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  1. Thought I’d share this cool version of our Onyx Path logo customized for Pugmire by our own Impish Ian Watson. Ian points out that five years ago when I started Onyx Path Publishing, I made a bunch of game line versions of our logo just for the fun of it, really.  But with a lot of our focus being to introduce folks to Onyx Path these past several years, we used the “standard” OP logo in order to build that recognition factor for the symbol. But I’d like to see this game line style be used more now. What can I say? I’m part of the MTV generation and was studying design and corporate identification when they were playing fun games with the MTV logo. So, if you look below to Mirthful Mike’s part of the updates, you might note that we have a lot of projects in the “To Press” category right now. This, for us, is a good thing. It means that a lot of the projects we’ve been nurturing are in these last stages before they get to you. But let’s break that down for these projects, because “At Press” means different things depending on the project: At Press Pugmire Early Access- The Mirthful One is putting the PoD files together for this and we’ll be looking at getting PoD proofs. It’s “At Press” because the files go through a review after we upload them to DTRPG, and then the PoD printer also reviews the files and gets the proofs out to us. M20 Deluxe Edition- Truly “At Press” in the same way Mirthful Mike and I have delivered hundreds of books over the years as it is with the traditional printer we use for the Deluxe books, and is finishing up gilding of the pages as the last part of the manufacturing process. Chronicles of Darkness Cards- The PoD proof versions have been ordered, so we just need to OK them. So, “At Press” in that the press would be ready to roll once we OK the proofs. Gauntlet of Spiragos 5e- Mirthful Mike has these files prepped to post on DTRPG, so a bit early for “At Press”, but finished in every other stage. Forsaken 2 Condition Cards- The PoD proof versions have been ordered, so we just need to OK them. So, “At Press” in that the press would be ready to roll once we OK the proofs. Chronicles of Darkness- The PoD proof versions (both Standard and Premium Color) have been ordered, so we just need to OK them. So, “At Press” in that the press would be ready to roll once we OK the proofs. Demon Storyteller’s Guide- We discovered one small error and this book needs that fixed even though I already ordered the PoD proofs. So even “At Press” we can make some fixes. Beast Screen- We’ve sent the traditional printing files for this to our Screen printer. They have had some questions, but not returned their approval proofs to me. So not really “At Press” in the sense that they are not literally on the printing press being printed yet, but are in the first stages of that process. We wouldn’t want to have them just print our files without checking that they have interfaced with their printing tech. So traditionally printed “At Press” for us has always been for us the moment the files left our office. Truth Beyond Paradox- With one correction, this can be prepped for PoD. Lore of the Clans LtD Edition- Files sent to the traditional printer, we need proofs from them as above. Lore of the Clans Screen- See Beast Screen. To elaborate, that moment of passing our files to the printer was one of exquisite pleasure, particularly back in the day where it might have involved chasing the FedEx guy with our package of files (before DropBox and FTP sites). Sometimes we “chased” the FedEx guy by blocking his truck into our office park with our cars as the artist or designer finished the last pages in the files. Good times. Those are the details of “At Press”, but the big picture is that it represents a lot of projects on the cusp of going live to all of you, like I mentioned before. These were “pressing issues” for us, as are the projects at every stage in the Updates. You can see times where books leap forward, or settle into a stage for what seems like a really long time, and that ebb and flow is vitally important to us. Some of that pulse is because we are at the stage in Onyx Path’s growth where we are adjusting our processes and personnel, and honestly we are still dealing with the new work processes necessitated by the purchase of the WW IPs by Paradox Interactive, now the new White Wolf Publishing. While we’re bringing our projects forward, we’re also extending what we can do with our projects starting this year with the C20 Deluxe dice set, and the dice sets for the rebooted Scarred Lands and for Pugmire. We are looking at getting Chronicles of Darkness character sheets on Roll20, as well as sheets and NPC chits and maps for Scarred Lands and Pugmire up there, in order to enable our players who play online. As is typical for our Kickstarters, we continue to have fiction (both novels and anthologies) being created, and now Pugmire is bringing a new element to our fiction by including an already passed Stretch Goal for turning one of the stories into an audio drama like the little dramatization at the beginning of the KS video. Even further, we just revealed a Pugmire Stretch Goal that would enable Eddy to work with his cohorts at EarPlay to create a Pugmire Interactive Audio Drama, including founder Dave Grossman who has done some amazing work in the computer gaming area like Return to Monkey Island. This is an amazing step in the direction of getting our worlds into more media – which I believe can greatly enhance the fun for gamers who this week, let’s say, can’t get a group together but can enjoy their favorite setting via other media. Which is an important part of all of these tendrils we are putting forth; we always come back to whether this new direction, whatever it is, can enhance and build on the tabletop gaming experience. Now you, as an individual, might not be into audio stories. But you might love online tabletop RPG gaming with a group of friends now scattered all over the world. Or you’re not into that, but love some dice. Etc, etc. This is going to be a really exciting year for Onyx Path, between new releases, long-awaited releases, and our experiments into different media with our worlds. Thanks for walking it with us.   BLURBS! KICKSTARTER!   I might have referenced this above: it’s the Pugmire kickstarter! Pledge to enable us to create a beautiful full color, hardcover, 180+ page, 7″ x 10″ core rulebook that we can also get into game stores. We’re doing lots of great stuff with this Kickstarter including both a fiction anthology and turning at least one of those stories into an audio drama. Backers can download the Pugmire Early Access PDF and get playing right away on the basic version of the game so check it out: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/200664283/pugmire-fantasy-tabletop-rpg And here is a very in-depth interview that Eddy Webb had with The Gentleman Gamer where Eddy also answers all sorts of questions about Pugmire, Sherlock Holmes, his work with EarPlay, and Vampire: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8ePtKD54Bg   ON SALE! Starting today and running for two weeks, there are twin Werewolf: the Apocalypse Bundle of Holding Sales going on here: https://bundleofholding.com/presents/WerewolfApoc1 and https://bundleofholding.com/presents/WerewolfApoc2 There are some great deals on these classic PDFs, and 10% of the profits of these sales go to The Bodhana Group to help promote RPGs as counseling tools.   We are waiting for the PoD proof for the Chronicles of Darkness Core Rulebook, and if we get them in time we’ll get the PDF and PoD versions up on DTRPG this Weds!   Gauntlet of Spiragos is a 5E D&D adventure for the Scarred Lands and is now available free as a PDF. Just like the Pathfinder version of Gauntlet of Spiragos, this one will eventually have a physical copy Print on Demand version as well. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171523/Gauntlet-of-Spiragos-5E-OGL-adventure   Condition Card PDFs for both Chronicles of Darkness http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171574/Chronicles-of-Darkness-Condition-Numina-and-Dread-Power-Cards and Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171573/Werewolf-the-Forsaken-2nd-Edition-Condition-Cards are now up dealt up at DTRPG, with PoD cards soon to come!     The Demon Storyteller Guide has dropped its cover and is on sale as an Advance PDF on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/170165/Demon-Storytellers-Guide M20 How Do You DO That? is now available at DTRPG in PDF and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/162241/M20-How-Do-You-DO-That       If you are into the Pugmire KS, here are also six Pugmire posters available as free PDFs or $.99 physical posters, suitable for framing: Spike Mutt: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150845/Spike-Mutt-Pugmire-Poster-6 Pan Dachshund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150844/Pan-Dachshund-Pugmire-Poster-5 Jack Rat-Terrier: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150944/Jack-RatTerrier-Pugmire-Poster-4 Sgt. Leo Bulldog: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150843/Sgt-Leo-Bulldog-Pugmire-Poster-3 Princess Yosha Pug: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/149750/Princess-Yosha-Pug-Pugmire-Poster-2 Sister Picassa Collie: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/148516/Sister-Picassa-Collie-Pugmire-Poster-1 Start spreading the Code of Man!   CONVENTIONS! Gen Con 2016 planning has started.   And now, the new project status updates! DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM ROLLICKING ROSE (projects in bold have changed status since last week): First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep) M20 Book of Secrets (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition) Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition) CtL fiction anthology (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) Ring of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) EX3 Backer Charms (Exalted 3rd Edition) DA Tome of Secrets (Vampire 20th Dark Ages) VtM Endless Ages fiction anthology (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Redlines Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse) Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition Cavaliers of Mars Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes (Beast: the Primordial) Dagger of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) EX3 Quickstart (Exalted 3rd Edition) Second Draft Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition) The Realm (Exalted 3rd Edition) Dragon-Blooded (Exalted 3rd Edition) Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition) Scion: Alpha (Scion 2nd Edition) Development W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) V20 Lore of the Bloodlines (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beast Ready Made Characters (Beast: the Primordial) Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) W20 Kinfolk (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beckett’s Jyhad Diary (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) V20 Ready Made Characters (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Shattered Dreams in-book stretch goals (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Editing Dark Eras Companion (Chronicles of Darkness Dark Eras) WtF The Pack (Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition) CofD Hurt Locker (Chronicles of Darkness) Post-Editing Development: V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Secrets of the Covenants (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition) Scarred Lands Player’s Guide: Ghelspad (Scarred Lands 2nd Edition) V20 Dirty Secrets of the Black Hand (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Indexing: Beast: the Primordial Core Book (Beast: the Primordial)   ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE: In Art Direction V20 Ghouls W20 Shattered Dreams  Promethean: the Created Second  Scarred Lands PG Dark Eras Companion The Pack Secrets of the Covenants Necropolis Rio W20 Kinfolk   In Layout Mage: the Awakening Second Dark Eras  V20 Black Hand Dreams of Avarice   Proofing Ex 3 core book – From RichT: Sent review notes on the fixed PDF from the Devs to Maria for what we all hope is the last pass as they caught very tiny things this time, working on getting an index for it.   At Press Pugmire Early Access M20 Deluxe Edition Chronicles of Darkness Cards Gauntlet of Spiragos 5e Forsaken 2 Condition Cards  Chronicles of Darkness Demon Storyteller’s Guide Beast Screen  Truth Beyond Paradox  Lore of the Clans LtD Edition Lore of the Clans Screen   Special- projects on hold in the art and production area until an external factor is resolved Wraith 20 – Can’t go further until art notes come in, still being developed by Rich Dansky. Pentex Employee Indoctrination Manual – Some added and amended text needs to come in.   TODAY’S REASON TO DRINK: On the weekend, to sweethearts everywhere. View the full article
