Monthly Archives: March 2016

This one’s by Lee Garvin (of Tales From the Floating Vagabond fame*), and it’s one of those great games for those nights when the GM just doesn’t feel like running, but you really want to hack some stuff up anyway.

(*) – Yes, he’s still a good ways behind on the 2nd Edition; buying this helps, because the guy’s had some rough medical roads he’s walked down.

The Zombie Apocalypse is here!

Now, you and your friends must gather whatever weapons you can. But it’s not enough to just grab a weapon: you’ve got to make it Badass!

It’s not about killing Zombies; it’s about looking Awesome while you do it.

Why settle for a Machete when you can wield Laser-Guided Machete-Chuks! And hey, is that a Katana? No, It’s a Black Market Gas-Powered Katana!

Badass Zombie Killers is a stand-alone card game of Zombie Attack Preparedness for 2 to 6 players, full of One-upsmanship and Backstabbing.

You know; with your friends.

A friend and fellow patron of Awesome Things, Sheva Bree, pointed out an up-and-coming author and creator, James Osiris Baldwin. In a field as competitive as being a professional creative, truly great talent is too easy to miss, so here’s a chance to discover someone new!

You can check out his Facebook presence, or his personal website.

 

For those who love the Iron Age of Comics, there’s Cold Steel Wardens.

For that game, there’s this awesome supplement to support getting published.

“Line up the usual suspects…”

Cold Steel Wardens: Rogues Gallery is the first follow-up to the award-winning Cold Steel Wardens roleplaying game.  Designed for both GameMasters and players, Rogues Gallery expands deeply on the Cold Steel Wardens setting, providing invaluable resources for the would-be vigilantes of New Corinth.  It’s a fantastic supplement for any investigative superhero game!

What’s in the Book?

Cold Steel Wardens: Rogues Gallery is separated into five primary chapters, each with a different focus:

Chapter 1 provides an introduction to Rogues Gallery and includes discussion on how to best use the Cold Steel Wardens mechanics to create fantastic villains for your game.  Chapter 1 also includes a new option for Heroes, based on material created by contributor and originalCSW playtester Fred Webber:  animal companions.  Ever wanted to play The Falcon or Catwoman, or bring along Ace the Bat-Hound?  Now you can!

Chapters 2 and 3 focus on two major locales in New Corinth:  Stonegate Federal Penitentiary and the Lincroft Institution for the Mentally Disturbed.  Both chapters will include fantastically-detailed maps, done by Stefan Schloesser, as well as a history of each location, major NPCs, countless plot-hooks, and more.  Further, Chapters 2 and 3 also contain sections on how to run a campaign centered around Stonegate or Lincroft, including thoroughly researched information on prison psychology, psychological treatment methods, and much more.  

Chapter 4 has Mooks, and lots of ’em!  This chapter features a legion of goons, heavies, grifters, and lowlifes,  ready to toss into any fight.  What’s more, they’re sorted by affiliation, making it easy to for a GM to assemble a group of Rojo Bastardes gangers, an NCPD patrol, or a meeting of Genovese mobsters. 

Chapter 5 forms the bulk of Rogues Gallery and is the most defining chapter.  Chapter 5 features “Sawbones’ Files”, the collected notes of paramedic-turned-metahuman-vigilante Sawbones, which detail his numerous encounters with the crime bosses, the psychopaths, and the metahumans roaming the New Corinth night.

Sawbones’ Files are written primarily from Sawbones’ own perspective, though each entry also includes a series of character-specific plot hooks, all necessary in-game stats, and an in-world “prop” document, ready to be copied or printed directly from the book and handed to your players.  These “prop” documents range from psychological profiles to police interviews to event fliers, all of which build upon the world of New Corinth through its numerous Rogues.

We anticipate CSW: Rogues Gallery to end out at approximately 160 pages, with a full-color cover and black and white interior art.

This one comes from the Mind’s Eye Theater community (including my friend and colleague, Matt McElroy). One of their own suffered a terrible accident and could really use some help.

Tommie was in a severe car accident on the afternoon of Thursday March 17th. Currently he is in stable, but critical condition. He has multiple broken ribs, skull fractures, and a small puncture in his lung.

Tommie has touched so many of us with his kindness, laughter, and good heart. He’s helped so many within the various communities he’s a part of, from Mind’s Eye Society to Xadune.

Tommie faces many challenges in the future: his car is totalled, he won’t be able to work until he heals, and mounting medical bills. He will need the support and love of his friends and family, so let’s rally around Tommie in his time of need!

Tommie has made an impact on so many of us, and the outpouring of concern for him has shown this. Please give what you can so we can make sure he is has what he needs while he heals!

My buddy Shawn Gustafson (The Specialists) pointed this one at me, and I think it’s well worth a look for many reasons.

Handicape is a superhero hacker on wheels. He’ll have to rise up against a dark conspiracy to restore friendships and save the world.

