jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

I'm reading another FATAL and Friends, this time of a 90's-era RPG that was heavily inspired by World of Darkness. It's called The Everlasting, and it is, if anything, even more pretentious than OWoD.

How pretentious are we talking, here? Well, for starters, it calls your character sheet a "Protagonist Profile," and it calls the act of playing an RPG "Legendmaking." This is the example of actual play that it gives in Chapter 12: Storytelling: Rediscovering the Magic of Life:

Four people have gathered in a basement for a night of legendmaking. They have exchanged the light bulbs for red lights and have placed some lit candles on the large table they are seated around. Also on the table are two fake skulls, hand-scrawled directions to a haunted house on what looks to be the brown paper of a grocery sack, and everyone’'s cards, dice, and protagonist profiles.

I hope no one filled in their character sheets- excuse me, Protagonist Profiles, in red ink. :P

In all seriousness, though, seeing people like this book's authors describe RPGing in mystical, pseudoreligious terms, reminds me of Mormons talking about how amazing sex is once you're married. When the truth is, it's not something you have to do in a particular way, the most important things are to listen and make sure that you have people's consent and enthusiasm, and you're going to make lots of embarrassing mistakes but the best way to get better at it is by practice.

When I believed my own hype, so to speak, it just made me a perfectionist who was too scared to actually play. What helped more than anything else, in getting [community profile] capsulerp and the in-person game started, was opening up about my insecurity, letting go of the need to make everything perfect, and trusting my RPing partners to know and describe what they wanted.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

This essay was written as a response to Landmarks of Gaming Theory. It is meant to address problems which roleplayers and game designers experience, and to deconstruct a reactionary ideology which would in some cases prevent people from doing so. It is not meant to be the last word, so much as our personal starting point.

Read more... )

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

This is Mira Fox, the character we play in FFXIV. Apparently there are a lot of RPers in Eorzea, and some of them even use Fate. Who would have thought?

(Please note that the use of "men" to mean people is a turn of phrase that is unfortunately common in Mira's world, and which she might be only beginning to question.)

Read more... )

Character sheet formatting (and the I'm a Keeper stunt, representing her species) yoinked from Knight Kat's character sheet. This is what the characters for [community profile] capsulerp will look like once we get them posted, so let us know if you have any questions ~

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Last night I posted a (kinda depressing) thing about not being able to do the online RP we've been planning. I pulled it after I'd calmed down and been able to rest, but I'm still not sure that we're stable enough right now to be "always-on," so to speak, and to be able to do things like reply to creative writing prompts on demand. Especially when things keep happening, multiple times in a week, that set us back and make it impossible to keep to any kind of a daily schedule.

That's not to say that we don't want to GM an RP, or that we can't, period. But I don't think the play-by-post format will work for us, because it takes a lot of effort to "shift gears" to be able to write for it. And having to do that on an as-needed basis, just in the character planning phase, has been making us dread posting on Dreamwidth and leaving comments unanswered.

Or not having our comments answered.

I think what would work better for us would be to schedule times to go on a chat app, or even a forum like here on DW, and GM a game for a few hours, all at once and with no interruption. It would give us deadlines to prepare for, and also help us relax in our "time off." It would also improve our responsiveness, since we're very good at being focused and on-task when needed and the problem is not knowing when we will need to do that (and feeling like we are getting further and further behind when we need just a day or two to stop doing it).

I'm going to just assume that no one wants to do a chat-based or "live" forum RP, right now, and consider the one we were working on dead. I'm probably then going to avoid Dreamwidth out of shame for awhile. If anyone wants to try this format, though, I guess we can talk about where to go next in the comments.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Yet another emotional crisis drove us underground, in the last few days. We're taking care of it (and ourself), with [personal profile] aliaspseudonym's help, but we're also having to do things like go out and get prescriptions refilled and try to make ourself play miniatures games (which is our only in-person social contact anymore).

So the RPG thing has been a little delayed. >_o

I'm told there's at least one other person who's interested, though, besides [personal profile] redsixwing and [personal profile] sablin27, and I'm going to try to get in touch with someone from Steam who expressed interest as well. (For some reason I thought he subscribed here on Dreamwidth, since he commented here, and I was wondering why he never followed up.)

