Ep. 02 – #iHunt Review

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Introduction – 00:00

Welcome to episode 02!

I start off by declaring my unabashed love for blaseball, an online baseball simulator. Its absurdist, and weird, and fast paced, and just wonderful. It looks like they are taking a break to upgrade the system a bit and fix some bugs, but I look forward to its return. Stare Into the Sun!

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Three reviews on Thursday.

Three Reviews on Thursday, covers of Michtim, #iHunt, Murke's Peerage

I had a few hours to kill tonight and decided to get a few product reviews out there. When it comes to the sales platforms used by most RPGs (Itch, DTRPG, etc.,) reviews really help get their products seen, and so few buyers ever think to leave them. I decided to remedy this.

Each review was posted on Itch.io, which is problematic since I don’t know for sure that Itch has fully implemented reviews on their platform. As such I’ll include the text and a pic so they will at least be seen here. I would have done this on Drive Thru, but I didn’t actually buy these games on that platform, and it won’t let me leave one.

I picked these three specifically because I am followed by their creator on Twitter, and the games looked cool. There really wasn’t much else to my decision making process. So lets roll

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Hello World!

Every post located below this one is from some early long abandoned blog. Future posts may not, and likely will not, reflect the content of older posts. Tea, Tea, RPG! is a podcast covering Indie and Small Press RPGs, thats where my interest has been focused for quite a while, and where I intend to devote my limited energies for the foreseeable future.

For those coming here from Plus or Minus I’d just like to say Hello, and that this is not abandonment. I’m still going to cover plenty of Fudge based content, I have just come to see Fudge games as being part of the much larger Indie RPG scene rather than a scene of their own. I fee like I can do some good here.

I’m still working a bit on format and content ideas, but the only rule I’ve worked out so far is that I”m not going to focus on the 1,000 pound gorilla in the room, they get enough attention. I’m going to focus on the games not getting the attention they deserve, the little bits of clever design hidden away in some 1 page RPG you’ve never heard of, trends and whole genres of Roleplaying game that many of us know nothing about.

A lot of this was kicked off, for me at least, by Orion Blacks explanation of why they no longer work at Wizards of the Coast, found at this Twit Longer. But my love for that game has been slain by a thousand cuts since the introduction of Third Edition. But instead of dwelling on my problems with a company and its products, I’ve decided instead to dwell on a community I’m very much in love with.

Ep 1, Getting your Campaign off the ground, OSR Star Trek, and Lost Colony worlds.

Nothing too new here I just re-edited the three short podcasts I’ve made into a single long-format podcast with segments. This podcast goes into depth on getting your game up and running inspired by “Odyssey: The Complete Guide to Campaign Prep”, a discussion of the two main OSR systems for running Star Trek, and some plot hooks for space sci-fi games involving colony ships. Next month I’ll be tackling the Adventurer Conqueror King Roleplaying Game, as well as a Setting Idea I have for it. Please subscribe to get further episodes. Thanks

Download on Archive.org

 

Watch it on Youtube

Watch it on Vid.Me

Odessey: The Complete Guide to Campaign Prep PDF PRINT (Affiliate)

White Star RPG PDF

Five Year Mission PDF

Starships & Spacemen PDF

Metamorphosis Alpha PDF PRINT

The Starlost DVD

[Fate][Review] Shardlands

Shardlands: Muskets, Blades, Words of Power! by Judith and Christian Vogt Self Published Setting for Fate Core

I tend to think of myself as primarily a Basic/eXpert Dungeons and Dragons (1981) player and game master. Thinking of Elf as a class, descending armor class, and creating a rags to riches story at the table gives me a warm fuzzy feeling inside. Like a warm blanket on a cold morning, these utterly fallacious thoughts keep me cozy in my descending years. The truth of the situation is that I’ve played more Fudge than anything since the fateful day I found a certain text file on the AOL boards. Of all Fudges children Fate is probably the most successful, and I’ve played a bit of it in the last few years. Anyway, here are my thoughts on an English translation of a German book about a setting based on Russian myths.

Christian Vogt sent me a copy of he and Judith Vogts new book to review, despite the fact that I update my blog once a year and have no audience to speak of, I may also talk about it on my YouTube channel since that’s a thing I’ve been meaning to do. Its a PDF, about 89 pages (minus a few ads at the back), and chock full of info on playing a Wolf in Czar Koloy the Thirds Two Realms. The setting is based loosely on the latter days of Czarist Russia, incorporating fantasy elements from Slavic legends. IF you ever wanted to play a snarling special forces agent perched on the roof of Baba Yagas hut sniping at shadow demons, well, that is a thing you can do now.

In this setting you play a Wolf, a sort of Czarist special forces unit bound together by dark blood magic and used by the Czar to keep the peace, like the “Taking the Black” in Game of Thrones, your Wolf is absolved of his past life, but also required to abandon it. The rules give an example of a Wolf pack, and an example of a pack based stunt tree to get you started. One thing I would have liked to see is the wolf pack stated out as an organizational extra, one of Fates strong points is that everything can be a character and treating the wolf pack as one would really help flesh the idea out.

The setting is based on Slavic legends, which is a bit of a double edged sword. On the one hand Slavic legends contain alot of fantasy awesomeness, you have immortal sorcerers, three headed dragons, demented witches, and strange shadows stalking the darkness. On the other hand, most people (myself included) don’t really know alot about Slavic legends. The author does try to resolve the latter issue, but this is done through only a few examples and a long reading list. The work could have done with an additional section on Slavic legendary themes, cultural norms, and a bit of religious history.

Speaking of religion, the action in the game is centered around a religious schism. In the setting the dominant religion is a form of monotheism based on a 3 faced god which was forced to include quite a bit of folk religion and lesser spirits/gods. A schism in the main faith occurs when people decide that the god might just have a fourth face. This is actually a pretty simple way to introduce alot of plot complexity, I’m on board.

You can explore themes of religious interpretation, and the distinction between politics within a church and actual belief. Do all the supporters of the Four Faced God actually care about the dogmatic implications of the schism, or is it just a banner they are standing behind for political reasons? what seemingly minor reforms might be more important to some than the actual four faced belief? what other schisms might be hiding in the wings? When you read about the protestant reformation you see these kind of complex issues, with some lords throwing themselves behind the protestant cause because of political or personal reasons having nothing to do with the actual change in religion, and people fighting for it because of their changing faith. Its kind of awesome.

The magic system is pretty simple and strait forward. The Words system of magic is kinda vague for my tastes but the personal costs of casting spells fits the darker themes of the setting really well. Basically its skill based magic based on the idea that characters are using/learning words of power which draws magic from a dark shadow realm, and may allow things through from that realm. It means only a fool would ignore the promise of magic, but only a fool would use it freely. The system also has a crafts based Alchemy system which lets you create all kinds of compounds, potions, and even explosives.

I like Shardlands, I’d definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys a little gunpowder in their dark fantasy. Its got its problems, some translation induced typos, and its a bit short for the huge subject matter its tangling. Still, there is just too much awesome in Slavic/Russian legends, and too few games trying to tackle any of it to say much bad about something like this. Muskets and Witches and Demons oh my!

Ep:000 Hello World.

So this is my pre-inagural episode. I initially chose to go with the name “OSR in SpaAacE” and was going to focus on Science Fiction role-playing games focused on the Old School Renaissance. I have since decided to do longer monthly episodes covering a variety of OSR content. I’m posting these three Podcasts here as a “how it was” kinda thing, but I’ll be re-editing these into a first episode for the new show. Enjoy!
OSR in SpaAacE on Archive.org