Saturday, March 31, 2012

Adventure Time!

by Fred Weasley, Deviant Art

I became aware of this show through a piece of swag my wife brought home from a TV conference a couple of years ago,
Her hat is AWESOME!
but I haven't really started watching it until I remembered to plug it into my DVR.

Having caught up a bit now, I have to declare the show MANDATORY watching for any OSR roleplayer, especially if your tastes run a little gonzo. Each episode revolves around Finn, last human in the Land of Ooo and his magical dog, Jake as they have a seriously surreal adventure. A GM you can't pick out a good idea or two to use in their game is not paying attention. Already I've got notes in binder on how to use things like;
The Wall of Flesh
Crystal Guardians guarding a crystal apple tree
A giant Lich Lord

The show's wiki is here.

Kids in the Hall Saturdays

I think its safe to say we all had a teacher that tried this?

Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Plague Doctor

From the fantastically macabre site, The Chirurgeon's Apprentice, a website dedicated to the horrors of pre-anaesthetic surgery.

April Blogging A to Z

Cutting it close, but I've officially signed up. Yesterday I tried to sit down and do some work on my RPG stuff but found myself having a tough time pulling it together. Then this morning I remembered this contest and it occured to me that it might be a good way to focus my wandering chemo brain.

I’m going to officially work on The World of Nood, which is the current setting for my D&D/Basic campaign entitled “In Search Of”, but I’m toying with duel-streaming it with the Clawed Lands, a more serious setting I’ve written about here once or twice.

This year's OSR challenge hosted by "The Other Side Blog".

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

More Superhero Cars

Excerpts from “Prototypes Top Trumps”, 1978 -- via. Retronaut.
Click pic for lots more.

Wanna shake things up? Run a game on an Island!

Pair of interesting articles today, both about islands and pseudo-islands.
-- via Skyshroud 3, Deviant Art.

Huge hamsters and pint-sized porcupines thrive on islands, -- via Science Blog.
Island ecology is fascinating to me, and not just because I married a Newfoundlander (her father built their home, and all the fittings inside are designed for short people). Now I just want to run an island adventure with pint sized Manticores and some really colossal Giant Rats. It would be a great way to screw with long-term players' expectations.


"Death of a Data Haven: cypherpunks, WikiLeaks, and the world's smallest nation" -- via The Browser.
While it may have its problems in real life, it seems a perfect location for a near-future or Cyberpunk game. The article even references "Cryptonomicron".

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Uzay Wars

I don't know when I'll ever run a Sci-Fi campaign again, but if I do, I'm gonna damn well call it Uzay and base it off these Turkish Star Wars knockoff figures!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Game Log III: Escape from the Unknown

New Character: Sokrates the Barbarian. Heralds from the Land of Barbonia and worshipper of the God Koom. Played by Mikey

After looting the Barrel Golem, the Wild Stallions found a door heading north that lead to a natural cavern with an opening high on the cliff wall. There they found a grappling hook embedded in the ground, with someone climbing up, or possibly down…

Thinking it was the Halfling Harb, they readied to cut the rope and carefully peered over the edge, to find themselves face to face with a young warrior named Sokrates climbing his way up. Sokrates had heard of the treasures of Rogaine and Zell, and had come seeking his fortunes.

Happy to have another fighter in the party, the Wild Stallions accepted the young barbarian with an apparent speech impediment and went father into the dungeon, where they were nearly squeaked to death by a swarm of bats lead by two Mobats.

Fed up, wounded and nearly out of supplies, the party headed back to the cliff face and saw, in the fading sunlight, a red glow surrounding a white castle far down the valley. They spent the night in the cave, climbed down the next morning and headed back to Bastion.

After a quick resupply and hearty dinner (mobat and carrion crawler, specialty of the Twig and Berries Inn), they deliberate their next course of action; go back to the Caves of Questeron or seek out the White Castle?

Girdling their loins, they decided to set off to the investigate the White Castle, effectively ending their journey In Search of the Unknown, and opening the way to investigate the Palace of the Silver Princess.

After bravely making their way into guardhouse, they bravely killed a half starved giant rat and were stumped by a portcullis.

