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Raven “World of Synnibarr” McCracken left homeless by fire

I just found this on rpg.net and other role playing game forums and I thought I would share it:


For those who haven’t heard, Raven c.s. McCracken, author of The World of Synnibarr, recently lost everything to a house fire for the second time in his life.

The third edition of his game is up for sale here, if anyone is interested in helping him out that way.

Also, he’ll be in #rpgnet chat for a Q&A tomorrow, 5/21, at 8 p.m. CDT: http://tinyurl.com/rpgnetchat

Either way, he could use your thoughts, prayers, and support.


If you enjoy Raven’s games please consider buying something you don’t have or buy something for a friend to help him out.


– The Game Guy

posted by The Game Guy in Game Discussions and have No Comments

[Kickstarter] City of the Dead

There is a Kickstarter for a Zombie game called City of the Dead.   The kickstarter can be found here


What is City of the Dead?
As you might suspect from the name, City of the Dead (or “COTD,” if you please) is a zombie apocalypse roleplaying game. Some of you love zombies and apocalypses, others love only one part of that equation. That’s okay! The game actually caters to all kinds of players. COTD is set in The City—a plug-and-play setting that provides detailed but nonspecific locations. You can take pieces of The City or the whole thing, drop it anywhere in the world, add the desired local flavor and be good to go. It’s generic, but that isn’t to say it’s vaguely defined. On the contrary, locations like City Hall or the City Zoo, or the Penitentiary, are all given lots of detailed descriptions and rules for things you might see there, how they could serve as a temporary or even permanent shelter in The City, etc.

You’re a Survivor. It’s what you do. You were strong or smart or maybe just lucky enough to survive the initial Plague. Now you band together with your fellow Survivors to form Communities or maybe just survive another night. The City is in chaos. Many more die every night, and rise up to join the undead. Society as you know it is collapsing. Are you going to eat each other when the going gets tough? Are you going to support one another to endure an environment too dangerous for any one person? While traditional zombie apocalypse tales paint humans as the greatest threat, they’re also your reason to survive. People help each other in disasters. Communities come together to pool resources, maybe rebuild a semblance of safety and order amid the zombie-infested city.

What is the rules system like?
With City of the Dead, we elected to create our own system. I wanted one that did the things I enjoy most for this kind of game. At its heart, the GAEA System uses 2D6 + modifiers versus scaling Target Numbers. Survivors have Attributes and Skills, which for humans range from 1-6. Most basic rolls use an Attribute + a Skill, although modifiers from environmental conditions, equipment, abilities, and so on may apply. Meeting or beating the TNs aren’t the end, though. The game uses margin of success (“MoS”) points for extra effects. If you roll well, you could spend MoS points on finishing a critical task faster, inflicting extra damage in combat, knocking a foe down, or even using less Salvage in a crafting task.

City of the Dead is all about building on this basis, so that things are simple to understand but offer depth and options to those who want it. For example, Skills have Specialties, which are additional abilities you unlock as the Skill increases. A Specialty might do something like subtract one from the MoS points needed for various success options, raise the effective level of the Skill even above 6, or open up new and unusual uses for the Skill.

Survivors aren’t just Skilled, though. Like Sailor Jupiter, they’re Talented! Each Skill has a group of related Talents that players can choose from to improve their characters. These often unlock useful new abilities or enhance existing ones. For example, one of the Criminal Talents, “Casing the Joint,” allows the character to study a Location (which often have their own traits that can be modified by players, like barricading the place!) and learn its traits. She can even learn (“Call it an educated guess!”) or strongly suspect hidden traits, such as likely alarm systems, where the real valuables or weak points might be, and so on. It even gives you a bonus to break in to that Location! That’s pretty cool, right? Another one, “Trigger Discipline,” enables you to use less Ammo when you’re putting down the undead—a handy skill to have in the post-apocalyptic world.

A wealth of Talents exist for each category, allowing you to customize your Survivor the way you want to.

Putting the “survival” in “Survival Horror”
At the most basic level, Survivors need Food, Water, and shelter in order to remain Survivors. The average Survivor needs 3 Food and 2 Water a day, or else they begin to suffer from deprivation. But there’s a lot more to survival than that, isn’t there? You need shelter from the elements (and the hungry dead). You need tools to help you survive. That’s where crafting and Salvage comes in.

