Campaign Ideas: The Diamond Throne

Campaign Ideas: The Diamond Throne

The Pitch: Today is your Leaveseeking Ceremony, where you will venture into the outside world for as long as you need and decide if there is something out there that rhymes with your truename. Or did your ancestors have the right of it, that the wonder in the world is eclipsed by its cruelty, better to find safety with your own people in this isolated mountain village.

You aren’t born evil because you were born of a certain race. You don’t, as a member of another race, have some manifest destiny to conquer and rule. And while there are certainly heroes and villains worthy of those titles, they are heroes or villains because of the choices they make.

The Diamond Throne by Monte Cook

I remember liking the Arcana Evolved hardcover and its weird fantasy Diamond Throne setting. When we started discussing it in an indie RPG slack I frequent, I realized I had put the books from the shelves to my desk, thinking that I might use them for a Tuesday Campaign Ideas post. I’ve got one other Campaign Ideas post about done and another outlined. I’m hoping to start a tradition. Anyway, back to Arcana Evolved…

The classes are just so cool: Akashic, Champion, Greenbond, Mage Blade, Magister, Oathsworn, Runethane, Totem Warrior (rename!), Unfettered, Warmain and Witch.

No priests, you see. Where were the gods when the Dramojh’s cruelty was raging?

Part of my is tempted to just grab the magic book and bestiary and play it in its original 3.5 ruleset. But with those rules, isn’t it silly to go with the human village rummspringa idea above? Isn’t part of the fun of 3.5 to choose race and class (ugh, RACE)?

Hence the human-centered starting point above, starting with a ceremony, a cornerstone of the setting. Delve into the weird with human eyes at first. As the characters enter into ceremonies with other folk and heritages across the setting, those folk become potential character types. Maybe you set your human villager aside while they train and pick up a verrick or litorian or giant. Perhaps you start playing one of these options because your human goes back to the village to settle down, having had enough of this world.

I like this set-up because the characters will learn about the setting with the players, no homework necessary. Of course I’m thinking about hacking at Into the Odd. Levels 1-3 and then you choose your class, gaining 4 HP per level, topping off at 12 HP, maximum for a person – dragons are 16 HP, of course. The training for the classes is vague in my mind, as is the magic system, but I bet we could do a Whitehack-like magic thing for the fluid and flexible magic from the later Grimoire supplements.

The first part of the Leaveseeking Ceremony is being able to walk through the village, going wherever you want and asking the elders about their Leaveseeking. What were their ambitions? What were their regrets? We’d flesh out the characters’ families and the world in one go, right at the first session and give the players enough information to make a decision about where they wanted to go.

Do you want to go up the mountain and see the Dramojh Fortress with your own eyes? Do you want to see the cruelty your ancestors survived that led them to founding this village and this ceremony?

Or do you want to venture out and find that lost cousin who graduated as a Magister and now serves a Giant Steward in the capital city? Your grandma has that sword above the fireplace and no one will talk about it but today is your Leaveseeking; she’ll talk about it today and tell you everything about her time leading an element of the Nightwalkers.

Or is it something farther and stranger? Is it the Floating Forest or the Harrowdeep or the God-King of the verrick that calls to you?

There is a big, strange world out there with lots of history and secrets. Let’s go.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

Psychic Tiger Fodder Returns!

Psychic Tiger Fodder Returns!

This is an Into the Oddish game (chargen houserules here) using DNGN as the adventure. Jeb the footpad, Taki and Tabouli are now the adventuring party – Psychic Tiger Fodder (t-shirts available, all artist’s proceeds go to the World Wildlife Fund).

Into the

with special guests

The same trio could make it for our Thursday night game (a huge, for zoom, group that is usually made up of 6 + me). We continued with Psychic Tiger Fodder, hirelings stuck in the depths of a (mega)dungeon after the adventuring party that hired them were mauled by a psychic tiger. Jeb the Footpad, Taki and Tabouli along with Roddy the Shieldbearer and Gill the Wizard’s Apprentice. This time I remembered that Jeb has a domesticated mimic, a pet that he keeps as an extra enticing coin pouch on his belt. LINK: Previous session’s write up.

