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Monday, July 4, 2016

Recent Gaming 2016 July August


After a brief side trek to another part of the continent and a lot of crazy stuff, the PCs are back in 'AfghanIceland' and finding out that someone worse than the religious warlocks (ironic, no?) and warlords is beginning to make things worser, and the PCs are supposed to be part of it (when aren't they?).  Apparently being a servant of a Shadow Demon has its downside.


GM introduced (most of) our new PCs in his FortyKay RP campaign.  Used my system generation tables and ended up with nasty etheral-shifting aliens; tough as nails (more than 42 points worth of armour and wounds), four melee attacks, poison that is worse based upon degrees of success, etc. Good stuff.  The big bads are more Kao$.  My 'Warlock captured by Space Drow  and escaped worse for wear' PC has yet to appear.


Last week made new EC UWoM characters with Gamma World mutations on a planet far from their other characters.  Had them each roll up 1d4 bits of Ancient tech: a lot of hologram virtual technology, and a blaster and ammo, but no magazine.
Main characters received goodies and are now fiddling about on an edenic world run by an archdragon in its pocket dimension where it created clones of the pcs which are maturing in barrows in the wetlands.  The PCs are carving weird symbols in the rocks and other fun stuff.

Monday, June 20, 2016

The Accommodating GM and the Weird Sunday

"Do I give you guys too little treasure?"

Player 1: "Why don't we just fast forward through this section of space?"
Me: "You have plans I should be aware of?"
Player: "It'd just be a bunch of random encounters."
Me: "And possibly the resources, contacts, or other means to accomplish your goal (of paying off a 250,000 debt) once you reach Guild Space.
Player: "OK, good point."

Me: "You have to make  a decision where you are going to go.  The less populated area, the more populated area, or out into the wilds with damaging terrain."
Player: "Why not go through the most populated area?  What could go wrong?"
Player 2: "We would be noticed and if we got into a fight, we'd likely be destroyed [] their ships are twice as big as ours (and would do massive damage if they hit)."
Player 3: "Why don't you want to go through the less populated space?"
Player 1: "We'll meet bad guys there and they'll attack us.  Why do we think that the more populated area is less safe?'
Players 2 & 3: "There ships are bigger, there are more of them, and they have more sensors operating in that area.  We may face a few outcasts in the less populated area, but we will definitely face more if we go into the more populated space."
And on it went in contrary-land for a while.

Travelling through the less populated space, they detect a habitable planet almost perfectly textbook perfect.  Player number 1's other character receives a vision of a dragon who invites the party to meet and discuss the planet.  The dragon is described as a higher-reality creature who is projecting its presence into normal space.  It wants the party to send humans to populate its planet.  In exchange, it will give them their pick of treasure.  Player 3's PC finds a piece that will more than cover the 250,000 debt.  The other four PCs (between Players 1 & 2) will choose their loot next week.

Next bit of post-game conversation is about other players at the store I am known not to get on well with.  Feels like a bit of a wind-up.


Monday, June 6, 2016

June 5th '16: Thursday and Sunday Gaming Updates

After a fun, highly abstract (card-based) game of W40k on Saturday night, Sunday's Encounter Critical UWoM game was fun of a different sort.

The PCs, having found that independent aimlessness wasn't as fun as they thought it could be, have found structure and drive in acting as a space exploration team for an Imperial-era AI.  Additionally, they are representatives of the Greater Yirinn Sphere / Dryvv, expanding both groups' influence as they travel.

A lot of the things that had happened in the (year?) of gaming had been undone, and now are being re-introduced to their current timeline.  The massive war against the Q'Lish and the loose federation of species that couldn't happen in the Humanosphere and Species Empires section of the former galaxy was possible in the galactic offshoot (cloud, etc.) -- but that all collapsed as that timeline was undone from the PCs' perspective when a critical character disappeared from time.

Now, the same group, and the replacement PC (and new addition), are finding that probabilities are clustering around the same lines and similar events are occurring, as well as 'memories' of the other timeline returning to them.

Presently, they are on a planet most of them had previously visited once or twice before, where the Imperial descendants were in a global prison state run by a minority of Hierophantic Church, Psionic College, and Imperial Nobles, suppressing a population of psionics.  I'll skip the previous encounters with these people, but, let's just say that it isn't a happy place.  Additionally, the planet itself is less than hospitable, but livable.