Survivors build, repair, and jury-rig a variety of items. They do this with Salvage, which is used to build shelters and barricades, repair vehicles, improvise weapons, and much more. Salvage comes in several forms itself: General, Mechanical, Electronic, Wood. Each of the three non-General types corresponds to a given Craft subskill, while General can help make up some of the bulk Resources needed. For example, a Survivor searches an office for supplies. She might find a half-empty vending machine (2 Food), a full water cooler (2 Water), and lots of computer monitors, paper, plastic, and other office supplies (3 General Salvage, 2 Electronic, 1 Mechanical). If she wants to barricade the door, she could use General and Mechanical Salvage. If she wanted to jury-rig a display system with the monitors, she could use the Electronic Salvage along with General Salvage. For many projects, General Salvage can replace up to a certain amount of the required specific Salvage types, making it useful in bulk.

Ammo operates the same way. The game doesn’t track the minutiae of each individual shot fired, but rather uses Ammo of several varieties, such as Handgun, Rifle, and Shotgun. If players desire more detail, they can limit each type of Ammo by weapon size as they desire. By default, the game favors the ease of tracking Ammo—1 Ammo might represent a single shot (with Talents like Trigger Discipline), or it might represent several handgun rounds. Fully-automatic fire might eat up more than one Ammo in a given round, while something like a Shotgun uses Ammo more slowly (but takes more time to reload).

This approach allows players to add narrative detail and flavor to the game without bogging down in exacting detail. Narrators are encouraged to look up real-world brands (and perhaps make up some similar-sounding companies) if they want, but those who need to can distill the finding of Ammo to its essence: “You find several boxes of shotgun shells beneath the counter—worth about 5 Shotgun Ammo.”

Why check out your game if I don’t like zombies? What makes it different?
One thing it does well enough to stand out among its contemporaries is its focus on mental and social abilities, resources, and effects.

What does this mean? In many games, social skills and often intellectual ones are given vague guidelines, especially compared to combat and physical-based abilities. This works in those games, because they don’t necessarily need rigorous rules for the ability to socialize. City of the Dead places equal emphasis on these non-physical aspects, so that you can build any kind of Survivor and have her shine. Combat is dangerous, risking injury or infection. Physical prowess and fighting ability are useful, but not the only things that are important. Communities need smart and gifted people to thrive.

A skilled leader can keep groups of beleaguered Survivors sane and focused. She can direct them in combat or emergencies, can help restore their Willpower, provide them with bonuses to action, and more. Meanwhile, a brilliant scientist or crafty mechanic can engineer defensive systems, plans to modify locations and items, new means of procuring food, or accommodate an influx of new Survivors. Art and socialization help provide release from the constant tension of survival in The City.

Basically, in this game, all the things that make you feel human: good food, sleep, conversation, socializing, all of those literally help restore your Willpower. The will to survive is all about finding reasons to survive, right?

The basic system is very flexible. It’s usable in all manner of modern settings, like occult thrillers, action and espionage games, or other types of survival situations (like being stranded on an island full of murderous cultists). The rules work especially well for any sort of post-apocalyptic or survival tale.

The zombie creation system is flexible enough to create many different foes. File off those serial numbers and you can reskin the zombies as parasitic hive aliens, hideous demons, killer robots, twisted minions of elder gods, vampires, even ghosts and stranger things. Zombie Aspects even cover “Living” zombies, so you can make prehistoric monsters, shapechanging alien things, or even move from traditional undead zombies into fungus-possessed or rage-driven humans.

Plug-and-Play Setting
City of the Dead takes place in The City—a generic but exhaustively detailed plug-and-play setting. What does that mean? It means that the game includes detailed descriptions of important locations and all the accompanying rules. Yet The City as a whole, and each location within it, are kept nonspecific, so that you can drop them anywhere and add your own flavor. Maybe you want to simply reskin it as locations in your home town, adding local flavor and detail, while using the basic mechanics provided.

You can also take individual pieces as you wish: City Hall, Police Station, City General Hospital, and so on, and use them or change them as you will. Maybe you want to say that one is the site of a small Community struggling to survive. The rules make that easy and fun.

Maybe you don’t need the whole City for a given story. What if you don’t need a City Zoo, but you want to portray a bio-weapon manufacturing lab hidden beneath an unsuspecting city? You can take the zoo and re-skin it as a lab full of mutated monsters. Change the details and description of a given location to make it match your needs. The system details will work for whatever you want, and even if you want to change those, you can.

