Monday, February 28, 2022

OSR Review & Commentary Magic of the Old West By Tim Ewick, Pat Ewick, & Skirmisher Game Development Group For Cthulhu Live 3rd Edition live-action role-playing game & Call of Cthulhu rpg

In the 19th century, the American West was marked by booming technology, polarized political beliefs, territorial skirmishes, racial conflict, Civil War, and continuous expansion. This era also brought to the West an influx of other peoples — along with their religious, spiritual, and magical traditions — adding to the cultures of the indigenous Native Americans ones from Europe, China, Mexico, Central America, and Africa. These disparate influences combined with geographical isolationism and the country’s powerful, nearly raw power to alter many rituals and practices and make them uniquely American."

"This supplement to the Gold-bestselling Cthulhu Live 3rd Edition live-action role-playing game of Mythos horror introduces eight magic traditions, a new spell for each, and new mechanics for spells — rituals, components, fast casts, and visible effects — to give players a three-dimensional feel for the magic of the Old West. All of these are rules-light and easily adapted to tabletop games like Call of Cthulhu. "

So a while back Skirmisher Publishing came to me with a ton of titles &  Magic of the Old West By Tim Ewick, Pat Ewick, &  the Skirmisher Game Development Group came up on the drive. Magic of the Old West isn't that expensive at .99 & only comes to six pages. In those six pages it manages to squeeze out a bit about most of the occult practices of the Old West. 
And it's not a bad little add on for other Call of Cthluhu rpg campaigns and this includes Chaosium's Down Darker Trails CoC supplement

Down Darker Trails covers a ton of historical Old West & pop culture weirdness such influences such as  Valley of Gwangi, Dead Birds (mythologies ), Bone Tomahawk, Dead Man, The Burrowers, Lone Ranger  comic books & radio program as well El Topo...&  all the spaghetti westerns tropes. 
What Magic of the Old West covers is some of the magicks & occult practices that Down Darker Trails didn't cover such as Vodun, Chinese magicks, some of the plains Native American practices. Even bits and pieces of other traditions of  indigenous Native Americans ones & others imported  from Europe, China, Mexico, Central America, and Africa. And all of this fits right into six pages of gaming goodness
. Could Magic of the Old West be used for other Western rpg's?! Yes with some serious modification and I'm seriously looking at the 2d6 goodness of Independence Games Rider rpg here. And while there's no magick in the game per say it wouldn't be to hard to do a bit of conversion. 

How?! Well there's a few options but Michael Brown's 2d6 Magic is an option to add in a bit of that old black magick to the Rider rpg. But that's a blog entry for another time. Skirmisher's Magic of the Old West is a solid little six page old school supplement for your favorite Call of Cthulhu rpg to add a bit of an occult twist or to the Old West. 

You can grab Magic of the Old West By Tim Ewick, Pat Ewick, &  Skirmisher Game Development Group For  Cthulhu Live 3rd Edition live-action role-playing game & Call of Cthulhu rpg Right Here. 

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Eddie The Maul's Legacy - - Session Four Report - Cepheus Engine & Stars Without Number Revised rpg Game


The party made a side trip to Cebu Three the Communication's planet where they ran smack into Eddie The Maul. Eddie's a drifter, spacer, & all around bum ie adventurer whose got a murky past & even more murky cybernetic implants. Here's the back story.  Right at the moment I've got two different Stars Without Numbers Revised & Cepheus Engine rpg campaigns happening. One of these was given to me by DM Steve whose friend DM Huby passed on recently & I've taken over the old Phaseworld rpg. The game campaign's bounty hunter and more then slightly shady slant didn't change only the rpg system did. And while did lose two PC's to the machinations of bullets & bad dice rolls things have been going well. Well until Eddie one of our regulars brought up the other campaign which you can read about here. And this is where things get tricky because the Slavers are still on the brothel planet. And the PC's managed to make contact though pirate connections in response to the Flint Corporation & its holdings. They still want to go after that end of the campaign. But there are other complications. 
The PC's have managed to squirrel away enough money to buy a starship but Eddie joining our regular group with his spacer PC started to tell em about ins & outs of 'saving' ie buying  that sentient drive from the slavers. Eddie's PC Harry The Maul knows a guy whose got a ancien
t use  RAX Type Protected Merchant for sale from the Million Suns Empire. 

Eddie comes with a few advantages including hyperspace charts to get to our Strange Stars sector hyperspace gates. But Eddie's got some secrets of his own including cybernetic brain parts & systems that he's not sure about. Eddie was a belter and miner who was captured by some rather nasty Greys who implanted him with these. Eddies can almost but not quite interface with  the drive box and several other Strange Stars weirdness. Eddie showed up because of his connection with Bobby Daystrom from last game with details here. In the past Bobby Daystrom has been digging into Eddie's rather murky past. If the party doesn't trust Eddie he's got passage back to where my other party is via a Bright Water Class Personal Yacht that a friend of his owns. Eddie of course is sticking around for the moment because he's done nothing to the player's PC's but they don't trust em.