  2. Howdy. Thought I’d share a draft while Hurt Locker’s on its way toward editing. This is the appendix for the book featuring weapons, armor, and equipment. This is more or less what the appendix will look like, with some minor changes here and there, edits, and what-have-you. It features a slightly different take on the way guns work, includes rules for explosions, and some Merits that pertain to all this. The Merits will go into a different section in the final book; they’re just here because they relate directly to these systems. The idea was, we wanted a slightly more narrative approach to this kind of equipment, letting us focus on parts more appropriate to Hurt Locker specifically, while still giving a series of granular choices in the vein of Armory and Armory: Reloaded. We toiled over this content, and I think we’ve reached a good balance between the approaches. View the full article
  3. As Storypath has entered its finalized albeit generic state, and I’m stitching together the Continuum-specific version before passing it on to my writers, I thought some of you might like a peak at one of the Allegiances available to Talents in the Trinity Continuum core. This comes from author Jack Norris. 9 Motto: Protection, Discretion, Security Once Branch 9, this group began as a covert arm of the US Government tasked with tracking and neutralizing threats that employed strange scientific and supernormal phenomenon. They worked closely with other organizations such as the Æon Society, but always with their own objectives and agenda. Privatized in the early 1970s, it dropped “Branch” and now operates as simply 9 and works under contract with a number of governments and private institutions. 9 are the people who deal with problems most people think are the subject of pulp novels and really out-there techno-thrillers. An ancient plague discovered in a hermetically sealed casket in an ancient tomb is more likely to be on their radar than someone hoarding mundane chemical weapons. A conspiracy to overthrow a local government might not interest them, but if the rebels are fielding an army of genetically modified soldiers? Then their interest is piqued. 9 seeks to study and contain such situations, though if necessary they will simply eliminate a threat. They can be criticized as not always being forward thinkers and too concerned with saving the status quo, but they’ve saved the world more than once. History Branch 9 was created as a small covert law enforcement arm of the US government by then President Teddy Roosevelt. Concerned with, but having no entity to address, possible threats from multinational crime syndicates, secret societies, and a number of strange but potentially world-ending threats, Branch 9 was created and Roosevelt used his power and influence to give the organization limited operational capacity overseas as well as vast domestic power. In its early days, Branch 9 was underfunded and treated as an annoyance or joke by most conventional law enforcement; a paranoid creation of a government who was jumping at every shadow. The groups effectiveness despite its small size and modest funding actually worked against it; since few outside its membership knew of the courage, devotion, and effectiveness of its operatives. The organization did a lot of good despite its lack of notoriety, but it was often limited by its small size. When the organization foiled a cell of former Nazi officers and scientists seeking to use subsonic weaponry to control and undermine the government of Argentina, people within the intelligence community began to take notice. The organization was given more funding and resources, and during the late 1950s to mid-1970s helped detect, contain, study, and eliminate various strange threats and anomalies. They even foiled an attempted assassination of then presidential candidate John F. Kennedy, though they were unable to detect or prevent his assassination several years later. Still, these successes and the brave sacrifices of various Branch 9 operatives kept the agency well-funded and regarded during much of the Cold War. While always proactive and motivated to shut down threats before they manifested, Branch 9’s newfound reputation meant they were able to monitor and dispose of numerous catastrophes before the public even caught a hint that anything was wrong. When Vietnam and Watergate era scandals decreased faith in the US government and its concentration on covert operations, Branch 9 took a serious funding hit and was nearly shut down. It limped along for another decade, finally saving itself by privatizing the bulk of its operations during the Reagan administration, a move which expanded their capacity to work internationally but at the cost of some domestic allies. However, the collected secrets and dirt on various officials the organization had collected over the years allowed them to deflect all but the most cursory government oversight and kept them associated with the US Government, UN Security Council, and other institutions in the form of lucrative “private consulting” contracts. Drawing from a pool of ex-government operatives and disillusioned and disenfranchised private sector scientists and engineers, the organization reinvented itself as 9, consulting firm that specialized in security and intelligence issues. These individuals formed the backbone of the newly private group and aggressive recruitment in the private sector and overseas quickly replaced any lost resources. By the mid 90s, 9 was just where it wanted to be; influential in intelligence and politics and mostly unknown to the public at large. Since going corporate, 9 has worked globally to deal with esoteric and deadly threats that few others in the world have the experience or resources to handle. It’s a specialized field, but one with few competitors who can match the organization’s experience, resources, and drive. Many 9 operations are highly secretive, and none of the organizations files are declassified or available for public perusal. Casefiles are keep offline and hidden at a secret facility because 9 knows the sort of panic some of the things they’ve encountered over the years would cause if made public. A team of counterintelligence operatives, spin doctors, and hackers helps keep the group out of the limelight and has thus far managed to pass off even their weirdest operations as mundane threats, when anyone hears about them at all. Given their record and history of results, the United Nations is currently considering granting the group special intelligence gathering and international law enforcement powers under a special directive of Chapter 24 of the UN Charter. This “Directive 9” initiative is still being discussed by the UN Security Council but is expected to be put to a vote within the next few years. For their part, 9 is still determining under which conditions they would accept UN control and funding. Recruitment 9 seeks individuals with a mix of military or law enforcement training and scientific and technical expertise. From ex-soldiers to MIT grads, 9 seeks any individual who can assist them, even hiring freelance contracts as needed. They provide basic scientific or combat training to any recruit whose other skills merit hiring them. Field operatives in particular are expected to have a grounding in a variety of disciplines; so while a lab tech might get basic firearms training, a field technical expert would be held to higher standards. Many of the upper echelon and old guard of 9 hail from their origins as Branch 9, though over the years they’ve added operatives and administrators from around the world. In fact, the current head of 9 security is a ex-Kenyan Wildlife Service ranger who left his country and joined 9 after he met its operatives during a mission in Africa. Discretion is highly prized in the organization and some otherwise very promising and effective recruits get decommissioned or passed over if they display an inability to operate covertly and with a constant eye to avoiding public exposure. 9 would sooner hire a talented rookie with a knack of keeping things quiet than a veteran operative that can’t keep a lid on the strange situations the organization constantly encounters. Organization and Structure Resembling a mix of government agency, private think tank, and corporation, 9 uses an interlocking structure of directors, senior agents, and department heads to run its diverse and eclectic staff. Individual agents and employees are encouraged to communicate new ideas and bring new issues to their superiors and a robust bonus structure exists to reward this behavior. Agents receive pension plans, excellent health care, further education and training, and other benefits. Turnover in 9 through resignation is extremely low, though several operatives are lost or retire each year as a result of dangerous operations. Operatives are given a surprising among of freedom compared to many intelligence and military organizations. As long as the public is kept unaware of various threats and strange phenomenon most field teams are allowed to conduct operations largely as they see fit. 9 learned the hard way when dealing with strange accidents, old creatures, secret societies, and other such problems the most effective process is to let their people on the ground evaluate, assess, and if necessary neutralize threats as best fits the situation. Extensive debriefing and monitoring of field teams keeps the higher ups informed, but they generally won’t step in unless things have gone very wrong. Each field operation is assigned a case agent, a trained analyst who employs their own team of experts to advise and support field operations. The end result is an organization of “free thinkers” and “mavericks” who all operate under an operational umbrella of secrecy that is more like a code of honor than a modern paramilitary group . It’s an atypical framework, but it gets the job done. Operatives are letter and number coded (A1, B1, etc…). Numbers are never repeated, and fallen agents are from both Branch 9 and 9 are listed on a memorial inside the organization’s headquarters. When cover identities are called for, these are often plays on the letter and number, so Operative L14 might be given the alias “Levi Vierzhen”. Support staff, case agents, and executive personnel are given their own code names based on surnames which are recycled when someone retires or dies. So an operative case agent might be Mr. Wilson, and when he leaves? The new guy is also Mr. (or Ms.) Wilson. The current Executive Director of 9 is Ms. Pemberton. This enigmatic woman of mixed European and Persian ancestry was an NSA operative before being recruited by 9 in the 1980s and rose through the ranks to take over the organization when the last Pemberton was eaten by a particularly dangerous “bioweapon” when the organization was attacked at the turn of the century. Goals and Methods 9 is devoted to monitoring, cataloging, collecting, and if necessary shutting various unconventional threats, particular experimental or “fringe” fields like parapsychology, nanotechnology, advanced genetic manipulation, and the like. These folks track down mutated predators, terrorist nano-plagues, mad scientists, and other threats most law enforcement and espionage agencies are ill-equipped to deal with. Got a terrorist cell operating in town? Call the FBI or NSA. If the cell is planning to unleash a airborne plague that disrupts a target’s higher brain functions and causes them to attack and devour their neighbors? The traditional authorities call 9. While 9 works with various scientific discoveries, they aren’t interested in spending the majority of their resources working on small theoretical advances or mass market applications; they have various allies and associated institutions to do this. Instead, they spend most of their time dealing with dangerous genetic anomalies, covertly shutting down or acquiring intelligence on various secret weapons projects, and following up rumors of everything from alien abductions to secret Nazi strongholds in Antarctica. Much of what they investigate turns out to be bunk, but at any given time there are at least a dozen operations worldwide that involve very real, extremely dangerous, and often incredibly weird threats. The average 9 field team is made up of a mix of combat specialists and scientists, which various technicians and administrative staff providing support. Solo operatives are also often employed, especially to monitor sensitive situations or unconfirmed threats. 