Sunday, June 18, 2017

RPG Day 2017


Yesterday I attended my first RPG Day event. I was originally scheduled to GM a Savage Worlds game in the morning, but with only two players a week away from the con date, I decided to cancel it so the players could sign up for another game.

So I spent the morning sitting at the various tables to watch the other GMs at their craft. The first 40 minutes or so were slow as many of the players were new to D&D and RPG indeed, but after that everyone got into stride and there was a nice buzz in the hall.

It was interesting to see how different GMs used different tools and styles. Some stood, others sat throughout the game. Some used markers on blank mats, some printed battlemaps, while others used "theatre of the mind".





Curiously, almost all the players looked like they were in their twenties or older. There was a teenager at my game in the afternoon, but he was perhaps the only one there. I spoke with another player over lunch and he thought maybe it was because teenagers tended to play with their schoolmates and so were not represented at what was primarily an Adventurers League event.

The game I played in was quite fun, even if my character went to 0 hit points at least twice. We had a good mix of classes and co-operated well, allowing each character his or her moment to shine (except my paladin, who simply could not hit anything!).


Still, I feel that the format of AL means that each game is essentially a one-shot with strangers. While you kept your character and his XPs and gear, there was no shared memory between members of a party, which I feel is an important part of the whole RPG experience. It is a concession to the reality that for many people, getting a regular group of players together week after week is simply not possible; I am glad I have a regular gaming group.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

July Giveaway

For the month of July, I am giving away several sprues of WW2 German infantry which I don't think I will ever get around to painting.

They are as follows:

Pegasus Hobbies German Fallschirmjaegers.

Leftover figures from Plastic Soldier Late War German Infantry

Plastic Soldier Company Self-propelled Gun Crew, and some soft plastic figures and equipment from the Pegasus Hobbies IG18 set

Once again, if you want these items, do leave a comment, and I will draw a recipient on 01 July. This is not a first-come, first-serve offer.

The offer is free: once I let you know you have been drawn, do let me have your email and mailing address and I will send them off to you. You don't even have to pay for postage; I am hoping to give these figures a good hope.

Good luck!

Added: Also, would Michael Mills contact me on this blog so I can send you last month's giveaway please? Thank you.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Have Dice, Will Travel (for RPG)


A couple of my new players in the Space Opera RPG I am currently running are also GMs on the Meetup group, and I have attended a couple of games in the past few weeks, and will be attending another one on RPG Day (17 June).

I like to use my own (Gamescience) dice, and I wanted a way to bring them around that wouldn't rattle or damage them, so I googled around and decided I wanted to make myself one of those fancy wooden RPG carrying cases that doubled as a dice tray and pencil case.

Unfortunately, the only good-looking wooden boxes at the local art store were those that came as part of water-colour or pastel sets that cost around S$70, which was more than I was prepared to spend.

Then I saw a plastic "bits" box at a general store that was about the right size (21cm x 15cm) and came with customisable partitions. I bought the box, a sheet of black rubber foam, and after trying a few configurations came up with this:


It can hold a 7-dice polyhedral set plus 2d6, or plus 1 extra d20 and d6 (for D&D 5E games), a few pencils and an eraser, and a post-it note pad. If you don't mind folding a character sheet, that can fit inside the box too. The bottom and inside lid of the box are lined with rubber foam so the the large compartment can serve as a dice tray and the dice won'y rattle when the box is closed. The box clips shut securely, which is important.

It's not as fancy as one of those custom-built wooden RPG boxes, but it's light-weight, compact, and cheap.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Black Tree Design Dwarf Hammerers and Stone Launcher and June Giveaway


A bit of a painting spree yesterday and today saw me clear my painting list. The two final units are the BTD Dwarf Hammerers pictured above, and the BTD Dwarf Stone Launcher pictured below.

The Hammerers are pretty much painted 'as is', except for the banner pole which I converted to look more GW. The command figures and three dwarves behind them are based on a stone plinth on a multibase, but the rest are based singly. As before, these are for Adrian and so the bases are left unflocked so he can complete them in his own style.


