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The official blog of the Obsidian Portal.
12
Jul

Group Beta #33 — Roomspiration

9
Jul

The Initiative Ritual

Composing Your Counting Customs

In the old Final Fantasy JRPG video games, there was a moment before the beginning of a battle where the screen would flash, an 8-bit sound effect would play (which may or may not have been trying to imitate the sound of clashing swords?), and the image would shift from a top-down overworld view into a statistic-heavy side-glance at the battle scene with all its menus and short, memory-frugal names. It is a video game sequence that elicits a Pavlovian response of joy/dread in those of us who ground out our childhoods (and some of our adulthoods) in the pixelated playlands of old. It was also a brief moment for mental preparation – a subconscious shifting of gears from “explorer” to “warrior.”

You can do something similar when it’s time to roll combat initiative in your game. Treat it like a formal rite and customize it to fit your group’s needs. Elevate it from simple bookkeeping into a ritual summons – drawing attention and setting the mood you wish to set. Conduct your initiative ceremony with the same care that you give to other parts of your game and you will reap the roleplaying rewards.

5
Jul

Group Beta #32 — Blood Bath

4
Jul

Obsidian Portal Campaign of the Month July 2019 – Birthright: Cities of the Sun

You look lost. First time in Suiriene? Perhaps I can be of some assistance? You won’t want to be blindly casting about too much around here. The Sultan’s men may not take kindly to it. They may think you an agent of The Serpent. I hear whispers of an impending purge, and you definitely don’t want to get caught up in that. Some think it cruel, but what can be done? He is the Sultan, it is his Birthright: Cities of the Sun – July’s Campaign of the Month! If you have a lust for adventure, then ready yourself, for we prepare to speak with Joedylan2000, GM of this gem.

2
Jul

Five-Minute Languages

J.R.R. Tolkien spent years developing his fantasy languages and then wrote a handful of books to test them out (you’ve probably never heard of them, they’re pretty obscure). Klingon and Dothraki were developed for film and TV – carefully encoded over time with great care. But you’re you. You need to crank out some gobbledygook for game night and you need it fast. Well, hold on to your diphthongs and protect your predicates because we’re doing a crash course on fast-and-dirty language creation.

 

28
Jun

Group Beta #31 — Physics Lesson

Award Winning!

Gold ENnie for Best Website 09'-11'


Silver ENnie for Best Website, Best Podcast 2012-2013
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