JP On Gaming

Monday, May 23, 2016

[GM Aid] Working on a Wilderness book

Inspiration is a fickle and fun thing. Back in the days when I was writing for NeoExodus, I was thinking about creating a dynamic system to build locations for the campaign. Something where I could define and build up a region, and provide it to the players. So I put down a number of ideas: interesting locations, settlements, and terrain features. There were quite a few things in there.

The idea quickly evolved into a way to create a map on the fly. Those of you who purchased our no-longer available book on the city of Gytha will immediately recognize that the swamp itself was left nebulous, and ready to explore. It was my idea, really.

Imagine an empty hexmap. Why? Because Hexmaps always seem more appropriate for wilderness areas. Why? Because I'm an old guy and back in my days, we drew our wilderness maps on hexmaps. Now stop arguing, and just focus on the story.

Dang kids. Won't listen. Won't do what they're told.

Picture an empty hexmap. Pick a spot in the center of the map. What is there?

I know the map is empty! Hence why I'm asking what your players find there... That's right. You are drawing a blank. Gostor: Wilderness will let you know with a few quick dice roll what is there. Then as they explore the area around and beyond, you can do the same and just expand as they travel.

What I lacked was a format to make it all come together. So the book stayed in my "Work in Progress" folder. And I saw it every time I open this directory (read: multiple times per day).

Then a few days ago, I was reading the 5e Dungeon Master's Guide. and I happened to fall upon the section about wilderness adventuring. I returned to the document with a few ideas on how to sort out the chaotic mess I had.

With a format defined, I reworked, and cleaned up the content to make it into a clean and simple set of entries, much like the rest of the Gostor products. As the product began taking shape, I could immediately see synergies with other Gostor products.
- Gostor: Bandits Because any trip in the wild may lead to conflict!
- Gostor: Ruins Because ruins are a natural site for adventure!
- Gostor: While on the road Because sometimes you just want to provide a quick overview of the trip. Gostor: Wilderness is the "opposite" approach.

So I am now in the final stages of touching up this book and plan on releasing later this week.

JP

Friday, May 20, 2016

Conquistadors in Africa: A Game for The Sword and The Flame

Tomorrow, for the first time since I left Colorado, I will participate in a miniatures event. Nashcon 2016 will be my first time there. I almost attended last year before having to back out due to my car's explosion...

So I am posting a few quick pics of the assembled forces for the big day. I am so excited to play some colonials again.

It will be Actionman's first full non-RPG convention. We will be playing minis all day together. I know he is going to love it. As my game is in the morning, we will decide what to play in the afternoon. There are so many fun games on the program that I can't quite decide what I would do if I was by myself. So I will do like I did at the previous events: I will go with the flow and see what to do.

I will have pictures, including the terrain after tomorrow's game where ActionMan and I will take on the world.

Here is my blurb:

It takes a real man to survive all the dangers one might find in the jungles of Africa. But to succeed in a quest as big as the one currently at stake, it's going to take much more. Opposing factions ready themselves for a final showdown as they all seek to capture the same prize.....the legendary Lost Mines of King Solomon. JP Chapleau, of First Ones Entertainment, brings us this epic adventure using modified "Sword and the Flame" rules and 28mm figures. Up to 6 adventurers can join this quest for fame and fortune and become a hero of legend.


JP

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Meet your ArchDespot!

I've been teasing everyone about this for over a month now that it is time to actually provide you with the final part of the epilogue for "ToS1-I-02 Something borrowed, something blew", the year-end special that I ran at Conglomeration. One of the big decision they had to make was the decision of who they would offer the crown to.

Like everything in Saggakar, it was not a unanimous decision, but one that was clear enough.

The following is an exerpt of the narrative available on RPGNow/DriveThruRPG for the great price of "Pay what you want". In the coming days, I will post a series of questions on the campaign, and thoughts I have to change and improve the campaign. The narrative section includes a lot more, including how some of the NPCs

But that can wait, the ArchDespot is about to speak...

