Oh Well

Go figure. My venture into Unknown Armies consisted of a character generation session… and that’s it.

Life just keeps getting in the way of any regular gaming for me. Whether it’s things preventing me from gaming, or things preventing everyone else from showing, there just doesn’t seem to be a way around this bad luck.

So, until I can get something going, I’m going to fade into the background. That doesn’t mean I’m gone. Things are starting up again at my game design blog, Scintilla. I’ll also be attending Fear the Con 5 in St. Louis this May, so expect updates about that. And maybe I’ll start posting here about some of the other, non-rpg games that I play.

Advertisements

Square One

Since the last time I wrote on this blog, I’ve started an L5R campaign… and it has died.

The usual culprit is to blame. Life. I just can’t seem to keep a group of players returning every week. I don’t think that’s a comment on my GMing abilities, either. I’ve been just as much to blame as my players, as well. I’ve had to work during several of our gaming nights, and an absent GM leads to not much of a game.

Things continue to go, however, and as we approach what should be the slow season at work, I’m beginning to put together ideas for gaming. It doesn’t hurt that I’m now incredibly jealous of my wife, who has joined a weekly Pathfinder game with some of our friends, while I usually have to work.

My strongest desire is still to play Engel, but I’ve got a lot of work to do on that translation before it can happen. The release of The Great Clans for L5R has got my creative juices flowing for that again. I’m also toying with running some Houses of the Blooded. Actually, I’m most likely going to be trading off. Run Houses for a bit, then run L5R, then Houses, etc. Throw in Engel and my homebrew game as they become ready. Rinse. Repeat.

Whatever I do, I’ll be putting it up on Obsidian Portal, as well as discussing it here.

There will be some facelifts here and there around this blog, and I’ve got plenty of topics to write about, so expect more regular updates. I just need to sit down and do it!

Angelic Ambition

Yesterday I finally did something that I’ve been kicking around in my head for a while.

I’ve been a fan of the setting for the game, Engel, since I stumbled across the corebook many years ago. The property is owned by a German company, Feder & Schwert, and the English version was published by Sword & Sorcery, a division of White Wolf. Unfortunately, White Wolf decided not to continue with the line. I can only assume that sales weren’t as high as they expected. Only the corebook, a prelude graphic novel, and two sourcebooks (a bestiary and one out of the five character splatbooks).

The setting has always resonated with me. Post-apocalyptic Europe, dominated by the Angelitic Church which seems at times both savior and slaver. The players take on the roles of Engel (German for “angel”) and combat the insect-like Dreamseed, protecting the Church and the European countryside. They also stand against the Diadoches, or Junklords — those regional leaders who stand against the Church. Of course, there are also cults and the internal corruption and politicking of the Church to deal with as well.

Continue reading

Testing the Waters

The following email just went out to 13(!) people, with possible forwards to a few more.

As most of you are probably aware, I’ve been wanting to start up a new game of Legend of the Five Rings with the new edition (which I think kicks some serious ass). For anyone who doesn’t know, L5R is a fantasy RPG set in a world based on myths and legends of Japan, China, Korea, and similar geography (mostly Japan). Players take the role of samurai from various clans, and seek to balance their duty and the rules of honor and bushido with their own personal desires and goals. Threats come from many places: goblins and oni (demons) from the twisted Shadowlands to the southwest of the Empire, invading gaijin (literal translation: barbarians; more accurate translation: anyone from outside the Empire), samurai corrupted by Jigoku (the Spirit Realm of Evil that has corrupted the Shadowlands) or other taints, peasant uprisings, or even just plain other samurai (either pursuing their own personal interests, or those whose duty conflicts with yours).

A long-standing tagline for L5R is “where honor is more powerful than steel.” So, as might be guessed, there’s a lot of political plotting going on. There’s also ample room for combat, though, for those that prefer that. I’ll be trying to maintain a good mix to keep the game interesting. I’ll keep from detailing my plans too much now, and save that for another time.

Right now, all I’m looking for is to find who would be interested in playing, and a general idea of your availability. I’ve had a lot of people express interest, though, and there is a limit to how many players I’ll deal with in a game, so I’ll probably have to be harsh and say no to some people that want to play. However, if there’s enough interest, I may decide to run a game for a second group operating in the same game world. With limits on time due to work, life, etc., I don’t know how that will work out, but I’m open to the idea.
So, if interested, please respond to me at this email and please don’t Reply To All. In about a week (to give everyone a chance to respond), I’ll send out another email, which will explain what I’m wanting to do a bit more, as well as give some info so you can start thinking about your characters.
It’s been a while since I’ve played, longer since I’ve GMed. So I may be a bit rusty. But i’ve got some new tricks up my sleeve, a few cool ideas to kick things off, so hopefully we’ll have a good, interesting and exciting game.
Thank you for your attention 🙂
If anyone reading this in the Albuquerque area is interested in joining the game, feel free to comment below (with some way to get in touch with you). No guarantees, but we’ll see.

L5R Project Update

I finally picked up the 4th edition book for Legend of the Five Rings last week, and have been reading through it. First thing that needs to be said about this book is that it is freakin’ beautiful! The layout and artwork and the whole design is top-notch. Typos are also significantly down from previous AEG books, and the thing seems internally consistent, which has sometimes been a problem. So hats off to the editing team as well.

Continue reading

Current Project: Engel

Many years ago, I stumbled across a game called Engel. I took a chance on it. What I discovered between its covers blew me away, and still leaves me in awe. I don’t want to say much about the setting, because there are plenty of secrets and such that I don’t want to spoil. The long and short of it is that in the late 21st century, God got mad at humanity. Plagues and floods and all kinds of badness resulted. A new church was born out of this chaos, and by the middle of the 27th century (when the game takes place), the church largely dominates Europe. Part of what has made the church successful is that angels have been sent to aid the church in its struggles. The PCs are all angels… or Engel. There’s a lot more to it than that, but it’s a start.

Continue reading

Current Project: Legend of the Five Rings

In preparation of the 4th edition of Legend of the Five Rings roleplaying game being released this summer, I’ve started putting thought into what I want to do for a new campaign. I’ve enjoyed every edition of L5R to date, and the designer diaries for 4th edition are addressing those things that I did not like about 3rd. So I am excited for it, and will be kicking off some sort of campaign as soon as I’m comfortable enough with the rules. It doesn’t look like the book will be coming out until late June, so I’ve got some time, and what follows is more or less of a documented brainstorming session inspired by some ideas I’ve had over the last few weeks.

Continue reading