Saturday, June 28, 2014

Crawling Under a Broken Moon issue two

     Issue two of this great post apocalyptic fanzine (Dungeon Crawl Classics compatible) is available, check it out! This issue introduces a new class: the Mutant! Included in that article are some mutation tables that come in handy to mutate various animals, as they demonstrate later in the 'zine. As we all know, tables can be used universally, whatever system you use, I may just use them for Mutant Future if I ever get a campaign of that going. Twisted Menagerie showcases three new creatures, two of the which of use in the following section: Interesting Places to Die. The Floating Tower of the Cyberhive, an enticing location to be sure, has such promise for adventure I desperately wish for a group to terrorize, um I mean run through it. Don't just take my word for it, check it out!

     For the record, I have a couple of illustrations in this issue with more to come. My small contribution aside, this is a great supplement for DCC and post apocalyptic games in general. Let me know what you think and take care, folks!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Lamentations of the Flame Princess

     So with Free RPG Day came the LotFP adventure Doom-Cave of the Crystal-Headed Children, with it's wildly imaginative plot and craziness. I retrieved my grindhouse copy of the rules from my game shelf and looked through the books. Taken as they are, besides the art there is not much that is "weird" about it, that comes from what the referee puts into it. There is a section, that I suddenly cannot find, where he suggests using the ordinary as a veil for the weird (not in those words, mind you) like travelling trough a small village and having a woman ask for help to find her son named Andrew, and then another, and another. What began as just passing through town turns into a mystery of these women and their lost, identical sons. It escalates from there. The website is here, the game is by James Raagi who currently resides in Finland. The free no art/rules pdf can be found at the site as well.

     The rules have the standard race as class with the four human classes and then dwarf, elf, and halfling. What I really like here is that the thief is called a specialist, and you can actually focus on different aspects, like maybe he is very sneaky, or an expert at tinkering with locks. Basically each class gets better at what it does, the fighter is the only class to get attack bonuses beyond first level, specialists get more points to specialize, magic users more adept at magic, and clerics cleric like no one's business. Oh, and the same goes for the dwarf, elf, and halfling. As lamentations has advanced, I could not really say matured, James has moved towards using historical settings and putting a weird spin to it.

     So now I feel compelled to run at least one game using Lamentations, I want to set it in Italy around 1500. Now if I could get some folks to sit around a table to play. Anyone want to try it out with me?

Looking forward to 5E

     Well, at least the free pdf. I want to see what people make of it, literally hacking the basic rules to build something new or slightly different. Each update is like a little nugget to parcel away saying "Oh, if I work this, maybe I can run a game in this random exotic locale." I personally have nothing in mind, just feeling the anticipation building behind my eyes. Maybe that's just a sinus issue, who knows.

     Looking forward to July 3rd, hope to hear what you all try out with it! Take care.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Free RPG Day: Elzemon and I

     This would have been posted earlier, but I took a nap. Priorities, what are you gonna do, eh? Got to Ravenstone an hour early to get set up for the game. Savage Afterworld's Tim Snider had stopped by earlier, had to return home. Ultimately I had three players who picked from amongst the pre gens Goodman Games provided, and at 2:15 (giving any late arrivals a chance to get in on the game) they began their trek to retrieve the blood drinking box. Talonir the Warrior, Ziwdang the Wizard and Ahlrick the Cleric! They decided to purchase a donkey to help carry the box back to town. Unfortunately throughout the expedition, they were plagued by crappy rolls on their part and shortly after the halfway mark, the wizard got dropped. I allowed him to be revived by being force fed a healing potion, since he was at zero. At the final "encounter", though the die rolls seemed to rally to the cause, the dice betrayed them once again. Naturally the wizard was the first to fall, followed by the cleric. The warrior held on a bit longer, but like his fellows succumbed to grievous wounds.

