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!

Sunday, December 30, 2018

A Year Review for Backed Kickstarters

In 2018 I returned to Kickstarter by backing more than I had any other year. A total of 8 Kickstarters backed. I thought I'd go through and take a look at which ones I backed and how they did or are doing.

For Coin & Blood
I went in on the $5 pledge to get the PDF. It delivered on time. The concept is an interesting spin on developing villains. This is one of those ones I really love the concept, got the PDF, put it in a folder and forgot about it. And this is something I could really use. I put the PDF on my desktop so I am more likely to read it. No complaints about this Kickstarter.

Off the Beaten Path, Desert Excursions
I pledged at the $9 level to get a print on demand book. This was the second Kickstarter I backed by Thom Wilson of Throwi Games. He keeps his Kickstarters simple and easy to understand. Some of these damn Kickstarter pledge options are confusing. Thom is in the same space as I am, create short adventures. He also enlists the aid of MonkeyBlood Design, Mr. Glynn Seal added some fantastic maps. Thom's stuff is solid and inspiring. Good stuff and another well done Kickstarter.

Dice Coins
I was in at the $12 pledge so I could get two of the three d20 dice coins. I love these things. They are cool. Delivered on time. I did a video of them, so if you're interest give it a watch.

The Dragon Heresy Introduction Set Fantasy RPG
I was in at the $50 mark so I could get a big, fat hardback copy. Doug Cole is the mind behind this one. I was lucky enough to be there during the embryonic stages of Doug coming up with Dragon Heresy. It has an interesting take on hit points (and grappling of course). It really settles the argument about the philosophy of hit points.  Then add the intensity and depth of the Norse culture setting. These are the type of rulesets I enjoy the most, those that are built specific for a setting. Delivered on time and amazing quality.

Choose Your Own: Sci-Fi Stock Art
I plopped down $50 for this one. Another interesting concept, building your own stockart by using different elements. The artist, James Shields was going to produce Weapons, Ships, Portraits, People, and Scenes. Over 250 individual pieces of art. And he was throwing in $20 vouchers for his current work. This one was due in September 2018. Nothing yet. His last update he showed a bunch of work, but nothing looks close to being done. Sometimes Kickstarters end up being a ton more work than you expect. I'd love to see this one get fulfilled.

The GMs Tarot 
I started my pledge at 15 pounds, but then I threw in 12 more pounds for the stretch goals. To us Yanks that's $34.31. I like these kind of gaming accessories. Anything that helps with scraps of inspiration I am in. It was to deliver in September, but not yet. However, last week I received a PDF copy of the cards. I just hope I get my hands on the physical copy. Card PDFs are like getting cotton candy that tastes like pickles.

Woodfall - A mini hexcrawl setting
Went in for 15 pounds on this one. It billed itself as a swamp where witches, thieves, and outlaws are squatting. How can you say no to something like that. Well I got my PDF on time. I got my hardcover soon after. I've been reading through it the past few days and need to do a proper review. This Kickstarter went very well.

Lost Hall of Tyr
Another Kickstarter by Doug Cole. I pledged $26 for a print copy. This adventure goes with his Dragon Heresy setting. This Kickstarter ended a few days ago, but Doug has a solid track record of not only getting things done, but doing them at the highest quality. The man doesn't sleep. I have the utmost confidence that I'll be getting my copy by June 2019.

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Goals for 2019

Goals for 2019...I don't usually do this kind of thing. But this coming year will be different. I want to make goals and do my best to hit these goals. While I am making year goals, I am also making quarter goals. Wife, The Happy Whisk, likes her solstice and equinox goals. I think it makes the goals more digestible. So let's get into this.

Quick addition...I wrote the goals then looked at them and saw I only had one with a measurable outcome. So I went back and added numbers to the goals. And where appropriate, a baseline.

