Missing the review

Hi there readers…

The wife and I are working on a project in the house this weekend and it is going to be a very cool add. Much like our home made steampunk library and the desk she made me, my wife has awesome ideas that come out so bloody cool. So since this was one of those rare weeks when our mundane life jobs both got us paid at the same time we had to pickup the parts and get to work. That unfortunately is leaving me without enough time to really do a good post this week… and a few other things. And that may happen next week too, we shall see.

Hope everyone is having a blast out there in the world and I am sorry that this is not a better post.

Gimme the dice, I have to see if I can avoid wiring the puppy into the new outlets in the living room.

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Die Fighter, no, we are not backstabing the fighter… sheesh

Ok so last week I asked about posting other things that I have done. I got a couple of replies and have decided to dive in with Die Fighter.

If you are wondering about the pic, well that is the type of customizable dice that I originally created the game with. Not really required but it makes it a little easier in my opinion.

Let me jump straight into a copy of the rules so you can see more about what I mean.

Welcome to Die Fighter first edition

Die Fighter is (C) Copyright Tony Johnson 2013 2014

Permission is given to distribute freely person to person but not to be posted on the internet.

This is a game that is trying to pay tribute to the classic two d fighting games of yore. Classic Street Fighter, Street Fighter II, Fatal Fury, and so many others that many of us spent a lot of time and money on in the arcades back when such things were common.

 Tools :

To play this game you need a ball point pen and at least one of these little packets of blank dice.

dice

I would suggest picking these things up at a local gaming or hobby store as you can see if you pick them up at one of the Uncles Games stores they are only 3.99 for a package, but at Amazon online they are 7.19 plus shipping or more.

The game idea is simple really. You use the rules below to design a fighter by marking the stickers and applying them to the dice. And then you and another player (or if you make two sets up then you can play on your own), roll dice to fight and take down the health bar of the other fighter.

Designing a fighter can take a few minutes, running a fight can take seconds to a couple of minutes. Number of rounds and so on will be up to the players involved.

Rules :

Ok so the first bit of the rules is to explain why you need the multicolored dice.

Each color of die represents an area of attack and defense.

Red – Head and upper body

Yellow – Mid body

Green – Lower body

White – Ranged and charge attacks

Initially you select three dice of different colors. This will define your fighters fighting style. Samples of fighting styles would be like…

Grapplers – Red, Yellow, Green

Fire Ballers – Red, Yellow, White

Chargers – Yellow, Green, White

These are just quick ideas. You can some up with your own way to define just what you have come up with.

Now that you have your three dice, you get 50 Build Points, and 10 Health Levels

Ok so what do you do with three blank dice and some points. Well you build a full on fighting style to flesh out your fighter.

Build points can be spent on the following –

(S) Strike – 2 Build Points – 1 Health Level of damage (this can be called a kick, a punch, flashing someone topless, whatever you want)

(B) Block – 2 Build Points – Stops one Health Level of damage against that location

(P) Power Blow – 5 Build points – Does 2 Health Levels of damage +1 Health Level for each other die you have doing damage (so if you have rolled a P, a B, and an S, your S does one damage, and your P does 3)

Strike, Block and Power Blow affect the other fighter on the same color. So you compare Red dice, Yellow dice, Green, and White.

(D) Dodge – 7 Build Points – Dodge avoids ALL damage your opponent has rolled that round.

(  ) Flub – If you have only one blank space on a die this is worth zero Build Points, however if you have two or more on a single die then you get +1 Build Point. This only counts once per die. This is like messing up your joystick command and not getting a strike or a block in.

So you can fill in the stickers that come with the dice with those letters and there you go.

Now you can also do the following items to make more advanced fighters.

Add an additional die of a color you do not have yet – 6 Build Points

Add an additional die of a color you already have – 10 Build Points

Add additional Health Levels – 3 Build Points per Health Level

 

A basic die might look like this

(S) on three sides, (B) on three sides – 12 Build Points

(P) on one side, (B) on two sides, (S) on two sides, (  ) on one side – 13 Build Points

(D) on one side, (P) on one side, (S) on two sides, (B) on two sides – 20 Build Points

 

If I use those three samples to create a fighter I have used 45 build points, with the five left I could add an additional heath level, and put another (B) or (S) on the 13 point die, and push it right up to 50 points. Do not worry if you have a couple of points left over at the end. At least not at first. Get the flow down and have fun with making a fighter or three, and seeing how their style and your luck at tossing the dice go. There are a lot of other combinations past the samples above, and the dice you choose may not be the same as the ones your opponent is using, so you may want to think about the style of fighter you want to create.

Last rules – Roll dice at the same time as your opponent. Compare the dice. Subtract unblocked, or un-dodged damage from Health Levels. If needed roll again until one fighter is out of Health Levels, or both are (and that means a draw).

Closing :

Now then some folks will ask about things like Tag Matches, Taunts, or from Street Fighter Alpha the infamous two on one match, or super boss fights. These things will be brought up in the second edition of the rules. This first edition is just the basics to get things started. There is more coming. 🙂

Addendum :

Dice sets for classic fighting game characters, at least in my opinion.

Guile – (Y) (G) (W)

Ken / Ryu – (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Zangief – (R) (Y) (G) – maybe an additional (Y)

Terry Bogard – (Y) (G) (W) early on then became (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Andy Bogard – (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Mai Shirinui – (R) (Y) (W)

Joe Higashi – (R) (G) (W)

 

So that is the first edition rules of Die Fighter. I have made add ons for Boss Fights, Tag Matches, and Two on One fights. While also adding things like Throw and Taunt moves. It makes for a quick playable game and it allows players to build what they want. During play-test I have had two players set up exactly the same dice, but describe their fighters completely differently. I thought it was completely awesome and could not wait to see more from them. Oh and yes I do have a couple of fighters sitting around here in my dice box. So if you know me in person please feel free to drop a challenge.

So any way, give it some play and see what you think.

Next week I will likely do a review if I can keep the puppy distracted long enough. I have a few I have been waiting to do.

So gimme the dice… I need to see if I can deliver a power move to the puppy for bath time or can pull off a dodge. (actually I did that last night and just wanted to tie this post into a Facebook post I made HAH!)

Play hard, and peace out.

 

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Crazy $#!t I have created

So I seem to be getting a lot of hits in regards to my Random Deity Generator and I have been thinking about posting a few other things I have created to see if folks enjoy them.

Die Fighter – A dice based combat system that I created to replicate 1/1 2d fighting games. But it can have other uses.

Random Bureaucracy Generator – Originally for Paranoia but if you are ever playing a game where you have to go up against big business or any government on their terms it could be useful.

