Friday, September 29, 2017

New old school stuff - Sept 29th Edition

Sorry for the lack of regular blogging latetly, I'm in deep writing mode at this point.  What I decided was to not write the premise first for the dungeon I'm working on.  Instead I'm letting the rooms decide the outcome.  (I have no idea if that makes sense).  It's sort of like writing a song and starting with the title.  You end up pigeon holing yourself. 

Anyways, here's the NEW stuff.  Obviously there's some affiliate links in there. 





Baby Zac's Bundle:  A whole bunch of awesome proceeds got to help out Zac.  My son Zac was born a day before we were scheduled to induce, at less than 4 pounds. He had several unforeseen complications and spent a week in the NICU before he was big enough for us to take home. The doctor said that if he had been born a day later he probably wouldn't have made it at all. He is a very happy and healthy baby now, but unexpected complications mean extra bills.  $28.22 CAD

Found Folio V1:  Monster manual with 130 monsters.  (for Version 3 and 3.75 of the world's most popular roleplaying game). PWYW

The Anti Paladin:  Character class for OSRIC.  $12.44 CAD

Dance of the medusa:  OSRIIC Adventure 4th to 7th lvl.  $4.53 CAD

d20 Simple FREE:  OSR style game using d20s.  Looks fun.  PWYW

Men and Monsters Book 1: The Unseen:  Introduce the paranormal to your WW2 Gaming. $1.24 CAD

Dice Roll Zine#1:  36 page booklet size zine covering OSR awesome. $3.73 CAD

Art of the Ice Kingdoms:  Art of the Ice Kingdoms? no description.  $12.44 CAD

Cool words for gamers:  A book for gamers interested in bizarre words.  $4.29 CAD

Nothing to see here:  System Neutral adventure:  $4.98 CAD

Heroes & Monsters:  Rules lite system powered by the Black Hack $2.36 CAD

Character sheet for H&M FREE

Lair of the Goblin King Grasnhak-Kul:  (I love excellent bad guy names!) Solo adventure for S&W $1.87 CAD

Crypt of Mandazed:  Solo adventure for S&W.  $1.87 CAD

Cavalier Attitude:  OSR Zine PWYW




Wednesday, September 27, 2017

My first time

Had a good discussion with Ivan last night about fighting fantasy.  I started thinking about the first time I ever ran a game.  I remember playing 1st ed D&D with my cousin, and around the same time his brother was getting into AFF.  At the same time all of my friends where buying the green spined Fighting fantasy books.  I'm guessing at some point (birthday maybe?) I got a copy of dungeoneer and digested the whole thing over the course of a few days.  Obviously I had my 2 cousins as my first Dungeon Masters at this point.

Fast forward a month or so and it was my friend Ken's birthday.  We were all enthused about FF books, and were playing herosquest regularly.  So for Ken's birthday we decided to try out Dungeoneer.  I remember it being a good 6 hours of play, maybe more.  I was bagged by the end, but gawd it was fun!  We were at that age, where we would stay up all weekend playing Sega and Nintendo trying to beat games.  Drinking copious amounts of pop at the time.

The adventure in dungeoneer was a bit railroadey (but great for a novice DM... or referee).  Afterwards we got the group together and ran the adventure in blacksand, and then a bunch of extra adventures I wrote.  (after I got out of the pit).

If I remember correctly I think I had like 8 - 10 players that first game.  Which was way more than enough!  The only character I can remember specifically was my friend Ryan's thief, who had scares on his face, a pile of tattoos (blacksand had its fair share of tattoo parlours, and the boys had far too much gold I gave them).  As well his character walked around with a large sack with the ears of monsters he had defeated.

So as far as roots go, I think I'm squarely in the fighting fantasy area.  I still drool over some of the fantastic artwork that was in those books.


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

A new community to discuss old games!

A new community to discuss old games! Please check it out if your into old games. This community is not about dnd, but all the other cool games we used to play. So if you are into rune quest, war gaming, traveller, hey even tmnt! Come chat with us.

Link: https://plus.google.com/communities/116265361877505441228

About the community:

A Community for discussing old school table top gaming, particularly role playing games and miniatures games from the 70's and early 80's.

This is NOT an OSR/D&D community. 
Reason being that the OSR has a fantastically useful (and busy) google community already. 

The impetus for this community is that discussion of other "old school" games tends to get crowded out by the OSR. 
This is a place to discuss Traveller, Runequest, Rolemaster, Warhammer FRP, Laserburn, Starguard and many more. 

