Friday, April 28, 2017


I talked with Adam Baulderstone about the latest Episode of Doctor who:

Wednesday, April 26, 2017


This came to from Zachariah Kennison who contributed to the Ogre Gate rulebook. It is meant to provide GMs who want less magic in their WHOG campaigns with an alternative to Qi Spirit Possession when characters overuse their Qi. It is essentially a Disease Characters are exposed to when they acquire too many Imbalance Points: 

Lethality: Weeks
Speed: Weeks
Effect: Temporary
Medicine TN: Special
Contagious: No
Potency: None
Skills: Combat, Physical, Special

When a character exceed their Max Imbalance they acquire this disease that putrefies the meridians.

In addition to Combat and Physical Skill penalties, the user also faces an equivalent, cumulative reduction in their Qi rating. For example, after 3 weeks they suffer a -3d10 penalty on Physical and Combat Skill rolls, but their Qi is also reduced by 3 levels. The effect continues until they run out of Qi Levels.

This Disease cannot be healed through normal means, but a successful Medicine roll against TN 8 can extend the Lethality by one increment. Don't roll 1d10 again to determine when the subject will die; instead, convert their remaining weeks to months. This can only be done once per case.

There are rumors of an herbal cure that grows on a peak in the Western Horn but these may be false. 

This Disease replaces the normal Qi Spirit Possession mechanic.


Still working out the details on the Dying Flaw. We shifted it to a Resolve, rather than Hardiness roll. This both seemed to fit the genre a little better and also made more sense mechanically (because the Hardiness keeps decreasing so the roll spins out of control too quickly when it is against that Defense). Still a work in progress. Also this is something that can be used in place of Qi Spirit Possession for characters who overuse their Kung Fu if your campaign has fewer supernatural elements. 

Dying: You suffer from a permanent and lethal affliction. Eventually it will kill you. How much time you have left is uncertain. The precise nature of the illness is up to you and the GM but it is a constant concern. Anyone who takes this flaw must roll 1d10 against Resolve every month. This roll can also be triggered by extreme emotional or physical stress at the discretion of the GM. On a Success you lose 1 point of Hardiness. When you reach 0 Hardiness you begin to die. On a Failure 1d10 is added to the next monthly roll. This is cumulative so two months free would result in a 3d10 roll. The monthly dice pool resets to 1d10 after a success. 

Your Hardiness is permanently reduced unless you receive proper medical care (Medicine Roll TN 8) and recuperate for a week. If you spend a week recuperating you can make an Endurance Roll TN 6. On a Success you gain 1 lost Hardiness. On a Total Success you regain 2 lost Hardiness (this cannot exceed your normal Hardiness rating). 

In addition the player and GM should discuss the specific nature of the illness. Based on this, the GM should choose a handful of affected skills (between 2-5) that suffer a -1d10 Penalty when the disease is active (i.e. during months when you lose a point of Hardiness).

Note, in campaigns without supernatural elements, this Flaw can be used instead of Qi Spirit possession when characters overuse their Kung Fu. 

Monday, April 24, 2017


This is pretty directly inspired by the new Sword Master movie, where the assassin Yan Shisan is dying because his meridians are all messed up from over-exertion. So this is a flaw for characters who are dying from an ailment. Just an idea at the moment. I haven't fully fleshed it out yet or playtested. We will see how it works in game in the coming weeks.

New Flaw
Dying: You suffer from a permanent and lethal affliction. Eventually it will kill you. How much time you have left is uncertain. The precise nature of the illness is up to you and the GM but it is a constant concern. Anyone who takes this flaw must roll 1d10 against Hardiness every month. On a Success you lose 1 point of Hardiness. When you reach 0 Hardiness you die. On a Failure 1d10 is added to the next monthly roll. This is cumulative so two months free would result in a 3d10 roll. The monthly dice pool resets to 1d10 after a success. 

In addition the player and GM should discuss the specific nature of the illness. Based on this, the GM should choose a handful of affected skills (between 2-5) that suffer a -1d10 Penalty when the disease is active (i.e. during months when you lose a point of Hardiness). 

