Sunday 26 November 2017

Things Never Go Smooth

Remember last week when I said I'd be running a Frozen Skies one shot at the local university's games society?

Unfortunately it ended up being cancelled, though with the prospect of being rescheduled at a later date. My plan was originally going to be writing up the post-game session report for this week's blog post, instead I'll be writing up what I'd intended to run. So sit back, relax and enjoy!

Things Never Go Smooth

What I had planned to run was the adventure of the same name as this post, though I was going to cheat a little to make things interesting. I decided to go with two or three complications that the players would've had to deal with in turn. The idea being to show off both Frozen Skies and the Savage Worlds system since I was expecting players who'd never played or perhaps even heard of Savage Worlds before.

The plan was to run with 2-6 players, which I created 7 pre-gen characters listed below (will provide full character stats if theres enough interest);

The Brick

They would've had a cargo plane built round a light bomber chassis and fitted with a pair of turrets, giving them reasonable protection as I was going to include a little bit of aerial combat (either critters or sky pirates). Once through their aerial gauntlet they would arrive in town to find their contact in jail (Complication No.1), having the option of busting him out or just gleaming what info they could. They would then learn that the goods were in the hands of a rival gang (Complication No.2), meaning that they would have to recover them somehow.

Going a bit of investigative work would reveal that the goods had been stashed in a cave outside of town (Complication No.3). Trooping out to the cave would've seen the characters possibly fighting of animal attacks before dealing with the rival gang members guarding the cave. This would be ground based and I'd encouraged the players to consider getting some sort of vehicle, particularly since some of the characters had the driving skill. Again they had options here, either stealth or brute force. Then possibly a Chase as they raced back to their aircraft with the goods in hand.

Hopefully I'll still get to run this, though its fodder for somebody else to use if they so wished (though please please let me know how it goes).

Sunday 19 November 2017

November 2017 Update

Right, Update Time!

Bit of a break from the Airman's Gazetteer series, though that will return in a couple of weeks. The Kickstarter ended successfully, though we just scraped in over the target. So now work carries on behind the scenes getting more artwork done, sorting out extra content and doing a bit of spit and polish to get Frozen Skies ready for release. So quick round up of how things stand, some game news and an extra treat.


As stated above, the Kickstarter ended successfully even if we just scraped past the target goal. Huge thank you to Applied Vectors and the backers for making it happen.

The first Kickstarter draft PDF of Frozen Skies has been released via a Backers Only update, this is effectively a beta version for people to try out and give feedback. Though theres some stuff still missing (artwork especially), but that'll be sorted out over time. Next on the list is a revised and expanded version of Alyeskan Tales, a fiction companion for Frozen Skies, that'll first be released as a PDF for Kickstarter backers. The files on DriveThru will be updated, changes include a rewrite of The Alyeskan Job and a new story. Then there will be a few adventures to sort out as well.

Hopefully all this will be done by the end of the first quarter of the new year, though possible delays with artwork and getting files sorted. We'll keep folk posted how things pan out.

After all the Kickstarter rewards have been sorted and Frozen Skies given its general release there will be work on either the Skies of Crimson supplement for Frozen Skies or the beginnings of a new product line called Cold War Skirmishes.


Monday 20th November I'll hopefully be running a Frozen Skies one shot at the local university's games society (UEA Gamessoc). Sign-ups have been and gone for this and have generally been limited to society members, but it has been part of a series of RP one-shot evenings over the past couple of months. Next week's post will be a session write-up. CANCELLED.

I've allowed myself to be convinced into running a forum based game of Frozen Skies, though we're currently settling upon campaign theme. Possible I may do monthly updates on how this goes.

And Finally...

Been tweaking the Aircraft Creation rules, opening up options.

Created this little beaut based on the Fairchild Brigand from Crimson Skies.

Blackforge Marauder

The Blackforge Consortium has its hands in a great many pies, not all are exactly legal. Aircraft is one of its more legitimate ventures, even if its customers tend to lean towards being a tad fuzzy with how they regard the law. The Marauder is an aircraft marketed generally towards sky pirates, though some company militias have brought some.

It is a medium fighter, notable for having a bomber style turret at the rear of the aircraft. It looks like an gainly aircraft but it packs a punch and a few have been retrofitted to carry rockets for anti-airship attacks, though these fittings do have a negative impact on the aircraft's handling.

Acc/TS: 20/140; Toughness: 12 (3); Crew: 2; Climb: 1; Handling: 0; Notes: Medium Chassis, Turret, Airship Hook, Armor x1

2x 50-cal MGs (50/100/200, 2d10, RoF 4, Bursts 14, AP 3)
2x 30-cal MGs (30/60/120, 2d8, RoF 3, Bursts 20, AP 2, Turret)
2x Rockets HE (50/100/200, 3d8, RoF 1, AP 8, SBT, Retro-fitting*)

*Rocket mountings retro-fitted to aircraft, -1 to Handling when carrying rockets.

Monday 13 November 2017

The Airman's Gazetteer: The Artian Confederation

Continuing the Airman's Gazetteer series is the Artian Confederation, a victor of the Great Darmonican War that now has little opportunity to enjoy the spoils of war. It has troops tied down on either occupation duties or keeping a wary eye on its eastern frontiers, what more relations with its wartime ally the Commonwealth have been growing increasingly tense. It has a very militant culture and outlook, though that could cause trouble in the near future.