The End (for now).

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Kids in the Hall Saturday


This is why I love Moebius's art. Who are these mages and why have they gathered?

Jack Vance Website

One of my favourite authors now has an offical Website. Its limited just now, but I hope it will soon become the Vance resource site.

Friday, March 23, 2012


I was poking around Drivethru RPG and came across a bunch of West End Games items available for free.

D6 was probably the system my group played the most. Our classic Star Wars campaing carried us through many, many years. Through it we discovered Ghostbusters and later we even converted a bulk of the RIFTS books into D6 once we grew too fustrated with the Palladium rules (which boil down to most MDC, wins). It actually worked quite well.

I've got a real sweet spot for the simplicity of the system and am happy to see that there are still dedicated fans out there keeping it alive.

A couple of more Links

With proper references this time!

Stephen Fry and Ian MacKellan save the Hobbit bar from rampaging lawyers. -- via TOR Books

The AV Club explores D&D. -- via AV CLUB

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Resource Post: Update on the Update

Tomorrow I'm going back into the hospital for the weekend, so these links are more for me to explore while I'm sitting around with absolutely nothing to do but sit there with a tube in my arm.

Update March 22: MWSCHEER of the most excellent site Rended Press pointed out that I did not correctly site him for the a majority of the links I gakked off him (some of which I believe he wrote or co-wrote). I was in a hurry and was dump copying out of GoogleReader and wasn't as carefuly as I should have been in noting the sources. I've since corrected all the ones I can remember.
Seriously, his site is awesome.

Stock.Xchng ... for stock photos. -- via Gnome Stew

Subterranean Design Tumbler for more photos of underground and abandonned places. via Gnome Stew

A Quick Guide for Old School Gaming. A booklet by Sword and Wizardry. Its free! via Gnome Stew

Old School Encounter Reference a massive PDF that I just downloaded and can't wait to start digging into! via Gnome Stew

Demonicapedia ... exactly what it sounds like.

A whole mess of 2e fanstuff, available for a limited time only! -- via Rended Press

Wayback Machine WotC free archives! -- via Rended Press

and my most played system ever, d6 Star Holocron -- via Rended Press

A fun solo game using QR codes called Minoqaur -- via Rended Press

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Deep Sea Life

Whenever I need inspiriation for a monster, I read up on deep sea life. I just stumbled upon Deep-Sea News blog and read this article on io9. Plus I watched the 'Lost City of Atlanta' episode of Futurama this morning on Netflix.

I've never run an underwater adventure, but I seriously begining to want to.

Blind Angler
Freq: Rare
Armour Class: 2
Hit Dice: 5
Move: 10'
Attack: 1
Damage: d10 Bite
no. Appearing: 1
Save As: F5 (standard)
Special Attack: Lure
Treasure: B
Alignment: Neutral
Xp Value: 55

Blind Anglers are large creatures ranging from 8'-10' tall. They have teardrop shaped bodies supported by six elephantine legs. They have a small hind end and front end dominated by two large, blind eys and a massive mouth filled with long, needle sharp teeth. They also have a long antenna that ends with a large bulb filled with phosperescent algea that gives off a warm, bluish glow that can extend for hundreds of feet down a dark corridor.

Blind Anglers are ambush hunters, using their light to lure prey close enough to their powerful teeth. They often lurk behind large obstructions or just inside a room, dangling their antenna into an adjascent corridor or room.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Another Giant Lost

First Moebius, now M.A.R. Barker has past.

Kids in the Hall Saturday

I tried to find a St.Patrick's day skit, but then I came across this personal favourite and I had to post it.

And in other news, I'm halfway through my Chemo!

Hunger Games and the state of things...

The Hunger Games would make an incredible video game... if they let you build your own hero and pit them in a randomly generated Arena.

Unfortunately, I have a feeling they’re just going to let you play Katniss in a tired retread of the books/movies.