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

We're still trying to do this Fate Core RP, but we're feeling like we're in a little over our head.

Insecure foxraptor is insecure )

tl;dr We're doing our best but we're afraid of messing up, and this is making us avoidant of working on RPG things.

However! We've kept to our schedule so far, and as of right now, we've contacted both [personal profile] redsixwing and [personal profile] sablin27 about the last details that need to be clarified on their character sheets. If we can get that sorted out, we are going to write the first public RP post this weekend.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

... sort of.

You can visit [community profile] capsulerp now, and see useful links that we have for players, including our earlier summary of the game's rules (which doubles as an application thread). Right now we're getting back to players about the last few things to finalize on their sheets, and trying to get character sheets and the site itself formatted.

Speaking of which, if anyone knows CSS better than we do maybe you can tell us how to style only the entry text (including list items and headings) to use our preferred sans-serif fonts, while keeping the weird sci-fi font everywhere else. It's atmospheric and all, but it's a little hard on the eyes for reading long blocks of text. >_o

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

We're still feeling kind of icky and stuff, partly because our hormones have decided to change up our temperature tolerances >_o

Aaand we flip-flopped between Linux and Windows 8.1 a few times before settling on the latter, and finding ways to block a lot of the annoying commercialism, like Skype ads and "Upgrade to Windows 10!" banners.

But we're feeling better and less stressed now, and while we still have things to sort out we should be able to have a DW site up for the RP (along with the players' finalized character sheets) within a week or so.

We wanted to let everyone know, and also to know that we haven't forgotten to work on our fanfic or anything. Also, we somehow got three Malifaux models assembled, and are eagerly (and somewhat anxiously) awaiting next month's long-rumoured Tau releases.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Dungeons and Dragons (and its successor, Pathfinder) uses a mechanic called "alignment" to describe your character's morals. It consists of a Good / Evil axis and a Lawful / Chaotic axis, with the possibility of being "Neutral" on either or both.

A lot of people have discarded the alignment system, seeing it as neither a fun game mechanic nor a useful way of understanding people. We don't really like it as it's implemented in Pathfinder, but we feel like the Planescape campaign setting for D&D really showed what kind of potential it has both for storytelling and philosophy.

Planescape portrayed the Chaotic Neutral afterlife as a "Limbo" of swirling clouds of random matter, which change so often as to be essentially formless and static. It noted that there are "anarchs" who can reshape the landscape at a whim, but did not seem to think much of them.

We think that if someone were to make a game where you play as one, though, it'd look something like Microsoft's Project Spark ...

Click here if you can't see the video.

... either that, or the Internet.

Floating islands of games, stories, and content, connected by threads of imagination and lit by sparks of wonder. That's what we feel it'd be like, to live in a realm of pure creativity and personal expression.

We were always told that we'd get to create (and populate) worlds, in the Mormon afterlife. But that was always used as an excuse, to keep us from doing so here and now. We had to "endure to the end," first, and then somehow we'd go from a Lawful lifestyle of self-negation to an eternity of fulfillment. Either that, or we would be destroyed and replaced by someone who would be fulfilled as a Mormon.

I think our family of origin still wants that for us.

I think that's what all conservative religious people mean, when they talk about "loving the sinner but hating the sin."

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Incoherent rambling here, sorry about that. But as shiny as technology is, I'm not sure I really want to make a career of it anymore. Whether in writing about it or for it.

Partly because the opportunities are so limited. Not opportunities to be paid to write code (albeit in a probably-misogynist environment), but opportunities to be paid to write interesting code ... which, for me, is code to tell stories. Dozens of people work on AAA games, but only a handful get to use them to tell stories, subject to market pressures.

Even at best, in the "indie game" scene, you still spend a lot more time writing code and drawing animations than you do actually telling a story.

I personally think that the optimum feedback loop, for me, is writing the "code" for a tabletop roleplaying game, which is meant to be "compiled" by players and storytellers. I don't have to provide the art assets. I don't have to explicitly build in options for people's characters -- or if I like, I can do nothing but write options for characters. And I think part of the reason that it's more rewarding is because the debugging cycles are so long, so I have a long time to anticipate how people will react to something.

