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Adam Minnie
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Adam Minnie

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Hey, if you like board games, space, and friends, you should check out this one. I have loved playing Battlestations and now an awesome second edition just hit Kickstarter where you can get in on the newly minted action.

The update streamlines much of the gameplay in wonderful, elegant ways. I can't wait to play it with some of you if you're interested. Check it out. Backing it for just a dollar lets you be a part of the stretch goals for even more spacey, FTL-like, Trek-like, zany awesomeness.
http://www.tinyurl.com/HeroicAdventure
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Peter Cobcroft's profile photoKevin Lovecraft's profile photoPavel Berlin's profile photo
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I look forward to converting my 1st edition add ons to this version 😊
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Adam Minnie

Adventure Hooks  - 
 
I'm starting a 5e Eberron campaign next month and so far I'll be asking the players to pick one of the pitches in the linked doc. I'm trying to start the party off at 1st level already deeply tied into the cultures and tone of the setting. What other ideas would you add or change to offer more of the full flavor potential of the setting or tie players more tightly into the world?
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1VUiviKH6MwmdaqQ-RJK_Fdsq0OSDxYWDwrabH95tKBo/edit?usp=sharing
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Campaign Pitch IdeasEberron Party/Campaign Pitch Ideas 1) Deep scars. Ex-veterans scarred by the Last War, trying to find a way in a new wartime environment of outward niceties and treaties, but the same old cut-throat brutality behind closed doors and buried in people's souls. (grim and heavier, dealing with existe...
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Some major themes that haven't been touched on in this entire document are the Draconic Prophecy, Aberrant Marks, and Siberys Marks. For that stuff, I would suggest working with various Dragonmarked Excoriates trying to make their way in the world without support from their Houses, while one or more of them is being stalked by an unknown party (House Tarkanan, seeking to recruit). As for the Prophecy itself, maybe one or more of their Marks grows, and they start experiencing  visions of some sort. Maybe one of them is specifically studying the Prophecy (possibly a Sivis?).

Here's another idea.

Tyranny of Dreams Khorvaire is a free continent, home to many thriving races living in relative equality (most of the time). However, not everywhere is the same. On the distant continent of Sarlona, non-humans are subjugated, treated as slaves or second-class citizens at best. Humans don't have it much better, as every waking moment has been planned out for them since birth by the mysterious Inspired, whom they worship and serve without question. PCs are rebels, seeking to end their torment by fleeing to another country or continent, and maybe one day return to free their kin. The tone should be more about newfound hope, as they discover a world where they are free to do as they please and be whoever they wish to be. However, they should still be looking over their shoulders, as the Dreaming Dark does not take kindly to those who defy them. (Or were they meant to escape all along?)
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Adam Minnie

Sagely Advice  - 
 
Looking for GMing advice on a beginner elf who lost his spell book
My players are level 2, just setting out from town on their second adventure. During the first one (Under the House of the Three Squires), the elf lost his travelling spell book during the fight with the spider. He didn't fully realize until trying to acquire a new book how bad of a compromise that was.

He took a new spell slot for 2nd level, and his mentor gave him a few scrolls for a new spell to both learn and scribe into a book when he gets a new one. Without a spell book, however, he can't really use his magic. Currently he just got Resources 1 and burned all his coin recovering from sickness and exhaustion, so there's almost no way he can afford a new book anytime soon.

As a GM I hate to stymie a decently big part of his character concept, but I also don't mind letting the spider's compromise sting for all it's worth (even though it'd be ideal if the sting hurt the whole party more than just the elf who earned the spider's greatest ire). He's now seeking less orthodox ways of acquiring a new traveling spell book.

If you were a GM in this case, what would you do? Point him toward adventures promising treasure with which he can attempt to legitimately buy one during a future town visit town? Point him toward a way to steal or trade for one from someone during an adventure? Or provide a greater than usual number of scrolls to make up for the fact that he'll burn through them rather than re-memorizing spells from his book? Or would you just let it sting since it was a legitimate cost of a conflict compromise (instead of being poisoned, injured, or something else)?

If he had access to his library and his mentor, which he did, would it be too easy to assume he could piece together a workable travelling spellbook without having to buy one?
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Thor Olavsrud's profile photoOwen O'Connell's profile photoDuamn Figueroa's profile photoAdam Minnie's profile photo
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Gotcha +Duamn Figueroa. I did miss that that was your point, and yeah, that's the crux of what I've been doing currently.
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Has anybody else been using Tabletop Audio (and especially it's new interactive soundpads!) for running Blades games?

The site offers great victorian city/docks/spooky/airship/alchemical lab ambience soundscapes, and the soundpads allow great way to add easy sound effects for things like clanging doors, dog packs barking, fire, footsteps, rain, winds, eerie and suspenseful tones, etc. The Olde Towne soundpad is brand new and seems well-suited for Blades games!

