Grandiose GRATIS-Idee für alle Spielleiter

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Auf Google+ (dem Facebook in nützlich) entdeckte ich einen Post von Franky Borny, in welchem er als Spielleiter erklärte, wie er seine riesigen Spielpläne herstellt: Er sucht sich im Internet nutzbare Pläne z.B. aus Modulen (aber natürlich könnte man genauso gut Architektur-Grundrisse oder Blaupausen oder die Grundrisse aus den Pegasus-Büchern nehmen, liebe #shadowrun SLs), lädt sie in den KOSTENLOSEN Online Service BLOCK POSTERS hoch und druckt den Plan danach gewaltig aufgeblasen auf einer Reihe von A4-Blättern aus. Die schneidet er zu, bringt eine selbstklebende Klarsichtfolie auf und VOILÀ: Er hat einen Riesenspielplan, den er auch gleich als abwischbare Battlemat verwenden kann.

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Riesenhaft aufgeblähte Karten von anderen Sektoren als den Spinwärtsmarken, ein selbstbeschrifteter XXL-Plan von Berlin im Jahr 2076+, stimmungsvolle Grafiken zum Bedecken und Dekorieren des Spieltischs (oder der Wände!) passend zum System – ich kann mir endlos viele praktische Anwendungen vorstellen.

Konnte ich euch nicht vorenthalten!

Und für alle Shadowrunner auf der Suche nach Inspiration für den perfekten Gaming Room sei wie üblich an Cyberpunk2020 verwiesen :) –> http://datafortress2020.com/gamingroom2.html

 

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.

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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.

News in eigener Sache

Ein extrem arbeitssames Dreivierteljahr liegt hinter mir, und auf der diesjährigen SPIEL in Essen waren einige Früchte jener Plackereien zu sehen, allen voran die SHADOWRUN Neuerscheinungen „Schattenrüstzeug“ (mit meinem ersten Abenteuer, Schattenkrieg, dass ich gemeinsam mit Torben Föhrder geschrieben habe) und das Quellenbuch „Rhein-Ruhr-Megaplex“ in der limited Edition.

Tja, und das wollte ich euch eben nicht vorenthalten.

Und ebenso – wenn auch aus anderen Gründen – wollte ich auf das neue Pegasus-Spiel „Nightfall“ aufmerksam machen, mit dem ich zwar (leider, bisher) nicht das Geringste zu tun habe, das ich aber für ein sehr interessantes und vielversprechendes Produkt halte.

Last but not least sei an meine Galerie auf Deviant Art erinnert, in der es nun einige Updates zu sehen gibt, nämlich ein paar wenige Beispiele des RRP-Artwork.

Cliffhanger reveals first peek at Shadowrun Online

The first newsletter for the upcoming browser-based Shadowrun MMORPG by Cliffhanger just came in – and here it is:

Welcome to Cliffhanger Productions’ first ever newsletter for the upcoming Shadowrun Online game.

This being our first official newsletter I apologize in advance for the less than glossy appearance and the fact, that it took us a while to even get one out.

Here at Cliffhanger Central we have been busy sticking it to the megacorps and trying to go solo on developing the game. So far we have gained at least enough creds to go into pre-production and will kick off our development next month. That being said – if any of you can spare a Million or two, we are happy to help you spend it. But until the money comes raining down on us, here are some answers to the questions we get asked the most:

So, what will Shadowrun Online look like?

Well, it will have a perspective camera in a 3D setting, much like our Jagged Alliance Online game, which we are currently developing. (for a peak at that one, you can go to http://www.digitaltrends.com/gaming/jagged-alliance-online-preview-a-classic-reborn-for-the-browser/ , who have the latest info from our gamescom version.) So, it will be a decent quality, but it won’t be what some call AAA. The reason for that is simple: We are doing a browser based game. This means anyone can access it at any time from their PC, no downloading, no hassle. But that also means we need to limit visuals. I hope you agree that gameplay is king, so we think the visuals are decent enough.

Here is a very early prototype (with even less visual quality) we did for Shadowrun to play around with camera angles…


What can you tell us about the game?

Well – not too much yet that is going to actually stay that way. Some of you may have followed the discussion we had over at the Dumpshock forum and we continue to get good input from fans. We have also secretly launched SHE – the Shadowrun High-Council of Elders, a group of current and previous editions writers and artists and Shadowrun alumni who have worked on the pen and paper game or had their hands in Shadowrun Mods or community work. They will make sure we don’t stray from the path of righteousness and continuity in adapting Shadowrun to the world of online games. We are going to work closely with Catalyst (American Shadowrun publisher) and Pegasus (German Shadowrun publisher) and may have some nifty surprises for you further down the line.

Enough already – what about the game?

The game will feature two major parts – the action map, where you (and your friends) do missions from stealthily infiltrating a secret Renraku research facility to punching the lights out of a major Aztechnology outpost with guns blazing. Hacking, magic and gunfights are all part of that and will be done simultaneously (so nobody needs to go for pizza while your hacker battles Black ICE for two hours).

The second part will be the legwork and mission preparation. This will happen on a city overview map, where you can try and use your contacts, skills or resources to gain info on the mission goal, acquire blueprints, bribe guards or prepare the right soft or spell for your endeavor. This will be closer to rolling the dice on an action and getting a short narrated outcome. Each of those actions will cost action points (and if you want to get better odds you may want to spend more action points on a specific objective).

So if you don’t have the time for an extended session, you may just want to spend a couple of AP to prepare and make sure you get the most out of your mission when you actually want to tackle it.

But I have a million more questions!

Of course there is much more to be said, but most of it is in a very early stage and we haven’t decided yet on how exactly we are going to do that. We are currently in full swing on our Jagged Alliance Online game, so thing are a little busy round here. But I promise we will give you more news as we progress.

In the meantime, why don’t you take a gander over to our Forum and ask questions there?
Until then, we will see each other in the shadows…
Primetide