ArchDespot Hellebora walked alone on the balcony where a few hours ago, she appeared with her late husband, she smiled calmly as she waved to the crowd in the courtyard below.

This was her one chance to rally the ArchDespotate to her rule, one chance to have the slave willingly accept the yoke she would place upon them. She had, after all, barely escaped the assassination attempt that claimed her husbands’ life. Now she was the one who would be their target, unless she found a way to deflect the attentions of every jealous First Ones.

Lucky for her, she had a plan.

Subjects of the ArchDespotate, I accepted to bear the crown my husband bore bravely, with great poise and wisdom for nearly two decades. Too long you have toiled uselessly, working against each other, advancing plots and fighting over scraps as our ArchDespotate fell apart, with rebels and outlaws refusing to pay their rightful dues, flaunting their so-called independence. That was my husband’s greatest failing, a failing he shared with me in the precious few moments we shared before he drowned in his bath. He wanted us united! He wanted us to not be just strong, but great!

I call upon everyone, First One or slave, to join me into creating a grand army that will bring under our collective heel those rebels who flaunt our authority and laugh at the fighting between with ourselves! she said to an unconvinced crowd, some cheered, a few jeered, many simply kept quiet.

WE can fix this! We can flood our markets with slaves. We can fill our homes with plunder. We can make our neighbors cower in fear at the mere mention of our name. Let us strike down those who oppose us, those who refuse to bow down, and those who choose to recognize others are their rightful master. We are to be feared and ruthless. WE ARE FAREMH!

The crowd listened on as its new ArchDespot continued without pause. I call upon every swordsman, every spell caster to flock to my banner! she continued, her enthusiasm palpable. Together, we will re-forge a new, greater Faremh, one that will stretch from the wall of Mists to the West to the distant shores of Nyen’To in the east to the jagged shored of Zuhur in the north! I will fill your homes with slaves and gold, so much of it that we shall pave the streets with it. The blood of our enemies will turn rivers red for two centuries! Her enthusiasm carried over as the courtyard erupted in cheers. The ArchDespot’s promises filled them with thoughts of glory.

Near the entrance, a single group stood quietly. As one, they turned their back to the cheering crowd harangued by the new ArchDepot, pumping her fist in the air. House Faremhi did not buy in to the dream ArchDespot Hellebora promised. They saw their hold on the throne of the nation that bore their name slip.

Losing was not a virtue of House Faremhi.

JP

Monday, May 16, 2016

It's my birthday and I'll do what I want

With my birthday just passed, I realized a number of things. First, I have a great wife and great kids. They did their best to make my day just awesome!

We went to the Tennessee Renaissance Festival, then the hibachi grill, then I opened some great presents, and finally I got to take a nap on my chair. Exactly the kind of things I love doing on Sunday.

Another thing I realized... I have a lot of great friends! I received wishes from people on Facebook, through email and in person. So I decided to give back and as such, everything on RPGNow/DriveThruRPG is now 30% off!

Check out the site here

JP

Sunday, May 15, 2016

How I conquered Germany

I woke up this morning to find a great surprise... Stefan-D, who contacted me a while ago about translating my adventure "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" I wrote for Gaelcon 2000. My first year in Ireland. Wow... sixteen years ago.

I woke up to find a picture for "Die Hohle des lowen" (I'm sure he would laugh like crazy as I try to pronounce this). Yes! Stefan translated the adventure into German for the Cthulhu Ruf magazine! As I said before, he not only translated the adventure, but also moved it to during WWI. Really added something special for my day.

I do not speak German (on the bucket list), but for those of you who do, go and check out their publication http://www.cthulhus-ruf.de. It seems filled with adventure and material. I really like their production value.

On a sad note, Issue #10 of Cthulhus Ruf is the final publication. I will think that they finally hit perfection with my adventure and decided not to do any more... Ah I am so full of sanity!

What a great start to this day!

JP

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Gencon plans are coming together

On Sunday, Gencon registrations open up, so it is time to tease you with what you have coming... I have a few adventures currently in the works.

