Monday, September 30, 2013

tremulus Actual Play: The Hatchetman and the Silver Saints

We decided to give tremulus another go, with the new group of Russ, Chrystal, Tommy (who plays in most of my Savage Worlds games) and myself. Unlike the last time we played tremulus, we had extra Playbooks to choose from and more players, so this left us with a motley crew of Russ as an Entertainer named Frank Stone (and a bodyguard named Sheffield), Chrystal as a Psychic named Eliza Dent (and her driver Chauncey) and Tommy as a Drifter named Ramblin' Tom.

I was actually pretty ill prepared going in, so we started the session with Ramblin' Tom walking into town and being passed by Eliza and Chauncey...while a distracted Frank Stone ran off the road and clipped the Drifter, who chose (after rolling a 7-9) to take a little extra damage but force Stone to blow a tire and hit a tree. This led to Frank being a little shaken up and Tom hurting a bit, but Tom gathered his wits and put Frank in a bind, essentially blackmailing Frank into taking care of him, once Tom and Sheffield took care of the car tire.

Eliza and Chauncey checked into their hotel, which was a spacious, two story affair. As Eliza and Chauncey went to their room, Eliza noticed a younger man wearing a silver star pendant watching her. She smiled at him, but he turned his head away. When she and Chauncey got to the room, she decided to relax and commune with the spirits to see what she could see.

Back at the car, while looking for the spare, Ramblin' Tom noticed that the driver of the car (Frank) had some headshots in his trunk...making Tom realize that the driver was an actor or model or something, and this gave Tom a bit more leverage. He also saw a curious silver star pendant in the trunk of the car, which he pocketed. The three men piled back into the car and headed into Ebon Eaves.

Eliza had a vision of dozens and dozens of townsfolk, including the young man that was watching her, forming an angry mob while a demonic face loomed over them.

Frank Stone, Sheffield and Ramblin' Tom headed to the hotel, where Frank discovered there was only one available he used charm and money to get people kicked out of their rooms while he and Sheffield took Tom to get some food (as part of their deal for, y'know, nearly killing him). The service in the diner was much nicer, friendlier and more competent than the hotel. The three men were just starting to maybe get along when a tall, silver-haired man entered the diner, flanked by a short, nervous man and a stern-faced man with a milky white eye. The tall man was referred to as "Reverend", which caught the attention of Stone and Tom. Frank said he didn't like that white eye, so Sheffield got up and grabbed a knife, threatening to put it out, but Frank made him sit back down.

Eliza and Chauncey entered the diner and sat down, and Chauncey never took his eyes off of the Reverend and his entourage. As dinner went on, Frank didn't like the look of Chauncey and sent Sheffield over to Eliza and her driver to make sure there was no issue. This nearly escalated into violence as Chauncey told Sheffield to take two steps away from Eliza. Frank overhead the commotion and told Sheffield to back off, (and Tom was busy eating all of Sheffield's food while this was going on). As Frank gathered up Sheffield and Tom and headed to the door, they were cut off by the Reverend, who recognized Frank. He asked for an autograph for Martin's (the nervous man with the Reverend) son and the two men soon decided that they should have dinner together. Tom mentioned being both broke and injured, and the Reverend offered him medical care at the doctor's and work at the church the next day. Frank began to press The Reverend on the real reason he had come here: Ebon Eaves' legendary Hatchetman. Many years ago, a young man named Billy had gone insane and chopped up five of his friends before a sixth stopped him...and every five years, the murders started up again. As Frank pushed the Reverend on these legends, the Reverend shrugged it off.

Ramblin' Tom headed to the Doctor when he felt an overwhelming sense of being watched...and discovered that *everyone* on the street was watching him.

Frank returned to the hotel and sent Sheffield out to find some drugs, while he began pumping the old lady now working the counter for information about the Hatchetman.

Eliza and Chauncey, paranoid about the town, scoured their room for cameras...until Eliza spotted something on the window. The outside of the window. The word "Witch". Eliza contacted the Spirit World once more, getting a flash of an eyeless, oily skinned creature in an old rock quarry...and a flash from the future of a newspaper headline proclaiming that that anniversary of the Hatchetman had passed without incident.

Ramblin' Tom got his wounds dressed by the friendly Doctor who suddenly, as Tom was leaving, told him to "keep your nose clean or we'll f---ing kill you."

Frank got upset when the old woman told him the Hatchetman wasn't a ghost...but a curse on the town, which drives people insane every five years...and that the next Hatchetman would be coming soon.

Eliza and Chauncey decided to go for a walk, having a chat with the old woman, who seemed nice enough...except she said that the town was constantly poisoned by satanic outsiders, such as witches like Eliza. Frank and Tom decided to turn in to their respective rooms.

Frank was awoken by someone beating on his door and peered through the peep hole to see Sheffield...who drove a hatchet into the door! He smashed his way in and the terrified Frank Stone darted away from him and bolted through into Ramblin' Tom's room, waking him up as the crazed Sheffield burst in! Frank fired his handgun at Sheffield and wounded him, but the enraged bodyguard charged Tom and Frank, only to be taken by surprise by the Drifter, who managed to rip the axe from his hands and knock him into a door, accidentally breaking his neck! Frank immediately proclaimed victory for stopping the Hatchetman. A nervous back and forth ensued about who to call, with Tom pointing out that the Reverend runs this town, and Frank became optimistic that his friendship with the Reverend would help out.

Eliza and Chauncey tried to return to the hotel...only to find it bustling with activity, including four of the Reverend's Silver Saints blocking her entrance, calling her a "Witch". Chauncey threatened violence on the four men, but Eliza opted for a less violent approach and took Chauncey back to Meg's Diner, where she once more contacted the Spirit World.

The Reverend and his sidekicks, Martin and Robert, were relieved to see that Tom and Frank had stopped the Hatchetman without further bloodshed.

Eliza got a flash of an eyeless, oily being biting Sheffield and driving him into a rage...and Sheffield biting someone else and throwing them aside as he grabbed a hatchet from the man's truck and stomped to the hotel...leaving the wounded, enraged man to attack another bystander and so on...and that the creature is now dormant.

Outside the hotel, the Silver Saints guarding it were attacked.

Ramblin' Tom decided to cut out, only to look down the stares at the old woman from the counter, now quite crazed and charging up the stairs. He barely got away from her, but didn't get the door barred in time. Frank tried to block her entry himself...but failed as she nearly bit him, causing him to lunge away from the door.

Eliza began asking the gentleman in the diner about rock quarries, leading to her and Chauncey deciding to head to the quarry to put an end to this monster.

