Sunday, October 5, 2014

Kindred: The Embraced - A Challenge to Onyx Path

Back in 1996, there was a short-lived drama series known as Kindred: The Embraced based around the Vampire: The Masquerade RPG. I remember watching the episodes when they originally aired and those who has also watched them originally or on VHS or DVD, they know how much of a flop it was. The series is often referred to as Kindred: The Embarrassed.

I recently had the chance to watch the series over again as I helped to introduce it to one of my friends. Even he realized how wrong they got things translated from the RPG.

With all the 20th anniversary editions of the original World of Darkness books that Onyx Path has been releasing, I thought that perhaps it would be a good time to possibly revive the idea of a TV series... without the Aaron Spelling influence.

So I offer a challenge to Onyx Path to start a Kickstarter to make this a reality. Vampires have been made popular for quite some time with the releases of the Twilight movies and TV series like True Blood and The Vampire Diaries.

With good casting and better writing, I feel that a this could be a viable product. Oh, and don't keep the original title.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Update on my epic Pathfinder campaign

A lot of what I've been doing to prepare for my Pathfinder campaign is to pick-up a few specific D&D books to add a little flavor to the game. Here's what I've got so far:
  • Dragonlance Campaign Setting
  • Dragons of Autumn
  • Dragons of Winder
  • Dragons of Spring
  • Expedition to the Demonweb Pits
  • Expedition to Castle Ravenloft
  • Expedition to the Ruins of Greyhawk
  • Expedition to Undermountain
I actually have all the books I need in PDF format, but I prefer having the physical copies so I can easily add notes in the book (sticky notes, that is) to clarify specific Pathfinder items. (i.e. Where I can find which monsters stated. Specific treasures dropped at specific locations.)

Right now, I'm looking for a few different key modules to fill-in whatever gaps I may have in my campaign. The whole reason I picked-up the "Dragons of" books is because I loved the original modules they are based from. It's been quite a long time since I used modules, so I can't remember which others I enjoyed playing when I was a kid. I'm open for suggestions.

As I believe I mentioned before, I plan on having this campaign cross campaign settings; that's why I have books for Dragonlance and the expedition books that are keyed to Ravenloft, Greyhawk and Forgotten Realms.

Character Creation Idea's:

Here are a few things I'm going to use for character creation-
  • Group character creation. 
  • Starting campaign setting- Forgotten Realms.
  • 4d6, re-roll 1's once per roll. (I want to try and have a better than average stat pool for characters.)
  • Max HP @ 1st level. (Yes, I've decided to start the characters at 1st.)
  • Max gold @ 1st level.
  • 4-5% chance for every player to play a non-standard/special race.
  • Random magic items-
    • Each player will roll-up a totally random magical item.
    • After all items have been generated, the group will decide who should get what.
    • Any items not claimed will be "sold back" at their value and the total divided amongst players who did not receive a magic item.
    • Players with GP from selling the items will be able to purchase magic item(s).
    • All items gained like this at character creation will be considered heirloom items from the character's family, or something similar.
Faith Between Realms:

As my loyal readers know, I intend to have the party travel between several of the campaign settings and I was a bit concerned about the logistics of clerics & paladin's being able to receive their divine power when they are essentially cut-off from their chosen deity.

I didn't feel comfortable with allowing deities from setting specific pantheons travel into other settings, and I didn't feel like having a single cosmology for all the various pantheons. It took me a bit of thinking, but I came-up with a compromise that I am comfortable with and I think any players who decide to play a cleric or paladin will like.

Before the character attains their 1st level as a cleric or paladin, they go through a series of trials for confirmation in their chosen faith. The last of these trials will be a high priest telling the character a tale of how their chosen deity chose their very first cleric or paladin. At the end of the tale, the character will have a vision of the deity who imbues their holy symbol or weapon with a small piece of them.

My thoughts behind this is that the piece of the deity will be enough to maintain the divine abilities for the cleric or paladin and the symbol or weapon is keyed specifically for that character. I want to also provide a minor benefit, but I haven't yet settled on what that will be.

