Thursday, March 23, 2017

(Savage Lost) #2.5 It Was Dreadful in the Swamp

After securing a perimeter around their campsite, and coming face to face with one of the "blue monkey men," our heroes decided to further venture together further into the jungles of this strange land. 

Working their way downhill, they noticed a head of one of the long-necked plant-eating dinosaurs peaking out above the treeline.  Going closer for a better look, they stumbled upon the long-forgotten bones of creature... a giant humanoid!

Good thing I brought a camera, or else no one would believe us!

The swamps, chips mark locations to search.....

Our heroes (L-R) Kacey Barbara, Lord Cuppenbrush, and Maja Millie.
On the other end of the swamp, the hunting party of the Akala (blue monkey men) entered.  Still looking for the ugly, pale-faced ape men, food was a bigger concern...

The Akala enter.
Kacey Barbara got near the first pool, and two strange frog/fish men armed with tridents, emerged from the water.  Kacey could hear voices inside her head.

"Leave quickly, for our Master is coming.."

Blauen, the lone member who encountered the heroes, scouted around the second pool with the dinosaur in it, lazily munching on the surrounding trees.  A voice penetrated his mind...

"Foolissshhhhh creature... Turn back beyond the sssstones to ssssafety.."

A legendary serpent man!  Bedecked in all the clothes of his station!

Blauen made his rolls and chose to ignore the reptile's warnings...

The Akala decided to capture the dinosaur, climbing all over the beast.  The dinosaur bucked twice, thrashing its tail three more times, until it was free of the blue pests.  One of the splashed into the pool.

The mixture of another strange race and telepathy froze Barbara is fear, as a giant, hideious reptiliad creature burst out of the pool.  With a mighty swipe, the photographer was knocked high in the air.  If not for the soft, marshy ground, she may have been knocked unconscious.  Lucky for her, she soaked the damage with her lone Benny

The Akala eluded the tail of the dinosaur and successfully chased it out of the pool.

Get along little Dino!
Barbara dashed by the shotgun-toting Englishman, grabbed the had of Maja Millie, and the town headed back to towards camp... quickly.

Lord Cuppenbrush leveled his shotgun and fired at the monstrosity, taking a huge chunk of flesh out of it.  The "Master" let out a howl of pain, but continued its charge.   Barely parrying the first claw with his shotgun, the second clobbered Cuppenbrush in the shoulder and the adventurer went flying over some rocks (using up all his Bennies to soak the massive damage).

The Akala might be easily distracted, but they had laser-like focus on wrangling the dinosaur, going so far as to ignore the giant, mystical gemstone lodged into the ground.  They had dinner for the whole tribe coming right up!
Hunger trumps gemstones...
Lord Cuppenbrush scrambled back up and fired another grazing shot at the "Master."  To his surprise, the beast took a few more steps forward and froze, terrified of a strange sigil carved into a nearby rock.  A third shot seemed to barely scratch the creature, but it began to retreat back into the marshland. 

This valley surprised the English nobleman in a different way each day. 
It was the second session were Millie (age 6) gleefully took control of the Akala and decided to do her own thing.  Preoccupied with the dinosaur, they did succeed at seizing one objective and ignoring a second, while chasing their prey.  The Akala village will eat well tonight. 

For our heroes under Maja (age 7), the initiative cards were not in their favor, as the stood flat-footed as Father Dagon (The Master) got a joker. The group will need to perform some more heroics for more Bennies as they attempt to explore a different part of the jungle. 

The initial set-up was inspired by "Swamp Things" by Preacher by Day....  The rest of the game devolved at its own natural pace.

Next: Episode #2.6: ?????

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

(Painting) Father Dagon and His Children

With all the long-term projects, it's nice to whip up a couple figures I needed for the next installment of the Lost World game..  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle gets a little influence from a Mr Lovecraft this week.

First off is Father Dagon, a stretch goal mini from RAFM's Call of Cthulhu 7th Edition Miniatures Kickstarter.  Funny thing, the last rewards from the Kickstarter hit the mail in October, but this one still isn't on their web site

Tagging alongside Big Daddy Dagon, are two Deep Ones from the old Dunwich Detective line.
Moonraker Miniatures
 The Deep Ones are a bit stunty, 20-23mm, which makes Dagon far more impressive...

Next Up:  The Cult of the Ape God needs followers!  Gnomes and Blue Martians/Monkey Men/Goblins as always...  Plus a new special project for the kids!  Stay Tuned!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

(Kickstarter) Noir World by John Adamus

One of these days I will finally write-up the new dozen podcasts I've been listening, but sometimes they do help me take a second look at products coming out.

