marcus 2013

Another Jab

Had my second Covid jab today. Feeling fine so far, we'll see how it goes. Hoping I'll be well enough to get out and vote in the local government elections tomorrow, if I'd noticed the coincidence of dates I would have got a postal ballot to be on the safe side, but it's a bit late now. When I had the first dose I felt a bit queasy on day two but otherwise fine, hopefully this will be similar.

Got home to find a letter saying I've been randomly chosen to take part in an NHS periodic study - if I agree to participate they'll send me a Covid test kit, by testing several thousand people at intervals they'll get an idea of how it's spreading (if it still is). The down side of course is having to self-isolate if the test shows I have the virus, even if there are no symptoms. I think I'll join in, I think I'm better off knowing.

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marcus 2013

GURPS Lensman article

 I forgot to mention that one of my old articles for Pyramid magazine is on line on Steve Jackson Games' web site - Holy Klono!, a discussion of a religion for GURPS Lensman. So far as I can remember it's the only article they ever published for this setting, which is a shame.

Something to give you an idea, a typical small advert from a newspaper in this setting:

LET THE POWER OF KLONO INTO YOUR LIFE!

Since the dawn of Civilization thousands have owed their lives and fortunes to the intercession of KLONO. Wild Bill Williams was an unsuccessful asteroid miner, dogged by pirates and claim jumpers, until he bought a LUCKY KLONO STATUETTE; on his next mining trip he found a meteor worth FIFTEEN HUNDRED CREDITS, and went on to make a series of MASSIVE ORE FINDS. Vesta of Vegia was a lowly translator until she learned Spaceal and began to SWEAR BY KLONO; within weeks she WON 1,762,810 CREDITS and BROKE THE BANK of Club Elysian on Chickladore, and went on to become a PROMINENT VEGIAN BANKER. Kimball Kinnison is known to have SOUGHT KLONO'S INTERCESSION many times in his career; today he is GALACTIC COORDINATOR! Now YOU TOO can own a LUCKY KLONO STATUETTE, identical to those belonging to many FAMOUS PERSONALITIES AND CELEBRITIES! Send a check or money order (no cash or stamps please) for a mere Five Credits to LUCKY KLONO STATUETTE, 934 Strata Towers, Dublin, Tellus. Money back if your fortunes have not improved within 28 days of receipt of a LUCKY KLONO STATUETTE. Offer void where prohibited by law - handling charges may apply in the second galaxy - Mars residents add 1 cento sales tax


The article is here

http://www.sjgames.com/pyramid/sample.html?id=1489

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marcus 2013

Another RPG bundle offer - Legendary Planet

Another one I'm not familiar with - Legendary Planet, a multi-world fantasy/SF setting for D&D 5th edition and Pathfinder rules:

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/LegendPlanet

Legendary Planet Adventure PathThe Legendary Planet Adventure Path is a spectacular eight-part sword-and-planet fantasy campaign from Legendary Games, provided here in dual versions for both D&D Fifth Edition and Pathfinder First Edition. Funded in a strong June 2015 Kickstarter campaign, the Legendary Planet Adventure Path takes your characters through alien gateways across the multiverse to exotic worlds, and from 1st to 20th level and beyond. From the backwoods of a fantasy world to the farthest reaches of the cosmos -- from grungy desert planets to waterworlds, from fascistic dieselpunk asteroid mines to a Dyson sphere a hundred million miles across -- sword-swingers and spell-slingers work with scoundrels and seekers to unravel cryptic alliances bent on universal domination, or annihilation.

This all-new offer provides each ebook complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format) in separate versions for D&D Fifth Edition and Pathfinder First Edition. Buy the bundle and you get both versions of all the books. Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these books have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their devices.

Ten percent of each purchase (after gateway fees) goes to this offer's pandemic-related charity, Direct Relief. Direct Relief gets protective gear and critical care medications to health workers, with emergency deliveries to medical facilities across the US and to regional response agencies across the world.

Legendary Worlds supplement Polaris 7The total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$87.50. Customers who pay just US$14.95 get the DRM-free .PDF of the complete 700+-page Legendary Planet Adventure Path (retail price $50) in two versions -- both 5E and Pathfinder 1E.

