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Friday, December 23, 2011

Traveller [Mongoose] Dynasty Walkthrough part IV

Commodore Winston J.D. Breckingsbridge
Hero of kappa Marfik
Savior of Saiph

Commodore Breckingsbridge was responsible for extracting the remaining Confederation fleet from the Marfik Salient and delivering a major blow to the Imperial Fertod Navy in its attempt to capture the Confederation capitol on Saiph.  The Imperial Fertod Navy was so utterly crippled that not only were hostilities with the Confederation ended, it could no longer enforce the Emperor's will.  Within 5 years the Fertod Empire crumpled, breaking into numerous small polities.

A product of the Saiph Naval College, Commodore Breckingsbridge attained flag rank on his merits and experience unlike many of his superiors within the Confederation Navy, whom attained their flag through political connections.  Destined to never attain the rank of Admiral, the Commodore developed a cadre of like minded officers to operate his task force of fast cruisers.  When the Imperials threatened to finalize the destruction of the ineptly led Confederation fleet that had be exposed in the salient around Marfik, Commodore Breckingsbridge coordinated the rearguard action that allowed the remnants of the fleet to escape to Saiph for its final stand against the Empire.

The Confederation council promptly dismissed the remaining senior flag officers that held their positions on political connections and gave Breckingsbridge overall command.  With little time to prepare for the final Imperial assault, Breckingsbridge and his staff devised a strategy of using privateers and support vessels as decoys and bait in an attempt to require the Imperial fleet to spread its fleet around to handle the potential threats.  There were many heroes as Breckingsbridge's adhoc raiders were able to distract the Imperial fleet allowing the main Confederation fleet to defeat in detail the Imperials forces as they attempted to contain the Confederation to Saiph for the final assault.

After the final battle in the outer zone of the Saiph system and the subsequent collapse of the Fertod Empire, the Confederation, always a fractious collection of self-interested polities, started to splinter into its original form of separate but associated planets.  The remnants of the Confederation fleet flocked to Breckingsbridge and with the help of his command staff, they formed the dominant fleet in the region, the Knights of Saiph.

The first 100 years of Knights' reign have seen the fleet continue to grow and spread its influence.  With the breakup of the Fertod Empire and the Confederation, war is commonplace and it is big business.  Things were going better than planned and the Knights continued to improve their abilities.  When colonists from outside the region, the Knights assistance with the initial colony and protection from locals looking to take advantage of the fledgling colony led to a public relations dream, made even better when the colonists shared some of their newer technologies with the Knights.

The Knights have over the years shown their political adroitness by avoiding being embroiled in the intrigues that continually hamper the region.  Even when many government contracts were coming up empty, the Knights avoided potential losses to its coffers by remaining flexible and taking advantage of the many commercial contracts that became available.

In recent years the Knights have made a concerted effort to recruit professional soldiers in an effort to bolster the dynasty's defenses.  This has sapped some of the dynasty's available wealth, but the results with improved fleet capabilities and better security within its territory indicate the wealth was spent well.


Traveller [Mongoose] Dynasty Walkthrough part III


Now that we have our initial derived statistics for our Dynasty, its time for us to make a few decisions for the improvement of our Dynasty. First we get to chose three Characteristics we wish to improve and roll 2d6 plus said Characteristic's DM against each chosen Characteristic's current value. If we roll higher than the current value, the value is increased by 1; if a natural 2 or 12 is rolled, the value decreases by 1 or increases by 1 respectively. As indicated below, the Knights of Saiph failed all three of its rolls, but did not lose any values.

Next we have the option to deduct one point from a trait and apply it to another trait.  You may do this equal to the Cleverness DM + 1.  The Knights choose just to increase its Territorial Defence at the expense of its Fleet value.

Aptitude training follows, allowing the player to attempt to train up to five skills.  However, you do not recieve any Characteristic DMs to assist in this training.  The die roll is modified by the current Aptitude (Skill value) with untrained skill providing a -2 DM.  As with the Characteristic practice, the Knights failed to improve any Aptitudes.

The final step before delving into the dynasty's early history is the calculation of its Values.  These values represent the available resources for task resolution.  If any of these values are reduced to 0 at the beginning of a generation phase, the dynasty  has collapsed.

