Magic Items for Shitlord: The Triggering Based On BASED STICK MAN

I will be the first to admit that I am a bit of a fanboy for Shitlord: The Triggering. Some of my previous posts on that game should have made this obvious.

If, like me, you have been watching certain parts of the internet, you may have heard of BASED STICK MAN. There was a “March 4 Trump” and some antifa were there to disrupt the event. Several people wore helmets and made shields to protect the “March 4 Trump” people.

However the antifas turned violent and well…the following happened:

The man wielding the stick has become known as BASED STICK MAN. As a huge fan of Shitlord: The Triggering, it was clear to me that BASED STICK MAN is a high-level Dickpuncher.

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What is a high-level character without magic items?

Without further ado, here are some of the magical items that BASED STICK MAN uses in his fight against the Cult of the Blood Moon. All of these items may be used by Dickpunchers and Acolytes of Harambe, unless otherwise specified.

STICK OF COMMIE CRANIUM CRUSHING
Heavy Mace +2, +3 vs Communists and Cultists of the Blood Moon (but they are really one and the same!)

On a successful hit, the enemy struck must make a saving throw at a -2 penalty or fall unconscious for 1 round. If the enemy is a Communist or a Cultist of the Blood Moon, the saving throw penalty is increased to -4. It also gives the wielding a melee reach of 15 feet, instead of just 10 feet.

While this deals damage like a Heavy Mace, the STICK OF COMMIE CRANIUM CRUSHING looks like a Staff that is wielded in one hand. Infused with the souls of great fighters of Communism, it seeks a chance to further smash some socialists.

SHIELD OF SHITLORD SUPPORT
Shield +2

While worn, this shield gives the wielder and all allies within 30 feet immunity to the Fear spell and similar effects.

This simple wooden shield emblazoned with the emblem of the Starfield Republic inspires all Shitlords around to stand their ground and not yield a single inch to the forces of evil.

GOGGLES OF TRUTH

While worn, these goggles allow the person wearing them to see through any and all illusions. They are also stylish as hell. Usable by all classes.

MASK OF CLEAR BREATHING

While this mask makes it difficult to speak well (no spells may be cast while it is worn), it does grant the wearer immunity to all attacks that require breathing (such as gas attacks). Please note, that this does not allow the wearer to breathe underwater. The mask filters air, it does not create air.

Despite being a bastion of free speech, BASED STICK MAN does not speak. His actions speak louder than words.

BOOTS OF BOLSHEVIK BEATING

These boots grant -1 [+1] AC while worn. Additionally, if the wearer takes a moment to plant his or her feet firmly on the ground, the wearer cannot be pushed over or moved by anything less than a hurricane force wind or something of that strength.

These boots with their hard covering that goes all the way up the wearer’s shin provides moderate protection from attacks. They are infused with the knowledge that planting yourself next to the river of truth makes you unmovable. Usable by all classes except Fabulous Homos. Impossible to sneak in these boots!

Drums and Horns

I do not know what it is about the use of drums and horns in music that make me want to put on a horned helmet*, grab a sword, and charge a castle. But I like it. The only problem is that sometimes it feels too epic for a “normal” combat.

This kind of music should be saved for that BIG moment when your characters are assaulting the the fortress of the evil emperor. This is the soundtrack of thrilling heroics and epic battles, of great heroes and diabolic villains. Your players should be inspired to greater acts of heroism than normal with this in their ears.

Be aware that this may result in more character death than normal, but heroic sacrifices are still heroic and will be talked about for many sessions to come!


* I am aware that a horned helmet is easy to grab in melee combat, so it would not be a good choice to wear…but come on…rule of cool!

OSR Order of Battle Inquiry

I am still working on my DOOM-inspired OSR-ish game based on the framework of Swords & Wizardry (tentatively titled “SPACE DEMONS…IN SPACE”). One of my design philosophies is to keep things simple-ish, so there is speedy play at the table. Also, I am stealing…err borrowing…err using every good idea I can find in other roleplaying games. This includes the advantage / disadvantage mechanic from 5th Edition.

My question is this:

What is a good, simple OSR-ish system of combat resolution?

I know every game and gaming group has their preferred method and I am trying to find one that will work for a fast-paced game. With so many different ways of resolving combat in OSR games, what is the best solution for quick play that is easy to remember?

Something I have not mentioned in my previous posts is that my gaming group is not as…shall we say…rules-obsessed interested as I am. Easy rules are better than hard rules. For example, Advantage / Disadvantage has been better than most situational +2 / -2 modifiers. While I doubt my group is interested in play-testing this game, I want to make this game with that experience in mind.