City of the Dead also provides a wealth of random generation tables to help provide inspiration or even a little unexpected drama. Want to see just what Resources remain in that ransacked home? Roll on the appropriate table, with options to modify by season, location, and more. City of the Dead is about providing options, a toolkit to create the kind of apocalyptic survival scenario YOU want to play.

What do you want to see?
So, I’d like to hear your thoughts, questions, comments, and unholy hungerings for the flesh of the living. This is my first created Kickstarter. I’m sure things will change, go wrong, etc., but we have to start somewhere. What kinds of things would you like to see? What are your questions? I plan in the near future to share the draft with backers who request it, and I’m happy to talk more about any aspect of the game. Note that things may change based on the last few playtests, but mostly I’m looking to improve production values, make the game available in hardcopy, and so on. I’m excited to bring this product to life and I do hope the Kickstarter goes well. Please tell me how I can help interest you in the game, or anything like that. If you’re not happy with the rewards, we can work on that! I’m happy to do everything I can to make this experience better for you.


Again the kickstarter can be found here   If you find it interesting please consider funding the project.


– The Game Guy

posted by The Game Guy in Site Info and News and have No Comments

[Kickstarter] Savage Thunderscape! by Shawn Carman

Here is a very cool kickstarter for a game using the Savage Worlds game system.  It is called Savage Thunderscape.   The Kickstarter can be found here


The world of post-apocalyptic, industrial fantasy and horror comes to Savage Worlds at last! Defend Aden against the Darkfall!

Welcome to Aden

The World of Aden is struggling for survival against a foe that seems invincible. Not so long ago, the world was in the throes of an industrial revolution, with the discovering of gunpowder and steam power giving rise to the incredible power of mechamagic, the union of magic and technology. Each passing year brought incredible new advancements, and war had been absent for so long that it was virtually forgotten. But ten years ago, the sun went black during an unexplained eclipse, and in that moment of darkness, every horror imaginable crawled from the shadows to prey upon the people of the Known Lands. This event became known as the Darkfall, and it changed the face of the world forever.

Ten years later, the world of Aden still fights for survival. The creatures created by the Darkfall, known as Nocturnals, have destroyed countless hundreds of settlements, tens of thousands of lives, and brought entire nations to ruin. Every day brings a sigh of relief that the world has survived, and every nightfall brings another threat that it may end. And yet, there is hope.

Those who fight against the Darkfall are not necessarily heroes, for there are many who seek to preserve Aden for their own purposes. Regardless, however, the common folk look upon them as leaders and inspiration, because the struggle for their survival is a desperate one. Foremost among the warriors who take the field against the evil plaguing the land are those who possess the power of mechamagic, either in the form of a mechamage, who commands a powerful golem to do his bidding, or a golemoid warrior, whose body has been modified to possess steam-powered weapons built right into their flesh. Others, including the technology-creating steamwright and the survivors of the divinatory Seer order, are only a few of those who hope to save Aden from an evil that no one yet understands.

In Thunderscape, your character can fight against the hordes of nocturnals spawned by the Darkfall in a desperate attempt to win back the vast stretches of wasteland lost over the course of years. Or you can defend the few remaining settlements from your enemies, both nocturnals and mortal. You can take up the banner of Urbana and forge new trade routes across the Known Lands, or you can fight against the oppressive regime of Lord Urbane in hopes of liberating the people from his brand of ‘necessary tyranny.’ You can plumb the depths of the Burning Coast in hopes of retrieving lost treasures, or search for the mysteries of the lost creators of Le’Ciel. Hunt giants in the deep jungles of the Misland Republics, or fight off necromantic incursions from the Gray Isles as part of Arasteen’s Radiant Order.

The possibilities are limitless!

“In my mind, Thunderscape: the World of Aden is one of the best campaign setting books released, and if I had anything bad to say about it, it would be that 224 pages left me wanting more…” – Jere M., DriveThruRPG

“This book is great! I wasn’t familiar with the history of the world of Aden until I picked this up, but I’m quite glad that Kyoudai Games got their hands on the rights. The book has some pretty amazing magi-tech related material: from people with cybernetic implants to airships and tanks, this book probably has what you are looking for.” – James Langley, Paizo.com

“I’m a big fan of mixing magic and technology. I love properties like He-Man, Thundercats and Flash Gordon so for a while I was on a huge lookout for products that would satisfy my need to run a few Magitech or Dungeon Punk campaigns. Thunderscape is the book that satisfied me in ways that other similar products didn’t.” – Malwing, Paizo.com 

What is Savage Thunderscape?