I still want to tell fiction stories ... and I still want to write a few games and apps. But the ones that I want to make, right now, are aids in GMing a game, or automations of "life sim" aspects of roleplaying games like Pathfinder that most people don't want to play at the table with five other people. Procedural stuff, like Ultimate Campaign's hexmap exploration system, or the Babylon 5 RPG's space trading system, that work best when one person's imagination fills in blanks around a series of random prompts.

I'm not sure I need to learn "programming" to be able to make those. There are things like Project Siena and the Windows App Studio that basically let you write stuff in Excel macros, or automatically generate code. The kinds of things no self-respecting developer would use to make The Next Big Thing, but that let domain experts create basic apps for their own field without special training.

I'm not sure when or if I'll do something like that, but I'm feeling depressed right now realizing software development as a career does not appeal to me. And that I'm old enough I should already have a career but don't, even though I used to. I'm trying to tell a new story, and give myself something to look forward to.

Maybe I should have been selling ebooks all this time, like people have been telling me for ten years or so now.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

At one point I was GMing a game of Demon: the Fallen that took place in an AU where the Confederates won the Civil War (at Yuro's suggestion), and Yuro and Alias were trying to talk to this Christian homeschooling lady in a trailer park whose kids got possessed by My Little Pony characters after a failed attempt to summon Cthulhu, and in the front yard was a statue of Robert E. Lee beating up the bear of Communism, with the inscription "BETTER DEAD THAN BEAR."

This isn't a dream I had last night, this is something we actually did. That was an awesome campaign.

Ia Celestia ftaghn!

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The following is a revision of the rules and fluff for the Ceilicans, as presented in Changing Breeds, a Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th anniversary book. The W20 rewrite changed most of their yava to the weaknesses listed here, but still kept some obnoxious restrictions ... like having to change their identity once per year but not giving them any special ability to do so.

Ceilicans are one of the most well-known breeds of shapechangers, but much of what people (even other shapechangers) think they know about them is wrong.

Cats were often said to be the familiar spirits of people accused of witchcraft during the middle ages, and were put to death along with the "witches." Fera call the shapechanging cats of this time Ceilicans, and believe them to be descended from the Cait Sith, fey cats of legend. They are thought to have learned magic from the fey and from actual mages, and to be hiding in modern society using extremely powerful glamours. If you catch one, it's said, you can ask for a magical boon.

Most of that's true. But in truth, Ceilicans' magical powers aren't quite up to granting wishes, and many of their Gifts revolve around hiding from those who would try to exploit (or destroy) them.

After being hunted nearly to extinction, the "witch cats" have learned to hide their true nature in two ways.

First, they have access to a level one Gift which lets them appear to be of mixed racial or breed heritage, making them appear slightly "off" to some but usually no more than that. This allows them to blend in to different human societies, or appear to be small mongrel wildcats such as you might find in a group of other cat shapechangers. This gift requires a roll of Manipulation + Subterfuge, and the expenditure of 1 point of Gnosis, which doesn't return until the Ceilican dispels the glamour. While it is active, they can't benefit from the Pure Breed background.

Second, many Ceilicans know a rite that can replace their identity with a new one. Their memories and appearance are altered, and they may re-allocate skills at a rate of one dot per success rolled. Their Merits and Flaws remain, but their pryio and Backgrounds must be changed to different ones once the rite is completed. If any memories of their past life remain, they seem like dreams or half-remembered stories.

Ceilicans have three unusual weaknesses, all of which resemble legends told about them. Reciting a Ceilican's name backwards six times is supposed to be able to kill them; it really just makes them uncomfortable. The sound of churchbells is supposed to strike them deaf, when in reality it just entrances them for a moment. Finally, cold iron is said to burn their skin like a brand; as it turns out, extremely pure iron affects them this way, regardless of its temperature. Most Ceilicans are vulnerable to silver as well, like other shapechangers, but many -- called "moon cats" by some -- treat it as their plaything.

