English Only | All Blogs | Compact view | Full View
25 | 50 | 100

Why is it unexplored?

One thing that bugged me a little about Western Marches as described was that there wasn't a really clear reason for the wilderness to be unexplored.  Sure, it was dangerous, but it didn't sound dangerous enough to stop a motivated army, or a mass migration.  So, some thoughts on reasons the land you want your PCs to explore hasn't already been settled.
  • Hostile natives
    • As mentioned above, I feel that if an area has sufficiently hostile natives to stop exploration and colonization, they're probably too hostile for small groups of low-level PCs.
  • Taboo
    • The land is off-limits by decree of religious authorities.  I [...]

Don't read this: tomes of doom in USR Mythos

I like the thought of a book so evil, so mind-shattering that it psychologically breaks the reader and sends them into a spiral of madness. What a great book. Of course, the daddy of them all is the Necronomicon. We all know it and its power to bring on the crazy wholesale. But what about other cult books? Let's run through some that could be making an appearance in USR Mythos:

Book of Ways

Thought to be written in the 13th century by an unnamed sorcerer, the Book of Ways would come to be known by Christians [...]

Zeitgeist, Part 01: Royal Homeland Constabulary At Sea!

Dramatis Personae:
  • Odeal Hinthunter: Human investigative bard and Docker with just a hint of elven blood
  •  Lilo: Deva and former gnome, recently reincarnated as a spirit medium and fey sorceress
  • Anna R. Chi: Human follower of the Vekeshi cult and witch with well-traveled parents
  • Tumbar the Rock: Dwarf monk of the Sacred Mountain school and follower of Heid Eschatol
  • Egon Krogher: Human barbarian, veteran of the Fourth Yerasol War

What Went On Before: Just getting started as newly-graduated members of the Royal Homeland Constabulary, defenders of the kingdom of Risur.
The group was told to ensure the official launch of the Coal-Tongue, the kingdom's new [...]

Special Mounts

Recently Benjamin Baugh wrote about special mounts and made a document available detailing some random tables for epic mounts.

I’ve also been using mounts in my campaign, but they’re not as epic as Benjamin’s mounts. One of the halflings runs a unicorn reserve and rides on one. There’s also a standing offer for a life-long supply of (stolen) pegasi.

Here’s how I run it:

  1. Mounts and animal companions act a lot like other non-player characters in that they can join you. This usually involves a minor favor such as feeding the griffons their favorite meat, taming the young weasels by petting them and feeding them, offering the unicorns a safe haven, rendering Freya a service such that she’ll turn your wolf companion into an ice wolf.
  2. Mounts and animal companions act a lot like henchmen in that they count against the limit imposed by your charisma, they’re loyal and courageous. They don’t require morale checks in combat.
  3. They don’t gain experience points and they don’t level up.

Reading Benjamin’s document has me rethinking this last point, however. Perhaps the mounts and animal companions having as many hit dice as their master would make for a better game?

Or perhaps, like non-player characters, they should be at roughly one level below their master? That would also solve the issue of people buying war dogs at first level (HD 2+2 as wolves). First level characters would get dogs that also have just 1d4 hit points. Second level characters would get dogs that have 1d8 hit points, and so on. But then war horses would be much less scary: first level veterans don’t get HD 3 war horses. They get 1d4 hp war horses. Perhaps it would be better for the hit dice in the monster stat block to be the starting point. When you buy them, war horses have [...]

SS Random List -- Mecha Team Name

From the generators of Seventh Sanctum, here’s a list of 20 randomly created names for your Mech Teams. What type of mech do they use, what weapons and defences do they have and what about the beings that pilot them?

D20 Team Name 1 Alien Robo Lightning Motor Warrior Army 2 Atom Dynamo Company I 3 Big Dynamo Army 4 Blazing Atomic Power Motor Fleet W 5 Celestial Techno Sentinels 6 City Artilery Guard Psi 7 Cog Blaster Corps Z 8 Deadly Cybernetic System Robot Guards 9 Electronic Squadron 10 Experimental Electronic Force Dynamo Army Theta 11 Fighting Cannon Tank Valkyrie Corps 12 Giga Cannon Devil Legion Beta 13 Hyper Artilery Sterling Piston Unit 14 Military Radiation Avatars 15 Motorized Alien Circuit Valkyries 16 Motorized Avatar Corps N 17 Radiation Cavalry Rho 18 Royal Atomic Demon Taskforce 19 Shining Enforcers 20 Strategic [...]

