Friday, July 31, 2015

Fernado The Unabashed

My buddy +Adam Lerner let me borrow his new phb last night, on the way to work this morning I started thinking about what kind of character I am going to play.  Eventually he is going to start DMing so I'll get to be a player.  WOOT!  Funny thing is I've never played as a player with our group as I'm always the DM so I'm intensely excited about this idea.  Whenever we finish up the starter set adventure hopefully at that time Adam will be ready to try his hand at DMing.  Provided no one else is a bard, Fernado will be born.  (yes I printed of a character sheet already, no I haven't rolled him up just yet).  The plan is that Fernado is going to be the total womanizer, overly extravagant bard.  He will of course play bagpipes "Let me play you the song of my people!".  Regardless of whether anyone wants to hear it.  I haven't decided on flaws etc yet, however one of his grand plans is to have his catalog of songs converted to a actual book that he can flog and see.  Of course he will have to find some gnomes that have a printing press!


Fernado's Greatest Hits! 

Yes it'll be a 24 hit package, totally K tel!  Love it. 

My wife had suggested that she may want to try a bard, so if she decides that then I'm going to create a over the top 3 Musketeers type fighter.

As far as combat is concerned Fernado is totally going to be about the two weapons.  A dagger in one hand that he's quite proficient at, especially when throwing, and a nice cutlass in the other hand.

I have a cutlass problem just as Drizzt has a scimitar problem. 



Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Drew this while sitting on tech support


Small Publisher Marketing

I think we need to break out the mould. 

I'll preface this post by saying I'm not a marketing expert.  I have however had 14 years of experience working in the recording business/record label business for a small company.  There are similar lines. What we as a company keep coming up against is the overwhelming amount of material that is out there.  The goods news though is that we are a "niche" marketing company.  Which means that most of the music we sell is not widely popular.  (much like the OSR).  As I said there are similar lines.

First things first, I know I've made a few mistakes with 3 Toadstools, and I intend to correct them.

What I see for the most part is the following:

Patreon Pages
Kickstarters

Distribution thru Lulu, drivethrurpg, amazon etc.

All of these are good things!

What I see from DIY OSR publishers. 

Patreon Pages
Kickstarters

Distribution thru Lulu, drivethrurpg, amazon etc.

Why yes its exactly the same thing isn't it.

example...

I have almost completed my adventure/module/epic set of rules/etc
I'd like to get a kickstarter going.
If the kickstarter is funded you will get the following depending on contribution

Free (Pay what you want) no art pdf version, complimentary
pdf download
softcover + pdf download
hardcover + pdf download
hardcover + pdf download + first born child.

While these form of marketing and crowd funding is perfectly acceptable way of going about it.  Part of the problem becomes the sea of other projects that are very similar to this.  (Mind you there have been some seriously cool swag given away in some ks's).

Alternatively some publishers manage to get products out by sheer will and no real financial considerations.  (I'm one of these crazy people).  Create product, beg borrow and (clipart) and find an awesome graphic designer that can help you out for a share of the royalties, finish product, then throw at virtual fan to see if anything flies back.

There are happy mediums to both ways.  However in both cases in order to make any kind of a dent sales you need to have a strong social media presence, and a strong product (don't forget that).  As I stated earlier the "sea of products, and posts".

What I'm asking is, is there another way to do this?

One thought briefly occurred to me, the idea series adventures.  Much like the way "The Green Mile" was originally published.  In order to do something like this however, you would need to have a good percentage of the work completed.

Another thing I've considered is writing specifically for one rule set (as a lot of publishers to do), creating a rule set of my own (which can be a silly notion).   More importantly writing adventures set in a well fleshed out campaign setting.  Yes I'm looking at you WOTC, there's a reason people keep buying the stuff.  Part of it is having the source material.  In much the same way as CD compilations work.  Here's a song you might like, if you like the artist here's the CD code to buy the whole album.

