Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Disqus


So, I was the victim of my first malicious blog comment today. Sure, I get spam content. The odd advertisement for Viagra. But, this was different. It seemed someone just wanted to post something unkind on my blog for no reason.

And I realize that there may be little that can be done to police this kind of activity. And in a way, I am flattered. I figure you're not a real "celebrity" (LOL) until someone attacks you. So, I have left the comment up as a sort of badge of honor.  I've now undergone that right of passage ... cool.

I have added Disqus to my site to track comments. Please let me know if it makes the commenting process overly cumbersome. In the past, I haven't used any kind of comment screening and just kept up with the spam myself manually.

Thanks!

Jeff

Squadron UK Sourcebook on Kickstarter!


I am a fan of Golden Heroes and this book brings back all the characters of the original RPG and stats them out for the new Squadron UK which I reviewed a while back! And which I included in my personal list of Top 10 Free-RPG's on the internet. (Unfortunately, Squadron UK Basic is no longer free. But, it is available pretty inexpensively.)

I am a backer!! As a fan of Old School and Superheroes this one was a no-brainer!! And I'm not even from the UK!


Jeff

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Merry Christmas

That time of year to annually share my favorite Christmas Song ...




Warm regards,

Jeff

Monday, December 08, 2014

Diners, Drive-Ins, and Superheroes!



Welcome to part 2 of my latest "Hero DxD" play-test report.

When last we left our intrepid heroes the villainous Mamma Bear (wife of the evil J.J. -which although being played by Laurence Fishburne is named for James Earl Jones ... but, if you saw "evil J.J. and immediately thought I named the villain for J.J. Abrams, well that works too ... but, that was just a happy accident.) But, I digress ...

Mamma Bear (played exquisitely by Gina Torres) held a car in the air over her head and was poised to throw it at the heroes! (When I say "played exquisitely" I mean that I told my fellow gamers as I described Mamma Bear, "Imagine that she's being played by Gina Torres if this were a movie." And well, in my imagination she did an "exquisite" job.) But, I digress ...

Mamma Bear did indeed throw the car smashing it into the side of the diner. Debris flew everywhere, but thanks to a critical success on her defense roll, one player not only avoided injury for herself but also was able to protect any innocent bystanders from harm!

Now the fight is on! Mamma Bear, the super strong black beauty in one arena, and her less super, but just as evil pistol toting hubby J.J. in the other. J.J. went down quickly, but Momma took a bit longer to defeat. The Heroes did win the day and were personally congratulated by Guy Fieri (of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives) himself! The celebrity foodie there to do a follow-up on his piece on the "Diner on the Route" (now we know why it really closed!) Guy gave each of the heroes his business card with a number and time written on the back. Call me, he urged!  

The players had a bit of down time, but ultimately came together out of curiosity and made the call. The players disappeared from their calling location to reappear in the called location, the now abandoned, Justice League Satellite! It seems that Guy Fieri's true identity is one Ralph Dibny AKA the Elongated Man. EM had been struggling with an image problem. And with other high profile stretcher's stealing his thunder he decided to retire. He gave up his public ID as Ralph Dibny and went to work for the Food Network.

Now ... according to Guy (Ralph), the Food Network is looking to get into the Superhero biz and wants him to help promote a new supers team. They even offer a salary of $1000 a week. All they gotta do is thwart the occasional super villain and maybe get caught on TV doing it. Why not support the Food Network? The Heroes don't have anything against food do they?

The players agree to this arrangement for now. Guy's connection with the abandoned JLA satellite gives them access to information on criminals and instant travel access all over the globe. (The JLA have moved to a new headquarters (The Hall of Justice) in Washington DC. No sooner has the new team agreed to this remarkable arrangement, then a bank heist in New York sets off an alarm drawing their immediate attention!

The supervillains Lightning Serpent and Sparrow Hawk (both created by me by the way when I was in 4th grade!) are hold up in the bank and have taken hostages! Time to beam down to action!!

*End of issue 2* (and our play session!)

So the rest of the playtest went really well. The combat between Mamma Bear and the PC's was exciting the flow was quick and everything felt easy. New mechanics for difficulty levels and critical success all came into play effortlessly and the rules continue to stay out of the way of the role-play, perhaps more for Hero DxD, than they did even with Five by Five.

My new superhero game rocks! I have another play-test scheduled here at Watchtower next week on Saturday, 12/13. I am really looking forward to it!

Regards,


Jeff

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Beards and Superheroes!



Play-tested Hero DxD (formerly Super Five) with friends at my new apartment in Baxter Springs, KS. Please note, I have officially renamed Baxter Springs: Smallville. Also, my apartment shall hereafter be referred to as: Watchtower.

We started with the random character creation which went remarkably well. I was actually shocked at how everyone's characters came together with minimal fuss. And everyone was really happy with the characters that they got. My group of 5 players all had characters created and ready to play in under an hour. It was amazing!

The adventure started with everyone brought to a diner in Baxter Springs called: Cafe On The Route. This was an actual place in Baxter Springs that was featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives (with Guy Fieri), but then closed down before I ever moved here. So, of course in my version of Baxter Springs the place is still open! Yay! And this is where the players begin.

I explain to my group of players how Baxter Springs is actually Smallville, how Superman moved to Metropolis years ago, and how the name was changed to protect Superman's secrets from his enemies. I then go on to describe a freak storm of green glowing rain that each of them were caught in a few weeks before (providing a reason for superpowers to those who need it circa the Smallville TV series.)

We go around the table and each player describes their characters, powers, and origins/backstories, then I go around again and we discuss the circumstances that brings each character to the diner. Finally, I talk about two shady characters talking mysteriously in the corner. One played by Peter Dinklage, and the other played by Laurence Fishburne (recast from James Earl Jones ... will explain in a moment.)






The Fishburne character - called JJ (James Jones) was asking about the delivery of a mysterious package by the Dinklage character called only "Dwarf" by the JJ character. Suddenly, the Dwarf screams, "I am not a Dwarf!" ... as the hairs of his beard begin moving and growing shooting from his face and grabbing JJ around the throat!

The players aren't sure what to do at the sight of this spectacle and only take action when it's clear that the Dwarf is in danger of killing JJ. At the first signs of opposition, the Dwarf's prehensile beard lashes out, hitting everyone, putting holes in the walls, breaking windows, and elevating the Dwarf through the roof and above the crowd (in the manner of Doc Ock's arms.)

One of the heroes manages to teleport the Dwarf away as JJ comes up wielding a firearm. It becomes quickly apparent that JJ is outclassed and he yells for help. At his call, a 7 foot tall black woman in a fur bikini steps from the a car outside. She also wears bear-claw slippers.




This is Mamma Bear. For her I cast, Gina Torres. With that decision came the immediate decission to recast JJ (James Jones) as Laurence Fishburne as JJ is Mamma Bear's husband (see told you that I'd explain.) Mamma Bear, seeing her hubby threatened picks up a car holding it above her head and prepared to throw!

Come to Mamma!!

This seemed like a perfect 1st Issue cliffhanger and we declared a break here and ordered some pizza!

(Next: Hero DxD play-test report part 2!)


Regards,


Jeff