They went up a level this game and immediately levelled up without having to slow down the game (add d6 to hit points and roll d20 for each stat, +1 if you roll over). Easy-peasy. T asked if he’d eventually get Cleric powers from leveling, as his character was an Acolyte. I reckon we’ll get to level 3 (where Into the Odd tops out) and then figure out houserules for specialized training and the powers that might come with them.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

They mugged the bandits on level 5 but let them keep their daggers and half their gold. All things considered (they had hit Taki with their Wand of Paralyzation and demanded everyone’s treasure be turned over before the tide of the encounter turned on them), that was pretty reasonable. When the bandits went down a level (the Psychic Tiger Fodder are trying to go UP and outta here) they heard blood-curdling screams from the stairwell down and ignored it – moving on.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

They found a pile of detached thumbs with gold rings on them in a pile of bloody rags. The thumbs were fed to the domesticated mimic. Wait. WAIT! What is the pet mimic’s name? I must know. When they read off their list of treasures the gold rings are recited as, “The gold and wand we took from the bandits. And the gold rings we got off of those thumbs – probably cursed.”

NOTE: Sven is the pet mimic’s name. I messaged J, who plays Jeb the Footpad.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

Jeb’s elf-dagger got nabbed by a metal statue’s magnetic pull, sticking to the statue’s body. When Jeb tried to get the dagger back, the statue animated and knocked him unconscious and when he tried again, under cover of Roddy the Shieldbearer’s shield, it broke Roddy’s ribs. Reluctantly, Jeb left the dagger there. There was no talk at all of taking the statue on to get the dagger back. Would it have gone differently if more STRENGTH checks had been failed and more weapons were stuck to the statue? We will never know.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

Tabouli can see and talk to ghosts and so the dead gnome with a will-o-the-wisp eating its eye talked to him but didn’t take an immediately liking to him (failed WILL save). But when Tabouli asked if there was anything they could bring to the gnome ghost, Klambikurt (thank you, Fantasy Name Generator – Gnome Names), took a bit of a liking to him and told them that they weren’t 10 levels down but 3 levels down. Now they know how far they have to go.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

We ended with Psychic Tiger Fodder bloodied but still standing after Jeb took a while to pick a lock with an arrow and skeletons with sharpened fingers but no thumbs wandered in and were dispatched. We know, from Tabouli talking to a half-elf ghost that there is some kind of art in the room to the north that drove him mad. We’ll start, there, in Room 3F, next time.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

There is a kind of whimsy to it. It isn’t goofy but the situations and the things they run across bring a humor to it all, despite the fact that they are taking the premise seriously. I am going to have to think a bit about world building and what they are going to find if/when they get out of this dungeon.

Playing a game system that is dead simple with a dungeon zine that is SO EASY to read is a real pleasure. I’m really enjoying running this thing.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

My Favorite Page in World of Dungeons

My Favorite Page in World of Dungeons

World of Dungeons by John Harper is a tiny pdf, 3 double-spread pages, a third of which is the stained character sheet printed twice. In that space you get enough rules to get started with the idea that as you go, you and your friends will be creating new moves as needed.

My favorite page, though, the one I never see anyone discuss – the one that we ignored when Sean and I played is the following:

List of places and names.

The places: Northlands, Imperium, Regency, Xanathar & Islands, Uru & the Great Desert, Akhyra & Cythonis

Northlands, Imperium, Regency, Xanathar & Islands, Uru & the Great Desert, Akhyra & Cythonis, with a list of evocative names under each. That right there is a setting. That is all anyone needs to get started. Daydream on that, write some names on a map, scrawl out a few rivers, some mountains, jot some symbol that means, “demon-haunted hole filled with treasure,” a few times and you are good to go.

Dangitall, there is even cosmology about True Names in there that I didn’t even remember until I pasted the page into my blog.

I think what I’ve learned in the process of writing this is I like my settings with more questions than answers.

What is the Regency? Is there a child-king ruled by a council of oligarchs? Will the oligarchs hand over power when the child comes of age?

The border where the Northlands meets the Imperium – is it open war? Feuding? Have the Northlands Jarls sworn oaths to the Empire?

Xanathar and Islands – why is the Imperium navy having trouble keeping its hold on the forts here?

Uru and the Great Desert – what remnants of a once worlds spanning government has its ancient ruins buried in these sands? What are the people like who call the Uru home and why has the Imperium kept its armies clear of them?

