Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Eschatology Code Adventure

The PCs begin play already aboard a commercial airliner, en route to a mission destination. Read or paraphrase the following to the players if they haven’t already been briefed.

read aloud
You’re an Estate operative, and you’ve got a badge to prove it. The Estate is a secret organization that monitors activity on Earth that originates in alternate recursions and, generally speaking, puts a stop to it for Earth’s safety. You’ve been touched by the Strange yourself and have abilities regular people wouldn’t understand. Those abilities are what make you a perfect operative for the Estate.

You and your team were assigned a new mission, which started today. You’ve been in the air for a couple of hours with a coach-class ticket from Seattle, Washington, to Sioux Falls, South Dakota. You’re on your way to investigate a man called Father Foss of the All Souls Church of Deliverance (located in Sioux Falls).

Father Foss began counting down to the “End of Days” a few weeks ago. Of course, crackpot evangelists do that all the time, but in this case, local televised news reports showed Father Foss pulling off several tricks that bamboozled the local media. A few reporters went so far as to call the tricks actual miracles. But you know a lot more...

Thus begins Eschatology Code, which was run as an official GenCon 2014 event for The Strange RPG (click here if you want a free preview or to purchase a copy of The Strange). Eschatology Code is an ideal introduction to the game, a stand-alone scenario, or as part of an ongoing campaign. Also included are six pre-generated characters, so you have everything you need to get started playing immediately!

If you'd like a copy, you know where to click:

DrivethruRPG Store ($3.99):

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

How to Play The Strange

It's ok to be voyeur if you're invited. Watch us play The Strange!

Surveilling the pawn shop!
I GMed The Strange on camera for players Shanna Germain, Monte Cook, and Jen Page. We did this so you could see the game in action, learn the basics about The Strange's unique setting, see what characters in The Strange are like (including their skills and abilities, and important elements like Pools, Edges, and Effort), and just generally see how we (the authors!) intend for a game of The Strange to be played. Plus, it's a good time. If you've got a need to fill 30 minutes with some RPG entertainment, give the video a look. And maybe help us spread the word, too!

Here's what one viewer had to say:

What will you find when you venture into Earth’s shoals? And what will find you, as you travel into...

More at

Friday, October 3, 2014

Designing Adventures Using Legal Pads

When I was hired by TSR in 1995, it was like a dream job. In fact, it was a dream job, even though things didn’t work out as I’d expected. Instead of coding a D&D-branded MUD as I’d been hired to do, I was asked to write a paper and pencil 96-page adventure with the working title Gates of Firestorm Peak.

Well, I got to work on it. I sketched out my thoughts and ideas for the adventure using one of the many yellow legal pads I had lying around. (I had extra legal pads thanks to being on my high school debate squad, despite ten years having passed since that time.) After working just three months on “Gates” I was asked to write a new project, working title Return to the Tomb of Horrors. Again, I had lots of space left on empty legal pads, so I used them for concepting work. Both of those products seemed to do well.

Fast forward several years: