Dec 172013

The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan is listed as C1, the first of the “Competition Series”, This module was originally ran way back at Origins in 1979. It’s also one of my favorites.
I know there’s other covers but that’s one that sits on my shelf. There’s a couple reasons. The module is filled with devious traps and really cool monsters. I mean really cool in that this module was the debut of the infamous Gibbering Mouther. I always loved throwing that monster at player characters. And as a player I hated it.
The module is pretty straight forward. The party is lost. They stumble upon some ruins. No dramatic plot. No epic quest. It’s just there. Adventure if you dare. There may not be a hook plotwise but adventure and glory is why we play these game. This is one of the few modules that I feel like I can take off the shelf and just run with it and throw at the players.
There’s something else that pretty damned cool about this module. It was one of the first that included a picture book. That’s not only a map but a book of pictures of the rooms. I remember the joy I had the first time I ran this and the players sat there staring at the pictures looking for the tiniest clues to what dangers lay ahead.
Now, I’m not all that cool on the whole competition thing. I’m just not that kind of guy. I can see how it can be fun as lark and heck I just might do something like that maybe at the convention that I manage to go to. I like sitting around with friends rolling, dice, killing (or being killed by) monsters. You know that drill. But any way this is pretty cool classic module. Pick it up give it read and throw at some players.

Dec 162013

We finished up the Dresden Files game this last Friday. Due to just being plain sick we were missing one player but we forged ahead anyway. It was a brief but brutal session.
When we last left our heroes, they had gotten pretty banged up fighting the gang of Jade Court Vampires. They decided to play it save and go into overkill mode. They snuck through the service tunnels until they discovered the lair main of the Jade Court and their boss. Then they found a gas main. Then a little thaumaturgical hoodoo and they have an odorless cloud of natural gas that gets gently pushed into the lair. The resulting explosion sent several manhole covers in the area flying and resulted in on Apple store burning to the ground. Yes, I could played this up more as a GM but it was time to wrap things up.
Then the group goes about setting up the Red Court and the Denarian in final showdown. They managed to via some social maneuvering to get both of them at the same place at the same time. They sat back and watched the slug fest. The Denarian ended up winning and pretty much taking out the remaining Red Court Vampires. Hoping the fight weakened the Dinarian, the party charged in with hopes of finishing off the fallen angel. It was another tough and bloody fight. The player characters got really banged up. Artie blew his entire magical wad in one big spell that only annoyed the Dinarian. It was a fight of attrition after that. Here’s one place where we used my little house rule about missing player characters. And it worked pretty well. The missing character is handled like an Aspect for the group. They can invoke him once for free in each exchange. Pretty simple. And to the point. Needless to say, the party barely took out the Dinarian.
Then on to the Fairy stuff. The party gets all of the factions together at their apartment because it is “Centrally Located”. This was a really brief encounter and just really a role playing exchanged. A few offers were by the Fairy Courts that were politely turned down. Mab and Titania both do their parts to summon Puck. Puck goes ballistic but is powerless to do anything. He slowly shrinks down to the size of one of the Wild Fey and is taken into custody by Titania. And here endeth the campaign.
Yes, I know these notes are very short compared other posts. But this was the last and clean up session. I’d say all in all that it went well. The players enjoyed it and FATE was really easy to run as a GM. We talked briefly about what will happen if the group decides to do another Campaign in New Bay City (Note the first time I used this setting was for a Mage game). They agreed that it would be fun but probably better if we used a different set of rules. FATE is fun, easy and quick. But we all felt there was a little too much “hand wavey” stuff and that after a while everything just started to feel the same. But this a debate for the far future.
So what’s up next? Well, the Classic Deadlands campaign is still going strong. We’re going to be starting a Pathfinder game (Serpent’s Skull) very soon. Personally, I’m going to get my old-school game up and running after the Holidays. But more on that one a little later.