A Case for Multiple Game Masters

Today’s guest article was written by Gnome Stew reader Tony G., who has been GMing for 20 years. He’s got co-GMing on the brain, and we thought this was a great topic to revisit from a new perspective. Thanks, Tony! –Martin

I have asked many of my fellow GMs this question: Why do we run games by ourselves? Tradition? Why not share the responsibility and the work with a fellow GM? If you think about it, it kind of makes sense. Most entertainment is a group effort. Movies are a large collaboration. Television shows most certainly are. Even some books are [...]

Iron Crown Enterprises Newsletter -- October 2014

To receive this monthly newsletter direct to your inbox, sign up to our MAILING LIST now.
Apologies for the slight delay in releasing this month’s Iron Crown Enterprises Newsletter. I am currently in the throes of a terrible case of man flu and as such my reasoning is currently at -30 and everything is taking me a lot longer than normal. Despite that, there is plenty of news to be getting on with….
Catch up on what you’ve missed with this month’s Director’s Briefing.
This month has seen the official release of [...]

Wraith Compendium Class

The main inspiration for this was the protagonist from Shadows of Mordor. Any similarities to Talion were totally done on purpose and I’m not sorry.


If you roll a last breath due to an attack from a wraith, ghost, or specter, and you come back to the land of the living, you may take Terrifythe next time you level up.


You now have a bit of wraith bound to your mortal coil. When you let your wraith come to the surface and scare someone, roll +CHA. On a 10+ choose 2. On a 7-9 choose 1.

  • The targetbecomes confused and chaotic and will [...]

October Movie Challenge: Nosferatu (1979)

I am not sure how to classify this one really.  I thought I saw it years ago, but once I started watching it again I was less sure.  By the end I was really unsure.  Some scenes were familiar, others I remember really differently.

This movie of course is a remake of the classic 1922 Nosferatu.  Remake is somewhat of an inadequate word.  This is a re-visioning of Dracula from the 1922 source.

Klaus Kinski was one of the greatest actors to grace the screen. A strange man by all accounts, but also a brilliant actor [...]

Doctor Who: A Painted Backdrop No More

Spoilers exist in more (and less) than 3 dimensions..
     How do you explain "out" to a 2-dimensional person? Say a very talented painter, one so talented that he could quite literally breathe life into his paintings, one day painted a picture of a person. A painting so exquisitely detailed that the person on the canvas came to life. When that 2-dimensional person wondered who created them, how could the painter put into words an answer they would understand? How could they explain "out" to their creation? More importantly, what if their creation didn't care? What if [...]

d20 Rifts - Races, part 1

Humans: Humans are the most prevalent and wide-spread race, being native to Rifts Earth, and to most of the closest dimensions. As such, they are considered the baseline. Humans get no standard benefits (i.e., no bonus skill points or feat a la D&D). However, they are able to choose a department, which indicates their original training. Any of the Spycraft 1.0 departments are available (though, obviously, the names of many of them are meaningless in this setting). (Ed note: In re-posting, I think I'd drop this. Adding the departments does good things to encourage people [...]

GMprov -- Part 1

GMprov -- Spontaneous Dialogue -- Part 1: Eavesdropping

I only have a few years experience with GMing, so there's little I can offer in that field that others haven't said before. However, I do have experience as an Improvisational Performer, and I've found the two have a lot of overlap.

Today, I'm going to focus on dialogue, specifically on the noble art of eavesdropping.


Inevitably, in any given adventure, the players will need to find out information. They might get this from a written clue, or from going Jack-Bauer on some captive, but sometimes they'll just eavesdrop on a conversation already [...]

DC Heroes - The New Teen Titans: Rigged Results

From the Back Cover:


As if flooding streets, blackouts, and looting aren't dangers enough, the news comes from the Mayor's Office:


It's up to your team to destroy the wave-maker first: IF you can find it... IF you can get to it... and IF you can... DEFEAT THE MASTERS OF DISASTER!

