Saturday, July 6, 2013

Insect Summer

 In Texas, during summer there are two constants. Heat and bugs. Wasps and spiders, bees and beetles, locusts, flies and mosquitoes everywhere.

Inspired by all the insect life buzzing and stinging, I've decided to build a Sectaurs inspired setting., called Symbor. Like Action Galaxy, Symbor will be a mini-campaign campaign, with lots of new fluff and crunch to bend Galaxy Command to a specific genre.

Right now, my world of Symbor will be a dual-format setting, ostensibly part of the Galaxy Command cosmology, but also usable in a fantasy context. Like most of my current stuff, my Sectaurs homage world will be a hybrid of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game with D20 Modern elements.

As it stands now, my "Symbor" draft is pretty basic. I'm only just getting to know this world.... My memories of Sectaurs are fairly vague, I remember loving the classic Marvel tie-in comic, which featured amazing art from Mark Texeria, who went on to do awesome art on the 90s Ghost Rider revamp. Seriously, Texeria's art was the absolutely best part of that comic. I remember owning only one Sectaur figure, Waspix. He's the purple and green fellow in the above image, and I loved him. The almost metallic sheen on his armor looked beautiful, and for an early 80s toy, he had tons of articulation and great sculpting. I think at the time the larger Sectaurs figures, especially those with the 'deluxe' insect steeds were a little too expensive for my family- if I recall the Sectaurs toys had a price point several bucks higher than the MOTU figures, and much, much higher than a single, carded G.I. Joe.

I recently began watching the five episode mini-series on Youtube- call it research. Storywise, the cartoon holds up. It was much more violent and genuinely medieval show than Masters of the Universe, and the series' main villian, General Spidrax, was an extremely competent and intimidating figure. He felt like a brilliant and  sadistic military leader, sorta of Vlad Dracul with compound eyes. If I had to give the cartoon a one line summary it would be "Game of Thrones with bug people." Seriously, the cartoon was shockingly dark, presenting a world with sadistic slave-masters, sociopathic mercenaries and a villainous army on the march, pillaging and burning everything in their path.

The key rules elements this setting will include:

* Everybody gets an animal companion. Classes, like Ranger or Paladin, that get some kind of animal companion or mount receive a more powerful animal companion.
* The worlds natives are a unique race of humanoids called Sectans, whose racial traits emphasize their bond with insects and inhuman features and powers.
* Swappable racial ability packages, starting talents and racial feats will incorporate elements from Fursona, which are 'on-theme' with a world of giant insects.
*Naturally there will be tons of new bug and spider-based monsters, and I'll be pulling some critters from my still unpublished Endara draft to populate Symbor.
* Techlevel will be mostly medieval/Renaissance but there will be pockets of advanced tech and cool sci-fi type weapons, not to mention 'dues ex machina' type artifacts and lost relics.

I'm getting the first sketches in from Amanda and the first renders from John. I really like this wasp-rider from Amanda. She looks like she belongs in the original Sectaurs cartoon- she's a riff, not a rip-off or mere repainted knock-off. Anyway, expect the Symbor book in a couple of weeks, and a few other projects in the meantime.

Blessed Bee,

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