I’m not posting much because its Reading week here and the wife is off school and we’ve been spending some time together. However I have however, been planning and scheming for both BURPYS, Playing Card Mazes and my D&DBasic campaign.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Throw Stuff at the TV

I've been half-watching ABC's The River. I admit I was curious to see how it would pan out until last night's episode where everything suddenly crystalized into a pyschic glimpse of the show's initial pitch meeting: some yutz in a suite with all the creative capacity of a lump of cat shit saying "Lost meets Walking Dead!"

Had I been just a little more invested in this show it would have been a let down of Battlestar proportions. Luckily I don't really care and it just came across as sad and pathetic.

The Wow Factor

I have to use Google Reader to keep track of the blogs I read because at this point I think I’ve got about two hundred feeds coming in. Though the topics range from anthropology to zoology, it sincerely one of the highlights of my day to log onto each morning and discover the hundreds of new ideas that the RPG community has generated in just 24 hours.

The creativity, imagination and originality never fail to amaze and astonish and I just wanted to give a sincere Thank You to every single RPG blogger out there. Each and every one has inspired me to flex my imagination and keep thinking one step ahead.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Dozen Dungeon Maladies and their Cures

[Ed note: I woke up this morning with the word 'slimefoot' in my head and inspired by the always awesome Dungeon Dozen, I came up with this list.]

Dungeons are nasty, filthy places full of molds, fungi and parasites. They lurk everywhere from the bite of monsters, to swimming in stagnant water, floating in dust and clinging to damp walls, all looking for a nice warm body in which to take root and grow. Here are a dozen, non-fatal Delving Maladies and their cures to inflict upon the irresponsible and unhygienic PC. All are magic resistant and normal Cure spells may delay or interrupt symptoms, but they can only be permanently cured via the methods described below.

1 Slimefoot
This malady, caused by walking through stagnant water, causes the delver’s feet to constantly ooze a greenish-yellow slime. The slime is slightly caustic and will ruin any footwear and bedding within a week. If the character is barefoot on a slippery surface they suffer -1 to DEX, but there are no other ill effects.
Cure: encase feet in a box filled with dragon stool. The older the dragon, the less time is required to remain with the feet in the box, though 1d6 hours is minimum for ancient dragons, and 1d6 days may be required for especially immature dragons.

2 The Snargleflux
An unpleasant malady that flares up during times of stress (like combat). Under stress, the character must roll d10 every round. On a result of 1, the character can perform no action but to defend themselves, as they suffers an explosive bout of diarrhoea
Cure: A mouthful of Healing potion right when the character first notices that there will be a problem (rolled a 1). The swig also has the effect of healing 1hp, and a typical full potion will do for d4 doses. The character must take a mouthful at every occurrence (rolled 1) for d6 days to be completely cured. If they miss even a single dose, they must start again.

3 Cave Tuber Sprouts
Caused by eating undercooked dungeon-meat (giant rat, etc), this malady causes the delver’s skin to randomly develop potato-like ‘eyes’. After about a week after first appearing, these eyes will sprout small plant-like stalks that can be painlessly trimmed by the delver.
Cure: Rust Monster rust rubbed on the ‘eyes’ as soon as they appear. Requires 2d6 weeks of treatment before they stop appearing. There is a 5% chance per year of the eyes reoccurring, but once the initial treatment is applied, only requires 1d6 days treatment to clear most flare ups. The rust does not have to be fresh, but it must come from a Rust Monster.

4 Orc Mouth
The character’s natural teeth become loose and fall out. They are then replaced by snaggle-toothed fangs. The new teeth are fragile and easily broken, but they grow continually and are constantly replaced. Delver now does d4 bite damage.
Cure: Remove all teeth then massage gums nightly with a paste made from a raw, fresh osquip liver. Requires one month’s treatment and approximately 20+d10 osquips, after which time the delver’s teeth will grow back normally.

5 The Walking Frug
This neurological disorder, brought on by contact with dungeon mould causes the character to walk in a jerking, funky manner. It in no way affects the character’s movement rate, though it is distracting and impedes hide and sneaking rolls.
Cure: Powdered al-mi’raj horn, taken as snuff for 10+d20 days. Requires one horn per day.

6 The Shouts
The occasional result of contact with shrieker spoors, this disorder causes the delver to speak as loudly as possible, no matter what the situation.
Cure: One, whole Screaming Devilkin, boiled alive until simmered to a broth and drunk before allowed to cool.

7 Mossbeard
This malady causes a thick, green hair-like fungus to grow on the delver’s face, regardless of gender. If the delver already has a beard, the natural hair is replaced. Over time, the fungus will replace all the delver’s hair, starting with the head and working its way down.
Cure: a poultice made of boiled Minotaur hair and powdered horn applied to affected areas for d4 days. Cure has a 13% chance of causing a case of Furskin.

8 Furskin
This malady causes the delver to grow a thick layer of fur, the same colour as their natural hair, over their entire body.
Cure: A full-on blast from a Shocker or other electrical monster. All of the delver’s hair will fall out leaving them utterly hairless until their hair grows back in at a normal rate. There is a 10% chance that the hair will not grow back at all.

9 The Stench
The delver emits a constant, overpowering musky odour reminiscent of boiling skunk musk.
Cure: Ingesting the stink bladder of a giant-skunk, witherstench or dire-weasel. The inflicted only has a 2% per CON chance of keeping the bladder down. If the character fails to keep the bladder down, they fail to cure the malady.

10 Slugbelly
Usually contracted from drinking stagnant water, this small and otherwise benign parasite takes up residence in the delver’s stomach. It has no ill effects on the host, but roughly once a fortnight, the parasite will lay a slime covered egg-sack that the host will then pass naturally or be vomited up, usually while sleeping.
Cure: one live, purple worm larva swallowed whole. The larva will devour the parasite, but then the inflicted character must drink one full gallon of brine mixed with one complete powdered pixie to then kill the larva before it begins to burrow its way out of the host.

11 Wandering Bladder
Contracted through contact with extra-planar creatures, this malady causes the character’s internal organs (primarily the bladder) to partially shift into neighbouring dimensions. As a result, the character looses all control of their bladder, kidneys and urinary function. The system regulates itself so there is no danger of infection or further disease, but the character will remain completely incontinent for the rest of their natural life.
Cure: The displaced spleen of a displacer beast carefully prepared at the junction of two planes and ingested through a Bag of Holding.

12 Glowskin
The delver’s skin becomes coated in a thin layer of phosphorescent fungus that glows in the dark. The condition is not visible in daylight and though the delver will no longer require a torch, the glow attracts wandering monsters at twice the normal rate.
Cure: a bath in the carefully prepared remains of an ochre jelly. The delver must be completely submerged for one minute to burn away all traces of the fungus or else the condition will simply spread again. There is always at least a 10% chance that the prepared jelly remains will retain their full, acidic effect. There is no way to fully test how successful, or deadly the treatment was until the delver is removed from the bath.

Monday, March 12, 2012

The Invasion of Cobra Island

Though I'm a Canuck down to my maple flavoured heart, there was a period as a kid when my favourite show/comic/toys was Larry Hama era GI:Joe. The toys are long since sold and try as I might, I haven't been able to rekindle much nostalgia for the cartoon on Teletoon Retro. However, I still have all my old comics and I gotta admit, this video gets me right in the geek-spot.

A few years ago, a buddy tried running a Transformers campaign (using the Mechamorphosis rules) which ended in disaster. I played 9-Iron, a golf-cart warrior who was part of a team that had first been activated in the 1950s and quickly disolved into us hunting for Commie sympathizers in the Autobot ranks and ended with Optimus and a few others forcibly shutting us down. One of the few times I've ever seen a GM almost cry in fustration.

Anyway, the experience forever spoiled me on running a similar game, but I wonder if there was ever a proper GI:Joe rpg? That I'd love to read.

Game Log II: Wraith of the Cave Monkeys

Dire Cheese Stats (D&D Red Book)
AC 4, HD 2, hp 12, AT Bite d6. Loot nil. XP 30

The party fished themselves out of the pool after falling through the pit trap from the roof above. Torches and lanterns soaked, they had to rely on Bulger’s low-light vision and Bowden’s sole Light spell to try and find shelter in the natural cave system.

What they found where ghouls lurking in the next cave, though they were able to pull Bulger out after the dwarf was paralyzed. Shortly after they had finished with ghoul’s, Ted the cleric realized that she could have tried to Turn them (noobs are fun).

They were much less lucky at the next encounter. Coming to a four way juncture, they tried the eastern door which opened into a dark, warm cavern heavy with the musty smell of something living inside. Bulger crept in axe at the ready, covered by Bill the thief and her bow. Just as they crossed the threshold, they were swarmed by a pack of Cave Monkeys (Rock Baboons), some armed with crude clubs.

Bill was quickly swarmed and overcome, while Bulger held his own. Back at the door Ted and Bowden did what they could against the raving monkeys. After downing a couple of simians, Ted tried to rescue Bill and dove into the room. Wounded, Bowden slammed the door to buy time to down a Healing Potion. It turned out to be a fateful decision as in that few seconds, both Ted and Bulger went down under rabid simian fury.

Suddenly, everything depended on the first level mage without a single spell left to cast.

There were three Cave Monkeys left, hammering at the door. Bowden quickly gathered all his rations and threw them down the western corridor. Then he wrenched open the door, hiding behind it as two of the monkeys burst into hallway. Winning initiative, Bowden dove through the opening and slammed the door shut behind him, trapping himself in a room with his bleeding companions and the remaining savage Cave Monkey.A few rounds and a handful of lucky rolls later, the monkey was dead and Bowden was being hailed as a hero by his companions.

They spent the next two days resting in the room, using the last of their rations, sneaking back to the pool for water and eating roast monkey. Finally, they set out again, heading west and encountering no further resistance until they accidentally triggered a spiked pit trap (though, at only d4 damage, it was determined to be more a spiked ditch trap).

They then found themselves in a vast cavern with a curious statue at the south end. Approaching, they saw it was a man made of barrels. Curious, Bulger poked the barrels, causing the fearsome Barrel Golem to spring to life and attack. During the battle, both Bill and Bowden were struck from behind with rocks, though everyone was too caught up in the battle to investigate at the time.

Defeating the Barrel Golem, they began to loot the room. Harb, used the distraction to sneak into the room and pull something from inside the destroyed Golem’s body before racing away.Barrel Golem
AC 2, HD 6, hp 40. D d8, Loot: special , Xp 100.

In the golem cave, Ted found a Ring of Protection +1, Bulger found an expensive silver amulet, Bill found a +2 Spear while Bowden found a Sleep scroll.

Now, with only one Healing potion and no rations, all they have to do is find a way to escape…

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Quick John Carter Review

At least a half hour too long, wildly uneven pacing and a nonsense plot do little to get in the way of a pulpy good time. It worked much better when concentrating on the action and humour rather than emotion or plot (though I would have been happier with toning down the jumping just a bit). Saw it with an eight year old who was a bit bored by it all, which probably says more about the film than any thousand words I could write.

Personally, as a Burrough fan, I was pretty pleased with my visit to Barsoom.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

The Legendary Moebius is dead at 73.

I've been a fan of his art since I was a kid. Truely a sad day.

Kids in the Hall Saturday

Not having any hair right now, I admire a guy who takes care of his locks.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Super Hero Cars!

A trio of real-life cars for your superhero games. All via the amazing Retronaut. Click the pics for more info and pics of each.

The Skoda "Toroise"

Art Deco Bike, 1936

And the best for last, a Phantom Corsair from 1938

Sunday, March 4, 2012

In Seach of In Search of the Unknown: Game Log 1

After Google utterly failed to work, we went audio only on skype and finally got a game going. Cast of Characters
Bludger the Dwarf,
played by Dave.
An aged one-eyed dwarf who after years of being an NPC caravan guide, decided to try his hand and become a proper PC.

Theodosia Calcifer III ("Ted"), played by Doc X.
A cleric of Gucci, the god of fashion and manners who has left home seeking to remove the stain on her family name left over by her cousin Bill.

Billasia Calcifer (“Bill”), played by Ace
A young thief, rumoured to have made her money in sheep-pimping. No one is sure if this is true, but she does have a nice collection of sweaters. Exiled from the family, she has tagged along with Ted, much to the cleric’s dismay.

Bowden T. Baggers, played by Vlad
A young wizard recently sent out from the Tower of Magery to gain experience. A bit of a rube.

Mostly strangers to each other, a group of adventured gathered in the common room of the Twig and Berries Inn, each in search of the same treasure. Bludger the one-eyed Dwarf picked a fight with a group of farmers. In the melee, he grabbed the tablecloth from Ted’s table ("the centerpiece is still standing!"), angering the cleric and causing her to knock him unconscious with her mace. Bowden and Bill leapt into the fray, the theif promptly relieving the Dwarf of his money and wineskin. To avoid angering the famers further, a Halfing who introduced himself as Harb Sharptoes invited the group upstairs to the common room; he had a proposition.

Harb promised to take them to an abandoned stronghold located not to far from the city of Bastion, once home to the warrior Rogaine and his companion, the wizard Zell the Unbeknownst. The next morning they set out, but Harb quickly led them into an ambush. Harb’s two companions where killed, but the Halfing escaped.

The party, now calling themselves the Wild Stallions, returned to town for the night. The next day, they set out again, only to wander from the path and entered a shallow cave, home only to a young Owlbear. They were victorious but mauled and badly wounded. Returning to town, they sought healing from the shrine of St. Cudgel of the Blessed Bludgeoning (and stocked up on healing potions). They then befriended a slightly burnt out alchemist called Rufus, who attempted to access some potions they had found and purchased the body of the baby owlbear. The next morning, after hearing some reports of a full gown Owlbear attack on the south gate where three guardsmen were killed, they set out again, this time arriving at a door located in a cliff-face overlooking the town.

Entering through the splintered door, they walked down a long corridor, only to trigger a Magic Mouth trap. After getting into an insult contest with Bludger, the mouth faded and they continued deeper into the stronghold where they came across some bodies. Looting, three of the bodies stood up and the Wild Stallions battled the skeletons. Exploring ever deeper into the stronghold, they found a room overgrown with fungus and infested with Jumping Maggots. Barely escaping with their lives, they took refuge in a kitchen, only to be attacked again by a savage Dire Cheese.

After a rest and a lunch of cheese sandwiches, they were ambushed by a party of Orcs and almost lost Ted the cleric to a hail of arrows. After some uneventful looting, they accidentally triggered a pit trap and where dropped into a underground lake some 20’ below.

Still to come, more adventures of the Wild Stallions!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Kids in the Hall Saturday

Feel that heat in your hand and know you are alive!

So What Do I Have, Exactly?

Any explination as to what kind of cancer I have is up at my Kinda Has Cancer blog.

Friday, March 2, 2012

12 Not So Wonderful Magic Tomes

Inspired by the most awesome Dungeon Dozen blog, here are twelve magic books that aren't so useful to a party (but are potentially valuable to the right buyer)

Magic-Lite Books
1. Prestidigitation for Absolute Beginners
2. Lord Blurg’s Roll of Scatomany
3. The Amazing Rando’s Amazing Sleight of Hand.
4. 1,001 Ways to Conjure Doves
5. Master Folio of Ichthyomancy.
6. Advanced Calculations for Protophysical Particle Thaumaturgy.
7. “This is not a wand” and the Principles of Post Modernist Magic.
8. Magercise ! Staying Fit for Magic Users.
9. A History of Mold Magic.
10. Familiar Care Do’s and Don’ts.
11. Dinner Party Miracles: Amaze you Friends and Be a Hit at Parties!
12. Cannibalistic Rituals for the Home Devil Worshiper

Gremlins of Nood

My explination of where all those traps come from in the Nether Regions of Nood. For some reason, this took forever to write:

There is a popuar Gnome legend called ‘The Door’. In it, a young boy named Slemiel set out reach the bottom of the gorge known as Yawning Bowel. After a series of adventures, the legend tells that the boy reaches the bottom to find only a small door, locked from the inside. The young boy opens the door and that is where the legend ends.

