Wednesday, 30 June 2010

You know you're a geek when...

...you've got about a Gig of RPG pdfs on your iPhone.


I have an iPhone, and I love it to bits. It's a little old now, and I've started to look at other devices again, but I still love it. The reason for this post isn't just to sing my apple's praise, but rather to draw attention to a particular app, in case anyone reading this has an iPhone (or iPod Touch/iPad).

The app in question is GoodReader. It's cheap (should be around 1 USD) and to my experience so far, stable. What's more, it makes transferring files from your computer to your device so simple that even I could do it. So now I've got my core library in my pocket, and I'm currently reading through Hunter: the Vigil.

You know, I often think about when I was playing Cyberpunk 2020 back in the early nineties. I still remember the sense of wonder all the awesome gadgets inspired in me. I have to say, in a lot of areas reality has outdone imagination. I'm still waiting for the Sandevistan Speedware though... Future FTW!




[Picture source 1 John and Scott's Blog; 2 Hunter: the Vigil]

Monday, 28 June 2010

Because it's Awesome!




...and because it's a slow night at the asylum.

A while ago The Official Star Wars Blog posted a few pictures of steam-punky SW-characters by the talented Mr Greg Peltz. I finally got around to looking at his blog, and DAMN! Suffice it to say he's now on my blog-roll.

But wait, there's more...


He's also done C-3P0 and Bobba Fett. I suggest you pop over and have a look for yourself.

List of Spells


This link will take you to a WoDIndex (the WoD wiki) page listing pretty much every canonical spell there is.

EDIT: This here is a handy list of basically everything you may end up wondering about in just about every nWoD game published. I'm putting it here in case I (or you) should ever need it. Keep in mind that some of the links in the first batch are broken, the second batch (the one after the edit) seems to be in order.

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Armory

Here you'll find a collection of the arms and armour worn by the people of Argos, from the humble wooden club, via crossbows, to revolving rifles. The span in sophistication is due to the recent influx of technology caused by the Ordo Ultima Thule and the Commonwealth of Man in Argonian affairs.


Ranged
Flintlock Pistol


Damage 3
Range 15/30/60
Strength 2
Clip 1
Cost ••

Flintlock Blunderbuss

Damage 5
Range 10/20/40
Strength 3
Clip 1
Cost ••

Flintlock Musket
Damage 4
Range 35/70/140
Strength 3
Clip 1
Cost ••


Flintlock Rifle

Damage 5
Range 60/120/240
Strength 3
Clip 1
Cost •••


Wheellock Pistol
Damage 3
Range 10/20/40
Strength 2
Clip 1
Cost 


Wheellock Musket

Damage 4
Range 25/50/100
Strength 3
Clip 1
Cost ••


Wheellock Rifle

Damage 5
Range 50/100/200
Strength 3
Clip 1
Cost •••


Matchlock Musket


Damage 4
Range 20/40/80
Strength 3 (w/ support)
Clip 1
Cost 


Revolving Pistol
Damage 3 AP
Range 15/30/60
Strength 2
Clip 4 to 6
Cost •••

Revolving Rifle
Damage 5 AP
Range 60/120/240
Strength 3
Clip 4 to 6
Cost ••••

Doxworthy Navy No. 5 revolver
Commonwealth of Man

Damage 5 AP
Rate of Fire: 2
Range 30/60/120
Strength 2
Clip 6
Cost ••, Non CoM characters add •

Merrit-Cartwheel Mk XIV rifle
Commonwealth of Man

Damage 6 AP
Rate of Fire: 2
Range 80/160/320
Strength 3
Clip 5
Cost •, Non CoM characters add •

Crossbow
Damage 3
Range 40/80/160
Strength 3
Cost 


Hand Crossbow 

Damage 1
Range 10/20/40
Strength 1
Cost ••


Melee
Club (wood)

Damage 2 (B)
Size 2
Cost n/a


Mace
Damage 3
Size 2
Cost ••


Knife

Damage 1
Size 1
Cost 


Dagger

Damage 2
Size 1
Cost 


Main Gauche


Damage 1
Size 2
Cost 
Special: +1 to defence vs. melee attacks.