     Despite my having killed off their characters, they had fun and are looking forward to future events. I am crossing my fingers that there will be more folks joining in to give DCC and other games a try. Gaming is more than D&D and Pathfinder, right? In addition to running the DCC adventure, I picked up James Raagi's Doom-Cave of the Crystal-Headed Children. It has some fun ideas behind it, though I have only read the first part of it. I like it when I see something that takes a different path, and boy is it different! Enough of this, I am running another DCC game tomorrow so I am signing off. Take care all!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Dungeon Crawl Classics/Free RPG Day Reminder

     This Saturday is Free RPG Day and I will be running the DCC game Elzemon and the Blood Drinking Box at 2PM, Ravenstone Games in Columbus, Ohio. Come on down to play or just watch the action. Also I will be running a zero level adventure for DCC on Sunday starting at 1:30 that I am hoping will turn into a regular game. New players always welcome, come on in and try it! Pre-gens will be made available for both events.

Origins 2014: Odds and Sods

     Here are a few things that slipped by my original set of Origins posts. First off, the Kenzer and Company booth had this cool gladiatorial mini setup.
Do we not die for your amusement? Oh, we're getting packed away? Never mind then.
Sadly I never thought to take a picture of the caves set up that I had played in earlier in the con.

     The Crowne Plaza hotel was home to the Munchkin Tavern, where you could buy some cool Munchkin stuff (Also Pocket Sized Ogre!!) and they had a wheel you could spin for cool swag! In the bar they had these place mats you could color, with crayons provided.
My place mat

My wife's, I like hers better than mine!
     Then finally we have...
David Lee Pancake
     I got to hang out with David Lee a little bit throughout the con, if you stopped by his booth you know he has some amazing art. He won the best 3D award for Ophelia, which I think you can see part of in the picture above, to the right of Dave. Again, sorry for the blurry pics, I was rushing around like a mad man.

     So, another Origins has come and gone, here's hoping next year is even better and that any problems that cropped up this year are fixed for the next. Take care all!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Origins 2014: Day Four

     It should read "Day Four-The Final Hour", since I made it to the con and realized I had forgotten my badge. So back home and worked out a plan where partner in crime (the wife) drops me off and runs a couple errands with the kids while I go in and say my goodbyes.

     I stopped to congratulate Jason Hardy on Shadowrun fifth edition getting the Origins fan favorite rpg award. Look at this guys, he knows where his towel is.
I took my leave and then said adieu to these folks
Tony Steele
Kay Steele
      These two are amazing, as artists and human beings, plus they put up with my grousing about teenagers (of which I still have one) Mr. Steele won the award for best professional digital color work (Baseball Monster), so congratulations, sir!

Next stop, Demon central!
Heather Kreiter, Queen of demonic steeds!
     Heather has recently taken the step into working on her own stuff, and with the popularity of her My Little Demons, who could blame her. I am sad the pic came out a little blurry, but I was worried I would run out of time. What can I say that has not already been said.

Across the way, I found a familiar Leezard
Kirk "Leezard" Hardtle
          Kirk works in his Liquid Leezard studio, lately he has been zombifying different characters to great effect. Plus he is just a fun guy to hang out with, just look at his partner perched on my shoulder there.

I then spotted someone returning to his table....
A blurry Scott Frank
     He typically shares digs (read-table) with the Steele's but was gone when I first arrived. Scott does a lot with miniature painting and 3d printing, great designs. Makes me want to get my own 3d printer. Then I realize I don't have the money, nor the skill. Mr. Frank, you are a gentleman and a scholar.

Next is the father/son duo of...
James (left) and Bill Stolpin
     Bill is fantastic, whether he illustrating dragons or painting a watercolor landscape. Unfortunately I never asked what James does, I guess that means I should interview them sometime. Ooh, something to look forward to!

Douglas Bushong
     Here is Douglas Bushong, 3d image and animation master. He has these awesome little viewers that work like the view masters from when I was a kid. A great guy with some wonderful skills, he has a pretty wicked sense of humor as well.