Minion Uprising Chart – Many games have given players the option to have minions, hire legions, or inspire nations. However they get a little iffy on what it takes to not just have them leave your service but totally revolt and try and destroy you. This chart fixes that option.

Sanity Converter – In Call of Cthulhu learning about the mythos costs sanity. Learning magic costs sanity. Surviving physically in tact costs sanity. This handy dandy little table can show you if that would be a cost worth paying. This started out as a joke but when I had a character start at 30 sanity in a game and go up and not down on the first couple of adventures its nature changed.

Goblin Invention Name Generator – This is still very much a work in progress as I keep finding new words that would just work too well in it. I started this when playing Iron Kingdoms as a setting for D20. I have carried it over to other games as well after.

So yeah a really short post. Trying to get the puppy to understand it does not get its way all the time and that requires frequent cleanup.

So gimme the dice, I have to figure out what he destroyed this time.

And if any of these ideas spark an interest give a note/reply and lets see what I publish next.

Peace and play hard folks.

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The power of a good GM

So I am rather certain that every gamer has run into good and bad GM’s. The person running a game has so much influence on a game being fun or not, that they cannot help but have a lasting impact on their players.

I have a few things I do to try and exercise that power in a way that helps my players get into the game that I think other should do… but that is just my opinion.

Those things are –

  • Brief your players about the world they are entering. Write ups, art, music, whatever might help them understand the world they are going to be in. Make sure they know about special rules and things that go outside of the usual for the game. House conditions and things you want to enforce. And do that all wayyyyyyyyy before the game starts. It keeps the players from feeling ambushed by your personal set up and gives them time to embrace it even before character generation.
  • Make character generation collaborative with the story you want to run. That way the players know how they will fit in with the other players. And the GM will know what kind of group is on the field and be able to modify story and encounters to get the most of the game session for themselves and for the players enjoyment.
  • Take some time to get to know the players. It does not have to be a lot of time but just enough to get a feel for them. If you can get a basic idea of the players you can have a better insight to what they would want to do in a game and if you have a group of “Arrrgh I need to blow $#!t” up players you wont be trying to force them into a series of “Gads that story was epic” games.
  • Remember there are no rails. Your game has already gone off the rails. Trying to force players into anything story wise wont help. Giving them options that lead to the story will. Being able to just run with whatever crazy $#!t they come up with would be perfect. The players are not in your head and do not know what is coming or how epic and cool you think it is. Accept that they have their own ideas and goals and you could come up with something even more epic.
  • Enforce role play every time you can. My trick is to call out “Live Table” so that players know that everything they say is what their characters say. Every action they describe are what their characters are doing. Don’t to it all the time. Give players time and space to meta game if they need it. Encourage them to step away from the table to do thinking and planning or just do some solid BSing. And remember in the end, actual role play is not for everyone, so not everyone you play with will be into it or want to handle it.

Why do I bring this up? Because quite frankly I am tired of reading posts in other social media about players who suck because they wont get into the story. Or posts about GM’s who have all sorts of hidden rules and regulations in their games that they never tell you about until it can screw you over. And even posts about GM’s who drive players relentlessly into a story that they have no interest in but would rather explore or put time into some tasty sub plots.

And before anyone gets all high and mighty and says that this is not just a GM’s responsibility, trust me I know. My rant about players needing to pull their heads out and work with the GM and the other players is longer and more detailed and quite frankly would be much more cathartic but I have a puppy that seems to be a bit of an energy vampire and needs attention like you would not believe. Unless you have run a game for 7 year olds.

So gimme the dice, I need to make a roll and the random home destruction table to see what has been blown up in the 20 minutes it took me to write this.

Peace out, game on, and have fun folks. 🙂

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Sorry for the delay

Hey there readers… its been a while…

I have to say there is a good reason.

Puppy.

Yeah my wife and I have added a puppy to the house hold. His name is Binx and he is a Plott Hound / Lab mix. With a beautiful brindle coat and a ton of energy and need for attention.  Only ten weeks old so he is still very nippy, needs to play a lot and every time I have tried to take a few notes to put together a new post it has been …

Ok so the new topic…

Hey Binx ok lets get you outside and play

New topic is…

Ok puppers lets go

New topic…

Oh what did you get into pup, do you need a bath

New…

Snooooooooore….

Yeah those 3am wakeups are not too bad when you usually get up at 4 to get ready for work, but tying them to the 11pm wake up, and the 1am wake up… well… yeahhhhhh.

The wife tells me this is great training for when we have a child of our own… but damn its exhausting. The little guy is a loving ball of fluff though and I cannot do anything but love him for it.

So over the next few months (I hope it takes less time but I wont count on it) posts will be sporadic and may be a mix of gaming and gushing about the puppy.

Now gimme the dice, I gotta put em up so Binx wont chew on em.

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Review #27 IronClaw (G)

Iron_claw cover

Those who are familiar with the game will notice I am using the second edition omnibus cover. To be honest the current copy I have in my collection is digital and I cannot remember which version it is. I know there have been a few changes since first edition and that can make some interesting comparisons but I am going to try and stick to what I have on hand for my review. The other reason I used this image is because the original cover was a little too cheesecake for my tastes.

Ok so you can see from the image (if you dont know the game) that Iron Claw is an anthropomorphic game. That does not make it a Furry game. The Furry Fandom may enjoy the game and feel it meets with what they enjoy, but there is a big difference between Anthropomorphic and Furry. I want that out of the way because I know too many folks who confuse the two.

IronClaw is Sanguine Productions… original… game I think. I believe that they picked up other anthropomorphic games and then converted them to their unique game engine later. IronClaw has a very solid not quite mid-evil Europe/Renaissance setting with an edge of fantasy to it. They supplemented the game with JadeClaw using the same rules to add an Asian part of the world in which they could expand their combat system to include more martial arts and also expanded their magic system to add more types of magic.

Now all of that seems rather brief I know. However there is an element of this game that really drew my attention, and still does. They also put it into a sci-fi setting called Myriad Song that takes things outside of being in an Anthropomorphic setting. That element is their skills and stats system.

To introduce the idea they used, I think that every gamer I know of has at one time or another pulled up a handful of dice and gone, “I am gonna role a 1deverything.” Well in some ways that is what this system feels like. During character creation you start with a set number of dice of different types. These dice are then assigned to stats, your characters race, and also to their profession. This can stack up so you will be rolling several dice of different kinds against a difficulty score. More successes equals more impact on what you do. You also add skill ‘marks’. More marks in a single skill give you more dice. Let me give you an example.

