Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Beginnings of an AD&D Campaign

Most of the players were on board to switching to the AD&D campaign. One just isn’t into d20 games and no problems there I will just have to see him on-line and play some City of Heroes. We’ll kill some clipart.

Like I said in my previous post we will be playing AD&D, warts and all, but there will be a few homebrewed rules thrown in.

Character Creation: 
  • Roll 4d6 throw out the lowest six times then place them in the attribute of your choosing.
  • All races in the PHB are fair game.
  • All classes in the PHB are fair game.
  • Roll starting money as per class.
  • Choose weapon proficiencies.
  • Choose a non-weapon proficiency. (I need to find the short entry in the DMG about them)
  • Magic-User classes start with 3 spells, each additional spell will cost them 50gp.
  • Languages need to be chosen.
  • I’m even playing with alignments. How can you have a true AD&D game without them.
  • And I am using the money system, including the dreaded electrum piece.  

Homebrewed Stuff: 
  • I will switch the money system from a gold to a silver standard. I just like it better overall.
  • I am not at home and I don’t have my books in front of me, but I don’t remember if this was a rule or not, but I plan on giving a +1 to AC for helmets and +2 to AC for great helms (but it carries a -1 ‘to hit’ penalty).
  • No going to worry about encumbrance for the most part. Unless they find a 500 pound gold statue.
  • Initiative will be a d10 instead of a d6. It makes sense to me since there are 10 segments in a combat round. What you roll is what segment you attack on. Dex bonuses will apply. If a player gets an AC bonus the same number will apply to the initiative.
  • I retain the right to change or ingnore everything I have just said. 
When I get my books in front of me and hash out the rules I'll post more.  The setting I have pretty well outlined in my mind.  At least the beginning.  It is something I came up with when our group was planning on doing a cooperative Points of Light type suppliment for old school systems. 

My plan is to hash out rule details.  Then give the players the background and starting situation.  Each will get there own custom knowledge sheet and so on.  I plan on posting a lot of the details here.  Use this as one of those wikis I don't totally understand.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Finding the Right System

We are on a break (not the Ross and Rachel kind) from our Monday Night game that will resume after the Labor Day holiday.  I am currently using 4th edition GURPS and while I do love the system and all of its options and flexability, but I'm not feeling it.  I've been reading and writing for S&W, OSRIC, LL and my new renewed interest is in Hackmaster Basic.  It has a little of mix of some GURPS and AD&D. 

I plan on asking my group to switch systems.  Most of them will have no problem, but if some do I can understand.  What I plan to purpose is a AD&D game using the orginal three books.  No retro clones, no numbered editions just the game we played for countless hours.  I don't plan to change anything.  I want to play it with warts and all.  I'm interested to see how much different we view the game so many years later.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Sleestak Sunday

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Late GM Badges

Yup, it's my turn.  I was in line to do this, but I got in the wrong line and actually ended up getting tickets to the Air Supply/Peach n' Herb reunion concert.  Stuart over at Strange Magic created these fantastic GM merit badges.  I really dig them.  Thanks Stuart, they are cool.  Here is my Hurricane Irene entry.  I hope it finds all you gamers in her path safe and dry.

Character death is a definite possibility in my game as I wrote in recent post.  I just not sure how to GM a game where PCs are throwing themselves into they fray and not have it be a possibility.  But more important my players like the tension of this risk in my games.

I like a mind bending disturbing content.  I never go into details about content like rape or anything to do with children, but in many of my games innocents are often victims.  A whole village may be killed and tortured, but I won't describe it.  But I so imply what horrible things have happened.

Drama.  Got to have it.  Tension between the environment, another person or group and one self is what makes a game world alive.  I think it is critical to have a balance of the three in game although one will always take center stage at any given moment.

Okay, I am not a full out gonzo ref.  I guess you could call me gonzo light.  I like a down and dirty game with a lot of weirdness to it.  Elements that may not fit into a system, but add an element of the unexpected.

Oh yeah, this is me all the way.  I make shit up as I go all the time.  I do like to have a loose outline of possible events during a game, but everything else is up to the players and my whimsy.  I often come up with better ideas and connections to events without thinking too much about them.

