Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A blurb on Gaming for my project game

Every game in the world does that "What is Gaming" section and its a waste of space.  Either you know, as you just bought the damn book or you are going to be shit confused.  So really the person I need to talk to is unsuspecting person who buys this as a gift or something and the odd few who pick this up all wide eyed and innocent.

Hello my friend, thank you for considering the purchase of this book.  It is what is known as a Role playing game.  While I highly encourage your purchase of this product, I must first offer a warning.  This is not a mere book but a gateway drug to a path not easily walked.  Many great things you will find but it is not without its price.  There is a great social stigma associated with our hobby it is not for all.  The best of us are infinitely sure of ourselves others have little to lose.

OK kidding aside role playing is primarily a bunch of goofy white guys sitting around a table.  There are occasionally some Asian players too but yeah its usually a crackerfest.  If you were to listen you will find there is often more joking around anything else. The game being played often has them talking in funny voices or overtly worrying about the placement of little figurines on a map.  They will be rolling dice sometimes to determine a random element of the game but mostly just fucking off with them. 

If one of these role play games breaks out in your house here are some things to expect.  They are loud!  You will hear lots of shouts and cheers along with cried of Fuck and Shit!  There will be a lot of laughing and such.  There will probably be food, perhaps booze, there will certainly be a smell of some sort.  Expect a clogged toilet from time to time.  Also expect to clear the mess yourself, if you host expect to clean up too.  More often than not you will just want the motherfuckers to leave at the end of the night rather than stay and help.  These things are long too maybe four to six hours of play.  Also expect it to happen again and again.  They things usually are weekly or every other week and can go on for years.  That is where wives and parents usually get pissed, when you have an ongoing commitment to screw around every week.

It's not all lame and gloom though.  Role playing is great for someone who is shy or even high functioning on the autism spectrum.  You are interacting in a safe environment with the same people over and over again.  You are able to be yourself, or even someone else, without judgement.  Our wired in world seems to remove value from face to face interaction.  This is the entire point of the role playing game.  This is not a text message or an online game but an interpersonal game.  Often you make some of the best friends of your life playing games like this. 

These games involve a degree of math skills and problem solving.  These games are often highly mathematical to model real world situations.  I know several instances of geometry being used directly in games.  You are often give situations were a clever idea or trick is called upon.  A great deal of lateral thinking is involved in these games.  There are artistic elements be it painting miniature figurines or drawing a map.

Really I recommend you go to YouTube and search for Freaks and Geeks or Community.  Both of these shows have featured gaming sessions in episodes that while poking fun also seem to get the idea across.  James Franco's, Carlos the dwarf perhaps best shows a new player entering the world of gaming.  Please give it a look if you want to come back we will be here.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Whole milk is Our Birthright

The folks at Formal Sweatpants get the spirit of Krampus 100% right with this fantastic cartoon.  I am not anti vegan but I really hate the Gluten free.  It just seems like a fad like altruism or New Coke.

I think the soy stuff is more offensive Santa is obviously Nordic.  We northern folk have a near 100% occurrence of lactose tolerance.  Whole milk is our birthright.

Monday, December 19, 2011

A tale of the Beltinovites part 1

Books crowded every corner and step of Galav.  It was once the Beltinovites capital now their last city and some would say prison.  It was not a high commanding city but rather a pit dug low into the ground.  It was not something to be assaulted but rather ignored just a hole full of books.

Galav was perhaps the most ancient of all cities it was built and rebuilt and hundred times some in triumph some in defeat.  The Beltinovites have said it was even built before the Architect arose though such talk was reason for much of their current plight.  The stunted race claim to being a higher form of the Aron Veja wise and enlightened.  Few like to to be told such things, though the Aron have said to be thralled by the Beltinovites in their distant past.

These Beltinovites were not dwarves or goblins but rather just short and wide eyed.  Their heads large and hands sleight.  Yes they were quick witted and had hands dexterous none could deny.  They worked magic and understood the genomes the Architect himself played.  They were the first to build the living machines and only now were their works being surpassed.  Carinthis sold either goods as fine works of art and beauty.  

