Sunday, February 22, 2015

Game Crafting and Toledo Rules (Crawlspace)

Just finished BASHCon 2015, as great a time as ever. Friday night during the Crawlspace session, "The Swamp Troll",  because of a slough of deaths, some rules tweaking came about. As everyone knows, when a Character dies they get an "All-In Hand" which are the five Damage that he has taken up to that point. If the cards can be arranged into a poker hand, the pairs or straights that happen are removed as Damage for the sake of drama. Well, I didn't specify if there were any sort of limitations on the All-In Hand conventions. My figuring at the time was that there was about a 40% that any random deal of playing cards were "High Hands" (crap-hands or "Bluff Crowns"). Thanks to the this play session, I began to realize that my math was wrong.

Officially, somewhat, it only occurs 4.1% of the time. Hey my decimal point was off. I think Beckett, who was there, already knew this. He was at the session and we discussed "High Hands," which I was calling "Trash Hands" before the session was in full swing.

Luckily during the course of play, only three Characters out of the eight playing, constituted the slough that I spoke of earlier. So despite a bunch of great lethal scenes, when I expected one out of the three fatalities to be fatal the arithmetic started clicking. This is not really that big of a problem.

Death and dying doesn't have to be too easy in  Crawlspace and ultimately it is up to the GM.  In my mind, if an event moves the story into tying up a yarn into a larger knit for a complete fill, the GM needs to let it happen. Before then though, some poetic license should be allowed during these fatal "moments" that the cards can rewrite. Heck a GM, as the director, can call the "Made For TV" clause, and send everybody on a potty break, and during that commercial break, he can rearrange the All-In Hand that is about to read. I am mostly kidding here, but I hope that you, dear reader, get the point.

But without being conniving or arbitrary, I don't like to be either when GMing, quicker death for PCs can be helpful. I, of course, threw my design dilemma to the crowd, JerryTel mentioned a couple solutions. One of them included the number Damage before the All-In Hand was required reducing at each death.

So here's my recommendation, which could very well be finalized, in something called (working title) St. Dubious University: Crawlspace Schoolhouse Schlock. A Character's first death is after five Damage. His second is after three. The third death and those thereafter, is after two Damage cards are obtained.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

A World a Week: an Ozgard critter listing.

Thought I'd type up some of my handwritten notes from the Ozgard campaign. I was exploring random-encounter adventures, with fixed plot points while players were in specific regions. I called it my Tunnel Hack (TunnelHack!) matrix. I suppose it was kind of similar to what others were calling "sand-boxing."

Encounters for Gloom Wood:
(Red, White Die): (encounter)
1,1: Aunty Ant and her Ant-men,
2,1: Bears
3,1: Alfin (savage elves)
4,1: Dyrads (alfin-brides),
5,1: Echos (incorporeal ancient elves),
6, 1: Frog-kin
1,2: Grubbies (Sentient and magic-wielding grubs)
2,2: The Hobgoblin (magical monster NPC)
3,2: Forest Imps
4,2: Beetlers
5,2: Jinx Minks
6,2: Wombats
1,3: Gobbler Clan (goblins)
2,3: Tree-folk (kind of ents but cool)
3,3: Dragon-fly sprites
4,3: Snow Tigers
5,3: Mokko (were-moose)
6,3: Badger-kin
1,4: The Occasional Yak (magical monster NPC)
2,4: Mushroom-kin (knee-high)
3,4: Opossum
4,4: Cold Kangaroos
5,4: Paleolithic Wolverine (deadliest encounter here)
6,4: Woodchuck-kin
1,5: Reindeer
2,5: Goose-kin
3,5: Otter-kin
4,5: Bluelings (smurfs, they say "Blue" instead of smurf)
5,5: Tuskers (boar-faced humanoids)
6,5: Moose
1,6: Zinger the Wizard (NPC)
2,6: Wolves
3,6: Reeks (antlered saquatch)
4,6: Jinx Lynx
5,6: Duck Dancers (Leprechaun clan)
6,6: Woolly Platypuses

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Wobble: Cats from... Saturn(?), Kernel #1

The other night our cat Tio, short for Theodoric, was lying between Peryton and her laptop. Because of the winter's dry air in the house, whenever she petted him, a charge of static electricity would move into the processor and the machine would think an obscure key had been hit. A little "ping" would fill our den, and have both of us looking around wondering what was going on, since we both working on our computers at that time. When we figured out what it was, we were able to recreate the occurrence a couple times, so we didn't have to call Ghost Busters or some such.

