The Hero Academy
—What is The Hero Academy?—
The Hero Academy started out as simply a name for an Adventuring guild I could attach my players to and use a device to run hooks through. I didn’t really intend on it to be an overwhelming part of my game. As time passed though and I was gifted an Ascendant account by Kettle & Kathea I started to think about ways to use OP more. So I started to develop in my mind ways to expand on my game, and eventually I came to the conclusion I’d use The Hero Academy as my focal point.
At first, I was thinking about themes for my wiki. I looked around, got some ideas, started working on concepts and then it hit me. Why not make it feel like a web comic. Why not start making doodles of characters? Why not do almost all your own artwork and give things a more comic feel. Present information normally, but slant it and shade it with humor. Then I could allow for things like you’d see in “Knights of the Dinner Table” and have them reference an actual table top game. A game people could track and read about.
I started off with a grand vision of what I wanted to do. Then I got grounded by reality: I had no idea how to code anything.. what is CSS? How do I use it? HTM..what? I could barely color between the lines as a kid and now I was going to try to make full body characters. So I set out, like any normal person trying to do stuff they aren’t good at… I watched youtube tutorials. _ That gave me some concepts, but I couldn’t just start from nothing. That would take forever. Then along came CSS templates… Thanks Wolfhound. After nabbing one of his templates I was able to simply play around with the coding. Eventually, I figured some stuff out. Then I ran into w3schools.com and it was like I had a guide right in front of me. It took some experimentation but eventually i got the hang of things on a basic level.
Now I had to do some drawing. Kettle had turned me on to paint.net and I had been using it for awhile in his Campaign for my journals. So I found a nice picture of a quaint little anime type character and traced it. I started using that as a basis to make figures. Some turned out ok, and some not so much. Eventually I found myself erasing mass parts of my template character and drawing in my own stuff. I’m still not that good but I think they’ll work for now, and as I do more characters they will get better. So that’s that.
The Hero Academy had turned into a project of mass scale, and I laid out a concept document, and a content summary and started to chip away at it. Little by little red links turned blue and content started to fill up. I wanted to be ambitious and use a wiki to its fullest potential all while being able to present a colorful, fun way to show off the game and my player’s incredible ability to be funny, stupid, awesome, and downright amazing all in one place.
—Who Am I?—
That’s an interesting question. Let’s see, I am a long time roleplayer. Been doing it for over 25 years now. I gamemastered my first game in the late 90s. So I had been a player for a long time before I ever tried running a game. That first game was pretty simple, no real rules just a d20. We called it “A Game of Us”. Essentially, you were you and stuff happened. Alien invasion, sounds good. Teleported to another dimension, done it. Whatever it was, it was a blast. My first version took my two friends and their personas into the world of “Wing Commander”. One of my most favoritest computer game series ever. There was everything I needed in that game, relationships, dog fighting, enemy aliens. As is it was most games of us lasted for only a few sessions. This one lasted us a solid month of roleplaying every other night or so. We all had fun, I learned how to GM and the rest was history.
Since those days I’ve been constantly running games. I actually enjoy being the gamemaster. Now don’t get me wrong I like making a great character to play too, but when I GM I get to be all my NPCs and I love trying to make them unique and fun. As I’ve gotten older my games have gotten deeper into more mature themes. So when the chance to run this game came to me I decided to take the light hearted road. I like being the GM because I can weave a great story with my players. It’s like being given a canvas, an easel and told to paint a picture of anything I wanted. So who am I? I’m a roleplayer. I’m sure you’ve heard us.
—Why D&D Next?—
Why not? I like D&D. I’ve liked aspects of 2nd/3rd/3.5/4th and now Pathfinder. What really captured my heart was the Encounter design system in 4th edition. It was simple, it was quick and I could churn out a random encounter in a few minutes while my PCs roleplayed in the background. When Next was announced I got excited. My group had tried 4th a few times but I don’t think we really got into it. It had great potential but it felt too board gamey or miniature battle like for us. We had used minis a lot in 3rd and 3.5 but it just felt too glued to the battle map. So when they came out with the play test for D&D Next we tried it, and the combat was fast. vastly faster than 4th. At that point I decided that the next game I ran would be using the play test rules. It would mean trying to keep up with new packets and reincorporating rules as they change. I imagine I’ll try my best to keep that up to date, but if the changes are sweeping (and they could be) I might end up simply sticking with one particular packet. We’ll see. I’m sure the play test will be long.
—Making Things Up—
Yeah, while I have a good deal of knowledge about the world of Toril and of Faerun in general. I am not, nor shall I ever consider myself a Loremaster of the Forgotten Realms. I’m gonna make stuff up, a lot of it. Canon will get shattered, things will happen that shouldn’t, people will be where they aren’t supposed to be. Names will be changed. Not to mention as I am setting my game in the New World of Faerun that’s coming for D&D Next (and it’s not out yet) dates and years might be screwy. Stuff will have happened that hasn’t yet…. yeah, you get it. I’m just making it up as we go.
—Special Rules & Options—
Accolades – The Accolade system is more or less a bonus experience system. They are XP rewards given out for certain actions in or outside of combat. They also serve as a merit system for role playing. The more accolades a character possesses the more well-known he is. The later part of these rules is pretty subjective, and the reputation may or may not be the same across the board for each cadet.
Hero Points: Characters have 3 Hero Points. 1 hero point can be used to re-roll any failed roll. In addition, 1 hero can also be used to save your life. Hero points are not replenished easily. The only way to replenish hero points is to level at which point you have 3 again, or complete a current adventure which will award 1 hero point. Hero points are use them or lose them. You can never have more than 3. This is a simple system not meant to be horribly game-changing and does not scale very well with level.
The Hall of The Arcane — The Shrine of Ilmater — Sanctum — The Wiki — The Dorms