Wednesday, July 31, 2013

D&D TV

I don't think I ever remember seeing this one on TV.



Do you remember any D&D commercials on TV?
The only one I ever remember was this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q1wGlOwn1pM&feature=share


White Dwarf Wednesday #74

White Dwarf #74 is a major swan song of sorts.  Here we see the end of the White Dwarf I grew up with and the start of something new.  Of course whether that new is better or worse is a matter of perspective.
The Frank Brunner cover could be the Necromancer that caused so much of a stir a while back.  Or maybe I am seeing nostalgia where there is none.  

Ian Livingstone bids us farewell in his last editorial, though he is sticking on as Editor-in-chief for a little while at least.

First up an extended look at Super Power a game of foreign policy that could have only been popular in the 80s.  It is part Monopoly, part Risk and part Reaganomics The Game.  Its from GW so I guess that is not surprise.  I have no problems with a magazine showing off the house brands games. Dragon did it all the time.

Open Box is a big one covering all sorts of games. Dragon Warriors is up first along with The Elven Crystals and The Way of Wizardry. Robert Dale, a playtester of the game, gives it 9/10. Vikings for RuneQuest is next, though I recall using it as a system agnostic book.  It covers, well Vikings. I remember the writing being good and the attention to detail nice.  I should pick it up to see if it cleaves with my memories or not.  Oliver Dickson gives it 8/10.  Nightmare in Norway scenario for Call of Cthulhu gets 8/10.  The big AD&D release Oriental Adventures is up.  The start of what we have recently taken to call AD&D 1.5.  It gets a solid 9/10.
The Pendragon Campaign is an odd one. It has quite the reputation these days and was/is obviously a quality piece of work.  But it also repeats a lot of the material found in the main Pendragon book.  One could look at this and see the likes of Forgotten Realms on the way; fully realized campaign settings.  It gets 9/10. Lastly we have two Star Trek books, Termination: 1456 and The Outcasts. Both are lauded for their sense of belonging to the Star Trek universe and are given 10/10 each.  The reviewers must have all been in a good mood.

Terror at Trollmarsh is one of the largest AD&D adventures I recall seeing in the pages of WD at 7 pages.  It is also one of the more detailed ones.

Lycanthropy in AD&D is given another look by Peter Blanchard.

The Power of the Frog is another attempt in a long time at some game-related fiction.

Hide of the Ancestor is a 2nd Ed RuneQuest adventure. It's not very long and mentions that some things will need to be updated to 3rd ed.

Gentlemen and Players is an interesting take on Call of Cthulhu on how create unique British characters for the game. While the focus is the Pulp Era there is a lot here that I find useful for my own Victorian games.

Treasure Chest covers musical instruments in AD&D.

Some redesigned super-hero origins for Golden Heroes, but should work with any supers game really.

We end with a bunch of ads and Travellers.

It is hard not to look at this issue through the eyes of knowing what is to come.  With little fanfare and announcement we got the last Fiend Factory last issue.  This is a big deal for me and my retrospectives since FF was one of the reasons I enjoyed White Dwarf so much.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Top Ten Questions

I know. I am slow, but here are my thoughts on the top 10 Questions from Random Wizard.

(1). Race (Elf, Dwarf, Halfling) as a class? Yes or no?
No.  I love my B/X, but I like to be able to choose race and class separately. Granted I just don't play many demi-humans.

(2). Do demi-humans have souls?
Halflings and Dwarves do, Elves and Gnomes do not.  By that logic then neither do goblins and maybe not orcs.

(3). Ascending or descending armor class?
Ascending.  Sorry it is just better game design and better for newbies.

(4). Demi-human level limits?
No.  I understand why they were used, I just buy the logic.

(5). Should thief be a class?
Yes. Though an argument could be made that Assassin shouldn't be.

(6). Do characters get non-weapon skills?
Why not? If I want to play a skills-based game I have Unisystem and GURPS, but a few extra skills for characters in D&D never hurt.

(7). Are magic-users more powerful than fighters (and, if yes, what level do they take the lead)?
They should compliment each other.  But Wizards take the center stage as soon as they get Fireball.
Also I think high level fighters should be able to wade through scores of enemies, knocking them down like a lawn mower does to weeds.

(8). Do you use alignment languages?
Only for religious purposes, using them in public should be viewed as the same as some one today saying "Thee" and "thou".

(9). XP for gold, or XP for objectives (thieves disarming traps, etc...)?
Both. Why not.  I like to focus on solving problems, and sometime killing the monster doesn't actually fix anything.

(10). Which is the best edition; ODD, Holmes, Moldvay, Mentzer, Rules Cyclopedia, 1E ADD, 2E ADD, 3E ADD, 4E ADD, Next ?
Actually there no such thing as 3E ADD or 4E ADD since both were called D&D (no Advanced) and the answer is "what ever I am playing and having a good time with".  Which was, at the last time I checked, all of them.

Bonus Question: Unified XP level tables or individual XP level tables for each class?
I am happy with either to be honest.  Individual XP tables solve a lot of "balance" issues.
I'd get around the demi-human level limits by giving them more XP they need to get per level.  To offset this they get some racial powers, ie dwarves get better at finding secret doors and the like.

You can see his answers here and many other replies here.


Monday, July 29, 2013

Finally getting to PLAY some 4e

Well better late than never I guess.

I joined an online game of D&D 4th Edition as a player, not as a DM.
Got a couple of hours in tonight and it was really fun.  I am getting to play the character I want, a witch, which is great (and believe it or not a rarity for me recently).  I nearly got killed, even with the rests, extended rests and healing from a cleric.

It is taking place in Eberron, which I know jack about but that is fine.  But so far we seem to be going through the Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh. The DM hasn't said that is what we are doing, but it feels familiar enough.  Either way, I'll put my modules up and out of the way till then.
No idea how long the game will last, but right now it is fun and if I can get in a couple of hours here and there (depending on the other two) then it will be fine with me.

I'd still love to get my 4e game back up and running to be honest, but weekends have been shot due to work or other commitments.  Hell. I was supposed to be working tonight on a social psych course.

Prestige Class: Tempestarii

Trying my hand at some more witchy Prestige Classes.  This one has been rolling around in my mind for a while.  I have a couple of things going on here. First, I wanted another Prestige Class that a witch could take, but was open enough for others. I also wanted to try to convert one of my older Traditions into a Prestige Class to see how it might work.  To top it all off I found this wonderful bit of art from SirTiefling and he has graciously allowed me to use it for this post.

I chose the Tempestarrii because I felt I needed to go back and give the idea another, different go.  I am using some OGC here as well to do some of the "heavy lifting".