Frank scurried away...leading to woman attacking Martin and ripping a chunk out of him! She tossed him aside and lunged at Tom, who got away from her and never saw Martin lunging up and biting Robert! While Tom and the old woman fought, Frank opened fire...shooting Tom in the shoulder and making him drop his axe! The Reverend began fighting with Robert, and Frank opened fire on on Robert, giving the Reverend an opening to draw a knife from somewhere and drive it into Robert's skull! Frank was pleased...until Martin pounced on him and dragged him to the ground! Tom and the old woman fought, but he flipped her end over end and out the window! Frank shot Martin, stunning him so that the Reverend could move in and slice Martin's head off!

Eliza and Chauncey began to enter the quarry to execute the dormant monster, when bizarre, vaguely crablike fungal creatures ordered her and Chauncey to stop! They were surprised as these beings descended from the skies and said that they created the hunter to quell the Nightgaunts...and that killing it would doom the town. Eliza tried to debate them, pointing out that it was killing people, but the beings said that those were acceptable losses to keep the Nightgaunts under control. She and the creatures argued, until she finally ordered Chauncey to execute the sleeping hunter, which he did with a high powered rifle. The creatures recoiled, stating their belief that she had doomed the area to the swell of the Nightgaunts.

In the aftermath, the Silver Saints did a splendid job of quelling the uprising caused by the madness of the hunter's bite, and when Eliza confronted to the Reverend about his town's zealotry, to her surprise he agreed: He's been well aware of the rising darkness in the town and has been deathly afraid of his inability to quell it.

Notes: I totally did a horrible job of conveying the humor we had going on here, as Russ hammed it up as Frank Stone and I had a blast slipping back and forth between Chauncey and Sheffield. The tremulus system is a bit exhausting, as I'm not used to improvising *that much*. All the improv is why some things were set up and not paid off (like Tom finding a Silver Star in the trunk of Frank's car). That said, I have to give the group credit: This was the first time roleplaying with this configuration, the first time Chrystal had played a non-D&D game and the first time Russ had played a non-fantasy RPG and everyone slipped right in. They played like characters in a horror game, and took my bait as I laid it out there, running with little tidbits here and there to advance the plot, conveniently choosing the same hotel to stay at and diner to eat at, and so on. Ironic, then, that Eliza *never* directly interacted with the other two PCs.

This was also the first time using non-core Playbooks, as all the Playbooks used came from the tremulus Kickstarter stretch goals. The special moves came into play a LOT (especially Frank's ability to gain +2 while trying to Act Under Pressure in defensive situations, Tom's ability to roll Luck to lessen harm and Eliza contacting the Spirit World, which bordered on being awesome and gamebreaking).

A good time was had by all, the new group got off to a promising start, and next week we hit familiar territory for me and Tommy: Deadlands Reloaded!

Monday, September 23, 2013

A Look at Accursed Golems

Golems are the created beings of the Accursed world, and if you're a Ravenloft fan you're probably used to the idea of the intelligent Golem. Golems are created by The Crone and can be comprised of anything: Flesh, straw, stone, glass, etc. Here are two Golems, one made of wood and one made of stone.

I didn't use the same conceit with Golems that I did with Dhampirs, where they started from similar origins and took opposite roads. These are merely two separate Golems from the opposite ends of the Golem spectrum, organic materials and inorganic materials.


"The Redwood", as Rowan was known as during the Bane War, was a gifted field tactician who stood firm in the face of danger, ordering his men forward and devising plans of victory. When The Crone got ahold of him, she transformed him into his namesake: A tree-like golem. Now the Redwood rallies his soldiers around him once more, convinced that his tactical genius will be enough to triumph against The Crone's forces. His tree-like visage, complete with goggles to compensate for his impaired vision, strikes a fearsome, steadfast image, surrounded by soldiers willing to lay their lives down fighting for what's right and just.

Name: Rowan “Redwood” Matthias
Witchbreed: Golems
Rank: Veteran

Agility: d6
Smarts: d10
Spirit: d8
Strength: d6
Vigor: d8

Charisma: 0
Pace: 6
Parry: 5
Toughness: 9

Acceptance/Defiance: Acceptance Level 1

Fighting d6
Guts d8
Intimidation d8
Knowledge (Battle) d12
Notice d6
Persuasion d6
Repair d6
Shooting d6

Bad Eyes

Command Presence
Officer of the Alliance

Racial Package
  Constructed: The Golem has the Construct ability.
  Deliberate: Agility can go no higher than d6.
  Hulking: +2 Toughness.
  Weakness: +4 Damage from Fire
  Notice Tests -2 

  Witchbreed Sense
  Drawn to Those in Need

Flintlock Pistol, Short Sword


Jack Butler was always a big, stubborn man...but The Crone took his inner essence and manifested it in startling fashion, transforming him into a giant man of stone. Granite Jack is slow and not very bright, but he's a terrifying sight when he does move into action, preferring to eschew weapons and pummel his opponents with his bare, rocky hands. Being a Golem, he's already quick to recover from being stunned, and he's accepted the stone facet of himself, making him harder still to wound. Pray that you are on his side, because Granite Jack is a veritable juggernaut who will only become more terrifying as his strength and ability grows.

Name: Granite Jack
Witchbreed: Golems
Rank: Novice

Agility: d4
Smarts: d4
Spirit: d6
Strength: d10
Vigor: d8

Charisma: -2
Pace: 6”
Parry: 7
Toughness: 8

Acceptance/Defiance: 0

Climbing d4
Fighting d10
Guts d6
Intimidation d6
Notice d4
Survival d4
Taunt d4


Hard to Kill
Martial Artist
True To Its Origin

Racial Package
  Constructed: The Golem has the Construct ability.
  Deliberate: Agility can go no higher than d6.
  Hulking: +2 Toughness.
  Weakness: +4 Damage from Blunt Force Damage

  Witchbreed Sense
  Drawn to Those in Need

Unarmed Attacks (Str+d4)

Thoughts: Granite Jack is a scary, scary bruiser. Why? Because I dumped Agility and Smarts, which makes him vulnerable to Tricks, but True To Its Origin (which may be getting excised) gives him Hardy (which prevents wounds from two Shaken results), and Construct essentially gives him Combat Reflexes (and his Spirit's d6 and can easily rise). Yeah, Fighting d10 was expensive, but he needs it as his Agility locks him out of a lot of the cool combat Edges.

Redwood was fun, inspired a bit by seeing the book carrying, glasses wearing Golem in the Accursed art...but with a twist, making him a military genius instead.

Mongrels are up next, and I'll try to make it a point to delve into Arcane Backgrounds with that one.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Marvel Accelerated: The Midnight Sons

Three more Marvel characters that I enjoyed in the 90s and haven't care much for their recent stories: Ghost Rider, Johnny Blaze and Morbius of the Midnight Sons! The I Am A Midnight Son Aspect that all three shares pretty much ties them into the war with Lilith and her Lilin, rather than creating a second aspect that essentially covered the same ground.