What kind of games are covered?
Principally role playing games and miniatures games.
Board games ala Squad Leader tend to already have their own communities.

What is "old school" ? 
Depends on your criteria but generally, a reasonable cut-off is about the late 80's with the release of Warhammer Fantasy Role Play and Warhammer 40.000 Rogue Trader.
It's really more about attitude than age: Open-ended games that emphasize creativity over adherence to purity. 

Any other rules?
D&D kindly belongs elsewhere.
Leave your politics at the door. 
Be pleasant. 


Friday, September 22, 2017

New old school awesome - Sept 22

*prices in USD this time, I neglected to login prior to starting the blog post.  Normally it's in CAD. 

Oversight Pass:  Adventures in Filbar Adventure.  (I believe Basic DnD)  $3.00

White Star: Galaxy Edition (Swords & Wizardry):  Integrates new rules, Original game + Companion.  Includes 25 new character classes, spaceships, etc.    $9.99

Bureau 13 - d20 Edition:  Apparently a Gencon Winning game from 1992!  $19.95

Extrastellar Set two: Space Colonists:  Minis! $2.45

Life & Death Zarth Edition:  Source book for crypts and things.  $10

Places of power: Soulspur Inn (System neutral) $3.45

DCC# 94 Neon Nights:  $6.99 Level 3 Adventure for DCC.

The Witch:  New class for Frontier RPG PWYW

BlueHolme Journeyman Rules:  $9.99

Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers Of Hyperborea.  $12.75 (an update?)

Edens Lament:  Adventure for S&W.  PWYW

The ruined kingdom: Sandbox campaign  $10.

No Class Hack.  $2.00

Thursday, September 21, 2017

It's your turn! - An interview with Diogo Nogueira of Old Skull Publishing

1. How did you get your start roleplaying? What system did you use?
Well, I don't know if that counts, but I believe my initiation was with Fighting Fantasy Gamebooks, and then with the Dungeoneer RPG (which is an Advanced Fighting Fantasy version). I played many of their first gamebooks and then started to try make something similar with Dungeoneer. It was only with Tagmar (a Brazilian Fantasy RPG that functioned similar to the TSR Conan RPG) that I really started to understand the differences between gaming books and proper Role Playing Games.



2. How and when did you discover the OSR?
I think it was around 2010 or something. I had just got back to playing RPGs, and bought a bunch of 4th edition D&D books. I tried to play a campaign with them for about an year, but in the whole time, we didn't finish even 3 adventures. It wasn't like the D&D I remembered. Then I started looking around the internet to see what people were playing and I found about this whole "let's take a look into the origins of our hobby" thing and discovered Labyrinth Lord. I immediately wanted to try it out and it worked so fine (in a 3 hour session we did things we took months to accomplish in the 4th edition campaign), I became like an OSR fanatic, hunting everything I could find about the older editions and the things they were inspired now.

3.  Tell me about Old Skull publishing, how did it start?
One of the things that I found really fascinating about the OSR was how everyone had their own vision of how the game was, and how it could be, and even shared these visions with the community, publishing games of their own. It was really refreshing. I realised we didn't really need a big company dictating what game we should play, how the setting was, what story we should be telling now. We could do our own thing. The game was really ours, and we could do anything with it. So over the years I played many many OSR games and each one there was something I really liked, but didn't have something another game had. So, the logical step was to make a game myself that would combine what I wanted to have, stealing bits and parts from a bunch of other games and put it out there, and see how it goes.

4.  Tell me about "Sharp Swords & Sinister spells".
Sharp Swords & Sinister Spells is a game I made for myself. It's a light sword and sorcery RPG with strong Old School influences. It's not so light that you can't have significant mechanical bits and the rules almost don't matter. They do, and they have an important impact on it, but are easily manageable. If you need to create a character, you can do it in a few minutes. Need a monster? It's even quicker. It is inspired mainly by the stories of Robert E. Howard's Conan and Fritz Leiber Lankhmar series, although there are influences of other authors such as Clark Ashton Smith, Lovecraft, Michael Moorcock. And the actual system is a mixture and reimagination of various bits of different systems (it has parts inspired by Black Hack, White Hack, DCC RPG, Beyond the Wall, Call of Cthulhu, Edge of the Empire, Fiasco, and a bunch more), most of them from the OSR, but there is a thing or two outside of this realm of influence. I wanted to combine everything I liked in other games into my own, and the result it something unique, but that seems familiar too.