This one kind of goes with the above.  If the players are discussing what 'something could be' and its way cooler than what I thought of hell yeah I am stealing it.  They need to be like those football coaches on the sidelines covering their mouths while they talk if they don't want me listen.

Mystery.  A good mystery is always a fantastic element to add to the game.  Where there are so many rules and all the monsters that everyone has memorized and knows all their powers, it's great to add some mystery into a game.  To me it's the difference between a good game and a great one.

I like to give my players a lot of responsibility in my game.  Especially in character creation and in story development.  Sometimes if I don't have something scripted I tell them to make it up and then it become part of the campaign canon.

Scary.  I think this one is tough to achieve in some ways because of the issues I mentioned with the mystery.  Everyone pretty much has the all the rule books memorized.  Really the best way to achieve this any more is to create something yourself.  And allow the players watch from the safe distance as a red shirt experiences it first.  Or just keep it just out of view.

I like tactics in combat to give it a little more depth than just rolling dice.  I like options.  A combat should be its own story and may have several ups and downs in it also.  A good fight is a work of art.

And last, but not the least, but in my games probably one of the most important, Story.  It combines everything above into an ongoing adventure narrative that if done correctly will have your players boring other players with its retelling for years to come. 

Again thanks to Stuart for creating these badges.  They were fun to play with.  Now I have to find those player badges.  Although I think Ark's was the best.  That one cracked me up.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

PC Death

I know I've blogged about this before and I will probably do it again, but I've seen a few posts on it lately and thought I would add my thoughts.  I am sorry I missed the GM badge thing.  I saw them floating around everywhere, but I am a little slow on figuring out what they were.  Those are cool.  Okay, back to death.

It is simple for me as a player and a GM, if death is not a possible outcome then the game is not fun.  Death doesn't necessarily mean the physiological limits of a character have been reached, but something that makes him unplayable.  Rabin insanity, limbs gone missing, or he has a combination of so many disadvantages that he has become useless as an adventurer.  When I take my character into a massive ruin of some forgotten god I would hope there would be some risk involved.  If it is predetermined that I will lose hit points, but there is no chance of losing my character than the monsters should just hand me the loot at the door and apologize for inconvenience. 

I know the argument about players losing interest if their characters are killed.  Maybe just maim them instead.  Which is a possibility and one I also use, but I think the argument that players lose interest is weak.  I know the other argument is what if a player does everything right and he dies due to crappy die rolls.  Sorry, that's the way the game goes.  How much fun is it when a player does everything wrong, but the dice rolls are with him and he gets away. 

But all this hinges on the expectations of a player and a GM.  This is something I write about frequently.  If a GM and players are not interested endangering their characters and they play a wound, but not kill game and have a blast I say excellent and enjoy.  We each chose what type of game we like best.  And all the things I have mentioned above is the way I like to play best.  It's not the only way of course, but a way I prefer.

Death is a huge part of gaming.  Many times it's either kill or be killed situations.  It's always cool to roll up a new guy and see what kind of trouble you can get your new guy into.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Neoclassical Geek Revival

I really do like getting things in the mail and lately the post office has been a candy shop.  The other day I go to the post office and another parcel waited for me.  This one was from Zzarchov over at Unofficial Games.  I received a copy of Neoclassical Geek Revival, it's his homebrew rules in a very old school style of book.  It is very cool.  He has a lot of good ideas about container rules and carrying capacity.  And some great ideas about armor and weapon tags.  I think he said he may have one or two left.  If you have a chance go ping him for one.  It's a good read and very old school.  I love the look of the book and the feel of the paper.  Thanks Zzarchov for sharing your homerules with me.  I learned a lot.

And now some seductive pictures (que the wah wah music):

The dent in the right corner was there when I got it.  Apparently there a still a few disgruntled Canadian postmen.

The simplicity of it has got a sex appeal and looks great in my OSR section.