Those who pay more than the threshold (average) price, which is set at $19.95 to start, also get our entire Bonus Collection with eight more titles worth an additional $37.50 -- each in separate versions for 5E and PF1 -- including Stargates (retail $6), Treasury of the Machine (retail $5), and six Legendary Worlds location sourcebooks: Calcarata (retail $2.50), Carsis (retail $5), Melefoni (retail $5), Polaris 7 (retail $5), Terminus (retail $4), and Volretz (retail $5). (These DriveThruRPG links lead to the 5E versions of each book, but we provide both 5E and Pathfinder versions.)



This is a neat framing device for campaigns - it's not unique to this setting, I think it was used in Chaosium's early Worlds of Wonder multi-genre RPG rules, and I think there's something like it in GURPS Fantasy,  and of course it's a staple of fantasy and science-fantasy literature, with obvious inspiration from sources such as the Stargate franchise. My impression here is that it's been done reasonably well, and at a relatively affordable price, so if you're looking for something with a lot of fairly diverse settings it may be for you. But as usual I need to reiterate that I get this stuff free if I want it, if you don't you may prefer to concentrate on systems you already own.

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marcus 2013

Another RPG bundle offer - Dusk City Outlaws

Another system I don't know at all, Dusk City Outlaws, which is basically a system and setting for fantasy criminal adventures:


https://bundleofholding.com/presents/DuskCity

Dusk City Outlaws Core GameThis new offer presents Dusk City Outlaws, the fantasy heist RPG from Scratchpad Publishing about criminal cartels in the sprawling metropolis of New Dunhaven. Inspired by books, TV shows, and movies like The Lies of Locke Lamora, Leverage, and Ocean's Eleven, Dusk City Outlaws casts players as a crew of thieves, con artists, and assassins, drawn from the eight colorful cartels that rule over the city's criminal underworld, take on a Job, a task brokered to them by one of the cartels. The players devise a plan, do the legwork, pull off the job, and then survive long enough to get paid. There is no "right" way to handle the Job. Each cartel gets a cut of the take, and the crew gains wealth, prestige, and influence.

The streamlined DCO rules use a sleek narrative dice system that makes the game easy to start playing on a moment's notice. Everything the players need to know stays on the table in front of them. Rob Wieland summarized the system in his Geek & Sundry article, "Dusk City Outlaws Will Steal the Hearts of New Players and GMs" (21 June 2018): "Character creation features three choices for the players to make; the cartel the player belongs to, the role the player serves on the team, and a quirk that gives the character a little bit of personality. The system is a roll-under percentile system with a slight twist. A player's chances of doing something generally stays the same, but can be modified by boost or obstacle dice in the roll. Rolling boosts gives the players little extra advantages on future rolls, such as inside info or a little extra damage on their attack. Obstacles provide the opposite by showing the things that don't quite go as planned as things often do in these stories. Players use their Luck to push their rolls to success or reflect avoiding problems they might cause. When they start getting hurt, it's because their characters have literally run out of luck. [...]

"Each job is split into a series of day and night segments. Players can use a segment either planning their next move or executing their plans. As more and more segments pile up, the crew acquires Heat, which reflects all the small imperfections of their plan drawing the attention of the authorities. The Judge can spend these points of Heat to increase the difficulty of the legwork the players do by throwing more obstacles in their way. The Judge can also save that heat to pull off a Plot Twist, where something completely unexpected happens during the final heist."

Rob Donoghue (Twitter, 27 Feb 2021) said of Dusk City Outlaws, "Theme-wise, it's like a more brightly lit Blades in the Dark, but in terms of play style it's fast, episodic, flexible, and just has COOL BITS -- a whole box of them. The rules lean into spending physical tokens, and using combinative elements and cards to do chargen and drive plots. It's a genuine delight."

DCO designer Rodney Thompson worked with the Wizards of the Coast design team on both the Star Wars Roleplaying Game Saga Edition (as lead designer) and D&D 5E. He co-designed several board games, including Lords of Waterdeep. Leaving Wizards after a decade, he freelanced for Green Ronin, Paizo, AEG, West End, and others. In January 2017 Rodney funded Dusk City Outlaws in a smash Kickstarter campaign that drew two thousand backers and US$154K. Nowadays Rodney works at Bungie on the Destiny video game series.

This new offer includes the beautiful full-color DCO Core Game, its campaign expansion, and a slew of Jobs -- everything you need to make your mark with the cartels of New Dunhaven -- or maybe become a smear at the foot of the 13 sky-scraping towers of the Tines. We provide each ebook complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format). Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these books have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their devices.