Rapier
Damage 3
Size 2
Cost ••


Broadsword

Damage 3
Size 2
Cost ••


Longsword

Damage 4
Size 2
Cost ••


Greatsword
Damage 5
Size 3
Cost •••


Small Axe

Damage 2
Size 2
Cost 


Battleaxe
Damage 3
Size 2
Cost ••


Partisan
Damage 3
Size 4
Cost ••


Halberd
Damage 4
Size 4
Cost ••


Pike

Damage 3
Size 5
Cost 


Armour
Buff Coat
Rating 1/0
Strength 2
Defense -1
Cost 


Breast Plate


Rating 2/1
Strength 3
Defense -1
Cost ••


Hussar Armour

Rating 3/2
Strength 3
Defense -2
Cost •••


Cuirassier Armour

Rating 4/3
Strength 3
Defense -2
Cost •••


Gothic Armour

Rating 5/3
Strength 3
Defense -2
Cost •••


Infantry Helmet (Morion)

Rating 1/0
Strength 2
Defense -1
Cost 

Cavalry Helmet (Lobstertail)

Rating 1/0
Strength 2
Defense -1
Cost 


More arms and equipment here.

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Word: Gun

Origin: Gunpowder weapons first appeared in Western Europe in the 1320's, and the first English text to use the term gun is dated 1339. However, words like gunne, gonne, et al goes back further, describing mechanical siege engines. According to Bert S. Hall, this stems from the practise of naming such engines with the Old Norse female name Gunhilda (gunn-r means war and hild-r means battle). Later the word gun became intermixed or confused with the word gin (from engine) and was used as a generic term meaning any sort of siege engine.


Source: Bert S. Hall, Weapons & Warfare in Renaissance Europe, Baltimore 1997

Saturday, 12 June 2010

Dìs

That is not dead which can eternal lie.
And with strange aeons even death may die.

Over the last chapters, the god of death, or more accurately, the death of the god of death, has figured quite prominently in the Chronicle, so it is only natural that I post a few pictures.

Memento mori.









The High Order of the Knights of Angermar


From Cults and Secret Orders of Our Age, by Gayr Martell, Baderborn, YE 989


Garendir kwa Erhendor / Who yields not wins

The arcane order of the Knights of Angermar (KoA) is first recorded by Stefen Doerdrach in his Cultus Obfuscatis in YE 311. He describes the order as "They are hid amidst the right Nobele Folke of the North & verily they seeke all the Might and Prosperitie they can howsoever attaine."


We also find the Knights in a Letter of Ban signed by the Cabal of Pure Thought's High Council of Magisters in YE 571, and in Livonian protocols of court from the last three decades of the sixth century of Enlightenment.


The order's rituals build on the worship of the old god Bolgen, a warlike and savage deity worshipped by the primitive tribes of the North in the Second Age (Deities & Demons, Dr. Hugarth Brox). In antiquity, worship of this god often demanded human sacrifice, and several accounts accuse the Knights of such horrid practices even in our enlightened Age.


The Arcane elements is believed to have been introduced to the order in the fifth century of Enlightenment, when the renegade magus Heyerman Exacrest Bannerburn became its Grand Master. Graf Wazenstam writes, "Bannerburn, after having fled from the Ordo Hermetica, quickly aquired infamy when he proclaimed himself Arch Magus of the Alemani. For a time, he terrorized the peasants east of Geistwald, until he was chased out by the Knights of St Invictus."


Apart from these sources, little except rumors have reached the Erian lands about this occult order. Still, I have myself spoken to a gentleman traveller (whom I will not name) who claimed to have spoken to a Livonian professing himself a Knight of the Axe of the Order of Angermar. Thus it can be assumed that the KoA has survived to this day, and that the order still maintains its lithurgies and guards its secrets, hidden amidst the nobility of Livonia.

---

Storyteller's note:
See also:
The legend of Brōdar
Bolgen

Also, a cookie to the first who can tell me what the picture originally portrays.

[picture source: The Shackled City]

A Beacon is Extinguished

11 June 2010 The Cimmerian closed, thus ending one of the finest weblogs in the blogosphere. It is with sadness that I write these lines, but all things come to an end. I wish to thank the dedicated crew of TC for having delivered so many articles of a quality rarely found amongst the endless stream of crap that flows through the tubes.


I do not intend to hold a lengthy eulogy, only to offer a salute as The Cimmerian vanishes into the annals of internet history.


Well done, and godspeed.

[source: MIT]

New look for the Book

Just that. I will probably tweak and play with this a little over the next while and a bit, but if you have any objections or opinions feel free to let me know.


Apart from that, I hope the summer finds you in good spirit and in good health.


May fortune smile on you :)

Friday, 11 June 2010

Sentinel, aka Guardian Angel

From The Saints of Eria, Unknown origin, YE 901

Thus writes Martlegar of Sternwall:


"In the days of King Othelgar, a terrible enemy came in great numbers across the sea. They slew many of the people who lived along the shores, and many more they carried away to slavery and doom. None could stand against these fiends, and a great number of knights were killed.


Thus it was that the noble king sent his finest knight, the Blessed Osberth, to deliver his people from their scourge. Many and great were his deeds already; his spurs he had won after having defended a village from an elvish attack.