Section 15: Tempestarii (Storm Witch), Copyright 2013, Timothy. S. Brannan.
OGC Declaration: The following content is considered Open Content for term of the OGL.
Art is owned by SirTiefling and is NOT open and is used here with permission.
Based on the "Weather Witch" from Magic of Arcanis, Copyright 2005 Paradigm Concepts, Inc.

Tempestarii (Storm Witch)
Witch by SirTiefling

First Witch 
    When shall we three meet again 
    In thunder, lightning, or in rain? 

Second Witch 
    When the hurlyburly's done, 
    When the battle's lost and won. 

Third Witch 
    That will be ere the set of sun. 


Macbeth, Act 1, Scene 1

Witches have long been suspected of raising storms or foul weather against their foes.  King James even spoke of such witches and believed they were attacking him when he had visited Scotland.  The Tempestarii is the ultimate expression of the storm raising witch.
While any class that cast spells can become a Tempestarii. Witches, druids, wizards and sorcerers of an elemental bent, and even some clerics of storm Gods choose this path.
The first Tempestarii were mighty witches that used clouds as carriages and rode storms into battle.

Hit Dice: d4

Requirements 
 To qualify as a Tempestarii, a character must fulfill all of the following criteria.

Concentration and Knowledge (Nature): 7 Ranks each
Feats: Iron Will
Spell casting: Ability to cast spells

Alignment: Any.

Class Skills
(2 + Int modifier per level): Bluff, Climb, Concentration, Craft (any), Knowledge (arcana), Knowledge (nature), Profession (any), Spellcraft, Survival, and Swim.

Class Features

All of the following are class features of The Tempestarii prestige class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The Tempestarii gains no additional weapon or armor proficiencies

Spells per Day: With the exceptions of 3rd, 6th, and 9th level, the character’s caster level increases when a Tempestarii level is gained if she had also gained a level in a previous class that allows them to qualify for this class.

This affects her spells per day and spells known, as if they had gained a level, but she does not gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If a character had more than one qualifying class before becoming a Tempestarii, she must decide to which class she adds the new level for purposes of determining spells per day and caster level.

Resist the Elements (Su): Beginning at first level, a Tempestarii learns she has nothing to fear from a storm or a sunny day. She becomes resistant to weather conditions as if she had the relevant endure elements cast. This effect is continuously active.

Wind Dance (Sp): Starting at 2nd level, the Tempestarii may use gust of wind as a spell like ability once per day. At 5th level, the Tempestarii can use this ability an additional time each day. Whenever she casts gust of wind either as a spell or use of this ability it is treated as a 4th level spell, the range is increased to 90 ft., and affects creatures as if they were one size smaller then they actually are. At 9th level, the Tempestarii can use this ability three times per day. Whenever she casts gust of wind either as a spell or using this ability it is treated as a 6th level spell , the range is increased to 120 ft., and creatures are effected as if they were two sizes smaller then they actually are.

Air Domain (Ex): At 3rd level the Tempestarii’s connection to the weather is strengthened. She gains the special ability of the Air Domain, and adds all of the domain spells to her list of spells known. This ability does not give domain spell slots to Tempestarii who do not already have them. If the Tempestarii already has the Air domain she may choose another, appropriate domain or sub-domain with the GM's approval.

Rain Chant (Sp): At 4th level, the Tempestarii may perform a rain chant. After ten minutes of chanting, the Tempestarii summons a rain storm which causes a light rain to fall in a 500-ft. radius for one hour per caster level. At 8th level, the radius of effect increases to a 1,000-ft. radius.

Storms Embrace (Sp): Once per day as an immediate action, the Tempestarii can enwrap herself in a cloak of whipping winds. This ability mimics a wind wall spell cast at her caster level that only affects the Tempestarii.

Weather Domain (Ex): At 6th level, the Tempestarii’s connection to the fury of the storm is strengthened. She gains the special ability of the Weather Domain, and adds all of the domain spells to her list of spells known. This ability does not give domain spell slots to Tempestariies who do not already have them.  If the Tempestarii already has the Weather domain she may choose another, appropriate domain or sub-domain with the GM's approval.

Bend the Storm to Thy Will (Su): The Tempestarii learns to manipulate the currents of air and storms around her as her innate connection and knowledge of weather increases. This acts as a limited form of control weather. The Tempestarii can affect any naturally occurring storm, be it a mild rain or raging storm. She can either calm or intensify the storm. She may do this only once per day. Storms of divine origin, such as the storm created by the Wrath of gods.

Sudden Storm (Sp): Weather responds more rapidly to the Tempestarii’s call. Once per day the Tempestarii may cast control weather, except that the casting time only requires a full round action. The storm’s effects manifest in ten rounds, instead of the standard ten minutes described in the spell.

Furious Storm of Vengeance (Sp): Becoming almost one with the flow of air and weather, the Tempestarii discovers that the forces she is bound with can express her fury. Once per day, as a full round action, the Tempestarii can unleash her anger, creating the effects of an Enlarged Storm of Vengeance cast at her caster level.

Class Level Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Spells per Day
1st +1 +0 +0 +2 Resist the Elements +1 level of existing class
2nd +1 +1 +1 +3 Wind Dance +1 level of existing class
3rd +2 +1 +1 +3 Air Domain -
4th +2 +2 +2 +4 Rain Chant +1 level of existing class
5th +3 +2 +2 +4 Wind Dance 2/day +1 level of existing class
6th +3 +3 +3 +5 Weather Domain, Storms Embrace -
7th +4 +3 +3 +5 Bend the storm to thy will +1 level of existing class
8th +4 +3 +3 +6 Sudden Storm +1 level of existing class
9th +5 +4 +4 +6 Wind Dance 3/day -
10th +5 +4 +4 +7 Furious Storm of Vengeance +1 level of existing class

New Minor Artifact: Cloud Ship of the Magonians
The Sky Kings of Magonia called upon a group of Tempestarii to build for them giant ships of war out of clouds. From these clouds, they waged war by pelting huge hail stones and lighting on their enemies below. However, the Sky Kings failed to pay the witches for their ships. The witches chased them as they flew away in their ill-gotten magical clouds.
No one knows what happened to the Sky Kings after that. They have never been seen again, but the sky ships remain. The witches created these magic items as a way of getting back at the Sky Kings; now anyone can use their ships of war. This item appears a gallon sized earthen jug. Once the stopper is uncorked, thick cloud-like mist will roll out and form a cloud.
The cloud is secure and can carry up to 800 pounds of people and gear for 24 hours, or twice that much for 12 hours. After that point, the cloud will dissipate. Each jug contains only one cloud. The clouds themselves act much like carpets of flying, obeying spoken word commands for directions.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Well...

