Strolen\s Citadel content. 
101 Villages
Locations  (City)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-10-20 03:25 PM
this is a fun one, a very useful tool for any gamer. Go to Comment
The Black Man
Plots  (Coincidence)   (Side-Quest)
axlerowes's comment on 2009-11-12 08:18 PM
Only voted Go to Comment
The Maul
Locations  (Neighborhoods)   (Other)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-09-28 11:15 PM
I enjoyed this, and admire (if that is worth anything to ya) the composition. We get a little history, a little geography, a little ethnography and few overviews of notable characters. I also like how the links were employed.
Go to Comment
30 Firefighters
NPCs  (Extras)   (Combative)
axlerowes's comment on 2009-03-17 03:54 PM
I saw this on random and thought this would be really useful if in a whitewolf or shadowrun game you needed to grab a fire department cause your PCs decided they needed to get involved with one right away. It has the nice mix of subplots and blunt simplicity that make it accessable to most. While not a major creative effort it is well put together and handy.

So I am glad you posted it and I enjoyed reading it. Go to Comment
The Strange Ship
Plots  (Coincidence)   (Side-Quest)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-23 05:16 PM

The third option is Dracula.

I like the second option, the ghosts could actually provide much of the information that the cabin boy provides in option 1 but as Scras says it has that touch of saddness that makes it special. 

Go to Comment
Nymphs in Distress
Plots  (Hired)   (Campaign)
axlerowes's comment on 2009-10-13 10:17 PM
This strikes me as awfully railroady for a plot and anti-climatic. The death horse are a prime example of putting your characters on rails.

The plot is anti-climatic in that the player characters don't achieve the goal as much as they deliever a message to somebody who achieves the goal. I think many players would find this resolution unsatisfying. This would be particularly true if the PCs had a rough encounter with the prospectors early on, and are hoping to get a bit of payback or at least to be the instruments of justice. The fairy tale tone is different and interesting, and it is a very complete write up. I think the conflicts within this plot line need to be developed so that the players are more directly resolved in the resolution of the conflicts. Go to Comment
Palace of the Ebony Fields
Locations  (Fortification)   (Plains)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-01-12 08:00 PM
for your gamer's gamer. Go to Comment
Translator of Political Corectness
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-24 12:10 AM
One of us isn't getting the joke Go to Comment
Translator of Political Corectness
Items  (Other)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-24 06:05 AM
I guess you just doubled down Go to Comment
The Spider Wall Trap
Dungeons  (Underground)   (Traps)
axlerowes's comment on 2009-09-29 10:10 AM
useful and well presented Go to Comment
Oaken Shambler
Lifeforms  (Flora)   (Forest/ Jungle)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-18 11:05 PM

Take that Shel Silverstein! The only thing this tree gives is whup-ass.

I think these almost entirely meta-posts would not be hurt by in-game stats. I think the Citadel is old enough to let go a some of its bias and dogma.

Not too much world building here though.

Go to Comment
Asphalt Golem
Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2011-05-24 07:48 PM
I like it. Why not have a Tar Golem or an Asphalt Golem if you are going to have Golem? I also like the suggestion that these Golems were used to transport raw materials. "Why move the mountain when you get the mountain (or the tar) to come to you?" The write up isn't witty or entertaining, and perhaps that is why some didn't take to it. But it is a clear write up and it gets to the point. I may use this someday. Nicely done and thanks. Go to Comment
Articles  (Resource)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-12-15 07:01 AM
This list scared the hell out of me. Of course I have a terrible anxiety and trepidation when it comes to synonyms, and

Agateophobia- Fear of insanity
 Dementophobia- Fear of insanity 
 Maniaphobia- Fear of insanity 
 just sent me in to the fetal position.
Go to Comment
Articles  (Resource)   (Game Mastering)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-12-15 10:53 AM
I had to goggle Wallons,

The English, The Dutch, The Wallons I detecting a pattern of disliking modern pidgin cultures. Go to Comment
The Despised
Lifeforms  (Intelligent Species)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-11-10 10:17 AM
Nice write up, could be a solid entry in the old school contest. Go to Comment
The Sanctuary of Sumuho
Dungeons  (Desert)   (Rooms/ Halls)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-02 01:57 PM
This is well formatted and clearly written. I admire that a great deal. I also don’t think there is anything wrong with the use of GM voice. But I get the impression that you are more of a writer than a GM.

As a story/ piece of writing:

Someday a literary scholar will undertake a study of roleplaying writing (if they haven’t already), and in that contrived and irrelevant thesis the scholar will be forced to recognize the existence of a novel and modern literary voice or perspective: the GM VOICE

In the GM’s voice the speaker or narrator is addressing simultaneously the player and the character. If this voice occurs as it does here, in a GM supplement, the voice is both addressing a traditional audience which is following the story in a linear fashion, it all addressing the GM who plays the role of a writer or co-author and in this case it also addresses the “in game” or in story world as it if were real and independent. Let us consider the description of the first encounter.