     Said goodbye to the delightful Jeff Carlisle, but due to his popularity and the fact he was in a tiny space, I did not get a picture with him. His natural good looks probably would have broken my camera anyways.
Andy Hopp
     Next to last, we have Andy Hopp, weirdo extraordinaire. I finally caught him alone at his booth, his thousands of adoring fans had been temporarily sated. This undergraduate of the unusual is at the top of his game. This is another hoopy frood who knows where his towel is.

Finally, we have...
Charles Urbach
     This man always has a crowd showering him with acclaim, I can't believe he hasn't collapsed under the weight of it all. It was during this time that I got the message that my ride was outside. I said my goodbyes, snapped a picture and dashed out of there. Maybe not quite like that, but you get the idea.

     All in all it was a marvelous four days hanging out with friends, making new ones and relaxing. I could leave knowing I had not wasted my time, maybe other people's but I was alright. Plus, I still had the rest of Father's Day to come, woohoo! Take care everyone.

Origins 2014: Day two/three

     When I stay late at the con, I have a hard time posting after or first thing the next day. So here we go.
     This year they are using even more of the convention center than before. This space marine was guarding a door at the end of a long, empty hallway. "Can I see your ID? I guess you can see the miniatures hall now." You can hear the disappointment in his voice that he can't vaporize you "Man what a worthless post!" and inside.
     The terrain is awesome, as usual. I love when you can look at a setup and guess what they used to build it. Here is another one.
     I did some hanging out with friends, and in one instance of trying locator someone, I got into a game of Xcrawl, run by the inimitable Brendan LaSalle (I hope I got his name right) Xcrawl is set in a modern day fantasy world where Xcrawl is a televised sport/dungeon crawl. It was cool seeing the other players get into character, shouting catch phrases and busting out moves. I kind of lock up when I am playing a game I am not familiar with, alongside complete strangers. Despite that, it was a lot of fun, but I had to hurry back to the dealer's room!

     My friends were going to BD.s for dinner, eventually forming a fairly large group. Thankfully we had made reservations. The food was good, the company even better. There was a drawing, if you signed up for their (BD's) club they would randomly pull an application and that individual got a free desert. They winner was Kay Steele who picked the biggest desert and shared with her end of the table.
Left to right; James and Bill Stolpin, Kay Steele, Tony Steele (obscured by Scott's hat) and Scott Frank
     Afterwards we retired to the Crown Plaza where we lounged around their fire pit (?) drank and socialized.
     Afterwards I went home, tired but content, and not willing to stay up long enough to post. *sigh*
     Each day, before heading to the con, I have stopped by my local coffee shop to get a cuppa. If anyone happens to be in Westerville, the Java Joint is a great place for coffee! One of these days, I might try to run a game there. Enough of that, onto day three!

     Saturday I stopped to pick a friend up so he could go to the con for a day. When we arrived there was a pulsing mass of humanity awaiting him at registration. I wished him luck and headed off. Now that I think about it, that was a little mean. The first part of the day, I had my daughter with me. Since she had no desire to see the dealer's room, we skipped the ginormous line and just wandered around downtown and hung out. We then left to have lunch with my wife and boy assistant #2 (my youngest) and then my wife and I returned. We basically visited friends for the rest of the day, but we did stop and try Mayfair's Witches board game. Based on Terry Pratchett's book series of the same name, you are one of four witches roaming the countryside helping out. As you solve the various problems, you accumulate victory points, though if certain things happen on the board then everyone loses.

     We then went to the Happy Greek with friends and had dinner with friends, topping it all off with a "galactic burrito" (the nickname our friends gave it when they came Thursday night)
devouring the galactic burrito

     So ended Saturday. More to come later!

