Sunday, September 19, 2021

Date Of Expiration Is Now Available!

 You have never seen a dungeon like this before!!!

What happens when crazed mechanical beings from the future arrive on your fantasy world?

Designed for character levels 4-7, Date of Expiration, is made for the basic and advanced versions of the world’s most popular fantasy role-playing game, but can easily be adapted for play with later editions.

A challenging funhouse, this adventure fits the sword & planet sub-genre of science fiction. Be warned, there is no escaping technology here!

Date of Expiration, is a unique tale of discovery and doom. The few characters that survive will never be the same again. Good luck and have fun! 

  • 108 Pages
  • Unique Monsters & Treasure
  • All Original Art
  • Overland Journey & Vertical Dungeon Crawl

The PDF is available at DriveThruRPG here: DATE OF EXPIRATION PDF


Soft Cover Book at Amazon here: DATE OF EXPIRATION Soft-Cover Book 


Art and layout samples are below... 








Are these wires actually made of gold?

Saturday, August 21, 2021

Better Prime Requisite Perks

Still here folks...

Classic B/X Prime Requisite perks are a +5% XP modifier for scores 13-15 and a +10% XP modifier for scores 16-18.

I've always completely ignored this and never gamed with anyone that didn't.

The last thing we wanted to do was bust out the calculator when dishing out XP.

Try something like this instead. It's easier, more fun, and gives your character an equivalent and tangible edge during actual play as opposed to an end of the night calculation.

On the following tables, you get 1 roll if your Prime Requisite is 13-15, and 2 rolls if it is 16-18. These rolls take place at character creation and never again. These charts reflect positive Prime Requisites, but, can easily be reversed for negative scores. If your Prime Requisite increases or decreases during play, add or subtract these bonuses as needed.

Elves can roll on either the Fighter or Magic-User tables. 

Roll 1d4...


Fighters/Dwarves/Halflings/Elves

1. +1 to-hit

2. +1 to armor class

3. +2 hit points

4. +1 to damage


Clerics

1. +1 to turning undead

2. +2 hit points healed with curing spells

3. +1 hit point

4. bonus 1st level spell (when available)


Magic-Users/Elves

1. bonus 1st level spell

2. +1 save vs. spells

3. targets are -1 save against your spells

4. bonus 2nd level spell (when available)


Thieves

1. +5% to all percentile thief skills

2. +1 to-hit with back-stab 

3. +2 to back-stab damage 

4. +1 to a single saving throw category


Tuesday, July 6, 2021

RIFTS: She Will Kill You!...And The RIFTS 30th Anniversary Edition

She will kill you!

The Blind Warrior Women of Altara. Slaves of the Splugorth of RIFTS Atlantis. The Altarains were enslaved 2,000 years ago. Psionic, fit warriors, three quarters of them have been thoroughly brainwashed into happily serving the Splugorth, the rest yearn for freedom. There are no males and they reproduce by cloning themselves every 12 years. My drawing above portrays them as flirtatious...they are not!...but then again, it's your game.

A couple of weeks ago, this arrived...

Keith Parkinson cover painting, one of the most iconic images in the history of Role-Playing.

This is the original game reprinted in hardcover with a bunch of extras including concept art and several pages depicting all the RIFTS covers ever published. This is raw RIFTS before the multitude of expansion books. The thing I love the most is all the Larry MacDougall art, which for whatever reason is completely absent from RIFTS Ultimate Edition. There are a few samples of his high contrast art below. 

The black ink in this book POPS, I mean, the black is BLACK and crisp. 







Makes you want to play doesn't it?

You can purchase a copy here: https://www.palladiumbooks.com/

Once again, I have absolutely zero affiliation with Palladium Books, just a fan. 

Sunday, June 27, 2021

Wherein I Roll Up A Character For Gabor Lux's Helvéczia

István the 2nd Level Hungarian Soldier.
 
Helvéczia by Gabor Lux, is a picaresque fantasy role-playing game. What is picaresque? A blurb from the back of the book:

A re-imagination of old-school fantasy role-playing in a late 17th century Switzerland that never was, Helvéczia is a fast-paced and colourful game of guns, dames, deviltry and steel, based on swashbuckling tales, penny dreadfuls, local legends, and the strange stories of the Brothers Grimm.

There's no way to digest this game so quickly, but I did make a character...

Starting with stats,  I rolled using the recommended method of 4d6 drop the lowest, just one set, you're allowed to roll two sets and choose the better:

Strength: 17 (+2)
Dexterity: 11
Constitution: 12 (+1)
Intelligence: 11
Wisdom: 17 (+2)
Charisma: 10

Strong and wise. 

Being a soldier (subclass of fighter) he gets a +1 to combat and the ability to carry over damage if his attack reduces someone to 0 hit points.