Main soundscapes: http://tabletopaudio.com/
Olde Towne Soundpad: http://tabletopaudio.com/olde_towne_sp.html
Dungeon-themed soundpad: http://tabletopaudio.com/dungeon_sp.html
Dark Forest Soundpad:
http://tabletopaudio.com/darkforest_sp.html
Original, 10 minute ambiences and music for Tabletop Role Playing Games.
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John Perich's profile photoJoshuha Owen's profile photoVasco Brown's profile photoTina Trillitzsch's profile photo
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I've been using their background music for my BitD sessions, but I had totally forgotten about the soundpads. Thanks, +Adam Minnie !
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Adam Minnie

Discussion  - 
 
Hey friends in the dark. I could use some help running a compelling one-shot. I'm running a single 4-hour session of Blades in the Dark at a con this weekend, and I need help thinking about how to tell a compelling story in only 2 scores without much focus on downtime, the crew sheet, or faction relationships. How can I pre-load some PC personal arcs players can choose that allow nice closure within a one-shot plot?

For context, I plan to use the gang rules by +Andrew Shields, and in fact I'm running the game with a Shadowrun/cyberpunk skin by having attune cover either hacking or magic, swapping contacts and gear options, and making heritage metatypes like elf, troll, etc. Otherwise most supernatural stuff will instead simply be flavored either matrix/digital stuff or mage/shaman stuff almost one-for-one. Looks like the re-skin should work without too much trouble.

I suspect I should look to the format of great one-shots +Sean Nittner and others have produced?
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Andrew Shields's profile photoAdam Minnie's profile photoTina Trillitzsch's profile photo
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I'm curious if anyone has ideas for a better reward than a special ability for completing a mini-arc card. Or what sort of powers are cool after your character has passed their personal climax? Advancing stats seems a little useless since you'll get it toward the end of the game when you won't be using it anymore soon. Something narrative seems better but harder to pre-plan.
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Adam Minnie

Rideshares  - 
 
I live in St. Paul near St. Kate's and would be willing to offer rides if others are en route. Note that I plan to stay on Saturday to offer a one-shot game, so if you ride with me Saturday, you'll either have to stay too or find another ride home. 
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+Adam Minnie I should be done with work stuff by 4:30 and am working from home this week.
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Adam Minnie

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An awesome twist on the monk class for 5e. Small changes for big flavorful effect! I love swaggering scrapper archetypes and they seldom feel right in standard rpgs.
The production quality on the homebrew material at sterlingvermin.com are consistently stellar. Check out all the other new class options in the Complete Martialist and Complete Devout Handbooks.
 
Scrappers & scrapettes!

This week on the Sterling Vermin Adventuring Co. an unarmed ruffian literally kicked the Complete Devout Handbook into next week to make room for himself! The Pugilist, a monk variant class, is here! The Pugilist is more than an archetype but not quite an entirely original class either. Check out its unique blend of brute strength, gritty determination, and undeniable raw force of personality at the blog!

http://sterlingvermin.com/2016/01/20/the-pugilist-early-draft/
Scrappers and scrappettes! This week I intended to post the Complete Devout Handbook, compiling all of the previous Devout Handbook entries into one revised document. While some of the archetypes r...
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Has anybody put thought into backgrounds related to strong national identity? Or rather than presenting new options, do you think a list of nationalities should just suggest choices of race, class, background, proficiencies, and subclass/tradition?

I'm leaning toward the latter, but have not yet seen such a list. I find nationality to be a powerfully defining character feature in Eberron and putting some mechanical suggestion to it helps players new to the setting seriously consider how their national origin shapes their character and outlook. National origins could even have their own lists of ideals, personality traits, flaws, etc but without being full backgrounds. Has anybody drummed up or seen anything similar?
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Dean Flemming's profile photoAdam Minnie's profile photoRobert Calfee's profile photo
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Right, re-skin the iconic loyalty for something relevant to Eberron: Dragonmark, or nation, or other affilliation (you could even go with moon/planes). 
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Adam Minnie

Sagely Advice  - 
 
Town questions for you other GMs
It's been a couple months of not getting to play, but we're on for Torchbearer again tonight. It'll be about the 5th session. After completing Under the House of the Three Squires, blackmailing the owner, and rebuilding the ruined Three Squires somewhat, they're finally headed to their first stint in Town. Here are some questions I have.

Should I expect town alone to take a full session, or could I have some Grind events on the road there beforehand, (both to emphasize the drain of traveling on our overland hexmap, and the value of having good maps)? I believe they don't have any conditions at the moment so 'resting up' in town seems less pertinent than simply the ability to level up to 2.

What are the pros or cons of having this first town be limited in what it offers. It's pretty rural, so I can imagine having fewer choices will make the experience easier for players new to the Town phase, and it'd make them eager to visit more diverse, bigger towns later, but it could be stifling too. 

