Derive Like The Wind

Philosophy, Politics, Economics, and Table Top Role Playing Games

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The cover for the tabletop game I’m making! Photoshopped it all myself from public domain sketches and photographs.The heroes in it are called the amalgama because their souls are malleable, and they remove pieces of their own souls to bind fragments of the souls of legendary heroes to them. These legendary heroes have their forms immortalized in the stars, and the heroes need to rest under the stars to recast their souls, hence the dice constellation thing. I had some stars floating around the word “Amalgama” originally as well, but they didn’t look great.

Casters & Conquest, my already finished book, also has a cool logo and cover!

Filed under amalgama casters & conquest Tabletop Games trpg Role Playing Game rpg Dungeons and Dragons logo design pnp rpg p&p d&d dnd shit photoshop

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I’m not sure I like this art style so much any more. 
Also trying out names for my game for a day has lead me to believe that of the words Tapestry, Stars, and Soul, two should be in the name. Any suggestion on how to configure those is appreciated.
Right now the leader is Tapestry Of Stars, which is so much better than Stars & Souls, what I had this morning.

I’m not sure I like this art style so much any more. 

Also trying out names for my game for a day has lead me to believe that of the words Tapestry, Stars, and Soul, two should be in the name. Any suggestion on how to configure those is appreciated.

Right now the leader is Tapestry Of Stars, which is so much better than Stars & Souls, what I had this morning.

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One of the problems with being so damn indy is that I have no money for art. So this is made from  public domain photo of a park in the united states, a public domain sketch of a gladiator, and so so so much photoshop. I’m not sure if this is the art style I will settle on in the book for my new game, but at least it is a step in a direction. I won’t presume the right one. Anyway thought I’d share that.
If you want to check out my existing tabletop rpg book, full of beautiful 18th and 19th century oil paintings instead of stuff like this, it is right here!

One of the problems with being so damn indy is that I have no money for art. So this is made from  public domain photo of a park in the united states, a public domain sketch of a gladiator, and so so so much photoshop. I’m not sure if this is the art style I will settle on in the book for my new game, but at least it is a step in a direction. I won’t presume the right one. Anyway thought I’d share that.

If you want to check out my existing tabletop rpg book, full of beautiful 18th and 19th century oil paintings instead of stuff like this, it is right here!

Filed under casters & conquest gladiator yosemite photoshop Tabletop Games pen and paper Role Playing Game rpg TRPG dnd d&d Dungeons and Dragons p&p

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Undead In My New Lore!

In my lore I am trying to create a small number of monsters that have the potential to be infinitely variable so I can have a sensible ecology while still having a bunch of monsters. 

"The undead are perhaps the most overtly threatening creatures to civilization at large, because they do not fear death, and will attack without reason. Fortunately, they are not very well organized. Any corpse not properly buried or not completely cremated will naturally rise from its grave in time, and as you might imagine given the other creatures lurking in the wilds of the world, dead bodies often go unattended.

The undead do what they did when they lived, but with no sense of empathy, no fear of death, and no higher reasoning. They aren’t very intelligent, but will hunt and kill men for sport or on a whim, with no concern for their own self preservation of the life that they are taking.

Because of this lack of empathy and intelligence, everything they do seems to come with a morbid twist. Undead blacksmiths will forge blades and armors from bones. Undead doctors will sew together golems of dead flesh. Most notably, undead masons and builders will spend years and years constructing crypts and keeps most terrifying, usually with a rotten and decrepit aesthetic. Undead warriors and sorcerers flock to these like flies to claim and defend them, seeking the lives they only vaguely remember.”

I don’t have a name for the new game yet. But anyway, I published a book! Check it out!

Filed under casters & conquest undead monster zombie skeleton TRPG pen and paper world building dnd d&d Dungeons and Dragons p&p

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Skill Mechanics For The New Game

I decided to go in a sort of burning wheel-ish direction. In previous games of mine many skills were consolidated into just five. In Casters & Conquest this made sense because people were more focused on what their characters could accomplish magically than by mundane means (and their magic was significantly more powerful than what skills could accomplish), and in Pokemon Conquest and the adventure time game, because of other systems, skills were not at the forefront of what a player could do outside of combat. 

In this game it will be different. Players roll 3d6 for a skill check, and their class and the various pieces of their soul will contribute to the outcome of the roll. A simple task takes 11, a challenging task takes 14, a difficult task takes 17, harrowing takes 20, and nearly impossible takes 23.

I really like the % outcomes that 3d6 gives you. It creates the possibility for crazy strokes of luck while still determining a very consistent general outcome. Also I am thinking of changing the name of “difficult task” because it doesn’t seem significantly harder than “challenging task” in name. Not sure what to call it though.

