Sunday, January 13, 2019

Packing Boxes for the Move

I announced a while back that I am moving Gothridge Manor to a new home. I've had my fill of all the Google nonsense and ineptitude. I know no company is perfect, but I'm done here. I've out grown my space. I probably should have done this a few years ago.

Let me tell you what's going on. First, my new home will be gothridgemanor.com. I've had that domain for years, finally parked it over at Wix, purchased a merchant account so I can combine my store with my website, and my podcast. It'll be my one stop place to find everything. It's got me psyched about blogging again. 

I've been working on the website steady this weekend hoping to do a grand opening. I under estimated the work load. I'm not expecting to get everything done, but I want it to look good and be functional. 

The store part takes the longest. All the pictures I have needed resized and put into a format that fits. Good thing I have Ivy or that might have not gotten done. It wouldn't have been done. 




These samples give you an idea of what they look like. I think she did an amazing job. Her help has been tremendous. 

After the pictures are plugged in I priced them, put them in the proper categories, and wrote descriptions. I got all the NPC Cards done, The Manors done, but no progress with the micro-adventures or micro-locations which is a chunk. I'm not planning on getting them all in before I go live, but I'd like to get a batch done.

My store is broken into categories such as The Manor, NPC Cards, Micro-Adventures, and then I'm adding a used gaming book store. I continue to sift through my shelves and find books I have duplicates of or just don't plan on using again. 

I don't have a timeline...yet. But it is my top priority. And I'm sure I'll need to tweak things, but that is a good problem to have.

When I move I hope you'll join me. It's not to far of a walk. One click away.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Let's Build an Adventure Using My New GM Tarot Cards

So I received my GM Tarot Cards in the mail today. It was a Kickstarter that met two of its stretch goals. So I in addition to receiving the general deck, I also received the urban and wilderness decks. 


My only gripe is the font is tiny and the background images interfere. They are nice looking cards, great cases, and useful...but there is only one way to prove how useful. 

Let's make an adventure!

Let's keep the first one simple. A dungeon. We'll need a map. Oh look, here's one.

Six numbered encounters in a straight forward underground, dungeon, cellar, or sewer. CARD TIME!

The GM Tarot Cards, I'm using the general deck, has three different type of cards; locations, encounters, and hooks. Location cards have a compass. 


Atmosphere
So our little dungeon is neither dungeon, cellar, or sewer. Tis, a crypt of the family variety. Wafting in the air are the scented memories of births, celebrations, rivalries, love, and deaths. Shared experiences of the Covenington family. Stuffed in expensive vases around the crypt are now dead lilacs and lilies sitting on well crafted wood tables. On the floors are fanciful rugs you would find layered in a parlor. The appearance is unsettling because of the attempt to duplicate a room for the living.

Rumor
The young house maids gossip about the wealth that is no longer within the house. Rooms that were once filled with gold and silver items of exquisite craftsmanship are missing. They whisper that the lords and ladies must have been buried with their treasures. The older servants smack them for their idle gossip and make them return to their duties. Things still need cleaned, repaired, and kept in order until the next lord visits. 

A Bit of Mystery
During the burial of the late Lady Gwen, one of the pall bearers, Gibson, noticed one of the crypts remained unmarked. Strange. He thought it empty, but the crypt was sealed, the lid was secured with what looked like silver spikes. But consider the source, Gibson gets his nickname, Red Nose, for a reason. He never met an ale he didn't like. He's the one who thought he saw a short ghost in the forest. It ended up being Miss Gladiola's dog tangled in a bed sheet.

I'm not sure if I'm supposed to use one or all, but I'm developing all of them just to have in my hip pocket. You never know when the party is going to turn left, right, take flight, or decide to leave the area completely. 

 Let's grab a hook card.


Very appropriate card. I am pulling these out at random. I swear. So let's see what kind of hooks we can create.

Unwelcome Guests
The Covington family has always been secretive. They are no different in death. With the scuffling of booted feet, not even the silent pads of a halfling will escape their notice. 

What the Hell was that?
Anderson, the caretaker of the manor, said he nearly died of fright. He saw a thing. Like human, but broken. Its back and limbs bent at odd angles. For a moment, the edge of his lantern light caught features between the darkness. The gaping mouth was pitch black and hung open. The creature bolted into the darkness.