Before I go into the specifics of the adventures, let me tell you about the Pathfinder/5e events. On Thursday and Friday morning, I will be offering Saggakar adventures using 5th edition. These will be taken from TOS2-00 Service and Reward. That adventure features short (2h-ish) sub adventures forming a whole, similar to the format that the Adventure League has for many of its intro scenarios, something I find extremely brilliant, but more of that later.

During the Thursday and Friday afternoons and evenings, I will be running any of the adventures below, depending on whoever comes to play. I only split the slots between Pathfinder and 5e to make sure everyone came for the game they like.

I am also extremely proud to announce that I will not be the only one running Legacies this year! Writer-extraordinaire Randy Price will be joining me on Thursday Evening and Friday afternoon! This means that you will be able to play with the (quite twisted) mind of the man who came up with Onero and the plots therein!

So many good things are coming to Gencon this year, especially since I am only attending Origins as a GM for others this year (more on that later). I will have new shirts made, along with a new banner for the new year, which Irene sent me the final art. And like everything else, it is GR-EAT!

If I come during one of the Pathfinder slots, can we play the Special? Yes.

Can I apply 5e credit to a Pathfinder character? Yes.

Can we play mixed tables? No.

Will there be unique items given during the special at Gencon only? Yes.

Now for some blurbs:

TOS2-00 Service and Reward by JP Chapleau

The ArchDespot declared that she wanted to impose her will on those who spurned the divine yoke of the Faremh. Before she can send troops in foreign soil, she needs to pacify or at least get the cooperation of the Houses. This is an introductory adventure to the world of the Tyrants of Saggakar.

An adventure for APLs 3-5 (characters level 3 through 6)

TOS2-01 Fate of Zealots by Randy Price

An assassin loose in the city of Onero is nothing special. Someone is willing to share information in return for a share of the bounty. But in the city of sins, nothing is ever secret and offers come from all directions.

An adventure for APLs 3-7 (characters level 3 through 8)

TOS2-02 Fogs of Days Past by JP Chapleau

A new ArchDespot now sits on the throne of Faremh. Her rule is far from unanimous, however. She needs people to retrieve the ancient crown to prove her worth.

An adventure for APLs - (characters level 3 through 1)

I decided to have my Sunday morning slot be the special specifically.

TOS2-I01 Dreams of Dust by JP Chapleau

Last year, adventurers recovered an icy slab from Yorix's island. The slab was locked away in the under bowels of the palace. But it did not lay dormant, but has been dreaming, dreams of dust beyond the Mists.

An adventure for APLs 3-8 (characters level 3 through 9)

JP

Monday, May 9, 2016

Update: Everything and a bag of chips

Today was an odd day. Fun. But odd.

More-less out of the blue, I was contacted by two people I greatly like and respect who wanted to discuss some ideas they had about Organize Play. Ideas flew left and right, leaving me more than a little intrigued by some of what may come out of this.

You will understand that I cannot say anything right now since, well everything is still in the brainstorming phase. However, as soon as I can say anything you know I will.

I have been working on a number of new FOE products: I have 2 more Gostor products in the works and like four Legacies adventures at once, only one of them by me. I hope to get you some blurbs within the next few weeks.

I am also working on my writing classes, with a lot to do. Mystery and creative writing. That's two classes!

I still have my Arcanis adventure to complete, but it took a backseat for now as I complete other stuff. I will ramp it up this summer.

I need to finish painting conquistadores for my Nashcon game. And make a playtest run to make sure the game rolls... GAH!

So I now go back to the getting things done.

JP

Sunday, May 8, 2016

[Non-gaming Sunday] Fiction

I told you I was taking writing class. This is the one noteworthy piece of fiction I wrote: a short 200 words description of one of a series of characters. I won't show you the picture I wrote about, just let you imagine the character.

The goal was to physically describe the character: physical and mannerisms over action and history.

