Chapter Master: A fan made Space Marine Chapter Manager game.

Posted by: Jason Silverain / Category: , , ,

The uniforms of the Imperial Guard are camouflaged in order to protect their wearers by hiding them from sight.
The principle is that what the enemy cannot see he cannot kill. This is not the way of the Adeptus Astartes. A Space Marine’s armour is bright with heraldry that proclaims his devotion to his Chapter and the beloved Emperor of Mankind. Our principle is that what the enemy can see, he will soon learn to fear…
- Chaplain Aston, Fire Hawks 10th Company  

 I've always been fond of fan made and indie games, many people I know speak of their dream games so when I see those who move beyond simple musings and try to give form to their ideas I can't help but smile. However admittedly more recently with the rise of popularity the indie game market like any other has been saturated by those looking to make money out of its supporters rather than create decent games.

Chapter Master is a grassroots project at its finest that was given birth at that notorious murky water (or as some in the media have called it the cesspool) of the internet 4Chan, though more specificity /tg/.

As a result it should be mention this article will contain and link to pages containing strong language and profanity, You have been warned.

Chapter Master was first given life in 2011 as an post which complained about the Inquisitorial AI in a game called Chapter Master which can be read below:

This inspired a thread of posters each describing their experiences with this imaginary game, building more and more popularity with each tale of victory, failure and ridiculous AI. Eventually people who were new to the thread began requesting links to the game to which there was an eventual admittance that it did not exist.

After the initial disappointment various new threads began discussing the possibility of creating Chapter Master and as of October 8th, 2011 several Anon's skilled in artwork and coding came forward creating usernames and a forum creating the basics of the game. Though there was an initial burst of creativity by 2013 progress slowed to a crawl and it was believed the project like many others had died. However on August 9, 2014 a poster by the name of Duke came forward having taken all the resources of the forum and produced a Alpha he had nearly single-handedly coded.

As a one man project and Alpha there are the usual bugs one would expect but it looks and plays reasonably well.

To begin you can select an existing space marine chapter though only Dark Angels, Blood Angels, Salamanders and Ultramarines are available at this time of the Founding chapters and the Lamenters of the Existing chapters, alternatively create a space marine chapter from scratch (which is more fun in my option)

After the surprising in depth creation which allows the choice of geneseed flaws and troop weaponry amongst other things, the game lets you out into the galaxy for you to explore and defend after loading up your marines into your vessels (though if your like me you'll find only the smaller companies can fit into your starting vessels).

Management so far other than movement and deployment covers construction of weapons and the recruiting of new marines to the chapter which limited by your chapter limit and Geneseed stocks. While there seems to be issues recruiting normal marines in this early alpha there is no such problem with the special characters and there has been one enterprising player who made a company of Librarians.
I've not yet quite figured out the combat mechanics yet as these are mostly still been built upon, during planetary invasions a player can only choose to be the defender but I seem to win without casualties or be utterly destroyed but its gratifying to see 400 marines destroy an ork force of 3000 and the text descriptions are rather nice. While space battles are reminiscence of a simplistic version of Gratuitous Space Battles which is just waiting to be developed further.

Between fighting back  Xeno incursions and discovering relics occasionally requests will come up from the various factions requesting aid and various random events will occur, I would go into further depth but I wouldn't want to to spoil the surprise for those about to play.

As with any fan game it runs the risk of a cease and desist action especially as Games Workshop is one of the most defensive companies when it comes to these issues, however if they have any sense (sadly evidence shows this may be lacking) they will either let it be or sponsor it giving it the backing it deserves. If they do try to close it down I can only imagine they will fail with the anonymity of its creators and the backing of 4chan behind them and only drive them further underground or cause an explosion of download links.    

With this been an Alpha I'll try to keep an eye of its development but it could fade into the warp for another few years again.

Updates about the game can be followed at its page over on 1d4chan.
The latest version can be download here along with the manual.

Update: Tips for Playing Chapter Master.
Update: The First Release of Interstellar Army Simulator is here.

They shall be my finest warriors, these men who give of themselves to me. Like clay I shall mould them, and in the furnace of war forge them. They will be of iron will and steely muscle. In great armour shall I clad them and with the mightiest guns will they be armed. They will be untouched by plague or disease, no sickness will blight them. They will have tactics, strategies and machines so that no foe can best them in battle. They are my bulwark against the Terror. They are the Defenders of Humanity. They are my Space Marines and they shall know no fear.
– on the Creation of the Space Marines.



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Update: Login Problems and aftermath of Steampunk At The Asylum VI.

