Friday, July 20, 2018

No One Warps For Free - PDF live!!!


Yes, at long fucking last... Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, or Cosmic Grass... No One Warps For Free! is finally available (softcover will take another couple weeks).

I'm excited about this release because ENnie-nominated Glynn Seal and I worked hard on this book and it turned out superb.  The production values are the highest Kort'thalis Publishing has ever attempted.  It really looks amazing!

What's in it?  A whole bunch of stuff.  I know it's only 74 pages, but the thing is dense with random tables, optional rules (like PC careers), and scenarios.  I'm waiting for the first few reviews to filter in, but I'm going out on a space limb right now to say that No One Warps For Free is one impressive sonofabitch!

Thanks to all my Kickstarter backers, supporters, contributors, artists, and everyone who paved the way.

VS

p.s. Incidentally, the RPGpundit just reviewed the previous Alpha Blue supplement Battle Star: Trek Wars right over here.


Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Cha'alt on Roll20


I'm opening up Cha'alt to the world, at least those who frequent Roll20.

So, if you're interested in a 5e D&D game that's part cyberpunk, part mutant wasteland, part dungeoncrawl, here's the link.

These weekly sessions will only be about an hour long (Thursdays, 11:30 - 12:30pm central standard time) and text only (I'll be sitting at my desk in a fairly public space).  So, we'll dive in ASAP. 

Come with a character concept ahead of time.  check out these character classes!  Races can be any standard fantasy thing you want to come up with... as long as it's not too immersion-breaking, I'm fine with it.  Half centaur, half stalk of celery, and half nuclear bomb?  Umm... no.

If this turns out well, I will most likely blog about it... perhaps even self-publish the campaign as an adventure or setting book down the road.  So, signing up to play means you're cool with that.

VS


Monday, July 16, 2018

MotBM an OSR Dead-End?


Ok, this deserves a blog post all its own...

So, I and many others read this review of Maze of the Blue Medusa right over here.  There's been a lot of feedback, as well as, quite a bit of push-back from the OSR.

Now, if the reviewer was railing against commonly accepted OSR staples, I would wholeheartedly agree with their rebuttal.  However, I got the sense that the reviewer is himself an OSR gamer and was judging MotBM on its own self-proclaimed old school merits... and found it lacking.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I don't see the reviewer advocating for adventure paths.  He simply wants a megadungeon to have some logical cohesion along with something going on that relates to the PCs.  You know, an adventure!  That's not some newfangled modern 4th edition story-game nonsense.  On the contrary, it's the foundational bread and butter of RPG scenarios: there's something going on that draws the PCs in and makes some kind of sense as they involve themselves.

I don't know if this is quite right, not having read MotBM (though this is probably the 13th review I've read over the last year), but from the reviewer's perspective, it seems like a deconstructed megadungeon.  All the parts are there, but it tricks you into thinking it's fully assembled.

Just because an adventure (any adventure) says, "You can do what you want with it - make it your own!" that doesn't mean it's useful, what the customer wants, or is worth paying for.  Now, I think MotBM is worth buying and I intend on purchasing the 2nd edition yonder.  But my acquisition is not why the ordinary gamer wants it.  

I'm looking for inspiration, what worked, what didn't work, why it captured the 2017 imagination as hard as it did.  Why?  So I can surpass it, of course.  Hoping to publish my own megadungeon in 2019!

Anyways, when it comes down to it a gaming product should be gameable - especially when it's expensive, talked up to the nth degree, and was a work-in-progress by two accomplished gaming authors for 4 friggin' years (trying to verify that, but not finding a source - will keep trying)!

If the reviewer, and he's not alone - I've seen lots of feedback over the last 12 months - thinks it stops short of providing satisfactory gameable content, that's a flaw.  Thankfully, I don't believe MotBM's flaw is shared by the OSR.  If anything, MotBM strayed too far away from old school principles - and that's what bit it in the ass.  

But I'd love to read your thoughts, will gladly engage in discussion and hope to have my beliefs either verified or reduced to ash after I've read the damn thing (probably end of August).

VS

p.s.  Ever since I realized my interview with Patrick Stuart pictured not Patrick Stuart, I've felt a little bit bad about it (but not so bad that I actually did anything).  So, here he is pictured!  Also, here's a link to that post-MotBM interview.  For completion's sake, here's my post-MotBM interview with Zak S.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Cha'alt: Session One


Last night was the official start of my new post-apocalyptic D&D campaign Cha'alt: Sun-Bleached Death Under Magenta Sky.

4 players, specific classes I came up with last week, a few house-rules, handful of scenario notes, and... that's it.  Nothing else.  I didn't have any rulebooks, charts, screens, supplements, or full-fledged adventure.  No music, weird lighting, artwork, or any theatrics, pyrotechnics, special effects, etc.

I was, admittedly, a little apprehensive about going that route, but it felt very refreshing.

The only thing I'm going to say about the session as of now is that three PCs came from the wasteland (wasters) and one came from the dome-city (domer).  After conducting their initial business, they were attacked by raiders and ran for their lives.  While being pursued, they found a place to hide... and explore.

Oh yeah, I can also tell you the party's dragon priest was almost swallowed by a giant sandworm.

I want to keep the rest under wraps because I intend to open the Cha'alt campaign world up to everyone - details coming soon!

However, I also want to share some system / game mechanics that I came up with to make my O5R game feel like D&D without sacrificing the range I've cultivated with VSd6.

Difficulty

Easy:  10
Moderate: 15
Hard: 20
Near Impossible: 25
_______

In addition to a d20 roll, players add their character's level and relevant ability score modifier.

For example, Harold's techno-mancer tried to imbue a disused subway car with power and force it to run over his enemies.  He rolled his d20 and got a 14, then added his level (they all started at 1st level) +1, and finally his intelligence modifier +3 for a total of 18.  That means he was able to get the subway car up and running and moving in the right direction, but couldn't put as much force or direction into it as he wanted.

Result: it struck and wounded one of the oncoming attackers.

I'm using this for pretty much everything, except standard combat maneuvers.  So... spells, special attacks, perception checks, etc.  However, all rolling comes after the all-important roleplaying.  You can't just roll to check for traps without describing what you're doing first.

VS

p.s. Almost forget to mention, if a player gets 5 or more points above the target, he generally gets a little bonus, like a critical success.  If he gets 5 or more points below the target, he's bound to get some kind of penalty or further loss, like a critical failure.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Shades of Amber


Patrick Stuart's False Machine review of Amber: Diceless Role-Playing brought up a lot of great memories.  I haven't played Amber since High School in the early 90's, and haven't read the core rulebook in over a decade, yet Wujcik's wisdom seems burned into my psyche.

