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.
If there was a downside to The Day After Ragnarok it's that there just wasn't enough of it. I loved the book, and there's certainly enough there to run a campaign or three, but I wish there was more. In the very near future, there will be.
Atomic Overmind has announced that Tehran: Nest of Spies -- the first supplement for The Day After Ragnarok -- is releasing November 30, 2009 as a PDF source book for Savage Worlds and HERO 6th Edition.
After a few years away, the Blackazor Guild and I returned to MEPACon last weekend, our local gaming convention held near Scranton, Pa. every spring and fall. We used to be regulars at the local convention scene, but over the last few years we been running our own howngrown Nuke(m)Con instead.
Major Simon Cartwright is a globetrotting spy who’s traveled to all the surviving major cities in the world … as well as most of the ruined ones. He’s a debonair spy, one who revels in the glamorous aspects of the world of espionage: fast cars, high stake gambling and beautiful women.
Jason Freewalker is a second-generation lawman, his father having become a Texas Ranger just after Serpentfall. In the early days after Serpentfall, he rode with his father, battling scaly monsters crawled out of the Rio Grande to drink the blood of children and the Serpent cults arose from the Gulf looking to spawn realms of madness.
He’s been riding and shooting since he could walk, and he’s wanted nothing more or less than to walk in his father’s footsteps. Tragically, he’s done just that; the year he became a Ranger, his father died at his side, fighting an infestation of ghouls in Houston. He now proudly wields his father’s gun – a pearl-inlaid, silver-gilded Colt .45 – and wears his steel-toed, Serpent-skinned boots (their skin being about the only good thing to come out of those Fallspawn).
In another life, Ollivander Ellis might have been a physicist or astronomer, but instead he grew up in the world of the Serpentfall. It’s lead him to dedicate his life to understanding its arcane secrets ... and fighting them when they’re unleashed upon the world.
Coromir is a modern barbarian. Born outside of Pittsburgh, as a teenager his family was slaughtered by the Black River Cult. He barely escaped the culling, and spent the next few years living on his own in the wilderness of western Pennsylvania. He swore an oath to avenge his family’s death, and when he was 19, he succeeded in finding and killing the naga behind the cult.
His desire for revenge was not sated however, and rather than return to civilization, he pledge his life to hunting abominations. His travels have taken him throughout the ruins of the United States. He has been consistently disappointed with the people he’s found there, cowardly, manipulative bastards all too eager to pay someone else to solve their problems, obsessed with returning to the Old Ways. As though technology can save them. As though a gun can help you when you’ve used up the last of your precious bullets.
He’s taken their silver and beer ... but he’s refused to live with them.
Jules Drake is the epitome of the dashing rocketeer; brave to the point of reckless, utterly loyal to the cause and his cohorts and unwilling to back down in the face of danger.
He's been extraordinarily successful in his endeavors, fighting for king and country and doing his part to ensure that the British Empire survives in the shadow of the Serpent. As such, Jules has often been tasked with special operations teams directed by MI6, and is on permanent loan to that agency.
Jules believes in getting the job done, and isn't overly concerned with how the regulations say it should be done. He counts on his abilities to cover any shortcomings that might be in a given plan. This confidence has served him well, but it's only a matter of time before his reach exceeds his grasp.
The Boundless family have long been adventurers, scouring the earth for new challenges, and using the knowledge and treasure they looted to found a dynasty. That dynasty was nearly ended when the Serpent fell, crushing London, but fortunately Andrea's father, Richard Boundless, was abroad in India when it happened.