9 has a decent reputation for working with other organizations, though they also have a deserved reputation for keeping secrets and trying to take control of joint operations. In many cases, discretion to seize data, technology samples, or even take custody of “special” individuals is part of 9’s arrangement with the organizations who hire them. As noted in the Recruitment section, discretion is highly prized by 9 and its allies. They don’t silence or squash every advance or discovery, but they control the way and speed these things are revealed to the public. This is done to reduce panic, unrest, economic instability, and chaos, but it gives the agency a partially deserved rep for being obsessed with misinformation and secrecy. 9 is also largely apolitical, concerned more with general stability and safety. They’ve worked with everyone from the World Health Organization to the SAVAK (Iranian Secret Police) to investigate and contain supernormal threats and abominations of amoral experimentation. They don’t endorse the goals of most of their temporary allies, they simply are willing to work with whoever can help them accomplish their mission. Advantages 9 has impressive resources cultivated over decades of operation. In addition to their highly trained staff of scientists, engineers, and combat personnel, they have access to cutting edge technology and military-grade weaponry. They maintain facilities to house and contain dangerous weapons and individuals staffed by experts in security, medicine, and other areas. These facilities serve as operational centers, research labs, and containment facilities, allowing 9 staff to study and monitor contained threats in relative safety. Chief among these facilities is The Block, a secure network of seemingly innocuous warehouses in Virginia, but they maintain similar facilities in New York, New Mexico, Japan, the United Kingdom, and elsewhere. Unless working in the most remote parts of the world, field teams needing scientific support or containment for a threat are usually less than eight hours from an appropriate facility. 9 is willing to supply operatives with highly experimental technology and resources if the need arises, though they never do so lightly. Any member of 9 can ask for and will usually receive additional training in various skills that could have useful applications on organizational operations, though they need to justify the need to their case agents and directors. As a private entity, 9 has more financial resources and looser oversight than it did during its covert government days. Patents from acquired technology and research are a large part of this fortune, though consulting fees from various governments, corporations, and institutions pay for most operating costs. 9 rarely deals with threats they can simply throw money at, but they have very deep pockets if necessary. The organizations mercenary and pragmatic approach to cooperation and field operations means they possess few true allies among various governments and other organizations, but a lot of clients, co-conspirators, contacts, and situational allegiances. If 9 wasn’t so uniquely suited to deal with the increasing number of strange threats popping up all over the world they’d probably have been destroyed by now, but they manage to survive and prosper. At least so far. Why 9? The common modern home of the traditional pulp or action hero is the techno-thriller. Work within this framework to explore the weird and save humanity from threats beyond normal comprehension. Gain the benefits of a covert government agency without the confines of a single national allegiance. Character Concepts Action Scientist, Military Operations Expert, Fringe Theorist, Ex-Government Agent, Expert Recruited from a Previous Operation, Solo Operations Specialist Spies Not Like Us While 9 shares some goals and a basic concept with other independent covert agencies such as Alert Status 1, they are definitely their own entity. Where a group like AS1 is a collection of spies and secret agents from around the world who form a type of secret superspy mega-organization, 9 is has a tighter command structure and more unified legacy springing from their origins as Branch 9. Both groups are secretive, but this secrecy manifests differently. AS1 is focused on cover identities and tried and true covert tactics while 9 hides its operatives and operations behind code names and an active corporate front. These differences allow not only both groups to excel at different things, but also gives each a unique feel in the setting. Finally, while there was a time that 9, like AS1, focused on various worldwide threats regardless of origin, 9 now firmly sets their sights on strange, supernormal, and downright unbelievable threats to world security and stability. This focus has allowed them to become shadowy experts in a very unique field. Of course there’s often a lot of crossover with other espionage operations: when a dictator uses mutagenic retroviruses to turn his troops into a half-human super soldiers or a vengeful researcher programs a quantum supercomputer with the personalities of Francis Duvalier, Idi Amin, and Kim Jong-il. During the worse of such crises, 9 works with groups like AS1 as necessary, though there’s a lot of professional rivalry between operatives and administrators alike. View the full article
  4. Now available from our RedBubble store, we finish off the collection of bloodline symbols: Ahrimanes Anda Baali Blood Brothers Cappadocians Children of Osiris Daughters of Cacophony Gargoyles Harbingers of Skulls This brings the total number of shirts in our VTM collection up to a whopping 95! We’ve also got some updates to the White Wolf back catalog: Wraith: The Oblivion’s Dark Kingdoms trilogy of stories is now available in ebook format Werewolf: The Forsaken’s Tribes of the Moon is now available in print Mage: The Awakening’s Intruders: Encounters with the Abyss is now available in print View the full article
  5. Scarred Lands 24 hour Warning!

    Fewer than 24 hours remain on the Scarred Lands Kickstarter for Pathfinder and 5e! In the hands of the original creators, this 3e FRPG setting of a world torn by war between gods & titans returns for Pathfinder and 5e! View the full article
  6. So we launched a Kickstarter for Fast Eddy Webb’s Pugmire fantasy game of uplifted dogs last Thursday. We were hoping to get enough interest that we’d fund the creation of the core book, based on the Early Access version that Eddy was using at MidWinter Con, and to get it traditionally printed so we could get some of these out into game stores. Eddy estimated we’d fund our pretty modest $15,000 goal in about four days. I was in that state I get into before we launch a KS where I am sure it will be our first KS to fail to fund. Or at least that we’ll squeak by with funding right at the end. We funded in an hour. Today, as I write this, we have 1630 backers, $102,198 in pledges, 35 days to go, and have run past six Stretch Goals like a dog let off the leash. We got a write-up on the Nerdist web site here: http://nerdist.com/theres-an-rpg-called-pugmire-about-medieval-fantasy-dogs/ It is so very gratifying to see so many people excited about Pugmire! Oh sure, there are some folks uptight because Pugmire isn’t the angst-filled majesty that is the World of Darkness, but we expected that. In fact, it is important to us that a project like Pugmire can have its place in Onyx Path‘s release schedule alongside the World of Darkness, Chronicles of Darkness, and Exalted. It shows, as Joshua Alan Doetsch phrased it, ” A deliciousness of range”. Which is important to us here at the Path, which is why you might have noticed we have a variety of game worlds that we create for. As creators, it is vital for us to be able to concentrate on one world and then be able to pull back, regroup our creative energy, and focus on another very different project that stretches the creative muscles in different ways. For Fast Eddy and I, this was exactly how working on Pugmire affected us. It was the pause that refreshes in between the many, many projects we were working on. For us, as friends and collaborators for years, it’s a great project that lets us work together on creating a game world, and one where we have only ourselves to decide what works or doesn’t. But that’s just us as wacky creative guys making (and often eating) mud-pies. In fact, there are many other reasons why Pugmire is important to Onyx Path: It’s our first new game to make it to the public. It’s our first “creator-owned” partnership project to make it to the public. It’s one of our first experiments in reconnecting with game stores and getting a traditionally printed book onto their shelves. It’s our first Kickstarter with a dice set included in the Reward Tiers. It’s our first Kickstarter with…well, you’ll see if you follow the Stretch Goals, but there are SGs in this KS that we could only do with a project we owned. It’s our first game specifically designed so that you can play it with your adult group and if you want to, you can play it with your kids.   Besides just making a really fun game and world, all of these reasons enable Onyx Path to grow along the lines I was mentioning in my posts at the end of last year, and as we try out these options, our efforts towards the White Wolf game lines are infused with more ideas and energy, and our efforts towards further Onyx Path owned projects like Scion and the Trinity Continuum also can be increased because our creators see that there are audiences out there beyond what we’ve touched on these last four years. So, yeah, pretty important stuff behind the scenes, and a fun game world of dogs with swords & sorcery upfront where it should be. If you’ve already pledged, then thanks for coming on walkies with us: you are a Good Dog. If you are still sniffing around the Kickstarter, I hope you’ll sit up and take notice of all we’re trying to do with this and give it a taste: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/200664283/pugmire-fantasy-tabletop-rpg If you do, I promise I’ll stop with the doggie puns.     BLURBS! KICKSTARTER! Less than 24 hours to go! As of right now, if you pledge for the $30 pledge tier or above you will also get over $100 worth of classic Scarred Lands PDFs via the Stretch Goals! In the heady days of the D20 explosion, White Wolf created our own fantasy setting featuring a world devastated by the brutal war between gods and ancient titans. The Scarred Lands will return as this Kickstarter for the new edition of Scarred Lands Players Guide! Hosted on KS by our partner, Nocturnal Media, this Kickstarter is not only for a new edition but for a print run to get Pathfinder AND 5E editions into stores! Here’s the link! