Holy Lands: Approved Non-core Spells

Ashley has made available a spreadsheet for everybody to maintain their spells. It can be updated by the GM or players at the following link:

Holy Lands: Approved Non-core Spells


The Three Spheres

My character Walker in The Holy Lands has started writing a book, The Three Spheres. It is a combination journal, philosophy book and sword fighting instruction manual along the lines of Miyamoto Musashi's, The Book of Five Rings.

Trying to write down all of the characters adventures is a large task, but I thought I could at least jot down a fragment or two, to try and evoke the spirit of the thing.

Walker Faces Fetwuther


Raven is a character I've been playing for a little while now in KC's campaign Oerth:

Character Sheet


Prophecy of Baeron

Cryptic words discovered by the Moonwalkers in a strange and forbidding place...

The Prophecy of Baeron


Now I can't stop...

Now that I have started posting stuff from SDCC I can't stop:

Gigantor rules.


The San-Diego Comic-Con has been going on all week. I have been not thinking about it pretty much 'cuz it sucks not to get to go, but... I just saw this and it is the first news that is too cool not to think about:

*Edit*Iron-Man sneak preview from SDCC got pulled.

I feel Tony Stark and I are marching to the same drummer. :)


Happy Birthday America!

By my calculation you are 231 years old today (that makes me feel a little less old, except that reminds me that I was around during the Bicentennial... oh... now I feel old again).

I was at this show the other day... it looked like this:

and even more patriotic rockin'.

Pretty cool somebody got videos... nice job Portland!


CSQ Timeline Update

We had another awesome session of CSQ so the timeline has been updated.


Busted into colosseum
Defeated Kurgoth Hellspawn
Busted into Courtyard of Lolth
Defeated Nightwalker
Busted into Castle Maerimydra
Defeated 4 Malebranche Devils


John Doe Returns

John Doe is coming back to town:

and he's got a new album on the way.


Some new Knitter's dates (or is that critter dates?) have been posted. A bunch of new (...old, new-old?) X-related stuff:

is starting to turn up around the Intertubes and I even saw a rumor of a new X album (last line of the 2nd link).


Brother Jeff

I literally don't remember the last time I played a cleric. Here goes nothin'... Brother Jeff:

Character Sheet


CSQ Timeline, Notes and Letters

Smitty sent out a timeline detailing what we have done in CSQ. I also unearthed an old attachment he had sent out with the letters we had found in the Underdark.

The Followers of Agat

My character Smoke is a member of a religion I concocted called The Followers of Agat.


Radley Jagger

Radley Jagger is the first D&D character that I have put on-line that I am not actively playing anymore, who knows, maybe someday...

Character Sheet


Dance Man

This one's for my mom.

She is a Fred Astaire fan and I was suddenly reminded that like everything else a bunch of his best scenes have been captured on YouTube. Enjoy Ma!



These are a Few of My Favorite Things

I love the internet. I realize that sounds ridiculous. Nonetheless it's true. There are many things that in the pre-internet days I thought had faded into obscurity for good. Now thanks to the internet if even just a few people are interested in these things they manage to hang around. This has always happened but it's a matter of degree, more information simply means it happens more and in this case more is better.

So here are a couple of the things I'm rambling about:

The Borribles
The Borribles Online

The Unofficial Thriller Webpage

Buckaroo Banzai
The Banzai Institute
Buckaroo Banzai FAQ

Of course it isn't just some impersonal internet that did this. These things persist because of cool, insightful and dedicated people who help them persist. My sincere thanks to those people.

One day I'll get to writing about this stuff in more detail.


Good Cops

I would love to see these guys play. Listening to their music takes me back to a happier time.

Back In the Saddle...

Ok I am starting to look forward to this:

Nicholas Cage is a good actor and when I read this I started to get enthused.


Earth 1168 Genesis

Character creation has gone really well and without giving anything away RP-wise you guys essentially now have:

1 Brick (Melee/Brawler)
1 Controller (Supernatural/Fire)
1 Blaster (High-Tech/Energy)

Champions isn't quite as role-oriented as D&D, so it's not like you guys have to have 1 from each role/class. It seems to inspire some folks when making up their characters though so I thought I would just throw out some info on general archetypes:
  • Fighter
    • Brick
    • Martial Artist
    • ...
  • Spellcaster
    • Blaster
    • Controller
    • ...
  • Defender
    • Buffer
    • Healer
    • ...
  • Rogue
    • Gadgeteer
    • Speedster
    • ...
This stuff is all very subjective and none of it is enforced by the game mechanics, so people shouldn't get hung up on it, your team will be just fine even if you guys come up with 5 Fighters. It's more to try and give some structure because creating your character is so unstructured in Champs.



My Character Xed died in D&D last night, the victim of a friendly-fireball. He was a really fun character to role-play and I really liked the concept, but he was never able to keep up with the rest of the party combat effectiveness-wise, so I doubt he will return.

At a party Menahir threw to raise the spirits of the people of Brindol before the impending invasion Xed gave a brief speech:

"Good people of Brindol and the environs of the Dawn Way, if the Red Hand Horde is a sea, then you are the rock on which they shall break. Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass. It is about learning to dance in the rain."




This time it's my character Mutt who gets the treatment and has his character sheet and back-story added to my on-line archive.



This new Sample Character Mirrorshade for my up-coming Champions Campaign Earth 1168 is a Blaster, plain and Simple.

