The Womb Bog and The Bowl

The Womb Bog

Womb Bog

I’m having fun playing with Hex Kit.

I was futzing with the randomly generated maps, where you can put different hex-types at different elevations and see what happens and got this one with a bog right in the middle. It made me want to play a game with lizard-folk, bullywugs and maybe dragonborn. Lizard-folk vampires from the Bonegrove steal your warmth by grappling with you.

Clerics of single elements, all elements in balance or two combined.

I want a demi-god called the Froghemoth and a primordial world being put together out of the broken pieces of dead worlds (hence, elf lake). I added in rivers and lakes and named some stuff.

Fun toy.

Old World Markers

(If one isn’t enough for you, roll 2 and combine them)

  1. Dead Gods’ Rib
  2. Broken Shrine
  3. Infernal Amber (Frozen Piece of Hell)
  4. Statue’s Limb
  5. Stone Tentacle
  6. Boundary Marker designating the edge of a long-dead empire
  7. Cyclopean Cog (Broken Piece of Heaven)
  8. Golem Cemetery
  9. Dead Tree Deity
  10. Cathedral-sized heart, slowly rotting
  11. Dead Mushroom Deity
  12. Tower-sized Sword embedded in ground
  13. Blasted Wizard-God’s tower
  14. Crucified Paladin-God
  15. Crow’s cage containing the rotting Thief-God
  16. Broken Skyship Gate
  17. Crashed Capital Skyship
  18. Chains running from deep in the earth into the sky
  19. Lich-god’s crystal skull
  20. Broken siege engine meant to wage war on other-planar fortifications

The Bowl

And we’ve got the Bowl, rivers running towards the cold void at the center of a broken shard of a world, turning into frozen crystal waterfalls as their water spills into the uncaring stars.

The Bowl

Why do Sky Fortresses guard the void?

What blasted the old towers along the rim?

Who decides the path of the free-floating Sky Pyramid?

What is the relationship between the Black Monoliths and the Glyph Rocks?

Will the Mushroom Grove engulf the entire Bowl some day, as foretold?

What is the source of the river’s waters?

 

Traditions of the Swordlords: Faith and Taxes

Back in the Riverlands

It was difficult getting back into the groove. It has been so very long.

The session itself was solid. We rolled some dice, earned some personna artha and got to see each other’s faces once again – a lovely way to spend any evening.

Red Apple and Silver Bells. A book of verse for children ... Illustrated by A. B. Woodward

Lifestyle and Taxes

The last game was a long, long time ago. So the snow is thawing and it is time to think about the Lifestyle Resources roll and taxes from the various towns.

They made their ob 9 role for a ducal lifestyle with plenty of cash dice from taxes to spare. Drew brought me back to the Riverlands with descriptions of the tax montage scene; it is a good reminder that we have to link these rolls to in-game, in-world descriptions. Especially after long times away from a world, I find that I still forget that.

We talked about wax tablets and the gold vault’s walls being made of slate that the accountants use to keep tally of where various payments come from. They suspect Jiri, the pimp-knight in charge of the prostitution in the Riverlands, is holding out on them.

Red Apple and Silver Bells. A book of verse for children ... Illustrated by A. B. Woodward

River Tolls

A detail that came up was that the rivers were being used by merchants without tax nor tariff going into the High Swordlord’s coffers. Rachel circled up a Swordlord and a knight to deal with the situation. The Swordlord was Lom Godina; I had very little written about him and everyone else’s notes didn’t amount to much. I picked a picture for him from the Swordlords Pinterest page and played him with some swagger – a general who got captured early in the war and who had said the way they were fighting the Brevosi wouldn’t work but did his best to make it work until he was taken.

The knight was the warden of a debtor’s prison named Mihaly Warden; he had a pinterest pic already and was known as a humble knight, having led the debtors into the Riverlands due to a letter written by Ivo way back in the day.

Lom was all about sticking it to Mivon and making war on their soft, merchant-princes. Mihaly suggested setting their tolls at a price point that specifically would not start a war. They were sent off to do their work, to set the prices at a reasonable sum, fortifying a bridge already build on the Thorn River.

Red Apple and Silver Bells. A book of verse for children ... Illustrated by A. B. Woodward

The Priest and the The Bishop

Drew had a belief about unburdening Ivo of a book filled with the names of Drajnov’s dead that needed to be read out loud in a ritual meant to put the dead to rest. He wanted to discharge this list to the Church of 1000 Saints. It was an old summoning debt. The Sorcerer and the Swordlord called on Brother Johd, who was now a priest but in the old days of the uncivilized Riverlands he was a wanderer with faith in the Sword Saints. Now he is a priest, and apparently, a priest who had attempted to become a Bishop of the Riverlands in the recent elections but had fallen short.

Johd seemed out of place. He was comfortable in the old Riverlands, on the fringe of civilization and now civilization had come to him. The church had politics that were outside of his comfort zone. Johd was sad. I didn’t realize he was so until Ivo and Zora tracked him down.