Name: Knights of Saiph

Archetype: Military Charter

Power Base: Starship/Flotilla

Management Asset: Command Staff



Subtotals Characteristic
practice
Trait
Management
Aptitude Training Final Value adjustment Initial History adjustments Dynasty Starting Characteristics, Traits, Aptitudes & Values
Characteristics













Cleverness 12 +2 fail







12 +2
Greed 11 +1









11 +1
Loyalty 12 +2









12 +2
Militarism 12 +2









12 +2
Popularity 10 +1 fail







10 +1
Scheming 11 +1 fail







11 +1
Tenacity 12 +2









12 +2
Tradition 13 +2









13 +2
















Traits













Culture 3







1 4
Fiscal Defence 3







1 4
Fleet 9

-1



1 9
Technology 5







1 6
Territorial Defence 2

1



1 4
















Aptitudes













Acquisition x



fail

1 0
Bureaucracy x









x
Conquest 2









2
Economics 0









0
Entertain x









x
Expression x



fail



x
Hostility x









x
Illicit 0









0
Intel 3









3
Maintenance 1









1
Politics 0









0
Posturing 0









0
Propaganda x









x
Public Relations x



fail



x
Recruit 1









1
Research 0



fail



0
Sabotage x









x
Security 0



fail



0
Tactical 3









3
Tutelage x









x
















Values













Morale







16

16
Populace







19 -1 18
Wealth







16 -1 15

The Knights of Saiph decided to take 5 rolls on the history/background table. The choice of 3, 4 or 5 rolls must be made prior to any dice are rolled.  I rolled the following:

  • 35 - War is commonplace and war is big business [-1 populace, +1 culture, +1 fiscal defence]
  • 63 - Things couldn't go better [+1 acquisition]
  • 34 - Historic event #8 - Colonists from distant place setting up a colony in dynasty's territory with dynasty's help - roll public relations [pass - +1 technology] 
  • 41 - Government contracts come up empty but commercial ones are booming - roll politics [pass]
  • 51 - Professional soldiers being recruited to bolster defence [-1 wealth, +1 fleet, +1 territorial defence]

Traveller [Mongoose] Dynasty walkthrough part II

Now that we have bought our initial Characteristics, we now move on to fleshing out the rest of its statistics.


Name: Knights of Saiph
Archetype: Military Charter
Power Base: Starship/Flotilla
Management Asset: Command Staff




Power Base
Archetype
Boons, Hinders & 1st Gen Bonuses
Subtotals
Characteristics










Cleverness
12 +2






12 +2
Greed
11 +1






11 +1
Loyalty
12 +2






12 +2
Militarism
12 +2






12 +2
Popularity
10 +1






10 +1
Scheming
12 +2




-1
11 +1
Tenacity
12 +2






12 +2
Tradition
12 +2




1
13 +2












Traits










Culture




3


3
Fiscal Defence




3


3
Fleet


2
5
2
9
Technology


1
3
1
5
Territorial Defence


-2
4


2












Aptitudes










Acquisition




x


x
Bureaucracy




x


x
Conquest


1
1


2
Economics


1
x


0
Entertain




x


x
Expression




x


x
Hostility




x


x
Illicit




0


0
Intel


2
1


3
Maintenance


1
0


1
Politics




0


0
Posturing


1
x


0
Propaganda




x


x
Public Relations




x


x
Recruit




1


1
Research


1
x


0
Sabotage




x


x
Security




0


0
Tactical


1
2


3
Tutelage




x


x












Values










Morale










Populace










Wealth













The first column represents the Characteristics we purchased in the first step. The next column are the bonuses we received for having a power base of Starship/Flotilla.  Since the Dynasty qualifies for the Military Charter Archetype, the next column contains the starting (unmodified) values for the Military Charter.  The following column has the bonuses (both positive and negative) received due to boons, hinders and the first generation bonuses.  The final column represents the almost starting values for the Dynasty.

Two last steps remain:  initial generation training and the history of the first 100 years.  The first step allows the player to attempt to improve a few attributes through a combination of rolls and swapping.  The final step of dynasty creation has the player rolling 3, 4 or 5 times (player's choice) on a archetype specific history table which provides good and bad results that help flavor the dynasty.

