NB: Relevant X-plorer's bits cross-posted from my silly little blog.
that the X-plorers rule book is in distribution, we can (I will at
least) look forward to the adventure modules! To my knowledge, the
first three that Brave Halfling is planning on right now are
ones that I've written, and I'm PUMPED to see them nearing publication
(Cleopatra Station by the game's creator, Dave Bezio, is already available for
free at DriveThruRPG). I've used the 'default'
setting from the rulebook in all three missions, but of course they are simple to convert to any home-grown
setting. For all of them, I've made an effort to write in lots of
story options so you can run them several ways and have ideas for sequels. They will not be railroad plots.
To my knowledge, The Deadly Dawn (you've seen a mock up of the cover),
will be the first released, detailing a rescue mission where several
interesting secrets may be discovered, a significant nemesis or ally is
introduced, and some really far-out (it's a 70's-esque game, right?)
Sci-Fi madness and adventure can be enjoyed by all. The scenario can
end a few different ways and possible hooks for sequels of the Referee's
design are suggested.
Another module I wrote, Wreck Tech,
set in the Reaches and involving lots of corporate backstabbing and,
well, exploration, is written and mapped, and is really just ready to
get art and maps and layout and stuff, so that will probably be
next(ish). This was the first one I wrote after getting excited about
X-plorers while proofing the White Box limited edition version. My
AD&D background shows, as Wreck Tech is much like a Dungeon Crawl
(in a good way, I hope!) but the overarching plot presents the players
with some interesting choices that really affect the endgame of the
mission... if your team survives!
The third module called Letter of Marque
is 95% done. It is more of a
sandbox adventure kit than a plotted story-type module, and it really
grew larger than I planned, but that's good. It's got several
neat-o options and optional rules for new stuff, and I dare say it will
be fun and useful. What's cool about Letter of Marque, is that it could
serve as a good background for the other two modules and give a Referee
lots of seeds to plant their own story ideas and go nuts. So it's sort
of a shame I thought of it last since it would make a great starting
point, but it will certainly work at any point in a campaign.
5%? I came to find the mapping of the various things that need mapping
to be a challenge, and felt that all the maps were starting to look too
similar. It was writers/mappers block and earlier in the year I sent
out a distress call to the rest of the team to see if anyone wanted a
crack at designing some of the maps. I felt like a bit of a wimp. I
have some free time this week, it turns out, so I may assess the
situation and bang out whatever needs doing.
Not that you asked, but for mapping, what's
worked for us in the past is I draw the map(s) to go with the adventure on graph paper and scan it.
Then I clean it up a tad if needed with Print Shop Pro (I'm that out of
date), and email the image to John who finds a real map maker (usually
Pat at Arcana Creations, to my knowledge) to make it presentable for publication (one exception is the hand drawn ink map I did of the cavern in The Secret of Ronan Skerry). I've also sketched maps using Paint (yes the lame little windows app) so you can imagine how awesome those
look before Pat fixes them. :-D I digress; the point is, by January I
had gotten Letter of Marque to a point where it was quote unquote
finished, submitted it to John, and I haven't touched it since then.
But now I'd like to make it better, and will take a stab this weekend. I
think it's going to be a while before Brave Halfling will be able to
attack it anyway, since John has his hands full with fulfillment of
Brave Halfling's amazingly successful Kickstarter and the new Dagger RPG for kids.
So I'm totally pumped that these three adventures of mine will be published and help X-plorers grow!
also a Quickstart version of X-p that I -- what's the word; "condensed"
or "edited"? -- with a short adventure in the back that I wrote (again
with crude hand sketched map that must be re-done professionally*).
good intro to the full X-p experience, I think. I'm
happy with how it turned out and I hope it gets more people interested
in X-p if we can use it at some point. It was going to be for FreeRPG
day, but since the printing of the full rules wasn't done on time for
June, the decision was made to hold off on the FreeRPG day version since
there's no game book in stores for it to support.
As it stands
now, the QuickStart has info for character levels 1-3, a shortened
section on robots, simplified equipment purchasing and no spaceship
I wonder if changing it to 2nd level characters
only and adding single ship combat would be better? (I figure 2nd level
characters because the Soldier doesn't enjoy Weapon Specialization
until 2nd level, and I don't want any newcomers to see the Quickstart
and think Soldiers don't match up with the other classes).