I just re-read his review, and while I can't pinpoint the exact sentence getting to the heart of this blog post, it's in there somewhere.  Allow me to plunge my warlock hands into the primordial soup and see what I can yank out...

As a designer of RPGs myself, my foundation seems to be context.  In any interaction, there are a number of variables, each having their own weight, pushing and pulling the odds of success, failure, or something in-between hither and yon. 

For me personally, needing to hit a target number of 14, rolling a 15, and saying, "Yeah, you hit," or rolling a 13 and saying, "Nope, you miss," just doesn't satisfy me like it did when I started out playing Basic D&D in grade school. 

After years of gaming, I realized how much I preferred subtlety, nuance, interpretation, the dice as oracle and I, Game Master, as the one who speaks for them.  I want the dice to give me a range, a degree of good, bad, and ugly where I'm able to refine the raw material... shades of gray, rather than just rolling to see if the outcome is either black or white.

That's why I came up with VSd6, a system using d6 dice pools.  The result allowing GMs to know which way the wind is blowing so they can narrate the actual outcome... their outcome, rather than something hypothetical and polarized.  In this way, the dice results are like potential energy, awaiting the GM's ultimate determination.

Where Amber expects the GM to do all the factoring in his head, the RPGs of Kort'thalis Publishing (Alpha Blue, Crimson Dragon Slayer, The Outer Presence, and Blood Dark Thirst) provide tools cutting out much of the guesswork. 

The GM as final arbiter; rules merely a framework for GM and players to immerse themselves in virtual reality - is the very definition of old school.  That's why I believe both Amber: Diceless and my own RPGs are essentially OSR.

VS


Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Cha'alt: Character Classes


So, a couple weeks ago was session -1, and yesterday we finally got to session zero.  Although, to be completely honest, it's more about having lunch with friends than pre-planning D&D.

Regardless, some campaign discussion happened.  For instance, here are the available character classes in Cha'alt: Sun-bleached death!

Basically, it's Shadowrun within the domed cities and Mad Max / Gamma World / Dark Sun everywhere else.

  • Dragon Priest: Dragons rule the world of Cha'alt and they are perceived as Gods by the inhabitance.  However, there are priests who worship other god-like beings too... such as, worm priests (yes, giant sandworms burrowing in the wasteland).  Focus: non-offensive spells, such as healing, protection, divination, flight, creating water, etc.
  • Sorcerer: They wield the magic; this was a land of fantasy and technology before the apocalypse.  Focus: offensive spells; destructive sorcery such as fireball, lightning, acid arrow, magic missiles, etc.
  • Urban Ranger: They live in the domed cities, detectives, investigators, blade-runners, and bounty hunters.  Metropolitan killers in nice slacks.  Focus: tracking, locating weaknesses of their prey, and surviving in city environments.
  • Brutalizer: If you're going to live in the wastes, you either have to be a hunter or gatherer.  These are the hunters - they tussle with big game out in the radioactive ruins.  Focus: killing!
  • Scavenger: Thieves of the wasteland, scavengers who search for necessities, tech, magic, and anything that can be used to survive.  They know how to get in and out of the ruins and sewers beneath the domed cities.  Focus: detecting and disarming traps, skulking around silently, getting into hard-to-reach places, hiding in what little shadow there is and striking death-blows.
  • Techno-mancer: They plug into cyberspace in order to access the network, repository for all the available knowledge.  Focus: creating, repairing, operating, and maintaining machines, electronic equipment, and any kind of high-tech gear.

For the dragon priest, sorcerer, and techno-mancer, magic (even techno-magic) is rather free form (player describes what he wants to have happen).  Spells / day = character's level (3rd level character can cast 3 spells per day), but additional spells may be cast at a cost of 1d4 HP per spell.

Next time I blog about Cha'alt, I'll talk about PC races!

VS


Tuesday, July 3, 2018

It's The Adventures, Stupid


I've had this blog post on my mind for a while now...  It all started with a discussion on g+ about Labyrinth Lord.

How one of the first big retro-clones has been virtually eclipsed, why, and if it's possible for Labyrinth Lord to reclaim its former glory.

Well, what makes for a successful RPG?  I'm sure there are many factors that could and should be discussed by those interested in the answer.  But today, I'm going to focus on the primary reason: SUPPORT!!!

Support for that RPG keeps it going, makes it feel alive, engages players, and provides material for using that game now and in the future.  The ideal kind of support is adventures, the backbone of roleplaying.  Various supplements can't hurt, but a large number of scenarios is probably the best gauge for success when it comes to new RPGs.

Just look at your DCC, LotFP, and S&W.  They come out with adventures all the damn time.  If Labyrinth Lord wants to compete, it's got to have just as many high-profile scenarios coming out under the Labyrinth Lord name.  That's why it's so hard for the little guys to compete... any one-man shop is going to be hard-pressed to generate one adventure a month or more.  You need a team!

On that LL thread, I made the boastful statement that I could turn LL around if put on the payroll as brand manager, scenario connoisseur, or whatever to the tune of $50K a year.  Yeah, that seems like a lot, but the juice has to be worth the squeeze.

What's funny is that it's all compatible!  There's no earthly reason why you can't swap one system's adventure for another.  But perception matters with these kinds of things.  Brand awareness affects the market.  We're only human, after all.

I've tried to maintain a regular flow of adventures myself with the several RPGs for Kort'thalis Publishing, but in the end I only succeeded with Alpha Blue.  Crimson Dragon Slayer almost kept pace, but I think sci-fi more lenient than the over-saturated genre of fantasy.  Alas, I realized the full extent of this lesson too late.

Having said that, I'm going to make an announcement regarding Kort'thalis Publishing's RPG lines.  But first, I want to finish Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, or Cosmic Grass... No One Warps For Free!  It'll be released before the end of July.

I've already mentioned elsewhere that I'm taking a break from RPG publishing once this last adventure is completed.  There are juicier fruits out there that I have to find.

VS


Thursday, June 28, 2018

Return of the Blue Baron


Since I made a small contribution, just wanted to mention Return of the Blue Baron, volume 2.

It's a collaborative dungeon full of all kinds of crazy stuff!  It was a fun, easy experience and I think the OSR should do more of that kind of thing.

Cooperation makes this hobby possible. I'm always happy to share little tidbits with my fellow creators.  Just ask!

