From the Facebook megalot, comes this character, Molik Karn. I really like the color of this guy. He's some form of cyclops warrior. Skorne's Japanese-influenced armor really make this very colorful. He was fun to paint up, with the demonic-looking mempo mask. This guy is definitely my favorite Skorne model so far.
Saturday, March 25, 2017
Friday, March 24, 2017
For those of you who are still on the fence about attending Conglomeration in Louisville KY on April 7-9, allow me to add some more goodness to the lot...
Saturday night, I will be running a special, one-time only adventure, the Battle of Dreadkeep. I have just put the final touch on it and well allow my to say that it adds a lot of new elements to the campaign. The plot moves forward and things change... a lot. How will this happen? You may be the ones who will determine what happens!
Battle of Dreadkeep is a one-time-only event for the Legacies campaign, that can be played by characters up to level 10! Yes. It is a battle interactive with some story elements.
There will be four different unique rewards offered, one of which is a unique item. The other rewards can be gained by multiple PCs at the table. I'm not going to say what those are but they can really change send your character in odd new directions...
Oh and did I mention the new Rhym adventures?
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
This is a post I am very happy to put up as I get to go back over old posts. This time I have a Kaya Moonhunter from the Facebook Mega-lot.
I hadn't looked at them and am happily surprised to find how similar the work between the two is. I am very intrigued by the difference in my painting technique. As the previous one was from April of 2013. Already four years ago!
I still like that dark skin, but I find the newer hair to be more natural.
This new Kaya required the addition of a hand...
Sunday, March 19, 2017
This past weekend I traveled to the frigid lands of Michigan to take part in what is quickly becoming a personal tradition, Arcanicon. Arcanicon is a convention dedicated to the Arcanis campaign.
I have been involved with this campaign as a player since 2009. Love the complex story line. Although I have complained a lot about the system, it has grown on me and I appreciate it today.
The trip started when I left work early (16:15) to face the Nashville traffic to head to the airport. Nice day, warm, sunny, 70F (20C). Really an awesome winter's day.
Then I got to Detroit. Wow. The temperature was below freezing. Lucky for me I brought my wool jacket. I zipped it up to the top as I waited for the airport shuttle.
Other than that brisk assault on my body, there was no issue. I got there on schedule, without frostbite. Met my roommate, Dawn in the atrium where we would play. A nice open room with ample space. After a quick meal, I went to bed.
Friday I got up, ate and worked on the editing of the upcoming Rhym setting. I made great progress there which put me in a good mood.
I played the first adventure with a fun team, including Beth and Steve. however, I was surprised a backup that it was clear I was not needed. Now I do not have to be in the spotlight all the time, but it sucks when anything you do, you are overshadowed. Still, my character, the inimitable Kermina Gallia val'Borda managed to help out in the investigation and in the combats.
The story was one that skirted the themes of vampires and Dracula lore. Very fun really. Classic but highly workable.
For the evening, I jumped to a cobbled table, joining Paul and Nicole, with who I have played a lot of games. It is always a pleasure to join them. Also with us was Tom. Now fun story. As we waited during breaks, he and I said that it would be really fun if our characters got to ah together outside of a LARP event. Well our wishes were answered!
This second adventure was a mix of espionage and The Lost Boys. Again very cool!
By that time, it was back to the room. Dawn and I chatted for a while, then snoring.
Saturday was reserved for the special interactive event, with the same team as the night before. We faced a number of thematic monsters. A lot of challenges and monsters we do not normally see in Arcanis. It was interesting that one of my abilities: the spell rebuke which is effectively a turn undead. Well, it worked, for once!!! I was both shocked and really happy!
I really enjoyed the story, it was simple, flavorful and just plain fun.
I saw two things to improve Arcanicon. And one thing with the Hotel...
First, more people. A common note if you read this blog. If you have a choice, attend. Quite simple.
Second, the interactive started at 10am and lasted til midnight. Fourteen hours of heart-pounding craziness. I was originally going to say "start @ 1 pm" so that we could squeeze an extra slot to play. There are a few adventures out there I would have liked to play. That annoyed me on-site but really, after playing the special, that issue disappeared.
I will say that the special was good. It was much better than last year's incomprehensible plot of undead, plague-bearers and gnolls. I still don't understand what that was about. Better not to talk about it anymore. It was not as good the Vault of Larissa from two years ago, however. A solid offering.
Now for the true second downside: this was Tony-N's final event as Arcanis organizer. Over the years, I really learned to appreciate Tony's style and how he thinks as a writer and really find like what he writes: rooted in campaign lore, I feel like every adventure, I learn or explore a different take on things in Arcanis. Tony, I thank you for your work in making Arcanicon and making Arcanis even more interesting.
Big-time highlights... A few of them...
As usual, the people. Paul, Nicole, Beth, Mike, Stephen, Tom, Chris, James, OMG! I'll stop here so many good folks! Fun to play with.
