Thursday, July 20, 2017

[CRIT] Stinkhammer

It was the first D&D table I sat at where everyone went around and shared their pronouns before play. I had been invited to join a newly-formed queer D&D group, as a player. I’ve been a DM since got into D&D, so I’ve often found it difficult (to put it lightly) to transition to the other side of the screen. But there was no way I was going to pass up the opportunity to queer up the world’s most popular roleplaying game.
The game itself was very tropey – meetings at inns, kidnapped blacksmiths’ daughters, goblins in abandoned tombs, escorting rich benefactors through an Elven wood – but it was done in a way that felt simple and charming. “Trope” has become something of a swear word nowadays, but when employed right, they can make a gamespace give off that warm, fuzzy “embarking on an adventure” vibe.
Our DM sprinkled in a few neat mechanics to build on that vibe. The first was handing out rumours to players at the beginning of the game, which we were encouraged to let filter naturally into the party through roleplay. It gave the whole “inn meeting” trope a little extra crunch, lending authenticity to that first conversation over mugs of mead. Then, during our daytrip through the Elven wood, the DM had us go around the circle and each invent a problem, which the next player in the circle would have to solve. It was a hell of a way to make travel feel grand for once, instead an unengaging mess that was either prepped into the ground or an unwieldy mess generated from encounter tables.
But the kicker was how these comforts were subverted at the end, as a levitating bald dude in black-red robes paid a sobbing inkeeper one blood-caked gold piece for each man slain on his grounds, as goblin cohorts with red bandanas on their arms collected the dead, the same goblins that we fought in the tombs. This whole time, this innocuous, trope-laden sandbox was masking the scent of something sinister that had been lurking right under our noses.
I’m getting way ahead of myself. You see, this whole reveal felt like cosmic justice for my Half-Elf Paladin of Silvanus, Tell. Tell couldn’t handle being shunned by both sides of his heritage, so he blamed the whole thing on civilization at large, using an oath to Silvanus and the Ancients as an excuse to isolate himself in the wilderness. He’s a filthy, spiteful boy who refuses to sleep under roofs or practice basic hygiene. He’s not just stinky, he’s d4 poison damage within 10 feet stinky. The one-and-a-half people’s worth of Halflings in the party added that to the fact that Tell carries an oaken warhammer to whip up this cute little moniker: Stinkhammer.
Being a Paladin of Silvanus and an ardent isolationist, Tell’s got quite the beef with buildings. While burying Goblins in a shallow mass grave (he cares, but not that much), he muttered cryptically about a “a scar on the land that will never heal,” gesturing wildly at the tomb entrance. Tell was quick to assert himself as a warden of nature to an Ent barring their passage, and even quicker to swear an oath to Silvanus that he would bring back the critters of the forest. Their disappearance coincided with the founding of a new city deeper in the wood; not a scar this time, but a festering wound.
Then, the party reached an inn at the center of an abrupt clearing filled with withered saplings.
Four cloaked bandits brooding at a corner table jumped the party as they approached the bar. As one charged, Tell misted them with his glowing warhammer, burning with the righteous fury building in him throughout the day. His companions blanched, the bandits fled, and the innkeeper screamed “I told you not to kill anybody!”
And that was never the intent. I thought it important that the innkeeper was begging us not to kill anyone as soon as we stepped foot in his inn. So I thought it keen to relay to the rest of the group how knocking someone out works: drop them to 0 hit points with a melee weapon and you’re good. But in my mind – clouded by tropes – equated their black cloaks to more hit points, 15 at least. I wagered a smite with a melee weapon would win me a one-hit knockout, but instead it caused instant death, the damage enough to kill the poor sap twice over. Tell knocked the spine and organs out of the bandit, leaving a sleeve of skin mounted on two thighs in mid-stride, which led to the reveal that turned our happy little world topsy-turvy.
Seriously, it was never my intent to kill anyone, but according to the dice, it was certainly Tell’s. All that guff about giving the goblins a proper burial and swearing up-and-down that his brutish companions wouldn’t even snap a twig under his watch, and here he is putting a undeserved end to some desperate thug. Quite the paladin he turned out to be. We’ll see what Silvanus has to say about this, and how many bloody coins Tell is about to put in this innkeeper’s coffers.
Edit: I realized just after writing this piece that I really didn’t talk about what made this session queer. But that’s just the thing: queer D&D doesn’t look that much different from normal D&D. The only difference is that when a player or the DM says “this character is nonbinary” or “this character is black,” the response is “okay,” rather than claiming that it’s unrealistic, or fishing for some justification for why the character is like that. Character’s don’t need a reason to not be white or straight or men, especially in a world of magic and whimsy. It was just so refreshing to not only have openly queer characters, but to be openly queer at the table without some sort of tension hanging in the air.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

[KINK] Mr. Leather Colorado 2017 Fundraiser Shirts

Superhorse is selling limited-edition t-shirts to raise money for the Mr. Leather Colorado travel fund! This fund not only enables me to represent Colorado at IML '18; it also allows future titleholders to represent Colorado at events across America!
The shirt was designed by James Newland, whose take on our community's iconography is cartoony, campy, and just plain fun! I felt his art best expressed who I was and how I approach Leather.
All proceeds will be collected by the Leather Colorado Foundation, which maintains the Mr. Leather Colorado travel fund.
If you’re interested in purchasing a shirt, click below to visit my Bonfire campaign! There are plenty of shirt styles and colors to choose from.
The campaign ends August 1st, after which these shirts will never be sold again! So get ‘em while they’re hot!

