It was in the mid 80’s when Dragon Magazine came out and there was a strange ad for an upcoming roleplaying game called Skyrealms of Jorune. They were cryptic as hell and even more intriguing were the art for the ads. I really didn’t get a chance to play it often, only a couple of sessions during college and I did enjoy the weirdness and the wonder of it.
It wasn’t until much later that I had purchased the second edition box set and have a gander of the system and setting. I don’t think there was much material out for it at all or even adventure module. The setting was a huge canvas for the gamemaster to paint the world in their own weird setting. I wrote a few adventures for the system and I only ran one and never completed it due to the players at the time not wanting to venture forth in another game system, and when D&D 3 hit the stands well that put the kibosh on ever running Skyrealms of Jorune campaign for a while.
About three years ago I committed myself to run a scenario at Cangames. But, then someone else stated they might run one there for old time sake and I put the scenario on the back burner and run something else from my collection. This year I made it my mission to run it by hook or by crook.
So, Skyrealms of Jorune will run this year at Cangames.
Well that didn’t take to long to decided what to run this coming May. This afternoon I received my GM form for Cangames 2018 and several minutes later I submitted an adventure I hope to run.
So you can say that I’m all set for Cangames. I’ve decided to run a classic role-playing game called Skyrealms of Jorune, and the adventure I’m running is a home-brew scenario I wrote called “Midnight at the Oasis”.
I’ve been waiting patiently for the form to show up and once it did, I submitted the synopsis of the adventure and chose the time slot that I would like to see it ran at.
Cangames is the only convention that I’ve been attending faithfully now for pretty close to two decades now. Over the years my gaming crew had made the trek to Ottawa to partake in a day of rolling dice, chowing down junk food and gaming til the cows come home.
My gaming group has changed over the years, sometimes a caravan of cars heading to the big city, but these past couple of years just two vehicles from this town has made the trek. Gamers have come and go, but Cangames remains the same.
Each year I try to run a different game from my shelf so that I breathe some new life into an old system, maybe argue with another grognard over the interpretation of the game mechanics and what not. But, in the end it’s all good fun.
So this year Skyrealms of Jorune is the lucky recipient to be my Cangames pick. For those who never heard about this game, it was released back in 1984. It’s a science-fantasy role-playing game which is set among floating islands of earth levitated by mysterious crystals. Think of the movie Avatar for the setting but with the John Carter movie for the story and there you have it in a nutshell.
Now that the second week of 2018 has fallen upon us and this week challenge is “A Book From My Childhood”. So, I really want to re-read a pretty important book from my childhood, the trouble is trying to find a physical copy of it now.
That book is Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel by Virginia Lee Burton. I think it was either read to me by one of my kindergarten teachers back in 1969-70 or maybe I heard it from The Captain Kangaroo Show since he always had a story time and read from a book, showing the pictures of it as he read.
The story had been written in the depression era and is about a fellow and his sentient steam engine, named Mary Ann, trying to compete with the new gasoline mechanisms at that time and they literally dig themselves into a corner.
The solution to their dilemma is indeed ingenious and I don’t want spoil it for those who haven’t read it but let me tell you it still resonates with me to this very day. It’s a bittersweet ending that leaves you smiling after the read. It’s definitely on par with The Iron Giant in my humble opinion.
Though there is an animated short of the story that can be found online it’s still not the same as holding a physical copy of the book in your hands.
… was called on due to the extreme cold weather we’ve been having in the area. Two of my players couldn’t make it this evening since the weather is pretty damn cold to the EXTREME!
One of my player’s had to deal with pipes bursting at his home and the other didn’t want to brave bone chilling cold and the face hurting air, and also he was not wanting to leave the warmth of his humble abode and I couldn’t fault him for that.
So after an afternoon of prepping for the next chapter in the Hoard of the Dragon Queen adventure, means I’m all set to go next week with no prep what so ever since it’s all done. That’s a bonus.
So rather than sit and waste the time away by watching a movie (or playing a video game) I went over to Roll20 to work on an adventure over there. While there a player from Gamma World game there wanted to check out the last remaining rooms in the “outpost” we had last left off there on Monday.
And so we finish off a small side trek adventure and completed that little outpost.
So, the evening was not a bust after all.
Well, since I’ve taken the plunge in the 2018 Ultimate Reading Challenge I’ve decided to reread Mockingbird by Walter Tevis. It’s a science-fiction tale about an android who simply wants to die but he cannot due to his programming. The tale is set in the distant future where the world is slowly decaying and people are so “drugged” up that they can’t even see it.
The android named, Spofforth, is the central character. The two other characters that interact with Spofforth are Paul Bentley, a fellow who taught himself to read, and Mary Lou, a woman that sort of forms part of the triangle that our characters interact in.
The reason I read this book for school because it was on a list of books to read for our Science Fiction class in High School. This was back in 1981-2 and was an alternative English class and it was taught by Mr. Menzies who fuelled our imaginations with strange and wonderful science-fiction stories.
I basically picked the book simply because I dug the cover (and they say never judge a book by it’s cover). It was a new book by Tevis as well, written in 1980 and since I liked his The Man Who Fell To Earth I figured it was a surefire bet that it would be a very good read. I wasn’t disappointed. I won’t spoil it for anyone else who wants to give it a read.
I was drawn into this story right after the first passage and it hooked me good. Since I’m also a huge fan of post-apocalyptic fiction and a role playing game called Gamma World, I figured this book would also be good to mine for adventure seeds.
Even after 36 years this novel still holds up pretty well and I’m glad to give it another breath of life once again. It’s even more compelling now in this day and age and it’s making me feel like I’m back in high school again, waiting for Mr. Menzies to shout Pop Quiz and put our knowledge of sic-fi authors and their book titles once again.
I’m taking part in this challenge. Stay tuned for week one.