100 Patrons
I've had my Patreon running since July 2014, or 55 months. At current I have 81 fantastic patrons. I've been hovering around that number for probably half the year. People come and go and sometimes come back again. I try to make it fun. And useful. I need to continue to get the word out and running more games...another one of my goals.
Current Patrons: 81
By Spring Equinox: 86
By Summer Solstice: 91
By Autumnal Equinox: 96
By Winter Solstice: 100


Moving Gothridge Manor
I've had GothridgeManor.com domain for years. And years. And I've done nothing with it. Until last night. Whisk and I went over to Wix to check out their website options. I want a site to blog, have an eCommerce store, and to post games/events/releases. Then I got a super good deal. Woot. Now I need to sit down and figure out how to build my website. 
This goal needs completed early in the first quarter.


Continue Podcasting
This past year has been my introduction into podcasting. It's been a lot of fun. I already have a hundred twenty-six episodes under my belt. I'd like to do interviews or collaborations. I've done none. The Anchorites have a Discord channel where they meet, but I don't get over there too often. I plan to check in more often.
Complete two interviews/collaborations each quarter.


Game with More Folks
In 2018 I gamed more than I ever have. Gaming three nights a week during most weeks. But I'd like to do more random gatherings with different people. Get to know some others. I think the new website should help with that. And I'll need to get on Discord a bit more often.
Complete two events during each quarter.


Collaboration with Other Gamers
Writing adventures has been a favorite pastime of mine. It is a solitary en devour. This year I want to partner with other gamers and mushing our brains together to see what squirts out.  
Complete one adventure collaboration per quarter. 


What do you think? It is a lot of goals. Sometimes my job takes the shit and vinegar right out of me. It doesn't leave me a lot left over in the tank to be social. This year I've done much better with it and I've come to rely on it to recharge my batteries. These goals are about having fun. Doing more of what I love to do. A win win situation. I am winning at D&D. 

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Patreon: Year's End of Micro-Adventures


I'm not sure if I've done a year end report for my Patreon to check on the growth (or decline) of my Micro-Adventures. This year I thought it would be good to take a look at the past three years just to get some perspective.

Why don't I start off with my production through these years.

Stats for 2016
  • 16 Micro-Adventures
  •   7 Micro Locations
Patrons
Start: 68
End: 63
Highest: 73
Lowest: 63

Pledges
Start: 165.75
End: 158.75
Highest: 176.25 (Aug)
Lowest: 149.75 (Feb)
  • Loss of 5 patrons
  • Loss of $7 of pledges
  • My production was 1.92 releases a month. 
  • I had six months of growth and six months of decline.
  • The largest losses were $16 in pledges in February and $10.50 in October. 
  • The largest gains were $10.50 in May and $8.50 in October. 
Notes
Since this was a couple years back my memory about what happened is fuzzy. I do remember struggling with the lack of progress with my Patreon. It seemed to have 'topped out'. I decided to try a few things to increase patrons such as being better with sharing my content. I was lax on spreading the word about what I was doing. If I wanted to get my Micro-Adventures in the right direction I needed to try new things. Even if they were out of my comfort zone. 

Some of My Favorites from 2016


The Hoblin Goblin Run
First off, I love the title. My wife, The Happy Whisk, is the one who came up with it after mishearing me say hobgoblin. It is also the first micro-adventure with a isometric map. Not the best in the world, but suited the adventure. I also created a Potion of Treasure Finding that was specific toward one item and with a horrible side effect that would kill the imbiber if the item was not found in time.


The Charcoaler's Ransom
I did a lot of research for this adventure. I love grabbing a piece of minutiae and digging in to find an adventure. Taking a simple charcoaler out of the economy can cripple the area.  And to top it off, those that kidnapped the charcoaler, treat him like a king. While the kidnappers wanted to extort money from the nobles, they had no intention of harming the charcoaler. Providing another small twist.


