Author Archives: Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan

The Plain People of Gaming: All About The Numbers

Inspired by Ray Winninger’s seminal Underground RPG from Mayfair Games (which is sorely due a reboot), these parameters for Mutant City Blues let the players shape the future of their city, shepherding it into an era of prosperity or fighting against the tide as it’s engulfed in crime and corruption. Each parameter’s measured from +3 […]

Plain People of Gaming: Random Encounters of the Quade Kind

The Quade Diagram in Mutant City Blues is a wonderful thing – it’s a structure for mysteries, an investigative method, an in-world document and a tool for character creation. One thing it doesn’t handle, though, is helping pick a random mutant power for random mutant passers-by or indecisive players. The hack below is visually ugly, […]

The Plain People of Gaming: The Window on Standish Road

This quick Trail of Cthulhu adventure first appeared in the Dragonmeet 2018 program book, and is based on genuine historical events that took place within a few minute’s walk of the convention centre.  The Window on Standish Road What was reputed to be the appearance of the mischievous person? In white sometimes, and sometimes in the skin of […]

The Plain People of Gaming: Songs of the Icons

If you use background music in your 13thAge games – such as the wonderful 13thAge soundtrack – you can replace the regular rules for icon relationships with a more improvisational approach. Here’s how it works. Players choose their icon relationships as normal during character creation. The GM creates a playlist, mixing in the songs for […]

Night’s Black Agents Director’s Screen & Resource Guide

Night’s Black Agents player characters are highly trained super-spies, veterans of dozens of covert operations, ready to use guile and lethal force to overcome any obstacle. Night’s Black Agents players are even tougher. Ready yourself for the inevitable conflict with our Director’s Screen, keeping your notes and maps hidden until that final dramatic reveal. On one side, […]

The Plain People of Gaming: Fear Yourself

Roleplaying games are fascinatingly mediated. In almost every other storytelling medium, the audience perceives the action directly. They see the actors on the stage or screen, the characters in the computer game, the voices in the radio play. In prose, true, the author can play tricks with an unreliable narrator or writing in a very […]

Hideous Trophies

There appeared certain odd stories of things found floating in some of the swollen rivers – The Whisperer in Darkness Some of the horrors of the Cthulhu Mythos are composed of ultraterrene matter, or hail from dimensions or angles beyond the ones we know, or cannot die in any way we can comprehend. Others, though, […]

The Plain People of Gaming: Talking to the Dead in the Dracula Dossier

I was listening to the new BBC podcast on The Ratline (it’s about escaped Nazis and post-war conspiracies, so it’s useful for both The Fall of DELTA GREEN and the Dracula Dossier), and was struck by one observation that there are very few survivors of WWII left. For that matter, most of those who were […]

The Plain People of Gaming: Random Mutant City Cases

Random Case Generator If you’re stuck for inspiration in your Mutant City Blues campaigns, take this random case generator for a spin. Just roll a d6 on the tables as directed. (Note that some of the investigative abilities mentioned are from the upcoming 2nd edition of the game). Inciting Incident How do the characters discover […]

The Plain People of Gaming: Agencies in Solo Ops

Your lone spy in Night’s Black Agents: Solo Ops has been burned. You’re out on your own. Oh, you’ve got a network of connections and contacts you can draw on specialist skills – you can find a forger in Budapest, or a computer hacker in Buenos Aires, or an arms dealer in Boston – but […]

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