Sunday, 25 September 2022

Cyber Streets Development Blog #1

 I thought I'd keep a record of my work on Cyber Streets, and go over the 12k words I've already done for the game as well as chat about how I got here and what I intend to do next.

First of all, altough the game is called Cyber Streets and there are cybernetic options in the rules, that isn't what the game is focused on. First off, I chose the name Cyber Streets because it's kinda cool and rolls off the tongue nice and easy, and secondly I feel it grabs the attention. What I have tried to do is keep the 'cyberpunk' description out of the game as even though it shares those trappings I'm trying to avoid the whole street-gangs-attitude-style-rebellious nature of those games. In fact, I wanted to leave the 'punk' out of it all together. Can the players still play those kinds of characters? Yes, absolutely; the game doesn't restrict anyone from playing whatever they want, but the primary focus is on playing detectives.

So what makes it different? Well, I'm focusing on the natur of the game, what the players do in the setting, and that's the legal side of things, or at least legal from their point of view. Think an episode of Law & Order or CSI but in a futuristic setting, a cop procedural in a Blade Runner-inspired city where the players hunt down the people abusing this technology, but at the same time they are funded by the city-controlling corporations so their investigations can only go so far, or perhaps they are pushed in directions the corps would rather they go.

That's my aim with Cyber Streets; to make it more focused on investigation but still leave room for some good old fashioned action adventure. It's based on the Fireteam rules, after all, which were designed for fast combat games.

It started out as a basic setting for Fireteam - if you look at my original cover page test below, it was simply going to be a straightforwward cyberpunk game using the orignal core rules. However, it's now morphed into it's own thing, and I'll cover that in my next blog entry.



Friday, 23 September 2022

CYBER STREETS - Future Noir Roleplaying game coming soon

Cyber Streets is a dark sci-fi roleplaying game coming soon. Expect a game in a future noir setting where you play detectives dealing with crimes of all sorts in the Capital...


... from genetic manipulation to cyber crime to ethically questionable technology to random scum and gangs.

Simulacrum hide among the people, corruption runs rampant in a corp-controlled government and a citizen is only worth what they can give to the big businesses.

There's the opportunity to play other elements of society by - freelance STS offices tasked with exposing the simulacrum, Street Teams coming together to do illegal jobs at night, or just citizens in the wrong place at the wrong time.

On top of all this are the detectives of the office with the most unfortunate acronym; the Street Detective Teams. Funded by corporations but expected to be the holier than thou face of a public institution, these investigators are under a lot of pressure to do the right thing, whilst trying not to upset their paymasters.

Oh, and there's flying cars, too.

Saturday, 19 March 2022

OUT NOW - The Three Peaks of Azra-Kalan

Nearly five hundred years have passed and the story of the Great King and his children’s tombs in the Three Peaks of Azra-Kalan is told from generation to generation, known to bards and storytellers as ‘The Tragedy of the House of Derain’. It is a well-known story in these parts and many plays and songs have been staged and sung. It attracts adventurers from all across the realms because every year expeditions are sent out to find the entrances to the tombs but they always return empty-handed. Where there are tombs of royalty there is invariably treasure, and many chancers and glory-seekers comb these mountains looking for clues every season.

Over the decades the stories have been embellished to include tales of mystical treasures, magical trinkets and weapons of great power, protected by devils and demons sent by the gods of old to protect their charges. If any of this has any truth to it is unknown as nobody has ever found the tombs. They are hidden in the mountains and, as far a the locals are concerned, will never be found. This suits them just fine as the constant stream of explorers and travellers coming through the land is filling their pockets with silver. The trade in false maps, fake artefacts and incorrect information is booming, as well as for guides and retainers to help the fortune hunters in the mountains. In fact, it has become something of a tradition in the summer season when it’s safest to climb the mountains.

This year, however, things might be different…

‘The Three Peaks of Azra-Kalan’ is for OD&D in a neutral location that can be added to any general fantasy land, as part of an existing mountain range or simply three lone peaks in the middle of nowhere.



Saturday, 19 February 2022

Phaunt's Tower - an adventure for OD&D

Welcome to Wherwest!

This is a town full of opportunities at every corner, adventure through every door and danger at every turn. Glory and gold awaits! That is, if you can get past your first night here.

When an explosion turns an evening of celebration into a nightmare filled with demons and monsters, it's up to the players to make sure that the gates of the pit remain sealed!

Phaunt’s Tower is an OD&D adventure, although it can be easily adapted for most classic D20 systems. The adventure is designed for a party of four adventurers of any race and class, and can be inserted into your existing campaign quite easily, no matter what world you’re gaming in.

Available now from DrivethruRPG.



Sunday, 30 January 2022

Those Dark Places: The Gamma-Sigma 12 Report - available now!

