Friday, July 29, 2011

Amethyst Evolution - Out Now! PDF on RPGNow in Radiohead Fashion!!

How did I miss this?!  Well, real life sometimes gets in the way of the hobby and the blog.  But, now that I have caught it, it needs to be said here.  Amethyst Evolution, the second book in the Amethyst universe, has now come out!!

You may have caught a little bit of my preview article for Amethyst Evolution a little bit ago.  You will recall I was really, really excited to see that there were going to be some awesome new organizations coming around as well as some new Techan classes and a few new races.  Things are just getting better and better.  Dias Ex Machina is going to be striking again with this awesome book.

As for a little blurb of what you'll find in this book, here's a snippet from the Dias Ex Machina site which explains what you'll find in Amethyst Evolution:

Lifepaths: New lifepaths are being introduced including options for divine and evil characters.
Races: Kodiak, pagus, and tenenbri are introduced as playable races. In addition, all the old races of Foundations are reprinted and revised to match up with the developing 4 th Edition philosophy.
Classes: Get up close and personal with a new techan class, the vanguard. Older techan classes are expanded and revised with alternate class features and powers. Also included are revised Foundations classes presented with simplified abilities and fixed level features instead of encounter and/or daily powers. These classes may replace original Foundations classes in your current game if it permits these alternative classes. These do not replace the classes from Foundations ; both versions are compatible with each other and players can elect either option in a game without upsetting game balance.
Paragon Paths: New paths are available for new races as well as options for classic races and classes.
Feats: Dozens of new feats are offered, including martial arts and explosive feats.
Epic Destinies: New epic paths are now available for both echan and techan characters.
Equipment: Nuclear weapons (yes nuclear weapons) are available. Look for larger power armor and aircraft. Players can now (clumsily) wield super heavy weapons.

Sounds pretty awesome right?!  Nuclear Weapons!!!  Awesome.  That sounds sufficiently EPIC to me.  You can get the book off of RPGNow right now! and guess what?!  In very Radiohead Fashion, the publishers have decided to let you choose how much you want to pay for the book!!!!  There are two price points available for Amethyst Evolution; you can pick it up for $14.99 or $9.99 whichever you feel is the fair price to pay.  They would love to have the support I am sure, so consider popping for the extra $5 when you buy the book.  Also, the print edition of the book will be available soon.  I love my hardcover print copy.  You might want to also consider their PDF/Print bundle which is also available now.  This pack ensures that you'll be getting the print version when it comes out.  Very cool.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

What's Coming Down the Road

Well, it has been a busy couple of months and I am officially derailed from my goals for posting this year.  I hoped to be able to dedicate more time to the blog, but it just hasn't been working out as I had planned.  Family life and work have gotten in the way, but that is all changing soon!!  YAY!!  I am currently on my summer vacation, which means that I have to come to work, EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.  Wow.  The Japanese education system is pretty crazy.  No actual work to do, but I do have to sit in the chair at the desk and try to get things done.  What this basically boils down to is 8 hours of down time away from the kid and the wife and away from any usable video games... this means more time for the blog and for reading through RPG books.  Thank god!

So, now that I can sit down and think about the blog and what I need to work on, I thought it would be nice to kind of give a bit of a preview of what will be coming for my site.

One of the things I am most excited about this summer is going to be the series of game reviews that I have coming.  I talked with some of the folks down at Cubicle 7 and they were nice enough to send me several of their games to try out.  You may have heard about their big news, with the Lord of the Rings RPG coming down the line, but maybe you don't know about some of their older titles.  I'll be bringing you reviews of:

Qin the Warring States - set in semi-historical China, this French made RPG is certainly very interesting and offers another option for gamers that are interested in an oriental setting outside of Japan and games like L5R.

Victoriana - Steampunk? I'm in.  This system and this setting are pretty cool and the artwork in the book is definitely interesting.  Looking forward to giving this a review in greater detail!

Legends of Anglerre - This is one hefty tome.  It runs with the FATE system, is full of some of the coolest, nuanced artwork that I have seen in an RPG that is both comic-book and old school at the same time.  Did I mention that the book is huge?  Awesome.  Stargazer is reading through this one right now as well! What a coincidence.  Looking forward to bringing you this review soon enough.  This review will be Dump Stat only! You won't need to go anywhere else to hear my opinions on how this book works. 

But, Cubicle 7 aren't the only folks I am looking forward to reviewing products for.  I also happen to have another L5R book to review! I will be reviewing Enemies of the Empire, for L5R, brought to you by AEG.  This book is pretty awesome from an appearance point of view.  The artwork, just from a precursory glance is just as beautiful as the stuff you saw in the core book.  I LOVED the artwork in that book.  This one doesn't disappoint either.  I really can't wait to give that book a review and then make use of that in my current game...

L5R over Google+ !!

I put out a call on Google+ and on Twitter to see if anybody would be interested in trying to do a PbP style game using the circle function in an experimental kind of way.  The response was pretty immense.  7 people volunteered for the game in 24 hours.  Seven.  I can definitely see some Seven Samurai jokes being brought in here.  I can't wait to discover how this whole Google+ thing can be used to run an RPG.  I feel like it has a lot of potential, even outside of the Video Chat method.  I might even try to use that at some point, but who knows. This is going to be a very big test, we'll see if our group can pass.

