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by SotF
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Author Topic: Cynosure - the Pan-Dimensional City for Miniature Gaming  (Read 3889 times)
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warrenss2
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« on: November 07, 2009, 03:36:09 AM »

Years ago I read a fantastic series of comic books called Grimjack...


Grimjack lived in a city called Cynosure. It was located that the center of a dimensional crossroads of sorts. Some of the dimensions were stable and permanent... others phased in and out. Cynosure has been called many different names by various inhabitants of equally various dimensions... Atlantis, Tanelorn, Shangri-la, etc... It is a place where the laws of physics can change from block to city block or by crossing the street. Magic works here, but not there... same with psionics, superpowers, guns, science technologies. Swords work everywhere.

Since we're talking an infinite number of different dimensions here we could use an infinite variety of different miniatures... type, genre, and size would be no matter (a variety of weapons on the miniatures would be the norm). Same with type of terrain. You could change up and/or mix more than one or two genres. Imagine a wild west saloon next to a high rise apartment building... with a motorcycle, aircar, and a cybernetic horse tie outside it. Maybe the dimension Hell phases into Cynosure and your players have to take part of the Demon Wars? What if they get captured and forced to become pit-fighters?

It's all rather difficult to explain in a fashion that does the comic book justice. I strongly recommend finding & reading one of the comics.

These links might help too...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grimjack
http://www.grimjack.com/ - an online example of the comic.
http://www.internationalhero.co.uk/c/cynosure.htm

Let me know what you think.

I was thinking for rules I could use a mix of Fear & Faith and Mutants and Death Ray Guns both put out by...
http://ganeshagames.blogspot.com/ - they're fast and fun.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2009, 04:10:07 AM by warrenss2 » Logged

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diehard
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« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2009, 04:06:49 AM »

Grimjack was a great comic, even after they killed the original John Gaunt, but it was easy to let them slide (I believe John Ostrander was the writer) when they got flint Henry on board as artist. it was a lot of fun reading that and the Badger. And as to your idea, I have to agree, Cynosure would make a great setting for gaming opportunities.
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warrenss2
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« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2009, 04:54:56 AM »

Here are some miniatures, done by other members of the LAF, that I think would look great in a Cynosure Game...

Commander Vyper's priest...


Some of Froggy the Great's stuff...





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Ruarigh
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« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2009, 04:01:24 PM »

Grimjack is still one of my favourite comics of all time and I still have a complete run of it. I ran a pbm rpg based on it back in the mid 80s that was great fun; wrote my own system but no longer have any records of it. There was an rpg that used the idea called Nexus: The Infinite City. That might be worth checking out to see how they handle the mechanics of the game. Some description here:
http://www.idiom.com/~trip/gaming/nexus/nexus.html

In some respects, you might find it easier to use a variety of different compatible systems to model Cynosure because the rules of reality vary depending upon where you are. That is where a system like GURPS would really come into its own. Strip it back to the core skirmish rules and then add on the bits you need for each area/dimension. Using the full range of Ganesha Games rules might well come into its own in the same way. They are sufficiently similar that you ought to be able to port characters between the rules, although some skills will be useless in some areas. The TwoHourWargames line might suit too. I suppose you could always stick to MDRG and Fear and Faith, but that seems a little limiting for my tastes.

Regarding games, random events ought to be a significant part of them, things like:
Tourbots mob one figure which must pass a test to escape them.
Rolling dimension wanders down the road, picking up any figure in its path.
Dimension phases out: remove one half of the scenery from the table and replace it with something else. All characters in the lost part no longer take part in the game (or continue their battle separately form the others.

It's an infinite world to play in so you have loads of room for manoeuvre.

I look forward to reading battle reports from your games.
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warrenss2
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« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2009, 05:02:56 PM »

Tourbots mob one figure which must pass a test to escape them.Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh Laugh

Rolling dimension wanders down the road, picking up any figure in its path. - Or dropping one off!

Dimension phases out: remove one half of the scenery from the table and replace it with something else. All characters in the lost part no longer take part in the game (or continue their battle separately form the others. - Would have to make this a rare event at best... stopping the game to rearrange scenery might slow it down too much.

