Yes you read that right! This was supposed to be the 8th installment of the weekly series of posts based on my old Star Wars Infinities campaign. Organizing the information for these posts has been a trip down memory lane and I realized that I have materials for one additional post. So next week will be the REAL final installment, an overview of the campaign itself. But for this week we’ll venture into crunch territory, house rules!
While the first 7 posts were mostly fluff and (I hope) usable for any Star Wars game, regardless of the system, this one is specifically about the Star Wars Sage Edition RPG. Published in 2007, we quickly embraced the system and got to playing. As I often do before a campaign I submitted a survey to the player about campaign expectations, this gave way to the Infinities timeline and background you’ve read in previous posts. It also gave way to the following house rules.
Back in 2007 I did share some of these rules in the EN World forums and got some excellent feedback form members. The rules evolved, I took some of their advice, ignored other bits, and came up with the following rules…
(Various caveats: I wrote the rules back in 2007, only the core rules had come out. I had some idea of how I wanted the system to work, specifically cutting back on some of the Jedi’s power. Whether I succeeded is debatable. In the end I believe I added needless complexity and there were some easier fixes, but hindsight is 20/20! One last thing, the force talents were adapted from those posted online. I cannot find the original source for all of them; some are adapted from the Imperial Knight Prestige Class (found here), the others I cannot identify. I don’t think I wrote them from scratch, but I am not sure.)
These are the house rules as I presented to my players back them. So let’s take a trip down memory lane to 2007!
Understand, all the planning for this campaign began in 2007. While Social Media existed, not all my players were avid users. One didn’t even have internet access at home. So when I decided to begin teasing about the campaign my best bet were text messages. This was not even MMS, no smart phones in the group. This was only text, and short messages at that…
These messages began simply as a distraction, a way to get all the ideas about the Star Wars game out of my head and give the players an idea of the campaign. I sent the first few while waiting in line at the bank. The response was immediate and I realized these messages could serve another purpose. Through them I could send teasers about the happenings in the galaxy and possible plotlines. Likewise the players took an active role and began interacting with the storyline, one quickly integrating e-mail for longer responses.
Here I have collected and edited all postings sent via text message or e-mail and ordered them into a semi-logical sequence. They give a glimpse at what had been happening in the Galaxy before the game started, hinted at things to come, and even introduce some characters they met during the game. A very special thanks to Sammy, Piwie and José, they are not currently playing with us regularly, I hope to have them at my games again in the future.
So without further ado, this week’s installment:
When Gygax Magazine was announced I was thrilled. Although I am not a big super of the OSR movement (more on this later!), I understand its appeal and there are instances where I enjoy it. Also if you’ve read my past reviews of Kobold Quarterly you’ll know I’m a fan. I always compared it to the old print Dragon Magazine. It was to me the spiritual inheritor of said publication. So what about this magazine that was clearly setting itself up to be the direct descendant of Dragon, from font, to art to content? Would it work?
When the release came out I was REALLY disappointed… I wanted to participate of the fun and get the magazine, but alas there was no electronic version when it came out. That, to me, was a head scratcher; in this day and age to ONLY go with print at launch was a miss. I understand the nostalgia, which was confirmed upon reading the editorial, but that was not communicated effectively beforehand.
In their defense they cleared up questions really quickly, communicated effectively and assured us there would be a digital copy soon. And there was, but no having the digital copy right there and there took the wind off my sails a little bit. Despite the excitement in the RPG community I was a little disappointed by everything I saw about the magazine. It looked TOO MUCH like Dragon magazine; I feared it might not be a tribute and become merely an aping of glories past.
Bruce Heard is a name I will forever associate with classic D&D content, but for the uninitiated I have just one word, Mystara! Of course it wasn’t always called Mystara, once upon a time it was just the Known World, the starting setting and the greater world hinted at in the Dungeons & Dragons boxed sets with which I learned how to role-play.
That world came alive for me with the Gazetteer series. I remember when I got my hands on the first one, The Grand Duchy of Karameikos. It showed me what a D&D setting could be, it was at once familiar and surprising. I learned the word gazetteer that day. Of course the book that really blew my socks of was the Principalities of Glantri, the land rules by magicians cemented what this world was like in my mind and made me a long life fan. Back then I didn’t really know much about who wrote what but I remember looking at the cover and wondering just who this guy Bruce Heard was…
Imagine my surprise when I got to talk to him online not too long ago! After all these years I actually was exchanging messages with someone who was instrumental in my formation as a role-player and game master. Isn’t social media grand! Of course one of the first things I did was pester him about and interview and he was so kind as to answer the long list of questions I sent him. So now without further ado, here is my interview with Mr. Bruce Heard…
Yesterday Google started to roll out a new feature for Google+ called Communities. Communities are basically what groups are in other social networks like Facebook or Ning. I thought it could be nice to have a community for pen & paper RPG bloggers, so I created one. If you are interested in sharing your thoughts with other RPG bloggers, why don’t you join us?
Apropos RPG blogging. Last year I posted a series about my tips on how to start RPG blogging that I want to share with you again.
By the way, if you have more tips & tricks for RPG bloggers, why don’t you share them in our new community on Google+?
This past weekend I began tweeting a couple of reflections on RPG gaming on my Twitter account. I tweeted them with the hashtag #GMwisdom. Mind you these are not all original thoughts, maybe I put them in a different way, but most of these ideas have been gathered after years of gaming, from advice in books, other GMs, and my experiences at the table over the last 25 years. If by some unforeseen reason you’ve been following me on Twitter for a while you might wonder what got me so philosophical. It’s a combination of thinking about games from a research point of view, born out of my research in education for my class work; and some situations in my regular gaming group. What can I say, you never stop growing and learning! A couple of people seemed to like, and agree with some of the ideas, so I thought it would be useful to compile them here in the blog to share with a larger audience and hopefully generate some discussion.
While I branded them with the hashtag #GMwisdom I think of them as general advice on gaming, applicable to both players and GMs. Musing about games in 140 characters can be hard, and it forced me to be succinct with my ideas. To me this is an advantage so the tweets are reproduced in their original length (with a couple of typos corrected, hey it’s not easy typing in a phone with my fingers, and with a little editing to try and make them more gender inclusive). I believe they speak for themselves. Hope you like them… More
I’ve been fortunate enough to be contributing for this blog for two and a half years now… How time flies! Through this time I have made many new friends, had the opportunity to interact with other fans and authors, but most of all I have been really lucky to know this guy sometimes called Stargazer after discovering his blog while searching for material about Savage Worlds. I was fortunate enough to be here when Michael invited other writers to contribute to the blog. So as a contributor I became a roadie to this show he’s been running, a roadie to the rock star himself, the STARGAZER!
Stargazer’s Worlds had its anniversary a couple of days ago and I thought it would be fitting that for the 4year anniversary I’d turn the tables on the our fearless leader and interview the guy responsible for the blog and giving us contributors a forum to talk about our passion, role-playing games.
Sunglar: Hello Michael, why don’t you begin by telling us a little bit about you? Who are you? Who is the man doing the stargazing?
Michael: Who am I? Good question. My usual response is that I’m a 37 year old German guy who loves roleplaying games, gaming in general, has an interest in astronomy, science in general and who enjoys writing about his hobby.
Sunglar: I think you have talked about this before on the blog, but just in case there are any new readers, how did you get into gaming?