Once the Blessed Osberth came to the shorelands he sought out the fiercest of the foes and challenged him to single combat. For a full day they fought before the enemy fell before the steel-clad knight. So awed were the enemies that they departed the lands and vanished into myth.


The Blessed Osberth himself suffered terrible wounds in the combat, and once the last of the fiends had left, he succumbed to his injuries. Such was the valour of the saintly knight that even in death he watches over the watches over the righteous."




There are three known reliquaries dedicated to St Osberth, these contain his sword, his left arm, and his head. The two former are in the possession of the Order of the Black Friars, the latter in the Scholae of Treviaro.


I have myself visited all these three and more. They are what Armatrix calls Fetters, or artefacts serving as a metaphysical anchor for outerworldy entities. There are presently one hundred and seven and fourty alleged angelic reliquaries in Western Eria.


The term angel is subject to some confusion and controversy amongst the learned, but the guardian angels of the saintly relics have been declared pure by the High Collegium of the Cabal of Pure Thought. Still, there are many who hold them to be akin to any Outsider, and thus that prayers offered to a saint are blasphemous in nature.


In my studies I have come to conclude that the angels of the saints are indeed from beyond the Veil, but that there is nothing corrupt or foul about them. These entities are aspects of the saints, and thus pure in nature and intent. In fact, of the five angels I have encountered, only one, the Angel of the Sword of St Osberth, was capable of communicating in any constructive manner outside the sentinel's simple challenge.


There is an established theory, as described by Theophrastus, that says that the saintly angels were once benign spirits, bound by the saint in life. Another common theory holds that the angels are the souls of the saints, protecting the living even after death. This theory can easily be refuted as an unabridged truth by the fact that no man has more than one soul, and thus no saint would have more than one angelic relic. Another theory again states that the angels are spirits drawn to the earthly remains of saints by the worship of believers.


I myself believe that all these theories are in part true. It is known that certain humans have such a great soul that they may remain attached to the mortal world even after their death. One such example is St Anivia. According to Iacomo de Cortona, the angelic form of the saint herself protected the Monastery of St Anivia of Mantellavia until its destruction in YE 266.


The angels of St Osberth are examples of the other two theories. The Angel of the Sword was in all likelihood bound by the saint in life, and continues to serve even after the death of the binder. The other two angels appear to be simpler in nature, and I believe them to be lesser spirits drawn to the reliquaries by the prayers of the believers.


It is a curious paradox that even Macharius condones the worship of saints and their angels, exempting these from the ban on all communion with Outsiders.
 
[picture source: Karen's Whimsy]

Thursday, 3 June 2010

Historical References: Pictures

This edition of HR will focus on visual references. In RL we all have an idea of what a bus looks like, the same goes for a gun, a trench-coat, a laptop, or any of the multitude of items that make up the scenery we pass through on an everyday basis. No so much for a fictional or historical setting.

One of my players told me that he finds the core-reference of Argos, the 17th Century, hard to imagine; it's not medieval, nor is it modern. This was the reason why I started this series, and in that vein I'll continue. This time I've scoured the internets for pictures that may aid the visualization of the world of Argos.



This view of a 17th century port is quite descriptive of almost any European port of the time. Artist: Marcin Jakubowski.



It's not the first time I've posted pictures of the latest fashion of the 1600's, nor will it be the last. Bear in mind that the people who could afford to be chic back then were fairly wealthy. In fact, back then you tended to dress as lavishly as you could afford. This picture is from The Costumer's Manifesto.



Pieter van Bloemen, a Flemish painter who lived 1657-1720 has painted this scene. It depicts a livestock market, and I believe it would be fair to say that when travelling overland you'd pass through quite a few of these. Source: Crocker Art Museum.



I have no idea what's going on in this picture, but it's called 'An Incident in the 17th Century', and it's painted by Francisco Domingo Marques. It would appear that the gentleman has taken offense by something the ruffian has said. It bears mentioning that said gentleman has loosened his cloak, and by the way he now carries it he is ready to use it defensively. It would also appear that he has drawn what may be a pistol, although from his stance I'd think a sword more likely. Having looked closer at the picture on other sites, I am now fairly convinced that it is indeed a sword, most likely a cup-hilted rapier. Source: 1st-Art-Gallery.



This kitchen should be fairly typical of a that of a large household or an inn. Source: the Isle of Man government website.



The ship in question, the galleon Our Lady of Juncal, was part of a fleet hit by a powerful storm in 1631 in “one of the greatest tragedies that has ever occurred in Mexican waters,” according to Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History.
I started this post with a view of a port, and so it is only fitting that the last one should be of a ship. I am well aware that sometime soon I have to devote a whole post to matters maritime, but that'll be another day. Quote and picture from the Maritime Texas blog.