Links to Canon. Links to the Past

When a game has run for a long time it develops its own sort of canon. By that I mean the "official timeline" that fans would use when debating points about what is going on. In the case of a long running game though, the Canon would be what actually happened in your game as opposed to the fanciful retelling that people use when telling stories. Not that players naturally want to lie or exaggerate when telling stories, but as human beings that tendency lives within us and so deeds tend to grow in scope and scale until, at some [...]

Delving Deeper Week, Day Seven: And In The End, We Look To The Future

Thanks for joining me for this, the last day of Delving Deeper Week. It's been a fun week(-ish), and it's been neat to see so many folks get fired up about DD and OD&D-style gaming itself. There's been a lot of work done so far, and today, we'll be looking at what comes next, because today's the day where I ask +Simon Bull:

What plans do you have for the future of Delving Deeper?
My most basic plan is to continue to enjoy it. Beyond that, I'd love to see some supporting materials for DD (and indirectly for 0e!) [...]

October Horror Movie Challenge: Riding the Bullet (2004)

Directed by Mick Garris, Riding the Bullet is yet another horror film based off a Stephen King short story. While hitchhiking back home to visit his sick mother, Alan Parker is picked up by a mysterious stranger. As the ride goes on, Alan uncovers a terrible secret about the driver, who then gives him a choice. A choice between life and death.

Riding the Bullet feels like a Twilight Zone episode stretched out to 98 minutes. If Rod Sterling had appeared at the beginning and end of the film to give his signature monologues, I wouldn't have been surprised. Well, [...]

I Looked at the 5th Edition D&D Books, and I Liked It

 So I was in Barnes & Noble today, and I picked up the 5E Player's Handbook. And as I flipped through it, I really liked what I saw. Really, the full-page illustrations took me back to the D&D 2nd Edition books, man. Seriously. And I liked the style of the [...]

Castle Greyhawk: Easy Decisions

Welcome back Greyhawk mavens! It's time to continue with the third chapter of our ongoing Castle Greyhawk graphic novel. Check out page four and see lead in dialogue by fantasist Scott Casper. On our site you can also check the archives and follow the entire Castle Greyhawk story from the very beginning.

Artist's Commentary: Ah it's a classic homage this installment. It's going to be interesting to see how a wizard-fighter heavy group navigates this chapter. This page is a prime example with poor Tenser being relegated to a task usually left to the more roguish types. Tenser does have climbing experience though, for those who remember chapter one's adventure [...]

New Character Colours

The scavenger's mostly done...time to start colouring the next character for the book.

Kickstarter - Infrared Tag RPG style - Go Ahead, Ask Why?

Alright, I feel a need to point this part out from the Infrared Tag RPG style opening video. If you are going to opt out on wearing shoes, wear clean socks. Better yet, wear shoes, as no one wants to see your socks. Oh, and nobody really wants to hear you ramble on during the video. When you say at 5 and a half minutes into the video that you were going to make the video longer (and it still clocks in over 9 minutes) it's probably already too long.

If the main video isn't enough for you, there are 11 more linked. Huzzah!

Maybe shoes should be part of the rewards offeredDid I mention:

This Kickstarter has failed once before [...]

Orcs in Space!

In a previous post I wrote up a crew of orc whale hunters. This post provides ideas for incorporating them in a space fantasy campaign.


Orc Whaling Ship

The Discovery(a.k.a. Orcs in Space!)
"Captain!" The voice carried down to the sterncastle of the ship Abattoir from the crow's nest on the foremast. "Two points to starboard!"
Pulling out his spyglass, Captain Cyrus scanned the surface of the water in the direction mentioned. For a moment he couldn't make out a telltale. "Is it a spume?"
"No, Captain---seabirds. It could still be lucrative, though."

Minis for Charity: Part 3 Special Characters

So we come to the end of the minis for the UK Children's. Here are the three "Special Characters". These minis are all special...

The first one is the priest. Every good western town has a priest or a preacher. Sometimes he is a good man, other times he is a scumbag with a pistol hidden in that bible... Which is it?

This mini has a unique interest to me because my first Deadlands character was a priest, Father JP who was not allowed, by the party, to carry a gun. I adventured across the West bringing the word of [...]

EN World Pre-Release Review -- The Rise of Tiamat by Kobold Press & Wizards of the Coast

Hail and Well Met Gentle Readers!

