State of the Old Crown

Continuing the theme of what’s currently going on with my thinking for various projects, what’s going on with the Old Crown?

Not much, it turns out.


The biggest development was me changing the map around a bit more. It made less sense for the home of the Wildfolk, who are part plant, to be in a northern tundra than in a nominally temperate/tropical location, so I switched things around a bit. Now the swamplands to the south of the Old Crown are to the north, and so on.

It doesn’t really change much.


I think if I run the setting again, I’ll be steering clear of using any D&D rules. I’m more inclined towards FATE Accelerated or FATE Core, or possibly Cortex or Gumshoe, though I’d need to actually look more at the rules of that last one.

FATE Accelerated is nice and accessible and seems to do most of what I want, but the different organisations might be harder to model. That’s part of the problem I had when I was looking at Cortex a few years ago.

I could probably make the thing work fine with FATE Core, though I might end up using a version of the skill groups from Atomic Robo. I liked how they fit pretty neatly with some of the ideas for racial and organisational character abilities. I plan on tinkering a bit.

Though that would be easier if I’d actually played some Atomic Robo.


Will I ever pull the whole thing together and actually run more than one or two sessions? I’m eternally hopeful. I think it needs a little bit of streamlining, which I might manage to do at some point.

After Ginnungagap. And FATEPunk. Or more likely, at the same time as.


I really need to finish a project.


City takeover

The other day, I ended up having a scroll through some old blog posts and one caught my eye that I’d completely forgotten about.

Since I’ve written that post, new novels about that hinted-at history have begun rolling out, but I’m ignoring those until I get my hands on a copy!


Anyway, the point being, I’m now thinking about how this could be pulled off in an RPG. How best to apply the rules, and what rules? Taking over a city is basically the main goal in any Vampire: the Masquerade game for any half-decent coterie, so I might ignore that.

What then? FATE, D&D, Cortex, Savage Worlds all give potential, as does just homebrewing or mashing a few of them together. D&D would be easy to pick up for most of my players, but FATE might give me the god-like messiness that gives them the chance to really take on a city.

I may have been playing too much Saints Row and falling back on my love of the Authority comics in brainstorming this. And then I remembered the post I made before my original city takeover and thought about connecting the players to an old forgotten temple or something like that.


Anyway, we’ll see. So far, my options for a new RPG are either this, Space Viking D&D, or an intro Vampire game that people might be interested in. We’ll see. It’s been far too long since I rolled some dice!

Cortex Plus Old Crown pt. 1

I’ve been pretty quiet for a while. I had a series of posts planned out, but then when one didn’t post and I lost it, I got a little behind schedule.
I’m going to try and catch up in the next few days, so I can start the new year on a high!

Speaking of which, I think I’ve gotten some positive results out of reading through the Cortex Plus Hacker’s Guide.
I’ve gotten through the Action rules, based on the Leverage RPG, I’ve gotten through the Drama rules, based on the Smallville RPG (best link to the product I found, sadly), and now I’m working my way through the Heroic Fantasy rules, based in large part on the Marvel Heroic RPG.

So far, I think I don’t like the Marvel rules so much. They just don’t fit the social aspect of my Old Crown setting as well. I went back to the Action rules and made a D&D-style hack using the six core stats (though I started with eight and then condensed, then realised how they matched up and felt bad about it). I wasn’t too pleased with that either.
I’ve also been hunting around the web and managed to find a few ideas I liked too.

So here’s the state of the current pool. Criticism welcomed, of course.

The basic roll is always two dice. These are drawn from the Drive and Method Traits.
Drive is pulled from the Smallville game, where each roll revolves around Love, Justice or Truth or something similar. I’m finalising the actual stats now but so far I’m using Bravery, Duty, Justice, Knowledge, Loyalty and Renown. They represent WHAT GOAL the character is acting upon.
Method is a lift from the Sword and Sorcery hack of Cortex Plus by Dain Lybarger. In his hack they’re known as ‘Means’ and are a re-flavour of the Affiliations used in Marvel Heroic. I might re-skin them myself, but for now they’re still Steel, Guile and Lore (Force, Subtlety and Logic maybe?). They represent HOW the character acts.

From there, the dice pool can be pulled from a few more areas.
Race, Distinctions, Career and Resources can all be added in.

Race is a single die, and should only be applicable in certain circumstances. I’m also allowing it as a method of earning Plot Points and to spend them for a specific benefit.
So, RACE: Static modifier OR gain a plot point OR spend a plot point for a specific moment.

I’m using these in a similar vein to the FATE Aspects. Chracters have three of them.
They are cool things about your character that make them distinct.
DISTINCTION either grants a d8, or a d4 and a Plot Point.

The Career is another lift from Dain Lybarger. They function in the same way as Specialties in Marvel Heroic, I think.
I liked them because they gave me the flavours of all the training and connections a character would gain over a lifetime.
Only one CAREER can be added per roll, unless a Plot Point is spent in the usual way to include another die.

Resources refer to Signature Assets (possessions, locations, magical ability, faithful servants etc) as well as any temporary assets created with plot points, the unfolding plot, or the GM rolling 1s.
They are only worth 1d4 if temporary, 1d6 if created with a plot point but still remain temporary, and 1d6 but permanent as a Signature Asset.

Stress tracks are currently
Emotion (anger, fear etc)
Social Standing (reputation, embarassment etc)

I’m using a Trouble pool of the GM and a Growth pool for players currently, as I preferred them to the XP system. I’m going to make a decision on that once I’ve had a bit of a play/finished reading everything though.

And that’s it so far. I’m going to have another read of the Firefly game, and maybe try and find my digital copy of the Supernatural game I got free from DriveThruRPG at Halloween a few years ago. See if any other details fall out.