The PDF is free, so definitely check it out.

VS

p.s. Also, be sure to post feedback and reviews.


Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Describe Stuff


Originally, I had a different introduction for this blog post (see below).  But reading this post on Raging Owlbear, I'm just going to say that providing descriptions is, like, the GM's #1 job.  Take that away and why even bother having a GM.  Just do some wargaming skirmishes with miniatures, instead.

It is fortuitous that I was thinking about Clash of the Titans this past weekend - specifically the character Thallo. Because without those stray thoughts, you wouldn't have this blog post and I wouldn't have found out that Tim Pigott-Smith just died.  He played Captain of the Guard Thallo.

So, I was walking the twins and thinking about descriptions.  Going the extra mile, taking it to the next level, and just how important that is in RPGs.  Of course, keep in mind there's a world of difference between fully describing something the PCs experience in their virtual reality type of environment and the adventure writer's crappy novella about the town the PCs are visiting, all the townsfolk, and 1,000 years of history that nobody gives two shits about - just get on with it!

Anyway, it struck me that Thallo's description of flies when he's talking to Perseus is the perfect example!

Even back then, when I was about 8 and watching Clash of the Titans seemingly every day, I knew that Thallo's words were beyond mere mortal description.  As a wordsmith, he was like the Gods, and probably would have made a fucking boss GM, too.

Let's take a look at what he said...

Accursed, hell-sent swarms of blood-gutted marsh flies.

Any adventure writer or GM can come up with "marsh flies."  That's nothing.  Describing them as "blood-gutted marsh flies" is better, we can both see them clearer and get a better sense of their feeding habits.  It's visceral.  But "accursed, hell-sent swarms of blood-gutted marsh flies"?  Damn, that's awesome!  The players now know where they're from or where they seem to be from, that their evil, possibly demonic, that they come in swarms, probably plaguing that entire marshland area.

Great descriptions do more than convey information - they're symbolic, the programming language that literally makes the game.  Words are the tools we gamers use to create and interact with that virtual world.

Sure, you can go overboard.  After all, Lovecraft did that all the time and no one remembers him or his creations. That was sarcasm, yes.  When it's called for, go off the rails - describe stuff like there's no tomorrow.

So, be like Thallo and Lovecraft - do your job as either an adventure writer, GM, or both!

VS

p.s. Want more advice like this?  You can get Adventure Writing Like A Fucking Boss and Adventure Writing Like A Fucking Boss II.


Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Imagining Cha'alt


This blog post serves as a record for "session -1"... basically talking about the stuff there is to talk about before session zero.

Yes, I'm launching a new D&D campaign next month.  Why D&D?  Well, it's awesome and... you've got to go where the fish are.  Tons of people play D&D.  Comparatively, 5 people play any of the lesser known, old school, retro-clones or OSR off-shoots like Crimson Dragon Slayer (even though d6 dice pools are way cooler than d20).

Three guys talking about D&D, movies, concepts, influences, and the kind of campaign we'd like to see - nay, live in!  It went well; let's dive into the juicy stuff.

I've always had at least an inkling of science-fantasy post-apocalypse in my D&D games.  However, this time I wanted to go all-in.  Mutant Crawl Classics has been ordered from my FLGS (just found out the 1st printing is sold out, but the game store's distributors had a couple extra copies).

In creating the campaign setting/world called Cha'alt, I'm planning on drawing quite a bit of influence from MCC and Dark Sun, but also the following movies...

Mad Max: doesn't get any more post-apocalyptic inspired than that.  I also want to use Cyborg and Water World as inspirations.  A totally ruined civilization where survivors must scavenge to survive in a chaotic, untamed world!

Blade Runner and Split Second: not so easy to find the latter on DVD or blu-ray, but I keep trying.  Anyways, Shadowrun has always been mildly fascinating as a concept.  Fantasy + cyberpunk, so Cha'alt is going to incorporate that, too.

But how?  Well...

Zardoz:  A trippy, 70's favorite of mine.  Just like in Zardoz, there's two lands - one populated by the brutals where it's all savage and low-tech and the second populated by eternals - young and beautiful degenerate intellectuals who want for nothing and have elaborate social rituals.  The eternals use the brutals by way of the vortex (seriously, if you're dying to see Sean Connery's chest hair - just go see Zardoz).

Why not have two main realms?  One was shielded from the apocalypse, more or less, and is the dark near-future cyberpunk world we're familiar with.  Possibly a domed city or one of several, like in Logan's Run.  The other land (pretty much the rest of the world) got the full brunt of the apocalypse and are living in the devastated aftermath.

The PCs are opportunists, mercenaries, thrill-seekers, or one of the dregs of society who agree to travel between the two lands, carrying out various missions and/or independently seeking fame, glory, and treasure (gold, credits, magic, and tech).

How did the apocalypse occur?  Instead of going the usual route of nuclear war, why not dive into the sword & sorcery lore of Thundarr the Barbarian?  Yes, a mysterious comet passed too close to our moon, broke it in half, and shit went crazy!  Ok, it's not really "our" moon.  This is all happening on some fantasy world, which explains the elves, dwarves, magic, etc.

What about Gods?  Dragons.  Dragons?  Yes.  Dragons!!!

I was looking up my kids' Chinese zodiac signs last night and early this morning.  There was something in the description for Year of the Dragon that caught my eye.

In ancient times, people thought that dragons could control everything in the world with their character traits of dominance and ambition.

That sparked something in my imagination!  I started thinking about dragons as gods in Cha'alt.  All-powerful monstrous beings who influenced the people of that world.  Priests would pray to and worship dragons - fire dragons, water dragons, gold dragons, steel dragons, and so on.  As dragons fought amongst themselves, so would great armies - leading to the Dragon Wars.

Yeah, you could just keep going with that idea, from religions and cults to empires and customs - dragons are a huge part of everyday life in Cha'alt.  In fact, I'll most likely take another crack at writing a novel, one based on Cha'alt.

System-wise, I'm leaning towards the Basic Starter version of D&D 5e and adding bits and pieces from there, instead of saying everything in the Player's Handbook is legit and then having to go through it and take bits and pieces out.

It'll be old school.  O5R, to be exact.  And while the 1st session starts up in July, there's going to be an online version of the game people can play, too, via Roll20.  At least, that's the hope.  We'll see.  I still have to complete my latest Alpha Blue kickstarter!

Have an opinion, let me know.

VS


Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Alpha Blue merchandise


Yes, you can now buy Alpha Blue merch right over here!

