Friday, October 30, 2015

Why the Warlord should be in 5e Dungeons and Dragons.

"When they walk into a room everyone seems to hush, as if expecting a speech. People are enthralled and their size always seems to be bigger then life. Even a gnome warlord seems to stand tall in the mind of a half-orc, and he makes a common man feel like he can do great deeds."
mellored  - enworld.org 

One of the great things about the warlord class in 4e as it created a real agony of choice with the cleric.
  • If you took a Cleric, you had greater healing abilities.
  • If you took a Warlord, you might be able to shave a round or two off your fight, saving more hp then the cleric could heal.

It should exist in 5e for the following reasons.

1. it fulfils a niche that currently isn't covered in 5e dnd (martial leader).

2. Two words: Dark Sun. It also allows a great alternative when you don't want to deal with gods in your world or game. With this class in place, you don't need to overhaul the game to get similar coverage. 

3. It has a fan base. By not doing it, they're practically throwing money away.

Spellcasters need competition. I believe in the "agony of choice" when it comes to character design and honestly, 5e is following (but not to the same degree as dungeons and dragons 3.0/3.5) of favouring spellcasters over non-spellcasters.

As for what actions, I want a mechanic where I can give up my action, to give it to somebody else an action with a bonus, or get somebody to move, or to get everybody to dive under cover without resorting to spells.

If the name offends you because of his fighting connotations, use the 3e term Marshal or Mundane Bonus Booster (or MBB for short).

The thing is the base covers a wide variety of concepts:

1. Let's go for the classic example: Julius Caesar. A 43 year old politician turned warrior that laid the foundation of the Roman Empire.   He sure as hell wasn't a fighter.
2. A Rescued Princess/Prince that gives bonuses to their party while getting into peril.
3. A Kobold mascot, whose dapper attitude makes him/her adored by all.
4. An singular ŇĆendan with a set of flags that cheer-leads the rest of the team to victory.
5. Captain America: Y
es you could make the argument that his super soldier serum makes him a fighter, but in a world where you have Hulk and Thor on the team, his biggest advantage has always been his charisma and his leadership skills.
6. King Arthur of the Britains.  His main skill was not his force of arms, but his leadership ability.

Other ideas include (quoted from Manbearcat in Enworld.org)
"Or Hannibal from the A Team. Or Mick from Rocky. Or Colonel Troutman in Rambo. Or Bilbo/Frodo in the Hobbit and LotR. There are plenty of examples in genre fiction.

Or mommy kissing boo-boos away!"

So ultimately hating the warlord is to be  against mommy's and America. :p

More seriously, the warlord should be including because 1. it full-fills a niche that currently isn't covered in the game and 2. by not having it, those who like the class are being told by the community it's bad wrong fun.

I like my gaming to be inclusive. :)



Thursday, October 29, 2015

Blade III - how could it have been better.

Let's start with some basics of what could have been better.

1. Dracula isn't a 3k year old vampire.  If they wanted to do something like that take an egyptian or mesopotamium deity, and vamp them out.  Good choices are Osirus, Set, Anu, Tiamat (ancient female vampire would work well), and Cain.   White wolf may throw a hissy fit, but if you create enough distinctions no worries.

2. If you had to have dracula, do some homework.  Watching bela legosi at three in the morning eating doritos in underwear doesn't work (and it wasn't even that good).  There was absolutely nothing to make him distinctive  a big bad euro vampire Vlad Tepesh (who is an awesome character even before vamped).  Heck buffy villians are superior in all ways.

3. Do not kill off whistler in the first 5 minutes of the show.  He is the consistantly best character, and removing him got rid of a person who could have helped integrate the two generations better.  If you need to kill him  (again), make it actually useful.

4. The nightstalkers could have worked, but they should have been setup as a scooby like relationship with blade.  They needed to at least be integrated in a manner that didn't seem forced.  The chick has a hollywood weapon, and the twerp should have actually been useful beyond the first five minutes.  Being an ex vampire doesn't cut it (whistler was one, and he's three times the man you'll ever be).

