State of gaming today:
There are so many games, so many systems, so much good stuff out there that it’s humanly impossible to keep track of it all, at least it is for this human. Consequently, I have to pick and choose what I attempt to learn and it’s still too much. I’m just an old stick-in-the-mud twiddling my thumbs most of the time.
A preview of Ert:
The Ertian Cosmos
The heavens about Ert are filled with bodies, planets, moons, stars asteroids, meteors, comets and things unknown to Ertian astronomers. The Ertian sun is more yellow and hotter than Earth’s sun also slightly smaller and is known as the sul in all languages, though animists may have more colorful names for their god. And though Tyranus has been destroyed, his name virtually forgotten and the sul only a burning husk of his essence, one of Ert’s moons retains the name of the goddess who destroyed them both, Lune. Lune is the major moon of Ert, of a distinct bluish cast, comparable in size to our own night orb and has a 28 day cycle. There is another Ertian moon, a yellow body, called Lleuad Ychydig in ancient Paxian, or “Little Moon” as the residents call it today with a periodicity of 46 days, being more remote than Lune. It has various names in the vernacular of other countries, but a direct translation of “little moon” will convey intent. It appears about a third of the size of Lune, but it’s likely bigger given its distance from Ert. Lune controls most of the tidal activity on Ert, but if Little Moon is in conjunction or opposition, that affects tidal activity.
There are several constellations visible from Ert and just like in our own world they are given descriptive names based on their outlines. The most important constellation is known as Milwr Arrow, or “Warrior’s Arrow,” for the tip of the arrow is Ert’s navigational star for the northern hemisphere, called Llwybr Pen or “Trail’s Head.” In the southern hemisphere, the constellation is Adz with Golau Arweiniol (Guiding Light) forming the point of the pick end of the tool. Other constellations visible from each hemisphere are named below. Not all are visible during all parts of the year and such is noted.
Elfodd y Darian (Elfodd’s Shield) – not visible in autumn
Llachar yn Dod o (Bright Falls)
Coginio yn Llwy (Cook’s Spoon) -not visible in winter
Hyfaidd y Pibellau (Hyfaidd’s Pipes)
Cynfan y Llusern (Cynfan’s Lantern)
Y Drol (The Cart) – only visible in summer
Y Graddfeydd (The Scales)
Yr Wrn (The Urn) – not visible in winter
Iddawg y Morthwyl (Iddawg’s Hammer)
Yr Heliwr (The Hunter)
Llifo Ffynnon (Flowing Fountain) – visible only in spring and early summer
Dwy Fasged (Two Baskets)
Gweneal Gwisg (Gweneal’s Dress) – not visible in winter
Y Gwŷdd (The Loom)
Y Coif o Drwst (The Coif of Dwrst)
Bawen Cath (Cat’s Paw) – not visible in summer
Rhonwen y Delyn Fach (Rhonwen’s Lyre)
paper, pencil, gum eraser
snacks, drinks especially something delectable for the GM
A doughty torchbearer:
This fellow is designed for HackMaster, but he can surely be adapted to other systems. This is bare bones for now. I’ll eventually get back to flesh him out.
Gjolinor Goldbeard is a dwarf with an unfortunate past. He was once a warrior, an adventurer, a stalwart of his clan. On a search for a great hidden treasure some years ago, Gjolinor was mauled by a nasty-tempered (is there any other kind?) red dragon. The dragon took nearly half of the poor fellow, so Master Goldbeard only has one of each of those bodily appendages in which he should have a pair, well, with one notable exception. He still has his cojones! So, with a peg leg, his good arm, good eye and indomitable spirit, he’s taken up adventuring once again, but now in the diminished capacity of torchbearer. He carries his ax still, just in case…
Carnivorous Flying Fish
Well, just to get this category on the board, here’s an encounter with an original monster from my “Crusaders Gauntlet” C&C module.
The rain relents beyond the headland and the Bonnie Breeze sails into a fine, balmy day, early in the morning. The sun is bright, only infrequently challenged by clouds, now too timid to be more than wisps veiling the brilliant orb. The wind is brisk, the crew tight and the marines sharp as you sail into the Amber Sea. Omens are so favorable and conditions so fine that even the most devoted land-lubbering dwarf could begin to relax. Captain Capps has given you free run of his ship with the caveat that only two of you are allowed on the bridge at one time. You discover a massive hold below with ships stores and foodstuffs, plus farming implements for trade. The crew’s quarters and mess are also below. Topside aft, is the bridge and helm, along with the ballista, atop the captain’s cabin, officers’ quarters and wardroom or officers’ mess. On the forecastle (foc’sle), is the catapult, with your quarters directly below. The main deck spans between fore and aft superstructures, mainmast amidships with a mizzen, or after mast. The carrack is manned by thirty crew, plus four slaves, three officers besides the midshipman and twenty marines with two officers. The first mate is “Toppy” Patchett, a human, second mate is Bale Corder, a half-orc of imposing mien. The marines are led by Captain Skyle Talon, a half-elf, assisted by Lieutenant Katarenna Turmer, a dark-complexioned amazon of a woman.
Watches are on a four-shift rotation with one shift off (five altogether) for both crew and marines. Roll for a change in the weather between every meal. *Once inland waters are reached, weather changes need only be checked daily. Encounters are set, but weather may delay the vessel.
WEATHER CHANGES, d10
1-5 Stiff breeze, calm seas
6-7 High winds, choppy seas; no delay, but characters must save vs. poison (+0) to prevent seasickness and total incapacitation
8 Winds unfavorable, tacking causes delay
9 Vicious storm, driving rain, shifting winds; save vs. falling overboard (special), a roll of one indicates failure
10 The doldrums, no wind
If an 8, 9 or 10 are rolled for any two periods in the open sea, the ship is delayed a day. *Of course, each such result after reaching the gulf will cause a delay, as well.
CARNIVOROUS FLYING FISH
NO. APPEARING: 40-400
HD: 1 (d6) –2 hit points (minimum of 1)
MOVE: 60 ft. (swim), 20 ft. (glide)
AC: 14/10 (see below)
ATTACKS: Bite (1)
XP: 8 +1/HP ea.
Carnivorous Flying Fish hunt the seas for warm-blooded meat, preying on vessels large and small. They attack in schools, launching themselves out of the water to glide over ship decks snagging a chunk of sailor while gliding by. Each individual may attack, only every other round, because of the need to reposition after every attack. They glide faster than a normal man can walk and are AC 14 in the air. If one is hit and misses its save, it is knocked to the deck and is thereafter AC 10. Not included in the stats, a CFF can flop 1’ a round to wriggle itself over the side of a ship to escape certain death. Each school has a certain range and a ship will not be followed beyond a distance of 20 miles. A ship, of course, may enter a range on a tangent and not sail through the entire 40-mile extent. Once out of the range, attacks will cease.
Each character will be attacked once per round (the school surrounds the ship) until they kill 15 (150+ xp) of these little monsters, the remainder being dealt with by the crew and marines.
I have the book “Digging Into Wordpress’ and I figure it’s about time I start tryin’ to get through this step-by-step. It’s the only way I’m going to learn. Problem is, I’m trying to learn with only half my cylinders firing and I have so much going on, so much to learn or relearn aside from this that I’m still pretty damned hopeless about my abilities to absorb and retain information these days.