The party didn't get the information they were looking for but they got Eddie instead. And he's been feeding the party information all during the game. So its worked out so far. The party wants to take Eddie to a cyber doc & have his implants dug into to findout what or who their dealing with. That's next week.. Oh did I forget to mention the three Flint corporate goon erm agents who contacted the party?!

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Free Old School Pulp Download 'The Martian Circe' By Ramon F Jones From the Summer 1947 issue of Planet Stories magazine For Your Old School Martian Campaign

You can download the novella here. 

Mars has been my imagination's home since I was a kid & many a night was spent working my way through piles of my uncle's ancient Pulp magazine collection. And that brings up 'The Martian Circe' By Ramon F Jones  From the Summer 1947 issue of Planet Stories magazine. 'The Martian Circe' echoes through with the Pulpy voice of Ramon F. Jones & his Mars is an almost settled colonial world on the edge of the solar system; 

 'Who was this sweet-voiced singer weaving a spell of dreams and drugs that drove men mad and threatened to smash the System? SBI Captain Roal Hartford dared the death of the Thousand Minds to learn her dreadful secret!' 

So we've entered the world of Captain Roal Hartford agent of  the Solar Bureau of Investigation. And his is the world of the Martian underworld & therefore the  perfect foil for adventurers & scoundrals. But who was Ramon F. Jones?! According to his wiki entry; "Raymond Fisher Jones (November 15, 1915, Salt Lake City, Utah - January 24, 1994, Sandy, Salt Lake County, Utah) was an American science fiction author. He is best known for his 1952 novel, This Island Earth, which was adapted into the 1955 film This Island Earth and for the short story "The Children's Room", which was adapted for television as Episode Two of the ABC network show Tales of Tomorrow, first aired on February 29, 1952.'

'Jones' career was at its peak during the 1940s, 1950s, and 1960s. His stories were published mainly in magazines such as Thrilling Wonder Stories, Astounding Stories, and Galaxy. His short story Noise Level is known as one of his best works. His short story "The Alien Machine", first published in the June, 1949 Thrilling Wonder Stories, was later expanded into the novel This Island Earth, along with two other short stories, "The Shroud of Secrecy", and "The Greater Conflict", known as The Peace Engineers Trilogy, featuring the character Cal Meacham. Jones also wrote the story upon which the episode "The Children's Room" was based for the television program Tales of Tomorrow in 1952.

'The Martian Circe' concerns a phantom tavern 'the Starhouse' the venue for The Queen of the Silver Stars'  that has been drifting around the Martian cityscapes & taking out the souls & sanity of solar system miners. Harmeena is a gas like agent of the Martian Harm plant that causes those who inhail its gases to save vs poison or suffer horrifying visions as per a Fear spell.  And 'Starhouse' operates out of one of the Martian Capital cities  
Heliopolis. Heliopolis is the center of the wizened and withered Martians of Mr. R Jones tale. The Jones Martians as I've taken to calling them are +3 to their Constitution, +1 on Intelligence, -2 on Charisma, & +1 on Wisdom as they are an ancient race of Mars. And they barely tolerate humanity on their end of Mars. And the Jones Martians  lead deeply into the mystery of the phantom singer Alayna The Queen of the Silver Stars. 

Humanity produces a subtle radiation that is harmful to the Jones Martians & the Martians are planning on using Harmeena as one of the weapons of conquest. Any human who has exposure to the drug for more then two months becomes open to Martian telepathic mind control. And this is the secret of Starhouse, the tavern is an illusion that can be projected onto any human mind anywhere on Mars. And this is all due to the Thousand Minds. The Thousand Minds is the secret & highly advanced psionic ruling  body on Mars of the Jones Martians. The Thousand Minds can see through & control every Jones Martian on Mars. The Thousand Minds are the real masters of the Jones Martians & for the moment only use the 'Starhouse' to distribute Harmeena among every facet of human society including rich humans & gamblers who are looking for the seedier side of Mars. 
The situation in Heliopolis & the other Jones Martian human cities is a ticking time bomb and only he destruction of the Thousand Minds will save humanity. They are located in a series of Jones Martian  burrows outside of Heliopolis bout five miles or so from the city. 

Some OSR Thoughts on Unmerciful Frontier: The CCA Sourcebook Third Edition By John Watts For the Clement Sector rpg, Cepheus Engine rpg, and Your Old School 2d6 Science Fiction rpg Campaigns

 One of the key Clement Sector & Earth sector books is 'Unmerciful Frontier: The CCA Sourcebook Third Edition' by John Watts. And its a key book if we're using the Space Western analogy and the key reasons are in the description; "Unmerciful Frontier covers the Cascadia Colonization Authority,  the most famous of many organizations in Clement Sector dedicated to scouting the unknown and determining where future colonies might be placed.  Unmerciful Frontier gives detailed descriptions of the CCA and features career tracks to allow your players to become members of this storied group." 