'The Gamma-Sigma 12 Report' is an official adventure for 'Those Dark Places Industrial Science Fiction Roleplaying' published by Osprey Games.


Well, this doesn’t sound good. Listen to this message we received.

“Is anyone out there? This is Resource Station Gamma-Sigma 12, we are under attack from a life form…

(static)

Our escape ships have launched only half-filled – cowards! - and there are no vessels left here to get us off the station – there are about twenty of us here and we’re scattered all over, requesting…

(static, crashing sounds, an inhuman screech)

Ben! Ben, they’re through! Get the gun! Patricia, take this and get ready! They’re through!

(screech)

Just shoot! Fire! Fire!

(gunshots, screeching, a cry of pain)

Dan, no! Keep firing! Keep…

(static, transmission ends)”

The nearest warship is two weeks out – you’re six days away on your route. We’re sending you as an advance team to get on board and secure and extract civilians before the big guns show up because Resource Station Gamma-Sigma 12 sent that mayday on every channel available, unencrypted, to make sure someone heard. That means any other company or private enterprise could be on their way there right now to claim the station and take the Calium-3 for themselves. So time is of the absolute essence.

Review the information included, including the station layout and statistics. We don’t know the condition of the station, who is there or what the threat is so go in hot...

... and expect trouble.

CONTENT WARNING: This adventure contains physical, psychological and body horror, so be sure to check with your players if they're good for that kind of game and use any safety protocols you might have, especially if it is being used in a convention. 

Tuesday, 25 January 2022

FIRETEAM - Rules Light Sci-Fi Action Roleplaying now OGL

FIRETEAM - Rules Light Sci-Fi Action Roleplaying now OGL

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 25th 2022

Northampton, UK: Jonathan Hicks of Farsight Games has made the rules-light sci-fi action roleplaying game 'Fireteam' available with an OGL for gamers to create their own material for the game, as well as use the rules system for their own settings and campaigns.

Using the WotC OGL, the game engine -  the 'Hi5 System' - is now available for gamers to utilise in their own games, to modify and adjust as they see fit, and also enables them to release their onw material for profit. The Hi5 System is a dice pool engine that uses D6s, and any roll of 5 or 6 on a single die is counted as a success. It is fast, light and intuitive and suitable for fast-action games of combat. The original book is written by Jonathan Hicks and illustrated by HodagRPG.

Jonathan Hicks: 'The roleplaying game community has been more than kind to me so I wanted to give something back. The game engine is simple and fast and I want gamers to take the rules and run with them. I'm looking forward to seeing what they come up with, and how they can improve on the original!'

The OGL has already been added to the PDF and is available now.

-------------------------------------------------

Jonathan Hicks is the designer and writer of many RPG games including Those Dark Places, Advanced Fighting Fantasy and Against the Darkmaster. Born in the historic city of Lichfield and now residing in Northampton Jonathan has been at the gaming table since 1983, and has more than a decade of gaming articles, reviews, interviews, and designs across multiple genres under his belt.

HodagRPG creates Fantasy, Sci-Fi and Superhero RPG Illustrations. Mostly for fun, although occasionally he takes the odd commission.




Monday, 3 January 2022

'A FUTURE HISTORY OF THOSE DARK PLACES' in development

One thing I'm excited about as I write this sourcebook and supplement for Those Dark Places (10k words and counting!) is that I finally get to share my ideas and rules for extended campaign play, so that your PCs can improve over time and longer stories can be told.

TDP is great for one-shots but the more I design adventures the more I want to try and create an extended campaign that players can experience. I hope the new campaign and experience rules help with that, without compromising the simplicity of the core rules.

Saturday, 1 January 2022

Happy New Year!

So, let's talk about what I've got planned for Those Dark Places in 2022.

Now that my commissioned work is all but done I can spend more time focusing on TDP. There are three projects on the go right now:

- 'The Gamma-Sigma 12 Report' is finished and pretty much fully laid out. I'm missing a single piece of art but still deciding as to whether I need it. That will be out later this month.

- 'Darker Places' (working title) is the 15mm skirmish game and is still in design/playtest, though the basics are designed and just need to be put through the paces. I have no idea when this will be available; I don't want to release it myself and would rather it be a physical rulebook. I might be opening it up to public playtesting, but that's a work in progress.

- 'A Future History of Those Dark Places' is a sourcebook I have just begun work on that will detail a timeline leading up to the game's present time, details of the major corporations and prominent personalities, life on Earth, new rules for vehicles and starships, and a guide on character development and experience, so that you can improve your TDP PC over a campaign. TDP is designed with the one-shot in mind so this will help gaming groups enjoy a full campaign, or a 'tour'.

I've got lots of other ideas and plans but these are the three main projects I have. I won't be commiting to a timeline or a release schedule but I will be giving plenty of notice before release.

Have a great 2022!

Art by Nathan Anderson