Name: Ghost Rider (Danny Ketch)
High Concept: The Spirit of Vengeance
Trouble: What Demon Am I?
Aspects: I Ride When Innocent Blood Is Spilled, I Am A Midnight Son, Barbara Ketch’s Death in on My Hands

Careful: +0
Clever: +1
Flashy: +3
Forceful: +2
Quick: +2
Sneaky: +1

Because I Have A Flaming Motorcycle, I can drive wherever I need to.

Because I have the Penance Stare, once per game session I can spend a Fate Point to add a new Consequence when Cleverly Attacking an opponent with innocent blood on their hands.

Because I have a Mystical Chain, I gain a +2 when Forcefully Attacking or Overcoming an Obstacle using the chain.

Stress 3


Refresh 3

Notes: I made Danny Ketch much less of a factor than Bruce Banner is for The Hulk, because Ketch tended to be a much smaller part of the Ghost Rider book than Banner was. The Penance Stare may seem a tad underpowered, but in my experience, it always proved to be more of an informed ability as the only characters that ever seemed to be completely neutralized by it were relatively minor villains. This is the version of Ketch that isn't aware that Noble Kale is inhabiting his body, rather than Zarathos or another demon.

Name: Johnny Blaze
High Concept: Ex Spirit of Vengeance
Trouble: Deal With The Devil
Aspects: World Class Stunt Rider, I Am A Midnight Son, The Quentin Carnival is My Family

Careful: +1
Clever: +2
Flashy: +3
Forceful: +1
Quick: +2
Sneaky: +0

Because I have a Hellfire Shotgun, I gain a +2 when Forcefully Attacking or Overcoming an Obstacle using the Shotgun.

Because I have a Mystical Motorcycle, I can drive wherever I need to go.

Because I Hunt Demons, I gain +2 when attempting to Cleverly Create an Advantage against supernatural foes.

Stress 3


Refresh 3

Notes: I love Hellfire Shotgun Blaze. Rather than give him a Stunt for his motorcycle riding, I left it alone and he'll just use the Aspect as needed. Though Blaze is free from Zarathos, he knows he's never REALLY free...and Deals with the Devil are not broken lightly.

Name: Morbius
High Concept: The Living Vampire
Trouble: I Must Only Drink The Blood of the Guilty
Aspects: Nobel-Prize Winning Biochemist, I Am A Midnight Son, I Must Find A Cure

Careful: +1
Clever: +2
Flashy: +0
Forceful: +1
Quick: +2
Sneaky: +3

Because I can ride wind currents, I can spend a Fate point to glide long distances.

Because I can mesmerize my foes, I gain a +2 when Cleverly creating an Advantage against an opponent.

Because I am Hard to Kill, I can spend a Fate Point to downgrade a Consequence once per session.

Stress 3


Refresh 3

Notes: Morbius doesn't heal quite as fast as Wolverine does, but he does heal quickly. He's struggling with his bloodlust and has agreed to only drink the blood of the guilty. Being a Living Vampire, he has some of the abilities and weaknesses of a vampire, but not all of them (he doesn't burst into flame in the sunlight, but he tries to avoid it, for instance).

Again, I'm a Fate I'm open to comments and suggestions.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

A Look At Accursed Dhampirs

Dhampirs are the half-vampires of the Accursed setting, created by the Blood Witch. Dhampirs are described in the Accursed Player's Guide is being agile, sure-footed and charming. I decided to play around with character generation a little bit and take a closer look at Dhampirs.

Any of the Accursed can choose to accept or defy their nature, embracing the power of their Witchmark or struggle against it. The more you embrace the Witchmark as a Dhampir, the more vampiric you become. The more you struggle against it, the more human you become (which is how it works with all of them). So I created two Accursed Dhampirs: Both have done horrible, horrible things since gaining their embracing his nature and the other fighting it.


Khalos gained a reputation for his rage and his brutality in The Bane War. To this day his name is cursed and though he fights the minions of The Blood Witch, he has few friends. This isolation has driven him down a dark path, and while he will never serve The Blood Witch again, fighting monsters has indeed transformed him into one. He flies into a berserker rage in combat, summons wolves to fight by his side, can consume blood to make himself stronger and cuts a horrible swath with his scythe, Bloodletter. However, his vampiric nature forces him to move under the cover of darkness, holy ground makes him incredibly uncomfortable and he must feast on blood in order to survive. His time in the Bane Wars have given him astonishing resolve and his is a great boogeyman to stalk the Blood Witch's banes...but has he crossed the point of no return?

Name: Khalos the Butcher
Witchbreed: Dhampir
Rank: Veteran (2 advances)

Agility: d10
Smarts: d6
Spirit: d8
Strength: d8
Vigor: d8

Charisma: +1
Pace: 7
Parry: 8
Toughness: 8(2)

Acceptance/Defiance: Final Stage Acceptance

Climbing d4
Fighting d10
Gambling d4
Guts d8
Intimidation d8
Notice d6
Riding d4
Streetwise d6
Tracking d8

Vulnerability to Holy Ground (Minor)
Wanted (Major)

Blood Fury
Call to the Wild (Wolves)
Grand Coven Veteran
Trademark Weapon (Bloodletter)

Racial Package
  Dark Charm (Charisma +2)
  Graceful (D6 Agility)
  Keen Senses (D6 Notice)
  Low Light Vision
  Nimble (+1 Parry)
  Wood Weakness (+4 from wood)
  Enemy (Blood Witch)
  Blood Hunger

  Witchbreed Sense
  Drawn to Those In Need
  Stage 1 Acceptance (-1 to all rolls in sunlight, +1 to Pace)
  Stage 2 Acceptance (Parry increases to +2, -1 to attack rolls against Dhampir, double damage from wood, need blood to survive)
  Stage 3 Acceptance (-2 to all rolls in sunlight, need invitation to enter homes, Agility increases by one die type, Charisma +1, abilities that affect blood gain +2 against Dhampir)


Scythe (Str+d6) (Parry -1, +1 to attack rolls, Reach 1, 2 hands), Reinforced Great Coat (+2 armor)

Liam the Penitent

Whereas Khalos revels in who he is, Liam is haunted by the things he's done under the influence of the Witchmark. The horrors he has seen - and committed - have forged him into an unflappable agent against evil, one who is taking his soul back one piece at a time. Damage in combat rarely slows him down, and few things can frighten him at this point in his life. Liam knows that he is owed a horrible death for what he's done, so he seeks it without fear, only hoping to drag as many minions into damnation with him as he can.