Psionic technology and Tauron the quasi-40k, Haelbean-Other Human character is playing a major role, while I'm trying to keep the other characters engaged.  I think magic will have a few things to add to the mix, but my main concern is integrating Sam Crow (former Guild Combine assassin) into the higher powered storyline.  Sam has pretty neat teleport capabilities, but without combat, he doesn't have a lot of face-time.


My Thursday night Hangouts game is continuing to draw thew PCs into the exploration of my version of Ben Djarum's Yngarr setting.  The area the PCs are in now is like tribal Afghanistan if set in Iceland and populated by folks from the Beastmaster setting.  I'm taking some inspiration from Talislanta, and HPL's Dreamlands as depicted by Chaosium.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Sunday 2016 May 15th

We had an opportunity to test the Combat Elaborations:

Initiative that Matters
Clarified Round Structure
Hit Locations
+ Bleeding
Revised Armour Saving Throw procedure

First Round was just a few single combats and an overwatch unit.
Next Round saw 16 bad guys show up and then the hurting began.
By the end of the session, we had two PCs down but passed their Survival Rolls (but not easily), and a random event which really helped the PCs and had a great in-game rationale.  The bad guys were not well prepared to fight in the dark and when the lights went out, it was like shooting fish in a barrel.

Situational Awareness can make life and death difference: one missed Clue roll and then Personal Saving Throws were unavailable, as also happens when Prone (such as when each leg receives a wound).

Critical Strikes are increasingly common as the PCs level, and their opponents are generating them as well.  Ouch.

For lots of [optional] bells and whistles, it runs gruesomely well: more like MERC than Phoenix Command.  Using Mass Combat rules instead drops figures much more quickly in table time, and is D&D-level abstract, which is great.  Three scales of combat with a lot of interchangeability of optional rules so that the mass combat can easily include a basic or advanced Hit Location roll to determine whether hard cover blocks a body part, or, at the bells and whistles scale, simply remove figures once their Armour is penetrated.  Options and speed.

Good testing session, and the Shadow Warlock didn't blow up the universe.  :D

Monday, April 25, 2016

Playtest Campaign Play Report 24th April

The exploding shuttle aft of their ship blew through all 9 Hull Points and inflicted a Critical Hit on a ship system, which would have been the newly installed forward phasic cannon, but that couldn't have worked, so next would have been Cargo, including the thousands of explosive and incendiary arrows they were transporting to the agriplex.  Instead, the now Dryvv Shadowblood Warlock burned blood to change that to Communications / Data / Sensors, which she can repair.

The Warlock, having changed her basic magic premise as well, now is using a deck of crystalline cards to cast magic more powerful than her True Magic (Cantripish) but less than her daily Spells (powerful).  She played the King of Clubs, and summoned a shadow revenant from the Porphyry: World of The Burn world age, and commanded him to stop the battle.  He sunk into shadow and boarded on of the chameleon folk shuttles bound for the planetoid.  I rolled for his success and received a very large success conflicted with a clear failure.  He reported to her, "I am free."  It was then that it became apparent that the tractor beam the planetoid was using to stabilise itself, rather than plunge into Arcend, had ceased.  Further evidence was that the atmosphere of the planetoid looked disrupted, and the agriplex cannon was able to penetrate it, clearing sight of a fiery ring on the planetoid's surface.

Roughly half the distance as Luna from Earth, the planetoid was beginning to near, causing seismic events, endangering everyone on the agriplex.  The chameleons began to bug out and did not send further shuttles.  One chameleon guy had been captured by the resident Haelbean Criminal played by D, and the two were getting on well ('Let me go, Puller of Tongues!').  Meanwhile, it became apparent that the Imperial QinqNol scout was running from something else, beyond the planetoid, as an evil red glow was shining behind the planetoid.  A communication was received, broadcast in the Elemental Fire tongue.  Naturally, the Warlock felt awful about dooming everyone, again, and so she played her best card, appealing to Lord Shadow to intervene in a meaningful fashion, etc., etc.  Lord Shadow answered by eclipsing the planetoid and it disappearing into the Plane of Shadow.  This has repercussions not immediately apparent.  Exposed now, the evil red glare was investigated by the crew.

