Thursday, 10 November 2011

Converting Masks of Nyarlathotep to Oriental Adventures:

As mentioned in a previous post, I was considering published campaigns that I could adapt to the Legend of the Five Rings setting for my second, much smaller, group. The one that essentially meets as when I have the time and can be bothered, as opposed to the weekly earth-shaker game.

Kelvin Green, genius that he is, suggested reworking Masks of Nyarlathotep. An awesome idea that I leapt on. I had just finished converting the first chapter, originally set in New York, to work in L5R's City of Lies when I had a revelation (inspired by the excellent blog Ramblings of a Great Khan): Why the hell am I bothering to convert this awesome campaign to L5R, a game system my players have never used, when I can just use OSRIC flavoured with 1st ed AD&D Oriental Adventures?

So, over the next few days you'll probably come across a number of Oriental Adventures themed posts. Nothing to do with my efforts converting the campaign module itself, I'm afraid. After all, my group has to play through it first. Mostly I'll be taking the mounds of racial and character class information in OA and re-presenting it in a more user friendly format. Last night I had to read through the Samurai class information three times to work out how many starting proficiencies they had.  The “OSRIC” Oriental class artciles will therefore be nothing new or original (with the possible exception of the ninja. I might re-work that class entirely) just a rehash of existing material. Mostly for the benefit of my players, it has to be said, but hopefully there will be something useful in there for you too.

I'll also post maps and a brief key of my version of a fantasy Japan. Though the campaign won't be set in either OA's Kara-Tur or L5R's Rokugan I'll probably use elements of each lifted wholesale from the original. The starting city will still be called Ryoko Owari. It will still be a “hive of scum and villainy” but it wont be Rokugan's Ryoko Owari, apart from a few key locations. I also anticipate building in an area based heavily on L5R's Shadowlands. Blood Magic will also feature heavily (it shouldn't be too hard to work up rules for Blood Magic in OSRIC). So look forward to seeing articles about these over the next few weeks.

Anyway, that's it for me just now. I'm coming down with could be a winter cold. So I'm off to hop under my duvet with a mug of hot toddy and try to beat this thing down before it has a chance to take hold.

15 comments:

Lobo said...

love samurais :)

Fabian said...

I'm in the process of converting the OA classes to Labyrinth Lord on my blog. You might want to take a look for some inspiration.

Ray Rousell said...

Great idea!!!!!

Dangerous Brian said...

@ Lobo: Me too :D

Thanks for the tip Fabian. I'll check it out. And cheers for the enthusiasm Ray. I reckon it's a winning idea too.

Beedo said...

This idea is just crazy enough to work. I love The Masks campaign and agree it'd make an awesome D&D horror game. I'll be watching this one unfold with great interest - good luck!

I've often thought of running LOTFP as Oriental Adventures; the Specialist makes a great customizable Ninja, and the fact that only fighters excel at fighting makes them excellent stand-ins for Samurai. Just saying.

Dangerous Brian said...

Thanks Beedo. That's a great suggestion. The conservative in me is screaming for me to use the ninja class as is. But that said, I think it could be done better. A re-work of the Specialist from LOTFFP could be just what it needs. I'll look into it.

Lord Gwydion said...

I was going to recommend checking out Fabian's work converting OA to LL, but he's already been here. So I'll just second his recommendation to check out his stuff.

Sounds like a fun campaign. I'm not familiar with the module, but Asian fantasy meshes really well with horror, in my opinion.

Dangerous Brian said...

Fabian's conversions are really good. Just the type of thing I'm looking for. Honestly I don't think my conversions for OSRIC will much different from his. In fact, Fabian's version of the Kensei looks pretty much perfect.

Dangerous Brian said...

Oh - and going by how easy it's been to convert the module to Asian Horror, I'd agree. The two seem to mesh pretty well. One night's work and I've already got the first full adventure converted over (other than providing stats for the NPC's that is).

whiskeytangofoxtrot said...

This is one of the weirdest combos of stuff I have ever seen.

I love it.

kelvingreen said...

You're very kind. I suggested it almost as a challenge, to see if you'd do it. What I like most about Masks is its structure and that's something I've often wanted to emulate; when you asked for campaign suggestions I wondered if it would be possible to -- instead of borrowing the structure -- port the entire thing over.

I hope you'll keep us up to date with session summaries, as I'd love to see how it all turns out.

Dangerous Brian said...

I'll do my best. I'm finally getting to take off my DM hat and play for a bit as I'm joining a new Thursday night group. They have rotating DM's, and some of the players have already expressed an interest in having me run OA Masks. So you'll probably see your suggestion in action in a few months.


Thanks for the suggestion again. I love a challenge.

Jagatai said...

I started dropping in a few horror elements and a bit of blood magic to my game myself, I figured I might as well get my moneys worth out of all the L5R RPG stuff I've bought over the last year or so and the Black Temple IS the Temple of Elemental Evil in my new OA campaign. Demons = Horror and dark sorcery.

Dangerous Brian said...

I've been following your actual play reports -and your campaign musings- with a great deal of interest Jagatai. I reckon you're on to a winning combination there.

Shannon said...

That's a lot of work you intended there but, hey, do what you love. If you think it'll be fun go for it. Did you end up doing it though? I see that it was a couple years ago that you made these plans.