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Messages - sgtslag

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General Discussion / Re: Prophets of White Dwarf?
« on: July 08, 2019, 12:54:26 PM »
Computers have their place, but the AI is still in its infancy.  For that reason, I think TT RPG's will continue for decades.

There is no AI which can emulate an imaginative DM -- not even the HAL9000:  "What are you going to do, Dave?  Attack, run, or surrender?  Remember, Dave, the Computer is your friend..."  "Dave" needs to remember that the HAL9000 was originally developed to run the PARANOIA RPG.

Poor "Dave":  the HAL9000 also controls his Smart House...   :o

LOL!  Cheers!

General Discussion / Re: NTRPGCon 2019
« on: June 05, 2019, 08:15:12 AM »
Too long of a drive...  Located in Tropical Southern Minnesota.  Have fun!  Cheers!

I stumbled across a link to a phone app which allows you to catalog your items (any items), with a photo.  The app would allow you to share your inventories with others.  I thought, "How perfect for sharing my mini's collections, so my friends won't need to ask me if I have X and Y mini's/terrain pieces for a fantasy battle they are planning!"  Then the rubber hit the road of reality...

The app, in question, is only written for Apple iOS.  They promised to offer an Android OS version -- two years ago, but it still is not available.  I found other apps, for my Android phone, but they do not allow me to share with others.

A friend suggested I do it with Excel.  I have more than 10 armies, each consisting of 20-180 miniatures, each.  I need a catalog, with photo's, and detailed information, in each entry.

I also need to catalog my collection of RPG books.  I have two copies of a couple of expansion rule books, in my collection, because I didn't realize I had a copy already.  Really want to have something on my phone, to consult, before I bid on e-Bay, or order from Amazon/DriveThruRPG/etc.

What would you suggest?  I could use OneNote, and other MS programs.  Wondering what the hive-mind thinks...  Remember, it needs to be usable on a cell phone (Android preferred, but Apple iOS compatibility as well, would be ideal -- my friends, who I wish to share my files with, have both types of phones).  Cheers!

General Discussion / Re: Writing Adventures
« on: April 15, 2019, 12:33:25 PM »
With commercial modules, I tend to go off script (or my players lead me off script with their actions and decisions...), pretty quickly, most times.  I find that reading the boxed text, no matter what, tends to be boring for everyone at the table.  I typically paraphrase it, in my own words.  Of course, once we go off script, it tends to become a free-for-all.  My campaign world is not scripted, so I can't go off-script with that.  Using published modules to fill in blanks, however, can be fun, and rewarding.  By the time I am done running a published module, though, most would not recognize it.  We tend to go way outside the lines, as published.

To me, this is a very good thing, typically.  Running a series of modules, however, can create continuity issues if an original NPC dies, but needs to come back in the sequel adventure.  Still, there are ways of dealing with this "challenge".  This often takes you even further afield of the published script...  And that makes it even more fun, and more personalized for you, your game world, and your players.  Cheers!

Kickstarters / Re: The City of Great Lunden Kickstarter FINAL HOURS!
« on: April 15, 2019, 11:33:56 AM »
I've been using The CSIO since the early 90's; I switched to using Tarantis, by Judges Guild, as a base of operations for my D&D game group, back in the early 2000's.  A city setting, IMO, is the ideal "base camp", for land-based characters.  My versions of CSIO and Tarantis, only share their maps with the original settings, in my rendition of them, in my campaign.  I made them my own, entirely.

Cities require a large investment from the GM, if they plan to use them.  This is a worthwhile investment of time, effort, and learning, though.  When it becomes "real", to your players, you will know that you have achieved your goal.  I've found that an adventure is around nearly every corner, on every street.  I love my city-based campaigns.  I also love globe-trotting, with my players, but it's nice to come "home", to the city.

This looks like an awesome city base, for a campaign.  The old JG cities are hard to beat, even today; this appears to be a serious contender against JG...  I wish them well.  Cheers!

General Discussion / Re: How to grow the Forums
« on: January 04, 2019, 10:28:15 AM »
I passionately HATE forums like FaceBook...  It is designed to virtually force you to visit it multiple times each day, to avoid losing a conversation/topic, as it scrolls down the page as new topics are posted...  I can't stand such a crappy approach to try to force participants to log into their site slavishly.  Forums are the only thing I will utilize.  I refuse to become a zombie-slave to FB, or any other social media machine.  YMMV.  Cheers!   ;D

Second Edition AD&D / Re: 2e Bard: What is your experience with this class?
« on: November 26, 2018, 01:28:42 PM »
Thank you, both, for your replies.  It would seem that Bards have not been overly popular as a class.

