Schedim's Blog

RPG meandering and stuff

Time to get my act together!

Been on a stable baseline for a while so now I actually have to prove it is really an improvement.
So now I have decided upon a moratorium on game buying, I shall not buy any more game products until:

-I actually produce something own my own that I actually think are worth promoting.
-That is actually downloaded more than by a couple of persons.
-And at least someone says something nice about.

I feel I need some incitement to be productive and not just slacking and twiddling with interesting notions and ideas.
Caveat- I have Gloranthan super-goodness incoming , a lulu shipment and just bought a couple or ten on RPGnow (from this heap of stuff) so I won’t starve mentally to death anytime really soon, just need some discipline and a kick in the pants.

What this masterwork will be, I don’t haven’t decided upon, but I kick some three or four ideas about in my head…

Sooo now I’m off to stare blankly at a empty page…

Mountains in Forgotten Realm…

… what do they become in Forgotten Space?

After some pondering and trashing of several ideas I think I going to settle for; old, very old remnants of a supernova shell. Such a shell has a bit of the right shape and are evocative enough, but is is so old that it has cooled down and become more of a nebula of birthing suns with planetary accretion discs and general space waste, possibly remnants of systems blown away by the supernova.
Anyway, these zones interdicts hyperspace travel due to gravitic interactions of the material and is nearly impossible to map correctly as these gravitic anomalies shifts and moves. Extremely slow travel are possible with constant surveilance and recalculation of the route.
That strategy is what those who make a living in this area find their way out and back often with help of navigation buoys. As these usually are people that don’t want to be found the buoys are stealthed and only turns on if the right code are transmitted at the correct place and time.
The nebula shells are usually home to two categories, raiders and other criminals, and prospectors. The lasts as the shell are rich in exotic substances and isotopes created by the supernova and the blast wave afterward.
But the are are dangerous due to the rapidly shifting gravitics and pockets of still hot radiation, and, of course, the less savoury inhabitants.

Soo, that was one geographical feature down .. Hmmm … Now, what are rivers.. Hmmmm

A rare old piece of Australian History

Schedim:

Interesting piece of history ….

Originally posted on Myth-O-Logic:

Sydney_Bulletin_April_1925

The Sydney Bulletin went under in the Great Depression. That fine old paper is little remembered these days, but one of its claims to immortality is that the paper’s reporting of the Alert incident in 1925 provided one of the inspirations for H.P. Lovecraft’s novella, ‘The Call of Cthulhu’.

After some research (midst ancient tomes in forbidden libraries by midnight) I am pleased to be able to share the front page of the Sydney Bulletin of April 18 1925, where it’s now famous headline reports the arrival of the Alert at Darling Harbour after a terrifying encounter in the South Pacific.

Click for a high quality PDF copy of the Sydney Bulletin front page of April 18, 1925. (PDF 4 Meg)

MYSTERY DERELICT FOUND AT SEA

Vigilant Arrives With Helpless Armed New Zealand Yacht in Tow. One Survivor and Dead Man Found Aboard. Tale of Desperate Battle and Deaths…

View original 18 more words

An abstract Wealth/Status system

A modest suggestion, briefly outlined

Postulates

  • Want to get away from the gp listing on paper and bean counting.
  • Want to have competition of treasures between players and a hands-on system for transfer of resources between and from players.
  • The accounting part is a clan/temple/organization/noble that sponsors the dungeon delvers.
  • The correspondence between the new resource statuses and the old monetary is logarithmic. (In the case of Pathfinder, the base 5 seems be the best choice.)

System

Here I try to outline the rules part of the system and what changes that is necessary.

Treasurelevel Value in GPBase 5 Notes
0 <1
1 1-5
2 5-25
3 25-130 Individual
4 130-600 Clan
5 600-3k Temple
6 3k-15k Guild
7 15k-78k Religion
8 78k-400k Duke
9 400k< King

Pre-play

Instead of handing out coins all treasures are condensed into jewelry, gems, other valuables and magical objects. Raw coins can also (for simplicity’s sake) also be turned into metal bars. This means a bit of work with reworking all treasures and loot of all creatures. An even greater work (at least intellectually) is to work out the sponsoring factions/clans/temples/guilds/other that will enter play and what resources they can provide and to what level.