Unmerciful Frontier also features our advanced star system generation method which is updated to match the best science available concerning the topic.  Unmerciful Frontier's star system generation method will return realistic star systems usable with any science fiction game.

The book also acts as a sourcebook for Tranquility Sector, the sector directly to trailing of Clement Sector and a prime location for adventure." 

The reason why I'm saying that the 'Unmerciful Frontier: The CCA Sourcebook Third Edition' by John Watt is because this book gives all of the details on creating the further edges of the terrorities of the Clement sector and its ilk. This book gives us deep details on the Tranquility sector & this is the last green dot of civilization before the  'no man's land' that is the Clement Sector's deep black of interstellar space. This book details those explorers, far searchers, scouts, & deep spacers. These are the individuals who brave the deepest depths of space without the furthest idea of what's out there. And the  'Unmerciful Frontier: The CCA Sourcebook Third Edition' by John Watt is the book that gives the DM the tools to create what's around the next solar system. 
And one of the key adventures for the CCA?! Well that's Hell's Paradise by George  Ebersole  & it goes deep into what makes the CCA so dangerous and well rounded for adventure creation.

 You've got exploration, 'save the crew' tropes and more; "
TXE-605b, known to some as Calliope, is an untapped planet whose barren surface but breathable atmosphere and abundance of water promises to be an excellent candidate world for colonization. The Nordic Exploratory Service sent an expedition to the TXE-605 system to expand humanity's knowledge of this world. Now their vessel, NESS Arn, has not returned on schedule. The crew of the CCAS Clara Barton, a Cascadia Colonization Authority search and rescue ship, has now been tasked with finding out why the Arn has not come back from TXE-605b. Have they been attacked by pirates? Have they suffered a malfunction? Or is it something far more sinister? " 

Everything about Hell's Paradise works because it tapps deep into what makes the CCA great. You've got the crew of a search and rescue ship going in deep into the black to find out the fate of an NES ship's crew on an unknown planet. Lots of opportunity for bringing in the adventure & horror elements if the DM wants to. But there's multiple opportunities for the player's PC's to leave their mark on the expanding frontier themselves. There's a deep dictomy of exploration & to a certain extent exploitation of the interstellar scene as it stands in the Clement sector and that's expanding. The CCA is one of the most undersung adventure opportunity elements of the Clement Sector rpg in my opinion. They have deep roots in what makes the Clement sector work as an adventure setting. 

Unmerciful Frontier: The CCA Sourcebook Third Edition By John Watts For the Clement Sector rpg Is Available Here. 

Hell's Paradise By George Ebersole For the Clement Sector Is Available Here. 

Friday, February 25, 2022

OSR Review & Commentary Quantum Starfarer Rpg By Omer Golan-Joel and Richard Hazlewood From Stellagemma Publishing For Your 2d6 Old School Science Fiction Campaigns

 "Starships riding fire across the sky. Heroes and villains exchanging laser fire. Desperate spacers struggling against an alien monstrosity. Vast alien vistas, flying cities, moonscapes, mad robots, and first encounters. High-action science-fiction adventure that stimulates your sense of wonder. Now – on a mere 4x two-sided sheets!"

"The rules include everything from quick character creation, through personal, vehicle, and starship combat, to starship design, procedural world generation, and a quick equipment guide! All on a mere 8 pages!"

Quantum Starfarer Rpg By Omer Golan-Joel and Richard Hazlewood From Stellagemma Publishing is the latest OSR retroclone  incarnation of the Cepheus Deluxe rpg rules. The Quantum Starfarer Rpg is really cut down to the bone for a minimalist Cepheus Engine rpg style 2d6 Science Fiction rpg. And it rocks. Why?! Because the Quantum Starfarer Rpg has everything you need to act as introduction to either  the Cepheus Deluxe rpg rules or the Cepheus Engine rpg itself. And for a beer & preztels night rpg the Quantum Starfarer Rpg is a solid choice. Its fast, easy, and very reliable. And it works! Everything from mininal star ship construction,to psionics, to adventure construction is included. All of this for a dollar. 
The writing here is crisp, fast paced, and mininalist rules all in one within 
 the Quantum Starfarer Rpg. The deal in  the Quantum Starfarer Rpg is solidly designed & written. And its perfect for an evening's entertainment or complete campaign run. As with Cepheus Deluxe the ideas here is to get maxminum playablity with the mininalist amount of rules. So we get rulings and not rules, making  the Quantum Starfarer Rpg a firmly OSR rules set. 
 The Quantum Starfarer Rpg is another example of the solid creativity of the Cepheus Engine rpg community. The drive of these writers & desginers is something to behold when we get solid products such as  the Quantum Starfarer Rpg. 
We get a really nice evening Science Fiction rpg with 
the Quantum Starfarer Rpg, The Quantum Starfarer Rpg is a productive & well written rpg with all of the moving parts & pieces to run an evening entertainment or a full year or two campaign. 

