Wednesday, 19 December 2018

16 month Calendar and other time keeping

I saw a youtube video about the Human Calculator, and his 13th month Calendar and I thought.. Hmm, I wonder If I've mentioned it in my blog? my Calendar that is..

16 Month Calendar

Earth has a strange calendar, You can google hundreds of articles and videos about it, how to calculate it, ways to fix it, etc etc. I do like the idea of the 13 month calendar and how people in power have crushed all attempts to have it through history.. makes you wonder.. 

So I looked at my world(s) and thought.. Hmm, How many days/weeks/months etc would I have..How would people measure it?

Earth has 4 seasons, hot, warm but getting colder, cold, and cold but getting warmer, depending on where you are in the world. Unless you could think of anything else in such a binary system, It'll stay.

Then there is the moon cycle. Travels around the world, gives you a sense of when things should happen next.. 4rd moon this year? must be time to plant crops, 7th moon, animals will begin to breed. So there's that to consider too.

Moon cycles were divided into four, to make the week, giving us 7 days a week, luckily, would be havoc if it was 27 day cycles, we'd have some messed up calendars.. maybe that's why many civilizations don't get space travel, their clocks are so confusing, their lives so disordered, they can't get anything done efficiently, and why should they, the universe is obviously not consistent, so why should we?

So, that's Earth.

The Coyn.

Well At first it was earth like, and later I thought.. that's wrong, because of many reasons. So I had to do some math, lots of math, and figure out all the angles.

A brief reminder: The Coyn is a flat, disc shaped world, it has a sun, smaller than the disc (for reasons) which rises and sets on the same side of the world, but moves around it, 1 full rotation of the sun is a year, and takes, now, 515 days. Actually its 515.25258.. but more on that later

There are many ways to divide up 515, not. You have 5 and 103. So would the civilisations choose 5 months of 103 days each, or 103 weeks of 5 days? 103 doesn't divide easy, so, yay!

So, Ancient Civilizations might have 5 seasons, areas that are usually cold, might have, "the Great cold" as a season.. Russian Winter! Then a season for getting warmer, but its still cold, getting warmer and its nice, getting colder but its still nice and getting colder but its already cold, each season is 103 days long? 

Does it have to? We have leap years, where we add in an extra day every 4 years, so why not leap months? Maybe as time went by, they looked at the 103 days and figured.. you know, we could break it up into 51 days x 2 and a spare day... or 25 days and 3 spare days, or 3 sets of 26 days and 1 set of 25 days. Then 25 days can break into 5 days each, since 5 seems to be a dominant number here..

Viola.. its got some logic, but is broken, so I gave it to the Orc Tribes in the mountains (since they'd be watching the sun and figuring this stuff out), but broken enough to be a little chaotic, unruly and cause fights. 

"Midsday, the 3rd week of Forthmonth of old winter, I was reminded by my mother that there would be no end of month day celebration as it is the end of old winter and the next day would be Firstmonth of wintergone, war is coming as does the sun"

Of course races with a bit more aesthetic, would be insistent on declaring some days as seperate celebratory days, and having a nice clean set of numbers to work with. Humans, arriving at the world, remembering their earth calendar would be putting together a 30/31 day a month calendar, resulting in 17 months, 12 with 30 days, 5 with 31 days. But an offshoot of people would try to force a 12 month calendar of 43 days each, with 1 less day each year, except leap years.. 

What about leap years?

So, Earth, has 365 days, but we also have .24, so every 4 years we add a day (leap year), but thats .25, so that little..01 means that every 100 years we don't have a leap year, BUT theres a teeny tiny bit, so if the 100 year is also divisible by 4, then it is a leap year, except a miniscule little leftover, we'll add a day in the year 4909.. got that?

So, If I allow for leap years, every 4 years you add a day, and every 40 years you add an extra day and every 160 years you don't add either of those extra days.. thats the .25258 part.. 

So now, our offshoot humans have 43 days a month for 12 months, for 1 year, and then the other 3 years, December has 42 days (better to have 1 less day of winter, than 1 less day of summer)

The Elves

The Elven Homeworld is an eight sided octohedron, six gigantic mountain ranges that seperate the eight lifestyles of the elves. The aesthetic of the number 8 permiates their existance, and relates to their innate usage of magic. They quickly recognised that the world was not right and have attempted many times to get it right by speeding up the sun, slowing down one of the moons, their long term impression is that once its 'back to normal' the internal machine of the world will start back up and set things right. Their clocks have 80 second minutes and 80 minute hours, broken into four 8 hour chunks of the day for 32 hours, so it stands to reason they're try to force their calendars to a 8, and then when they realised they couldn't, force the world to conform to their system.. 

The Dwarves

The Dwarves are based on a 4 and 6 structure, 24 hours, broken into 4 sets of 6, 60 minutes, 60 seconds. All very logical, so their calendar too tries to split into 24 months, but that makes 21 days per month.. not very 24 like.. but 21/4 gives 5 days a week (one for each finger on the hand) for 4 weeks, and a day off at the end of the month.. very dwarf like.. very agreeable. oh and 11 days at the end of the year for a festival.

Of course, this is all for the major civilisations, all the minor groups have their own, and their neighbors influence, and then it all gets messed up by the spire.

The Spire

In the middle of the Coyn is a gigantic spire of ice, at its base, its 100km wide, rises 60 something km high, above the clouds of the clouds of the cloud cities, The very nature of a gigantic structure, causing a shadow across the land for miles and miles, the sub being blotted out for days or even weeks, will affect the psychology of the people and the weather of the area.. As a result, a sub-section of the calendar might also come up.

In my Dark Moscow campaign, there was 10 days of utter darkness in the winter where the sun was behind the spire, it was called Deep Winter, and was not recorded on calendars at all, for fear that acknowledging it would bring out demons, vice versa, during summer, autumn and spring, a few days of extreme warmth from the reflected rays of extra sunlight, caused a Mid Spring Summer, a mid Autumn Summer and a Very Hot Summer for a few days, So for them, there were almost 8 types of weather, the equinox of winter and summer marked by days of extreme cold and heat.

In roleplay, this happens for a few sessions, players are reminded of the natural course of events that their characters are fully aware of, and the players are always fascinated by. Before, I might explain it each time, later I had hand-outs and now.. I can reference this blog.

Tuesday, 18 December 2018

DD12 Cataclyzm Playtest Diary

I've been playtesting Cataclyzm to get a feel for how the game flows well, as its not a traditional roleplay and has moments where even I as GM get fazed and left wondering if I'm making a fun game or forcing an idea. So I decided to blog my thoughts..

DD12 Cataclyzm Playtest Diary #1

Related image
A Typical Afternoon in Cataclyzm.
Cataclyzm has alot of great ideas, but alot of crummy ones too, so I've decided to play test them out, and see what works and what sucks.

First Characteristics: Most games start with long sessions to create characters, but the draw back is, long character creation = far less desire for players to lose their character. Also, rolling vs choosing, both have their draw backs, but what about situational voting?

So what we do in Cataclyzm is give the group the choice.. Here is the situation.. who is going to volunteer to solve it, why are you volunteering, because you're the best at it, group votes if they should be "the best" or "just good", if they are "the best" they should also choose something their 'not so good at' to balance..

i.e. The Players awoke in darkness, tore the membrane/cloth that covered their face and looked around, the first thing they saw was some insane crossbred horse/turtle with a mouth of teeth. The first to get up and go towards it, would likely be the most courageous, the group votes him "most" courageous, a 21 is assigned as his courage score, and he steps forward to the beast.