In-game

These situations can be roleplayed to a greater or lesser degree.

Ask for support

This is how the characters “buy” new equipment. Adventurers should start with a relation to a least one sponsor, possibly a clan. This value governs what kind of equipment they can acquire, both to what types are accessible and of which value. And now to the system; equipment at a value level of at least two steps lower than the relationship to the sponsor is essentially free. In order to stymie those who want to game the system each new request after the first without a giftgiving (see below) reduce the “free” level one step. If the value of request is in the bracket of the one level lower than the relationship number a check has to be made using diplomacy or equivalent suitable skill. Depending on this result the status can be unchanged with the request granted and the status taxed (temporary lowered until next giftgiving, see below), request granted, status lowered one step. If the request is denied the status is either lowered one step or is taxed. Remember that it is the sum of the request that counts, in the case of the base 5 choice five cards equals to one higher step.

Giftgiving

This is one of the central parts of this system, how the players increase their status in the eyes of a sponsor. A gift giving can be of three types, to rise in status, to remove taxed and to keep status. To raise in status (or new gain a new sponsor status) you have to present a gift of a level equal to that status. A check is made (using Diplomacy or equal); the result ranges from gaining the status, gaining the next lower status and the gifts are returned and gaining status of enemy. Gift giving should also be restricted in number over time, perhaps as seldom as once a year and not more often than every other month. And here it is in PDF; Wealth and Status

Eruditions about Dungeons

To make a mega dungeon interesting to return to there are several qualifications that has to be fulfilled to a lesser or greater degree. In no particular order:
• There has to be a way to re-enter a Dungeon, at or close to the place of deepest penetration.
• There must be several options of choosing route of decent.
• There must be distinct differences between locatins (themes).
• Monsters inhabitants must be suprising.
• There must exist moments of recognition and drawing on experiences.
• Not everything should be hostile.
• No mandatory balance, some challenges should be to hard and have to be bypassed.
I will try to address them in the coming day, outlining how I think I will deal with them in my Dungeon’God worldbuilding.

The first point is a tricky one, concealed backdoors and secret tunnels to discover only work so far. Perhaps portals, scroll of returning but those all present challenges to suspension of disbelief.
Idea, at altars you can bargain with lost gods in order to be transported out of the dungeon, but each time the god demand a sacrifice in the shape of a Geas. Each one of these gives the gods some power and is a step towards them coming back into the world, the thing is that if you break a Geas they get vastly more power as the following curse is much stronger. The curse then can only be lifted through an even larger sacrifice. And if you have one Geas and want to use an altar, then you get two new Geas ….

Another tidbit from Nifelhel

About the Thawed

When the new guests to a celebration is bound to life again, through ritual clothing and eating during the celebration, they become members of the community. They go by several names but the most common are Thawed. Some of them seems to vaguely remember an earlier life, dissipating like a dream, others just finds that some skills just come easy to them, and lastly there are a large group that never find anything easy or comfortable. This last group find safety in huddling together with like minded, satisfied with doing simple labour for board and food. This group is treated with patience and encouraged to try new things in order to perhaps find their skills, and sometimes a memory, allowing them to gain a purpose and a will.

The next group is those who find (sooner or later) a skill to develop and engage in, at first they are apprenticed to someone with the same skill or at least a similar one allowing the individual to improve and expand their knowledge in safety and with support of someone with greater knowledge. As communication and dissipating knowledge is encouraged, in order to recreate the world, any “surplus” apprentices are sent to travel to distant places lacking their knowledge. During this portion of their life they are called Journeymen, for some this is the preferred life and they do not settle down for years, while others travels as fast and short as possible. A Guild system has developed in order to facilitate this system. The Guilds are quite amorphous and the membership differs a lot between different settlements, depending on the make up of their skilled individuals.

 

 

Those pesky, cabbage smelling ….

