Archive for January, 2022

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Tuesday Magic Item – Map of the Territory

18 January, 2022

Orkney MapGollaon sprinted after the assassin. “Come on we almost have them!”

Voddick did his best to keep up, his crossbow cocked and loaded.

Gollaon rounded a corner and slide to a halt, a large piece of paper gently wafted towards the ground in front of him.

“What?” half asked, half demanded Voddick as he followed, crossbow quickly aimed at the moving paper.

“Thrice damn him to hell!” shouted Gollaon.  “Back to the Royal quarters and hope we are not too late.”

Voddick spun and began running back the way they came and Gollaon followed behind as the map settled to the floor behind them.

Map of the Territory

These maps are a recent invention, though their source is unknown, they were widely used before their secondary function was discovered.  Now they are still used but much more carefully and their creator is even more avidly sought out.

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Shadowrun Campaign News for the start of 2022 and a new Seattle Scream Prop (#72)

17 January, 2022

RockOn!Shadowrun moves forward in 2022, playing both online and in person (once a month), after a break for the holidays.  Getting ready to start the Songs on the Key of X campaign.  To do so, I had to wrap up the T3 (Total Tempest Tour) game, which we had started under 5th ed, to show you how long ago that was, but some of the player wanted to reprise their characters so here is an (in game) commentary on the end of the tour:

Dateline Seattle

I stand here on the tarmac of SeaTac international airport in the intermittent snow watching as Indigo Storm returns bloodied but unbowed from her Total Tempest Tour (T3) of Europe.  Like a conquering queen, she sweeps down the stairway from her private jet, guitar slung across her back and a cocktail glass of something neon blue in her hand.  She seems unaffected, or perhaps unaware, of the assassination attempts that took the life of one of her security team and the terrorist plot to sink the floating stage in Venice while she was performing.  She is happily trading barbs with the music press, myself among them.

    “Tempest!  Did you and your team have anything to do with the attempted coup in Hungary?”

    She laughed and finished her drink in a single gulp.  “Rock and roll has started revolutions before!  We certainly supported the aspiration of the people who tore down the reactionaries attempt to seize power!  The people will be free!”  She struck a dramatic pose and winked.

    “That’s enough for today, newsies!  I’ll see you -if you can get tickets- at the Inferno!” She laughed and slipped into a waiting limousine.

    From what my research had turned up, Tempest’s answer was mostly accurate.  Margit Kovács, leader of the Young Democrats of Hungary, said that Tempest interrupted her concert to issue a call to arms to oppose the attempted coup   It was the media blackout that the coup imposed prevented it from being widely distributed at the time, and after the event the new government suppressed it wanting the rising of the people to appear to have been spontaneous in their support.  But you can find a copy of it here:

<Media File – Indigo Storm leads the counterrevolution>

    It was not the only adventure that she had according to what this reporter has been able to uncover.  Information places her in the suburbs of Prague, Czechia, near to where a drug deal went bad leaving two people, both suspected syndicate members, dead.  No eyewitness or recording can confirm she was there but her hired car left the area shortly after shots were fired.

    In Copenhagen, she was confirmed on the scene in an aftermath of a boat crash that turned out to be a smuggling ploy that went disasterously wrong.  That same evening there was a scuffle outside her hotel that may, though this is unconfirmed, have involved gunfire and magic.  The hotel has only shared it security footage with the Danish Politiet and no amount of wheedling by this reporter was able to shake copies loose.  However a witness to the tail end of the confrontation claimed to see a large man or an ork in a mask bodyslam a man with an SMG.  My sources strongly indicate that the smuggling ring is tied to or run by one of the Russian syndicates.  Possibly the same group whose drug deal went bad in Prague though this is unconfirmed.

It was also reported that Indigo Storm’s private jet had to take an unscheduled landing in Reykjavík, Iceland after a flaw was found in the autopilot.  Indigo used it for a surprise, though brief, concert in the airport.  She framed it as a farewell to the tour in the same location it had begun, but witnesses said it she was extremely shaken getting off the plane.

So, perhaps our little novastar is hiding her light in the shadows on occasion?  She would not be the first, or is likely to be the last, who was tempted by the adrenaline rush of such dangers.  But time will tell if she will continue this dual life or return exclusively to the bright lights of stardom.

Now, I do have tickets to the show at the Inferno, so I hope to see you there.

Gina Andropolous signing off.

Still working my way through Double Clutch and hope to have my review finished soon, some good stuff and some wacky stuff there.  Already informed my group that there will be no anti-grav in my campaign, I find the total shift implied by anti-grav to be too jarring (not to mention one of my physicist friends had great trouble with the very concept which has always colored my thoughts on it).

Now for some news that is fit to use!  The new Seattle Scream (#72)!  The story about Lucidorable and the giving of toys by Namco are both the fallout from runs played.  Rare to have two runs make it into the Scream.

