Sunday, March 29, 2015

Review of Strange Stars



     First I owe Trey Causey an apology, I should have done a review for Strange Stars way before now, the only excuse that I can offer is that I have honestly been swamped with work , school and family stuff. But Strange Stars is so cool that even those reasons are insufficient.  Strange Stars deserves to be talked about, discussed and most of all played!
This retro style sci-fi gazetteer draws from some great resources; Star Trek, Micronauts, Star Frontiers, there is even a subtle but strong dose of Talislanta in there (Talislanta IN SPAACE!). All good stuff!  And if you enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy then I think you will enjoy the ideas presented in this tome of Sci Fi coolness!
If you are looking for a resource of stat blocks, hyper detailed NPC's, extensive world information and such then you need to keep in mind that this isn't that kind of resource, instead it is a great snapshot of what looks like a really cool galaxy of adventure, that you will want to play in and make your own.  Each page is jam packed with snippets of the setting and just perusing this tome will give both you and your players ideas for your own Sci Fi campaigns.  The artwork is fantastic and really helps to capture the feel of the setting and get you immersed into it quickly. This resource gives you the right mix of ideas to grab a hold of and jump right into the setting.
Given that this is a system neutral setting book, I now just need to decide  what game system to use to run it? There is a Fate version due out soon, to be followed by a Stars Without Number version.  But I can see using this setting with Traveller or Savage Worlds.  Hmm...decisions decisions... In case you couldn't tell I'm very happy to have this as part of my collection.
Oh and Trey has added a ton of additional resources (including some game stats) for this setting over on his blog.  So check it out for more information.  
You can grab a copy HERE

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Strange Stars Now Available!

I've been remiss in not mentioning that Strange Stars setting book is now available!
I've been eagerly following the development of this product for awhile now.  Just look at that cover!  It just blasts you with its coolness!  I have the PDF of this downloaded and ready for perusal, once I finish my graduate school assignments for the week I will be digging into this tome of awesome space OSR-Coolness!
_More to Come!_

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Pathfinder Sunday

Last weekend I got to play in our monthly Pathfinder; Rise of the Runelords Campaign. 
I brought my "Dungeon in a Bag" for this one, thanks to my wife I was able to get in on the first Dwarven Forge Kickstarter, so I have a literal bag full of dungeon tiles begging to be used.  I'm really glad I have this.  Below are some pictures from the game.
The DM was to the left setting up, that's my Pathfinder Book.
Moving the party forward!  We know there is a Quasit in the next room, but what else lurks there?
Combat ensues, jumped from several directions at once!
 
The final fight of the evening!  That's the nasty Barghest in the upper right corner of the square room, my Flaming Sphere didn't even tough him!  We got our butts kicked!!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

A tale of two games!

It has been a busy and yet cool week in the Southern Rad Zone.
Work has been crazy busy, Graduate School has been tedious, but guess what?  I was able to game TWICE this week!!!  I haven't done that in years!

On a whim I started talking to some friends at work and before you know it I had a group of five players interested in trying out 5E!  My boss even gave me permission to use the conference room after hours!  Very cool!

We played our very first session of 5E last Tuesday. This was my first time DMing 5E.  In three and a half hours we made up characters, did introductions, some role playing and had our first combat!  It was a blast! Two players had never played before, and the rest have varying degrees of experience. It went very smoothly, the newbies really surprised me, they took right to the game. .  I think 5E is great for new players, it had just the right amount of rules for the newbies.  Character creation was smooth, it helped that we had an extra player's handbook, and I had two print outs of the basic rules (Yay Staples).  Everyone had a great time and wants to play again.  My wife is one of the players, so it is great to be gaming with her again.  IF I get time I'll type up the session.


 For my second game of the week I got to rejoin the monthly Pathfinder game, I missed last game due to the birth of my grandson!!! We played nearly 8 hours yesterday! That is definitely something I'm not used to doing and had to really work to fit it into my schedule.  We are going through Rise of the Runelords and have wrapped up things in Sandpoint (I think), well other than that BadA$$ Barghest that is trapped down in the dungeon. Last night we mistakenly thought we could take him on!  Yikes he almost TPK'd us the first round, we fled and licked our wounds.  I'm playing a Human Sorcerer, Efreeti Bloodline. I was beat when I got home (getting old, I am a grandad now, LOL). 

 I'm not going to turn this into an edition wars post.  I had fun at both games, for similar and different reasons. For my group at work 5E is the perfect fit for us.  I can't wait to see where the game goes, having newbie players in a new system, feels really cool to me, in fact playing 5E felt to me like I was running old school D&D again, the rules just drifted into the background and we got down to business! I am happy to be running 5E. 

 The Pathfinder game was fun, its an established group and I'm the new guy, so it will take time to fit in. I enjoyed being able to customize my sorcerer, I would like to see more bloodlines for 5E, but the system just came out so I'm sure they are coming. Not sure what the DM has up next for us, I know there is a whole Runelords storyline, but I have never played it or read it so this is all new to me.  Anyways just thought I'd share, it is great to be getting some gaming in!