Archive for the ‘Role playing’ Category

h1

Onward and upward

September 1, 2010

We’ve set up a yahoo group to do some private playtesting of Anubis games, but in the not too distant future a genuine web site will be set up to replace this blog, complete with a public forum for discussion and feedback.

It has been a long time coming, but it looks as though the quiet unseen gardening work over the years is starting to come into fruit.

Most, if not all of the material here will be migrated on to the new site, but this is just the beginning. Anubis Studios is poised to produce a series of professional games and game supplements, harnessing the creative forces of Greg Hallam, Alan Harrison and Andrew Boswell. This will be combined with the goodwill and solid support given by Nic Robson at Eureka Miniatures.

Thanks to everyone who has visited this site over the years. I hope that you will stick around with us as we transition into the new model, and I hope that we can provide you with some innovative and fun games in return.

Andrew

Advertisements
h1

The end of Star Wars Collectable Miniatures Game

August 17, 2010

It’s not new news, but it does beg the question what is to happen to this francise. The game was no great shakes, the miniatures had patchy quality. But it is a popular genre.

“Wizards of the Coast Director of Marketing Greg Yahn announced on the WotC forums that the company was not renewing its Star Wars license and that it would end this summer, attributing the decision to “the economic downturn.

 “We know this news is disappointing, we wanted to make this announcement as soon as possible and thank you for being such great fans,” Yahn said.  “It’s been a fantastic ride with the Star Wars community and working with Lucasfilm.”

The license to release new products ends in May, with WotC product available through August.

h1

The Scarlet Pimpernel – a perfect subject for Eureka’s Revolutionary era figures and Ganesha’s Song of Drums and Shakos

May 18, 2010

“They seek him here,
they seek him there,
those Frenchies seek him everywhere.
Is he in heaven or is he in hell?
That damned elusive Pimpernel.”

The above passage contains some of the most famous lines of verse in English literature and is found in the classic novel, The Scarlet Pimpernel, by Baroness Emma Orczy.

Who was this lterary character who has captured the imagination of generations of readers, has spawned movies and popular TV series, and even provided the inspiration for a hit Broadway musical?

The Pimpernel’s character has his setting in the the streets of Paris, which are awash in blood as Robespierre and his henchmen send hundreds of French aristocrats to the guillotine. Against this backdrop one unknown Englishman and his brave band of followers leave their genteel lives behind to spirit the French royals to safety in England.

The question that France’s new leaders demand to know is: who is the Scarlet Pimpernel? The question the reader asks is: why does Sir Percy risk life and honor for a land not his own?

Whatever the motivation, the story of the Pimpernel and his gallant crew as they outwit the Committee of Public Safety and its agent Chauvelin again and again, is absorbing reading.

Aristocrats, clergy, shopgirls, even the Dauphin himself – no one is beyond the Pimpernel’s aid.

So who was he, this dashing character?

The Scarlet Pimpernel is one of the most famous heroic characters in popular fiction of the past century. Because the adventures of the Pimpernel were set in immediate post-revolutionary France, people these days tend to think the story has been around since the end of the 1700s, but the novel was first published in London in 1905. It’s all very French and very genteel English, but it was actually written by a Hungarian woman who was an aristocrat by birth, and actually became the template for a succession of Hollywood and comic-book heroes.

Baroness Emma Orczy (1865-1947), a “transplanted” Hungarian, wrote dozens of books but it is The Scarlet Pimpernel for which she is remembered.

The book tells the story of Sir Percy Blakeney, a late-Georgian British society fop who is known more for being a dandy than having an semblance to a swordsman and hero.

All is not as it seems, however, and Sir Percy leads a double life as “the Scarlet Pimpernel” -the rescuer of aristocrats and innocents during the Reign of Terror that followed the French Revolution. Sir Percy, feeling betrayed by his bride, French actress Marguerite St. Just, is pursued by his nemesis, the French Republican agent Citizen Chauvelin.

The central thrust of the Pimpernel – that of an unlikely everyman being capable of living a twin life, one of which is unbelievably heroic – has been copied time and time again since Baroness Orczy put pen to paper. How? Think about Zorro, Bruce Wayne/Batman, Clark Kent/Superman. The list goes on.