A little later Peryton started talking about Shroedinger's Cat, while I,  looking for a song by the Loving Spoonful, accidentally pulled up a video of some guy in Sweden who had built a "box" for the same thought experiment. Let's hope the Swede keeps it a thought experiment, because the real result is, the longer in the box, the more certainty that the cat is dead, period.

A little later, I was reading a blog where the author hated how the Lovecraftian Dreamalnds were being used. He even slipped in the Cats from Saturn.


Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Wobble: Payphones (Closing)

That's A Wrap:
Any surviving the session get 900 X.P. plus 75 X.P. for each big laugh that the group had from their antics or quips during the sit down. Depending on what has occurred in the last scenes, the Characters can be in various states. The honorary member of SEWER will be offered the directorship of the Observatory, if it is still there, for resolving this yarn's dilemma.

If the action stopped abruptly with the apprehension of Profession Flystop, someone could research into Flystops logs with a SR 25 on MENTAL, to learn:
o... Flystop had been researching into the universe labeled "Omicron" by explorers from the Apex in Omega Verse. It is often referred to as "Hell" or the "Infernal Cosmos" by many other Wobblers.
o... In his personal notes, he writes of contact with a being identifying itself as Alphonus. The entity could very well be the saint of the same name. He claims to be trapped in the realm and requires assistance. Flystop feels that he should endeavor to assist the being, as he is sure that his own means of controlling aliens is more than likely capable of containing any threat.
o... Flystop decided not to share his experimentation with SEWER as he was tired of their interference with his research over the past decade.

Characters in other Verses, will find their Wobbling ability depleted for 4d6 hours, and must survive until they can start Wobbling hopefully back home.

Cohorts of the Castaway Characters, should hopefully want to start trying to find their missing colleagues.

(Copyright Feb 2015, Tom K Loney. SEWA and SEWER copyright 2009 Michael Larsen and used with permission.)

Wobble: Payphones (delivery four)

Knitting the Yarn:
 Whether the Characters guarded the Observatory and the Professor, or got into a scuffle with the stricken person from the train station; as the evening shadows lengthen, they will find themselves back at the Observatory. If nothing else, Flystop will call to tell them that the three stricken people, including the two that he was earlier unable to find, have appeared at the lab's grounds, as if surrounding the building. The cops that might have been pursuing him will be on the other side of the town following someone that they think looks like him. If the stricken Character has not already had to, he should have to make a SR 30 on PHYSICAL to avoid getting d3 more PHYSICAL points and losing a point from MENTAL, and tearing his clothing.

If the characters have been researching the security database of the Observatory, they should be pretty suspicious about Professor Flystop and recent occurrences within the labs as well as whatever is going on with the payphones. If asked about the log, the scientist will claim that it has been hacked by the alien intelligence that is "invading the city, and likely the world!" He will then lock the Characters out of the upper level at the first possible chance that he has.
A short cut through the mystery will be one of the Characters making a SR 20 on LUCK to observe the robot going about its rounds during all the commotion. It will come to a broom closet that it will try twice to open before having to move on. If that Character ignores the clue, the robot will back in about two minutes and this time try the door knob. Characters will find the door, well, locked. A SR 20 on PHYSICAL should easily dislodge the handle and its electric lock. The bodies of everybody who works for Flystop will come tumbling out. A SR 30 on NERVE will be required to avoid being freaked out and from being nauseated.

Access to the upper level will be much harder than any door in the place. A SR 40 on MENTAL as well as an SR 35 on PHYSICAL to work the wiring just right. The door itself is from an old bank vault. and the walls are reinforced.

The Climax:
As darkness fully descends and night is begun, the three stricken people will begin to walk in a circle, counter clockwise around the facility. A payphone at the back of the building, which has heretofore gone unseen by our Wobblers will ring. At first it will ring once, somewhat eerily, so that the Characters have time to find it. Once it is found, it will start to ring again. It will continue ringing until someone picks it up. If the stricken Character answers the phone he will receive d3 MENTAL points and lose d2 PHYSICAL points.

