Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Too Much to Blog, Too Little Time

I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Or rather, I know what’s wrong with me (I have a completely obsessive need to write-blog-comment-write-blog-comment) but I’m not sure WHY. Is it just that I haven’t had a proper creative outlet for the last couple weeks while traveling in Spain? Is it that the two week vacation rested me enough that I’m able to better access my inner inspiration? Is there just a ton of stuff to comment on, going on around the blog-o-sphere?

Who knows? I don’t, that’s for sure. Heck, maybe I just have too much to do this week (like going back to work, and unpacking, and getting ready for a number of Very Important Family Events, not to mention following up with my printer about the new print-run of the B/X Companion), and blogging is simply a way for me to procrastinate all the “responsible things” I should REALLY be working on.

C’est la vie.

Tim Brannan (he of the many blogs and Johnny Quest-like icon) has published a dandy little write-up of Count Dracula using my B/X Companion. This has touched off a whole bunch of thoughts (for me) on both the undead AND the role of the Companion in high level play. Two completely separate subjects really, and both worthy of their own posts. However, a preview question to consider:

- Does your use of undead drop off in high level D&D play? And if so, why?

Then, of course, there’s the leprechaun, which also really deserves its own post. Which would you rather have first, folks? Faeries or the walking dead? I know, I know…it’s a tough call. Probably the leprechauns will win out (I am part Irish, after all).

In political news...well, let’s just say I hope you all are voting this November and that you’re educating yourself at least a little on what’s going on, rather than just watching attack ads from either side. I’ll leave it at that for now.

In local news…Gary’s Games in Seattle is celebrating an anniversary of some sort (Tim told me how many years, but I forget) and is celebrating by having a week of events and festivities all next week. I’ve been asked to run my Thursday night Baranof game AT Gary’s rather than the bar next door (they’ve even agreed to keep the store open a little later on my behalf…nice!) as part of the celebration. Despite their lack of cold draft beer (or any alcoholic beverages), I’ve given it the “thumbs up.” AB and I might need to get our drink on BEFORE going, but I have promised to run the game more “family friendly.”

Though if recent experience is any indication, I expect a lot of the family to die.

What else, what else…so many commentators on my pistols post giving positive kudos has led me to think I need to include firearms in my B/X game. Between SpellJammer, the 1st edition DMG, Warhammer FRP, and Mordheim, I’m pretty sure I can come up with some simple/cool rules. Will there be warplock muskets A LA the skaven? Doubtful…unless I write-up skaven for B/X (and then I’d need mutation rules, and then I’d want Chaos powers, and by that time I’d be re-writing Slaves of Darkness and The Lost and the Damned for use with Labyrinth Lord…and I’ve already got plenty on my plate).

Actually, though, it’s not a TERRIBLE idea. If the Keep on the Borderlands was set in the Norsca parts of the Auld World…no, no, that is too ambitious for right now! Not to mention definitely cruising for a bruising of the lawsuit variety (that’s a lot of Games Workshop IP!).

I would love to write more about Spain…especially as relates to Strongholds and Mass Combat. As I’m sure I’ve mentioned, Spain is littered with ancient castles and fortresses, both Christian and Islamic. Both types have something in common: beefy practicality. These are not the fantasy castles of Ludwig the Mad (sorry, Bavaria), but are squat, thick strongholds that were the sites of bloody skirmishes. They are also quite a bit bigger than the dimensions given in the D&D rulebooks (towers at the Alhambra are at least the size of “keeps”…we’re talking 60’ X 60’ square plus).

Regarding mass combat, the new Army Museum at the Alcazar in Toledo had plenty to say, including the practicality of stand-up fights on the medieval battlefield (i.e. NONE). In the “Good Old Days” the object was NOT to commit ones’ troops to a toe-to-toe fight as this would generally lead to a ton of dead men…the idea was to drive the other guys off, or intimidate them into surrendering the field, so that you could claim territory with minimum loss of force.

Which makes me feel all warm and fuzzy that I made the Morale rules a major part of my mass combat system in the B/X Companion.
; )

Let’s see…even though Spain has been a major inspiration of late, Marion Zimmer Bradley has given me even more “school for thought” (maybe…Spain IS a big country, after all). However, THAT’s going to be a two or three part post that I’m currently in the process of “cleaning up.”

Oh, yeah...any my 2nd print run should be finished by next week. Keep those orders coming!

All right, that’s enough talking ‘bout talking. Time to get to work!
: )


  1. MZB? Seriously? I'm very much looking forward to seeing what comes out of that. :)

  2. Bradley's on "my list". And I don't mean my enemies list. I have not had the pleasure of reading any of Bradley's stuff.

  3. I haven't read a lot of MZB, though her stuff for Thieves' World was pretty cool. Also, I love her sword & planet novel, Hunters of the Red Moon (as should any sword-loving D&D player). ;)

  4. Thanks for the plug!

    I love MZB and I am looking forward to seeing what you do.

  5. Combine both and do something set in Estalia. ;)