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1861515217/scarred-landsfrpg-setting-in-both-5e-and-pathfinder   As I sort of mention above, it’s the Pugmire kickstarter! Pledge to enable us to create a beautiful full color, hardcover, 180+ page, 7? x 10? core rulebook that we can also get into game stores. We’re doing lots of great stuff with this Kickstarter including both a fiction anthology and turning at least one of those stories into an audio drama. It is a treat, so Be Good Dogs, and check it out: https://youtu.be/DeggUirLIiU   ON SALE! Gauntlet of Spiragos is a 5E D&D adventure for the Scarred Lands and is now available free as a PDF. Just like the Pathfinder version of Gauntlet of Spiragos, this one will eventually have a physical copy Print on Demand version as well. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171523/Gauntlet-of-Spiragos-5E-OGL-adventure   Condition Card PDFs for both Chronicles of Darkness http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171574/Chronicles-of-Darkness-Condition-Numina-and-Dread-Power-Cards and Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171573/Werewolf-the-Forsaken-2nd-Edition-Condition-Cards are now up dealt up at DTRPG, with PoD cards soon to come!     The Demon Storyteller Guide has dropped its cover and is on sale as an Advance PDF on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/170165/Demon-Storytellers-Guide M20 How Do You DO That? is now available at DTRPG in PDF and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/162241/M20-How-Do-You-DO-That       If you are into the Pugmire KS, here are also six Pugmire posters available as free PDFs or $.99 physical posters, suitable for framing: Spike Mutt: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150845/Spike-Mutt-Pugmire-Poster-6 Pan Dachshund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150844/Pan-Dachshund-Pugmire-Poster-5 Jack Rat-Terrier: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150944/Jack-RatTerrier-Pugmire-Poster-4 Sgt. Leo Bulldog: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150843/Sgt-Leo-Bulldog-Pugmire-Poster-3 Princess Yosha Pug: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/149750/Princess-Yosha-Pug-Pugmire-Poster-2 Sister Picassa Collie: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/148516/Sister-Picassa-Collie-Pugmire-Poster-1 Start spreading the Code of Man!   CONVENTIONS! Gen Con 2016 planning has started.   And now, the new project status updates! DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM ROLLICKING ROSE (projects in bold have changed status since last week): First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep) M20 Book of Secrets (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition) Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition) CtL anthology (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) Ring of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) Ex Backer Charms (Exalted 3rd Edition) DA Tome of Secrets (Vampire 20th Dark Ages) Redlines Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse) Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition Cavaliers of Mars Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes (Beast: the Primordial) Dagger of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) EX3 Quickstart (Exalted 3rd Edition) Second Draft Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition) The Realm (Exalted 3rd Edition) Dragon-Blooded (Exalted 3rd Edition) Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition) Development StoryPath System Rules (Base rules set for Scion and the Trinity Continuum) W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) V20 Lore of the Bloodlines (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beast Ready Made Characters (Beast: the Primordial) Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) W20 Kinfolk (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beckett’s Jyhad Diary (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) V20 Ready Made Characters (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Shattered Dreams in-book stretch goals (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Editing Dark Eras Companion (Chronicles of Darkness Dark Eras) WtF The Pack (Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition) CofD Hurt Locker (Chronicles of Darkness) Post-Editing Development: V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Secrets of the Covenants (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition) Scarred Lands Player’s Guide: Ghelspad (Scarred Lands 2nd Edition) Indexing: Beast: the Primordial Core Book (Beast: the Primordial)   ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE: In Art Direction V20 Ghouls W20 Shattered Dreams  Promethean: the Created Second  Scarred Lands PG Dark Eras Companion The Pack Secrets of the Covenants Necropolis Rio W20 Kinfolk   In Layout Mage: the Awakening Second Dark Eras  Lore of the Clans Prestige Edition Chronicles of Darkness Core Demon Storytellers Guide   Proofing Ex 3 core book – From RichT: Waiting for review notes on the fixed PDF from the Devs.  Now, working on getting an index for it. Truth Beyond Paradox Beast Screen   At Press M20 Dreams of Avarice Gauntlet of Spiragos 5e  Forsaken 2 Condition Cards  Chronicles of Darkness Cards   Special- projects on hold in the art and production area until an external factor is resolved Wraith 20 – Can’t go further until art notes come in, still being developed by Rich Dansky. Pentex Employee Indoctrination Manual – Some added and amended text needs to come in.   TODAY’S REASON TO DRINK: Arf arf, bow wow, wowser! View the full article
  7. Release Roundup: January 2016

    Here’s what we released over the last month: Demon: The Descent’s Demon Storytellers Guide in advance PDF Exalted’s Tales from the Age of Sorrows in ebook and print-on-demand Chronicles of Darkness Condition, Numina, and Dread Power Cards in advance PDF Werewolf: The Forsaken 2e Condition Cards in advance PDF Scarred Lands’ Gauntlet of Spiragos Adventure for 5e in PDF DriveThruRPG has also added some material to the White Wolf back catalog! White Wolf Magazine #10 in PDF White Wolf Magazine #11 in PDF White Wolf Magazine #12 in PDF Vampire: The Masquerade’s Classic Clanbook Bundle, featuring all 13 clanbook PDFs from 1st/2nd Edition. Save 50%! Werewolf: The Apocalypse’s Tribe Novels: Silver Fangs & Glass Walkers in ebook View the full article
  8. The Pugmire Kickstarter is now live! Be a Good Dog. Protect Your Home. Be Loyal To Those Who Are True. These are the words of the Code of Man. Dogs have inherited the world, building the kingdom of Pugmire thousands of years after the Ages of Man. These dogs have been changed to use tools and language, and they (along with other races of uplifted animals) seek to rediscover the world they’ve inherited. Some dogs use the leftover technology of humanity, but they believe it all to be magic handed to them by their dead gods. Others seek to create an ideal civilization, using a Code of Man compiled from ancient, fragmentary lore. The world is dangerous and mysterious, but courageous and loyal dogs will persevere. Now you can contribute to help us create a beautifully illustrated, traditionally printed version of Pugmire for sale in stores. We’ve got lots of fantastic stretch goals ahead! Will you be a good dog and join us? View the full article
  9. Now that Wizards of the Coast has announced the 5e OGL, we’re delighted to present the 5e version of our free Gauntlet of Spiragos adventure! More of a Pathfinder fan? We’ve got you covered. Grab Gauntlet of Spiragos for Pathfinder now! While you’re reliving your glory days on Scarn, why not check out some of these classic Scarred Lands shirt designs? Remember, there’s less than a week left to get involved in the Scarred Lands Kickstarter we’re running in conjunction with our friends at Nocturnal Media! View the full article
  10. Cavaliers of Mars OPP logo Hi, Rose here. ^_^ Thought I’d drop by with the most recent city-state I’ve redlined. Welcome to Illium, where flying ships fill the skies above and the dessicated bodies of the dead lurk in the caverns below. Text by Rose Bailey and Meghan Fitzgerald. ___ Illium High on the Radium Plateau rises many-spired Illium. Illium, city of learning and commerce… and of war. Broad, well-paved streets thread their way throughout the city, and the nights are lit by radium lamps. High white walls encircle the city, but do not rise as high as the towered homes of the aristocracy. Great machines pump water from the canal below the plateau, through a labyrinth of caves whose layout is a closely guarded secret. The caves also hide Illium’s wondrous reclamation systems, which allow the people of the city to live with an almost unheard-of abundance of water. In Illium, there are fountains in every square, and baths in every neighborhood. The University of Illium is widely considered the greatest remaining seat of learning on Mars. Yet plentiful water is not the true wonder of Illium. That honor belongs to the magnificent sky navy, a hundred ships buoyed by a mysterious anti-gravity element. The sky navy, docking at Illium’s highest towers and spreading forth across all of Mars, gives Illium nearly unmatched power in trade and war. Of the other city-states, only Illium’s rival Zodiac possesses the secret of flight. A term of two years’ service in the army or navy is compulsory for citizens of Illium. Slaves may be emancipated in exchange for military service, but must serve until honorably discharged. Such discharges are usually granted only for old age. The dead are processed for their water, and then laid to rest in the upper cave complexes. The mummies of Illium figure heavily in the scare-stories other Martians tell their children. The Princess Invincible and her Council of Judgment rule Illium. The word of the Princess is law, and disobedience is punishable by death in the Ray Chamber. The people of Illium believe the Princess wise beyond measure… for if they thought otherwise, they might see that they live and die at the whim of an all-powerful and unaccountable goddess. Locations The Fortress Invincible The Fortress Invincible may be the most heavily-defended place on Mars. Here, in her shining palace that reaches into the heavens, the Princess Invincible rules unequivocally. In the Moon Chamber, her Council of Judgment decides the fates of citizens and the shape of the city’s future. In the Ray Chamber, those who dare defy the Princess perish, disintegrated to ash in the searing heat of a First Martian weapon of devastating power. From its pier atop the Fortress’ highest spire, her own personal skyship — Horizon’s Terror — scatters these ashes on the wind over the city as a reminder to all. In the Sun Chamber, the Princess mounts her silver throne and dispenses wisdom to the people. When Illium goes to war, she draws her blade and takes to the sky with her soldiers. The sight of her ship alone has been known to send hardened troops scurrying to surrender. Hooks One of the characters turns out to look nearly identical to the Princess Invincible. They receive a myriad of proposals and offers — everything from impersonating the Princess for gain, to acting as her official body double at boring society functions, to posing with noble children for portraits. The characters are called in by the Council of Judgment, ordered to provide testimony for a crime they are meant to have witnessed. The only problem is, they didn’t witness it. Is this all a misunderstanding, or has someone embroiled them in a sticky situation on purpose? While attending the Princess in the Sun Chamber, the characters hear the plea of a family that lives out on the Radium Plateau, asking for soldiers to protect their village from