Melee Total: +7 (fighter, strength, soldier, Hungarian)
Ranged Total: +3

There are three saves: Bravery, Deftness, and Temptation. Bravery is his prime, the other two are secondary.

Bravery: +4 (con)
Deftness: +1 (dex)
Temptation: +3 (wis)

Hit Points: 20 (2d10 + con/ max 10 at 1st level)

Initiative: 0

Armor Class: 15(17 in Melee -- Hungarian) -- Cuirass. I put this poor guy into debt twice just so he could have a cuirass! Who does he owe? The Rotschilds? The Lehmanns? Goldmann-Sachs? Those names sound familiar?

I made him Hungarian as a tribute to the author. This gives him some combat bonuses but also some ill fate, -2 to a random save each adventure. 

Virtue: 11 (middle of the road, which way will István go?)

Skills: I chose Climb, Ride, and Medicine. They are soldierly.

Climb: +4
Ride: +2
Medicine: +4

A halberd for a weapon: 1d10+2 damage, critical: x3

Money Left: 3 Gold Thalor

And there you have it. István, the 2nd level Hungarian Soldier, in debt, off to adventure in the Switzerland that never was. Probably tired of the Ottomans.


A few days ago, after being gone from my house all day, I returned to find an upright package on my porch leaning against the siding. 

It had been raining ALL DAY.

It was one of the books I've been waiting on, but my heart sank, as in my gut I knew that it was Helvéczia! All thoughts exited my head as I quickly entered my domain to check the damage, for I have had a poorly packaged book, by a well known author, completely and utterly destroyed by rain before. It was promptly replaced by a better packaged one, and that creator will remain anonymous as I'm not trying to embarrass anyone. 

This package was soaked!!!!!

Miraculously, Helvéczia survived unscathed. What a relief!!! My mind was blown at my fortune!

And then it was blown again by the contents of the game. Just check out this spread...

Well done, Gabor, well done.

BTW you can purchase Helvéczia here: https://emdt.bigcartel.com/


Tuesday, June 15, 2021

DATE OF EXPIRATION -- Preview

Cover could change, but probably not.


This is the main project I've been working on...

Below are two sample pages (sans the actual info) the first of which includes the dungeon doodle that sparked this whole thing. There are 43 sections like these and each section usually has multiple rooms and corridors. After I drew them, I pieced them together, forming a massive tower complex, and then set about making sense of it all.






And from my first tease...




I've drawn tons of art for this; the dungeon itself is art. 

Stats will be generic OSR like I've done before, e.g., (Armor: as plate.) 

The book I tend to reference the most for stats, spells, and such is the Rules Cyclopedia.

Levels are tentatively 4-7.






Shooting for the Fall...


Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Knock! Issue 2 Is Live On Kickstarter!

Here we go again!

If you were a fan of Knock! Issue One, Knock! Issue Two looks every bit as good if not better!

More OSR goodness from around the blogosphere!

The first Knock! kickstarter had the fastest turn-around for a kickstarter that I've ever seen and this one looks to do the same! 


Wednesday, May 12, 2021

A Little Nod To Basic Fantasy

 Haven't drawn a hot dwarf in a while!

The four books below, 1 hardback, 3 soft covers, cost me a total of $26.45. 

  • Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game
  • The Basic Fantasy Field Guide of Creatures Malevolent and Benign
  • The Basic Fantasy Equipment Emporium
  • Morgansfort: The Western Lands Campaign.

All you need to play D&D, literally, for years

And, the PDFs are all actually FREE to download (along with optional races, classes, adventures, spells, etc.) at: https://www.basicfantasy.org/

I like to reward such efforts with a physical purchase. Plus, I prefer books.

Most of you know Basic Fantasy already, but I make this post on the off chance that you do not.

So, Basic Fantasy's been around for a while, why am I only buying it now? Not sure. It popped into my head recently, as things do... actually, I was thinking about saving throws and different ways to do them and I seemed to remember that Basic Fantasy saving throws followed a different progression than B/X, BECMI, or AD&D.

One thing that bothers me (well, "bothers" is actually too strong a term) about old-school D&D is that your saving throws don't progress more smoothly.

Even if you're aware of Basic Fantasy's existence, you might not know how it actually differs from the game it clones (mainly B/X) and how it differs from other clones. Some things I noticed after a quick glance:

  • Race and Class are separate: 4 races, 4 classes. More options can be found at their website.
  • Turn Undead uses a d20, not 2d6 (but 2d6 is used to determine the number of undead.)
  • Individual initiative.
  • Slightly (and I mean slightly) different spell list.
  • Sleep allows a saving throw.
  • Every 2 levels, 2-4 of your 5 Saving Throws improve by 1, sometimes 2.
  • Class levels are 1-20.
  • Energy Drain gives "negative level" penalties, but not actual loss of levels.
  • Scale Armor is considered better than Chain Mail. (In the Equipment Emporium)
  • Dragon Breath is based off Hit Dice not Hit Points.
  • Demons & Devils are called Infernals. (In the Field Guide)
  • Gold for XP is listed in the optional rules section (as are customizable thief skills.)
  • NO ALIGNMENT. 