I need your help to get Handicape printed in fancy-pants hard bound books. After more than four years and many hours of hard work and dollars spent on art, advertising and people-fuel, the only thing left is to make final edits to the text, format the pages for press, and get these things printed and shipped.

When all is said and done, Handicape will be printed in a 7″x10″ hardbound book with full color pages and some extra content. Right now, it looks like it will be about 90 pages, but I’ll have a final number once the final edit is done, and the extra content has been finalized.

The Backstory

Several years ago, I was taking a summer van ride with a friend to see the latest superhero movie. I was driving and my friend, in a wheelchair, rode passenger side. As the conversation wandered through topics of movies and heroes, an image and a single word came to mind. The image was one of a guy in a wheelchair with a superhero’s cape. The word: Handicape.

It was more than a year later, after finishing work on The Lost City, Chico X and other Red Tempest comics, and that image and word kept coming to mind. Handicape. But what sort of hero would he be?

Over the years, I continued working on Handicape: drawing the logo and some concept sketches, and piecing together the story. Then, in late 2012, those pieces fell into place. A superhero in a wheelchair, whose power was controlling anything with electricity—specifically, he would be a computer hacker.

The Story

In 2005, three high school friends (Ethan, Simon and Andrew) are ready to embrace the new adventures of life after school.

But only weeks before graduation, a string of mysterious events turns their plans to dust. Andrew gets expelled for breaking-and-entering (but he’s sure there’s a conspiracy against him). Simon gets news that he’s suddenly being sent to private tutoring in England. And Ethan is left alone.

2011. Six years later, the mysterious events from high school come around in an unexpected way to bring the three back together. Small town corruption may not be as small as it seems. They could hardly know they are in the middle of a struggle for power that has been going on for over five-hundred years.

Once friends and now almost strangers, a test of mind and body and ultimately, trust, will be the best chance of restoring their friendship.

Today, we head back into Eclipse Phase space and the future of humanity.

In Transhumanity’s Fate, you play secret agents protecting the scattered remnants of transhumanity from threats that could wipe it out once and for all. You might be a crusading hacktivist, an anarchist militia fighter, a planet-hopping xenoscientist, a psychic detective, or a social networker owed favors by all the right people. You’re a transhuman—a genetically modified human, an intelligent animal, a mind in a robotic shell, or even a bodiless artificial generalized intelligence. Your body is heavily upgraded, and your mind can communicate with every electronic device around it. You need every advantage, because you’re up against mutants infected with an alien virus, WMD dealers, corrupted AGI god-minds, shifty amoeboid alien merchants, rampaging alien wildlife, and the ultimate threat: transhumanity’s own self-destructive capabilities.

Firewall recruited you because you’re resourceful, you have needed expertise, or maybe you saw something you shouldn’t have but handled it well where most people would have fled in terror. Maybe you lost everything in the Fall, maybe you’re an idealist who thinks they can fix everything, or maybe you’re just looking for a good fight. You’ve passed our loyalty tests—for now—and proven you’re ready.

One thing we all agree on: transhumanity stands on the brink of extinction. We all feel called to act, and with a viewpoint that’s galactic, not local.

Extinction is coming. Will you fight it?

Transhumanity’s Fate brings technothriller espionage and horror in the world of Eclipse Phase to the Fate Core system.

Join Firewall, and defend transhumanity in the aftermath of near annihilation by artificial intelligence!

Transhumanity’s Fate requires Fate Core System from Evil Hat Productions.

You know, if just a few of you who read these things each pitched in $5 at a pop, there’d be a lot of good done in this world just from our little piece of it. Thanks to all who read and support the Happiness, Peace, and Dreams of others.

Okay, so I don’t have much luck with this stuff, like my friends have had.  But let me tell you a little about what’s going on.

My name is Te.  I make maybe about $6500 a year at the current moment.  Between having MS, and paying off debts to my parents and other parties, I manage to set just enough aside for myself every week. 

Today, I got a call from a debt collection agency.  Apparently, I have a balance due to a hospital for about $5700….

Normally, I would ask my parents for help.  But I’m paying off a debt to my father of $1500.  I’m trying to save for a car….and I never got a bill for this visit.  It was during one of my MS treatments, when we were on a cash pay only basis, as often happens since my dad skips over insurance coverage pretty often.

I know I’m not really much in need of help by a lot of people’s standards, and I can’t really offer anything in return, but I need help.  I can’t afford to contest this, and honestly?  I just want it to go away at this point, and I have a deadline of the end of June if I don’t want more fees tacked on apparently.  They’ve agreed to help me wait this long.  Thank you for taking the time to read this…Even a dollar helps.

If you know the name Judges Guild, either you really know your RPG history, or you lived it. This group was one of the first third-party developers for roleplaying ever, and now Joseph Goodman is bringing this incredible history back to life in a big, wonderful way.