Saturday, April 22, 2017


Had a great discussion about Flag of Iron with Lady Cao Feng and Steve at the Bedrock Podcast. You can check it out here: 

I also reviewed some more martial arts movies. First up, Savage 5:

Next I reviewed Shaolin Prince: 

And Shaolin Intruders: 

Followed by Deadful Melody:

Saturday, April 15, 2017


This is a log for my ongoing Disposable Disciples of Bone Kingdom campaign. You can see the previous session HERE.  Note that I began recording sessions, so this has allowed me to do more detailed session logs.

Player Characters: 

Shen Chun/Crazed Raksha
Little Bai
Ong Lao
Min (Feiyan)

Disciples of the Sect: 

Red Eagle (Little Bai)
Mount Dao/Biggest Sister (Little Bai)
Filial Cricket (Little Bai)
Dim-Witted Chen (Shen Chun)


The Righteous Outlaws
Calamity Star
Ou Jinghzhu
Tea Master Houzhou

Stone Palace Sect (Also called Golden Way)

A gambling hall and criminal network in Yun Hu. Currently under control of party, with Weeping Lotus managing it. They've absorbed many other sects into this organization including Crocodile Sect, Blades of the Weeping Lotus, Temple of the Jade Mercies, Relentless Corpse Sect and more. Recently they joined with Relentless Corpse again when Shen Chun arranged a marriage with their leader Da Mei Mei. 


Shen Chun (King)
Da Mei Mei (Queen)
Weeping Lotus (Right Vanguard)
Silent Dagger
Feng (Accountant)
Gu (Head Chef)
Little Bai
Scholar Shen (a scholar who has been writing a story about Little Bai's life)

Dancing Scorpions
Criminal network in Yun Hu

Relentless Corpse Sect

Da Mei Mei

Temple of the Jade Mercies (see Stone Palace)

Abbot Wei Zhao
Abbess Bao-Yu
Yao Tu-On
Yao Chun
Yao Ba

Southern Hill Sect

Yellow Mantis
White Chysanthemum
Green Mantis (Dead but important)

Twin-Fisted Eagle Sect

Twin Fisted Eagle
Jade Fist

Bone Breaking Sect
Destroyed and taken over by Drunken Hero Kang

Glorious Death Cult

Led by Supreme Master Tung, who says he is a god of death

After Min, Ong, White-Browed Tiger and Qui had defeated the Bone Queen, chaos began to grow in the City of the Spiral Crown. Ong announced that the old queen would soon return and that the people should make preparations. He then began issuing orders to make sure there was a smooth transition. 

Qui flew to Granny Ox Tail to bring her news of their success. He arrived at her valley in the evening and saw a group of men suspended near her cave in a cage. 

One of them said "Hey, why don't you help us out?"

"Who are you," Qui asked. 

"Merchants from Daolu."

"Let me see what I can do?"

"Just open the cage, let us out before she comes back."

Qui told the man to be patient and approached the cave entrance and announced his presence. 

Granny Ox Tail opened the entrance and came outside. 

"Granny Ox Tail, the task is competed, the Bone Demon and King are both dead."

"Good, I will gather my things and triumphantly return."

Granny Ox Tail re-emerged with eight swords strapped to her back wearing a crown. She grabbed the cage saying "Food for the road" and told him to lead the way. 

"Granny Ox Tail, lets get better food there, why don't you leave these men behind."

"I need food for crossing Batong Bridge, and these are prime delicacies: effete men from the north," She said. 

They debated the point, with Qui trying to convince her that Northern Men lacked flavor but she told him he was misinformed. 

"Since you are so fond of them, I will let one live."

Qui took out the man he spoke with and flew with him above the Batong Bridge and waited for her to reach the other side. When she arrived, the cage was empty and her mouth dribbled blood. 

The man thanks Qui for saving him. 

"What are you a merchant of?" Qui Asked. 

"I have been given the contract to find the Chariot of Du Qian."

"Very well," said Qui. "You better find a way to make yourself valuable to Granny Ox Tail. I don't know how long my word will protect you."

They went into the city, with Qui making sure the townspeople knew to prepare for her presence. 

As she came into the city to the adoration of her people, Min and Ong sorted out the situation with their Ogre Demon prisoners. 

Granny Ox Tail told Ong to order her palace rebuilt. He explained the details of the attack. 