As a community project I am really intrigued by the whole White Star thing.  Its of course the new flavor everyone is enjoying.  But it has staying power, its new its different, it still has that 1974 goodness we have all come to appreciate.  Same with "Crimson Dragon Slayer", another new rule set, with a world attached to it, a community that is contributing heavily to the development and continued development of it.  In both instances however it its 1 publisher that started the community and is hoping other follow suit and write for it.

What would be a cool idea, is to create a OSR world, somewhere were we can all add our own input to.  Write adventures for.

The issue becomes "what system?", "can we have trolls as a playable race?"  etc.

Creating a co-op idea would be cool.  A group of like minded OSR publishers forming a NEW publishing company, that would work towards having the following:

A OSR type rule set
A campaign setting
Adventures written within the campaign setting.

Sometimes there is strength in numbers.

Getting back to breaking the mould.  There's is a variety of amazing examples of that

Red & Pleasant Land 
Yoon Sin 
Crimson Dragon Slayer 
Dyson's Patreon Page 
White Star 

Just some thoughts.

- keep the dice rolling



Monday, July 27, 2015

Weapon name generator

During our recent gaming session, one of the players picked up a mace (that turned out to be slightly magical).  I noted that something was written on the hilt in elvish.  One of the players quickly realized that he did in fact speak Elvish.  Cue GM panic.  Oh hey! I have a scattergories dice.  (a friend of mine gave it to me, thanks Phil!).   Rolled it twice came up with a P and H I believe.  Portent Haste.  good enough!

I realized however that I need a random table to check out once in awhile.   Something better than "Dragonslayer", "Widowmaker" etc.




Roll a 20. 

1.  Besotted Brilliance
2.  Blackened Rhino
3.  Rib Torn
4.  Honest Fate
5.  The Branding
6.  Targ
7.  Nailbite
8.  Starstruck
9.  Sunglow
10.  Windless Star
11.  Considerate Maiden
12.  Admirable Garroter
13.  Impish Inquistor
14.  Dapper Diviner
15.  Vacant Peril
16.  The Odd Jouster
17. Loathsome Protector
18.  Elaborate Vanquisher
19.  Whirlwind Exploit
20.   Grey Water





Thursday, July 23, 2015

Brief update

It seems I've spending an inordinate amount of time planning my home campaign.  As such I haven't been able to devote as much time to the blog as I would like.  I guess that happens when you get a chance to do some gaming.  In the mean time I am going to slowly start fleshing out a campaign setting within this blog.  All of this started from this amazing map I found at freefantasymaps.org 

This is the specific map for the campaign world

Starting with the town of Brance  - of which there is a work in progress shot of the town map.

So stay tuned for some interesting things coming your way.

First things first however, I need to name this world!

Keep those dice rolling




Saturday, July 18, 2015

let the hilarity ensue!

Yes my stomach still hurts,  yes I'm still holding it from the bell laughs I had.  at one point I had a player just shaking his head while it rested on the table.  Twas a good evening.  1 part Chthulu, 1 part redbrands, and 1 part Monty Python.  Second episode of the 5e starter set.

After finishing off klarg, the heroes headed back into town, only to be stopped by a disgruntled looking halfling wearing what appeared to be a USPS tunic type outfit.  He handed each of the PC's a letter.  Thankfully and to my surprise, they all pleasantly read their letters and did not divulge any information to each other whatsoever.  (DM win!).

I decided in my infinite wisdom to create the "Phandalin Crier" a little newspaper/rumour mill.  mostly to beef up the players rep, and also to add a few little adventure scenarios for the future.  I'll make a copy of the crier available shortly for download.  there is a hillarious story of a chase thru the village, where one PC did some major Bruce willis and jumped thru 2 or 3 (depends on the townsfolk) windows whilst being chased by a group of ruffians.  (don't split the party).  damn I hope they do that again.  Too funny.   However that was last session.....