"Call me Belphagor." The voice at the other end of the line will say. "What you think is Professor Flystop is an escapee from the Quck. We cannot allow that. Nor do I think that you would want that if you knew what we are capable of. "
Outside are Quck-inhabited beings from your world. They are casting a spell to return the whole structure that you are in into my domain. If it is drawn here, there is a good chance that one or more of you will be sucked along with it, regardless of where you are at that time. Here, listen"

The sounds of screaming and Latin will fill the receiver. 

"If you are somehow able to get the body of Flystop to my minions, I will stop the mechanism."

If the Characters get Flystop to the other Quck, there will be a cloud of darkness that covers everybody in the area. SR 15 on NERVE not to start screaming. It will lift and the possessed people will find themselves holding the dead body of Professor Flystop. They will have no memories of what has occurred. 

Quck Flystop, Quick 160
BASH 100
AIM 160
Throw Loop (cost 40 Quick)- Instantly teleports target that does make a SR 30 on LUCK 100 meters in any direction. 

If Characters decide to fight the Quck outside in order to stop the ritual, they will fight back. They will also continue to try to walk around the building in-between fisticuffs. The problem is that these Quck aren't actually part of the ritual. The unseen Belphagor is actually casting the spell from a nearby window, in a house where he has slaughtered the family that once lived there.

Quck #1, Quick 120
AIM 60

Quck #2, Quick 220
BASH 180
AIM 60

Quck #3, Quick 120
AIM 120
Moonless Moan (cost 60 Quick)- All hearing the moan will require SR 20 on NERVE to not be shaken into inactivity for 2d3 turns.

After thriteen (13) turns of combat, if the ritual is not stopped, the Observatory and any Characters that have not made a SR 25 on LUCK will be sucked into a location in the Omicron Verse. Those being dragged through will suffer 2d6 damage from chunks of our reality tumbling along with them. If they survive, they have a whole other adventure going on around them. If the ritual is stopped, but Flystop is still free, the top part of the Observatory will become bathed in a wash of sharp lights and incandenscent shapes. It will slip into another universe, a single Character must make a SR 20 on LUCK not to dragged along with it, this time only suffering d3 damage from the event.

If Flystop gets away, all the standing Quck including Belphagor will seek to take retribution on the Characters.

Belphagor, Quick 320
BASH 180
AIM 120
 Abraxus Suck (cost 80 Quick)- All within caster's range of sight must make a SR 30 on PHYSICAL or lose d3 PHYSICAL. The amount of PHYSICAL points lost are multiplied by ten and added to caster's Quick.
Moonless Moan (cost 60 Quick)- All hearing the moan will require SR 20 on NERVE to not be shaken into inactivity for 2d3 turns.
Throw Loop (cost 40 Quick)- Instantly teleports target that does make a SR 30 on LUCK 100 meters in any direction. 

Friday, February 13, 2015

Wobble: Payphones (third crunch)

Things Get Heated Up:
Professor Flystop will tell the Characters that he figures that whatever entity is causing the payphone attacks has figured out that it is being observed by him and is planning on attacking the Observatory. What happens next should vary from player group to player group. Here are a couple situations that could be encountered. The GM will have to adjust as he sees fit.

If the Characters, or a couple of them,  rush out to confront the individual from the train station, it will only take a SR 15 on LUCK for one of them to spot that person before stumbling upon him, or her. It will appear as though the stricken person is indeed making his way to Flystop's labs. When he gets closer, he will look up at the Wobblers.
The Character that picked up the payphone receiver from earlier will have to make an SR 30 on PHYSICAL not to have that stat increase by another D3 and lose another point of MENTAL. The size increase will start the clothes he is wearing to actually start to rip at the seems.
Attempts to communicate  with the stricken will boil down to him screaming in a near rage things like,
"NOT ONE!!! QUCK!!!"
Once the man has started yelling he will not stop. If not hindered he will keep walking up the hill.
As this scene is occurring on a public street just a little past lunch time, there is a SR 20 on LUCK that local police will notice the confrontation. Depending on what exactly going on, they will want to at least apprehend the stricken man who is yelling. If there is any sort physical altercation the police will want to apprehend all of the participants as well.
Whoever is the first to make a move to hinder the stricken person, he will prove to rather quick despite his loping walk moments before. It will take a SR 40 on PHYSICAL not to be judo flipped over his shoulder, and suffering d3 damage points. If someone starts to shoot a gun, or say use a taser, after the first shot, everyone within line of sight, must make SR 20 on their PHYSICAL stat not to be hit bit bits of "black air" that shoot forth from the person's fingertips, and taking d6 damage.

