Strolen\s Citadel content. 
Cosmic Era: Predator Tech
Items  (Equipment Listing)   (Combat)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-07-19 09:51 PM

The term Yuatja is that something you made up or is that from some other source material?

I am of several minds about how to comment on this one.

First thought is whether to critique comment or vote at all. If one comments on something and the recipients gets upset then there is no point. This website is all about personal enjoyment and if you strip them of that than you shouldn’t be here. People often say critiquing is okay and necessary as long as done nicely. But isn’t it nicer not to critique at all and just offer blanket praise? Light hearted criticism is often worse cause people might take it personally. This particular case is rough because it is always rough to make negative comments about the big guys on the website. In the internet world those guys have the power to be bullys and push you around or keep you from participating. Indeed the first time I ever offered Scras and Muro serious criticism I was so worried about doing it I sent it to them as a PM. They were cool about though and I later posted and voted. Critiquing and voting is the game of the citadel. But if push comes to shove if somebody asked me to give them a higher vote, or change my comment I would and I have.

Additionally, in the case of Scras, he always makes a point to say that he writes most of this for himself out of some compulsion. I get that. If there are four winds of the citadel than self-indulgent post has to be one of them. If somebody is posting just for them then maybe should you get off their lawn? But if one posts it up here and not in the forums than it must be because one wanted that piece to be evaluated.

Finally, I am also worried that on this website that I am the guy playing too hard. I am that guy playing full court D in pick up basketball, stealing bases in softball or blocking on the run in flag football. It is always a debate whether to try and be brief and light-hearted, but that can be ambiguous. And perhaps Scras and the cosmic era are special and deserve more attention.

One of the risks I have seen when you write for the cosmic era is that you spit out banal regurgitations of the inspirational material. In this particular post you simply describe the items from Predator movie. You mention a few things about the cosmic era (it could drive you insane or what have you) but you don’t integrate it. You already have arcano tech as a concept that give you carte blanche for most sci-fi stuff. Above, just like in your recent Cosmic Era Avenger’s post, all you do is describe the characters from the movies with new techno babble rationales for their powers and abilities (though I did think /Hulk, equipment: pants/ was funny). Contrast this to what you have done with G.I. Joe. You have taken the material and visual minutia of the Cobra faction from tv show and turned into a subversive and sympathetic terrorist group in the cosmic era. None of the story points are the same, but just a few details are kept, the window dressing is kept. I make have the logo of Cobra but it is really Amerika Command. It is a truly re-imagining. You failed to do that with the Predator tech stuff and the Avengers and thus you waste our time and yours. People like to read articles about stuff they already know, it makes them feel connected and comfortable. It sometimes fun to see lists of your favorite movie villains or the coolest movie guns. Your stuff on the Avengers and the Predator tech is fun in that regard, but not as cosmic era a post. I feel this whole discussion, your brain storming of with regard to how to integrate the tech, would be better suited for the forums.

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Feather-Dusters of Dra'Solme Tsolyul
Items  (Melee Weapons)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2017-04-06 06:52 AM
cute and complete, poor Shamargyun.....I hope he or his ancestors come back to claim their feathers Go to Comment
Feather-Dusters of Dra'Solme Tsolyul
Items  (Melee Weapons)   (Magical)
axlerowes's comment on 2017-04-06 06:53 AM
Skeleton Bow
Items  (Ranged Weapons)   (Cursed)
axlerowes's comment on 2017-04-06 06:55 AM

Love the old school game logic in this one. Very nice!


"Our archers are greater than theirs, their arms do not tire, their strings do not snap, and shooting them full of arrows only replenishes their supply of arrows." Go to Comment
Vaakri's Empyral Bow
Items  (Ranged Weapons)   (Heroic)
axlerowes's comment on 2017-04-06 07:00 AM
Nice myth, I like the tone and the choices you made while writing it. Go to Comment
Vingian Array
Lifeforms  (Constructed)   (Any)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-09-04 01:04 PM
This is fantastic, one of the best CE posts I have ever read. It kind of reminds me of the post-Hue Lore Borg with their emotional collective.

“The data recordings show a brief but violent staff 'correction' as several unpopular members were eliminated from the collective, followed by a moderate amount of procreative activities.”

This is frightening. The hive mind as the ultimate mean girl clique. I wonder what feature made people unpopular.