Meghan Dornbrock on the Modifier podcast interviewed author/editor/game designer John Adamus.  Not only was it not the stock game designer interview I've heard over and over again, but it did raise my interest in his Noir World, which just Kickstarted this morning.
Noir World is another game Powered by the Apocalypse, with twenty classic Noir roles that you can fit most types of characters, and ten different ages, starting with the 1920s and going up to near future.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Weekend Without a Cold Wars

As was apparent to its attendees, I did not make it to Cold Wars this year.    A comedy of errors this winter, adding up to rescheduling personal events, a car that I only trust on a 10-minute commute, forgetting to pre-register, and the last minute cancellation of the Gnome Wars games, I was still dedicated to making a day trip on Friday, seeing Mike Lung and the other gnomies, and maybe pick up some cheap deals at the flee market.

Then the snow came... and it never really stopped. 

I already bailed from work twice this week, but the thought of tossing the kids at day care an hour earlier the bus would (school had another snow day), calling off from work, and dealing with the jagged icy ruts to Amish country were still 50/50. 

Then at 4:45pm on Thursday, my boss tells me everyone else is stuck in meetings offsite and will continue to do so all next week.  I'm in charge... of EVERYTHING.

Work loyalty trumps hobby loyalty. 

PROs:  Saves money on gas, admission, food, and purchases.  And between my Pulp Figures order already here, my Reaper Kickstarter almost together, and my Jet Bike Kickstarter from England stuck at the post office, I've already got my metric crapload of stuff.
CONs: I can't get to see my fellow gnomies (face-to-face interaction is always the best).  With Mepacon currently at 20% to attend next weekend (a gnome-themed convention, no less!), I won't see a true convention until Fall-In! next November 3-5. 
As I always do, I will try to assemble a "ViscountEric's Best Of" pics from Cold Wars that I find from other blogs (with proper citation, of course).

(EDIT: Mike to the rescue.  After I typed this up for Sunday, this blog'a eternal and immortal correspondent Mike Lung got ahold of me with tempting news.  A fella at the flea market had two boxes full of PAINTED Legions of Steel minis. A few texts and pics later and I'm getting two more behemoths, six assault troopers and some weird spider creature I can't ID.  All for less than a day pass and gas.  Mike is a God among men...)

As a consolation prize, I finally snagged this up at the local drug store. 
I reformatted my gaming projects journal at the start of the year, and despite being better at plotting out long-term projects through the summer (and changing some dates in my "drafts" side of the blog), I was waaaay too ambitious with the first three months of the year.  There are still three items I haven't completed in January, six in February, and seventeen for March.   Most of my problem is (surprise surprise) in the painting/terrain side of things, where sleep has trumped painting for many nights. 
Upon a quick review of posts from the last two months, I see that I've already brought up these issues... TWICE. 

So, knowing that I have a problem, I will rewrite the project journal into my new permanent gnome-themed one using the following guidelines (so now, revised for a THIRD time!):
  1. GNOME WARS - Whether or not the figures are painted, I have an Easter game, a Father's Day game, and a few other ideas open to kids and/or friends.
  2. PULP GAMES CONTINUE - The kids enjoy it, plus I have so many ideas saved up that it's great to weave my storyline with their imagination.  The need for figures has dominated my purchasing/painting plan and has helped
  3. A RETURN TO PONYVILLE.  More news on that probably after my daughter's birthday in May, post-cruise.
  4. MOUSLINGS - So many to paint, with more coming.  Mousling Fantasy games were just on the horizon, anyway.
  5. MY KINGDOM FOR A LAPTOP.  With all the other issues/expenses/vacation, the need for a new laptop for working from home is important for Reviews, Gnome History, Rules, etc.  Both our antique model from before I was married and an old work model bequeathed to us have given up the ghost, and it would be nice to have a little processing power from the later side of this decade.  Getting down to the basement to paint after hours is tough.  Strolling down the hall into the office to write up reviews, RPG campaign notes, and the like requires a little less effort. 
  6. THE JOURNAL.  I've been busy transcribing the old college D&D journal word for word into another Actual Play series as I've done with Hackmaster and Call of Cthulhu.  It's over 50 pages of handwritten notes, written by multiple players, and that doesn't include a significant side campaign that occurred during Summer session that I already possessed in my office.  I'm halfway through and I've set up 26 different weekly entries that all will need significant editing to turn into a readable prose.  While the other projects are thing I love and seem to generate traffic, The Ballad of the Pigeon God is a nostalgic trip down memory lane that will excite at most a dozen people on this planet.  And while the other laptop preferred activities could be done during my lunch hour at work (I am allowed), I'm more inclined to dedicate that time for these weekly postings every Tuesday.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

(Kickstarter) Portals of Pangaea

I'm not one to normally mention a game when it's their designer's first run at thing, but Portals of Pangaea Tabletop RPG-ish Game has the advantage of being chock full of Travis Hanson art. 