You can get 
Quantum Starfarer Rpg By Omer Golan-Joel and Richard Hazlewood From Stellagemma Publishing  Right Here 

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Ghost of the Goya - - - Session Three Report - Cepheus Engine & Stars Without Number Revised rpg Game


Well, my players have been doing a bit of bounty hunting in our Cepheus Engine/Stars without Numbers rpg campaign and things just got real complicated. The PC's have been hanging out at the Frontier Trading Post & this picks up right from this blog entry here.   And they caught up with the Flint Corporations  president's Brightwater-class Personal Yacht which was being used for transporting pre Scream artifacts from Relics of The Lost.   And while he wasn't on it they down loaded the complete data base from the ship. 

Just as an easter egg I threw in the fact that the Flint Corporation was finiancing the starship Goya to go look for the flying Dutchman of space the starship Warden. This was only supposed to be an Easter Egg  & down the road the party might look for it. Umm no! They dug in deeper instead shaking down their latest bounty to find out the extent of the Flint Corporation's involvement in securing certain experimental nuclear fuels for the corporate mission. 

So things start getting real interesting real fast as the party dives into the connections between the Scream & the disappearance of the biggest space going story ever, the disappearance of the Starship Warden. Every school kid knows the last known heading of the Warden but its only recently that the space pirates have located a hyperspace shadow of the Warden. And those are the Dark Terror space pirates one of whom they just busted. 
And the space pirates weren't the only ones in search of the Warden. The infamous space tyrant Logan Murphy was as well. Which means their taking a side jaunt to Cebus Three the communications world of the universe. The party knows that a cyberdecker named Bobby Daystrom ( a clone of Richard Daystrom) has the hyperspace course that the Goya took to get the Warden. But they have no idea where he is. So the party is going to be doing a bit of hard core investigation to find him on the street level. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

OSR Review & Commentary On Axioms Issue 10: Grim Heroes and Night Terrors By Alexander Macris, Omer Joel, & David Kickasola For Adventurer, Conqueror, King Rpg Or Favorite OSR or Old School Fantasy Rpg

 "Axioms is Autarch's quarterly supplement for the Adventurer Conqueror King System. Each issue of Axioms offers a mix of short content updates for ACKS, such as new classes, new sub-mechanical systems, explorations of specific themes within the game, short adventure scenarios, and more.  "

"In this issue, macabre monsters, twisted temples, and grim guardians await...

