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This category contains 20 posts

Foundering Valley, Chapter 13, Friday Morning, June 6

Chapter 13, Friday Morning, June 6 Early the next morning, D-Stract skipped breakfast, thinking about her figure, and headed to Ironborg’s tailor shop. Ironborg tried to listen to her while the two children howled and screamed in the back of the shop, despite their mother’s best efforts to keep them quiet. Finally, he lost patience … Continue reading

Foundering Valley, Chapter 12, Thursday Evening, June 5

The seven adventurers sat at a table in the front of the inn, staring at Spamwich’s most recent creation. It appeared that he had braided together jerky and green onion stalks, or maybe it was seaweed, impaled them on sticks, and coated them in a mysterious brown sauce. As a side dish, there was a … Continue reading

The Breakout Room Puzzle

This challenge was given to me by my future daughter-in-law, Audrey, as a genuine need.  She had a large meeting of people (16) during which she wanted to break them into smaller groups (e.g. of 4 each) so that they could get to know each other more personally.  After each small meeting, they would mix … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 11

Chapter 11 – The Yellow Brick Road Experts  The Lord, Earl of Founder’s Valley, appeared with his usual retinue. He stood to the front of the raised area before the castle door and all fell silent. Roddy, Whittler, Hound, and Plunkett all pushed forward eagerly to hear what help he would bring them. The Lord … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 10

Chapter 10 – Loose Ends in the Morning The next morning, Sapphire and Rufus were first to emerge for breakfast, each waiting for their partners to get ready. They sat at a table in the empty front room of the inn, picking at Spamwich’s idea of a cross between a cinnamon nut roll, a meat … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 9

Chapter 9 – Back at the Inn. The six adventurers sat around the table, enjoying lightly poached fish, fresh bread, and a hearty brown ale. For dessert, they sampled the excellent cherry brandy. Animus remained in his room, obsessively working on his nets.   Other patrons included the Visitor, who sat alone enjoying a gourmet … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 8

Chapter 8 – The Fishing Huts. Cleo and Rufus had not gone far before they saw large dark shapes moving in the depths of the marshes. These did not approach the causeway, though, so they headed on towards the fishing huts, on the other side of the little peninsula that jutted into the lake. As … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 7

Chapter 7 – Town Offices and Shops Flummox and D-Stract poked their heads into the jailhouse just after the town meeting. The greenish Chief Grief was addressing a circle of his new cronies.  The buxom officer in the smart uniform turned to them. “You need something, citizens?” Flummox shook his head and raised his hand. … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 6

Chapter 6 Market and Cathedral Sapphire and Grace skirted around to the back of the inn where they came to the market square. Against the back of the stone inn building was a low wood structure followed by some covered market stalls, beyond which was the corral beneath the last tower. The back edge of … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 5

Chapter 5 – The Beach and Uptown  The other elf archer fumed. ‘Annie Moose’ indeed! He was always being mistaken for a human female, and it burned him up. The elf maiden didn’t seem to have the opposite sort of trouble, and she was bigger and stronger than he was, definitely a warrior. Annie Moose? … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 4

  Chapter 4 – The Town.   Cleo and Rufus headed back towards the smithy. Clang was there, working a bellows and hammering on a horseshoe. Behind the open-air smithy they could see a crowded corral with over a dozen horses. A couple more shadows moved in the stable further on, also between the road … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 3

Chapter 3 – The Adventurers A half dozen adventurers lingered over the milk and pastry. The angry farmer, Billy Sky, came into the inn as well, and asked Beryl for a beer. Shaking his head, Beryl drew the beer in a mug and passed it to Goldilocks to deliver.  In the door came the summoned … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 2

Chapter 2 – The Town Meeting The storm broke even as the adventures settled into their beds. Not a thought was given to their less fortunate compatriots camped on the lakeshore. Crashes of thunder and rushing of water made such a racket than none could sleep until dawn brought a still silence. Tired as dirt, … Continue reading

Foundering Valley – Chapter 1

The Foundering Valley by Dr. Gerald Keep Prelude             And so the word went out – an ancient ruin had been found in the mountains far west of The City, with unexplored catacombs beneath. It promised something different to everyone, be it knowledge, treasure, adventure, or danger. And so the preparations began. Warriors looked to … Continue reading

Role Playing System Guidelines

Intimate Details of Castle Keep Role Playing System Guidelines G. Keep – updated 5/30/2020 When you encounter a Big Evil Troll carrying a Flaming Sword and Skull Scepter of Death, do you whip out a sword or a rulebook? Do you want to spend the afternoon dickering with the Goblins of Snaggle-Tooth Mountain, or arguing … Continue reading

New twist on an old card game

Something for the heavy dark of winter. You all know the card game, “War”, I suppose.  Split the deck, simultaneously flip two cards, winner takes them both and puts them on the bottom of their half of the deck.  Whoever ends up with all the cards wins.  In the event of a tie, you do a … Continue reading

New Media – The Computerized Novel

The birth and development of the “computer game” has of course taken a completely different direction from the paper-based novel.  “Readers” have such latitude – (burn the village or trade with the natives?) – that the author has very limited control over the course of events, and has to resort to heavy-handed deus-ex-machina to steer … Continue reading

New Media – The Paperback Version

Dr. Egon Spengler (Ghostbusters) says that print is dead.  I would say that there is so much more that we can do than just a linear story line 100% controlled by the author, in the (non-participatory) story-telling tradition. As I kid, I was intrigued by the choose-your-path mystery books.  At every critical junction, you had … Continue reading

Game Rules – The Green Biz

Here are the rules I spit out when Terry challenged me to write an educational game related to green technology entrepreneurship.  In a nutshell, you try to build an industrial complex with Murphy’s Law knocking you in the shins all the way. This would need to be published as a card game, so it needs … Continue reading

Game Rules – Enchanted Empires

I crank out new ideas for games the way some people play tennis – to deal with stress and frustration.  Here is one that I put together not long ago, that would form the kernel of a web-based game.  The tracking of populations and resources and such are way to complicated to do without a … Continue reading