New SciFi RPG Campaign

We spent Saturday doing character generation. While it was frustrating for some, I think over all it was a good time, and we have an interesting set of characters to start the new campaign with! Can’t wait to get this one really rolling.

I’ve set up a campaign page and will be storing information there for the players as well as attaching any writing or finished information as I get it done.

Flintlocks in the Cypher System

pistolI am currently working on a Cypher System setting that will require flintlocks, muskets and the like. These weapons could easily just be tossed into the bucket with light and medium weapons, but in this setting (a dark gothic late fantasy setting) I wanted to give them a few extra rules to set them apart from the highly prevalent crossbows and bows that will be the normal ranged weapons of the peasantry.

Luckily the Cypher System’s highly hackable rules made this really simple.

First thing is what damage should the weapons do. I don’t think any firearm throwing a lead ball down range that can kill should be a light weapon. Looking at firearms in the Cypher System modern section I decided that all the flintlocks should be Heavy Weapons. Pistols will have a short range, and muskets will have a long range.

Next, these weapons were armor killers (historically they brought about the end of wearing armor) so they halve the amount of armor someone is wearing. Obviously if you used these rules in a modern game, this would need to change.

So with that much damage and armor piercing, everyone is going to want one, so I decided to balance this all out with some reload rules. I could have just called it one round to reload but where is the fun and danger in that? Instead, I decided on two rounds to reload, but a Speed check on the first round (of difficulty 4) could alleviate the need for a second round. If you become trained or specialized in that weapon it would also count toward the reload roll, and of course as usual you could spend effort.

Since this is a horror themed, dark fantasy game I thought the addition of a roll to reload quickly might give me great chances to intrude, while higher tier characters will be able to reload fairly quickly when they want to.

With that I think I’m done, bring on the dual pistol wielding witch hunters!

Rambling Thoughts on Subtle Cyphers

polyhedral-translucent-diceCypher games without a gear focus (or strange findable tech like Numenera) make cyphers a more interesting problem for the setting. In a previous post I talked about how well cyphers work for spy games, but what if you are after a more narrative, character focused game? How would you do cyphers for a game that doesn’t really focus on gear? Like a Horror games for instance?

This is where subtle cyphers come into play. There is a lot of handwaving required to shift from the idea of physical real object cyphers to subtle narrative style cyphers. If you take a step back though, they can just become another system just like any other arbitrary game system.

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Cypher System Genre: Spy Movies

mission_impossibleI was on a company trip the other day, and we rented Kingsmen to show on the bus. Thinking on the movie and the Cypher System (which was still on my mind from my read through the preorder PDF) I couldn’t shake the thought that this would be a great combination.

Spy movies can make some of the best cinema out there. From Mission: Impossible to Cover-Mockup-2015-04-08-Opt2cCover-Mockup-2015-04-08-Opt2cKingsmen to James Bond, these movies have lots of thrills, action, and great scenes of the hero having to talk his way into or out of some sticky situation. All of this makes great fodder for an RPG!

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GM Intrusions, Just Do It!

Numenera-for-postYes, I know “Just Do It!” is a slogan for a popular shoe brand, but I think it applies very well to GM Intrusions in the Cypher System. It was something I worried over a bit before my first Numenera game, but it was a needless worry.

The thing about GM Intrusions is that it helps you guide the story. The game was well into its third or fourth scene, had even already been through a fight, before I remembered that I had not even done one GM Intrusion yet. So I threw one in just to do it.
It was like a dam broke. My mind was lit with the ability to help guide the story despite the player’s need to always be perfect! Many systems give you disadvantages for this sort of thing, but if your players are like mine, they want to make characters without dramatic flaws. They want to win and not be tragic. So they take disadvantages that will impact them the least for the amount of points they give you.

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Numenera Campaign Starting

So to kick things off, we (the group I run my tabletop RPGs for) just finished up a 6 session arc of Shadowrun. While I LOVE the setting, I really hate the level of detail of the rules, and find myself getting WAY bogged down in setting up for games and just running them.

Did I mention I have 7 players. And myself. Dear god, how did I let that happen?

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TM and © 2015 Green Ronin Publishing

Anyways, while looking for what to run next I went through a couple of ideas. Savage Worlds is popular, but I’ve always found it a bit swingy. I did drool over the their apocalyptic deadlands reloaded future setting at my local FLGS the other day, but I digress. The last time I ran Savage Worlds, I tried writing my own world, and it did just didn’t last. Not sure if it was the system, or the world I created. Oh who am I kidding. It was likely just me.

So next I thought about Fantasy Age by Green Ronin. If it’s good enough for Wil Wheaton, who I am I to complain. Well, I hate deep level systems, classes, and large hit point pools, so I think I’ll let the Titansgravers have fun with it. Love the show by the way guys.

So finally I was digger around my twitter feed and came upon Cypher System news. I’ve followed Monte Cook for a long time, but wax and wane my Twitter usage. Just happened to hit it on a day where I was more susceptible than not to trying something out.

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Welcome All

This site was to be where my little indie company got started. Then a job change later, I shelved the dream of building an indie company, and went back to working on my first great hobby, tabletop RPGs. So I have repurposed the site for that purpose. I will be putting information about my campaigns here for my players, and maybe even blogging my thoughts about things RPG related, video game related, or what not.

All opinions (unless state otherwise) are my own, and in no way reflect my employer. Or my wife. Or my son for that matter. Leave them all out of this. 😉