As play progresses, We discover who our archer/ranger is because one of them decides he wants to throw a rock, and he wants to be good at it. We discover who our warriors are, because the grab rocks and start stabbing at the thing, one is a fast warrior, the other strong.. again, because the group voted yes to each of them being 'good' at it.

Related image
Imagine its dark, that head is twice as large and 7 ft tall!
When One of the group got bitten, the question was.. Do you have enough health to survive this? why? do you have any skills that might mitigate this situation?

As the turtles neck spun around in his direction, our warrior quickly turned his body away at an angle, the bite was harsh, but escaped being deadly as his bones halted the crushing jaws of the beast, just long enough for him to pull free.. a gaping wound, but one that could be survived.

Of course, We can't all be heroes in all ways possible. eventually most players had 3 defining stats of 21, 19 and 17, with 3 counter stats of 4, 5 and 6, while other players had more averaged 18, 16 and 14, with a 6, 7 and 8, the rest of the numbers were in the 10-11 range..

Play testing, I had allowed players to 'spend' the spare points to round out their characters, but they of course min-maxed a few stats, for the future I'll ensure the rule is 'average' out the remaining points.


At first I was all "Oh you can be anything you want, are you a medieval peasant, or a caveman or a guy from present day earth or someone from star wars or warhammer 40k", the caveat is, they have to take skills relevant to their character, not the situation.. Also, their characters all have amnesia to begin with, "who am I" so their skill list is empty.. the problem is, they take skills as they need them anyway, not skills that are character relevant, but situationally useless, I'm going to have to bring in some kind of lists and have them roll or something, players could later invent their own lists and hand them to the GM.. they know what skills they 'might' get, but not when they will 'remember', or they could even not remember anything and just learn their skills from the GM never really knowing who they are until weeks into the campaign.

Again, this is to get the game flowing fast, decisions in character creation slow people down, take away the choice and direct their agency into interpreting the situation, gives players creative freedom with creative barriers, often best used when you're not sure whats best.

As the character settled down for the night, lost as to their place in the universe, the pondered their existence. They chewed on their uncooked turtle-horse leg meat, tended their acid wounds, and kept watch.. for the endless night sky and vague silhouettes in the lichen-glow suggested any manner of nasties, ready to devour them.

Related image
Ok, so lose the trees, the sunset, the glowing tents, pretty much all light.. so.. nothing like this photo.

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

Vancian and Moorcockian Magic

Inspired by Pitsperilous, I started thinking about how Vancian of magic fits into Dungeonworld.

Other Kinds of Magic

My Three Power Systems seperate into power from without, power from without and power from divine. yet really the last one could be power from other.

Magic, is power from without. Harnessing Elemental forces via code words, gestures, material effects and runes to force the laws of reality to shift momentarily, so you can perform magical effects. You need to understand these rules to be able to alter the rules.

At its basic level, though, magic is just pre-scripted sets of these code words and gestures, understood by ancient magicians and taught down the lineage to newer magicians, without any thought as to 'how' that rule does what it does.

Material Component for Fireball!
How does someone cast a fireball? what is going on to create that fireball? for the most part, players don't care and so its understood that the magic user has less care, he knows that if he moves his fingers thus, speaks the command word just so and has a pouch of sulfer in his hands as he does so, a ball of fire will appear from his gesture, and move at haste towards the target.

Its only when a mage reaches some greater understanding of magic, that he might question the very art he practices and delve deeper into its mechanics enough to adjust the fireball to become hotter, faster, invisible, or appear at the target instead of thrown towards them.

When this happens, the system needs to already have all those parameters worked out to allow the mage to attempt to adjust and create new varieties of spells..

Which is probably why my spell system has taken 20 years to develop.

Yet since 99% of players will never care, there is no need to have those rules in the core books. just list the spells and what they do.

The Same could be said for all the arts.

So, Vancian and Moorcockian systems might simply plug directly in. Since the above fireball cost to cast has a material component, then maybe instead all spells have a memory slot component, or in the case of Moorcock, the spell requires the knowledge of a being that reduces the magic point cost..

Except we've crossed the line into Priestly abilities.

When developing the system, I decided that the process of Vancian Magic made sense if instead of a memory slot, it was goodwill of a god.

When a young priest begins his journey, he has very little sway with his god, so he asks of his god a prayer, and given than he is indeed a pious priest, the god will award him with that prayer, but if he asks too much of his god, a second prayer or third, he risks the gods ire, or at least is ignored.

This works almost directly with the D&D Vancian style. Priests have X number of slots, based on their relationship with their god. A level 10 priest, might have 1 level 4 prayer, 2 level 3 prayers and so on, allowing the priest to perform a daily ritual, to 'stock up' his prayers, then uses them during the course of the day, if he is strapped for a specific prayer he might ask in abnormal times according to his god, but maybe, godwilling (or GM willing if it makes story sense) the god says yes and the power is bestowed upon the priest, but maybe at some extra cost.. ("don't ask again for a week!")

Vincent Muhr, god of wind!
So, Moorcockian Magic would instead be a external power from others, If you need to cast calm, you pray to Muhr in a windy shaft, and he brings you the power of calm, to be used within 48 hours.

Of course, you'd have to know Muhr, or at least his name and his environmental rules, and have some clout in the elemental realms, akin to belief in the priestly area.

This creates a whole subclass of 'powered' which seems akin to the classic warlock or a neolithic shaman. Its a mage, but uses the priest lifestyle and deals with spirits, demons and elementals instead of gods. It seems cheaper, and easier, like priest powers, but likely with time has terrible after affects. 

Monday, 12 November 2018

Comparing Systems for Completeness

I saw a post about comparing their games break-away dice system, to show it off.. Though I might use the template and see if my system would do the same:

Heres the Link

Will your game system deal nicely with this:

Charter Authority (CA): You have received a gilded envelope with very flowery writing.
Beatrix: Does this look like the last envelope sent by the House of Celebration?
CA: It does, the handwriting is also recognizable to you.
Beatrix: I want to check if the envelope is rigged like the last one and, if so, open it safely. No mess this time!
CA: What skills do you wish to employ?
Beatrix: I have a 12 in Insight, I'll roll to boost: rolled a 6 and 3, success +2.
CA: Ok, If there is any rigged gear, lets see if you notice (GM rolls for stealth vs player perception+2) a 1 and a 3.. doubtful
Beatrix: So that's a failed roll.
CA: You open the envelope, trying to take great care with it until, suddenly, you're covered in glitter. It's all up in your feathers.
Beatrix: Curses!
Kace: Can I try to get a sneaky picture of her covered in glitter?
CA: Roll your Stealth against her Perception.
Beatrix: Aw, you can't just leave my poor character in peace? Does insight help.
Kace: Ooo a Setback! I rolled a pass, but with an 11.
CA: That's a mixed success! You both have a success and a failure. I think I'll let you decide what Beatrix's fumble should be, Kace.
Beatrix: Don't you dare, Kace!
Kace: I character uploads the picture to my holoprofile and shows it to Beatrix.
Beatrix: My character runs at him!
Kace: He runs away! There's no way he's getting covered in glitter too!
Jackson: While this is going on, I get a picture of the chase and upload it with the tag #DD12.
CA: It gets 135 Hearts and you have 10 new followers.
Jackson: Indeed.

Its something I do from time to time, when I see people posting about their game rules. If I come across an issue, I ask myself, do my rules cover this? Can my players do this? and more often, do I want my players to be able to do this, or will it spoil their experience if they assume other rulesets.