Without further ado, here is my proposed “official” system for combat resolution in SPACE DEMONS…IN SPACE:

COMBAT

                There are multiple ways to run combat in this kind of game. If your group already has a preferred way of doing it, go for it! Below is one way to run combat and I guess you could call it the “official way”. However, the way your GM decides to run combat is the official way to do it.

INITIATIVE AND ORDER OF BATTLE

When the party of adventurers comes into contact with enemies, the order of events is as follows:

  1. Surprise. The GM determines if one side is surprised. As with all of the GM’s decisions, this can be based on common sense instead of a die roll. The surprised group automatically loses initiative on the first round of combat. Also, they have disadvantage to all initiative rolls to the rest of the combat session.

  2. Determine Initiative. Each side rolls 1d20, and the highest result wins. Ties go to the players. Note that this is rolled for each side, not for each combatant.

  3. Winning Initiative Goes. The side that won Initiative acts first (casting spells, using medical experiments, attacking, moving, etc.), and results take effect.

  4. Losing Initiative Goes. The side that lost initiative acts; results take effect.

  5. The Round Ends. The round is complete; if the battle has not been resolved, begin the cycle again, starting with step 2.

What do you think? Is there a better system I should be using?

 


Once I have a suitable rough draft with all the features, I will let you all know and I will be happy to distribute it freely to anyone who wants a copy.

Here is where I am at with various features:

Character Creation: 100%
Combat System: 75%
Magic: 0%
Monsters: 25%
Appendix of Influential Works: 25%

Breaking the “My Character Can’t Die Mindset” in 5E

After some more scheduling issues, I was finally able to sit down with my 5E gaming group (Fighter, Rogue, Bard, & Sorcerer) and run another session of my heavily-edited Sinister Stone of Sakkara campaign. Because I am trying to bring some more old-school roleplaying ideas into the minds of my players, I decided not to play too nice. I am making the bandits they encounter difficult to fight, but I made sure that talking was a potential solution.

The first group of bandits they met, they starting talking, but then decided to fight them. The group was quite indecisive on how to handle these bandits. They were quite close to a break-through in their conversation. The bandits were willing to take a toll so that the party could freely move through their territory.

Instead, the party created a distraction and tried to fight them. There was an expectation that they could simply walk into this place and kill everything room by room. That is an expectation I am trying to break, but I am trying to be fair about it. If the party does something stupid…it is going to hurt. If they do something smart, they will be rewarded.

The fight did not go too well for the party. The rogue nearly died after trying to stab a bandit in the back, away from the rest of the party. As I was adding up the damage that knocked her unconscious, the player looked at the group and said, “I liked this character!”

After the fight was over, (and realizing that the bandits were not easy prey for murderhobos) the characters successfully intimidated the last living bandit into a meeting with his leader. They are trying to meet just outside the entrance to the ruins, so they can run / have a tactical advantage if need be.

Next session when they meet the bandit leader and he details his vision of supremacy among the other bandit groups in the ruins should be fantastic. The bandit leader is expecting a trap, so he will make a show of force. I cannot wait for the players to react to this.


Finally, a shout-out to bards that actually try to sing / be “bardic”. My bard is a talented singer, so naturally when she used certain bard skills, she would make up a little song on the spot. She even made up new insults when using her Vicious Mockery cantrip. The best one?

“You smell like Cheez-Its”.

I Am Still Here…

I apologize for being a little quiet on the blog and on my various social media accounts. I have been feeding my desire to replay Pillars of Eternity and, more importantly, I am working on something new. As a one-man operation with an operating budget of nothing, I am close to throwing my hat into the game design ring. Hopefully, within the next couple weeks, I will have a rough draft complete.

Here is a sneak peek of what I am working on:

seriously-what-am-i-thinking

If you do not quite understand what I am going for, this NSFW video may help:

The Importance of History, Legend, Religion, and Myth

What makes a good story in a roleplaying game? I do not mean a “railroad-y adventure path” kind of a situation, I simply mean an interesting situation that the party can find themselves in that can organically turn into a story.

One factor in that story telling is our collective human history, legends, religions*, and myths. To make your game world or a particular situation more real, draw from that well! I am not suggesting that a GM needs to have a doctorate in mythology and history, but what I am suggesting is peppering your gaming with a few terms / concepts from the past.