Sandra could not wait to meet with her best friend Ann. They would get together around coffee but instead she would order the fancier cortado, espresso with milk. She dressed to impress, while remaining professional: black was both slimming, professional and it would draw the eye to her shoulder-length blonde hair and away from her body. A scarf would provide a feminine touch of color to the outfit. She disliked her body as it wasn’t as slim and sexy as it once looked, so she chose loose and form-hiding tops and wide pants. Gone were the heels of her youth, replaced by more comfortable skidders. Accent jewelry covered the phalanges of her fingers.

For the past few days, she had been looking over shots of period costumes and trying to make sure there were no historical inaccuracies. She had a number of stories to tell Ann about one, a Victorian-era constable. At first, she was sure it was perfect, but an online search had uncovered a number of issues. Telling Ann about them would be the highlight of her day. She liked sharing knowledge she would find about such minute detail.

Ann would listen and take notes, nodding and commending her on her discoveries. She was such a good friend.

JP

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Back to School!

For years now, I have been an amateur writer, writing stories and adventures for fun and as a way to get me to think about other things. Plus, I will be honest, I like to write. It is the most precious gift I was given as a young child.

This year, around New Year-ish, I decide that I should perfect my craft and expand my horizons and learn connex skills to adventure writing. I joined a group of creative writers. "Just for fun" and without any specific goal in mind.

The at the beginning of March, they offered a class on mystery writing. It was inexpensive and consisted of a number of one-week assignments. Nothing to worry too much about. Plus I do enjoy a good mystery.

The first adult mystery book I read, was one my sister had. Finding the cover intriguing, I began to read. And read. And read until the final, climax and reveal. Hercules Poirot masterfully solved the murder.

It was the first time I read a true "adult" fiction book and one that would keep me reading Agatha Christie for a long time. I even bought a few anthologies of short stories when I moved to Kentucky and re-read a number of the stories I read as a child. Since that time, I always have had an affinity for mystery, whodunit, and tales of suspense and mystery.

So it is with a lot of excitement that I started this new class. I hope to have more to report soon. For now, all I have is a single scene depicting a crime. It may - or not - become part of the final work. I will anxiously await the next assignment and keep on writing.

Who knows I may soon become a true mystery writer!

Oh the excitement!

JP

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Gostor: Nobles now available!

Gostor Nobles is a product I've had on my plate for months now. I have been playing with it here and there, tweaking the verbiage, adding or removing feats. Finally, I decided to sit down and get it done. I flipflopped about whether I wanted to produce such a book. In the end, I decided it was worth getting it done and out. The resulting class is one that is very much of a skill monkey, with some social-based abilities to confirm and expand their roles as noble.

I used the 3.5 Arcanis class as a base and both simplified, streamlined and "Pathfinder-ized" it to its current form.

I am very curious about having people play and use the class in their adventures, so I published it under the Gostor imprint. The final class should fill a role and add to your Pathfinder game.

In addition to the noble base class, I added a new prestige class, the ambassador. The ambassador works well with the noble by being the direct representative of their liege to another group or species. I always thought such a role is not very well represented in Pathfinder. Though the design came as I worked on the noble. I kept imagining an archetype of the class, but I kept thinking "I don't really want to give major powers to a 1st level character" so I had to make it into a prestige class. Needless to say the two are tightly linked and a noble has an "easier" path into the class, but anyone could become an ambassador.

So here it is, folks: the Noble class for Pathfinder!

As an added bonus, the entire content of this book is now available for your Legacies characters!

JP

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Book Review: LA Story's Urbania

Some of you will remember my AAR about MidSouthCon 16 (If you don't simply Check the post here). During the Saturday afternoon, I got to sit down at Pro's Row with author L.A. Story. At the end of our short time together, she signed me a copy of Urbania.

Once I returned from the con, I added it to my stash of books and left it until it came up in the rotation.

Now I am not a big fan of modern urban fantasy. I did tell Leigh Ann that, and I dare to think that she gave me the book to try and convince me.

The book itself is 76 pages long and follows Richard Shelton, as he tries to enter Urbania.

Before I start, allow me to provide you with a blurb that will, I hope, bring your mind along the lines of what this book is about.