Confederation of Artia

Prior to the Tyland-Artian War in 1741 AF, what became the Confederation was a loose alliance of city states that branded together out of mutual defence during the to-and-fro wars between the Kingdom of Tyland and the Holy Sodkan Empire. The Confederation's birth can be traced to the Siege of Utherheim where the first Artian Archchancellor, Viktor Wilstein, managed to inflict a crushing defeat on the Tylanders from which they never truly recovered. The ultimate Tylander defeat in that war sowed the seeds of the Great Darmonican War half a century later.

These days the Confederation is a very militant country, even more so than the other nations of Darmonica. Troops are everywhere, either in transit or marching through the streets whilst the airships of the Luftmarine ('Air Navy') can be seen floating across the skies. All Artian police officers are armed, though it seems only differences in uniform sets them apart from the army. There is a sense of military efficiency throughout the Confederation, especially in the heartland area which has recovered the quickest from the war. Frontier areas with the Tyland Free State and the Iron Collective still feel as though they're on a war footing.

The Tyland Occupation Zone forms the Confederation's western border with the Tyland Free State, averaging five miles wide in most places. It consists of old trenches, barracks, fortified outposts and checkpoints. Nobody can move through it without the military's permission, though Tylander resistance fighters are extremely active in and around this area. Even throughout the western border states of the Confederation there is a heavy presence of troops, mostly infantry due to the ongoing threat of Tylander resistance fighters.

The Confederation's eastern border also has a heavy military presence, though this is more artillery and armoured units as well as a long fortified wall. Artian troops are deployed in a well maintained defensive line, countering any possible threats from the Iron Collective. The River Thule forms the lower half of the border, though the Thule Line (as the fortifications are called) bulge round to the west where the 'Gloomlands' (area devastated by the Blast at the end of the war) sprawls across the Thule before it empties out into the Crater Sea. Where the Crater Sea meets the larger Mammut Sea there is a narrow straits that forms the border with the Union of Sodkan Republics. Artian troops used to conduct patrols into the Gloomlands, though these have tailed off after many of them failed to return.

Forming the Confederation's southern border is the small nation of Pamdinia, it managed to stay neutral during the war and benefited from a mountainous border. Pamdinia's main interest is maritime, it has a broad coastline along the Mammut Sea and is one of the trading routes with the Sultante of Taramate. It has a small border with the Tyland Free State in the west and many use it as an alternative land route to the Union of Sodkan Republics. The Confederation has been applying pressure to ensure that Pamdinia clamps down on gun runners, something that the Pamdinians have tried to address by deploying additional customs officials.

Monday 6 November 2017

The Airman's Gazetteer: The Free State

Currently our series, which covers the various nations of Darmonica in a greater detail, we take a look at the Tyland Free State. Formerly the Kingdom of Tyland, it now little more than a sad rump of a nation still struggling with the aftermath of defeat. It also faces an uncertain future as parts of its territory remain occupied by powers that may possibly clash with one another before long.

The Tyland Free State

Compared to the Commonwealth, the Free State is a nation teeming with problems. There is deep seated anger at Tyland's defeat a decade earlier and at Tylander territory being in 'enemy' hands. The Provisional Government, based in Midraige, is considered weak and ineffective (mostly true) and has to rely on a small army to enforce martial law in order to achieve anything approaching stability. As per the Conditions of Surrender (otherwise known as 'the Conditions) that were imposed upon Tyland, a small council of ministers leads the Free State rather than a single head of state. These ministers are stuck between keeping the Artians happy and trying to fix the sighted injustice that the Tylander people feel has been done to them, it is a fine balance that the Provisional Government has struggled to make work.

The Free State has been even slower than the Commonwealth with repairing war damage, rubble choked streets and burnt out farmsteads are still a common sight. Though not all of the damage was caused by the war, some of it has occurred much more recently. There are frequent clashes between the Free State Army and anti-government forces, plus the fallout of clashes between Tylander resistance groups and Artian forces. This has resulted in martial law being imposed and the Free State becoming a grim and downtrodden country. There are shortages of everything and thus strict rationing, which in turns sparks more unrest and protests against the government.

Foreigners aren't entirely welcomed, though the Tylanders reserve their hatred for the Artians especially. As per the Conditions, the Artians are allowed to send their troops into the Free State at any time and arrest persons suspected of aiding the resistance groups. Artian troops are also exempt from prosecution under Free State laws, which gives them an almost free reign to do what they please. Even though the Commonwealth, for its troops based in the Treaty Ports, can apply for the same protections under the Conditions it elected not to do so. The Commonwealth has been pretty big on the conduct of its troops and building up a cordial relation with the Free State ahead of the Treaty Ports being handed over.

The Treaty Ports were a series of ports on the Straits coast of Tyland that came under Commonwealth control at the end of the war, under the Conditions the Commonwealth is allowed to retain those ports for a ten year period and then renew (if it wishes) every five years. The Treaty Ports are the most stable part of the Free State and the Commonwealth has invested some money in them. Only one or two ports are expected to be retained by the Commonwealth, they happen to be the best defended and many believe this decision is perhaps influenced by the Commonwealth and the Artians currently being 'uneasy allies'.