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Posts posted by Andrea

  1. Re: Age of Sail: Sailors and Officers Skills


    Originally posted by Spence

    In fact, most PC's should probabaly not be regular crew at all, if the game is to be played in a Napoleonic type AoS setting. I would lean toward making them all officers of some capacity or gentlemen volunteers from at least minor titled families or non-titled holding measureable and influential wealth

    I agree completely that there's no much amount of freedom if you are a lesser player in the English Navy. I lean toward the officer status or, as you suggested, the wealthy adventurer ( or a spy like Maturin). Obiouvsly if you play in a more loose organisation ( like the Ottoman Navy or the infant American Navy of Nelson's books) you can get a certain amount of freedom because the rule are not so strict.


    As for the skills, my main goal is definying all the details then I will surely put most of them in packages, but I really don't want to lose the technical feeling that is a basic part of this setting (IMHO).


    Originally posted by Spence

    All excellent references. I have will post a few more titles when I get back home

    Thanks a lot


  2. Re: Age of Sail: Sailors and Officers Skills


    originally posted by CourtFool: This level of details seems great in theory but once you are at the table who really wants to roll their Food Preservation Skill over and over again?

    Someone who likes Rolemaster:D


    The idea of creating many skills is related to the fact that, IMHO, a book on a setting should be as complete as possible, even just to give an idea of the skills that might be involved in such setting.

    Then everyone can play the character that suits him best (and the Master). Your Sailor, for example, would be great on any boarding party but I would not put him in the crew of the cook or the purser :D


    Moreover I don't think that you are really required to roll for "food preservation" often but Rigging Mastery is another story.


    Thanks for the feedback


  3. Re: Age of Sail: Sailors and Officers Skills


    Originally posted by Cancer : I think you're trying to draw too many distinctions among skills.


    Mmmh.. Yes and No

    Yes I'm going to get a lot of distinction among the skills because I really like the Rolemaster approach of having almost all the skills mapped out for all the predictable situations of gaming. Moreover I think that Maritime setting are very adapt to a skill detailed approach( but this is just my feeling)


    And no because I do think that most of the skills you see presented were quite distinctive.

    I agree that the average sailor is good in many of the skills aforementioned but among officers there's a great difference in how good a Captain is in Sail Trimming and a Boatswain ( with the latter often more skilled) and I'd like to maintain that difference in my game.

    But obiouvsly someone can take all the skills and throw them away, using only navigation: depends on the level of realism that you'd like.


    And about Celestial Navigationvs vs. Stargazing...

    Originally posted by Cancer : it's implausible that one could do one of those and not the other


    Correct observation but my intentions were to separate the "gut-based" navigation of some of the sailors and petty officers ( who knew very basic facts about moon and other stars) from the educated science of Charting and Triangulation that was taught to Officers. The Observation of Stars is very ancient, I think, while the Celestial Navigation was official only from 1793 ( the definyning works began in 1714 !!)

    As Brian Lavery says in his fabolous book " It was precisely this skill which separated the sea officers from the petty officers and common seamen".

    I'll see If I manage to find something better.


    Thanks to everyone


  4. Re: Age of Sail: Sailors and Officers Skills


    Thanks to all of you for your replies


    Originally Posted by Captain Obvious I don't suppose you'd be willing to outline what these skills are supposed to cover, would you? For example, what exactly does Sail Mastery entail, and what does Stargazing do that Celestial Navigation doesn't already do for you?

    I'm willing to describe any of the previous skills if I will able to do that and also create some examples for the different target level. Stargazing for example is not the same of Celestial Navigation because the last one requires the use and knowledge of the sextant.


    Originally Posted by Ghost Archer Try Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey/Maturin series, I am currently rereading it for the third time. The movie Master and Commander will give you a good idea what shipboard life was like.

    Thanks for your suggestions at the moment I'm using

    • The young sea officer's sheet anchor by Darcy Lever
    • The arming and fitting of English ships of war 1600-1815 by Brian Lavery
    • Nelson's Navy (The ships, Men and Organisation 1793-1815) by Brian Lavery
    • A Marine dictionary and terminology by Various Author
    • All the Patrick O'Brien books
    • All the Hornblower books

    By the way I'm working out all of your suggestions to make a definitive list.


    PS Edsel I thought many times about Coopering and I switched to Carpentry but I think that you're right. I'll put it back along with Shipwright




  5. Hi,

    as some of you might know I'm in the process of building a Hornblower Hero web-book. One of the first task is to define the list of skills that are necessary in order to manage most of the situations of the setting.