So, in the end, SS&SS is a simple yet robust system, that let me create things for it quite easily, without requiring too much work from me, while also giving me the elements a want to work with for the style of sword and sorcery adventures I like.



5.  What are you currently playing?
I am currently playing Sharp Swords & Sinister Spells and Dungeon Crawl Classics RPG. I am beginning a SS&SS urban crawl kind of campaign, inspired by the Lankhmar stories, with a bunch of generators to create gaming elements, hooks, places, NPCs, conflicts and other stuff (and I plan to publish the setting and city tool kit for the game later). For DCC RPG, I basically play a bunch of one-shots of the modules.

6. If you could campaign in any world which would it be?
That's a tough question. I love playing The One Ring, which takes place in Middle Earth,  Star Wars RPGs, that happen in that universe... But I think one of the settings that really fascinates me is Edgar R. Burroughs' Barsoom. It is futuristic but medieval at the same time. The ruins, the mysteries, the different civilizations that live and lived there, the legends and superstitions. I guess I really want a good Barsoomian campaign someday!

7.  Tell me about the SS&SS Addendum, and spell books.
Well, when I published SS&SS core book, I wanted it to be compact, having everything you really need to play a sword and sorcery RPG, with some tools. But the Addendum is that little extra, that spice you can put on your food to make it more tasty. The Addendum brings some optional rules inspired by the sword and sorcery genre, like a Luck boost drunk people receive, a rule for a strong bond with your adventuring companion (like Fafhrd and Grey Mouser have), carousing, the use of true names and things like that. Not to mention a whole lot of tables and generators to help players and referees come up with stuff during play, or during prep time.

8. Who is your favourite artist and or author?
Well, art wise, the name that always comes to my mind is Peter Mullan. I don't know what it is, but his art really leaves me amazed. I can stare at it for hours. He has something of Erol Otus in the early days but with something more. The details, the scenes, the weirdness of it. They are really something to be studied, and I do try to do that with my own art.

In terms of RPG authors, that's a tougher one. I really enjoy Harley Stroh adventures. They are so pulpy, so exciting and have a fell of sword and sorcery shenanigans that's right up my alley. As for proper game rules author, I really like the style of how DCC RPG was written. It's really inspiring, and is not just a gaming manual but a style and inspirational book. So, I guess Joseph Goodman.

But it just know occurred to me you might be talking about literature authors. Well, as of right now, I really like Fritz Leiber. Fafhrd and Grey Mouser stories are exciting, sometimes dark, but they always have a light side to it too, some funny bits that makes you smile now and them.

9. What is one of your favorite adventures other than something that you’ve released (or worked on)?
Hummm... Let me think. As I said, Harley Stroh stuff is really right up my alley. I love Tower of the Black pearl, even though it is pretty straight forward. But it mixture rumors of legendary places, pirates, mysterious wizards, a tower that comes out of the ocean. In game play, it has a time limit that pressures the players. There are puzzles and problems they need to figure out themselves, without rolling dice. There is opportunity for roleplay and epic combat. There is everything in there.



10. When you get a chance to play a character, what type of PC do you like to play?
I don't get to play as much as I'd like, but when I do, I usually like to play the seedy scoundrel type of guy. Like Grey Mouser or Han Solo. The type that can handle themselves in combat, but prefer to solve problems with a bit of wit and subterfuge.



11. What are you most excited about in the RPG scene currently?
Setting toolkits, that generate stuff for you to play and use on the table, instead of just reading it to memorize details. Like Yoon-Suin, Hubris, Vornheim and things like that. Setting that are tools for you to play them and create content for the actual game, instead of just boring descriptions of every single detail you will never actually use in play. I really want to prepare the SS&SS setting like that!



12.  Would you rather be a spell slinger or a beefy warrior?
Well, considering I am all about sword and sorcery, and that sorcery corrupts and deforms you in this type of fantasy, I will stick with the beefy warrior. I want to find ancient gold and spend with mundane pleasures!



13.  What are your plans for Old Skull Publishing this year?
Wow, so many! But I need to focus at one at a time to finish them! I am currently writing a few short adventures to release for SS&SS and at the same time writing Solar Blades & Cosmic Spells, which will be Science Fantasy version of Sharp Swords & Sinister Spells. It will be literally sword and sorcery in space. Barbarians side by side with robots, aliens, sorcerers, psionics, mechanics and everything. It's going to be like Dark Sun meets Star Wars meets Hyborea or something. After that, back to SS&SS with it's setting!