The reveal.  A little taste of the goods.  But just a taste.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Starter Adventures Cover

I've been working away on Starter Adventurers again now that I seem to have my headaches somewhat under control.  Jason of UNDERWORLD INK sent me the cover.  I've sent him what I did to the cover, which is put those words over his beautiful picture.  Overall I think it looks good.  I'm waiting to see what Jason thinks and tweak it from there.  And he sent me the back cover which is great. 

In a week or two a plan on having a caption contest.  John sent me an amusing picture that is crying out for a one liner caption beneath it.  I might actually have a couple of those and the winners will get free PDFs of Starter Adventures. 

Have a great Monday guys.  Normally this would be a game night for me, but I've asked my group for a break until after Labor Day so I can catch up on some stuff at home and Starter Adventures.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Building a Better GM

Over at Hill Cantons, over here at the Manor he is know as Cake, he put out this challenge that has been sweeping around the blogs.  I guess it's my turn to give it a go.  I've seen some people arguing over creativity and/or techniques and it makes me chuckle.  I've been in the writing business since the mid 80s and there is always someone who knows better and gives you the absolutes of how things are supposed to be.  They're full of shit.  Ignore them.  Don't even argue with them because you won't change their mind and all you do is waste precious energy on them.  Even though I have no absolute laws of how things are supposed to be, I have suggestions because they work for me. I think most of us already know and use what my three things are.  It's not complicated.

The three questions blend together so I will sort of answer them all at once. 

1. I like to take the stereotypical, allowing the players to go on assumptions and then twisting it, sometimes subtly and sometimes more extreme.  This is a great technique I use in my fiction and it works fantastic for gaming.  Maybe the orc that is tromping through the forest is not a 1HD easy target.  Maybe it's a 5HD orc/troll with regenerative powers wearing the Charm of Gruumsh that grants any weapon it uses to paralyze.  This is a deadly example, but a good one that plays on players' assumption.  Everyone has the monster manual, but GMs have to remember those stats are just a suggestion.

What to watch out for: Making everything unusual so in doing so you've made the unusual the usual.  It's okay to have a horde of goblins for the players to slaughter.  That's fun too.  A GM needs to set up the situation so that the twist will work.

2. I am very good a winging it.  I think this is probably one of the most important skills a good GM can have.  I think the best adventures are ad-lib and some nice surprises for the GM as well as the players.  Of course to be effective the GM needs a solid knowledge of the system.  Ad-libbing is cool, but also I think needs to be done in moderation.  A foundation and consistency needs to be established.  Some people who have the entire world, cultures, history and geography memorized then it's no big thing.

What to watch out for: Like I mentioned the biggest problem with too much improvisation is inconsistency.  Too much and it's difficult to keep track of motivations and people and things and places because you made them up on the spot.  Keep good notes or at least have a good outline/structure that you use to keep things from going too wonky.

3. I think what makes me a good GM is I engage the players in interesting story-lines.  There is often several running through a single game at any one time and some are the main story arc for the characters and some are those side quests or path splitters.  I like to weave a lot of layers and build a complex relationship to the world they're interacting with. 

 What to watch out for: Over complicating things.  Players love to develop their story-lines and will often complicate it enough themselves, GMs need to allow them that privilege.  If things slow down a bit the GM can always interject some new interesting twist, but if your players are anything like mine they create enough drama to last several sessions in one sitting. 

Sleestak Impressionism Sunday

A sleestak in a haystack or I did not find the needle, but I did find this.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Doppelganger Mirror

I was reading through the Swords & Wizardry rulebook and an idea popped into my head. I'm not sure what trigger the idea, but here it is. The Doppelganger Mirror is a nasty little item to spice up a campaign. Even the destruction of it is going to cause problems for a long time. Enjoy.

The Doppelganger Mirror is made of a high quality, polished glass. It is framed within a large oval silver steel frame. The frame is sculpted in a sea theme with waves adorning the edges and clam shells at each corner. It weighs 100 pounds and is meant to lean against a wall for support. It looks to be of elven craftsmanship, but its weight and thick frame suggest it is only elven influenced.

The mirror reflects a depth to objects and people that regular mirrors are incapable of doing. The mirror is able to see around things. When a person stands before the mirror and desires something that object or thing will appear in the reflection.