I'm trying to promote my Kickstarter (only 11 days left to back) Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, or Cosmic Grass... No One Warps For Free!  Please check it out, support my dirty hobby, and tell your friends / RPG acquaintances.

Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design (hire this glorious bastard, you fool!) did an outstanding job creating the pink tentacles and slime details, font, etc. I mean, is there anything worse than a t-shirt with rectangular image just hanging in space?

A couple more items may be added in the next few days, we'll see. The sad part is that I'm only making about 10% per item sold - should be able to pay Glynn back for his magnificent work in 2021.  But at least Zazzle takes care of all the heavy lifting, of which I have neither the time nor energy to do.

Zazzle also does frequent sales.  Sometimes site-wide sales (25% off right now), certain items, etc.  They also have some interesting options.  For instance, the posters come in a range of sizes and if you wanted a canvas print, you can also choose the thickness, as well as, the size.  Be sure to play around with options before ordering to make sure you'll love it.

Any questions, just let me know!

VS

p.s. Glynn just alerted me that you need to switch the content filter to "OFF" in order to see the images (I set them to PG-13).  Thanks, hoss!


Sunday, June 10, 2018

What's Most Important


I've been having an interesting conversation online about XP, leveling, and new mechanics / dice rolling conventions.

What I proposed a few days ago right over here, basically took the place of the math heavy calculations that went into doling out XP per character.  I remember playing in the 80's and sometimes it would take the DM up to an hour after a session to get the final numbers (we were all about 12 at the time).

That seems like a lot - and it was - but that was the way it was, and I do not believe that's an exaggeration.

Anyways, the old school purist I was engaging with said something about all these newfangled rules and ways of doing things diluted the purity of the game, making it harder to find a game or made the available gaming pool for old school D&D more shallow.

To that, I suggested that game mechanics will always play second fiddle to the really important factors that go into an RPG campaign...

  • The GM (is he GMing like a fucking boss or is he just an asshole who doesn't care and loves his precious NPCs way too much?)
  • The Players (I want to game with people who love the game - they don't have to know a lot about it, just be enthusiastic and willing to immerse themselves in the fantasy world we're collectively making).
  • The food/drink available (Sure, I can eat before and after the game, but sharing delicious food and beverages makes the experience that much better).
  • Comfortable and quiet place to play (if your cat's dingle-berries are "x" amount of inches from my dice and I'm sitting in a metal grade school cafeteria chair, I'm out). 
  • Close to home
  • Convenient day/time 
  • The game's setting, flavor, theme, mood, aesthetic, etc. (Several days ago, some awesome dude was talking about mixing Planet of the Apes with Carcosa... hell yeah!)
  • Style of play (don't play my character for me and don't railroad me.  I want some agency, bitch!)

I could think of others, I'm sure, if I sat here for another hour or two.  But that's enough to get the idea across - who you play with and where is so much more important than 90% of the game's overall functionality.  

Yes, I maintain that all of those things, individually, are more important than playing Moldvay vs. Holmes, or Mentzer vs. AD&D, or 2nd edition vs. 5th edition, or S&W vs. LL, or Crimson Dragon Slayer vs. DCC.

If I had the time, liked the people involved, and what the game was about, I wouldn't care if the GM used ascending AC, descending, or some weird random d12 mechanic he pulled out of his ass.  Bring on the pizza, mountain dew, and let the good times roll!

VS

p.s.  Please check out and back my latest Alpha Blue kickstarter - Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, or Cosmic Grass... No One Warps For Free!

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Inappropriate Characters episode 2



This is the 2nd episode of our RPG talk show Inappropriate Characters, comprised of RPGpundit, James Desborough, and myself.

In this episode, we talk about Kickstarters, Anita Sarkeesian coming to GENCON, gaming as adults, and more!  Thanks for tuning in.  Be sure to subscribe, like, and comment.  If you enjoy that kind of irreverent programming, consider supporting us through our Inappropriate Characters Patreon.

VS

p.s.  The Alpha Blue supplement Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, or Cosmic Grass... No One Warps For Free! is being Kickstarted right fucking now - go check out the sexy girls if nothing else.


Friday, June 1, 2018

More inappropriate characters!


Tonight is our second episode of the Inappropriate Characters RPG talk show.  Please subscribe to our channel and get notified when there's something new to watch!

Also, here's our Patreon account.  It'll help us keep the good times rolling!

One of the topics I'll be discussing tonight is RPG kickstarters.  Specifically, tips to succeed at running your own.  As it happens, I launched my 15th KS earlier today.

Check out Alien Ass, Hydrogen Gas, and Cosmic Ass... No One Warps For Free!

If you have questions about running an RPG kickstarter, let me know what they are so I can answer them on the show.

VS

Monday, May 28, 2018

No Politics, Please



Today, we're talking about Armor Class... but first, let's discuss the lack of diversity among the straight, white, male, rape-culture, terrorist roleplayers.

Why?!?  Why does this always fucking happen these days?

I'm referring to the interjection of racism, sexism, inclusiveness, forced community welcoming, protection from the threat of possible harassment, and a bunch of other stuff.

It's politics.  Why are politics always worming their filthy way into our gaming?  I want to be free of it.

A few years ago, "No politics" meant not overly praising or bashing the President or talking about gun control or immigration.  Now, it's everywhere, affecting everything, and there seems to be no escape.

This seemingly innocuous post by James Raggi started off good and then got bogged down in the same bullshit that happens when more than 3 people are together.

At this point, I equally blame the Alt-Right (stop egging the SJWs on, baiting them, and calling them totalitarians) and Ctrl-Left for their mutual failure to leave their politics at the fucking door!  It's gotten so bad that, like, 20% of all RPG discussion needs to be removed like a cancerous tumor.

From now on, unless I'm taking part in a political discussion, I'm going to ignore the stuff I can safely and easily ignore; everything else I'll respond with NP,P.  Even if that's questioning why so many OSR people harass minorities or wear a Nazi armband or prefer ascending armor class.

Those who've seen the inaugural episode of our RPG talk show, Inappropriate Characters, know that I'm a centrist who prefers to keep gaming talk about gaming, when possible (new episode taping later this week)...



Thanks for listening and hope you all had a good Memorial Day,

VS

Saturday, May 26, 2018

The Division


There's a divide between what most gamers consider "old school" and "modern" approaches to RPGs, specifically D&D, but those categories are general enough to be somewhat universal.