Savage Thunderscape is a complete campaign setting and mechanics sourcebook for the Savage Worlds role-playing game. It details the World of Aden, including eleven different races (including the standard human, elf, and dwarf that so many fantasy aficionados love), twelve unique nations, and countless different groups and organizations that are perfect for a party of enterprising adventurers to be a part of. Editing is still in progress, so we can’t give you an exact page count just yet, but the final product of Savage Thunderscape will be a full-color, 8.5’ by 11’ work with a high quality and density of artwork designed specifically for our setting.

When Kyoudai Games first brought Thunderscape back to tabletop gaming, we utilized the Pathfinder system. Since that time, though, the most frequent question we’ve been asked is whether or not we were going to create a Savage Worlds version. Our initial Kickstarter reached a stretch goal that would allow for a free conversion guide to Savage Worlds, but the writer we contracted to write 5,000 words ended up producing 50,000! Finally we admitted that it seems the universe wants this book to happen. And why shouldn’t it? Both are creations of Shane Hensley, after all.

The World of Aden was created and developed by Shane Hensley in the mid 1990s as the setting for two computer games, three novels, and two role-playing supplements. Many years later, Shane would go on to develop Savage Worlds with much the same emphasis on vibrant, exciting experiences for everyone involved. Uniting Thunderscape and Savage Worlds is a perfect opportunity to pay homage to the man’s vision while simultaneously spreading our deep and abiding love of the setting to more people. The members of Kyoudai Games have been playing RPGs set in Aden for literally two decades, using all manner of different systems. We’ve had the time of our lives, and we want to share that with you.


The Kickstarter can be found here   If you find this interesting then please consider funding it


– The Game Guy

posted by The Game Guy in Kickstarter Listings and have No Comments

[Kickstarter] No Thank You, Evil! a Game of Make-Believe for Families by Monte Cook Games

Today I am going to talk about a kickstarter for a game called No Thank You, Evil! by by Monte Cook Games.   One of the reasons I think this game is very cool is because it focuses on young gamers and families.   The thing I like the most about this is because it focuses on young gamers, its possible for young gamers to use this as a gateway to the hobby, thus helping to build up an aging hobby that seems to have more people leaving the hobby then coming in.  The  Kickstarter can be found here


About this project

Olivia is a Super Smart Princess who Experiments With Science. Rowan is a Cool Robot who Plays With Ooey Gooey Things. They just found out that their friend Wiffle has been captured by saw-toothed witches deep in DragonSnot Falls! They’re the only ones who can enter Storia and save Wiffle—how will they do it? It’s all up to them!

No Thank You, Evil! is tabletop game of creative make-believe, adventure, and storytelling. In No Thank You, Evil!, each player creates a character based on a couple of cool, descriptive, imagination-firing traits. The Guide (a special role often played by a parent or older sibling) presents a dilemma, and the players set off on an adventure of the imagination. Along the way they use their character’s special skills, companions, and equipment to overcome obstacles—perhaps fighting a slime monster, winning over the suspicious mayor, or beating a rabbit at a race.

Whereas conventional board games constrain players’ actions, No Thank You, Evil! sets kids’ imaginations free: Their options are limited only by what they can think up. Together, the players create a story as they work together to make their way through the adventure!

For the Little Kids, the Grown-ups, and Everyone in Between

Younger kids frustrate easily when a game is too complex for them to master. Older children quickly grow bored by games that are too simple or that strike them as below their level.

No Thank You, Evil! is great fun for kids as young as five years old. But it’s also great fun for the rest of family—adults included!—because the scalable rules adapt easily to the abilities of the player. A six-year-old might play, for example, a Princess. An eight-year-old might play a Super Smart Princess. A ten-year-old might create a Super Smart Princess who Experiments With Science. Each of these stages adds a level of sophistication to how the game is played—but all of these characters play around the same table in the same game. After a game or two with the grown-ups, a twelve-year-old might even run games for the other kids!