But if there was an MVP, I have to give it to James-V, the man who brought my to Tim Hortons... And who brought me some Tim coffee during the game! Oh joy of joys! I'll skip the hotel food description. I had Tim's. I mean... If you are Canadian, you understand. If you are not... Tim Hortons was a mediocre hockey player who started a donut shop upon retiring. They may a very smooth, nice, flavorful coffee. The brand has a number of stores in the United States, particularly in Michigan and Ohio.
Yes, you will notice my wonderful nails... I was dressed up for my part... *Giggles*
I was left to ponder about the con. Will it be the last one, now that Tony is no longer organizing it? I hope not as Arcanicon is one of the event on my personal convention calendar.
You will guess that I will be going back next year. Yes, I will go back.
Thursday, March 16, 2017
It has been a while since I posted some terrain elements. In case you have not figured it out, I have been on something of a Japanese kick recently.
Torii arch as an iconic symbol of Japan.
To build these arches, I used chopsticks and Popsicle sticks. They are weighed down by metal washers stabilizing them.
An old love... I used to own this on an old VHS in the original Japanese subtitled in Korean and I read the text out of a printed script.
At the time, I thought it was very innovative, since I had not seen the before or after series.
Taking place three years after the events of the One-Year War. Zeon is defeated and there is peace across the world. This story is about two new Gundams, built in Australia. One of them is stolen by a Zeon pilot just after it is loaded with nuclear missiles. Now why it was loaded with them, I don't quite know. The thief is Anavel Gato, a Zeon pilot working for the Delaz Fleet, an offshoot of Zeon who believe the Principality gave up too early.
The Earth forces try to recapture the Gundam but ultimately fail as the Zeon take in into space.
This story has a lot of plot twists, serving as a bridge between the original series and the Z-Gundam. The ultimate villains' goal is fiendish indeed. Even Gato's motivations and hatred of the old Zeon leadership is understandable. There are a few side-plots of interest.
Story: The story starts out slow and gathers up a lot of speed with twists and turns all the way to the end. Secret deals, love affairs, internal politics, I found myself really enjoying this. I'll give it a 4/5.
Characters: The characters here are diverse and interesting, as we have the pilots, the engineers, the command structure, military and civilians. It was easy to follow and keep track of them. 4/5.
Animation: The animation is not a little dated (it is about twenty five years old by now) but is still quite good. 4/5.
Overall: Overall, this was as enjoyable now as when I first watched it back in the 90s. I will give this a solid 4/5.
Tuesday, March 14, 2017
The Rhym first draft is completed. More than that, I have just completed the first pass of editing. It's long, hard but the results are there. Now I have to do some of the rewrites and get JD to provide me with some additional material to fill in the holes. The final book will clock around 160 pages!
I will admit that it took a lot longer on my part to edit this, and that it is completely my fault. I procrastinated. A lot. I mean, instead of getting this done, I watched anime, I watched movies, I took some classes, I attended game days, I went to hockey games, anything not to do what I am supposed to do, but I finally got it all done.
This book is so different than the Tyrants of Saggakar one. It's a full campaign setting, so the biggest piece of work was done on the nations and fluff-based elements things. Fun but requiring a lot of work for internal consistency.
This was a short update for you all.
Sunday, March 12, 2017
From the Facebook mega-lot, a second (and last) Retribution model in the lot. It was interesting painting him. I may use him for one of the kid's Adventure League characters, the simply named "ElfMonk" who happens to be an... well... an elf monk.
The final mini of this batch of ArcadiaQuest... This guy is THE king!
For him, I did a fairly simple paint job, inspired by the jumpsuits the King wore in the 70s. On his cloak is a crown and the word "King". The whole effect was covered in glitter to simulate rhinestone. Lots and lots of rhinestones. About four different coats of glitter yielded this effect. In the end, he is the king.
Thank you, thank you very much.
Wednesday, March 8, 2017
For this year's Nashcon on June 2-4 in Franklin Tennessee (litterally 1 exit north of my work), I am planning big! I will be putting together two miniatures games, with hints of role-playing elements. I designed these games to be played by kids (such as my own), to be quick, fun and filled with action.
It seems Nashcon is the one minis-only conventions I attend and it already has a special place because I can attend with ActionMan who served as my helper last year! We had great fun together and he remembers it fondly. Let's see what we can bring back this year. Perhaps we will do some shopping...
Lost Treasure of King M’koto
First Ones Entertainment’s JP Chapleau is bringing 16th-17th century action using 28mm miniatures using a simplified game based on "The Sword and the Flame". This game for 3-8 players is centered around bands of conquistadors, pirates and native forces searching for the Lost Treasure of legendary King M’koto. This game can be cooperative or not, and is accessible to all. The rules are quick, simple and will be explained.
Saturday June 3rd Morning 9-1
Mecha Battles: Gundam
First Ones Entertainment’s JP Chapleau is bringing the Mecha Battles rule set to the Gundam universe using 1/400 models. This game for 3-8 players who will take the side of either the Earth Federation or the Principality of Zeon fighting each other. This game can be cooperative or not, and is accessible to all. The rules are quick, simple and will be explained.