Traveller [Mongoose] Dynasty Walkthrough part I

I recently picked up Mongoose Traveller Supplement 12 Dynasty
which was on sale (still on sale?) over at DriveThruRPG for $14.99. Not quite a re-write of Pocket Empires, and quite a bit abstract, which gathering from a few reviews has put off a number players. I like the concept and have been playing around with creating my own dynasty.

 I going to document the creation of my first dynasty and in following entries, I'll document its progress over the generations.

 My first Dynasty will be a Military Charter, a dynasty which I plan will become a dominate force within its region and maybe create the foundations for an empire. I decided to use the build method as opposed to the standard (random) method because the standard kept leading to initial values less than 0 which technically indicate that the dynasty has failed. So I started backwards in the creation process and chose some of my build values first in order to determine my available pool for initial Characteristics.


Initial Build Points [BPs]

100
BPs
Management Assets Command Staff
0
BPs
1st Generation Bonuses Noble Armada
-12
BPs
Dynasty Boons & Hinders Gun Runner Gambles
-5
BPs


War Hero
10
BPs
Remainder

93
BPs







Characteristics Cleverness
-12
BPs


Greed
-11
BPs


Loyalty
-12
BPs


Militarism
-12
BPs


Popularity
-10
BPs


Scheming
-12
BPs


Tenacity
-12
BPs


Tradition
-12
BPs
Remainder

0
BPs


  • Cleverness represents the Dynasty's ability to understand and avoid problems before they can become too great for the Dynasty to handle.
  • Greed represents the Dynasty's ability (or need) for funds to maintain itself over the generations.
  • Loyalty represents the Dynasty's ability to keep it members as a cohesive force and protects against subversive threats to it populace.
  • Militarism represents the Dynasty's ability to wage conflict, both offensively and defensively and is an abstraction for its prowess, resources and willingness to use arms.
  • Popularity represents the Dynasty's position within the community.
  • Scheming represents the Dynasty's ability to plan both legal and illegal activities to further its goals.
  • Tenacity represents the Dynasty's ability to survive hardships and the transition of power between generations.
  • Tradition represents the Dynasty's ability to pass on the ideals, teachings and history to succeeding generations.


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

I'm not terribly surprised...

I Am A: Lawful Neutral Human Ranger/Wizard (3rd/2nd Level)
 
 
Ability Scores:
 
Strength-11
 
Dexterity-13
 
Constitution-12
 
Intelligence-16
 
Wisdom-16
 
Charisma-13
 
 
Alignment:
Lawful Neutral A lawful neutral character acts as law, tradition, or a personal code directs him. Order and organization are paramount to him. He may believe in personal order and live by a code or standard, or he may believe in order for all and favor a strong, organized government. Lawful neutral is the best alignment you can be because it means you are reliable and honorable without being a zealot. However, lawful neutral can be a dangerous alignment when it seeks to eliminate all freedom, choice, and diversity in society.
 
 
Race:
Humans are the most adaptable of the common races. Short generations and a penchant for migration and conquest have made them physically diverse as well. Humans are often unorthodox in their dress, sporting unusual hairstyles, fanciful clothes, tattoos, and the like.
 
 
Primary Class:
Rangers are skilled stalkers and hunters who make their home in the woods. Their martial skill is nearly the equal of the fighter, but they lack the latter's dedication to the craft of fighting. Instead, the ranger focuses his skills and training on a specific enemy a type of creature he bears a vengeful grudge against and hunts above all others. Rangers often accept the role of protector, aiding those who live in or travel through the woods. His skills allow him to move quietly and stick to the shadows, especially in natural settings, and he also has special knowledge of certain types of creatures. Finally, an experienced ranger has such a tie to nature that he can actually draw on natural power to cast divine spells, much as a druid does, and like a druid he is often accompanied by animal companions. A ranger's Wisdom score should be high, as this determines the maximum spell level that he can cast.
 
 
Secondary Class:
Wizards are arcane spellcasters who depend on intensive study to create their magic. To wizards, magic is not a talent but a difficult, rewarding art. When they are prepared for battle, wizards can use their spells to devastating effect. When caught by surprise, they are vulnerable. The wizard's strength is her spells, everything else is secondary. She learns new spells as she experiments and grows in experience, and she can also learn them from other wizards. In addition, over time a wizard learns to manipulate her spells so they go farther, work better, or are improved in some other way. A wizard can call a familiar- a small, magical, animal companion that serves her. With a high Intelligence, wizards are capable of casting very high levels of spells.
 