He is only slightly more complex than Wrecking Ball, but he does show the use of a Multi-power and a variety of attacks with more interesting Advantages.


Updated CCCC

While I was talking to Smitty I was reminded of some stuff and updated the Champions Character Creation Cheatsheet.

He reminded me of the formulas for computing Active Cost (the cost after Advantages), Real Cost (the cost after Limitations), which are ultimately the formulas for how you compute the cost of any power.

It used to be that you lived and died by these calculations. Nobody could make a character without knowing them and they would have been one of the first things I added to the CCCC. What changed? Hero Designer. The computer program does all this stuff for you, so pretty soon you don't think about it anymore.


The Champions Character Creation Cheatsheet

Long ago I made the Champions Game Play Cheatsheet. It's pretty useful while you're playing, but the fact is that right now you guys are wrestling with Character Creation, not playing the game so I decided to try and make a similar sheet for Character Creation.

The Champions Character Creation Cheatsheet. The idea is to synthesize on one sheet the most useful information possible. I don't think it's quite as successful as the first one but if nothing else the page numbers should be useful.



Hideous is another sample character for my nascent Champions campaign. Hopefully it will help people see how you can use the rules to translate a concept into a character. Specifically Mike wanted to see something Blob-like.

Hideous is a 10ft tall, 1000kg monster. When irritated it can will itself to be even heavier and stronger. When it feels truly threatened it goes into "Unstoppable Mode" where it moves very slowly but almost nothing can turn it from it's path let alone harm it (it's almost like a cross between The Blob and Juggernaut).

First how to make it tall and big? Well the rules say Growth and Density Increase are for characters that change their height and weight (p. 126). To model characters that are always tall and heavy you are supposed to buy regular powers and characteristics. They give you some templates to help(pgs. 573, 336).

If you look at Hideous's sheet you will see that it is built on the combination of the Large (p. 575) and Heavy (p. 577) templates. Once I had that base I was free to add whatever I wanted knowing that he already satisfied the requirements of being 10ft tall and 1000kg. I gave him additional STR, CON, BODY, etc... I also gave him additional Knockback Resistance and Armor. All this just reflects that he is even tougher than your average 10ft, 1000kg monster. :)

The next part of my concept was that when Hideous gets mildly irritated it can will itself to be heavier and stronger. Since this IS a case of him temporarily changing his body it is a good fit for Density Increase. So I just bought him a few levels of DI basically until I was satisfied his STR would let him inflict some decent property damage.

The final part of my concept was Unstoppable Mode. In this mode Hideous can barely move, but he's also almost impossible to stop or harm. This was a little tricky, here's what I did:

1. I bought Damage Reduction (p. 143), the key power of Unstoppable Mode
2. I bought more KB Resistance and Linked (p. 299) it to DR

At this point he is super-tough, but how do I make him super-slow when he activates his DR?

3. I lowered his regular DEX, SPD and Running.
4. I bought DEX, SPD and Running as Powers (p. 139).
5. I labeled these powers as "Hideous Movement".

Then the final trick that ties it all together:

6. I added the Limitation Lockout (p. 301) to his DR. Lockout says whenever I activate DR other powers of my choosing will stop working. So on my sheet I indicate the powers that will stop working are the ones labeled "Hideous Movement". Now we have modeled our concept.

A few other things to keep in mind about this character. It's a villain. It would make a terrible PC. It's powers are too great and it's limitations are too extreme. I would reject this character from a player out of hand just based on the DR alone. So I detailed "how" I did it because I hope that's what you'll take away from this example, rather than "what" I did.

BTW the picture used in the character sheet is indeed Karkas another of Jack Kirby's creations.


The Baddest of Them All

Wrecking Ball is a sample character for my friends who are getting into Champions to take a look at. He is your basic "Brick", closer to Thor than Hulk in that he is strong and fast.

This character has all the basics covered. Good attack, good defense, solid movement, decent skills (your not gonna' get away with less than 20pts in non-combat skills). If you compare his character sheet against the tables in 5ER on p. 28, you'll see that he falls within all the ranges for a Standard Super-Heroic character. Based on the "OPTIONAL CHARACTER DESIGN GUIDELINES" table on p. 29 he is a "Characteristic Oriented Hero".


Champions Game Play Cheatsheet

One of the great things about Champions (and now Hero System) has always been that although there are a lot of rules the whole thing boils down to just a few very simple mechanics. The ones I consider most important to running a Champions game can all fit on a single piece of paper, The Champions Game Play Cheatsheet.

I can pretty much run any Champs game with just that piece of paper and I'm pretty confident that if I have done it recently enough I could run it without anything.


I've been playing role-playing games a long time. Since 1979 in fact (man I am old). Almost that long, since the early 80's I've been playing Champions. It's a great game that doesn't get nearly as much attention as it deserves. The underlying Hero System is very well factored and rules-wise pretty much my favorite RPG.

In the near future I hope to start up a new Champions campaign. Like all my other role-playing stuff I will post info about it here for my player's and for myself.

The first and most vital piece of info is the Hero Games website.


Norrin Loves Shalla?

I want to love all the super-hero movies that come out. I did not love the first Fantastic Four Movie. On the other hand it was not the worst movie I ever saw. So it is with genuine enthusiasm and trepidation that I anticipate the next one.

Using the Silver Surfer and Galactus is a good start. This story done right has the potential to set people back on their heels, but will it be done right?

The surfer looks good:

As does the trailer.

'Nuf said True Believers.