Richard Shelton, a determined journalist, is fascinated by the story of Urbania – the Great City. It was a city that began as an ideal and became an enigma. Populated years ago with the best and most creative minds from across the globe, the city was established in the Nevada desert. The city’s leadership became more reclusive with each generation and they eventually constructed a gargantuan 50 foot wall around the city to keep out The World. The only entrance is the city’s famed gate where most petitioners are usually shot. Richard locates Ketch, the only person to have escaped Urbania and survived. Ketch advises Richard how to successfully petition and get past the gate, but there is a price. Ketch wants Richard to help Ivey, the woman Ketch had to leave behind during his long-ago escape. Richard gets through the gate, only to find the city harbors unimaginable secrets he may not live to tell.

The first scene as he tries to enter the Great City is very much like one of the good teaser from Star Trek. It stops you in your tracks and makes you go "Wow! That's pretty strong." I was taken aback a little as I did not expect the story to start this strong - and good. I really could not drop the book as I anxiously kept on reading.

And I kept on reading.

And I kept on reading.

And I kept on reading.

I did not put the book down until I was done. I lost some sleep over it. The storytelling is strong, evocative, and at the same time revealed more secrets and made me ask more questions about what was happening. I honestly did not expect that. The pace was fast, very fast, but not to the point of ever losing the reader. It was fast because events demanded they flew by.

One thing I was worried about was excessive embellished prose (what I sometimes call mental masturbation). But L.A. really does a great job of NOT falling in that trap. The images and the mystery is describe very effectively using fairly simple language. I will say that such a tour-de-force really drew me in. I found it riveting.

To avoid spoilers, the plot had my mind wonder from an alien over-plot to the Matrix to Dark City to a Science-Nazi state. Each page adding more questions while answering a number of them.

I came in with very low expectation
- This is not my favorite type of litterature
- The blurb worried me the story would meander
- I worried the plot would get nowhere, that I would be left with more questions than answers.
- I expected long, over-complicated sentences and obscure imaging
- A blurb that only covers the first two pages of the story

However, *I* was wrong on all accounts. The plot is crisp, questions are answered, but enough remain at the end that I would be willing to read more about the characters and Urbania. Enough is resolved that I am happy with it, but should more become available, I would want to read more. The prose is simple, clear and exciting. The blurb is accurate and exact, to the point where after reading the book I re-read it (for this review) and thought "Yeah... that is a great way to say this"

Try as I might to find fault with this, all I can come up with it:
- I would love to write in such compelling style
- I would love to produce such a fiction piece
- The story was too short, I wanted more
- The story has a strong ending, not needing more, but allowing more to be produced.

Hummm.. Yeah none of this is L.A.'s fault and really on my end. Which forces me to give Urbania a 5 star rating. I thoroughly enjoyed myself reading this.

JP

Friday, April 29, 2016

Indian food, a pair of ladies, a phone, and Napoleon

For a few days now, I have been in a rut. I have an idea for an adventure: encounters, a story line, NPCs, and an interesting development. However, I completely drew a blank with regards to how to tie it all together. Everything I thought about either felt flat or fell into the "already done it" bucket.

Neither held my interest in wanting to write. I played around and avoided doing much. Lucky for me, I had some editing to do, so I did that.

But my writing output has been low and slow... Not much to brag about. Oh things are still being worked on, but nothing is approaching the end.

Then today at lunch time, I sat down to eat at a local Indian restaurant I really like. A pair of ladies at a nearby table took a picture with their phone. Nothing there, people do it all the time. The spark of inspiration struck when one of the ladies said, "now it is recorded for posterity!" Perhaps it was the odd, yet perfectly correct, word that drew my attention, I will never know, but what remains is that I had my idea.

My mind wandered here and there until it settled on David's Coronation of Napoleon. Definitely my favorite painting of all time. It is both a grandiose work, but it also serve a propagandist purpose. What a great piece of work!

A little Google work and I had all the information I needed. Now to expand the concept, link the encounters and make it a coherent whole.

Thank you, Napoleon!

