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Jeff's Gameblog
Thursday, 11 March 2004
Other BattleTech stuff I've been thinking about
I have in mind a couple of no-Mech scenarios. First off would be a scenario set against the Capellan-Supremacy War, a conflict in BattleTech "pre-history" (before the invention of the battlemech). The second one would be a battle based upon the old TSR minigame Revolt on Antares. The troop types in Revolt (laser tank, hover craft, jump troops, power armor) match up wll with BattleTech coneventional forces. To do that one I'd need a more recent rulset, since my BattleTech Manual does not contain any power armor rules.

In my Starmada posts I already mentioned my Aeromada project, converting the original Aerotech over to Starmada rules to do some dogfighting.

As with most every other BT fan out there, I want to webpublish some mech designs. Unlike most BT fans, all my designs are meant to be historical derivatives of existing mechs. For example, I want to stat out the prototype Blackjack that moved 5/8/0 and had flamers instead of ACs.

Posted by jrients at 11:41 AM CST
A grab-bag of BattleTech scenario ideas
Reservoir Raid pt 2: Winners from scenario 1 relieve the rest of their company. This could be a tricky one to balance.

Star League Cache: A CityTech fight over control of a recently discovered Star league era site.

The Last Resistance: General Kerensky's command lance puts down the last Amaris mechs between him and the Usurper.

Fall of Redjak: This one would be 2 lances on 2 lances. A hypothetical Steiner/Kurita punitive expedition to Butte Hold. Includes at least one or two vehicles on the Redjak Ryan side.

Triple Whammy: A three-way skirmish (see the TRO 3025 entry for the BattleMaster for a historical backdrop)

End of an Era: Documenting the destruction of the last of the old Exterminators.

Against the Wolf: Basically an excuse for one side to use mechs exclusive to Wolf's Dragoons.

The Recon Hustle: Two half-lances of recon mechs meet in a forest clearing. Using special simultaneous move rules.

Posted by jrients at 10:59 AM CST

Well, after all the fuss, only a couple of people are commenting on my BattleTech scenario. I find it interesting that more people got into it over at RPG.net. Maybe RPG.net has a lot more users.

Posted by jrients at 10:38 AM CST

Last night was the first get-together of Dave Hoover's new campaign. The players are my good buddy Pat, his cow-orker Loren, a fella named Joe, and me. The system is Shane Henley's Savage Worlds. Dave pitched two different campaign summaries to us. The first was a near future cyberpunkesque game that I thought looked very compelling, especially since I hadn't really done near future sci-fi before. The second was yet another fantasy game. Guess which one the group chose? To be fair, this particular fantasy game has neither orcs nor elves, but come on people, I signed on for Hoover's game because I wanted something different. Still, I want to see what Dave can do as a GM, so I've decided to do my best to make a positive contribution to the game.

So we hashed out some campaign world details and then made characters. The build system for Savage Worlds was very nearly transparent, with only a couple 2:1 buy ratios. My character is Rondoo the Learner, a monastery-educated young man out in the real world for the first time. I'll post more on him later.

Pat found that old Space Gamer I've been wanting to borrow, the issue with Aaron Allston's review of BattleDroids (known in later editions as BattleTech) and George MacDonald's variant rules for the same. He also passed on his near-pristine copy of the old Rogue's Gallery for use on the Otus Shrine and he lent me his copy of the DDG for a cover scan (my DDG has a much more worn cover).

Early this morning I had an bit of an idea for a Sorcerer game, set in the Star Trek universe. The key idea is that Humanity represents one's ability to ignore Star Fleet regulations/political expediency and do what is right. The premise would be something like "Which is more important, upholding the high ideals of the Federation or furthering your own career?" Demons could be space vessels (all captains are sorcerers under this theory), alien sidekicks (the demon Spock bound to the sorcerer Kirk), or kickass powers (Spock as sorcerer, his vulcan powers being demons or Kirk as sorcerer, his Kirk fu and general mojo as demons).