More to come later.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Firefly Role-Playing Game: Gaming in the 'Verse (Gen Con 2013 Preview)

Title: Firefly Role-Playing Game: Gaming in the 'Verse (Gen Con 2013 Preview)

ISBN: 9781936685318
Price: $34.99
Publisher/Year: Margaret Weis Productions, 2013
System: Cortex
Out-of-print: Yes
Available on DriveThruRPG: No

Overall rating (1-10): 7

Announced back in February of 2013, this new version of MWP’s Cortex System (used in games such as Supernatural, Leverage, and the Marvel Heroic RPG) takes browncoats back to the ‘verse, this time with a tighter rule set and more of a focus on the TV series.  While the full core rulebook is slated for Quarter 1 release in 2014, the preview version for sale at GenCon is plenty enough to let players find a crew, find a ship, and fly the black. (As of this writing, the release for the core book has been pushed into Quarter 3 at the earliest.)

The book itself is a 272 page softcover, with images taken from the Firefly TV series.  One thing that is made clear in the book is that this is not a “beta” in the way that FFG’s Edge of the Empire or Age of Rebellion Beta rulebooks were; the rules have been written for this game, with any further playtesting being done in-house and on an “as needed basis.”  I know some people aren’t happy about a licensed-based RPG product simply using footage from the source material; this was a constant complaint I heard in regards to Wizards of the Coast and their various Star Wars RPG product lines.  But in this case, it works.

The book opens with a quick introduction to the setting, putting the default time frame in the same window as the TV series, with events from the Big Damn Movie not having occurred yet, as well as a quick overview of the Cortex system’s mechanics and the chapters in the book.

In a rather neat approach, the book breaks down the first two episodes of the series, “Pilot” and “Train Job,” as though they were actual RPG adventures, allowing players the chance to have their own crew take a crack at things and see if they can do better or worse than Serenity’s crew.  They also include several NPCs from the series with full stat blocks to allow a GM to simply drop folks like Badger or Adelai Niska into their game without much fuss, as well as various elements to futher flesh out the ‘verse such as Reaver ships and bits of tech that the PCs might come across or know about.  The NPC layouts are very simple, listing their Attributes, trained Skills, Distinctions, and any personal assets they might have.  There’s also various setting elements such as the liberal use of Chinese words and phrases, adding a nice touch.

From there, it’s on to the meat of the rules used in the Cortex Plus system.  If you’ve played the Marvel Heroic RPG, then you’ll see quite a few familiar things, such as how the dice pool is assembled.  The rules are explained in a way that’s both direct and informative, with examples given of how the system works.  Like prior MWP offerings, the game uses d4’s through d12’s, with the larger dice obviously being more beneficial to the person rolling, since you only get to keep two of the dice you rolled to determine your check result.  Rather than a set difficulty, all dice rolls are opposed checks, especially if there’s an NPC involved.  The person or thing targeted/defending makes their roll to determine the actual difficulty, or “set the stakes” as the system calls it, with the person or thing acting rolls their dice in the hopes of beating that difficulty to “raise the stakes” and succeed.  If the player does really well, they earn a Big Damn Hero die that can be used to boost later actions.  If they fail, they earn Complications which will make things tougher for your crewmember seeing as how they increase the difficulty of tasks by virtue of being included in any roll to set the stakes.

Most actions will have a dice pool of at least two dice, the first being the Attribute (Physical, Mental or Social) and the second being your skill rank.  Interestingly, everyone starts at a d4 for their skills rather than not having any dice as occurs in most other RPGs.  I like this as it encourages players to at least make an effort at something they’re not trained at doing, as they’re at least going to get a d4 added to their pool; it’s not much, but it’s something, and sometimes that’s enough.  One element I recognized from the Marvel Heroic RPG was the inclusion of Distinctions, including such things as Crude (think Jayne), Reader (River), Stoic (Zoe), Everything’s Shiny (Kaylee), and Things Don’t Go Smooth (Captain Reynolds).  However, where a Distinction simply allowed the player to roll an extra d8 or reduce it to a d4 to gain a Plot Point in MHRPG, in Firefly a character’s Distinction has additional effects that can be triggered once unlocked, giving the player additional options for their character.

Character creation in this system is fairly simple, and the entire crew of Serenity are presented as examples of what a starting character could look like.  However, some folks are itching to make their own Big Damn Heroes, and while the book doesn’t quite give a fully free hand in doing so, the players have a fair amount of leeway.  The three Attributes are set at a default of d8, though you can choose to drop one to a d6 in order to increase a different one to a d10; Mal Reynolds has a d8 in all three of his Attributes, but Inara has a lower Physical but higher Social and Simon Tam has a higher Mental but a lower Physical.  From there, it’s time to choose your crewmember’s Distinctions, of which you get three.  Another part of Distinctions that are important is they note which skills your character has a knack for, which will be important when you get to skills in a very short bit.  While there are no rules for creating your own Distinctions, the book does offer plenty of choices, split amongst roles, personality traits, and backgrounds, allowing for plenty of variety amongst the crew.  You also have the option of “unlocking” two additional Distinction effects when creating your character, either providing you a boost when rolling a dice pool or an additional way to earn Plot Points (handy things that let you keep an extra die from your dice pool or trigger certain special effects).