JP

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Gencon Events submitted

I just submitted my 35 hours of Gencon events for Tyrants of Saggakar. Most of the games (5/7) will be using Pathfinder and two will be using D&D 5th Edition. I kept all of Saturday for myself to participate in... Well, whatever! I am already thinking of playing some Shadowrun, maybe some Rokugan, hopefully some WitchHunter, but I may get myself into something new I yet have no idea.

Why split between 5e and Pathfinder?

It is something I agonized over... In the end, I decided to try and offer one of the adventures in a 5e model. I won't say it, but it will force *ME* to hurry and finish a few things. You know, having a deadline really forces one to get his act together and stop procrastinating. I know today I think "pfah! I have months to go" But comes July I'll be a nervous ball losing even more hair than I have left trying to get everything nice and perfect!

I can already predict the panic!

Still until then, there is a lot of time to go...

All I have to do now is to wait to see if Gencon will approve my proposals, have no fear, I will let you all know.

JP

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Player Tips: Playing a Paladin

A number of times, friends and players have commented that playing a paladin in Saggakar must be impossible to do, particularly if your character belongs to one of the great houses. It always surprises me when I hear that. And while I can see that worshipping a good deity and promoting order and goodwill may not make you a lot of friends, I firmly disagree.

Too often, a paladin lives in a place where choices are easy: a friendly populace, a government that support his goals and ideas, a public church to rely on, or an order to have his back.

It's easy to be the good guy with the lofty ideals when everything goes your way and your one choice is kill or capture.

But what happens when you cannot fight every evil at the same time? What happens when you have to hide or face a populace that is not fully behind you? When you have to choose what best way to improve the world? When simply using detect evil and beating up whoever walks up.

Is it harder? Yes.

But it is also much more rewarding.

1- choose your fights well Though you may not be the brightest or wisest in the party, doesn't mean you must or should take on every fight, immediately. You will fight evil, and much evil there is, but like a policeman, you can take down the street pusher, or you can go after the head of the snake. Pick the fight you want, and win it.

2- just because someone is evil means that all his works are The First Ones are forces of evil, and while most of their works are evil and done for evil goals, not all are evil all the time. Such works much be encouraged and not opposed: creation of a new aqueduct or building of town walls. Work to improve the workers' conditions.

3- there is nothing wrong with working within the system This does not means that you seek out to help evil forces. This means that while you are forced to do so, keep your eyes and ears open for ways you can help out and make world a better place.

4- quarter turn at a time Not everything will work immediately, so focus on making small changes. However, like with a screw, if you turn it one quarter-turn at a time, you will get far.

5- you are a beacon of good As a paladin, you are a major warrior of the forces of good. There are many ways this can be played: you can be a martyr, taking onto you the pain and suffering of other. You can be the one person encouraging others to avoid antagonizing the masters, reserving that role for you. You can be a local leader and protect your people.

So as you can see, it is definitely something of a challenge, but not something impossible. The paladin can do much more good alive, than turned as a zombie.

Service is Eternal after all...

JP

Monday, April 25, 2016

Lexicon 2016 After Action Report

This past weekend, I travelled back to Lexington Kentucky to attend Lexicon for the second year in a row. Last year, it served as a major plot point for our emerging Battle of Gytha storyline. It would also be the final convention where NeoExodus would make an apparition. It was an important event for me: I introduced new players to the campaign... some people you now know... Shall I say Randy? Mr Onero himself! You can read that after-action report from last year by clicking here.

This year, I had different plans. Having just run a number of events at Conglomeration and needing a personal break to play games, I chose Lexicon as "it". I did, however, send an event offering. Driving back from Mid South Con, I resolved to produce a 5e version of Saggakar, with options and everything so the game could be enjoyed using either of the systems. Then I spoke to Henry after their big announcement. The Lexicon decision was somewhat last-minute, but it did force me to get my stuff done.

The folks from Lexicon are great, quick response time, very interested in projects. I mean really, it is one good and well-organized group.

The Trip

I left work a little early (I had time off left from my planned trip to the DMV earlier in the week, which I used on Friday. The drive went well and I got into Lexington around 7PM whereas I had planned on arriving around 10PM. Ka-Ching!