Another week has sped by, Fellow Gamers, and the weekend draws near – with hopefully many opportunities for you all to have some great gaming fun.

Personally, I’ve got plans to do some in-depth playtesting of the new 5E Dungeons & Dragons this coming weekend. In fact, just last Sunday, I had the opportunity to sit down and create a few characters from scratch and I have to say the process is very streamlined indeed. And I got to try out a 1st Level character for a few encounters, and the new D&D runs pretty well [...]

Character Thursday-Lyet Highfall (Dragon Slayer)

I’m planning a dragon hunt post in the near future, and I want to use this character, but my schedule just got really crazy with a final thesis run. Expect that in a week.

Backstory and Levels 1-20:

Lyet Highfall was made a ward of an order of monks at the age of six. He was taught in their ways and was respected for his potential as a warrior. He advanced rapidly in the order, but when the order was destroyed through the betrayal of some of their leaders, he escaped the carnage and vowed vengeance on those leaders. He turned his [...]

The Pearl 023


Just what would gnome-skinning runes look like anyway?

The Pearl 023

Flip Through Rise of Tiamat Review

In this Flip Through Matt takes a good look at The Rise of Tiamat without spoiling it. This book is full of content, very few pictures.

The Rise of Tiamat will be available in stores November 4th 2014. you can also grab a sample at D&D Organized Play.

Where Have I Been? And A Monster For Your Troubles...


It's been a while. It certainly has been a very long while. Much has changed, and now that the effects of Tzeentch are beginning to wear off I am finding a little more time to talk about those changes and other topics which I do love to natter on about.

So here goes...

Since I last spoke, I've: visited Japan for 2 amazing weeks; changed vocations (now professionally working for a Games Design studio in Melbourne, Australia - Twiitch); gained a housemate; radically altered (and somewhat stalled, due to increased work) my WFRP 2e campaign, Marienburg: [...]

Spiel 2014 Part 2


On Sunday I returned to Spiel 2014 to pick up my copy of Shadows of Brimstone. I located the pick-up point quite fast but underestimated the size of the reward a little bit. So I ended up hauling a big carton box back to the car, minutes after I had entered the building. I then returned to the Flying Frogs booth where I saw Brian Snoddy giving demo's of the Shadows of Brimstone game. As he was in the middle of a demo I decided to return later on.

Brian Snoddy giving a demo of Shadows of Brimstone at Spiel 2014

Spiel [...]

Episode 029: Two Years, CritCon, Mission Spoilers, Writing

This is Critical Glitch, a Shadowrun Podcast Episode 029

Your host,The Most Dangerous Man in Gaming-- Tim Patrick

Co-Host: Bob "Dr. Meatgrinder" Loper

Co-Host,"Good" Ray Rigel


A new actual play Shadowrun Podcast Geek the Mage

Troll Good Ray Rigel’s home game on Obsidian Portal


SRM 5A-01: Chasin’ the Wind



SRM 5A-02: Critic’s Choice



Spiel 2014 Part 1


Spiel is Europe's biggest gaming convention and gaming should be taken as broadly as possible. There's RPGs, LARP materials, boardgames, comics, artists, and so on. My main interest in going to Spiel has always been the RPG section which this year was located in Hall 2.

On Thursday around noon I walked into one of the Spiel 2014 halls and the gaming buzz immediately surrounded me. One of the first things I saw was a Shadows of Brimstone banner so I headed over right away to take a look at the game. And it looks great ! 2 demo's were in [...]

Keith Baker's Warforged Race for D&D 5th Edition

To help raise money for Extra Life (donate here), Keith Baker, the creator of Eberron, has worked up an unofficial Warforged race for DnD 5E here.

Check it out and help a great charity in the process.

The Teratic Tome - D&D Monsters I through Z

It is time to check out the rest of the Teratic Tome, a gory and explicit monster RPG book. Check out part one of this review here. This is a pay-what-you-want pdf available here.

When I was first checking out this book, I read up on the author, Rafael Chandler. He has done other stuff, including an adventure called Slaughtergrid. I am currently running my Dungeon Crawl Classics group through that adventure, and I should have a full report in a couple of weeks when we've finished. My favorite part so far is a red unicorn who likes [...]

