Sunday, June 25, 2017

A Bestiary!

I finally finished a bestiary for our hybrid rules! Basically, took monsters from my various scenarios new and (very) old and applied the hybrid stat structure. Play-tested several baddies last Saturday and it went very fluid.
One thing I did purposefully for this little tome (only 64 pages) is there is next to no art. What I found over time is that a brief, evocative description in words is much better than a drawing on a piece of paper that needs to be passed around or held aloft a period of time. I made sure each critter (except for the obvious, like "giant ant") has such a description so the DM can tell everyone at once what they encounter.
The Vacuous Grimoire Volume Three is available now in the Direbane storefront at DriveThru-RPG.

*** P.S. Here is a Vacuous write-up of the Storm Spirit dudes from that famous movie with Jack Burton. Thanks to "Brown Hood" who posted his original stats back in 2002 on EN World. Not in bestiary, but used 'em last game for lots o' fun!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Playtesting The Vacuous Grimoire, Volume One
 at DunDraCon over Presidents' Weekend.

There are a few new twists from the prior hybrid rules we used, but mostly I'm interested to see how accessible the information is during game-time. There was this problem with my retro, digest-sized books that because the material was divided among 6 booklets wasn't always clear where to look.

I will be using Vacuous volumes one and two as a resource during my "official" game Friday night (Cyberhell), and me and my mates will all be using volume ones for our regular game Saturday evening in the Open Gaming Room.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Yes, this is a thing 2 on DriveThruRPG...
The Blackmail tome was "essential gamemastering information" for Judges to navigate the myriad of situations players will encounter exploring the campaign multi-verse. It has been nearly 5 years since Knights of the All Mind and Blackmail, in conjunction with the S.R.D. of the All Mind, were assembled for judges of groups utilizing "modern" accouterments of The World's Most Popular Role Playing Game.

This new work combines these various home brew rules with the Open Gaming License "System Reference Document" into a single reference, a unified rulebook for judges that does the work of walking in old school attribute checks along with racial and class abilities where skills and skill points used to tread.

Also a complete directory for the magical items is included, so this tome is indeed all a judge needs along with Vacuous Grimoire Volume One to play.

Thursday, January 12, 2017
Yes, this is a thing now on DriveThruRPG.
The Vacuous Grimoire is an expanded edition of the former SRD of the All Mind. In one volume the grimoire combines various home brew rules adopted from the variety of influences with the Open Gaming License "System Reference Document" to present a unified rulebook for players that supplants character skill points with old school attribute checks along with racial and class abilities.
The impact of using these ability checks we have found most often is speed of gameplay. D6 "party" initiative resolves encounter surprise and initiative with a roll of two dice. Expertise such as picking locks or tracking creatures in the wilderness are race or class abilities, which isolates these abilities to discrete characters rather than having everyone and their aunt making a roll.
Combining Knights of the All Mind for players with the System Reference Document also adds new rules directly descended from our old game such as for critical hits, fumbles, morale, divine interventions, technological weapons, insect, amphibian, and reptilian races, and new character classes. All fixed to accommodate the style we ran with fun and thrills over three decades of gaming.
But wait, THERE'S MORE! New rules on mana, arcane spell bumbles, and dex adjustments to speed that break conformity just enough so that characters seem more grittier realistic heroes than homogenized stats where most every humanoid creature can move exactly 30' x 4 in a full-out run.
Plus the complete directory and entries for the mechanical effects of common spells from Words of Spells is included, so this tome is indeed all a player needs to play. (Volume 2 in this series will combine material from Knights for game judges.)
Taken together, this new venture hopes to continue "wild west" flavor from this pastime's classic age while being compatible in an unbalanced fashion with more modern gaming devices.