As noted before, skills all start at a d4, but you do get a few points to increase them, as well as getting some increases based upon which skills are noted as “highlighted” for your selected Distinctions.  If your Distinction notes the skill as “highlighted,” you increase by one die type, and if the same skill shows up under two or more of your Distinctions, you increase that many times.  For instance, if two of your Distinctions list the Fly skill, then you’d increase it from a d4 to a d8.  While this could be abused to get a d10 in a couple of skills for free, this approach will come back to haunt you as it’s a lot cheaper to raise a highlighted skill, so you might be better off selecting Distinctions that offer a broad array of highlighted skills instead of focusing too much on a select few skills.  Spending your skill points also ups your dice rating in that skill, though you’ve only got so many points, and those non-highlighted skills cost twice as much.  For example, none of Jayne’s Distinctions (Crude, Family Ties, Mercenary) list Fix as a highlighted skill, so if Jayne wanted to get better at fixing things, it’d be mighty pricey for him, though he’s pretty good at hitting people with his fists (Fight) or shooting them (Shoot), particularly with Vera.

The last step is spending your specialization points, which can be done to either add a specialization to a skill that you’ve got at least a d6 in, making you better at that skill by adding an extra d6 to your dice pool anytime that specialization would apply to a roll, such as Wash having the “transports” specialization attached to his Fly skill, making him very good at flying Serenity.  The other thing those points can be spent on is to create character assets that are always present, such as Vera, the Mare’s Leg, or even Serenity herself, allowing members of a ship’s crew to be particularly adept at actions involving their ship, such as Kaylee and her way with Serenity’s engines, or how Mal seems pretty in tune with the ship in general, even if he’s not as good a pilot or mechanic as Wash or Kaylee.

The book also provides a number of ready-made archetypes that only need their two additional Distinction triggers selected but are otherwise ready to play, a handy thing for a group that simply wants to start flying the black but don’t feel up to portraying the Big Damn Heroes (ain’t they just?) that we know so well.  However, one thing that is missing is rules for character advancement.

The last portion that’s for the players is a brief chapter on the party’s ship, with only three models offered, among which is, of course, the Firefly-class transport.  Ship stats are handled much the same way as they are for characters, with three Attributes (Engine, Hull, and Systems), a Distinction based on the class of ship, and two additional Distinctions based on the ship’s History and a Customization.  When used in play, the ship’s own Attribute and Distinctions get added to the dice pool, meaning that Wash is rolling a lot of dice when piloting Serenity, accounting for him being able to do all sorts of fun stuff like a “Crazy Ivan.”

The next section of the book are two separate adventures that can be run using the Firefly cast or original characters, and do a good job of capturing the general feel of the setting.  The first of these is “Wedding Planners”, which finds the crew entangled in an arranged marriage situation that starts with them ferrying the bride-to-be and just goes from bad to worse, while the second is “Shooting Fish” and centers around the crew’s attempts to help an old friend, save an orphanage, win a boat race, and deal with the local corrupt mayor that wants to shut down said orphanage.  The adventures themselves are loaded with plenty of NPCs that GMs could have crop up as recurring characters in their campaigns… provided none of the PCs put a bullet in some of their brainpans.  Though in that case, just give the NPC a new name and face, and just use the same stats for that type of opponent.  The book then wraps up with an Appendix that covers designing the game and the book as well as a Chinese Translation Guide and atlas of the White Sun system, the primary star system of the series, and ending with a side-view schematic of Serenity and a character sheet and ship sheet.

Overall, it’s a pretty slick system, one that’s open to a lot of fun interaction as the players are flying the black.  The dice pool system is very simple yet flexible, with the Distinctions adding a lot of in-character flavor both in terms of role-playing but also to the dice rolls, providing benefits and drawbacks as suits the situation.  My one complaint with this book is the complete lack of character advancement rules; you’d best be happy with your character when you create them, as officially speaking you’re going to be stuck with your choices until the full rules get released early next year.  Admittedly it’s possible to come up with some method of character advancement, either by drawing from prior Cortex-based RPGs or simply extrapolating from the character creation section, but I honestly feel that such a step shouldn’t be necessary.  I get that this isn’t meant to be the full RPG, but a lack of character advancement rules just feels like an oversight.  But honestly, that’s the only real negative to me for this book, and it’s a comparatively minor one that can be remedied with a little creativity.