Click to purchase a t-shirt!



Tuesday, July 11, 2017

[KINK] Seahorse

If you support me through Patreon or Ko-Fi, you can enter in the “Scene Raffle” to have me engage in a scene of your choice, complete with a writeup and photos! This post is an example of what that might look like. Needless to say, this post is gonna get really dirty.
“Fuck me, I’m trapped.”
That’s how a friend on Discord told me to start this post. A lot of people are telling me to do shit today. I have nobody but myself to blame. I’m a typical masochist: writing checks with my mouth that my body can’t cash. But that’s part of the fun isn’t it? Putting yourself in situations you can’t really get out of, being forced to experience new things and push your limits. I mean, I’ve got safewords, of course; I’m a stickler for safe play so that’s a given. But since my boyfriend lives in Maryland, we have to put a few systems in place to make sure I do exactly what I’m told.
I suggested to my boyfriend that I remain in my neoprene getup for as long as he desired. I laid out my gear for his approval; the thought that it’s currently the dead of Summer never really crossed my mind. Once geared up, I locked on my collar so that the hood and wetsuit couldn’t be removed, and gave the key to my roommate, who would only return it if I showed him a message from my boyfriend. The time I was allowed to cum was assigned using a random number generator, calling on value ranges that only my boyfriend knew. This meant that I could finish, but then be stuck – sweaty, exhausted, and totally over it – for hours.
We got more creative as the night passed. I finished a forced workout of 50 crunches because my boyfriend wanted to really hear my gas mask work. I could barely catch my breath through the filter. When I headed to dinner with the other roommates, all I was allowed to remove was my mask and my hood. A few sloppy joes and a half-hour of awkward staring and timid conversation later, and I returned to a hood and mask cold and slick with sweat.
Eventually I was allowed to finish and retrieve the key, but on one condition: I had to fill a shot glass. Of course I couldn’t (even though I filled a decent amount). Out of sheer desperation, I offered to drink it all down with rum, the only bargaining chip I had left. But I took the shot before my boyfriend clarified that all I’d get out of it was “protein.”
Needless to say, an ounce of Black Magic rum – my heretofore drink of choice – made it curdle. Fair is fair; he let me peel out of my gear after I subjected myself to that.
P.S. Throughout the night, I kept referring to myself as a “seahorse” because I found it extremely amusing. A close dragon friend of mine reminded me to mention that. He found it amusing.









Sunday, July 2, 2017

[CRIT] Savage Worlds House Rules

Last Updated 7/12/17
If you’ve spent more than a few minutes exploring Kinks & Crits, you’ve probably realized that I enjoy house ruling my games. My players have learned to accept that if a game doesn’t do what it’s supposed to do exactly how I want it to, then I will go to great lengths to modify it until it does. I refuse to run a system unless it fits me like a glove.
So then it follows that the less house rules I append a system with, the better I feel it accomplishes its purpose. Dungeon Crawl Classics, Burning Wheel, and Symbaroum have no house rules, for example; they execute their concepts perfectly in my opinion.
Savage Worlds is in the middle. I feel it requires a few house rules to better unify the system and to excise unnecessary fiddly bits, but otherwise I love the system as-is. I’m of a mind that the more specific the concept that a game is written for, the better the game; Savage Worlds may be billed as generic, but it captures a pulpy style of storytelling and beer-and-pretzels dice-slinging in a way no other system has.
My list of house rules for Savage Worlds is meager, but deliberate. I hope they better streamline your gaming experience!

Derived Traits

Parry

Parry is treated as a penalty to Fighting rolls. This penalty is equal to (Fighting / 2) − 2. Additionally, Fighting rolls are now made against TN 4.

Toughness

Toughness is treated as a penalty to damage rolls. This penalty is equal to (Vigor / 2) − 2. Additionally, damage rolls are now made against TN 4.

Equipment

Armor Damage

Each raise dealt against a character’s Toughness reduces the Toughness of the armor they are wearing by 1.
A successful Repair test restores 1 lost Toughness on a success, and 1 additional Toughness for each raise. Each attempt takes 10 minutes. Armor with 0 Toughness is not repairable, and a critical failure reduces an armor’s Toughness to 0.

Ammo Tracking

Do not track the ammunition or magazines you consume when you use a weapon with the Shooting skill. Instead, when you use a weapon with the Shooting skill, roll another die with a size equal to your Shooting skill. If that die comes up as a 1, you have to reload that weapon before it can be used again.
This roll can be modified by certain weapon properties:
  • Double Tap: Roll two dice and take the lowest.
  • Burst: -3 to the roll.
  • Autofire: Penalty equal to number of shots fired + 1.
Bennies can be spent to reroll an ammo roll.