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Steve Long

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Everything posted by Steve Long

  1. Those are some excellent points, Dean! While I wouldn't mind delving into Aarn at all, I agree that it's similar to a lot of other major Fantasy cities (all of them ultimately inspired by Lankhmar, I imagine ) -- that's part of why it's there, some gamers want/need a place like that. But really setting Aarn apart in that department would be tricky. As much as I would like to someday describe the Sunless Realms in more detail, I agree that for the time being at least there are plenty of products out there that a GM can shoehorn in if need be. I've been intrigued by the idea of camp
  2. Yes, I just learned that existed the other day. Gonna check it out sometime soon, if possible.
  3. First off -- your speculation is correct in that it is the Loskell River that starts in the Thurisian Mountains. My bad for not watching the labeling more closely. The question of how far large ships can go up that river chain is a good one. Given that the land around where the Ordring flows out of Lake Beralka is described as "marshy," I don't believe large ships could make it all the way through -- and there might be other obstacles (heavily churning water at the Ettinstone, narrows, rapids, etc.) that would get in the way even further down. (Personally I kind of think that the w
  4. Bat fight! (Sorry, been watching too much What We Do In The Shadows lately. )
  5. I've been reading a long thread about the Turakian Age setting recently, which naturally has inspired me to think about the setting and ways to add to it -- specifically, the possibility of a city book, since I don't think I've written a detailed Fantasy city book. So I thought I'd find out which cities would most interest y'all, and why. I make no promises, but knowing what y'all suggest will help me guide my imagination. My own personal most-likely candidates would include Aarn, Eltirian, Talarshand, Tatha Gorel, Tor Vilos, and Trisadion, though any of them would be interesting t
  6. I've always thought that the Ordring River was the outflow for Lake Beralka -- though I do see that I confused the issue by describing it as having a "delta." I should have just described it as a large patch of swampy ground. That way the Ordring can flow south, merge with the Loskell River at the Ettinstone, and thus eventually join the sea. Assuming everyone accepts that logic, the reference to the Ordring widening and deepening should instead say something like, "With the input of so much water from the Ordring, the Loskell becomes much wider and deeper at that point, allowing larger vessel
  7. Good call-out! The technical term for this, which I suspect Carlyle uses at some point(s), is euhemerization -- derived from the ancient Greek mythographer Euhemerus, who first developed the theory that gods must have started out as ancient kings and heroes who gradually got turned into divine figures over time.
  8. I will take the hit re: PhilF's criticism about which direction rivers flow in the TA setting. To answer his specific question, the Shaanda River flows west out of the Sea of Mhorec into Lake Beralka. I should've made that clear in the text. And if there is a major body of water with two or more outflows, I plead relative ignorance and plain ol' stupidity -- believe me, my knowledge of geography and how it affects worldbuilding is light-years beyond what it was in 2004. For other rivers, generally speaking they flow from their point of origin to the nearest larger river, body of wa
  9. Coming up with names that I like, and which I feel will have sufficiently broad appeal to the reader, is sometimes one of the toughest things about writing a Fantasy setting.
  10. PhilF and LL both make good points about the expense of art, but there's one factor I'd like to add that plays into the reality that the art in TA (and other books, from many publishers, for that matter) doesn't always match the text as well as we would like, and that factor is: the Production Cycle. When I set out to write a book like TA, the first thing I have to do for it, after outlining of course, is to prepare the art list. I try to make it as specific to the setting as I can, but the plain fact is that the setting hasn't been fully created yet -- all I have are an outline and lots of i
  11. Leiber is definitely one source of inspiration for that part of the setting. Even moreso are the works of Jack Vance, whose ability to create unusual, fascinating cultures for his SF and Fantasy is second to none. (Read his oft-anthologized story "The Moon Moth" for one great example.) There are probably some bits and pieces of influence from R. E. Howard's Hyboria as well. The creative mind, she drags in all sorts of stuff and mixes it together into a new stew.... Say what now?
  12. I gotta take the hit for that one. I am a fan of authenticity, but sometimes a word in a language most of us aren't used to (Inuit, in this case) seem "bizarre." I've run across that repeatedly in working on my Encyclopedia Of Mages, Magic, And The Arcane, where it's sometimes given me nightmares trying to figure out proper alphabetization. Even though such words can be a lot of fun and emphasize the "unusual" aspects of the story, you can run into trouble when no one can figure out how to pronounce things. In this case I should've shortened it to Adlit or Edlit and given the full name in the
  13. I'm a couple years late to this part of the party, so forgive me if I'm stating something everyone knows already, but I thought I'd try to offer a little perspective on this issue. The blunt truth about it is this: most readers/gamers expect the same ol' races (species) in their Fantasy settings, and often become upset (and more importantly from a publisher's perspective, less likely to buy a product) if they're absent. Not all gamers think that way, but enough of them do that many, many Fantasy settings -- including some of my own, like TA -- include them. Conversely,
  14. I remember discussing governments with you, aeons ago, using that strange form of communication we now know as "snail mail." I think I still have those letters around somewhere, though it would probably take me a while to find them.