It's not just traditional versus story game or experienced veteran versus youthful noob.  It's a matter of approach and perspective.  Designing adventures seems to be one of those areas where those things matter now more than they ever have.

The latest conflict is around a scenario entitled Mines, Claws & Princesses.  It's by some dude I've never heard of named Oswald.

While I'm not wild about the title and don't care at all for the cover art, renowned D&D adventure reviewer Bryce Lynch has said amazing things about it.  Even though I haven't read the module in question, I trust his judgement and plan on purchasing it soon.

And that would be the end of it (and hardly worth a blog post) if not for a counter-point review from some guy named Chris Kelly over at Wizard's Laboratory.  Chris takes points off for the adventure's unfinished nature, its mature themes (gratuitous violence, apparently), and lack of compelling story.

Pretty much everything that's wrong with scenarios put out from the 90's up to today's "adventure path" is placed on a pedestal by some of these gamers who see old school as a detriment and OSR as something that passed the RPG hobby by or a niche relegated to the back of the bus (standing room only).  I'm talking about overly-long, tedious, hand-holding, uninspired railroad drivel that keeps diamonds in the rough from getting noticed.

As an aside, I glanced at this preview over at ENworld today. The author is talking about the upcoming Solar Blades & Cosmic Spells RPG.  Angus seems to be explaining the nuts and bolts of old school roleplaying to an audience that's possibly unaware of gaming culture from the 70's and 80's.

I mean, it's just sad that so many people don't know what good Game Mastering is about, that so many players have to experience all those campaign worlds with blinders on... with fun on mute.

Personally, I view old school as the future of this hobby.  There wouldn't be a 5th edition without the OSR.  Those noob-friendly "training wheels" are actually GM straitjackets, preventing the proper flow.  And what is the proper flow, you ask?

The adventure designer inspires the GM with awesome ideas.  The GM takes those ideas, interprets them based on his own desires, adds in what seems appropriate at the time, and presents his version... his vision to the players.  The players respond as if they actually were the characters themselves.  The GM reacts to PC actions (or inaction).  

That's it.  That's what's supposed to happen.  Interrupting that sacred pattern with failed novelist backstory, tedious read-aloud text, and predetermined outcomes is ruining D&D!!!

Besides continuing to educate people, I'm not sure what else we can do.  Sure, we can keep running games from an old school perspective, initiate new blood into the OSR fold.  But what else?  Hmm...  write reviews?

VS

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Banned on Amazon?


Over 48 hours ago, I received an email from some shadowy division of Amazon telling me that Battle Star: Trek Wars was being temporarily suspended (suppressed, they call it) because of confusing or misleading keywords.

When setting up the title for Amazon's print-on-demand service, CreateSpace, I was asked to put in keywords to help customers find my product in searches.  Apparently, whatever I used (we can all guess, I'm sure) went too far.

But instead of merely removing my keywords or getting rid of them for Battle Star: Trek Wars altogether, they took the book off their virtual shelves.  That seems like overkill.  Could there be another motive?

I was told in that email that it would take 24 hours for them to review the matter after I sent in new keywords (which I immediately did).  As I mentioned, more than 48 hours have passed.  I've called CreateSpace's help # twice, but they could do little.  Apparently this Amazon division cannot be directly contacted, they sit in judgement beyond our universe, maneuvering in dark and secret ways...

Since I've never encountered this problem before, all I can do is wait and hope with tentacles crossed.

In the meantime, I'm putting Battle Star: Trek Wars on sale over at DriveThruRPG.  Get it here at 30% off until it's back on Amazon... whenever the fuck that might be.

Thanks,

VS


Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Looking Back at Empire of Satanis


"If you're going to do something that is naughty, do it, and realize that you're doing something naughty and enjoy it."
  Anton Szandor LaVey

It seems like a lifetime ago that I wrote one of the worst RPGs in existence (well, a few people kind of liked it).

Empire of Satanis was my self-publishing origin story. I wrote it over the course of a few months (with some help from The Forge) and put it out there for God and everyone to see (and be ashamed of) in 2005.  Not sure why some of the product information shows a 2011 date - maybe that's when Lulu updated their site?

This being 2005 and 2006 (for the 2nd edition), right around the OSR's genesis, I cobbled together a traditional and what would later be known as a "story game" hybrid.  And with games such as Alpha Blue, I'm still doing that.  Neo-OSR, baby!

This is the free PDF.  That is a link to the Lulu print-on-demand hardcover (why I thought this deserved a hardcover version is fucking beyond me).  Both updated versions are a bit longer than the original.  I doubled-down on the unnecessary quoting of inspirational luminaries such as H.P. Lovecraft, Thomas Ligotti, and Anton Szandor LaVey.  The three L's!!!

I also did all my own layout using Lulu's templates.  Jesus Titty-Fucking Christ!  Now, you know why Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design does everything for Kort'thalis Publishing.  So bad!

Just reading the reviews is a treat.  Empire of Satanis deserves to be mercilessly crushed... and it frequently is.  A lot of reviewers had fun skewering this kaleidoscopic demon turd.  Hopefully, they'll put a smile on your face as they do my own.  :)

You can read this guy's Fatal & Friends detailed analysis of the game right over here!  He updated the F&F EoS autopsy not too long ago.

Yes, it's an uncharitable view, but I can't say he's wrong.  Empire of Satanis is an amateurish mess of terrible cliches and something even worse - running in the opposite direction of cliche... only to hit a brick wall at top speed.  Indeed, the thing is weird for weirdness-sake, and tries too hard in the process.

However, taken from the standpoint of purposefully awful, perhaps... maybe... possibly there's something intriguing deep inside.  I can barely imagine pairing it with Encounter Critical or Crimson Dragon Slayer.  Irony only goes so far...

Is there a moral to this story, High Priest Satanis?  Yes.  Yes, there is.  Even if what you're writing now is so bad it stinks on ice, there's hope for the future.

A couple years from now, you could be getting paid a few thousand dollars a year for writing whimsical exploitation trash.  I did it, and so can you!

VS

p.s. I took the name Satanis as part of my nom de plume to keep myself humble.  Never forget!


Sunday, May 13, 2018

Inappropriate Characters


No, I'm not just talking about barbarian halflings and dark elven monk/assassins!

RPGpundit, "Grim" Jim Desborough, and I decided to create our own RPG talk show.  Three outspoken OSRish libertines who have similar views and experiences throughout the hobby/industry we all know and love (loathe...?).

Here's the first episode of Inappropriate Characters.  It's only #1, so cut us a little slack for the meager production values.  As we continue to produce the show, it'll get slicker.