Quck #1, Quick 120
AIM 60

If Characters decide to stay and guard Professor Flystop, he will become agitated with them and urge them to go out and stop "the thing" (the person stricken at the train station). If his urgings come to no avail, he will tell the group that they can watch the exterior of the Observatory from the security monitors at the receptionists desk. He will state that he is working on something to send "the invaders back to where they came from." and must be left alone to complete his work. 
Anybody heading down to reception desk will indeed find six views from cameras posted at the mansion's four corners and two more over the front driveway and backyard. That Character(s) will also have access to the buildings security database PC. If a player doesn't think of it, with an SR 20 on LUCK a Character will screw up a Minesweeper game by hitting the "Control" key and opening up the system's security access dashboard. From this screen the Characters can do a bit of research, with a SR 20 on MENTAL, the following can be found out:
o... Some six people came through the front door on Wednesday AM, between 7:30am until 9:16am.
o... One went out the side door at 10:14am and came back in at 10:23am. Video footage will show a woman carrying out a mug of coffee and smoking a cigarette during that time.
o... No other exterior doors were opened until the Characters arrived.
o... There have been no less than 32 attempts by someone trying to get into Professor Flystop's quarters and libraries since 4:14pm Wednesday. Access denied due to bad retina scan and invalid codes at door, acceptable ID card though.
After about forty minutes, the person from the train station will arrive at main gate, and remain standing there staring at the front entrance camera. At this time, the Character who picked up the payphone in the Opening will have to make a SR 30 on PHYSICAL or gain d3 more PHYSICAL points while losing a MENTAL point. This time the Character's clothes will start to rip because of the growing muscles.

Wobble: Payphones (second bit)

Checking In on the Professor: (continued)

Getting into the Observatory will not be hard, at least one of the Characters will be an honorary member of SEWER and have an access badge for the electronic front door (10 X.P. for the player that thinks of being a member of the group first). The place will be rather quiet as no seems to be in the front offices but nothing will seem amiss. The four land-line phones will be set for "Weekend" though it is still Friday morning. A couple labs in the back will be orderly and locked up. To get to the second floor there is a regular staircase and this is where Professor Flystop's personal quarters are. There is also a third floor where he maintains secured libraries of both digital and paper data. Getting into either floor will take some doing requiring an SR 40 on MENTAL and SR 25 on PHYSICAL to unlock the area without setting off burglar alarms. From the spiral staircase that leads from the labs on the first floor to the observatory platform a light will shine down with the noise of someone humming and working.

There will be an automated robot routinely checking the postal slot at the front door. It will scan the envelopes in a basket there and drop them off at the appropriate desk or lab's door slot. It will then attach itself to the spiral staircase's handrail and trolley-car its way to the observatory platform. 

How the Characters go about working their way through the Observatory will determine the tone of the scene. The platform does not have a telescope but various large processors and ample liquid-oxygen cooling systems behind a bullet-proof seal chamber. The open area has up to six work stations, complete with 3-D display "flats." Flystop will be there and apparently unharmed. the scientist will be the picture of health as well as the epitome of the distracted person in a lab coat.

Flystop will have four of the work areas on and apparently they will be switching between surveillance cameras at various public areas. All sixteen of the hacked cameras will be focused on pay phones. The Professor will at the fifth work area pulling 3-D graphs and maps of an unrecognizable star system in a red and purple nebula, and have various notes and lines swirling around. Seeing the Characters the NPC will at first be startled and then give the wide smile that he, or she, is known for in Wobbler circles. He will be dirty and unkempt, and his clothes will look to have been worn for about three days.

When hearing of the dire proclamation, Flystop will be surprised and bit amused.
"Reports of my death are an exaggeration." will be the quip response.