Yesterday's planned "Keep on the Borderlands" under 1st ed didn't happen.
I ended up with a migraine.  First real bad one since my MRI back in April.  Took my medicine for it and the next thing I knew it was about 8 hours later and I was watching Harry Potter with my kids.

So much for that.  But I did come up with some new ideas for magical backlash.

I'll try to get those written up today.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Zatannurday: Ani-Mia Cosplay

Still digging through the Flickr, Tumblrs and Picasas so you don't have to! (Yeah my life is rough...)

But this one was nearly handed to me on Facebook.

Cosplayer Ani-Mia as Zatanna at SDCC 2013.  She was such a hit she even made #2 on JoBlo's top 10 hottest at Comic Con list, http://www.joblo.com/movie-news/lists-comic-con-top-10-hottest-costumes/item#2

I think you can see why!





Signed by John "Captain Jack" Barrowman
And Tweeted by him!
Ani-Mia and YayaHan



You can find her on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/Ani.Mia.Cosplaym Twitter, https://twitter.com/AniMiaOfficial and buy her prints at Storenvy, http://animia.storenvy.com/.


Friday, July 26, 2013

The Upside to Kickstarter

We have all been burned on Kickstarter at one time or another.  While Tenkar is doing a great job of keeping us informed with the failures, I do feel the need to point that more times than not people get what they paid for.

In some cases, like Troll Lord Games or Eden Studios get me what I paid for and often more.  Others like Joesph Bloch not only fund with very, very clear expectations of what is happening when, he also gets the materials out everyone either on time or early.

Here is another one.  Yesterday I mentioned two new games powered by Ubiquity, Revelations of Mars and Space:1899. Well if you fund both you will get a special PDF with two adventures.  Frankly it is something like that this making me consider up my PDF only pledge to get a Hard cover.

I think I am going to spend some quality time with Ubiquity here soon.  I already have some ideas on how I want to combine Space:1899, Revelations of Mars, Hollow Earth and Leagues of Adventure!
Gearing up for an Edwardian-times game based on all the ERB stories I have been reading of late.  Right now calling it "1901: A Space Odyssey". Should be a lot of fun!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Ennies Award voting is now live

The ENnie Award voting is now live.

http://ennie-awards.com/vote/

There are some great games in this batch so support your favorites!

Kickstarters go to Space!

Two new(ish) Kickstarters head out to Space with the Ubiquity System.  The same found in Hollow Earth Expedition and Leagues of Adventure.

First up is Revelation of Mars
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2085348754/revelations-of-mars

I didn't get on this one fast enough but it looks AWESOME.  I love the John Carter of Mars stories and I loved Pelucidar.  I am hoping that these games combine nicely (they should).  And honestly have a look at this Green Martian Princess.

Martian Princess by Will Nichols
Not exactly Edgar Rice Burroughs idea of a Green Martian, but I say this is an improvement.

Next is Space: 1899
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/440453703/space-1889-sf-role-playing-in-a-more-civilized-tim

I mentioned this one before.  But it looks really, really awesome.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

White Dwarf Wednesday #73

We start out 1986 with White Dwarf #73.  The Lee Gibbons cover reminds me of the ones from around 1983; barbarian couple fighting and stealing gems.  It's a good cover but seems like a step back.  On purpose maybe? Is WD already feeling nostalgia?  In any case this issue is now larger than the previous one.

The editorial is about the chain store Boots now stocking RPGs and Citadel miniatures. I imagine that this is something similar to when Waldenbooks and B. Daltons began to carry games, though I suppose this is actually closer to something like Target or Wal-Mart carrying games.

Open Box is up and I am beginning to doubt the "independence" of some these reviews.  First up is a scenario for Golden Heroes, Queen Victoria and the Holy Grail.  The review is a mixed bag. Pete Tamlyn likes it, but admits it is tough and weird and maybe just a little bloody He mentions gripes and dislikes the ending and still gives it 8/10.   The Judge Dred game is up next. It gets a 10/10. I can't argue with the reasons Jason Kingsley gives, but for me it was an 8/10 at best.  Both games are from Games Workshop.  We have a couple of "Advanced Advanced" game books from TSR next and reviewed by Paul Cockburn.  First the Masters Rules for what we now call BECMI. Indeed it is the "M".  It gets an 8/10, but almost begrudgingly so. Lastly is Unearthed Arcana.  Bottom line is that Cockburn hates it and gives it a 3/10.

2020 Vision is the new Movie review section.  Covered are Back to the Future, The Goonies and the Bride.  I will admit I never cared for The Goonies.  I know it is supposed to be some culture touchstone for my generation, I never liked it.  Neither did this article.  Though I will admit I enjoyed The Bride.  I might need to rewatch it this Halloween.

Power & Politics is an interview with Derek Carver about the Warrior Knights game.   IT sounds like a good game to mine if you want to add some 1400s-style realism to your FRPG.

American Dream is a Golden Heroes scenario.  It looks fun. Reading it I am reminded of some of the scenarios I wanted to run for Silver Age Sentinels.  Though the coolest thing is the use of Chris Achilleos' "Miss America".

Starbase has a great article on navigating 3D Space on your space maps.  Overtly for Traveller, but it would work for anything really.

Star Spray is an adventure for MERP and AD&D. I just finished the Silmarillion recently and I have been wanting to find something just like this since my knowledge of MERP is limited.  But this adventure feel s a little flat to me. Graham Staplehurst did his homework and knows his Tolkien.  But anytime you involve PCs with great heroes and figures out of the past they can't help but be dwarfed.  I don't know, maybe Tolkien's epic is still too fresh in my head and it is coloring my interpretation of this adventure.

RuneRites covers non-lethal combat in RuneQuest.
Cults of the Dark Gods continues with more background for Call of Cthulhu.
Treasure Chest has some ideas on Magic Items. Namely that every item found is potentially magical IF you know how to awaken the magic inside.

Fiend Factory is back with some more AD&D Monsters.  This one is back to old form with mosters found in Rain Forests. Not a bad entry really.

Tabletop Heroes covers part 2 of doing dioramas.

We end with lots of ads.  I noticed the Message Board/Rumor Board now seems to be gone.

This issue is larger than the previous ones, but again most of that has been given over to ads.  Not a bad thing mind you, just no extra content.

The content we did get was good. I feel this was a better issue than many we have seen recently.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Dream of the Blue Orcs

I had the oddest dream the other night.  I am blaming all the allergy drugs. And the Absinthe I had on Sunday.

