Force and Destiny Core Rulebook

30 October 2016 | Hisham | | Books, Role Playing Games, Star Wars
 

At first Fantasy Flight Games released the Edge of the Empire rulebook which allowed players to be the scoundrels and smugglers of the galaxy. Then they released the Age of Rebellion rulebook for players to play soldiers and military spies. Finally, their final Star Wars role-playing game (RPG) rulebook is in my hands: Force and Destiny, where players are able to choose from a range of Jedi characters to play.

It had been released for almost two years now, but I was not able to get my hands on it. I was unable to grab it off Amazon because I possess no credit card. Nor was I able to use Paypal to order it from Book Depository because it has been "out of stock" for many months.

On a whim I offered to draw for the book and Erik Jensen on Google Plus accepted. So I drew this for him. And as payment I asked of him the Force and Destiny core rulebook. He sent me more than I bargained for.

It's the book on the left

I might review Keeping the Peace in a later blog post.

From a cursory flipthrough of the book, I believe I can run diverse campaigns, from Tales of the Jedi/The Old Republic era 4000 years ago to a Sith-only games. The setting section of the book mentions Tython, the Great Hyperspace Wars and the Ulic Qel-Droma shenanigans.

It's Endor Leia!

The rules are almost the same as the two books mentioned above, except for Dark Side rules with regards to using the Force Dice. I have not run this system for almost a year and this book is making me want to run it again. I wonder how would I intergrate Force users in the campaign I ran for Irfan, Edged by the Empire, presently on hiatus.

In Widescreen!

One thing is for sure: the artwork in this book is top notch.

Three of the Jedi Careers available

Like the other books, there are six Careers available for players to choose from, all Force slingers, with three specialisations for each Career. Each Career sets a specific role for players and the specialisations allow for them to refine the characters more. The Careers are Consular (with the Healer, Niman Disciple and Sage specialisations), Guardian (Peacekeeper, Protector, Soresu Defender), Mystic (Advisor, Makashi Duelist, Seer), Seeker (Ataru Striker, Hunter, Pathfinder), Sentinel (Artisan, Shadow, Shien Expert) and Warrior (Aggressor, Shii-Cho Knight, Starfighter Ace).

I found it a nice touch that one specialisation in every career uses a term that had been invented earlier in other books.

 

Some Sort of Translation Workshop

28 October 2016 | Hisham | | Recent News
 

Then it came to pass that I have to present a talk at the department's inaugural Basic Translation Workshop. Public speaking is not something that comes to me easily. Despite all the training afforded to be by over 25 years of gamemastering, it still affects me negatively as I was extremely introverted growing up. I did not know whether it felt more harrowing about to give a talk to strangers... or to people I know, such as my fellow workmates here in this case.

The title font is Faktos

After several days burning the midnight oil producing the slides and rehearsing, it was time for me to dive into the deep end of the pool. I was creating new slides less than 30 minutes before the talk was scheduled to begin! And I would not have be able to do it without the help, suggestions and support of my colleagues in our Translation and Language Service Unit.

I have no idea what I'm doing

Naturally because I was the one on point, the presentation just had to involve a couple of Star Wars and Star Trek references as I talked, organised exercises and brief group competitions. After over two hours on my feet - actually another two hours even before we started - I was done! I hoped the participants were able to absorb some of the theories and anecdotes that I shared to help them understand the intricacies of translation between Bahasa Malaysia and English.

I suppose I can do this presentation this again... and give a talk to scary strangers next.

 

Raniq Arae - Jedi Pilot

24 October 2016 | Hisham | | Artwork, Star Wars
 

Erik Jensen commissioned a drawing of his wife - who is a huge Star Wars fan - as a purple lightsabre swinging Jedi who also happens to be an X-wing fighter pilot. Also included is the astromech droid designated BB-2.

Raniq Arae

This is one of the rare instances where I draw an original Star Wars character which is not involved in any RPG campaigns.

 

16th Anniversary Dinner

15 October 2016 | Hisham | | Family Pics
 

Tonight is our sixteenth year together as husband and wife, so we took it upon ourselves to go celebrate with a dinner at a eaterie known as MaiCafe. As far as anniversaries were concerned it quite an enjoyable dinner and our second here in Perlis.