In the above example, its the player asking to engage in a perception action.. Us humans, we assume that we're just not engaged with the world, and we need to 'enact' our engagement. 'be aware'. Having been in several life threatening situations, I can attest that your body does this for you automatically. Your awareness heightens, and the only thing you get to choose is where to focus that attention.

For DW, Its assumed that you are in 3 possible states of awareness, Asleep, Awake and Alert. the GM is instructed to give characters the benefit of the doubt and assume that they are in the most appropriate state for the situation. If a person was asleep, and you start describing some sound, then they are awake.

There are of course situational modifiers, lack of sleep, drugs, alcohol, blows to the head, etc, but the base score is Asleep = 0, Awake = half, and Alert = full.

When Beatrix asks to check if the envelope is rigged, its because she has previous experience with such things. So she automatically gains her insight bonus, and can roll to gain it again. (players love to roll) by being cautious and looking for the trigger.

The GM rolled a 4, with a 1, so, unless Beatrix has amazing perception + skills, its doubtful that a 4 would ever fail, so we don't even check if the roll was success or not, that 1 pretty much says it will be.

When Kace tries to stealth against Beatrix, we know the scores, Kace passes the roll, but rolls a fumble (10, 11 or 12) on one of the dice. Having players choose their own fumble is far more entertaining.

Once again, I am relieved. While I had to 'fudge' the text for the Insight roll, I'm just aware that I have to double up on the rules text about how opposed rolls work.

p.s. I have friends who glitter bomb their invites.. vacuuming for weeks!

p.p.s. OMG As Google+ goes down, all their related sites just fail. Appologies, I only now noticed that the text above was forced a white background for certain browsers, AND I can't comment to the fact, as Google+ is now blacklisted by DNS blockers from commenting.. ??

Monday, 5 November 2018

World Build October Part 29

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Monday the 29th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a ceremonial object"

In A time long gone, The Angels who flew the world left the 'candleholders'. They were collected and distributed amongst the churches of the Holy order of the Tree and are used in ceremonies to celebrate the festivals.

They are light weight, have a heavy pointed end and a hollow end. When placed in the ground or on a wooden table, they balance easily and the weight of the candle usually has no bearing on the balance.

When lit, they give off a glow toward the ground, some show special symbols and patterns, some a generic circle.

Some have been told, hold the bones of the angels and are regarded as holy relics, stored in ancient vaults beneath great churches.


The light weighted bird race invented a spear, that could be segregated into 6-8 parts, and carried on a belt at the waist, connectable in times of need as a dagger, or short bladed sword, a polearm or a full spear. 

Wednesday, 31 October 2018

World Build October Part 28

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Sunday the 28th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a common pet or companion animal"

I'm going to go with this from Players.

Typically you'd expect that players would go with a familiar or pet that matches something either easily accessable, OR something rare and exotic.. now while thats true for most players, a larger majority decided that declaring their horse as their pet/companion, was the best choice.

In that line of thread, it seems fair that at least amongst the more common folk, a riding beast or beast of burdern would be most likely as the commonest..

Which brings me to the Yakult. A six legged Oxen/beast of burden, quite friendly, mildly magical, and very strong when it comes to pulling heavy loads. They have tough skinned hands instead of hooves and have been known to grip trees and stones to pull themselves forward.

Since the wild Steppe of the Ashigaru plains have many nomdaic races, which use the Yakult for many reasons, statistically speaking, the Yakult is the most common animal companion.

Monday, 29 October 2018

World Build October Part 27

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Saturday the 27th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) an average citizens home"

Average? for where? The houses of the medieval European cities are single roomed, sometimes built upon a structure to keep above the dirt, which affords the owner a cooler storage place. Colder climates need a hearth of sorts, while warmer climes can do without.

Being a generic, from all worlds, fantasy trope place, its not hard for any gamesmaster to throw any kind of house into the world and it being fairly normal.

Wood Elves live in forests, high up in treehouses. Dwarves carve their places into the stone of hills and mountains. Deep Dwarves live completely underground. Caitshee tend to be nomads or live in moving tribes and Dryads live inside of trees.

An Average citizen of a High Elven city, might live in a 4 roomed, 2 story building, perched on the side of a cliff, while the average halfling lives in a communal hall with his brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents.

The People of Rel'Whenderfel live on house boats, and the people of the lands of the Water God Innusi live on mounds of dried dirt, in a land of perpetual swamp.

World Build October Part 26

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Friday the 26th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a predatory animal from your world"

Ok, so since dangerous, roleplay worlds are pretty much filled to the brim with predatory animals, who have yet to starve themselves out of the food chain. I'll have to roll on my chart of animals, and pick one that isn't standard trope, already in any other rpg...

here goes.. 

The Mortubus.

Most likely a demon-dog hybrid? The few who have encountered the Mortubus have described it as either a dog with tusks, or a warthog with a lithe body, but the most unpleasant thing that has always been said about it is that it has the hindquarters of a human, even though it runs on the ground. As a result, its end is raised in the rear.

None have been killed and brought in for study by any mage schools or monster hunter guilds, so it can only be thought of as one of the many gorgons that inhabit the world. i.e. the variety of creatures that seem to be made by warped gods who stitch random creatures together.

It is a deadly creature, possessing some semblance of intelligence. It fights with crazed fevour and uses some mildly clever tactics to corner its victim. The tusks are sharp and long, penetrating armour easily and doing some severe damage, often also infecting the wound, causing the victim to die days later and their organs seeping from the wound.

Its suggested that the Mortubus cannot properly chew, and needs to poison the victim into a more slush like food to be lapped up.

Its hind quarters are its vulnerable location, being human-like, cuts easy, yet any strike to the latter half will result in the creature retreating and fleeing from combat.

World Build October Part 25

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Thursday the 25th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a prey animal from your world"

Besides all the standard earth world predator-prey examples that you can google, and all the ones that match, i.e. any animal that tries to catch and eat another, and this can include alot of ones that might be world-buildy.. i.e.

the plant that captures other plant/animals and eats them?

or the animal that captures sentient plants that walk around?

or the rock elemental that chases down dust-bunnies?

How about this one:

Living coins.

For some strange reason, magic tends to give everyday objects sentience and purpose, without any reason. The weirder variety of these are living coins.

They can cause themselves to roll, if they manage to fall from a shelf or high enough surface, in order to move themselves around the world. They tend to 'park' themselves upright against walls or furniture so they can move off at a later point, because if they ever end up flat on the ground, they are immobile.

They tend to want to be picked up by humanoids, placing themselves in places to get noticed. If they get into an empty bag of coins, they escape. Working their way up the sides with each jostle until they jump out. Sometimes, its noted that they take other coins hostage?

But they are, for the most part, trying to escape the dungeon they are located in, because eventually the mimic will find them and eat them. 

Sunday, 28 October 2018

World Build October Part 24

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Sunday the 24th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) an extreme form of weather that exists in your world"

You'd think a cyclone of sharks, or an earthquake that has sentience would be bad enough.. but what about blood rain that causes all living things to become undead.

In the most recent times, the queen of death, from another dimension, decided to target the coyn world, and the whole that she came through ripped the fabric of reality, causes rain to become blood and within it a disease which caused living tissue to suffer and dead tissue to attempt to live once more.. in other words.. zombies.

The whole continent is now under heavy rain of blood, heroes everywhere are seeking out the source in an attempt to 'save the world'.

Meanwhile in sunny Archronite, there is a sentient cup of tea having a heated argument with an air- water sprite.

World Build October Part 23

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Tuesday the 23rd - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) some plants from your world"

There is a strange little flower that grows all over the world, in various forms. The colours it displays to the average person can ranger from a single pigment to a rainbow of shifting patterns, depending on the time of year and the moving leylines.

