Ronin Roundtable: Wim (Fantasy AGE iconics 2)

Hey Fantasy AGE fans, Jack again. Some time ago we introduced you to Aza, our iconic warrior as featured on various images and in our warrior entry in the Fantasy AGE Core Rulebook. This time we’re turning to the mystical side of things and taking a look at Wim, our mage.

 

Meet Wim

Pale-skinned, well-dressed, and bearded, Wim Iakabal fits many people’s idea of a wealthy dwarven merchant or scholar. The scion from a family of famed academics, Wim studied classic architecture and engineering at several esteemed universities until his natural aptitude for the mystic arts was discovered. Enrolling in the elite King’s College of Magicians (see Fantasy AGE Bestiary, p. 50), he excelled in his studies.

Unlike his many cousins and siblings, Wim was ultimately not content to merely study in the safety of the library or laboratory. In his fortieth year of study, he left the university seeking more dynamic and exciting opportunities. As an expert in ancient structures, complex machinery, and magic he found his particular eclectic skillset was in high demand on various expeditions to explore lost tombs, ruined cities, and ancient temples.  Nearly dying on an early expedition to a trapped temple rumored to hold vast treasures, he was rescued by and fell in with his current companions and has been traveling with them ever since.

Wim tends to spend a lot of time thinking, theorizing, and planning. In fact, his companions often tell him he thinks “too much”, especially since it is their skills in battle that must save him when his magical talents fail to protect him from his own curiosity and tendency to distraction.  However, his knowledge often comes in handy in a variety of situations, as does his quick wit. Wim is surprisingly hardy for a scholar, a fact owed to a realization of the importance of physical fitness and his dwarven constitution.  He isn’t much in a stand-up fight, but can use his magic to great effect in battle.  He is rarely without his magical Staff of Channeling, a souvenir from an early adventure.  He’s been considering taking up explosives, but so far his companions have convinced him that’s probably more trouble than its worth…

 

Wim

Dwarf Student Mage, Level 5

Abilities (Focuses)

1 Accuracy (Arcane Blast)

2 Communication

4 Constitution (Running)

3 Dexterity (Traps)

0 Fighting

4 Intelligence (Arcane Lore, Engineering, Evaluation, Historical Lore, Lightning Arcana, Research)

1 Perception

0 Strength

4 Willpower

Speed          Health         Defense        Armor Rating

11                     52                        13                          0    

Weapon                 Attack Roll           Damage

Arcane Blast            +3                           1d6+4

Staff                        +1                            1d6+1

Unarmed                  +1                            1d3

Special Qualities

Favored Stunts: Skillful Casting (2 MP), Magic Shield (3 SP), Split Spell (4 SP), and That Makes Me Wonder (3 SP)

Specialization: Arcane Scholar (Novice)

Class and Race Powers: Arcane Blast, Arcane Focus, Darksight

Arcana: Healing (Novice), Lightning (Journeyman), Power (Novice)

Spellpower: 14 (16 for Lightning Arcana)     Magic Points: 50

Spells: Arcane Awareness, Jolt, Healing Touch, Revival, Shock Blast, Spell Ward

Talents: Lore (Journeyman)

Weapons Group: Brawling, Staves

Equipment: Staff of Channeling (Take a minor Activate Action to reduce the MP cost of the next spell you cast by 2 and grant a -1 SP to any spell stunts), spyglass, compass, books and notes on various theories and discoveries.

Using the Freeport Bestiary

With the pre-order of the Freeport Bestiary opening up, I thought it would be worth taking a moment to discuss how to get the most value out of the book. Of course if you are running a Freeport game this is easy – grab monsters as appropriate. We build the book to make that easy! But if you want to use the Freeport Bestiary to add some spice to other classic fantasy campaigns that’s easy too! In essence this is a companion piece to my discussion last year about adding typical Pathfinder Roleplaying Game to a Freeport game, but in this case we’ll talk about how to select the Freeport-themed monsters for your other campaign ideas. Since a fantasy campaign can focus on just about anything, I’ve broken this conversation into specific information the Freeport Bestiary gives you that can help you decide if a specific creature is a good match for your game’s overarching plot.

The Basics

It’s true of nearly every bestiary, but it’s worth noting that we break down the monsters by CR, and every monster entry gives you information about its type, size, environment, and so on. Sometimes when building an adventure a GM just needs more choices for a CR 14 aquatic encounter, and having more choices to go through expands the odds that you can pick exactly the monster you need. We also talk a bit about what we mean by the various terrain entries, since for some reason monster terrain types don’t use the same terms as ranger favored terrains.

