Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Make Your Own Gaming Fonts

If you are like me and you like handing players cryptic messages, but you'd like to make your own "fantasy scripts," then this website is for you.

Go to the site, download the template.  Fill it out.  Scan it.  Upload it and viola! you have your own font.

Here's a quick example of the form filled out --

I then installed the font and here's an example of a cryptic note...

PS: if you make some cool fonts -- please share!  :)

Here's my font if you are interested!!

Monday, July 29, 2013

My Dr. Who Cosplay

Waaaaay back in the 80's, I used to watch Tom Baker play Dr. Who on our PBS station.  I caught all the episodes I could and I even used our VCR to record any episodes that played late at night.  (What I would have given for a DVR!)

My Grandma Erna was a terrific knitter.  She made all kinds of things and not the awkward, ugly sweaters that grandmas are known for.  She was really good and she was a good sport too!

In 1988, I asked her to knit me a Dr. Who scarf.  She did.  I still have it.

I still have a letter from her telling me all about her progress.  I'm posting it here (minus some family gossip) for your amusement.  When you read it, you'll know why I laughed out loud all these years later.  :)

Here's the pattern my cousin received from the BBC 

Here's the note she sent when she mailed me the scarf

Here I am wearing the scarf today.  :)

Grandma has been gone for awhile now.  I miss her.  Thanks for the scarf and all the memories Grandma Erna!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

[CotMA] Battle with the Circus of the Damned

So three adventurers had been geased to retrieve the Rod of the Skygem for the Ringmaster.  Kalen had been asked by Bachontoi to retrieve it for him.

This setup a conflict.

Using commune with Bachontoi, Morgrim determined that battle with the Ringmaster was the only way to break the geas without giving the Rod away.

Bachontoi was willing to go along and turned himself into a donkey to sneak into the Ringmaster's pocket dimension.

The Ringmaster and his clowns, freaks, witch and drago-phant (part elephant/part dragon -- called Dumbo) were ready upon their arrival.

The battle took a long time but eventually the adventurers were triumphant.  I'll share some random tidbits about this photo for those of you who are interested.  :)

  • Using my LCD projector, I was able to find a picture of a carnival and this formed the area of the battle.  
  • Though it's hard to see, Kalen the Wizard is being identified by the "pointing fingers" in the picture above.  He dimension doored from the battlefield to a perch on the "Ferris Wheel of DOOM!"  He's sitting on a platform on a "flying stand" that I built.
  • The blue object (center-left) is the gate that the adventurers entered through.
  • The hobbit with the yellow ring is Hildigrim.  He is currently hasted (gold ring) and has read a scroll of Protection from Magic (yellow ring - 11 rounds of protection left - yellow die)
  • There were four kinds of "freaks" from the Circus Freakshow.  Three of them can be seen here.  The one at the bottom represented a "four armed" freak.  At the top with the red skin was a "firebreather."  Next to that one was a "scaly" freak.  
  • Biata (purple dress) had her hands full with freaks in melee.  I use numbered wooden chips (2 above) to designate monsters to keep track of damage and effects.
  • The mini with the green base was a "Clown."  I found these in a vending machine for $0.50.  I have three and they've been a fun addition to the Castle of the Mad Archmage.  Lots of clown references in there.
  • The two wizards battling are Bachontoi (left) and the Ringmaster (right).
  • Firebreather freak #1 has been wailing on Oryx and Morgrim with his firebreath.  
  • Yellow Clown has a red ring on him because Oryx managed to give him a terrible wound.  He will take an extra d6 every round, hence the red d6 nearby.
  • Dumbo the drago-phant has been clobbered by Grunbar the Handsman.  This represents the SECOND dragon he has knocked out with his fists.  Awesome!  
  • Grunbar is the dwarf with the keg.  Morgrim has the red cloak and sword.  (Clerics of Bachontoi can use swords in my game.)  The sword is Jasper and can speak telepathically to Morgrim.  Oryx is the dwarf with the pick and lantern.
  • Collen Redsides has just been knocked out by the Red Clown.  
  • The two pale minis are Spiny Freaks.
  • The mini encircled with the yellow pipe cleaner is the witch who is being crushed by Bigby's Crushing Hand.  Kalen used a wand to that effect after dimension dooring to the Ferris Wheel.  
  • The dire badger is her pet and it is trying to rescue her.
Good times!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Bones Barbarian

Latest Bones I've finished.  Making progress...

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

One Bone, One Wizard

In my CotMA game, there's a recurring undead villain named Corvus the Black.  I've been using a generic "Shade Knight" to represent him --
But no longer!  Check out the guy on the left!
Corvus the Black and a Chaos Wizard

Of course, who can't use a Chaos Mage when they are running a campaign?  The guy on the right is a Games Workshop plastic from a long time ago.  He's been rattling around but now he's done.  I think he turned out nicely.  The bronze is a new paint I bought this weekend and I like it.  Did a red wash over the metallic on his staff.  His hands seem to be freakishly big, however.  :)

Monday, July 22, 2013

[40k] Banecorp Terminators

I got these guys on eBay and they were painted some kind of awful red scheme.  Into the Pine Sol they went and a couple of dunks/soaks/scrubs later they were bare metal.