Granny Ox Tail thanked him and began instructing Ong in a new technique after the festivities. 

Ong asked for permission to build a temple of Gushan in the north. 

"Who is Gushan?" She asked. 

"I am Gushan," Ong replied. 

"You may build a temple in the north."

Then she taught him a technique called the Crippling Winds of Gushan. She asked for a prisoner to be brought forward. Ong had a prisoner take to a post and tied there. 

"This technique is extremely dangerous, it is only for truly extreme situations," she said. Then she inhaled deeply and unleashed a chaotic wind on the prisoner. It whipped and swirled around him, and made his eyeballs burst. 

Ong then used the technique himself, mastering it, and causing the legs of a prisoner to buckled and break. 

Min talked to White-Browed Tiger about his plans. He told her he planned to continue capturing demons and working for the Holy Killers. 

Qui decided to head north toward the Pale Hills in Hai'an. Qui told his companions he would meet them in Yun Hu after he tended to his own business. 

Granny Ox Tail had Ong roast the merchant Qui rescued as soon as he left. Ong then went to speak with the Ogre Demons after securing permission from Granny Ox Tail to take them with him to the north. 

He could tell after examining them that two were male and one was female. 

"What are your plans?"

"Do not protract our execution." They said. 

"I am not, I want to take you north with me."

One of the Ogre Demons said "Why work with us after fighting us?"

"I respect your loyalty to the previous queen, I can work with folk like you. I need your help establishing a temple of Gushan in the north."

The Ogre Demon said "In Li Fan then?"


"Fine, I will go with you, but I recommend you execute these two savages, they cannot be trusted" said the Ogre Demon pointing to the other two. They immediately began howling and smashing with their shackles. 

Ong looked at them and asked "Is this true?"

The Ogre Demons protested, and Ong decided not to kill them. He then unbound the Ogre Demon who was willing to go and prepared him for the journey. 

The Ogre Demon retrieved his dab yai and was ready to go. "What's my role in your organization?"

"When I build the temple I want you to keep the grounds safe."

"This is a waste of my talents!"

"What can you do?"

"I once served the Demon Emperor, I can do many things."

"Then you can be my personal bodyguard and the enforcer of our Temple rules."

"Very well," Said the Ogre Demon. 

That evening they had a great feast, and Granny Ox Tail ate her roasted merchant. 

In the morning Min asked White-Browed Tiger to join them so she could learn some of his rituals. He said he had a matter to tend to but would meet them when he finished. They agreed to meet at Golden Way Headquarters in a month. 

He then demonstrated the power of his red spirit orb, withdrawing one from his robe and using it to blast a nearby tree into splinters. 

Shen Chun tended to the daily function of his sect. 

Accountant Feng, after a request for information, brought information about the Lacquer Broker from Gaoxing who had promised them a good deal. 

"He has been murdered Chief. Someone broke into his home and cut off his head."

"Is there any more information?"

"An inspector has been placed in charge of the matter."

"Which inspector?"

"Technically Little Bai is the lead inspector of Gaoxing in these matters, but due to his absence, the magistrate has stepped in."

"I would like to meet this magistrate, please take me to him."

Shen Chun then traveled to Gaoxing with Accountant Feng and Fearless Dagger. There they spoke with the magistrate and learned more about the case. 

They were told that Shang Guan (the lacquer broker) was beheaded but that Inspector Cong Buzhi had all the details as he had been placed in charge of the matter. 

They went to Cong Buzhi's who greeted them and answered questions. He spent an inordinate amount of time sniffing the air around Shen Chun but was otherwise pleasant and polite. 

"What happened to Shang Guan?" Shen Chun asked. 

Cong Buzhi continued to sniff the air and said "His head was cut off...."

"That would be apparent."

"And before his head was cut off, someone used Sealing the Phoenix Technique on him; are you familiar with this ability?"

"No, what does is it do?"

"It is a technique that allows you to prevent someone from using their Kung Fu."

"Do you know who did this?"

"I am working on this presently but obviously whoever did it, would know Sealing the Phoenix. The person also struck the body with needles before killing him and administered a type of poison. I also have a witness who said he saw man with boyish features and a small frame enter the house before the killing." 

Shen Chun nodded "I will what I can find out about this."

