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"Goodbye, Jean-Luc, I'm gonna miss you. You had such potential. But then again, all good things must come to an end."
- Q, Star Trek: TNG

Savage Worlds

Tablets at the Table, 2011 Edition

by Ken Newquist / May 31, 2011

When the iPad hit a little over a year ago, there was a flurry of posts in RPG circles about tablet gaming. Since then we haven’t seen a lot of talk about them – I’m not sure if folks grew bored with the topic, or if they’ve now become so common place that they’re not worth commenting on any more.

MEPACON Spring 2011 Events: Savage Worlds, Dragon Age, Pandemic

by Ken Newquist / March 7, 2011

MEPACon Spring 2011 is being held Friday, April 8 through Sunday, April 10. It's the 10th anniversary of the convention, and they're going to be having a special reception Friday night. As always I'm looking forward to the convention, but this time around I'm taking my own advice and only running two RPGs.

MEPACon Fall 2010 Wrap-up

by Ken Newquist / November 17, 2010

Another MEPACon has come and gone, taking with it two weeks of frantic game preparation and 12 hours of actual play. The convention was held in Clarks Summit, near Scranton Pa. on November 12-14 and looked to have the typical attendance of 100 gamers playing a mix of board games, organized play, and one-shot RPGs. I ran three events, all of which had 5 to 7 players.

MEPACon Fall 2010 Events: Star Wars, Ragnarok, and Pathfinder

by Ken Newquist / October 7, 2010

My events for MEPACon Fall 2010 are up and ready for registration on Warhorn. The convention is being held Friday, 11/12 through Sunday, 11/14 at the Ramada Clarks Summit in Clarks Summit, PA. I'll be running three events -- "Catch and Release" (Star Wars: Saga Edition), "The Champions of New York" (The Day After Ragnarok), and "The Rise of the Ur-Flan".

The Lunchtime Game Master's Toolkit

by Ken Newquist / September 21, 2010

 RPG Blog CarnivalWhen some co-workers and I decided to try our hand at a lunch-time role-playing campaign, I knew that game prep was going to be critical to making it work. But not the sort of game prep I normally did; this was all about the physical game prep.

We're playing The Day After Ragnarok using the Savage Worlds rules, and thanks to Ken Hite's numerous adventure generation tables, the scenarios practically write themselves. No, the part the essential part of making this campaign work was making sure I knew where my towel was.

Dice. Initiative cards. A battle map. Miniatures. I have all of this stuff in my game room ... but we're not playing there. We're in an under-ventilated, odd-smelling basement conference room whose only virtues are privacy, a table, and a dry erase board.

Superhero RPGs soar into print

by Ken Newquist / May 25, 2010

There's been a bunch of good news on the superhero role-playing front lately. Green Ronin has announced Mutants & Masterminds 3rd Edition and DC Adventures, which is a DC Comics-based superhero RPG.

The first DC Comics book, DC ADVENTURES drops in August 2010. Three subsequent books detailing heroes and villains will be released later this year and in 2011. Mutants & Masterminds 3rd Edition will use the same ruleset, and be released in Fall 2011.

At the same time Savage Worlds Super Powers Companion is now available in print (it had been out in PDF earlier this year).

Vancian Magic in Savage Worlds

by Ken Newquist / May 5, 2010

I love Savage Worlds. Half of the guys in my group love Savage Worlds. But part of what keeps the other half from jumping on board, at least for a fantasy campaign, is the lack of a Vancian magic system (aka the "fire and forget" memorization system from Jack Vance's Dying Earth series and popularized in Dungeons & Dragons). I know that many Savage Worlds fans see this as a feature rather than a bug, but it's a concern with the Blackrazors, who have 12+ years of D&D 2E/3E under their belts.

So what would a Vancian magic system look like in Savage Worlds? There are two key elements to a Vancian system: discovery and flexibility. Discovery comes from being able to find spells in scrolls and spellbooks, and add them to your own growing library. Flexibility comes from being able to pick the right spell for the right job, and not being locked down to a pre-determined power suite.

Recreating a Vancian system in Savage Worlds requires you to retain these discovery and flexibility while still working with its default power point system. Here's my take on it.