Their city was a library overflowing with books like the sand.  And Linent Siall loved these books like his children.  For a Beltinovite he was a simple man non a wizard nor chemist or breeder of machines. No Linent held the highest of all titles he was a librarian.  

Linus and Lucy

I recently sat the child down and forced her to watch A Charlie Brown Christmas.  She has had little interest in Charlie Brown until now, often asking if it was Caillou.  Yes kid I see the similarities but WTF one is the most sincere depiction of my feelings on Christmas and the other is a spoiled fucking prick.  I was surprised she did well watching it and enjoyed it. 

In watching I really focused in on the Christmas tree, that has a huge amount of symbolism in it. It seems to represent the heroes faith in Christmas as a whole.  You can see through the show the tree gaining branches as the show progresses.  It is not without its down turns though, every time Charlie presents it for others to see it looses needles.  Its as though it has a personal strength but whenever interacted with it fails. 

Oddly this was not an intentional choice, as even Charles Shultz has lamented the constant change in the appearance of the tree.  So it is clearly not a direct decision but rather a happy accident of the production.  These happy accidents seem to have happened everywhere in the show.  Every time someone stuck to their guns it ended up being the right choice, that has forge a timeless classic that captures the holidays in both joy and sadness.

I love the shows conclusion with Charlie "killing" the tree.  Its like he finally tries to put some weight on his new found faith and it really has no strength.  Fleeing his tree and faith the final lesson of the holidays is presented.  Others and community are essential for the holidays, as it is the group of kids accepting the tree and each adding something to it. They in essence accept Charlie and restore his faith.

Thursday, December 15, 2011


You stitched me up
and I was on my way
I Left my hat and
didn't even say, goodbye

It was raining hard
before I realized
and I'm closer to gone
with every mile.

This is the way with running
and never looking back.
You try not to remember
what you're missing until it's forgot.

it's the white lines
and biting flies on the road
with a few too many
Ladies waiting back home

Ill keep on running
always heading toward
The setting sun
Alone on the road

This was quick and its weak.  I am loaded up on nyquil for a head cold so its sort of the best i can pull out of the toilet

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Monkey gone to Heaven

Well i was finally able to finish up Adam Curtis's All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace.  My thoughts on the piece as a whole is it was good but not a solid as his other work.  It also has a problem in not having a solid wrap up, this is an issue I have with Curtis.  He seems to let his point be implied rather than directly getting at it.

Also It seems that he was coming out against the "Selfish gene" theory, he could have supported this better.  The theory generally is that we are not  individually important but are collectively working to pass our common genes.  Selflessness is also an act to help those with similar genes and conflict worked to hurt those with dissimilar genes.  It seems the Tutsi and Hutu group conflict was manufactured and was actually a group of people with the same genes in conflict.  Mr. Curtis also has mentioned a study in south America in a previous show.  Some researcher took apart a video of a violent conflict between tribal groups.  He claimed those with closers relations sided with each other.  In Fact it was proven to just be a conflict between the haves and have nots after several other researchers reviewed the film.

Also while the show tackles altruism it doesn't seem to address another human ideal that challenged the selfish gene theory, that being justice.  Justice seems to be a large driving force in political environments and is often the source or justification of revolutionary forces.  When you boil fairness down to its base elements it in no way helps the genes.  Rather it works against the selfish gene.

I would liked if Curtis would have addressed the social implications of accepting that we are machines.  That was the original thought that excited me about the series.  I think there is much that could be done with philosophy of loss of self in groups.  There could be another episode just in that. Lack of personal accountability and the desire to accept modes of life that have historically been viewed as less evolved.  I could see Kierkegaard and Heidegger being talked about significantly.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Fascination Street

I was listening to Fascination Street by the Cure on the radio and this is the song that popped in my head.  It sort of goes with that dark droning music of the song.  I have had a few of these sort of songs or alternate lyrics inspired by another song.  If you have a band and want to use them your welcome to.  Just send me a link.  You can even come up with the title.