Friday, March 17, 2017

(Savage Lost) #2.4 For Once I Was a Hero...

After another decent "night's" sleep and a cobbled together breakfast of provisions and some starchy legumes Lord Jon-Smythe Cuppenbrush dug up, the party regained their composure and organize a plan. 

Their new dinosaur-infested environs were still quite confusing, but a thorough search of an extended perimeter around the camp was needed before they began further exploration. 

And it was not a second too soon, as multiple things were making noise in the jungle.

Maja Millie takes the lead, followed by Kacey Barbara, and finally Lord Jon-Smythe.

The British aristocrat spied a strange site, thousands of ants (normal-sized ones) going crazy over some substance in the air.  Upon further investigation, and an agility check to avoid tripping into the voracious fire ants, he discovered one of the expedition's supply crates, far from the river.  The fresh food was missing, and the provisions in jars smashed (hence the frenetic ants on the spilled molasses).  However, the tins of food were dented but intact, plus unspent cartridges are strewn across the ground.  Someone, rather than something had found the box, but was only civilized enough to pillage to easy plunder.
Lord Jon-Smythe finds ransacked provisions!

For the sake of the dear reader, those strange raiders were the Akala, a blue-skinned race of intelligent primates that inhabited this jungle.  With their strange spoils from the day prior, the Akala scouts were sent back out to find any other exotics treats.

Instead, they found a stegosaurus, lazily grazing on a low hanging willow. 

The team tried to scare it off, as they were trained to do, but failed miserably (all 1's).  The dinosaur let out an uncharacteristic roar and used its spiked tail to topple a nearby tree.
"We really could've snuck around him, boss..."

Our heroes heard the roar off in the distance, but were concentrated on getting the supplies back to the camp, with no fire ants, if possible. 

For the Akala, the unfamiliar roar terrorized two of the already skittish creatures.  One bolted away, while another kept exactly 50 paces from the Stegosaurus, panicking in shrieks if the animal ventured an inch closer.

Kacey Barbara caught a glimpse on him as they headed further into the jungle, but said nothing.

As Lord Jon-Smythe got to the second objective, he was surprised to see the carcass of some sort of small wild boar laying in the underbrush upon further investigation, it had been recently killed, and its predator leaped up on a rock.
A sabre-tooth tiger??? By Jove!!
Not expecting such a beast, the adventurer stood flat-footed (a two on the next initiative). 

Fortunately for him, Maja Millie might eschew firearms, but she wielded a mean machete.  She also drew a Joker, giving her +2 to hit and damage.  She ran up to the big cat and seriously wounded it.   The cat still had plenty of fight it in, but Kacey Barbara handled it bravely, snapping an picture of it.  The act itself wouldn't scare or damage the beast, but as luck would have it, the contacts of her flashbulb must have finally dried as blinding *voosh* frightened the it further.

That's one good flashbulb!

The beast fell off it's perch, and just then, a lone blue skinned looking monkey man burst out of the swamp, swinging its spear and screaming at the top of its lungs. 

The sabre-tooth tiger ran off in one direction, and blue creature in another, followed by the clueless lumbering walk of a stegosaurus. 

Encountering the dinosaur, and sensing the tiger somewhere near, the Akala had (tried to) scramble up trees, as they instinctively were wont to do. Blauen, the scout with the newfound phobia of dinosaurs with 50 paces, was alarmed when the monster turn towards them.  Blauen fled through the swamp in a psychotic fit, until he reached the clearing with the sabre-tooth tiger and three strange visitors.   The dinosaur still within 50 paces, he dashed off again, finally reaching his compatriots. 

But while our heroes finished their reconnaissance for the day, someone was watching them from up above....

This is the only game the family got in during the horrid "Blizzard of 2017."  Dad spent waaay too much time keeping the two feet of snow at bay.  I had Maja run the lost expedition and Millie ran the "blue monkey men"   The four possible objectives were randomly rolled (two good, two bad) and all had a check to make to avoid immediate danger. 

The girls kept Dad on his feet, especially when Millie kept failing rolls for the Stegosaurus.  The fight with the (freshly painted) sabre-tooth tiger climaxed when Kacey Barbara, photojournalist, aced her photography roll, not once, not twice, but three times, for a 25 (8+8+8+1).  I figured her water-logged equipment must have miraculously recovered.  Between her and Blauen the Akala scaring off the cat, Lord Jon-Smythe was probably a little red faced from the encounter.

Next:  Episode #2.5  Swamp Things