5. The major vampires were bad.  It's a sad sign when HHH was one of the best played of the characters (although why they game him a vampire little dog is beyond me).  That female character had the worst lines in the show, and created dead silence with her horrible overacting. The other guys weren't too bad but we knew they were fodder.

6. Never got the feeling that the Vamps were using the system against after his capture after the death of whistler.  I know for a fact if he killed as many cops as anyone did, he shouldn't have a moments rest throughout the movie.

What would have been kewl is if he finished off the big bad, and the rest of the vampires, tired and exhausted and as he left, found out the building was surrounded by cop cars.  Complete with laser dot on forehead from a sniper.

7.  Don't care about a mixed cast one way or the other, but make them competant whatever you do.

8. One of the stupiest things is when he turns off the blood bank and walks away.  What the heck is stoping her from flipping the switch back on.

9. Personally, I actually didn't mind wes (and his stunt doubles) performance, but they should add more neat stuff to the story show casing blade's abilities.

10. In the first few minutes, vampires finally got my respect, using body suits to go outside.  More usage of this by the villians would have gone a long way of making them credible villians.  Usage of guns to slow down blade in cross fires would really prep them for a physical fight.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Artillery in Rifts



Ever since I got Merc ops (a while back), I've been grumbling over its comments about artillery.

On page 125, it says "artillery seems antiquated  and much less effective."

I disagree for a number of reasons.

1. Difficult to track: Even if the big guns are slow, the mortar if anything has been bred new life in the battlefield.  In WWII, the allies hated dealing with the german 50-mm light mortar.   The main reason for this is that the mortar literally could come from anywhere and were difficult to track.

Now wouldn't you like that tactical advantage if you were dealing with a demon/monster that has been terrorizing the country side.   You pick up 2 to 3 3-man mortar teams, and shell it from multiple angles, and the demon/monster  will either flee the area or get trashed, for it has literally no idea where it's attackers are.

Even if the enemy has modern sensors, the attackers are literally under the tree line, making radar useless,  and they can use range to stay out of nightvision and infrared range, provided they know where their target is.  And if they are driving a 20 foot to 30 foot robot, it becomes fairly easy to spot.

2. Targeting an area rather then a person:  It is always easier to fire at a land mass then at an actual character, and it takes less training.  Even if you miss, you can still get them in the blast radius, as what it was designed for.

3. Cost:  A mortar costs 2000 Credits in rifts, and it's ammo is roughly the same cost as a CS grenades.  Comparing that with prices of a simple wlk's 320 laser pistol which is 11,000 credits, and the very expensive cost of recharging e-clips makes the mortar very cheap indeed.  You can train 3 man teams with it and the cost goes down even further.

Even the big guns are much less expensive then other weapons of note:  the 105 mm howitzer costs 150,000 credits, the 155mm  costs 350,000 credits, and the GAW-155 Electromagnetic Howitzers costs a whopping million credits.

In contrast, the Samas costs 1.6 million credits, a NG samson costs 850,000 Credits and when you get to giant robots, it starts getting into the multiple millions of credits.  For the cost of one samson, you can purchase 5 105 mm guns and still have money over for ammo.

4. Technology and Tricks:  There are a number of tricks and traps that have been developed using modern artillery.  For starters, if the defenders have a chance to survey the area, they will have a good idea which way attackers will assault the position.  Plus with  scouts  with maps and secure radios on hovercycles, one can fire on a particular area, long before an enemy comes in threat range.

Another trick for a slower, yet still mobile artilery is to take either a mountaineer or rolling thunder and have it pull a 105 mm with a solid connection that allows the heavy vehicle to fire it from the cab.  Build 4 or five of these and give it good radius, and they can act as each other's forward observer, and rain firey death on their targets.  Plus can move fairly quickly out of position, while the other vehicles drop artillery to provide cover.  Plus with a good targeting system, can compensate somewhat for fast opponents.  Also sensors of all sorts can help identify a target for shelling.  It is still cheaper then most power armor to boot.