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Origins 2014: Day One

     My first day at Origins this year has come to a close. I just wanted to give the dealer's room a once over and visit with friends. In addition to talking to all my friends that I happened to run into, I got to tell Carolyn Stogdill of Hack Princess that I enjoy her blog. I don't play or run Hack Master, so I can live through her stories, and it is nice that here is someone who loves the game and here is this cool thing that happened at the table. Also, the modified fortune cookie fortunes are pretty cool. While I was at the Kenzer & Company booth I decided to try Hackmaster. Their setup was amazing and as we ventured through the labyrinth we gained party members (Hey, wanna try this, we could use a hand) and eventually escaped with the wizard making a noble sacrifice. It was fun, but I don't think I would feel comfortable enough running it, it was a little heavy on the crunch in my opinion.

     Of course, I realize as I am leaving that I did not take any pictures, so got one of the outside of the convention center. Hopefully I will not be so absent minded tomorrow. I am planning a basic schedule even as I push send. Take care and hopefully I will see some of you later this week!
Ps. I am hoping to run at least one pick up game of Labyrinth Lord at the con, let me know if you are interested!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Origins 2014 is nearly here!!

     Starting this Wednesday, Origins 2014! I have nothing planned, but I am hoping to get some games in when I get there, most likely me running them in the open gaming area. I will bring my Mutant Future adventure as well as Labyrinth Lord and Dungeon Crawl Classics. Speaking of DCC I have my game Wednesday evening, since there typically is not much scheduled for that evening at the con. It most likely will be relocated to the con itself instead of Ravenstone, though. If any of you will be attending, let me know. I am often curious about those that read my posts. There are already a number of friends that I know are attending, hopefully we can make an event out of it! Enough of that, let's get this week started so I can get to the con, hehe!


Running Dwimmermount!

     I will run Dwimmermount at Con on the Cob this year. The pdf, which is the "We are done except for looking for typos." version and that is what I will be using until I get the final version.There will be at least two Dwimmermount slots and there will be overlap. Example being if the second expedition follows the path of the first, they will see evidence of the first group. Now if they are the same folks, then it wont be a surprise but I am looking forward to it and am hoping I get two groups going through.

     Anyone new to this mega dungeon, Dwimmermount is set on the world (planet) of Telluria, and the titular mountain is a prison. One ginormous prison filling a mountain. Rumors abound about this place, but it has been sealed off from the rest of the world for two centuries! Until now. There are folks ready to pay lots of money for what they think/know is in their, also folks who do not want the wrong people poking around in there. Which group will you side with?

     I will be using the regular Labyrinth Lord rulebook, meaning you can use the free pdf at Goblinoid Games website and not have to spend a penny. In Dwimmermount the only races available, besides human, are dwarf and elf. James Maliszewski has weaving a fascinating back story for the history of Telluria and beyond which explains the creation dwarves and elves. Seriously amazing stuff. There are also two new(ish) classes, the cultist and the paladin. You can start off as a cultist or convert from a cleric, and paladin converts from a fighter. There are locations and people in the dungeon that you go to for conversion.

     I hope to run this at my local flgs as well, so if there are any folks out there who want to play then let me know. I still have some more reading to do, but I could be ready to roll with it soon! Leave a comment if you're feeling froggy, folks! Take care everyone!

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Con on the Cob 2014: site update

     In case you are out of the loop or have not signed up yet, registration is different this year than in the past year or two. Andy and his merry band of mavens are handling registrations this year, including game sign ups. Therefore gaming will be free once again, and you wont need to sign into a separate site to sign up. Personally I am in favor of this change, since I always forgot my sign in info for MSBT (?) since I only used it for Con on the Cob. I will be putting a couple games into the system soon, and I encourage anyone thinking about it to go ahead and sign up to run some games. That is all, carry on.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Dwimmermount:disappointment and hope

    Dwimmermount was originally expected to be out in August of 2012. When it's creator dropped off the 'net due to health concerns (which I will not go into here) it eventually was turned over to others to finish his work. I admit I do not know all of the intricate details, who messed up or whatever, but I do know that it continued to be worked on as opposed to folks just running off with the money. It looks like we may finally see a finished product.