  • Grim Heroes: because a grimdark world needs grimdark heroes.
  • Terrors of the Night: a pair of new undead creatures inspired by monsters of legend
  • The Fetid Crypt of Anatu the Defiler: a dark and haunting dungeon in the Auran Empire's borderlands." 
When it comes to the Adventurer,Conqueror, King rpg, I've been a fan since the release of the rpg. Why?! Because the AKC's has always been just that wee bit different. And this is carried over into  Axioms Issue 10: Grim Heroes and Night Terrors By Alexander Macris, Omer Joel, & David Kickasola For Adventurer, Conqueror, King Rpg. This issue's content's will work with other OSR style rpg's. And in this issue we get three new classes which includes the flagellant, the Revenant, & the sorcerer. So let's begin with the martyr for Law the flagellant; "The flagellant sees pain as the pathway to penitence and spiritual purity. He views martyrdom as the pinnacle of faith a believer can achieve, and wounding the mortal flesh as a road to clearing one’s soul of dark Chaos. He marches through the corrupt mortal world to call the sinful to repent and flogs his own flesh to ward away the bestial call of the carnal body." What good is a flagellant in a game of ACK's?! Flagellants are not as they appear; "Flagellants are trained combatants and they fight with holy fervor. At first level, flagellants hit an unarmored foe (AC 0) with an attack throw of 10+. Like fighters, they advance in attack throws and saving throws by two points every three levels of experience. Flagellants increase their base damage roll from missile and melee weapons by +1 at 1st level and by an additional +1 at the 3rd, 6th, 9th, and 12th levels" Basically these holy zealots are out to combat the forces of Chaos regardless if these forces are slavers or even Chaos cults. The class goes to 20th level & plugs right into the feeling of 'grim dark' domain play nature & terror. At the end of the road the flagellant found monisteries and temples. This plugs into the flagellant being from the salt of the Earth and pleasant classes. Next up we get the reverant as a PC class, that's right you can play an incarnation of the undead spirit of vengence cast into undead form; "The holy teachers claim that death brings final respite to man. But some spirits cannot rest. Drawn to the living world by an oath unfulfilled or a mortal sin unconfessed, these revenants emerge, restless, from the grave to right the wrongs of their former lives. Many are monstrous undead, acting in vile ways to pursue the crimes they committed while living. A few, however, evade the dark grasp of Chaos and retain their free will. Some retain their own morality. Revenants are undead, albeit free-willed undead. They must consume the blood and flesh of living or recently dead sentient beings to heal and exist." This class goes to nineth level befitting its undead state where they built a fortified mosleum dedicated to housing an army of desparate & degenerate mercenaries. Yes this PC class is not on the side of light & Law. 
Finally we have the sorcerer and its a class that plugs into everything nasty about Sword & Sorcery PC's;
"Sorcerers: The dread of normal men, who huddle behind their walls muttering prayers against those who wield unearthly power. The scourge of the stalwart warrior and barbaric brave, who cower from the sorcerer’s eldritch might. Horror of eternity, steeped in the occult in life, terrifying in eternal undeath when they transcend the grave. Sorcerers are the latter half of “Sword and Sorcery”, the first half being the courageous sword-wielding barbarian who dares face such magical power." This class is shaded drawing its power from both the Black & the White spell lists. And this class sucks at combat and so it relies heavily on the ACK's magical formula for his protection or as the class puts it; "This is the reason the archetypal sorcerer relies on others – henchmen, allies, pets, or summoned creatures – for facing his foes, while the spellcaster uses his sorcerous might to bring doom upon his enemies from afar. A sorcerer may use any magic items useable by mages." The occult  might of a sorcerer is not to be underestimated at higher levels; "However, unlike a mage, a sorcerer’s magic is shaded. This means that spells his are categorized into White, Grey, and Black Magic. Grey and Black magic can cause Corruption. Use the rules from the Shades of Magic article in AXIOMS #1 for the use of such spells and the resulting Corruption. In return for this shading of his magic, the sorcerer gains two advantages. First, he may rebuke and control undead as a Chaotic cleric of his level. Second, he has access to a more varied selection of spells than a mage or cleric, from summoning to healing." 
The Sorcerer plugs directly into the ACK's domain rulership axiom with Sorcerer Kings being the  final level of fourteen level power. A kingdom ruled by dangerous magicks & power can be yours. 
We then bounce into the world of the undead with the nosferatu  a powerful variation of the undead capable of ruling a cult, graveyard, or complete kingdom of the undead. These are extremely dangerous monsters & caution on the DM's part should be excercised. These undead horrors are more then mere vampires and have their own variations within. And then we get into one of the undead horrors that I personlly loath the Psychofágos. What is a Psychofágos you might ask?! The Psychofágos is more then a mere undead monster and instead is a fiend from the deepest depths of the Negative material planes; "When the priestesses of the chthonic god of death eventually die, they do not always stay dead. When the burial grounds where the priestesses are buried become shadowed pits, they can rise as Psychofágos or “Soul Eaters”. Psychofágos are intelligent undead creatures that lurk within the tombs and graves that they were buried in. These twisted grey-skinned humanoids will roam the nearby countryside, preying on unwary travelers and villages. Once slain, their victims rise again as flesh-eating ghouls or zombies under the command of the psychofágos." And these undead fiends are extremely dangerous especially within fringe or urban enviroments. The monsters here flex to the level of the PC's without getting dull or repeatable. They each have their own quirks to bring home the terror. 
And this issue of Axiom Issue Number 10: Grim Heroes & Night Terrors rounds out with a lair or small dungeon for PC's levels 3-4 in the form of The Fetid Crypt of Anatu the Defiler. This is a straight forward adventure encounter or hex location that brings home the grim dark nature of this issue. And its a rather nasty little affair at that. Use the The Fetid Crypt of Anatu the Defiler with some caution or your might end up with a TPK. 
Is Axioms Issue 10: Grim Heroes and Night Terrors By Alexander Macris, Omer Joel, & David Kickasola worth getting for ACK's or your favorite OSR system?! Yes I believe it is. There's plenty of original content to add to your ACK's campaign and enough here to bring home some solid OSR weirdness. 

Axioms Issue 10: Grim Heroes and Night Terrors By Alexander Macris, Omer Joel, & David Kickasola For Adventurer, Conqueror, King Rpg Is Available Here 

Red Tide & Spears of the Stars - - Thoughts on Worlds Without Number, Spears of the Dawn, & Cepheus Engine rpg

 So once again we dive back into Worlds Without Number & Stars Without Number Revised but this time through the back door settings. 

Anyone that knows me knows that I take risks with players & campaigns. This blog post is going to continue right after here. Now over the past couple of years I've had Sine Nomine's Red Tide OSR rpg setting for  Labyrinth Lord sitting on my hard drive. Now doing some deep research by going through Dreams In The Lich House's review of Red Tide. Reading through Red Tide, Worlds Without Number, & Stars Without Numbers Revised, & the  Godbound Rpg  several questions started to race through my mind. One is the Red Tide setting actually one of Godbound's Celestial Engine universes where said Celestial Engine is breaking down?! Are the red tides actually Celestial Engine energies leaking into the setting & causing many of the mutations & horrors?! 