So the the other night I dreamed about this giant orc with a blue face. Not sure if it was painted blue or was blue.  It was wielding a giant axe, but one that looked like it was more chopping word than necks.  He was screaming and running at "me".  He was also wearing a kilt.

Now a lot of this can be explained away.  I have been reading a lot of Tolkien of late and his orcs are more, for a lack of better word, demonic than the typical D&D Orc or even the typical "new" Orc as first given to us by John Wick. I have talked about orcs before and how they fit into my world and the various sub-races.
I was also at the Bristol Ren Faire that day, so that explains the axes and even the kilt.

The idea of a blue orc is a cool one, so I looked for them online.  I see there are blue orcs in Heroscape and they have sabre-toothed tigers. That is a cool idea.  The axe makes me think northern climes and the kilt, well Scottish.  I have a "White Orc", but I was thinking that these Orcs would be south of the artic areas, but still northern and cold.  Think Canada.

Given my world's population they could even  be another offshoot of the Green Orcs, like the White.   Culturewise they are not much different than the Green.  Maybe more savage and certainly more tribal.   Wars with the Green and White keep their numbers in check.   To continue the metaphor, if Blue Orcs live in Canada then the Green live in the US and the White only the most northern places.  Greenland, Iceland, Siberia and Alaska.

Blue Orcs do not differ significantly from the other strains/sub-races of Orc in terms of stats.  Though if anything I would give them a bit better survival skills in colder climates.  Though this also reminds me of the Cailleach Bheur, the hag of Winter.    Maybe Blue Orcs worship the Cailleach as some sort of Goddess figure.  Pagan Orcs...the idea has some possibility and different than the other orcs.  Perhaps they believe that their Goddess carved them from ice and stone and then breathed on them to bring them to life.

The more I think about it the more I like it.  I'll have to use these guys soon.
Plus it gives me a chance to come up some Blue Orc witches.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Christmas in July

DriveThruRPG is holding it's annual Christmas in July sale.  Tons of great PDFs for sale.


How many is "tons"? Well right now a little over 14,000 products. All at 25% off.

Great time to get some of those items in your Wish List!

Sick Day

I don't have much to say today.  Feeling a bit under the weather.

Hopefully I'll have something new to post when I am feeling better.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Zatannurday: Team-ups

I wanted to talk about the new Trinity War from DC.  The big cross over with all the "Justice Leagues" including the Justice League Dark with Zatanna.

But I have not bought any of the comics yet.  Frankly I might just wait for the collected trade if it ever comes out.  I also have not seen any new cospaly pics yet from SDCC.  No new Young Justice anymore.

So in the spirit of crossovers.  Here are some more Zatanna team-ups and cross-overs of various sorts.


week 134 Carmine Infantino tribute by ~StevenHoward on deviantART


Zatanna sketch by ~JLRincon on deviantART


Commission - Deadman, Constantine, Zatanna by *tyrannus on deviantART


Zatanna + Scarlet Witch by ~HaphazardMachine on deviantART


Counterparts: Zatanna Zatara and The Scarlet Witch by ~nhiaphengthao on deviantART


Annataz Arataz, The Mistress of Mayhem by ~krystenperes on deviantART

Who knows about this one.

Zatanna Deadpool And Pikachu By Dannith by ~Kenkira on deviantART

And Zee with herself.

Zatanna Fetish by ~Youngjusticeaddict on deviantART

Friday, July 19, 2013

More New Classes from Barrel Rider Games

A while back I posted about Barrel Rider Games.
Well they have some more classes out and just like a potato chips they are cheap, fun and I can't stop at just one.
These classes are all for Labyrinth Lord or your favorite Basic Era clone.

Dhampir
The Dhampir is another Labyrinth Lord compatible class from Barrel Rider Games. For less than the cost of a 20oz Mt. Dew you can get a complete class.

LL (and Basic before it) had an interesting artifact of the the original D&D game in that races were also classes. So you could be a 3rd level Elf for example. This book takes advantage of that and gives us a race class that works rather well.
The Dhampir is the mortal offspring of a human (usually female) and vampire (usually male). So think Marvel's Blade of Rayne from the Bloofrayne video games. There are a number of features to this class that give a unique spot in the party. Combine this with a few of BRGs other classes and you could have a kick-ass party of undead hunting experts.
6 pages -1 for cover and 1 for the OGL it has everything you need.

A couple of minor quibbles though.
The HD for this guy are d6. Vampires and Dhampirs have always been portrayed as robust. Honestly a d8 would be better.
The text also says that the Dhampir is not bound for evil, but the powers it gets at 7th and 9th level pretty much mean it is destined for evil. I suppose you could argue that to stay good a Dhampir needs to stop advancing and retire and grow sugar beets or something; such is the tragedy of the character. Doing he was born to do turns him in to the thing he hates the most.

In any case this is a fun class.

Fairy
Another fun class from Barrel Rider Games. The fairy is the counterpoint to the Lost Boy class.
It's a nice combination of thief, elf and magic-user.

Honestly this, plus Lost Boy, would make for a great introduction to LL/Basic for any young children.

$1.00, full class. Art + OGL statement. A steal really.

Lost Boy
What a really interesting concept.

You can play a "Lost Boy". The Peter Pan ones, not the Kiefer Sutherland ones.
The class is, like all of BRGs, classes, simple and easy to read and use.

My only gripe with this is a minor one. The Lost Boy can "Grow up" which is fine, but he gets to convert over to a new class. I say when a Lost Boy grows up he should retain some abilities from his past (but not all) but restart at 1st level.

Otherwise this is a fun class.

Tanuki
The Tanuki is new to me. I have heard of similar creatures from other myths, but this is the first time I have seen this one. So credit to BRG for giving me something new.

I have been following Barrel Rider Games' books for a while now and they have all improved with over the course of their publication, this one being no exception.

Presented here is a class/race that is similar in many respects to the halfling; that is if halflings could shape shift into raccoon-dog like creatures. Everything you need to play is here, XP per level, to hits, saves, and special abilities. Drop this little guy into your games and watch the fun.

Ninja
You can't buy a lot for just a buck these days. But Barrel Rider Games is in the business of giving you a class for a buck.
Not a bad deal really. I used to spend $3 for a Dragon magazine back in the day, often to get a new class.

This time BRG is giving us a Ninja class. Part thief, part assassin and part ranger this class has everything you would expect to see in a ninja class (almost, and I'll get to that). I have been following BRG classes for some time now and each of these pdfs gets a little bit better. So I am pleased to say that the class book here is complete. Saving throws, attacks, xp per level, and all the special abilities of ninja are here and ready for you to drop it into Labyrinth Lord...well like a ninja.