If the player concentrates on the object the surface of the mirror will begin to ripple. At this time the player can reach through the mirror's surface. If a player chooses to do this he must make a saving throw vs. spell or be imprisoned within the mirror. The doppelganger of the player is now free to move through the real world. This doppelganger has gleaned most of the surface knowledge from the person, but does not know the background or secrets. It will use its ability to read minds to find more information. A character can resist this with a successful saving throw.

The doppelganger will provide substance for the imprisoned player by bringing drinks and food within the range of the mirror's reflection. It is in the doppelganger's best interest to keep the prisoner alive. If the player dies then it dies. The player can interact with the objects that are reflected in the mirror and use them as they normally would. However, magical properties cannot be transferred through the mirror. A +3 sword would be a regular sword within the mirror.

Once the mirror has taken someone it reverts to a normal mirror until that person dies. Only the doppelganger can see the prisoner within. To all others it is just a fancy mirror.

Only a magical weapon or object can shatter the mirror. Smashing the mirror will instantly kill both the imprisoned and the doppelganger. The magical explosion will tear through the fabric of reality making the affected area weak. 

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Rusty Battle Axe Reveals His Dice

I don't have a place to post my dice, so I am sending you this pic in case you want to post it on your blog. My odd assortment of Holmes Dice. - from Rusty

Done - Tim

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

I Got Your Smurf Right Here

With the Smurfs being revived I thought I would break out one that my dad had for years.  I am pleased to present the little known blue man who rarely got any animated time due to his bad behavior and habits. 

Please meet....

Drunk Off His Ass Smurf

With a tankard the size of his body he is ready to party.

Mail Call! A Beautiful Beast

This beautiful beast arrived in the mail yesterday.  This thing is absolutely gorgeous.  Inside and out.  I know I whined a few posts ago about not knowing the mailing date and I retract my dismay with Kenzer & Company and the new Player's Handbook.  I think I'll be ordering that puppy as soon as I can afford it.  With the Hacklopedia of Beasts in safely secured on my shelves and reading table, now I wait for the the big, fat Tome of Horrors.  Prepare to be jealous.

Monday, August 15, 2011

More Killer Pics from Underworld Ink

 John and Jason of UNDERWORLD INK have been doing an incredible job of capturing the spirit of what I am trying to present in Starter Adventures.  I really love this picture for two reasons, 1) The perspective and  2) The layout options.  Because its not a typical square picture it allows me to break up the text in a different manner.

The picture itself will go into the dungeon section of the book.  My mind's eye has already placed it in a cozy little space on the page.
And I absolutely love this one.  Reminds me of a superhero battle with tankards.  It's just missing the POW! or BAM! above it.  This one goes into Tavern Fight.  Duh. 

All the pictures are in except maybe one or two for the dungeon.  Rob is tweaking maps.  And I am slowly getting edits done.  Battle migraines has been a losing battle for me lately.  I'm going on my 4th week of this headache.  Although it switched it up some this weekend and now I actually have two headaches which is weird and very unpleasant.  But, seeing these new pictures was better than aspirin. Thanks to both John and Jason.

Villians, S&W Style, Part 6

Most people notice her bright orange hair at first.  The loud, shrill voice second.  Martina the Cursed has been run out of every village in the north kingdom.  Always in tow, her small son, Will.  She appears in villages for a short time to ask for help for her and her son.  She claims that she is ill and that her son is dying even though he is always active and thriving.  Most take pity on her in the beginning, but after a week when the charity wanes Martina gets angry and screams that everyone is against her. 

"My boy is dying.  My little boy is dying and you people don't care."  At this point, anyone who attempts to help Martina is threatened.  "I'll go to the baron and tell him everything you're hiding.  Tell him you sleep in instead of work the fields.  I'll tell them you steal because you're a thief.  A no good thief."   She has even threatened to go to the king and have everyone in the village hung.  Will just stands by her side with his head down.  Some speculate, because of Martina's advanced age, that Will isn't her son.

