Archive for the ‘ RPG ’ Category

A Great Cause & Little Baby Sings

Did you know that you can buy both Erik Jensen’s Bonespur Glacier and Jason Paul McCartan’s The Tomb of Bashyr as an OSRIC game system, double-feature module? Well, you do now.

Best of all, this double-feature module helps fund a worthwhile charitable effort: St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. This link takes you the pay-what-you-want version. There’s also this $4.99 version. I’ve purchased my copy, and you should too. It’s a great pair of adventures written for a great game that help support a great organization.

And now, a new magic item!

Little Baby Sings

This strange toy, cast from metal into the shape of a crawling infant and painted with bright colors, features eight oblong buttons on one side. The first seven buttons are numbered; the last is labeled with a musical note.

The toy’s holder can press a numbered button and then the musical note button to produce a magical effect. The exact effects vary as it seems as if no two of these items are identical.

Possibilities could include such effects as these:

1. A single humanoid creature of 4 or fewer Hit Dice within 30 feet is dazed and loses its next action.

2. For one round, the use can make a rope move as commanded.

3. A single creature of 5 or fewer Hit Dice suffer from severe fear for 1d4 rounds.

4. An illusionary duplicate of the holder appears and lasts for 1d4 rounds. The duplicate mimics the holder’s actions.

5. Secret doors within 30 feet are revealed.

6. For the next minute, the holder can walk across water or other similiar substances as if they were solid ground.

7. Ignite a flammable object within 30 feet.

May 23rd, 2015  in RPG No Comments »

Things I Don’t Miss about the D20 System

1. Attacks of opportunity and the accompanying square/hex counting

2. Character build optimization

3. “That encounter’s CR was too high for our level!”

4. “That’s broken!”

5. “That’s under-powered!”

6. One-hour-long combat rounds

7. Having to hunt through a dozen books to find a single rule

8. Feat chains

9. Spending 12 hours to prep for a 4 hour game session

10. “What kind of action is that? Standard? Move?”

May 19th, 2015  in RPG 3 Comments »

Z is for ZZZ


Well, that’s it. The month is over. This post is actually two days late. I lost my rhythm, and just couldn’t get caught back up, especially what with me falling asleep at about eight or each evening.

Speaking of sleep, one of the things that has bugged me a little bit about the sleep spell in the d20 System is this line: “Slapping or wounding awakens an affected creature, but normal noise does not.” When I think about it, I cannot help but think that this sentence pretty much ruins the spell’s effectiveness much of the time.

If slapping a target of sleep wakes them up, then wouldn’t the targets wake up when they collapse and hit the ground, especially if they were running, jumping, fighting, et cetera, before the spell took effect?

GM: “The orcs charge.”

Player: “I cast sleep.”

GM: “The orcs fall asleep instantly. They tumble roughly to the ground, landing on each other, smacking their heads on the ground, and what not. Of course, this wakes them up.”

I’ve never adjudicated sleep that way, but it kind of makes sense.

April 30th, 2015  in RPG No Comments »

Y is for Yondral in the Sky


The island of Yondral with its collection of some half dozen buildings floats on invisible, eldritch currents, perpetually surrounded in mist. Once upon a time, an order of mystics called Yondral home. Peaceful, contemplative, and erudite, these mystics practiced arcane meditative arts, seeking to divine the mysteries of reality for no other purpose than the pure joy of learning. Life on Yondral was peaceful, even idyllic.

That is until one of the mystics named Blaise turned his mind toward darkness. A malignant force wormed its way into Blaise’s psyche, and slowly the mystic became more wicked while the force became stronger. Before the other mystics could figure out what was wrong with Blaise and take steps to heal him, the force lashed out. Yondral was sundered, but not into pieces. Instead, beneath the floating island, there appeared a demon-haunted mirror image of Yondral.

Today, Yondral and its twisted opposite drift about, abandoned but not abandoned, perhaps still home to ancient wisdom but certainly home to ineffable evil.

April 29th, 2015  in RPG No Comments »

V Is for Very Hard to Keep Up


Musical Interlude

Sheesh. Where’d the time go? It’s Sunday, and I’m doing Saturday’s post (but I am cheating my backdating the post; shh, don’t tell anyone). Worse than that, I’ve got nothing. My brain is fried. Grading, progress reports, typing a newsletter, and next up essays to proofread for my son Christopher. Perhaps a little W. B. Yeats is apropos?

What Was Lost

I sing what was lost and dread what was won,
I walk in a battle fought over again,
My king a lost king, and lost soldiers my men;
Feet to the Rising and Setting may run,
They always beat on the same small stone.

April 25th, 2015  in RPG No Comments »