A world-eating starship which hunts these Wekanrot was bearing down on its prey, and was more than a little surprised to find it had suddenly vanished.  More Fire tongue nonsense.  However, the Imperial QinqNol scout ship was about to disappear into the world-eater's maw when the PCs neared, were caught in the class 100 tractor beam, and were being drawn in as well.   The Haelbean Pswordlock opened a warp portal to the scout ship, and through clever taunting by the party, brought him over.  The Warlock lass pulled her umpth card of five for the day, and plane shifted the PCs' ship into Shadow, allowing them one hour of travel at a little over 3,886 MpH.  The QinqNol Scout demanded that they travel towards the his fleet, and they thought it would be a good idea to have friends with starships at a moment like this.  We ended the session with a boarding party entering their ship.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Playtest Campaign Play Report Update 17th April

The Player, J, who has been running a Glassblood Aelbaan Warlock (/ Astrogator / Scout) from the beginning of the campaign offered two of the character's incarnations up to the Dryvv, in exchange for their help in destroying the L'Mori insectoids which had captured them due to a conflict she had inadvertently created with the planet (Astrogators have the Cosmic Sorcery special ability).  The Dryvv were very clear that they were not going to attempt to do anything more than break the Warlock out in the exchange, and so the party was rescued in that regard.  Meanwhile, Ry's gunslinger (who had been a henchman to a character whose Patron is a Dryvv Litch) calls on her, and she coincides with the rescue such that each group is responsible for their rescue.  The group now are paradoxes, as the two incarnations the Dryvv took from J's character were ancestral, rather than future, and so now she is rewritten in reality as the Dryvv version of a Haelbean (Yirinn / Dryvv).  Everyone's past has been rewritten except for the gunslinger's as he is technically the oldest character, having his origin in late IVth Era Autumn before the flight from Urutsk.

Next episode, the Strict Machine, AI leader of Ledha, kink-capital city-state, cannot account for a discrepancy in her time stamp, and calls the group to meet her android avatar.  Their ship (roughly the same size as the Millennium Falcon) has had the forward Phasic Emitter replaced with an upgrade (which was why they were there before the L'Mori incident), and an NPC as part of their crew who hadn't been part before (she is the incarnate spirit of the gunslinger's former boss's intelligent sword of wounding, Lancet).  Lancet ('Set) is wondering why some of them are still acting weird, asking about things  that are obvious history from her perspective, etc.  The group is examined by the AI, and it is determined that when the Aelbaan version of J's character had invested a point of True Magic into the AI, that accounted for the added picosecond on the time stamp.  Feeling very generous, the Strict Machine asked the group to fly a shipment of high tech arrows to an agriplex who had ordered them months prior.  Coincidentally, due to atmospheric disturbance, the agriplex was unreachable.

The Dryvv-Yirinn Warlock (etc.) plotted the fastest course to the agriplex, and the cyborg pilot flew to the sagitta of its arc and spotted a planetoid incredibly close to the planet.  Moreover, craft were flying from the planetoid and attacking the agriplex, and then returning to the planetoid in some sort of continuous operation.  Thriceover, a faint, garbled, alien broadcast was detected behind the paletoid, and it was determined to be Imperial QinqNol.  The message was on repeat, and amounted to a scout informing its group that the planetoid had been spotted.  The gunslinger knew of these planetoids, having their origin in a previous World Age, where they formed on the homeworld (then, Porphyry) as small balls of matter, and collected living bits and animals, known as Wekanrot, before they left the planet for space.  With over 14k years between Porphyry and Urutsk, this Wekanrot's presence so far out, let alone so close to the massive desert planet Arcsend, is peculiar to be certain.

The planetoid attacked the ship with a d11 Tractor Beam, and the d15 ship was able to break free in a few rounds of contested rolls.  The crew land the ship, attack two alien shuttles on a landing approach, and disembark to melee the retiloid aliens; the shuttles are destroyed.  Ry's Pswordlock character is pretty powerful at this point, and is PKing aliens about, killing each time.  The aliens are only using stunners, and are clearly absconding with personnel and other life forms from the agriplex and attempting to return to the planetoid.  The Warlock superpowers the agriplex' cannon which is firing at the planetoid, and unlike its own shots, this one penetrates the thick ionising atmosphere, apparently doing the harm the 'plex wanted to achieve.  Doc was only Dazed by a Stunner hit, but wouldn't shake it off for another 4 Minutes game time.

We held it there.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Technological Disobedience

Perfect inspiration for post-apocalypse thinking gaming.