Cepheus Journal #10: Some Highlights

I just wanted to go over some highlights of the latest issue of the Cepheus Journal, the free fanzine for Cepheus Engine games. They’ve been putting out some great stuff recently, and it’s worth promoting. This isn’t a complete list, just the stuff that stood out to me. I’m also happy to say one of the articles is mine.

It’s all free to download at the Cepheus Journal site.

Beyond Mithril and Adamantine

This article by Joseph Jaquinta has a list of some fictional metals for use in a fantasy setting, along with sample equipment made from those metals. Each item has a possible plot hook provided. This one’s system agnostic.

The Alchemist

This one’s my favorite. It’s by Paul Drye, and it provides detailed rules for handling alchemy in Sword of Cepheus. The original SoC book doesn’t have any details for alchemy, beyond the skill itself, so it’s nice to see the idea fleshed out here. It describes the difficulty, time needed, and specific procedures needed to create any of the standard SoC potions. A table is provided to determine what happens when an alchemy roll fails.

There’s a d66 table of possible ingredients for potions. Getting any these ingredients might be the basis of an entire adventure.

A list of alchemical equipment details each tool that might be found in a laboratory. It’s not just for flavor, each item has an actual mechanical effect on the alchemy rolls.

The article ends with a list of possible Great Works – a lifetime goal for an alchemist. Examples are immortality elixirs, and converting lead to gold.

Though it’s somewhat SoC-specific, a lot of this could be translated to other fantasy games fairly easily.

The Human Destiny

An little campaign setting by Jon F. Ziegler, about 23rd century Humanity after it’s been colonized by an alien civilization. It’s got some interesting ideas.

World Generation in the Hostile Setting

A description of the changes to the world generation rules in Hostile, Zozer Games’ Aliens-style retrofuture Cepeheus setting. There’s also a link to an online generator using the new rules.

Using AI for Your Cepheus Engine Setting

This is P-O Bergstedt’s list of online tools for generating images (portraits and landscapes), names, and even adventures. Some of these were completely unknown to me, and it’s nice to have a listing of them. Despite the title, none of these are particularly Cepheus-specific.

Bring me the Head of Izumi Takahiro

I won’t go into detail on this one, as it’s my entry. It’s an adventure for the cyberpunk game Zaibatsu. It’s got militant fanboys, Ghibli-Disney tactical teams, and a frozen head.

I’ll have some design notes for it in a future post.

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