Why am I falling apart
Why are you walking away
Ill take you down with me
I'm going to tear it down
I'll burn it all up
Then sweep it under the rug

If I ever get through
You'll be the first I see
If it's the last id do
I'm coming for you

Better keep an eye out
Better watch where you go
Don't you ever stray
from the narrow way
I'll be a thorn in your side
You won't be able to hide

If I ever get through
You'll be the first I see
If it's the last id do
I'm coming for you

So don't be so smug
Thinking you've won
I still have another hand
All will go as planned
You've already lost
before the dice were tossed

If I ever get through
You'll be the first I see
If it's the last id do
I'm coming for you

Monday, December 12, 2011

Crescent Star Progressive Rock score card 10

Machines of loving grace is actuall the name of a collection of poetry but it was also used by the band.  Where is a video I really dont know the band or any of their music.

Summer Nights and my radio is something off 5150 Van Halen or Haggar depending.  My cousins cousin played this near constantly way back when so I have most of the record stuck in my head.  It's actually not nearly as good as I remember.  The choruses are solid but alot of the songs are sort of goofy.

More Metal than you is something from Brian Posehn the commedian.  I like the D&D with Dio bit, I bet he would have been a fine DM.

Tin man is by America I really don't know the record, I heard the song and sort of started thinking the piece that is written there.

Hello It's Me is by Todd Rundgren it's an ok song here check it out

Working on a chain gang is by Sam Cooke though I think i was really thinking of Devos' working in a coal mine

Bron Yr Arur is the the quiet song by Led Zepplin not the Stomp song which has a very similar name.  Its a great acoustic song really much better than a lot of the Zepplin they force feed you on the radio.

Cinema is by Yes, i know i like them too much.  I think that is from that super poppy record 90125 they had with all the hits from the 80s

Everything you want is by Vertical Horizon or someone like that.  They played that song almost too much awhile go I heard it recently and was sort of like this again.

The song remains the same. Led Zepplin i dont thing you need to say any more on it. I actually was probably thinking of the organ bit in the movie but here is the song

I should be singing but I am tired out of breath is a line from the fountain of lamneth by Rush this is off of Caress of Steel the kick ass record you should go buy.

Wait for you is by that Bonham group they had in the 80's

Back in the Village again is by Iron Maiden off of powerslave

Live Undead is the title of Slayers live record from way back when.

The swan is a murderer is Cherry Five/Goblin some hard core italian prog.  The bass player is insane

Through fire and flames every guitar hero player will know is Dragonforce they are pretty cool in that they try.  Not enough of us try.

In the garage is Weezer they are a bit hipster and lame for my tastes but at least its a song about D&D

Meddle is one of Pink floyds records but I am sure you know that.

Bullet hits the bone is by Golden earring they probably play that on your radio all the time

Who Cares wins is Anthrax

A murder of one is Counting crows on their first record

a murder of one

Everything is growing gray on the morning with The things we are left out for the weather The burlap of our skin laying ragged out with the frost  Long forgot all thing mold and rot in a yard left to winter Even the scarecrow wordless bent by the winds that laid us bare the months before  Reaching up with all aware only dark birds left to care in this empty winter air

Friday, December 09, 2011

A tale of Carinthis part 3

From high above the sun broke through the haze of cloud and momentarily bathed the square in light.  It was not dark prior but for a few moments it seemed dazzling almost scintillating bright. As that moment faded Reglin caught the bright gleam of the sun upon an instrument of death, as it fell.

Fell from its perch held upon high lashing through the heavy throat of a stead.  It was a twice handed cleaver of steel, a treasure in and of it self, the butcher a man of the a'ron vega' to Reglin's eyes. Though shrouded Reglin could see a second skin which clung tight and masked all his features with the exception of his mouth.  There it had been scrapped away the true flesh almost that of a broken blister.  A sunless white of flesh and teeth that wordlessly mouthed rage.