The gameplay rules are easy for novice or young players to grasp, but nuanced and flexible enough for older kids and grown-ups to enjoy just as much. Here’s a brief look at how the rules work:

Enter Storia: The Land Next Door

No Thank You, Evil! is set in Storia: The Land Next Door. It’s a world seen through children’s eyes, home to all the elements of kids’ imaginations: Dragons and dinosaurs, faeries and elves, race cars and robots, and all sorts of fanciful creatures. Players’ characters in No Thank You, Evil! are kids who have been specially chosen to help save Storia from evil. Accompanied by their companions and their handy I Gotchyer Back packs (living creatures that carry the characters’ cool stuff in their bellies), characters venture into Storia to save the day!

For more detailed info on the setting, game rules, and characters, visit the No Thank You, Evil! web site!


The Entire kickstarter again can be found here   If you think this is a worthwhile project please consider funding it

– The Game Guy

posted by Administrator in Kickstarter Listings and have No Comments

D20 Entertainment Deletes Their Kickstarter Account

There was a very interesting post on the RPG Runkle Plays Games blog discussing how D20 Entertainment deleted their kickstarter account.   This could be of considerable interest to people who have participated in one of D20 Entertainment’s kickstarter projects.  The full article can be found here


Last night I was speaking with Jolly Blackburn about the interview I recently did with him. And the topic of D20 entertainment came up. I had mentioned how I was glad to see how KODT and Kenzer Co has handled the backlash of D20 Entertainment’s kickstarter and how difficult the whole process must feel overall.  I mentioned as well I left this out of our interview because Jolly himself has been one the most vocal about D20 Entertainment being more active on their fourms as well as providing better service to their backers.

Now I am not a fan of Ken Whitmen and other than the KODT kickstarter I have not backed any of his projects. I also only Backed KODT for 1 dollar to support the Knights. My reasons were Ken’s past Kickstartes that he conducted as Ken Whitmen games.

Ken’s first two kickstarters as Ken Whitmen games were funded. The Dice O’Matic  and Knights Quest Family Card game.  These two projects brought in $12,309 dollars & 331 backers combine.  And the first look at what worried me about Ken and D20 Entertainment.  Knights Quest had several backers that seemingly never got their card game. Ken was insistent that everything had been shipped out to the backers but the problem was never fully resolved.  The second thing was that his Dice O’matic kickstarter was suspended. Mostly due to the fact that it already existed.  Take a LOOK the real irony here was Ken Touted that as the Dice O’Matic  Reached its stretch goals he would include a Plastic cover and 5 dice for the game. So if it had not made its stretch goals Ken had planed to not send the whole product to his backers. As you can see in the link above the Dice roller comes with both of these. So rightfully KS stepped in and suspended the funds for this Kick.

While this is going on D20 Entertainment comes on the KS scene with an Epic KS they Roll out KODT live action That funds in Feb 2014,  and shortly after that Spinward Traveller that funds in July 2014. Followed up at a regular pace with Castels & Crusades In Nov 2014.
These projects all are well received at first. Then as the months go by. .one by one they begin to break down in the communication from backers to creators.  On the comment sides there is a ton of complaining of Stretch goals and add-on’s not arriving or damaged. Almost entirely each time the comments are deflected with statements that your product has shipped or will ship soon or did you send us the right address contact us again.. over and over.  Ironically in the case of Castles and Crusades.. Ken just didn’t. The project completed and he said he sent out the surveys in a few weeks and never posted again on the comments. But D20 Entertainment kept blazing away with three more Kickstartes at the start of 2015.


Again if you would like to read the entire article please click here because it is interesting reading.


What do you think about the situation with D20 Entertainment and Ken Whitman?  Post a comment and discuss it

– The Game Guy

posted by The Game Guy in Game Discussions and have No Comments

[Kickstarter] Blood & Bone: A Low Fantasy RPG by by Arcana Games

Arcana Games has an low fantasy role playing game called Blood and Bone.  The Kickstarter can be found here:  https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/arcanagames/blood-and-bone-a-low-fantasy-rpg

Here is the information about the kickstarter:


Blood and Bone is a tabletop roleplaying game set in the dark, gritty, low fantasy world of Ossura. Its unique and expansive campaign setting and core rule system are inspired by the brutally realistic historical fantasy championed by writers such as Glenn Cook, Robin Hobb, and, of course, George R.R. Martin.

