#RPG #DnD5e – Grimdark – The Bard (Cunning Man)

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Art by Grace Liu

Bard (Cunning)

In a low magic setting the magical side of a bard is not something we can really incorporate, but there is a tradition of ‘cunning men’ who were associated with magic but who were, in all likelihood, conmen, tricksters and people with secret or hidden knowledge – albeit of a different sort to that found amongst artisans and guildsmen.

As such we need to reinterpret the Bard into being something more about patter, confidence tricks, diplomacy, etiquette, storytelling and, yes, music. This kind of career would be one that would be suitable for nobility, scions of noble houses and – if the setting is as sexist as the times in which it mirrors – for women.

Some things we could keep, other things we would have to change – most notably the spellcasting.

Class Features:

Hit Points: 5+Con Bonus.
Heroism: 1d8/Level

Proficiencies:
Light Armour.
Simple Weapons, One-Handed Ranged, Longswords, Rapiers, Shortswords.
Saving Throws: Dexterity/Charisma
Skills: Any three.

Tools/Equipment:
Five of the following, multiples are permitted – Fine clothes, costume, musical instrument, writing gear (pen, ink, parchment or book), jewellery worth 50 gp, rapier, longsword, dagger, pistol, hand-crossbow, 10 shots for a weapon, diplomat’s pack, entertainer’s pack, leather armour…

To read this full article, please donate $1 a month on my Patreon to get articles like this, access to me and discounts on apparel and PDFs of RPGs. You can get many of the same perks (but fewer) by following me on Minds.com and donating 1 token a month.

#RPG – Grimdark – Characters

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Art by Maxime Defoulny

So these rules are really me brainstorming how I would need to change the rules of D&D to better fit the ‘grimdark’ setting I am intending to crowdfund in the near future.

D&D is great for all sorts of games, but as a ‘general’ rules set doesn’t particularly excel at being anything other then D&D. Lamentations of the Flame Princess and other, hardcore ‘old school’ games hark back to the extreme peril of playing low-level characters in Gygaxian misery-dungeons, and often have a grind-house/grind-core heavy metal aesthetic, veering more towards horror than fantasy.

That’s great and all, but I want to do something with 5e, to appeal to people on a basis of more than nostalgia and to provide a familiar, but different, experience for people who are new to role-playing and have entered through the popularity of 5th Edition.

There’s something of a fetish for super-difficult games in computing, from Darkest Dungeon, Salt and Bloodborne to the Infamous, Dark Souls. Tabletop games are different, you can’t learn or hone the skill of the game or learn the attack patterns of the monsters, character builds can be optimised, but that tends to diminish the role-play. Difficulty, then, has to come from the sense to play tactically, carefully, swing the advantage in your favour and to deal with difficult and horrifying roleplaying and decision making.

We need to take that, lustrous, heroic edge off 5th Edition’s default rules-set to amp up the difficulty and make people play more carefully, but without turning it into a total meatgrinder.

Let’s talk about characters then…

Species

In the setting I am envisioning you would only be able to play humans. So far as the types go otherwise, there isn’t really anything much else that needs to be done. As a default the human traits – especially the variant ones – go a long way to helping compensate for bad rolls at character creation, mixing self-determination and the ‘hardcore’ nature of the ‘straight roll’ character generation – which I would foresee being the standard rules…

To read this full article, please donate $1 a month on my Patreon to get articles like this, access to me and discounts on apparel and PDFs of RPGs. You can get many of the same perks (but fewer) by following me on Minds.com and donating 1 token a month.

#RPG #TTRPG – Postmortem Studios May Update

240931The art on the left is by Brad McDevitt, who sells a ton of stock art through us. Perfect if you’re starting out making your own games or need something cool for a handout. This art isn’t only for use in RPGs, you can use it in any of your personal or professional projects, subject to the license.