The horse fell hard taking its rider with it; A squat Cazz'it dressed for the desert. In a moment the assassin was on him stabbing with a tooth dagger.  Relentless and rhythmic he stabbed again and again. Though the veil of flesh Reglin wondered if his eyes were now on him, he gulped hard and began his blood song.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

A tale of Carinthis part 2

The shops and stalls ranged from fragrant familiar to flavors strange.  Often Reglin stopped staggered in awe of the wonders and horrors he saw.  The green people had some small use of the biomachinary he saw here; but it was autonomous or self contained in living entities they coexisted with.  The green people would call many of the wears sold in the shops parasitic.

Reglin vaguely understood offers allow him to breath in water or for a second skin.  One even tried to purchase his voice with the offer of four solid iron links.  He fled in terror when the process of removal was described.

His feet worn, he almost without mind found himself at the animal pens.  Perhaps he could hire onto an eastward caravan and put more distance between himself and his kin. 

This quarter of the city was the most sparse and in need of open air.  Much of the trade and supply of the pack trains occurred here.  Horse and Camel were hauled up for the desert floor far below, along with the chitin covered Sammis Worms.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Sample Rules part 2 thoughts on spells and combos

Another aspect of the game that I wanted to delve into are spells and combos.  I am not a huge fan of free form magic such as that found in Mage.  I don't want to rule it out as many people really like that sort of thing but I also wanted to keep something like AD&D spell.  Magic that has the same very specific effect time and time again.  The combos I am talking about are similar but for melee combat.

In general when you use magic you are are making a skill roll and then purchasing effects from a list.  These could be damage , area of effect, distance the list goes on.  It can be free form where you and the GM decide the cost or you can have a big of things you can purchase with successes.  A spell instead is a preconstructed set of effects that has a prescribed cost.  It usually can not be extended beyond its description though some may have minor upgrades that can be applied.  Spells are usually the first step of magic with the more free form style being more difficult and costly. 

A spell may give you a requirement of one or more successes needed to cast, if you don't have enough it doesn't work, that's it.  When you succeed it follows the description and the only available success purchases you can make are those within the description.  All extra spell points are lost unless you have some extra purchased ability that specifically allow you to do something else with them.  There are "Feat" like abilities that allow you to purchase magic stones with your extra successes but these will not effect the spell itself.

As for Combos and combat actions they are similar but allow for actions that would not be possible otherwise.  In some ways they are like the linked actions I mentioned in the sample rules section but go beyond that.  They are a specific mapped out attack or attack and movement that require miniatures and a combat grid to fully use.  The idea for these come directly from video games and you may recognize a few of them.  One example is an attack to the hex directly in front of you then moving two hexes forward followed but an increased damage attack to the hex directly in front of you.  Mechanically you would require an acrobatics success and two melee combat successes.  The could be accomplished in a number of ways.  A strong melee with no stones by make an acrobatics roll and then carry over their automatic melee successes.  A character with plenty of stones may make a standard melee attack role and then take two clear stones to make an acrobatic success.

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

A tale of Carinthis part 1

The streets of Carinthis were wild and chaotic.  Full of colors in designs that seemed to move constantly. It was as if the city made and unmade itself every moment, which of course it did.  It sat as a crown high atop a pillar of stone which rose out of the desert.  A bazaar of tented streets pierced by six high towers and one low, wind blown against a sky that did not seem to want it.

Reglin was veiled and short but seemed tall and lethe against the throngs of Cazzit which called the city home.  They were a desert race short and stunted their skin almost scaled to fight the wind and sand.  The Green was a head taller than the dwarves, supple skinned and elegant.  His voice was song even though he tried to drive melody from his voice.  He moved with watching eyes to each stall seeking.

He was looking for work or somewhere he could hold up unseen.  He had been hunted most of his life though just as often was the hunter.  His people warred openly with the beastly race that shared their forests.  Now he was hunted by his own.  for Reglin had grown old, nearly twenty five, and wished to live a little more. 