The Weeping Witch
I've run this adventure a few times. It's a ton of fun. It has a lot of elements squeezed into a situation. A boy goes missing. There are some questions about his caretaker. The identity of the Weeping Witch. And why are all of them connected? It is a cool little mystery that can have very different endings. I feel good about all the elements and possibilities I managed to get in this one. It is my go to adventure for cons right now. 

Stats for 2017
  • 15 Micro-Adventures
  •   4 Micro-Locations
  •   4 NPC Cards
  •   1 The Manor #9
Patrons

Start: 68
End: 74
Highest: 84 (April & June)
Lowest: 68 (Jan)

Pledges
Start: $147.25
End: $227.75
Highest: $227.75 (Dec)
Lowest: $147.25 (Jan)

  • A gain of 6 patrons
  • A gain of $80.50 of pledges
  • My production was 2.0 releases per month.
  • I did not have a release in November.
  • I had seven months of growth and five months of decline.
  • The largest losses were $11.50 in January and $7.50 in May and July.
  • The largest gains were $32.50 in March, $20.50 in December*, $18.50 in June and $13.50 in April.
Notes
It was in December of 2017 that Patreon announced they were no longer going to charge creators fees, but rather transfer the cost to the patrons. I was pissed because it asked more from people who were already being generous. This caused an exodus of patrons, but the strange thing is while I lost eight patrons that month, my existing patrons actually increased their pledges! Amazing. Patreon did reverse their decision before the month was out. It just goes to show how fantastic my patrons are. 

My growth was fantastic in 2017. After a decline in 2016 I thought about winding the my Patreon down. That I had peaked. Or I needed to promote a little more, do some giveaways. Get some interest. I kept creating content I enjoyed, and one by one my following increased.  

Some of my Favorites from 2017

 

Mr. Cruddy's Grave
Again, I go back to simple situations that have gone wrong. When Cross-Eyed Willie gets himself in a spot, the party may have to lend a hand. This is clumsy cross-section map, but I still like it. Kinda illustrated that you don't need a grand setting to have an adventure. This one lends itself to humor, with the incompetency of Cross-Eyed Willie coupled with the still angry in death Mr. Cruddy. Plus, I like what's in the chest. 


Brax
My NPC cards started hitting their stride and became a favorite of my patrons. Brax is an NPC I've used a lot. He cracks me up. He seems to crack up the players. While I had some very cool, earlier NPC cards, I think Brax hits that balance of being interesting, simple, and humorous. Those anti-spider ties would sell on QVC like hotcakes. Or Potions of Healing to stay in game.


The Manor #9
It had been a couple years since I released an issue of The Manor. Because I geared my Patreon to populate my campaign using the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light system, this issue became easy to write. It's funny how daunting it can becoming to release an issue even with several under my belt. I was glad to get this one released. And I thought the content was useful.



Stats for 2018
  • 8 Micro-Adventures
  • 4 Micro-Locations
  • 6 NPC Cards
  • Adventure Time Cards
Patrons

Start: 76
End: 86
Highest: 89 (Oct)
Lowest: 76 (Jan)

Pledges
Start: $229.75
End: $254.75
Highest: $256.25 (Oct)
Lowest: $224.75 (Feb)

  • A gain of 10 patrons
  • A gain of $25 of pledges
  • My production was 1.4 releases per month.
  • I did not have a release in May.
  • I had nine months of growth and three months of decline.
  • The largest losses were $5 in February and $3 November.
  • The largest gains were $9.50 in April, $6.50 in May, and $6 in October.
Notes
It was an interesting year. My lowest output compared to the previous two years, but I still managed to gain traction. There were no real big swings in loss or gain from month to month. I enjoyed a steady growth for the most part. I was hoping to crack a 100 patrons in 2018, but couldn't quite do it. So guess what my goal for 2019 is? 100 patrons! 

Some of My Favorites from 2018


The Broken Girl
I love the vibrate colors and simplicity of the map. The mysterious giant dock tells of an age long past. But the true meat to this adventure is the weird little creature that murdered the little girl. The creature goes from a raging murder without thought of its consequences to become overcome by a flood of emotions and regret. I use children often as a factor in my adventures, for good or bad, they play an important role. 


