Open Letter to a Terrible Savage Worlds Roleplayer

Photo Credit: Tom Coates

Photo Credit: Tom Coates

Dear X,

I’m so sorry it’s come to this. It’s not you. It’s me.

My apologies if I’m being overly dramatic, but that’s kind of the point. I like running high-drama, fast-action, cinematic Savage Worlds campaigns where players really immerse themselves into their characters.

The rest of the group seems to be down with that. They’ve developed back-stories for their characters over time. Every chance they get, they’re playing their character Hindrances to the hilt (yes, even when it puts them at a disadvantage — maybe even risks their death). They’re following up on clues, making alliances with NPCs, agonizing over moral choices and generally trying to get their characters’ story arcs to proceed to their dramatic conclusions. Read the rest of this entry »


Handling Prisoners in Savage Worlds

1949 film noir “Knock on Any Door” ...item 2.. Man, 20, 'bashed boss's wife and daughter to death with cement block (27 December 2013) ...item 3.. Chet Baker - Best Of Chet Baker ...The heroes grabbed the villain and tied him to a chair in a closet. They tried to intimidate him — and then when they didn’t like his blustery response, they smashed his face in. After the rough stuff was over, the villain gave them all of the information they wanted (in truth, they easily could have got about 90 percent of the info just from talking to just about any longtime resident of the city, but whatever. Proper police questioning technique is a post for another day).

When the villain was done sharing all of the information he had, the honourable holy Paladin of our group announced that he was going to slit the helpless villain’s throat.

At this point, a reasonable outsider starts asking, “Who is the hero and who is the villain, again?” Read the rest of this entry »

Theme Song for My Upcoming Realms of Cthulhu Campaign

Cthulhu FhtagnWhat else? Gnarls Barkley, Crazy:

I remember when, I remember
I remember when I lost my mind
There was something so pleasant about that place
Even your emotions have an echo in so much space

And when you’re out there without care
Yeah, I was out of touch
But it wasn’t because I didn’t know enough
I just knew too much

Really looking forward to running my latest Savage Worlds campaign. Anyone who’s already run Realms or the original Call of Cthulhu Chaosium game, feel free to leave a comment with some tips for making the game super-creepy.

PS. Anyone who’s interested in some Halloween season two-fisted Cthulhu-tastic pulp fiction, please check out my novel, The Detective vs. the Slime Monster from Outer Space

What Do You Do with Your Old Homebrew Campaigns?

Freeport: The Buccaneers of the SkiesInglourious Basterds meets the Lord of the Rings. That pretty much sums up how my latest Savage Worlds campaign played out. Savage WW2 combat, magic, changelings and epic battles involving Nazi clones and twelve-foot tall Gray Elves — awesome stuff. I enjoyed the campaign immensely and my Players did too.

I’ve now run probably 6 or 7 or so Savage Worlds campaigns over maybe 25 sessions. I’ve got a lot of RPG stuff in various files backed up in Google Drive. I was thinking of throwing together some downloadable PDFs of them to share — but then I figured, why not make some money from them?

My next thought was — am I willing to put in the effort to make these — and market them? I don’t actually run a gaming company (though I do run a web copywriting company). I know that it’s not just about making stuff, but getting the products out to people who will buy them.


Soundtrack to a Savage WW2-Fantasy Campaign

UntitledJust finished Part 7 of what was supposed to be a 3 or 4-session Savage Worlds campaign that’s sort of a Weird Wars-Changeling WoD mashup. The number of Player Wild Cards and NPCs is getting pretty crazy. To help keep track of their various personalities and motivations, I’ve decided to give each character their own song (akin to my article a little while back, Story and Soundtrack to a Savage World of Darkness). Here goes:

Max Graff, Weird Scientist and Jewish-Czech resistance leader (Player). An analytical mind combined with some anger-management issues when it comes to Fascists. Read the rest of this entry »