Sunday, 23 December 2012

Model Conversion Plasma Recharge Unit WIP

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Monday, 19 November 2012

Rob Rants: Castles "Park Over There!"

300 Gaming Videos/How It All Started

I'm celebrating my 300th video on the Gaming Channel!

I of course have put up quite a lot on the Duz Andy Know? and Life On Rob channels too, and those aren't counted! But it's nice to see that number all in one place in my uploads.

As I look back on how I developed the content on the channel I remember having it for some time without
feeling the need to put up any sorts of videos. Then we started gaming in Warhammer Fantasy RPG 2nd Edition. It was a great game for us and I began collecting together the events of our adventures as an ongoing story. I then put this story up on YouTube as a spoken word collection. It now stands in its finished state as Their Fated Travels...
98 videos long and about 18 hours of playlist!

...Chances are that this story will continue somewhen...

 The RPG gaming community affectionately referred to as the "RPG Brigade" by the gaming populace really started to take off, with some great videos and fantastic channels of content.
This made me realise that I had things to say about the gaming I did as well, so from there, based off the the fabulous inspiration of those initial pioneers (many of which no longer make videos) my new focus for gaming videos on the channel came into sharp form.

From there I've been making videos on our Warhammer 40k Dark Heresy campaign and Dragon Age RPG (my personal favourite) sessions.
Then of course I have also been making the more generically centred 'Gaming Talk' episodes where I discuss facets of gaming that all system's players can refer to.

What happens next? Where do we go from here? I've always tried to pioneer new things for myself and to push the envelope of how things are done, bit by bit from time to time, just to keep things fresh. I quite honestly don't know what will happen next - if a time will come when it all ends or if a time comes when I start making videos of a completely different type again on the channel. Only time will tell, as there is no definitive plan in place.

I set up the beginnings of a webstore directly linked to my channel. Perhaps that is one avenue that will be prone to expand somewhen.

Anyway, that's enough from me, take care everyone and, as always,


Magic Resist Vs Spellpower (Dragon Age Role-Playing Game)

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Session 20 Vidcast: Dragon Age Role Play

See the other video for this with session 19 (part 1) including GM notes for how to run it here:

Friday, 5 October 2012

Win 'Black Sepulchre' Book Dark Heresy Competition!

Welcome to the blog version of this competition to win the Black Sepulchre book. Comment on the video at YouTube to enter into the competition to win it, but also comment on here, this blog post to get a bonus entry intro the draw! Always good.

Good luck!

Monday, 1 October 2012

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Rob Reviews: Marston's Old Empire (India Pale Ale) 5.7%

Win 'Purge The Unclean' Book Dark Heresy! Competition

Welcome to the blog folks!

You're turned in to the blog version of the video. While you're here why not check out some of the other content I've done over the last while?

Leave a comment on here to gain a bonus entry to the competition, telling me why you should win the book - and don't forget to let me know who you are on YouTube!

Good luck everyone, prize draw 10th October. Winner will be notified via YouTube.

Sunday, 9 September 2012

Bi-Polar Weather: Life On Rob

Dragon Age RPG Behind The Scenes Pictures

Here on the blog are two exclusive recent pictures from my Dragon Age RPG gaming sessions and prep.
First we see what my table looks like while I'm creating a conversion to DA. This time, Fighting Fantasy's Dungeoneer:

Next we look at the white board drawing for the battle of Redhold we recently ran. They had to hold this wall against waves of darkspawn at all costs. There was a cost to pay too, Oof and Paedar indeed did fall at this battle. Here's the detail of how it was drawn out for miniatures to be put atop it:

BronyCon Auction 2012 BUCK - Lory Let Loose

Sunday, 29 July 2012

Session 15 Vidcast: Dragon Age Role Play

The following is a Fighting Fantasy Dungeoneer book conversion into the Dragon Age RPG system.


1st statue riddle: Two beautiful maidens approach the village matchmaker to be matched. The matchmaker is impressed by their beauty, but even more impressed is she by the fact that they both look exactly alike.

The matchmaker asks each maiden where she lives, and their answers are the same; they live in the same house. She asks each who her father is, and their answers are the same; they have the same father. She asks for their birthdays, and they have the same birthday.

"Ah," says the matchmaker. "You are twins."

"No," say the maidens. "We're not twins."

How can this be?

2nd Statue Riddle: I wonder as I wander: where am I?
I shed tears, yet I cannot cry,
I trek, but cannot walk, swim or fly,
I am born to die. Say, what am I?

3rd statue riddle: I am, I'm not. I visit young and old,
Some I make timid and some I make bold,
Unwise is the one who pokes fun at me.
Beware, for I am a shadow of thee.


1st Statue riddle answer: They are two of a set of triplets.

2nd statue answer: Cloud

3rd statue answer: Death

Monday, 2 July 2012

Coming Soon: Rob Recommends

Coming soon to Life On Rob is my new playlist, Rob Recommends. I intend to show you several videos I think you should look at, with some feedback in between them as a playlist on my channel. The videos will be grouped into the same category each time and the categories will range vastly.