Eventually she gets frustrated and moves onto the next location.  This is when things tend to go bad for the people who have helped Martina.  Depending on how much the people helped Martina is how severe their bad luck will be.  Often when Martina stays in someone's home the household gets sick, house pets turn on their owners, food in the pantry goes bad and things break easier.  There are no known deaths due to her stay, but some of the effects remain permanent.  Geoffrey of Offcom could no longer live in his home after Martina stayed there for nearly a month.  He became sick to his stomach every time he entered and any food brought in one day would be spoiled the next.  The local clergy determined his home cursed and ordered a cleansing by fire. 

Martina does not know what happens to the people she leaves behind, but she carries an intense hatred for the people she believes abandon her and her son.  Many years ago, she was a healer woman of a village, then fell in love with a clergyman.  He was young and intelligent and corrupt.  He seduced her and passed her around to the others.  This continued on for eight years before they grew tired of her and threw her into the streets.

Soon after she bore her son, Will.  Will appears to be seven years old, but is actually twenty-two.  One of the clergymen was an incubus in disguise.  Will is a demon spawn with subtle magical powers.  He allows minor demons to use him as a portal.  It is he who causes the problems in the villages and the one who keeps his mother sick. 

Martina has no significant stats or abilities.  Neither does Will, but if he is killed he will evolve into his next form and his powers will grow significantly.  His death must be granted by another, should the incubus die by his own hand or actions then the incubus will be killed permanently.  If a player suspects Will's true nature the church or local temples will send their demon catchers to capture the boy.  Even during this Willl remains silent.  It waits for its death patiently. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Zombies vs. Disney

Calling all gamers, time to show everyone that zombies are way cooler than Disney.  Happy Whisk has put out the call to vote for her friend Lo Mo to win a cake contest.  That's right, cake zombies!  All you have to do is go over and Vote Here.  This is a couple of pictures from her Plant vs. Zombies cake.  The red pepper still looks undecided.

Here is her main competition.

So here is your chance to show Disney in all its saccharineness and cavity created sweetness, to go to hell.  Show them that zombies rule the day....and the cakes.

Sleestak Sunday - 500th Post

Yep, that's right, 500 posts in bag.  I know some of you out there get 500 in a couple of months, but took me two years and some change.  But Sleestak Sunday must continue despite milestone post. So to all those who have favored me with their comments through the years, have a chocolate Sleestak.  I won't tell you what's inside.  I'll let that be a surprise. 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Am I Missing Something?

Over at Kenzer & Company I barely noticed they even got the new Hacklopedia in print and shipped it out (I guess) last Thursday.  I've been checking in every now and then to see if it has shipped and I found nothing on their main page.  In fact the Hacklopedia is at the bottom of the page.  Maybe I am being a little short with this, but it kind of irks me.  They wanted people to plop down a good chunk of money ahead of time for this book, but have done very little to keep people informed of its progress.  And from the looks of their main page they have moved onto the next thing (the new players handbook).  Maybe this information is spelled out in the forums (which I glanced at), but I would think it was important enough to let the buyers know on the main webpage. 

Don't know why but lately Kenzer & Company has been pissing me off a bit.  I have been a huge supporter of their products, systems and ganzo attitude, but not lately.  There seems to be a disconnect or at least with me.  I see their new product they are shleping is the New Players Handbook and normally I would be very interested in it, but I gotta say this time I think I'll pass.  Considering they are supposed to supporting HackmMaster Basic, I'm not sure how a 400+page PHB goes with it.

But like I said in my title, maybe I am missing something. 

Friday, August 12, 2011

Friday Night Video

God, remember that show.  Flashback.  Not in the mood to blog.  Enjoying everyone else's.  Nice to a little time to sit down and enjoy them instead of always rushing to look.  I'm listening to some music and kicking back.  I offer you a mellow tune from my main man Tom Waits.  Enjoy the weekend.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Black Forest

The Bone Soldiers trudge through the aptly named Black Forest, led by their deaf leader Azun.  He claimed to have lost his hearing during a fight with a water demon after being drowned, but some of the older soldiers knew he'd been losing his hearing long before that and not for any spectacular reason other than old age.  But old soldiers tend to cover their weaknesses with stories of battle.