Name: Liam the Penitent
Witchbreed: Dhampir
Rank: Heroic

Agility: d8
Smarts: d6
Spirit: d10
Strength: d8
Vigor: d8

Charisma: +2
Pace: 6”
Parry: 7
Toughness: 6

Acceptance/Defiance: Stage 2 Defiance

Fighting d8
Guts d10
Investigation d6
Knowledge (Enochian Faith) d6
Notice d6
Streetwise d6
Subterfuge d8
Taunt d8
Tracking d6

Death Wish
Quirk (Sucker for a Pretty Face)

Combat Reflexes
Graceful Leap
Iron Will
Nerves of Steel

Racial Package
  Dark Charm (Charisma +2)
  Graceful (D6 Agility)
  Keen Senses (D6 Notice)
  Low Light Vision
  Wood Weakness (+4 damage from wood)
  Nimble (+1 Parry)
  Enemy (Blood Witch)
  Blood Hunger

  Witchbreed Sense
  Drawn to Those In Need
  Bane Sense
  Stage 1 Defiance (Wood damage drops to +2, Dhampir loses Low Light Vision)
  Stage 2 Defiance (Notice skill is reduced 1 step, Dhampir has no Wood Weakness, gains +1 benny each session).


Longsword (str+d8)

Thoughts:  I really like the available character options. A few oddball Edges and Hindrances are missing (Bloodthirsty, No Mercy, and so on)...stuff that aren't included as part of the setting but that I'll probably add back in myself...but I made it a point to try to create these as close to Rules as Written as possible.

Anyway, that's a look at Dhampirs down. In a day or two, I'll try to sit down and stat up a pair of Golems. If this looks appealing to you, back the Kickstarter. If not, then brace yourself for a few more posts about something that probably doesn't appeal much to you! But I'll try to work some non-Accursed posts in just the same.

Note: I am not affiliated with Melior Via or their Kickstarter in any way, I just really, really like what I've read in the Player's Guide, enough that I've backed the Kickstarter myself.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Sneak Preview: The Accursed Player's Guide

So I'm going to come right out and say it: If the Player's Guide is any indication, then Melior Via has made the game I wanted to write, but never trusted myself to design.

From their press release:

The Curse is Imminent

New Savage Worlds setting launches on Kickstarter on Friday, September 13th.
Melior Via, LLC, publishers of the critically acclaimed Hope Preparatory School game setting are preparing to launch a crowd funding campaign for the creation of a new RPG setting. Accursed is a dark fantasy world, where the players take on the roles of classic movie monsters. They struggle to free the land of Morden from the dark influences of the Witches. The Accursed draw their power from their curses, while struggling against it to preserve their souls. Recognizing that the game is named Accursed, it became apparent that the project had to launch on Friday the 13th.

About the setting:

In Accursed, Hammer Horror films meet Hellboy, and Solomon Kane meets Castlevania. The game world allows players to take on the roles of characters with transformative curses, cast by the Witches of the Grand Coven. They are Dhampir (Half-vampire charming rogues), Golems (living creatures crafted from unliving materials, similar to Frankenstein’s monster), Vargr (werewolves), Mummies, Mongrels (humans with bestial limbs and other body parts grafted onto their bodies), and Revenants (the living dead). The Accursed must not only fight evil from without; each character’s Witchmark defines his curse and changes over time.

About the Creators:

Ross Watson, Jason Marker, and John Dunn have designed role-playing games for many properties, including Star Wars: Edge of the Empire, Shadowrun, Warhammer 40,000 Roleplay, Robotech, and Malifaux: Through the Breach. They have decades of experience working in the gaming industry and are very excited about bringing a new twist on dark fantasy RPGs to life. The three members of the core team are bringing their combined creativity, experience, and passion to the project.
Accursed website:
Kickstarter Preview:

Melior Via, LLC website:

Now, that sounds all well and good, but you can say anything on a press release...but they sent me a copy of the playtest draft of the Player's Guide and I've spent a few days with it. First off, the book is very pretty. Here's the cover:

Not bad.

Accursed is powered by Savage Worlds, which is pretty high on my list of games, as you all know. Now, monster hunting/fighting games are nothing new in Savage Worlds. This art, for instance, gives a little bit of a Rippers vibe. However, not a lot of Savage Worlds games are placing the PCs in the roles of, essentially, monsters. The Accursed are all Witchmarked, which has a different effect on the PC depending on the witch that marked him:
  • Dhampirs are half-vampires who suffer from some of the flaws of vampires but are more nimble and graceful, and even have an Edge they can take that gives them a boost based off of their blood feeding.
  • Golems are men who have been transformed into constructs, with all the pros and cons that entails.
  • Mongrels are twisted beast men who have had animal parts bound to their bodies.
  • Mummies are the loooong dead, who have risen at the beckoning of the witches, forcing them into unlife.
  • Revenants are angry, driven walking dead like The Crow.
  • Vargrs are the setting's own werewolves.
So, yeah, Solomon Kane meets Castlevania, as you play men turned into monsters who are fighting monsters. While the book introduces new setting rules, powers (to go along with powers sets for Alchemy and Witchcraft), where the setting REALLY sings is in the WitchMark, which is what turned the poor guy into an Accursed and is the source of his power. So far, so good, right? One of the Wowza moments for me is that the Accursed can accept or defy their witchmarks, which has a deep impact on them...they can either accept their fate and gain more power at the expense of their soul, or they can embrace their humanity but forsake their power. This level of complication is added very simply, with corresponding bonuses and penalties based off of each level of acceptance or refusal. So, yeah, you can choose to become completely mortal...but you still have dangerous and powerful enemies and you are giving up your power while still waging a war!

A couple of years back, I was envisioning a Castlevania-esque setting that I thought Savage Worlds would be well suited for, but Accursed hits a lot of the beats I wanted to see in my own setting. The Kickstarter should be live by the time you read this, but I'll be back (probably this weekend) to play around with character creation a little bit and look at the Accursed character types a bit closer...but as it stands, I'm more excited about this than I have been a new setting or game for a while, and I cannot WAIT to see what is going to be in the full book.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

The Path of Kane - A Solomon Kane Actual Play Volume 3

Unfinished Business

The Winthorpe party set out for Conners’ home, hoping to raid his books and find out what he may know about the Gems of Power. As they approached Conners’ home, a sound from around back drew their attention. Checking out the grounds, they found a barn, from which a rough sound was emanating. Jonathan told Tenzan to be at the ready as he carefully approached the barn…

As he came closer to a knothole, the doors were busted open and a massive black stallion with glowing red eyes and barbed wire being used as bit and bridle emerged! The group was momentarily taken aback…then Roger drew his pistol and fired, dropping the horse dead!