And here's our Patreon page where the three of us are looking for funding/support.

If you have questions, comments, topics you want us to discuss, feedback, or anything else, let us know!

Thanks,

VS

Friday, May 11, 2018

Adventure Writing softcover!


Both Adventure Writing Like A Fucking Boss and Adventure Writing Like a Fucking Boss II have been combined into a slim softcover over on Amazon...

Here's the link to purchase it.

It's got a lot of great advice for those wanting to design and run their own adventures.  If you aspire to self-publish your own work or want small-press publishers to buy your scenarios, this will also be an invaluable tool.

If you have the time, please post a review!

Enjoy,

VS

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

733 downloads of Alpha Blue


Thanks to Sean Patrick Fannon, Tenkar's Tavern (use his affiliate links - the dwarven ale must flow), and many others, Alpha Blue was downloaded a total of 733 times this month... and it's only the 8th!

That's awesome, and I greatly appreciate the support.  Next, I'd love to see people get really into it - blogging about the game, writing reviews and actual play reports.  Kick the transparent aluminum hover-tires and see what happens...

Perhaps this will open the door to new Alpha Blue games (face-to-face and on Roll20; campaigns and one-shots). More players means more opportunities for sleazy space opera fun. 

Mix and match!  You can always make your Metamorphosis Alpha, Traveller, White Star, Stars Without Number, Star Trek, and Star Wars RPG silly, sleazy, and R-rated.

Want to see the support material for Alpha Blue?  Check the sidebar over on the right - adventures, optional rules, random tables, campaign settings, maps, and even a funky scifi board game (Q'uay-Q'uar).

And possibly a brand new adventure coming in June.  Wait and see...

VS


Thursday, May 3, 2018

Sean Patrick Fannon Sexual Harassment Scandal


I've read the news about allegations regarding Sean Patrick Fannon over at EnWorld.  And I've got something to say about it...

As most people know (or can guess), I'm not part of the woke, SJW, ctrl-left side of politics.  Nor am I a far-right wacko.  I'm in the middle, a moderate.

Similarly, I'm not handing out free passes to every jerk, creep, sleazoid, and sexual harasser that comes down the pike.  Yet, I'm not one to join any kind of mob, demand to see individuals burnt at the stake, or boycott certain products, companies, or whatever.  I call 'em as I see 'em on a case-by-case basis.

And in this particular case, I'm biased.  Like, super biased.  My bias hails from Krypton, is now hanging out on a planet orbiting a yellow sun, and it's on steroids.  Why, you ask?

I couldn't find these interactions myself, only recalled the incident because I mentioned it on Tenkar's Tavern over here.  But I had some help from an EnWorld forum member named [prefers to be anonymous]...

The post was generated in response to this post on your blog, via Google Plus. It was made on March 22, 2016.

I didn't notice it before, but there's some further back-and-forth between you and him there, if you read the comments (I can still see the post, and I don't have a G+ account, so it looks like it's still open for public view). This one is his responding to someone pointing out that Alpha Blue was behind the adult filter:

Quote Originally Posted by Sean Patrick Fannon
For some truly ridiculously offensive products, that isn't enough in my opinion. OBS is a private company that respects, you know, actual decent human beings. I completely support their policy to allow for truly over-the-line misogyny and related horrors to get a second look.

Considering this is only the second time this has come up since the Tournament of Rapists fiasco (that one being the first), I think all the outcry is completely uncalled for.

You don't sell horse manure in a donut shop. Why should a given company be coerced into selling rape fantasy on an RPG site that caters to a much broader audience? The Internet is full of porn - find a site that sells rape porn and have a ball.
Later on, he says this:

Quote Originally Posted by Sean Patrick Fannon
Considering I've been supportive of +James Raggi and his LotFP line in the past (including with the Pick of the Day), I'll admit to being a bit surprised to see he's lining up cast me as the villain of this piece. Guess that shows me.

At any rate, I recognize what I am dealing with here, and I am quite done with it.
More later on:

Quote Originally Posted by Sean Patrick Fannon
Create all the vile and offensive make-believe you want. Knock yourself out.

Just don't be surprised when folks are offended by offensive material. And, yes, it's a testament to your personal character when you think publishing such stuff is OK, as far as I am concerned. You may be comfortable with it, and you may have your fans, but when others see your efforts as perpetuating a harmful culture (and rightfully so), there is righteous blowback from that.

And when you openly put material out to the marketplace that triggers serious trauma for some, you deserve the kick to the special place you get.

This isn't just about my taking pleasure in a hater's misfortune (though, that's definitely a bonus).  Those statements are character witness testimony from Sean Patrick Fannon himself around the time of the alleged sexual harassment incidents.  Well, some of it is alleged.  He admitted to bits and pieces.

As I've mentioned in a couple forum posts, Alpha Blue is openly sleazy.  It doesn't hide what it is.  It's not a hypocritical piece of shit.  And it's a game - a fun RPG played between consenting adults.  The "make-believe" part of it allows one to fly his or her freak flag without making convention attendees or anyone in the gaming community feel uncomfortable, unwanted, or less than a human being.

I've read hearsay of other sexual harassment incidents in various forum threads talking about Sean Patrick Fannon.  What we could really use is more women who've been sexually harassed by Sean Patrick Fannon coming forward to tell their story.

Don't let the douche-bag bros deter you from speaking your truth.  You know, I hear the word "misogyny" thrown around these days as often as the word "the."  However, in this particular case, the apologists, abuse supporters, and armchair lawyers who don't think we should even discuss the issue until there's been a jury trial and guilty verdict do seem like they actually hate and/or fear women.  Fuck you guys! And fuck Sean Patrick Fannon for just being an all-around asshole!

Don't let the bastards wear you down,

Venger As'Nas Satanis
High Priest of Kort'thalis Publishing

p.s. I'm making the core Alpha Blue RPG 100% FREE from now until Sunday evening!!!  Get your sci-fi sleaze on... without ruining your life.  ;)


Thursday, April 26, 2018

Adventure Writing II


I've just released the 2nd volume to my Adventure Writing like a Fucking Boss series!

Grab the PDF right over here at DriveThruRPG. 

Adventure Writing Like a Fucking Boss II has a lot of amazingly useful content - for amateurs, professionals, and GMs who want to improve their craft - which I'm sure reviewers will point out when they get the chance.

Have a great weekend,

VS


BS:TW in print!


Right over here is the softcover for my latest Alpha Blue supplement Battle Star: Trek Wars!