Ten percent of each purchase (after gateway fees) goes to this Dusk City Outlaws offer's pandemic-related charity, Direct Relief. Direct Relief gets protective gear and critical care medications to health workers, with emergency deliveries to medical facilities across the US and to regional response agencies across the world.

Dusk City Outlaws - Turf Wars supplementThe total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$87. Customers who pay just US$7.95 get all five titles in our Starter Collection (retail value $35) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks, including the complete 362-page full-color Dusk City Outlaws Core Game (previously in the Indie Cornucopia 6, Nov 2018, retail price $20) and four Jobs: The Canal Job (Pay What You Want), The Gunpowder Job, The Stonesetter Job, and The Masquerade Job (retail $5 apiece).

Those who pay more than the threshold (average) price, which is set at $17.95 to start, also get our entire Bonus Collection with ten more titles worth an additional $53, including the Turf Wars campaign expansion (retail $8); no less than eight more Jobs ($5 apiece) -- Jailbreak, Ledger, Wolf, Museum, Portrait, Rat, Magistrate, and Ruin; and an offbeat horror-themed heist, The Zombie Job (retail $5).







This seems a little like a fantasy equivalent of a cyberpunk campaign, with the players acting as contract thieves / con men / whatever rather than hackers etc. Generally the rules seem to emphasize drama and story telling rather than precise mechanics, and it seems to be possible to pick up the game and start playing without a huge time investment. On a less positive note, there do seem to be a lot of game components which you can print yourself but are probably better if you buy them ready made - special playing cards and dice, for example - so this could get to be quite expensive. The actual word count seems to be fairly low, which may explain the comparatively low price - the largest document is only a couple of megabytes, and jobs (adventures) only run to a few pages.

Given the low price and slightly different approach it looks like a worthwhile buy, especially if you want to run this sort of campaign and don't have a suitable system. But as as always I have to point out that I get this stuff free, your mileage may differ.

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marcus 2013

A quaint relic of a bygone era ?

I went to Portobello Road and my first two car boot sales of the year last weekend. Didn't get much, but one of the items I bought was something I would have snapped up without hesitation a couple of years ago - tonight I listed it on eBay and I'm not even sure I'm going to get my money back. This is how I described it:

This is either a quaint relic of a bygone era of international travel or a useful accessory for the upcoming resumption of international trade - either way, they normally seem to sell at £20 or more including postage, I'm starting low and with no reserve.

What is it? 

Collapse )

So... what other hitherto-common products may seem dated or outmoded in years to come as a result of Covid etc? Any thoughts?



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marcus 2013

Another two RPG bundle offers - Dungeon Crawl Classics

Two new bundles for Dungeon Crawl Classics,  an RPG which harks back in style to the early years of RPGs. One is general-purpose, the other focuses on one of the classic fantasy settings, Fritz Leiber's Lankhmar.

Dungeon Crawl Classics

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/DCClassics

Dungeon Crawl Classics core rulebook"This is one of two all-new offers now in progress featuring Dungeon Crawl Classics, the Goodman Games FRPG of gold and glory won by sorcery and sword. This Dungeon Crawl Classics Bundle has the current core rulebook and a slew of modules. Its standalone companion offer, DCC Lankhmar, adapts the DCC rules to Fritz Leiber's world of Nehwon, home of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser.

After establishing the Dungeon Crawl Classics brand with five dozen old-school D&D 3.x modules published under the d20 license (2005-2011) -- we featured these in our April 2016 Dungeon Crawlers offer -- Joseph Goodman introduced his own standalone DCC RPG in 2011. Since then the game has steadily gained ground, strengthened by stalwart Goodman designers like Michael Curtis and Harley Stroh as well as TSR-era artists like Erol Otus, Jeff Easley, and Jeff Dee. DCC's third-party support is also vigorous; hundreds of small publishers have embraced one of the gaming field's most supportive licenses. A high-power October 2015 Kickstarter campaign for the corebook's fourth printing raised US$215K from 2,259 backers.