“The true horrors of humanity derive not from orcs and Dark Lords, but from ourselves” – George R.R. Martin

Like Game of Thrones, the world of Blood and Bone is governed not by cosmic forces of good and evil, but by the actions humans, driven by Machiavellian principals in a struggle for power. The world is morally complex, fueled by sexuality, political intrigue, and war.

“Family games and kids games are great… but this is not one of them. If you’re looking for a world of heroes, monsters — clean cut good versus evil — this game is not for you.”

Ossura, the Shard, is inhabited by a dozen complex human civilizations. There are no shallow reimaginings of the worn fantasy tropes (Elves, Dwarves, Orcs, etc). Nor are the races cheap facsimiles of historical civilizations from our own world. Each culture is unique to the world and setting of Blood and Bone…

A monarchy in name, the five provinces of Caros are controlled by rival generals and scheming high priests of the Order of Ash.

High priests of the Order are paradoxically corrupt, presiding over their theocratic domains with absolute authority and an insatiable hunger for gold and power.

To the cold and desolate north, soldiers of the King’s army fight to repel Inoruit raiders from the ragged shore. In the west, the army holds a weathered Mason fortress, the Iron Eye, border to Tarn. To the south, the ancient and sprawling city of Arx marks the end of a great trade road from Mercos.


The most populous region of the Shard, Mercos is comprised of dozens of small city states, most ruled by trade princes, and united under a common will to profit.

Famous for its rich iron and gold mines, Mercos trades with every region of the Shard. Mercish swords, Mercish mail, Mercish oil, and, above all else, Mercish coins can be seen in every city.

Wealthy traders and traveling merchants, the men of Mercos enjoy decadence — from elaborate shows in the arena, to grand bazzars’ overflowing fountains, to pleasure houses, packed with Thralls and concubines, and every earthly delight that gold may buy.


Although the largest region of the Shard, most of Abkhaz is hostile desert. The great desert is too vast and unforgiving to be controlled by a single ruler. Instead, it is home to hundreds of nomadic tribes.

Fittingly, the Abkhazi who call this land home are a resilient race. They are known throughout the Shard as fearsome warriors and mercenaries. For some such wandering bands, the line between mercenary and bandit can be thin. Some Abkhazi will ambush Mercish caravans and take captives only to ransom or sell as slaves.

Blooded in Abkhaz are common, but generally weak. The making of Risen is seen as a natural stage of one’s life and is desired by warriors, who strap katars to their wrists so as to fight even in to undeath.


For over three hundred years, the same king has presided over Tarn. He is seen as the face of The Reaper, their undying god. He is called The Old One, The King Eternal, and The Black King. The Blooded of Tarn are both the most prevalent and the most powerful. Risen are used as a workforce, in cold mines and fields.

The Tarnish army, too, is largely undead. Noble Houses rule much of Tarn, commanding peasants and Risen alike, loyal to the Black King.

Only a Blooded child may inherit a Noble House’s title. To consolidate royal power, the first male Blooded child, at the age of ten, is sent to join the army of the King Eternal. So too, at the age of ten, a Noble House’s first Blooded daughter is given to his royal court. Thus, Tarn remains.


Ruled by grizzled warlords, the Inoruit are a collection of scattered tribes clinging to a rocky cluster of northern islands. It is rare that a great warlord may unite them under one banner.

Precious few of the Inoruit are Blooded. Despite this, they are fearsome warriors, naturally larger and stronger than the other peoples of the Shard. Their contact with the mainland is largely limited to their seasonal raids of Caros and Tarn.

The few Blooded among the Inoruit are regarded as shamans. They use the Blood to replace their teeth with those of wolves or bears and to affix antlers and horns to their skulls.

“In D&D any cleric could just summon food and water at will, but the existence of people like that seem to have no impact on the pseudo medieval world. I love how your world is built around the Blood. it makes everything feel so much more real…”

The Blood

Each of the cultures of the world of Ossura is profoundly influenced by the existence of the Blooded, individuals possessing power over the forces of life and death.

What is Blood?

Blood is the powerful hereditary ability to manipulate the forces of life and death at will. It is innate, coming naturally to the Blooded, those born with its terrible gifts. Like any natural talent, ones’ level of skill is a composite of their inherent skill and years of careful practice.

