A place wherein this Dwarven Cleric can share his love of maps, dice, miniatures, and all things involving gaming and general geekery--not to mention the occasional witty non-gaming observations--whilst escaping from the humdrum existence of his routine Terran existence.

Hail and Well Met, fellow traveler! May my Stronghold provide a place for enlightenment and amusement, and somewhere to keep your dice dry. Enter and rest awhile.

14 May 2013

[From the Mailbag] Playing Catch-up from Los Angeles

The recently-completed A to Z April Challenge took more out of me than just physical and emotional stress. It also pretty much kept me from talking about some very generous and terrific things I received in the mail during that time.

First up are some offerings provided by Christian Walker. Old timers will remember him for his several excellent 'zine offerings, most lately Loviatar, a 'zine which I credit for a resurgence in interest and production of self-published RPG 'zines. He called it quits on Loviatar in late December 2012. Since then, he's been re-charging his batteries and taking a break. However, imagine my surprise in walking in from work one day and finding a LARGE envelope on my desk...a large envelope with his return address stamped on it. I tore into it with excitement and confusion, as I hadn't been expecting anything from him. I'm well overdue for saying THANKS, CHRISTIAN!!! Inside the package I found this little beauty:

I must confess, I've never seen this or heard of this setting before. I'm not well-versed in any Labyrinth Lord material, to be honest. This particular gem was first published in 2007 and is the basis for Mr. Bezios' "Phoenix Barony" setting (the end of the book promises several more adventures/modules in the setting). The gift was completely unexpected and utterly appreciated. It came on a very, very bad day and helped alleviate some emotional pain. The material within looks generic enough that it shouldn't be too hard to adapt and modify for my own 3.x/Pathfinder uses. In fact, I'm already plotting how and where to fit the Phoenix Barony in my campaign world in relation to Coldtreath.

Heh. Good stuff.

Speaking of good stuff, imagine my surprise when I received this in the mail on Thursday. Christian had, last year, started sending out one-page gaming material letters together with (and eventually in lieu of) Loviatar. I really enjoyed them and found them useful in my own campaigns. Well, he's started a new one-page letter 'zine: a Los Angeles-centered Cthulhu-oriented campaign setting, Shudde M'ell Confidential.

This first issue was intriguing to me. So much so that I sat right down and scribbled out a quick map and a letter to his newly-introduced first NPC regarding some mysterious runes discovered in an unusual excavation in the basement of a downtown building.

Yeah, I've got a set of brass ones. I'm a bit forward sometimes. But as I said, the material inspired me.

To be honest, I've never even played in a Cthulhu campaign. I'd do almost anything to live in Christian's neighborhood and take part in this one, though. Every Lovecraftian game I've heard any of my acquaintances run have all been New England-oriented campaigns. One friend had planned a northwest/Washington State-oriented game, but it never left the initial "wouldn't this be cool" planning stages. The idea of investigators in early 20th-century Los Angeles really sets off a spark somehow. There's a lot of interesting individuals, personalities, events, etc. that exist on the West Coast during this time period; certainly sufficient to make for a fun and realistic campaign setting.

Sigh. And here I am, stuck in the Rockies.

1 comment:

christian said...

I am so glad you enjoyed the Phoenix Barony. It's a neat little project I heard about on RPG.net years ago just when the OSR was in its infancy.

I'm also pleased that you liked the zine. I need to send you a re-print of the first issue as I made some slight changes to layout and stat blocks.

I've no experience with CoC, so undertaking it is going to be interesting. My style us definitely more subdued that the usual tentacles from beyond time and space themes, so I hope I can marry the two somehow.

It feels good to be writing again, although I am a bit cautious. The events at Sandy Hook in December really had a profound influence on me. Part of my time away from the hobby was trying to figure out how I could participate in a venture that features so much violence. I'm still trying to sort it all out, but in the meantime it is nice to be scribbling away.

I got your beautiful letter yesterday and the CoC material you included was amazing. I read it, then immediately thought, "See, Christian, this is how you do CoC." You really have a knack for the theme and tone!

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