The scientist will then go on to explain that he is monitoring an alien incursion into our world, and that is probably why the Characters were mislead into checking on him. He will then pull up images of various people picking up payphones over the last forty-eight hours. Each will be visibly shocked. Some will collapse, others will just stand there. All nine of them will shake off the effects and walk away in an odd manner. Then Flystop will show coroner/pathologist reports of seven out of the nine dead because of heart attacks within hours of their contact with the payphone call. He will have the names and addresses of the last two people contacted, though he will be assuming the earlier of the two is dead just undiscovered.

At this point, one of the workstations will sound an beeping alarm complete with a flashing red light. Flystop will move to it quickly. He will replay a scene at the nearby train station where another person surprised by its ringing, picked up a nearby payphone, and fell to the floor. Once again after a seconds, the individual will get up, shrug off any help, and start walking towards the exit. The exit will be in the direction of Millionaire's Hill.

Wobble: Payphones (the yarn's beginning)

Reader Discretion Advised: The following write-up is for GMs only. That means the intelligent, cool, and mature people of the hobby. If you're not a GM, you will turn into saltines before you've finished reading the article... Okay I am just kidding. Even if you plan on playing in my Wobble sessions, I this outline is one of four differing plots. I do ask that if we're role-playing together one day and I mention the name "Payphones" that you let me know if you've read this one.

Check out what happens next!
The player-characters, Characters, will find themselves at a public train station. This terminal is beneath a tall building in the downtown district of an urban area nearest the player's and GM's present location for the sake of familiarity, I use Cleveland myself. The building has a shopping mall with various outlets on the floors above the rail lines. The adjoining structures to the terminal towers are high end hotels, office buildings, and even a classy casino. Why the Characters are here is up to the GM, I, myself, will have them investigating ghost sightings.

As the characters move to an area where there is a batch of payphones, one will start ringing. If none of the Characters move to answer it already, all will have to make a SR at 40 on MENTAL not to reach over automatically to answer it. Even if everyone makes their rolls, the one with the lowest LUCK stat will pick it up.

ZAZAP! The Character picking up the phone will receive a blast of energy, taking a point of damage, SR 15 on PHYSICAL not to drop the phone and be knocked backwards. From the receiver everyone within fifty feet of the phone will hear,
"Professor Flystop is dead!"

(10 X.P. to the player that thinks to say something to the effect of, "Who the hell uses a payphone anymore?" at anytime during this scene)

The Characters all know the Wobbling theorist Professor A.W. Flystop. This person has been working in the field of trans-dimensional travel for the last decade with the Society of Extra-Weird Events Research (SEWER). Besides being brilliant and rather theatrical when doing presentations to his colleagues, Flystop has been known to do some Wobbling as well as just studying the phenomena. 

Checking In on the Professor:
Flystop's office lines and personal cell-phone will be busy, one might say unusually so. The Characters won't be able to reach him, so going to check on him face-to-face will be the only way. He works out of the Old Eastside Observatory atop Millionaire's Hill. The Characters will know that Eastside and Millionaire's Hill are on the rundown part of town, Flystop grew up in the area and refused to move away. The Observatory was once an actual astronomical telescope, around the 1890s, but as the city grew up around it, it became more of novelty mansion than anything else. Since Flystop's reinvestment it's been a well-maintain research facility for the SEWER franchise.

Before the Characters leave the terminal tower building, the one that answered the payphone will have to make a SR at 30 on PHYSICAL. If he fails, he'll grimace in pain and gain d3 points of PHYSICAL, and lose 1 point of MENTAL. The clothes he is wearing will start to pull at the seams and everyone will notice just from the stretching sound.  

Second Bit
Third Crunch
Delivery Four

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Still a Glow On the Horizon

Folks have been sending me emails explaining that they've just read an amazing post-apocalyptic rules system but don't want to share it with me because I am working on Glow. Sometimes it's called "Glowing," I am still looking for where that came from. All I have answered is, please send me the links to the stuff. I only huff about "folks stealing my ideas" because the authors actually beat me to it. Frankly, I am pretty confident, that I am doing something good here. If I find great great rules, I'd love to submit my scenarios for consideration to those systems. For my shorthand though, Red Bat is the form that is being used in writing and during the play.