Not exactly a retro-clone but suffused with old-timey brio, DCC RPG glories in its own loopy and lurid, giddy and gaudy aesthetic. Its inspiration -- the most colorful sources in Gary Gygax's "Appendix N: Inspiration and Education Reading" in the original AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide -- shows in DCC RPG module titles like The Sinister Sutures of the Semptress, The Corpse That Love Built, The Accursed Heart of the World Ender, The Croaking Fane, The Dread God Al-Khazadar, and Creep, Skrag, Creep! In all these heady adventures it's easy to stay focused on DCC RPG's goal: "Adventure as 1974 intended you to."

This bargain-priced offer presents the comprehensive 506-page DCC rulebook and an array of modules that carry characters from the Starless Sea to the Cannibal Kingdom and beyond the Black Gate. We provide each ebook complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format). Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these books have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their ereaders.

Ten percent of each payment for these two Dungeon Crawl Classics offers (after gateway fees) goes to the charity chosen by DCC RPG designer Joseph Goodman, San Francisco-Marin Food Bank. For more than 30 years the SF-Marin Food Bank has worked to end hunger in the San Francisco Bay Area, where one in four neighbors is at risk of hunger.

Dungeon Crawl Classics adventure module Imprisoned in the God-SkullThe total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$94. Customers who pay just US$14.95 get all four titles in this offer's Starter Collection (retail value $52) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks, including the complete DCC RPG rulebook (retail price $25), the Gen Con tournament module The Black Heart of Thakulon the Undying (retail $14), and the popular "funnel" adventure Sailors on the Starless Sea (retail $7), as well as the DCC Judge's Screen.

Those who pay more than this offer's threshold (average) price, which is set at $29.95 to start, also get this offer's entire Bonus Collection with six DCC modules worth an additional $42, including The Queen of Elfland's Son, Moon-Slaves of the Cannibal Kingdom, The Star Wound of Abaddon, Emirikol Was Framed!, Beyond the Black Gate, and Imprisoned in the God-Skull (retail $7 each)."






DCC Lankhmar

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/Lankhmar

Dungeon Crawl Classics Lankhmar boxed set"This DCC Lankhmar offer is one of two now in progress featuring Dungeon Crawl Classics, the Goodman Games FRPG of gold and glory won by sorcery and sword. The other offer, the Dungeon Crawl Classics Bundle, has the current core rulebook and a slew of modules.

Fritz Leiber (1910-1992) chronicled the adventures of Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser for more than fifty years. From their home base in the City of Seven-Score Thousand Smokes, Lankhmar, the two rogues gallivant across their fantastic realm of Nehwon. Fafhrd, a tall and brawny northern barbarian, is a warlock in service to the wizard Ningauble of the Seven Eyes. The small and nimble Mouser, a mercurial thief, was once apprenticed to Sheelba of the Eyeless Face. Through three dozen picaresque stories that range widely in tone, the two peerless swordsmen perfectly model the typical D&D player character. No wonder one of TSR's first products was Leiber's Lankhmar board game, and AD&D 2E had a well-regarded line of Lankhmar - City of Adventure supplements.

Authorized by the Leiber estate, Goodman Games funded the Dungeon Crawl Classics Lankhmar line in a March 2017 Kickstarter campaign (1,838 backers, US$187K). The 2018 boxed set expands the DCC RPG rules to match the tone of Leiber's most exciting stories. A new "Fleeting Luck" mechanic lets good fortune blesses your characters one minute, only to dash their hopes the next. Goodman has followed up with a typically strong support line of a dozen Lankhmar modules, as well as several interesting blog posts about Fritz Leiber and his work.

We provide each ebook complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format). Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these books have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their ereaders.

Ten percent of each payment for these two Dungeon Crawl Classics offers (after gateway fees) goes to the charity chosen by DCC RPG designer Joseph Goodman, San Francisco-Marin Food Bank. For more than 30 years the SF-Marin Food Bank has worked to end hunger in the San Francisco Bay Area, where one in four neighbors is at risk of hunger.

Dungeon Crawl Classics Lankhmar module Acting Up in LankhmarThe total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$103. Customers who pay just US$14.95 get both titles in this offer's Starter Collection (retail value $47) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks: the massive Dungeon Crawl Classics Lankhmar boxed set (retail price $40) and the introductory adventure Gang Lords of Lankhmar (retail $7). We also include the free DCC Quick Start Rules.