Call of the Quiet
The Covington crypt claimed a victim recently. The miller's boy, no one remembers his name, disappeared months ago. Tracks led to the crypt entrance. A servant found a sack of flour the boy intended to deliver at the bottom of the stairs.

The last card is encounters. I think we've covered that with the previous cards. But do you think I'm not going to use one. I so am. 


Unseen Hoard
At first you think it's rain. A steady tapping noise. But as it continues it gets louder, stranger. From the other side of the walls you hear the sound of hundreds of thunderous footsteps charging your location. At any moment you expect the walls to explode and an army to pour into the room. 

The Grotesque 
It was Anderson who spoke of a creature of grotesque countenance. Such a creature stands half in light, half in the dark, its features continue to shift. It seems to struggle with the changes. What one would consider hands, holds its bent head and its body trembles. It looks more pathetic than terrifying. Any approach, the creature shifts, flickers into view for brief moments then vanishes. 

What...who is that?
The torchlight flickers. It fights the veils of darkness that flutter between the light and the things in the crypt. Between the veils, you see hunched creature with elongated arms that end in large, curled spikes. When the torchlight hits it, the veil moves and the creature disappears. A moment later, the creature is upon you.

Now I have all this information to build an adventure. More than I'll need. I can use some of it to build the lore around the crypt. I have NPCs to carry the storyline, some creditable, some not so much. I also have a creature, or more than one, ready to inflict horrible things upon the party. 

Doing this exercise, I see different avenues to develop the adventure and to get the party involved. Especially if they do multiple visits. This could be a place that evolves. Develops. The first visit doesn't necessarily mean the creature in the dark will reveal itself. Other strange happenings can occur. Who knows. 

One of the concepts I like to use, is the developing adventure. Not everything happens or is revealed at once. Through play and discovery, the site/adventure comes alive to reveal a horrible truth hidden beneath the veneer of rumors and distraction. 

Cool. I'm done. This was fun. 

Monday, January 7, 2019

Zine Quest...Let's Do This


Kickstarter announced in November 2018 (I am late to the party, but the party ain't over) it is inviting creators to launch their own RPG-inspired zine for February 2019. Kickstarter said they will feature Zine Quest projects on a special collection page in their Games newsletter.

Here are the guidelines. Simple to follow guidelines that really shows they want the old school type of zine. 
  1. Zines must either contain RPG or feature RPG-related content (like maps, adventures, monsters, comics, articles, interviews, ect.)
  2. Zines must be 5.5 x 8.5 (A5) or smaller.
  3. Zines must feature one-color printing. Note: You can print on colored paper. One color printing doesn't just mean black! You can use green, blue, or red ink if you think it suits.
  4. Zines must be unbound, folded, stapled, or saddled-stitched. No hard cover or perfect binding allowed. 

Love it.

The Zine Quest starts in February. So they remind you not to launch your project until February 1, 2019. 

To get information from the Kickstarter's mouth here are the links.

A CALL OUT
Today on my Gothridge Manor Podcast I called out my fellow Anchorites to get in on this and make some zines. Make some fucking content. The OSR, yes I am still using that term, when not chewing off its own leg, is a fierce, creative force. Let's have some fun.

Old zine makers, dust off those old long-armed staplers.

Wanna be zine makers, this is a great chance to get something going. 

Join with folks to develop content, to help edit, to discover new artists, and expand your circle beyond what you already know. My creation of The Manor opened myself up to entire population I did not know and I've become friends with many. 

SOMETHING IN THE WORKS
I spoke to Jason Hobbs to open up a channel on his Dungeon Audio Discord channel for Zine Quest. He will create an on-going chat. And I also purposed to have a voice channel where we could have folks experienced with zine making and Kickstarters we would schedule times to join together to answer questions. While I can help with zine making, my knowledge of Kickstarters in minimal. It is a different animal from backing to creating a KS.

Once this is up and running I will let you know. 

So are you up for a challenge? Is there a zine idea that's been festering in your mind like an unpopped boil? Are you ready to share the darkness in your mind?

Let's do this!