How does this relate to the Latter Earth of Worlds Without Number?! The islands of the red tide could well be isles with the Latter Earth that have vanished behind the horrors & energies of the red tide. And these observations could be true within my own campaign. 
And this got me thinking about Spears of the Dawn rpg which is an African-inspired game built on the Stars Without Number rpg engine. Spears of the Dawn could well be another continent setting for Worlds Without Number. The adventurers don't have to be colonists at all but adventurers stumbling into a Bronze age world that they have no idea about. These settings might not be easily reached because of the breakdown of the Celestial engines. 

What if parts of the gateways from Spears of the Dawn contect directly into the Million Stars Empire of Godstar?! And yet the technologically superior races of Godstar actually respect the technological drag of these Pan African cultures because of treaties that were created thousands of years go. And if we go back to 
 Sixteen Stars: Creating Places of Perilous Adventure. Then its easy to insert in deserted space ports, ruins of outposts, and more into Spears of the Dawn. What if only the best & brightest of Spears of the Dawn setting can serve aboard one of the ancient starships of the Godstar setting. Or captain one. 

Could there be far more going on with the Godstar then one might think?! Could the godstar actually be a divinity that escaped the events of the Godbound rpg and still retains its power?! 
Could the godstar's ancient knowledge extend over to the Nexus Gates of Arduin as well?! The mind boggles at the possibilities. Think about it an ancient and mysterious divinity that may know the old hyperspace routes through the back edges of the planes. 

So where does this leave the average instellar trader?! Here's the thing. There are treachous passages through the underbelly of the universe that extend across the planes. And there are aliens that know these ancient byways of hyperpsace. There are fortunes to be made & dungeons to explore but also some very dangerous things that lurk in the darkness. 

Monday, February 21, 2022

OSR Review & Commentary On Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog By John Watts, & Michael Johnson For The Clement Sector rpg, Cepheus Engine, & Old School 2d6 Science Fiction rpg's

 "Who will you choose to be?

Independence Games is proud to present our newest book in the Clement Sector line of products. Diverse Roles: A Clement Sector Career Catalog presents 19 career tracks for use in building Clement Sector characters. These include careers such as Belters, Clergy, Politicians, Scavengers, and much more.  While these career tracks are specifically designed for use with Independence Games' Clement Sector setting, they can also be used with any Cepheus Engine or 2d6 SF RPG." 

"Within these pages are the tools to allow your players to create characters from a wide variety of careers.  Some are honest jobs, some are illegal professions, and yet others are those which tread in both worlds."

2d6 Cepheus Engine games are only as good as the PC's careers & this is very true of the Clement Sector. This brings us to Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson. This 101 page book is filled to the brimp with Clement sector & Earth sector focused careers, their paths, & mutations all affecting the player's PC's in major ways. The layout is very well done, the idea here thick & fast, the general adherance to the 2d6 ideals are solid. 
Everything here is centered directly on the PC's during the career phase of their character creation. And Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson does an excellent job of presenting the defining careers of the PC's. 
Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  does this very well by giving the players many options with a toss of the 2d6 die. 
The focus of the PC's is front & center here in Diverse Roles Third Edition. The charts, options, and more brings home everything from careers in the cleric arena's to full on illegal careers to careers on the right side of the law. 
Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson is major book I feel for the Clement Sector bringing home some of the what I feel are essential careers for the Clement Sector rpg. 
The layout, fonts, writing here are all up to Independence Games standards giving the players another top notch product to use as a toolbox for thier PC's for Cepheus Engine or Clement or Earth sectors. Because 
Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson is a third edition product it seems like the bugs were worked out & we've got a solid addition to the Clement sector rpg line of products. I highly recommend Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson for those who want an another added layer of PC generation for their Clement Sector rpg, Cepheus Engine, & Old School 2d6 Science Fiction rpg's. 

Diverse Roles Third Edition : A Clement Sector Career Catalog  By John Watts, &  Michael Johnson  Is Available Here 

Sunday, February 20, 2022

Beyond The Normal Bounds of Space - Thoughts on Worlds Without Number & Cepheus Engine rpg

This campaign is going to pick right up from this blog entry here

There's been a ton of thoughts echoing through my brain especially about the  'Worlds Without Number' rpg.  Now incase you've not been reading this blog, I've recently took over from a DM who had passed on after a heart attack. My friend DM Steve passed these six players along who were a part of  a long standing Rift's Phaseworld rpg and they were in a transition phase of the campaign. So we've been doing a Stars Without Number rpg and Cepheus Engine hybrid campaign for the last two months. Its been interesting to say the least.One of these players was a part of our Godbound rpg campaign some months ago. But we've really got to get back into the fantasy or Pulp fantasy end of the campaign. Here's where Sixteen Stars: Creating Places of Perilous Adventure comes in handy. 

