All posts by Peter R.

I have been blogging about Rolemaster for the past few years. When I am not blogging I run the Rolemaster Fanzine and create adventure seeds and generic game supplements under the heading of PPM Games. You can check them out on RPGnow. My pet project is my d6 game 3Deep, now in its second edition.

Tiny Trove

A couple of years ago, when I started blogging, here I was getting interested in trying out much lighter rules systems than the Rolemaster which is my groups stable fare. I was given many suggestions and on the list was TinyD6 and Tiny Dungeon. 

I never wrote about Tiny Dungeon because at the same time I discovered Adventurers! and the one overshadowed the other.

This week Gallant Knight Games opened a Community Content Program for Tiny Dungeon (Tiny Frontiers and their other settings rae to follow). What this should mean is that there is going to be a whole raft of new titles for the TinyD6 system.

At the time of writing there are four titles available, three of which were already there when the program started. I guess they didn’t want an empty page. There was one submission yesterday, less than 24hrs after the launch of the program. In addition there are document templates for developers to use to make their work look like all the other Tiny Dungeon books and a sampling of free art to illustrate your PDF books.

If you are a fan of Tiny Dungeon then it is certainly going to be worth your while to check out Tiny Trove

Game Icons

I am probably very late to the game but I just discovered Game Icons back in April. I was of course familiar with story cubes but had not really got on with them as a plotting device. Game Icons and I seem a much better fit.

I suspect the difference is that when I rolled story dice I rolled them all and then had too many pictures to try and string together into a coherent adventure.

Story Icons on the other hand are themed so I can limit the icons to the genre I am writing for and I can roll for the number if icons I want or need.

I have always been a fan of the Mutant Year:Zero mechanics and it turns out that the d666 is the perfect companion to game icons. I can drag and drop icons directly from game-icons.net into a table with the numbers alongside and create a custom set in a matter of minutes.

I have been using them not only for creating in adventures but also for the motivations and inner thoughts for NPCs in those adventures. As an example I have a lady in waiting NPC in an adventure I am writing. I rolled two icons and got a wheel and a shield. I took the shield to mean that she was protecting something and the wheel to mean change. Suddenly that lady in waiting is part of a plot to overthrow the royal family. It is entirely possible that that will never come up in the adventure but it is also sitting there and should a character suddenly decide to use telepathy to find out what she is thinking they are going to be in for a surprise.

For me the big advantage is that I don’t have to sit here and be constantly inspired. The game icons are the inspiration. As a side benefit the adventures I am now writing a greater richness and depth if the players choose to explore those depths.

If you haven’t tried using game icons there is a neat tool at Tangent Zero where you can randomly generate game icons and I have attached a spreadsheet with the d666 numbers in the first column and you can drag and drop icons directly from either Tangent Zero or from game icon.net.

I hope these give you as much enjoyment and inspiration as they do me.

Sagas of Midgard

I am lucky enough that in my day job I both work from home and work entirely online. What this means is that I could be pretty much anywhere in the world as long as I can get an internet connection. In practical terms I am a little more limited as it is not just me, there is a Mrs R, two horses, three dogs and a scattering of grown up children and grandchildren.

What I did do recently is move from the far south west of Cornwall, UK to about as far north as you can get in the UK. I am spending seven months living on Shetland. I have swapped Celtic legends and Cornish Giants for Norse myth and legend. This a little bit of an adventure.

And talking of adventures… I have been playing Sagas of Midgard for the past two weeks and I have come to really enjoy the game. The game is very rules light. It has a single rule for resolving everything. The GM sets a target number and the players roll a d100 and add whatever they can to it and try and roll over the target number. It is one of those games where the GM doesn’t roll any dice. Combat is players roll to hit when they attack and they roll to dodge when they are defending.

What appeals the most is that this is a game where the heroes are heroic. D100 systems have a nasty habit of thinking they need to be gritty and realistic. I think it is the fact that a single roll has a hundred options means the designers feel they need to use them all (slight exaggeration).

Just look at this quote about should giants using bows be able to shoot further than humans, *not* from Sagas. “But m/(m+mv) scales in a way that depends on the relative contribution of m vs mv. If we assume m is much more important than mv, that simplifies to m/m and velocity will double because m/m * L is double. If we assume mv is much more important than m, that simplifies to m/mv and velocity will remain constant. So, the actual scaling is somewhere between x1 and x2, dependent on the relative contribution of m vs mv.

I found one reference that suggested for a bow, mv is about 20% the weight of an arrow. It may be much higher for a thrown weapon…? Would be good to see some numbers. But my initial impression is that Dan’s approximation of x1.41 (square root of 2) is within the range of x1 to x2 and not unreasonable.”

Really? There is a point at which when dealing with giants and dragons you kind of have to leave the physics behind. Back in Cornwall one of our local giants, Trecobben, could throw a rock the size of a VW Transporter seven miles. I would like to see the calculations for that (not!).

Sagas is NOT that sort of game. Sagas is all about the story, heroic action and dying well in battle. There is a great rule called With Joy I Cease which allows the player to trade the death of their character in exchange for delivering a truly heroic blow either killing a normal creature outright or delivering a massive wound to unique creatures. It is better to die honourably with your sword in your hand and enter the halls of Valhalla than to die in your bed as an old man.

All in all Sagas of Midgard is a great little game, fast to learn, simple to play and the core system has loads of potential to expand into other genres due to its sheer simplicity.