With two whole months passing without posting here, I have come to realise that I think this LJ page has run its course. Not that there has been any activity on my friends page either in that time TBH :)
With a new campaign starting up tomorrow and my decision not to post Actual Play Reports here, I doubt that I will be posting here anymore.
I have been using a variant of the world creation system in the FAL Companion to great effect for younger players. I have coined it "3-2-1-point". Each step is done once by one player, before moving to the next step.
Step 1: Take 3 coins or chips and throw them on a blank piece of paper. Each forms a geographical area. This is the same as the system in FAL but the three coins creates a two dimensional shape, unlike the use of two coins.
Step 2: Take two coins and throw them on the same piece of paper. Each forms a path or barrier that makes travel along it easier or travel over it harder. This can be roads, walls, rivers, tunnels, portals, cliffs, etc. It can also be less physical, like language barriers, weather changes, communication networks. This is a new step, but it really helps make the map dynamic, especially for those travelling across it.
Step 3: Take one coin and throw it on the map. This is a place. Again similar to existing Architects of FAL.
Step 4: Point to a place on the map and tell something about it or ask a question about it. This is similar to Historians of FAL but more limited and is useful in fleshing out elements on the map and identifying those elements that are of interest to the players.
After all of this, you should have enough to run a few adventures. I have used this for a fantasy landscape, space sectors, and modern town maps.
Without really trying my RPG calendar has filled up nicely with the following:
Mondays: I am continuing to play in Booby's Tyranny of Dragons for D&D, now into the second half. The GM has shown an interest in playing in one of the FFG Star Wars adventures once we are done.
Thursdays: Due to some anticipated changes, I am now running a short (12 sessions or so) campaign of Ryuutama. Once done, I hope to either run Mutant Year Zero or Godbound, or play in Urban Shadows, next.
Saturdays: I am also continuing to play in James' Tyranny of Dragons for D&D, but with a number of expected breaks this year, I am running Shadow of the Demon Lord when those breaks occur. The first is this Saturday.
Cons: For Buckets of Sand, I have Skyreach for Godbound ready to go, and Far Away Land for the younger crowd (using my 3, 2, 1, point system for scenario creation). I may also look to run Godbound at Not-D&D Con and even Kapcon, if it proves a success.
Family: With Imperial Assault behind us, I am planning on running Lost Mines of Phandelver for D&D for the family on the weekends.
I have been reading Sine Nomine's upcoming Godbound RPG and decided to make my my Lunar Exalted PC. Beast doesn't quite deal with Lunar's transformation but its so close that I am happy with how he turned out.
Jacobi Silverheart (Silver Jack)
Strength 14 (+1) Check 7
Dexterity 16 (+2) Check 5
Constitution 13 (+1) Check 8
Wisdom 8 (-1) Check 13
Intelligence 10 (-) Check 11
Charisma 18 (+3) Check 3
Hit Points: 9
Deadly Beastman Transformation 1d10+2 Check 17
Moonsilver Reaper Daiklaive 1d6+2 Check 17
Fray Dice d8
Facts: Survived on the edges of the wild, Stories are told of told of Silver Jack, Compassion stolen by a parasite god
Goal: To reunite with his true love
Alacrity, Beast, Passion
Cannot be surprised.
Can speak to animals and is never willingly attacked by unintelligent natural beasts.
Gifts of Alacrity
Swifter Than The Sun On Turn: Commit Effort. Your movement rate is twice as fast as your fastest pursuer or quarry, to a minimum of 60 feet per move action.
Walk Between the Rain Constant: Your natural AC is 3. You cannot be hit by anything not driven by a purpose unless you allow it.
Gifts of Beast
Red in Tooth and Claw On Turn: You have or can instantly manifest natural weaponry that does 1d10 damage and counts as a magic weapon. Against natural or magical beasts, these weapons always strike against AC 9.
Many-Skinned Mantle Action: Adopt the shape of any beast, natural or magical. Alternately, transform a human within sight into a natural beast; Commit Effort until the end of the day to affect those of greater hit dice, who also get a Hardiness save to resist.
Gifts of Passion
Fashioning a Friend Action: Commit Effort for the scene to beguile a visible creature, inspiring it to feelings of friendship and cooperativeness towards you.
I attended Kapcon 2016 in the weekend. Though the energy seemed more subdued than normal, it was a good Con. The energy (though lower) felt more focussed, it ran smoothly, and I was really happy to see people acknowledging and enjoying the long-lived social aspects of the Con (no doubt enhanced by the disappearance of the mid year Cons).
On Friday, Sam and I had a nice meal with Margie, Hix and James, before a fleeting visit to the pre-Kapcon drinks. The space was tight and noise made talking hard, but I was able to catch up with a few of my favourite people. I then managed a relatively early night's sleep, which paid dividends later.
Saturday morning I took off and helped the Kapcon Organisers and chatted with Nasia, Morgan and Hannah. Given that it was a scenario of my own making, I was happy to hear that Sam's first run of Ryuutama went well. Players of both this run and her second one later in the Con said they were keen to play more, which is always a good sign.
This was followed by my first run of Shadow of the Demon Lord. It ran pretty good with a standout player performance by Cat as a hard bitten Dwarf witchhunter who died of a heart attack at seeing the big bad. I wasn't happy with my own performance as GM, to be truthful, but it was a good wake up for my later games.
In round 3, I ran my second game of Shadow of the Demon Lord. This was a low powered game and with random PC creation. I was worried about it to start (character creation with tired player can be woeful) but it was reliably fun. Robert Vincent owned his murdernating goblin gangster resulting in one of the most hilarious hostage negotiations I have experienced.
I offered to withdraw my round 4 game at the start of round 3 to allow Conan to run his game, only to find that Conan withdrew his game at the last minute. I played in Undying run by MikeS instead. It was enjoyable (it felt like a Vampire Diplomacy) and I would definitely like to see it in action over a few sessions. As it was, I found that only one session skewed some of the play, leaving me a little unsatisfied. I also struggled with the walls of text move sheets, but that would disappear with some more play. I wrapped up the day being the last to leave the building with Russ and Morgan.
I woke up on Sunday tired. Adventure Squad loomed and its always a massive energy sink. Luckily, in the first round Karen ran a game of Mermaid Adventures and Dylan ran 5e. So, I dodged the GMing bullet. I did introduce the squaddies to Tsuro and Love Letter. the best pick me up that morning was seeing how much the squaddies (and their parents) enjoyed themselves. Adventure Squad continues to grow and I think its a great thing for Kapcon.
In round 6, I ran my second run of Shadow of the Demon Lord. I was worried about energy levels but I had a great group, with JonB being the driving force of the group with great player support all round. The session was probably my most enjoyable of the Con. I was happy to see that both Ayla and Sophie had run in round 6 as well and people were impressed. The Kapcon Organisers were also kind enough to recognise Sophie as the youngest Kapcon GM to date :). Fraser also ran a 10 session D&D5e game that round (which I had asked him to prepare on really short notice) and it went very well, resulting in him winning the prize for best single round. I left with my family after round 6.
My main impressions from this Con were:
1. Shadow of the Demon Lord is a really fun game.
2. I did a lot to make the Con fun for other people.
3. Adventure Squad is awesome and needs to continue to grow and be supported.
4. I am tired.