If you’re a fan of the series, it’s certainly worth picking up the PDF at least, and it wouldn’t take much to modify this game to run in other settings, from a true Old West game to other sci-fi settings such as Battlestar Galactica, Star Trek, or even Star Wars.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D)

System: Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D)
Type: Tabletop
Publisher: Tactical Studies Rules, Inc. (TSR)
Overall rating (1-10): 7

Before Wizards of the Coast (WotC) bought the rights and created Dungeons & Dragons 3.0, there was TSR's Advanced Dungeons & Dragons (AD&D). A simplified D20 system well before D20 was solidified and made opened source, and before the inclusion of skills.

The biggest flaw with AD&D is THAC0 (To Hit Armor Class 0). Armor Class was a whole different monster than it is in the current incarnation of D&D. A lower AC indicated that a creature was more difficult to hit. An unarmored human had an AC of 10, and armor lowered a character's armor class. Powerful creatures would usually have an armor class lower than 0.

In Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, a character or monster's ability to strike successfully was indicated by its THAC0, the minimum roll needed on a 20-sided die "To Hit Armor Class 0". The die roll needed to hit other armor classes could be computed by subtracting the armor class from the THAC0. The lower one's THAC0, the more likely a hit would be successful.

The term "advanced" does not imply a higher level of skill required to play, nor exactly a higher level of or better gameplay; only the rules themselves are a new and advanced game. In a sense this version name split off to be viewed separately from the basic version. The three core rulebooks are the Monster Manual, the Player's Handbook, and the Dungeon Master's Guide; later supplements included Deities & Demigods, Fiend Folio, Monster Manual II, Oriental Adventures and Unearthed Arcana. This was followed by a fairly constant addition of more specific setting works and optional rule supplements.

The great thing is that you could actually run a game with just the 3 core books. There were a number of published adventures ranging a huge range of level's for player's. You also have the option of other campaign settings such as Greyhawk, Forgotten Realms and Dragonlance; each of which add a new level of creativeness for dungeon masters and players alike.


As this system as a precursor to the modern D20 system, I feel that most modern gamers would be able to learn AD&D fairly easily. The only real hang-up for modern gamers would be THAC0, but that's easily remedied.

As much as you can run a game with the 3 core books, I highly recommend that addition of the supplemental books mentioned above as well as possibly the campaign setting books. These books add more flavor and possibilities for your campaigns.

Unlike the D20 system, AD&D wasn't really setup to allow players to use monsters as races.. but with the right tooling from you Dungeon Master, I'm sure you can make it work.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

World of Darkness (Classic)

System: World of Darkness (Classic)
Type: Tabletop
Publisher: White Wolf/Onyx Path
Overall rating (1-10): 8

In 1991, Mark Rein-Hagen created the first in what was to become a series of games based in a single world. This was the inception of Vampire: The Masquerade. From there came Werewolf: The Apocalypse, Mage: The Ascension, Wraith: The Oblivion and Changeling: The Dreaming. These became the core for the World of Darkness setting. Some ancillary games followed to increase the battery of concepts a persona could play, and a storyteller could run. These games were Kindred of the East, Mummy: The Resurrection, Hunter: The Reckoning, Demon: The Fallen as well as a selection of games setting in various times in history ranging from the Dark Ages to World War 1.

Character creation is a fairly simple point-buy method for dots in your chosen attribute/ability/power. Each dot represents a d10 that you use in order to determine the outcome of your actions. For example, a basic hand-to-hand attack would be a roll of your Dexterity attribute  plus your Brawl talent with a difficulty determined by the storyteller. For this example, let's say your Dexterity = 3 dots and your Brawl = 2 dots. You roll 5d10 and everything that matches or exceeds the set difficulty is a success.

In the World of Darkness games, you don't level-up as you do in games like Dungeons & Dragons, you actually spend the experience points you receive to improve your character. This helps players to develop their characters with a more personal touch.