    I've defined a list ( with the help of Theanswerman) and I'd like to know what do you think about it.


    Signalling, Rigging Mastery, Ship Fitting, Sail Mastery, Knots Mastery, Sea Lore, Etiquette, Ship Administration, Naval Code, Gunnery, Ship Construction, Press Ganging, Leadership, Medicine, Surgery, Celestial Navigation, Weather Forecasting, Food Preservation, Cooking, Rowing, Administration, Gambling, Astronomy, Brawling, Cartography, Climbing, Dancing, Diplomacy, Drowsing, Foraging, Heraldry, Navy Organisation, Playing instrument, Oratory, Rappeling, Religion, Star Gazing, Swashbuckling, Trading, Carpentry, Metal Working, Infantry Drills, Weapon Proficiency ( Cutlass, Pike, Long Barreled Muskeet, Pistol), Chart Plotting, Fishing, Naval Tactics, Knowledge Skill (areas) Local Waters,


    A note: I know that some of the skills can be substituted with the "Professional" ones but I think that having a specific skill can add flavor to the setting. So this is a point that I'd like to clarify with your help.


    Thanks again


  6. Re: A template for a Napoleonic-era ship of the line


    If I ever finish the Hornblower Hero project all the praise should be for thequestionman and all the help he gave me for any question i posted here.


    I don't know Hero Designer ( I can even admit that I don't know very well what is it...but I'll look around in order to learn it).

    I only asked if there was someone around that created a Ship of the line and could share with me the Stats and Skill and Foci and everything else. So it's ok for the modified cannon.


    Just that, I don't want to be boring or use the work others did.

    I definely try to look at the ship posts on the fantasy area.


  7. Hi,

    as I'm in the process of working more seriously to my Hornblower Hero project ( skills are almost all wrote down...) I'm in dire need of a ship template. As the questionman knows here in Italy vehicles books are nowhere to be seen and I don't feel confident enough to start from the poor guidelines in the basic book.

    Even in this forum I did not find any basic stats for Age of Sail ship ( but I enjoined a lenghty discussion about time and round during combats that was in some way enlightning).

    So here I am asking if you have something handy ( a copy and paste) in order to give me a rough idea of the stats involved.

    By the way I'm relating to a early 1800 Ship of the line with 74 cannons, but anything will do really...

    Forever obliged.



  8. Re: Genres HERO GAMES may want to avoid (intended to be humorous)


    Hi I'm back after a long hiatus from this board in case someone noticed...(which I doubt)

    I' d definitely avoid:


    • Job Hero ( I do that every day)
    • Husband Hero ( same as above)
    • Soap Opera Hero (After everyone has "bedded" every relatives and friends around the story get a little boring....)
    • Trafic Jam Hero ( Unless you take off the "no killing" limitation...)


    I'm quite sure that I could come up with something else....



  9. Re: Batman Begins


    Originally posted by Mister E

    I'd rather see Ghost Rider... but that's me.

    Mmmh agreed !! A Team Up movie !! Iron Fist and Ghost Rider against Zodiak and the Dragon of K'un L'un.


    I fear that we might not have a huge potential audience :)

  10. Re: Second Rate Villains!


    Dear Enforcer since I'm runnig a very low-powered campaign, Wednesday I'm gonna use Pinball Wizard ( a little dumbed down version) as a villain that is trying to earn some money by kidnapping the son of a Oriental Boss ( that must be protected by my player for different reasons...).


    So Thank you. Obiuvsly I'll let you know how Pinball fared...




  11. Re: Batman Begins


    Since I am a huge comics collector ( expecially of the Dark Knight) I'm always a little bit sceptical about comics-movie adaptation.

    I still remember what they did to the poor Daredevil !!!


    But I must say that "Batman Begins" is really a great movie: Great Acting, (Liam Neeson is Rha 'as Ghul), good insight of what is Batman, a marvelous Batmobile in Frank Miller's style, an Incredible Alfred by my beloved Michael Caine, an homage to Year One with the Swat team engulfed by the bats ( Ah I still remember the beautiful panel by Mazzuchelli !!), A tiny cameo for Mr. Zzzazs ( a cut for every victim) and no Catwoman or Robin !!


    This is the best comics-movie adaptation that I ever saw and surely the best Batman movie ( though I love the Burton's ones).