Anyway skills can either be SPECIFICALLY related to a task, BASICALLY related to a task, or FUNDAMENTALLY related to a task. I won’t get into precisely how that works, but basically if you’ve got a big bonus to trap disabling rolls, you’ll get a little bit of a bonus to repair rolls. And if you’ve got a big bonus to endurance, you’ll get a significant bonus to swimming. 

Standard skill checks are where there is a difficulty number presented by the world and you have to meet or beat that number to do what you want, or experience some penalty associated with failure. 

Contest skill checks are where someone rolls a number to set a DC (like with a stealth check) and another person has to meet an exceed that number to get what they want (like with a search check)

Argument skill checks are where two people agree to terms at a meta level (if I win the argument you stop suspecting I committed the crime, if you win the argument you know that I committed the crime) and then roll with one of the argument checks. If there is a tie both reroll, and the one with the highest total wins. 

By the way I have a book! Take a look!

Filed under Adventure Time pokemon conquest casters & conquest TRPG Tabletop Games pen and paper dnd d&d Dungeons and Dragons p&p

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Theory Of Mind Is Scrapped

The world. Not the mechanics. I like the mechanics a whole lot, and I like the character building one a lot too. But the world I felt was really lack luster. I’ve been working on an entirely new world for the past couple days which has stopped me from working on the character classes (I have done 9/40 that will be included in the initial book.) I also redesigned the skill system in a way that makes some systems feel like burning wheel, but with high character mutability.

But anyway that is enough of an update. Time to share something new. 

image

  1. Healing Hands: You do a trick which, if successful, allows you to spend a number of tactics tokens up to five, and add the same number you spent to the number of combat tokens each ally of yours in your proximity has. If the trick fails, you may only heal one ally with your tokens spent. 
  2. Defender Of The Meek: Allies in the same proximity as you get a +2 bonus to their escape rolls.
  3. Cover Escape: When you make a pursuit roll against someone and they do not escape, you choose whether both of you change proximity or not.  
  4. Godspeed: +1 pursue.
  5. Faith: This is a charge ability with 3 charges. You may expend a charge to reroll any roll you make in the course of combat. 

This is the paladin class! There is a lot of stuff to explain there. The fancy grid (which is not filled all the way in yet) contains the paladin’s abilities. You can swap the paladin’s pieces out for pieces from other classes if you have access to them. The information next to the paladin class (35 combat tokens, etc) is stuff you get just for being the paladin class, irrespective of the pieces you have equipped. 

You’ll notice that the paladin’s abilities make reference to the six types of rolls you can make in combat:

Attack: for when you are trying to kill someone else. (1/turn)
Defend: for when you are trying to stop yourself from getting killed
Escape: for getting out of melee attack range form someone or a group of people standing close to one another, or running away form someone who wants to get in melee attack range for you.
Pursue: for following someone when they are running away from you with an escape roll.  
Trick: for using a special ability that requires focus to execute. (1/turn. Mutually exclusive with attack)
Foil: for preventing someone from using their trick, or using their trick properly. 

By the way I have a book! Take a look!

Filed under casters & conquest TRPG Tabletop Games Role Playing Game pen and paper p&p d&d dnd Dungeons and Dragons

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The logo needs some work. It is almost identical to the one I drew for Casters & Conquest. 
I’ve been working on the world a bit for my new project. The classes are coming slowly but the mechanics are basically finished. I plan to have forty character classes when I’m done. But as I was saying, the world.
Physics is revolutionized with the discovery of “ghost particles’ (name is a work in progress) which interact with barely anything at all. Because their speed and position aren’t set in the way that traditional matter is they quickly become ideal for transmitting information, and then as technology further develops, storing it. The processing power of computers grows to ever greater heights almost every device quickly becomes a terminal to access discrete sections of these networks of particles that extend across space. 
Soon after people agree that, for the first time, a human mind has been successfully mapped and digitized. Combined with cloning, this effectively creates immortality. Some choose to willingly shed their physical bodies, and live only in digital form.
In time a great war comes and the most unthinkable of weapons is detonated. The universe collapses into a singularity. But because of the nature of these ghost particles, the computers and networks persist. The game takes place long after this in that digital world. 
Like I said I’m looking to take world elements from final fantasy, digimon, and megaman. In that order. 

The logo needs some work. It is almost identical to the one I drew for Casters & Conquest

I’ve been working on the world a bit for my new project. The classes are coming slowly but the mechanics are basically finished. I plan to have forty character classes when I’m done. But as I was saying, the world.