What kind of things do GMs do when players can't make their Lifestyle rolls, other than sending collectors to harass them with violence?

If a player has 0 Resources, and spends cash to succeed on a market purchase, does that put their resources up to 1, which they can then use to try to pay their Lifestyle bill? Or is it wiser for starting players to not bother with the market and save their cash for the Lifestyle roll, and let that be what puts them up to Resources 1 (assuming a success)
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+Adam Minnie Third shameless plug:  tinyurl.com/TBtheSlogRule

Seems like you could playtest this for me... I'll be quiet now.
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Adam Minnie

Discussion  - 
 
I love lots of the subtle changes in v4. The enhanced engagement results in are great inspiration, as well as the beefed up interface with incarceration. I'm completely thrilled by the teaser for prison claims in the full game. In longer play with the previous systems, I felt somewhat stymied in giving the Bluecoats and Inspectors teeth.

Oh, I also like the new rep/tier/hold/claims systems. They all seem to better fit the fictional expectations in a way that's more natural and intuitive. It seems that there may be more movement between tiers which I think is great. Lots more tentative intrigue games and power plays in order for the crew to appear better than it is, only to be brought low by enemies who want to assert their own positions. I like it that it feels much easier for NPC factions to hit the PC crew in a way that makes it hurt but isn't the end of the world.
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:) :) :)
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Adam Minnie

Hacks and Add Ons  - 
 
I may be running a one-shot this Saturday, and am wanting to run it in a cyberpunk fantasy/Shadowrun flavor with minimal changes. I know there's a similar stretch goal in the works, but here's my plan. I'd love any input on where I'm going overboard or off-base.

At this point, players will focus PC concepts around group choices on the gang framework by +Andrew Shields, tweaked slightly for cyberpunk flavor. 

Each player will have to choose whether all spirit/supernatural/ectoplasmic stuff on their sheet either stays spirit stuff (for mage/shaman-types) or swaps for equivalent digital/VR stuff (decking, rigging, etc). I think this may nicely handle the essence balance business of canon Shadowrun where cyberware/digital paraphernalia saps your essence which you need to power magic and shamanic spirit wrangling.

To further the cyberpunk skin (hopefully without too much complication), I'm thinking of adding two cards/index cards. Players choose one of each to supplement or replace parts of their sheet. 
1. One for each race/metatype, offering 4 racial special abilities (choose 1 in addition to the starting playbook ability). Most racial abilities are just other playbook abilities tweaked, inspired by Sixth World.
2. One for each classic cyberpunk archetype, replacing the sheet's friends section (and maybe offering more modern gear list options). These can also recommend playbooks that fit nicely.

The biggest change I may make is more due to being one-shot than the skin. Players choose a key-like drive card to guide investment in the world and mini-personal arcs (from a drawn hand depending on how many players there are). Option ideas are in a comment on this thread: https://plus.google.com/u/0/116748546962488989608/posts/KiJE48s8Qkr
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John Harper's profile photoVandel J. Arden's profile photoAdam Minnie's profile photo
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Ahoy, just as follow-up, I didn't end up running this game. I did all the prep for it though, so I'll let you know if I end up running it, and maybe share the tiny customizations I made or considered.

For those who are interested, here is my cyberpunk NPC generator modified from the NPC Generator 2 (GoogleSheet) linked on the community sticky post. Most of the details are inspired by Sixth World, and I haven't yet modified anything about the factions: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1n3YvShVgKyFRwSjggF5OFWkfyWd1ZeQr4E0_WPCw0es/edit?usp=sharing
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Adam Minnie

Discussion  - 
 
Ooh. The Warren kickstarter just released a new nearly final version of itself along with a few draft versions of other settings. I am planning to run Blades in the Dark for the one-shot slot, but this new update is tempting. :P
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Data, idea, & collaboration wrangler; freelance writer, editor, game designer
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Imaginator, explorer, and synergizer in God's spoken world
Introduction
Put me in circles about: Digital art, tabletop gaming, game design, rpg hacking/re-skinning, GMing, digital tools for tabletop rpgs, expanding imagination/creativity, blogging, writing/editing, exploring (travel, learning, experimenting), appreciating beauty (food, drink, nature, bizarre critters), higher education, interdisciplinary collaboration, MLIS/Information Science, human development, humanities (literature, history, philosophy), theology, dance, marriage, parenting, Jonathan Edwards, dubstep, acoustic music, quantum physics, How Things Work, languages/linguistics, metaphor.

You may request to be added to the following circles: Design & games, D&D news, Art & Mapping, Skype/Online Gaming (not computer gaming), Higher Education, and if you tell me particular rpgs you enjoy and I can classify you that way as well (eg. dnd, FATE, Cortex Plus, X-Com RPG, ORE, ‘indie’, etc)

For purposes of online gaming or conversation, I live in GMT -6.

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