    A minor flaw: Scarecrow is more frightening than the one we saw on the movie and the "poison-the-water-and-the-city-will-get-crazy" trick is a little abused.



    PS We need an Iron Fist movie now !!!

  12. Re: Greatest Western Movies of all Time


    I'm not much of an expert but for my Deadlands campaigm i followed this recipe:

    Just take anything from Sergio Leone ( eg.A fistful of dollars) and mix it with Sam Peckinpah ( eg. Wild Bunch), add Clint Eastwood ( eg.Unforgiven) and a touch of some classics ( John Ford would be OK).

    It worked for me.



    PS I'm happy to notice that many people put Quigley Down Under in the list. I absolutely agree, it was a really good movie with an interesting perspective and I'm happy to see that is well considered among the western fans.

  13. Re: Super Steve


    Yes, this was the first thing that struck me positively when I was deciding to give a try to the Hero System.

    I think that he's a very dedicated and polite guy and this give boost to all the community.



  14. Re: PULP HERO -- What Do *You* Want To See?


    Mmmh If I Have to be honest I'd like to see a Pulp Era RPG Book that does justice to Europe.


    I mean we all know that Pulp comes from America but those years ( 20ies and 30ies) were very interesting even this side of the pond and I was very disappointed that ( for example) pulp adventures from ICE ( that was a marvelous book) did very litlle justice to this with some historical inaccuracies.


    We had writers, poets and illustrators that, even if they were not technically pulp, were pivotal in creating the worlwide feeling of Pulpness ( does this word exist ?). A brief mention to their works would complete the book in my opinion.


    And sure, I'd love to see Italy well described because I think that it has some RPG interesting peculiarities ( that were the shady years of the rising fascism, we were full of conspiracies and we'got the Vatican) and mostly because we are always the cinderella of any setting and sourcebook ( In Rift we are brought back to the Roman Empire !!!).

    Just plain old campanilism


    But in any case I blindly trust Hero Games ( and Steven) and I know that the book will be awesome.


  15. Re: Your "2005" Pet Gaming Projects



    My pet project for the 2005 was learning Hero System rules and then start a Pulp Campaign ( against Fu Manchu no less...) and it is currently running towards its end ( last session next week).


    My second pet Project is Nelson's Navy Heroes a setting historically in the same age of Hornblower but with much more details. I've just finished in copying all the basic data about the 500 English Ship, reading two Brian Lavery's Book and browsing among the links sent me by the question man. I hope ( child permitting) to star writing something more complete soon. The project was a little hindered by the fact that vehicle companion is not an easy prey in Italy... ( wonder why so many role play gamers round here :rolleyes: )

    I soldier on.



  16. Re: Pirate Hero arrrrrg!



    I agree in a certain way that pirate and generally seamanship adventures tend to be repetitive but if the overall feeling is similar the plot twists can be numerous. And also the situation can be varied enough to keep the player entertained ( they must love the genre nevertheless...)


    I think that the best inspirational writer in this field is James Nelson with his books about the Brethren of the Coast ( historically perfect for your setting)and the Revolution at Sea ( can be adapted with not much effort).


    Among the book consituting the two series the Maddest Idea is the one most ripe with ideas... you got Bermuda and New England and a lot of interesting situations for your players to face.

    I don't want to spoil the book so if you want a brief synopsis I can send one to you via email.

    Then you can consider to adapt some adventures that were created for Run out the guns, the pirate game that ICE ( Rolemaster) supported for a brief period. i don't know the availability but at the website www.guildcompanion.com you should be able to find some used in conventions.




  17. Re: Marvel Universe trivia


    and what about this crazy idea having him became an Herald of Galactus and then put Captain Universe against this herald in order to save a planet full of peaceful people from being eaten.


    You asked for crazy ideas.......

  18. Re: Marvel Second Stringers. Help me out.


    I've discovered this thread only now but I'd like to throw in some suggestion just to amuse myself ( and I hope the others...).


    Stingray: Marvelous ( I know that has already been suggested) and moreover is a tech genius and can be helpful..but if you prefer you can cover the aquatic realm with Namorita...so nineties !!


    Machine-Man: I don't know if it's still around but it is a great character with lot of gadgets. Plus you got the human heart inside the machine thing to roleplay...