The newest member of the Bone Soldiers, Caleb, did not know Azun's story, but had warned him from going into the Black Forest during the high moon.  Azun showed him the map, they needed to be in Portalan and the most direct route was through the forest.  Azun laughed at him and spoke to him in his strange dialect, "Sigor ot holy man.  Ne, you wurny.  Tollus wilv be pad."  He pointed to the ten prisoners shackled together, but did not explain.

The first day of travel was uneventful and Caleb got a good dose of ribbing from the others.  But it didn't take long into the second day before the black spirits of the forest make themselves known.  Caleb clutched the crude, wooden necklace his grandmother gave him before he left.  She said it would protect him from things unknowable. 

It began with a few shadow shapes flying above.  Azun shouted orders for the Bone Soldiers to form up.  Shieldman formed a circle, spears resting in the small insets at the top of their shields.  Other spearman and crossbowman rushed into positions behind the shield wall and took aim at the swirling forms.  Sigor, the group's holyman, grinned as he watched with his bloodshot eyes.  Caleb steadied his crossbow as he took his place beside Azun. 

What little daylight that leaked through the treetops vanished.  The priest mumbled a word and a small light flared from the head of the mace he carried, but never seemed to use.  Even the magical light failed to light farther than the ring of bone soldiers.  The men shouted to one another confused.

Caleb heard the spirits, the sound of wind and a barely audible scream as they flew overhead.  As more of the black spirits gathered the louder the wind and screams.  One man broke tried to break ranks and ran into the blackness, but was held back the others.  A few dropped their weapons to cover their ears.  Caleb repeated the pray his grandmother taught him to keep the dark spirits away.  Azun ordered the prisoners to be pushed out of the light.

As the first prisoner stepped outside the light he was taken up and into the darkness,  His shackles clattered to the ground.  His shout faded quickly as he vanished into the unnatural blackness.  The prisoners one by one were plucked from the ground and vanished into the blackness above.

Azun shouted, "Tollus pad.  Tven man."

With that the Black Forest returned to normal.  Caleb believed he saw the last few wisps of the spirits vanish into the thick shadows.  The faint sunlight returned and Azun ordered his men to continue. 

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Game Night

A rainy morning makes me hit the snooze button fast and often. Last night was game night after a two week layoff. I kinda needed the break and to tell the truth I was exhausted last night before the game started. But I wasn’t about to cancel.

Cast of Players
GM – me
Cal, Master Mage of House Rez something latin – Dwayne (Gamers Closet)
Lazarus, mercenary marked by the Blood God, Azeel – Brian (no blog)
Aramayus, Myridon of Sarrath – Rob (Bat in the Attic)

The start of the game suffered from my low energy and resembling what happened two weeks ago. After being marked by a dead god the high priest, Opulus, had charged Rob with heresy and they had a trail in the grand courtyard of the Hellbridge Temple. Rob needed to pass the second test of his faith, the Test of Fortitude. In a grand display that no one saw he did so and the end result was the colossus statue of Sarrath impaled the offending priest on his spear. The staff he clutch, a bone of the dead god, fell to the ground in front of him.

Cal, stood in the audience and watched. And recognized the staff for what it was. He’s seen another just like it in the hands of Grand Master of the Guild.

Which brings us back to present.

After a short non violent conflict with some of the other temple Myridons, Cal, forfeited the staff. Lavinia, daughter of the Regent, explained a bit about why it was important that it remain in the temple despite its effect on high priest. Her words were “You clean your own house and I’ll clean mine.”

Fast forward through some clunky interaction to get their base established in the swamp. A lot of yapping. Some seeds were planted for future stuff, but overall I needed to get Lazarus back in the game. He’d been absent for I think a month. So I got all three of them stuck together.

The investigation brought them back to the original site of their battle with the mana titan. After some research the party found that it is possible the reason the mana titans were on the move was to correct an imbalance cause by powerful gates being opened by the Briv’El, demon servants of the dead Ba’al. They have returned to assemble the bones of their god to resurrect him (play cheesy ominous organ music here).