Saturday June 3rd Afternoon 2-6
Monday, March 6, 2017
Just when you thought I was done... I come up with another Denagra. this time, the advanced, Wraith Witch Denagra! I gave her metallic pink that I think really comes through as very unique. A very interesting combination I really like. She really pops when next to the other two versions (posted below).
Sunday, March 5, 2017
It would stand to reason that most games have an initiative system based on two players where all get to do the same number of move such as Warhammer/40k and Warmachine/Hordes leading the way.
When thinking of Mecha Battles, I keep seeing these sequence where the main character goes all out and smashes like a hundred of the bad guys going on a massive tear. This is very much inspired by anime. And well, I HAVE been watching a fair amount of Gundam...
So what would be a good way to design an initiative system that would be quick and simple and allow for these random bursts of awesomeness from one character?
I came with a simple system: drawing playing cards. A system inspired by one of my favorite miniature game: Larry Brom's The Sword and the Flame. Whereas TSaTF forces a reshuffle after a joker is drawn, I decided to keep drawing from the deck, with a joker allowing the winning player (red or black) to get an extra action or bonus to all dice roll for the turn.
After play-testing this rule, I found that the player got to choose whether or not to spent his actions on one mech or spread their actions. This worked surprising well, and led to the following sequences:
- Kitty moved forward with her GMs firing into me, and downing my pink Zaku.
- I won initiative three times in a row and destroyed two of her GMs with my cannons.
- Kitty used her Gundam to rocket boost and close the distance with my Zakus. (That's the situation outlined in the picture)
- Then as she drew the next card, she thrashed me.
- My Zaku retreated and shot into Gundam
- Gundam charged again and destroyed my Zaku
- Winning initiative, I used my large cannon to destroy Gundam.
This flow of event mimics scenes from an anime show. So that part of the system does what I want to do. This lucky happening makes the game extremely dynamic.
Friday, March 3, 2017
Another fellow for Will. This guy is called "Luke the Lucky". This guy goes adventuring with a wooden sword! Now I know few people who are brave or foolish enough to do that...
As a small surprise bonus for him, I painted him with a jersey of the Tennessee Titans's quarterback, number 8, Marcus Mariotta. The effect is pretty good I think and has made this mini one of my favorite.
Wednesday, March 1, 2017
These two guys are very cool. Before I learned they were necromancers, I thought they were Cthulhu/Dagon priests. I really like the fish skull on top of their heads.
The main color was purple and red. I inverted the colors on their robes and both have a lot of character. After taking the picture, I realized I had not painted the eyeball on the staff. So I did before applying the final seal.
For the past few weeks, I have been revisiting and looking a number of old animes, particularly Gundam and Robotech. I have always been a big fan of big mecha fighting, the first ever show I really loved the Goldorak/ Grendizer. The animation may have been terrible, but it was still great.
A half-formed idea for an adventure quickly formed in my head. Thoughts and ideas of revisiting some of my old settings for Robotech and/or Macross II. Hopefully get the gang back together for one more hurrah. Going through my books, I reviewed the my Palladium material but found it heavy and very old. I remember even in those days, the rules were complex. With mech battles being ridiculously long (especially with mecha with auto-dodge). Then I imagined trying to explain how the game worked to the kids. So Palladium was out.
Or was it? I looked at their Robotech Tactics miniatures game. I sought to buy a few sets to see if that system could be used. However, I failed to want to drop the money to buy it. The reviews of if I
Then I did a quick check at Savage Worlds. Savage Worlds was good. But I could not find a Savage Mecha game I could quickly adapt.
I looked at the old '80s Battletech but I really hated that game... It was so slow and every game I played ended up with mechs being partially damaged all over but never a killing blow. However, I liked the simplicity of the "character sheet" with the little boxes.
Privateer Press Horde/Warmachine has a very simple and cool system to keep track of damage.
I looked at an online Gundam Battle product but found it overly complicated. Very detailed but it did not please me, I wanted something simple and quick and that was definitely not it. I wanted something that would not be specifically tied to a product (I doubt Bandai would allow me to create a Gundam Battles).
As I was looking at these, I began to wonder quite simply. Do I really want to make this a role-playing game, or a miniature game with some role-playing elements ? And the latter idea made more and more sense.
I spent time thinking about how I could make a game that would:
- Mimic the battles in Gundam and/or Robotech
- Focus on mecha vs mecha combat.
- Be quick
- Be explainable to a 7-10 year old, so simplicity.
- Although not an initial goal, the game should be expandable through the addition of pilot-specific rules.
Using a small text file, I put notes down. Added random things. In the end, I ended with something that could best be described as a proto-set of rules. Not enough to be a serious game, but enough to do a few simple game play tests.
After dinner, I called the kids to see if they wanted to play something new with my Gundam 1/400 miniatures.
They wanted to play, being very excited about this. Here is a first picture of the play test... Here, Kitty using her Command GM charges my Zaku forces. It seems dire, but she would go on and destroy two of my mobile suits and greatly damaging the next one.