Archive for September, 2020

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Into October and Autumn, leaving September

30 September, 2020

Happy AutumnTomorrow begins October, the eighth month (naturally) of the Roman Calendar.  It seems the Romans had no special association for October beyond Autumn, but we have Halloween!  So the theme on the Sea of Stars Design Journal for this month will be Monsters and Monstrous Things!

If you have ideas for a Monster you wish to see, let me know and I will try to make it happen.

Have a safe Autumn all.

September, 2020, saw the following posts here:

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Review – Shadowrun: Slip Streams

30 September, 2020

Slip StreamsShadowrun: Slip Streams is very much a book for Games Masters, lots of information, lots of adventure seeds, all expanding on the effects that magic is having on the world. If the magic side of Shadowrun story is your jam, this is the book for you. Otherwise, it is an interesting read and there are no lack of adventure ideas that it throws off. For players, the in game information is a fun read and the new character option is intriguing but not for all campaigns, talk with your GM first.

Shadowrun: Slip Streams, is a Plot Sourcebook for Shadowrun, Sixth World Edition, expanding on the magical situation across the world but with a focus on events affecting North America.

As is expected, it begins with a brief introduction and a glossary of terms related to astral space, this is very handy and important to what follows. Then the requisite fiction section before the meat of the product begins.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Metropolitan Signal Whistle

29 September, 2020

A whistle for help“Good to see a city with properly organized wardens,” said Voddick taking a drink from a fresh tankard of ale.

Gollaon nodded idly.  “It is a challenging thing to organize well.”

“So true, the opportunities for corruption are numerous,” said Voddick.  “It take people convinced of the value of laws to run such a system well.”

“Law?  What about justice?” asked Gollaon.

“Good laws, ably administered are a step towards justice,” replied Voddick.  “But true justice always proves elusive, so we do our best.”

“I will drink to that.”

Metropolitan Signal Whistle

These whistles are usually made of brass to a standardized design, practical and tough, they get the job done without being showy.

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Visit Scenic Petrichor

29 September, 2020

I have been running learn to play D&D sessions monthly, so I thought I should consolidate the information on the usual location to make it easier for the players to reference.

Petrichor

What emerges after the rain?Many odd places exist in the Sea of Stars, one such place was the Wash, a large island that was constantly under pounding rain.  While a few hardy (or unfortunate) souls set up small settlements to sell fresh water to passing ships, expeditions into the exterior never returned or came back with stories of washed out plains and low hills of mud.  Even the expansionist powers gave up on settling the fringe of an island whose only resource was rainwater.

Then, the rain stopped, entirely.  The omnipresent clouds, blew away.  Suddenly, the Wash was just another island.  Cautiously, exploration began, after all the rains could come back at any time.  To their surprise, there were forests, mountains and lush grasslands, rivers and streams, even ruins.  It was as if the real nature of the land had been held ayont, waiting for the rains to stop before they returned.

Now, there is a great rush to claim this new land.  While in the capital, lawyers and surveyors argue over who owns the lands, everyone knows that it will be the facts on the ground that ultimately decide the division of this new realm.

Setting: The Sea of Stars, a new frontier thereof.  Characters who are venturing upon such land for reasons of their own.

  •    Continuity: Episodic with continuity, season arcs.
  •    Rating: PG13, themes of colonialism, slavery and exploitation are likely to appear.
  •    Style: Exploration, politics, community building.
  •    Tone: Serious but not aiming for dark, just thoughtful.

Rules: D&D5, with standard Sea of Stars modifications (see character creation notes here). Read the rest of this entry ?

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New Magic Item – Shield of Balance

22 September, 2020

Is balance just?“Why did we get chosen to take the fight to the enemy wizards again?” asked Voddick as another bolt of fire sizzled by him.

“Triple pay and a bounty?” replied Gollaon snapping a shot off with his bow.

“Oh, right,” nodded Voddick just before something slammed into his shield.  “Acid?  I just got that shield.”  He said tossing the shield aside as the acid continued to eat it way through its layers.

“Let’s catch up with our brave leader, his shield has been magicked to resist such things, I think.”

Shield of Balance

These shield are always fairly large and often decorated with a simple symbol of balance, being painted half black and half white is common, on the back are inscribed complex calculations of the seasons and paired oppositional symbols of the elements.