Cal, found he could not enter the area. The mana was highly unstable and caused him a lot of pain and would have damaged him if he remained for any length of time. However, Lazarus and Aramayus were able to enter the mana storm. A hundred yards in Aramayus came across a fallen myrmidon and tried to remove the body, but of course those damn bodies don’t stay still and it attacked. Laz had his hands full with a trio of mana zombies. Aramayus after a short battle was slain.

As he lay there it was a myrmidon he’d known stood over him holding out his hand to help him up. The environment remained the same except much calmer. Both marked as true faithful of Sarrath they stood together with sword and shield. And although Laz ran out, he returned to the mana storm and was slain by Aramayus. Once again, Laz fell to the ground to find Aramayus standing over him. All stood with their symbols of their god engraved in their chests.

Poor Cal was still stuck on the outside of the mana storm firing spells. If you know GURPS being that far away it is difficult to do too much, but he was able to assist here and there. Especially in the last encounter when the party met a Briv’El in the shape of a wolf that tried to consume Laz’s body. Laz and Aramayus were able to battle it from their side, but it was Cal’s sunbolt that evaporated the creature.

There it ended. Two dead. Stuck in this nether world. One stands outside a mana storm unable to enter.

The next session I plan to run is separate. Short sessions for Laz and Aramayus on Saturday. And then I will do a separate session for Cal. I like doing this if the players and myself have the time.

Though the session started slow after a while I got my mojo going and it was fun. My imagination revitalized again. Migraines have a bad side effect that leaves playing RPG game undesirable, but once I got into it again I felt a lot better.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Slee Stacks Sunday

A very cool adaptation of a favorite sleestak breakfast from Christopher Hiller.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Saturday Night Random Dungeon

It's going to be a quiet night here at the Manor.  Sitting around watching a little TV and listening to some iTunes while I mapped out a dungeon.  I am going to use Mythmere's Adventure Design Deskbook and the Ultimate Toolbox to create the dungeon and background.  Then I may use Mythmere's second volume of the Adventure Design Deskbook to create some critters.  I think I have other generators around that I will use to create NPCs and whatnot.  So this will be a completely randomly generated dungeon.  It will either be cool or a hot mess.

And I wanted to thank everyone for participating in the Show Me Your Dice Marathon.  A lot of gamers exposed their dice for all to see.  Not a bad turn out for being the opening days of Gen Con.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Loviatar....It's Good for You

It's late here and I am ready to crash for the day, but before I go I wanted to do a shout out to Christian for putting together such a cool little zine.  Its put together so well.  Simple, small and in print.  And yes Christian it is fantastic to get things in the mail.  I'll be adding this little zine to my bedtime reading.  Then I see issue #2 is going to have GURPS.  That is awesome in bold.

For those who haven't gotten an issue take the plunge.  It's $3 a copy or $12 for 6 months.  Three bucks.  You spend more than that going through the drive through getting crap that's bad for you.  Get this instead.  It's good for you.

Okay, gushing over.  Time for bed.  And let me borrow a phrase from Loviatar's patron.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Show Me Your Dice

Bard gave me an idea.  Any gamers out there who would like to participate in Showing Me Your Dice Marathon.  Just take a few pictures of your dice put them on your blog.  It's an easy blog on top of it.  So join in!