I only noticed one small, tiny thing. Typically with a ninja class we get a number of new weapons. This doesn't have those. I did not down-grade the pdf because of this because it is outside of the scope of the call books and that material is easily found elsewhere.

Shootist
I am one of those guys that despite all real world logic I DON'T have guns in my FRPGS. That being said I do know there is a history (both in game and out of the game) to include them.

If you are playing a "Basic Era" game and want to include guns then this is the class for you. Like all BRG classes you get about 5-6 pages of a class (with cover and OGL) for a buck. Not a bad deal at all really. You also get expanded rules for firearms in this one.
The class itself is solid and has everything you need to play.

Basic vs. Basic

With the release of Basic D&D at DriveThruRPG and DnDClassics I thought it might be nice for people to discuss their favorite version of D&D Red book Basic.

VS.


Who did it better?  What did you like or love about them? Or hate?
(I will do Holmes next time)

Let the "Edition" Wars begin!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Victorian Age Goodness

There are some great Victorian age products for your enjoyment.  I would say "new" but they are really new editions of old favorites.

Also, as much as I would love to provide full reviews for these games, I feel it is a conflict of interest since I am working on a book for Gaslight and I consider all the guys on the Victoriana line to be friends.  So instead of real reviews, I'll mention what I like about them both.

Victoriana 3rd Edition
From Cubicle 7, this updates the 2nd edition version of the game.  Using the same system from what I can tell, this version has been edited and cleaned up for greater clarity.  Some of the alt-history has been fixed as well.  Normally I don't care for alt-history games, but in Vic's case I can't fault them.
Victoriana is the one game I always try to play at Gen Con and I am going to miss playing it this year with the new edition.  I will have to get the hard cover next year.
When asked how to describe Vic the best analogy has always been Steampunk Shadowrun.  This new edition really emphasizes the steampunk and gearpunk.
The art has been greatly updated and looks a lot better, but I have to admit I miss the authentic photos.

Gaslight Victorian Fantasy 2nd Edition
Gaslight comes in both OGL and Savage World flavors. This is the new 2nd edition of the OGL edition.  It is a great resource for your existing d20/OGL game or as game you already know how to play.
At nearly 400 pages it is also a great resource for all sorts of Victorian Age games. This one take place in the later Victorian age and nicely covers the time right after Victoriana.

There is also the new Space: 1899 Kickstarter from former C7 designer Angus Abranson.
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/440453703/space-1889-sf-role-playing-in-a-more-civilized-tim
It is going to use the Ubiquity system, which is the same as Hollow Earth and Leagues of Adventure, so your pulpy, steampunky, alt-Victorian fun will be complete.


All three are great fun and I can't have to have them in hardcover to add to my collection.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

BECMI D&D at DnDClassics.com

I learned D&D from a badly xeroxed copy of Holmes basic.  I later cut my teeth on The Basic book by Moldvay and the Expert book by Cook.  When the BECMI (not the B/X) sets came out, I ignored them.

Well now these books are hitting DriveThruRPG and DnDClassics and I for one am thrilled.

I know that when I say "Red Box D&D": it is the Mentzer set that most people think of.  This one the one that introduced so many to the game.  The dragon cover is iconic, so iconic in fact it has been used to sell the 4th ed of the game and the style was also used for the Dungeons & Dragons cartoon boxed set.  It gave us Aleena and Bargle, though I was always more partial to Morgan Ironwolf and Black Dougal.

I did pick up a near mint copy of the Red Box rules.  It still had dice in the plastic bag.  I got it signed by Frank Mentzer a couple of Gen Cons back, great guy. Really happy to sign the book. It is a piece of D&D history that I had missed out on.

But that is now changing.
Today the Red Box was released to DriveThruRPG/RPGNow and DnDClassics.

Player's Manual: http://www.dndclassics.com/product/116578/D%26D-Basic-Set---Players-Manual-%28BECMI-ed%29-%28Basic%29?affiliate_id=10748 

DM's Rulebook: http://www.dndclassics.com/product/116619/D%26D-Basic-Set---DMs-Rulebook-%28BECMI-ed%29-%28Basic%29?affiliate_id=10748

To celebrate the 30th Anniversay of the Red Box DnDClassics is offering a code to get the B series of adventures at 50% off.



Additionally we have seen the release of the fantastic D&D Rules Cyclopedia.  Which might be the best version of D&D ever.  And the release of the Creature Catalog for BECMI.

For me getting these books is like rediscovering the game that I loved.  There are little bits here and there that I have never read before. The game is the same, but the feelings are new.

White Dwarf Wednesday #72

This week I cover White Dwarf #72 from December 1985.  Not quite sure what I was doing at this time, I was a Junior in High School and generally speaking having a pretty good time of it.  Lee Gibbons provides the Cthulhu-esque cover for this edition.  I remember thinking it was cool when I first saw it.

Open Box has two staples of "why I thought the British were just better" when it came to games.  The FASA Doctor Who RPG was one of my favorite Sci-Fi games ever.  Despite the fact there was some wonkiness with with the timelines (wibbly wobbly) and the system was just the Star Trek one.  I loved it.  It got an 8/10 but looking back on the game now I can see we were all just starved for anything Doctor Who.
Up next is Chaosium's fantastic Pendragon. It got a 9/10 from Graham Staplehurst. It should have gotten a 10/10.  And just to really drive the point home, the only American company to have a game is one of my favorite companies, Pacesetter, delivering a game I had thankfully had forgot about, Wabbit Wampage.  It gets a generous 6/10.

An article on Talisman and the new expansion set is up next after some ads.  It is advertised on the cover as "Expansive Coverage" and it is, but it also feels a little like an advertisement.

Fear of Flying is a short Call of Cthulhu adventure taking place on a plane.
Heroes & Villains this issue covers mad and super science.  It is written generically enough to use in any supers game, or even any steampunk one.

The Necklace of Brisingamen is next. An AD&D adventure for 7-10th level characters.  Pretty high for a magazine adventure.  It is also pretty long too.  It is generic enough to use anywhere, but I like the Nordic feel to it.  My first thought was it could be used as a nice side adventure while doing the whole GDQ series.

Pete Tamlyn covers character generation in Origin of the PCs. While there are some interesting ideas here, in particular to designing a new game, it is my experience that people come to the game with an idea of what they want to do early on.

Sliegh Wars is a Christmas themed board game for 2-4 players. Frankly it just doesn't look that interesting to me.

