Monday, December 29, 2008
I'll be having more fun stuff for you all as the weeks of 2009 go on.
And now, for your listening pleasure, the theme song to Yor the Hunter from the Future. Yeah, that's Reb Brown, m'man.
Saturday, December 20, 2008
First, one of my favorite Christmas specials: The Rankin Bass Twas the Night Before Christmas!
and just so you don't think I'm going soft, check out Ken Foree's Black Santa's Revenge.
Hopefully more before Christmas!
Sunday, December 7, 2008
One of my guilty pleasure shows that I watch when I can is Filmation’s Ghostbusters. Yes, I love The Real Ghostbusters. It is the greatest cartoon adaptation of a movie ever made. But there is a fun anything goes energy to Filmation’s version that can be fun. I go as far to say that if Filmation had named the series anything other than Ghostbusters it probably would be more highly regarded. Hell, I like both series, truth be told.
But Mike, you ask. Why did you head this post with Encounter Critical Theatre #1 when you’re talking about Ghostbusters? Good question. Filmation’s Ghostbusters did bust ghosts, just like the name said. But they also fought werewolves from the future, Aztec sorcerers, trolls, and great ghost gorillas. Great ghost gorillas that lived on another planets with gorilla robots. All this driving an intelligent jalopy that could fly and travel through time!
Now you see where I’m driving at.
The following videos are of an episode called “The Looking Glass Warrior”. In it, aliens are traveling in the dimension behind mirrors to kidnap innocent people. The Ghostbusters investigate with the help some friends. This has some great stuff to steal for EC. When I get some time, I may even stat up some stuff from the episode.
And for those old school people that like the game Lords of Creation by the legendary Tom Moldvay, this episode would so make a great adventure for that game.
On December 4, famed monster memorabilia collector and magazine maven Forrest J. Ackerman passed away.
Obituary on Yahoo News
I was born too late to bask in the glory that was Famous Monsters of Filmland in its heyday. But I recognize that trailblazing that was done by Uncle Forry, and the pure passion he held for fantasy, science fiction and horror movies. The people he inspired to make movies and write fiction in turn were the ones who inspired and entertained me. For that I will forever be grateful.
Farewell, Uncle Forry. May you be greeted warmly in that great movie theater in the sky.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
The Complex Arcana
This seed can be used in any fantasy setting that has magic. It was inspired by several sources including Metamorphosis Alpha to Omega (Amazing Engine), Spelljammer and the best sci-fi show on TV, Babylon 5.
The players find a strange archway during their journeys. Markings on the arch are strange, but seem to offer a unique experience and great power. If the PCs go through the arch, they are knocked unconscious. A gate has been activated.
When the PCs awaken they find themselves in a deserted castle room. Let them think that everything is normal until they really look out one of the massive windows. Instead of a normal landscape there is the vast emptiness of an interdimensional void.
The PCs have stumbled upon one of the greatest magical creations in the multiverse--the Complex Arcana. A cabal of sorcerers was the despotic rulers of the planet they were from. To keep an eye on their holdings (and to resist rebellions and assassinations), the wizards decided they needed a unique fortress. They took one of the moons of their world and sucked all of the life to empower the enchantment that became famous. The thirty sorcerers each built a castle built on the moon, then with one forgotten enchantment merged the castles into one mass, a complex for their rule.
The cabal ruled from its perch until it overextended its reach and called too much magic. Backlash from the sorcery ripped the Complex and some of the surrounding lands off the moon. The interaction of the cataclysm warped the permanent gates, rendering the Complex dimensionally unstable. It began to phase in and out of different realities.
A more serious side effect was the warping of the transport gates. Instead of allowing the sorcerers to go planet side it began to abduct towns, parties, and individuals. The cabal members who didn't die during the backlash were mostly killed at this time. Some, though, are rumored to have survived.
Over the centuries civilizations have flourished in the Complex. The wizards planned to be self-sufficient. Rooms were designed to hold nothing but crops. Of course, war still rears its ugly head, and there are lots of undiscovered areas just begging to be discovered.
For GMs the Complex can be a fun way to bring back old characters and creatures. For maps you can photocopy castle maps from any RPG. For races and cultures, use any of a million sourcebooks for any RPG system, other RPG races, even grimlocks from the Fiend Folio (shudder). The sorcerers design their castles by personal whim--it's a logical reason for all of your favorite implausible dungeon rooms for your players to romp around in.