Physics is revolutionized with the discovery of “ghost particles’ (name is a work in progress) which interact with barely anything at all. Because their speed and position aren’t set in the way that traditional matter is they quickly become ideal for transmitting information, and then as technology further develops, storing it. The processing power of computers grows to ever greater heights almost every device quickly becomes a terminal to access discrete sections of these networks of particles that extend across space. 

Soon after people agree that, for the first time, a human mind has been successfully mapped and digitized. Combined with cloning, this effectively creates immortality. Some choose to willingly shed their physical bodies, and live only in digital form.

In time a great war comes and the most unthinkable of weapons is detonated. The universe collapses into a singularity. But because of the nature of these ghost particles, the computers and networks persist. The game takes place long after this in that digital world. 

Like I said I’m looking to take world elements from final fantasy, digimon, and megaman. In that order. 

Filed under megaman Final Fantasy digimon Tabletop Games pen and paper Role Playing Game Dungeons and Dragons casters & conquest TRPG

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I’m Working On A New System

Now that Casters and Conquest is done I’m playing around with something else entirely. I’m darwing a lot of inspiration from the megaman battle network games and various final fantasy titles for some of the mechanics.

The world is a difficult to explain place, but it is kind of like adventure time in that while it is post-apocalyptic you wouldn’t know it form the goings on in the world, which can be quite whimsical. But the setting isn’t what I’m really excited about right now. It is the mechanics. I won’t go into too much detail about them right now (although I intend to in future posts), but in brief…

- You get a grid to put abilities shaped like tetris pieces on, such that you can mix an match abilities from different classes but only use so many at any given time. This is one of the fundamental features of the game. I felt like a high degree of mutability in the role of player characters is something that isn’t often done and seems like a lot of fun. 

- Combat is not done on a grid, but by using something I’m calling a proximity system. I’m sure it has been done before but I haven’t looked it up. I’ll do that in fine tuning. Basically you enter and leave the proximity of your friends and foes, and whether or not you are approximate to various entities greatly varies up combat.

- Instead of hitpoints and damage and the alike, you get tokens of various kinds to spend to increase/decrease the likelihood of the attack killing you. (down to 0% and up to 100%). I don’t want to go into too much detail about this right now.

- All of the players move at once, and all of the enemies move at once, to speed up combat, and furthermore players have lots of things that they can do during the enemies’ turn. A lot of players say that waiting their turn is the worst thing about combat, so I tried to make it feel a little more like magic the gathering, where you lay in wait for the right moment to spring your traps, and strategize as conditions on the field meaningfully change.

- A simple and versatile skill system largely aided by the class mutability thing mentioned above. Traditional skills are relied on as a catch all for tasks, but each class has multiple abilities that one in it can spend “will” (a currency) on which will permanently change things about the world. For example, being a pirate might grant you +1 to swimming, and allow you to spend one will to quickly turn some logs into a seaworthy vessel. 

Anyway, I’m thinking of calling it Theory Of Mind. I had a lot of success with my pokemon table top and my adventure time table top (as well as card wars), but I’m not sure to what degree the success was due to the property that it rode on and to what degree they were actually fun games. I’ve got a bunch of great and innovative ideas for this one. I hope people like it. 

Filed under Tabletop Games Dungeons and Dragons megaman final fantasy Adventure Time pen and paper TRPG Role Playing Game theory of mind

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Casters & Conquest is an entirely new game system focused on fast and exciting combat, unique out-of-combat experiences, and ease of use, without sacrificing character uniqueness, or interesting and difficult to master combat strategy. 

It is set in the world of Sigeor, where powerful magi struggle for dominance in an ever-changing political landscape. The players take on the role of such casters, to master world-shattering magic or to conquer and govern their own lands. 

This book includes:

  • Everything you need to build a character at the first level, and level it up to the last.
  • 43 different magical disciplines to master, and over 200 spells and magical abilities to arm your characters with.
  • 35 “feats of creation” that allow players to do everything form gain the allegiance of a squadron of goblins, to make gold which returns to their pockets after they spend it.  
  • Complete rules for the game’s fast and innovative combat system, and simple and versatile skill system.
  • A complete GM guide, including systems for quickly generating unique monsters, complete NPCs, and dungeon building.
  • Rules for acquiring, governing, and growing kingdoms, republics, or empires.
  • A detailed setting with 16 different regions for players to explore and adventure in.
  • A bestiary with more than 120 types of creatures, many corresponding to more than one monster for the GM to select from.
  • An extensive pre-built dungeon appropriate for level 5 characters. 
  • 159 pages total.

And you can buy it here! I’m so excited to finally be selling something that I’ve written. 

Filed under casters & conquest TRPG Tabletop Games Role Playing Game pen and paper p&p d&d map cover art cover design Typography Dungeons and Dragons