For centuries, Gnome scholars have pondered the tale. Some see it as a metaphor for the mystery of death, others translated it as a koan; a riddle without an answer, while others still have argued that the last page is missing. But the larger mystery of the take that puzzles the learned sages this very day, is why in the Gnomish tongue the name Slemiel has become synonymous with word, idiot.

Coincidentally or not, at approximately the same time as the Deep Door was written comes the first accounts of a strange new race, known as Gremlins, who slowly pushed their way up from the deepest depths and began a centuries long war with the Gnomes. It was not a war in the traditional sense; no armies were dispatched and no great battles fought, though the Gnomes still speak with great reverence of the #4 Kickback Shaft and the Well-Timed Collapse of the Hanging Chasm. Instead it was a war of trapsmith vs engineer, tinker vs gizmoteer as the two races trapped, snared and ambushed each other tunnel by tunnel, room by room, up from the unimaginable depths.

It was a war the Gnomes lost. Pushed ever upwards, they entered the Downlow and were forced into conflict with the Deep Dwarves and the White Elves. Already stretched to the limits, they were forced to the surface and began the nomadic existence they live to this day. The Gremlins meanwhile, suddenly and mysteriously, disappeared.

Soon after the Great Absurdity, the Gremlins appeared again, this time en masse near the ruins of Lost Lucile. They quickly drove out the survivors and used the ruins to build the giant, rotating structure that has come to be known as Tick-Tock Castle.

Gremlins can still be found in greatest numbers around Tick-Tock Castle, but they have quickly spread out a across all of the Nether Regions. They quickly crossed north through the Burning Troll Mountains and into the Elvish Empire and can now be found scattered across the continent of Arthurland. Their preferred habitat is underground, but they have been known to infest abandoned castles, thick woods and city cellars.

Humanoid, Gremlins range in height from about a foot, to four feet tall and are covered in thick skin than ranges in colour from red to blue-green. Their heads are large in comparison with their bodies and they have large, yellow, cat-like eyes and large ears. Red, white or black hair is common, and some are outright furry, though most are hairless. Their mouths are wide and filled with needle sharp teeth. They dislike bright lights and direct sunlight can cause severe burns.

Their bodies, ranging from almost round to rail thin, are possessed of strength equal to that of a full grown man. Large feet with long toes make then agile climbers and their hands are large, with long fingers topped by thick nails.

Not natural tool makers, they will happily steal them, along with anything else not nailed down. They are also particularly fond of clothing and armour. In the wild, most gremlins go around naked, but almost all Gremlins found near civilization will be wearing something, from a simple scarf or codpiece to elaborate costumes or eclectic outfits made up of colourful scraps.

It is their natural ability to built things that sets them apart from other demi-humanoids. Gremlins delight in construction and will quickly take over any abandoned space. Unfortunately, gremlins are primarily sadistic and cruel and most enjoy building elaborate traps. If a space is not abandoned, they will booby trap common items for maximum carnage.

This knack for building can be focused for a limited time and gremlins are sometimes recruited by sorcerers, wizards and alchemists looking for a cheap, disposable labour. But to do this they must enter Tick-Tock Castle and appeal to the semi-mythical figure called the Gremlin Queen.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

In Search of In Search of the Unknown

So the group took a vote and it came out unanimous for old skool D&D! Huzzah! I’m going right back to the roots and will be running B1-In Search of the Unknown using Red Book straight up.
This is all the background they are getting...

The Nether Regions are spread wide and long across the southern parts of the continent known as Arthurland. The Nether is a wild region full of ancient magic, lost treasures and wandering monsters. Each of you has come alone to Bastion, the only city in the Nether, following the legends of Zell the Unknownst and Rogaine the Bald. Rumour has it that they disappeared many years ago battling Orkish Hordes to the south, leaving behind a hidden stronghold, abandoned and just waiting to be plundered.

Our adventure begins as you enter an inn called the Twig and Berries located in the poorest part of town called Poxhill. Inside a wretched collection of scum and villainy gather around a miserable fire, eating thin gruel and drinking watered down margaritas.

What do you do?...