Ansel's Secret Workshop
I absolutely love this location. A place the group can find and take it with no combat. And if nothing else how can you not like a spider named Clyde who likes long walks and playing chess. An example of how all locations or adventures don't need to end in a bloodbath. 


Thurber Village
Another piece created to fill out a section of my campaign. I've found this entry and the format for other villages very useful. I provide given the GM lots of opportunities to to breath life into Thurber Village in a small space.

Final Thoughts
I'm planning of moving my Gothrdige Manor blog to a new home, set up an honest to goodness eCommerce site. Getting help with edits. And finally getting around to compiling these adventures into a book. As of this time I have a total of 78 Micro-Adventures, 26 Micro-Locations, 11 NPC Cards, and 3 miscellaneous for a total of 118 items I've created for my Patreon since July 2014. 

As always, I can't thank my patrons enough for their support, past and present. They provide me the inspiration to create and to share. And while we hear a lot of negative things about the OSR, I think in part it is because of its success, as a group. But the foundation is built upon sharing ideas, creating content, and if nothing else, drawing a map.

Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Hearth of the Hill Giants

Merry Christmas everyone!
I hope you guys got some good gaming stuff in your stocking and under the tree. I was given a nice collection of books this year. They should keep me busy for at least a couple of months. 
Having a little time off, my brain finally had a moment to focus on gaming material again. The Hearth of the Hill Giants is an adventure that I started months ago. It was born out of a random encounter. I decided the big buy needed a home. I surrounded the giants' home with worgs to the south protecting a corrupted an ancient Northmen well. To the north is a crabbers paradise. Imagine a single crab where you could harvest 40 pounds of meat. You're going to need a LOT of butter. But that's a different adventure. 
I've implied different reason why a party would journey this way, but the end reason is the privilege of the GM. I've dropped a few hooks a party could latch onto. Maybe papa hill giant chewed on a messenger with a very important message. Rumors of a long lost treasure of the Northmen, or the worg problem is getting out of hand. The source must be destroyed. 
With the year coming to a close I'm planning a year end for my Patreon. I want to share the progress, accomplishments, and challenges over the year. As much as I can remember. 
Thank you and enjoy the holidays.

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Moving The Manor Soon


I may be a little premature in writing about this, but I am planning on moving Gothridge Manor and GM Games to a new home. I've been very lax in using my blog. I find it more frustrating these days when I spend more time moderating comments from blatant spammers that Google opened the gates. For example, I haven't written a post in a few weeks. Within two days I have 83 spam comments. Most days it's two to ten. It shows me Google has no interest in the integrity of their platforms. 

In addition I want a new home to get back to writing and to develop an honest to goodness eCommerce store. I've got ideas for 2019. There are a few larger items I'd like to get done. Maybe do a few collaborations. Get more organized. Ha. I know, that last one is funny. 

I've never had a real store, just some Paypal buttons at the bottom of some posts. I'd like to make it nicer for you folks to find what your looking for. Once I set up my new place I'll let you know. 

I think a new place to play might be the ticket in 2019.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Inspiration and Development of a Campaign



Ray Otus asked about my campaign. What my inspirations were/are. So I decided to do a podcast.

Most of you know I'm a huge fan of the Thieves World books. No doubt those had the biggest influence on the way I game. Then add in some magical realism and the values of Harn. There's more, but you'll have to give it a listen.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Publisher Series: The RPGNow Vanishing



I continue my Publisher Series. I have a batch of great call-ins and then get down to business with the complete merger of RPGNow into Drive-Thru RPG. My take on how this affects OSR publishers. The good and the bad. 

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Creating a Catacomb Hoard


In a recent session the party came upon an ancient burial. Each of the eighty bodies had a weapon, wore armor, shield and each one had a coffer under their head. For sadistic reasons I decided I'd roll each of the corpses separately to determine and exact loot. I should add I am using the B/X Essentials ruleset.