I primed them grey and then I got to work.  I think they turned out pretty well.

They have feathers and such on their armor.  I'm thinking that they might be Ravenwing or Space Wolves?  I dunno...

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Wizard Says "Enjoy the 500th Post!"

Here's a plastic Games Workshop mini that's been primed and unpainted for quite some time.  I think he turned out quite well.  I believe he's an "elemental wizard" or somesuch -- I think the old WH Fantasy had "themed" wizards.  He'd be fire I think!  :)

Here's another pic.  As you may know, I'm a bit of a DIY person.  I'm not opposed to recycling materials to make something.  Here's my paint setup -- I made it from a few boxes.  It holds all my paint stuff in a relatively organized fashion.  It's all hot glued together and the main box is intact so it bears the vast majority of the weight.  The back tiers are the opposite ends of a flat Chobani yogurt box.  Chobani tubs make excellent water cups for painting.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

More Minis, Plastic, Not Bones...

Here's a hobbit and a dwarven troll-slayer.  I got these years ago in a small box of plastic minis from Games Workshop.  Adventurers, I think.  I believe there were 10 different characters in the box.  I'll need to look for the rest of them...

I normally don't bother trying to paint the eyes -- my hands aren't steady enough anymore.  I took a chance on him and I think they turned out fairly well.

Friday, July 19, 2013

More Minis, One More Bone...

I'm finding myself painting a lot these days.  Partly because I have HUNDREDS of minis to paint and partly because I find it relaxing...  I have a considerable amount of stress in my job these days.  Painting also has less calories than eating, which is what I tend to do if I sit on the couch...

So, here are some pics of the latest minis I've finished.  I've never claimed to be a great painter, but I think my work is OK and certainly not terrible.  You may have a different opinion.  :)  If so, well, remember the thing I said about my stress at work...  :P

The one in the middle is a Bone(s)

Ack these are blurry.  :(

This Saurian is actually "Rex" a lizardman played by Matt in a Savage Worlds game from long, long ago...  I finally got him finished.  I had to build out the front of his base with some putty so that he wouldn't fall over.

My name is "Tim."  

This is the "Prodigal Sorcerer" from the Magic: The Gathering miniatures line.  I've had him in my box for years and years.  He was primered, but never really painted.  Well, he's done now.  

I wanted a "blue" theme to him since he's a big part of blue within the M:tG universe.  Just couldn't bring myself to paint his clothes like that...

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Temple Phantom

Illustration copyright Alex Babakitis - used with permission -
Temple Phantom : HD 5; AC 0 [19]; Atk 6 claws (d4), bite (d8+special); Move 18 (fly); Save 12; CL/XP 12/2000; Special: Grab attack, Spell drain

Not actually a phantom and not even undead, the Temple Phantom is a malign creature from a parallel dimension. 

Over time, the prayers of worshippers build a conduit between the mortal realm and the outer planes.  This conduit is strengthened and reinforced by the act of worship, but if a temple falls into ruin or is abandoned, this path can become fragile and "other things" can slip in from the spaces between worlds.

The temple phantom is one of those things.  Looking like a toothy mass with six grasping claws, the temple phantom slips into our world looking for living prey. Its body is used to significantly warmer temperatures, so it frequently wraps itself in whatever cloth it can find -- usually tapestries, burial wraps or other discarded fabric.

It is this flowing fabric, as the temple phantom flies through the air, that give it its misnomer.

The temple phantom cannot be turned by clerics.  It has an impeccable sense of smell and can track prey at great distances.  Temple phantoms are immune to non magical weapons, sleep, charm, hold and poison.

Being an entity from "elsewhere," the temple phantom is strongly attracted to magic.  It prefers to attack magic users over other victims.  If more than one magic user is present, add up all the levels of their currently memorized spells.  It will attack the magic user with the higher total.  If no magic user is present, it will attack a cleric.  If no cleric, it will attack at random.

When a target has been located, it swoops in attacking with all of its claws.  If three or more claws hit, it will grasp its prey and automatically bite for d8 damage (no roll to hit necessary.)  Each subsequent turn it will automatically bite for d8 and crush/claw/squeeze for an additional 2d4.  Grabbed victims cannot cast spells.  

If the bitten victim is a magic user, she must save vs. magic or lose 1d4 levels of memorized spells, randomly determined by the GM.

Grabbed victims must make two successful STR checks (1 per round for 2 rounds) to escape.  Killing the temple phantom will cause it to dissolve into nothingness releasing the victim.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

[Bones] More Progress...

Here are a few more old Grenadier hirelings/henchmen...  Just love these guys.  Such character.  :)
Nice to have a few non-combatant hirelings...

Here's a Chronoscope (?) Bones.  I'm planning to use her as Sgt. Telion in my WH40k Banecorp Space Marine Army.
I think she turned out pretty well.