Artillery can be used to fire a wide range of ammo, from poison gas, to incendiary (to start fires), to anti-personal and anti-armor rounds.  There are also Air burst rounds for those flying targets that probably wouldn't be hit by normal artillery.

Finally, if your worried that your neighbours know about your artillery, just pull an old trick learned from mash.  Put it in a tent, and/or thatch house, and have it built to be pulled down quickly when needed.

In short, I believe that artillery is still dang useful in post -apocalyptic rifts.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Uses for a 10 foot pole.

Just a fun list of uses for any new gamers.

a) pushing open doors
b) prodding the floor/ground for weak spots, pits etc.
c) for leverage
d) tapping for hidden compartments
e) impromptu weapon (staff/spear)
f) impromptu bracing (sometimes requires pole to be shortened)
g) testing fluids for dangerous content
h) taking samples of liquids or slurries (attach a tube for flask to the end)
i) impromptu fishing pole
j) vault over pits
k) impromptu ladder (if it is a metal pole, and the char is light)
l) prodding holes and burrows for baddies
m) impromptu wooden pegs
n) testing places where your arm might go for scythe traps
o) testing places your hands might go for electrical trapes/runes
p) carrying foes/bodies (tie their hands and feet, and carry them as if on a spit
q) impromptu spit (for cooking)
r) impromptu cavalry defense (sharpen the end to make huge stakes, like the British archers used to do)
s) depth gauge
t) tripping hazard/trap to use against foes.
u) statue poker
v) Picking up keys/items with loops on them from the ground (especially if you tie/attach a hook to it)
w) Knocking down items from high places (tops of shelves, etc.)
x) food gatherer (knock fruits out of trees)
y) a way to hand things UP (especially w/ a hook attached). If hte guy who falls into a pit is the one with the rope, he can pass one end up (if he fails to toss the end up)
z) as a balancing rod while walking across a plank or tightrope.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Forgotten Realms and The Thunder Blessing - Dwarves gone wild.

Back in 3rd edition era of the forgotten realms, there was a baby boom of dwarves.

this rant was a reflection of what I hoped they would do with it.

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


I think they're will be change, but I don't think it will be the same breakdown of society that happened in the 60's or 70's.

More like the changes occuring in Japan since the meltdown (at the same time experiencing a mini-baby boom.

My reasoning behind this is as follows.

1. Dwarves by their very nature are lawful, and while change will occur, they are more likely to work through legitimate channels.

2. Because Dwarves families are extended rather then nuclear, and they have a longer lifespan overall, they'll have strong pressure to conform. Not only will ma and pa chastise the young dwarf wizard, but also grandpa, grandma, great grandma/grandpa, great great grandma/grandpa, and the aunts and uncles of each generation, to say nothing of the cousins.

Then again, the cousins could also be insisting on various changes within society, making things extremely interesting.

3. not really a point, but more of an ideas of its affect on dwarvern society to show how cultural change has already happened within dwarvern society.

I would like to bring up the subject of Dwarvern women.

At one time in the realms, Dwarvern woman had comparatively few rights. They were respected, but were stuck in servitude role, expected to act as mothers and wives, but little more.

As the clans declined, female dwarves "took advantage of failing Clan power to achieve equality with their malefolk." (Dwarves Deep page 6).

This both shows that Dwarvern culture changes over time and that dwarvern stereotypes can change within dwarvern culture, especially if their is a desire.

In fact, because of their own changing nature, I would argue that Dwarvern women would be more likely to explore the mystic arts, especially since Dwarvern Males dominate the Clergy.

It would definately have an effect on the study of magic.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Deathrace against the Patriarchy

We decided to try The Fast, the Furious, and the Feminist.
https://studentroleplayingregionals.wordpress.com/2015/09/25/the-fast-the-furious-and-the-feminist/

We decided to use the Ryan Macklin cards to fill in the blank spots.