It was common desire but not one allowed by the Green people. Their rites sought rebirth at this time and all would find it, desired or not.  Reglin had not been the first to flee his people, many had tried.  Few made it this far from their territory, perhaps far enough to begin to hope.

Monday, December 05, 2011

A tale of the Gannith part 2

Cornass hoped it would only be death the big steed was to face.  He knew the incantations of animating the dead well, but had little desire to invoke them now.  Wise men often dealt with spirits themselves some of them dark.  Some doorways were crossed by uninvited guests.

The strange faces he painted on the flesh of the fallen were often to confuse these darker spirits.  The bindings were some for show but some to restrain should the wrong ones get in.  The tokens, seals and coins woven into the horses mane were to pay debts unpaid in life but also to clink; chiming away the unseen.

All done Vall finally lead his guest and horse on to the east. The riders alone travelled against the great wheels the Gannith people walked.  The dead man would travel to the east wall just once in his life, though it truth it was his death. 

Cornass held his spear high allowing the banners to stream with the hard wind.  Some marked the dark circle another was for the fallen man.  The last banner that whipped furiously with the wind marked contagion.

Who Cares Wins

I knew the no initiative thing was going to be controversial with my gaming group.  I gave it a try with Pinnacles Savage Worlds rules set to see what they thought.  There was some resistance as expected.

The players were not used to the idea of simultaneous action.  They seemed to think if they won initiative they really won something big.  I was explaining even with initiative they only real benefit is on the round they kill someone they prevent their action.  So in reality they are only avoiding one attack or action.  With simultaneous action that last action goes off.  This really just gave enemies a chance to run, which seemed to piss of the players even more, they are very concerned with wrapping up loose ends i guess.

They were a little hesitant with the opponent going first, this surprised me.  I tried to explain that since everyone acts in a round they were actually better off going last.  They got to see their enemies action and react after.  Again grumbling.

Finally they showed me the real fatal flaw in my evil scheme to speed up combat, players acting against each other.  Damn I didn't even expect this would happen, but first fucking game! First fucking encounter!  In my game there is less of a problem with this as you have the stones you can used to control the actions. But damn they have them in Savage worlds too.  The players just didn't spend them. FUCK!

From here you have a few options some of which will not sit well with players.  Just decided which ever outcome suits your story best happens.  Screw it your the GM you have a hard enough job, you deserve a break.  But players start feeling railroaded.  Go with logic the fastest character wins a chase or whatever.  But here you will get down to some actions were the characters are just equal mechanically and neither have role played out a reason that the scene should go their way.  Coin flip or something?  These are often rather important game defining scenes when two characters are in conflict, you really need something more dramatic.

I am almost thinking I need that initiative roll there just to keep people happy.  It just seems to time consuming and for a less than important aspect of the game.  See I have wasted all this time writing up a post just for my problems with it.

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Sample Rules

Ok this is the start of me putting down some of my game ideas.  I will probably start pretty general and then work on detail as I have more and more feedback.  This is something of my philosophy for the game as well.  I want do a game that has a configurable level of detail. So you can dial up focus in some areas and down in other areas. For example a thief heavy fantasy campaign could increase the level of detail around traps and go with a simplified version of magic rules.

While the above is my philosophy I also have a set of goals in mind that will have effected my ideas.  For example, I really want to be able to capture aspects of brawler video game combat.  I want there to be moves and chained combos.  I also want to be able to simulate timed events with increasing stress.  Finally i want to do things with a percision that allows the difference between success levels to be clearly distinguished.
well lets get down to it. Combat seems to be the heart of most systems, but I have never seen a "Good" system that doesn't derive combat from the basic task/skill resolution mechanic.  having two entirely different systems for combat and general roleplaying sort of sucks for everyone involved, so i want to steer clear of that.

taking that in mind I have stolen from a couple of game and came up with a system based on roles and automatic successes.  Borrowing heavily from hero wars skills are repressented with a number of successes and a modifier to role.  For example Toad has a stealth of 1S3; meaning before roling the dice Toad already has one success and when rolling gets to add 3 to the role.  I am going with a set dice role, say d10, for all skill and attribute checks.  I really hope to do the same in combat and everywhere else but we will see what happens.