Read more

Fantasy AGE Encounters: Ancient Shadows (PDF)

Fantasy AGE Encounters: Ancient Shadows (PDF)

Fantasy AGE Encounters: Ancient Shadows (PDF)

We’ve got a new Fantasy AGE Encounter for you today, for just $2.95!

Ancient Shadows: The village of Crows Crossing lies near a site of ancient ruins and standing stones. Someone has explored where they should not have, and the heroes must decide what to do, lest something terrible be unleashed upon the world.

Ancient Shadows is a Fantasy AGE RPG adventure for heroes of levels 5-8.

Fantasy AGE Encounters are short “side quests” that can be used as is or expanded into longer adventures.

Freeport Bestiary for Pathfinder: Pre-Order and PDF

The pre-order window for the Freeport Bestiary for the Pathfinder RPG is now open!

The world of Freeport is a perilous one, as any swab can attest. Sailors face monsters like ocean wyrms and sail dragons, explorers must deal with ghost eaters and harpoon crabs, and city dwellers may be surprised by burnlings and flayed men. You’ll find all these creatures and many more in the Freeport Bestiary for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game!

This 180-page, full-color sourcebook includes a wide variety of threats, from classic Freeport adversaries like serpentmen and fire spectres to new monsters like corsair drakes and witch beasts. It’s the perfect complement to Freeport: The City of Adventure and can be used to add spice to any Pathfinder Roleplaying Game campaign.

As with all of our RPG book pre-orders, when you place your pre-order in our Green Ronin Online Store, you’ll be offered the PDF version of the book for just $5 when you check out. If you prefer to shop locally, make sure your retailer takes part in our Green Ronin Pre-Order Plus program, and they will be able to get a coupon code for you to order the PDF from us when you pre-order the physical book from them.

Press Release: Green Ronin and Greater Than Games Team Up For Sentinels of Earth-Prime

Sentinels of Earth-Prime, coming to Kickstarter, April 2017

Sentinels of Earth-Prime, coming to Kickstarter, April 2017

 

GREEN RONIN AND GREATER THAN GAMES TEAM UP FOR SENTINELS OF EARTH-PRIME

New Card Game to Bring Together Mutants & Masterminds and Sentinels of the Multiverse

February 14, 2017—SEATTLE, WA: Green Ronin Publishing and Greater Than Games announced today that they would be working together to create Sentinels of Earth-Prime, a new version of the hugely successful Sentinels of the Multiverse card game using the core setting of the Mutants & Masterminds RPG. The game, a joint venture between the companies, is coming to Kickstarter in April.

“Nothing says superheroes like a great team up!” said Green Ronin President Chris Pramas. “We are big fans of Sentinels of the Multiverse around here, so there was no way we were going to pass up the chance to work with Greater Than Games. I’m especially excited that Christopher Badell, the original designer of Sentinels of the Multiverse, will be designing Sentinels of Earth-Prime as well.”

“Mutants & Masterminds is one of our favorite super-heroic RPGs—we’ve been fans since the first edition,” said Christopher Badell, Editor-in-Chief of Greater Than Games. “Some of the side characters from Sentinels of the Multiverse even started out as heroes and villains from our home games of M&M! So, when Chris Pramas mentioned doing a Mutants & Masterminds card game, we jumped at the chance. I am eager to bring the rich lore, characters, and settings from Steve Kenson—a hero in his own right—to the card game format, now that the Sentinels of the Multiverse line is coming to a close.”

Earth-Prime has been the core setting of the Mutants & Masterminds RPG since its debut in 2002. Its characters and stories have been detailed in many books over the years, from Freedom City and Foes of Freedom to Emerald City and the Cosmic Handbook. The Atlas of Earth-Prime, a comprehensive setting book, was just released in January.

Sentinels of Earth-Prime will be a stand-alone card game that can be played on its own or with decks and characters from Sentinels of the Multiverse for universe-spanning action. Its Kickstarter launches in April and Green Ronin will publish the finished game in 2018.