Since WWN is a fantasy, we've been wondering about various star ports, outposts, interstellar towns, etc. going to seed. Or have these settlements have interstellar connections.Settlements that continue to trade with the rest of the sector or galaxy?! From what we've talked about WWN is perfectly suited to a linked Stars Without Numbers Revised rpg. This campaign setting would enable the sector's military to bluster their ranks by drafting the most dangerous & able warriors, wizards, etc. 
And here's Sixteen Stars: Creating Places of Perilous Adventure  is also good for creating adventure locations for these fantasy PC's to prove thAnd its here that we believe that there's room for an almost Arthurian element to the campaign. 

For the Clement Sector, this could be one way that the ranks of the military of the outer edges of the sector where the pirates & outlaws hang out get filled in. And this is one of the aspects that I've been toying with for our own campaign. The Clement sector, supplies other sectors especially with everything from food to fuels and it brings to mind the workhorse starships. Starships that could be prey for advanced pirates & outlaws. 

Over the last couple of months thoughts have been occupying my mind with far off hyperspace ports. Places off the normal hyperspace routes & gateways. And it brings me back to Paul Elliot's Godstar as a possible isolated sector of space far from the normal spacer routes. Godstar would make an excellent secondary contact world & sector for traders. Traders would be completely out of their element within the  desert world Aurelia. The Million Suns empire is ancient, alien, and a complete mystery to the normal Stars Without Numbers Revised or  Cepheus Engine rpg adventuring party. 

Now I've talked at length about 
Godstar & it sets up a 'Marco Paulo' style trader campaign with the PC's being exalted 'guests' of the Million Suns empire. And the adventurers being completely out of their own element. The 'fishes out of water' campaign option is tricky & complicated to off but very rewarding when it works in spades. 

Otherworldly Death Druglord For The Neonlords Of The Toxic Wastelands Rpg

Otherworldly Death Druglords  come from beyond the stars to suck the brain matter from out of the freaks of the wastelands of Neo Traxx to make the ultimate high! These highly dangerous alien humanoids come to use a brain sucker to harvest the highly valuable brain chemicals to get the rest of the galaxy high. The highly dangerous humanoids use blinding amounts of chaos & bloodshed to cover their tracks across Neo Traxx. 

The Otherworldly Death Druglords use a combination of high caliber violence. And the own alien senses to target humanoids with the right combination of brain chemicals to drain. 
Across the wastelands these alien pushers take the heads of anyone they deem worthy of their attentions. 

Otherworldly Death Druglord
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement:40 ft 
Armor Class:16 
Hit Dice:3 
Attacks: Rifle or Spinning Slicers +2 To Hit 
Attack: 2d4! Blaster Rifle, Spinning Slicers 1d8+2, Brain Drainer Tendril 1d4, 
Saves:Grit 11, Agility 12, Resolve 17, Death 10 
Special : Flash Banger, Alien 

To The Max! 
1-19 The Sheer Violence of the Alien Death Drug Lord Gains an Additional 1d6 damage on the attacks 
20 Head Shot - Double The Damage if using the Spinning Slasher and then the spinner richots off an obstacle and then its Decap - Attack! The alien takes the head of the target and then drains the brains of all of the rich brain chemicals. 
The Otherworldly Death Druglord has a flash bang and can throw one as a bonus action. 

The Otherworldly Death Druglord causes a wave of violence that covers their tracks as they take head after head for their valuable brains. His supply of brain chemicals is worth billions to the right buyer even in the wastelands of Neo Traxx. 

This is my homage to one of my favorite 90's films 'I come In Peace' Aka Dark Angel for Neon Lords of the Toxic Wastelands rpg

Saturday, February 19, 2022

The Cybernetic Legacy of Logan Murphy - - Cepheus Engine & Stars Without Number Revised rpg Game Campaign Commentary

 One of our PC's in our Cepheus Engine/Stars Without Number Revised  is from an advanced cyberpunk sector. But as an alternate from Phaseworld whose crossed over into our campaign setting. Said PC ran into a corporate representive & his cyborg bodyguard. For the players this was like running into a piece of ancient history. Ancient history from a colony world of Michael Brown's New World: 2D6 Adventure in a Cyberpunk America. 

All of this decends into the Hellscape of SWM's Polychrome deep in the heart of the PC's former home sector. The whole sector is run by A.I. 'gods' who control a good portion of sector's commerce & population. 

This whole thing would or will lead into the capture of   Logan Murphy was a ruthless dictator on the world of Casudxe in Old School Role playing's Justice Denied. Logan was actually a manufactured dictator literally created by the A.I. gods to give the people something to hate. The cyber dictator did far more then simply rule with an iron fist. He harvested organs, chemicals & drugs from the human brain, used people as living factories, & more. 