Ankhyra and Cythonis – what is the cultural link between these lands and the Imperium? What relationship did they have with the ancient people of Uru? What political conflict is causing civil war there now?

And I want those questions answered through play – if they are answered at all.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

EST Early Morning Pay-to-Play Games

Trying something different with the Paid GMing and booked a bunch of slots that are (for me) early in the morning.

Links are below each pic.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

More Into the Odd in the 6 Cities Thoughts

Thinking about those imaginary friends who want to play Into the Odd but in a setting that is a bit more D&Dish. Thinking this post over and it would not have been enough. Here are the tables from that post in a slideshow:

Maybe players get to choose which city their character is from and they get a character based on their hit point total. Perhaps new places and character options can be opened by forming relationships by new folk from different places.

Cool, then we take a hint from our Dragonslayers game and when players roll up their Strength, Dexterity, Willpower, HP and Coin, they keep track of any 1’s or 2’s. For every 1 or 2, they can roll one more time (everyone gets a free roll) on the table below, getting allies, pets, lore, weapons, reputations and spells that link one’s character to the setting in unexpected ways.

I’m thinking of a rule where players can choose the result of any 1 die roll during their chargen. If they have zero 1’s or 2’s, they seem to be the subject of a prophecy that may or may not be true and they can pick their one result from the d66 table below (but only after everyone with worse stats has already gone).

11 Torchbearer
12 Scoundrel
13 Zealous friend
14 Loyal Duelist
15 Runaway Apprentice
16 Ghost
21 Domesticated Mimic
22 Hawk-sized Dragonish Critter
23 Underpanther
24 Blink Dog
25 Talking Owl
26 Little Monkey
31 LORE: necromancy, undead and the planes they inhabit.
32 LORE: elementals, their kin, and the  planes they inhabit.
33 LORE: Devils, their kin and the planes they inhabit.
34 LORE: Demons, their kin and the planes they inhabit.
35 LORE: Angels, their kin and the planes they inhabit.
36 LORE: dragons, their kin and their lairs and habits.
41 A runeblade, malevolent and deadly
42 A silver blade, stolen and psionic
43 An ancient dagger with a fell name.
44 A spear from a famous hero-king's barrow.
45 A staff that belonged to a famous wizard.
46 A bright blade, shining and full of destiny
51 Saviour of the Northtowns
52 Orcfriend
53 Elf-friend
54 Gnomefriend
55 Dragonfriend
56 Hero of the Barrow Hills
61 Learned a spell from a Hidden Cache of  Scrolls from the Mage Wars.
62 Learned a spell from a tome called Gifts from the Fae Queen.
63 Learned a spell from  a book called  the Wizard’s Guild Journeyman Archives
64 Learned a spell from a book entitled Olde Queen’s Druidaria.
65 Learned a spell from a pile of scrolls known as the Black Market Hobgoblin Cantrips
66 Learned a spell from a tome known as the Lake Country Family Illusions.

Yes, I know, I need tables for the spells. Luckily, I have a google doc with spell names that should do the trick. I’ll post those tables next time.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:
The Bastion Free Library

The Bastion Free Library

TEXT: Bastion Free Library / Cataloging the stars above / Accessing the mysteries below

PIC: Worn library building icon with star above and dingus below...

In the central blocks of Bastion’s Bookbinding District is the Bastion Free Library, an organization born from the work of the city’s founders and the good will of more recent philanthropists. The open door policy of the library and its mission to support the many communities in Bastion is a stark contrast to the dozens of subscription libraries around the city, that provide access to information and Arcana to only the wealthiest clients. The B.F.L.’s steadfast librarians work tirelessly to round up items of all kinds so its collection remain relevant to its citizens lives.

Arcana that the library holds cannot just be checked out like a book but can often by used and studied in the depths of the library’s sub-basements. If the need is clearly illustrated to the library’s advisory board and the Arcana’s powers match the situation at hand, a librarian will in some rare cases be dispatched to oversee the Arcana’s use outside the library’s walls. Those who steal the item or harm the guardian librarian will find themselves hunted by driven library comrades who have spent a lifetime delving into the darkest depths of the Underground and the farthest reaches of the Deep Country in pursuit of lore. Also, those who would steal from the library or harm its staff will find that support and good will from people and factions all over Bastion will quickly dry up, as the free library is a beloved institution.