The focus of tonight was Brisket.

yes us Canadians can BBQ.  (check D&D reddit) http://www.reddit.com/r/DnD/comments/3dqts1/session_food/

and here it is.  http://imgur.com/7HdyHfh

It was also about the Redbrands, now was the time to take them on.  Everyone had levelled up and was now 2nd level.

after a bit of investigation, and some carousing in the bar, the heroes set out for the red brands hideout.  Due to the fact that there was a whole lotta talk and no action, I decided that on the way to the the redbrands hideout a bunch of wolves had over taken the town and were doing their best to devour some peasants.  send in the heroes.

So 4 PC's + 3 peasants, one of which was wielding a torch, the other 2 had shovels of which they were attempting to "el cabong" the wolves. the fight ensued.....

The PC's emerged victorious and happy, because they got to roll some dice.  Turns out one of the peasants, was the father of "Carp", not to be mistaken by "tuna" (not the same kid, different game, move one, its a joke...moving on").  the deal worked out good from a DM standpoint, because I was later trying to figure out how in the heck the PC's would find the entrance to the redbrands underground lair.  Thank you Carp (round of applause)..... shows up after the PC's had attempted to do the following to get to the top of the wall of the red brand manor.

1.  mage hand + rope and a bunch of silly dice rolling
2.  some one gives some else a boost, fails, and they switch.  VIOLA! the top level of the house is completely burnt out.

Wandering around looking for some way in, to take justice on these poor red cloaked bastards, the PC's finally run into "tuna/carp" who had ran away from the wolves, that chased him away from his house in the first place.

(seriously, listen to your players, let the paranoia happen, and go with it).

After a bit of amazing roleplaying, we are inside.

They run into OTHICAL!

(I'm not giving the name of the beast, I just did a bit of random thinking to come up with something, to keep with old school tradition, I don't want to tell the PC"s what a monster is exactly or what potion / magical item does).

If you have read the adventure you know what othical is.

a bit of a bartering arraignment ensued.

fast forward to a tomb.  a bunch of skeletons are there.

COME ON EILEEN!

Why yes, ,we decided to name on of the skeletons EILEEN.  after a bit of hack n slash, she lost most of her leg and was hopping all of the place.  Mostly dodging blows from players who kept rolling horribly.  and now that damn song is stuck in my head.


Cheers


PS.  Get to Waterdeep, before the snow falls. (that makes no sense whatsoever, however I'll post a bit more of the session report when I can.)

I forgot to mention the fight with the redbrands, when a player thru some dust from a tomb into their faces and blinded them.  (disadvantage).

I'm still giggling.




Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Creepy Assed Moreau Monster Generator


Just finished reading "The Island Of Dr Moreau".  Sparked a bit of an idea for a monster generator.  This is slightly inspired by Ready Reference: Mix & Match Humanoids from the Semper Initiativus Unum blog.

Crossbreed Monster Type (roll 1d10)

1.  Hyena
2.  Dog
3.  Cow
4.  Bull
5.  Ape
6.  Wolf
7.  Rhino
8.  Monkey
9.  Cougar
10.  Roll Twice On Table

Armour Class (roll 1d6)

1.  AC 9
2.  AC 8
3.  AC 7
4.  AC 6
5.  AC 5
6.  AC 4

Disposition (roll 1d8) 

1.  Attacks immediately
2.  Curious/Inquisitive
3.  Disgruntled
4.  Unsure
5.  Stands ground
6.  Flees in terror
7.  Helpful
8.  Submissive

Intelligence (roll 1d4) 

1.  High (repeats the "law")
2.  Average
3.  Low Intelligence (slowly reverting to animal state)
4. Animal (normal animistic behavior)

Alignment (1d3) 

1.  Good
2.  Neutral
3.  Evil

Attacks (1d4)

1.  1d6 damage
2.  1d4 damage
3.  1d8 damage
4.  1d10 damage






Saturday, July 11, 2015

Revised D&D Challenge Day 12

Favorite Dungeon Type Location.  This is a interesting one.  I'd love to do a underwater adventure, that'd be cool!  Of course some Metamorphosis Alpha on a starship would be neat as well.  For that matter running Expedition To The Barrier Peaks.