A Ceilican's feline form is the size of a housecat or small wildcat. Ceilicans with the Pure Breed background look like sleek, black domesticated cats, with emerald green eyes that seem to glow in the dark.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

The game store we played D&D Encounters at is feeling a little less welcoming lately. The owners are friendly, and went to a pride parade in New York and used to give us rides home so we didn't have to walk back for an hour and a half. But they've also got Chick-Fil-A as one of their sponsors for an upcoming fundraiser event.

We wrote them to just mention how we weren't sure we'd feel comfortable being reminded of what it was like, seeing the crowds in front of that restaurant on "show the gays you hate them day 2012" before going to play D&D at their store. But they kind of blew us off in several long-winded paragraphs.

We're considering buying our RPG books at Barnes and Noble now, and spending time at a different game store that's more convenient to get to and that one of our (few) local friends goes to. It helps that it's near the bus station. We'd have to stop going to Encounters ... but our apprehension about spending an hour and a half walking back since the buses don't run that late has kind of done that for us already.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

This is a feat for the Pathfinder roleplaying game, inspired by the Ritual Casting feat from D&D 4e. It is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license and uses Open Gaming Content from the Pathfinder Reference Document. A D&D 3e / 3.5e conversion is also available.

Ritual Casting

You are trained in the use of rituals, which are versions of common spells that can be cast at-will, provided you have enough time and expensive reagents.

Prerequisites: 1 skill rank in Knowledge (arcana), Knowledge (nature), Knowledge (religion), Heal, or Perform (any).

Benefit: You obtain a basic ritual book (which has the same weight and game statistics as a common spellbook), which has two 1st-level rituals scribed in it.

You know how to inscribe new rituals into your ritual book, and how to cast rituals from it.

Scribing new rituals

A ritual may be inscribed into a ritual book from any spellbook or scroll, provided it does not deal Hit Point damage. To do so, use the same rules and skill check DCs for adding Wizard spells to your spellbook, but substitute one of your ritual casting skills for the Spellcraft checks as follows:

Spell ListRequired Skill
BardPerform (any)
ClericKnowledge (religion)
DruidKnowledge (nature)
Sorcerer / WizardKnowledge (arcana)

Spells which cure Hit Point damage are an exception. Use a Heal skill check for them instead.

Spells from spell lists other than those listed above cannot be cast as rituals.

Casting rituals

At any time, you may roll a skill check as appropriate for the ritual (see "Scribing new rituals," above) to cast a ritual from either your ritual book or a scroll containing a spell which could be inscribed into one. If cast from a scroll, the act of ritual casting erases the text, just as casting a spell from it does.

The DC for casting a ritual is equal to 20 + caster level if cast from a scroll, or 15 + caster level if cast from your ritual book. (You may choose what caster level to use if you are casting it from your ritual book, up to a maximum of the number of ranks you have in the required skill.) To cast rituals from a scroll or from someone else's ritual book, roll a skill check as appropriate for the ritual to decipher it first, as with Wizard spells.

If you are casting the ritual version of a spell which would normally require expensive material or focus components, you must have those components on hand when casting it from a ritual book.

Casting a spell as a ritual takes considerably longer than casting spells normally does:

SpellRitual
1 standard action1 minute
1 full round10 minutes
1 minute1 hour
10 minutes1 hour
1 hour1 hour

Spells with other casting times, such as a free or immediate action, cannot be cast as rituals.

If you fail the skill check required to cast a ritual, you do not cast that ritual, and any consumable items required to cast it (including the scroll if you are casting from one) are lost.

To cast a ritual, you must have the required reagents on hand. These cost as much as the material components required to scribe a scroll of that spell, and take on a form appropriate to the skill required to cast the ritual:

Required skillReagent Type
HealEither rare herbs or incense
Knowledge (arcana)Arcane dust
Knowledge (nature)Rare herbs
Knowledge (religion)Incense
Perform (any)Arcane dust

You may also use residuum, which is a form of distilled magical essence obtained by disenchanting a magic item. To disenchant an item, a character with the appropriate item creation feat and a caster level equal to the item's must spend as long as it would take to create that item (maximum 8 hours). The amount of residuum obtained by disenchanting a magic item is equal in value to the gold piece cost required to create that item. Artifacts cannot be disenchanted.