Quick Summary of the Kickstarter

  • This Kickstarter funds the scanning, digital restoration, and print publication of classic Judges Guild RPG supplements.
  • Our goal is to create two products. The first is the oversized 13″x18″ hardcover Judges Guild Deluxe Collector’s Edition. This huge compilation contains Tegel Manor, Thieves of Fortress Badabaskor, Citadel of Fire, five issues of the Judges Guild Journal, and additional articles and new game material.
  • The second product is a series of four 8.5″x11″ reprints of classic JG modules. We are calling these the tabletop editions. There is a tabletop edition reprinting each of these products: Tegel Manor, Thieves of Fortress Badabaskor, Citadel of Fire, and Dark Tower.
  • The project is about 90% complete as of now. All scanning, art, and editing is complete, and a rough layout is complete.

A Golden Age of Role Playing That We’ll Never See Again

In the earliest days of role-playing, Bob Bledsaw and Bill Owen co-founded Judges Guild in Decatur, Illinois to publish products compatible with Dungeons & Dragons. When their first product debuted at Gen Con 1976, it heralded the next chapter in the Golden Age of RPG publishing. Judges Guild introduced the concept of the adventure module, among many other innovations, and changed the course of Dungeons & Dragons play. Gary Gygax himself acknowledged this at the beginning of the Dungeon Masters Guide (1979): “Bob Bledsaw of the Judges Guild must also be given credit. He and his associates have certainly contributed to the overall improvement of fantasy adventure gaming, making the undertaking easier and encouraging still more interest in role playing.” 

The Company That Invented The Adventure Module

Gamers today who seek to recapture the excitement of their youth will find it in the pages of the Judges Guild. This Kickstarter connects you to an era of unbridled imagination by funding an oversized, archival book collecting some of the finest work of Judges Guild in its original published form. This is the Golden Age of Role Playing presented as it originally happened, when the concept of “adventure module” had never been seen before.

Looking back on that period with forty years of experience under the industry’s collective belts, it’s easy to dismiss the earliest Judges Guild material as unpolished productions. But to do so is to overlook exactly how creative people like Bob Bledsaw were back then. Without the benefit of things we’ve long taken for granted —  standardized monster stat blocks, for instance — Judges Guild cranked out legendary adventures and supplements like Citadel of Fire, Thieves of Fortress Badabaskor, and of course, Tegel Manor. What they lacked in professional style, standardized formats, and concise layout, they more than made up for in entertainment value, creativity, enthusiasm, and raw, unbridled joy of gaming. When Judges Guild first came into business, TSR had never published an adventure module, and TSR did not publish adventure modules until after Judges Guild established the viability of the concept. When Judges Guild started publishing adventures, there was no template for the adventure module: Judges Guild created that template.

Just a reminder there’s this awesome place for all your D&D digital products, called the Dungeon Masters Guild. Not only is it a place to create, sell, and buy 5e material, it’s where all the editions of Dungeons & Dragons are supported. This particular gem is great for anyone interested in the Forgotten Realms, regardless of edition.

The heroes of the Forgotten Realms are as diverse and varied as the regions from which they hail. This collection of Faerûnian lore and arcana allows you to create and equip an endless array of characters braced for the challenges they’ll encounter. From races, feats, and spells to prestige classes, magic items, and more, Player’s Guide to Faerûnprovides a v.3.5 update to the Forgotten Realms setting, reintroduces some old favorites from 1st and 2nd Edition, and offers all-new character-building material.

Includes

  • Over 60 feats
  • Over 30 prestige classes
  • Over 90 spells

To use this supplement, you also need the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, the Player’s Handbook, the Dungeon Master’s Guide, and the Monster Manual.

Product History

Player’s Guide to Faerûn (2004), by Richard Baker, Travis Stout, and James Wyatt, is the core book for the 3.5e Forgotten Realms. It was released in March 2004.

Beginning the 3.5e Forgotten Realms (Again). Though the 3.5e Forgotten Realms product line had already begun with Underdark (2003), Player’s Guide to Faerûn was the book that really brought the line into the new edition.

Origins (I): The New Edition. The fundamental goal behind Player’s Guide to Faerûn was to update the Forgotten Realms setting from 3.0e to 3.5e. That didn’t mean just revamping the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (2001), but also the other Realms source books that had been released in the previous three years.

However, the Player’s Guide goes beyond that: in a process that James Wyatt compares to Andy Collin’s revision of the 3.5e Player’s Handbook (2003), the development team also worked through the rules systems in the Campaign Setting, polishing and adjusting them to make improvements based on lessons learned from three years of play. The regional feat system would see the biggest changes, but spells also got adjusted and other mechanics got tweaked.

The end result was a crunchy book of updated mechanics for the Realms. The Player’s Guide doesn’t repeat the setting material of the Campaign Setting (though it offers some expansions), and thus it doesn’t try and replace the core 3.0e Realms book … just complement it.

[For more history, click the link.]