You have a Rhino. (just roll with it) Racial skills for a Rhino are Endurance, Presence and Tactics. A career as a Knight Errant adds the skills Dodge, Melee Combat and Tactics. There are four stats in the game Mind, Body, Speed and Will. So if a player were to put a d6 in Race, and a d8 in Career, and a d4 in Mind, and then 3 skill marks in Tactics, when the time comes to roll for Tactics they would roll 2d8 + 1d6 + 1d4. If the task is easy then you have a difficulty of 3, so you need a four or better. As it gets harder the number goes up, the number of successes needed might go up too. Rolls against another player or an active NPC come up as who gets the highest and most… most of the time.

There are of course modifiers and gifts you can get that will alter the value of the die, add bonus’ of one kind or another or simply add dice. It can be a little challenging to track at first but they make a really nice character sheet that actually tracks all of this quite well so you dont have to think about it too much.

I will admit when I first played this game back in 2000 I had a hard time with the mechanic. It just kinda felt, off. I was so used to single dice unless I was doing damage, or multiple of the same die no mater what I was doing, that having all of these dice to try and do an action just felt wrong. But once I got used to it I found it actually enhanced my tendency to tell stories. I mean when you can see just how your race or career training has helped develop your skills and your natural traits all blend together, it gets very descriptive. And you can make in character comments like “I made it through mostly due to my training, but I think my natural tendency to ….. also helped a bit.” And that to me seems cool.

There are a lot of little things in the game engine to like or dislike as well. But that is true for any game system. What I really enjoy is that they were able to use their game engine to do both fantasy and sci-fi without modification. If you look at games like D&D and the 3.0 experiment with d20 Modern you can see how they had to modify things to compensate for guns and heavy weapons. But that is not an issue with the Cardinal game engine.

So that gives you some of my basic thoughts, what do the numbers say?

Overall Fluff 3/5 – I have to go a little lower on Fluff than I would like to. The art by and large is just ok. If you have any issue with Anthropomorphic stuff then, well sucks to be you, but this is not the best example of the art that I have seen. Also the background material is, well its a little stunted. It is designed to give you just enough to run with but still make you need to buy the supplements to really know what is going on in the world overall. I would not have an issue with it if the supplements were only need to have a good grip on specifics like houses and guilds but this goes beyond that.

Overall Crunch 4/5 – These rules are well written but poorly ordered. So you end up needed to go back and forth a lot before you can really get them down. Sure that is more an editing error than a problem with the rules themselves, but it leads to misunderstandings and with newer groups more than a few arguments.

Overall Mod 4/5 – Given that they have already published rules that show what can be done with sci-fi you know you can mod the engine. I do not think you could pull off supers with it, but if anyone can figure out how to without breaking the engine let me know and I will take this up to a five.

Overall Fun 4/5 – I really enjoy the story telling elements of this game engine. However finding a group to play this is harder than with most engines due to the nature of the game setting. Just from that I would usually bump it down to a three, however I really do like the game despite the difficulty finding folks who would play.

Total Score 15/20 – Not a bad score overall. No hideous either. I like the potential here and would really enjoy playing with it more. In this instance to me the engine gets more props than the setting but not a bad combination.

So as usual, think for yourself, check it out and see if you agree or disagree and have some bloody fun with your gaming 🙂

Now gimme the dice, I have to see if my cats are break in artists of any skill level or not.

 

 

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Review #26 Monster Manual (S)

Yeah I wanted to go deep flashback with this one.

monstermanual

Originally published by TSR in 1977 the Monster Manual has become sort of an icon figure in gaming. There has been a version of it in every edition of D&D save for the Basic/Rules Cyclopedia version. Even the original white box edition had a booklet for Monsters and Treasures. It has also appeared in movies, and in TV series like Stranger Things.

Personally this was one of the coolest books ever to me. Even when young I was a fan of mythology and fairy tales and here in one big hardcover book were tons of the creatures that legendary heroes fought against. Here were all the dragons I would ever need. All the types of giants that had challenged Thor, and Titans who were not monsters but heroes of the monster world. It was amazing. It was also amazing because while my mom would not let me see Clash of the Titans in the theater because there was a scene with a topless woman, I already had a copy of the Monster Manual which had several topless creatures drawn in. It was better than trying to steal a Playboy magazine.

Now then that might not be ok to talk about in modern politically correct terms, but considering that there is the internet these days… well a few hand drawn images of topless women should be the least infuriating thing that could happen.

What I find very cool these days about the book is that the monsters published in this book became the core monsters for so many fantasy role-playing games. And for so many generations of players. The history that got started by this one book is really impressive. And considering how many editions of D&D have come and gone since its publication you might think that this list of creatures would have become out dated, or that something else would have taken its place. But that never happened. Instead it became the model for most everything that came after it.

As a game player and collector I am going to step up here and say something I rarely do. If you plan on playing first edition AD&D then you need this book. Of you can make all the monsters you want to using the rules for encounters in the Dungeon Masters Guide, or encounters with villains by making characters in the Players Handbook. But this book gives you monsters, horrors, and even peasants to run up against with very little effort. It gives you simple images (by today’s standards) to show your players, and just enough info to give you a basic understanding of the creature in question, but not so much info that you feel compelled to put them (save for a few) in any type of tight knit ecology or society. One of the things that a savvy reader will come across is that in the 4th printing, or 1979 edition of the Monster Manual (the version that was reprinted in PDF version and the most common one to find in used book stores as it had the biggest print run, also the version that was reprinted on new stock back in 2010 I think for the retro edition books that Wizards of the Coast released) the section on Elves is updated to include information on Drow, or Dark Elves. They actually made their first appearance in the module series Against the Giants (G1-3) in 1978 when the three adventures were being published separately. However the version most people know of those modules is from 1981 when the three were combined into one module for play. So if you don’t pay close attention to these things you might think that Dark Elves were something that they had always intended for the game.

If you want to play history buff then maybe you can tell me why the Monster Manual was published in 1977, but the Players Handbook was not published until 1978 and the Dungeon Masters Guide hit in 1979.  I have a theory but I don’t want to spoil your questions and thoughts by positing it first.

So how do I rack this classic supplement up in terms of the numbers?

Overall Fluff 4/5 – Some might think I am overdoing the fluff here since the art is weak by modern standards and there is no backstory or city or anything to drive them along. But remember that this is a supplement full of monsters. And while the art may seem weak today when it first came out, it was a dream come true. They could have added more of just about anything to it, but all in all for the time it was published and the content, I have to go 4/5.