Complex Adventure Seeds
Mutations Anyone?: Why should Gamma World have all of the fun? There is still a lot of weird magic still wandering around the Complex. A selection of knacks, advantages, and disadvantages can simulate a variety of mutations? Now you to can play a bat winged halfling. Used with common sense, mutations can spice up an ordinary campaign.
Rebellion on the Complex: An interesting campaign/adventure can be had if the GM decides that the Complex will stay in one place. A force made up of an uneasy alliance of kingdoms currently inhabits the Complex. Interests planetside command most of the armies on the Complex. The governments of the world are getting more and more corrupt. The armies discover some of the wizards' "toys" and proceed to plot secession from the planet below.
Alien Attack!: The squabbles and intrigues on the Complex have to be put aside when a race of ruthless aliens decide to invade the Complex and claim it for their own. It's a clash of magic and technology as the aliens can field quite an array of deadly hardware. The denizens of the Complex might discover that one of the sorcerers had prepared for such an occasion with a fine array of magic-powered conveyances to battle the invaders. Imagine Golem Powered Mecha vs. Tripods and you get the idea.
Guardians of the Complex: A member of the cabal was obsessed with the creation of what he called "the perfect army". He dabbled with obscure magics to imbue weapons, objects, armor, and people with amazing powers. Denizens of the Complex sometimes find one of his catalysts and are gifted with bizarre powers. You can have fun with this one. Pixies with the strength of 20 men. Flame breathing minotaurs. High Elves with orange rocky skin. Heroes can find plenty of evil to fight in the Complex. Supervillains can unearth weird magic to fight the archenemies with.
The Sorcerors Awaken: Rumors and legends have always been told that the builders of the Complex would return. Some of them have as liches--powerful undead wizards. The forces that now hold power would rather that such beings not be allowed to succeed. The goal of this seed is stopping the liches from destroying the Complex with a minimum of damage.
The Great Complex Adventure: A man who wants to hire them for an expedition approaches the players. Even if they refuse, they are teleported to a strange room with a giant crystal in the center. The crystal is Synthesis, who claims to be the consciousness of the Complex. The players are chosen to be his guides in his quest to physically tour the Complex Arcane. This is a journey throughout the castles. You can really have some nasty fun with this one.
The more I think about this one the more I think it would rock using a Labyrinth Lord/Mutant Future crossover or even a Mazes & Minotaurs variant to run it. now that I think of it Encounter Critical would rock for this too.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Rays that came from jewels embedded in her fangs.
Now, with the majesty that is YouTube, I can prove that there was a Voodoo Vampire.
In your face!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Quick note: Cartoon Action Hour Season 2 is now available at RPGNow and Drivethru RPG. I say order it up for good retro-toon fun!
Yesterday was my birthday but you get the presents!
One of my favorite movies, Fulci's The Beyond!
The amazing Ator l'invincibile 2 (aka The Blade Master)!
and a compilation of great 70's Horror Movies Trailers!
See ya soon!
Sunday, November 16, 2008
I created a character for the new rules. The CAH S2 book comes with three ready-made cartoon series: Transbots (Transformers), Strikeforce Freedom (G.I. Joe), and the setting I chose, Warriors of the Cosmos (He-Man and the Masters of the Universe). The CAH S2 Playset here gives you a brief background of the setting. So without further ado I give you:
“Loyal Lizard Centaur Detective of Shadestar”
Quick Bio: Traloc is a member of a race of lizard centaurs known as the Xoanon. They are refugees from another dimension that settled in Iconia a century ago. The Xoanon live in small communities scattered throughout Iconia. They are usually a reclusive people, but several of the Xoanon have entered the service of the kingdoms in which they reside. They cannot be changed into goop zombies, so Nekrottus usually imprisons them or forces them to work in one of his pet projects.
Traloc’s family lived in the Kingdom of Shadestar, in a small village near the royal lands. He grew up an inquisitive child, and became renowned for his prowess at solving puzzles. As he grew older, Traloc left his village and entered the Shadestar Guard. He soon became the personal detective for the new queen, a young woman named Noblara.
When Nekrottus attacked Shadestar, Traloc helped fight, but was captured by the Blackskull Empire. He was among those sent to the Castle Suspended, a prison run by the disgraced former Shadestar Guard Captain Rezlor. A raid by the Guardians of Iconia freed Traloc and his fellow prisoners. With Noblara’s support, he offered his services to King Rastor and the people of Haven. Today Traloc uses both his brains and his brawn to fight for the freedom of Iconia.