roving bandits. The Princess refuses and sends them away, giving no reasons. Someone the characters know is innocent is arrested and dragged to the Fortress, destined for the Ray Chamber. Do they dare intervene, risking the same fate for themselves? Can they gather enough evidence to convince the Council before the deed is done? The characters receive an offer: go to the Sun Chamber and copy down what the Princess says into a specific book, word for word, in exchange for payment. The offer is too generous to be on the up-and-up, but the task seems so innocuous. What’s so important about this book? Why hire strangers to do such a small thing? While exploring elsewhere in the city, the characters come across a door that should lead into a storeroom, but instead leads into the Fortress’ extensive cellars. What treasures might such a place hold in store, if they can avoid getting caught? How did such a passage come to be? Characters Captain Kromis, Red Martian second-in-command of Horizon’s Terror (Decorated Soldier X, Right Hand of Justice X, Ships Are Better than People X; Trouble: Criminal Past) Vestai of Black Sand, Red Martian noble seeking the Princess’ favor (Irresistible Good Looks X, Victory Is Worth Any Price X, Fancy Footwork X; Trouble: Glory Hound) Sebaste the August, Red Martian member of the Council of Judgment (Brood of Many Scions X, Weighty Words X, Smells a Rat X; Trouble: Hard of Hearing) Trif, Red Martian Sun Chamber petitioner (Impetuous Entrepreneur X, If Wishes Were Horses X, Lights Up the Room X; Trouble: Empty Purse) Dinni, Skarrut Ray Chamber guard (Pole Sling Master X, Heart of Stone X, Eyes of Steel X; Vitality X; Trouble: Gambling Habit) Rhes, Red Martian Moon Chamber messenger (Swift Feet X, Sixth Child of a Noble House X, Fly on the Wall X; Trouble: Sibling Rivalry) Hazards When the Ray Chamber would create a martyr or grant too quick a demise, the Princess Invincible challenges the criminal to a duel to the death. No one has ever defeated her. The Sun Chamber is a battlefield of words, where each question posed is an army’s advance and each careful greeting a tactical maneuver. Drunken beastmasters boast of a vicious, many-fanged beast with wings of enormous span that lives beneath the Fortress, kept by the Princess as a last resort against invasion or siege. (Aerial Mobility X, Toothy Maw X, Doesn’t Take Orders X) Servants at the Fortress murmur that those who wander where they shouldn’t come under a curse of confusion, doomed to forget everything they knew. Anyone who tries to stow away on Horizon’s Terror must contend with the ship’s tenacious and loyal crew. The wide plaza stretching out before the Fortress gates is prime real estate for traders hawking souvenirs and street fare with booming voices and tantalizing deals. Beware, all who planned to leave with any coin. Sky Navy Port The Pride of Illium, the Moonrise Fleet, the Living Storm — all of Mars knows the city’s majestic sky navy by these names, and many others besides. Its twin flagships, Scythe of Phobos and Lance of Deimos, cut distinctive and awe-inspiring figures against the sky. When the armada comes home to roost, its ships dock atop the gleaming spires of Sky Navy Port, a vast forest of towers, radium beacons, and barracks. Its shipyard is guarded fiercely day and night, protected by a high barricade and restricted to only the most trusted personnel. The fixers and builders who work on the sky navy’s ships are celebrities, and always travel with assigned bodyguards lest their secrets fall into foreign hands. The navy’s highest ranks are reserved for those of aristocratic blood, and feuds break out over promotions and medals given to rivals. Hooks By chance, the characters stumble upon a well-hidden group of dissidents among the navy’s ranks who have grown disillusioned with the Princess Invincible’s omnipotent wisdom, and plan to enlist like-minded souls to overthrow her. The navy recruits volunteers for a mission to take down infamous sky pirate and Illium deserter Cosmalia Crimson. Once the characters join up, they realize that details of the plan don’t fit together quite right. Why would the navy need volunteers to hunt pirates? What’s really going on? An admiral gives a rousing speech and the characters are part of a massive crowd assembled to hear it. As they listen, they notice that the admiral speaks oddly, as though hidden between the lines might be an encoded message. Can they decipher it? Reports of an approaching invasion force reaches the navy, and they mobilize for war. Citizens are expected to participate, and many are rounded up for emergency training at the port — including at least one of the characters. A prisoner from Illium’s last battle, kept for interrogation, escapes. The soldiers patrol the city relentlessly looking for the escapee, who approaches the characters and begs for help. The sky navy holds an auction for a newly-retired ship. While attending, the characters discover that a merchant consortium has rigged the outcome in its favor and intends to sell the ship’s technology to a foreign broker without the Princess’ permission…for an awful lot of money. Characters Novian, Red Martian illegitimate child of nobility (Hardworking Young Soldier X, Standard Issue Blade X, I Will Win a Title X; Trouble: Seeks Acceptance) Volca (aka Qaysa), Red Martian Zodiac spy and navy infiltrator (Hoarder of Secrets X, Friend to Birds X, Crack Shot X; Trouble: Hidden Identity) Vestai of a Thousand Lights, Red Martian naval astrologer (Enigmatic Horoscope Reader X, Always on Course X, Night Owl X; Trouble: Incorrigible Dreamer) Marchai of the Valiant Horn, Red Martian admiral (Survived Ten Feuds X, Voice of Command X, Mentor to All X; Trouble: Secret Fatal Illness) Kaesii, Red Martian naval shipwright (Anti-Gravity Expert X, Bon Vivant X, Flock of Admirers X; Trouble: Common-Blooded Narcissist) Kismet, Red Martian soldier and ex-slave (Hears Everything X, Daring Maneuvers X, Born in a Far-Off Land X; Trouble: Wants Freedom and Peace) Hazards An accident at the shipyard causes the gravity in this whole area of the city to fluctuate out of control. One of the anti-gravity platforms that transports passengers up and down the tall towers malfunctions, leaving the characters stranded high above the ground. The sky navy has adopted the Princess’ dueling traditions but (usually) stops short of death. Insulting a naval officer, even by accident, is grounds for a challenge. Reports say a disturbingly large amount of photonic sand has been stolen from the armory. Whoever stole it could strike at any time. An enthusiastic shipwright asks the characters to help test an experimental weapon, but most of the kinks have yet to be worked out. A damaged ship on its way back to port is about to crash — right into the square where the characters happen to be, along with dozens of others. University of Illium Would-be students travel from all over Mars to the sprawling University of Illium, where if they prove themselves well enough (or they know the right people) they can study with venerated scholars of all fields: science, astrology, history, language, music, and even the secrets of the adepts. A complex, towering fountain with many levels and radium lights twinkling from within its waters graces the inner plaza. The central spire stands like an anchor around which the rest of the campus radiates in areologically-significant patterns, with lofty sky bridges connecting the structures. The spire was originally all there was to the university, one of the first buildings of Illium. Over time, it expanded to embrace the many Martians flocking to its learned halls. Today, it’s one of the few places where one might see a Roundhead and a Pale Martian sitting side by side — even if it’s only to see who can impress the Master more. Hooks The university clock tower has run continuously since the founding of the city ages ago, chiming the hours in perfect synchronization with the world’s turning. Now it’s stopped. No one knows why, but everyone knows that if it doesn’t chime the swiftly-approaching hour, something terrible will happen. The abandoned tower on the west side of campus is boarded up day and night, said to be the site of monstrous crimes in the distant past. It’s been empty as long as anyone can remember — but the characters could swear they saw someone peering down at them from the topmost window. The university is holding a city-wide competition for musicians of all kinds to prove their performing prowess. The winner is granted a significant sum of money — and perhaps more importantly, a personal audience with the Princess Invincible herself. A group of advanced students claims to have discovered, through data collected and analyzed over time, an ancient storm still writhing and thundering, raining water into a faraway canyon on the other side of the Radium Plateau. They need someone to visit the place to confirm their findings, and bring back samples. The university guards catch an assassin trying to kill one of Illium’s most renowned Masters. As the characters witness the arrest, or perhaps the intended punishment, one of them sees that the assassin is someone from their past. Only the top performers in each scholarly field win invitations to the Floating Study, an anti-gravity pavilion that takes students into the sky and away from the city. What they learn there remains a mystery, but some intrepid busybodies have dared everyone they know to sneak in and find out. Characters Flint, Red Martian university servant (Reformed Thief X, Entrance Exam Junkie X, Cheating Is Wrong X; Trouble: Not Very Bright) Master Lipita, Roundhead scholar of antiquities (Undisputed Cydonian Expert X, Valuable Pottery Collection X, Polyglot X; Trouble: Despises Students and Strangers) Headmaster Marchai of Nebulae, Red Martian university leader (Pleasantly Cunning X, Master of Commerce X, Let’s Make a Deal X; Trouble: Overprotective Parent) Rubica, Red Martian university student (Library Addict X, Secret Stash of Relics X, Problem Solver Xl Trouble: Two Left Feet) Rezzan, Pale Martian university student (Knows Sacrifices to Every God X, Fits in Everywhere X, High Fashion X; Trouble: Tempted by Corruption) Theonin, Red Martian university student (Child of a Vestai X, Money Enough for Anything X, Tall but Meek X;  Trouble: Disastrously Untalented Adept) Hazards Two rival Masters recruit volunteers for their research, performing increasingly strange and unsettling experiments. Eventually, they turn dangerous. Hordes of large rodents called radium rats haunt the university’s alleys. Their eyes glow a dull crimson, their teeth are sharp, and they spread a radiation sickness. Students notice a bizarre shift in behavior and habits in their favorite Master, and they suspect he’s been replaced by someone — or something — else. The university claims to have one library, but in fact it has two. The second is sealed and hidden away, a prison that holds a powerful and dangerous adept. Everyone loves the new Master. Even people who just yesterday expressed the opposite. Soon, the few people on campus who don’t love the new Master know something’s wrong. A student from Zodiac enrolls with the Headmaster’s blessing. The Illium natives don’t trust or care for this turn of events, and soon things get ugly. Plateau Caves Beneath the city, another world stretches its fingers deep into the earth. Far from the clash of blades and chatter of markets is a subtler noise: the distant, muted rush of water gilding the silence of the tomb. Catacombs line the upper cave system for miles, where the husk-dry mummified corpses of Illium’s dead are interred after their water is removed and returned to the reclamation systems for processing. Those with money or prestige enough are buried in ornate caskets with the weapons they wielded in life, while others are simply lined up in plain stone boxes or even wrapped only in oilcloths, if stone is too rich for their family’s blood. Deeper still than Illium’s necropolis runs the elaborate network of pipes, pumps, and