Posted by: Jason Silverain / Category: ,

Good morning everyone I'm finally back after a rather hectic week and I must say after six days of sleeping on a couch its nice to be back in my own bed.

I apologise for the delay in the Chapter Master post (which will be up this evening or tomorrow) as those of you following me on Google + know I had a security scare just before I was about to post it, I found myself unable to log into Google + and Blogger with my password not been recognised so after changing my password I had to go through all my pages and drafts to see if anything had been changed in case it was malicious attack.
Thankfully nothing was alter and there was no keyloggers or trackers discovered on my computer after a deep scan however this and finishing off my costume pretty much took up all my time before I was required to leave for Steampunk At the Asylum VI.

The Asylum itself was a lot of fun and while I could only afford the weekend ticket this year it was well worth the visit, they definitely listened to last years feedback and there were far more talks and events spread over the three days rather than the previous year where most of Sunday petered out and there were mostly book launches. Having been to most of the outdoor events in the previous years I mostly attended the talks that were aimed towards the creative side of steampunk and making costume pieces. Anyone who is interested in a full review of the day should read this fun little article by a first time attendee.

After the festival due to some appointments in town on the Monday I remained at my friends house who lived closer so I could make sure I could reach them in time and then Tuesday I was covering the shop at the Battle Bunker. However all the hectic running about over the last few days and a hint of convention flu caught up with me and I've spent a few days been ill but I'm back up and running again.

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Update: D20 Adventure Rude Awakening progress, ASYLUM VI and why I love charity shops!

Posted by: Jason Silverain / Category: , ,

Hey all, I'm posting a little late this month so here is a run down of what's been happening this last week:

- This months post was initially was going to a collection of settings people have create but unfortunately one of the setting creators hasn't gotten back to me yet so instead I'll be doing a post about Chapter Master, a fan made game that has gone from concept conversations to a one man built game. It is also quite likely I will be doing a post on this years Steampunk at the Asylum too.

- Speaking of the Steampunk at the Asylum its happening soon from 12th to the 14th so get your tickets now if you wish to avoid the queues. I would be working more on my own costume at this time but with a rent increase of £40 I simply don't have the spare cash to throw about this month. However I may make a guide on how to make simple medals in the future.

- My D20 Adventure Rude Awakening is on hold for just a little while longer with the Asylum this month and after a few play-tests there are a few details in the design I just didn't like so I need to redesign the dungeon, which means I have to also redraw the maps which took forever to do in the first place. If anyone has any suggestions of a free dungeon map tool that includes items such as barrels and boxes please leave a comment.

Finally while I don't really have the cash to spare at the moment I also resist a good bargain especially if its for some collector items, I personally believe one of the rarest finds we ever had in my group was a mint condition copy of 2nd Edition AD&D First Quest with Audio CD hidden high up on a lonely shelf and while our local Oxfam once had Scourge of the Slave Lords for sale its £45 price tag (higher than Amazon) put it out of range of a casual purchase.

Now out of habit myself and one of the ladies of my gaming group regularly check charity shops together when we go for walks or when visiting new towns (since one of the appeals is that unlike most shops you never know what you will find) and we've picked up the occasional book or two at any one time over the years.  

Stepping into the shop on this occasion my companion darted off to search amongst the clothes for potential costume pieces for this years Steampunk at the Asylum while I wandered over to the book shelves expecting nothing and found the biggest haul I've ever had in one spot.  

Unlike our local Oxfam this charity didn't know the values of these books and wasn't particularly fussed when I tried to enlighten them about the value simply asking for £10 for the lot.

For those of you curious the value of each book (all used):

AD&D: Manual of the Planes: Amazon Price: £15.87
AD&D 2nd Edition: Dungeon Masters Guide: Amazon Price: £13.49
AD&D 2nd Edition: Forgotten Realms: Adventures:  Amazon Price: £7.90
D&D 3.5 Draconomicon: Amazon Price: £27.56
D20: Orcfest: Amazon Price: £9.03
Sword and Sorcery Creature Collection: Amazon Price: 1p
Sword and Sorcery EverQuest Players Handbook: Amazon Price: £10.54

Stormbringer 4th Edition: Amazon Price Ebay price: £30.31 + £15.90 import only
Ars Magica 4th Edition: Amazon Price: £14.33
The World of Darkness: Amazon Price: £35.87
Mage: The Ascension: Amazon Price:  £10

It should be noted these are all the lowest used prices not including postage so honestly I think I got a heck of a bargain here (except in the unusual case of the Creature Collection but Stormbringer been seemingly rare as a level 20 kobold makes up the difference) with a total saving of £180.81.

Still surprised how expensive the core World of Darkness book is pre-owed though.

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