The Dwarf Stone Launcher came from Fg, who bought a few packs of the BTD dwarves way back when but never got around to painting them.

Which brings me to June's giveaway!

I have an extra Stone Launcher, plus a unit of 15 Hammerers to give away for June.

The Stone Launcher is missing the crossbar at the top (the thing that prevents the catapult arm from over-swinging, if you catch my meaning - I use a piece of plastic sprue cut to length to replace it).

The Hammerers come without a musician, and are missing a few shields.

Once again, if you want these two items, do leave a comment, and I will draw a recipient on 01 June. This is not a first-come, first-serve offer.

The offer is free: once I let you know you have been drawn, do let me have your email and mailing address and I will send them off to you. You don't even have to pay for postage; I am just helping Fg give these figures a chance to see some tabletop daylight.

Good luck!

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Kings of War 2 first game


Fg and I played two games of KoW this afternoon. This was the first time we played the rules, but they are easy to learn and remember, and with just a few special rules for each of the armies we used. we think we got most of the rules right.

In the first game my goblins spread themselves too thin and did not bring their numerical advantage to bear, and were rolled up on one flank and the whole army destroyed quickly.

In my second game I decided to deploy on a smaller frontage and keep a small reserve. This was a better strategy as it allowed the goblins to execute a number of flank charges on the humans, although with their weak attack and the human's high defence, it took a few rounds to rout a human unit.

The goblins repulsed the attack to their front, and I had just manoeuvred the war haggises (maw beasts in KoW) to charge the human unit that has breached my left flank when they failed their test to charge (due to being Yellow-Bellied), costing me the game.

The hit marker dice holders in action
It has literally been years since we last played a mass-battle game, and both the armies we used today had taken years to be ready, so I am happy that we enjoyed the game. It really does play as fast as people say it does, and the simple movement rules mean that units can and do manoeuvre.

My war haggises!
We played 1000-point games, but I do have enough figures for 2000-point games. The goblins are really quite weak, but I think at higher point games their numbers will be more telling.

I look forward to playing another game soon.


Monday, May 08, 2017

Gazetteer of the Known Galaxy

Map from NASA

This is a gazetteer of the galaxy our Space Opera campaign is set in. The setting is based on the bits of information from the Savage Worlds sci-fi setting, with adapted information from the various modules I use for our sessions. I will update this entry with new information after each session.


General Information

The galaxy is divided politically into three main parts: the human-dominated United Confederation on one side, the Rakashan-led (lion-headed humanoid) Tazanian Empire on the other, and the Neutral Zone between them.

The Neutral Zone was created in the aftermath of the century-long war between the United Confederation and the Tazanian Empire. The are comprises thousands of systems and planets, many of those inhabited. Each system is nominally independent, although several systems may band together to form political unities - however, none rival the power of either the United Confederation or the Tazanian Empire.

Ships from either of the major powers are forbidden from entering the Neutral Zone. Trade and transport through and within the Neutral Zone are therefore conducted through third parties, notably the Galactic Teamsters Guild.

The Galactic Teamsters Guild



Having its origins in the pre-hyperspace era of Earth's history, the Galactic Teamsters Guild is a loose organisation of traders, transport workers, and other professionals who are involved in the business of moving large volumes of cargo and personnel through the Neutral Zone and beyond.

The Guild has an open employment policy and does not discriminate based on species, gender, criminal record, and some say competence.

The Guild's headquarters is located at the Galactic Core Point.


The Order

symbol of The Order

A political movement that has arisen during the previous 2 standard years, The Order now comprises several member systems in the Dead Zone, a region of the galaxy known for having few habitable planets. Little is known about the leadership of The Order, but its stated purpose is to bring unity to the Neutral Zone so its numerous systems will not be at the mercy of the United Confederation or the Tazanian Empire.