reclamation machines that connect the canal below to the city above and transform the fluids of the dead into clean, usable water. A spare few know how to navigate these caves, and even fewer know how to operate the machines. Hooks Somewhere inside the catacombs is a door that only seldom exists. Its surface is carved with unrecognizable runes and it vanishes unpredictably, only to return with equal capriciousness. Where does it lead? When it’s gone, where does it go? And what happens if someone is inside when it disappears? A trader from Vance persuades the characters to make their way down into the caves and study one of the reclamation machines. She calls it a “cultural exchange” and promises they’ll be rewarded handsomely for a thorough report. The characters purchase a rare and extravagant weapon, only to discover that the salesman was a fence pawning off stolen grave goods from the tomb of an influential Illian family. The family is well-known for its sorcerous ties and the characters soon realize that the weapon is cursed. Characters Mystras, Red Martian catacomb tour guide (Illium History Buff X, Unafraid of the Dark X, Trusty Dagger X; Trouble: Morbid Curiosity) Kaniklai of Three Circles, Red Martian adept (Deadspeaker X, Renowned Mystic X, Loyal Pet Eora X; Trouble: Blind) Oea, Red Martian reclamation system engineer (Clever and Resourceful X, Down to Mars X, Tough and Muscular X; Trouble: Blunt Speech) Hazards One area of the cave system doesn’t function within the normal three spatial dimensions. Tunnels don’t lead where they should, and objects (or people) tossed down a hole fall back down from above. In the dark of the catacombs, people have been known to vanish without a trace, and some others say they hear the footsteps of the walking dead just like in the children’s tales. It’s easy to get lost under the city without a map, and maps are notoriously difficult to come by. View the full article
  11. In a strange confluence of timing, I am writing this blog on my actual birthday, and the occasion made me think about the kinds of presents I’m hoping for. A Big Finish third Doctor Who audio adventure, an In Search Of boxed set hosted by the inimitable Leonard Nimoy, a collected Promethea series graphic novel by Alan Moore, and the last season of Justified. Which pretty much suggests, no, confirms! that I am a nerd. But I wasn’t always a nerd. Oh, I was into the same sorts of things (Ultraman, Space Giants, Prince Planet, Rocket Robin Hood, Batman, and Spiderman– the one with the catchy theme song. Wild, Wild West, Star Trek, The Avengers, and the very first episodes of Doctor Who in the US all b&w and snowy on our old set) nerds traditionally liked in grade school, certainly. But before I was ten, we didn’t have a name in my area for people with our particular, non-athletic, interests. It wasn’t until Happy Days started running that “nerd” entered our vocabulary. At least in my neck of the Northeast Philly woods. That’s a metaphor or an idiom; we had to walk a bit to get to any woods. But my neck of the twin houses with thin strips of lawn between them just doesn’t sound pithy. Of course, puberty hit and so did Junior High School, so I hid out in the library and read Heinlein and Tolkien and Moorcock. I watched The Prisoner and got even more stubborn and resistant to authority. I devoured comic books – strictly Marvel at the time – and discovered John Buscema, Gene Colan, Barry Windsor Smith, and Frazetta, and wrote and drew comics and fantasy and science fiction imagery at every opportunity. I watched hours and hours of old b&w movies. Talked my grandfather into taking me to the 1975 Marvel Comics Convention at the Hotel Commodore and Stan Lee yelled at me because I blinded him with a flash bulb. How could he have seen it through those dark glasses of his? Although I had a few Avalon Hill historical wargames with chits for your forces and fold-out cardboard maps, there was no one I knew who was interested. I played chess with my dad. Beat him. We never played again. Don’t be sad, I would soon have all the challenges, in a good way, that a teenager could desire. The door to fellow nerds was about to open and my life was never to be the same. Central High School. America’s first magnet school before there were magnet schools. 99.9% college bound. We didn’t have a principal, we had a President, and every graduate over a certain GPA received not just a HS diploma but a Bachelor of Arts degree. I tell people this and it sounds like I’m either bragging or lying, but no, for us, it was just a mixing pot for what were supposed to be the best and brightest teens in Philly. Star athletes, South Philly mobster wannabes, certified geniuses, and we all quoted Monty Python, and SNL, and Star Wars. My friend Michael Thau (Goggle his philosophy books) translated and performed an entire scene from the Marx Brothers in French class. Our nerdiest impulses were looked at as eccentricities. And there was an entire Strategy & Tactics club dedicated to war gaming where I, and a whole room full of other guys, could play Squad Leader, and Wooden Ships and Iron Men, and then. And then. D&D. Three years of playing at least once a week. That and the finest art major program in the city set the twin courses of my life. Got to art school, was dissuaded from creating fantasy illustrations: “not serious, not cool”,  but the nerd would emerge in film classes and animation. In making a chain mail vest and a silver wolf’s head ring in jewelry class. My undergraduate years were bracketed by Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. Indy comics like Cerebus and ElfQuest mixed in with my ongoing Marvel collection. I may have been at Fat Jack’s Comic Crypt at the same times as M. Night Shyamalan. (Another nerd for sure). Tom Baker as Doctor Who enabled a conversation that started a relationship that turned into my first marriage. I studied film and film theory. Cahiers du Cinema anybody? Took my normal (er) friends to art school film festivals. It took Johnny I. two Long Islands Ice Teas before he could formulate words after the Pink Flamingos and Polyester double-feature. Played D&D every week with a regular gaming group, at least 75% of the time with me DMing. Dressed them up in belts and furs and junk, took them down the woods, and filmed a post-apocalyptic fable inspired by Harlan Ellison’s writings. I only wore light blue button down shirts and dark blue slacks. Purple sneakers or cowboy boots. Army coat and a cowboy hat or a derby (both black). So by now, dear reader, you might be aware of a couple things. One, I’m a nerd as the title suggests. Two, I’m an old (er) nerd. Note the complete absence of anything computer related so far. Three, I seem to be doing a biography here, with no end in sight. “What’s your point, Thomas?!” You might say. Well, a hint to my point might be found in the factoid that the quote one line above actually was said to me by Harlan Ellison. While I had to fight to get the review board to let me do a graphic novel based on my ongoing D&D world as my Master’s Thesis, and I had to fight the budget committee at Channel 29 in Philly to bring in the first desk top publishing graphics and animation system, and I had to convince the Illustration department head to let me add sequential art to the illustration class I was teaching, the nerd world I loved was soon to be more and more the world I lived and worked in all the time. With White Wolf, I was creating gaming art. We all talked the same language. Wes and Josh taught me about Manga and Anime and Street Fighter and Army of Darkness. Marathon was played on the office computers. I hired artists I studied for years like Michael Wm. Kaluta and Berni Wrightson and Mike Mignola and came within days of hiring an ailing Frank Frazetta. I had dinners with Harlan Ellison and Michael Moorcock. I’m not name-dropping here for status, these were my idols, my inspirations. In. My. World. A world that got fuller and busier as I and a host of incredibly talented creators poured our hearts and souls, our sweat and blood, our spinal cords and sanity, into the books and fiction and cards and board games and ads and other projects WW put out. It was an amazing time. The other, bigger, world was changing too. I sometimes think it was Tim Burton’s Batman that did it. Coming only a few years after Miller’s brilliant Dark Knight rejuvenated Batman for us nerds, his Batman brought that same milieu to the masses. It successfully buried the camp aesthetic of the TV Batman, which was honestly the Batman the majority were familiar with. OTOH maybe it was this damn internet that changed things. Whatever the reason, here I am, a nerd with his ongoing nerd interests, in a world that is actively waiting to view new superhero shows and movies. Where most people have seen at least one of the Lord of the Rings movies. Where the new Star Wars film is the most financially successful film ever to fill up a theatre. Wow. Things sure have changed from my 53 year perspective. It is a great time to be a nerd. It is a great time to create games and art and celebrate my nerd interests. I’m just getting started!             BLURBS! KICKSTARTER! In the heady days of the D20 explosion, White Wolf created our own fantasy setting featuring a world devastated by the brutal war between gods and ancient titans. The Scarred Lands will return as this Kickstarter for the new edition of Scarred Lands Players Guide was funded last week! Hosted on KS by our partner, Nocturnal Media, this Kickstarter is not only for a new edition but for a print run to get Pathfinder AND 5E editions into stores! Here’s the link! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1861515217/scarred-landsfrpg-setting-in-both-5e-and-pathfinder   Starting at the end of this week, we will be presenting the Pugmire kickstarter! Pledge to enable us to create a beautiful full color, 180+ page, 7″ x 10″ core rulebook that we can also get into game stores. Before we start the KS, we’re pre-releasing the KS video featuring a brief audio drama of our adventuring party on the quest of an artifact of Mankind, as well as Eddy Webb and Prince Murray Pug explaining just what we are doing with this Kickstarter campaign. It is a treat, so Be Good Dogs, and check it out: https://youtu.be/DeggUirLIiU   ON SALE! Gauntlet of Spiragos is a 5E D&D adventure for the Scarred Lands and is now available free as a PDF. Just like the Pathfinder version of Gauntlet of Spiragos, this one will eventually have a physical copy Print on Demand version as well. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171523/Gauntlet-of-Spiragos-5E-OGL-adventure   Condition Card PDFs for both Chronicles of Darkness http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171574/Chronicles-of-Darkness-Condition-Numina-and-Dread-Power-Cards and Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/171573/Werewolf-the-Forsaken-2nd-Edition-Condition-Cards are now up dealt up at DTRPG, with PoD cards soon to come!   The Tales From the Age of Sorrows Exalted 3rd fiction anthology is now on sale at DTRPG in PDF/ePub/Mobi and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/145501/Exalted-Tales-From-the-Age-of-Sorrows The Demon Storyteller Guide has dropped its cover and is on sale as an Advance PDF on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/170165/Demon-Storytellers-Guide M20 How Do You DO That? is now available at DTRPG in PDF and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/162241/M20-How-Do-You-DO-That   The Pugmire Pamphlet we had available at Gen Con is now ready for PDF download. Read about the world of Pugmire from the enthusiastic and optimistic pen of Princess Yosha Pug, as well as notes from the gruff and worldly hunter Pan Daschund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/153518/Pugmire-Gen-Con-Brochure There are also six Pugmire posters available as free PDFs or $.99 physical posters, suitable for framing: Spike Mutt: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150845/Spike-Mutt-Pugmire-Poster-6 Pan Dachshund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150844/Pan-Dachshund-Pugmire-Poster-5 Jack Rat-Terrier: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150944/Jack-RatTerrier-Pugmire-Poster-4 Sgt. Leo Bulldog: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150843/Sgt-Leo-Bulldog-Pugmire-Poster-3 Princess Yosha Pug: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/149750/Princess-Yosha-Pug-Pugmire-Poster-2 Sister Picassa Collie: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/148516/Sister-Picassa-Collie-Pugmire-Poster-1 Start spreading the Code of Man!   