The story has been dramatised on television and on the big screen several times (most notably in 1935 with Leslie Howard, Merle Oberon and Raymond Massey). In the ’50s Marius Goring portayed what was arguably the best TV Pimpernel, after starring in a Scarlet Pimpernel radio series broadcast across the US. The 1982 TV series starring Anthony Andrews, Jane Seymour and Ian McKellen was hugely popular. The BBC made a six-part film in 1998 and 2000 starring Richard E. Grant, Elizabeth McGovern and Martin Shaw. The Scarlet Pimpernel’s more recent popularity and notoriety is a result of the Tony Award-nominated Broadway musical by Frank Wildhorn and Nan Knighton, which made its debut at New York’s Minskoff Theatre in 1997.

The Scarlet Pimpernel is forever being reinvented and will live on for new generations.

h1

Warheads – I no longer know where the hobby is going. But I like it

May 17, 2010

From the site: Warheads: Medieval Tales is a fast and fun two player tabletop game for players of all ages and abilities. Every two months we’ll release a full-colour, lavishly illustrated magazine in which you get to tell the story of Hugo of Deangard and his bitter rival Gui le Batard, as they gather followers to fight each other and go on amazing quests.Over the course of six issues the story unfolds with you in charge of the characters’ destinies and development.

Each magazine contains all the rules you need to play the battles and characters contained in it and is accompanied by two boxed sets of uniquely-styled Warheads gaming miniatures.

The rules are fast and easy to learn, and they build over the lifetime of the game, so you don’t have to learn everything before you start. Warheads: Medieval Tales blends the best of story driven role-playing and tabletop wargaming.

Some background: Medieval Tales is set in late 11th century Britain, where men were bold and sheep were nervous. The first generation of British Normans grew up in this land to inherit the manors and castles of their fathers, the original conquering knights of William’s army. We’ve set our tales around the area known as the Welsh Marches, far from the centre of power in London, and with a reputation for lawlessness and strife. This a land to which robber barons and mercenaries from the continent flocked in the wake of the conquest, seeking to grab what land and plunder they could. It’s a land of hunts and wars. populated with rival knights, Saxon and Welsh rebels and bandits, dangerous beasts, magic and miracles. Oh, and let’s not forget the dragons, witches, unicorns, trolls and numerous other beings of fable and folklore that stalk the dark woods and bowers.

It’s here: Warheads – the game

h1

Rattrap Productions and Granton City Press team Up

May 14, 2010

The heroes and villains who populate the world of Granton City Press will soon be population a new table top miniatures game.

An agreement has been reached with Rattrap Productions LLC to bring the Granton City world to the games table with the fall release of ‘While the City Sleeps: A Game of Heroic Action in Granton City’.

The cover art seen here is by Sean Kasper, colored by Gil Murillo.

“When approached about incorporating the diverse characters from Granton City Press into a table top miniatures game, I thought it was a great idea,” said Richard A. Johnson the man behind Rattrap Productions LLC. “Initially we tossed around the idea of incorporating the characters into one of our existing games but came to realize there was enough unique and interesting new character in Granton City to support a new game themselves.”

Johnson said he had been working on a new game, and it turned out to be a perfect vehicle for characters such as The Black Wolf, The Starling, Ghost Wind and Churchill: Alien Bounty Hunter.

Calvin Daniels, creator of Granton City Press said having a miniature game coming out to support the books of Granton City Press is amazing.

“I’ve played a lot of miniature games myself, so it will be a major thrill to sit down and play a game based on a world I and a number of dedicated co-writers have created over the past several months in our novels,” he said. Daniels said he had interest from other parties to work on a game, but was excited to work with Rattrap based on their half decade of experience in the miniature games sector, their dedication to pulp-era gaming, and the willingness of Richard Johnson to allow lots of input into While the City Sleeps.

The new game will be an ideal place for the soon to be released Black Wolf miniature from Zombiesmith Miniatures. Watch for more news on the miniature front in the weeks ahead. Granton City Press expects to have The Black Wolf #1: Metal Monsters of Doom out in April. Black Wolf #2, and spin-off titles Unit 13, Ghost Win and Churchill: Alien Bounty Hunter follow in the fall, with a release expected to coincide closely with Rattrap’s release of While the City Sleeps.

You can follow the game’s progress at http://www.rattrapproductions.com as well as at http://www.facebook.com/l/4d4f6;www.zombiesmith.com or
http://www.facebook.com/l/4d4f6;www.wix.com/grantoncitydesk/togc

h1

Science fantasy weapons of the 20’s and 30’s

May 6, 2008

The following is a list of imaginative weapons described in science fiction writing during or before the period of our Jurassic Reich game. These weapons must be accounted for in our rules, and modelled to follow the available descriptions.

