This Blog 2019, Goals and Grommets

Inspired by the 2019 goals post over at Charles's Dragons Never Forget Blog, I figured I would do the same thing. 2018 right around ...

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Testing my explorers game..

The following took me an hour and a half to generate..
I still have a ton of work to do, but I think I have a good start.
So what did I learn?

  • Keeping track of hours is not easy when you are running and playing alone. 
    • The game taking 2 points of food per company member per day is just easier than saying eat every  12 hours. 
    • on the other side one hour per action taken by  company members is easy to track and works for me. (AkA examining the statues or hunting voices in the swamp.)
  • Setting up a company takes about 5 minutes. This is good ....but......
    • The wagon needs more options
    • Characters need more skill options.
    • I have not written weapons or armor at all yet.
  • I need to raise the travel times.
  • With out a Gm there is not much to dig into. I had little reason to stop ad make exploration rolls other than trying to find the source of the noises in the swamp, and  examining the  statues. With a Gm there would be more to do.
  • The party found a big horn sheep , I never bothered to roll it's stats Because I never engaged it.
    • that saves a roll and is an argument for the two roll encounter system.
  • Weather isn't perfect but it works.
  • I need MORE of pretty much everything.
    • I haven't even tacked unnatural features .. or intelligent encounters yet and those are huge. (yes I winged the statues)
  • the die mechanic is simple but weak... I may need to revisit the whole thing. It wouldn't be hard to rewrite but I want all the other tools to be done first.
  • I want the GM to be able to spend the  danger rank in a hex like points to put things on the  company. this system is not written yet. and while it's simple it will totally change the Gm'ed game vs the non-Gm'ed experience. (A good thing IMHO)
  • It's pretty obvious to me the  company has an ancient society in ruins on their hands...the statues the old road, if I were the GM I would push that.
  • Again I need to write so much MORE of everything..

The first level company:
resolve 15 / Wounds 3
Survival: 4
Combat: 6
Exploration: 4
knowledge: 4

resolve 13 / Wounds 3
Survival: 6
Combat: 4
Exploration: 4
knowledge: 4

resolve 15 / Wounds 3
Survival: 4
Combat: 4
Exploration: 4
knowledge: 6

resolve 16 / Wounds 3
Survival: 4
Combat: 6
Exploration: 4
knowledge: 4

resolve 15 / Wounds 3
Survival: 4
Combat: 6
Exploration: 6
knowledge: 4

The starting wagon: 2 mules.
Food  started with 55. /  25 remaining.
Wagon repair kit x2
First aid kits  x10
water proof clothing
A canoe
Machetes 3 uses / 2

The journey so far.

map so far.
  • Hex 001
  • Woods
  • Elevation: 2
  • Complexity: 4
  • Danger: 4

  • Hex 002
  • Swamp
  • Elevation: 0
  • Complexity: 5 /4 with the cutting tools at hour 19
  • Danger: 4

  • Hex 003
  • Scrub
  • elevation 1
  • complexity 3
  • Danger 5

  • Hex 004
  • Scrub
  • Elevation 2
  • complexity 4
  • Danger 4

Journey log:

Day one:
We embarked with our wagon, plenty of food and equipment.
The lands around us are an intimidatingly dense forest with hills covered in deep brush.
The weather is fair and dry, hardly a cloud in the sky.
The beginning of our travels are uneventful, moving through the forest being slow going with our mules and wagon.

On the 7th hour we could feel the ground getting wet, and sodden. The land around us descended into a tangled swamp.

On the 8th hour of travel. We detected the sounds of a nearby camp. Voices in the near distance.
Sven ventured out to find the source of the voices, but the thick swamp stymied him at every turn. He could get no closer and soon the noises moved away. We can only assume this was a smaller company of scouts from our own troop.

Hour nine we made camp, and slept.

6 hours latter we pulled up camp and embarked on tackling the thick swamp before us.
The search for the voices cost us some time, so we decided to break out the machetes in an effort to hack our way through the thick undergrowth.

On the 21’s hour we encountered a bighorn sheep bedded down on a dry hump in the swamp. We surprised the best which just sat and snorted at us angrily. We still have plenty of food so there is no need to hunt such a beast as of yet. It's comforting to know large game of this type exists in the area.

Day 2:
Still in the swamp.
We stopped to eat, and chat over the past day. Were all a bit tired of this swamp but we must take time to eat.
It has turned overcast and moving on might be wise, a storm in a swamp is nothing we want to deal with.

Hour 4. We finally have climbed out of the swamp and into a rather open scrub area.
Hour 8: We have encountered several tall faceless statues erected in the middle of this open scrub. They are heavily weathered and my or may not have been human.

Hour 9: Peter takes an hour to examine the statues. He determines that these statues were once depicted holding weapons though weathering has long ago scoured away most of the details. He seems to think that they may have been some kind of warning or border marker.