One of my favorite dungeons is from "In Search Of The Unknown" as you can fill a lot of the details out yourself.  Its a typical dungeon, but there's room to play around in it.  Atleast there are caves and regular straight dungeony tip sections to it.

The Keep On The Borderlands (caves of chaos) alternatively I never really liked as far as a dungeon was concerned.   The next time I run it however I think I will split the caves of chaos up and put them in different locations, rather than a bunch of monsters under a big hill.

Another dungeon I'd love to try and pull off is the Labyrinth that Dyson Logos did for his Frog God challenge module

.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Planar Gate Map

So the other day I sat down with the new 5e DMG and started working thru creating a map with the random tables on page 290.  While the tables are handy for someone who doesn't really draw maps, I found it a bit restricting.  I got about a quarter of the page done, and then just started going with it.  Afterwards, I scanned it (with new scanner!)  dumped it into gimp and started playing around adding things, redrawing lines.  I found a nice parchment texture and I used Inked Adventures scroll image to add that effect to it.

Whilst reading thru the DMG random dungeon section, I came across the planar gate tables, for creating a dungeon.  I think there is a good chance that I'll be creating a little adventure based on the table shortly.  (probably this morning).   It will be Labyrinth Lord Compatible.

So without further ado.


Revised D&D Challenge Day 11

Favorite Adventure That You Ran.  I really enjoyed running the "Chaotic Caves" By JD Neal, for Basic Fantasy role playing system.  Its a mashup of "Keep On The Borderlands" and a few other modules.  (sans the keep).  I did however mash it up with the Morgansfort bf module (which has a keep!).  It was a lot of fun, I really dug the area map and all the semi random encounters.  The nice thing about the "Chaotic Caves" is that its written fairly open ended.  With a little preparation time you can come up with a lot of cool ideas and adventure paths for the hero's.


Product Description. 
This is a very standard adventure setting, consisting of a group of monster-infested caves and an abandoned manor-fort, for beginning player characters.

Download it here. 

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Revised D&D Challenge - Day 10

Craziest in game experience.  Well this is a good one.  And I briefly wrote about it before,

One funny bit was that the PC's split that party. 

LMFAO

Two PC's stayed at the nice Inn, in town having a few drinks

The other two went to investigate the Rebrands at the Sleeping Giant tavern.  As one of the players was a thief, and had previously been a fence in neverwinter.  He figured he might be able to gather some information on the bridgands.  Well the encounter happened and they pissed em off.  A fight ensued and both PC's started to high tail it back to where the other PC's were.  One got hit with a flying sword and fell unconscious making saving throws, prior to that however he managed to break thru not one but two windows of local farm houses.  (thank you DMG chase rules).


That may not have been the craziest experience ever, but it came to mind when I read the challenge for today.  I feel like writing today, I am going to go and attempt to get my new scanner to work and hopefully upload a map shortly.  




Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Revised D&D Challenge - Day 9

Favorite PC you'd like to play.  I've never played a Bard, and I would really like to.  Sort of a cross between D'artagnan and a regular Bard type character.  Of course with my Scottish roots, I think this guy would have to play the bagpipes as well, just to annoy the crowd.  It would also be interesting to play a bard with a helluva a lot Charisma stat.  Just enough to be able to play the class, but not enough to be really good at it.  "And for my next performance I'll need a hamster, and a volunteer".   No?.....

I really like playing flawed characters, it just makes the whole thing more interesting.  Low wisdom characters are the best, they don't last long due to their non-knowledge of the world, but that hilarious to play.  I've discussed this before, but the whole "Hey guys hold my tankard and WATCH THIS!' comes to mind.