Hope your Shadowrunning is going well.  Feel free to tell us all about it in the comments!

Notes: Photo found on pxhere.com and is in the Public Domain.

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Political intrigue among Dragons (RPG Blog Carnival)

13 January, 2022

This month’s RPG Blog Carnival theme is hosted by Daemons and Death Rays and is on Political intrigue, Courtly drama and Factions and, as I am hosting next month, it seems only right that I contribute to this month’s carnival.  And the theme is perfect for the Sea of Stars in any case.

dragon-princeDragons are the rulers of the Sea of Stars from the Empress at the top who, in theory, ultimately controls everything to the lowest of individual dragons who only rule over a single island (for no dragon does not have at least a small piece of land that belongs entirely to them).  Each of them (except for the Empress, perhaps) is seeking to advance themself and gain more power, preferably at the expense of other dragons for everything is better when it is taken from another, thus proving one’s strength and a rival’s weakness.  Yes, dragons are usually right bastards.

But the dragons rarely descend to physical conflict with each other, as that is risky even with proper preparation, so they primarily focus on political maneuvering which, in many ways, is more satisfying in any case as it proves you are cleverer than your rival.  As dragons are functionally immortal, they have time to craft long-term, and occasionally absurdly complicated, plans to gain advantage over their rivals.  This is less of an advantage than it sounds as the rival they are acting against is also functionally immortal with the ability to prepare equally elaborate defenses or even counter maneuvers.

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Tuesday Magic Item – Carmenta’s Book

11 January, 2022

Learn the alphabet or make your own!Voddick watched in fascination as the young scribe added another new ideogram into the book.  “I would have thought it would be filled by now,” he whispered to Gollaon.

“I suspect it would be, were it not enchanted,” replied Gollaon pouring a cup of tea.

“Of course, I should have noticed,” said Voddick.  “I have already seen more pages than could possibly fit in that book.”

Gollaon nodded and handed Voddick a cup of tea.

Carmenta’s Book

These book are very rare, only a few exist and they are prized by their owners, they are slim but tall volumes marked with the owner’s initials marked on the front, changing to match the local language.  The pages are a rich cream color and take ink exceeding well.  The book is, perhaps surprisingly, resistant to almost all damages.

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What is a “Dungeon”?

7 January, 2022

design-for-a-stage-set-showing-the-interior-of-a-fortress-or-dungeon-061ac6So, my wife and I were talking with some other gamers at our local game store, Tyche’s Games, as you do.  The people we were talked mentioned that their campaign did not not have dungeon and then described what their campaign did have . . . which sounded just like a dungeon just under another name.

Which lead to a discussion among my wife and I about what defines a dungeon.  I think I know what defines a dungeon, in the classic Dungeons & Dragons sense, to me and which I will elaborate on in a moment.  But what does the term dungeon mean to you?  What images does the word conjure?  Is there anything that you immediate think of, for good or ill?

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Shadowrun Campaign Pitch – Songs in the Key of X

5 January, 2022

It has been a bit since I have done one of these, campaign stat blocks are a good way to frame a pitch for your group, which is what I am doing here.

Shadowrun – Songs in the Key of X

X by troyakA shadowrunning team works to survive and thrive on the mean streets of Seattle while being drawn into investigating the mysteries behind the creation of ManaWave Technologies and the plans of its CEO, the sinister Dr Shipson . . .

Setting: This will be set in Seattle of the Shadowrun Universe, at least my divergent timeline of it, 2079.  Broad continuity shared with James’ NorCal Shadowrun campaign.

  •   Continuity: Episodic with arcs.
  •   Rating: PG in general, standard nasty corporate stuff and maybe some toxic and other disturbing magic.  Do people want to draw lines (things that are off the table) and veils (fade to black situations) for this campaign?
  •   Style: Crime, investigation with some social and political maneuvering.
  •   Tone: Heist Movie mixed with Investigative television show with occasional shades into techno-horror.

Rules: Shadowrun 6WE with standard house rules. Read the rest of this entry ?

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Tuesday Magic Item – Boxed Kitchen

4 January, 2022

BoxVoddick glanced into the wagon and quickly hurried on.  “I know why the meal wagon always has excellent food for those willing to pay,” he said, sotto voice, to Gollaon.

“Indeed?” ask Gollaon looking toward the wagon.

“A kitchen box, one of the larger ones.”

Gollaon raised an eyebrow.  “Then no more eating well.  I do not trust those boxes.”

“That is just . . . I do not either.”

Boxed Kitchen

These boxes come in several sizes (each increasingly valuable) and they can be made of wood or metal or a mix of both and they are often decorated with culinary scenes.  The boxes are sturdy but surprisingly light until they are used, then they become surprisingly heavy.  They are used bu opening them, adding food, usually raw and then closing them.  Precisely an hour later, a meal will have been prepared from the ingrediants provided seved on simple dishes unless better were provided.

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