"Can I ask why you are investigating?"

"Shen Guang was supposed to help us procure lacquer."

"Solving the case won't solve your lacquer issues I am afraid. But if it helps there is a woman named Jing who is my witness and I can place you in contact with her."

Qui made his way to the Pale Hills with a guide and Jagged Blade. There he tried to find the Pale Fox Gang and soon found himself surrounded by them. 

They told him to drop all his belongings. He negotiated with them and arranged to meet Pale Fox under the condition that he leave his men behind under their guard. 

Qui accepted and went to a cave where Pale Fox appeared before him adorned in jewels and fine clothing. 

"It is an honor to meet you Pale Fox," Qui Said. "My name is Qui, but most know me as Cunning Dragon. I would like to work with you to help increase your standing in the martial world."

"Why do you want to increase my standing, what do you have to gain?"

"Perhaps you have heard of the tournament that is set to occur?"


"Well I plan on entering and have a good chance of winning. Whoever wins becomes the leader of the martial world. Those who join me will rise, those who do not will fall."

"How do you know you will win?"

"I am called Cunning Dragon for good reason."

"You plan to cheat?"

"I plan to be strategic."

"I see. What would supporting you entail."

"I wish to form my own sect and you would serve as one of my chiefs."

"I would be co-chief of your sect?"

"Yes, of course since I am the founding member, I would need some seniority..."

"There are sects with equal co-chiefs," Said Pale Fox.

"There are but we will need some kind of hierarchy."

She leapt down from her high platform and said "Then you will need to beat me in a fight."

In a blur, she stabbed at him with her spear through the belly. 

Qui then crouched like a toad and croaked as his body launched like a battering ram into her chest sending her back many feet and causing her to cough up blood. 

Wiping the blood from her jaw she said "Very well, I will consider your offer."

They both began to meditate and heal then discussed a possible arrangement. Pale Fox said she didn't want to leave the Pale Hills. Qui asked her to leave for a time, then they could establish a base in the Pale Hills. 

"Is this agreeable to you?"

"I don't like the idea of it being unclear to my men who is in charge."

"You would be in charge of your men, and they will follow me only if it doesn't conflict with your command."

"What do I get besides prestige?"

"Wealth and power. I will give you ten thousand spades to start."

"That isn't very much."

"I expect to have more soon. What would make you happy?"

"Bring me the head of a man," She said. 


"Hero Feng."

"Why Hero Feng?"

"He and I have previous issues," she said. 

"Where is he?" Qui asked.

"Last I heard he was hiding at Purple Lotus Temple."

Qui bowed and said he would return with the head of Hero Feng. He then gathered his men and began traveling back to Golden Way headquarters. 

Shen Chun had returned to his headquarters and was told that a man named Ling Su was there to speak with him. He had him brought into the reception hall. 

Ling Su entered dressed as a scholar and said with a bow "Shen Chun."

Shen Chun nodded.

"May we speak more privately?"

Shen Chun dismissed all but his wife. 

"You are aware that he Kushen are at the border and amassing troops?"

Shen Chun nodded.

"Are you also aware of the rumors that their leader has attained immortality?"

"I am not, how did he gain immortality?"

"They say that Loma the earth goddess granted him an elixir," Said Lingsu. "And I understand you are not on good terms with Kang?"

"We are not."

"Can we put these differences aside for the good Qi Xien?"

"What do you propose?" Shen Chun asked. 

"I want Kang to meet you in secret for a private drinking contest. If you win, he will hand over leadership of the martial world to you. The tournament will just be a formality."

"And what do you gain in return?"

Lingsu said "I would like to have a place at your table."

Da Mei mei said "My husband and I need a moment alone, please leave and return when we call you back."

After Lingsu left they discussed whether he could be trusted. They decided to send a spy after him but that his offer was beneficial to their sect if true. Shen Chun worried about whether he could win. Da Mei Mei said she would try to create a pill to absorb the alcohol in order to give him an advantage. 

They brough Lingsu back. 

"How would this all be arranged?" Asked Shen Chun.

Lingsu said "I understand that you would fear being ambushed. What I have arranged is a meeting on Snake Peak where only you and Kang would be present. The Lady of the Peak will ensure that neither side violates the agreement."