Overall Crunch 5/5 – Monster with stats. That’s what you want in a book like this and they give it to ya. Even going so far as to offer you the option of making things a little different by not giving everything just straight hit points but having die values to mix it up from goblin to goblin. Again might seem a little weak by today’s standards but this was the original that set the later standards.

Overall Mod 3/5 – Ok so I go a little low here and that is more about the game engine than the book itself. Within the rules it is not easy to mod much of anything past hit points. However with tossing the rules out the window you can mod just about anything. Just ask me about goblins with belts of giant strength and see where that goes 🙂

Overall Fun 5/5 – Even though by today’s standards the book is light on material, I still think this is a heck of a lot of fun. Nostalgia and such aside there are monsters in here that have yet to appear in other games and they can still be converted over. Plus this was the first book that named names when it came to evil demons and that kinda fed into the whole screaming parents who were overly religious saying that their kids were being sucked into demon worship and under the influence of the devil. Ahhh those were the days.

Total Score 17/20 – So this might seem ridiculous to some but to that I say 😛 its my review and I can point it like I want to. Seriously this thing is a classic and if you cant see that then maybe you should delve a little deeper into your games and hobbies to see where they come from.

Ok so that’s the entry for this week. Hope everyone out there is having a great time and gaming their butts off.

Now gimme the dice, I need to see how many folks I can bother with a single game review.

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Cyberpunk to Steampunk a mod story

So I need to start this posting with a little bit of a flashback. The very first review that I posted was for the original Cyberpunk RPG by R Talsorian. A game which I said could be modded to hell and you could come up with a lot of cool things. Well this is where I talk about one of those cool things. Modding it into Steampunk. And by the way Mike, if you see this please note that you should really consider putting this out officially to expand the line while all of us long time fans wait for Cyberpunk 2077 to come out.

I am going to make a big assumption here in writing this, actually three of them.

  1. You know what Cyberpunk is as a genre
  2. You know what Steampunk is as a genre
  3. You have a passing familiarity with the Interlock system created for the Cyberpunk roleplaying game.

So the reason I am tossing this together is that I have a few friends, and my awesome wife who love the Steampunk settings. Hells the wife and I have a Steampunk themed library in our house that we took about four months to build so yeah its a kinda big deal. I have looked into a lot of different RPG’s and several board games but I had not been able to find something that had a clear and easy steampunk setting that I felt was just completely top of the line. So I decided to kitbash one using a game engine that I felt really kicked ass on doing the cyberpunk theme.

What I came up with was basically a double mod. Using the Cyberpunk game as a base I realized that I could use every role in the game with just a few changes to description except one. For example the Rockerboy could become a Presence, the charismatic leader type that runs guilds and unions or even goes into politics. Solo’s become Dragoons while keeping everything that makes them feel like warriors. Nomads can be migrant working families or gypsies or both. Corporate’s stay as they are really, and  Techies, well they were always going to be techies, just now driven by steam, clockworks, and primordial electricity instead of hydraulics and nano-machine interfaces. The hard one is the Netrunner. That is also where the split happens that gives you so many options.

I thought to turn the Netrunner into an Arcanist. Now then depending on if you want to have a Steampunk setting with actual magic or not you would need to either make the Arcanist a fortune teller who knows legends and can be sort of a mystical con man, or if you want magic to be functional then you should pull in the stat Psi from Mekton Zeta Plus and change the psi powers to magic spells. In either case the role skill of Arcana can be used. In one version it is used to try and add mysticism to the world and in the other it allows the Arcanist not only knowledge but it is essential in the casting of spells or channeling the mana that powers magic. If you go with the real magic version you can also do up a Techie who is an Arcane Engineer who’s tech skills revolve around using mana as a power source.

A quick check of monies made it seem like all the gear and tools could be used if we just divided all the starting money by ten and do the same to the costs. Most of the blatant cybernetics could stay, but would have to fall into things that are steam powered and therefore bulkier and have the right look. For things like the neuro enhancements and skill chips we need to have the setting include magic to make it make sense without having everything go sideways.

Next step is to add to the idea of corporate powers. In addition to them you will also have guilds. Groups of men and women who control certain skills and knowledge. Corporations will have to deal with them to get the resources they need to get the advancements they want. This will give players even more factions to work with and fight.

With all these possibilities on the doorstep you can see where the options can roll to. One of the big limits that I tossed in when I made my version of this was to have the Magic stat be opposed by the Empathy stat. By that I mean that between the two of them you can only ever have a score of ten. So an all powerful Arcanist who has a Magic stat of 10, also has no empathy and therefore no humanity. And they then become the magic equivalent of a cyber psycho.

All in all this is a really easy conversion to make.

You will also please note that I did not go into all the details that I could have. I did not put down any lists of Unions or Guilds that I put together for my world. There is a reason for that. This article is about giving others the idea and letting them run with it. If folks want me to flesh it out I could do that, but I honestly think that with what I put here you have enough to drive your own version.

Now gimme the dice, I need to see if a mana powered steamcat can be used to sneak past some lack luster Dragoons to pick up a few things for me…

Have fun and keep playing folks. 🙂

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Delta City part 4

Hey all… ok so I finally decided that if I am going to edit the fiction that I would need to do a total rewrite of a lot of stuff. There are so many bad grammar points and things that only seem to make sense to me that… well it is just kinda crazy. So instead of waiting for that to be done I figured I would just post a few highlights here for the moment and call it good. Then I can focus on the edits and such later and maybe build it up as I go.

Now then some of this is set up to sound tracks, some of it is not. When it is soundtracked just remember that the songs listed are what inspired me for fleshing out that section of story. Not what I think anyone should listen to while reading it.

So here they are, highlights of the fiction section…

War in Delta City

This story starts out as a triptych and moves into being one story as the three main characters come together.

This takes place in the period of the fall of 2003 in Delta City. Late October to Early November. It takes about a seven week period in total.

Opening Scene – March of Cambredth by Heather Alexander

This scene gives an over view of Delta City, drifting past points in the city like Grace’s and the docks, rolling over old down town and the international district, sweeping out past Forge Industries and then back up to the college’s after going out to the coast and coming up to the wealthy houses there.

The only time the camera/visual slows is when we see the three main characters.

Marcus a.k.a. John Doe 17 – Standing on the roof of MacGreagor Sanitarium, on the south side of town, in the buff before vanishing into the night.

Kylee Lee – One of the three drivers for Black Dragon Couriers sitting in a private booth at the Flip Side Club, alone.

Joshua Tao – Picking up a gun and checking it, holstering it, and then doing the same with a very beautiful sword before tossing on a unique looking long coat and walking out of an apartment in the College district.