I recently found some YouTube videos which are collections of sailor songs, likely from the Renaissance period; few have instruments accompanying them.   After listening to them for a while, I realized it would not be terribly difficult to change the words, to come up with campaign-specific lyrics to use as a Bard player.  I could learn around six songs which I could then change the lyrics on, and sing.  I might even get the other players to join in for a chorus, after they learned the tunes.   ;D

Not everyone would care to sing at the gaming table, period, but it intrigued me.  I've performed singing, before, even an acapella solo, so that part would not bother me.  It was coming up with relevant lyrics, and a tune (acapella, as I don't play any instrument).  Still, it would be difficult, aside from the singing parts, as I don't really find the class very interesting.  It would require a DM who would go along with my antics, as well...   :o  Cheers!

Victorious / Re: Temporal Damage = Kinetic Damage?
« on: October 23, 2018, 02:00:01 PM »
Thanks, DMMIKE, for confirming my experiences with Dragonsfoot forum!  I left it after a couple of years, due to their, "Thou Shalt Only Play Our Way...", attitude.   :o    Nice to know I was not mis-reading their attitude.  Cheers!

WotC D&D / Re: 5e campaigns
« on: October 19, 2018, 02:21:16 PM »
I played one 2e AD&D session being run in the FR setting, recently...  The maps are amazing, but it is likely the most detailed fantasy game setting, to date, even surpassing, IMO, Harn.  I cringed, looking at the FR maps, considering them from a DM's perspective...  It's all detailed out, and before I could really begin modifying it, I would need to familiarize myself with the whole, so that I understood it fully, to begin massaging it without destroying it, and contradicting it per the published materials...

I've been running my own game world since I mapped it out back in 1983.  I've amassed a lot of "documentation" on my game world, by playing in it for the past 35 years, but most of the "documentation", is in my head, not on paper.

By running my own game world, which I create (very much on the fly, during game play, with the Players assisting me in defining it...), I am in full control over it.  My players help shape it, through play, so they take ownership of it, as well, which has value, and meaning, to them.  They feel comfortable in it, and that they own it, to an extent, shaping its history, as they play.  I don't see that so much in published settings which are so detailed, such as FR.

YMMV.  Cheers!

Victorious / Re: Temporal Damage = Kinetic Damage?
« on: October 03, 2018, 08:09:53 AM »
Sorry folks, did not see that this is referring to the "Victorious" game rules.  Thanks.  Cheers!

Victorious / Re: Temporal Damage = Kinetic Damage?
« on: October 01, 2018, 12:32:18 PM »
Take a look at the Ghost monster entry, in the Monster Manual:  they are Ethereal, with a negative AC (1e/2e rules), but, if the PC's confront the Ghost on the Ethereal Plane, they are AC 10, and easy to kill.

To your player's point, heat damage is on the Prime Material Plane, not the Ethereal Plane.  She should have been afforded at least the same protection the Ghost gets.  The only reason the Ghost is able to to be attacked in limited ways (normally, she would not be visible to anyone on the Prime Material, without using magic to see into the Ethereal Plane; some magic weapons will reach into the Ethereal Plane, but only if they are stat'ed to do so, in the DMG, or by DM fiat), is that it is on the near-Ethereal Plane, basically touching the barrier between the Ethereal Plane, and the Prime Material Plane.  If the PC is in the near-Ethereal, then she can be attacked (only by weapons which can reach across the barrier, see above), but if she withdraws from the interface between the two Planes, she is not affected by anything in the Prime Material, nor can she see into the Prime Material anymore, either.  Cheers!

Updates to the KickStarter:

1)  After selling out all five Wenge Dice Tower KickStarter Rewards, we have added an additional 15 Wenge Tower Rewards -- login and claim your Reward before they're all gone!

2)  Opened the KS up to the rest of the World, after receiving inquiries from Europe, we chose to open it to all.  Priority shipping, with tracking, is available to the entirety of the world.

3)  We added videos of each type of Dice Tower, rotating on a Lazy-Susan, giving a 360-degree view of each type.