One of the things I needed to determine was the condition of each piece of equipment. I had recently bought Table Fables by Madeline Hale, she had a straight 1d6 table to determine condition. But since these items were hundreds of years old, I wanted the results to skew towards broken or damaged. Here's what I came up with.

2d6     Condition
  2       New
3-4     Used
5-6     Poor (-1)
7-8     Damaged (-2)
9-12   Broken

The condition changes the protection of the armor and damage of the weapons. In my game the poor quality items can be repaired for 10% of the original cost, and damaged items can be repaired for 20% of the original cost. Broken items could be sold for scrap. (i.e. A poor quality suit of chain mail protects at +3AC, not +4, but could be repaired for

Then I created tables for armor type and weapons. For the shield, I created a table to determine the material. 

2d6     Armor
  2       Padded Cloth (+1 AC)
3-6      Leather (+2 AC)
7-8      Studded Leather (+3 AC)
9-10    Chain Mail (+4 AC)
 11      Scale Male (+5 AC)
 12      Plate Mail (+6 AC)

2d6     Weapons
 2-3     Two-handed sword
 4-5     Battle Axe
 6-8     Long Sword
 9-10   Spear
11-12  Bow

2d6     Shield Material
 2-3     Bronze
 4-6     Iron
7-11    Wood
  12     Steel

This system worked well. I considered any 'new' condition result as that item was magical or made of hard silver, a material in my campaign. Hard silver takes on enchantments.

Then to decide what was in the coffers I used treasure type C from the 1st edition Monster Manual. I use a silver standard, if electrum was rolled I replaced it with hard silver pieces. The Northmen used this as a special currency. For game terms, 1hsp equals 5sp. If enough hard silver is collected they can be made into a weapon, armor, or whatever item the players want. I also changed the amounts of coins from the 1000s to 10s.

Copper: 20% chance to find, 1d12.
Silver: 30% chance to find, 1d6.
Electrum (turned into hard silver): 10% chance to find, 1d4.
Gems: 25% chance to find, 1d6.
Jewelry: 20% chance to find, 1d3.
Maps of Magic Items: 10% chance to find, any 2.

With the jewelry and gems, I used the condition table to determine the value. If broken, the metal was scrap or the broken gems could be used as a spell component. On a damaged result the value was in 10s, poor in the 100s, used in  the 1000s, and the result was new, I considered the gem or jewelry magical.

If corpse came up empty, I created mundane items. Some worth something, most were token items. A poor Northmen gets a pint of ale and drinking horn at the minimum. For the mundane items opened different books picked out an item here and there then added them to mix.

It took a lot of time to create this list, but it worked well. The players will need the resources for the next leg of the campaign. They are 2nd and 3rd level characters attempting to establish their  a temple, a mage tower, and a trading post in a very hostile region.

Disclosure 
The links are affiliate links. I like both products a lot. If you do go for B/X Essentials I suggest the print option, then you get the PDFs for free. Well worth it.

And if you like Table Fables, there is a second book, conveniently named Table Fables II, that focuses on World Building. Also worth grabbing.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Anatomy of Adventure Writing, Part 2: Room Description



I did a second part to my series, Anatomy of Adventure Writing where I break down an adventure into parts. This one focuses on room description. I come at this from my perspective and how I prefer and how I think good adventures are written. And if you missed part one, Introductions and GM Notes, here is the link.


Thursday, October 11, 2018

Game Report: Cleansing of the Temple

This post has nothing to do with MeWe. You are welcome. 

Cast of Characters
Finikas Snotrags: The youngest son of a well-to-do merchant halfling family.

Brimstone: Street mage from Scorn. 

Johann Swartz: An honored hunter dedicated to the Theophant.

The Catch-Up
A few sessions back the group received a land grant. It was located at a Northman temple ruins. There the honored hunter could build a temple to the Theophant, which is normally forbidden. The halfling could establish a trade post and expand his family's influence father north. And the mage could construct a tower and start his own group of mages. But the Komor Forest will not give in easily. 