  15. The only other thing I've written for Tuala Morn (which is part of an overall setting I call "the Northlands" or "the Septentrion") is my PDF detailing Acquitaine (which is the "France" part of the setting, where Tuala Morn is the "Ireland"). I believe that's on sale in the Online Store (and is on DriveThruRPG as well). I'd love to do more stuff with the setting -- it's one of my most favorite of the many I've created -- but they usually require a certain amount of research and "detail" that make them harder to produce than most stuff. But still, one of these days, some of my notes will get tu
  16. We're currently trying just such an experiment with Champions International, and if that works well for us the possibility of creating more Fantasy settings, or expanding on TA and the others we have, is a definite possibility. Like many of y'all, I love creating worlds. (Which reminds me, at some point I need to get back to working on my Worldbuilding Guidebook, based on the methods and tips I often teach in seminars at gaming cons.)
  17. In point of fact, Scott, when I designed some of the races and creatures in TA, I drew a little bit of inspiration from some of the art you published in Rogues' Gallery over the years. I've thought about doing a PDF of 6E updates to the TA setting, to cover things that haven't already been updated (e.g., I don't have to update the spells from FHG I and II, since the HSG already does that, albeit with genericized names; same for the monsters and the HSB). Things like Templates and such-all wouldn't be too hard to "convert." But as always, I need to find the time to work on a
  18. That depends on how you look at things. It has (typically slightly tweaked) versions of many powers from Champions Powers (for which USPD I and II were of course predecessors). But there are some powers which are entirely new. There are 46 powers in total (many of which have options to change them, of course).
  19. Thanx! I am currently working on Super-Archery Powers and Metal Powers. I have a few ideas for a couple other power sets, but they're somewhat more complex and may require some actual rules design, so I haven't done much work on 'em yet. Unfortunately, no. I barely know anything about the genre, so I don't want to try to write for it. Sounds like it might be an interesting topic for someone to explore who knows what it's all about. I certainly understand that, but I don't know a thing about that genre, so I can't write about it. But I'm sure there's
  20. Howdy, Herophiles! My latest book (in PDF form) is now available: The Celtic Bestiary, a collection of monsters and creatures from Celtic myth, legend, and folklore, is now available at the Hero Games Online Store for a mere $12.99! It features 67 monsters, and is just the right thing if you're in a campaign set in Tuala Morn, have a Celtic-influenced setting in your own campaign world, or would just like to have some cool, unusual monsters to throw at your heroes. Please check it out and pick up a copy today! https://www.herogames.com/index.html/store-items/new-for-the-hero-system
  21. Howdy, Herophiles! My latest book (in PDF form) is now available: The Celtic Bestiary, a collection of monsters and creatures from Celtic myth, legend, and folklore, is now available at the Hero Games Online Store for a mere $12.99! It features 67 monsters, and is just the right thing if you're in a campaign set in Tuala Morn, have a Celtic-influenced setting in your own campaign world, or would just like to have some cool, unusual monsters to throw at your heroes. Please check it out and pick up a copy today! https://www.herogames.com/index.html/store-items/new-for-the-hero-system
  22. Pinnacle Entertainment Group has just made available for just $2 an audiobook of a superhero short story I wrote for them some years ago, entitled "The Third War." Here are the basics: https://soundbooththeater.com/shop/audiobooks/the-third-war/ "Crusader is the most isolated man in Star City. He spent the years prior to the v’sori invasion racking up an impressive body count of supervillains and street criminals. For his efforts, he was hunted by the cops, targeted by the underworld, and reviled by the public as a ruthless vigilante. Since the invasion, he’s
  23. Hey, all y'all Champions players! I've got three new mini-supplements available at the Hero Games Online Store. Each of them expands on CHAMPIONS POWERS to offer an new category of powers. They are: Aquatic Powers, which features nearly four dozen powers for characters who live in or often work underwater. Whether your character is a native of Atlantis, a water manipulator, or has powers derived from a marine animal, Aquatic Powers has just the powers you need to create him! Hard Energy Powers let a character create energy constructs with sufficient solidity
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