Yet to a wizard, the flower represents potential. The flower exhibits magical properties, seems to be magical, yet is the alchemists stone of the magical herbalists community. Nothing can be discovered about it enough to make use of its properties.


In the northern jungles, in the shade of the Kalikuri mountain, There is a plant that having observed wildlife, create a two part structure. One, looks like a predator, and the other a grassy knoll. When someone or something comes along, sees the predator, is startled and falls back, they fall on the grassy knoll, which is instead a pit trap with spikes.

Smaller varities of the plant produce snake-like vines with huge heads and beady looking eyes, larger varieties have been told to shape into giant cats and even fantastical creatures unseen before.. Anything to scare the victim into the trap.


The world seems to have a strange sense of humour, many plants have grown in a way that suggests some level of sentience, or an external force. Once such plant is the dandy-lion. The flower of which represents a lion, with a smile, with leaves that look like a suit of a 17th Century Victorian dandy. Curiously, boiling the flower heads, results in a tea that has been known to bring courage to the imbiber.

Another curious plant is the blood-wart. It grows on the sides of things.. other plants, buildings, people if they stay still long enough. Its green, but in the core is a wart of blood. it can be squeezed, and blood like substance will come out. It has no known use and is considered a weed as it makes places and things look quite grotesque with all these little blood coloured warts all over it. 

World Build October Part 22

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Monday the 22nd - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) one of your worlds man-made wonders"

The Original city of Middlehelm was a sprawling great city, people built both up and down. Many houses of the affluent were severl stories high, with a floating chamber in the house that allowed anyone quick access to float up to higher floors or float down to lower ones. Stairs still existed for several purposes, but not common everyday access. This was due to the fact that the city had been built on a magical leyline of the element of earth and air, allowing almost fee gravity spells.

The Tallest Tower in the city was run by the University of the Coyn. Due to their almost inexhaustible supply of gravity stones, They were a hub of magical travel by means of a variety of floating paths, and hover carts. The Tower boasted over a few hundred levels, yet, one could argue that placing a floor half way between the floor above and the floor below, on the outside of the two, did not constitute as a seperate level. If we disclude those, the tower rose 498 levels from the ground, and was over 900 levels in total.

When the great flood of mud buried everything, the top 70 or so levels were not flooded and buried. But, as a result of the shift in magic, they almost immediately collapsed. The surviving wizards and dirtomancers managed to rebuild a new University with the bricks and stones of those 70 levels.. not up so much.. but more around. Yet still boasts a tower of 13 levels, held up more with engineering than magic.

The New city of middlehelm, still benefits from a pulse of magic that comes from deep with the land, and worthy adventurers come from miles around to delver deep into those dungeons, plunder the ancient treasures and return (if they return) rich enough to retire.

The City is a wonder to behold, and the caverns below more-so.

World Build October Part 21

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Sunday the 21st - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) one of your worlds natural wonders"

If you've ever travelled earth, Seen some of the natural wonders that we have, you'd be hard pressed to invent anything that isn't already a real, natural wonder.

Sure you could include magic, turn things upside down, or floating without gravity, entering one place and popping out another. Things akin to the world in the Russian made Dragon Hunters movie (which I've seen on YouTube in its entirety).. or Labyrinth, Jareds castle's gravity mixed locations could present an interesting natural wonder..

That begs the question, if a place is created by a god.. is that a natural wonder?

If magic, psychic or godly powers, influence anything, would it still be natural?

So, for this, I Think I'll have to go with something a bit different, and a lot bigger.

The Coyn World..

The World was made of Lava, it was a spinning top of lava, and upon its surface little lava people walked around and fought for the creators amusement.

Over time the lava cooled, and became a giant rock, meteors of ice and minerals crashed into its surface and eventually over time, the escaping gasses formed a dome of air.. because, even though the world gravity caused the shape of a flat coin from the rock, air has its own way of doing things.

At first there was no plant life, mostly due to a lack of sunlight. There was no sun, originally being lava, there was no need, but as the rock cooled, light faded into nothing.

Yet life still somehow existed on the surface.

The Creator has included some left-over toys to create suns, but never got around to starting them up, they floated around this little creation, their energy seeping into the world, yet no light.

At some point, the little lifeforms on the surface began to create light sources, who knows why, and eventually, they tapped into the giant energy balls and started one up as a sun (not before getting one wrong and creating a cold sun) and so, light eventually existed on the world.

Now (skip time), Four remaining spheres float around the world, One Sun, bright and hot, one Cold-sun, Bright yet frozen, One untapped Sphere of energy and a small lump of rock, that may have been the top of the spinning top at some stage. Plants began to grow, giant dinosaurs didn't take the time to eat all the plants as people were already running around the world, using the dinosaurs as mounts, No comet has come to wipe life off the planet, but there was a great flood of mud that buried everything, and people had to dig it all up again, which created hundreds, if not thousands of tunnels and dungeons beneath all the cities of the world.. hence the name.. DungeonWorld.

Thursday, 25 October 2018

World Build October Part 20

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Saturday the 20th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) an important historical figure"

There was once a great king, He drew his people together to forge an empire. They cut down trees, cut stone, smoothed the land, and built a network of roads from the north of the empire to the south, but along the way, they disturbed an ancient vampire who lay sleeping in his crypt for a few hundred years.

At first the king thought it to be a crypt of ancient lore, like any other, and had it moved to his city of cemeteries, like the rest. A trophy city if you will, of all the lands that had been taken over by this king.

Well, the Vampire awoke, and at first thought that the city had merely grown up around his crypt, but as soon as he discovered that he'd been moved.. well there was hell to pay.

He summoned up all the dead from the city.. which was alot.. and lay waste to the entire land, searching for the king.

Eventually, the king was defeated, the vampire approached him, and whispered in his ear. The King was appalled. Aghast, he attempted to fight back, but the Vampire turned the king into his own kind.

The Vampire king, as the story goes, strolls the land in search of something, somewhere.

Little children are told this tale to teach them not to forget where they put things, lest the vampire king come find it first. 

Like most historical figures, much is lost of the reality, and only the 'interesting bits' remain.

World Build October Part 19

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Friday the 19th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) something in a common artistic style in your world"

You could say there are three forms of art, Natural, Square and Unnatural.

The Natural forms, favoured by many artists, races that live in harmony of the land, tend to follow patterns found in nature. lines matching branches of trees or lines in water and such. The meaning of such art is often obscured in prose, poetry and hidden in strange metaphors.

Sqaure forms are followed by more stone & mineral loving races, They follow more geometric patterns, often with plain meaning and logical patterns.

The Chatoic artforms tend to make the other two groups retch, as the often violent, dangerous form can lend itself to bending reality with magic, conjuring up nightmares or summoning demons.

You see, Art, can be used, very similarly to runes. The right flow, lines, paths and a touch of magic can enact spells.. 

one must be careful

World Build October Part 18

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Thursday the 18th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) the uniform of the military or police"

The Uniforms of the Vespertine brigade are an interesting specimen, Beside the brocades, the fluffy quills, the shiny boots and the cloak. The more interesting aspect is the grill.

The Vespertine brigade are all equiped with a metal plate, attached to the shoulderpads, which covers the face of the guardsman from chin to nose. It has a slotted grill allowing air to flow, but not completely.

You see, centuries ago, there was a great plague, the city of Versper suffered greatly, it didn't kill, just made alot of people weak, and unable to defend themselves against anyone who was unafflicted, so for months, the entire city was at the mercy of a few rogues who were immune to the disease.