Just a heads up, hope you enjoy the concept and the videos I will show you.


Even More Choice? Gaming Talk Follow On

Friday, 29 June 2012

Ask A Silly Question... Part 3 - Episode 120 Duz Andy Know?

Another Gamer Inspired By The Channel

It's really really gratifying to see my videos reach out to people and impact their lives. One of the best feelings ever is when someone buys a system solely because I have given it coverage on my YouTube Gaming Channel.

One such video is embedded below of a gamer who explains why he bought the Dragon Age RPG after viewing my playlist coverage on it.

All the very best of luck with your campaign, Sir!

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Session 12 Vidcast: Dragon Age Role Play (Fighting Fantasy Conversion)

Welcome to the Fighting Fantasy Conversion Project. In its first step we convert 'The Wishing Well' by Steve Jackson over to something suitable for Dragon Age. Recommended for perhaps level 1 or 2's - or an easier time for level 3's.

Below you will find out how to get the original book, a video of how it played out for my group with personal opinions from the GM and all of the pages of conversion kit scanned in for your use. All I ask if you want to show others the conversion kit online that you link them to this blog so that I'm credited correctly.
These pages may be downloaded for personal use in your gaming. Happy sessions!

Firstly, here's the book you'll need to get hold of to play this dungeon:

You can try getting it from somewhere else too, but this is just to show you which book you need.

Here's a video of me talking about how the session went for this conversion into Dragon Age RPG, how I tied a story/theme into it and what I think worked or didn't - useful if you're planning to GM it too:

Below are the scanned pages of the rough conversion kit to use alongside the book. I made these notes for personal use but am now making them available to you. Remember, these pages don't make sense on their own. You need a copy of Fighting Fantasy An Introductory Roleplaying Game to work with it:

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Pathfinder Comic Interview With Writer Jim Zubkavich

I want to say a big thanks to Paizo Publishing for allowing me the opportunity to talk to Jim Zubkavich about the upcoming Pathfinder Comic series.
Read below to see what information I managed to get from him about the series and his own style as a writer and RPG gamer. 

Hi Jim, thanks for giving us this opportunity to find out a little more about the Pathfinder comic book series coming this August initially to Gen Con Indy, then in shops later that month.

You'd had some previous experience with Eric Mona (head of Paizo) for him to know you were the right man for the job hadn't you? Tell us how you met him.
Erik and I have known each other for several years. I work at the UDON studio as a Project Manager, handling the studio’s freelance projects with game, comic, movie and advertising clients. Paizo hired the UDON crew to create artwork for both Dungeon & Dragon magazine titles when they were licensing them from Wizard of the Coast, so we got to know each other through those art projects. Since then, we’ve seen each other at conventions and kept in contact. I really feel like we see eye to eye on the gaming and entertainment business.

Your approach to Golarion and the characters of the world obviously won them over (Paizo Publishing and Dynamite Entertainment) in your pitch - but what was that angle? What defines your approach, your take on this? A theme? Something else?
I stressed that the comic needed to be about characters, first and foremost, not just info dumping on the vast and complex setting Paizo has created. I also made it clear I wanted to create a comic that was completely new reader friendly and didn’t require prior knowledge of the game or fiction line in order to work. Thankfully both of those aspects fell right in line with what Paizo wanted too.

As a writer yet tabletop RPG gamer yourself, how often do you find you're able to get round the table with others and play a session of something these days?
It’s pretty rare nowadays, unfortunately. My work and travel schedule is intense and a weekly gaming session doesn’t work well, especially during summer convention season. I still pull together friends for the occasional one-off or multi-session RPG session. Other times, we’ll have big board game nights at my place. I still have a lot of love for gaming.

Also as a writer you're used to having directive control over plot. Do you tend towards Games Mastering RPG sessions? Or does it work the other way, a sort of relief factor of time off from creative design letting others GM it?
I’m a GM at heart. I can’t help it. I grew up as a player, letting other people dictate the stories but, by the time I was in high school, I was almost always the person running games for my friends. No matter how much I want to just play the game, I can’t help but start thinking about how I’d run things and ways to work with the plot material. The storytelling bug has got me bad.

Have you ever considered using real tabletop gaming events or characters as inspiration for stories? I say that, because I've done the same in writing and had exciting dynamics of unexpected character death that doesn't feel "written".
Some smaller stuff has definitely crept into my work – funny lines, bizarre action scenes and the occasional amusing NPC. The spontaneity that comes from gaming is a great way to get creative juices flowing.

I think RPGing is important as a storytelling exercise but that just writing sessions as fiction isn’t necessarily a good approach. It has to be refined and adapted, using the strength of each medium properly.

The characters in the story will already be familiar to pathfinder fans won't they, why?
They’re very familiar visually since the iconic characters in the comic are on the cover and interior art for almost every Pathfinder product since the game started in 2008, but their personalities and histories have never been defined. It’s a really unique challenge working with characters who are simultaneously familiar but unknown to fans.