Jonathan was taken by surprised at the single lethal shot! He ordered Tenzan and Roger to examine the barn closer, while he and his sister checked out the house.

Inside the home, the siblings rifled through some very expensive art pieces, but they were really interested in knowledge…which they found in the study. Jonathan found that Conners had been studying “The Castle of the Devil” in the Black Forest of Germany. Jonathan read with great interest about Baron Von Staler, his descent into madness and cruelty after hitting his head and losing his sight, locking the Baroness away, battling Solomon Kane and then regaining his sight, murdering the Baroness believing her to be an imposter! Conners has apparently come to believe that Von Staler’s bones are still in his castle, and has dispatched men to Germany to seek them out for some dark end!

Jonthan read on, discovering that Conners had been financing his studies through selling all kinds of dark items to dangerous and desperate people, and that he had actually created that horse in the barn, through some manner of demonic infusion!

Tenzan and Roger joined the twins in the house, and Jonathan asked what took so long, to which Roger replied by informing him that the horse kept trying to get back up!

Examining the house closely, they found a hidden room where Conners was performing dark studies, as well as parts and remains from human and animal victims he had been studying on!

The decision was made to make their way to London, gain passage to Germany and seek out the Castle of the Devil for themselves! To finance the trip, they rather looted Conners’ home, in hopes of unloading the items in London.

The Winthorpe party rode out across England in their cart, stopping at an inn a couple of days later. Through this all, Jonathan had been studying the book he found at Dr. Hapgood’s…and as he was settling in for the night, something clicked! Jonathan was momentarily overwhelmed…because he had discovered the secrets of raising the dead!

Shortly thereafter, a strange pot crashed through the window and began filling the room with smoke! Jonathan tried to keep his feet, but stumbled out of the room where he saw Tenzan and Christina under similar assault! Then darkness came…

Jonathan came to sometime later, being smacked repeatedly by his sister, who was trying to wake him up. She told him that Roger has missing, but she had found tracks leading away from the inn. The twins and Tenzan mounted up, and headed out to rescue Roger!

A short ride later, they saw Roger tied up in a clearing, surrounded by half a dozen men, and a figure on a black horse that appeared to be Conners! They rushed to save Roger, but the henchmen moved to intercept them! One struck Tenzan with a surprising blow, crumpling him to his knees! Christina charged Conners, but one of his men tried to block her.

The others surrounded Jonathan, who quickly cast spells to protect himself, and then to enhance his fighting skills. They paid off just in time, because he was surrounded by some vicious thugs!

Conners went at Christina as well, and she was battling viciously to fend off both men.

Jonathan bloodied his kodachi, as Christina brought down Conners and his henchmen, then rushed to save Jonathan.

In mid battle Jonathan was hit with a revelation: He knew a couple of these men from Wyndham Keep! This puzzled him, but he kept fighting and he and his sister held off the thugs!

Tenzan was wounded, but not killed, and was embarrassed to be taken in such a way. They freed Roger, and went to Conners…to discover it wasn’t Conners at all, but a frightened soldier named Terry Roth! Roth explained that he was only here because his daughter had been bitten by a wild dog, and a man offered to heal her: Life for a life! Roth would do anything to protect his own, even kill another, and that’s why he ambushed Roger! A slip of paper fell from his cloak and Jonathan read it: A note, addressed to Roger, from Conners! Citing certain beliefs that items on your person follow you into the afterlife, Conners left this so Roger would know who killed him, and that it was done because Rogers “chose the boy”. Conners then promised in his letter that he would come for “the boy” when it was least expected, and would take his life!

The Winthorpe party gathered Terry and Roger agreed to try to save his daughter. They went to Terry’s home, and after a long night of hard work, Roger managed to help her illness subside.

Soon back on the road, the Winthorpe party arrived in London early the next day, riding along the coast, when they caught wind of sailors hauling a body onto land and one yelling out “Again?! That’s the fifth one this week!”…

Notes: The encounter with the demon horse was supposed to be way more than a one shot finish. The horse was trying to escape and would inadvertently lead them back to Wyndham Keep, where Conners had escaped after getting into the heads of some of Lord Wyndham’s men and getting them to turn on Nicodemus.


Jonathan’s player played the Enemy card in this session, and so I made sure to establish that Conners would be coming back, and back for blood, while also hinting again at the hidden past of Roger Therrien.

Next adventure is a Savage Tale from the book involving a giant rat…did I mention Jonathan is afraid of rats?

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A Friend In Need

So a week or so ago, I posted about Chris Pramas and his impending neck surgery and the troubles he's facing with paying for it (which is alleviated now by the generous outpouring of support from his friends and fans). I come to you with another matter, one a bit more personal to me: Marty Snodgrass, a friend and colleague in the indy comic business (in addition to his freelancing, he and I have both worked for Equinox Comics who has published...almost everything I've released in comics), is quadriplegic and on a ventilator. About two weeks ago, his handicap accessible van was stolen in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Now, his family found the van...but it was stripped out and damaged, and his family only had liability insurance on it. He pretty much needs such a van to get to and from the doctor, or anywhere he might want or need to go, so he's trying to raise the money to get another van. He's set up a GoFundMe account (click the link to hear it in his words) in hopes of raising the money he needs to get another van, so if you have the means, please help a guy out...and, if you don't have the means, please pass the word on.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Tommy's Take on API Worldwide: South America

Apocalypse Prevention Inc. has had a release pattern since the core rules came out, alternating between Demon Codices and Regional Sourcebooks. We have previously taken a look at Canada and Europe…now we travel to South America!

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW: The print book is $20 in black and white and the PDF is $10, with the book coming in around 96 pages. As with previous API Worldwide books, this is designed to cover a region of the world…in this case, South America.

The chapter South America Briefly details some of the challenges the API faces when operating in South America, such as the lack of cell reception, the vast stretches of uncivilized territory and the constant run-ins with organized crime (namely the drug trade, though API tends to avoid them unless the drugs are supernatural in nature). A number of sidebars are included, such as one that details a number of herbs found in The Amazon, complete with their mechanical effects on those using them.

History Lessons covers the past and the present of the API in South America. For instance, the South America division takes in less savory agents due to the limited talent pool, and a lot of problems just never get addressed due to the lack of resources. The leader of the South America API branch is a small woman who can “influence” those she speaks to, which helps her more than a bit.