There is very little surplus verbiage, all the voices are clear and there are several fun vignettes. I do hope Edward Evans is a short story somewhere and I do like the Bond collective idea. Go to Comment
7 Things Wrong with Transformers: Age of Extinction
Articles  (Humor/ Editorial)   (Gaming - In General)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-04-07 08:06 AM
It would be great if you had this much interest in and expended as much thought on the work of your fellow strolenites. Go to Comment
30 Barbarians
NPCs  (Extras-Horde)   (Combative)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-04-09 07:21 AM
This is really fun. Reminds of the bio blurbs on the back of action figure packaging. I like the connected nature of this ready made horde, I like the use of archetypes and cliche, and the write up is smooth and accessible. Go to Comment
Perimeter Pod
Items  (Ranged Weapons)   (Combat)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-02-18 09:33 PM
This seems about right, another niche filled. Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-02-19 12:18 PM
One of the constant concerns when writing anything, is whether or not ideas are presented clearly. Did you understand the Rank system for Decepticons? Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-02-19 03:21 PM


Well I was thinking the rank concept would cover the morale check thing, decepticons without a clear leader fall apart

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TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-15 12:39 PM
"Each transformer needs a size.

Size does not mean more power or more gadgets. It usually means that the bot is stronger, tougher, and more intimidating though. "
Size is included in the power rating, i understand what you mean about power not being size and i think the difference here is just word choice. As I have it here (or will have it here, every time I edit this something else is lost, its F**KING wit me ed.) Power is related to size, base damage done and base damage absorbed. Here is the listing of the size/power choices. That I can't to go into the main post.
A: Mega: Pretty self explanatory, if you turn into something that holds multiple other transformers. Omega Supreme, Metroplex, Scorponok
B: Max: These are like front lines units but for some reason in the toys and the in the narrative of the show they were just a little more robust and powerful. This includes the leaders, Galvatron, Megatron, Optimus Prime, Grim Lock
C: Front Line: These would be units such as Hound, Wheeljack, Hoist, Soundwave,
D: Secondary Unit: Smaller but still effective transformers: Bumblebee, Cosmos, Powerglide, and the Insecticons
E: Extension Units: These are transformers that don’t exist without another transformer. All the transforming cassette tapes would fall into this category and maybe Reflector.


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TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-15 12:43 PM
"Each transformer should have a motivation in addition to a purpose. This will help explain why they make each decision. Optimus leads the autobots, but he is willing to die to save one transformer. Starscream wants to please or overthrow Megatron, but he usually just obeys his orders."

I have a step D to character creation, I called it the character's Quirk or Bugs/disadvantages. Every transformer has one. Maybe the character has to speak in rhyme, maybe the character has constant ruthless ambition or maybe the character has a "simple brain". Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-15 12:52 PM
"Some transformers can also have multiple alternate forms. One alternate form option is the ability to combine with other transformers. These combiners, like Devastator, have a new arsenal and abilities when combined."

I tried to deal with this also is character creation. So the player rate the relative importance of the various character aspects 1-5 or A-E. If you put a rank of A in power, then get to play a mega transformer-like a transforming aircraft carrier. If you put a rank E in power, then you play a transforming side car to somebody else's motorcycle.
The 5 aspect you rank are POWER, WEAPON, SKILLS, VEHICLE FORM, AND ADVANTAGEs.
ADVANTAGEs would deal with the issues you bring up.
I have yet to assign value to the different advantages but I brainstormed some above. One of those would be noncybertron construction, no prime directives, Examples of this would be the Combaticons and the Dinobots. Another advantage would be part of connector unit. So if you wanted to play a Combaticon type unit you would have to spend a enough focus you priorities on advantages. Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-15 12:54 PM
"Each transformer should have a power rating for the power of their Spark"

Yes they should! could this be like experince, could extra spark be an advantage you buy? When you have a spark of five do get to the hold matrix? This particular point needs work. Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-16 05:35 PM
What do you mean dull, an SUV with ramming armor and Futuristic Space vehicle with a multitool sound awesome!! They are way cooler than say a mini-van with a glue gun.

"I am looking at you G1 one Ironhide....there was reason you got it worst of all in the movie."

What were your character's personality like? If I am going to make tables that for people to roll up G1 characters, then they have to except that Bumblebees will happen. More than that if you are going to play with tables based character generation, then you have to commit to playing a random character.
Of course you can always leave the table behind. Just say I am putting A in alternate form and playing a robot that turns into shark.

My goal here is to get simple system that 5 people could make 5 characters in under half an hour and which uses intuitive rules. So I was toying with a different alternate form table for each power rating. So if you were a power A, you would roll on a different alternate form table for each rank you put into alternate form. But that would be too many tables. But unless we choose to just ignore mass as an issue like they did in the G1 cartoons, then we can't have a Mega transformer playing turning into a chainsaw. I think if we only gave A/5 power and an E/1 power have different table.

But as hybrid and multiple forms, burrowing, that is why a put mole in there, that is why I put advantages in there. You will get advantage points to spend on stuff, and then you can take disadvantages like "simple minds" to get more advantages.