 
 
It should be noted that my LN and LG scores were identical, as well as my Ranger and Wizard scores. I blame James over at the Underdark Gazatte for ruining my productivity today.

Monday, October 24, 2011

I owe someone a book review, but I'm busy and lazy....

Someone sent me a copy of their book of short stories and asked for a review.  I've been reading it during my commute, but I've been busy and a bit lazy lately and haven't gotten around to writing a review of it yet.  My goal is to start writing it this week and posting it by the weekend.

The good thing about the busy-ness I've been experiencing is that some of it is due to gaming.  My new group has about a half dozen sessions complete and we all seem to be having fun.  I'll have to write up some of the funnier incidents and share them with you.

BTW - Newbie DM is giving away a DMG2 and Monster Manual2 and all you have to do is leave a post on his site and send a couple of tweets, so go take a chance for some free loot.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Do you ever have that feeling....

....that you are no longer treading water, but are actually starting to sink.  Yeah, me too.  I need to become financially-independent.

Friday, September 9, 2011

You know you are starting to get old when....

.... while making dinner, you lose the ability to use your left thumb without tremendous pain and at the subsequent doctor visit are informed that you have gout.

I come out of the patient room and tell my wife that the doctor said it is probably gout and she looks at me quizzically and says, "Gout, that's an old man disease."  Thanks dear, way to make someone approaching his 43rd birthday feel better.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Brothers Barbarian

Another web series, found here.

Funny and goofy.  It seems that D&D-ish films need to be truly awful or extremely silly.  I wonder why no one has been able to create something that isn't to either extreme.

Monday, August 29, 2011

I did survive....

... both the earthquake and the hurricane. Yep, I was shakened on Tuesday down in DC during the earthquake and stirred Saturday night/Sunday morning by Hurricane Irene, but the family came out okay. 39 hours on a generator and no significant damage. Took the day off today to recover, cleanup and help my parents who were without power much longer than I was even though they are not quite a mile away.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Musical atmosphere - The Yoshida Brothers

The first one, Kodo (Inside the Sun remix) is my favorite so far.

This one is intersting as well, Rising

A little slower in tempo, My Heart Holds


Monday, August 15, 2011

4E Homebrew Sandbox - Initial Map draft


This is my initial hack at a starting map for a sandbox campaign I'm getting ready to run.  The basic premise is that humans have been hidden on an island for 300 years or so and have just found their way back to mainland.  Due to population pressures there are many taking the month long journey for land and adventure.

Notable areas so far:

  • Hergig - founded 20 years ago
  • Military encampment by northern lake - secrets jealously guarded
  • Lachenbad - farthermost settlement up the Hool River; home to hot springs; of much interest to sages from the Hochschule in Blauwestone
  • Nueva Remas - a wretched hive of scum and villainy; pirates and scoundrels

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sci-fi inspiration - Part II

TAS travel guides tend to neglect to include a description of most lowports' seedier districts.  Courtesy of Coolvibe.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Sci-fi inspiration - Part I

When I was younger and first started to read sci-fi, before I new which authors I would later prefer, I would chose my book by the art on the cover.  I don't tend to do that anymore, but I still love to look at sci-fi art and use it for inspiration for the sci-fi worlds I imagine.  Found here at Coolvibe.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Another case of Gamer ADD?

Greg over at Dark Horse Game Design was kind enough to offer an invite for Google+, something I've been dying to sign up for.  I'm hoping that this will be come a useful tool for game networking, but ......

Of course I'm not a neophyte with computers, but sometimes I do miss the DOS prompt.

Update - It is official; I'm a dumb ass when it comes to understanding how social media works.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Shadowfell Gloomwrought

The Shadowfell Gloomwrought setting was one of my purchases during my spree at the going-out-of-business Borders the past week.  I perused it further a bit last night and was reminded of the 1990 Realm of Terror Ravenloft box set that TSR put out.  I can't say I'm overly impressed yet, but I'll wait to pass judgement until I've further digested the material.  I can say I do like most of the artwork though.


Monday, August 8, 2011

Looking for a few players to fill out new game group.

As the post title states, I'm looking for a few more players to add to my newly forming game group.  The group will meet at my home; I've got room for 5 or 6 players, plus myself.