Reagents other than residuum can be purchased at temples, magic item shops, specialty shops catering to adventurers, and from druids or rangers who are open to dealing with outsiders. A character may also roll Spellcraft or Survival to gather reagents, with one check representing one day's work and providing an amount equal to the gold piece value that would be added to an item with that Craft check result. The DM / GM may rule that you cannot roll this check if you don't have access to an appropriate node of magic or source of raw materials.

Converting to D&D 3e / 3.5e

Increase the number of skill ranks required to take the feat from 1 to 4, and reduce the maximum caster level when casting rituals from a ritual book from "equal to your number of skill ranks" to "equal to your number of skill ranks -3."

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

An adaptation of the Vile Scholar theme from the Book of Vile Darkness, with inspiration for powers and abilities taken from a variety of other existing themes.




Called of Cthulhu

"Ph'nglui Mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn!"

There are things mortals were not meant to know. And you dream about them every night! Because a funny-looking green guy with an octopus for a head keeps showing up in your dreams and telling you them, in a language that sounds like the slapping of cold, briny tentacles.

Maybe he tells you to go to a sunken city, filled with the chants of fish-people and cultists. Maybe he says humanoids are delicious, and you really should find out yourself. Who knows! The people you tell about your dreams tend to go mad, and not in the fun way, either.

Starting Feature

The language and mindset of squamous, otherworldly horrors no longer seem otherworldly or horrifying to you. And when you describe your dreams to other people, it does unpleasant things to their minds and bodies.

Benefit: You are fluent in Deep Speech. In addition, you gain a +2 bonus to Dungeoneering checks, and to Bluff checks, Diplomacy checks, and Intimidate checks made while interacting with Aberrant creatures. You also gain the call of Cthulhu power.

Call of Cthulhu -- Called of Cthulhu Attack

The nightmares brought to mind by your utterings drive your opponent into a screaming, panicked frenzy.
Encounter * Fear, Implement, Shadow
Standard Action
Ranged 5
Target: One creature that can hear you
Attack: Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma vs. Fortitude, Reflex, and Will. You make a single attack roll and use it against each defense.
Hit (Fortitude): The target falls prone.
Hit (Reflex): You push the target up to its speed.
Hit (Will): The target grants combat advantage until the end of your next turn.

Additional Features

Level 5 Feature

Your memories of the sunken city make underground ruins seem safe and cozy to you. Slimy Underdark dwellers show up in your dreams often, and you know their names as well as their powers.

Benefit: When you make a Dungeoneering check, you can roll twice and use either result.

Level 10 Feature

Most people would have nervous breakdowns if they were to suddenly sprout tentacles. Fortunately, yours are helpful and friendly, and they go away when you don't need them.

Benefit: Once per round, you can retrieve or store an item as a free action instead of a minor action. You can also use one of your tentacles to hold an item (like a lantern), to open doors, or to do things that don't require fine manipulation, but you cannot make attacks or roll skill checks using it.

Optional Powers

Level 2 Utility Power

If you want to visit that sunken city from your dreams, it might help to bring your friends along ... and to be able to breathe underwater. Fortunately, you've got that covered. Just make sure to tell them first, or they might be caught by surprise!

Deep One Transformation -- Called of Cthulhu Utility 2

Your skin becomes slimy and scaly, and cold, pulsating gill slits appear on your neck. Everyone nearby is affected as well, and the unprepared are REALLY affected.
Daily * Shadow, Implement, Stance
Minor Action
Close burst 1
Target: Every creature in the burst
Attack: Highest mental ability score vs. Fortitude
Hit: 1d6 + Highest mental ability modifier damage, and the target takes ongoing 5 damage as long as it's not underwater (save ends).
Special: Allies in the burst do not take damage from this power. Instead, they assume the deep one stance. Until the stance ends, they can breathe underwater and have cold resist 5, but are unable to breathe air. You may choose to assume this stance as well.

Level 6 Utility Power

You understand the geometry of madness well enough to plunge into the depths of your dreams, and interact with the nightmares therein. Sometimes they tell you something useful, but other times their answers leave you shaken, and you wake up in a cold sweat.