Appearance: Traloc is a Xoanon of average height (five feet tall) and length (four feet long). His upper torso is humanoid, and his lower body is similar to a small rhino with a long tail at the end. Traloc’s scales are green, with shades of gray here and there. His face is lizard like with no nose and eyes that seem to notice everything. When at official functions he wears a blue sash with his family sigils and symbols of his deeds. He always carries a mace given to him by his father when he became a member of the Shadestar Guard.
Factoids: “Former member of the Shadestar Guard” ”Uses both brains and strength to solve cases” ”Cannot be bought” ”One of the few Xoanon who leave their villages” ”Loyal to Noblara”
Subplots: Archenemy (Captain Rezlor), Vow (To help free his people)
Traits: Xoanon Mace 4 [Enhancer +2, Accessory], Tail Slap 3 [Enhancer +2], Trample 5 [Enhancer +3, Disadvantage (Must make a running start)], Scaly Skin 2, Shadestar Guard Detective 4, Xoanon Lore 1, Stamina 3, Brawling 3, Strong 3, Inconvenient Size 2X.
Oomph 2, Threshold 10, Battle Rating 5
Okay, you got me. Traloc is a Zoat. I just had to do that. Once you have a general idea of what you want, character creation is pretty easy. It does have some of the same daunting nature of a “make your own trait” system. It emulates the chosen genre well, and that is always a plus.
Friday, November 14, 2008
*There should be a retro-clone of the venerable Ghostbusters RPG. We could call it Phantom Fighters or Ghoul Smashers or something like that. That would rock.
*As I get older, I find myself gravitating to simpler systems. I started out with Red Box D&D. GURPS 3rd Edition with always be one of my great RPG loves. But for now I love simpler systems like Risus, PDQ, and Cinematic Unisystem.
*I see the eras of gaming like the history of rap music. My friend Joe, who has been gaming for since 0eD&D, is from the Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five era. I consider myself from the RUN-DMC/Beastie Boy era of gaming. Okay. Maybe it’s just me.
*It’s a shame that there aren’t more products out for Steve Jackson’s Toon game.
*Sci-Fi Original movies may be lousy, but they would make fun RPG scenarios or miniature games.
*When I went to see Reign of Fire with my friends in the theatre years ago, my first thought was “Well, that was an okay movie”. My second thought was “Ya know, if this was made in the early 90s, Leading Edge Games would have made a board game and RPG about this movie.”
*I personally don’t take a side in the whole GNS gaming debate. I look at that whole business like the East Coast/West Coast rap war. I like artists and works on both coasts, and I don’t really want to pick a side when Biggie and Tupac start arguing about something.
*Part of me wants to use Mutant Future and Labyrinth Lord to run a version of He-Man and the Masters of the Universe vs. the Thundercats/Silverhawks/Tigersharks.
*Emmanuelle Vaugieur is hot. I know that has nothing to do with gaming. I just had to get that off my chest.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Monday, November 10, 2008
Levan and our Ladies of Sorrows (the basis for Argento's "Three Mothers" trilogy)!
Sugary Serials (80s Cartoon style webcomics)!
Interview with Paul Kirschner about Eagle Force, a G.I. Joe predecessor!
The OFFICIAL Robo Force Page: Maxx Steele (becaue I KNEW this toy existed!)
The 30-Second Bunnies Theatre! Hilarious!
Friday, November 7, 2008
CLASH OF THE HEAVENS
A superhero idea.
Mythology and the superhero genre have been going together as long as comics have been around. Many comic book companies have appearances and continuity tied to gods and devils from diverse cultures. This seed involves these mythological forces.
Metahumans are appearing at an alarming rate around the world. This would not be so unusual, except that many of them adopt identities based on mythology. Soon the new metas start banding together and call themselves the gottkinder (roughly translated "god child").
Tensions soon arise as the new metahumans begin to splinter into groups based on classic pantheons. An evangelistic preacher has begun to preach that the gottkinder are demons that are on Earth to bring about the Apocalypse. He has begun to amass weird technology and metahuman mercenaries in an attempt to end their threat.
What's going on? A recent surge of spiritual energy has awakened the meta potential of people chosen by the forgotten pantheons. This choice is usually either a distant descendant of a particular god, or a person "adopted" just because the god happens to like him or her. Most are normal people who call forth a manifestation form, a physical embodiment of his/her power. Each manifests powers and abilities based around a concept or idea.
An annoying side effect is a resurgence of old grudges and hatreds. The gods are subtly manipulating the gottkinder to reenact the past. Hera still bedevils kinder loyal to Zeus. The Celtic and Greek pantheon gottkinder have a cold war going on over the Romans brutal colonization of Britain.
