Weekend Roundup: July 30th 2016

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Wow, July is almost finished…already. I’m off to my annual motorcycle trip with Matt, our other brother and our father. Back on August 3rd, but Peter is back from his trip today!

Those Vikings had some weapons. Axe or Sword.

What’s new with I.C.E.? Keep up with the Director’s Briefing.

Shadow World “Longheads”. Ancestors of the Worim?

Short a player from your group? Utilizing NPC’s.

Or, down to just 1 player?

Living it up like Bilbo.

Want an inexpensive, compact game mat? Try Noteboard.

Book pick of the week. Love those armored Greatcoats!

Shadow World Adventure Hooks: Taking your game to a new place.

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One of my previous blogs discussed the “Many Flavors of Shadow World” and I felt like expanding on a few specific adventure environments that we’ve used that really enhanced our campaign.

  1. Underwater adventures. Having your players adventure underwater can add a new dimension to your SW environment. Lost cities, shipwrecks and new races can all be encountered and the challenges of breathing, moving and fighting add a new strategic element to group tactics and abilities. My current I.C.E. module submission, Priest-King of Shade, is focused on water/underwater adventures and environments. It’s in edit/review and hopefully will see print in the near future.

Shadow World Game Hook: The Lair of Ozymandias

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You slowly open your eyes, paint stabbing through your head and your body aching from head to toe. Gradually, your surroundings come into focus. Above, a smooth stone roof dripping cold water. Moving your head cautiously you realize you are in a small stone room blocked by rusting narrow bars. You are not alone. Other bedraggled figures are likewise laying on the floor. All appear to be bruised, their clothes in tatters and are moving feebly taking in their surroundings.

Rolemaster Weekend Roundup July 23rd 2016

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Welcome to RolemasterBlog’s first “Weekend Roundup”. Here we will feature interesting links, stories or news items that might be of interest to RPG’ers or curious minds!

The price of fashion. Getting around in ARMOR.

What a bunch of NERDS!

Celebrities aren’t the only ones PLAYING D&D.

What every growing boy needs…the CRATE OF DOOM!

Cryptonomicon…I don’t think so. Try the CODEX SERAPHINIANUS.

Interesting article on PROTO LANGUAGES.

The Gods of Death in Shadow World. RESURRECTION discussion.

You call that a KNIFE?

Till next time!

All my players want to be Clerics.

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You know that guy…the player that begrudgingly agrees to play the Cleric for the “good of the team”. After dispensing some essential buffs, he waits around to dole out some healing and maybe, just maybe, get a few licks in during combat. Add to that, the group leader role is usually played by the more assertive, dynamic player who is the fighter. That guy gets the glory and the bulk of combat. Oh the indignity.

There are ways to make the Cleric more interesting and even the most desirable character to play. Here is how I did it.

Rule sets and settings. The gap between Rolemaster and Shadow World.

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A recent forum thread started me thinking about the “tensions” between a game setting and a game system. Specifically rulesets and worlds published by the same company (not like Peter’s use of FR for his RM game). Certainly Greyhawk and Forgotten Realms were designed to incorporate the full breadth of the D&D rules, but what issues are created when a game world doesn’t fully embrace the system it’s meant to support? MERP is a good example of this. The original modules used the RM rule set, but that rule set never really fit the low magic world of Tolkien. ICE eventually introduced MERP, which stripped out many of the professions to better fit the setting.

STRANGER THINGS: A tropey love story to the 80’s.

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I thought I would go a bit off normal topics to discuss Netflix’s most recent series: Stranger Things. The series is a nod (actually more of a trope head-butt) to 80’s science fiction and fantasy and written and directed by brothers steeped in early fantasy gaming. The show starts with a group of boys playing D&D in their basement—the game narrative establishing the plot and structure of the rest of the series.

Revisiting Rolemaster Magic Realms

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Rolemaster’s 3 realms (Essence, Channeling, Mentalism) creates conflicts and limitations. Certain spell lists never fit well in certain realms and casting mechanism were basically the same between realms even when the spell called for very different methods (alchemy imbedding, runes, circles, bard/singing etc). As part of our own Spell Law Redesign (Project BASil) we deconstructed the whole system and started from scratch. Step 1 was to define Realms into more specific parameters of effect and mechanism. During that analysis we found that we really needed to expand our system into more than the 3 standard realms.

RM Stats & Labeling. Quantitative vs. Qualitative

imgresWhile Peter is off “riding horses” and drinking Earl Gray I thought I would toss this issue out and see if anyone had some thoughts on the subject. on a side note….(Peter is off to some mysterious locale, Peter is English, all villains have an English accent; ergo Peter is a villain up to some nefarious scheme!)

Anyway, I wanted to start off with a factoid I was told years ago that stuck with me. A friend of mine in the Navy said that the nuke dept. still used analog gauges in their instruments instead of more accurate digital displays. Why? Because while less accurate, we can better perceive “rate and severity of change” with a needle than a rapidly changing digital number output.

Little Viking Horses

This time next week I will be in Iceland riding a rather special kind of horse that has pretty well remained unchanged for 1000 years since they were introduced by the vikings to Iceland.

If you don’t know much about horses then just consider the hardy little horses the 4×4 (SUV?) of the equine world.

Really this is just an excuse as to why I have not prepared a post for the blog today and I won’t be doing one for Friday either. Brian on the other hand will be hard at work producing loads of new and original content for Shadow World.