Dreams of Madness - Called of Cthulhu Utility 6

You ask questions of one of your nightmares, and hope that you can withstand the answers.
Daily * Shadow
Standard Action
Personal
Requirement: You must use this power during an extended rest.
Effect: You may ask up to three questions of Cthulhu or another Far Realm aberration. For each question, make a check with a bonus of 5 + one-half your level + your highest ability modifier, against a DC your DM secretly sets.
On a successful check, the nightmare gives a useful (or at least harmless) answer, which you remember when you wake up. If the check fails, you instead lose a healing surge, which is deducted from your total when you wake up the next day.

Level 10 Utility Power

The tentacles you sprout are friendly to you and your allies, but they don't care for your enemies much at all.

Squamous Tentacle -- Called of Cthulhu Utility 10

You know how to fight with your cephalopod appendages just as well as with your bony limbs.
Encounter * Shadow
Minor Action
Personal
Effect: Until the end of your next turn, your reach increases by 1, and you gain a +2 power bonus to melee damage rolls.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

This is the character that we've been playing in Encounters. >_>b We finalized the design after reading a bunch of Dragon Magazine articles and pulling the concepts we liked most.

Content note: Fantasy violence.

Just one minute ago, the Aurilite shaman had been presiding over the death by exposure of his counterpart, from the weaker tribe in the valley. But before the bundle of rags in the snow before him had even stopped writhing, the outsiders had charged in like a winter storm, shouting and swinging their weapons. Literally throwing themselves at his warriors, as one towering Goliath picked up a hammer-wielding Dwarf and tossed him into the fray.

For a moment, he thought he saw shimmering wings bear up one of the younger outsiders, and wondered if a higher Power than Auril had somehow sent them to test him.

The next few seconds were a blur. The small, white-robed girl behind the winged warrior vanished like a candle in the wind, only to reappear an instant later much closer to the shaman's allies. Holding out one arm towards them, as a terrific storm surge blasted sparkling snow into their faces, leaving them choking and blinded. One man fell over backward and impaled himself on a tent stake, and the outsiders rushed forward as his allies coughed and sputtered.

The shaman watched from beneath his fur cloak as the girl strode towards him casually, her glassy eyes shining like moonstones. Snow swirled around the crystal orb around her neck as she held it out towards him. "Do you want to live to serve your goddess?" she asked. And though he had more than a foot of height on her, he suddenly felt very small.

"The Frostmaiden will return," he managed to get out, mesmerized by the display.

The girl looked down at the twitching sack of bones at his feet. When she glanced back up, her ears were more pointed, and the hand that held on to her orb had grown claws. "Perhaps," she said, grinning and revealing her fangs. "But where is she NOW?"

Character profile behind cut )

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

It's like the freaking WordPress of tabletop RPGs.‏

Everyone uses it. Everyone knows how to extend it. Everyone knows how to break it. Nobody cares that it's broken.‏

The people who love it most are the ones who make money off of selling stuff for it so you don't have to write your own.

It wasn't as bad in the 3.5 days. 3.5 classes were as bare-bones as you can get. Some of the rules were really messed up (how the heck does polymorph work, anyway!?), and Pathfinder fixed some of those and clarified some things that were ambiguous.‏

But the biggest thing Pathfinder added was options. Loads of options. Tons of options. Lots more system complexity. Lots more moving parts bolted on, until it was like a blinged-out drag racer with fins and chrome hubcaps and flashing police lights.

Ranting and explanation )

I'm trying to think how to take the good parts from both 3.5 and Pathfinder. Here's what I'm thinking of so far:

From D&D 3.5

  • The basic core mechanics. How most spells work. How most classes work. Cleric domains. Each class should be only a page or two long in description. Psionic stuff's probably okay as optional add-ons.

From Unearthed Arcana

  • Action Points, ideally as the only secondary resource for most classes. Being able to add a +1d6 bonus to any roll you make really makes level 1 characters feel more heroic, and takes the frustration out of missing your attacks and skill checks.