So some clever sorcerers and tinkerers invented a facegrill to be worn by some heroes, so they could arrest the rogues. Once proven to be useful, the king ordered a full regiments worth of these, with extra abilities built in for commanders and the king.

There were some improvements made, so the original grills have been de-commissioned (and might be available on the black market).

While now over a hundred years old, the grills still work perfectly (as does many magical items if cared for). Their abilities are:

* Blocks out 80% of all poisons, gases and air-borne diseases, -80% effects.
* At will allows wearer to increase volume of voice by 25% or 50%,
* Commands given have an influencing presence, causing listeners to obey.

As a result, the military guards have become a very effective police force, and crime in the city is lower than 20% of other cities of equal size.

World Build October Part 17

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Wednesday the 17th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) an average low ranking individual"

There are a myriad of everyday people that have been born into the world, and a handful of those that were accidentally deposited here in times beyond comprehension. Yet those few are not so average as they bring new ideas, fresh thought and a sense of wonder into the world.

No, the average individual of this world is akin to the average joe or jane of any world. going about their business, doing what needs to be done to survive.

Lets Take a random person from a random continent of a random city, all by rolling on some charts I have.

The Continent: The Lions Head.. Ok.. lots of stuff mapped out here:
The City? Shempuir, North of the Capital of Thuispar, Home of the Hills-folk, a race of humans that prefer to build their cities into hills, using the rocky ground as protection.
A person? well, random parenting rolls from character creations gives me a charcoal burner.

So, Kaligra Shukburner, dresses in his average hession cloth clothes, covered with a smock, his pockets contain a flint or few, some frayed rope, maybe a copper coin and some dried pork fat. His day would consist of going into the woods, gathering as much wood as he can carry, bringing it back to his family to sort into grades or qualities of wood. In Summer, he'd wait til morning to build up his mud vat, surrounding the wood in mud, lighting up the fires, burning them for an hour, then sealing off so they cool to coals. During that hour, he'd load up his bags and his wheelbarrow and do his rounds, selling coal door to door in the richer regions first, so they have their coal before the masters awake, and the poorer regions with the lowest grade.

He makes a copper for a sack of high grade wood coal, and a few tin bitz for a shovel of twig & stick coal. Once his load is gone, he'd head over to the markets and buy a load of old sacks for a half-copper, take them home for his wife to resew/mend, have his meal and off out into the woods for more wood.

To survive, he'd likely set a few traps at first, collect them again that evening on the way back. maybe a small patch of plants and herbs he's planted out in the common land, or hidden in a patch of woods he know about.

His life is likely to be short, breathing in charcoal dust, he'd get a lung disease by 50, but he'd have been married at 18-21 to whoever'd have him, his kids grown by his 40th, so he'd see grandkids before his death, maybe even meet an adventurer or two during his life.. 

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

World Build October Part 16

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Tuesday the 16th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a powerful or high ranking individual"

My players know of some individuals, who like Voldemort, should not have their name spoken. We refer to them as Mr.D, Mr.B and "her".

There are many people who could be considered powerful, high ranking yet powerless. I do like a good trope, and having seemingly innocuous folk be ultra powerful (like yoda) is good fun, yet done too often is boring.

There is a guy though, that is powerful, yet doesn't really understand it.

See back year ago, we decided to roleplay ourselves in my game, We stat-ed our characters, argued about how it sucked that we were not herioc, and in the end the 'portal' opened in my lounge room and we all traveled to this fantasy Coyn world to play.

It lasted about 2 sessions. It became obvious, that being our real selves in a world, didn't give us the skills to survive the world, It wasn't fun playing a bunch of geeks and nerd, who had very little real combat training, no spell ability, no actual lore of gods, and the only thing going for us, was our meta knowledge.

The game stopped, but one player kept it going with a kind of offline play by email game.

The thing was, not being born in the world, of the universe everything resided in, it made no sense that the gods could be aware of him. Without that, death could not come for him. 

See gods are responsible beings, responsible for the day to day goings on, that we in our world call physics. So without the 'god of physics' around.. he became immortal.

He's still there, tending bar, he now owns the bar.. he's aware that he can't age, and suspects he's immortal, but doesn't want to test the theory, and he can't ask anyone since he's the only one this applies to, he can't find out for sure.

He knows alot about the world in general.. Imagine being cast back in time now, to 0 B.C. How much history of the world do you know, basic physics, maths, science, etc etc.. alot..

He (in real life) knew a lot about my world, so in the game, he knows ALOT about the world.. 

But while he can't make things happen to gods.. if he tells someone, and they believe it.. then that affects the gods.. which means he can influence, without repercussion..

Now that is powerful.

World Build October Part 15

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Monday the 15th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) what your inhabitants wear in cold weather"

There Are Three Winters, One is due to the huge pillar of ice in the centre of the world, and the shadow that it casts across the land, Every season, there are several days when the sun doesn't peak out from behind the crystalline structure and the world as you know it becomes colder than you've ever felt before..

In the middle of Summer, the Blistering Sands of the Omfg Deserts cool enough to walk on, then the rare rock pools freeze, cracking the rocks they sit in. As the sun returns to heat everything once again, water seeps into the cracks, providing small life recluse locations to grow away from the 60c+ deserts

In the Town of Amishandor, Far enough North, that the shadow passes for a mere 3 days, people come out to celebrate in Summer, as the cool winds and chill temperatures are a respite from the hotter summer days, Yet in Winter, when its already cold enough to freeze ice left outside, those three days become dangerous.

During these few days, Amishandor crack open their winter chests and bring out the Rattain Furs.

The Rattain are a race of giant rats that live in the hills to the north, mutated by the demonic powers that reside there, to be able to live in the cold caverns and protect the treasures. While dangerous, the fur has an amazing property, that even after death, the fur creates warmth for the wearer.

When Adventurers came to Amishandor, and travelled to the Demon caves, they returned often with skins, and items raided from the tunnels. At first the townsfolk shunned the fur as it was strange, smelled and gave of an eirie warmth, yet with a good wash and skilled stitching, has become a sought after cloak by travellers.

World Build October Part 13

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Saturday the 13th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a depiction of a god or deity in your world"

This one is one of my favourites.. I hope you inlcude him in your world, because he likes to travel.

The God PHUK. (ouch)

This God, is praised and worshiped across the world for many, many reasons. People pray to him for a myriad of reasons:

* because they found something awesome, 
* or saw something amazing,
* or hurt themselves,
* or want to emphasize something in his name,
* or all of the above, at the same time!

This God, is a mighty god and with all this worship, he gives out presents. Many Eons ago, he discovered the best present is a red brick.

In the very early days, when a prayer was made, he would throw the brick from high, at his workshipper and when it struck them in the head, they would pray to him again.. WOW he thought.

So he gifted them again, yet often the second brick did not warrant a third prayer, Such kind followers, not to burn through his powers.

Some people took his bricks and made temples to worship him. When they prayed in this temples, the whole temple would collapse upon the priest and bring the priest to his heaven. An efficient way to directly bring leaders to his kingdom in the afterlife.

Since the world was so wonderful, he watched further as others would use these bricks in the building of his houses.. then later, when a worshipper would pray to him, the brick would do its job and re-gift itself to that person. Amazing thought the god.. I don't even have to create bricks, and I still receive the worship.

Everyone knows of the god, They know of the gifted bricks and the love that he brings the world. People have started to show the god a time of rest, but not praying so much.

Soon, several other gods began to follow in his ways, and a small pantheon of gods were formed. They are known as Carlins Seven.