Currently I'm looking to start a 4E game.  I've DM'd older versions of D&D and other games, so I'm confident that this will go well.

In the future, I envision that we'll have multiple DMs and play other games as well.  If you are a regular here you know my interests include Traveller, WFRP, Battletech and Modern/Spy games.  And lets not forget board games and wargames.

We'll start with a weekend day, maybe 4 or 5 hours and possible add weeknights if there is interest or time.  Feel free to drop me a line a aka.john.foster @ gmail DOT com to discuss or leave a comment.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Going back for seconds

I decided to raid the Columbia Borders to see if they had any Essentials products, especially the Dungeon Master's Kit, and I hit the jackpot.  Whereas the Annapolis Borders had been picked almost to the point where a Gelatinous Cube wouldn't find much of a meal, the Columbia store had tons of stuff.  Not only the other Essentials, but about 30 of the splat books, plus a number of other RPG products, mostly WFRP 3E.

So I picked up the Dungeon Master's Kit, The Wilderness tile set, The Shadowfell box set, DN1 & DN2 (dungeon tiles) and the Forgotten Realms hardcover.

So my two trips to Borders looking for bargains netted me around $275 worth of D&D materials all for around $185.  I would have gone to the FLGS, but I'm glad I decided to bargain shop first.  I'll go there when I use the remaining bit from my windfall for the missing Battletech core rulebook and maybe a few minis.

Friday, August 5, 2011

I've finally taken the plunge to 4E

It's official, I've finally bought some 4E materials.  I swung by Borders the other night and picked up the Rules Compendium, Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms, Heroes of the Fallen Lands, Monster Vault and Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale.



I'll probably be de-listed by the Old Skool blogs, even though I still like to game that way.  But I've played it now a few times over the last year and a half and it isn't as bad as some make it out to be.  I'd rather play 4E than not be able to find anyone to play an older edition.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

An unexpected windfall!

But I need your help.

I work for a small, but national, non-profit in DC, that deals with public health.  In response to some extra work from the CDC this past fall, we've been swamped with work.  As the finance guy and the only member of the management team with any business acumen, I've been hard pressed as well.

The hard work has paid off, and we've found ourselves in the enviable position of adding a substantial amount to our reserve fund.  The CEO has decided to award everyone with a $250 gift card for the extra effort they displayed.

So why do I need your help?  Because this is my bonus!  And I plan on spending it on my gaming habit.  There isn't much left for my gaming allowance after my wife and daughter get their whack at our disposable income, so this one is all mine.  So fire away with suggestions please.

Some of the things I'm considering:
  • 4E DM Kit (none of my 4E is non-electronic)
  • Warhammer Fantasy Orc/Goblin Army accessories (but I've not finished assembling/painting what I already have)
  • a 40K army
  • Munchkin
  • materials to make a gaming table

Thursday, July 14, 2011

A bleg - Updated

I remember reading a book in the late 80s or early 90s about a warrior who had a wizard make him a magic sword, but the type of ring used wasn't the proper metal.  Therefore the magic sword had a slight drawback.  If I remember correctly, the warrior would die when he killed his 100 person with the sword, so he kept it behind his bar and wouldn't use it unless he had to.

Does anyone remember this book?  I want to say it was The Brass Ring or something of the vein, but I truly can't remember.

Update - Thanks to Lord Gwydion from What a horrible night to have a curse (which is a great old-school Scooby Doo reference for all you kids out there), we have identified the book as The Misenchanted Sword.  With a little GoogleFu I also found the author's website for the book here, where among other things, you can read the first chapter for free.  With the wife out and about today, I'll ask her to swing by my favorite used book store, or if she can't I'll swing by there tomorrow and see if I can find a copy.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Online Pendragon campaign

A gaming friend of mine who I've run an intro Pendragon game for and I will be putting together an online Pendragon campaign.  We'll probably be using Skype for voice and a web-based chat room for text and dice and Google Docs for maps and other materials.  Once I get it setup (which will be mid-August after my audit is done) I'll post a campaign journal here.

If you would be interested in participating, drop me an email. 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Heretic!!!!

If I was widely read, I'd be inviting the trolls to ravage me for my heretic thoughts.  I don't get to read novels as much as I used to due to the volume of stuff I read to keep up with my job as a corporate controller.  So I generally am reluctant to pick up a writer that I am unfamiliar with.  But having re-read every Niven, Pournelle, Feist, Asimov, Clarke, and other regulars I could get my hand on, I decided to branch out.  Part of the reasons was the new used bookstore my wife found.