Below is a video of me flipping through the full-color (though, some interior illustrations are black and white) softcover book.  I was extremely impressed with Glynn "MonkeyBlood Design" Seal's layout and CreateSpace's print-on-demand quality...




If you purchase the softcover, ask me for the gigantic, color map of the Ta'andor galaxy! 

Thanks,

VS

p.s. Reviews on the PDF have been great, let's keep 'em coming.  ;)

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Alpha Blue Influences


I've talked about the sexy, sleazy, late-night, cult classic movies from the 70's and 80's that inspired a lot of the Alpha Blue action we've come to know and love. 

I've also mentioned old school RPGs that had their share of inspiration, like WEG Star Wars, Encounter Critical, Paranoia, and maybe even Toon and Tales from the Floating Vagabond (even though my only exposure to that game was advertisements in Dragon Magazine).

But re-reading the WTF D&D!? section over at Something Awful, I realized the cheesy, silly, inappropriate, Star Wars ripoff, and terrible on purpose actual play reports (pretty sure these aren't actual play reports) most likely influenced me and had an impact on the creation of Alpha Blue - possibly Kort'thalis Publishing's most successful RPG line.

Here is part 1 and this is part 2. Drink in their delicious stupidity, laugh your ass off (as I did, but not everyone is going to find them funny), and become wiser in the knowledge that another piece of the Alpha Blue origin puzzle has been completed!

VS

p.s. Battle Star: Trek Wars is available right now over at DriveThruRPG.  It's 70+ pages of sleazy sci-fi awesomeness!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Adventure Writing


I've held onto fragments of Adventure Writing Like A Fucking Boss II for months.  I'm almost ready to put the finishing touches on, but want to hear from you one last time before the final edit. 

What about adventure writing, either for yourself or others, makes you nervous, becomes an obstacle, always seems to be a problem? 

Do you have questions that need answers?  If so, please share them with me.

Thanks,

VS

Monday, April 16, 2018

Battle Star: Trek Wars PDF


Seemed to take forever, but at the same time this is, like, a month early...

I'm excited to announce the release of Battle Star: Trek Wars on PDF!!!

Glynn Seal of MonkeyBlood Design did an awesome job with the layout.  It's not just pretty, though - I think you're going to find this book useful, fun, and the perfect resource for that Alpha Blue campaign you've been fantasizing about.  ;)

Thanks to everyone who contributed content, supported this project, backed it on Kickstarter, and goes out and buys it.

VS

p.s. The full-color print version is coming next month!

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Taking a poll


I've been working on a new project that's only tangentially related to RPGs.  The following is a short poll.  I hope you take the time to answer it.  Thanks!

1. If there were a social networking site specifically devoted to causes (anything that someone's passionate about and wants to see action taken or enact change themselves), would you be interested in joining and sharing it with others?

2. Once it's up and running, do you think such a community may become one of your preferred social networking sites?

3. If you were using this website, what feature(s) would you be most interested in using or having available?

____

Ok, more RPG news coming soon...

VS

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Something for The Players


There's now a softcover edition combining both Player's Handbook Like A Fucking Boss and Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss.  It's an Amazon/CreateSpace print-on-demand book, so it's good quality (decided against going through the extra hassle of DriveThruRPG).

This has a wealth of awesome advice and options for RPG players - especially those who love fantasy!

Doesn't matter if you're all the way into old school (OSR), OSR curious and playing 5e, or totally new school, like Pathfinder.  There's something for everyone in these draconic pages.

Thanks for purchasing, reviewing, and sharing this news with all gamers.  ;)

VS

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Blurring the Line Between Player and Character


Remember those old D&D advertisements? They attempted to put you right there in the action, as if you stepped inside one of the fantasy characters, exploring a dungeon or fighting a dragon.  "You are the wizard!"

The times when it felt like myself but also my character in the environment described by the GM, that's the essence of roleplaying. That's when I really connected with the game and immersed myself in another world.

Everything else is just hanging out with friends, rolling dice, and seeing what happens next - not a terrible thing, but not what I like best about RPGs, not what makes them special.  That uniqueness is best represented, in my view, by old school styles of play. 

I'm trying to make more videos, as well as, blogging.  Here's one I just made about this very subject...



Can you remember a time when it felt like you weren't sure where you ended and your character began?  Tell me about your experiences!

VS


Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Updated PDF: Player's Handbook Like A Fucking Boss


Some nice changes have been made to the PDF (both bloody parchment with evil red veins and the printer-friendly version), so wanted to blog about it!

A few of the previous illustrations weren't that well integrated into the layout, my fault on that.  And a new image was added, plus text from Draconic Magazine here.  So, the document is looking better than ever. 

If you've already purchased it, the updated PDFs are waiting for you (email notification should have automatically been sent out when the files were updated).  If you don't have it yet, I think it's well worth the price...

Aww Hell, let's put this motherfucker on sale!!!

VS


Monday, March 12, 2018

Juvenilia


So, this question was recently posed at the end of a Ten Foot Pole review for Gamma Turquoise: Santa Fe Starport...

"What's the point of all the penis imagery/juvenile themes? Not a complaint. Just curious and interested in why you think your work needs that?"

Rather than reply to this comment with something short like "Because I can," which isn't very illuminating, I thought, why not do a blog post about it?

The simplest answer is that I like comedy, I like things that are funny, I like being funny.  I think humor is one of the strongest qualities of both man and art - it reveals, deflects, digs deep, allows us to remain on the surface, and keeps us from taking things too seriously.

The vast majority of RPG content is serious, almost nobody writes for laughs.  Maybe that's because if what they write is taken seriously that means they'll be taken seriously?  I don't know.  But the exclusivity of humor in RPGs is one of the things that attracts me to it.  If most people are doing one thing, I like to go the other way.  That's just who I am.

As I've mentioned elsewhere, RPGs are a great medium for shared storytelling and cooperative imagination. But they also have a stumbling block or two. Without audio and visuals (besides the GM's voice and a few illustrations and possibly miniatures with terrain), RPGs lack the visceral punch of movies, TV, comic books, music, and novels (which is a different story entirely - campaigns are not novels, though we should take cues from them).

In fact, music is a good analogy - before the music video, you had the album cover art and maybe a few pictures of the musicians on the back.  Otherwise, you had to go see the concert and then it was just a bunch of people on a stage playing their instruments.  Even after MTV's heyday, a lot of today's music is consumed visually. 