Monday, July 15, 2013

[Bones] More Progress...

Here are some more minis from this weekend's painting spree...
An "eyebeast" I think.  I like the way he turned out.

I make the bases larger with Sculpey and a 1" washer.  Then I blend the crack (a bit) with Squadron White Putty.  I've not tested the bases for durability.  I suspect they are a bit fragile, but I typically am careful with my stuff.  :)

A couple old Grenadier "Henchmen."  I like to paint these guys up a little gaudy.  I think the wash turned out well.

You poor dumb dead bastard!

Sunday, July 14, 2013

[Bones] Progress So Far...

Here are the first two Bones I've painted...

This is the "Iron Golem" from the set.  I painted him in gold to represent an adamantine golem that exists in my Queston campaign.  The golem is called Lomax and serves the Fyrking as the leader of the Golden Fyrguard.  I suppose he's more like a warforged than a golem, but there weren't warforged back in the day.

Here's a crypt.  Who doesn't need a nice crypt during the odd dungeon crawl?

Saturday, July 13, 2013

My House is Filled with BONES!

Just a short post to say that my Reaper Bones arrived.  Wow.  I will never need to buy another mini for the rest of my life.  :)

Yeah right...

Thursday, July 11, 2013


Illustration copyright Alex Babakitis - used with permission -
Arachno-raptor : HD 8; AC 4 [15]; Atk 1 bite (1d8) 2 claws (1d4); Move 15 (Climb 12); Save 8; CL/XP 10/1400; Special: Teamwork, Webs, Possible spell use.

It is unknown if this beast is the result of fiendish magical experimentation or just another demonic terror loosed upon the world. 

The arachno-raptor is a swift moving predator that hunts in packs.  Rarely alone, the arachno-raptor will use teamwork and clever tricks to capture and kill its prey.  They are extremely smart.

Some arachno-raptors have learned to mimic human speech (like a parrot) to lure intelligent creatures to their doom.

Rare arachno-raptors have learned to read magic (by capturing and enslaving weak wizards) and have taught themselves spell-use.  Their ability is generally no greater than a third level magic user.  They can use wands and scrolls.

It can create webs once per day, as the spell.  The webs dissolve in a week unless maintained by the arachno-raptor.

I could really see these guys being used as the main protagonist in a game.  They could use their superior intelligence to domesticate other spiders, ally with humanoids (or enslave them) and pursue their own agenda.  Throw in dark elves, illithids and the demon queen of spiders and you've got another faction to have fun with!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

[WH40k] More Underground Lasers Terrain

Here are some additional buildings.  Here's a link to his eBay store.  You can see how modular these are and how you can mix and match to make the scenery different each game.
Notches stabilize the different pieces when you stack them

Ladders and the antenna are movable

The roof will lift off of the large square building AND the long shipping container

When there is extra material for the model, the space is filled with ammo crates or other small boxes

Sunday, July 7, 2013

[WH40k] Underground Lasers Terrain

A few months ago, I got involved in a Kickstarter for this laser-cut, wooden, 28mm scale Sci Fi terrain.

I received a well-padded box filled with my models.  I built one, just to try it out, and I must say, that I'm very impressed.  The wood is solid and the cuts are very clean.  The slots/grooves that slide together to assemble the pieces fit perfectly.  The pieces are very well engineered.

I highly recommend Underground Lasers if you are interested in this kind of thing.  He has an eBay store.

Here are some pics.  Eventually, I plan to paint these once I'm certain about the configuration I like (there is some built-in flexibility.)

These "shipping cubes" are stackable.

The ladder you see on the right side is removable.  

More pictures to follow as I build additional pieces.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

[Monster] Flarab Beetle

Illustration copyright Alex Babakitis - used with permission -
Flarab Beetle : HD 4; AC 2 [17]; Atk 2 pincers (front 1d10/back 1d6); Move 12; Save 13; CL/XP 6/400; Special: Spittle

The flarab beetle is a native of the elemental plane of fire, but it can frequently be found underground, especially near molten magma.

The beast has a hot, sticky lava-like spittle that it can use effectively as a weapon.  3/day the flarab beetle can spray a 10' wide cone of spittle, up to 15' distant.  The spittle is activated by air and acts similar to heat metal with the exception that anything covered in the stuff is affected by the heat.  For each round, consider the following chart --
  • Round 1: The spittle is heating up, no damage but uncomfortable
  • Round 2: 1d4 points of damage; save or be blistered from the heat
  • Round 3-5: 1d4+1 points of damage; save or be blistered and overwhelmed by the heat for 1d8 rounds
  • Round 6: 1d4 points of damage
  • Round 7: Cooling down, hot to the touch
The target can prevent damage by immersing themselves in water.  A large body of water (lake, pool, river) will be sufficient to counteract the damage and wash the spittle off in 1d4 rounds.  Soaking oneself with water from a waterskin (or similar) will cancel the damage for that round only.  

It is said that the eye of the flarab beetle is much prized by wizards for the creation of wands of fireballs.