14.  Sushi or Dim Sum?
I don't know if there is a secret meaning behind this, but I love sushi. I do enjoy a Yakisoba though!


15. Where can we find you on the web?
You can find me on Google+ (https://plus.google.com/+DiogoNogueiraXP), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/diogonog), Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/diogo_nogueira/) and Twitter (@diogoxp). Old Skull Publishing stuff can be found at RPGNow (http://www.rpgnow.com/browse/pub/10771/Old-Skull-Publishing) and Lulu (http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/OldSkull).

Monday, September 18, 2017

d20 dank places

1. Crawling across the floor are six humans missing their lower torso.

2.  Strewn haphazardly about are various rusted torture implements, a large dark stain occupies most of the floor.

3. Ooze drips from a chair nailed to the ceiling.

4. A terrifying mural covers most of the wall, it is drawn in feces and blood.

5. A full deck of cards is staked indivually to the floor by 52 daggers.

6.  All of the archways in the room have a greyish phantasmal coating in the empty space. It ripples when a breeze touches it.

7.  A small old crone sits near a pool of black water, she holds a wooden stake in her hand, her eyes have a faint purplish glow.

8.  Green crystals hang from the ceiling, at various lengths. On the floor are the remains of a fire, a few pieces of unburned parchment lie near.

9.  Thousands of runes are drawn all over the room, the walls, floor and ceiling. A light wisp of smoke is slowly appearing from a crack in the floor.

10.  The room is devoid of anything, small luminscent orbs float around.

11.  The rotting carcass of a large animal fills most of the room, clawing and scratching can be heard coming from underneath it.

12.  Chained to a wall is a haggard human, he looks malnourished. Tattoo all over his arms are what appear to be the writings of a madman. He smiles, and looks down at his feet.

13.  Murky green webs fill the doorway, a low moan comes from within the room.

14.  Water pours thru the ceiling, a small chalice sits directly below. It remains empty.

15.  A pile of skeletal remains are arranged in the shape of a pyramid.

16.  The room is filled with dust, it's hard to breathe. There are cobwebs everywhere. On the floor is a set of footprints that appear, and then they get covered in dust right away.

17.  A grotesque chess set lies in front of you, small deformed children are the pieces, they are all made of stone.

18.  Bubbles of blackness pitch forward from a pit. A upside down religious symbol made of wood hangs from a alcove above the pit.

19.  Inside the dark room is a jar filled with toes, an old torch that is still warm to the touch, and a broken lyre.

20. In the floor is a large steel metal door, across the room a set of keys in the socket of a large skull.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Old School Awesome At OBS - Sept 15

Good Morning! (alternatively Good Afternoon, Good Night!)

Here is the awesome.

FOR THE MOTHERLAND:  a collection of support missions designed for WWII: Operation WhiteBox.  $7.29 CAD

FRINGEWORTHY D20:  the original RPG of Inter Dimensional exploration, presents this d20 edition, filled with information, scenarios, friends and foes, aliens, equipment and artifacts.  $24.82 CAD

ELDERS PLAYMAT:  Generic counter playmat.  PWYW

MALICE FROM THE MIDDLE VALE:  Looks like a choose your own adventure kinda book.  $3.23 CAD

SAVE YOURSELF FROM HELL:  NEW Alpha Blue adventure from Venger. $4.87 CAD

FROM THE MAW OF THE WURM:  Labyrinth Lord Adventure.  PWYW

DARKFAST CLASSIC FANTASY: CLASS COMPENDIUM:  $5.17 CAD. 

DISCORD AT THE DOCKS: MORE ADVENTURES IN FILBAR! $2.43 CAD

BEAST HACK + BUNDLE:  LOTS OF GOOD STUFF HERE. $4.87 CAD

LIGHT CITY FOES:  ADVENTURE FOR S&W  FREE! LOOKS PRETTY COOL

DAUGHTER OF THE DUNES: S&W ADVENTURE. PWYW

THE PIRATE HACK 2E:  Looks like version 2.0, obviously a pirate hack of the black hack. $4.86 CAD

WISDOM FROM THE WASTELANDS:  MUTANT FUTURE MAGAZINE BUNDLE.  $2.42 CAD

THE PRINCE OF THE SEA: OSRIC ADVENTURE.  $4.26 CAD

SHADOWS & SHAPES:  LIGHTWEIGHT FANTASY GAME. PWYW 

THE NORTHERN TIER:  A HEX ADVENTURE SETTING: FREE!






Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Stoner - Alternative Class for Dark Places & Demogorgons

The Stoner (Sub class of Rebel) 

You spend a inordinate amount of time out of class, smoking grass behind the janitor's shed.  Paranoia & Conspiracy theories are always on your mind. You are pretty mellow and lack any real worry about life.

Prerequisites:  Intelligence 

Level 1 - Beginning Skills Knowledge General, Select one of the following:  Language, Mechanics, Paranormal, Science.  You get that skill and and get a +1 on all rolls for that skill.  -2 to all skill rolls towards police. 

LEVEL
ADVANCEMENT
2
Gain Ranged Weapons Skill (or a +1 if you have it)
3
+1 to attack rolls, or +1 to any INT based Skill
4
+2 to all Saving Throws
5
Gains dream bong!


Starting Equipment:  A lighter, rolling papers, a backpack, hard cheese, 1d6 dollars, metal pipe and screens, half a gram of mary jane. 

Man: You wanna get high, man?
Pedro: Does Howdy Doody got wooden Balls, man? - Cheech & Chong 



DP&D Kickstarter is now LIVE! Go Check it out.
SURVIVE THIS!! Dark Places & Demogorgons RPG Core Rulebook

Monday, September 11, 2017

A review of the character classes in Dark Places & Demogorgons

Dark Places & Demogorgons has a huge variety of classes, you can play as the following: The Kid Scientist, The Nerd, The Geek, The Jock, Extreme Athlete, The Karate Kid, Break Dancer, Goth, Metal Head, Preppy, The Princess, Teen Heart Throb, Bully, The Hood, and last but not least the Punk Rocker.

Since I was basically a nerd punk rocker, I decided to review those 2.  As well, I took Judo when I was kid (i was terrible at it) however I loved Ralph Macchio, so I will also review the Karate Kid.

The Nerd 
You've always been picked on for being different and for being smarter than everyone else... Well I was always picked on anyways.

You must have a Intelligence of 13, you automatically get the following skills:  Knowledge, General & Science, a -1 to Strength, CON, & CHA, and a +1 to INT And Wis.  I like it already!

Advancement is kinda nifty in DP&D, All of the classes go to level 5 and as you go your skills increase and some attributes.  In the case of the Nerd, they get a +1 to all knowledge rolls at level 2, a +1 to Intelligence at level 3.  (That's as far as I go for now, you'll have to buy the book!).  The game itself has waves of Fifth Edition as far as the classes go & leveling up, but it easy.

Starting gear is funny: Home Computer, home library, library card, a flashlight, 4d6 dollars and a revenge of the nerds poster.

I'd like to add some silly black glasses, a plaid shirt button up to your neck, possibly suspenders, defiantly a Kleenex or two in your pocket (allergies!)

Obviously there are a pile of great pop culture references for nerds, most of the crew from Big Bang Theory, Thelma, Urkel, George McFly.

The Punk Rocker 
No prerequisites needed for this one! Except maybe a disrespect for authority, and a bad attitude. Starting off you get art & music, driving and intimidation skills.  - 2 to all skill checks against authority figures (LMFAO awesome)

As you level your armour class increases, fear and intimidation checks, and so on

Starting equipment: punk clothes, leather jacket with patches, pocket knife, punk rock handbook

I'll add a knock off stratocaster guitar, a package of band aids, a skateboard missing a wheel

Obviously you can pull influences from Punk Music, Punky Brewster, a few of the lost boys. Marty McFly.

The Karate Kid

Prerequistes: dex 9, and Con 8.
You start off with basic athletics, martial arts.  You get a +1 dex and a -1 charisma (due to people thinking your a bit weird).

As you level you get bonuses to your AC, and physical attacks, extra melee

Starting equipment: a Gi, pair of nunchuks, throwing starts, last dragon VHS,

Obviously The Karate Kid you can draw an influence from, as well bruce lee, chuck norris,

I love all the humour written into the character classes!  There are a lot of great throw back quotes that get you in the right frame of mind to roll up your character!

The Kickstarter launches tomorrow! 
Check out the video (I wish i could embed it) 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d6YmUBpzi9Y





Saturday, September 9, 2017

A whole WACK of new old school stuff! - Sept 9

Hurricane Harvey Bundle: There is a bunch of great stuff in this bundle

from Goodman Games, including Sailors Of The Starless Sea! (For DCC)

$12.14 CAD 



Beast Hack + Bundle :Includes the following:  The Beast Hack, Beast Hack 2 Monster Madness, 
Beast Hack 3, The Item Hack, The NPC Hack. $4.86 CAD.  

