Alien ship detected!

A gigantic star ship has stranded nearby a gas giant of a populated system, sending out an automated distress signal. The type of vessel is unknown, so is the language used in the distress signal. However, the ship appears to be very advanced, maybe even beyond Imperial maximum.

All communications with the ship have failed so far and suddenly a race for the apparently abbandoned ship begins. Imperials, Pirates and Travellers make strange bedfellows. Who will be the first to claim its treasures..and survive?

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This is the beginning of the new and exciting TRAVELLER adventure „Hephaistos“: A classic space tale with loads of deck plans and artwork by yours truly, lots of strange creatures and even the opportunity to find and salvage a „living“ ship for TRAVELLER characters. The adventure has been published in German – now publisher 13Mann tries to bring the adventure to English-speaking TRAVELLER and other science fiction enthusiats.

Just go to the website by [CLICKING HERE], learn more and support this amazing project!

 

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Great tabletop RPG video for CYBERPUNK 2.0.2.0.

It’s just some kids – meaning: incredibly young players, given the fact that CP2020 is only remembered by very old farts today – having fun playing CYBERPUNK. But they are doing it INCREDIBLY right, hitting just the right mood, theme and way to play the game.

fuck

 

fuck

 

You „may“ have noticed that I love CP2020. And this is why.

 

Visions of the Future

Cyberpunk may be dead and we may be already living in our past future vision, but the megas out there have more in store for us. Our perception of the future is accelerating beyond belief, because any lack of real technological breakthroughs (like cyberware or flying cars) is being compensated by new tech that will radically transform how this future world looks and feels and interacts with us.

I have to stress this: The future of 2020, 2050, 2070 or 2100 will not have flying cities and people living on distant planets (like past generations envisioned it), it will not have flying cars and business meetings on the moon (like they thought in the 1950s), it may not even have real cyberlimbs or genetic augmentations (like some hope even today). It will, however, have entertainment, connectivity, video paper and phones and even glass that is distinctivly smarter than most of us…

This future world will be so complex that it will be possible to grasp it only fully when you are living in it. It is also FAR FAR less exiting to think about living in that future than it was in the 80s or 90s: „So we’ll have Augmented Reality? So what? Just another way my Facebook friends can send me invites for stupid social games.“

We will indeed be „amusing ourselves to death„. And we know it. And it’s not like we are anticipating this with baited breath. Au contraire: We are wishing to live in that future because it will offer better ways to get away from it (like Video Games in full VR mode).

When I was living in the 80s, I hoped to live long enough to experience 1999, the focal turning point for anything „future“. I wanted to live long enough to see the year 2000, maybe even 2010, maybe even 2.0.2.0.

Now, living in 2012, I sure enjoy the new toys we got, and am looking forward to the new toys we’re getting in the near future … but the excitement and anticipation has been dampened a whole lot.

And this is beginning to affect my stance towards „former future“ games like Cyberpunk 2.0.2.0. (or rather: my former Cyb3rpunk revision/reimagination of CP2020) and it is HEAVILY affecting my stance towards 4th edition of Shadowrun, an upcoming version of Shadowrun 2050 with SR4 rules and what a possible 5th edition should look and feel like.

When SR4 – „wireless edition“ – was released, I was sceptical and didn’t like it („it“ meaning the wifi world) that much. It took me a while to understand and accept that the vision of the future has to be adapted somewhat to our present world, because it’s kinda hard to imagine a future world that’s actually technologically behind our own, real world.

This attitude has since changed. And mostly because I rediscovered my love for classic (= not transhumanist) science fiction, like the Seaford Saga or the stories about Honor Harrington. In this science fiction, you have both technology that is so far beyond what we can hope to achieve in the next 200 years that my eyes are watering (fact: we couldn’t even go to the moon if our lives depended on it currently) AND that are clearly behind what we have achieved already (note: Honor Harrington doesn’t even have an iPhone).

All the tech that is hard to describe and put into game mechanics in a sci-fi setting (like the connectivity and social issues a wireless WWW has and will have) is being left out while „bigger“ technological advancements that are easier to grasp and introduce in a sci-fi setting, both as a concept and rules-wise (like space travel, or cybertech) are put forward.

Returning to Shadowrun, I now see what the appeal of the „cable matrix“ SOTA of 2050-2060 is – and can even see beyond that: How much appeal a world would have (as a game background, and also in respect to rules) in which the free and omnipresent internet never surfaced. Remember the days of AT&T and AOL dominance? Just add megacorporations and tighten the control even further: internet would be a kind of interactive TV, with the megas being the senders and the consumer being receivers – and nothing else.