Crawling Chaos has a bunch of books for characters to read, not players. Too bad really.  But these are still cool and can be used anywhere to provide some color to a Victorian or Modern horror game.

Big ad for the new game Dragon Warriors.

Treasure chest offers up some tables and events for characters.  Things like "Arrested" and "rumors".  Neat idea, but takes control away from the DM and players in my mind.

Tabletop Heroes covers dioramas. I knew this guy in high school that was fantastic at doing these dioramas of the Grenadier lead minis.  I think he rather enjoyed doing those more than the actual gaming to be honest.

The last 14 or so pages are ads, including one for the D&D Masters rules, Marvel Super Heroes and more MERP.

I am happy to still be getting regular CoC and AD&D material.  The adventures are still rather good. There are still some new games being featured.  I am looking forward to seeing some Doctor Who material, if there is any, I don't remember. don't spoil me. Dragon only ever had 2 articles on it if I recall.  More Pendragon is always nice.  I always put Pendragon into that category of "Way Serious RPGs".  I hope it gets covered more in the next 20 some odd issues.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

John William Waterhouse

I have mentioned here before that I am a huge fan of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood style of painting. I am also a fan of their poetry and philiosophy, but that might be another post.  It is one of the few artistic styles where I see it overlapping most of my gaming interests (fantasy, horror, Victorian).  In particular I am a fan of John Collier (whose Lilith is still one of my favorites), Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and his sister Christina Rossetti (author of the poem "The Goblin Market"), though she was not part of their "Brotherhood".

Though my favorite is John William Waterhouse.  He rose to prominence a few decades after the Pre-Raphaelites but his style was considered to be part of their tradition and he is often called the Modern Pre-Raphaelite.


I seen his work many, many times before.  I think it had to be the cover of Rosemary Ellen Guiley's 1999 "The Encyclopedia of Witches & Witchcraft" that made me want to seek out who this artist was.  From that point on I knew I wanted to have his art on the cover of one of my books.

The Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft, Second Edition
The original painting done in in 1886, oil on canvas, was purchased for £650. It is on display at Tate Britain galleries.  Called "The Magic Circle" it features an unnamed witch (thought to be Morgan Le Fey) creating what is commonly believed to be a summoning circle or a protection circle. There are a multitude of diverse pagan elements in this painting reflecting the magical beliefs of many different cultures that it is not hard to see why it is embraced by those who like witches.  There are number of little things in the picture that I enjoy.  She is using her right hand to draw a counter-clockwise circle  for example.  This means this witch is up to nothing good.  Her brazier is more Mediterranean or even Middle Eastern than it is Anglo-Saxon, though her hair style and sickle are Anglo-Saxon style.  There is just a lot going on here.

Given my love of all things witch and witchy it was Waterhouse and the Pre-Raphaelites that I associate with my early gaming memories as much as Otus, Dee, Caldwell and Elmore.

The Witch: A sourcebook for Basic Edition fantasy games

Obviously I am not the only one.

Magic & Miracles
and

10 Witch Magic Items (PFRPG)

I feel like I am in pretty good company here.

Magical Theorems & Dyson’s Delves Sale

Dyson over at Dyson's Dodecahedron is running a sale on his two big products Magical Theorems & Dyson’s Delves.
http://rpgcharacters.wordpress.com/2013/07/15/magical-theorems-dysons-delves-discount/

I reviewed Magical Theorems & Dark Pacts last month so no is your chance to grab a copy.


Monday, July 15, 2013

2013 Ennies

The nominations for the 2013 Ennies awards are now up.
http://www.ennie-awards.com/blog/2013-ennie-awards-nominees/

Here are some random thoughts.

Best Adventure
Achtung! Cthulhu – Three Kings (Chronicle City/Modiphius Entertainment)
Deadlands Reloaded: The Last Sons (Pinnacle Entertainment)
Enemy Within (Fantasy Flight Games)
Pathfinder: Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition (Paizo Publishing)
The Zalozhniy Quartet (Pelgrane Press)

Outside of Rise of the Runeloards I don't have any of these.

Best Aid/Accessory
All We Have Forgotten—Music for Ashen Stars (Pelgrane Press)
Night’s Watch (Green Ronin)
The One Ring Loremaster’s Screen & Lake-town Sourcebook (Cubicle 7)
Protodimension Magazine Issue 13 (Kinstaff Media LLC)
The Unspeakable Oath (Arc Dream Publishing)

Nothing here either.

Best Art, Cover
Champions Complete (Hero Games)
Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
The Magnificent Joop van Ooms (Lamentations of the Flame Princess)
NPC Codex (Paizo Publishing)
The Whole Hole Volume 01: Keister Island (Mutha Oith Creations)

The OSR is represented in Raggi's adventure-not-an-adventure in Joop van Ooms.

Best Art, Interior
Ed Greenwood Presents Elminster’s Forgotten Realms (Wizards of the Coast)
Night’s Black Agents (Pelgrane Press)
Night’s Watch (Green Ronin)
Shadows of Esteren Book 1 (Agate Editions)
The Whole Hole Volume 01: Keister Island (Mutha Oith Creations)

First of only 2 products from WotC this year.

Best Blog
Gnome Stew
The Illuminerdy
Nerd Trek
Triumph and Despair
The Rogue Warden

Gnome stew is doing quite well this year!

Best Cartography
Ancient Temple Interior (DramaScape)
Deep Blues: Nautilus (0One Games)
Drake Starship Map (Blackwyrm Games)
The Lands of Ice and Fire (Random House)
Sprawl Sites: High Society and Low Life (Catalyst Game Labs)

Best Electronic Book
Curse the Darkness (Growling Door Games, Inc.)
Deadlands Reloaded: The Last Sons (Pinnacle Entertainment)
The Deadly Seven (paNik productions)
Experimental Paradigm of Cinematic Horror (EPOCH) (Imaginary Empire)
Hobomancer (Hex Games)

Best Family Game
Doctor Who: Adventures in Time & Space—11th Doctor Edition (Cubicle 7)
Hero Kids—Fantasy RPG (Hero Forge Games)
Mermaid Adventures (Third Eye Games)
Project Ninja Panda Taco (Jennisodes)
Wandering Monsters High School (Bold Pueblo Games)

I have all of these, all are great..

Best Free Game
Mazes and Perils RPG (WG Productions)
Phantasm (2010) (End Transmission Games LLC)
Nights of the Crusades (Aetheric Dreams)
Silent Memories (Morning Skye Studio)
Throwigames Simple Roleplaying System (Throwigames)

M&P is up for the OSR.  The 3rd Ed is an improvement over the 1st ed.

