Wednesday, January 24, 2024
Wednesday, October 04, 2023
Oops, it's been a little while since I posted here - which wouldn't matter much if I hadn't had experienced an outburst of productivity.
To begin with, Steve Jackson Games published my second "Fantasy Folk" creation - the short and sweet (well, not too unsavoury) GURPS Fantasy Folk: Kobolds. Yes, the mild annoying little guys. Except that GURPS Banestorm kobolds aren't that small, when you look at them, and I'm also covering more folkloric kobolds, which came in at 245 GURPS points. Then there's the question of the myth's possible roots in Greek myth... the project was slightly more fun than I might have expected.
And then, just a little later, I released a couple more books that collect characters who I originally created for volume 2 of Pyramid magazine (i.e. the Web-based version). Pyramid Characters: Fantasy Foes and Friends has characters for a variety of fantasy settings, while Pyramid Characters: Crosstimers and Other Oddities mostly features characters for the GURPS Infinite Worlds milieu, plus a couple of others who sort-of fit with that concept.
(Both of those latter two are currently only available from DriveThruRPG, as Warehouse23 seems to be having some technical issues with third party sales at the moment.)
Friday, June 30, 2023
After a bit of a lag (for, as I understand it, administrative reasons), my latest effort is now out (in PDF form) from Steve Jackson games: GURPS Fantasy Folk: Goblins and Hobgoblins. It's a generalised sort of guide to playing and GM'ing the creatures known by those names in RPGs - and not just genre fantasy games. (I'm rather pleased with the goblin template for Monster Hunters.) It walks the line between "very generic RPG fantasy" and "what words actually originally meant", and I hope avoids falling off.
Wednesday, April 19, 2023
Oh yes, this blog still exists.
Well. I have a new (small) roleplaying book out - self-published, even. (Though some people would doubtless quibble with "new", because some people are born to quibble.) Transhuman Space: The Pyramid Personnel brings back half-a-dozen NPCs for the Transhuman Space setting which I originally wrote up as short articles in Pyramid magazine volume 2 (the Web page version), but which haven't been available to new readers since that went offline. So I negotiated a deal with Steve Jackson Games, put together a 30-page compilation, and am now selling this. It's available as a PDF from Warehouse 23, and as the same PDF or in print on demand form from DriveThruRPG:
(One note; some people seem to be under the impression that DriveThru do all their print-on-demand printing in the USA, with ensuing exorbitant shipping costs to Europe. This is out of date; they now have printing options on this side of the Atlantic.)
Sunday, April 03, 2022
Just for the record, in case anyone is interested; I'm dropping my LiveJournal account (because reasons), and will probably delete it entirely in a few days. It was always echoed here, anyway, and this will remain as much of a blog as I've got.
Monday, November 08, 2021
The Discworld Roleplaying Game went out of print a while back, but the thing about modern technology is that "Out of Print" no longer means quite what it used to — at least sometimes. The book is now available through Amazon's Print on Demand service — just follow that link.
(I've not seen a copy of this version; it's paperback, of course, and I'll be interested to see what the quality is like.)
Tuesday, October 26, 2021
Hmm.Spoilers follow, of course.
I walked out of the cinema moderately impressed, but then I often do. I’m a sucker for cinematic techniques, and anyway I’d seen it on IMAX and had just spent two hours being physically assaulted by Hans Zimmer’s score (which is definitely great). But the refrigerator logic hit before I’d even reached the refrigerator.
It looked impressive. The sets and scenery were epically vast. It reminded me of that historical theory about the end-state of all civilisations being stasis and architectural giganticism; every building and spaceship was ten times bigger than it needed to be. But then, equally, the movie itself could be taken as an art film which had succumbed to giganticism.
And dear god, I wish that Villeneuve could find a lighting cameraman or set designer with the guts to to tell him that murky fog isn’t big and isn’t clever. The murk was appropriate in Arrival, but neither Blade Runner nor this needed so much of it.
And there was certainly a lot squeezed out from the book. Sometimes that’s necessary, but the blink-and-you’ll-miss-it moment when Thufir Hawat’s eyeballs turn white as he does some mental arithmetic suggest that mentats were supposed to be in there, but had ended up on the cutting room floor. Couldn’t they just have cut half an hour or so of Timothy Chalamet looking slightly angsty? Losing the idea of mentats just turned Hawat into an all-purpose bureaucrat, and also made Yueh’s attempted revenge and Leto’s death scene less interesting and plot-useful — because by killing the Harkonnen mentat, you set up Hawat’s move into his position for the second half of the plot (and grant Yueh some posthumous revenge).
(Losing the stuff about Yueh’s psychological conditioning also deprived the Harkonnens of some Evil Schemer points, and makes the Atreides look a bit incompetent in having defences that can be brought down by one undetected traitor. But then, “unbreakable conditioning” that could be broken by the baddies pulling the age old “we have your wife, bwah-hah-hah” tactic never made sense to me, so whatever.)
A lot of what felt off to me may be patched in part two. We’ll see. But that would make part two a very different film to part one, so I suspect we’ll mostly get murky fog and Timothy Chalamet looking vaguely angsty. Or maybe there’ll be a five hour director’s cut with all the Herbertian politics back in.
Thursday, July 08, 2021
The latest Steve Jackson Games GURPS Kickstarter project again offers the possibility of acquiring a PDF of my creation -- in this case, GURPS Infinite Worlds: The Osiris Worlds, a brief collection of alternate history settings centered on alternate versions of Ancient Egypt. Actually, it offers the definite possibility of getting twelve GURPS mini-supplements for just $3, if you act in the next few days.
Sunday, August 30, 2020
my very small collection of personal works on DriveThrough RPG; specifically, A Dozen Castle Images is mostly what it says - twelve full-colour pictures of castles (processed photographs, to be precise), large enough to show to players (especially perhaps on-screen while playing by video) and each with a brief note including some ideas for game events and plots.
Thursday, July 02, 2020
Steve Jackson Games are currently running a Kickstarter promotion in which a bunch of short PDFs are made available to anyone who backs it -- exactly how many depends on how much the Kickstarter raises, but it's currently nine, and will probably rise to twelve by the time things are done. And one of the nine is my "Broken Clockwork World" steampunk setting.
And the good news is that one can get this material for just $3. (There are also larger backer levels which add other GURPS material in PDF form, making this a good deal for anyone who wants to buy a bunch of such stuff.) So if anyone is interested in any of this, the cost really is quite negligible.
The URL for this is https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/warehouse23/steve-jackson-games-gurps-2020-pdf-challenge .
Wednesday, June 17, 2020
So now, well, there's so scenarios to work on that should in due course see use at conventions (yes, initially online conventions, I had noticed the state of the world). Then it's over to the project for Iron Crown...