First things first! If you don’t already follow me everywhere, please make sure you do! It’s the only way to ensure you get all our updates and information. You can find me on Youtube, Twitter, Gab, Minds, Instagram, Steemit, Facebook, Bookface, FookBace, GooglePlus and Bitchute. If you’re looking for new social media or blogging support, I can highly recommend Minds and Steemit. It’s well worth setting up a Bitchute account if you have a Youtube account, as it can be set to automagically back up your videos from Youtube and publish them on there. A useful safeguard in this censorious age!

You can support me by buying products at RPGNOW, Lulu.com, Amazon and TheGamecrafter, or go one better and subscribe to support me on Patreon.

MakerSupport has been having some issues of late, but those who follow and support me for $1 a month on Patreon or 1 token a month on Minds.com will get discounts, articles, exclusive access and more.

If you’ve got no money, you can still follow on all these platforms and provide support by upvoting and especially resharing content as algorithms on Facebook and Youtube are choking creators’ exposure.

I also recently added a Teespring store, where you can currently purchase two different T-shirt designs. Check it out! This will be replacing the old Cafepress store, which just can’t compete on quality or exposure.

If you’re a Gor fan, there are now communities for Gor on Facebook, Minds and Googleplus.

Personal Update

I am doing a hell of a lot better, having had my cocktail of brain drugs adjusted. Now, if I could only also get a prescription for Modafinil, I think I might become a Delphi Juicer (RIFTS). This means my output has gone up a lot – as you may have noticed – in terms of blogs, Youtube videos and, behind the scenes, work. I’m slowly getting back into routine and becoming more productive. I’m by no means ‘better’, just more capable. I have a tendency to run myself into the ground with work the moment I’m capable of it, so I’m watching for that.

Youtube and Facebook make raising awareness of product so very difficult it sometimes barely seems worth trying. Recent changes have also led to videos being suppressed on Youtube and followers and subscribers not seeing posts on Facebook, or people leaving Facebook due to privacy concerns. All social media is suffering in this way, save the Alt Tech platforms (like Minds and Gab) which have their own problems since, being free expression havens, their first ‘settlers’ have often been politically or socially unsavoury.

I think we’ve turned a corner on this socially, but the wheels of government and corporatocracy move much slower so it is now Terms of Service and regulation that we now find ourselves battling and when it comes to companies there’s a balance between the rights of the consumer and the rights of the owner that needs to be struck. The public square is in private hands and that presents all sorts of problems for our social and political institutions and our understanding of the right to free speech. The Count Dankula trial is probably the best example of how bad this can get and how important it is.

This is the environment in which I find myself working on more Gor material. Making a rod for my own back I suppose! I don’t intend to self-censor at all. We’ll see how bad things get I guess.

560I’m currently working on regular blogs and other content, trying to drive people to subscribe and support on Patreon to help push up a regular income, as well as a fantasy setting for Machinations of the Space Princess (odd, I know) and more Gorean supplements.

I massively appreciate your feedback, even if you don’t like something. So please don’t forget to rate, review, share and if you would like me on a podcast or stream to chat or be interviewed/interrogated, let me know. Questions and suggestions are always welcome any format, any where.

ZANG!

#RPG – Tales of Gor Support Groups

207667If you like Tales of Gor (the Open D6 system published by us) then feel free to join one or all of these support groups for people who play the game. I’ll be there and present to answer questions as much as I can and you can share game ideas, beasts and NPCs there between each other, along with adventure ideas and so on.

There is a group on G+ (please keep in mind that G+ frowns on explicit material) HERE.

There is a group on Facebook (please keep in mind that the above goes double for FB) HERE.

If you prefer things uncensored and unfiltered and are migrating away from the big platforms, MINDS is a new social media contender and has a free expression stance. So there’s also a group for Gor HERE.

I don’t really go in much for dividing up my fans into discrete game communities, but there is a support group for Machinations of the Space Princess too, HERE.

Hope to see some of you there, where there’s a demand I may consider opening up new groups for games later on.