The library treads a precarious line. Some librarians even claim a kind of magical neutrality. The time will come soon when citizens trying to wrest a true democracy out of oligarchic grip, a union fighting to prevail against militarized union busters or marginalized community struggling to survive will ask to use an Arcana under library care. That will be an interesting day on the streets of Bastion.

Chief Librarian Jeanine Pepper, Bastion Public Library STR 10, 9HP, 2G

Driven to gather and catalog rare Arcana and Manuscripts from all over Bastion, the Underground and the Deep Country and provide access to Bastion’s citizenry.

Outreach and Excavation Team 8HP Skirmish Knives (short swords with basket hilts) and dueling shields d6

Local Fundraising and City Government Support 4G Income

Founder’s Endowment d8G Income (can be bumped up to d10 for one cycle but until that money is repaid, it will operate at a d6)

Archivist General Holmes Volfhole, Elmer Volfhole Library Inc STR 8, 12HP, 7G

Driven to gather Arcana and Manuscripts in order to bolster its collection and increase the power and prestige of the private library’s shareholders.

Volfhole Acquisition Team 12HP Muskets w/ bayonets d8

Corporate Budget d8G Income

Black Market Dealings d4G Income

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

Pick up a Bastion Free Library t-shirt, all artists’ proceeds go to National Center for Transgender Equality.
Into the Odd Delve #1: The Nine’s Tomb

Into the Odd Delve #1: The Nine’s Tomb

Thousands of years ago, when I was in junior high, we’d play AD&D and the premise was called the Quest of the Nine. In this premise, one character from each alignment represented a higher power in a quest to find an artifact called the Dragon Orb. The idea was that we couldn’t directly hurt one another but once we got to the Dragon Orb, all bets were off.

Hence, my Into the Odd adventure idea, the 9’s Tomb, in which adventurers have had themselves interred in the Underground. Since Into the Odd is an industrial take on dungeon delving, the adventurers we knew from D&D were a thousand years ago. It felt fitting to loot what we know of adventuring as the first delve.

Less than a thousand years ago I had a Facebook Group of FB friends who are also gamers. 99% of them I’ve either met at cons or have gamed with face to face over the years. I asked if folks were interested in gaming together and got a few games together, thinking that we’d play an Into the Odd campaign in a consistent world. This was our first session in what I hope will be a twice-a-month game with rotating players.

After past year or so of Thursday nights going to D&D 5e, Into the Odd felt sparse in a good way. Rather than go to the dice, I found myself asking lots of questions about what the characters were doing and what it looked like, so I could decide how the world reacted. When the dice did come out they were fast and decisive. No initiative and no to-hit rolls was a relief. When in doubt, I shared too much information, so the players had enough information to make interesting decisions.

The tone was perhaps goofier than my gaming usually is – with the Fighter and Thief Skeletons playing it up for yucks until Culver showed them his Arcanum, a Bone Box, and the Thief stabbed him to get it. There are Prog Rock musicians called The Floating Skulls in this world, we discovered. I doubt I’ll be able to stop myself from making Floating Skull band t-shirts.

My favorite moment was when they cut a deal with the attacking Air Elemental and opened a gate they found in another room to the Dusklands, where a Dooskelf had attacked them earlier. Outside the box thinking and using the world around them as tools and levers feels like exactly what this game should be doing. What will become of an Air Elemental in the Dusklands? Maybe we’ll find out some day, maybe it will just be a mystery.

The players made interesting decisions – leaving the Intelligent Sunsword in its tomb, rather than deal with the Sword Nun who appeared to whoever wielded it, asking the wielder about their faith. They crushed the Thief’s skull rather than keep the living/talking skull as a mentor and adopted the electrified floating sphere, naming it Sparky.

We hit the fast forward button a bit at the end, getting through the last bits of the dungeon; the interesting parts were already thoroughly mined. Moving forward, we’ll flesh out the Underground, Bastion and the Deep Country and I’ll make a map of some kind with notes on the unknown bits in between the explored areas until we have a kind of hex-crawly shaped thing to explore. But for now, just single shot adventures as the characters grow stranger and stranger and the world is filled with ancient religions, prog rock bands and dusklit dimensions just beyond a magical portal.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

The Iron Lich Situation

The Iron Lich Situation

I spend time on the DM’s Academy Subreddit and lots of folks ask questions about how to start a game. This is very much inspired by the Situation model I learned through Burning Wheel and was also championed on the Alexandrian in his blog post, Don’t Prep Plots.