Chaos vs Chaos details some of the threats the API must deal with, beginning with The Council Most High, an organization of demons who are in a bit of a cold war with API. Another threat is a rogue agent and her organization, the Interdimensional Publicity Agency (IPA), which is trying to expose the supernatural world in direct opposition to API. The Children of God are a group of vampires who are breeding their own psychotic army to take out API and rule the world. The Manchakuy are descendants of the Incans who are hunting the Spanish in South America in revenge for encroachments by the Spanish Conquistadors. The Shadow Trade is dealing out weapons and information to anyone with the money, being both a resource and detriment to API. There’s even a group of human hunters called Skinners that have become aware of the supernatural and hunting demons in the street.

Secrets of the Amazon provides mechanical crunch, such as the effects of heavy rain and mudslides, as well as hyperthermia. The Path of the Mark is introduced, providing animal-based tattoo magic, like Mark of the Monkey which can grant the user a monkey-like screech or Mark of the Serpent which can provide a python-like grip. The Path of Wealth covers both aesthetic bits like looking wealthy, as well as a creepy power called Dirty Money that borders on reality warping as it can force people to remember committing crimes that they did not! New weapons (like automatic shotguns and grenade launchers) are included, as are new toys and cybernetics. New antagonists range from anacondas and jaguars to the frightening Cherufe – a demon made of molten rock.

Four new demons are provided: Gyks (Geeks) are tech-demons. Mohans look kinda like monkeys, but they can transform into serpents and jaguars as well. Thirsts are parasitic starfish that latch onto dead human bodies and reanimate them. Tox are a blind species with venomous skin.

Two adventures are included, the first being a clash with the IPA and a scary demon that controls shadows, while the second ends in a horrifying decision that can alter the world.

WHAT WORKS: This API Worldwide book does a great job conveying the different “feel” that it has over a US-based game, doing an even better job of illustrating that then Europe or Canada did, and feeling more “complete” than the Europe book. The lack of metaplot means that you don’t have to worry about your group’s decision at the end of the second adventure being overruled by anyone.

WHAT DOESN'T WORK: None of the four new demon species really jumped out at me the way previous Worldwide demon entries did.

CONCLUSION: If you’re not setting a game in South America, even as a temporary detour, I’m not sure there’s going to be enough here to make you NEED this book. That said, if you want a completely different, almost desperate, feel to your API campaign, South America is just what you’re wanting: The API South America branch is outgunned, overpowered and trying to figure out how to make it all balance. Strong recommendation if you like API and want a change of scenery. If you’re just wanting something to boost your existing game, this probably won’t do the job for you.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Tommy's Take on Wu Xing: Truth and Lies

Wu Xing alternates back and forth between regional sourcebooks and clan sourcebooks. At the beginning of the year we got the latest clan sourcebook Truth and Lies, covering the rival clans The Will of Iron and the Hidden Strands.

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW: You will need the Wu Xing core rules to use this, which is available in print for $20 and PDF for $10. The print book is in black and white softcover. I got mine via the Truth and Lies Kickstarter a while back.

The first chapter is an in-character “fluff” chapter directed at a new recruit to the Will of Iron, filling him in on the Clan’s purpose and methods. The Will of Iron are hardcore enforcers of the law (or their law, anyway, known as The Tao of Steel, which is broken down law by law in a sidebar, featuring such gems as “Stopping a crime is meaningless if the criminal can commit it again”, “A starving innocent is tragic, but a fat criminal is an outrage” and “To tolerate a crime today weakens the resolve to enforce the law tomorrow”). Other sidebars cover notable members of the clan, including the elderly boogeyman known as Justice’s Blade. Other cool and notable tidbits about The Will of Iron include their hidden prison known as The Repeating Prison, where they imprison criminals who should not be killed but cannot be openly detained, trapping them in casks and forcing them to relive their crimes. The structure of the clan is detailed as well, including a treatise on how The Will of Iron trains. We also get a deeper discussion of The Will of Iron feels about the other clans, though they generally find something wrong with each clan.

The Hidden Strands of Fate are shadowy manipulators to The Will of Iron’s hardcore enforcers. One of the first things we learn about the Hidden Strands is that the new inductees are selected by existing members, who manipulate the destruction of the potentials’ enemies to ensure that they survive to become Hidden Strands. We also find out (from the Hidden Strands, if they are to be believed) that they have manipulated each of the clans to ensure that they have incarnated into their current forms. Greater good and all that, I suppose. So you know, they don’t like the Will of Iron. The chapter ends with a dirty tease about just precisely what role The Hidden Strands play in the Ninja Crusade, though we don’t get to SEE it.

Chapter Three delves into the mechanics. Two new Passions are introduced: Treachery (especially for the Hidden Strands) and Pursuit (generally for the Will of Iron). The Will has new Gifts (like Sentaka, which grants bonuses to hunting criminals) and Drawbacks (like being so Sadistic that they lose control when attacking their target). Strand Gifts and Drawbacks include 100-Year Thread (using silk soaked in the blood of the clan’s enemies for 100 years) and Truthful (which is a huge problem when your whole clan is a bunch of liars). New weapons include Butterfly Swords and the impressive Seven-Branched Sword as well as the terrifying Heaven Splitter.

Two new Fighting Styles are included: Deer Style (which uses sais and is a defensive style that focuses on locking up weapons and breaking them, or striking a crushing blow when attacking off of a Parry or Dodge) and Silkworm Style (using chains and designed to take opponents down quickly). The Way of the Metal provides new Wushu which lets the ninja sense metals, split metal pieces into multiple shards and ultimately summon a magnetic storm of metal. The Way of Spun Threads can increase the strength of threads, create a whirlwind that turns their threads into wicked weapons and even transforming into a wicked warrior protruding threads from their body. The Way of Heaven’s Judgment allows the ninja to attack the guilty with increased accuracy and damage (while causing the opponent to become sloppy), allow them to reduce damage taken (and turn some of it into chi that they can use in return) and even become a walking embodiment of justice.

Three new Celestial Animals are added: Spiders, Peacocks and Silver Dragons, with an example of each, including a Celestial Spider that is hunted by the Will of Iron.

The first of the new clans is called the Sons of Steel, hardnosed warriors that make the Will of Iron look like softies. In fact, the Sons of Steel are completely emotionless. They have the Way of the Iron Mind, which allows them to shut out mind-altering effects, remove emotions from other individuals and, at the height of their power, remove emotion from everyone around them.

The second clan is Veiled Ones, an offshoot of the Hidden Strands. They have the Way of Pulled Strings which allows them to see through the eyes of their puppets, make their puppets look lifelike, and even control victims directly with their wushu.

An adventure is included that involves altering the balance of power in an Empire trade city, but both the Hidden Strands and the Will of Iron insist on including members of their clans on the strike team.

WHAT WORKS: The cool new mechanics are a great addition and some of the setting elements are nice. The options for playing the Will of Iron as “not nice” as well as playing an “honest” Strand of Fate is really intriguing as well.

