Friday, April 22, 2011

CotMA Campaign -- Now with T-Shirts!

One of my players can silkscreen shirts.  I bought him a couple and he put the name of the campaign home city on the front and some of the details about our characters on the back.

Fun stuff!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Cauldron Crab

So, in my CotMA campaign, one of the characters, Oryx, got a bad draw (Void) from a Deck of Many Things and his soul is trapped... somewhere...

Anyway, he's encountered the spectre of an evil wizard.  Is he real, perhaps another lost soul, or is he a figment of Oryx's imagination?  He may never know.

He did discover that the wizard has been brewing up a monster in a large cauldron.  I'm calling it a cauldron crab.

I thought you might like to see a picture that I mocked up.  Enjoy!  Picture removed.  I shouldn't have used the stock art here.  Apologies to the artist.

Cauldron Crab
HD: 4
AC: 4 (or AC 0 see below)
#AT: 2
D/AT: 2d8/1d6
MV: 9"
SZ: Large
Morale: 9
Treasure: Nil

Created from baby crustaceans, rare herbs and demon ichor, the cauldron crab is a monster that dark wizards can use to protect their labs or to serve as loyal bodyguards.  Created through a long thaumaturgical process, the cauldron crab must be fed fresh meat at the conclusion or the wizard risks the crab turning its appetites upon him!

In combat, the cauldron crab will try to use its iron shell to keep opponents at bay.  If attacked in melee by one or two opponents, they will need to hit its formidable AC of 0.  If attacked in melee by 3 or more opponents, only one (randomly chosen) will strike AC 0, the rest will be able to attack its softer chiton armor of AC 4.

Once it has been reduced to 8 HPs or less, the crab will retreat into the cauldron and attempt to hide from its attackers.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Dungeon Mapping Online

A friend of mine, Dave, has a dwarf fighter named Oryx.  Oryx is a monster magnet and is the most experienced character in my CotMA campaign from the point of view that HE was around at the start.

Anyway, he got a bad draw from a Deck of Many Things and his soul is currently entrapped "elsewhere." His body is kinda like a zombie right now, but he can't do much.

I've been running a PBEM for him as Oryx tries to navigate his soul out of the prison he is in.  His mind has built this prison from his memories/assumptions about reality.  It seems that the souls of friends are also there to help him.  Namely Jace the Devine (a cleric who perished in a firetrap) and Bob the Burro (who took an unfortunate tumble down a 30' pit).

To play online, I discovered QueekyPaint.  I've uploaded a map from Dave's Mapper there and then I put a layer of black over the top of it.  I erase the black as Oryx explores the dungeon.

Well, here's the cool bit.  QueekyPaint captures the actual strokes that you make as you draw.  That's right, it plays your drawing back like a movie!

I downloaded Jing and I recorded the exploration thus far.  I encourage you to check out these tools for yourself.  You might find them valuable.

Check out the video of the dungeon exploration here:

Sunday, April 17, 2011

You've GOT to be KIDDING ME!

Check out these pics of the WotC "Terrain Powers" for 4e:

Wow.  I'm glad they statted those up for me...


Over at, I built a deck of 12 Swashbucklers.  I got the images from the Wizards website and I used the Labyrinth Lord Character generator to cut/paste in some random traits.

If the traits were normal/average -- I deleted them for space reasons.

You can get the cards here.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Going Postal

This is a trailer from a new Terry Pratchett/Discworld novel that I've never heard of.  My wife used to work for the United States Post Office, so I'm familiar with the connotation.

I thought the clip was filled with a lot of inspiring stuff.


Fat Dragon - EZ Tiles - Wilderness Ruins

Fat Dragon Games, makers of 2D and 3D dungeon tile PDF's sent me an email with a coupon for $1 off their newest creation, "The Wilderness Ruins."

For $2.99, I couldn't resist.

The PDF comes with 10 tiles that are similar, but have some differences built in.  The best part is that you can turn features on and off to compose the tile that you'd like.  Here are a couple of screenshots:

In this one, you can see that everything is turned ON.

In this one, I've turned off the stairs, the statue and the pedestal.  Same tile; different options.