I spent the evening playing Shadowrun. I thought I did not have my character, Ralf, with me. But by sheer luck, guess who I found in my box! YEAH! I would get to play Shadowrun with my own character and not a pregen! WOO HOO! I really like how he plays and with more Karma (I won't say XP), he gets more and more interesting. Definitely a tougher hombre, somewhat in spite of himself!

Ralf is based on Dave Chappelle's character Tyrone who is a crack addict. Though in the world of Shadowrun, that's a rather interesting proposition.

I got to play two Shadowrun missions with Michael-B as my GM, one in the evening and another one in the morning. I played with the very blasty Flamewitch and the ever-funny brawling Jim the Troll. A fun team, really. A few others joined us with pregens to complete the team. Fun.

In the afternoon, I initially planned to play some Adventurer's League adventure, however, they already had six players so I had to find something else to do until 5pm. At this point Chad needed a GM to run something for a few people.

He asked me "What do you want to run?" to which I invariably replied "Tyrants of Saggakar".

His face remained unconvinced (though it was the most honest answer I could give him).

He will say things.

LIES!

Things that are not true.

But he found someone to run an adventure for him and get him out of a bind.

Later that day, I received a cool new ribbon! Yeah! I am the Big Cheese!

I then played an Adventure League adventure part of the latest Ravenloft-themed story. That storyline is rather interesting and makes me want to play more of it. My GM, Heather, was pretty good and I enjoyed myself quite a lot.

A minor event happened during that game where some guy was oddly rude for no reason. I let Karen, the organizer know about it later and the problem went away. Remember what I said earlier? Classy organization? Proof.

After the AL adventure ended, I went to see if Chad had any seats left (I did not want to play some more Shadowrun, tho I believe the option was still there). Turns out they had one seat left.

Poor Randy who had to deal with the inside party treachery of Ben Gunn, the cheatiest scallywag this side of the Inner Sea.

That swine even signed his name in a Hellknight fortress and painted up the sign of Besmara the Pirate Queen. He was working against the party to get us all killed all along! I did propose that we all jump him and shank him before he do something to us. But I'm certain that he had paid the others to spare his wretched life!

DAMN YOU BEN GUNN!

Which brings us Sunday. Final day of the con.

This was the day I was scheduled to run the first of Tyrants of Saggakar playtest. To save time and to be able to get a comparison, I chose to re-run an adventure that ran previously. So last year's Gencon special it was! It is an adventure that has a fair amount of lore and actually has a number of interesting encounters. So it would be definitely a valuable way to compare how the two run.

Thanks to Randy and his family for being there (being Sunday Morning, attendance is always sketchy). The game went well. I want to run a few more tests to see about game balance and the races, but the first test was a success.

One thing I noticed is that when you increase the challenge of a monster to face the party, the numbers from the DMG quickly scale up. I will have to experiment with this some more but I am not overly worried about this.

So let's thing over the con...

The Good

Lexicon has done quite a number of good things
- Getting events on the program was VERY easy
- On-site, Karen is an awesome RPG coordinator: knowledgeable, interested, and attentive. LOVE HER!
- They removed the dividing wall and made the RPG/tabletop room bigger.

The Improvable

Things the con could improve to be better
- The biggest issue I have with the con is how to purchase on-site tickets. To buy a pre-printed 2$ ticket, you had to go online (though there were supposedly tablets for that, I was never offered to use them, nor did I see them).
- With the dividing wall open, a lot of the open/board game tables were so close to each other that it was hard to go from the RPG section in the back to well... anywhere. Perhaps removing one row of these tables would give us fat gamers a way to walk to the bathroom without having to make long detours.

In the end

From the previous event, the con has made great strides. The only "real" negative point and where they did not improve was with the "go online to pay cash" thing. Annoying, but in the end definitely fixable.

Lexicon is definitely a convention I want to keep attending. I will definitely try to attend it again next year! Hopefully with the kiddos...

JP