About Green Ronin Publishing

Green Ronin Publishing is a Seattle based company dedicated to the art of great games. Since the year 2000 Green Ronin has established a reputation for quality and innovation that is second to none, publishing such roleplaying game hits as Fantasy AGE, A Song of Ice and Fire Roleplaying, and Mutants & Masterminds, and winning over 40 awards for excellence. For an unprecedented three years running Green Ronin won the prestigious GenCon & EnWorld Award for Best Publisher.

About Greater Than Games

Founded in January 2011 by Christopher Badell, Adam Rebottaro, and Paul Bender, Greater Than Games, LLC designs and publishes tabletop games. At Gen Con 2011, they released Sentinels of the Multiverse, which was called the best game of Gen Con 2011 by notable reviewers. Sentinels went on to have several highly successful Kickstarter campaigns, culminating in the OblivAeon campaign in 2016, which raised over 1.5 million dollars.

Greater Than Games and Dice Hate Me Games (founded by Chris Kirkman) merged in 2015, combining their powers to maximize the awesomeness of the games they publish.

Contact Green Ronin Publishing

Nicole Lindroos
General Manager
nicole@greenronin.com
https://greenronin.com/

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New Character Options in Valkana (pt 1)

The forthcoming Titansgrave: World of Valkana setting book has lots and lots of the sort of setting detail one expects from an expansive world book. Details on settlements, geography, culture, and history all about, sprinkled liberally with inspiration for years worth of gaming in this world.

 

But one of the challenges of any good setting book is to provide new and interesting traits and resources to player characters. The goal is always to provide new material that isn’t just fun but also highlights the setting quite distinctly. They should be materials that feel like a part of the setting come alive, because they are directly relevant to the player characters.

 

In this week’s RRT discussing these new options, we’re going to look at some of the detail on the races in this setting book. Here is some of the new material available in Titansgrave: World of Valkana.

Races

Though Valkana’s setting uses the core races presented in the Fantasy AGE Core Rulebook, this sourcebook casts a closer eye on them, examining them by their cultures and history as well. Those races capable of crossbreeding with others in the world of Valkana are included in this description. Some of the races even include strange offshoots with distinct differences from their main kin. These subraces – called the nhazera – are detailed as well, including entirely new Benefits charts to reflect their differing lifestyles, cultures, and temperaments.

 

Below, we include a sample sidebar detailing those characters who are born of the mixing of dwarven blood with other races.

 

 

Mixed Race Dwarves

Dwarves rarely breed with those outside their own race, though this is mainly due to societal pressures of the past. These days, dwarves and humans produce handsome, hearty offspring named rockborn. Dwarf and gnome artificers treasure the fey gnome-dwarf children known as daylins. Rumors hold of dwarves mating with elves, orcs, and halflings, but their offspring always resembles one parent’s race, or the other.

Cosmic Science Sale and Charitable Giving Initiative

Green Ronin has done a good amount of charitable giving over the years. This has generally been on an ad hoc basis though, with us either reacting to disasters like the earthquake in Haiti or taking opportunities that came our way, like the Worldbuilders fundraising event at Emerald City Comic Con last year. Things feel different in 2017 though. It’s like we’ve all moved into a darker timeline, with forces thought vanquished in WWII coming back to haunt us again while a dangerous instability affects America and the world.

We’ve thus decided to be more active in our charitable giving. We’ve set up a page on our website about it, so you can see what we’ve done and keep up on what we are doing. Starting now we will also be having a sale in our online store each month that benefits a different charity. We will use these sales to highlight organizations doing good and important work that can help us all weather the coming days.

Our February sale will benefit the Union of Concerned Scientists. This a group founded in 1969. To quote their website: “Appalled at how the U.S. government was misusing science, the UCS founders drafted a statement calling for scientific research to be directed away from military technologies and toward solving pressing environmental and social problems.” Things were bad then. They are far worse now. Science and indeed the scientific method are under assault. This is short sighted to say the least, and the effects on America and the world may be dire.

We are putting The Cosmic Handbook on sale for $19.95 in print and $12.95 in PDF this month. $10 of each sale will go the Union of Concerned Scientists. Thank you for your support.

Cosmic Handbook

Cosmic Handbook (PDF)

—Chris Pramas

Out of Context

If you’re familiar with Green Ronin’s Blue Rose Romantic Fantasy Roleplaying at all (and, if you’re not, you should visit its page on our site) you know the game features strong themes of inclusion, both from a design perspective and in terms of the culture and history of Aldis, the primary civilization of the setting, often in contrast to Aldis’s neighbors. This includes diversity in terms of race, gender, romantic interest, and more.