Scene 1 – Riot by Disturbed

Marcus moves into the underground. Still not knowing that he has power that would dwarf a lot of small gods, he decides that to stay out of the grips of the Sanitarium and the cops that he is going to need friends in low places, the lower the better to keep him out of trouble and unnoticed.

Unfortunately he falls in with folks in the Goblin Market with connections to the Core and his organization. When the Core meets him in passing he recognizes the power in Marcus and decides to try and push to get his ideas into the city the hard way, by causing chaos.

He starts a campaign against Marcus that leaves Marcus with no choice but to hit the surface and run. Trying to make Grace’s he runs across some of the Net 7 leads in Downtown, including Chanise Taylor who’s ability to mimic the power of any being she can see flares out of control when she sees Marcus and an unintentional battle of young gods erupts in the city streets. Ending when Marcus vanishes.

Scene 2 – The City is at War by Cobra Starship

Kylee Lee is heading out of the Flip Side. Candalmas, the satyr owner, stops her and hands off a package an envelope and a kiss to the young lady and then stops short of slapping her ass when she catches his hand and reminds him of how bad he came off last time he tried that.

In the parking area she gets into a black and chrome custom vintage Cobra. The interior is about as far from vintage as you can imagine as all kinds of heads up displays pop up and with a touch she guns the engine to life and then starts to drive.

Her route takes her to two or three stops and in the background you see Marcus getting chased into the streets at one of the stops. Her trip ends at Echoes, where she goes up and meets with one of the leads from Heroes Ltd. While they talk about what may or may not be in the package, there is an explosion in the Downtown area that everyone in the restaurant gets up and runs to the windows to see what is going on.

Scene 3 – Out of Control by Hoobastank

Joshua Tao is finishing up a very big fight.

There are dozens dead or dying all around him and he is falling into a personal crisis where he meets Walker… (previous story slightly reedited)

THE START OF A JOURNEY

 This may sound strange, but to understand what I need to tell you this story needs to start with an ending.

He had lost it all. His lover, a woman he had held onto for life in the past, a woman he would have given his life and soul for, had died in his arms. She swore him to a path of vengeance. Which he had followed with wild abandon.

Throwing everything to the winds, he warred into the breach. Destroying the friends and allies of those who had killed his soul mate. Not seeing, not caring, that as he went he left behind all of the friends and family who would have stood beside him. Not hearing their cries for help as the minions of his enemy struck them down.

At last he stood before the man who had struck down his love. When he readied the killing blow the killer showed the man all he had lost, the people, the friends, the family, all in one image. Then the killer pulled the one card he thought would save his life, the soul of the mans lover.

The killer held the soul of the mans lover in all its glory in front of himself, bragging how the lovers soul would be damned to the same dark hell as his own should the man strike him down. With a tear in his eye, and the tearing of his soul, the man struck the killer down.

As the killer died, and his lover’s soul faded, the man knew that his lover forgave him, and that he could never forgive himself.

You see I had been watching all of this unfold. I knew how it would end. And I stood by and let this man damn the soul of my sister to some dark, unspeakable place. All for the sake of helping his noble soul go on. I knew this was a test. By the gods some believe in, by fate, by my design… I don’t know which. All I could be sure of was that this man was needed for something else, and it was my job to make sure he was there.

That’s how this began. That was when I met Joshua. In the flesh anyway. My name is Croyd Walker. This is the story of how I helped Joshua Tao save himself.

You could hear the thunder in the distance, like footsteps slowly walking away. The scent of fresh spilled blood heavy in the air. The storm that had been, had passed, and Joshua was on the ground in tears. Trying to decide how to end his own life. The gun to his left, or the sword to his right.

It was time to become known.

“So that’s all her life meant to you?” I hoped he could feel the sarcasm in my voice.

“I don’t know who you are, but unless you want to join the corpse on the floor, you’d best leave.”

“No can do Joshua.” He wasn’t moving. I had to take that as a good sign. “When you let Tia’s soul slip into the pits just to kill Morgan, our paths became tied.”

“I still don’t know you, and this is the only way I can join her.”

“Tia was my sister Joshua.”

“So are you going to kill me, or do I have to do it myself.”

“No time for your sorrow man.” If he could hear the tears I was choking back, he didn’t show it. “Tia and I share the sight boyo. She saw great things ahead of you. Things you need to be alive for.”

I didn’t even see him move and he was on me, sword to my throat, gun to my heart, and screaming.

“She was my life! Her soul is gone! I could have found help! Brought her back! And I destroyed her. I DESTROYED HER!”

He looked like he aged ten years before my eyes. As he dropped the weapons and dropped himself to the ground, sobbing. Letting the pain and anger that had festered inside come to the surface and die. Pooled on the ground in blood and tears, this war was almost over, and he just wanted the circle to close.

“Please kill me. I can’t do it. I need to be with her.” He begged me with the voice of a sobbing child.

“Not here, not now.”

“Please.” With almost no strength.

“You have things to do, places to be.” It was hard to say these things, I could feel his pain, but had to reject it. So I picked up his gun, and took out a bullet.

“This bullet, for one year of your life.” He looked confused. “If I can’t show you that your needed in one year, I’ll put this back in your gun and end your life.”

“A year…”

“You have been without her for half a year already. Twelve months to show you the paths you can take, the life you could have. At the end of the year give me your gun, and if you ask it of me, I’ll send you to hell to join her.”

“This is hell, being without her.”

“Then get up, and come with me.” I reached out my hand. “Let me show you it doesn’t have to be.”

With hollowness in his eyes, and his moves, he took it.

I had the sight to guide me, I knew a lot of what was going to come in the year to be. Joshua had no such vision. Nor did he have a clue as to the truth about this little town we shared. There are things that no one knows about Delta City. Even someone like me with the sight to guide them is blind to a great many things in this town. That’s why I need someone like Joshua, actually, according to the last thing my sister told me, that’s why I need Joshua specifically.

“Come on Josh, we have a long way to go.” I pulled him to his feet and lead him back to the world outside.

It was time to make a difference in the world.

Scene 4 – Iron Man by Obscure (Ozzy cover band)

Marcus is sitting alone and in shock in Angel Park. He remembers his past, how he got to Delta City, how he ended up in the Sanitarium and still not really getting how he escaped, how he does what he does, how he had a fight like that in the city streets and did not blow up or blow up the city.

He has to think about all this for a while before coming to the conclusion that he is tired of not knowing, tired of running, tired of being the victim or making himself one. He has power and he is going to do something with it.

Take on that asshole The Core and all the people who help him. He does not know what they want, but by damn he is not going to let them have it.

