Friday, October 9, 2015

Probably Not in Strange Stars

I've talked a lot about finding inspiration in older sci-fi,  but their are some vintage TV aliens, I just couldn't fit in:

No two headed clades. Not even on Mars like in the Twilight Zone.

The Saticons from Lost in Space know how to accessorize, but well...

The Lobster Man from Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea has no opposable thumbs.

Like Talislanta, Strange Stars has no elves, so these guys from the Lost in Space episode "Space Vikings" are out.

The zarbi and the menoptera from Doctor Who. What is there to say really?

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Hyehoon: Another Strange Stars SWN Excerpt

This is pretty much the format the clades for player character use will be in in the Strange Stars Old School book, currently in the works:

Physical Characteristics: Biologic humanoids with some avian characteristics. They have lighter frames than baseline humans, but are strong for their weight. Head and brow hair is replaced by light, downy feathers.
Psychological Characteristics: Hyehoon are dynamic and inquisitive. They get along well with other clades.
Names: While there is variation based on subculture, most hyehoon have a personal name, a clutch name (immediate family), and a clan name (larger kinship group). Their typical ordering convention is clan name, personal name, clutch name. Samples:
Female Personal Names: Ahwi, Hyana, Oona, Wheta, Yaren, Yrari
Male Personal Names: Apata, Hamoon, Helo, Olo, Tuvo, Ydris
Clutch Names: use personal names from either gender
Clan Names: Ahmat, Aroi, Milonga, Ro, Sokha, Yooloo, Waroi
Backgrounds: Any; Adventurer, Astrogator’s Mate, Biotech Crew, Comm Crew, Politician, Researcher, and Technician are typical.
Classes: Any.
Attributes: standard.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Wednesday Comics: Queen of the Man-Things

Reviews of previous issues of Weirdworld can be found here.

"Queen of the Man-Things"
Weirdworld #4 (November 2015), Written by Jason Aaron; Art by Michael Del Mondo

Synopsis: Arkon and Skull the Slayer have plunged into a swamp where the very touch of the vegetation burns. The Slayer has the upper hand, but Arkon luckily finds one of his lightning bolt-shaped weapons underwater, and stabs Skull with it.

The combatants are both grabbed by plant creatures rising from the much--Man-Things. They again burn as they feel fear, Arkon sees the flames consuming his beloved Polemachus.

The Queen of the Man-Things comments that there is so much fear in both of them. She is Jennifer Kale and she reveals that Skull is James Patrick Scully and they are both from the world beyond Weirdworld. She tells Arkon that it is Morgan Le Fay, the Baroness of Weirdworld that hunts him and Skull works for her.

Kale wants to depose Le Fay and bring peace to the world and for that, she needs soldiers. She takes two winged frog things and puts them in their mouths. Arkon sees a vision of Polemachus upside down, but he realizes it's something more that his fear of his world being turned upside down.

Skull's vision makes him see the error of his ways. Kale rechristens him Skull the Redeemer. She turns to Arkon...

He rejects her offer and flees. Kale lets him go. Arkon runs through an area of rock that looks familiar. He's at the place where Polemachus should be, but it's gone. He's at the edge of Weirdworld. Arkon prepares to committee suicide. What he doesn't know:

Man-Thing is famous (well, as non-top tier Marvel characters go). Jennifer Kale is a supporting cast character from the Man-Thing's comic; she's heir to ancient Atlantean magics.

Monday, October 5, 2015

After the Flood

After a weekend of heavy rain and flooding in this neck of the woods, some uses of floods and their aftermaths in games is on my mind. There's what I've got:

The Lost City: Inundated coastal cities might become lost or at least legendary. Ys is a good example. There's typically a mystery here or at least potent magic. It might be a whole area to explore, or just a bit of weirdness in a campaign.

Looting the Depths: Jesse Bullington's The Folly of the World includes an attempted theft in town submerged by the Saint Elizabeth's Flood of 1421(the 20th worst flood in history). "Moon fishing" is apparently the term for treasure among the ruins of the towns flooded by China's Three Gorges Dam. Looting underwater would present special challenges for adventurers and a different array of monsters than the usual.

Something Strange Beneath the Surface: You already know about aquatic elves and aquatic trolls, but let's got deeper. In Swamp Thing #38, Alan Moore presents an aquatic mutation of vampires in the submerged town of Rosewood, Illinois. Any monster can have an aquatic variant but the key to making them non-mundane is having them by one-offs in unusual circumstances.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Special Snowflake Called Azurth

Art by Jeff Call
Humza K, author of the Legacy of Bieth and newest Hydra Cooperative member, has started a series of interview posts at the Hydra blog about "Special Snowflake" D&D settings. His interview with me regarding the Land of Azurth was the first published.

Go read it here.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Another Strange Stars Fate Tease

The Strange Star Fate Rule Book draws ever closer. Here are two sample pages. The title page featuring art by Adam Moore:

And the character record sheet:

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Kickstart A World of Visceral Adventure

Looking for a good Kickstarter? Even if you're not, I've got one for you. Friend of the Sorcerer's Skull, Mike "Wrathofzombie" Evans brings you a detailed setting for Dungeon Crawl Classics: The World of Hubris. Mike calls it a "high-octane, meat-grinder, weird fantasy setting," and I'd say that's just about right. Want to see for yourself? Check out his blog and where it has been developing. You also see some great art the likes of David Lewis Johnson and Jason Sholtis have done for the setting. If you like what you see (and why wouldn't you?) throw some love the Kickstarter's way.