So earlier this year, I heard reference both online and with my new gaming group about Glen Cook's The Black Company and I found the trilogy Chronicles of the Black Company at said bookstore for $4.  I  breezed through all 700+ pages in about two weeks, reading during my commute and in the evenings when I had time.

On Wednesday, I had run the wife to the local library and stumbled across Greg Bear's Halo:Cryptum.  I've not read any of the Halo fiction and despite playing Halo 2 & 3 on XBox, I'm not terribly familiar with the background.  Two days later I was done, very pleased with the writing and the story.  Unfortunately, Bear has only penned one of the Halo books, so I'm going to have to look for his other stuff.

Here though is where I'm going to brand myself a heretic.  At Chicago O'Hare, on my way from my annual board retreat to meet up with the family in Orlando for the start of our vacation, I decided to pick up George R.R. Martin's A Game of Thrones.  I've heard so much about this book.  I've seen the RPG and may even have a copy of it.  I know its on HBO or Showtime or one of the premium channels.  So, I decided to take the plunge and I regret doing so.  Its terrible.  I've made it 85 pages and where there are a few cool things and concepts in the first 85 pages, my mind felt like it was in a block of ice while reading it.  I tried to pick this book up over a 7 day vacation and found no joy in the book.  When the protagonist's youngest son so predictable died on page 85, I just couldn't be bothered to pick it up again.

Friday, July 8, 2011

3 Muskeeters reboot!

See the trailer here.  Looks pretty good and exicting, with a slight steampunk aire.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Open letter to current and aspiring game designers - Stop it!


It isn't that I am not apprecative of the effort and talents of all of you, but its becoming a pain in the ass to see new rulesets rolling out weekly.  I'm not interested in new rules, really, I'm not.  I want new settings.  I want new settings and maps and geomorphs and NPCs.  Pick a system, whether it is free or not, and develop your product.  Pick two or three and modify accordingly.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Microsoft - Problems and Solutions

I had my XBox 360 account hacked about two months ago.  I had been up late on Saturday night and early Sunday morning was checking my email and notice confirmations about purchases I supposedly made after I turned off the Xbox.  I called my credit card company and they were extremely helpful.  However, getting in touch with Microsoft was not easy and the effort to resolve the situation was more than I bargained for.  But in the end, Microsoft came through and did more than the right thing.

When I finally got hold of someone at XBox, I was told that my account was to be suspended for 5 to 10 days while they investigate the breach of my account.  Okay, no problem, I can survive without going online for a week or two.  So after about 10 days, I still hadn't heard anything, so I gave Xbox another call.  Guess what, they sent the case to a country that didn't support English!

So the investigation had to be started all over again.  So 10 days later, still no communication from XBox and another call to the customer service line.  This time I'm given the run around by the rep and excuses about how busy they, etc., etc.  So I wait another week or so and the Friday before Memorial Day I get an email from Microsoft cancelling my account.  What the Hell?!?!?

So during my lunch break I get Xbox back on the line to bitch.  Well, they had resolved it and I should be getting an email with a new code for my account shortly.  And the code for my account was for 12 months extending my current year 5 months.  So yeah, I lost two months of online time (and for me that is about the only thing I do on it) and got the two months back plus 3 more.

So the lesson here is that customer service reps suck where ever you go, but sometimes companies don't need to be hit with the cluebat to compensate customers because the reps suck.

Summertime slowdown

Not that I've been a paragon of posting frequently, but a warning to everyone that posting will probably become more erratic for the summer.  Why you ask.  You did ask that, right?  Well, summer is busy in the Foster household.  The little one is of school starting next week, our annual trip to Florida this year starts with me flying to Chicago for a board meeting then catching up with everyone else in Orlando (they'll take the auto train from Richmond), and then the fun really starts as my fiscal year ends June 30th and I need to be prepared for the auditors by the middle of August.

I'll still try to get some gaming in, but writing about it probably won't happen.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Campaign issues

I hooked up with a gaming group and have been meeting mostly weekly now for about two months.  We're playing an intrique/political game in a campaign setting designed by both the GM and players (not me, I arrived shortly after, but before the campaign started).  It is different, but I am very interested in playing it, but we've had some troubles getting going.  Part of it is that its a new campaign, and part of it is adding a new guy to a new campaign, and part of it is life interfering with a few members ability to participate, but a large part was the game system.