While perhaps one in every hundred people is Blooded, many of them will be weak, lesser Blooded. Only a fraction of those will have genuine power, and a smaller fraction still can be said to have true mastery over their potent abilities.

At its extreme, a master of the Blood can live for centuries, their bodies woven with Blood, returning the dead to life at will and reducing their enemies to dust at a glance.

What can Blooded do? 

Blood is the power over life and death. It is exhausting to use and requires great skill and training to control. Used to destroy, it can wither flesh, rot wood, and rust metal.

Used to heal, it can cure infection, knit flesh and bone, and mend wounds.

The regenerative powers of the Blood may challenge even death itself. It can be used to create Risen — horrible, half-living men, reduced to primitive rotting husks.

It can also be used to truly return the recently dead to life. However, if this goes awry, it may create a Risen, or worse, a Thrall. Thralls, returned to life, are technically living, but they are empty, reduced to hollow, mindless, shadows of their former selves.

How does Blood shape the world?

Blood is a defining force in the world of Blood and Bone. Its inherent existence profoundly shapes each of the unique cultures of the world. It is a core pillar of almost all aspects of society, shaping the face of religions, economies, political regimes, and military forces.


Again the kcikstarter can be found here:  https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/arcanagames/blood-and-bone-a-low-fantasy-rpg   If this interests you consider funding it


– The Game Guy


posted by The Game Guy in Kickstarter Listings and have No Comments

Kickstarters- The Right way and The Wrong Way

Kickstarters have become the popular new way to fund game products lately but have been a real mix bag as far as results are concerned.   Some are really successful and work out perfectly and some have gone horribly wrong.

Gareth-Michael Skarka who is designing Far West is one of the people doing a kickstarter that ending up going very very wrong.   Far West was funded over two years ago and ever since then there have been delays and excuses.   People asked for refunds and he refused to give them and made more excuses.   This, of course is surprising considering Gareth-Michael Skarka has been in the gaming industry for many years now and is considered a professional game designer

When people asked questions about the project he would either make excuses or berate the person for daring to question him about the his commitment to the project.  Being rude to the people who funded the project and  who’s money he has and haven’t gotten anything in return isn’t a very smart tactic, and one that can backfire on you.  One could even question whether the project actually exists or whether he just ran away with the money, and I am sure this has crossed the minds of some of his backers

Giving him the benefit of the doubt I am sure the project does exists and he is just hopelessly behind.   And he did have legitimate medical issues but that doesn’t explain or forgive his arrogant responses to backers who have asked him questions about about the status of the project.  Someone who has been in the industry as long as he has should have learned customer serivce by now.

This lack of customer service and total lack of professionalism is defiantly not the way you want to run a kickstarter.   Hopefully one day people will get the product they paid for, but Gareth-Michael Skarka needs to learn some humility and stop being so arrogant, though the damage he has done with the Far West kickstarter might bring him more humility that he could ever imagine.

If you are doing a kickstarter the right way to do it is to have the writing done.  Sure there will be proofreading and improvements to be made but at least have the text done.  And at least play test the game once to make sure it’s serviceable.

Once you have the manuscript done and at least one play test under your belt then put up your kickstarter.   This will give you enough time to make more improvements, play test some more, get art and do layout.   So when the kickstarter is done and funded (hopefully!) you will only have a couple months work left to do before getting it out.   If you need a little more time then you explain the need for more time and the why and they more likely then not they will be understanding.

Communication is key, which was a problem that the Far West Kickstarter ran into way to often.  A Lack of communication

If you study the mistakes Gareth-Michael Skarka and others have made so you don’t make the same mistakes

– The Game Guy

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[Download of the Day] Downloads of the Day- The D6 Open Core Books

A few years ago, West End Game’s owner put the D6 system into the OGL allowing people to take the system and use it however they want.  If people want to create a setting and sell it as long as it has the OGL information they are welcome to do that.

So today, I am presenting all three of the documents, D6 Fantasy, D6 Adventure and D6 Space.   All open under the OGL thanks to Eric Gibson and West End Games


weg51011OGL- D6 Adventure


All three books are the same basic rules, with additions added on to help fit the system into the genre (such as templates).

Hope you enjoy.  If you use them feel free to post a comment and let me know what you use them for.  Tell me about your games!