  • Spell Points instead of spells per day. Clerics, Druids, and Wizards still prepare spells each day, but they cast them with Spell Points, which makes it feel more worthwhile to experiment with interesting spells because it's not as much of a waste if you never cast them. Plus everyone gets the concept of "mana" or "MP" more readily.

  • Certain optional class archetypes. Monk fighting styles aren't much more complicated than Wizard schools. Paladins shouldn't have to be Lawful Good to begin with. Whirling Frenzy is a neat Rage variant. So long as they don't add too many moving parts to keep track of, I'm cool with thematic abilities.

From Pathfinder

  • Advanced Race Guide rules for creating a species, but trimmed waaaay the heck down to stuff that'd be useful for anthros.

  • Certain bloodlines, mysteries, and the like could be simulated using feats, maybe. It'd be sort of like 4e multiclassing: You gain a class skill and a cool ability, maybe one for your familiar too if you have one. Higher-tier abilities depend on the lower-tier feats. Don't have enough feats? Take an Unearthed Arcana weakness, why don't you.

  • Clarifications on some spells, like polymorph.

  • Character traits, just as options. If you want you can take another feat instead. Could probably make these a lot simpler than Pathfinder has it, anyway, especially since most of the traits seem like reprints of each other (+1 to a combat stat, +1 to a skill and it's now a class skill).

Jury's still out on whether Combat Manoeuvres are an improvement on how 3.5 handles it. I think that they're doable as long as we make them an optional system, and stuff all the "fancy tricks you do in combat" into it.

We're open to suggestions and stuff.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

First, a new profile.

Second, a new old community, [community profile] fursonarpg. We promised some local furs a draft of our RPG rules, and have been hastily writing and editing. Here's how far we've gotten:

Basic Rules: http://fursonarpg.dreamwidth.org/1161.html

Fursona Creation, part 1: http://fursonarpg.dreamwidth.org/1455.html

Fursona Creation, part 2: http://fursonarpg.dreamwidth.org/1546.html

We're partly doing this because of all the times we've had to help walk people through Pathfinder's character creation process, and we want to just do all the work at once and make it so people can easily understand how to do it on their own. Also because we like a lot of things about World of Darkness' character creation, and noticed some ways we can make Pathfinder work like it without actually changing the underlying math too much.

What's frustrating is that when our web hosting went down without warning, we lost all the stuff that we wrote on our old WordPress site. This includes [personal profile] cereus' story (I've contacted them about it but received no reply), and all the Fursona RPG stuff that we wrote. Remember, kids, keep local backups.

Let us know what you think, if you're interested.

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)

Summary: A short writing experiment inspired by Demon: the Fallen, the His Dark Materials trilogy, and bits and pieces of Mormon theology. Part one of a character backstory for a D:tF chronicle. Definitely neither GM-approved yet nor canon.

Content Note: Some violence (nothing graphic). Don't read if you belong to an Abrahamic faith and are sensitive about religious matters.

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Read more... )

jewelfox: A portrait of a foxgryphon with a beak, black fur, magenta hair, fox ears, and a neckband with a large jewel on it. (Default)
In part 1, I summarized how I feel about human society and what they've done to the rest of the world. Now I'm going to go over different human-created technologies, and ways we can use them to tell our own stories and create our own worlds. I feel that this is a way we can both help otherkin and other marginalized people, as well as attack the most powerful humans directly.

So here's a breakdown of what's involved in creating the experience of becoming one's fursona or true self, and how hard each step might be to implement.

Read more... )

Sorry for the drowsy rambling. We sort of had to work this out for ourselves. We're open to suggestions, offers of assistance, and anything else anyone would like to add.

Edit: Oh wow you guys look at this http://danielribeiro.github.com/WebGLCraft/ It's an open-source tech demo for playing a Minecraft-style game in your browser. There are other things like it out there. Just imagine what could be done with this, like for creating scenes you could RP in or games and stuff. Virtual legos don't need to be able to run Tekkit, they just need to let you build things!

About us

~ Fox | Gem | Rei ~

We tell stories, paint minis, collect identity words, and share them all with our readers. If something we write helps you, let us know.

~ She / her ~

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