The reason why this work keeps going is because, it keeps getting played.  In case you're wondering, Glow is going to be released as a "setting" for the TROTT system, which has been updated into something called Red Bat. I cannot tell you much about it, except that it is all but finished, but to not expect it within the next sixty days. The reason why I bother you with this info is because, someone else might be writing scenarios for the setting as well. From an email to this latest potential contributor I responded with the following info. Mind the reader, though there are quotation marks around the material, it's paraphrased.

"...The technology of Glow goes from space-faring to stone-age. Here's the handle, take something about your part of the world that is wrong and turn it into the dark future.

Here's some highlights of my own campaigns. Rather sheltered folks, "Bubble-heads," from the nano-tech capable Bubble Cities get thrust out into the Great Swamps (one time known as the Great Lakes). The "hi-tek" Rustbelters run a railroad track, aptly named the Rustbelt, from Pitt (Pittsburgh) to Terminal (just east of Chicago). Chicago, itself, is now often referred to as "Techno-City." The area is now full of robots controlled by a human-hostile AI working out its expansionist aims, and composing poetry-- it might also take up pottery. Most of rural areas of Ohio and Indiana are covered by the Y-Jungle, filled with agriculture livestock and plants gone wrong and wild. The Y-Tribe clones in the area keep quiet under the psychic command of Clone One. The other population centers are controlled The Nation of Billies, "Noobs," which have road warrior armies keeping mutant populations in the thrall of "Soapies" (Pure-Bred humans), the Noobs want the Rustbelt for their own.

My favorite scenario to run, "The Temple of Elvis." Here's the backdrop: Memphis is like Rome to the Noobs; Chicago is like Jerusalem. The tech-level? Think of the sociology of Europe around 1490 and then picture some road warriors and robo-tech monsters and you have a good start. Now picture yourself as a serf with a hoe and bag of turnips. From there the world is your oyster.

Beckett, the earliest of converts to this game, is working on The Violent Northwest, err North Wastes. He's got Silicon Lords, complete with sex bots and other toys, dwelling in bio-domes atop of just about-to-erupt volcanoes. He's got mutant Brotherhoods in the cities running pro-wrestling leagues. He's got Yojimbo style settlements where different Pharma-clans are warring. I don't think he's quite done there either..."

So, dearest reader, here's a plan. I am going to finish up Red Bat very soon. There should be four post-apocalyptic scenarios ready for publication by the end of the year. Hopefully, I can do some cross-game system editions of each.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Wobble: Payphones, Part 3

Still working on a plot. There was the one movie where the guy gets stuck at a payphone with a sniper, then turns the flick into something akin to slow torture. And then there is the one where someone picks up a phone, hears something and becomes a psycho-killer or cannibal or some such. A little bit of zombie goes a long way. If nothing else comes up, maybe. There the ones where psychics'/ghosts' minds can travel over the phone lines as well... okay, I am liking that last one. But... .

A group of alien Wobblers that can travel over phone lines, are running around an area. They cannot travel on electrical lines because the voltage is too high and would harm, maybe even kill, them. Why do the player-characters care? Because the entities are harming folks around them... and they're looking for something important to our heroes.

Okay good kernel there. Now to get the specifics down. The word "Quck" has been in my head of late...

Sunday, February 8, 2015

The Quick and Easy Gamer's Answer to AD&D

I especially liked it when it was "Quck and Dirty...".
I have been mulling over Charlie Fleming's QADD: Quick and Dirty Dungeons from RARR! I'm A Monster Publishing about a month now. This evening I finally get around to reviewing it. QADD is not so Rarr!'s answer to dungeon delving as it is the author's answer to game mechanic design and rules tweaking. If you're too young to remember sitting in on a new bunch of D&D players and not recognizing most of the conventions utilized by the group, be patient.

You might already know this, but anything "quick" (and dirty) isn't as simple as you'd think, but Fleming handles it well.

What is different about QADD than any other game that you've ever played, is that it doesn't matter what kind of dice that are used, just as long as you use dice and they're all the same kind. Encounters and obstacles require various numbers of the chosen die-preference, the larger the sum, the better. The GM should keep critical successes and absolute failures in mind, to add to the crunchiness of table-top High Fantasy drama going on. 