     So why are people not at least happy or interested that it is coming out? The tone is that they are relieved they were not in the kickstarter, not "Wow, it's finally coming out? I wonder what it's like?" The mega dungeon and it's environs still captivate me as much as it did two years ago, and I am hoping to run it sometime. The sci fi/fantasy aspects as well as the larger world it is set against is very intriguing and I look forward to holding the book in my hands.

     I prefer to be positive about these things, which is good for my well being. I would save my vitriol for something that truly deserves it, as opposed to this which is only an inconvenience.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Free RPG Day, 2014

      Free RPG Day is happening here in Columbus, I credit my ability to bug my local flgs into action. I plan to run Elzemon and the Blood Drinking Box (DCC RPG) that day from 2-6 and I encourage anyone who feels like it to come and run something. Currently there is no Pathfinder Society games planned, so I will have the table up front, but if there is any overlap I am sure something can be worked out. I suspect the fact that it is the first weekend after Origins is why nothing is scheduled at Ravenstone. Since Elzemon is a first level adventure, I am hoping people show up to play June 11th to run that 0 level funnel and have first level characters. Otherwise I will have some first levels rolled up, though I would prefer something the players were a bit invested in.

     Enough of that, if you are in the Columbus, Ohio area and wish to try out Dungeon Crawl Classics or feel like running something else then head over to Ravenstone Games and let them know. The sooner the better. Take care, and happy gaming!

Monday, June 2, 2014

Con on the Cob: running games

     Con season is moving along with North Texas RPG Con next weekend and then Origins. I have to look ahead to October and Con on the Cob, since I will be running at least a couple games there. Goblinoid Games will have a booth there, so I feel I should run Labyrinth Lord and/or Mutant Future. I have adventures written up for both systems, so that should not be an issue. I am also tempted to run something in DCC rpg.

     Currently the games list for the con is practically nonexistent, so please head over and sign up. If you have not been there, but want to give it a try, do it. It is like ten pounds of fun in a five pound bag. Er, or something like that. If you have been then what are you waiting for, you know how fun it is. So there you go, see you all later!

D&D coming soon...

     In just over a month we will get our first 5E product in the starter set, well July 15th but still. Though my love for OSR products is boundless, I am looking forward to seeing what they have done this time. At the very least I can use any ideas I like for whatever rules set I choose, which is pretty much how I operate now. I have an abundance of rpg adventures and supplements that I plan to or have already done that very thing. This interview with Wolfgang Baur and Steve Winter (Kobold Press) regarding their upcoming 5E adventure modules is very promising. It sounds like they have packed a lot of action into it, not just fights but exploration, role play opportunities, taking advantage of the flexibility of the new rules. I can only hope it all turns out as cool as it sounds.

     Just wanted to put that out there, felt the need to put my two cents in. Feel free to let me know what you think, leave a comment below. Let yourself be heard! Or not, whatever.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

June 1st, getting this month rolling

     Here we are, beginning of June and I am looking forward to it all. Went to breakfast with Boy Assistant #2 at a nearby field office (coffee shop with wifi) when I discovered I had left my tablet and sketching supplies behind. Oh well, just means we get to hang out and chat.
Yep, kind off how it goes with Boy Assistant #2  
     Eventually getting home, I then decided to dig into another illustration for the Deviant Database 2.0. The chitterer, ie. a squirrel headed crab. Here is the rough pencil sketches I just finished up.
Did separate sketches of crabs and a squirrel so I could get a feel for how their bodies work, I gave the hybrid a shot. Next is coming up with a good pose for it and then diving in. Should be a lot of fun.

     In other news I will be helping get something together for free rpg day at my local flgs. The people in charge of the event were able to get something together to send to him, so I will run a game that day and hopefully there will be other games going on. Stay tuned for further updates! Take care, and hope everyone is having a good start to their month!