Every once in a while, I feel like being a creative person. Then I unpack my acrylic paints, and paint some of the figures I have gathered during the years I have roleplayed. I repeat this process until I get tired of painting or have something more urgent to deal with. I have plans to write updates on games and other rpg matters, but that will happen if I can stop myself from painting.
Figures are from the first Reaper Kickstarter Vampire level pledge. Image quality is crap since phone cameras are absolute garbage.
While tabletop RPGs give us an opportunity to escape from standard design mechanics, there’s a main factor of gaming that we often don’t set aside one way or another. In most every other kind of game there is a clear winner and loser, but RPGs don’t always allow for that kind of clarity. The…
This is an excellent question. Gaming itself is by nature a binary structure, but roleplaying does not have to be about winners and losers. Diplomacy does not work if you only talk about who loses and who gains.
I would not want to end the game just yet if the player characters would lose to the evil. There are only a handful good stories that revolve around evil guys winning the final fight. Just a thought, but maybe the villain could convince the heroes of the greater cause that the villain serves. Granted, I have not dared the players to make the ultimate sacrifice at the end of a game. But that may leave the players sour if they have no legacy.
As a GM, I win when everyone (including me) has fun. When I create villains and affably evil characters, I always ponder how they welcome their doom and failure. Okay, I’m prepared that any and all NPCs may die during the course of a game session/campaign. I try to make their deaths interesting, triggering possible future hindrances or advantages.
Lamantia campaign, towards the mountain of gold and sulfur:
The party picked up the bits after the festivious evening had ended. Village leader Danal informed that they had been offering jewelry and precious gems to a red dragon that swoops around the town every year. Sometimes the villagers offered women as per instructions by the dragon itself. The protagonists offered their help to deal with the scaly menace. Reluctantly, Danal agreed to their help, stating that it would help them to further advance their lineage and form a proper settlement.
VtR Campaign: Götterdammerung
After Wednesday and Hilda had helped the local Hound Diego to capture the diablerist Vincent, they took some much needed R&R. Wednesday’s Madame/Sire Felicia agreed to host them until the new Kindred had found their places to stay and thrive.
More than a week passed. Their casual movie night with Felicia’s ghoul Marcus was interrupted by a sudden visit. A female nosferatu had arrived at the front door of Felicia’s elegant mansion. She introduced herself as Herald for the Prince of Santa Monica. It was her duty to cordially invite the newcomers to participate in the formal gathering of the Prince’s court. The meeting was meant to take place in a special Elysium, unhallow grounds for the vampire folk. Not knowing what to expect, Hilda and Wednesday prepared themselves for the upcoming event to the best of their knowledge.
Long hiatus between posts, but life has happened. A lot of it, in fact. There have been five sessions during my absence of activity. But time to get back to work!
Progress on Lamantia campaign, first session:
Having defeated the deadly wyverns, the party stopped to rest and gain back their strengths. With the help of their new friend, Undine bard Eumelia, the whole group was able to take a relaxing bath and purify their bodies and souls but also clean their clothes. The weather turned from clear skies to light precipitation and clouds. Occasionally, the players could view the three large moons and bright stars lighting the hills and plains as the clouds parted with brief moments.
Almost unexpectedly, players wanted to roleplay recent past and current events in depth and detail. I was able to take the back seat for the evening and players progressed the game by themselves.
Being honest to your audience and readers
Yet again going back to last weekend, I participated in a world building lecture from Jason Josel, a developer working for the Privateer Press. It was a somewhat intense two hour Q&A session.
I do not know if this is an American/Anglo-American cultural thing, but Jason was really skimpy on spilling out the details how he had gotten his ideas for the Iron Kingdoms campaign and roleplaying settings. And it lead me to wonder, if I am personally doing something wrong how I host my tumblr blog?
I got familiar with TAMusic through their wonderful instrumental renditions of Touhou music. I also love most of Gen Urobuchi’s work, so queueing some Fate Zero instrumental music seems like a no-brainer to me.
During the weekend, I had a long discussion with some friends why I like the way how Urobuchi builds characters for his works (well, mostly male characters). At first, the audience is shocked with the choices Urobuchi makes for his characters. Nowadays, I expect unhappiness and horrible fates and I am more interested how these characters function with each other, how they justify and argument their actions. I feel that the ending is irrelevant, but the characters are eternal. I feel a deeper connection with the characters as they progress along the storyline. Stories do not need to have a happy ending.
As I mentioned earlier, I was at a roleplaying/geek fandom convention for the weekend. It hosted a number of excellent lectures about power and authority, as well as other entertainment and geekery. I returned to my recreational work as a GM, feeling refreshed.
I followed Morivan's advice and bought RPG books from the flea market that the convention had organized: Malleus Monstrorum for Call of Cthulhu and Savage Worlds Deluxe edition rulebook.
Slow week for updates. I’m at a roleplaying convention, getting my game on. Expect new posts on monday/tuesday.
Exploration. Perhaps best done in real life simply by traveling at random to different locations and places. Today, I took a long walk with my girlfriend. We wandered aimlessly and took turns without thinking where the road would take us. If you don’t know the way, your choices can take you to places you would not believe ending up in.
No further than two kilometers (approx. 1.2 miles) away from my apartment, a vast wetland can be found. Thick forests silence the sounds coming from the small city we live in, resulting in a relatively peaceful and quiet natural habitat. Birds, insects and other wild animals bustled around, making constant reminders that we were not alone in the wilderness.
We stopped to enjoy the serene surroundings. The weather was perfect: sunny but with mild winds cooling us down. It looked beautiful outside, but the most remarkable stimuli came not from how things looked rather than stemmed from other senses. The wetlands fizzed quietly, as thousands upon thousands mosquito larvae moved in the water. Reeds moved in unison, producing a sizzling sound as the wind guided their path. The sand and gravel gnarled underneath our feet. The air was humid and I could smell my own sweat. Sunlight made its best efforts to scorch my skin dry. Calm winds cooled us down, and allowed us to stay for a while longer.
Sight is regarded as our most important sense, but others are equally relevant in my opinion. Temperature, sounds produced by various sources and smells built immersion.
The photo was taken with my (not-so) handy smartphone and edited for better balance in color and brightness.