Saturday, April 21, 2018

SoEC Deluxe Resources

I decided to put together a master blog post (that I can keep updating) with a list of specific resources for Sentinels of Echo City's Deluxe Edition...

The Core Rules in Print
The Core Rules in PDF

From the Core Rules
Art Released Under a Creative Commons Share-Alike License
Character Sheet
Echo City Map in Black and White
Echo City Map in Color

Demon by Rick Hull
Space Ace by Rick Hull
Star Child by Rick Hull
The Cat by Rick Hull

Print Edition

The print edition of Sentinels of Echo City Deluxe Edition is now available.

Let the Wild Rumpus begin.

Echo City Rules Update

The updated version of the core rules has been posted. There are dozens of minor changes (mechanics, grammar, consistency) across the rules. There is also a new picture for Myrmidon, because I realized that the write-up for bleeding attack was in there twice!

There are no actual rule changes, just a whole lot of clarification and consistency. Thanks to Max Traver and Rick Hull for all of the editing help! You guys helped out a great deal.

I am still hoping to have the print edition out this weekend, and am also working on a revision to the blog itself, with revised links for support. I'm also working on fiction in the world of the game, and this will be a regular feature in the bi-monthly magazine that launches in May! There's a lot going on...

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Sentinels of Echo City Deluxe Now Available

The complete book for Sentinels of Echo City Deluxe Edition is now available! Whew.

I wanted to lay out the game plan for the near future...

There will be a print edition in a few weeks. I have been through this with a fine-tooth comb. That said, there is probably SOMETHING that I missed. I want to give it a few weeks to go back with fresh eyes before putting it in print. It is much easier to update a pdf than to tell people the print book they just ordered has some errors.

I have a plan for long-term sustainability. I plan to release a 24-page game update bi-monthly. I have notes for the first six of these. I didn't include the second Echo City Team Up characters, setting, and adventure in this core rule book, because these are going to be part of a larger 'under the sea' supplement that will be in the first few updates. The first one is going to focus on the Powers Family, and we'll be going under the sea in the second or third update. I don't have a title for these yet... I do love the name "Echo City Team Up", so I may just go with a second volume of that... I decided on a $9.95 price point for the book, because A) it is significantly longer than the other games I've done, and B) all supplements for it are going to be pay-what-you want, meaning that this is the only investment you'll ever have to make, and everything else will be optional.

I'd love to hear your feedback, and I'd welcome any help to spread the word about this book. It's all open content, so you are free to make, share, and publish your own updates. Please do! Tell your friends!

Thanks for the enthusiasm for this game. If it wasn't for people asking for it, I probably wouldn't have gotten around to doing it, and I am REALLY proud of the final product.

- Mike

Saturday, April 7, 2018

Echo City Map

I absolutely love the map that Michael Hansen did a few years ago for Echo City. It created a visual for the city that was different than the one I had in my head, but it was also a thousand times better. In putting the book together, I went to include that map. However, I realized that the file was a bit small, so it became grainy when I blew it up for inclusion in the book. Even more, though, I realized that I couldn't do anything with it... it was a finished file that I didn't have the ability to modify, add to, or tailor further. It was a finished product. I figured it would be worth the time to do my own version of it, breaking the files up so that I could manipulate them and create various layers of the pieces of Echo City, but also in a large enough file that I could go to the street level and put in actual buildings or places of interest as we go forward, updating the primary map. I present to you, the map of Echo City 2.0 (and the black and white version that will be inside the rule book):

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Character Sheet Update

Here is the revised character sheet for the Deluxe Edition... I got it back to a half-sheet, which I prefer. I expanded it for Absolute Power, but kind of missed the old half-sheeter. It is a little bit tight, but I like it. You can see how I trimmed a little bit of the fat from the game, but didn't lose anything in the bargain.
The draft is finished. The book is going to be 192 pages. I still have to put together the index, do all the page references throughout, and do one more good edit. However, I don't see any reason the book shouldn't be available by the end of next week. It's a nifty looking package. It has over 40 pieces of art (including maps), which are almost all new pieces. It has everything from the core rules, absolute power, Echo City Team Up #1, some GM notes from Splintered Realms Magazine #1, and a pretty solid update to Echo City (which was from a guide to Echo City that I had half written but never finished). The mechanics are streamlined and updated, and I have added a few tweaks here and there, including a 3-page section on battlesuits and a 3-page section on magic.
Here is the new character sheet to tinker with...