Dozus starts with a limited third person present tense perspective
“After two days of steady traveling, the archaeologists cheerfully announce that the Sanctuary is but a few miles away. As they top the next dune, however, there is a distressing sight: an encampment of nomadic lizardmen. Notorious bandits native to the Inhap, the lizardmen are no pushover, especially given their ability to dive into and "swim" through the sand, making them difficult to track. As one of the archaeologists - a slender woman with a heavy accent - unhelpfully points out, the encampment is directly over the site of the temple.”

In these line we are told of events that happen to the characters from thei character's perspective: The lizard men are notorious from the character’s perspective, their presence is distressing from the character’s perspective, the archaelogists comment is unhelpful from the character’s perspective

This tells us what is happening almost as if it is story, but then we switch to a future tense: “Unless one of the party is lucky enough to speak Inhapi, the lizardmen will have to be removed by force. Expect strong resistance from the dozen of the tribe…”

Next we return to a more traditional narrative: “The three nod to each other and the old archaeologist begins to chant in a strange tongue. For several minutes, nothing seems to happen. Then, suddenly, the archaeologist slams the base of the staff into the ground.”

Later on Dozus will start to address the story tellers themselves: “so some knowledge of Sumuho’s history would be valuable”

You, the readers and member of the Citadel prefer this type of writing. Why?

Why didn’t Dozus just write this up as story? What do we gain from this write up that we would not gain from a direct story? This already a very linear narrative, there are few asides or maybes. If this had just been written up as a story would the Citadel be more or less inclined to give it as much love? Writing this as a linear traditional story would not make it any less useful as a roleplaying adventure template, in part because except in the climax section were are not forced to deal with any encounters that could have truly different outcomes.

As roleplaying encounter:

1) The lizard men: It is stated that the perhaps talking to the lizard could be a solution, but we know nothing about their style of communication. We can assume that they are violent gnome slaughtering bandits, so their motivation seems clear, but what if you are characters are not inclined to go slaughter a group of intelligent beings that have done nothing wrong to them. A simple solution would be have encounters with the lizard men that would generate specific animosity between the players and the lizardmen. Otherwise perhaps the lizard men could be developed a bit to make them more than just “monsters”. What if the players fail or reach a stalemate with the lizardmen? Why wasn't that considered implicitly by the author?

2) The puzzle: Here the players just need to repeat what the NPCs tell them is important. This is interesting in that makes sure your players understand where they are going, like a backstory pop quiz, but it doesn’t dig into the players either. The most efficient method for solving this puzzle is to make the character puppets for the NPCs. Not fun. Could the players talk the door into opening by teaching it phenomenology?

3) Setback: It is saving throw and set piece. Again the players are not strongly involved.

4) Climax: Did the archeologist really need the PCs? To make this more powerful their should have been some event that forced the PCs to bond with archeologist prior to this. A GM could insert one, but it should have been in the write up. Did the archeologist give off clues that they intended to betray the PCs? The PCs are no more than passengers in this plot.

5) Twist: I like the picture of the talking head. At least this has some open ended stuff going for it.

Solid idea.

Go to Comment
The Sanctuary of Sumuho
Dungeons  (Desert)   (Rooms/ Halls)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-02 04:13 PM
Strolen's Citadel: A Role Playing Community

What separates role-playing fiction from standard fiction in your view. Go to Comment
The Sanctuary of Sumuho
Dungeons  (Desert)   (Rooms/ Halls)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-02 04:23 PM
I imagine the door conversation going something like this

Go to Comment
The Sanctuary of Sumuho
Dungeons  (Desert)   (Rooms/ Halls)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-02 08:45 PM
"Interactivity. If I wanted to write "standard fiction," it would be straight prose. "

Most modern fans of speculative approach the medium as spring board for their own ideas not as place to genuinely pursue or absorb the art. They are less concerned with the actually material than they are with the personal fantasies and possibilities that the story offers. Thus sci-fi and fantasy fans don't are willing to except bad writing or poor acting if there is an interesting idea behind the story. That has always been true, but I think that has shifted away from philosophical or political dialogs and focused on personal escapism. So called golden age Sci-fi/fantasy such as "We", "Anthem" and the Lord of the Rings were allegorical for political or social issues. Post Star Wars speculative fiction deals more providing a context that would appeal to the readers own fantasies. "Ender's Game" is the dream of every weak scared awkward kid. So I see modern fantasy and sci-fi writing as something written for the audience to play in.

Are you making the argument that story telling is less engaging than the story suggesting of RPG writing because in story telling the audience is just receiving and in story suggesting they are participating? Go to Comment
NPCs  (Mythic/ Historical)   (Mystical)
axlerowes's comment on 2014-03-26 11:29 AM
I like the idea that the priest robes are tattered remains of the old emperors clothing. You the get the point across and it is clear that you are trying to give us a mytho-historical figure

These are some general thoughts, not a list of "I hate this" questions.
I think you unnecessarily hamstrung this write up. If you are writing about the historical view of a person is different than writing about the person.

Why not write up the person?

If you are writing this for other GMs why assume that game use is only going to be at the time of your choosing?

Would have you written this different if the character was "a contemporary" citizen Neyathis?

You are not constrained by the fog of history and thus this fog of history aspect to the write up is only an affectation. Go to Comment
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