Scene 5 – One Fine Day by Offspring

Kylee Lee is having a drink in her apartment, her toys for the evening are letting themselves out. She watches them leave and counts herself lucky that Candalmas owed her one and sent a couple of the pretty ones over to let her have her way with for the night.

She thinks about the work she does in Delta City and the surrounding areas and thinks about how even with all the sex drugs and everything else she has access to thanks to her connections nothing gets her more inflamed or high than driving hard against impossible odds. Make the drive and the schedule impossible, and she loves it even more.

She is tuning up her car in the morning when she gets a call on a cell and not knowing who it is smiles when after saying hello she says simply, “You need it where?”

Scene 6 – Frontline by Pillar

Joshua Tao is in the Undergound fighting something that looks like a sabertooth tiger mixed with a giant albino alligator. There are lots of flashed of blade, claw and muzzle report. Walker is in the background occasionally taking shots but not seeming to have much effect. Just as Joshua seems to be taking the final blow a voice calls out for the fight to stop.

A small Asian man, you cannot really tell his background due to the fact that he looks to be about 200 years old hobbles up. Even though his body looks old his voice has such an air of power to it even kings would bow. He is the one that called the fight to stop. The Asian man compliments both Joshua and the beast on their skills, and offers them rest in China Town with the full protection that offers.

As they walk out of the underground into the streets above you see China Town in all its glory, and its grime. They sit down and have a conversation once they reach their final destination, a place that looks like a little palace in the middle of China Town. The conversation is about a coming war and how it will change the world, not just Delta City. That it can go one of two ways, millions dead, or thousands. The war is coming and it will be here soon, its just a mater of deciding on what side you will be.

Joshua takes out a phone and places a call, telling the person on the other end that they have a box that is his and he needs it in China Town.

Scene 7 – After the Flesh by My Life with the Thrill Kill Cult

The Core is talking to his people. The people in the Underground that feel that his ways will not only get them recognized in the city, but they are all under the illusion that looking not human means that they are going to be treated like lesser beings. That with his leadership they can be more, they can be the ones in charge. That the mayor is weak and instead of following the legal paths that they can take what they want.

The people in the underground ROAR and let him know that from the sewers to the Goblin Market that they are behind him. That the city will be his or that it will burn.

He smiles behind his mask and goes to the room that he has prepared away from the masses and gets ready for something, working plans and picking up a phone to make a call. Saying only, “Bring it to me in the Goblin Market.”

Scene 8 – No Reason by Sum 41

Montage scene –

Joshua training with random people in what looks like a dojo.

Marcus, with his clothing shifting as he walks, going in and out of places asking questions.

Kylee getting into a closet and pulling out a box about the size of a shoe box but old… very old. And then driving..

The Core sitting on a throne at the Goblin Market as his people fawn over him, he is holding something

Kylee’s car pulling up to a building that looks like a small palace in China Town as Marcus can be seen walking in the front door without opening it.

Scene 9 – Click Click Boom by Saliva

Marcus comes into the palace all steam and burn, the main room appears to be the training room. Yelling about how he needs to know how to find the Core and that everyone he has talked to lead him here and by gods he is not leaving until he has answers.

Joshua drawing weapons only to be held back by Walker as the old man comes out and with that voice yells back for the young pup to shut it and take a seat, he will have what he needs soon. Marcus is taken back and just sits in shock at the power in that voice.

Kylee comes in and does the classic bad time joke, walks over to Joshua and gives him a peck on the cheek and hands him the old wooden box. The old man asks her to join them in taking a seat as she will be offered a job in a moment that will test even her. Smiling she accepts an offered seat and waits while Joshua takes a seat and then Walker stays standing behind him.

The old man introduces himself as Nianling Zuida De Long, and while Walker gapes the others just sit and listen as he tells about the origin of the Core (superhuman from an alternate earth) and what he has been up to in the underground for the last thirty years. Gathering the disheartened and the disenfranchised and building them up into a force that will rock the surface of Delta City. But the problem is not that he has all these hundreds of people or the power he has always had at his command. He has figured out how to tap into the power of the Well of Worlds. A place at the heart of Delta City that is in part responsible for the miraculous things that go on here. But that it has been limited since Marcus arrived about five hundred years ago. With one last little thing the Core will be able to crack it open wide, and if the people following him are not enough to crack the city open and put it in his hands he will open the Well and try to use its power to make himself into a god and take not only the city but the world.

Once that happens the council of immortals that advises the mayor has authorized Long to offer the three seated here to take him on.

Kylee to get them there in time… Joshua to take on the Core before he can get the Well open… Marcus to protect the well or destroy the Core before he can unleash a disaster that will shatter the world.

Joshua nods and opens the box, Kylee grins, and Marcus glows… literally.

Scene 10 – Ten Thousand Fists by Disturbed

Candalmas enters the throne room of the Core and drops a bundle in his lap. Thanking the satyr the Core takes up the bundle and goes out to the people in the Goblin Market and yells out to his people “IT IS TIME… ARE YOU WITH ME?!?!” He is greeted back by a roar of several hundred if not thousands of voices… and then he yells “THEN MAKE FOR THE SURFACE, TONIGHT AND FOREVERMORE THIS CITY IS OURS!!!!!”

And on the streets it begins as hundreds if not thousands of beings of all shapes and sizes pull themselves out of the sewers and drains and move as one charging to downtown, destroying as they go and either killing or adding any other people they see to their ranks.

Long looks into the air back in the palace and sighs that they no longer have time. The war has started and everyone needs to move now.

Scene 11 – Kodo (Inside the Sun Remix) by the Yoshida Brothers & Andrew Martinez

A no words scene

Kylee drives hard and fast thru the streets of China Town moving as fast as she can while Joshua readies something in the box. Marcus looks into the streets and can see the riot moving to downtown and looks deeper until he sees the Core and notes that he is not moving with the mob, not even behind it but in a different direction. Marcus waves his hand and the HUD in the car picks a new destination, Kylee beams and nods cutting corner after corner to reach that point in old downtown before anyone can cut her off or slow them down. The riot is moving to the Mayors residence and the Core is moving to the Well.

In old downtown the Core is using some kind of weird energy to rip up the streets and to expose something old and deep below the streets.

Kylees car arrives and while Marcus moves thru the car and out Joshua dives out with the car still moving and begins to shoot from a gun  he has not been seen holding before.

The energy pulls up a chunk of asphalt to block the round and is blown to bits when it is hit knocking the Core on his ass.

Scene 12 – Rock Star by NERD / Jason Nevins remix

War in the streets as Joshua goes to town on the Core. The Core roaring about how he wont be stopped by half assed fools does not notice as Marcus fades thru the street to the Well below.