    Puck The jumping dwarf of the Alpha Flight ( is it still alive ??) is a powerful character from a player point of view but it has also that magical touch that is entertaining


    Daimon Hellstorm I think that it was involved in some of the craziest stories with the Defenders but a subsequent miniserie put him back in the map. Is a powerful dark character that should be good for all the magic and mystical issues of the team.


    Jack of Heart I know that they kill him but a new character with the same power would be very interesting ( the isolation room, the tormented soul, the involontary hero...great RPG)


    Night Trasher Perfect for a grim character without falling into the frenzied killer. Lot of gadgets, bad attitude and an overall good look. Maybe you can cut the lame skateboard.


    Here are the first names that i found suitable but I'm sure that a good night sleep and some browsing through my collection can find something else.


    If you need it...


  19. Re: The Essential Bad Iron Age


    What about Ninjak ?? I thought was really stereotyped !!! ( with the perennial Marial arts - Ninja elements so cool back then).


    I think that basically anything from Liefeld should be mentioned...but don't forget also the Strikeforce and the Force Works by Marvel ( following the abused thread: "Now it's time that the heroes strike before the evil...." )


    I'd dig in my collection and I'll tell you if I find something else...I love these kind of threads.


  20. Re: Pulp Reading


    Posted by st barbara "I don't know "The Footprints on the Ceiling", but it sounds like a "locked room" whodunnit !"


    In some way it is a whodunnit but it has many pulp elements, the eerie setting, the shady cottage, and a magician as the investigator ( I think that Glen David Gold owes much to Rawson).

    I think that also "No coffin for the corpse" from the same author is really worth reading.


    I trasformed both the two books in Cthulhu adventures and were very aprreciated by the PCs so I think that can be a good resource even for Pulp Heroes

  21. Re: PULP HERO -- What Do *You* Want To See?



    I don't know if someone has already cited the book but what I would like to see is a book similar to Rolemaster's Pulp Adventures that was a very good book.

    It detailed history, VIPs, Slangs and geography. Maybe it was a little to light in vehicle rules and gadgets ( that are so importan in a Pulp setting).




  22. Re: Pulp Reading


    Here's my humble opionion after much reading...And there are some suggestions that are quite out of the classic canon. I hope that can be useful...


    Sax Rohmer " The mistery of Dr Fu-Manchu" for the classical oriental pulp feeling


    H. Rider Haggard " Allan Quatermain" and "King Solomon's Mines" for the mysterious african flavor. And it's very well written too.


    Edgar Rice Burroughs "The Land that Time Forgot" for the sense of Marvelous, the Dinosaurs and the Nazi


    Edgar Rice Burroughs " At the Earth's core". Pellucidar is the perfect exotic pulp setting !!


    Arthur Machen " The Three Impostors". A collection of eerie tales that have that conspiracy feeling that so part of a Pulp setting.


    HPL all the Mythos tales. I know that it would be more appropriate for Horror Hero but there are some fundamental seeds that defines Pulp for years to come


    Clark Ashton Smith " The Emperor of Dreams" ( a collection of tales) There are Dreamlike stories that are very good in order to see how a fantasy pulp can be defined and there are the darker ones that shape up the horror pulp ( the nameless offspring to say one)


    Rober E. Howard " Skull face" A tale that can be found in some collection and that I like it very much for the hard boiled take on mysterious issues


    Clayton Rawson "The footprints on the ceiling Perfect incredible puzzle like detective story, set in a Island with lot of suspects. The archetipe of the magician detective. I love this book


    Glen David Gold " Carter beats the devil" A marvelous book set firmly in the pulp tradiction but with a twist. Great even for the meticolous historical setting


    Michael Chabon " The adventures of Kavalier and Clay" Maybe not set in the Pulp golden age but very beautiful indeed. There's a golem, golden age heroes, the Escapist, a Pulitzer. I learnt many things about life in those years


    Jules Verne "Robur the conqueror" Not Verne's best book but the flying machine are really worth the reading.


    This is all for all but I'll hope to contribute with some others in a next post ( if you are interested...)



  23. Hi again,

    this is a fairly simple question but the book it's not crystal clear on the matter.

    Can I abort an action to block instead of dodging ?

    It seems to me like it is a completely honest thing to do but since block is used to give you a little advantage in the next phase I don't know if it's Ok to treat this maneuver like dodge ( or dive for cover).


    Let me know.




    PS Thank to your various suggestions the first mastering session of Herogames went well and fifteen years of RPG have not been ruined ( I've got a reputation 'round here after all :)

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