If you want your character equipped with weapons, the selection available in the core books is extremely limited. In 1997, White Wolf published World of Darkness: Combat. This book not only included an extensive list of weapons and ammunition, but also gave optional rules to customize combat. These optional rules made combat more difficult, but I recommend you look for yourself. This book does include rules for specialized combat system for a few of the games, which also make the book worth getting and keeping. I'll have more information on that when I write my review for the actual book.

Each subsequent year of publication had a different theme. This brought about new sets of character types, but more importantly it dictated the focus of all the sourcebooks published that year. For instance, Vampire and Werewolf produced sourcebooks in the Year of the Lotus cycle, concerning a variety of Asian themed creatures and expansions.

Year Name of the year Theme
1996 Year of the Hunter Groups of Mortals trying to take back the night.
1997 Year of the Ally Mortal and semi-mortal allies to the supernatural beings.
1998 Year of the Lotus Supernatural beings from eastern Asia.
1999 Year of the Reckoning Start of Hunter: The Reckoning game line. Revised Edition published.
2000 Year of Revelations Secrets of the ancient period. (Related to Exalted Game line.)
2001 Year of the Scarab Restart of Mummy as Mummy: The Resurrection game.
2002 Year of the Damned Start of Demon: The Fallen as game.
2004 Time of Judgment End of the game line.

In late 2003, White Wolf Publishing announced it would stop publishing new books for the line, bringing the published history of the setting to an end with a series called The Time of Judgment. This event is described from different supernatural perspectives in four sourcebooks: Gehenna (for Vampire: The Masquerade); Apocalypse (for Werewolf: The Apocalypse); Ascension (for Mage: The Ascension); and Time of Judgement (covering the rest of White Wolf's less-established product lines: Demon: The Fallen, Changeling: The Dreaming, Kindred of the East, Mummy: The Resurrection and Hunter: the Reckoning).

The publishers stated that in doing so, they followed up on a promise that has existed in the World of Darkness since the first edition of Vampire, with the concept of Gehenna, and in Werewolf, with the Apocalypse, as well as some elements of some of the published material that pertain to 'end of the world' themes in other games.

In 2011 a 20th Anniversary Edition of Vampire: The Masquerade was released, also called V20, and a series of further books for the cWoD were announced. Those books include conversion rules between some cWoD games and their nWoD counterparts, as well as material that was planned but not published before the End of the cWoD, as well as additional material for V20 and a 20th Anniversary book based on Werewolf: The Apocalypse.

For V20, as well as the V20 Companion and the 20th Anniversary Werewolf: The Apocalypse White Wolf Publishing used an Open Development approach, where readers and gamers could give feedback to the authors. At GenCon 2012 it was announced that Onyx Path Publishing is a new company by White Wolf Creative Director Richard Thomas, that will produce material to the new and classic World of Darkness as licensee. In November 2012 it was announced by Onyx Path Publishing that due to the resounding success of the W20 Kickstarter, which reached over 400% of its target funds goal, a 20th Anniversary Mage: The Ascension would be launched for 2013.

I've been playing and collecting the World of Darkness book since around 1994. Other than the older edition core books and others that have been revised through the editions, I nearly have a complete collection. I look forward to posting reviews of each book in my collection, and I hope you enjoy reading them.


The World of Darkness is an easy system to learn. The more complicated parts are when you deal with the individual powers that each game brings to the table. (i.e. Vampires have disciplines. Werewolves have gifts. Etc.)

There are a couple of holes in the system that can be easily fixed by a competent storyteller. Because the system has been around for over 20 years, there are several books that compile a complete collection. You can easily play a simple game with just a core book, but the various sourcebooks add to the flavor and sunniness of each setting. You don't need every book to create a good game.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

New articles coming!

I'm going to start writing reviews of RPG systems and books soon. Right now, this will be limited to my personal collection. I'm hoping that after posting some reviews that I may possibly receive some support from one of the local game stores in my area.

I don't plan on getting into miniature games or collectible card games right now, but maybe in time. I've already tried playing Warhammer Fantasy and Heroclix a few times, and neither have really impressed me much. I did enjoy painting the mini's for Warhammer, but the problem was when I had time to paint, I didn't have the money to buy. When I had the money to buy, I didn't have time to paint.

I know that when I started this blog, I was going to stay away from writing RPG reviews. Now, I want to expand things.