Like these ideas...
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Ruarigh
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« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2009, 05:41:52 PM »

Given that Grimjack was hardboiled comics noir type stuff, why not use 45 Adventures, Fantastic Worlds and Broadsword Adventures for it? I have a feeling that, with a little work, they would suit the setting quite well. With your games set up on the small boards that these rules use, you could easily have set pieces that would be easy to switch out so that you can move an unstable dimension off the table quickly and replace it with another. It should still be a rare event though.

Thinking about the setting, there was one story that is crying out for a Song of Fur and Buttons game. Was the planet/dimension called Pookie, or something like that?

Time to go back and re-read the comics for some more ideas. The demon wars could be a fun period to game ...
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« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2009, 06:29:17 PM »

Cynosure would of course be a gorgeous idea as setting for a campaign.
I can also imagine a gaming table representing different dimensions, although by my understanding these would not be visible at the same time - maybe tha same layout in different styles on different tables.
When it comes to gaming - there surely are rulesets with related variations (Warhammer(Necronunda/WHAB as only an example)- but I can hardly imagine how to game in different conditions on the same table, apart from this being a nightmare for a gamemaster.

What I could imagine are different small tables with different styles and different rules, where on a master plan the fronts between the dimensions where You can switch from one to the other change at will or at random. - so let's say:

A scavenger gang from a dystopic future wants has a gangfight with a group of superheroes from a SF/psychic dimension over trying to get high technology into their world. So in order to get what they want, they try to lure the superheroes into a medieval setting - the scavanger gang thinks the superheroes won't have their superpowers, because it is a historical world while the superheroes assume it is a fantasy world where they do have them. What both do not know is that the medieval setting is actually on the brink between history and fantasy and constantly switches from one ruleset to the other, allowing psychic superpowers and firearms only on an alternating basis.

well, something like that
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Ruarigh
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« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2009, 06:50:27 PM »

I can also imagine a gaming table representing different dimensions, although by my understanding these would not be visible at the same time
In Cynosure you can cross the street and change dimensions, this was used to good effect in some of the stories. This means that different dimensions are visible within the same area. Where the dimensions are radically different you would be able to see the join. You could represent this by zoning your gaming table into different dimensions and have different effects work in each area. Another thing that happened was that dimensions would phase out. A native of Cynosure might know how regularly a dimension phases in and out, so you could set up scenarios that require capturing/stealing something in a dimension that is about to phase out and returning it a different one. That would put a different spin on the time-limited scenario.
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Tom Reed
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« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2009, 06:59:59 PM »

Grimjack is great. I once ran a RPG based in the city of Cynosure. All of the players were accidently brought from their various dimensions to Cynosure when an NPC scientist/sorcerers experiment exploded. IT was great fun.

I like the idea about having different dimensions on the tabletop, maybe using 1 foot squares for each. And it lets you use ALL of your miniatures. Another neat RPG to take ideas from is Runepun, which uses the Savage Worlds system.
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Dizbuster
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« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2009, 08:00:10 PM »

Grimjack wow that goes back some. Happy days.


Hmmm i wonder if they ever miniaturised Cerebus the Aaardvark  Laugh
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xthulu
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« Reply #10 on: November 10, 2009, 04:28:25 AM »

Sounds fantastic!  I think I'd use Savage Worlds.
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warrenss2
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« Reply #11 on: November 10, 2009, 07:30:54 AM »

I think I'd use Savage Worlds. - Been thinking that route myself.... or using Savage Worlds Showdown for the miniature aspects of the game.

There are some good rules out there that I think can handle the game well. Originally thinking of combining Fear & Faith & Mutants and Death Ray Guns. But also thinking that my favorite rules... The Skank rules... could also handle this also. Plus I want to investigate some options presented in earlier posts.
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JollyBob
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« Reply #12 on: November 10, 2009, 04:29:12 PM »

Cynosure would be a great setting for a series of games.

They at least started to reprint the Grimjack series not so long back in collected editions. I got the first one, but never saw any others after that so don't know how far they got with it.

Actually, a quick search on Amazon tells me they got quite far with it, and more planned for next year:

 http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_ss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=grimjack&x=17&y=16
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Whiskyrat
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« Reply #13 on: November 11, 2009, 01:33:51 AM »

Not come across Grimjack before - thanks for the pointer.  Smiley

I had a cross-over idea for a series of games using the Palladium Rifts RPG background after picking up most of the World books on Fleabay last year.


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