WHAT DOESN’T WORK: The adventure left me a little cold for some reason.

CONCLUSION: If you like Wu Xing, there’s a lot of great setting elements here to play around with (like the Repeating Prison). There are also some swell new rules like the wushu, new styles, new weapons (I do dig the Seven-Branched Sword and Heaven’s Splitter). Unless you’re playing troupe-style, your players won’t need a ton of clan options, but the Veiled Ones or the Sons of Steel could make for great antagonists. Definitely recommended for fans of Wu Xing as there are some cool elements to use even if you don’t have Will of Iron or Hidden Strands PCs in your games.

Monday, September 2, 2013

The Path of Kane - A Solomon Kane Actual Play Volume 2

A Tangled Web

After the dream-visit by N’Longa, the Winthorpe party decided to head to Northern England to rendezvous with a scholar friend of Roger’s named Conners. Hopefully, Conners could tell them of the Gems of Power, or at least the one in the Old World.

On the trail North, the Winthorpe party was taken aback to find people hanging from trees on the trail, animals having picked at them! Roger noted, after an examination, that they didn’t even appear to be criminals, but farmers and laborers.

As Tenzan immediately moved to cut them down, Jonathan was overtaken with a sense of nausea, and said he would “lead the horses away”. While removing himself from the scene, he spotted a side trail through the woods, where five men were stringing up another person!

Jonathan returned to his party and rounded them up to approach this other event. Jonathan got their attention, asking the men why they were stringing people up, to which they replied that the people of Wickhampton were guilty of desecrating the grave of The Lady Wyndham and were being strung up on orders from Lord Robert Wyndham! Jonathan demanded evidence of this foul play, to which the guards replied that Lord Wyndham and his adviser Nicodemus were certain the people of Wickhampton had jealously desecrated the body of Lady Wyndham in order to disrespect Lord Wyndham! Lady Wyndham had come from Wickhampton, and was buried – at Lord Wyndham’s dismay – in Wickhampton due to her final wishes.

This led to a fight, which ended badly for the guards. Three wound up dead, with one more hurt badly and the fifth lightly wounded. They interrogated the fifth, and wound up taking him and the other survivor in as indentured servants to Wickhampton as they took the prisoner and the guards back to Wickhampton, returning with carts to bring all the bodies down.

That night, they were filled with a new sense of urgency at hearing the tales of Wyndham’s brutality, hearing that the scholar Conners had been imprisoned by Wyndham’s men as well! Early the next day, granted a cart by the people of Wickhampton, the Winthorpe party headed to Wyndham Keep.

At Wyndham keep, they were greeted at the sight of Lord Wyndham himself on the wall, his adviser Nicodemus standing behind him. The keep appeared to be rather run down, and Lord Wyndham was rather obstinate as he argued with Jonathan Winthorpe over his treatment of the people of Wickhampton. Nicodemus advised Lord Wyndham that he sensed magick off of Jonathan Winthorpe, accusing him of being a Necromancer!

Jonathan argued at this and let slip that he had encountered the Lord’s men the day prior…to which Wyndham latched on, saying that the Winthorpe party would be required to replace the bodies they had cut down!

As battle commenced, Nicodemus transformed Christina Winthorpe’s rapier into a snake, one that bit her! She cried out and was forced to battle her own weapon with her dagger! Roger Therrien drew his wheel-lock pistol and blasted one of the guards off the wall! Tenzan moved to the drawbridge as Jonathan drew his sling and launched a rock at Nicodemus.

Jonathan kept slinging stones at Nicodemus, while Roger drew his rapier and joined Tenzan at the drawbridge to battle the approaching guards. Christina battled the snake viciously, finally killing it with her main-gauche and retrieving her weapon as it transformed back!

Lord Wyndham stalked down to the drawbridge, a mad rage on his face! Two of his guards opened fire on Roger, then moved to the tower for a better vantage point.

Wyndham’s madness was apparent when he attacked one of his own men, throwing him off the drawbridge and drowning him so he could attack Tenzan! Christina made her way across the bridge, aiding Tenzan while her brother slipped in the ranks, boosting the capabilities of Tenzan.

Nicodemus approaching Christina and frightened her back as he cast a spell on his knife and approached her…but he went into a complete panic as Tenzan hacked his Lord down!

Nicodemus, in a sad rage, confronted the assassins and asked them why they had come and what they wanted! Jonathan pressed further about the attacks on Wickhampton, but Nicodemus held firm, until Christina said that Wickhampton’s cemetery had been raided several times over the last six months!

Nicodemus was stunned by this…by the realization that his Lady’s grave may not have been particularly targeted…and that all this death and devastation may have been for the wrong reasons. He begged the Winthorpe party to find the fiends responsible and make them pay! He offered what he could of the Lord’s coffers, and even offered to release Conners to them for satisfaction!

The Winthorpe party headed back to Wickhampton to do what they could to resolve this horror.

Having dinner at the inn, they overhead the gravediggers talking about their evening duties and refusing to head back to the cemetery, deciding a Necromancer to be at fault for the grave robbings. Jonathan confronted them, and ultimately agreed to accompany them to the cemetery!

Heading to the cemetery, the party saw four men digging away, and the gravediggers ran off in fear! The party, not a single one skilled in Stealth, managed to sneak RIGHT up on the grave robbers!

Roger decided to try to cow them into submission, but as horrific a crime as graverobbing is, the grave robbers decided “fight” was the better choice.

They were dismantled in seconds.

Jonathan seemed pleased with the results, thinking it to be satisfactory.

Roger educated his young charge that grave robbers were interchangeable minions…symptoms, not the disease. Roger, shoving his finger into the wound of one of the surviving grave robbers, made him talk quickly and give up the name of Dr. John Hapgood.

Heading to the Inn, the party found out Hapgood is a pillar of the community and a wonderful guy whose wife was horribly killed in an accident a year back, crushed under a horse cart. Jonathan decided he should be confronted about these horrendous acts. The townsfolk tried to argue, but Roger and Tenzan ended that.

The party headed to Hapgood’s home on the Moors, and Jonathan picked the lock to get inside. Stepping inside, they were greeted by the insane sight of Dr. Hapgood, cackling gleefully about “saving” his wife and conquering death! Then the putrid arm of his wife snatched him back into a back room! A struggle ensued, and he went silent!

Jonathan pondered just burning the house down, when The Monster emerged! Tenzan was captivated by the horrific beauty of The Monster, and clearly thrown off as it approached. He did join Christina and Roger in battling it, while Jonathan moved about the rear, enhancing their fighting abilities, weapons and strength. The Monster flew into a rage and attacked everyone as they moved in, while shrugging off their strongest blows. A huge backhand from The Monster sent Roger spiraling to the ground, and this set Christina into a Righteous Fury!