As it is it’s beginning to get dark we take 2 hours to make camp and eat. Then 6 hours of talk and rest in the shadows of the mysterious statues.

Day 2: Hour 17 we begin moving again. The day is staying overcast and calm. Our thinly wooded scrub has become covered in an ever thickening blanket of thick thorny bushes and brambles.

Hour 19 of day 2, A heavy rain beings to fall. The whole company is glad we brought along the water-proof gear.

Hour 20 we stop to eat, in the rain…

Hour 24 We have stumbled a crossed an old road bed, the ancient flag stones cracked and damaged.
Narin took an hour to search the old road for tracks, but the rain had washed any signs away.

Day 3

Hour 2 the infernal rain finally dies.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Death of G+, A year in the life: Why come back to this?

I took a year (11 months) off from blogging. Anything I posted in 2018 were just unfinished articles I found floating around on my hard drive.

Great. I think I needed the break. I was getting pretty disillusioned with the whole online R.P.G. scene. Google had, and has changed their algorithms so that even the more successful blogs were having some trouble drawing traffic like they had in the past. My actual human viewer count went from small to nonexistent overnight. Which was a bit of a gut punch. Secondly our live gaming group just had a straight up busy year, so there was less gaming going on at the table. I'm one of those people who is far more creative when I can share or use what I'm working on. Otherwise I loose interest.

So, How do I find my self typing on the old blog?

Google announced that they are finally killing G+. Apparently by August 2019 the service will be, as they say"sunseted." Sunseted being a made up nice way of saying "slowly killed." I guess announcing that G+ will be asphyxiated by August 2019 wouldn't be as politically correct.

What the G+ situation has to do with this blog, (haphazardly enough also hosted for free on a google service.)

My relationship with G+ has gotten complicated.
The recent arguments on the OSR pages are a great example of why I started giving  less than a shit about what goes on there. For what it's worth I have never called my self an "OSR" blogger, and no one has ever told me I was doing the things that would make me one. I am happy to sit on the side lines, eat popcorn and watch the folks on both sides of their many arguments tear their tiny kingdom apart before G+ goes dark. I like playing old RPG's, not arguing over who owns / controls the social landscape around them. That's all I'll write on that subject.

Still even as I distanced myself from social media via un-following many pages and people (including twitter peeps I  brutally  un-followed.) during 2018 G+ was still my main outlet to read about other people's and announce my own game projects. Without it I'm not sure how I will connect to other bloggers, or get the word about anything I'm working on.
Right now I'm listening to a live chat on discord, (Tenkar's Tavern Sunday RPG Breakfast Club, Nov 25th 2018) and the hosts are talking about getting the word out about things they are selling / working on. I have know for a long time that I'm never going to have any real reach or any actual "success" as it is normally measured. I'm not going to make money at writing games or anything like that. I don't have it in me to go to tons of cons or run around to stores selling my wares. It's just not me. I'm intrinsically a lazy ass homebody. Professional level products, profit, and exposure  is forever beyond my reach. That's not how I measure success for myself.

My only measure of success it the ability to share ideas with friends and have some fun talking about them. A two hour conversation with Jens about die mechanics is more rewarding to me than making a few bucks.

My only thought is to start up the blog again, and network with as many bloggers as I can. In that vein I plan on working on my projects here as I always have, and also trying to  link up with as many other bloggers as I can. Understand because this is me, I'm not on hundred percent sure how this is going to happen or how well it will work out.

Perhaps.... Just possibly ... the death of G+ will bring us back to the original promise of RPG blogging.  Bloggers might be able to concentrate on our content rather than the latest arguments. Exchange ideas based on what other bloggers can be seen writing. I'm not sure. I just know the weight of G+'s various accretions being lifted might be as much of a blessing as a curse. At the very least it has reinvigorated me. Turning a negative into a positive as they say.

So I have a pretty extensive slush file of things I have been  (and honestly haven't been) working on:

I mean there's more in those sub-folders...I need help... send help!

As the reader can see. I have things to talk about. I have stuff I'm working on.. I might as well talk about it. I might as well work on it. (what ever "it" is this  week)

I have had some changes in my work life. Which means among other things I have to maintain hobbies in my outside life which are completely distracting and completely non-work related. That sounds like a no brainer to most people but for me I'm a bit obsessive. I'll think about  work all fucking night and day if I don't distract myself.  Right now having an active hobby life is going to be a positive mental health factor as much as a creative outlet.

That's it for today.

Take away these links as a happy Thanks-Giving-Christmas-blogging gift.

Disoriented Ranger's Blogg Jens writes longer and better than I do on every RPG related subject....
My link on Mewe My new social media. I'm not overly impressed with it so far, but hey whatever. I like the chat function.
Phase Abandon on  Drive through RPG. It's free .. I want to add to it.... Argh.
Inoreader is how I've been following blogs. My opinion about it is still up in the air, but I like it so far.

Ty for reading.