Posted by jrients at 5:45 AM CST
Updated: Thursday, 11 March 2004 9:11 AM CST
Wednesday, 10 March 2004

Two new articles have been posted to the Forge since my last visit: Narritivism: Story Now, the third in Ron Edwards' GNS series and Ritual Discourse in Role-Playing Games, a serious academic look at RPGs as rituals. Both are heady stuff. I'll definitely need to reread both of them before I can draw any useful conclusions. Well, it looks like the link to my BattleTech scenario will be going back up on ClassicBattleTech.com shortly. Although I was initially upset by the modding decision, I'm glad everything got worked out.

Posted by jrients at 4:04 PM CST

So I chatted with my bod Pat a bit. He said Dave Hoover's new game is up in the air right now, but that Savage Worlds and Aberrant were contenders. Savage Worlds I was expecting, Dave mentioned at Winter War that it was his new system du jour. But Aberrant? Totally out of left field. Pretty much my only encounter with Aberrant has been Johnny Nexus' article The Second Worst Scenario Ever Written in the hilarious webzine Critical Miss.

Posted by jrients at 12:24 PM CST
So last night I posted a link to my BattleTech scenario over on the message boards at ClassicBattleTech.com and an overzealous mod pulled it, citing the "no unseen images" rule. Nevermind the fact that the rule provides that links to other cites are excluded from this provision. I sent him a PM pointing this out. Hopefully he will put the post back up. I'd really like to see some feedback from the CBT community.

Posted by jrients at 8:43 AM CST
Tuesday, 9 March 2004

Been home long enough to check out my recent eBay acquisitions. BattleTech Reinforcements 2 is in pretty darn good shape. The majority of the mech standups are unpunched. I did okay taking my chances with the 3050/2750 set. Plenty of mechs from the 3025 era are represented, enough that I don't think I'll need to get the original Reinforcements anytime soon. I would have liked there to have been more 2750 vehicles, but gaming in that era never really caught on. Still, I think I'll be able to get at least one decent scenario done with the material at hand. I'm kinda thinking I could do the last firefight before Kerensky kicked in the door on ol' Stephan Amaris.

I'm still going over the Starmada Compendium, but so far I'm really happy with it. The race rules are nifty for campaign play. Basically when using these rules each race/faction/whatever has a limit to the variety of technology at its disposal, buying new technologies with a pool of points. The tech sections are expanded too. New weapons and other tech toys are always fun to play with. I'm even warming up a bit to the official Starmada universe.

Posted by jrients at 9:35 PM CST

Well, I got another email from local GM Dave Hoover. Looks like he's moving forward with his plan to run a new campaign on alternating Wednesday nights. Still no word on what we're playing, but there's gonna be some sort of prelim meeting tomorrow night at the FLGS. In a surprise twist my good buddy Pat is also on the guest list!

Posted by jrients at 5:12 PM CST
Starmada, part 3 of 3
These are the slightly more oddball projects.

Red Chicken Rising is a legit sci-fi ship-to-ship game with a rather silly background. I've got the vessels of all but one of the various races coverted. I can milk this baby for at least two silly scenarios:

1) "Everyone Hates Earth" in which the Anti-Earth Coaltion decides to try and finish off those pesky earthlings once and for all.

2) "Battle for Joe's Diner" Joe's Diner is sort of the greasy, smelly Babylon 5 of the universe, a free-floating space restaraunt where lifeforms of all sorts are able to work out there differences over a couple of blue plate specials. The Robots and the Undead attack the Joe's in force. The rest of the patrons defend it.

Aeromada is a conversion of the old BattleTech aerospace fighter game Aerotech. Scaling the dropships in with the fighters has proven problematic, but I believe I can do some good fighter vs. fighter scenarios. I have statted out the smallest dropship, the Leopard. It works sorta okay. I still have a lot of fighters to convert for this one.

Totally separate from Aeromada is my work on the Capellan-Supremacy War. This is a conflict from the pre-BattleMech era between two polities that eventually were subsumed under the larger Capellan Confederation (a.k.a. House Liao). As far as I can tell, the only information available on this war is a few pages in the old House Liao sourcebook, which describes only one or two space battles, though others undoubtedly occurred.

Posted by jrients at 3:12 PM CST

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