Here’s one take on it.

The skull of the Iron Lich with a dead star's light in their eye sockets. 

As created on Midjourney with the terms: skull of the iron lich in the style of raymond Swanland + ornate + highly detailed + concept art

Tell the players what the game is going to be about.

You’ve all learned that the Iron Lich is trying to take over the world with their manufacturing tombs.

Ask them to make characters who are bound to that plot.

I was the apprentice of the Iron Lich when they were mortal.

I’m a paladin who is sworn to destroy all undead.

I’m an elf ranger sent by the queen so the Iron Lich’s manufacturing tombs don’t destroy the forest.

During character creation, ask questions. Make shit up together. Write down names. The DM role is important during character creation. Help the players flesh out their characters and use this as an opportunity to flesh out the world. I am very open to learning about the world at this point and want player ideas about the part of the world where their character comes from and how the Iron Lich damaged that community. Through character creation I want to grow the antagonist and the world the antagonist threatens. There will still be plenty of blank space on the map and mysteries to learn in play.

I’m not precious about timelines or vague ideas about the Iron Lich. I don’t want to get rid of the main concept, “Industrialized Undead Wizard,” and don’t want to play in a tone that doesn’t work for me. If a player makes a Halfling named Dildo Haggus, I’m going to speak up and say that joke characters don’t fit. But as above, if my ideas about the Iron Lich said that they became a Lich three thousand years ago, I’m going to re-think that because having a wizard who was the Iron Lich’s apprentice when they were mortal is just so damned cool. If the Iron Lich being three thousand years old is key to the concept, maybe talk to the player about having a character who had been tossed outside of time in a void prison and just got out.

Once the characters are made give them a few choices that seem interesting to you. I like to do this the week before we play, so I have time to prep and daydream.

Do you all want to look into the devil-lich’s mountain lair where the Iron Necromancer became the Iron Lich or scout out the manufacturing tombs where caravans have gone missing or look into the duke’s counselor who is said to be a necromancer?

There’s no WRONG answer but sure, clocks will be ticking and things will change based on their choices. Also, maybe they have another idea or the first adventure becomes very clear during character creation. That is cool. Give yourself some time to prep but don’t over-prep.

The examples above were written quickly but looking them over, they feel like different kinds of adventures. The Devil-Lich’s Lair feels like a dungeon crawl. The Manufacturing Tombs is more stealthy and sneaky but also a bit dungeon crawlish. The duke’s counselor is very political, rooting out spies and cultists in the duke’s court. Each one would mean fleshing out a different part of the world.

Nothing about any of this is original. I don’t get an eff about originality. The game will become something original once out friends interact with all this stuff when we come together at the table.

I put together the tools I’ve worked on here in the past few years in a Medium article. If you liked this, you might like those articles too.

If you would like to get an email notification when blog posts are published, please subscribe below:

Lich Collection
Mothership, What We Give to Alien Gods, S1: So, Two Scientists and an Android walk into a nebula.

Mothership, What We Give to Alien Gods, S1: So, Two Scientists and an Android walk into a nebula.

What We Give to Alien Gods / An Adventure for Mothership / Session One / So, Two Scientists and an Android Walk into a Nebula

In which gaming friends from different corners of my life meet, we make characters and play for a bit. – getting the characters’ emotional cards on the table.

There should be no spoilers but if you want to play this adventure without any knowledge at all, details might slip.

Scifi Subject Divider

Got a pair of friends who had a particular time-slot in their lives open to play some Mothership, knowing that they’d both be down with it and hoping that friends from different parts of my life would get along. So far so good. We’ve got a pair of scientists; the character sheet gave some guidance. We’re playing, What We Give to Alien Gods; I find running published adventures pretty challenging but I think the pamphlet-size will help and I’m glad I have another week to get some visuals together to share on our Jamboard moving forward.