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Battlesuit Examples

I remember looking through the Weapons Locker supplement for the Marvel Superheroes RPG and being amazed at how the different armors worked, and how there were so many different varieties of armor for Iron Man. I thought it was cool to have a character who could put on different battlesuits depending on the situation. However, I'd never been able to design a system that allowed for that level of variety while still having some semblance of game balance.

Until now.

I present to you, the Persister Battlesuit, including generations to get to level 3, and the three alternate suits for level 3:

Persister Battlesuit Mark 1
(base suit at level 1; 12 BPs); Grants +4 hp
STR 14 [-]; CON 14 [-]; PWR 12 [4]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d6/30’) [2]; Flight [2]; Imperviousness (1d4) [2]; Strike (1d6) [2]

Persister Battlesuit Mark 4
(base suit at level 2; 25 BPs); Grants +8 hp
STR 15 [2]; CON 15 [2]; PWR 14 [8]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d8/60’) [4]; Flight [2]; Imperviousness (1d6) [3]; Strike (1d6) [2]; Trick Weapon System (30’) [2]

Persister Battlesuit Mark 9
(base suit at level 3; 40 BPs); Grants +15 hp
STR 16 [4]; CON 16 [4]; PWR 16 [12]; Air Supply [2]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d8/90’) [5]; Electronic Countermeasures [2]; Flight [2]; Imperviousness (1d8) [4]; Strike (1d6) [2]; Trick Weapon System (60’) [3]

Persister Battlesuit Mark 10: Bruiser Battlesuit
(first alternate suit at level 3; 40 BPs); Grants +18 hp
STR 20 [12]; CON 18 [8]; PWR 12 [4]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d8/60’) [4]; Flight [2]; Imperviousness (1d10) [5]; Strike (1d12) [5]
This suit is for situations requiring a lot of muscle.

Persister Battlesuit Mark 11: Infiltrator Battlesuit
(second alternate suit at level 3, 40 BPs); Grants +12 hp
STR 14 [-]; CON 14 [-]; PWR 18 [16]; Air Supply [2]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d6/60’) [3]; Chameleon [2]; Electronic Countermeasures [2]; Imperviousness (1d6) [3]; Sneak [2]; Sonar (3 miles) [4]; Utility Belt [2]
This suit is for situations requiring stealth.

Persister Battlesuit Mark 12: Explorer Battlesuit
(third alternate suit at level 3, 40 BPs); Grants +21 hp
STR 16 [4]; CON 20 [12]; PWR 14 [8]; Air Supply [2]; Amphibious [2]; Body Armor [-]; Bolt (1d6/60’) [3]; Imperviousness (1d8) [4]; Snare (60’) [3]; Utility Belt [2]
This suit is for non-combat situations: rescue or peacekeeping.

- I originally thought of the STR and CON ratings as being bonuses to your existing attribute. However, that REALLY skewed things when you started with STR 6 vs. STR 12 (both normal human range). If you are getting +10 to STR from the armor, one character is ending up lifting about 20 tons while in the armor, and the other is able to lift about 200 tons. When you look at how that range (attribute 6 to 12) magnifies, you ended up with a base rating of about 14 to 15 in the scaling. Putting all armor at a base rating of STR 14 (regardless of your human STR rating) makes more sense. It also keeps you out of the problem of 'what if Hulk put on the Hulkbuster armor? Does that magnify his STR?' In this case, no.

- It took some tinkering with the numbers to get it to balance out, but I think it works well. A battlesuit hero of level 6 is going to be VERY powerful. However, level 6 is Thanos level (the current Iron Man would be level 4 in the game, so 1 level up from the examples given here). I'd put this suit at the comparable level of War Machine right now. He'd be level 3 as well. 

- I LOVE the system for trick weapons, and when you layer this (or utility belt for that matter) into this suit, it's just fantastic. I will always use the random option: In play, I go to activate the flare rocket launcher; maybe I have a flare rocket left, or maybe I swapped those out for smoke rockets. The die is about to tell me...

Monday, April 2, 2018

Two Cover Mock Ups

Just for fun, here are two cover mock ups...

Powers Family

I'm working on edits to the character write-ups, and got to the Powers Family. I like them quite a bit, and after tinkering with them for a while, I decided to try and draw up an 'action shot' in the style I've been using for the rest of the book. This came out really, really nifty. I am not trying to channel Mike Mignola, but it's happening anyway... With a little bit of spot color, I could almost see this ending up as the cover design... I'll work up a mock-up of it, and see how it looks.