For dice i dont know why but I am going with D10+D4, its weird like me.  also it bears out on the earthdawn step math I have been using to check things with.  I am not sure if i will stick with it, but i do know its exploding.  With all the standard open ended dice rules.  I hope everyone reading this will be clear with this but assume you reroll and add the total to your roll if you max out a die.  Keep doing it if you role max again.  In rolling you are going to add you role total with that modifier.  For example Razgum has a seduction skill of 0s7.  When he tries to lay down his best lines at the local bar he starts off with a failure already but he has 7 to add to the die role.  Lets assume he roles 6,4 and 1 for 11 plus his skill of 7 for 18. 

Alright lets talk about different types of skill checks now that we have Razgum's role. I am currently thinking there needs to be two types of skill roles.  A basic skill check where the GM sets the difficulty and the player tries to meet it.  And an actively opposed check.  THis is where you have an undefined difficulty that is set by the defenders resistence role to an action.  Perhaps a parry being made against an attack for example.  So what is the difference here.  When a character makes a basic skill check they are trying to meet the GM defined target number and then every 7 beyond that counts as an additional success.  On the opposed check the lower role just becomes the target number for the higher role.  Every 7 beyond that role counting as an additional success.  Lets go back to Razgum, and lets say the situation is Razgum is trying pick up lines on a no consequence NPC.  So if the GM set a target of 9 then Razgum would have generated 2 successes on his check.  If Razgum had a skill of -1s7 he would have only come up with a single success.  I will talk about multiple successes later on but you need to assume you need a single success to do an action and the rest are considered additional successes.

Moving to the other type of role.  Lets have Razgum try and seduce an improtant leader in the opposing army with his trollish charm.  The GM would probably role some sort of willpower check to resist.  Taking Razgums roll of 18 the army leader rolls 28.  Comparine 18 to 28 that 10 more so the army leader gets two successes.  In this case Razgum needed to suceed to even zero successes would have worked for the army leader.  Normally a role must generate one success, which additional successes being used else where but here both success can be used against razgum.  While thinking about this you will notice it is possible for a 4s2 to generate a lower number than a -1s7 skilled person which could be total bs.  after the roll and the calculation of successes and subtract the lower from the higher.  This makes it a dual step process which sort of sucks but makes stuff more fair.  Giving Toad a chance with a 4s7 seduction and a roll of 18 against the 0s7 army leaders total roll of 28.  We now have Toad with 4 automatic successes and The Army Leader with 2; allowing Toad to succeed with 2 successes.  As opposed to resistence Toad needs 1S for success leaving 1 additional success. 

I am talking a lot about additional successes without really addressing them.  The come out sounding a lot like WOD or Shadowrun, which I actually dislike.  I hate how nebulous the difference between 3 and 4 successes.  Going back to my goals, I really want these things to be clear.  My solution is to allow players to uses additional success to buy better results.  I like this because it give me a clear idea how things resolve and I think it would be fun for the players.  Earthdawn sort of had an example of this where two success levels equalled and armor defeating hits on an attack.  I dont have enough details on this but I would like to say a stealth with a lot of additional successes could spend those successes to make a search or spot check more difficult.  In some cases I think the character could buy options to use additional successes for.  Like having a rogue who can spend 2 additional successes to make it impossible to tell if they picked a lock.