Sir Timothy of Kent is the 1st to Participate!
Here's Dylan's Offering.
R.W. Chandler has a sexy d30.
Obietteditor sounds us his mound of dice.
Kelvin Green shares his dicegasm.
Professor Pope was way ahead of the game with his brilliant dice.
Bard is super organized and has some killer bone dice.  I want them.
drcheckmate has a great looking group of 6 siders ready for duty.
Human Folly uses a minimalist approach and shows on perfect red 6-sider.
Kevin shares his two sets of dice.  I'm digging the green set.
Carter Soles is not afraid to use a d4. 
Ark has enough dice to kill Orcus.  
Astrodavicus talks about his dice porn fetish and maps it out. 
Joseph shows us his dice and Deck of Many Things.  And check out his dragonbone.  :P
The WIFE enters into the fray using the deceiving calm Miss Wiggy.  Believe me she is not that calm.  Wiggy that is.  Well, neither is the wife.
Kaijuville is shaken it 80s style Dice Dice Baby.
Nemo ask "If I rolled all my dice at once would they make a sound?"
Christian took a break from Lovitar to show us his Domo guarded dice. 
Sacha has some very cool cyber skull containers for his Pendragon dice.  That is cool squared. 
Bliss tells a sad tale of the demise of his Holmes dice, but still has enough dice to kill a lot critters. 
Dungeonmum enters into the marathon with nothing less than Bloodbowl dice.  Score! 
Mark shows off his dice using a fantastic castle backdrop.
And Paladin shows off his big pile of dice pron.  Its so big it doesn't fit.
Mo D, a wife of a gamer, shows off her deep purple dice.  Nice of you to join us.
Theron spreads his dice out.  He's got a crap load.
Angry Lurker has bone dice, war dice, clear dice, hundreds of pounds of dice. 
Catweasel has 1234 6-siders.
Risus Monkey teases us with only a part of his collection.  He is a cruel monkey.
Mark shows us how his dice pose Captain Morgan style. 
Pulcherius is doing very old school, he's got his dice in some Crown Royal bags.  I like it.
superherofigurehunter flaunts  his custom made 6-siders with pride.
ze bullette has the die from the magic 8 ball.  Now that is die hard.  He must have been blue for a month.
faolahd joins the dice mania by snuggling his dice up on a blanket.  That's love my friends. 
Andreas shows us his love for dice and his love die.
Matt shows off his dice and iPad.
Glenn has quite the spread of dice posing for their senior pictures.
Boric G goes all out for the Show Me Your Dice.  Dice everywhere.   
Bogus arrives to the party a little late, but brought his dice.  Although I think I may have to ban any other entries titles dice, dice baby.  

Dice Pictures

I have nothing to say.  So here are my dice pictures I posted on Goggle+. 

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

RPGNow vs. Lulu

I have a question, especially for non North American, overseas folks.  Both RPGNow and Lulu do the print on demand.  Which one do you prefer and which is cheaper?  Quality wise I have gotten books from both and they are comparable, good quality.  Price wise, I think RPGNow wins by a small margin.  But don't know which is cheaper for Australia, Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and even the penguins in Antarctica.  How much do charge to ship?

If you have a moment please let me know.  This is one area (I have several but let's not dwell) I am completely ignorant.  Thanks.

The Big Board

This week I am dedicated to finishing my edits to Starter Adventures and I have the big board to prove it.  Just so you know, once its on the big board it is an absolute truth.  Except if Ivy writes something bad about me on it.  I have part of it edited but don't have those sections marked.  I believe I have the cleric section done.  Jason has the back cover finished and has the front cover drawn just needs to color it.  Then I have to get on Rob to get some maps done which he can do in his sleep. 

This board does help me keep track of things with a glance.  I am toying of adding a New Creature and New Magic Item section to it.  There are a few of each in here.  If you have an opinion on this please let me know.

Still figuring the costs at RPGNow.  I am thinking I would like to make a $3 to $3.50 profit on each sale.  The only price I know for sure will be the PDF at $6.  Once I edit and layout the book with art and maps I'll have my page count and will figure out the price to publish the book. 

A picture of the big board.

And in case one picture of the big board isn't enough. 

Monday, August 1, 2011

Calling Western PA and Eastern OH and SW NY Gamers

In October, Erie Days of Gaming will be here and I was wondering how many old school gamers might be interested in attending.  Last year we had a hell of a good time when Rob (Bat in the Attic), play-tested Goodman Games Dungeon Crawl Classic.  Bodies were flying everywhere. 

But outside that game there was very little.  EDOG is a small, board game centered gathering, but I would like to see if we can drag a few more old school guys from around the area into a fun day of sitting around the table and throwing some dice, gaming. 

It's a small venue, but they get a handful of vendors and events run throughout the three days.  I'd like to see Saturday crowded with old school guys.  I think it would be a lot of fun.  And if enough people are interested we can start planning a few games. 

Last year I attended with Rob (bat in the Attic), Al (Beyond the Black Gate) and Jason and John (Underworld Ink).  It's a very good start, but would like to recruit a few more gamers.

We Want You to Join Us at Erie Days of Gaming