– The Game Guy

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[Game Design Garage] Setting Design: Escape from the Planet of the Robot Monsters


Today I am going to do my first Game Design Garage Entry and instead of doing an entire game from scratch, I am going to start out by fleshing out a setting.   The Setting is from a 1980’s video game that went by the name:   Escape from the Planet of the Robot Monsters.

The Basic premise is simple:   Planet X is a synthetic industrial planetoid whose most notable feature is the research laboratory of the buxom and brainy Dr. Sarah Bellum. Evil aliens called Reptilons invade the planet, capture the good doctor, and force the rest of the humans to manufacture a robot army to take over the Earth.

In the video game itself there are two characters the players can play named Jake and Duke.   But of course for a role playing game setting we want to make it so that the players can be any type of character they wish.

The one thing I am going to do for this setting is make is system agnostic, meaning you can use it with any game system you wish.

So we know the basics, the Planet named Planet X is a synthetic industrial planetoid.   We also know it is headed by the buxom and brain Dr. Sarah Bellum and that aliens invaded the planet and captured the doctor.

Now for a video game that’s enough to go on and the who, what, and why’s don’t really matter.   But for a Role Playing Game things are a bit different.

We need to determine what the alien’s motivations are and why they took over the planet.   It could be because they need the manufacturing and slaves to create some kind of synthetic food that they eat.  Perhaps they are trying to build up their fleet of spacecraft to attack other galaxies.

For our purposes we will say they are using the manufacturing to build a fleet of spacecraft to attack other galaxies.   So now we know their motivation for taking over the planet.

Now we need to determine how the characters are involved.   There could be some kind of interplanetary police force that they are part of and they are dispatched to take care of the problem.    Or the player’s could be mercenaries who are hired to take on the alien menace and regain control of the factory planet.  For a big reward of course.

If I were running the setting I would have both options (and add others as well) giving the players a wide range of choices.

What do you think of the settings?  Is there anything you think I missed?  Post a comment and let me know.

– The Game Guy

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Traditional Role Playing Games and Story games are separate hobbies

Traditional Role Playing Games and Story Games are two separate hobbies.  Say that again with me, Traditional Role Playing Games and Story Games are two separate hobbies.   You may wonder why I said it twice and the answer is very simple, because many gamers out there just don’t understand this very simple, very accurate point.

It’s not that I find one much superior to the other, it’s just a simple fact that many gamers out there cannot grasp.

They are two separate hobbies because each type of game has it’s own function and each sets out to do something completely different then the other one..  So let’s repeat that first line one more time, Traditional Role Playing Games and Story Games are two separate hobbies.

The Traditional Role Playing Games function is for players to play a role (Hence the term Role in Role Playing).  The players create a character, they play that role, they roll some dice and have a good time.   But the story aspect of the game is an after effect, the players goal isn’t doing collaborative storytelling, the story is the result of the characters actions, the dice rolls made and the actions of the GM (as well as the other players).

Story Games are narrative games whose prime purpose (which has even been stated by the people who created the games themselves) is to allow narrative into the game so the players and the game master can do collaborative storytelling.   The story isn’t the after effect of everything else that happens like it is with traditional role playing games, it’s the primary function of Story Games.

The goals of Traditional Role Playing games and the goals of Story Games are completely different, thus they should be wholly separate hobbies.   Now this won’t happen because the number of people who play Story Games (Such as one of the many Forge Creations, any of the games from storygames.com or FATE) is very small and a separate storygames hobby would fail.

The Traditional Role Playing Game Hobby, as popular as it is is still very small.   Most game designers make little (if any) money from designing games, so a separate hobby like Story Games that is not even half the size of Traditional Role Playing Games just wouldn’t have a chance.

And the people behind Story Games know this and attach themselves to the Traditional Role Playing Hobby simply so that they can survive.

The problem is, now some gamers are confused and cannot separate the two separate but distinct types of games.  This causes gamers to mistakenly think that Traditional Games and Story Games are one and the same even though they clearly aren’t,  simply because of each games clear goals.   Now you have gamers thinking that D&D is about collaborative storytelling, instead of killing things and taking their stuff.

I have no doubt Gary Gygax is spinning in his grave right now because of this.

So repeat it after me:   Traditional Role Playing Games and Story Games are two separate hobbies

We can only hope that Story Games will lose their luster (and the games from The Forge and the like have started to fade) and the hobby can once again return to normal.

The Game Guy

posted by The Game Guy in Game Discussions and have Comments (4)