I understand I am talking about tons of additional successes here.  Which brings me to my next component of the games.  I am going to use pente stones as additional successes that anyone can throw in with their role.  You will have a limited pool of these but they will be there when you want them.  Its really a rip off of Karma from Earthdawn or chips in deadlands.  The only real difference is i am going to have three colors of stones.  Green, Clear and Red; which represent Positive, Neutral and Negative alignment. I will be giving out stones as rewards during play.  On occassion I will say ok this represents high magic in the area.  Chris will often be playing a mage and will say oh some of my abilities require magic, so that is positively aligned; meaning i can use it as a green stone to power some specific ability.  Rich is playing a Xambrian who has a hinderance against magic, because he likes to roleplay gothy guys.  He says oh I have a magic hinderance that is a negatively aligned red stone.  I am playing something totally stupid that talks in a funny voice, its nothing to me so I take a clear stone.  We can all use them whenever we want and they function the same (as an additional success) but Chris can also use the red as magic.  Some of his spells/abilities may require a few magic stones.  I will just used the stone as normal, thats all i can do.  Rich may take an exp penalty for using a non aligned stone.  Also these stones could be used at the end of a night for exp.  If you have more than one positive alignment category just count them as flexible, it gets too much of a pain to track many types of things.  I was thinking of having tons and tons of types of these stones but ugh headache.

I wanted to talk about crits and fumbles.  Basically there are no crits that is just a very open ended role that give lots of successes.  Fumbles is a D10+D4 roll of 11 that ends with 0 successes or less.  I know this is going to be a problem with low skilled characters so i will probably give a confirmation reroll if you have 0 or less automatic successes.  You can even throw in you stones, but the GM will probably also be throwing in stones against you knowing what is at stake.

This brings me to another concept the devils hand.  While boss and sub boss NPC's will probably have their own stones the GM can always draw a random stone against you.  this effect happens during a roll.  On the up side the opposed player gets a random draw from the stones immediately after resolution of the action.
I probably should get onto the linked action thing now.  this is my way of doing timed actions and multiple attacks on high skill characters.  You can link actions on top of each other and they will be resolved within the same round.  This can go on indefinetly but the mechanic is going it going to take X+1 successes to link an action; where x is the previous number of actions taken in the round.  So you first link will cost you 2 successes.  This gets you to another action and another roll.  From here you would need 3 successes to link a third action.  I like this because I have always wanted to be able to generate suspense related to quick actions like jumping from a falling pipe into a roll under a portculus.

Combat Round
Ok Lets move onto the meat of this.  COmbat is pretty unfleshed out in my mind but i have a few idea.

Initiative is simultaneous so all actions happen and then are resolved.  So dont even roll it, its 2 second rounds or something.  If you want to interrupt an action you will need the specific ability and then pay the stones.  Or already be doing some sort of reactive action, parry dodge etc.  Chained actions are resolved within the same round but not all at once.  Everyone goes then resolution occurs.  Then the next link of the chain goes and is resolved, and so on.  You may infact die before getting to your linked action in which case it is lost.  Also some characters will have abilities to break linked actions cancelling out your next action.

I have been thinking of just having to hit rolls being based of of size and distance.  That would be assuming a target that is just there for the taking.  Active defense of parrying or dodging, could increase the target number to hit the same way opposed roles work.  that will make it pretty easy for melee hits to occur though.  I am not sure what i want to do with that perhaps we could subtract automatic dodge or parry successes.  Or maybe its just and aspect of the game where you are trading blows if not using an active defense. ONly very defensive characters would be able to dodge and then chain for a return attack.  I would have the defense stand for the rest of the round in this case.
Armor will be deducted from damage rolls just like earthdawn
Damage rolls are going to be opposed roles.  The attacker is trying to generate damage numbers with the roll,their modifiers AND THE DEFENDERS HIT POINTS, the defender will be doing a soak roll.  Your are going to compare the rolls and generate success for the higher rolling party. Next check if the attacker was the high roller if so the damage goes directly onto the defenders hit points.  Now compare successes!  Should the defender have more he could completely soak the wounds from the hit.  A really good role could generate some sort of rage stones or effect on certain defenders.  If the attacker has more successes they are applied to the defender as wounds, which deduct from all actions.  Certain attackers may even be able to force a death save by spending their successes.  Normally a death save are made according to the monsters death save chart which defaults to 5,7,9,10,11,etc.

