Time for another little find at the local big box home improvement place (Lowe’s). Normally, I check out the lumber and trim section for stuff to use for gaming but I found these little bits in the hardware section. They’ve got an aisle of various nuts, bolts, and other hardware pieces sorted out in drawers and one little section is wooden bits.
I like to use wood because it’s a good combination of weight, durability, and price. It’s easy to paint and with some tools you probably should have around the house, you can some modifications.
I grabbed a pack each of six 1-inch blocks and a dozen 1-inch disks. The blocks can be used for just about anything. I was going to use the disks to rebase some Mageknight mini’s but I thought I can do some other stuff to like I did with wooden plugs like tokens for camp fires, magic circles, or pits. Later on, I realized I could also do some customized tokens for Bennies, Fate Points, or whatever game type currency or points that I needed.
There’s more than just these shapes. There’s barrels (although a little big for scale), flower pot shaped pieces, pawns, and a few others. Each of the packs that I grabbed were under $2. Not bad.
Yes, White Star is awesome and it just came it out. But there’s already some pretty hand stuff that came out before White Star that you can use with it. Now this is based on my own tastes and I may not mention something. Also, this is stuff I already have so your mileage may vary.
For adventures there’s Dungeon from a Distant Star, and for X-Plorers Cleopatra Station. Speaking of X-Plorers grab it up and you could easily get some mileage out of the Alien and Robot Design.
There’s some handy class stuff in Strange Magic. Most are for fantasy campaigns but the Reverend Sisterhood is take on the Bene Gesserit from Dune.
For just charts, miscellaneous inspiration, and what not:
Bandits & Battle Cruisers has a ton of charts and monsters that’d be easy to convert/tweak.
Starship from Hell: A system agnostic book for generating ships, their crews, and plot hooks.
Frontier Explorer and Star Fronitersman while these are both for Star Frontiers there’s plenty of adventure seeds you can grab to get you going.
Galileo Games has some freebie adventures for Bulldogs! (FATE). An easy bit to convert and more adventure ideas.
Machinations of the Space Princess has some more handy charts and some inspiration. There’s a starship critical hit chart that would work well with White Star and some easy planet charts. There’s a few of bits you can mine for inspiration or house rules.
Vornheim Yes, I know it’s designed for fantasy games but there’s just so much inspiration and useful tools in this little book it’s not even funny. Just a adjustment on tone and there you go. Or you can just over to Mike Evan’s blog and grab up his Firefly/Vornheim hack.
And finally and by no means the least. For inspiration for a setting or more alien races. Get Strange Stars. I mean grab it now right now. Chances are you’ve heard good things about this. Well, they’re true. So if you haven’t gotten it already then grab it up.
The first volume is done and up on Drivethrurpg. You cangrab it right here.
Guess I can this to may resume. And yes I’m working on a second volume. It’ll be monsters, aliens and such. This one will take a little more time. Thanks to everyone for their support and inspiration.
More good stuff is on the way.
Remember back on Swords & Wizardry Appreciation Day and I said I was going to do a little Swords & Wizardry inspired space opera game?
Well, I really don’t have to do a whole game any more. I plan on rehashing those classes and just plain cutting some out that aren’t needed. The hard work has been done by James Spahn with White Star. So I’m rewriting and editing huge batches of stuff. Wish me luck.
It’s May the Fourth and the big OSR darling is White Star by Barrel Rider Games. Here is in a nutshell, based around Swords & Wizardry White Box which is based on the original three little brown books of the original edition of the world’s most popular RPG. White Star is a pulp scifi take on those rules.
If you’ve followed my blogging over the years, you’d know that I’ve had a very long love-hate relationship with science fiction RPG’s. Some get too tied to a setting. Some are over complicated, especially when it comes to starship combat. And some just it was just a combination of things that just didn’t do it for me. White Star seems to be hitting all the notes in my little grognard mind.
As far as setting goes, there isn’t really an official one yet. Let’s face it D&D was massively influenced by Tolkien but you could take your game to whatever weird direction you wanted. White Star is massively influenced by Star Wars but (like some games out there) it’s not Star Wars with serial numbers filed off. Star Wars would fall into White Star’s Appendix N (if it had one). But I can see the inspirations from lots of other sources. It comes together as both a tool kit and a blank canvas to play with. That’s a big plus. That’s what I want in scifi game.
The rules are dead simple. Heck, just follow that link above to the Swords & Wizardry White Box rules. Read them thru. It’s simple. It’s old school. There’s not a lot there as far as moving mechanical crunch. There’s just simple, easy, and tweakable rules. That’s another great thing about this game and the OSR in general. There’s so much great stuff out there and it’s all mostly compatible and convertible. Start with the basics and gather in what you like to make the exact game you want.
Starship combat is usually the big fail in so many SciFi RPG’s. It’s either so abstract that it practically doesn’t matter or so detailed that it’s like a whole new game and usually that game is a war game. I think the starship combat hits that sweet spot of detail and abstractness. And it plays pretty much exactly like character combat.
Let me talk about classes a little here. Simple and to the point. You’ve got Aristocrat, Mercenary, Pilot, and Star Knight. Then there’s the sort of racial classes, Alien Brute, Alien Mystic, and Robot. There isn’t an alien generation system as some games. But heck. Import one. Or just takes some the foes from the back of the book and let them be characters. It’s not that difficult. Plus heck kids, it’s only been out a day. More stuff will be on the way.
So over all. This is OSR SciFi sweetheart. It’s got the basics covered and whatever else I want I can just bring in or make. And if you want to know more. Check out the Google Plus Community.