Some planets of the Neutral Zone


Tropico


source

A resort planet, where the rich come for their vacations, and the even richer have their vacation homes. Tropico's surface is covered mostly by the ocean, with a belt of islands dotted around its tropical and subtropical zone.

- Notable persons and organisations

Kruger - Billionaire philanthropist, darling of the high society, and crime lord. Kruger has his vacation home on a private island near Tropico City, connected to the mainland by a causeway.

Scabarus - Crime lord and rival of Kruger, indicted for organised crimes on several occasions but never convicted.


Mechano


An industrial planet, where almost every inch of the planet's surface is covered by roads, factories, foundries and refineries, Mechano, also known as Wayland, is ruled by a Syndicate of 25 members elected from the industrial leaders of the planet. The head of the Syndicate, the Syndic, is in turn elected from among these members, for 5-yearly terms.

- Notable persons and organisations

Cyril Kornbluth - The current Syndic who is seeking re-election.

Frederik Pohl - A prominent member of the Syndicate, Pohl is expected to be contesting in the upcoming election.

Cryolon




Two centuries ago, the technologically-advanced planet of Cryolon was struck by a mysterious plague that had no known cure. To deal with the large number of dying citizens, the planet developed its cryogenic technology, hoping to revive its people once a cure was found. No cure was ever found, but over the centuries the Cryolans continued to improve their cryogenic technology, and it has become a religion on the planet and its leading export.


Wotan V



A gas giant in the Wotan system, Wotan V is orbited by a StarMart, a fueling station on the Catalia Run.

Boromite



A barren planetoid, Boromite once housed an outpost of the United Confederation Navy. After the formation of the Neutral Zone, the outpose was abandoned.

Spensonia


The arid planet of Spensonia is rumoured to be a sanctuary for pirates, although several expeditions by various systems have failed to locate the fabled city of pirates.

Anchura


One of the few habitable planets in the sector known as the Dead Zone, Anchura's main export is the blunana, a staple diet of many systems. It recently joined The Order after a near-bloodless coup.

- Notable persons and organisations

President Tru'hiyo - After escaping the planet, President Tru-hiyo now lives in exile at the Galactic Core Point.

WynGate Casino



On of the many orbiting casinos owned by Wyn Group, the WynGate started operating in orbit around Hircep-2, a Serran planet. However, with Hircep-2 joining The Order recently, the fate of the casino is uncertain.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Labour Day Giveaway

It's been a while since I have given something away on this blog, but due to some errors in the course of making purchases for my Kings of War project, I now have some redundant stuff on my hands which I hope to give a good home to.

The first is a unit of Black Hat Miniatures Dwarf Crossbows, complete with command figures. I ordered a pack of these way back when, but due to an incomplete address it could not be delivered. I ordered a second time, and this time it came, but without the command figures. I painted them up and called it a day.

Then some time later I ordered some War Haggises for my Night Goblin army, and an eagle-eyed employees at Black Hat noticed that the name and address matched that of the undelivered dwarves and sent them along, so now I have an extra unit. So if you are building or planning to build a dwarf army and would like an extra unit, do let me know in the comments sections below. Hopefully you like these figures enough to order more from Black Hat.

You get one command unit...

and 17 of crossbowmen

The second item is a set of D&G Pearl Purple & Gold 36 x D6 Dice Set. I ordered a set of Blue & Gold dice and a set of Green & Gold dice for my human and goblin respectively, but The Dice Shop Online sent me the purple set instead of the green set. I informed them of the mistake, and they sent me the green set, no questions asked. True Story.

Anyway, I am giving away this set of dice, so if you want them, do leave a comment and I will include you in the draw.

Once again, if you want either of these items, do leave a comment stating which item you want, and I will draw a recipient on Labour Day. This is not a first-come, first-serve offer.

The offers are free: once I let you know you have been drawn, do let me have your email and mailing address and I will mail it off to you. You don't even have to pay for the postage; I am hoping that by sharing these product I will help the two companies gain some new business.

Good luck.