Due to even the written prayer being enforced, I can only refer to the gifts given by the seven.

The First God, upon prayer, will ensure you slip in or on, that which you prayed for.
The Second God, upon prayer will ensure you now need to do so,
The Third God, is the god of this article,
The Forth Goddess, Will summon forth a Warrior of Social Justice to swat you,
The Fifth God, Will cause a farm animal to be angered at you,
The Sixth Goddes Will cause your female parent to curse you, as she recieves the Third gods present,
And the Seventh Goddess will ensure that the next time her namesake are visible, your vision is blocked by another.


This god was enforced when I was a teenager, roleplaying at the kitchen table with my friends (no basements in Australia) my mother would exclaim her ire at hearing bad words, so we introduced the first god as punishment, and the later gods when we saw George Carlins show.

This still didn't stop one of our Dwarves from his life long mission to build a tavern from said bricks.

World Build October Part 14

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Sunday the 14th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) what your inhabitants wear in warm weather"

Describe Warm Weather?

In Australia, Warm is 30-39c, In Russia, Warm is above 15c to about 30c.

In the Highland Swamps of the Kukuru mountains, the reflections of the sun on the mountain ranges, means year round warm weather, muggy, humid, The soil composition has left the valley in a perpetual swamp like pond, it rarely rains, just constant moist weather.

Clothing clings to the body, restricting movement, so most clothing is made from vines, weaved together to form a mesh, its not worn for protection from weather, but from the bites of fish.

Often, mud is worn on the skin to protect from bugs, and coloured mud has been sought after by several inhabitants, creating a trade in rarer shades of red and white (from the normal range of browns)

Celebrations often bring out the women covered head to toe in a variety of patterns of mud, in varies stages of drying out. clever 'dressmakers' have layered the mid so as a layer dries and breaks away, it reveals another colour beneath.


Deep in the mines of Karak-Dune, The Dwarves sweat when it gets above 20c. Maybe because its due to the varied layers of leather armour and mail, maybe its the forge tunnels are full of warm foggy air, so often Dwarves sweat. When the lava pits or forge halls get roudy, the rest of the tunnels start to get really warm, up to 40c, Dwarves can put up with alot, temperature included, but their clothing can't. So, when the temperature gets high, leather can rot, so off comes the leather.

But Dwarves are very traditional when it comes to gender relations. What with the beards and all. Often Dwarves mating rituals involve years of getting to know if the person you're friends with is a male or a female. Its considered extremely rude (at point of death) to imply, let alone ask a Dwarves gender.

As a result, in the warm tunnels, revealing anything that could imply gender would be extremely upsetting. So the dwarves invented a chainmesh, smaller links with the link gaps fused closed. Its slightly heavier, more comfortable than plain mail and still conceals enough of the body to remain respectable.

p.s. With my house-move-issues, I thought I scheduled these to post on their respective days, but obviously failed to do so, hence the block of posts all in a row

World Build October Part 12

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Friday the 12th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) an item on an average persons nightstand"

Some people put their necklaces out, maybe in a box, incase some thieves peek in the window, many people have a hook on the wall for their coat or scarf or hat. Space is expensive, either to buy or to build, so many bedrooms double as storage, washrooms and even workshops.

Imagine what you have on your desk at work, the last thing you use before you go to bed, you put it there, well people in medieval times did the same. empty your pockets onto the shelf and crawl into bed.

There is a little ticking man, made of brass, he sits on the nightstand of an un-average person. He watches the world go by, his little ticking brain, it looks and watches. When someone enters the room of his master, he erases them from existence, he stores their life-force, so the universe doesn't notice them missing, and doles it out for his master, day by day. They live in a tiny little brass prison, or, in some cases, where some have broken free, they roam the halls of the little brass mans inner workings. Few have ever escaped, his master, thinks the brass man just prolongs his life.. unaware of why and how it works, he just knows to always put it on the nightstand before bed.

Oh and sometimes random clothes appear in his room. 

p.s. With my house-move-issues, I thought I scheduled these to post on their respective days, but obviously failed to do so, hence the block of posts all in a row

World Build October Part 11

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Thursday the 11th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a temple or important scared space"

The Most interesting temple I remember a player inventing, was the house of secrets. The building looks like a bank, or maybe a school, no, actually I think it was a library. I'm not sure. Its non descript, people are not likely to notice it, its a boring old building that does what ever it does, Across the road is a market, Ohh boy, what a market. Something about that market, everytime I pass there I just have to go visit. 

p.s. With my house-move-issues, I thought I scheduled these to post on their respective days, but obviously failed to do so, hence the block of posts all in a row

World Build October Part 10

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Wednesday the 10th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a form of music or dance in your world"

In the mythranki Jungles, Far to the east of the lands of steel beams, there are tribes that have mastered the arts of tribal, ritual magic. It started with simple rain dances, then going in reverse for dry dances, and now their entire culture relies on each village doing a specific set of dances in a specific order each year, else their entire world will come to a grinding halt.. or so they believe.

One such dance, done by the teenagers at the pinacle of winter, ensures the blade of shadow will not harm them as it passes by the southern part of the country.

Teenagers being teenagers, some decided that it was not so vitally important, so they didn't learn the steps right that year.. the spell was not cast and the blade of shadow fell across the land.. to no effect.

As nothing untoward happened, the following year those teenagers, who went on to teach the next years students, made it clear that it was merely a ritual, and not to pay too much attention.

Years went past, and the ritual that softened the shadow of winter, was more of a dance.

Yet the reason the ritual existed in the first place, took notice that the wards against darkness were slowly weakening, year after year it watches.. 

p.s. With my house-move-issues, I thought I scheduled these to post on their respective days, but obviously failed to do so, hence the block of posts all in a row

Tuesday, 9 October 2018

World Build October Part 9

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Tuesday the 9th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a common game or sport"

Sport, for the most part is a derivative of the violent games played in medieval times, which are a derivative of war. So it seems a little strange to assume that sport would exist in a medieval environment at all..

Look at the Romans, unless you count Gladiator battles and lions eating Christians sport.. (Yes I am aware that in reality these things were not common events like movies & TV shows us)

It does make sense, however, that many games and sport-like events would have happened locally. groups of boys in the street would most definitely have invented their own games, some of which may have continued into early adult life.

But the game I'd like to discuss is the one, inspired by Robert Asprin, in his books.

Dragon Poker.

When I first read about dragon poker, I was highly intrigued. The idea of playing a game of cards that, the more rules you knew off by heart, the better your hand would be, and an adjudicator was needed to prove each rule quoted.

For example:

I might have a run of diamonds, 4,5,6,7 and 8, while you have a run of spades, also 4,5,6,7 and 8.. but, because I'm wearing predominately red clothes, but you have blues and greens, my red cards are worth more to me, counting my run as 5,6,7,8 and 9.. so I win..
But, you then point out that in the city of Maine, (where we're playing) red clothing is counted as negative, so my cards are now 3,4,5,6 and 7.. I lose.

Other factors include, time of day, number of players, city you were born in. hundreds of possible variants.

Also you would not point out rules that would be negative to you, that's your opponents job, you'd point out rules that gave you an advantage and rules that would negate your opponents cards.

So that's my inspiration:

Dungeon (draw) Poker, is a 7 card, with a 3 card open and 1 card closed (to you) game of poker like rules. There are a total of 12 suits in the game, and special wild cards, but unlike normal games, you bring your suit to the table yourself, submit it to the dealer, they shuffle in the wild cards available, and hand out the cards as a normal game of poker

You try to make the same kind of runs, sets or otherwise, like any poker styled game you've seen before.