Our story is called Deathrace against the Patriarchy

The year is the futuristic year of 1955

Our heroes are:
Cassie F.: Secretly, her f is short for frankeinstein and is unwilling to confirm whether it was the doctor or the monster.  She has monster hunters after her.
Her customized weapon is a black and red rhinestone  tommy gun.
Her car is the Down Deb a stripped down Jallopy.
Flashbacks: When she's being chased, she gets flashbacks.  They are always in black and white and not always within her lifetime.

Jeannie:  She's an older gal whose rumored to have been run out of hollywood after slugging the director.
http://quazal.blogspot.ca/2015/09/furious-game-jam.html
She racing against the Patriarchy.
Catch phrase " are you ready for your close up <pow!>.
Quirks: always rolls for feels
Customized weapon: no one is sure, but it's under the dashboard. She keeps saying "nobody has seen it."
Her car is the Purring P a teal cadillac

She may have had a kid out of wedlock (oh nose!)

Location: The mean streets of Milkwalkie

Gang name: C-GEE (because they cannot decide on anything else)

**************
Encounter 1:

"while you were casing silverback road for the next race, you saw the canadian motorpiggers  also casing it.

Cassie f rolled the following
Fast: 1
Furious: 3
Fiction: 4
Femminism: 5

Jeannie  rolled the following

Fast: 2
Furious: 5
Fiction: 6
Femminism: 6
Feelings: 5

based on the backstory card, cassie (too slow) was politely pulled over by the canadian motorpiggers  that was tense (Jeannie was grabbing her weapon from underneth the

dashboard) until they began to talk and appeared friendly (especially after Jeannie turned on the deep, confident, sexy, voice).  After a polite conversation, we made nice

on both  scouting out the road and giving the canadian motorpiggers kudos that can be cashed in at a later time.

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

Encounter 2

"you and PC were travelling to the "soda shop" when they encountered hostility from FBI.

Cassie:
Fast: 3
Furious: 4
Fiction: 3
Femminism: 3
Feelings: 4
Flashback 2

Jeannie:
Fast: 4
Furious: 4
Fiction: 2
Femminism: 2
Feelings: 4
Flashback: 1

As they pull up to the race, they realize they are being tailed. Purring P floored it, but the Down Deb took longer to rev.  It becomes a drag race, but they start racing each

other.

The race disappears from both of their minds as a flashback occurs.

Jeannie's flashback is to the orphanage where she had to give away her child out of WEDLOCK! to a man in black.  Her lip quivered, but she dealt with it like a woman.

Cassie also has a flashback at the same time. It appeared as  a turn of the century film reil of a Baveran castle.  She is in a tower with steps being heard coming to the door.

She avoids causing a crash as she jolted herself back into reality before the door opens.

Writer's note:
It was at this point, we decided that all dice would be rolled and had no clue how to health and didn't care.

Next round

Cassie
Fast: 5
Furious: 4
Fiction: 2
Femminism: 5
Feelings: 5
Flashback: 6

Jeannie
Fast: 6
Furious: 5
Fiction: 5
Femminism: 6
Feelings: 4
Flashback: 3

Cassie and Jeannie leave the Gmen in the dust, but tempers flare as they continue to race.  As Jeannie pulls ahead, her flashbacks kicks her fury into high gear.  Jeannie sees a guy and a girl on the road driving ahead and she cuts them off, where the couple is forced to stop.

Cassie pulls herself together, despite lagging behind.  She's been here before as her flashback also happens in black and white, but instead it was 2 decades ago before she was born?  The rotary car phone goes off.  Cassie pulls over and picks up the phone.  It is a manly voice on the back saying "they passed the test."

**************
Feedback.

It honestly felt like a great way to setup a plot and less of an actual game, but we might have been doing it wrong.

We had no idea how to track damage, or use difficulty for enemies.

We had no idea of equivelent of  Radiance

Still it was a blast (but that might have been our insanity).