The player builds a character dividing seven points among five attributes. Those attributes are Build, Brains, Deftness, Speed, Luck, and Charm. Secondary stats, Battle Score and Hit Points, by a couple of differing rmechanics, that I am not going to spoil here. Then the player picks a Race, or Kin, if one prefers. These races are Human, Elves (with three ethnics), Dwarves, and Halfkin (hobbitling). The Character is further defined by the Type, that's a "Class." The Types include Warrior, Wizard, Cleric, Ranger, Druid, or Rogue. It should be noted that the Type descriptions are quite nicely worked out and in easy to understand ways that will translate to quick play at the tabletop.

There are plenty of pages of game building material. Stuff like Weapons, Armor and Equipment listings; Spell descriptions for the magic-wielders, and of course a catalog of Monsters.The monster uses the rule's BS and Hit Points conventions, which strikes me as much easier to use than most games that I know. It is still clearer than T&T's MR, or my own (TAG, err TROTT, err Red Bat) the Quick. That last point is the best gem I can think of that showed its author's genius.

There were various highlights that come to me as I write up this article without looking at the text. I find the druid's write up especially well done. I liked the monster called the Gnarl, though wonder why they didn't just replace ogres. Fleming utilizes Jeff Freels's artwork from other projects, that gives the work a look that I know a lot of people are going to be comfortable with. Going through the game's core mechanic, using whatever side-die and however many, worked out out fine. I tested with both six-siders and D10s.

My lasting impression is that QADD is the answer to the urge to play AD&D as you once misunderstood it. On a scale of "Smurf to Godzilla" I am going to rate this a Saquatch. This game is wonderful for a quick convention Fantasy game, which I never have time for at conventions if its name isn't T&T, or the Peryton RPG. It would turn into a regular D&D variation if played for any sort of campaign. I am not that interested in playing a cleric, druid, or ranger that much to try it out. I suppose Fleming is just going to have to run me through a session before I get the bug to make room for this one.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

A World a Week: Ozgard

This was my leprechauns, goblins, and fairies campaign for T&T in 2003. Players could also play rabbits, rats, woodchucks, and various other small critters.

 The Whorl was a collection of old red-brick clumps formed into "builds" (essentially houses built into hillsides). King Peter ruled the north side of the metroplex with his Injun allies called Jewl. Pholux, a petty sun deity that resembled our planet's Elvis and James Brown, ruled the southern districts, collectively called Kluster. The islands in the center formed a Free City, known as Clover. While all three sides had their standing armies, leprechaun "Merchant Houses" acted as the glue for all the factions of this region.

In the more rustic townships of Oldnum, the Critters made their idyllic-minded homes. Peace-loving "Weelings," a collective term for leprechauns, goblins, fairies, rabbits, rats, woodchucks, otters, pigs, badgers, and whatnot, made their home there.

The Never-Never was a region of harsh extremes mostly suit for wild leprechauns and goblins. Nominally they all were all subjects of King Peter. Various local despots formed their own fiefdoms in the lands though, Lady Cold and One Tusk were a couple of better known. The Wolfpack never submitted to be spoken for by anyone except the biggest dog present, and was always hungry.

Wunder Home was the mountaintop city of the Eternals, descendants of an Atlantean colony an aeon before. The surrounding mountains were populated by the much less advanced, but equally powerful Clan of Suplymus (were-trolls). This region was known as Utopia.

Ships sailed through the Mists bringing all sorts of exotic things. There was some oriental folklore creatures in ships from the Farther Easts. More often than not these vessels brought in pirates and Altanteans.

The very urbanized lands of Stygia is where all the collective species called "the Soot" ruled. It was these super powerful beings that deposed Pholux, turning the skies from azure to smog-filled. The older leprechaun Merchant Houses still maintained companies in the cities of Nuxor and Delta. Lot's blues joints and blimps, more than a few aliens.

The Green was not for the casual adventurer. Here in these deepest of wildernesses, the plants and the soil were always hungry. Predatory animals had their own humanoid "were-forms" to interact with the outside world on occasion. More often the not, the "halflings" just wanted to eat the company. Elves hunted anything meaty, including Speaking Peoples, for nourishment while trying to avoid being eaten themselves. Squirrels and monkeys fared a bit better, but could never build cities because sooner or later, Woman Walking Jungle or a few of her thousands of gigantic children would trod over them.