But who was the bishop? I thought about that for a second. The older Sword-Matron had been dismissed by the High Swordlord. The priesthood wasn’t sure of its place in the Riverlands. The High Swordlord was not interested in giving them power or access to ways of making money that they had in Olde Rostland. The priests were scared and so the bishops who had been elected to serve throughout the Charterlands were the priests who had offered solutions, humble solutions.

And there was Bishop Ayub, an older priest who lost his sight late in life, a stone-carver who makes statues of the Sword Saints and sells them out of a barn. After the encounter, Drew said, “I liked your rabbi, Judd.” That was apt. I don’t think Ayub was any rabbi I’ve ever known. Maybe he was the rabbit I’d always wanted.

Ivo suggested that they give the remaining bits of taxes to the church to loan out at fair rates to the Riverlanders. And so the church became a bank.

Interesting times.

Red Apple and Silver Bells. A book of verse for children ... Illustrated by A. B. Woodward

Why the blog post?

The Burning Wheel forum is slowly closing its doors. I thought it was a good idea to start putting all of my Actual Play posts here.

 

British Library. “Red Apple and Silver Bells. A book of verse for children … Illustrated by A. B. Woodward.” British Library Flickr Collections.
LINK

Daydreaming of Vodacce

Vodacce, 7th Sea’s Quasi-Italy, was always the part of the setting that fascinated me the most – sword-and-knife-fights that go from city roof to canals to piazza and ending in a filthy alley. This is what I’m looking at while day-dreaming of treachery among the merchant princes and fate witches.

I’ve put together images from NYPL’s Digital Collection, all free to use except for the image of Mr. Borgia just below this. True to his family’s history, his use is ambiguous and dangerous.

I nypl.digitalcollections.510d47dd-c496-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99.001.w

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “A rare etching of Cesare Borgia, first born son of Alexander VI.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47dd-c496-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “The palaces.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1879 – 1880. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e3-acaf-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “The riva, No. 1” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1879 – 1880. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e3-acb8-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Morning at Venice.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47db-bf8d-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “The beggars.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1879 – 1880. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e3-ac8d-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Veduta dell’ Arco di Costantino, e dell’ Anfiteatro Flavio detto il Coloseo.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748 – 1751. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e4e3-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

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General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Infanteria de linea: [a] Alferez del regimiento de los morados viejos; [b] Sargento, del regimiento fijo de Sicilia.1718” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-99ec-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “St. Peter’s and the Vatican, Rome.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1750. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47db-a015-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Schweizer Garde”The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-95ab-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

Style: "1837212"

The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Magistrate of Florence, MCCC” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1840. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/5e66b3e8-b83c-d471-e040-e00a180654d7

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Veduta dell’esterno della gran Basilica di S. Pietro in Vaticano.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748 – 1751. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e4e9-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Veduta interna della Basilica di S. Pietro in Vaticano.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e4cf-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Colonna Antonina.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748 – 1751. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e4da-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Habit of the dutchess of Venice in 1581. Femme du doge de Venise.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1757 – 1772. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-3c8a-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Italy. Papal States, 1820” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-791e-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Roman consul” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1814. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-680c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “A nun of the antient[sic] Order of St. Augustin. Religieuse de l’ordre ancien de St. Augustin.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1757 – 1772. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-8179-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “A nun of the order of Font Ebraldi. Religeuse de l’ordre de Font Evrauld.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1757 – 1772. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-817c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Art & Architecture Collection, The New York Public Library. “A Franciscan nun. Religieuse Franciscaine.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1757 – 1772. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-817d-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “The grand piazza.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748 – 1751. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e4bd-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Two Musicians Playing the Violin and the Lute” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1538. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/d7e050f0-2efe-0133-3bef-58d385a7b928

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The Miriam and Ira D. Wallach Division of Art, Prints and Photographs: Print Collection, The New York Public Library. “Ponte magnifico.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1748 – 1751. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/639b6496-e516-e1ae-e040-e00a18061b63

 

Burning Greyhawk, Episode 2

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MP3 link

Gauntlet Patreon Link

Burning Wheel

Locien’s Spellbook

Using Art Magic from the Burning Wheel Codex

Fiery Phoenix Sword

Summons a finely balanced flaming hand and a half sword with phoenix iconography.

Sorcerous Weapon, Obstacle 3, Superior Quality

 

Locien’s Burst of Speed

Grants the caster fleetness of foot.

Advantage, Obstacle 2, +2D to Speed for a Conflict

greyhawk-castle-border

Link to previous episode’s blog post.

Art

Spencer Collection, The New York Public Library. “Front cover” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1909 – 1887. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47dc-3f90-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
British Library. “Castles and their Heroes…With Illustrations, etc” British Library Flickr. 1891. https://flic.kr/p/hWA5wk

SWN 13: Laser Rifles vs. Monoblade Spears

Screen Shot 2017-04-02 at 11.46.44 PM

That tweet kind of says it all.

They took a bit of a beating from the space marines and their monoblades turned into spears. Some of debate on how a genocidale unbraked AI got stranded on this planet and when they looked at the data they saw that it wasn’t destroyed because of a political breakdown in the AI-hunting Perimeter organizations

In the next game, they’ll figure out how to get 0r10n off-planet, past the nanite curtain made to hold unbraked AI’s on the surface.