For example, the word Laser was not coined until the 60’s. What we had in the 30’s was a ‘raygun’, and the rays had lots of different effects. Similarly, the word ‘gauss’ is a very modern one to describe projecting a bullet through electromagnetic force instead of explosive combustion. At the time it would have been called an Electric Gun – though not to be confused with the Electric Rifle, an entirely different beast designed by the heroic character of the age, Tom Swift.

This list is the starting point of our investigations into this period of technological fantasy.

Name

Author (Publication Date)

Annihilator Beam

L.F. Stone (1931 )

Atomic Bomb – very early reference

Robert Cromie (1895 )

Biological Warfare – first use of the concept in fiction

H.G. Wells (1898 )

Blast Rifle

Frank Belknap Long, Jr. (1937 )

Blaster – a deadly energy weapon.

Nictzin Dyalhis (1925 )

Concentrated Light – predicts the laser

Nat Schachner (1937 )

De-atomizing Ray – a disintegration beam

Edmund Hamilton (1928 )

Demagnitizing Ray

George Griffith (1911 )

Disintegrator

Garrett P. Serviss (1898 )

Disruptor Tube – pale beam of destruction

Nat Schachner (w. AL Zagat) (1931 )

Electric Machine Gun (Railgun) – electromagnetic acceleration

John W. Campbell (1933 )

Electric Rifle – Tom Swift’s weapon of choice

Victor Appleton (1911 )

Electrify the Rail – repel boarders!

Jules Verne (1875 )

Heat Ray – concept of the laser

H.G. Wells (1898 )

Invisibility – now you see it –

H.G. Wells (1897 )

Joystick Controls w/Remote Display

H.G. Wells (1903 )

Leyden Ball – grandfather of the taser

Jules Verne (1875 )

Needle Pipe – needle gun

Ray Cummings (1928 )

Pain-Producer

Edmund Hamilton (1928 )

Paralyzing Ray – early use

Ray Cummings (1931 )

Pencil Heat Ray – narrow beam

Ray Cummings (1931 )

Pentavalent Nitrogen – most powerful chemical explosive.

E.E. ‘Doc’ Smith (1931 )

Proton Pistol (Proton Beam) – beams of fury

Raymond Z. Gallun (1937 )

Ray Gun

John W. Campbell (1930 )

Rocket Gun

Philip Frances Nowlan (1928 )

Standish – a mean beam of energy

E.E. ‘Doc’ Smith (1934 )

War-Balloon (Navigable Aerostat)

George Griffith (1893 )

Zero-Ray

Clark Ashton Smith (1931 )

h1

JR – broad proposals on Monday

May 5, 2008

Here are some more proposals for Jurassic Reich. Please confirm or refute them point by point.

1) Space travel to the planets by rocket is commonplace and has been steadily improving since the days of Verne.

2) People can freely expect to travel to the planets of the solar system and do so with the same ease and frequency as they historically travelled on ocean liners.

3) Travel times between the planets is comparable to oceanic travel. So we are talking hours to the Moon, a few days to the closest planets, and a few weeks to the outer planets. Must check for time-dilation effects here: Einstein had published by this time.

4) Only the planets known in the 1930’s exist in the game (Pluto was discovered in 1930 – this would make it a mystery world). All planets are habitable.

5) Space is filled with air, because that is what everyone at the time believed. So it is possible to ‘step out on deck’ when on a space voyage. This is problematic with regard to implied speeds because of Aerodynamics and friction effects (both of which were well understood at the time. The speed of sound was known and believed to be unbreakable. ) . This clause alone may give us a lot of trouble.

6) The Great War (1914 – 1918 ) occured for much the same reasons, and had much the same result, except that the conflict spread through the planetary colonies as well. As a result of the crushing economic effects of this war, the Great Depression has still occured, and the revolutions in Germany and Russia have still occured, all with the same effects as those of genuine history.

7) Stargates, or Himmeltors, have only very recently been discovered, offering instant travel between locations on Earth and the planets. This is a strategic enabler, shortcutting travel times and threatening to upset the balance of power. Nazi Germany, particularly, is quick to recognise the ability to lauch surprise attacks.

8.) With the recognition that ancient or mysterious artefacts are real and can directly impact the political life of mankind, the race is on to secure these artefacts, or at least to prevent them from falling into the hands of one’s ideological enemies.

9) The world of Jurassic Reich looks very much like the world that the people of the thirties dreamed of. This setting is their fantasy come true.