Seeing the only thing she’s had resembling a parent in years crumple to the ground made her erupt in anger and she pounced on The Monster, driving her rapier through its skull! As The Monster fell, she stabbed it in the heart again and again until Tenzan roughly pulled her away…she didn’t stop trying to kill The Monster until she saw Roger standing before her, mostly intact…at which point she turned away so no one could see her cry.

Jonathan moved into that back room and found a book: “On the Subject of Life and How to Awaken it After Death”. Throughout the house he found notes and journals about the Hapgoods…how Martha had been crushed and how he kept her body preserved…how he failed to find help…until he bought that book from a scholar named Conners.

Returning to Wyndham Keep and providing evidence to Nicodemus about Hapgood’s responsibility for the grave robbings as well as Conners’ involvement, the party went to the dungeon to find out just what Conners meant by selling the book.

Conners tried to say the book was a fake, full of lies…but his old friend Roger saw through it. Roger told him he broke a sacred trust by putting something so dangerous into the hands of one so unstable, and Conners tried to say something about Rogers past, but was cut off. Roger finally turned his back on his old friend, telling Nicodemus to let him rot.

Nicodemus, for his part, offered the party 200 lbs (of which they only took 20) and his best wishes on their journey, planning to head to Wickhampton to try to mend the damage.

The people of Wickhampton, for their part, gave the Winthorpe party the carriage to use in their travels.

And Jonathan Winthorpe kept in his bag the devilish manual with the power to raise the dead…

Notes: This was a Savage tale called The Dark Side of Love with a large framing sequence added by me that expanded the depth of the tale by a few layers. I set up Wyndham and Nicodemus as an inversion of sorts to Theoden and Grima Wormtongue from Lord of the Rings…in this case the Lord was actually crazy while the adviser was just blindly loyal and trying to keep things together.

Plus, I added the layer of the lost friend that they were seeking being the one ultimately responsible for it all: The death of Dr. Hapgood, the villagers killed by Wyndham’s men and ultimately the death of Wyndham himself. A hint was dropped here as to the secret past of Roger Therrien, and there’s a good chance that Conners will return. Roger and Conners kinda remind me a bit of Rupert Giles and Ethan Rayne from “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”.

Once more, Christina gets the Righteous Rage in the Boss Fight…good timing. My friend Tommy is really liking playing Jonathan as a support guy while his extras (and Wild Card sister) do all the really heavy lifting. It was a good session, and adding the extra layers really took the adventure that extra step.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

A Call to the Community - Chris Pramas & Cadaver Bone

I don't normally do two blog posts in one day, but both needed posting and I didn't want one to piggy back off the other, so here goes:

Chris Pramas of Green Ronin, who I've never had dealings with personally, but who seems to be a swell guy by all accounts, and who designed the Dragon Age pen and paper RPG which I love to ABSOLUTE PIECES, is having to undergo bone fusion surgery in his neck pretty soon, and while his insurance is going to cover MOST of it, "most" means he still owes $10,000 after the surgery. Now, he's not asking for a handout...but he did ask for a little help from his friends.

I like it when friends come together and help each other out. It's just one of those things that makes me smile. So what Chris' friends have done (and by "friends" I mean an all-star line-up of guys like John "Leverage" Rogers, Ed "Forgotten Realms" Greenwood, Steve "ICONS" Kenson, Robin "Feng Shui" Laws, John "Unknown Armies" Tynes, Matt "Brave New World" Forbeck and David "Dragon Age" Gaider to name a few) is they have agreed to write a dark fantasy anthology called Cadaver Bone (because Chris is going to have a cadaver's bone fused into his neck, see) in order to raise the $10,000 to cover the remainder of Chris' medical bills.

Like I said, puts a smile on my face. As of this writing, they are almost at $7,500 with 30 days left to go.

Let's not make Chris sweat, huh? Let's help his friends help him. Heck, if you're a Mutants & Masterminds player (I'm not) you can kick in $5 and get a PDF of a villain named Cadaver Bone if that's more your speed.

I've put my money where my mouth is, because on this day I am able to, because I respect Chris' work and because I do dearly love seeing people pull together for their friends.

I wish you the absolute best of luck with your surgery and recovery, Mr. Pramas.

World of the Dead is (Almost) Here!

Hey guys, two big pieces of news regarding World of the Dead, the sequel to War of the Dead by Daring Entertainment, which I came on board as editor of with Chapter 3! First and foremost, World of the Dead is available for preorder from RPGNow! All pre-orders receive a free copy of the World of the Dead Players Guide (a $7.99 value) available for immediate download! World of the Dead is a stand-alone sequel to the popular War of the Dead campaign. Although War of the Dead is not necessary to play, a copy of Savage Worlds from Pinnacle Entertainment Group is required. Inside this book you will find:

Five new player races
Expanded Setting Rules
New Edges
Details on living in the survivor kingdoms, plus rules for creating one of your very own
Complete rules for custom building new Living Dead
Adventure Generator
Full Plot Point Campaign and Savage Tales

Available only at
Secondly, Daring has announced a new policy for fan material for folks that want to produce material for World of the Dead after its release! While full details will be announced when World of the Dead drops, this is the gist of it:

Any fan out there will be able to submit material to Daring Entertainment for approval (basically we are watching content to keep it Savage Worlds PG-13). Once approved, we will release it with the Savage Worlds Fan logo on it as a free download for all fans to grab.

What can you submit? Simple: anything. Characters, locations, adventures, entire Plot Point Campaigns, anything at all.

What is off-limits? Again, simple: Nothing. As long as the material is within the PG-13 rating that Pinnacle Entertainment prefers for Savage Worlds (and Daring Entertainment prefers for all its products) you're good to go. In other words, the World of the Dead Plot Point Campaign ends a phase for the setting, and leaves a ton of areas wide open, subplots open for the GM to resolve however he/she wants, and a whole world to yet explore.

What happens after the PPC is up to you! And your fan-material will help guide that for everyone else!

Because of the open format, and that every game at the table is different, we can even have multiple fan-material submissions for the same topic. In other words, if two fans submit material on the Unified Town of Beacon and the hinted at upcoming Civil War within the towns, and both take that idea in different directions, both will still be released. Which one GMs choose to use in play, or maybe even combine elements of the two for a third option at the table, is up to them. It's all about options and fun.

Stay tuned for more.

DISCLAIMER: The links provided in this blog post contain affiliate links for RPGNow. Any purchases made through those affiliate links will provide me with store credit at RPGNow, which is generally used to purchase more RPG material, usually for review on this blog.