Dec 132013

Here’s a three-fer folks all by Venger Satanis. It’s a pretty cool mix. Let’s start at the beginning.
Let’s start with Liberation of the Demon Slayer.
LotDS front cover (2)
This is fun combinations of house rules and a dungeon. The house rules are neat and there’s a couple of things I’m thinking of adding to my own games in one form or the other like the alternate spell casting and exploding damage. I pretty much already use a similar experience system and some of the fluff matches my own warped tastes. As far as the dungeon adventure itself. I think there’s some really cool gems in there. I’m trying not to do any spoilers. But there’s a cool variety of really warped and crazy monster and encounters to freak out the players. There is a few things that I’m not too crazy about. I’m cool with crazy gods and other unnameable things from beyond the stars and a few little bits of technology it’s advanced it’s magical. But there’s few more science fiction elements that just don’t float my boat. But hell there’s enough inspiration in there to replace it with something that matches how I would the module to feel. So all in all. It’s a good buy if you want a mature, insane and warped demonic adventure.
You can’t get better than free and that’s how much The Baleful Sorcerer of Tsathag’kha costs.
This a pretty simple little magic-user variant class. Since it’s free, I don’t feel like I really need to go into much detail other than to say if you’re running a dark magic style campaign there’s some good inspiration there. If not then this would make a pretty cool villain NPC class. It’s cool. It’s free. Check it out.
And finally there’s The Islands of Purple-Haunted Putrescence. This is Venger’s hexcrawl Kickstarter. Like I’ve mentioned before I’ve curtailed my Kickstarter spending but based on the other projects he’s done I just might make an exception for this one. So go ahead and check it out. I got feeling there’ll be some really cool stuff in there.

 Posted by at 11:43 am  Tagged with:
Dec 122013

If you’ve been following along the old blog, you’ll know that I’ve curtailed a lot of my Kickstarter backing. That’s nothing against the folks who are doing Kickstarters, it’s just the level of my bank account. But that small problem won’t keep from giveing a shout out to what looks like a really cool Kickstarter.

Everwrought looks pretty damned cool. Setting, adventure, maps and mini’s all in one box. That’s pretty cool idea. I know lots of you out there have more mini’s than can use in a lifetime. Thank you, Reaper Bones. But looks cool is that they’re using 3d printing to make their mini’s But it ain’t just about the mini’s. A boxed set adventure/setting now that’s pretty cool. And if you have some sort of gamer ADD like me then there’s a good choice of compatible systems. Pathfinder, 4E, FATE and Dungeonworld. My only suggestion would how about a little OSR love or even some Savage Worlds. But hell I’ve converting stuff for years.

So go check it out. Heck, the PDF version is only $20.
And yes, if you’re still reading. I’m way behind in my regular posting this week.

 Posted by at 10:20 am
Dec 092013

I talked about then I bought it. Now I’m going to rant about it and hope you buy it too. It’s for a good cause. And yes you may call biased. Go ahead. This one time that I don’t care.
Bad Myrmidon is an old-school hexcrawl created by some the coolest and most creative folks in the OSR. It’s based on teh Labyrinth Lord rules but like any of the retroclones, you can easily and quickly tweak it for your game of choice. There’s a good mix of weird encounter types, a little dungeon crawl and an over arching plot. Better than some hex crawls I’ve seen. There’s some down right crazy cool monsters and stuff in there too. It’ll be a fun adventure to add to your GM tool box. Now you may not all that hip to Greek mythology. That’s cool too. Just change some names and make it your. It’s that simple.
So let’s see. The price is “Pay What You Want”. It’s well written and original. It’s flexible. And it goes to a good cause. So what else do you want?
So go check it out at Drivethrurpg.

 Posted by at 10:32 am  Tagged with:
Dec 032013

Believe it or not gamers do good things. From disaster relief drives to helping those who just happen to be in need. This time I’m throwing a shout out to to Bad Myrmidon. All the proceeds from this little old school adventure go to helping Mandy Morbid. You see she has Ehlers–Danlos syndrome.
I wouldn’t dare call Mandy a personal friend but her, Zak Smith and the whole crew have given hours entertainment and inspiration. It’s worth a few bucks. Just check it out. Play it forward, people.

 Posted by at 8:14 pm