Best Free Product
Battletech: A Time of War Quick-Start Rules/Shadowrun Quick-Start Rules (Catalyst Game Labs)
EPOCH: Road Trip (Imaginary Empire)
Fools Rush In (Privateer Press)
Night in the Seyvoth Manor (Darklight Interactive)
Wayfinder #8 (Paizo Fans United)

The Shadowrun Quick start is my favorite of this list.

Best Game
Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea (North Wind Adventures, LLC)
Broken Rooms (Greymalkin Designs, LLC)
Champions Complete (Hero Games)
Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
Night’s Black Agents (Pelgrane Press)

Best Miniature
Dungeon Command: Blood of Gruumsh (Wizards of the Coast)
Freeblades: Black Rose Bandits (DGS Games)
Pathfinder Battles: Shattered Star Gargantuan Blue Dragon (WizKid Games/NECA)
Pathfinder Bestiary Box (Paizo Publishing)
Spot of Bother Set One: Royal Highland Guards (Okumart Games)

I rather enjoyed both the Dungeon Command game (played at Gen Con) and the Pathfinder Bestiary Box.

Best Monster/Adversary
Champions Villains Vol. 3: Solo Villains (Hero Games)
DC Adventures Heroes & Villains Vol. 2 (Green Ronin)
Inner Sea Bestiary (Paizo Publishing)
Mutants and Masterminds Threat Report (Green Ronin)
NPC Codex (Paizo Publishing)

All of these are good.

Best Podcast
Atomic Array
Indie Talks
Haste: The Official Obsidian Portal Podcast
TableTop: Dragon Age
Transmissions from the Ninth World

I am only familiar with Atomic Array.

Best Production Values
Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea (North Wind Adventures, LLC)
Doctor Who: Adventures in Time & Space—11th Doctor Edition (Cubicle 7)
Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
Rimward (Posthuman Studios)
Shadows of Esteren Book 1 (Agate Editions)

AS&SH another OSR book. And a great looking one at that.  Doctor Who though is just fantastic.

Best RPG Related Product
Edition Wars (Gamer Nations Studios)
Eighth Day Genesis: A Worldbuilding Codex for Writers and Creatives (Alliteration Ink)
The Express Diaries (Innsmouth House Press)
Kobold Guide to Wordbuilding (Kobold Press)
The Lands of Ice and Fire (Random House)

Best Rules
Champions Complete (Hero Games)
Dungeon World (Sage Kobold Productions)
Experimental Paradigm of Cinematic Horror (EPOCH) (Imaginary Empire)
Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
Night’s Black Agents (Pelgrane Press)

Another set of good choices.  I didn't play any of these though.

Best Setting
Broken Rooms (Greymalkin Designs, LLC)
Magnimar: City of Monuments (Paizo Publishing)
Menzoberranzen: City of Intrigue (Wizards of the Coast)
Midgard Campaign Setting (Kobold Press)
Mythic Iceland (BRP/Chaosium)

Make that 3 noms for WotC.  The Mythic Iceland book is fantastic.

Best Software
The Crawler’s Companion (Purple Sorcerer Games)
Cthulhu Mythos Encyclopedia (E-book Edition) (Arc Dream Publishing)
Dice & Dragons – 3D Dice Roller (simpleFun)
PCGen (PCGen)
Roll20 (The Orr Group, LLC)

I didn't use any CharacterGEn or gaming software all year.

Best Supplement
Dark Roads & Golden Hells (Kobold Press)
Doctor Who: The Time Traveler’s Companion (Cubicle 7)
Night’s Watch (Green Ronin)
Menzoberranzen: City of Intrigue (Wizards of the Coast)
Shadowrun 2050 (Catalyst Game Labs)

The Time Traveler's companion is very good.

Best Website
Adventure-A-Week
The Escapist
Gnome Stew
Modus Operandi
See Page XX

Not sure what separates something from being the Best Blog or Best Website (other than the obvious) but Gnome Stew made both lists.

Best Writing
Doctor Who: The Time Traveler’s Companion (Cubicle 7)
Kobold Guide to Worldbuilding (Kobold Press)
Never Unprepared: Guide to Session Prep (Engine Publishing)
Night’s Black Agents (Pelgrane Press)
Wolsung Steam Pulp Fantasy (Kuźnia Gier/Studio 2 Publishing)

Product of the Year
Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea (North Wind Adventures, LLC)
Broken Rooms (Greymalkin Designs, LLC)
Champions Complete (Hero Games)
Doctor Who: The Time Traveler’s Companion (Cubicle 7)
Experimental Paradigm of Cinematic Horror (EPOCH) (Imaginary Empire)
Iron Kingdoms (Privateer Press)
Menzoberranzen: City of Intrigue (Wizards of the Coast)
Night’s Black Agents (Pelgrane Press)
NPC Codex (Paizo Publishing)
Shadows of Esteren Book 1 (Agate Editions)

This one is always a hard call.  Nice to see AS&SH there.

Judges’ Spotlight Winners
Hooper - Leviathans (Catalyst Game Labs)
Matthew Muth - School Daze (Sand & Steam Productions)
Jakud Nowosad – Deniable Asset (Random Encounters)
Megan Robertson - Killshot: Director’s Cut (Broken Ruler Games)
Kurt Wiegel – Eldritch Skies (Battlefield Press, Inc.)

Nice to see Eldritch Skies get a nod.  I read through the drafts of it for Cine Unisystem content.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Looking to Buy, Sell or Trade RPGs or Minis?

Well then there is a new Facebook group for you.  And by new, I mean just a few hours old.


https://www.facebook.com/groups/roleplayinggamestradesell/

Created by Keegan Reid the group's aim is to connect gamers to trade, sell & barter RPGs and Minis.  Pretty much exactly what it says on the tin.

Join the group to see what is going on.

I love June

Doing some late end of the month analysis out at the pool and noticed that June was my best month of sales since October.

That is really awesome.

I am working on a few more books and hope to get them out to you all soon.  Not just OSR, but Gaslight, Pathfinder and more.

I have also had a couple requests for for a hardcover version of the Witch.  Any more takers on that?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Friday, July 12, 2013

ShadowRun and the Deep Web / Undernet

I was talking to my wife last night about ShadowRun in hopes I would have a review ready for you all today.

That didn't happen.

Instead she distracted me with something she had found out about the Deep Web.



I still want to get a ShadowRun 5 review up soon.  It is pretty cool.

Darwin's Guidebook of creatures, Mythical and Mundane for the Gaslight RPG

So I have been quietly working on this:

Art by Nolan Segrest

Darwin's Guidebook of creatures, Mythical and Mundane for the Gaslight RPG.