 Now Joseph's PC is after Logan Murphy, but he's unaware of the artificial nature of the cyber dicatator. This creates some interesting variations on the themes of Justice Denied. As the bounty puck for Logan Murphy has come up last time we played. 
And the PC's want to take a trip out to 
 the world of Casudxe to get on Logan's trail but there's already a body double NPC or two waiting in the wings of that world in hiding. 
What I'm doing is making a huge linked sector series of encounters so that the PC's will run into some of the campaign's adventure threads one way or another. 

Friday, February 18, 2022

Insearch of Worlds Without Number -- B1 Insearch Of the Unknown & Worlds Without Number rpg - Session Report One


So tonight I got a chance to play in front of the DM screen as a player in DM Steve's Worlds Without End rpg  Tonight was the night where I was sitting in for a player who couldn't make it and our party were on the trail of , Rogahn the Fearless (a fighter of renown) and Zelligar the Unknown (a magic-user of mystery and power)! That's right we're playing through B1 Insearch of the Unknown by Mike Carr! Now I've DM'ed this module countless times over the years but being on the other side of the screen means that anything can & will happen. We made several characters & equipped ourselves in town. 

I know for a fact that DM Steve has been using Bloody, Bloody,  Arduin in the mix as well, I recognized some of the Phant NPC's in town. The party didn't have the funds to hire these hirelings for the adventure. We encountered  troglodytes  on the first level & almost got into combat with them. However we decided to hang back & see who they were fighting. Turns out it was a rival adventuring party! 

Basically we're starting on the lower rung of the ladder here with 3rd level PC's and a whole lot of ruins of the past which are being explored like a modern day 'gold boom'. The party has been playing some months now with about six players. DM Steve backed the Worlds Without End Rpg kickstarter & wanted to run a classic old school module with it. Mere

Thursday, February 17, 2022

Sectors & Set Up's - - Cepheus Engine & Stars Without Number Revised rpg Game Campaign Update

 A campaign & adventure point that has been used numerous times in our campaign is the fact that the Clement sector supplies a huge amount of food stuffs, minerals, nuclear fuels, etc to other sectors. This has made the Clement sector incredibly wealthy and gives the PC's time to do a bit of double sector duty. How?! Well its easy. The PC's are going to be doing a bit of guard duty on a Clement Sector Hercules class Heavy freighter 

Now this isn't the first time that  I've used this bid but it is the first time that I've used the 'These Stars Are Ours' campaign setting as the receiving sector for the sundries, food crops, etc. And this happened out in the American West all of the time. The Hercules is perfect prey for space pirates and having an escort starship is going to help. 

'These Stars Are Ours' sector has a post war economy which deeply reminds me of the American Civil War. The Clement sector is positioned to be the perfect cure offering alternatives for interstellar trade. 
And this is going put New Liberty in the cross hairs of the PC's as a bit of a lawless colony and this isn't the first time that the colony has been on the table. 

The players are not going to be used to the fact that all of their high tech toys don't work on New Liberty & they're going to have to think outside of the box. And I don't see the Reticulans going the way of the American Indians at all. And is Terra of TSAO actually Earth?! In our game actually no. 
This dives into several themes that Stars Without Numbers Revised rpg goes into with the Scream and some post interstellar themes. These do fit our campaign so there's more coming on that end. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

On The Space Tides - - Session Two Report - Cepheus Engine & Stars Without Number Revised rpg Game

 This play session report is going to pick up where our last one left off on the blog here. The players don't exactly trust me as they've been doing a bit of recon on their target.So they've been asking around several star ports about the Flint Corporation. And they've come up with the fact that their heavily invested in antiquities brokering, military contracts and more in the local sector. The 'Flint Corporation' has heavily pissed off members of the Dark Terror space pirates gang. The Dark Terrors comes from Independence Games 21 Pirate Groups. 

And while asking around they stumbled upon a 'wanted' member of the Dark Terror space pirates gang whose wanted by the crime lord of the Frontier Trading Post. Devel Toricl's crimes are unmentionable but the holo puck for his capture is worth a cool 70,000 credits alive. And the PC's captured the  pirate in a very nifty double cross. 
The players grilled the space pirate about the Flint Corporation and found out about the president's Brightwater-class Personal Yacht which was being used for transporting pre Scream artifacts from Relics of The Lost.  

The PC's are not taking any chances and have the bounty in heavy restrains because their not sure that the NPC's not a heavy gravity  Altrant. And the PC's sedated him before landing back on the Frontier Trading Post where they handed over the space pirate & collected their reward. 

Their employer gave the party charts & approach courses to the Flint corporation's retreat world & its mini star pad. The world is rich in rare minerals & nuclear fuels. The players are very wary and not one has caught on to the significant's of the planet's homage  to original Star Trek's 'Requiem for Methuselah' episode. 

More coming up as the player's PC's buy a star ship on the black market next week!