The Forbidden Caverns OF Archaia Kickstarter Package:  This special collection is intended for 
distribution to kickstarter backers $89.11 CAD and the GM Screen Inserts.


Wormskin Issue 7:  Old School Mag $6.07 CAD

Riddles Of The Sphinx:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

Underbelly Of The Phoenix: Adventure setting for Filbar $3.65 CAD

Aerie Of The Cloud Giant Strategos: Adventure for OSRIC $9.73 CAD

The Black Knights Revenge:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

Valley Of The Damned:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

The Wicked Woeful Web:  Swords & Wizardry Adventure $1.25 CAD


The Black Knight Rides:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

An Invitation To Dinner:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

Dead Men Tell No Tales: OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

Castle In The Clouds:  OSRIC Adventure $4.25 CAD

The Blood Pharaoh: Swords & Wizardry Adventure $1.25 CAD

DCC Quick Start Rules:  Speaks for itself $2.52 CAD

B/X Essentials Core Rules:  A revamped version of B/X $6.07 CAD





Wednesday, September 6, 2017

the old door in the basement

The light spills from the edges of the door
Mist creeps thru the cracks
It's been years since it's been opened, 
Let alone had any light coming from it
The small room is unattended save for the rats
The kegs remain dry 
Only whispers exist of the mysteries behind the door 
in the basement 
Where no one ever ventures forth 
The brave hero's sit at the bar
An old man mentions the door 
The barkeep ponders the wonderful ale that used to come from the depths 
There might be treasure down there, 
There maybe death 
There are surely traps 
The hero's go off to sleep, and dream of gold 
When the morning light shines, they decide to venture forth, into the depths, behind the old door in the basement. 




Tuesday, September 5, 2017

This is the kick in the ass I needed

If you haven't noticed the maps I've been working on latetly, they are all here in this collection.  I had this idea for a dungeon rolling around in my head, and it's getting there.  It is starting to take shape.  The inspiration for it is coming directly from guys like +Zak Sabbath and +Mike Evans and the things I was reading while Gen Con was going on.  Specifically about the DIY D&D Community.  And the conversation about making games & adventures that YOU the author want to play.  The biggest problem I find, is the moment when I start worrying about what someone else is going to think.  In some cases, people might think "well that's commercial suicide, to pander to the masses".  And in a sense I suppose that could be correct.  However, that's not really what I'm talking about here, I'm talking about this little 5 level dungeon I'm mapping and working on.  And how I'll probably put it out there for people at some point, but way before that I'm going to run my players thru it, probably TPK them.  And way before it comes out, I'm going to start creating terrible "shane" art for it, because it makes me happy.

So here's the maps.  And eventually this may exist in some medium that you can download and run.

Or it may just be the place where my players characters go to die for the next few months.

In the mean time I'm going to sit on my couch with a glass of tea, an old black cat sitting beside me, and "friends" on in the background and doodle to my hearts content.  Who knows, it may end up being a bit bigger than 5 levels.







Sunday, September 3, 2017

Dark places & Demogorgon - A Review

+Eric from Bloat Games was kind enough to send me over a pdf copy of his new game, "Dark Places & Demogorgon".  Here is the elevator pitch from the back of the book.

"Dark Places & Demogorgon is a tabletop roleplaying game that uses the original 1970s fantasy rules and mutates it into a retro nightmare that you hold in your hands.  In DP&D you play as a high school student in the 1980s, the town you live in has had a rash of disappearances and strange happenings.  The adults seem lost as to what to do, the police are as clueless as ever, and reverend Philips is on another witch hunt.  It's up to you and your friends to figure out what's going on and stop if from happening again!"   Heavily influenced by 80s pop culture, DP&D draws inspiration from movies like the lost boys, ET, Goonies, Weird Science, The Ghost Busters, The breakfast club and TV shows like Stranger Things, Erie Indiana, and Scooby Doo.  

This game is going to be fun.  I think specifically if you have a group of players that all grew up in the 80s and get the theme of it.  Which is pretty much most of the OSR audience (or atleast a reasonable amount of it).  My 5e group would be at home playing this, my old school group all grew up in the 90s (so I might have to do a bit of explaining what a VCR is!).  