It is the first Victorian age monster book I have ever done.

The Gaslight RPG is a late Victorian Age Setting for d20 and Savage Worlds from Battlefield Press.
The Second Edition game will be out soon. along with another book I co-wrote, Dr. Challenger's Guide to the Unknown.  I did a whole bit on the Hollow Earth which was wicked fun.

Darwin's Guide was fun, but a lot harder than expected.
The design goal was easy enough.  Write a monster book with some common monsters, do it for the Victorian age, but write it in the style of Charles Darwin.

Since I am a fan of Darwin I went back to his most popular works, "The Voyage of the Beagle", "On the Origins of Species" and "The Descent of Man".  I also read his autobiography and a couple biographies.
Darwin was an interesting man and soon it became obvious there is no way he would have accepted a world that had magic in it.  He was too rational, too ordered.
Soooo I had to cheat. A lot.

In the end I hope the book is pleasing for Game Masters and players.  I hope that through this book you pick up one of his books.

Not sure when this will hit the shelves.  The publisher is in control of it now.
But expect a lot more from me on it when it comes up.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

White Dwarf Wednesday #71

White Dwarf 71 takes us to November of 1985. The cover art is another one by Alan Craddock. I would say it is a cavalier and a barbarian in honor of the newly released Unearthed Arcana, but I have nothing to back that up.
Ian Livingstone is still at the helm here talking about Game Day and looking forward to more success with Judge Dredd.

Of the bat we go into Open box with two books from the Way of the Tiger. These books seem something in between an RPG and a choose your own adventure sort of book.  Chris Elliott gives it 8/10 but I can't exactly figure out way in reading his article. He says it is fun, but something like AD&D with Ninjas and Kung-fu.  We get a new Paranoia book, Vapors Don't Shoot Back (7/10), a review of the almost legendary Masks of Nyarlathotep (9/10) and Thrilling Locations for the James Bond game (9/10).  Interestingly enough this is the first Open box in a long while that does not have any D&D related material.

The Face of Chaos is another look at alignment in AD&D.  Frankly even then I was tired of alignment discussions. Still am.

RuneRites gives us a couple of water-based creatures; the Frostgrim and Neried.

Cults of the dark Gods is the start of what promises to be a new feature on a "translation of ancient texts" for Call of Cthulhu.  This one deals with the original order of assassins and the Knights Templar.  I have often said you can't have a proper conspiracy theory unless it somehow involves the Knights Templar.

An ad for the D&D Masters game.

A Box of Old Bones is an AD&D/Dragon Warriors adventure for starting characters. Five pages with map, it looks like it could be a good starter adventure or better yet a good starter adventure for someone familiar with one of the games and learning the other.

Starbase covers Avionics failures.  Honestly I thought something like this was already in rules.  Of course the biggest issue is not that, but the assumption that you could have complete failure like this with out backup systems.  Plus today we would call these Sensors and not Avionics (which are in aircraft).

Two pages of Letters this issue.  I think this was around the same time Dragon had less letters.

Tower Trouble is an adventure for 3-6 Traveller characters. It is also quite long at 6 pages.

Monsters Have Feelings Too, Two is a follow up to the article in WD38 about playing monsters as intelligent opponents and not as walking collections of XP.

Fiend Factory is back, but it only has one D&D monster, a Psychic Vampire, and a weak one at that.

Treasure chest has treasure this time, with two magic items for divination and prophesy. A card and "tellstones".  Interesting ideas that I don't think work as well on the game table as they do on paper.

Gobildegook is still a full page. The newsboard/rumor page talks about an update finally to T1.

We end with ads including full page, full color ads for Unearthed Arcana, Marvel Super Heroes and Talisman.

This issue feels bigger than the last one, though I am not sure and don't want to grab #70 to find out.  It feels larger and that is what matters when buying it at the store. Speaking of which I am pretty sure that this was the time that all my local, and not so local, book stores stopped carrying White Dwarf.  It would not be till I got to college in 87 before I would find back issues of WD on the shelves next to back issues of Heavy Metal.

A solid issue with a lot of material, just nothing that jumped out at me.  Of course my apathy was also pretty high at this time and I was strictly AD&D and nothing else from late 85 to 87.  The great thing is that this is really my first time going through these issues in depth since I got them, so really everything is new to me.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Pacific Rim True20

Ok I am totally getting geeked out over Pacific Rim.  I have loved giant monster movies since I was a little kid.  And unlike some movies, the more I hear about this one the more excited I am to see it.  So are my kids.  Let's be honest that scene in the trailer where the Jaeger beats the Kaiju over the head with a boat? Damn.


This got me thinking about the True20 campaign setting Mecha vs. Kaiju.

It's pretty much Pacific Rim, only done 5 years ago (5 years? holy crap).

Giant mechs aka Jaegers and the pilots vs. Kaiju in True20s simple system.
Anyone that has been a longtime reader here knows of my love of True20.  I would love to see True20 make a comeback, but I am not holding my breath on that one.

On the other hand there is nothing in MvK that could not be adapted for Mutants & Masterminds easily.


I might have to give it a go after this weekend.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Gygax Magazine?

Gygaz Magazine was released to much pomp and circumstance this past winter.  The idea was to capture the feeling and joy of the Dragon magazines of old and it did this. For one issue.

I was/am a yearly subscriber but yet I have no idea really when Issue #2 will arrive.  This is despite the communications on their Facebook and Twitter pages.

The main trouble here is trying to release a new print magazine in this day and age.  Most print magazines are failing and some, like Newsweek and Dragon, have gone over to all digital format.

Gamers can be be obstinate to the point of pig-headedness (and old school gamers even more so) when it comes to print, but sometimes economic reality is, well, reality.

It's not as if the content of the magazine doesn't have value, sales of the print and pdf versions can attest to that.  Is the value worth more than the cost to print, sell and ship.  One issue I have heard coming up is the rise of shipping costs which I am sure is the killer for most magazines.

I hope things get worked out for Gygax.  I'd like to see it succeed.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Deviant Art: Raven

Been a busy weekend this weekend.  The neighbor's apple tree fell in our yard so I have been out with the chainsaw and cleaning up wood.  So here are some pictures of Raven, my other favorite DC magic girl.



Raven from Titans by ~MLauNeim on deviantART


Raven by ~KidNotorious on deviantART


Raven by ~CeruleanRaven on deviantART


Raven Inks by *Jon-Moss on deviantART


Raven Rising by =JamieFayX on deviantART


Not creepy, just different. by *oO-Fotisha-Oo on deviantART

Have a great Sunday!
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