My one fear of that damage system is i am hitting players twice.  If they are getting a bunch of damage they are going to have a harder and harder time soaking it, and if they have wounds they will have a harder and harder time soaking that damage.
The round would go something like this

1. Dont roll initiative.
2. Resolve Defensive opposed rolls
3. Resolve Attack Roles
4. Role for damage on success
5. Deduct Armor from damage
6. Determine Soak roll as Damage roll + current hits
7. Roll for soak
8. Apply damage and wounds to total
9. Resolve Special Actions
10.Death Checks
11.Check if there are any further linked actions
12a. if yes then proceed with 1 with linked actors.
13b. if no then new round
(an interrupt action can happen whenever the conditions are met) interrupt actions are more like AOO's in a way.

1. Dont roll initiative:  THis should be easy for some players.
2. Resolve Defensive opposed rolls:  Any one useing Parry or dodge as an opposed roll will make that roll at this point.  They may generate linked actions as well.
3. Resolve Attack Roles:  Attackers roll against the opposed roll or a target size ,modified by distance, roll.  Again Linked actions can be created here as well.
4. Role for damage on success:  Attackers make a str roll modified by weapon and make not of damage and any make not of any automatic successes they may have.  they should report a number such as 15 hit points and 1 automatic success.
5. Deduct Armor from damage.  subtract armor from the damage.  AC 5 would mean that 15 is now 10.  This has nothing to do with the 1 automatic sucess and it still remains.
6. Determine Soak roll as Damage roll + current hits:  Ok, add the victims current hit points onto the attack roll.  From above the 10 + 13 from a previous attack for 23.
7. Roll for soak: Ok the victim rolls their soak and has a target number of 23.  Lets say we roll great and get 27.  the damage is soaked but with no automatic successes. 
8. Apply damage and wounds to total: Any damage now officially it added to hit points.  From above we have zero.  This is where we remember that 1 automatic success.  This will normally be applied as a wound, even if no damage was applied.  Some characters may have other options allowed to them and could forces a death save or convert the success to Hit points of damage.
9. Resolve Special Actions.  Here we resolve everything else. players running or doing something else.  Everything is resolved
10.Death Checks: Any player that has hit a number of wounds equal to their death save chart must make a death save now.  Also any character that has been forced to make a death save in set 8
11.Check if there are any further linked actions: If anyone has linked an action in this round we start another action phase.  This will be sort of a side pot, with only those with links going.  At the end we check to see if more linked actions occur.
12a.Run that linked action round
12b.New round for everyone.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Bullet hits the bone

heaving hoisted myself out of bed some minutes before I was vaguely aware of the figure standing at the doorway.  At this point nothing was clear except for the smell of vomit and brute cologne, but things were getting clearer.  Someone In trouble.  I wasn't exactly sure if it was I or the person in the doorway but one of us was in a bad way.  On second thought I was surely in trouble, I just didn't know if it pertained to me or him.

I reached for my pistol but I don't have one, so instead relentlessly scratched at my crotch. He started to speak in a low desperate tone, but I just raised a finger indicating my task needed further work.  I had hoped he would leave at the sight of self abuse but he must have been in truly great need.

At this point my words were only a murmur so I let him speak while I descended the stairs and dug around the kitchen for something to drink.  He spoke of some friend in need. I struggled with some year old room temperature Coke gulping it down as bad medicine.  He said he was in trouble and I had to help.  This was a warm buzz of words at my bleary mind for several minutes.  I was all inward and sleep hoping he might leave but he continued.  This wasn't just his friend this was mine.  Mine, mine are asleep in bed upstairs where I should be.  After several dark moments I understood, I needed to help someone, but who?

Thursday, December 01, 2011


there is no illusion just the ground between you and me,
it's where we are falling that isn't where it used to be. 
Broken wings shattered against the us no one made
Now only a could have been lost nights you could have stayed.

Give me back my wonder I've used it all upon on you
Let me find something else so other way to muddle through
Drop down the gossamer give me some loss to grieve
this wordless waiting hold on with no reprieve.

Set ablaze these pyre memories I need finally to be free
Take away us even alone it still isn't me.
Tomorrow I'm setting off walking into the sea
Silent and submarine ending this silly plea