So, what's my point?  That RPGs need a helping hand.  More than passing around a picture of a dragon or ginger-bearded tavern keeper, our gaming sessions are better if they incorporate strong imagery based on classic tropes, material the players have experienced in the movies, TV, and novels. I ask you, how many characters would have ever used a whip if not for Indiana Jones?

The familiarity of humor is also an "in." It's an imagination boost!  Laughter is universal, even though not everybody thinks the same things are funny.  My comedy can be weird and dark; it's occasionally juvenile and often rooted in sexual themes.  Plus, there's the whole sleazy angle which I love for entirely different reasons and is a blog post for another time...

In conclusion, my answer to why I think my work needs such things is this - comedy is gold!

VS

p.s.  There are still quite a few Kort'thalis Publishing books that aren't full of penile juvenilia.  Such as... Dead God Excavation, Blood Dark Thirst, The S'rulyan Vault I and II, and anything with "Like A Fucking Boss" in the title should have a minimum of frothing vaginal tentacles (uncircumcised).  That's the Venger Satanis guarantee!

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Alpha Blue session report: Green Slime Boobs Religion


Another excellent game of Alpha Blue last night... a continuation from last session.

Three players, two new PCs, and one returning - Ginger Roots, a female navigation expert and explorer who's contemplative, healthy, wealthy, and wise - along with being good with lasers and hand-to-hand combat.

The other PCs were a robot chef named RB with flamethrower, chopping knives, and hover-board feet who also kept a little creature in his chest oven.

Hanzo was a space rat templar embodying the worst parts of organized religion - fanatical in the promotion of his own god for the dual purposes of increasing the power and spreading the influence of that god's religion.

Hanzo was created using the traditional character generation tables in the Alpha Blue rulebook, while RB was made using the new 7 word or phrase method over here.

Left high and dry on Alpha Blue by their former crew, they wandered the Mardi Gras type celebration happening in the entire entertainment section of the space station.

Ginger Roots and Hanzo got acquainted with RB as he was serving succulent and effervescent desserts upon a platter or h'orderves.  If the player hadn't come up with his own, we could have used this random dessert table here.

Ginger and Hanzo were looking to join a new crew on a new ship, so they asked RB if he knew of any job openings.  Turns out that RB's master was in the market for spacers. 

They talked to Kystin pirate pimp extraordinaire and he agreed to take them on as probationary members of the crew if they delivered a message to his rival, Vom Fass.

So, the PCs continued to walk through the celebration - going to the restroom, watching some alien get blasted, someone bought them drinks with his gambling winnings, they bought some drugs from a shifty trench-coat wearing dude, and chatted with a bunch of prostitutes who took RB's credits so he could taste a very special kind of dessert in the backroom. 

Before you know it, they were standing in front of Vom Fass who stood inside an environmental suit. Vom Fass insulted them and when the PCs talked back, he got ready to draw.  RB preempted any dueling by letting loose his flame thrower.  Hanzo kept shooting laser crossbow bolts into his groin while Ginger Roots blasted his arm off.  Vom Fass got a couple good shots in before he died.

They hightailed it onto Kystin's ship and out of Alpha Blue before a small angry, laser-toting mob got to them.  Off to the desert planet of P'oon to pick up an illegal shipment of... an undisclosed substance.

While relaxing on route to P'oon, Hanzo took a look at the meditation room on the ship, only to discover there was another crew member already using it.  This fellow spacer was a pink gelatinous dude who worshiped an entirely different space god.  This distressed Hanzo and led to a heretical religious debate of sacrilege and blasphemy. The jelly dude's form of worship was oozing green slime on women's breasts.  As much as Hanzo wanted to denounce such alternative religious practices, he couldn't help but realize the sense of it, eventually joining in.

Kystin's ship bypassed a Federation battle cruiser thanks to Ginger's navigational skills.  They landed in the desert, near the intended target - a starport. 

A Zone trooper security patrol caught up to the PCs, demanding to see their papers.  Instead, Kystin blasted them, but then got shot himself.  Before dying, his last words to the PCs were don't forget to pick up the turquoise.

RB used his computer access to locate the ship full of turquoise.  Dressed as Zone troopers, the PCs cut in line at the checkpoint.  Hanzo decided to pop some drugs he had bought on Alpha Blue and started seeing colorful dots all over, plus he was talking to himself. 

Luckily, he held it together until they could take possession of the turquoise.  Another security officer came by to check on things, questioning the PCs.  They made it through ok and flew the smaller ship full of turquoise into Kystin's ship. 

Then, they went back to Alpha Blue to sell it.

It was a typical Alpha Blue sandbox adventure driven by the players and helped with some random tables.  Besides coming up with a couple of NPCs beforehand, it was all improvised.  I got to use my electric, color-changing candles and roll on some new tables, so that was also cool.

VS

p.s. I had planned on recording some of this session and uploading it to YouTube, but since it was Alpha Blue (the sleaziest RPG in the galaxy), the wife vetoed that pretty hard. 


Thursday, March 8, 2018

Streaming Feelers

So, I'm sure the vast majority of you are aware of that epic Strongholds & Streaming kickstarter. With a couple days to go, it's up over 1.8 million dollars. 

Since my self-publishing efforts will be sidelined for at least a year, starting July 1st, (due to time and financial concerns) I've been thinking about streaming my own weekly games this summer.

I wouldn't be able to put too much energy into this (outside of running the actual game); otherwise the wife isn't going to let me pursue this, either.  However, I'm hoping with a minimum of additional fuss, I could provide an awesome stream of gaming for the viewing public.

Though, I would love to run my own games, especially Alpha Blue or Crimson Dragon Slayer, I've got to put financial needs above my own vanity.  Therefore, I'd be running Dungeons & Dragons - however, it'll be old school, using a wide variety of home-brewed and OSR/O5R content, as well as, adhering to a plethora of vintage aesthetics, play styles, and GMing techniques. 

Hopefully, this would do double or triple-duty - providing a fun, creative outlet for others to watch while teaching gamers how D&D 5e can be played in a more Basic D&D fashion.  Plus, a little extra financial security wouldn't hurt.

Let me know what you think!  If I can convince my wife (who has our family's best interests at heart) that streaming is where it's at, there might be a new KS next month...

Meanwhile, I've been making videos on my YouTube channel and trying to post more RPG related stuff on twitter @VengerSatanis in an effort to keep from going broke while not totally selling out to The Man.

Thanks for your continued support,

Venger As'Nas Satanis
High Priest of Kort'thalis Publishing