The Best Laid Plans…

A brief update : I’ve recently been in hospital with acute abdominal pain and while experiencing morphine for the first time was nice it still doesn’t make me want to repeat the experience.  I also managed to miss some major Pokémon  events too so poke-post hasn’t seen an update in ages.

Consequently I’m a bit fragile and have a massive backlog of housework to deal with as well as other real life stuff. So right now life is just a bit harder than normal at the moment.  But ho hum – evolve, adapt & overcome!

During all of this I’ve managed to update my mobile is to a snazzy blackberry keyONE – which I’m hoping will facilitate a bit more productivity and help me  return to producing game related content as well as possible future published pieces. It really is great for typing away on it like a mini tablet.

In terms of the YouTube I have a nice background cloth prepared (cut and hemmed) as well as better technology setup for mic+camera on top of optimising my workflow for the edit. So when I get a moment to write script topics I’ll be back to producing more videos. In the meanwhile EN world are making a podcast about RPGs so check them out if you need a fix of RPG news.

It’s not all doom and gloom, I’ve managed to spend a little time playing dungeons & dragons online (DDO) with my other half. Set in ebberon (and about 10 years old) it’s given me some interesting ideas and thoughts for actual D&D dungeons and methods of linking adventures. The lack of MMOG grind is nice too.

In real world I’ve managed to run the Secrets of Cats which is a FATE based system and despite not running fate before it went well and was enjoyed by all.

This then led me down a path whereby I’ve decided to switch hAccess to fate rather than PBTA for the simple reasons that I have limited experience with PBTA, it requires more bootstrapping to make a distinct yet playable hack which I don’t think I could manage without a dedicated PBTA group. FATE also allows for narrative framing of the level of detail depending on what sort of ‘adventure’ the players undertake. In short while I am enamoured of Blades/PBTA I don’t know it well enough to be able to make it do what I want. Whereas I do with FATE.

Finally in terms of TTRPGs we’re almost concluded in our side quest to save the sky whale and the group are really cool and have arranged too meet up and try a 1 shot of something. I’m going to bring FATE/ cats as well as some D&D I think. I’m enjoying the story and characters we have in the spin off but am looking forward to the getting back to the much bigger scale Red Hand of Doom.

We’ve also decided that we like miniatures for combat so I’ve spend a whole tenner on ebay to get about 60 lord of the rings uruk hai which work great as militarised hobgoblins. They’ll require stripping and painting too. More things for which I’m too tired to do *at the moment* but I’m sure will eventually get done.

Anyway if you’ve read all of this thanks for bearing with me while I continue to recover.

 

I Never Asked For This…

Jensen Meme

SitRep

So despite a plethora of illness* this past year, I’m trying to keep sane by focusing on my 2 main hobbies – Pokémon & RPGs – while I recover. I’ve managed to expand playing RPGs to 2 nights a week which is a major achievement considering health and previous commitments.

Miniature games aren’t really holding my interest due to the time investment required coupled with the sheer lack of local communities that I want to be a part of, (and I really don’t have the stamina to chivvy another community along after the last time). I still enjoy painting and that side of things though.

My lovely other half is quite busy with studies so even playing casual GW stuff at home isn’t really happening though Terraforming Mars is proving to have been worth the investment. (Seriously when it’s back in print, get it if you can!)

Aside from health issues and goals my new year’s aims were mostly Pokémon TCG based, and I’m managing to do pretty well at them too! (You can keep up to date with that journey here: Poké-Post.)

Anyway as mentioned, I’m really digging RPGs at the moment – from the Southampton guild of RPers to my own friend group I’m managing to play in and run some games and also have gotten to try out RPGs that I wouldn’t have otherwise encountered. (Blades in the Dark, Starfinder, Star Trek Adventures to name a few). It’s social and fun and lets me be creative.

Moving Forward

With all of that in mind I’m in the middle of writing 3 short PDFs for 5E D&D to offer variant monsters that are usually encountered at low level (Goblins, Hobgoblins and Bugbears). It’s a small step to break into writing for RPGs but I might as well try to make use of my 20+ years of playing RPGs to help other people while I wait for medical appointments to get sorted out.

Finally I’m managing to get some Deus Ex: Mankind Divided in, including the eponymous 1 save only perma-death ‘I never asked for this’ mode. I’m claiming it as research for a cyberpunk, conspiracy, non-magic (sorry Shadowrun!) post-human RPG that I want to write. Right now I’m thinking of basing it on Blades in the Dark / PbtA since the system is great and captures the nuances of the feelings I’d like to convey. However this is still early days.

*Seriously, at this point I’m expecting it to actually be lupus!