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Superheroes – Once upon a Time in 1967 – Issue 4 – When the Going gets Weird

21 September, 2020

Fox's Den, er, PenthouseIn the weeks following Issue 3:

Cover: Each of the characters in their own section, Vulpix on her penthouse balcony, Roboto arm wresting Lt. Steel, Horizon by a hospital bed, 808 poring over photographs of UFOs and Shadowfist talking with a shadowy figure on a rooftop.

Opening page:  Vulpix and her uncle looking over photos of the team and others superheroes spread out on a table, Mission: Impossible style.

Next page: Vulpix has approached her Uncle, who is the costumed le Renard Noir, to improve her training regime and to learn how to lead the team more effectively.  He agrees to work with her on such, including access to the family’s achieves of working with paranormals across the years and reminds Vulpix that her cousin, Jacque, stands ready to aid her as an assistant should she wish.  She demurs the offer of her cousin’s help, not feeling enough of a hero to take on the responsibility of a sidekick yet, but throws herself into training and study.  So a page of scenes of her doing physical training, reading books, watching films of past superteams and finally collapsing into bed.

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Shadowrun Campaign News for mid-2020 and a new Seattle Scream Prop (#67)

21 September, 2020

Urban fantasiesShadowrun continues to be played via the wonders of the proto-Matrix  (supported by Tyche’s Games our local game store).  It makes an adequate replacement for play around the table and we are playing about every three weeks rather than monthly, so there is that.

Still happily playing the Sixth World Edition of Shadowrun though have added add some minor house rules to match our play style.  Still need to work out a better way to represent gaining edge, around a table I can just toss a chip to the player, online, it is a bit trickier.  But that is a minor issue.  New players do not seem to have any problem picking up how the game works, though the multitudes of edge options is a little overwhelming.

To support that ongoing campaign, we have a new scream sheet: Seattle Scream 67, the corporate buyout is a indirect result related to one of adventures.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Ghost Sealing Shroud

15 September, 2020

Shroud for the dead“I hate executions,” said Gollaon.  “Even when deserved, they are unpleasant to watch.”

“Take it up with our charge’s mother, she seems to think it is good for youth to see the result of such justice,” replied Voddick.  “Though in general I agree with you.  While justice must be done, and be seen to be done, there is no reason to make such a spectacle out of it.”

“Some just take delight in the misfortune and suffering of others.”

“The only good thing I can say about the the whole thing is that they are serving beer.”

Ghost Sealing Shroud

These shrouds are made of lead beaten into a thin sheet and marked with wards and protective sigils along the edges, until it is placed over the head of an unresisting or completely bound human-like creature, then it binds to the creature until it is killed or it is forcibly removed.  Once the being is killed hardens like poured wax until pulled away and even then it remain stiff until the spirit inside is removed.  Originally designed for the noble purpose of catching the spirits on murders when they were executed to prevent them from becoming vengeful spirits some have turned them to a less enlightened purpose.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Thief Catching Mirror

8 September, 2020

Mirror, mirrorGollaon frowned and moved to another stall in the market and then another.

“What is the matter?” asked Voddick, joining him with a clay cup of beer.

“All of these fine establishments,” he answered, gesturing to the market, “have poor quality mirrors strung up, no matter what they sell, which make me look terrible.  I cannot stand to see those distorted reflections staring back at me.”

“Vanity, vanity, all is vanity,” commented Voddick with a grin.  “But they are to deter thieves.”

“But few thieves are as handsome as me.”

Thief Catching Mirror

These brass or bronze mirror are mass produced and simple items designed for one purpose, the catch thieves.  The mirrors themselves are not very good, showing warped and blurred images.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Dragon Claw Gauntlets

1 September, 2020

Claws and effect“Do wizards imitate dragons because they want their power?” asked Voddick, observing the wizard run through complicated hand gestures wearing gloves reminiscent of a dragon’s claws.

“Does not everyone want a slice of the power of the dragons?” replied Gollaon with a smile.

“Not I, that sort of power attracts trouble.”

“True and we have trouble enough.”

Voddick raised his mug.  “Truth.”

Dragon Claw Gauntlets

These gauntlets are made to evoke the claws of dragonkine and are used by spell-casters to focus their arcane energies and protect the wearer.  Made from heavy leather, usually from rare creatures, with the claws made of metal or alchemically treated claws or talons.

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