Eric and Co did a great job of game design.  The mechanics of this game are similar to the original 70s version of "the world's most popular roleplaying game".  The mechanics use S&W type rules, with d6s and 20s.  Although there is a bit of fifth edition throw in for good measure (advantage/disadvantage).  As well a few other sources.  (the XP system is akin to DCC).  

First off, the book is fantastically laid out, great art that puts you right into the mix of the theme and general idea.  There are even actual photos from year books (I'm guessing friends of Erics).  

You play the game as a teenager, and its basically race as a class.  Specifically you can play classes like "The nerd, the athlete, the karate kid, the goth, the kid scientist, etc").  All of the classes have special little things they can do, and a few disadvantages I suppose.  

There is also a skill system (based on DCs) that is pretty cool.  Not unsimilar to profiencies. 

The name of the game is really about mystery and role playing, it's not as combat heavy (which makes sense, as it would be a TPK a lot I think!).  The experience system that was dreamed up works fantastically, giving players XP for participating, achieving goals, etc.  It's similar to DCC in that we are not talking about having to get 1500 XP to get to level 2.  

The game comes with a baked in setting called Jtown (which is your small town in middle America in the 80s).  Which could easily be any small town anywhere in the world with a bit of tweaking.  

There are examples of play, monsters, adventure ideas, sample characters, weapons and armour (including a trash can lid! haha).  

I really like the idea of being a player in this game, and going with a different character archetype than what I was in High School (ie I was a nerd, and I can play a dumb jock!).  

While reading the book, I thought about how to start a campaign.  Obviously would depend on the characters in the game (for instance there are a whole bunch of backgrounds for the characters that you can roll, things like "being obsessed with D&D or my little pony, or mtv). But instead of the usual "you meet in a tavern", I thought "alright your playing D&D in some dudes basement".  So the whole thing is like your playing a role playing game in a role playing game.  You could even do it to your players during a regular fantasy game! hhahaha, that would be a trip.  

The premise of the game is somewhat similar to Crimson Dragon Slayer, as far as the 80s throwback references, and the immersion into that world.  However it's gonzo on a different level, and a different game entirely.  

Eric is going to be running a kickstarter for this book, if your interested in it keep an eye on his youtube channel.  At this point the book is laid out and ready to go, so it's probably going to be about getting the book in peoples hands.  

Seriously it's super cool! 

Thanks for sending me a copy Eric!  I'll see if I can't  get my players to solve a Scooby doo type mystery soon! (which btw I'm a huge fan of!)  

Here's Erics video showing off the book. 


Here's Ivanmikes review of the book.  


Friday, September 1, 2017

Weekly old school awesome at OBS Sept 1.

There is a metric ton of awesome out this week! Check it out.  
Contains affiliate links. 

Welcome to Gathox Vertical Slum, a far out, gonzo science fantasy campaign setting for Swords & Wizardry White Box Edition and other classic tabletop role playing games.  $12.40 CAD


SharpSwords & Sinister Spells - Addendum

A Sword & Sorcery Rules Light Role Playing Game with Old School Spirit.  It is said that the extensive library inside the Order of Chroniclers in Mezzanthia holds all the tomes ever written in this world and others, but that is a lie, for there are many volumes hidden in ancient citadels, forgotten temples, forbidden tombs and other strange places that possess secrets and mysteries capable of changing not only the course of history but also the very laws of our reality.  PWYW


TorchbearerSagas: The Crypt of Khaab'r

A Torchbearer adventure for 3-5 players of 1st-3rd levels.  High in the steppes of Barbaria, the epics tell of Khaab’r, a brave and fearsome wanderer who rose to become King of his tribe. His dagger, Tiger’s Tooth, was his constant companion throughout his legendary exploits. During his daring moonlight raid of High Hollow, it was Tiger’s Tooth that silenced the lookouts. When he was captured by the army of Sanction, it was Tiger’s Tooth that cut the rope binding his wrists. Throughout the rest of his life, Tiger’s Tooth was there, hanging at his hip or gripped in his fist—a symbol of his strength and cunning. When Khaab’r died, Tiger’s Tooth was placed in his crypt to serve him in the afterlife.  $6.21 CAD


HurricaneHarvey Charity Bundle [BUNDLE]

Includes:  Afterpeak Systemless Setting, Elemental Cross Systemless Setting, Mine Of the Godlin Horde, Modern Monks Players Guide, Planets Systemless Setting, Sword Of Three Parts, $19.86 CAD. 