The fun part is, there is always that 1 card you have no idea about, 3 cards that everyone 'has' and the wild cards.

Wild cards, allow you to mix up the rules along the way (like fluxx) some might allow you to change the open cards, view your closed card, view an opponents card, but as often as not, wild cards might boost certain hands, modify the cards worth based on factors.

Lastly, because paper is expensive, card stock is rarer, many of the Dungeon Draw cards are worth a bit more than a gold, so much so, that some nobles use the cards as currency in certain circles. This has created a supply demand curve on certain cards and even parties arranged for the exchange of cards, akin to world politics.

One kingdom traded a Dungeon Draw/Dragon Poker card in part to complete a marriage arrangement and bring peace to the lands. The card went on to win a tournament and bring untold wealth to the now merged kingdom and two generations later the same card swapped to another noble house brought about the ruin of another kingdom.

Heroes, often find cards, sealed in chests, in tombs, in dungeons, sometimes unaware of their wealth, they use them to light fires or pick simple locks.

If your heroes find a treasure, the most common cards are the suit of Peasants, or the Suit of Soldiers, throw in a card or two.
GMs: roll a 2d6, or d8+8 for rarer cards, In order: Ace/Void, 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9, Lord, Knight, Baron, Count, Prince, Duke, King, Emperor, Dragon, Suit-wild. Don't tell your players what they're from, just see how long til they destroy it or use it for strange reasons.

Sub-note: The Wizards, being interested in such things have invented their own similar game, which brings forth illusions to fight out over what cards were played, but it is a highly complex game, only for wizardly minds who like complex things.

Monday, 8 October 2018

World Build October Part 8

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Monday the 8th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a food that's eaten on special occasions"

There is a cake, its round, soft centred, crisp shell, with a white icing and sprinkled chopped apricots, cherries and mint berries, that is made in the winterlands of the centre. Its unknown where the recipie comes from, especially since the winterlands do not typically have wheat, barley, yeast, sugarcane, eggs, milk, apricots, cherries or mint berries. All these ingrediants must be imported, and since the winterlands are so far and remote, they must be imported magically.

Maybe, because of the bleeding effect magic has on all things,

Maybe because of the nature of narrative magic,

Or maybe the gods just think its funny,

This cake, is magical. Not just any kind of magical, but supremely magical.

Its is said, that if you start to eat this cake, on your name day, and continue to eat it, at least a crumb per mouthful, and finish it exactly on winter solstice, when the folk are out celebrating the cracking of winter and the spires shadow, then the magic will multiply your powers, you will grow a fuller whiter beard, your belly will swell and you'll gain several magical powers, usuable as often as you wish, some of which include instant teleportation at will (or is it at wink) up to 250m. detect good and detect evil and speak with animals.

That aside, people across the lands make up cakes resembling the unknown cake (some say the cake is just a myth) and eat it from morning til night of the winter solstice, a mouthful here and a mouthful there, waiting until midnight to eat the last bite.

Sunday, 7 October 2018

World Build October Part 7

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Sunday the 7th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) the decorations used for a holiday"

The Coyn World has a very large number of humans from a large variety of times, as the time of the Cataclyzm was not fixed to a specific time point, more of a blurred seven dimensional mess.

As a result, many earth customs from many times and place ended up being part of human culture in the Coyn. You can find Holly wreaths, kissing under mistletoe, pumpkins on all Hallows Eve (though they tend to talk).

But whats interesting to us mere magicless mortals on earth is the decorations done by non humans.

 Imagine if you will, Humans use plants, berries, inks, gemstones to create decorations, yet to some cultures, some races are made of plants, berries, inks or gemstones.. Imagine if they used humans and or human parts to decorate their houses.. urgh.

Luckily, its more common to use magical illusions to decorate, its easier to 'put up' and 'take down'. Some small hedge wizards might manufacture trinkets that create the illusions for people who have little to no access to magic.

Typically, symbols of the holiday, steamers of light or colour, maybe sounds or even a taste in the air, are the most common... that said..

There is a small cult, that celebrates the seventh day of the eleventh month with a strange set of decorations made of paper (with permissions of the dryads, its bark shavings, not wood). They decorate their main hall with furniture, covered with this paper, some represent goods, such as bags of wheat or a small sheep, but some, go a step further, including meat sausage to be eaten in a bread log, cold snow with coloured sugar. people of the cult, travel to each others homes, and purchase the items from one another, decorating the next house with those goods. All sending them off with the greeting "Come again".

Saturday, 6 October 2018

World Build October Part 6

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Saturday the 6th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a Custom, surrounding Death"

Death is an entity, black robes, scythe, bones, When you are at your deathbed, he arrives microseconds before, severs the lifeline to the universe and you are dead.

But, Heroes are granted one reprieve from Fate, another entity, who stands by deaths side and bumps him at the exact 'wrong' time.. the hero lives, escaping his death.

Magi can usually sense death and often as a last resort they expend all their magic in a burst of energy, creating a small patch of unusual effects. Why? because as often as not, the random burst of magic might prevent the death in the first place, and also its fun to go out with a bang.

As a result, some magi schools in the land have started to practice their 'final thoughts' and try to focus them into an actual realised effect, rather than just creating multi-coloured rabbits who burst into fire and smoke when you say the word "elephant".

In Rel'Whenderfel, the Humid lands of the East continent, they have an amaxingly colour filled festival where the magi dress up in bright colours, skull motifs and cast off illusions and fireworks all night. Ending with a grand finali, where the magi try to cast the most elaborate 'big bang' firework they can. They tend to expend all their magic, and sometimes the magic gets mixed up and non-illusionary effects change the landscape, but by weeks end most things are put right and every agrees they had fun running away from the bull-eels and old man McGee was dying anyway.. 

Friday, 5 October 2018

World Build October Part 5

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Friday the 5th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a Custom, surrounding Birth"

Interesting.. Being a dad I'm familiar with a few of our own customs, having a wife from another country means I'm also aware of some strange customs of other countries.

I think, in a world where gods literally exist, where magic exists even if its rare, there would be all manner of traditions, customs and the like, that actually have meaning, rather than pagan rituals that used to mean something when we believed in forest gods and sun gods, but now, are just things we do because we've always done them.

So how about this: In the lands of the Water God Innusi, He who was mortal and raised to god status by the sky gods and stone gods at the temple of blood. Innusi decreed that birth is of his domain, as he heralds the coming of new life. The father of the child must build a mound of earth, raked from the swamp floor, and upon it mould a bath, calling on the sky gods to dry it and the stone gods to make it as rock. Once complete, he sheds a small patch of blood into the bath and paints it with the name of his child. When the mother is ready to give birth, As heralded by a prayer to Innusi (the breaking of water) The father fills the bath with the purest water he can, and blesses it with Innusi's name, for his child to be born into the waters of life. If Innusi deams it worthy, the waters will be purified and the child will not be sick for the first 3 months of it life. If the child is sick, the father was not diligent enough in his bath, or the naming ritual or the purity of the water and the village will not let him hunt, or work, but instead must care for his child each time it is sick instead of the mother.

Thursday, 4 October 2018

World Build October Part 4

Its World-Build-Tober: 

Thursday the 4th - World-build-tober

"Draw (or describe) a Cultural rite of passage"

Every Year on Their Name Day, the Children are gathered around the great circle, They look on in fear, fretting their hands, From the year of their 10th until the year of their 16th, they are walked through the eye of Wailing.