How about this? If you are rank A or B alternate form you vehicle or animal has some sort of device or weapon it. So if you transform from those forms you get to keep the vehicle weapon, like the wrecking ball?


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TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-17 12:26 PM
The assumption was every transformer has an energy weapon, and can brawl "in all that". I think I say that in the write up but that needs to be more clear. But if you think we should take that out, I could see that, just give a weapon chart D-E and as you say allow players with weapon rating of C or higher to get two rolls. That could be fun, you'd get some more personalized weapons then the basic blaster for everyone. If we go with basic blaster idea, the power of that energy weapon is linked to your primary power rating. The Weapon chart is only for bonus weapons and doesn't necessarily mean offensive weapons. Then if chose alternate form RANK A or B. You also get a "primary" weapon or utility. Why don't you write up the weapon chart you think best fits.

As for the rationale why the "cost" for playing an animal. Well that is based on what I envisioning for the alternative form in game mechanics. In the robot form you have based power rating, this effects your speed, your resistance to damage and all types of attacks and your ability to dish out damage. Then in your alternate form your base rating is increased. For example in the system I am going to post, Grimlock in robot form would roll 4d10 for everything (except Skills). The strength of his actions would be based on the final number rolled, then in T-rex form he would either roll 6d10 is one thing I am considering but I inclinded to having it be 4d10+16 for Level 4 Transformer in alternate form. It is my belief that the animal forms are less specialized then the vehicle forms and are more versitile. An Ape may not have as big a gun as tank, but can it carry out a wider range of actions and it will be just as strong.


What we really need to work are the skills. How important do we want them to be? How specific do we want them to be? How much variation in skill levels do we want to have?
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TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-22 08:20 AM
I didn't mind the first M. Bay transformers movie with its "A Boy and his robot" plot. The two stories of the militaries exploration of the robots and the boys exploration. But you are right though they did not have the depth of the original G1 story line, which is saying a lot. Why did the writers have the Transformers come here looking for an artifact? I could get that they are looking for megatron, I could swalllow that Megatron is in some X-file/National Treasure like military facility, I could accept the kid and bumblebee form an ET-ELIOT bond, and that the "The Jesus" (his character was so over the top he might as well have been wearing that purple jump suit under clothes) was working for a secret government agency. could be made to accept that the boy might have some clue or item that would help the transformers. But it was amazing that after all that stuff they put in the film that there was no depth to the film at all. All of that and what story was left for us fanboys to expand on?
There were some very odd choices made in that movie, for example why the scene with Jon Voight and John Turturo trapped in the room with the little transformer? Did we need to redeem their characters? Go to Comment
TRANSFORMERS RPG: Part 1
Articles  (Rules and Advice)   (Gaming - Genre)
axlerowes's comment on 2012-02-23 08:09 AM
All that movement and the movies still didn't go anywhere. Go to Comment
Horse/Father/Da
Articles  (Fiction)   (Players)
axlerowes's comment on 2015-03-05 02:05 PM
I am not sure I could do that with this because the character never asks why his father left. He claims that his father loved horses more than him, but in the nameless character's mental dialog he has no discussion over his father's motivations. He just concludes that the man choose horse over him and he is not going to ask why. Perhaps in the character's heart he believes that his father left because he didn't care about him enough.

Anyway thanks for the comment this could use a lot editing. I really liked your suggestion for the title, I hadn't notice the connection of identity between the father and horses in the character's mind. Go to Comment
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The Candle-Eyed Man

       By: Murometz

The third son of a candle-maker, and secretly a spy, Tsiao Fong Wei betrayed his family, clan, and town to the merciless Qongg Dynasty, causing the deaths of his own family members. He survived to an old age hiding out in the country side and keeping a low profile. One day however, the “Paper Knife” finally found Tsiao Fong Wei , and exacted his revenge on behalf of the folk, dead and tortured.

After a furious struggle, the “Paper Knife” plunged twin burning candles into the eyes of the traitorous old man and laughed, as Tsiao Fong Wei howled in dismay and pain. Some say Tsiao Fong Wei died that day. Others say that the old man somehow escaped despite his sudden anguish and utter blindness.

The truth is lost to time.

But to this day the children of the Red-Ridge County towns and villages are told by their parents to always beware twin lights in the darkness and to never venture into the woods at night, and to keep an ear open for the Groaning Ghost, for somewhere out there Tsiao Fong Wei the Traitor, now a vengeful spirit, stumbles about the darkness moaning and wailing, candles still sticking forth from out of his otherwise empty eye sockets. And though the candles plunged into his eyes all those years ago were a’flame going in, now the wax protuberances are somehow lit from within and burn without, and two flickering lights in the darkness, always portend his coming.

Ideas  ( Lifeforms ) | December 6, 2013 | View | UpVote 4xp