About Taberaans
This specie followed the humans to Forgotten Space in some ancient alliance. They are short with soft feature and radiates an aura of friendliness and non-aggression.
Actually it is a bit more than that, when gathered in a group the Taberaans generates a psionic field of soothing and stimulates feelings of wellbeing. This is a very subtle power and can be overcome by agitation or pain which is reducing the effectiveness somewhat. But in combination with the smooth diplomacy and skill-full misdirection this species of habitary con men they usually get out on the top, and with some profits.
As most rulers know of the sedating effects of having a ghetto of Taberaans, they usually gets invited to new colonies and similar.
As they are carful of not generate to much negative feelings they seldom skim to much of their neighbours. They often run nice and cosy places of entertainment, gaming and drinking (always in special thight areas with almost exclusively Taberaans living).
It has turned the Taberaans into coplacent, nearly lazy social parasites. Some go through a phase of longing for more action, but seldom for more than a couple of years and never anything outrageous. They are indeed addicted to their own comfort psionics and develops insanities if going alone to long.

Not the UN but …

Ilmater Inc
This is one of the most famous MegaCorps and totally dominant in its chosen area of operation. Ilmater Inc. is a combination of relief force, peace keeper and intervention mercenary force.
The special twist of the company’s version of relief work is that they research every conflict and then chose to support the side they thinks have the greatest possibility of creating a stable government, and this is not always any of the fighting parties or current failing government.
When they intervene it is always with overwhelming force and surgically, in order to avoid civilian causulties. After they have military secured an area they set up a local government and organise rebuilding and perform humanitarian work.
When everything is stable and the world is connected to a trade network, Ilmater Inc. presents its repayment plan. This plan will not affect the rebuilding severely but it will fill the coffers of the company and the world will be in eternal debt to it.
The MegaCorp is often accused to act heavily handed and with no respect for local laws and traditions, but no one can really deny that the common people usually are better off after an intervention than before. The upper classes … Perhaps not so much.

Dwarves … Or not

About Gnarliccians
This folk is an ancient one, very secretive and never never call them dwarf to their face. As they disdain the weakness of flesh an celebrates the resilience of technology the exchange more and more parts of their bodies for cybernetics. At the same time they stress the point of man over machine and although they enhance and improve their brains they disdain pure robotics.
The species propagate purely by gestation vats and laboratory genetics. Their “newborn” bodies are distorted and dysfunctional, as to show the weakness of nature. As they age they are allowed to upgrade and that mostly by parts they have designed and constructedhemselves. They are supposed to cover the most parts of their biological bodies but as they grow in status and enhancements they may reveal more and more of the interfaced parts of their bodies.
By tradition (tradition, rules and systems are very important) the shape of a Gnarliccian is short and blocky compared to other humanoids, but retains the basic shape of their original body. (It is said that one thing that made humans call them dwarfs was not only their length (they tend to look spherical) but the common way of exchanging the lower part of face into a bundle of wires, tubes and threads that is vaguely beard looking).
It is not uncommon though to replace legs with other drivetrains, such as wheels, tracks or gravitics.
Nothing is known of the Gnarliccian homeworld, it is supposedly lost in the fog of the distant past. Today they make their homes mostly in asteroid belts and similar where no organic life disturbs them and there is resources to mine.
Their city-ships are highly competitive between each other, but instantly and efficiently work together agains any outside threat.
Gnarliccian tech is highly sought after and they readily sell, but at a high price and never mass produce anything more advanced than a spoon.
Other than prosthetics and body enhancements their most know product Is the Gyrocs, a weapon launching miniature rockets. The ammunition has a bewildering amount of options and varieties making it a difficult weapon to make defences against. The rockets can be programmed to slowdown before impact reducing the efficiency of forcefields and then explode into fleccettes making the conductive armour all but useless.

World-building revision

After some thinking and groaning, I have come to an conclusion. I have to do a revision of my statements in this post.

The fantastic fantasy in that world adds a vector of weirdness that may be fun, but actually warps the tranistion of Forgotten Realm a bit to much at the same time as it don’t reach the goal of turning FR into Science Fiction. It taste to much Weird and not enough Science, if you catch my drift.

Instead I think I’ll go for a Travelleresque universe and in order to wrestle my greatest beef with that system (2D space) I present this explanation:

Forgotten Space is a corridor of worlds “sandwiched” between two empty rifts. Perhaps furthest out on the tips of a Galaxy far, far away.

The scale still has to be measured, is each area in FR a subsector or a system? At first I was going for each country was a system, but perhaps a subsector is better…

I’ll have to work on an example at get the feel of the size.

More Disel Space feel than Magic Steam Space…. Time to dive into T5 again I guess.

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