Remember how it felt – actually FELT – to be amongst the „elite“ of the world just because you had the implant to dive into the matrix, and others didn’t? Remember the balls you had to have, facing off against the almighty power of the megas, battling them on their home turf, the matrix, liberating data?

I know that from our current day perspective this seems so remote, as our megas oftentimes give off the impression to understand less about the internet than every kid does – but that also means that being a hacker is not and will never be the same as being a DECKER.

OK, enough rambling:

Here are some videos of an increasing stream of videos about the future that’s about to hit us in the next, oh, 5–10 years. I sure will enjoy living then, but I’d like to PLAY in a world that is simpler and darker than our own, not one that’s even more complicated.

Shadowrun is a blend between fantasy and sci-fi. Let’s amp up the fantasy a bit (not in the sense of „more magic“ or „even more player races“, but in the sense of the general appeal of the fantasy genre in offering a simpler world we’d like to get away to), and tune down sci-fi to a gritty, dark, brooding cyberpunk theme where a lone guy with a gun and/or a deck just may make a difference – even when he’s not a dragon or IE.

Let this happen – in 2050 or 2075, I don’t care.

FYI: My PSN ID

Just so you know who you’re pwning … Come, add and kill the most unknown celebrity of all.

Kleine Short Blog Pause Break

Von all dem Kreativen, das ich so von mir gebe,

Of all the creative things I did,

war wohl nichts so bemerkenswert

nothing was as remarkable

wie die unerwartet frühe (4 Wochen zu frühe)

as the unexpectedly early (4 weeks early)

„Erschaffung“ von Lena am 9. Januar 2010 (2910 g, 48 cm).

„creation“ of Lena on January 9th, 2010 (2010 g, 48 cm).

Deshalb bitte ich eine kurze Blogpause bis Ende Februar zu entschuldigen.

It is for this reason that I -uh- how do you say this in English? Well, I’ll be off til end of Feb. Deal with it.

Merci und Danke für alle Glückwünsche, auch hier im Blog!

Euer Rabenvater AAS

Blog | Geburtstags-Video

Heut hab ich Geburtstag und beschenk mich selbst mit einem meiner Lieblings-Videos:

Falls dat Video nicht pläid: CLICK

D&D 4E | New Monster: Ghoul Fleshhunter

This is the first new monster I did for D&D 4E, so let me know what you think and leave a comment. While the rest of this blog is in German (mostly), I’ll keep all „Points of Light“ D&D articles in English, mostly because D&D 4E is not available in German anymore, so German D&D 4E players are forced to use English material anyway. New articles for my own campaign and world setting „Blut & Eisen“ (Blood & Iron, a fantasy setting with some steam thrown in) will continue to be in German, though. The monster pix you’ll see (and see here) I made myself, some (most) of them are actually sketches, some even final artwork for the „Monster Manual“ of the best Science Fiction Roleplaying Game there is, Battlelords of the Twenty-Third Century. So if you ever tire of the „same old, same old“ dungeon crawl and want to trade your magic sword for a neat pulse cannon or tactical nuke, there you’ll find carnage the likes you’ve never experienced before. And look: Battlelords elves have 14 fingers and wear kilts!

GHOUL FLESHHUNTER

GHOUL FLESHHUNTERS ARE THE HUNTING DOGS of an abyssal ghoul or any other higher undead creature. They are singleminded and bestial, caring for nothing more than hunting the living and sinking their hook-like hands into their flesh, dragging them screaming to their undead masters.

ghoul_fleshhunter_by_raben-aas

Ghoul Fleshhunter Tactics

A ghoul fleshhunter will attack with his hook attack, securing the victim to itself to use it as a shield. He will try to drag it to his master, who is in the vicinity in most cases. If his master is within 5 spaces of the fleshhunter, the fleshhunter will use his feeding drain to help its master rather than help itself.

Ghoul Fleshhunter Lore

A character knows the following information about ghoul fleshhunters with a successful Religion check (in addition to what they may know about ghouls in general (> Monster Manual)).

DC 25: Ghoul fleshunters are undead creatures in service to abyssal ghouls or Doresain, the King of Ghouls, himself. They often travel in hunting packs, trying to catch the living and bring them to their ghoul master(s).

DC 30: Ghoul fleshhunters are abyssal in nature. However, unlike those graced with special power by Doresain, fleshhunters are cursed with a bestial nature, binding them forever to their betters. Powerful they may be and dangerous as well, but they are nothing better than slaves or hunting dogs for Doresain’s court.