However, Aldea (the world of Blue Rose) is not Earth, and does not have the same history as our own world, so the diversity in Aldis and elsewhere in the setting exists out of context with certain realities of marginalized peoples here in our world and in our own cultures, particularly (North) American culture. How does this affect our portrayals of different people in Blue Rose? In a number of often broad and subtle ways.

 

Race

Much of Blue Rose’s racial diversity owes to two things, one history, and one mythic. In the history of the region, there was once a Great Kingdom with connections to far-flung places of the world (perhaps even other worlds) via fantastic airships and arcane gateways, creating a cosmopolitan society that was a melting pot of cultures and peoples. It was succeeded by an Empire which forcibly relocated and intermingled vast populations, such that modern Aldis is quite racially diverse. The mythic element is that the gods of Aldea appear themselves in a wide range of human (and even non-human) races, and it may well be that the gods—who fashioned mortal, material bodies for people at the dawn of time—made humanity as diverse and different as them. So Aldin religious belief tends towards racial diversity and plurality rather than any sense of “racial purity”.

Where racial conflict does come into Aldin culture is in terms of the non-human night people, created by the Sorcerer Kings using arcane means. Once, they were a soldier and slave race of the Empire. Now many of them are free and able to choose their own path, but there are some who consider them inherently corrupt due to their origins. Night people and their allies struggle against these preconceptions to win and maintain fair treatment.

Gender

Aldin myth says that the bodiless spirits that descended into the material world were without and beyond gender, but that the bodies fashioned for them by the gods possessed sexual characteristics, leading to the creation of male, female, and those who were some measure of both, neither, or transitioning between the two—the laevvel. Aldean religion also believes in reincarnation of those bodiless spirits, so everyone has been (or will be) every sex, gender, and race at some point. Male and female are not “normal” in Aldin culture, merely common.

Some societies have gendered roles, such as the Matriarchy of Lar’tya, an Aldin trading-partner and ally, whereas in Aldis the notion of differentiating people’s social roles based on gender seems a strange and foreign practice. Although it only merits a brief mention in Blue Rose, it’s made clear there are widespread, easy, and effective natural means of controlling conception for all responsible adults, a significant factor in gender equality in Aldin society. Similarly, it’s made clear there are effective natural, alchemical, and arcane means of gender transition on Aldea, significant to laevvel characters.

Orientation

Sexual and romantic orientation is likewise influenced by Aldean myth and spirituality: There are deities with same-sex and opposite-sex relationships, as well as polyamorous relationships among the gods, all reflected in the cultures of mortals as well. In particular, Aldin sexuality is less stigmatized, and far more openly mapped on a kind of bell curve, with the majority of people attracted to persons of either or any gender, and minorities as either end of the spectrum who are only attracted to either their own or another gender. Again, bisexuality (or even pansexuality) isn’t “normal” in Aldis in that there is a value judgment attached it it, it’s merely so common that there isn’t a particular name for it, whereas those with primarily same sex attractions are caria daunen (lovers of the dawn) and those with different sex attractions are cepia luath (keepers of the flame).

Similarly, various forms of polyamory are quite common in Aldis, although there are also “twilights” (literally “two lights”) who prefer monogamous coupling. Some cultures favor polyamorous relationships, star marriages and heath marriages, while others favor monogamy, or at least some form of pair-bonding. There are cultures which attach moral or practical judgements to certain family arrangements, and others that do not.

Ability

Aldin culture recognizes differently-abled people as having their own unique strengths and roles, particularly in a fantastic world where there are threats based on the things one might see or hear, for example, and heroes lacking in normal sight or hearing can overcome these threats more easily.

There are also means for compensating for differences in ability in a setting where arcane powers of the mind and spirit can move or perceive things with the talents of the mind alone; indeed, with the existence of the rhydan (intelligent awakened animals) there are entire species of differently abled people on Aldea, living in bodies quite different from humanoids, with their own unique abilities and challenges, and the need to recognize these people as precisely that: people, and not “beasts” or “creatures”.

Blue Rose is an example of a fantasy setting that takes many of the “what if?” questions we use to create fantastic worlds and applies them to diversity, presenting different and accepted ways of being in world that is both unlike and similar to our own. We hope you’ll take the opportunity to visit and tell your own stories there.