Imagine Spider-man in a long coat holding a sword and a gun fighting at full speed against some massively powerful telekinetic who also seems to be about as tough as stone. Bullets keep missing and where they hit they are blowing holes in things almost big enough for Kylee to drive thru. One of the bullets finally hits the Core and he roars and blows out a burst of power that slams Joshua in to the car before flipping the car down the street.

His energy reaches for the Well and Marcus steps in. Marcus has the edge in raw power right from the start but the Core has more experience and eventually a tendril of his energy slips in and digs into the Well, and he taps it…

BOOM

Closing – Remember the Name by Fort Minor

There are police in the streets, rounding up rioters. They are supported by all on hand members of Heroes LTD and Net 7. It looks like the Mayor has been saved.

Long is in his palace crying, Walker is trying to comfort him not knowing what is going on.

Joshua is pulling Kylee out of the wreckage of her car, she is broken and bloody but looks to be alive, she is asking if they won… Marcus pulls himself together behind them atoms forming out of the air until he is standing naked, then dressed… and he says

“No, I could not stop him. He is in the Well and I cannot close it. He is going to be back, and that’s when the real war starts.”

Roll credits

********************************************************************

This segment was the only character contribution that I got for Delta City. It was written by Dan over at Dan on Games, he is a great writer and once he gave me this character I had to work him in deeper into the whole Delta City framework. This character ended up becoming one of the major players in the history of the city.

*******************************************************************

Story and Character Joseph by Dan XXXXXXXXXX (used here with permission)

Joseph always had big dreams.

Even as a kid growing up in on the south side of Chicago in the early 1920’s, he had big dreams. This was the era of Al Capone and the mafia, and he was bound and determined to become one of the big names in “the family”. His parents were too busy making ends meet to pay too much attention to what Joseph or any of his four brothers were doing. When he was introduced to an inside man by a friend of a friend of a friend at the age of 14, he knew it was his shot at the big time.

Things started out simple for Joseph, running packages, delivering messages between various middle men, acting as an enforcer. He rapidly became used to the prestige and quick money of his new career, and impressed his new bosses with his hustle, determination, and know-how. One boss in particular, Vin Deluca, was impressed by Joseph, and took him under his wing. Soon, Joseph was privy to the schemes, methods, and tricks of the trade that had been employed for many years. Joseph began to look at Vin as the true father he never had, and the gang as his real family. Every family has its problems though, and this one was no exception.

Vin and another local boss had been fighting over a particular area of the city for years. This area included many small shops, perfect choices for the classic protection racket. Just when it seemed things were going to boil over, the rival boss sent a message to Vin asking for a meeting to discuss the matter. Naturally Vin was suspicious, but he agreed to the meeting. The talk was very cordial, if unproductive, and the anticipated trap was not sprung. When Vin and the rest of the gang returned, Joseph stepped out to grab some cigarettes.

When he returned, the trap had been sprung.

The rival gang members had waited for Vin’s gang to return, when their suspicions had worn off and they would be much less on edge. They apparently had busted in as soon as everyone had returned, and killed every last man. Even more galling for Joseph, hardly any of the rival members had died in the firefight. As he wept over Vin’s riddled body, he vowed vengeance on the other gang. With his typical thoroughness and determination, not to mention smarts, he soon made it happen.

He spent weeks tracking the gang, noticing where the members liked to hang out, what hours they kept, who they associated with, when they were most vulnerable. He analyzed their security, and found a number of weaknesses to exploit. When he began to take the members out, he acted like an assassin, stalking his prey then silently and quickly taking them out. Eventually the gang members were scared to leave home; whenever they did they were never heard from again. When Joseph decided they were good and scared, he broke into the warehouse they used as a headquarters, and took out the remaining members. The last man standing was the rival boss. Joseph shot him five times in the chest, uttered “Go to hell bastard”, dropped his gun, and walked away. He had taken out the entire gang, just as he had vowed to.

Unfortunately, he hadn’t done it unnoticed.

One week later Joseph was coming home from a local pool hall when he was jumped by six men. Turns out the rival boss’s brother found out who had slaughtered the gang, and was determined to take it out on Joseph. The six men beat him until he was merely a bloody stain on the ground. They left him there to die, and he would have in mere minutes, if not for Rendolf.

Rendolf (“Ren”) was a local vampire who, unbeknownst to Joseph, had been following him during his entire vengeance spree. Ren was very impressed with Joseph’s methodology; the way he hunted his pray for weeks before he took them out, the way he allowed his victims’ terror to eat away at them, the care he took in destroying his victims. Ren thought it would be a waste for Joseph’s talents to die in a dark alley in a pool of blood. He embraced Joseph, and made him a member of the oldest family on earth, the Nosferatu.

Ren refined Joseph’s skills, making him an exquisite hunter. He taught Joseph to hone his patience and his thinking even sharper; to use his skill and his subterfuge to blend into the night, to become one with the darkness. Joseph took his new training to heart, and destroyed the gang that had tried to kill him. He killed every member of the gang when they were alone, to enhance the terror. He toyed with his victims; speaking their name then disappearing for days at a time, only to strike when they least expected it. When he was done he had wiped out two local gangs, and there was a big void to be filled. While other gangs would have eventually picked up the slack, Joseph stepped in, and became the big man he had always dreamed of being, even though he was no longer mortal man.

Joseph ran a very successful gang for many decades. There were some bumps in the road caused by his new condition, such as having to eliminate his closest lieutenants every few years so that they didn’t notice he wasn’t aging, but overall Joseph was enjoying the life he had always wanted to live, and there was no end in sight.

When you finally achieve something you’ve been looking forward to, seldom is it as good as you were hoping. Eventually, as the millennium drew to a close, Joseph grew tired of piling up money, cars, women, and power. Many of the old guard was dying out, and Joseph was tired of the game. He didn’t want to bother having to beat down yet another new generation of gangs and gang bosses. He was tired of Chicago, and wanted to try a new life. One day with no word whatsoever, he left Chicago for parts unknown. He had heard about exciting things happening on the West Coast, and wanted to check things out. California ended up being not what he had in mind, so he wandered north to the Seattle, Washington area. He was there for a few months when he “just sort of wandered into” (as many have before) Delta City. He instantly knew it was the place for him. In some ways it was just like other cities, but it had that special something that spoke to him. He immediate set up camp and resumed his former activities.

Joseph found that for a city the size of Delta, there was a surprising lack of organized crime, especially in the areas of prostitution and gambling (Joseph’s specialties). Joseph quickly set up a network of crime. He loved building an organization from the ground up rather that inheriting what someone else had made. He also liked the fact that he seemed to be the only vampire in town; that gave him certain advantages over any who would be his rival. Joseph was very content; he had a growing organization and a new city to explore, terrorize, or bask in, as his mood suited him.