"And if I win the drinking contest I become leader of the martial world; what of the tournament?"

"The tournament would be a formality, and we have arranged for a new chief prize: The Chariot of Du Qian. This way there can still be a battle for something of value, but the leadership of the martial world would not be in question. We should not allow a tournament to get in the way and make us victims of the Kushen."

"I have heard what you said and would like to agree with it."

"Good. This will occur the 2nd day of the next month (ten days). Lady Xinyu will be there and ensure your safety." 

Qui arriverà in Yun Hu and began gambling at Stone Palace. Min and Ong soon arrived and greeted him there. Qui asked for an introduction to the leader of Golden Way. They had briefly met before but made no formal introduction. 

They brought him to the sect headquarters and introduced him to Shen Chun. 

Ong asked for permission to build a temple near the Golden Way Headquarters along the Fei River. Shen Chun gave permission. Min and Qui left and searched the Fei River for a good spot to build a temple. Ong found a place he believed had a good Qi flow and then went to find out how to gain permission to build a temple on the land.

Min then went to Yun Hu and purchased the Blood Invincibility Ritual at a book shop for 6,000 spades. 

Ong went to a magistrate and requested permission to build a temple of Gushan on the land. The magistrate explained that Gushan was not an authorized deity. Ong pressed the matter and tried to debate the magistrate. 

"I am not interested in this minutiae," he said. "Laws clearly stipulate what can and cannot be done."

"So I can only build a temple to a recognized deity?"

"Yes. But perhaps we can work something out. I could overlook a temple dedicated to Supreme Judge Yu for example but with a unique likeness of him. The cost would be considerable to you of course."

"How much are we talking?"

"Twelve thousand spades before any  of the normal legal matters are dealt with," He said. "This would just be for rights to build, but the land would still belong to the Empress."

Ong asked to think about the matter. Finally he agreed to pay. 

Qui appeared before Shen Chun and said "I think our interests are aligned if you still have an interest in getting rid of Thundering Guan. I was hoping we could form a secret alliance."

"To do what?"

"A new sect is forming under my leadership and I would like to serve both our interests and rally people against Thundering Guan. But I lack resources. If you could provide resources that would be helpful. I also plan on entering the tournament and have a good chance of winning. This could benefit both of us."

Shen Chun explained that the terms of the contest had been changed. 

"This is a sham, why would the leadership of the martial world be decided by a drinking contest....I will go and create posters announcing this outrage! But if this is how we think he leadership of the martial world should be determined I will drink poison if I have to!"

They talked some more and Shen Chun and after Qui whispered something in his ear, he agreed to loan money to him. Qui wanted 2 million spades, but was given 1 million. 

Qui thanks him and asked if he could take some men with him to Purple Lotus Temple to retrieve the head of Hero Feng and secure the alliance with Pale Fox. Shen Chun agreed to do so after his meeting with Kang. 

Qui went to Yun Hu to Translucent Frost Paper Making to make posters ridiculing Kang for holding a drinking contest for leadership of the Martial World. But he realized that his standing was so low, that the posters would likely have very little effect other than to shame him. This cost him 4,000 spades. 

Soon after Xiaomin returned and had an audience with Shen Chun. Her face was battered, her hair seemed in disarray. She carried a green bamboo stick and wore seven satchels. 

Bowing Xiaomin said "I have had my revenge."

"What is all this though?" Said Shen Chun pointing to the stick and satchels. 

"He insisted on making me his successor when he died."

"What does that mean?"

"I am the chief of the dirty clothes division of the northern Nature Loving Monks."

"Are you still with our sect?"

"Yes, I do not wish to work with those beggars....please send me to kill somebody, I desire to kill."

Shen Chun nodded and said "Very well, prepare to travel about nine days. We will go to kill Hero Feng. Do the beggars know what you've done?"

"The dirty clothes division has accepted me, but the clean clothes division has rejected me," She said. "But I don't care what those beggars think."

Shen Chun then asked her to be his new disciple. Xiaomin accepted and kowtowed to him. 

Later, in the silence of his reception hall as he contemplated the love in his heart for his wife Da Mei Mei, Shen Chun found his heart unsettled.

This is where the session ended.