Those who pay more than this offer's threshold (average) price, which is set at $24.95 to start, also get this offer's entire Bonus Collection with eight supplements and modules worth an additional $56, including The Land of Eight Cities, A Dozen Lankhmar Locations, The Fence's Fortuitous Folly, Acting Up in Lankhmar, Grave Matters, Rats of Ilthmar, Violence for Votishal, and Blasphemy and Larceny in Lankhmar (retail $7 apiece).






I'm not really very interested in either of these offers - in a lot of ways the system seems to be a reversion to the earliest years of RPGs, when adventurers did nothing but break down doors and smash heads, sometimes described as the "murder hobo" style of play. The presentation is a bit basic, and seems to be trying to sell even more weird dice than most players already own. I can't really see any special saving graces. But if you want the system this is a cheap way to buy it!

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marcus 2013

Am I the last one to notice....

...that if you say "Post Owl" at any speed it sounds like "Postal"

JKR really did like her puns when she was writing the Harry Potter books!

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marcus 2013

Another Bundle offer - Blueprints

 A repeated offer from a couple of years ago, assorted plans for RPGs

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/2021Blueprints

Drow City Virtual Boxed Set from Zero-One Games"Revived from January 2018, this offer once again a gigantic collection of RPG maps and bestselling blueprints from 0one Games. These blueprints enhance any medieval fantasy campaign with beautifully drafted castles, crypts, taverns, dockyards, towers, islands, pirate lairs, drow strongholds, Wild West frontier towns, and even Jules Verne's Nautilussubmarine. These interactive .PDFs let you show or hide grids (both square and hexagonal), show or hide room numbers, show walls as outlines or filled, show or hide doors and furniture, orient the compass rose, change print options, and make other customizations, depending on the kind of map.

We provide each map complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format). Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these files have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their devices. The interactive features require the free Adobe Reader.

Ten percent of each purchase (after gateway fees) goes to this offer's pandemic-related charity, Direct Relief. Direct Relief gets protective gear and critical care medications to health workers, with emergency deliveries to medical facilities across the US and to regional response agencies across the world.

Victorian House blueprint from Zero-One GamesThe total retail value of the map sets in this offer is US$111.50. Customers who pay just US$12.95 get all nine map sets in our Starter Collection (retail value $51.50) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks, including seven sets of Great City ward blueprints (The Great City set itself plus ArmyCastleDockResidenceTemple, and Trades Ward sets -- total retail price $11.50) and the giant Crimson Sea and Ironhill Citadel map collections (retail $20 apiece).

Those who pay more than this offer's threshold (average) price, which is set at $24.95 to start, also get this offer's entire Bonus Collection with thirteen more titles worth an additional $60,including the Wild West frontier town and Drow City series; seven more sets of Great City blueprints (Cold CryptsCutthroat's AlleyGraveyardHope ParkMarketplaceProphet's Court, and The Saltshacks); and four modern-day "Deep Blues" maps: the NautilusAirship221B Baker Street, a 38-page view of Holmes's home, and Victorian House, a classic four-storey house popular circa 1837-1901, perfect for Lovecraftian or modern horror.


Last time I said

This looks like a fun collection - for obvious reasons I'm most interested in the Victorian and Steampunk bits, but depending on the type of game you run some or all of it may be useful. That's assuming that you don't make your own plans, of course! Annoyingly, the bit I'd most like to talk about is a surprise item that will be added later [the 221b Baker Street plans], but the Nautilus and Airship are fun too. Having made quite a few plans over the years I appreciate the huge amount of work that must have gone into them, and I think that they're reasonably good value. But since I'm actually only going to be downloading two or three, and don't have to pay, I may be biased.

I don't see any reason to change this.

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marcus 2013

Another Bundle offer - Mike Resnick Novels

 Another non-games offer, this time novels by the late Mike Resnick, who died last year. Various series from his later work, which I don't really know very well.

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/MikeResnick

Mike ResnickThis all-new offer of ebook novels presents space opera and alternate-history fantasy ebook novels by Mike Resnick published by Pyr Books. Mike Resnick (1942-2020) wrote more than 70 science fiction and fantasy novels and hundreds of short stories. He edited 50 anthologies and the magazine Galaxy's Edge. He won many awards and was guest of honor at dozens of conventions. Resnick's work ranges from satirical fare to weighty examinations of morality and culture -- and especially to fast-paced page-turners, with engaging characters, snappy dialogue, and headlong action.