Enemies exist for the gottkinder other than your average supervillains. Some religious people are amassing forces to destroy the "demons". Also, the same force that animated the gottkinder has also resurrected other, darker things as well.
The number of gottkinder can remain the same throughout the campaign, or it can grow or shrink as the GM desires. It could be just an interesting break for a campaign, or this new force can become a regular facet of the PCs world.
If the GM wants to design gottkinder, the base character should be built as an alter ego character ala Captain Marvel. Each gottkinder has a Human form and a Kinder form that they can change to at will. Most mental skills shared between the forms.
You have the whole range of mythology to choose from. Pick a pantheon and use that as a base to for the manifestation form. Weapons and magic items that never lose a charge or can be taken should be bought as powers with the necessary enhancements and limitations. The fact that it is a weapon is, of course, a special effect.
Yes, I know there are a ton of really good games out there with this very theme. At the time I wrote this there was no real good source campaign material. The Gottkinder would work with any system.
DRAC AND FRANK GO TO IOU
An adventure seed for GURPS IOU
This seed is a tribute to all those Abbott and Costello and House of ...movies of the 40s. It is intended for a Silly IOU campaign.
As the title of the adventure seed says, Dracula and the Frankenstein Monster come to that bastion of education, Illuminati University. The reason? Very simple. The great Count Dracula has fallen in love with the Arch Dean. He will do anything to get her attention.
Being the King of the Monsters (TM), Dracula has brought over some of his friends over to wreak havoc. Yes kiddies, all of the classics are here. The Wolfman, the Phantom, the Creature of the Black Lagoon, the Fly (the cool one with the big ass fly head), Dennis Rodman...all your favorites.
The PCs can be brought into the fray in several devious ways. They could be the victim of a monster attach or scare. One of the deans could ask the players to investigate strange rumors in exchange for leniency for last session’s destruction. Or, in best movie fashion, they could stumble on to it obliviously.
What happens next is a comedy of terrors as the monsters begin to chase the students around campus. Pull out all the great gags: mistaken identities, hypnosis, shape changing, the "fool the monster for a minute" plan, etc. Whatever is planned by the GM. the monsters will stop at nothing to keep the students from telling the ArchDean about Dracula's plan.
The scenario could end with the ArchDean setting up Dracula with a succubus friend of hers. It could get really weird--the ArchDean could accept Dracula's proposal of marriage. The wedding can be an adventure in itself.
GURPS IOU is a great sourcebook. I say search it out at conventions. The setting is worth adapting to other systems.
LO, THE CREATURES AWAKEN
A Giant monsters running about seed.
This campaign/adventure seed involves giant monster akin to the Japanese kaiju films and the classic Kirby/Lee Marvel monsters from the 50s. Another inspiration for this seed was the short-lived animated series Inhumanoids. Best kiddy Lovecraft on television.
The time period is the 1950s or beyond. The world is our own, movie style. In the distant past of the world, the creators of the creatures took various dinosaurs and experimented on them. These dinosaurs formed the building blocks of the new creatures, forged in the mutating bath of the Sepulchers.
Sepulchers are structures buried deep within the Earth that hold the Shaping Pools and Holding Chambers that creates the creatures. The genetic material is placed in the shaping pool, where it sits in the Holding Chambers until the resulting creature is released by outside forces. The structures are very difficult to destroy.
An evil force releases the Sepulchers Creatures upon an unsuspecting world. Each creature is between 30-40 feet tall. Each is an unique entity with its own powers, invulnerable to conventional weaponry. Each has unique weaknesses and vulnerbilities that can result in the death of the beast. (Never make a weapon you can't neutralize.) The possesor of such an army has a formidable force at his/her command.
The players are the forces that fight against the coming Sepulcher Creatures. They can be a team of scientists and military specialists formed to fight the monsters. A group of supers with a mission to destroy the monsters is another option. In the MASS (Monster Assault Strike Squad) setting, the main characters use heavy weapons, powered armor, and hi-tech vehicles in their fight. The MASS Force battles against the evil Dr. Mysteria, deposed head of several universities and mad scientist extraordinaire.
A campaign can detail a running fight between the players and the creatures. The Attack of the Sepulcher Creatures can make a fun adventure(s). Fight alongside the world's greatest superheroes to defeat the marauding creatures.
Yes. This one begs to be ran using CAH Season 2 or your favorite superhero game.
That's all for now. See ya!
Monday, November 3, 2008
Thursday, October 30, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
The following are three races of EC that I posted on the EC Yahoo Group, and four new ones. They are slightly expanded from the original versions.