I look forward to your feedback.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Taking a hiatus

Due to some changes in my life, I'm not going to be able to devote as much time to my RPG addiction after February 28, 2014. I'll update this blog when I can. I'll probably have to put my plans for my Pathfinder game on hold as well. I enjoy writing this, so it's not an end just yet. I'm not sure how long I'll be away, but I'll be back.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Cosmology of the Universe

I hope the title doesn't scare you away, but I'm actually going to touch on 2 topics in this post:
  1. Religion in my upcoming Pathfinder game.
  2. The planes in my upcoming game.
I don't intend on being preachy and I'm not a fan of any singular religion.


In the current PF game I'm playing in, I'm the token Cleric and the church of my characters religion (which also happens to be the predominant religion for the empire) has started to spin out of control since the newest emperor happens to have been a high priest. Corruption shakes its very core, and inquisitors seems to be everywhere. Because the party I'm in is such a thorn in the side of the church, they have actively started to take action against us. (There's a longer story to this, but I hope you get the basic idea.)

At the moment, my character has claimed his birthright as county lord in one of the duchies of the empire, and he's seeking to form a new church based on the original tenants and beliefs he was originally raised on without the corruption of politics.

This got me to think about my own PF campaign. If anyone happens to decided to play a Cleric or (God forbid) a Paladin, I'm seriously considering creating a structure for their chosen religion rather than the "I visit the church and yada, yada, yada." I don't want religion to be a consuming aspect, but there must be more to a Cleric's faith than just the ability to heal and cast spells.

Religious holidays are an aspect that I don't think I've ever really encountered in any fantasy setting. In other games, I've never once seen a Cleric who was devout enough to actively tithe on a regular basis, confess, take part in regular church ceremonies (mass, communion, bris, etc.) or anything like that. I know it's not very conducive to an adventuring campaign, but I think there should be more expected from someone who has chosen to play a faith-based character.

My only issue on the topic of religion for my game is how it will be affected by the next topic...

The Planes-

My original concept was to run a campaign in a singular setting with a few key adventures/modules. As I worked to acquire the necessary books for this undertaking (Yes, though I do have the digital copies I still prefer to have the physical books), I started to re-think my original idea. This was born out of a question I posed regarding the interaction of the different campaign settings. I wasn't 100% certain if they were parts of a single planet or if they were individual planes unto themselves. The response I received from my query was that they are each individual planets, but could be traveled to via magical means.

So I thought long and hard on my options, and I think I will incorporate all the settings into my campaign design. But now the crux of my current dilemma... what about religion?

If a Cleric of Mystra were to travel to the lands of Greyhawk, what would happen to their powers? Greyhawk has it's own pantheon, but would the deities work together? As my personal belief system would welcome the thought of all the deities of the various religions being able to work together, I just don't see it happening with large groups of deities. Sure, I can belief that Jehovah, Allah, Yahweh and such can either be a single deity or work together, but for Zeus, Mystra, St. Cuthbert and Cthulhu I don't see it reasonably happening.

I guess the question I'm dealing with is how do I keep the plan of hoping settings intact without disrupting the abilities of Clerics or Paladin's? I'd appreciate hearing your thoughts on these topics.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Using literary characters as NPC's

If you've read or watched "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" or read the comic book series "Fables", you've noticed how literary characters can be brought into play in different settings outside of their specific books. Another good example of this would be the TV series "Once Upon A Time".

As I'm currently reading the latest volume of the "Fables" trade paperbacks, I was thinking how interesting it might be to add literary characters into a game setting. I'm sure that all the purists who are reading this (if there are any that actually do) are cringing at the idea.

For franchise games such as Star Wars and Star Trek, I've already admitted to being "one of those guys" who usually includes some of the major characters from their respective series when I GM a game. The last Star Wars game I ran had the PC's fairly buddy-buddy with the high rollers of the rebellion. Yes, I occasionally allow twinkies in my less than serious games. Even though he's actually stated in one of the published books, I've never actually used Dracula in any of my World of Darkness games... but I've been tempted. With the topic of this post in mind, he is a literary figure.

I'm wondering if any of you have used literary characters in your games, and if so, how did they work for you or were they just added fluff in your game? Did they make an actual contribution or just sit there being pretty?

Just an FYI to my regular readers who don't follow me on Twitter or haven't friended me on Facebook... You may have noticed that my year-end post is missing. Unfortunately, while I was working to get rid of another post I was developing for later this year, I accidentally deleted the year-end post. Blogger, the platform I use to post my blog, does not have a recycle bin where I can un-delete from. I could try to re-create it, but I usually write in the moment, and the message I originally conveyed would be lost if I attempted to.