16 years after that one time we got married

I have said it once and I will say it again: I am blessed to have Ain beside me as a partner for 16 years. Though we began four years earlier, so this is acutally our 20th anniversary together as a couple.

Irfan also joined the party

Also, where would we all be without the presence of one Irfan Shafiq who is old enough to earn the Legion Flight Ring.

 

Mini Six: Shadows Through The Mist

13 October 2016 | Hisham | | RPG Actual Play, Role Playing Games
 

I have always stated that tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) can be amazing teaching tools, not only for language purposes but to develop critical thinking skills, social skills and general knowledge. Yesterday, I finally ran a game in an English for General Purposes class to see the students could be engaged enough for them to communicate with each other and me without being shy.

The players at the table

The horror begins!

The Setup

Seeing that polyhedral dice were rare in these here parts, I thought I would run a game that used the ubiquitous six-sided dice. Thus, AntiPaladin Games' Mini Six was chosen. Besides, the system is based on West End Games' D6 system which runs the Star Wars RPG which I have been familiar with for the last 26 years.

The previous week the students and I had agreed to participate after briefly explaining to them what the game is, how it would be played and what my intentions were. Six of them volunteered to be Player Characters (PCs) while the rest would be able to observe and give suggestions to them as they played. I would become the gamemaster (GM) and pregenerated characters would be provided to the players.

I thought I would create a setting riffing off The Mist and Silent Hill because I had no idea how familiar the students were with genre tropes. A mystery setting with lethal monsters might provide enough motivation for the players.

I also played the video above that I quickly made with OpenShot Video Editor.

Shadows Through the Mist

Episode 1

 

Paperminis: Phase II Clone Troopers

09 October 2016 | Hisham | | Paper Minis, Role Playing Games, Star Wars
 
How many troops is a clone platoon anyway?

I thought I would get the ubiquitous Republic clone troopers from the Clone Wars out of the way before we get swept up by Rogue One fever in the coming months.

Shinies!

These are just standard Phase II armour without any armour decorations. There are ten clone troopers and two clone commanders on the PDF. Everyone has one DC-15 blaster. Here is what you can do: Customise these troopers! Decorate it yourself with coloured markers, and write their name in the box.

Now we're customised!

Go to town on them with a Sharpie.

 

Another Rainy Dinner by the Sea

09 October 2016 | Hisham | | Family Pics, Food
 

In the past I have posted an blog article of us having an early dinner along the road by the sea at dusk in Kuala Perlis before. Again, it was raining but this time there was a spectacular sunset on display for us to view.

Langkawi Island held its postion at the horizon

Click on the image above to view the full image. The sun was about to set, although at first thick clouds over Langkawi Island blocked our view of it. Meanwhile the rain fell sporadically in fine droplets that we easily ignored.

Ain faces north

Ain ordered the laksa, which was delicious but apparently not as delicious and rich as Mak Nyang's laksa, a story for another time.

Irfan faces south

Irfan and I ordered the lok chin, which is various seafood and sausages on a stick, roasted over an open fire and dipped in various sauces.

 

The Saurials of the Lost Vale

04 October 2016 | Hisham | | Artwork, Role Playing Games
 

Over the weekend, I worked on an art commission for Chris Constantin's upcoming update for his book The Saurials of the Lost Vale! Drawing fantasy dinosaur people will never ever be uncool.

...returns to the Forgotten Realms

From left to right: a parasaurolophus, a pteranodon, a triceratops and a stegosaurus! (Click on the thumbnail above to view a larger image.)

Dinosaurs that did not make the cut from the concept pencils were a dimorphodon, an allosaurus and a psittacosaurus. Features included in this Dungeons and Dragons supplement include:

  • The History of the Saurials and what has happened to them since the Finder Stone trilogy.
  • The Saurials, now updated for 5e Dungeons and Dragons.
  • The Lost Vale - gateway to Anauroch.
  • The Saurial Homeworld - rediscovered and fleshed out.

The Saurials of the Lost Vale is available from the Dungeon Masters Guild website here!