Dr. Wren Navarroe, played by Jay (MadJay Zero Hustle and Play Fearless) and Dr. Nathan Anders, played by an old friend, Jim, were students under Dr. Grahm, who went into Galaer XII, the Amaranthine Nebula, to look at something known only as Project Cyclopean Temple. During chargen, Jim had mentioned that Nathan was jealous of Wren and the way Dr. Grahm favored them. Post-doc students with an unhealthy relationship to their professor? Yeah, after a few decades living in a university town, that scans. Jay described Wren as being inspired by Fox Mulder and I think we’re still figuring out what precisely that means at the table. I can’t wait to learn more. I hear the Truth is Out There.

We chatted a bunch during character creation and I used every bit of it I could. Good stuff. Jay had Dr. Navarroe get them through security measures around Project Cyclopean Temple when he realized Dr. Grahm had left his favorite student a back-door into the files when he used his sign-in. Everyone at the table is a GM, so we’re all listening to one another and using each other’s creative contributions. Love it.

Scifi Subject Divider
Mothership 1.0 Character Sheet

Dr. Anders specializes in Sophontology and Dr. Navaroe specializes in Xenoesotericism. The character sheets really were a map, Daniel. We decided that they had been hired to take a science boat out to look at a dark matter anomaly but changed course to go find their lost professor. The Bradfield Company had also supplied Mendel, an Android with some piloting skills when they are plugged into the ship’s computer and the ability to support the science team with their own training in Exobiology.

Scifi Subject Divider

Naming things is so important in these first games and one of the things I really like about Mothership is it offers a vibe but no history, no background, just, a kind of…eh, it is a bit like Alien but not really kinda thing. The world-building is left to us and I dig that. At one point Jim talked about a trail of alien artifacts that could be offering evidence that we are getting closer to an alien homeworld and I yes but-ed it, “That sounds like a great hypothesis for a future science paper.” We’ll see if it ends up being true.

Are either of the characters veterans? What was the war about? What school did they attend? We’ll find out. I’m daydreaming details but there’s no rush.

The ship was called the Humboldt, found when someone (was it Jay or Jim?) suggested that Bradley Company ships were named after fish species. Grahm’s ship is called the Balinadae. I named Mendel after searching up names of biologists and liking how the name Mendel sounded. Awkward androids are some of my favorite PC and NPC’s to play.

In contrast to Mendel, the ship’s computer is warm and very human-sounding. Jim and Jay both spent time in New Jersey, something we all have in common, so I described the computer’s voice like your favorite NJ diner waitress, who smokes a pack of Marlboro Lights a day and always remembers how you like your coffee. “What’ll it be, hon?” Jim named her, Celeste.

Scifi Subject Divider

After making characters we had enough time to wake up out of hyperdrive sleep and get to know one another a bit. Anders took some stress when an Electromagnetic Wave rattled the ship a bit but Mendel and Navaroe handled it.

Jim made some fun decisions that were worth highlighting. He had Anders trust Mendel with the fact that they had changed the ship’s course and go save their former professor. This led to Mendel trying to trust Anders with his hobby, that I presented in as creepy a way as I could, causing Anders to run when Mendel was trying to show his new comrade the whiskey still he had hidden in the engine room, “There are no cameras there, so I can engage in my hobby without observation.” Jim really played it up for maximum horror and made it a real Jonesy Moment.

Jones, the cat
aka Jonesy

Horror, in my experience, isn’t so much about one person setting a tone but about everyone buying in. Sitting at computers in broad daylight, Jim and Jay are buying in.

Mendel trying to share his hobby led to a minor freak-out from Anders and some well meant apologies. Anders let Navaroe know that he was flat out jealous of his relationship with Professor Grahm. I love that we are starting the game with that on the table, right from the start as we head to Dr. Grahm’s abandoned spaceship. Some folks would’ve let that jealousy ferment in secret but it is out there now and I dig it. That is where we’re starting next game.

Dice hit the table, we saw some stress doled out and we’ve got some context. I’d like to get more of a feel for the ship’s layout and look, get to know Navaroe a bit more and see what happens when these scientists engage with alien horror. It was a fine start.

These designs and more in my Threadless shop – t-shirts of all kinds, mugs, stickers and even shower curtains…

Blog of Judd Karlman from Daydreaming about Dragons