For example, if you have a militaristic society with a highly disciplined army, why not base it on the army of ancient Rome? With a little help from a search engine, I found a list of ranks in the Roman army here. Instead of meeting with a sergeant, your party could meet with a centurion. Suddenly, in the minds of your party, your generic fantasy kingdom is connected to ancient Rome. The party may treat the centurion with a little more respect because they fear the might of the Roman war machine based on the player’s half-remembered knowledge of Roman history. Suddenly, a generic contact or quest-giver is now the representative of a military juggernaut that the characters (and players) do not want to cross. Obviously, you may want to be careful with this if someone in your group is an expert in the field, but adding a little bit of real world-ness to your game world will make it more real to your players.

Here is another example: you want to freak out your players?

Bring out the angels.

There a few descriptions of angels in the Bible, but I want to focus on the description found in Ezekiel 1:4-21 (NASB):

As I looked, behold, a storm wind was coming from the north, a great cloud with fire flashing forth continually and a bright light around it, and in its midst something like glowing metal in the midst of the fire. Within it there were figures resembling four living beings. And this was their appearance: they had human form. Each of them had four faces and four wings. Their legs were straight and their feet were like a calf’s hoof, and they gleamed like burnished bronze. Under their wings on their four sides were human hands. As for the faces and wings of the four of them, their wings touched one another; their faces did not turn when they moved, each went straight forward. 10 As for the form of their faces, each had the face of a man; all four had the face of a lion on the right and the face of a bull on the left, and all four had the face of an eagle. 11 Such were their faces. Their wings were spread out above; each had two touching another being, and two covering their bodies.12 And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went. 13 In the midst of the living beings there was something that looked like burning coals of fire, like torches darting back and forth among the living beings. The fire was bright, and lightning was flashing from the fire. 14 And the living beings ran to and fro like bolts of lightning.

15 Now as I looked at the living beings, behold, there was one wheel on the earth beside the living beings, for each of the four of them. 16 The appearance of the wheels and their workmanship was like sparkling beryl, and all four of them had the same form, their appearance and workmanship being as if one wheel were within another. 17 Whenever they moved, they moved in any of their four directions without turning as they moved. 18 As for their rims they were lofty and awesome, and the rims of all four of them were full of eyes round about.19 Whenever the living beings moved, the wheels moved with them. And whenever the living beings rose from the earth, the wheels rose also. 20 Wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go in that direction. And the wheels rose close beside them; for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels. 21 Whenever those went, these went; and whenever those stood still, these stood still. And whenever those rose from the earth, the wheels rose close beside them; for the spirit of the living beings was in the wheels.

Four-headed flying beings with calf hooves? Wheels full of eyes? That is some weirdness to throw into any campaign. That could be the building block of a session that people will talk about for a long time.


* As a person with religious convictions, I will not presume to say which parts of this are history, legend, or myth. I will simply state that whether or not some of these events actually happened, they are embedded into the Western psyche.

Cirsova 5 & 6 Kickstarter!

cirsova

At the time of this writing, Cirsova #5 and #6 is only $22 away from being fully funded!* I have said this before and I almost will certainly say it again, but if you want to be a good GM, you need to have a good media diet. The stories in Cirsova are head and shoulders above most modern fantasy and if they don’t at least stir your imagination or give you at least one usable idea for your game, I will eat my hat.** This is the absolute best short fiction magazine out there. Period.

For just $1 dollar, you can get a digital copy of issues 5 & 6. For that minimum level of investment, you will have several hours of great stories to read.

Also, Cirsova has delivered (on time) in the past with their previous Kickstarters, so there is proven track record here. If you are not already part

Why do I care so much about this? I am not the person running the Kickstarter, nor is anything I have written in its pages. I am someone who has surveyed modern science fiction / fantasy and despaired. I want a sense of wonder in my fiction, dammit! I am sick and tired of mopey people in space or unlikable dinguses in a magical world running around being unlikable dinguses. That is not science fiction, nor fantasy. It is crap.

Cirsova is a breath of fresh air…nay…a kick in the private parts of the science fiction and fantasy community. Cirsova is interrupting the biggest band in the world and saying “You suck. THIS is how you do it”, then pulling out a guitar and melting everyone’s face off with a wicked guitar solo. Cirsova is when you dip your tortilla chip in what you think is mild salsa, but it is actually the spicy stuff. That first bite hurts like hell, but you are never going back.

If you have already backed this, thank you. If you haven’t, please seriously consider backing it. You will enjoy the stories and you will be helping fund and encourage good science fiction / fantasy stories.


* Full disclosure: I backed this project for $20. I really enjoyed Cirsova 1-4, so I have high hopes for 5 & 6.

** No, I won’t eat my hat.