Thursday, March 26, 2020

Rising from the Ashes: A Fading Suns Kickstarter!

There's a Kickstarter for Fading Suns!

Yes, Fading Suns fans! At long last, we have a chance at seeing a new version of one of our favorite Science Fantasy settings and games.

Updates from Ulisses Spiele

Here's what you can get if you back at the Digital Apprentice level (50 Euros or about 55 USD):

  • The Universe Book (112 pages) presents the setting for Fading Suns: its history, society, and astro-geography. Herein you will encounter nobles, priests, guilders, aliens, psychics, cyborgs, and more.
  • The Character Book (272 pages) presents the game system and player characters for Fading Suns. This book includes character creation rules for all the major factions, as well as technological equipment, starships, psychic powers, and theurgic rites.
  • The Gamemaster Book (96 pages) presents people, places, and plots for Fading Suns. Herein are guidelines for creating dramas for the player troupe and how to populate them with all manner of non-player-character allies, rivals, and foils. An example drama is included, as well as a roll-by-roll description of play.
  • plus, any applicable stretch goals.
How do you feel about this Kickstarter? Will you be backing it?

Sunday, March 22, 2020

A return to Star Hero, at long last

So, the last time I actually played with my old Hero Systems gaming group was in the late 1990's.

Very early this Sunday morning, fifteen gamers finally played together again after a long time via a combination of technologies (Zoom, and Roll20).

The game: Star Hero, in a home brew setting.
The setup: On a slow boat to somewhere, a team of Marines and a handful of Confederation Starfleet military types from various races and branches are called into sudden active operations, as they're the only ones near enough to respond. A huge cylindrical object, suspected to be an O'Neill colony, once in stable orbit is suddenly kicked into relativistic speeds towards an unaligned planet along the Confederation / Alliance border. Life signs have been detected on board, so it's up to the hastily assembled crew to save the lives of  those on the cylinder and the planet!

It's really amazing how in-sync everyone still is after all these years. Despite the size of the group, folks took efforts to avoid talking over each other, procedures for communicating over the channels were proposed, refined, and implemented. And we had a blast.

Looking forward to the next one.

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Mid-March and Enhanced Quarantine Protocols (FATE Accelerated, Champions, and Gumshoe)

With covid-19 doing its number on the world, and on my country in particular, it looks like I'll be staying at home for a while. That means less time in traffic, and more time for some lapsed hobbies -- including gaming!

So here's my March 2020 gaming update.

Gaming with my boy

It's Pay-What-You-Want.
Go get it now!
We've returned to gaming, and are now setting time aside each night to play. Since he's shifted fandom camps away from the Power Puff Girls and has landed on Sonic the Hedgehog, we've now begun playing a dimension-hopping game with Sonic, Tails, Knuckles, and his character -- Lector the Ultimate Green Fighting Cyborg (based on MegaMan). It all starts with an emerald pyramid in the middle of a forest on Planet Moebius -- one that's bigger on the inside, filled with shifting platforms, ladders, and doorways.

Our system is currently Fate Accelerated because (1) I could't find any Hero System stats for these characters; (2) I'm out of practice building in Hero; and (3) benchmarking the abilities of these characters is way more than I'm willing to do at this point.

So far, he's enjoying it immensely.

I am using it also to try to force him to imagine things more, and to understand things from a single character perspective. He gets to order the other three character around, but they won't necessarily always do what he says. Especially if there are ways to activate their Trouble Aspects.

A Return To Hero

My fave cover.
George Perez rules!
That being said, I plan on taking some time to go on a character building binge. Not super-heroes, just Heroic characters for now. All Hero 5th Edition with some house rules -- because this is what my old gaming group, based in the U.S., uses for their Science Fiction gaming.

I need to get back into it anyway, and I've not gamed for any substantial amount of time with the Champions 6th Edition rules, so 4th through 5th rules are top of mind when I start rummaging through my remembered rules.

It's important, as I hope to begin writing for DriveThruRPG's community program for the system. I had some initial spadework done, but it was swallowed up by a ton of work and travel time. Need to revisit my initial ideas on these, and check up on what's already out there in the online realm.

Go, Go, Gumshoe Gaming!

Long Kiss Goodnight meets
Dracula: Dead & Loving It? We'll see.
Lastly, I hope to try out some one-on-one gaming with my wife as well. This time, I'm looking at Gumshoe and Night's Black Agents: Solo Ops in particular. Particularly appropriate, given the inspiration for this Superspy meets Vampire Conspiracy RPG (Jason Bourne vs. Dracula), that a solo super agent tangles with the blood-sucking freaks hiding in the shadows of history.

I've been wanting to taking the system out for a spin for a while, but with the One-on-One Gumshoe take, I'm even more intrigued!

Moreso, for now, than the apparent community content being developed for other flavors of Gumshoe. But I shall look into those as well. I've been wanting to do a Tintin / Secret Seven / Fabulous Five / Johnny Crossbones / Detective Pikachu type of campaign using the Bubblegumshoe system -- but I'm not comfortable with playing the system at all.

Let's see how the rest of March treats us.