We were using FantasyCraft.  I don't have anything against FantasyCraft, and I love SpyCraft (not that I've ever had the chance to play), but its D&D 3.75E framework doesn't really incorporate what we were trying to do.  So we made a switch to Houses of the Blooded.  It was a little on the fly, from the gamers standpoint, but I think we all agreed to a mini-reboot of the game using the system.  However disaster struck.

Due to many factors, mostly human, we ended up killing everyone in the party in two hours without any combat.  I've been thinking about this for a few days and I still am not sure how to explain what I'm feeling.  I feel that if I point out what went wrong, people will become defensive, thinking that I am finger pointing when I'm not.

Being the new guy makes me feel like I shouldn't say anything.  But I want to have fun and I want everyone else's fun to increase as well. 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

4-day weekend-W00t!

I'm moving back into my office after getting new furniture - goodbye government surplus desk and filing cabinets, circa 1950.  And I'm taking Friday and Monday off from work so I can, drum roll please, work at home!  We had a mini-tornado tear through our yard one night in the early winter and I'll be spending some time this weekend removing the last bit of debris, trying to fix the shed and prepping the inflatable pool for summer.  But before you feel sorry for my Staycation! Work-holiday, I will be making it to the new Games Workshop Battle Bunker in Bowie MD on Saturday. 

I'm also leaving my laptop at work over the long weekend so the IT tech can come in and upgrade the office computer, so I'll probably won't get back online until Tuesday.  Unless Microsoft gets their lame-ass act together and gets my XBox 360 account back up.  But that is a story for later.......

Monday, May 9, 2011

Yes Please! I'll take 20.

I found this over at Concept Tanks.  I know its steampunk (I've never played, but I still find the concept pretty cool), but I would love to use something like this in Battletech as well.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Cube

Higgipedia, over at Gaming All Over The Place has an interesting post about using a 6-parsec cube as a sandbox environment for a Traveller campaign.  The premise is that an area of space is opened to exploration/exploitation via a wormhole and that after this area is populated, the wormhole collapses, leaving the area isolated from outside contact.  This may be the piece I needed to help formulate MTU.

Status

I'm still here; I just haven't had time to do much blogging.  I've been involved with a FantasyCraft court intrigue game (I'm still a little meh about it, but the guys in the group are cool so I'm giving it a go), I finished the Black Company Trilogy (pretty darn good, IMHO; maybe I can get my lazy ass to write a review), and of course real life is a pain in the you-know-what.  So more stuff is on the way, now that I've had some more time to think about MTU (my traveller universe).

Monday, March 14, 2011

I'm still standing

I'm still here, just busy.  Even though I no longer am employed to prepare corporate taxes, I still get busy during tax season.  Firstly, because the Wife works for a CPA and her life gets hectic, making the rest of the household's life hectic.  Secondly, because I still need to be there for family members with their business and personal taxes.

Add to that the beginning of girls lacrosse and the demands on the coach to go to training, trying to remember how to line the playing fields (lacrosse has to have the most bizzare field markings of all sports) and getting 3&4 grade girls to pay attention.

To top it off, the Wife and I have been saving (including gift cards from the In-Laws) for a new kitchen floor.  A couple of weeks ago, the Wife informed me that it is time to put in the new floor and that since we have a trip to Atlantic City for her birthday and the following weekend we will be taking our girls LAX team to the opening tourney, we only had this weekend just past to put in the new floor.

One trip to the hardwood store later to verify (and buy, but the Wife forgot the gift cards), I find out that we are also replacing the counter-top.  Halfway through putting in the floor early Saturday afternoon, I find out that we will also repaint the kitchen since we have everything pulled out.  I don't know how WE survived the weekend!  Thankfully, the full was a snap, and I didn't screw up my calculations for cutting the counter top.  Two more cuts tonight and some gluing and I should be ready to put the kitchen plumbing back together.  It was worth it though, the kitchen looks great.

The funniest thing though for the entire weekend?  Over the course of two days, I used four different saws and made over 50 cuts.  What did I end up slicing my finger with?  My tape measure!!