Sunday, August 22, 2010

Sharn - The Cauldron - Episode 1

I've restarted my Dungeons and Dragons campaign set in Sharn. The characters are:

Kal'Torak - Risen Demon (e.g. Good Demon) Duskblade
Rexton Baxter - Human Cleric
Sequiter Cross - Swordsage

Our story resumes...

Kal Torak woke up in his crypt at night. He realized that he’d had a very limited memory of the past few days and had no memory of how he got home. He decided to Oldkeep and visit Sequiter.
As Kal progresses through Malleon’s Gate towards OldKeep, he notices statues. He inspects one and tries to move it. However, it is very heavy and he can’t move it. He goes into the hobgoblin bar. He orders an ale and asks about the statue. The bartender tells him about Gasslak (protects area because of no city guard except by the gates). Kal decides to continue on. As he gets toward border of the district he hears a “rattle” just as he leaves.
He finally arrives at Sequiter’s tenement brownstone. Sequiter does not seem to be home, so he leaves the following note
“Sequiter, came by to see you, you weren’t here. Please come by some time, Kal”
Kal continues to backtrack and he heads over to High Hope – Coldflame Keep. There, he is greeted by a young acolyte who invites him to wait until Mazin arrives as it is very early in the morning at this time (about 4 am).
Mazin finally arrives and is dismayed over the news. He believes that it is too late for the children. He asks Kal to followup on reports on slavery in the city as some of the children may be sold there. He introduces a visiting cleric named “Rexton” and suggests they team up. Mazin’s suggests that they start their investigation in the Bazaar in Dura.
When they arrive, they note that the City Guards are watching the customers, but don’t seem interested in stopping crimes as they observe a drug dealer (dreamily) operating and being ignored. Rexton looks for a Ranked City Watchman, but sees none.
Kal intimidates a drug dealer into going “Out of business” and gets information about where to go. Indenture Hall is located on “Song Way” and may have what they are looking for.
They head there and ask about acquiring a “servant” suggesting that they are looking for someone “young”.
Gast, the Half-Orc who runs the place, suggests they return that evening around midnight for “Special Merchandise”.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Obsidian Portal for Gamemasters

Just a quick post/recommendation.

If you are running ANY Roleplaying Game (any system), check out Obsidian Portal:

1. It's free
2. You can sign in using credentials from FB, Gmail, OpenId, and Many others - or make up your own login there.
3. It is system neutral - no matter what you are running it will work - it's about the story, not the mechanics.
4. It allows for GM only information that your players cannot see

I use it.
It is an online wiki that you can use to run your game and provide information to your players, including a log of all your sessions.
At the premium/paid level, a GM can provide a forum and notifications for players.
Read more about it at their site!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

How I use my tech: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow.

Have you noticed recently a change in the way you relate to your tech?

With the advent of super-smartphones (iPhone/Android) and the further increase in power of technology, I've noticed that how I enjoy my technology has been changing. Leo Laporte has chatted about this on his various podcasts, and I've noticed that it has become more pervasive in my life.

Here are some examples:

Three years ago:
  • 90% of what I watched was on Cable.
  • My phone was a pay-as-you go phone with minimal functionality.
  • Most of what I needed to do online involved me pulling out my laptop (including sending email).
  • I couldn't manage my schedule.
  • I kinda liked KGSR.
  • I had to call someone I knew for directions.

  • I don't have cable. I either watch online streaming TV or iTunes shows. I have my most powerful computer hooked up to my TV. I'm still keeping up to date on Dr. Who, Futurama, and NCIS. My PC tells me when I have new show available to consume.
  • My phone is my main entertainment platform: Audiobooks ( app), Audio and Video netcasts (Doggcatcher downloads stuff directly to my phone) , written word (Kindle/Nook apps), and more to come.
  • 90% of what I do online, I do on my phone. I usually dictate emails to my phone for sending. Keeping in touch with friends and family is TRIVIAL now.
  • I don't forget appointments nor important dates. Furthermore, I have an automated todo list to remind me to do tasks I could barely manage to keep track of (chores, exercise, and such).
  • KGSR isn't as Austiny as it used to be, so my favorite radio station (since dropping satellite radio) is a public radio 24/7 Blues station out of Chicago. Of course, my entire music library is IN my car right now.
  • I'm NEVER lost.
  • I learn something new everyday.

Realize also, that I use automated tasks on my PC to do preprocessing: I have it downloading and "speeding up" audio podcasts before sending to my phone, because didn't work well for me. sure I had to write some code to do that, but still. Furthermore, my PC downloads and keeps a local backup of my e-mail in case the cloud fails. I can log into that computer from my phone.
  • I will learn new skills by playing games.
  • I will work with my computer, not only by touching my screen, but similar to Tom Cruise in Minority Report.
  • I will be able to make my gadgets do some of my housekeeping tasks (not just housework).
  • The human race may not have a strong foothold in space yet, but we will be living "La Vida Star Trek".
  • My tech will further inspire and unleash my creativity.