Sword& Board #1: The Goblin Issue

Sword & Board is an OSR zine full of system-neutral and B/X content! Issue #1, the Goblin Issue, includes 10 pages of:  $1.24 CAD

Meanderings#1

Meanderings #1. Welcome to the inaugural issue of the Meanderings Fanzine. Supporting the Dungeon Crawl Classics and Mutant Crawl Classics Role-playing games primarily. However occasionally other licensed or open game source material will appear within these pages.   $3.72 CAD


NexEarthSetting Preview

Following hot on the heels of the Exodus System SRD comes the first preview for our upcoming NexEarth setting. This supplement details the timeline of mankind's flight from the doomed planet Earth to their arrival at NexEarth. FREE


Vaultof the Dwarven King

The Dwarven King of Brundurum has summoned you to his throne room within the Smokey Mountain. Brave souls are needed for a noble quest into the depths of the earth to retrieve the legendary hammer known as Fireheart. But beware - the Goblin King and his evil hordes believe the hammer woke a Lava Titan and they will seek to possess it at all costs. Who is telling the truth? Who is really kin to this ultimate weapon? What secret powers are at play in this tale of suspicion, intrigue and betrayal? Only your stalwart group of adventurers will find out and walk away with more fortune and glory than ever... if you can escape the Vault of the Dwarven King!  $12.41 CAD


TheDragon's Breath

An OSRIC adventure for characters of 4th to 7th level of experience. This adventure takes the explorers to a place few people ever see and live to tell about it...the lair of a dragon. This expedition is not for the faint of heart. Lives will almost certainly be lost. But the rewards are almost as certain to be immense.   $4.34 CAD


A CITYFULL OF SINNERS - Game Master's Guide for The Vigilante Hack

A City Full of Sinners a follow-up source book to The Vigilante Hack, is a compilation of Optional Setting, City Building tools, additional rules, tweaks and options that can take your Vigilante Hack game where you want go.  $2.48 CAD for PDF

TheBlight: Bundle of Blighted Adventures (SW) [BUNDLE]

Includes S&W Adventures:  The Crooked Nail, Horror In The Sinks, Bloody Jack, The Crucible, Children Of The Harvest, $45.86 CAD


VillageBackdrop: Tigley (SNE)

Wracked by disaster, Tigley is a village reborn. Standing on the fringes of a noisome marshland, its folk make their living from the swamp, and harvesting the guano excavated from the caves honeycombing the spire of rock upon which stands much of the village. But all is not peaceful in Tigley. The villagers’ unique burial rituals have attracted undead to certain nearby sunken ruins and goblins have been seen in the locality. In the village itself, influential figures vie for control of the local industries, a bully uses his influence to spread lies and cause trouble and the village priest hides a terrible secret. Once again, Tigley is a village teetering on the edge of disaster, but this time it is a disaster of the village’s own making.  $3.04 CAD


VillageBackdrop: Silver Bluff (SNE)

Silver Bluff provides respite from the nearby harsh mountains. Chief among these is Mount Argent, which the villagers mine for its namesake silver on behalf of the Hargrave’s Resources mining company. However, the respite is anything but welcome, as the miners distrust each other as much as they do strangers. The rich silver seams the miners have worked for over fifty years have dried up. While the recent discovery of powdered adamantine temporarily buoyed hopes among the villagers, a grisly murder has put everyone on edge.  $3.04 CAD

TheBlight: Tome of Blighted Horrors (Swords & Wizardry Edition)

This book is a Blight GM's best friend; it takes the 24 new monsters and templates to be found in the Bestiary chapter of the The Blight GM Guide and breaks them out into a separate book before adding more than 50 additional new Blight and Between up to over 80 new monsters. In addition the book provides new universal monster rules and compiles new subtypes and feats  along with all the subtypes and feats in existing Frog Gog Games Tomes of Horrors into a single book for ease of reference. To round it all out, the appendices provide a complete listing of the monsters in this book by type and subtype, by CR, and by terrain, as well as, lists of monsters as PCs and monsters that can be trained. Don't go into a game with your players unarmed. Take The Tome of Blighted Horrors with you, and let them know the danger of venturing into The Blight.  $12.40 CAD

PC13 -The OSR Witch

The witch is perhaps the most common unofficial character class for the first and original editions of the world's most popular fantasy RPG, with variations appearing in magazines, unauthorizaed supplements, fanzines, and no doubt the house rules of 1000s of games. PWYW