A halfling, porter, and a sleeping torchbearer wait in a bar
Brimstone decided to check the tavern and hire another fighter. When he went down the stairs there was only a well-equipped halfling, a large man sitting at the table with him, and a lanky man sleeping against the wall with a satchel of torches around his neck. 

The halfling, Bost Waddle, was one of those notorious halflings that liked to wander too much. A wandering waddle if you will. Between Brimstone and Finikas, they struck a deal with him. While not interested with adventure with them, he was interested in building a home on their land. And to help convince them, gave them a 100sp on the spot. 

Brimstone hired Quim (yes I know what the urban dictionary says it is, or anyone else who has watch Rob Roy, but damn it I rolled on a random table and that was the name I rolled. Plus, I thought it was funny). Quim convinced Brimstone he was good, a 3rd generation torchbearer. I'm using the torchbearer class from The Manor #8. He has a lot of specialty torches. 

Hamlet of Hounds Head
Wal-Mart has Move Into the Neighborhood
The players started in Hounds Head. They planned to head north to claim their territory and check out their land. Before leaving they decided to go to the general store and grab rations. There were none. In fact, most of the store had been bought out. The shop owner said the Adventures Guild came in and bought everything.

He could pre-order rations for them. He expected another bunch arriving next week. They bought a few weeks worth. And of course some oil flasks were on the order sheet. he shop owner discussed deal with the group. The Adventures Guild has on more than one occasion put smaller businesses out. The group agreed to work with the shop owner.

The Adventurer's Guild
To the south of Hounds Head is a massive construction site. The land was being stripped, leveled, and construction supplies everywhere. A man directed the workers. He used various slurs and created unflattering nicknames to everyone he spoke to. Then the party tried to speak with him. That did not go so. He offered to hire them, once it was known they were just 'lookie lous' he dismissed them and pushed Finikas away by his face.

The party also noticed all the gear that was in the store was now worn by the folk working here. Some of those they knew, before were dressed in make-shift armor and weapons, now wore more suitable attire for combat. The beast was growing.

Into the Forest
They set off to find their site deciding that the development of their own land would be the best defense. Along the way the passed a marsh that buzzed with stirges. They avoided it.

Then they came upon the temple ruins.

Elk Temple Map from Kingmaker Part 1
There the party discovered a gigantic bear guard what remained of the temple. During the battle the bear tore apart one of the henchmen before being downed by a rain of bolts and cuts. When the bear died it slowly transformed into a man. A northman. He wore a necklace known to be sacred. They buried him on site.

They noticed the pool cleared and after some experimentation, fed the fallen henchmen the water. He awoke with a start. His eyes wide, unsure what happened. He kept complaining of feeling different.

They continued to explore the ruins and to the west they found a series of catacombs. Half full. Estimate of 80 Northmen were laid out here. All with a weapon, armor, a shield with their name etched upon it, and a small box beneath their head.

Johann announced the area is ready to be sanctified, the creatures of evil would assault the temple to keep this from happening. This will take 24 hours and the ceremony must not be disrupted.

End of Session.

Things for Next Session

  • The next session will be the ceremony and the defense of the temple and Johann. For this I will devise a random table of attacks, mixed with a few set encounters.
  • Generate the weapons, armor, and what is within the boxes for 80 soldiers.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

What Are Words Worth?


I started a publisher podcast series on my Anchor channel. I released the first episode, "What Are Words Worth?"

These episodes are targeted at individuals like myself who are small-time publishers not back by the companies. I want to share my experience with the process and I am hoping others join in the conversation to share their experiences.

There are a lot of ways to go about publishing your own products, but I thought it would be interesting, and helpful, to those thinking about starting or who have just dipped their toe into the publishing pool.

If you are interested just click the link, "What Are Words Worth?" and you'll be magically transported there.