There are 15 days left on the KS!  Login now, to secure your Reward!  Cheers!

Tables by Davis has launched its first KickStarter, offering Heirloom Dice Towers, available in 12 different woods: six domestic, and 6 exotic. Quantities are limited for these special KS prices. Grab what you want, before they revert to regular commercial prices on TbD's web site (TbD creates custom built Gaming Tables, in the size you need for your game room, and your group of gamers).

The 180 domestic wood Towers are already manufactured, ready to box and ship as soon as the money is received from the KickStarter company, mid-August. The exotic wood Towers will be manufactured in August, and shipped in September. No lengthy waiting times for these classic Dice Towers… Cheers!

General Discussion / Adventures in "Hell" survey?
« on: June 01, 2018, 08:39:12 AM »
I am working on an adventure where the PC's try to rescue a Paladin PC's wife, who was thrown into my campaign's version of "Hell", body and soul, alive. The Paladin PC is preparing to go after her, no matter who will/will not accompany him. I am curious on how popular running adventures in the Underworld is, amongst forum members.

So, how often do you run adventures in your nether planes? I've run several short jaunts into Gram Nar (Icelandic, "Angry Corpse", my version of Hell). Now I am preparing a long adventure wherein the PC's will enter the Underworld of the dead, and search its vast lands for the poor woman, to learn if she is still alive, and if so, bring her back to the land of the living. They think they know Gram Nar, fairly well... They ain't seen nothin' yet!

They will arrive on an island, in a cave, greeted by Cerberus (extremely difficult to "kill", as he regenerates; this will likely be a comedic encounter: all three of his heads will argue who gets to eat them, even fighting between themselves). After that, they will have to cross a sea which is full of warring undead souls on ghost ships: they will need to negotiate with the dead sailors safe passage to the land mass across the sea. Once on land, they will need to navigate, and search, the various climactic regions, in search of the wifey, without any real guides to show them the way.

They will need to dodge several dead gods' abodes/palaces, while searching. They will also need to avoid the more powerful demons and devils along the way. I really don't know how it will all play out, but it should be a real hoot for everyone... Can't wait to bring them to the cave, and Cerberus! Playing the arguing three heads is gonna be a blast, watching the players try to manipulate them into fighting one another. Picked up the Safari Ltd. toy Cerberus for this -- prefect size, pre-painted to a decent standard. Ohhhh, so fun! Cheers!

General Discussion / Re: Writing Adventures
« on: May 29, 2018, 08:31:30 AM »
Backstory has its place.  It is a delicate balancing act:  background, history, mythology, cultures, role-playing, etc.  I use it all to create a dynamic, life-like experience for me, and my players.  I think what works the best is listening to my players' table talk about what they think is really going on.  I listen to it, massage it a bit, and then play it out:  they "realize" they were mostly correct in their assumptions, but there are subtle differences which make it more believable.

I view it as interactive story-telling.  They play a critical role in helping me to develop my game world, on nearly every level.  I don't dictate to them, for the most part.  I had a player, back in the 90's, tell me she was taking the "Etiquette" Non-Weapon Proficiency...  I was flabbergasted, and disappointed:  "Why that?  What's the point?  Seems like a genuine waste where there are so many other NWP's she could take, which are far more useful..."  I buckled myself down, and read, and re-read, the description.  I thought about her homeland:  a kingdom ruled by a Paladin, with knights, Dukes, and Barons.  It all started to gel together.

With her prompting, I developed a culture, and a kingdom.  It was Lawful Good, which, to me, meant that they had strict cultural rules, and a strict caste system.  I developed ranks, and classes:  Royalty and Nobility, along with peasants, and everyone else.  I came up with Spurred Knights, and Un-Spurred Knights [spurs are earned by defeating a (relative to you) powerful enemy, usually a monster]; Greater and Lesser Royalty, and Greater and Lesser Nobility.

In the end, two players were so annoyed by the strict caste system, they flouted it, to the point of being arrested, with one choosing execution -- she wanted to end the character, and this was her chosen method of 'retiring' the PC.  It was great fun for everyone!

Interactive storytelling means listening, and incorporating, your players' input, into the game.  Back-story, history, culture, etc., can all become a part of the grand story arc, but you need to balance it all, to make the whole, memorable for all.  Cheers!   8)

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