Patron Supported 5-Minute Adventures - Easy as Pie

With Halloween right around the corner and the release of The Nerdy Show's Franchise Kit earlier this week I decided to whip out some old .pdfs, look over a Anti-Paladin's Mini Six system and hit the bricks running ... away from some ghosts!
Typically my Patrons would get this 24 hours ahead of the blog, but today ... well, today is not going so well and I wanted to maybe make some people out there happy (they do still get the cleaner pdf version though!)! So strap on your proto ... I mean Electron Blaster and bust some Ghos ... Paranormal [...]

Roll For it

Roll For It! Deluxe Edition



In Roll for it! players try to score 40 points by rolling dice and matching cards of specific point values. Each roll presents the player with new opportunities and fun decisions to make. The rules are simple – Roll It!, Match It!, Score It! But look out! Other players may steal the card you're shooting for...So hurry, pick up the dice and Roll For It! The Deluxe Edition combines the contents of both the red and purple games and now supports 2-8 players.


Included are 48 stunning dice, a crushed velvet dice bag embroidered with the Roll [...]

Halloween Countdown, day 9

The Prince's party is today and every vampony in my class will be there and they'll all have their clan marks and I wanna get my clan mark, but I'm no good at turning invisible or dominating wills or ritual thaumaturgy but I wanna go to the party but how can I go to the party if I don't have my clan mark, which Pinkie Pie says I can't just make appear but I need it to appear... right now!

Silly Caitiff. The answer is always Diablerie.

A Myth Master's Screen

Not all myth masters (i. e. game masters) use screens, but I find them very useful. Perhaps I will make a professionally made MYFAROG myth master’s screen at some point, but for now I just give you this 4-page PDF, with the tables I find most useful when I play. You can print the PDF out for private use.

MYFAROG Myth Master’s Screen

To make your own myth master’s screen using this PDF, just print it out and somehow fasten the sheets to a piece of cardboard.

The tables are colour coded, with blue tables being used for skills, green for [...]

Reavers on the Seas of Fate -- Season Four, Second Session

Samaritha the Serpentfolk

Second Session(18 page pdf) -- "A Birth and a Death in Riddleport" -- Samaritha finally comes to term serpentfolk style and the crew entertain themselves by fighting in Zincher's arena, but then they find one of their long-time crewmates murdered!

That’s right – Samaritha, Serpent’s wife, who got pregnant backat the end of Season Two, finally gives birth! Well… Lays an egg, really, she is a serpentfolk. I think Golarion serpentfolk are supposed to do live birth but I’ve admixed the Freeport serpentfolk in instead and they definitely do the egg thing. Quite the milestone! So the first half [...]

Bujilli: Episode 107

Thanks to Lemuel attending to the swarm of Varn-spiders, Bujilli, Leeja and the rest of their group were on their way upward to the roof-tops in the hope that the Synchronocitor could take them elsewhere. They were making pretty good progress until they ran into an ambush by a band of degenerates...A set of stairs led down three flights to a large hallway. Blue-green mold smothered the corners and formed a foul canopy overhead. Dark liquid--it wasn't water--dribbled down the left wall, forming a long-running rivulet of oily nastiness that seeped sluggishly down the stairs.

"We can't stay [...]

Haste! Extra Life, New Players, Describing Combat, "Chess Is Not An RPG" and More!

| Episode 124|


Jerry is gaming for 24 hours straight this Saturday in order to help raise money for sick kids by taking part in the Extra-Life fundraiser. His team, Team Gazebo is comprised of himself, Dustin from BaldmanGames, his wife, and a few local friends. They are raffling cool prizes off including D&D stuff, board game stuff, and PC games.

Hit the link for the team page for all the info on the raffles, their schedule, and where to watch their live stream!


Due Diligence on New Players

How much prep, interviewing, stalking should you do on a new player that is [...]

Space station map tiles review(ish)

For some time, I've been looking at Future Armada's Invictus with a curious eye, but I haven't had actual need for it. A few days ago I run a session of Babylon 5 and went to check what DriveThruRpg has to offer. I had been looking at High Space's Euphoria as I was planning to use it's setting Lantern as a base for the game.

Gategully Episode 46

Being very glad my Dwarves can climb. Exploring the complex interaction between traffic designations and framerate. Rescuing idiot Dwarves from their own stupidity. You know, the usual.

Find the playlist here!