The science fiction books in this offer belong (tangentially) to Resnick's Birthright Universe, a surprising and subversive future history he introduced early in his career with Birthright: The Book of Man (1982) and continued in dozens of stories that span 17 millennia. In the SF Encyclopedia entry for Mike Resnick, John Clute writes: "The Birthright future history is a contrarian version of the future histories familiar to readers of American genre SF: Homo sapiens is uniquely aggressive among the numerous species of the galaxy, and thousands of alien species have been conquered -- and enslaved when convenient -- in the course of humanity's drive to create a galactic empire, which is maintained by a vast standing army and marked by constant wars. This phase of Resnick's vision roughly coincides with the 'normal' period of youthful expansionism found in more traditional work, though always described in terms that make it didactically clear the behavior of our species is unconscionable. [...] With no more enemies to conquer, it becomes clear that humans are incapable of answering the demands of history, that we are too short-lived and too caught in our mortality to answer the challenges of a greater world; and so the human empire begins to eat itself alive. Seventeen thousand years after it all began, Homo sapiens is extinct.

"The second element that structures the Birthright Universe is Africa; Resnick made it clear on several occasions the history of that continent over the past two centuries had served him in general as a model to depict the colonization of other worlds and race in SF, with 19th-Century European empires equated with human sovereignty over the galaxy, and native Africans equivalent to aliens. [...] His best stories, in which the fate and model of Africa are dramatized with unassailable cogency, comprise a significant alternate version of the triumphant tales of conquest told so often by writers in the genre he so clearly loved."

Resnick died of lymphoma in January 2020. His friend and fellow writer Michael Swanwick remembered Resnick as "a born storyteller, prolific author, tireless editor and anthologist, and a man who loved science fiction. Uncharacteristically for a genre writer, he had great business savvy. [...] Mostly, he was one sweet guy. [...] Mike had something like a thousand of those rocket pins they give you when you're nominated for a Hugo. (I exaggerate the number, but only in the service of emotional honesty.) Sometimes, for a Worldcon, he would haul them out and frame his con badge with a batch of them and then fill the Nebula Nominee with more: row upon row of little rockets. It looked like he was assembling a coat of mail."

John Scalzi remembered Resnick as "a teacher and mentor to a great number of writers in the science fiction community, sharing advice about writing and the writing life over decades. There are working writers today who unironically think of themselves as 'Mike's children,' which is a testament to his influence."

This all-new fiction offer presents ebooks of more than a dozen Resnick novels in three series: the four Weird West steampunk fantasies, the three Dead Enders adventures of interstellar espionage, and the five Starshipmilitary space operas. We provide each ebook complete in Kindle (.mobi) and ePub formats. Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these ebooks have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their devices.

Ten percent of each purchase (after gateway fees) goes to this offer's pandemic-related charity, Direct Relief. Direct Relief gets protective gear and critical care medications to health workers, with emergency deliveries to medical facilities across the US and Canada and to regional response agencies around the world.

Flagship, the fifth Starship novel by Mike ResnickThe total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$238. Customers who pay just US$6.95 get all three novels in our Mike Resnick Sampler (retail value $58) as DRM-free ebooks. Each of these novels -- The Buntline Special, The Fortress in Orion, and Starship: Mutiny -- launched a series.

Those who pay more than the threshold (average) price, which is set at $24.95 to start, alsoget our Complete Collection with nine more novels worth an additional $180 -- the rest of the three series -- including three more Weird West novels (The Doctor and the Kid, The Doctor and the Rough Rider, and The Doctor and the Dinosaurs); two more Dead Enders novels (The Prison in Antares and The Castle in Cassiopeia); and four more Starship novels (Pirate, Mercenary, Rebel, and Flagship).



I don't think I've read any of these series before except I think one of the Starship books - I'm much more familiar with Resnick's early work. I have a ton of books waiting to be read and probably won't get around to it before this offer ends at the beginning of May, but he's a good author and you're getting a lot of books for a pretty good price. Anyone who is more familiar is welcome to comment, I'd like a more informed opinion.