CONVENTIONS! Gen Con 2016 planning has started.   And now, the new project status updates! DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM ROLLICKING ROSE (projects in bold have changed status since last week): First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep) M20 Book of Secrets (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition) Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition) CtL anthology (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) Ring of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) Ex Backer Charms (Exalted 3rd Edition) DA Tome of Secrets (Vampire 20th Dark Ages) Redlines Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse) Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition V20 Ready Made Characters (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Cavaliers of Mars Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes (Beast: the Primordial) Dagger of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) EX3 Quickstart (Exalted 3rd Edition) Second Draft Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition) The Realm (Exalted 3rd Edition) Dragon-Blooded (Exalted 3rd Edition) Shattered Dreams in-book stretch goals (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition) Development StoryPath System Rules (Base rules set for Scion and the Trinity Continuum) W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) VtM Lore of the Bloodlines (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beast Ready Made Characters (Beast: the Primordial) Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) WtA Kinfolk (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beckett’s Jyhad Diary (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Editing W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Dark Eras Companion (Chronicles of Darkness Dark Eras) WtF The Pack (Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition) CofD Hurt Locker (Chronicles of Darkness) Post-Editing Development: V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Secrets of the Covenants (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition) Scarred Lands Player’s Guide: Ghelspad (Scarred Lands 2nd Edition) Indexing: Chronicles of Darkness Core Book (Chronicles of Darkness) Beast: the Primordial Core Book (Beast: the Primordial) ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE: In Art Direction V20 Ghouls – Awaiting text. W20 Shattered Dreams – Going over notes from Stew and figuring out buy. Promethean: the Created Second – Ron art is all in…. probably in the layout queue post Awakening 2. Scarred Lands PG – Still wrangling. Dark Eras Companion – Getting roster together and starting on artnotes this week. The Pack – Contracted.  Secrets of the Covenants – Notes going out to Mark and Sam. Necroplis Rio – Getting artist for cover. I’ll deal with the rest of the buy post Dark Eras Companion AD. In Layout Guide to the Black Hand – Working on it.  Mage: the Awakening Second – Awaiting approved text. In the queue after Dark Eras. Pugmire Early Access – Waiting on the last of the art to come in. Beast Anthology –  Awaiting approved text. Dark Eras – Art on expansions continues. Sketches coming in from a couple of artists already. Lore of the Clans Prestige Edition – Cover and End Pages.   Proofing Ex 3 core book – From RichT: Maria has returned her corrected PDF layout to me just this afternoon, and I am going to review it and pass it on to the devs. Now, working on getting an index for it. Truth Beyond Paradox – Off for approvals at Paradox. Beast Screen – Off for approvals at Paradox. At Press M20 – Deluxes printing (Screen is finished and awaiting book). Demon STG – Awaiting errata doc. Dreams of Avarice – Awaiting errata doc. Gauntlet of Spiragos 5e – PDF available for download. Forsaken 2 Condition Cards – Available for download. Prepping PoD. Chronicles of Darkness Cards – Available for download. Prepping PoD.   Special- projects on hold in the art and production area until an external factor is resolved Wraith 20 – Can’t go further until art notes come in, still being developed by Rich Dansky. Pentex Employee Indoctrination Manual – Some added and amended text needs to come in.   TODAY’S REASON TO DRINK: I’m still standin’, better than I ever did! View the full article
  12. Now available in PDF from DriveThruRPG: Chronicles of Darkness Condition, Numina, and Dread Power Cards!     View the full article
  13. Still a little fuzzy in the brain today from the whirlwind fun Neall Raemonn Price, Fast Eddy Webb, and myself had at MidWinter con in Milwaukee. The pic above shows our two table booth in the vendors hall where we sold out of M20 and M20 How Do You DO That? in a day. I did not expect that since so much of the convention’s roots are based in LARPing and mostly Vampire LARPing at that. V20 Lore of the Clans sold really well too, but that I expected. If any of you went to our early White Wolf parties back when Gen Con was in Milwaukee, this is the same ballroom where we had several of our Saturday night festivities. That gold draped alcove was I think the one where Ray Winninger sat for “Ray Winninger’s Krackin’ Korner”, where the noted game designer would unleash hilarious insults on anybody who stopped by. We knew how to have fun! The fun at MidWinter wasn’t just the booth and reminiscing about Gen Cons past, most of it was talking with fans and other gaming industry folks. At the booth, in restaurants and bars, we reconnected (and sometimes just connected) and talked gaming. Because it is a smaller con, the need for formal meetings and agendas was much less, and everyone seemed much more relaxed. Most of all though, the best parts of the con professionally were the playtests of Scion and Pugmire. We got a lot of positive confirmation that the StoryPath System was fun and works like we intended, and there was huge interest in the new Scion edition. We were surprised by how many people and companies were interested in Scion live action gaming, and we are definitely going to discuss that further. And then, there is Pugmire. There is really no way to express the waves of interest we got for this game world at this convention. Maybe because it was a year ago that “Be a Good Dog!” became the catchphrase for the game in the very first playtests, but wow, I’m not sure I’ve ever seen so much sheer enthusiasm for a game world even from folks who don’t play tabletop RPGs. The Kickstarter for Pugmire at the end of this month is going to be very different from almost any one we’ve run before, that’s for sure. In fact, The Gentleman Gamer himself, Mathew Dawkins, is coming out of online blog retirement to both interview Eddy about Pugmire and then to run an online Pugmire game with Fast Eddy Webb as one of the players along with a couple of folks who send him interview questions. If you are interested in sending him in questions, and maybe getting a chance to sit in on a game, here’s the link where Mathew explains himself what he is doing: https://youtu.be/XC8VdYeRSVc So, before I crash, let’s just wrap up by saying it was a very good convention, it has informed our plans for all of next year, and we’re thrilled to have gone and now be back and working on the projects below. Thanks to all involved (and a more detailed thanks in the Reason To Drink section at the end of this blog.)   BLURBS!   KICKSTARTER!   The Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition Kickstarter IS OVAH! Stretch Goals were passed like the C20 Deluxe Dice Sets as Add-ons, Kithbook: Boggans, and a sequel novel to the Immortal Eyes fiction trilogy written by Jackie Cassada! Unfortunately, we could not get enough commitments for the Ultra-Deluxe C20s featuring a stained glass style cover, so we won’t be able to create that. Good try everybody! C20 is still going to be gorgeous, and your support made that possible!     In the heady days of the D20 explosion, White Wolf created our own fantasy setting featuring a world devastated by the brutal war between gods and ancient titans. The Scarred Lands will return as this Kickstarter for the new edition of Scarred Lands Players Guide was funded last week! Hosted on KS by our partner, Nocturnal Media, this Kickstarter is not only for a new edition but for a print run to get Pathfinder AND 5E editions into stores! Here’s the link! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1861515217/scarred-landsfrpg-setting-in-both-5e-and-pathfinde     ON SALE! The Tales From the Age of Sorrows Exalted 3rd fiction anthology is now on sale at DTRPG in PDF/ePub/Mobi and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/145501/Exalted-Tales-From-the-Age-of-Sorrows   The Demon Storyteller Guide has dropped its cover and is on sale as an Advance PDF on DTRPG! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/170165/Demon-Storytellers-Guide     M20 How Do You DO That? is now available at DTRPG in PDF and PoD versions! http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/162241/M20-How-Do-You-DO-That       The Pugmire Pamphlet we had available at Gen Con is now ready for PDF download. Read about the world of Pugmire from the enthusiastic and optimistic pen of Princess Yosha Pug, as well as notes from the gruff and worldly hunter Pan Daschund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/153518/Pugmire-Gen-Con-Brochure There are also six Pugmire posters available as free PDFs or $.99 physical posters, suitable for framing: Spike Mutt: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150845/Spike-Mutt-Pugmire-Poster-6 Pan Dachshund: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150844/Pan-Dachshund-Pugmire-Poster-5 Jack Rat-Terrier: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150944/Jack-RatTerrier-Pugmire-Poster-4 Sgt. Leo Bulldog: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/150843/Sgt-Leo-Bulldog-Pugmire-Poster-3 Princess Yosha Pug: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/149750/Princess-Yosha-Pug-Pugmire-Poster-2 Sister Picassa Collie: http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/148516/Sister-Picassa-Collie-Pugmire-Poster-1 Start spreading the Code of Man!     CONVENTIONS! See above!       