These strange looking creatures are recent arrivals to Vanth, although some explorers claim to have seen drawing of Mantopi in ancient structures deep within the Forbidden Waste. They are humanoid with gray-blue skin and the head of an octopus, complete with 6 tentacles around their beaklike mouth. Their eating habits are disgusting, but the claims of mantopi being brain eaters are scurrilous rumors at best.
Adjust stats: +1 ESP or MAG, -1 LEA, +1 INT, -1 LUC, +1 ROB.
Mantopi gain a +10% to Psi-Resist and Psychic Implant, but –20% Seduce. They tend to be Warlocks or Psi-witches.
Sleazy and scurrilous, the ratmen are famous (infamous) for their skills at thievery and other naughty tasks. They have a tendency to be untrustworthy and dirty, existing underneath the cities and towns. Some members of the race have proven themselves decent and honorable, though. These ratmen are among the most dedicated lawmen and women in Vanth. They look like humanoid rats.
Adjust stats: -1 ADA, +2 DEX, -1 ESP, -1 LEA, -1 ROB, +1 STR.
Ratmen gain a +20% to Sneak, Steal, and Consume Alien Food. Most have a strange odor that gives them a –15% to Interaction with beings that can smell them.
A canine race of rescue experts created before the Galactic Collapse. They have proven themselves time and again across Vanth by helping any race in trouble. Dalmatons are canine humanoids with white fur covered with black spots. Fun fact: Dalmatons are the only race that Darth Viraxis has never tried to conquer.
Adjust stats: +1 ADA, +1 STR, -2 MAG.
Dalmatons gain +10% to Greater Feat, Lesser Feat, and Interaction, and -10% to See the Future.
A felinoid race of warriors who wander Vanth in search of adventure and a purpose in life. All Tigarians on Vanth are the descendants of three great family ships fleeing from a tyrannical pirate lord. To say this race hates pirates on an understatement. Each Tigarian has a Signature Weapon they carry at all times.
Adjust stats: +1 DEX, +2 ADA, +1 LUC, -1 MAG, -1 ROB, -1 STR.
Tigarians have a +10 to Happenstance. They also each have a Signature Weapon with which they have a +15% for Scare percentage with that weapon. (Journey Master’s choice)
Sages are a thin, ochre-colored humanoid race that has traveled the cosmos in search of knowledge. The mighty land of Vanth is full of such mysteries. The main concentration of the Sages resides in a great monastery hidden in the Deadly South Mountains. They are well known for not giving up their information easily.
Adjust stats: -2 DEX, +2 ESP, +3 INT, -1 LEA, +2 MAG, -1 ROB, -2 STR.
Sages have +20 to Psi-Resist, +10% to See the Future, -20% to Seduce, and –10% to Lesser Feat.
They are the last and greatest experiment of the mad Botany Barons of Bethel. Plantfolk escaped to the four corners of Vanth when the Ape Sultans wiped out the Botany Barons after the Rosewood Incident. The Plantfolk have been seen in the different environments of Vanth. Many Plantfolk are close to the land, and most worship the Mother Goddess A’dra.
Adjust stats: +2 ADA, -2 LEA, +1 added to two stats and –1 to two stats. The Plantfolk are a versatile race.
The Plantfolk do not eat normal foods, but survive either by sitting in the sun or “rooting” him or herself into the soil to absorb the nutrients within.
This race only recently rediscovered on Vanth is descended from insects rather than mammalian stock. The resemble humans closely, but they have facetted eyes, attenna, and four fingers. Most insectors have an innate distrust of high technology due to incidents in their past, several involving the lost island of Koleecho. There are colonies of Insectors throughout Vanth. Several clans of Insectors are bound to giant insects that they ride.
Adjust stats: -1 ADA, +2 DEX, +2 ROB, -2 MAG.
Insectors gain a +10% to Logic, +20% to Insect (Monster) Friend, and a –20% Machine Friend.
That's it for today.
Friday, October 24, 2008
The trailer for Italian Spiderman. This is flipping hilarious!
Something a lot gorier: the trailer to Beyond the Dunwich Horror, a new Lovecraft adaptation with an exploitation vibe.
And for dessert, David Hasselhoff fighting a robot with a lightsaber.
See you next time!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Welcome to Mike's Amazing RPG Fun Pad. When I told my friends I was finally starting a blog, my friend Gene exclaimed "Way to join everybody else on the internet!” Ah well, friend Gene is right.
Why? Because I can!