Its unknown how long the eye of Wailing has been there, but its well known, Children who pass through unharmed are good children, those who have evil in their heart are banished.

Its rare that children fail to pass through of their 10th, it has happened, but maybe once every few years, more often than not, its the children of the 15th or 16th year, and even then, barely one in a few hundred might perish.

As a result, the towns are usually devoid of delinquents, Children before their 16th year are well behaved, they do not wish to be banished on their Name Day.

Thousands of miles away, on a castle floating in the sky, children appear at the summoning portal. They are quickly gathered, consoled and informed that they have been enrolled in the college of magi.  

Wednesday, 3 October 2018

Kingdom Death Monster

TL;DR: I bought the game, and both love it and regretted it. Why? because it works so well and is broken in so many places, and its just like my game for the concepts, but none of the clarity. 

Kingdom Death Monster

I bought Kingdom Death monster, no, let me get that right..

I 'bought into' kingdom death monster when it was v1. The idea that you could choose your mini based on your equipment, and swap and change the weapons and armour, oh wow.. so when it came out in 2016, I bought into it, bad.
Choose your weapons, your armour, then pick out the mini parts, glue together and viola, here's your hero.

When I opened it up and played it? Oh Wow, did I love it.. it felt just like a setting I was working on..  I was like, Wow, Cool, This is what my game it going to feel like when I publish... It has a cool kind of combat System... like my game..
And a Crafting system, in a roleplay like game, cool, thats what my game does too...
And  with a location based system, that's what my game does, oh and a damage based system, that's what my game does, and your home base, being as important (if not more so) than the characters? Also, exactly what my game is all about.. 

In case you don't want to google 'what is KDM'

Unarmoured vs a stage II boss? TPK!
Kingdom Death Monster is a tight, focused game on major events, not the day by day or even the small regular events, they get refined into a die roll, no, you pretty much hand wave away all the story and plot of how your characters got to the boss monster, and you fight him/her/it as the main event, and its brutal and wild and the AI system is gorgeous, Death is the only escape from the battle, his, or yours.

Once you survive you take the corpse of the monster and cut it up into resources to be used by your village of survivors, to fashion a better set of equipment. Again, its hand-waved away the food, resources for building huts, its like the basic costs are all done in the background, and whats left over is given to you to choose with.

All prepped and ready? new armour, new weapons? Cool, Off on the next hunt.. The small events leading up to the boss monster are quick, sometimes (often) nasty, very thematic, but you end up at the next boss monster ready to fight

Those three paragraphs above are what you typically do in one game session and are called lantern years. It can take between an hour or three to do, so you might do two lantern years with your mates on a sunday arvo, or you might play solo each night. But it'll take around 8 lantern years if you suffer bad luck, to lose the game, or 30 lantern years to win.. and its a rush.

Since fights are very likely to end with at least one maimed if not dead character, tension is high to play. There are still moments in the village phase and the hunt phase where you might lose a character to death, insanity or worse.

Now its Not perfect, No, Its most definitely a hobbyist game, the minis are designed for people who like minis, wanna make minis, paint minis, its awesome for mini maker/painter/show offs, its like the ultimate trainset, but for violent fantasy. I (as a hobbyist) enjoyed scraping back the flash, aligning the parts, cutting, gluing, choosing the bits, undercoating on the sprue, layers and layers of paint, until they look like little people, ready to be eaten.

Yet the game, stands alone, maybe because no-one has had the audacity to make each and every single item, upgrade, skill, bonus, equipment and resources to make said equipment as a card. random draw? shuffle and draw is so much more pleasing than roll and consult a chart.

And for the same reason, its horrid. do you sleeve them all? trying to find each set to draw from, should you glance at a card as your looking for a specific card? oops, spoilers, too late, ruined that future surprise. Can't keep it all out and set up, but the hassle to take out the character sheet & then all the cards that match your character.. Argh
Hundreds of item cards, playing cards, bits of plastic, hundreds of each, literally.. its 9kg!

So you can't play straight away, yet funnily enough, the rule book is the fastest one I've gone from open to play.. its literally, open, and play.. don't read ahead the rules teach you tutorial like, the first battle, but like a plot..

I try to run my game at conventions, and to do so, character creation is either part of the flow of the game, or you pre-gen characters for people.. So when I saw KDM? a blank character sheet IS a standard character, I was like.. Yeah, that's right.. start fast and furious..

When the game arrived, be a hobbyist, Make the first 5 minis, they have to dry, and it takes an hour, at least.. if you're friends are due to come play another day.. paint? but don't spoil the rules by reading ahead, no no no..

Yet, when you do.. seriously these are the rules? knockback does what? knock down does what? and when you leave the board you just die? or don't? There are so many flaws, its obvious that they could have, should have, done a version 0.5 and published that, with the caveat that they'll redo the rules later and republish for their audience. I was rather dissapointed, but, then a little glee came in, because my game would not be like that..

I was reminded of all the paths I went down, and had to back-track, all the things I tried and failed with, my horrific worst case combat round that took 4 actual hours of real life for a mere 6 second of combat ... that was such a pain to test.. 

My players (god bless their hearts) would put up with so much crap, rules changes, rule edits, everyone had their limits, and it broke them down, then 3 months later I'd make enough revisions to start again and we'd all be like "oh, this works, oh, this doesn't all over again.. so I can just imagine what Poots went through to get his game to where it is.

The cost of Kingdom Death Monster

The cost, well ALL-IN pledges in games cost like $250-$400 these days, because of the limited first (1.3) edition, people just had to buy 1.5 (FOMO), and the models are expensive, not just because he's gotten awesome artists to make the models, the art and the lore, but because he prints only 500 of the pinups, and supply vs demand, he always sells out, so why not sell them for $40 each.. if Warhammer can do minis for $30 each, and they're lower quality (underpinnings)
The Main Box, and the Mini boxes in black, and eleven of the maybe 40 expanions.. $2,000 on ebay

If you were looking for a Folklore/Gloomhaven style game, I'd get that instead, I have Massive Darkness, I played it, and if I didn't want to use all those $1.60 each minis for roleplay, I'd sell it, much better dungeon crawlers out there.

This game is awesome, for the few people that its made for. For everyone else, its a bloody expensive hobby. 

The thing is, all those FOMO buyers, they bought the game or the lot, some found out, they were not actually so keen, but for all the people who missed the campaign, they bought the games from those who didn't want it, at stupid increased prices, and that hype, brought in more people..

There is just now, a turn, people who have the game, but just can't see themselves playing 30 runs of the thing, deciding to sell out, and the price is starting to drop. Might see some half priced versions in another year.

Funny part is.. the hype & price gouging matches the dot-com bubble and the crypto currency bubble.

If you paid full price, or worse, you're self-preserving brain will justify your purchase, maybe by claiming its the best game in the world.. because heck, if you forked out the price of a small car for a game you might realistically only get to the table 4-6 times.. you're going to be soooo pissed at yourself.

If you're honestly interested in playing KDM, try to find a group that is playing it, play it and get a feel for it, if you really like it.. the 1.3 versions are selling at 75% of cost these days (I picked up one myself, for 50%) give it another 6-12 months and you might get a 1.3 for half again.. when 1.7 or 1.9 or v2 comes out, 1.5 will drop in price again.. delayed gratification will always pay off.

Then again.. hang in there, Dungeon Delver Twelve Cataclyzm is a little more PG, has much of same mechanics, just done with different dice in a roleplay environment, no cards and minis, but more than enough content to roleplay a KDM styled campaign with some tweaks.

Fudge that's a big post.. maybe I'm self-justifying too.. I'll TL;DR at the top.