And now, the new project status updates! DEVELOPMENT STATUS FROM ROLLICKING ROSE (projects in bold have changed status since last week): First Draft (The first phase of a project that is about the work being done by writers, not dev prep) M20 Book of Secrets (Mage: the Ascension 20th Anniversary Edition) Exalted 3rd Novel by Matt Forbeck (Exalted 3rd Edition) CtL anthology (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) Ring of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) Ex Backer Charms (Exalted 3rd Edition) DA Tome of Secrets (Vampire 20th Dark Ages) Redlines Mummy Fiction Anthology (Mummy: the Curse) Wraith: the Oblivion 20th Anniversary Edition V20 Ready Made Characters (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Cavaliers of Mars Signs of Sorcery (Mage: the Awakening Second Edition) Changeling: the Dreaming 20th Anniversary Edition Night Horrors: Conquering Heroes (Beast: the Primordial) Dagger of Spiragos (Scarred Lands) EX3 Quickstart (Exalted 3rd Edition) Second Draft Arms of the Chosen (Exalted 3rd Edition) The Realm (Exalted 3rd Edition) Dragon-Blooded (Exalted 3rd Edition) Shattered Dreams in-book stretch goals (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Development StoryPath System Rules (Base rules set for Scion and the Trinity Continuum) W20 Changing Ways (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) VtM Lore of the Bloodlines (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) W20 Shattered Dreams (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Beast Ready Made Characters (Beast: the Primordial) Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition, featuring the Huntsmen Chronicle (Changeling: the Lost 2nd Edition) WtA Kinfolk (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Scion: Alpha (Scion 2nd Edition Playtest Alpha Slice) Beckett’s Jyhad Diary (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Editing W20 Pentex Employee Indoctrination Handbook (Werewolf: the Apocalypse 20th Anniversary Edition) Dark Eras Companion (Chronicles of Darkness Dark Eras) WtF The Pack (Werewolf: the Forsaken 2nd Edition) CofD Hurt Locker (Chronicles of Darkness) Post-Editing Development: V20 Ghouls (Vampire: the Masquerade 20th Anniversary Edition) Secrets of the Covenants (Vampire: The Requiem 2nd Edition) Scarred Lands Player’s Guide: Ghelspad (Scarred Lands 2nd Edition) Indexing: Chronicles of Darkness Core Book (Chronicles of Darkness) Beast: the Primordial Core Book (Beast: the Primordial)     ART DIRECTION FROM MIRTHFUL MIKE: In Art Direction V20 Ghouls – Awaiting text. W20 Shattered Dreams – Awaiting artnotes for Ch. 5. KS shirt is done. Promethean: the Created Second – Ron art rolling in… once all in I’ll send it over for approval. Scarred Lands PG – Wrangling last bit of art out of artists and recontracting some. Dark Eras Companion – Still sorting through that buy. The Pack – Almost contracted… waiting on one guy to get back to me.    In Layout Guide to the Black Hand – Working on it.  Chronicles of Darkness Condition Cards – Working on those this week. And yes… Cards. Conditions, Numina, and Dread Powers. Mage: the Awakening Second – Awaiting approved text. Pugmire Early Access – Waiting on the last of the art to come in. Beast Anthology –  Awaiting approved text. Dark Eras – Art in progress. Actually already have the artwork for Sundered World in. Doing layout with holes while the artwork is in progress. Sent notes for first bits of symbology over to Sto. Forsaken 2 Condition Cards – Should be going off to proofing by end of the week with the CofD cards. Lore of the Clans Prestige Edition – Prepping files.     Proofing Ex 3 core book – From RichT: Maria is working on the correx. Truth Beyond Paradox – Still proofing with Phil. Beast Screen – Off for approvals at Paradox. Gauntlet of Spiragos 5e – Sent to Scott Friday morning… might be a little bit as he’s currently moving.   At Press M20 – Deluxes printing (Screen is finished and awaiting book). Demon STG – Errata collecting, done Weds. Dreams of Avarice – Errata collecting, done Weds.   Special- projects on hold in the art and production area until an external factor is resolved Wraith 20 – Can’t go further until art notes come in, still being developed by Rich Dansky. Pentex Employee Indoctrination Manual – Some added and amended text needs to come in.   TODAY’S REASON TO DRINK: To all our friends at MidWinter: Anne and Bill, who run an amazing and warm experience no matter how freaking freezing it is outside; Meredith and Mike, who just embody positive energy and who you are no doubt going to hear more about; our blood cousins at By Night Studios, long may they stalk through the night; the gang from IGDN, who were great to finally meet and talk, joke, and scheme with; Matt McF and Michelle, who I loved getting to have some facetime with; Matt McE and Monica, with whom our whole next year was plotted; Front Room Games, oh you guys- you are gonna do some great things; Drew and Ric and John, who were always supportive all con long and great adventuring dog brothers…”it’s called sarcasm, Spike!”; Pat and Tiny and Danielle and everybody and anybody else I didn’t mention but who were there having such a good time with us. Thanks!   View the full article
  14. Now available in ebook and print via DriveThruFiction:   View the full article
  15. After spending the last couple of posts talking about compacts, I want to flip over and address slashers before we move onto conspiracies and, afterward, cells. A lot of what I’m talking about in this post, with respect to slashers, is speculative as opposed to definitive because I’m still in the brainstorming pre-outline phase. Also, I’d like to point out there are loads of page references in this post. Unless otherwise noted, they point to the Slasher supplement. For those of you who have been following Hunter: the Vigil from the very beginning, you might have noticed that H:tV broke a lot of ground as a game that you could customize to fit your table. That toolkit approach, through tiered play, advice, enhanced rules, etc. will be the general approach for Hunter: the Vigil 2E as well. If it seems like I’m being overly specific (or generic) in these open dev posts, there’s a good reason for it on my end. Essentially, as developer it’s my role to ensure this beloved game is playable by a number of different fans using various playing styles. Your feedback based on your experiences playing the game is helping me get clarity on what those might be, but I’m also interested in hearing from new fans to ensure that I’m covering all my bases. Slashers and the Slasher Chronicle H:tV 2E isn’t just a rulebook, however, it has a chronicle that features a specific monster type: slashers, which explore the serial killer trope prevalent in horror, crime, and mystery/suspense. The Slasher supplement took this trope and hammered into multiple directions, and I’m thinking about ways to take this a step further for H:tV 2E for a few reasons. One, from a chronicle perspective, the monster-of-the-week (or, in H:tV 2E’s case, multiple monsters) might serve for one or two sessions, but there wouldn’t be any connective tissue tying slashers together for any of the tiers, which could dramatically flatten your potential for storytelling. Right now, I’m leaning toward zeroing in on the fact that Slashers introduced how hunters can become slashers as one possibility of doing that. One of the ways I could make the hunter-to-slasher a clarified path, is to focus on using Integrity (from the Chronicles of Darkness rulebook) as a more concrete vehicle for becoming a slasher. This approach could also help further define the difference between hunters (Sam and Dean from Supernatural) and a person who’s encountered “a” monster in a traumatic experience (their clients) for Tier One play. There is also some precedent for this, for the suggestions outlined in Chapter Three of Slasher beginning on page 183 spend a lot of time addressing what happens when hunters reach a Morality rating of zero in the old system. I am also mulling over the possibility of creating a hunter-to-slasher rules track that is explicit and combines 2E rules: low Integrity ratings with Conditions (persistent) that can be utilized as a method of narrating the fall into utter darkness. By doing so, I’m thinking about ways a fallen hunter (who hasn’t quite turned into a slasher yet) can save herself or be saved by her cell. There’s some other interesting CoD aspects that could come into play, too, like Aspirations and breaking points (CoD p. 29), because it might be possible to twist those aspects to fit 2E slashers. Since both are vague (with good reason), I might suggest sample Aspirations and breaking points that fit a Slasher Chronicle, so you as the player begin as a hunter knowing there’s a risk you might turn into a slasher. Of course, there is a third option: turn slashers into monsters and ensure that Dread Powers could be used for their creation. Doing this, would clearly put them in the “monster type” category which significant alters their original intent–especially since monsters do not use Integrity per the Mortal Remains rules update on p. 161. This is a change that would be too significant of a departure from the original source material, and it would not fit for the chronicle, either, so this is not a direction I want to pursue. Tells Another way to define slashers a little more specifically, is to focus on specifying Tells and incorporate them into slasher character creation. There are a lot of different ways to do this, but I do see a benefit of ensuring it’s present in the rules. One of the mechanics I was drawn to from the original source material, is on page 139 of Slashers. There’s a Tactic called Exploit Tell which I’m quoting from below, and I really liked this. (Keep in mind, that Tactics will be reworked for H:tV 2E, and any tweaks mentioned here would have to be approved and playtested before a specific approach is pinned down.) I think this Tactic is pretty awesome, and I could totally see how valuable it would be to use it in the Slasher Chronicle. Keep in mind that I want to avoid “a” specific tell that turns slashers into a black-and-white monster type that can be easily identified, especially since slashers would use H:tV 2E character creation, too. Cabals Hunters becoming slashers is one end of the slasher spectrum to focus on. Given that there are more of them, for the purposes of the setting, the other end is that they are organizing into slasher cabals that are loosely connected. There is a precedent for slasher cabals, and you can find an example (The Subtle Collectors Association) on page 255. I’m not sure how far I want to take their association, since slashers by nature don’t get along with other people, even though they may also keep their existing Endowments or use new ones, too–which I’m not necessarily a fan of myself (pp. 91, 160). For me, keeping an Endowment opens up questions as to whether or not a hunter-turned-slasher remains with their conspiracy in a Tier 3 chronicle, and whether or not the player-character feels forced to stay with the conspiracy as a slasher for the benefit of that one rule. My thinking on this is reinforced on p. 90: “So, while it’s possible for a slasher to retain (or even gain) organization membership, it’s not likely, and that membership should be in constant peril.” I will say that for H:tV 2E, one of the things I’m looking at is whether or not to include slasher character creation as well as a basic slasher cabal creation that highlights both ends of these spectrums to ensure [REDACTED FOR SPOILERS]… Didn’t want to give TOO MUCH away there, but hopefully what I’ve posted about is getting you excited about H:tV 2E and its possibilities at your table. My hope is that the combination of the core rules for Hunter and the setting-related enhancements we’re making will further define what it means to be a hunter, and make it fun to play. Questions! Now that I’ve thrown a bunch of bloody butcher knives at you… My questions today are about your expectations for slashers and how you feel about using them in your game. Part of what I need to understand, is how the horror of a slasher will come into play at your table. Horror, after all, may seem one way in the text, but play very differently when there’s a group of uniquely-minded people engaged in a session. Since there are a lot of different flavors of horror (and many slasher archetypes), it’d be helpful to know what your feelings are on this personally and for your group. For super extra Hunter brownie points, if you’ve played a slasher-related chronicle in the past, now’s the time to tell me what you liked and didn’t like about that experience. 1) Slashers are based on a prevalent horror trope that often generates a lot of complex feelings. If you had to come up with a definition of a slasher that you know you and your group would be happy with, what would it be? 2) Does the possibility of becoming a slasher sound interesting to you? Why or why not? 3) Could you see yourself using a slasher cabal in your game? If so, how?And last but not least… 4) If you said “yes,” to Question 2, would you want the rules to support your transformation from hunter-to-slasher? Or, would you prefer this be kept more vague? View the full article