Could you introduce us to the party as if you were a friend of theirs summing them up?
Valeros is a mercenary fighter who has disobeyed orders so many times he's not quite sure how to be loyal to anything or anyone. His courage and temper make him a formidable and dangerous warrior.

Seoni is a mysterious sorcerer whose tattooed body and mystical dreams make those who first meet her wary of her power. Strangers may call her a barbarian based on appearance, but her keen strategic mind gives her a distinctive edge in battle.

Merisiel is an elven rogue whose glib banter and flashing smile lead people to assume that she's unintelligent and shallow. Her fears and long-lived life drive her in ways few will ever understand.

Ezren is a middle-aged man who came to wizardry quite late in life. The march of time mixed with his desire for knowledge keeps him pushing himself to new limits.

Harsk is a quiet and contemplative dwarven ranger with deeply-sown seeds of vengeance and anger buried under the surface.

Kyra is a battle-hardened cleric of Sarenrae who will stop at nothing to destroy evil, constantly testing her faith and will against those around her.

Pathfinder already has a particular artistic style in its visual renderings. It's very vibrant and almost looks like a comic book already. I suppose you knew your artist was going to have to remain consistent to that vision?
Yeah, absolutely. Having that really strong visual design already clearly established in the game books makes it easy to build the story within the world. The reference material is extensive.

You found Andrew Huerta (artist for this comic) via his deviantart gallery. Why did you end up using him in particular?
I sent links to the portfolios of several different online artists I’d been keeping an eye on to Dynamite and Paizo. After a couple test pages Andrew’s art really jumped out and Paizo chose him to draw the series. The final decision wasn’t up to me, but I put his name forward because I really liked his work. There was a really nice balance of dynamic and stylized art with strong storytelling chops.

Which way round do Dynamite handle the comic creation process? Do you submit a rough outline which is then drawn with dialogue being entered in last (the Marvel method)? Or do you submit the whole script through to Andrew?
I write full script and then make minor dialogue adjustments after art is submitted. I’m pretty anal about the story building process and that’s the way I prefer to work. I always start with a general outline and build the main story “beats”, major plot points that need to be covered. Then I break things down by issue and, after that, by page before I start scripting. I’m quite methodical about it so I have a solid plan in place before I script individual scenes or dialogue.

Are there any places where you feel Andrew has brought his own take to the series, any ideas submitted by him - tweaks to lines or perhaps the look of certain characters? Or elements that when drawn have a perspective to them that you hadn't previously considered? Or is it kept very close to your initial vision?
My background is in art and animation so I always ‘visualize’ the scenes in my head when I write them, but I don’t expect the artist to draw exactly what I’ve described. There’s always a surprise when I crack open the latest pages to see what the artist has done. I mean that in a good way though. It’s all part and parcel of collaborating. I want the artist to put their own spin on it as long as it fits with the script and tells the story well.

Andrew’s attention to detail is great. He puts in all kinds of extra background elements and big expressions into his pages.

Is this comic run intended as a limited story arc or will it be ongoing?
Dynamite has solicited it as ongoing, so my fingers are crossed that we get a big healthy run on it.

The first issue will be bumper sized won't it? What does that help you accomplish as a writer concerned with pacing and character introduction?
The story portion is 22 pages, but Dynamite and Paizo are including extra story and game material in the back to make it a real deal and grab the Pathfinder fans. It’s going to be a pretty sweet package.

If somebody isn't a current player of the Pathfinder game, will they still find accessibility within the comic?
Absolutely. That was absolutely core to my initial pitch. I didn’t want it to push away potential fans with confusing back story. It says “issue #1” on the cover and that should clearly mean “start here”.

What about the veterans out there who will have the title pre-ordered and on standing order? How much implementation and exploration of their game world can they expect?
Getting really clear visuals on places and creatures, seeing all kinds of subtle back story woven into the main plot and, of course, great character, NPC and adventure ideas will make it a fulfilling ride for Pathfinder fans.

What other projects can we find you in currently?
I’m probably best known for my sword & sorcery send-up comic series Skullkickers, being published by Image Comics. You can start reading the story online right here:

I’m also doing a surreal-mystery graphic novel with UDON called The Makeshift Miracle, also available online:

In addition to those two projects, I’m writing some original content for Bandai-Namco, the video game company. It’s a busy time right now!

Do you think you'd ever consider writing module adventure books for the system of Pathfinder if they asked, given your gaming roots?
Pacing a module and building encounters is storytelling, but it’s a different set of skills. I’d be interested but I have to admit it would be quite intimidating, especially when there are so may experienced RPG writers already at Paizo.

Finally, any last comments or words you would like to add about the series that you want us to know in the run up to its release?
The Pathfinder comic is going to be fantasy done “right” – great characters, big adventure and a fun ride. I hope people get on board and try it out when it’s released in August.

Thanks for joining us Jim, good luck with the Pathfinder comic! I'll look forward to reading it soon.
Thank you.

Follow the man at these places:

Twitter    @jimzub

Now kick back and enjoy some preview art pages for the comic: