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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Secrets to a Great Game

I know that there are several writers that have tons of techniques to creating a good game but this is not about technique. Now looking at all the great movies and TV shows that transcend to RPG and the common element that I (and a cousin of mine) noticed.

They are...

Promise of reward
A need for a rescue
Reputation change
A discovery
Avenge or Revenge

Now a portion of all of these elements are needed to make a great game as they are all needed to make a great movie or television show.

Now to go over these elements...

First there is the promise of reward. This is usually at the beginning. To illustrate this I will be using Star Wars. At the start of Star Wars the smuggler didn't join the cause until there was a promise of reward. Weather or not that reward was going to be coming to fruition was was completely reliant on how circumstance was going to play out. When GM's are playing with their world and need that hook, the meager promise of reward can be enough but don't hang your game on this alone.

Next is the need for rescue. In Star Wars it would of not been enough just to deliver the plans. There needed to be a need for a rescue or escape. In this story it was the princess that provided the rescue and encouraged the escape. With two elements in play we move onto the third element...

Reputation change. To go from wimpy moister farm boy to rebel star pilot and budding Jedi is a big change and the burden of change can destroy a character if the player is not ready to adjust to the change. When you look at all of the characters in Star Wars, first the farm boy is mention, the princess is a secret spy, the smuggler is now an accessory to the Wookie who turns out to be a sleeper agent who anticipated the arrival of the old Jedi who we find out was a warrior in the Clone Wars. Yes there was a lot of information given in that episode. Great stuff.

A discovery. Now this was played as a low key in Star Wars: A New Hope. One of the strongest discoveries was that the farm boys father was a Jedi and not a pilot on a spice freighter. Small discovery but none the less a discovery. Another discovery was that the smuggler had a large debt owed and had an alternative motivation for helping the farmer and his old man friend.

The last one was avenge or revenge. Once the farm boy finds out that members of the empire killed his father, he has a real strong reason for going after this faceless government (well good old Darth was the face of the government). He wanted to avenge the death of his father (knowing no differently). He wanted to free other worlds from the tyranny that they have suffered from. He wants to avenge the captured and tortured princess. Mild things but a great start for a catch later on in the story.

See all the great elements were in the movie and I bet you'd find it in almost every great movies and television that could be played in RPG Now there are other story elements that are great for novels and movies but I wanted to bring out the elements that would enhance your RPG experience.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Arboreal Dwarves

After posting my post about Jungle Elves, I got thinking what other diversity could I envision with the common races. I have ALWAYS been a fan of the dwarven kingdoms. Sturdy humanoids, with the courage of a bear, the strength of a lion, the loyalty of a wolf, the durability of an elephant, all packaged into the stout little body, much like a scottish terrier. So I started there. Dwarves, like elves, are VERY iconic. They have their stigmata,

Thursday, August 5, 2010


So here I am in the state of controversy and I love it. The state is getting a pretty bad rap from the media here and abroad. Its also very hot. I have only been away from the family for two days and I miss them already. I talk to the family while I work and its ok but its not being home. Arizona is hot (did I mention that?) and pretty the cacti is aplenty here.

I am working on some ideas to put into the Rifter and cleaning up the material that I have finished. I have been talking to my cousin Jayson and others and have been working on some fantastic ideas that just need to be fleshed out.

Among some of the ideas up in the air right now is some new mutants for After the Bomb and adventure ideas for Palladium FRPG. We have been tossing around ideas and I will post them soon as I write them.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Jungle Elves

In preparation for your campaign coming in November, I have been creating a mess of characters. Getting the old creative juices flowing feels good, but has its costs. Sometimes I feel TOTALLY unproductive.

Anyway, I started to create a certain character that you may find interesting. In his creation, other ideas of his past and culture became quite interesting. Let me know what you think.

I started with the idea of giving this character some awesome armor. I began to think, what would be uniquely awesome about armor. I have always been intrigued in nature, organisms that share a commensal or a mutualism relationship. That was it! I wanted this character to have armor that was actually a living creature! I began to draw some armor that resembled the quills of a porcupine, while thinking about how this character came across this armor and what exactly was it. I named it Quill Dragon Armor. Lets discuss this organism in detail.

The Quill Dragon is not a dragon at all, nor does it even resemble a dragon. The Quill Dragon is a mutualistic organism found in the Yin Sloth jungles. It needs a host in order to survive. Anciently Quill Dragons could be found residing on the skin and body of true dragons. This mutual relationship was once thought to be one organism and a new species of dragon. The secrets of the Quill Dragon were discovered by the Elven people of the Yin Sloth jungle, whose relationship with creatures like the Quill Dragon, set them apart from other Elven cultures.

The Quill Dragon by itself has a very flat, flexible, yet durable body. On the top side of the organism the Quill Dragon has developed long, thin spikes or quills. These quills grow much like hair. Tiny muscles in the follicle of the quill provide movement of the quill. The outside of the quill, when examined closely, is composed of a series of chitin-like rings that overlap. The inside of the quill contains many fibers that are attached to the internal surface of these rings at various lengths of the quill. These fibers provide exquisite mobility and dexterity of each quill, much like a tentacle of an octopus.

The underside of the Quill Dragon are micro-tentacles that are used to attach itself to its host. These tentacle serve as the organisms means of feeding from the host. Microrrhiza extend and connect to the blood vessels and the neuro bundles of the host drawing nourishment back to the organism. The Quill Dragon not only collects physical nutrients (i.e. glucose, oxygen, etc.) from its host, but also feeds off of the surge of P.P.E. and I.S.P. emitted by its host at moments of emotional response. As such the Quill Dragon becomes connected to its host on an emotional level as well.

The Jungle Elves of the Yin Sloth jungle utilize mutualistic organisms as an integral part of their culture. The Quill Dragon is one of the most revered of these mutualistic organisms. Jungle Elves, or Taure Huri as they call themselves, have strong beliefs about nature and the interconnect relationships between all living creatures. As a rite of passage, young Taure Huri go through what is called the Vehi'i Atu, "The Union" or the "Coming Together". This is a sacred ceremony where the young elf is matched up to his/her "Life Bringer", one of the various mutualistic organisms found through the Yin Sloth Jungle.

Other Elven races/cultures look on the Taure Huri with disdain. Many eras back the Taure Huri were enslaved by the other Elven races and kept as servants. Since that time, the Taure Huri with the aid of abolitionists freed the Jungle Elves. Yet, still in high circles of mainstream elven culture, the Taure Huri are not respected. A derogatory term sometimes used by aristocrats and high class for the Taure Huri is "Muck Elf", referring to their place of origin and the sometimes appearance of their "Life Bringer" in their skin.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

I have a little secret

I have a couple of secrets. Some I can tell and some... well not so much so. First secret I am changing the script for Cyberspace. I want to broaden it a bit similar to what was done in Rifter #2. I thought about it and said within myself, there is a war of the megaverse with demons and devils that is ever expanding, why not cyberspace? No I am not writing a book for the demon/devil war but my Cyberspace script is now getting too big for just the Nightbane. I want to include Heroes Unlimited and every modern civilization across the magaverse. Crazy huh?

Ok, I have your attention, more secrets are coming down the turnpike at Palladium Books that I was privy to know and cannot tell because of the slowness of things and I am not exactly sure if its going to come to pass. To say the least, its going to be cool if it comes out. I will be especially excited if I get published in some of the work that comes out .

Monday, June 28, 2010


I was thinking, Wayne when he wrote the article about Cyberspace in Rifter #2, he covered every world. I have decided to change some of the idea that I am working on from just being Nightbane to expanding it to reflect what he was working on (bless his soul). So, now I am writing like crazy and i need more time and energy. Man this is cool!!

Kevin and Me

I got to meet Kevin Siembieda and it was awesome!! I talked to him personally for about 10 to 15 minutes. I know that its not much time but man it was awesome! I got to meet some of the staff too and I got encouraged to write some new stuff and write I did. I spent the next few days writing tons of new stuff. I aim to submit my stuff by the end of the month of July. I am working on some great ideas. Its amazing how meeting someone would inspire me and get me revved. I have been writing for hours this weekend and I need to get back on this project some more; so I'll talk to you later. Peace!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Pictures say 1000

I have been looking on the magical land of the internet to see pictures for inspiration. Man people are inspired and that is keeping me going. There are tons of ideas now spilling in my mind. Its just a matter of keeping up with it. Most of it now are short stories and NPC's. Now its a matter of time before I can find a place where the wow factor is. The structure of the world is vague without a real fixture.

Still all in all, its awesome.

Saturday, January 23, 2010


I know that I have not been writing for a while but I have not really had the mood for the such. I love to write but I am a bit of a show off and with no audience I tend to veer off and attempt to discover myself in the mean time.
Recently I acquired an iPod and have been listening to the podcasts of several Palladium Fans. One of these days I want to be part of one and actually talk to Matthew Daye the author of Gateway of the Megaverse. I know that I have only been published twice but I would like to converse with someone that actually writes for Palladium. They have been talking about the 2010 gaming session gathering (times like this I wish that I could spend more time at home and have time for that kind of vacation). At any rate, I am writing again and hope that I blog more too. I have put some ideas on the back burner until the fire for them kicks in again and am working on some other projects. Wish me luck.