But it wasn’t going to last forever.

There is a saying among the Chosen Ones that a lucky vampire is one that makes a mistake and lives. Joseph hadn’t made a mistake in Chicago, but he soon would in Delta City.

One night after a long evening of hunting down and attacking an extremely attractive young woman, Joseph found himself on the far side of town as the night drew to a close. He didn’t feel like trying to make his way clear across the city underground, so he decided to hole up. He found an abandoned warehouse in a quiet section of the city and decided to wait out the day inside. The place was covered with dust; it was obvious no one had been in there for awhile. He figured it was safe.

He was wrong.

A group of petty thieves had been staking out that warehouse for months, looking at it as a perfect spot to hold their hot merchandise until they could get it fenced. They picked that day to break in and start using it for their operations. As dusk grew near (and Joseph slumbered inside) the thieves quietly broke in. When they discovered Joseph they figured him to be a bum or drifter, and decided to just kill him and dump him outside (in that part of town, nobody would have noticed or cared). They began to pummel Joseph mercilessly. Joseph was too groggy from the slumber to offer much resistance, and eventually was beaten nearly senseless. Two of the thieves picked him up and tossed him out a second story window. As he flew through the open window into the receding sunlight, he reflected on his life and all the unexpected turns it had taken. The last thing he did was smile. And then something strange happened.

Nothing.

Joseph hit the ground with an unceremonious thump. No bursting into flame, no pain, no effects at all from the still prominent sun. Out of instinct, Joseph crawled out of the sunlight, not really realizing what was happening (or not happening). After a few minutes, he gingerly crawled back into the sunlight, and discovered a unique fact about Delta City: vampires were immune to the sun here.

After he recovered, Joseph experimented and found that this phenomenon happened only within the city limits. Take one step outside the limits, and he would immediately start to sizzle. Step back in and everything was fine. When the city limits were expanded on one side of the city, the sun immunity expanded right along with it. All the other traditional vampire weaknesses (holy water, acid, fire, crosses, etc.) worked normally, but sunlight had absolutely no effect. Since this discovery, Joseph has spent all his time trying to unravel this mystery. He handed control of his syndicate over to his top lieutenant, and looks for a physical, mystical, historical, or other explanation for what’s happening. So far he is the only being on earth who knows about this, and he intends to keep it that way. If other vampires knew about this, Delta City would be overrun in a matter of weeks. He’s got the place all to himself, and that’s how he likes it.

Since secrecy is of the utmost importance, he does all the investigating on his own. Joseph was always smart, but was never into book learning. He is now trying to soak up everything he can about the mystical arts and the history of his kind in order to explain what’s happening in Delta City. He’s also subtly trying to explore the true power structure of Delta City, in the hopes that he will discover something there. A lot is going on in Delta City, and while no one knows about all of it, there are certainly powerful people in the city who could help (or hinder) him in his quest. In the meantime, Joseph enjoys walking about in the sun, living amongst normal humans again. Being able to walk about during the day offers so many more opportunities to target and seek out prey. If Joseph can discover the cause of this unique phenomenon, perhaps he can use it to be able to walk about in the sun anywhere, not just Delta City. Or perhaps it is something that can never be replicated outside the city limits. Whatever the case, Joseph intends to find out.

**************************************************************

Ok so that gives you the very start of the fiction I was creating for the city and the only contribution I ever got to building it up.

I was thinking about adding more but unless I do year by year updates this would be the messiest post ever.

Ok so coming up soon, more Delta City only on request or if I get something serious going with it, a conversion for Cyber Punk 2020 and maybe a few other things.

Hope everyone is having a great time with games, and keeps life rolling.

For me, gimme the dice I need to see what comes next in the creative process.

 

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Quick Review – Karma for SLA Industries (S)

SO while I am still trying to edit previous work on Delta City for the fiction that I wrote and the timelines/scripts I created for the world I wanted to flash back for a moment to a supplement for a game that I did a review on a while back SLA Industries.

Now then you can flash over to the older review to get links and such so you can get background on the game. There is something that has always struck me about this supplement though and I wanted to share.

There have been game supplements made over the years that come out looking like they are supposed to be a trade magazine for some industry in the game setting. I am sure you can think of a few. However most of them put all the game stats in the body of the articles that they print in their trade magazine. The first printing of Karma though puts all of the game crunch at the end of the supplement. There is nothing in your way for getting a real feel for the game environment and getting into the dark and dirty nature of the world. It is items like this that can help even jaded players suspend their disbelief and get into the game setting. To be honest I am sad I have not seen more supplements like this in games over the years.

Karma was the first supplement to be produced for SLA Industries and of the other published material I still feel it is the best one they made. For me I love the flavor that it helps give the game. For others I have heard they love the supplement because you dont have to deal with the flavor at all. You can run straight to the crunch and get the parts you want and get gone. So it is very effective from both standpoints.

What sort of score does something like this get?

Fluff – 5/5 – To repeat what I said about SLA itself “Oh gods the beauty in the darkness.”  This supplement not only keeps that alive but helps drive it further. The story it tells and the way the interviews and technical articles are written really drive the feel of the world home. The art being in the same style as the game kind of cements the relationship between the two.

Crunch – 3/5 – I cannot rate the crunch as high as the main game. There are a few things in Karma that can really create a badly OP (over power for the newbies) situation. Actually there is a lot of stuff in there that can be OP. And since the focus of the Karma publication is on only a few things, not all of the careers and character types can keep up. So it skews balance unless you are careful.

Mod – 2/5 – I am going to go word for word on this supplement as I did with the original – “So you can see this seems a little low. Here is the why of that. With the over complex rules you can do a little shaving and still be a bit flustered with how the overall rules system works. Or, like I do with a lot of GURPS books you can just toss out the rules and use it as source material for a game engine you really enjoy. But to do that effectively you need to be sure you can convey to your players that this will definitely be a darker, nastier world than anything they have used that game engine for before.”

Fun – 5/5 – Unlike the main game I can max the fun here. The way the writing works and the materials are presented this beauty can be applied anywhere and the style can be brought into nearly any other game system you can imagine. Personally I have to say this dark bit of art is too fun to let go of.

Overall score – 15/20 – Just like the original we have the same score but for different reasons. I enjoy this add on. If you dont that is up to you. But at least you will have made the choice for yourself 🙂 HAH got ya.

Ok so gimme the dice, I need to encounter a random breakfast.

Keep up the play and have fun all.

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