13th Age: Shadows of Eldolan

13th Age: Shadows of Eldolan



Students of Eldolan's three rival wizard schools constantly feud and create trouble for the town guard, the Silver Shields, who must clean up the wizards' messes. The Council of Mages – who truly rule the town – involve themselves with stints of political one-upmanship that keeps any true political progress from moving forward. And rumors of people going missing have been on the rise, keeping the common folk close to the magically lighted streets when they go out at night. But a darkness has been growing in Eldolan, and those who seek old power have set [...]

A Hot Meal and a Cup of Tea

  When I DM and when I play I am often surprised by the simple little things: player treat horses like bicycles; they never ask about the weather, and they treat fire as nothing but a light source.  I already talked about the weather a bit and I plan to write about horses, so let's talk about fire.

  We'll start by talking about encumbrance.
  No matter where you fall on the matter of encumbrance (and I am a hard-ass stickler that will slow you down, give you penalties, and expects you to track every 1/10th of a [...]

Trenkar's Landing, a crowdsourced fantasy setting

I’ve joined the crowdsourced sandbox setting dubbed Trenkar’s Landing. So far there are just above one hundred (!) participants! Here is the map of all assigned hexes, as of today. As you can see, I’m at 17.12, a sea hex. This is such a cool initiative, and I’m very excited to be part of this […]

Training Day

I've been playing with training times a little in my games, always treading the line between forcing too much downtime between adventures and forcing too many potential adventures that are ticking away and getting worse (or better) on their own. The current state of affairs in the campaign is that characters require one night of rest in a town or other defended position (8 hours) in order to gain

Re-Animator - Adding Just a Tiny Bit of Humor

I don't like Stuart Gordon's adaptations of Lovecraft. Here, I said it. They are just so bad, so... they're just bad. This time, he does his best, giving us a trashy film done professionally. But that's about all I can say for this bizarre movie, too much for most of us' appetites.In the movie, Herbert West is transformed into the early eighties, with that time's weird sense of fashion and strange ideals. I might have exaggerated a bit there, but the movie doesn't take itself too seriously either. Herbert messes with the dead, granting them "life" with a strange serum. [...]

Meta Thursday (Macabre Manses): Star Spawn Template

Star Spawn Template There exist horrors in the universe incomprehensible to man. Sometimes these abominations manifest themselves within other living creatures, warping them into monsters more deadly than their ordinary selves. Creatures of this order are known as star spawn,identifiable only bythe bizarre traits that they possess. It is not uncommon for two statistically identical […]

The post Meta Thursday (Macabre Manses): Star Spawn Template appeared first on Adventureaweek.com.

The Old School Gaming Guild is here!

The Old School Gaming Guild is up, Chronicles of Ganth will be up for till the end of November while I sift through old posts to save and transfer over.

Go check out my new blog and don't hold back on the comments, drive the conversation...it will be fun I promise!
Click the Pic!

Rocket Run Part 4

I don’t often go into the eastern portion of Wayward Cave, the one that requires Flash. I usually just duck into the western entrance for TM26, maybe a Gible if I’m doing a run where all the critters come from the Platinum cart (as opposed to breeding an egg from my super-awesome Battle Tower Garchomp). I decided that I wanted to unlock all the stat trainers on this run, so I did both sides. I chose to use the right-hand rule to thoroughly explore the cave, fighting every trainer and grabbing every item. That meant Mira was one of the [...]

October Horror Movie Challenge - Blacula (1972)

Synopsis: An African prince, Mamuwalde, is turned into a vampire by Dracula and locked in coffin. When the coffin makes its way to modern Los Angeles, Mamuwalde awakens and begins to seek out the reincarnation of his lost love.

The Good: This movie could have just been another schlocky blaxploitation flick if it weren't for the amazing performance of William Marshall. Marshall, a classically trained actor, gives the character gravitas.

The Bad: Despite Marshall's great performance, this is still a blaxpliotation film and has many of the trappings.

Final Thoughts: Mamuwalde one of my favorite vampires. If you like vampires, check [...]
English Only | All Blogs | Compact view | Full View
25 | 50 | 100

User Menu
Post Stats
Join Us

Random Post

Help Support RPGBA Donate Now


Follow us on Twitter @RPGBlogAlliance

Random Sites From
RPG Blog