A New Character for Shadowrun

I’ve been invited to participate in a relatively new Shadowrun game. Things have already started, but I’ve only missed four sessions. The game is apparently going to mix in some Resident Evil story, with the Umbrella Corporation being a big new player in Denver (where the game is set). It sounds like it could be pretty cool, and there are some friends in the group that I haven’t seen in a while that I’d love to hang out with, and I’ve just been jonesing for a game, so I agreed to join in.

Now the problem is creating a character. Continue reading

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Speak Geek: RPGs

I have this blog, so it should really be no surprise that I’ve got some sort of fascination with roleplaying games. What’s fairly unique about me and RPGs is how long I’ve been playing them. There are those who have been playing since they were invented. I’m not one of those people. I wasn’t around when they were invented. I have been playing from a very young age, though. Most people seem to be introduced to RPGs in high school or college (their late teens). Some people start a little earlier, like middle school (early teens/tweens). I started in elementary school. Specifically, I started in 3rd grade, which would put me at around 9 years old. Not only that, I started with a fairly complex system: MERPS (Middle Earth Role Playing System) from Iron Crown Enterprises. I was also introduced to Marvel Superheroes around this time, and that was the first game I bought for myself.

I had no concept that such games were new, or considered geeky, or were anything but normal. I did fall in love with them, though. More games followed, as I got my hands on anything that seemed interesting. Top Secret, Torg, Warhammer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Star Wars, Call of Cthulhu, Shadowrun… but I never bothered with Dungeons & Dragons. I can’t really guess at why. A friend who I introduced to RPGs eventually picked up D&D and ran it, and I never had a problem playing it (then again, I’ll play just about anything), but I never had any interest in picking up any of the books or running it myself.

But what do I like so much about these games? Continue reading

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.

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Up and Running (Almost)

A few months have passed, but things seem to finally be on their way. This past Saturday, I pulled together friends and acquaintances, and laid the groundwork for a new Legend of the Five Rings campaign! I’ll be acting as the GM, and I have four players, two of whom I’ve never played with before, but they are both at least somewhat experienced role-players. At any rate, it won’t be anything new for them.

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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.

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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.

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