Will they use the planetary kill-switch that will take the planet back to the stone age, destroying all tempered metal and synthetic compounds?

Will Arkady’s mentor teleport 0r10n off-planet, past the curtain?

7th Sea’s Dracula

Once upon a time a brave band of men and women built a fort on the edge of a dark, antediluvian forest. The forest was so deep and so dark that it was said that there were places no human foot had ever tread, trees that took their sustenance from their roots deep in hell’s sinful blood because the sun could not penetrate the roof.

The steadfast men and women were ordained by the church’s own  and became knights. The Order of the Star, known for fighting monsters. The villagers around the fort called it Der Stern and so their star badge was born.

knight's star

Der Stern

The knights were led by an Imperator, a devoutee of the Vaticine Church. When the church told him that the forest’s darkness had spawned its demons in the south, the Imperator marched his brethren south to the Crescent Empire.

knights head south

The knights march south.

They found no demons, only people. The church told the Imperator to take his knights to farther south, to Ifri but when they arrived – once again they found only people.

The church told the Imperator to take his knights to Cathay but his knights did not believe him and abandoned him, returning home to their own struggles, enriched and educated by their travels.

The Imperator was not enriched, nor was he educated by his travels.

The knights who had learned from the people of Ifric and the Crescent Empire and taken that wisdom and friendship back with them to Theah left the Imperator alone with a small retinue of his most zealous, most devout and most hateful.

They called themselves the Society of the Dragonists. The more the Dragonists looked at the people in the foreign lands they traversed the more hate infected their hearts, the more false demons they saw everywhere. The only demons they saw were the ones in their own hearts. They replaced their humanity with the darkness and hate they knew from the forest.

In denying people their humanity, the Imperator lost his own. Mirrors refused to carry his reflection and the sun showed disdain for him, as if he had been born on that forest floor, among the demons and the hellspawn he once hunted. The Society of Dragonists, led by their Supreme Dragon, have wandered undying, draining the world of resources like parasites for over 500 years.

Dragonist Founder

Duke Sigismund Dracula, Society of Dragonist’s Supreme Dragon

 

Strength: 10

Influence: 5

Monstrous Qualities: Nocturnal, Shadowy

When the Supreme Dragon comes to a new city, his retinue will spread out and find their prey, looking for landed folk to marry, seduce or charm. They’ll find foreigners to terrorize. Eventually, they will bring the Supreme Dragon from a ship on the bay, laying some building they own’s cellar with soil from the Walder Forest, so their lord might sleep, gestate and come to full power.

They will seek to increase their power through land-grabs and turning other folk into monsters, be it through their cursed blood or through their ugly xenophobic hate.

Imagery Thoughts

When describing vampires, I’m going to go with blood-sucking imagery. The Dragonists will be seductive and then once their hate is uncovered it will be an array of circular lamprey eel mouths, human-sized mosquito proboscises, and good ole fashioned giant bat wings.

Story of Die Kreuzritter taken from and inspired by the 7th Sea 2nd edition, page 261. The Imperator was in that story, waiting for me.

Art

General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Porta der Damasco.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-78f8-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Knights of Malta, 1048-1799” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-7901-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Johanniter.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e2-78f4-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Female Musquito — Natural Size And Magnified ; Culex Pipiens — Head Of Male.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1858. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e1-2aad-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Rare Book Division, The New York Public Library. “Petromizon marinus, The Lamprey.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1785 – 1797. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47da-6925-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “Indented Javelin Bat ; Vampire & Javelin Bat ; Trefoil Leaf Bat ; Three-Toothed Horseshoe Bat ; The Rear-Mouse Bat.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e1-34d2-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Burning Greyhawk, Episode 1

Burning Greyhawk, Episode 1

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MP3 link

Gauntlet Patreon Link

Burning Wheel

Locien Wester (played by an older John Cho)

Belief 1

I will recover the eye and hand of Vecna to resolve this cold war, reuniting The Circle of Eight and maintaining stability in Flanaess.

Belief 2

I will ensure that my archers are hired as city guards.

Belief 3

???

Locien Wester’s Character Sheet and Google Doc notes

greyhawk-castle-border

Greyhawk Resources

World of Greyhawk by Gary Gygax

The Free City of Greyhawk map

Flanaess names

Dragonsfoot Greyhawk Links

 

NPC’s

Jallarzi is played by Issa Rae.

Gazer of Hommlet is played by Felicia Pearson.

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Art

General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Buteo Cooperii, California Hawk.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1860. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47d9-5741-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
General Research Division, The New York Public Library. “Franc-archer, archer de la garde : 1460.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1910. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-4971-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
Title: “Castles and their Heroes … With illustrations, etc”
Author: HUTTON, afterwards ALEXANDER, Barbara.
Contributor: BOWERS, Georgina.
Shelfmark: “British Library HMNTS 10349.cc.17.”
Place of Publishing: London
Date of Publishing: 1891
Identifier: 001778831