I've posted about upcycling cardboard to make dungeon tiles before, so I did it again.  I printed 10 different tiles (each 6x6) and spray glued them to thin cardboard.  The result is a set of ruins that I can build into many different configurations.  Here are just a few (sorry about the blur -- phone camera)

They are slightly larger than the tiles I used in my 1PD Entry 2011.  They'll work just fine together.  In fact, these tiles are PERFECT for use as the temple ruin that is just above my dungeon.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Adventuring Children

Saw this pic over at Golden Age Comic Book Stories.  It's a cereal ad by N. C. Wyeth.  It's really cool.

When I saw it, I was struck by the way that the kids were having fun.

They appear to be off on an imaginary adventure.  Convert that pirate flag to a 10' pole and you've really got something.   :)

In large part, their outfits and toys seem to be handmade.  They are playing together.  The cereal actually sounds healthy.

Compare that to these more contemporary ads:


Just an observation.  As you were.  :)

Stephen Hawking @ ASU

Not really a post about Old School Gaming, but I have to post it anyway.

I got the chance to hear a lecture by Stephen Hawking last night at ASU. It was short, but very cool. My friends and I stood in the rain afterward discussing it, that's how cool it was.

The ASU Symphony Orchestra also played Gustav Holst's "The Planets" in sync with NASA imagery. Awesome.

The clip isn't groundbreaking, but I post it as evidence that I was there! :)

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Beware: The Man Who Damages A Book, Sometimes Repairs It

I LITERALLY woke up after a nap with these words in my head.  My DM muse must have been working in my sleep...

Here's what happens when you try to damage/destroy a magical tome:

d6 Reaction to attack How to destroy book
1 Every point of damage you do to the book is done to you instead. Cast Raise Dead upon the book.
2 Instead of taking damage, words describing the attack are magically written in the back section of the book entitled, "Depredations, etc." Cause the book to run out of magical ink.  This could take awhile because it has over 100 blank pages in this section.
3 The book is completely impervious to damage.  Nothing can tear a page or even scratch the cover. Getting the book wet will cause the ink to run and will effectively destroy the book.
4 The book gets angry.  It begins casting the spells within its pages.  You'd better make a saving throw... Befriend the book and convince it to cast erase upon it's "heart page".
5 The book summons allies from -- (1) elemental planes (2) abyss (3) nearby (4) other dimension -- to defend itself. Seclude yourself in such a way that the allies may not be summoned (or are summoned into peril) then destroy the book.
6 The book splits in two, making two copies of itself. One copy promptly teleports away. Destroy the book in such a way that its duplicate is also subject to the damage and the damage is constant and ongoing to prevent runaway divide and teleport behavior (Mt. Doom anyone?)

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Please Submit A Monster

Hi everyone!

Michael Kotschi over at has set up a form for monster submissions to the "Massive Monograph of Malignant Malefactors."

If you would like to contribute a monster (or monsters) to the book -- ONLY monsters of your own original design please -- you can do so by filling out the form found HERE.  The form will be open for a few months to allow for new submissions.  At some point, I'll turn it off so that I can get on with the final editing of the book.

Michael has provided an example monster on the page.  There's some quirkiness to the way we're doing this book, so you may want to study his example to see how we're statting all these critters up.  If you leave stuff off the form, I might just put it in myself.  :)

That said, I respectfully reserve the right to edit your submissions, but I will do so with great care and consideration for the monster your have created.

If your monster(s) are chosen to be in the book, you will get credit in the book and you will have a chance to win A PRINTED COPY of the book.  (I will draw randomly; one entry per monster chosen for the book; number of copies to be given away subject to my personal budget, but shall be greater than or equal to one.)   :)

For everyone else, the PDF of the book will be FREE and the book will be offered through Lulu AT COST.

If you are an artist and would like to donate some illustrations for the book, please contact me at my email: wilmanric at gmail dot com.  All art will be product identity so you will retain your copyright to your art beyond its use in the print and PDF versions of the MMMM.

Now, here's a song from the REM album "Monster" for your entertainment...