A solid clone.

And it's easily the best bang for your buck.


Thursday, April 22, 2021

Papers & Paychecks!

3rd-level Fashion Model
Stress: 9, Poise: 16


We daydream about the apocalypse.

We fantasize about danger.

We pretend we could take it.

But in a crazy world that seems to be on the verge of catastrophe every single day, eventually the shit will hit the fan and those of us that remain may find ourselves longing for less adventure as we relax to a nice ol' game of...

Papers & Paychecks!*

Yes, a game where you play as a 3rd-level Engineer, a 1st-level Plummer, a 4th-level Lawyer, a 5th-level Accountant, a 6th-level Nurse...

  • Hit Points are called Stress. You would lose Stress by failing rolls. Reaching 0 Stress might result in a nervous breakdown or some such thing that causes you to retreat from society.
  • Narcotics temporarily restore Stress at the risk of addiction and/or death.
    • Armor Class is called Poise, perhaps affected by your level and fashion accessories.
    • Dungeons would be events -- parties, weddings, conventions, disasters, vacations, etc. They might be a flow-chart, a point-crawl, or randomly rolled occurrences (challenges) interrupted by periodic preordained incidents. Longer, more stressful events would have a fixed number of minimum challenges.
    • Saving Throws might be:
      • Disease
      • Toxins
      • Injury
      • Depression
      • Lust
      • Peer Pressure
    • Getting fired from your job might result in negative levels, much like energy-drain, or at least pause your advancement.
    • Getting arrested might cause a mandatory dip into the Criminal class. 
    • Failed rolls in prison or war cause twice as much Stress.
    • Marriage, divorce, and children would be things that happen to you along the way that have both pros and cons that assist or hurt you with this roll or that.
    • Character Sheets would definitely look like job applications or tax forms.
    • Aging would come with both boons and banes.

    So, after a long day of scavenging for food and dodging what few bullets remain, cozy up to that warm fire in that make-shift shelter with a few of your surviving pals. Grab those strange looking dice you found in that burned-out town (who knows how those unused notebooks and pencils survived!) Roll up some career-folk and see if you can handle the day-to-day angst and stress of normal life in...

    Papers & Paychecks!*

    Almost sounds fun.

    *See pg. 111 of the AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide for inspiration.


    Friday, April 9, 2021

    RIFTS: Dial O For Operator

    Still working away at something, but can't neglect the blog, so...

    RIFTS Operators...

    I wonder how many people have played an Operator?

    They're basically just mechanics. Regular folks good at fixing stuff. They'll die in M.D.C. combat immediately. And they won't last terribly long in S.D.C. combat either. Unless you gear them up in either case. Which kind of makes sense, because gear is what they do.

    They should almost be a necessity for any RIFTS group, just like the thief is (or should be) a necessity for any group of dungeon-crawlers.

    You see, if you don't know, JUNK is all over RIFTS earth. Old junk, new junk, alien junk, all kinds of junk. In fact, if any setting needs a plethora upon plethora of random tables for what you find in this ruined town or that battlefield, it's RIFTS.

    A good GM should be littering broken, but potentially useful items (weapons, vehicles, armor, etc.) of all sizes all over the place...specifically for the Operator to shine. Not everything will get fixed (or fixed in time) some rolls will fail, but the Operator will always be busy and could become a cherished member of the group.

    Imagine they find some ungodly cool thing that's going to take awhile to fix, but it's in a dangerous place with lots of random encounters. How many fights are the PCs willing to risk while the Operator tinkers with this thing? (The Operator get's to fight too of course.)

    The younger me wouldn't have looked twice at this class, but now (especially after I drew that pic) I'm digging it.

    BTW, Palladium has been printing hard-covers of their rulebooks and they have a special hard-cover reprinting of RIFTS 1st Edition coming very soon. I've preordered one. That iconic Splugorth Slave Barge cover by Keith Parkinson....damn, if that doesn't fire up your imagination...

    Back to writing.

    And drawing.



    Tuesday, March 30, 2021

    A Teaser Of Sorts...

    This is not the title or the cover.

    ...for what I'm working on.

    Sat idle for a year.

    Back at it with a vengeance.

    Closing in on 80 pages.

    It's a very unique thing. 

    And then there's this guy...




    Date Of Expiration Is Now Available!

      You have never seen a dungeon like this before!!! What happens when crazed mechanical beings from the future arrive on your fantasy world?...