So, that is just a hint at what is coming from my site.  I hope you all stay tuned to the Dump State even when we aren't putting out 2 posts a week.  Game on!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Knights of Badassdom Trailer

Considering that this month, the RPG Blog Carnival is regarding the topic of Badass RPG's, I thought I should throw this trailer up on the site.  Yes.  This is going to be very, very Badass.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Review of "Crime Pays: A Godfather's Grimoire" Up at SGW

I finally bring my spotlight on Crime Pays: A Godfather's Grimoire to a close.  My review is now up on Stargazer's World.  I hope that you all check it out.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

RPG Blogger Carnival - Bad Ass Gaming - The Most Badass Kickstarter Ever!

You all know how much a fan I am of the RPG Blogger Carnival! Right?!  Well, this month, the Carnival is being hosted by none other than Nevermet Press!! How cool is that?  I had kind of liked there original idea for the carnival this month - technology at the gaming table - but the new topic is just as... well, BADASS!!

So, I guess the big question to you is...

What the hell actually is Badass???!!!

I find the term Badass to be a bit vague.  I love the term, but everyone really has their own definition for the word and so I guess it really all boils down to personal choice.

For me, Badass is all about emotion.  There are points in a TV show or in a Movie that you can point to and say "that was Badass" as you get that little snicker on your face.  The movie 300 had a lot of "That was Badass" moments in it... hell, the whole damn movie was full of Badass moments.  It was a freaking Badass movie.

Instead of talking about the Badass RPG's I've played, today, I really want to bring to you one of the most Badass RPG's that I have never played.  In fact, I don't even know if the game is done yet, but it looks like it has some serious potential.

A friend of mine, one Mr. Highmoon, directed me to this game and I have to say it looks so BADASS!!!  I am always really happy to see all of these RPG's getting backers and getting completed.  The development of the game seems to be pretty cool.  The fan community for the game has had a huge impact on how it has come together, and it seems like they have some big plans for the Far West "franchise" going forward.  If you check out their Five Movements, they even have plans to develop a web series based off of this.  BADASS!!

One of the things that I like the most about this game is how much the artwork reflects one of my favorite little movies, "Sukiyaki Django".  That film is BADASS!!  If you haven't seen it, you need to go and check it out.

If I had my way, I think I'd be playing this game on a weekly basis.  Check it out and if you have the spare cash, back the project.  They are getting really, really close to finishing it up.  Take a peak at the website for Far West as well!

Monday, July 11, 2011

XDMC 29 - Design a Haunt!

It's that time again for the next Expert Dungeon Master's Competition! This time around we have #29


Taken from the Competition Page:

The topic for this competition is Haunt. Fear and terror are staples of the fantasy genre, but it is not easy to create a locale that can terrify the larger-than-life heroes your players control. Creating a truly terrifying location requires the work of an Expert DM! This competition asks you to create an encounter location designed to strike fear into the hearts of heroes.

Required Elements

In order to enter this competition, your entry must fulfill the following required elements:

  • Name: Name your haunt.
  • Lore: Describe what is commonly known about the haunt. The haunt's reputation must be such that even heroes may believe themselves to be in mortal danger within.
  • Lure: Describe one or more ways an adventuring party may be lured to the haunt.
  • Lair: Describe what the heroes will find in the haunt. You may, but need not, include stat blocks for any NPCs, items, terrain, or other objects or effects in the haunt.

If you do not include a required element, you will receive a score of zero in Themes. Please note that a significant portion of your score in Creativity and Themes will be based on how scary you make the haunt's reputation and/or location.

Optional Elements

Your story must include at least three of the following optional elements:

  • Can Nothing Stop It?: The haunt threatens the world outside its walls (i.e., it begins expanding uncontrollably) unless the heroes accomplish a task described in the entry.
  • The Curse is Broken!: The haunt can become a haven to the heroes, or a resident of the haunt can become a companion to the party, if a task described in the entry is completed.
  • Guys? Where Are You?: One feature of the haunt is designed to split the party.
  • It's Alive!: The haunt's interior physically changes at least twice while the heroes are within it.
  • It's Not Human!: The haunt has one or more residents, but none are of the humanoid type.
  • It All Started When...: Surpassing one or more obstacles becomes easier if the heroes learn the haunt's history, as described in the entry.
  • Looks Fine to Me: To the outside world, the haunt appears completely mundane.
  • What Have You Done?!: The haunt rewards characters who interfere with or harm one another.
  • We're Trapped!: Once inside the haunt, the characters cannot leave until accomplishing a difficult task described in the entry, and which does not require combat.
  • What's That Doing Here?: The haunt has one or more residents, but none are of the aberrant or shadow origin, or of the undead or shapechanger subtype.
  • You Startled Me!: The players are asked to roll initiative checks against something that intends their characters no harm.
  • You Were Dead... I Saw the Body!: The heroes must defeat some aspect or resident of the haunt twice or more.

Sounds like a lot of fun.  This might be a really good way for me to get back into the blog again now that my schedule has cleared up a bit.  I'll be trying to pull this off, maybe with the help of my wifey who is actually making an effort to get involved in my hobby once again.  I wish you all the best! Good luck!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Dungeons & Anime - AMV

Found this the other day when I was checking out some of the Anime Music Videos (AMV's) that came out of Anime Expo 2011.  I thought it was pretty funny.  Most people know the song, by Stephen Lynch, but the composition of that song with all these anime clips is pretty humorous.  Not surprised that it didn't win the comedy category of the competition, but it still rocks.