BTW this is a lot more fun if you yell out "flashback" when you roll the die. :D

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Supermarket Munchinkinism

This is a smartering of crazy ideas of making a supermarket into a weapon.

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

Well here's a few

First the information pasted from an old book.  (underground by mayfair games)

Rubber bands:  If they were edible, rubber bands would be mankind's greatest invention!  Is your gun's grip too small, or too smooth?  RUBBER BANDS!  Do your spare clips rattle and give you away as you sneak down the hallway?  RUBBER BANDS!  Is that pesky 'sapiens getting on your nerves?  RUBBER BANDS! (use five or ten.  They may not be as satisfying as piano wire, but they get the job done.)  With a little ingenuity and a bunch of rubber bands, anything can be accomplished.

Ultimate Guide to Shooting Rubber Bands
http://members.aol.com/morganbolt/


Duct Tape: What is the perfect companion to a woaking great handful of rubber bands?  A couple of brand new rolls of duct tape!  From home and automobile repair ro demolition and electrical jobs, the lovely silver tape is good for any task you can imagine!! If you've run out of place to strap a gun on your body, strap it on a larger weapon with duct tape!  Do you have a piece of equipment or a sentimental item, but no hook to hang it from?  Tape it to another piece of equipment!  If rubber bands were edible.  I'd have mine with a big side order of duct tape!

101 USES FOR DUCT TAPE
http://www.thezac.com/ducttape/



Now my other stuff:

Pop Cans: One of the cheapest distractions I know, just shake, crack open and spray.  Not to mention their use in traps (in a manner not unlike the grenade drop).

Aerosol cans: This is a great catalyst for explosions, for a lot of the cans inqude nitrous oxide.  Plus whip cream can do amazing things to an area   :D:)

Rubber Gloves - gaudy, but will avoid having your fingerprints left and will protect against a lot of bad liquids.  Best of all, they are desposable.

zippo/lighter - there is absolutely no reason why a person shouldn't have this for lighting fires. Get several, or if possible small containers of lighter fluid for other fun effects.

Pam:  With this you can put a non-stick surface anywhere.  Good for making slip areas and picking locks :D:P

Crazy glue:  Sticking two objects together is always in high demand.

Heavy syrups:  Whether chocolate or Corn syrup.  This stuff is great for "tagging things" and when made into a paint bomb does wonders.

corn starch - powder:  This stuff has  no scent: with a surgical gloves, it can be used to blow a dogs scent when being tract.

Corn Starch Tricks
http://www263.pair.com/webstaff/cgi-bin/page_viewer.cgi?page_id=65

Candles:  These little babies can be used for illumination and also as timers, if you can set it up with a wind shield.

Notepad and pencil:  You never know when you need to write something down.  If bruce campbell would have had this in armies of darkness, it would have been a far shorter movie.

Crayons: Easy to mark out an area in color, plus they can be melted down for a wide variety of uses.

Ammonia detergent: if left open, it creates a fairly effective teargas.

uses of ammonia
http://www.rmtech.net/uses_of_ammonia.htm

can's of spam:  This stuff can be used as a  skin conditioner, gun lubricant in the past, and be considered edible :D:P

bag full of bubblegum and bits of chocolate (5 cents), gummi worms, gummi bears:  Besides being used to win favor with difficult people, this can be used to jam up machinery.

Mirror: a defected sunbeam can be seen from orbit.  Great for signalling and looking around corners.

Twine and rope:  never have too much of this.  for binding things.  Hope you were a boyscout :D:P

Lightbulbs: improvised catrops.

Matches: for...er...setting things on fire.

Backpack: to carry the stuff.

Glad garbage bags: for the rest.  Also great for mixing stuff.

cutlery: knives are dang useful

Pocket knife:  Even a cheap one has it's uses.
scissors: more useful.

toilet paper: the obvious.

Crowbar: For moving stuff and a great club.

Broom handles:  same uses as a 10 foot pole.

Marbles: hee hee, bad guys go down :D:P