Speaking of bagpipes, have you ever heard of the "Red Hot Chili Pipers"?  No well here yah go!






Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Random Dungeoneering.

Well first day of self imposed vacation, I manged to cut grass, have a shower! and then took my bike out for a quick ride.  I decided to attempt to use the random dungeon tables in the 5e dungeon masters guide (thank you Adam, Kurt and Josh I can't put it down!).  I've come to the conclusion that attempting to follow these random tables works really well...... extremely well if your not a map guy in the first place.  About 15 mins in I decided to just go with it.  This may become a one off blog post adventure sans stats, we will see.  I have this silly idea about a planar gate, which I've never toyed with.

As a side note, I am sorry about all the 5e posts.  I know a lot of you who read this are into old school stuff.  But Hey! I got 5e going now, a group of willing players, I'm going with it for the time being.  HOWEVER DO NOT FRET.  As I've been working up ideas for a very off the wall campaign setting for Labyrinth Lord, and that silly little mega dungeon I was supposed to finish in January, well I am working on it right now, as you read this.  Shane is hard at work coming up with some silliness.   Hopefully I will get it done, (pardon) not so much for your sake but for mine.  As its been stirring around my head for far too long.  I am thinking that after this week worth of writing I will create a closed G+ community that will have access to "what I have so far".  For a few reasons.

A.  I trust you guys/gals
B. I had some mild writers block that was cured by playing some d&d and bacon wrapped jalapeno poppers.
C.  I trust you guys & gals.
D.  I mentioned that already didn't I?
E.  I need a bit more gonzo.

Look for you invite, I want to know that I'm on the right track here.

But I digress.... Here's the map!




The revised D&D 30 Day Challenge! - Day 8

Favorite PC of your own.  I don't get to play a lot as a player, more often than not I'm the DM/GM. The last time I played, it was a play by post game, which was a lot of fun.  I played a halfling thief. Gwimble Lardfeet.  A fairly rotund, but still quick like a cat, always hungry, the only reason he stole anything was for food money halfling thief.  These are the types of PC's I like to play.  As well this is the type of PC my wife likes to play.  Basically Pipin Or Mary.  Her latest character is exactly that.  When she met the rest of the adventuring party they were in Neverwinter at the hamster races.  She caught one of the players cheating and called him on it.  A fight ensued and they all became friends after the fact.

This reminds me to start reading all of my players character sheets and start pulling out little clues that I can use in upcoming adventures.  But I digress....

The next PC I create is going to be the Barbarian type, possible Kodarr as he's just a friggin bad assed.  If you haven't read Kodarrs Komandments you really need to, sometimes they are funny, more often than not there's a nugget of good advice.

http://draconicmagazine.com/articles/kodarrs-kommandments-8

Monday, July 6, 2015

The revised D&D 30 Day Challenge! - Day 7

My favorite edition is the Moldvay edition of basic.  Although I haven't read the expert rules, I am sure they are quite good as well.  The rules are simplistic and they allow a DM to modify things quite easily, add subtract etc.  There was no real campaign setting that is discussed within the book.  Basically there wasn't a lot of assumptions made, which was good.  




















You can grab these rules at DNDclassics.com 

Runner Up
Although not technically an edition of D&D, but an amazing clone, Basic Fantasy is one of the best games I've played.  It has the same feel as the above B/X edition, with some nice extras like ascending AC.  There is a ton of modules, and extras at their site. 
Grab it here



Friday, July 3, 2015

The revised D&D 30 Day Challenge! - Day 6

Favorite Deity. 

Lolth!  Cuz she's a bioytch.
Nuff said.

Photo by 
Lolth by jucari on DeviantArt
http://jucari.deviantart.com/











I am so falling behind on this 30 day challenge, its going to wind up being a "when I get to it challenge".  I'm not finding it that different from the previous one that I did.