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marcus 2013

Another RPG bundle offer - Chivalry and Sorcery 5E

This one is new, but the game is pretty old - Chivalry and Sorcery

https://bundleofholding.com/presents/Chivalry

"Chivalry and Sorcery Fifth Edition core rulebookAmong the oldest FRPGs still published, Chivalry and Sorcery has a 40-year reputation for historical authenticity. Created by Ed Simbalist (1943-2005) and Wilf Backhaus (1946-2009), C&S depicted a feudal Europe (originally 12th-Century France, later a range of periods) with nobles, knights, Christian priests, and medieval doctrines. Though the First Edition (Fantasy Games Unlimited, 1977) has the usual fantasy races, monsters, and an elaborate magick system, it wears these trappings lightly. In those early days, and in its cleaned-up Second Edition (1983), C&S focused not on dungeon crawls but on the feudal system, court intrigue, tournaments and jousts, and a comprehensive catalogue of ordinary life. The designers took inspiration from flavorful historical treatises such as Life on a Mediaeval Barony (1923) by William Stearns Davis.

Chivalry and Sorcery also has a well-earned reputation for complexity. Early characters had 13 attributes, a social background in a rigid hierarchy, a multiplicity of skills, and astrological auspices; there were 21 classes of magick users. Resolving a single battle could take hours. Several later editions (C&S3, 1996; "C&S Light," 1999; "Rebirth Edition," 2000; "Essence v1.1," 2011) aimed, in various ways, for accessibility.

Now, four decades on, Chivalry and Sorcery is still accessing new audiences with its Fifth Edition (2020), funded in a July 2019 Kickstarter campaign from UK designer Stephen A. Turner at Brittannia Game Designs. C&S 5E refines the mechanics of past editions into a single percentile-based "Skillskape" mechanic. Though character creation remains intricate (Brittannia sells a custom Excel utility), attributes are simplified, and magick moreso.

Most interesting, especially in terms of accessibility, the new C&S draws on modern research to present the Middle Ages as they really were: diverse in cultural influences and rich with visitors from outside Europe. Now priests can follow Christianity, Judaism, or Islam, or you can tailor the faith rules to any religion, whether real-world or fictional. What hasn't changed: The Fifth Edition still weaves its fantasy on a foundation of realism, believability, and history. Want to foil an assassination plot at a royal wedding -- clear a pack of bandits from Creag Hill in Somerset -- or find a missing priest and recover his tithes from a haunted keep? Chivalry and Sorcery helps you tell stories at every level of medieval society with authority and conviction.

For those who fight, those who pray, those who toil, and those who enchant, this all-new Chivalry and Sorcery Bundle is a comprehensive guide. We provide each ebook complete in .PDF (Portable Document Format). Like all Bundle of Holding titles, these books have NO DRM (Digital Restrictions Management), and our customers are entitled to move them freely among all their devices.

Twenty percent of each purchase (after gateway fees) goes to the charity chosen by Stephen Turner of Brittannia Games, The Honeypot Children's Charity. Honeypot supports young caregivers -- children under 18 who provide care and emotional support to a parent, grandparent, or sibling who is ill, disabled, or suffers from a mental health condition or substance abuse.

Chivalry and Sorcery Night-walkers supplementThe total retail value of the titles in this offer is US$120.50. Customers who pay just US$9.95 get all seven titles in our Player Collection (retail value $49) as DRM-free .PDF ebooks, including the complete Chivalry and Sorcery 5E Core Rule Book (retail price $30) plus the Character Generator Excel spreadsheet (retail $1); four Companion character supplements from earlier editions (and still compatible with 5E) -- Dwarves' Companion (retail $4), Elves' Companion (retail $4), Armourers' Companion (free), and Knights' Companion (free); and The Art of Chivalry and Sorcery (retail $10).

Those who pay more than the threshold (average) price, which is set at $24.95 to start, also get our entire Gamemaster Collection with nine more titles worth an additional $71.50, including the rules expansion Nightwalkers (retail $14), for vampiric and lycanthropic characters; the location sourcebooks Dragon Reaches of Marakush (retail $15) plus its Dragon Reaches Map (retail $4) and Anderia (retail $3) along with its Anderia Map (retail $2.50); three full-length adventures -- Treachery (retail price $12), Treason (retail $12), and Creag Hill (retail $4); and the C&S 5E GM Screen (retail $5)."




This is a game I never really got into, possibly because I was playing Pendragon occasionally and that covered the Arthurian side of things pretty well, and possibly because it's a fairly complicated rules system. But it has a loyal following, and it's been around long enough that there are a LOT of players around. I think this is good value and an interesting offer, but as I should always try to remember to mention, I should stress that I get this stuff as freebies if I want it - if you don't your mileage may vary.

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