Monday, July 29, 2019

5e chargen

So I started hacking the PHB a while back:

Orcs: green tinged germanics
Half elves: fashionwitches

But without messing with the rules it's just a hipster collage of natgeo photography. So I stole liberally from Luka's houserules over at WTF, and added some backgrounds from old posts and various OSR darlings.

Take a look at it here

Gnome hack - remove all special abilities and score changes, and give them "Quantum of smallness: If you are unobserved, your size exists in a superposition and you can fluctuate anywhere between dwarf height and six inches to reach higher shelves or fit in little holes."

Dwarves as viking miners is fine. Just read up on Vikings (or miners)

Saturday, June 29, 2019

within cells interlinked

Mothership is really cool and you can pay what you want for the pdf. It's had me thinking about hard-ish scifi games and since you can play an android here's some blade runner 2049:

So using this in a game:

You're an android and the company you work for views you as property, probably. They don't want you getting any ideas about liberation or personhood, and so something they closely monitor is your emotion subroutines.

To do this they assign you a baseline (you, the player, should choose this if you want). This is like a stanza of poetry, a verse of a song, or even an excerpt from a speech or something like that. If you want to do the full-on experience (because why else would I be writing this) you get to memorize it and the Warden gets to come up with a half dozen questions pertaining to maybe a half dozen significant words in the piece - probably mostly the nouns but some other stuff too.

So now any time you return from a mission where you rolled on the Panic table they pull you into this little interrogation room and aggressively test your emotional response to your baseline. You recite your baseline and then can do the whole questioning thing if you want. Whether you do or not, then make a Stress check - your cool responses are what assures your unseen proctor you are adhering to baseline.

Success means you relieve half your Stress (Critical Success relieves all of it!) and you receive a bonus of 1d10 x level Credits.

FAILURE means you immediately roll for a Panic effect and hopefully have some friends on the outside who can talk you out of a pickle

CRITICAL FAILURE is same as above but you are also promptly slated for termination. Other players might come up with something to save you but it's doubtful it'll work more than once.

Monday, June 17, 2019

adventures from the blogs

from deviantart

Some free adventures that I'll try and update periodically:

The One Page Dungeons are allllll free baby

Excellent intro adventures from Dungeon of Signs

The Witch's List from Graverobber's Guide

Cave Quarry of the Chalk Dwellers from Valley of the Blue Snails (map missing but you can surely whip one up)

Stone Sky River Place from False Machine

Swamp of Monsters has a number of keyed locations, if not technically "adventures"

DUNGEON MIXs from Basic Red RPG

Dungeon Dozen has some free pdf adventures down the left side

Adventure PDFs (and a bunch of rules and stuff) from Goblin Punch

Monday, May 20, 2019

on the chromatic hunter, or "coloraptor"

The coloraptor lives in the jungles far to the south. It navigates and hunts using its chroma-sensitive eyes - the brighter color something is the more it is drawn to it. Brave men venture into the wilds in their gray coats to battle the dangerous beast and they do not always return. actuality it eats flowers. A chemical in its body is refined and manufactured into a paste that reacts to flashes of color, so gets smeared onto plates to make an image. The few that are caught and not rendered into "reptigraphs" are kept in captivity in concrete boxes and essentially starved. Like underfed tigers their behavior is more ferocious; their hide loses its shifting patterns and bright feathers. They are fearsome and miserable.

(Why yes, my campaigns have both dinosaurs in zoos and photography)

Thursday, April 25, 2019

red nails, and blue

An experiment for dungeon factions

Get a biggish dungeon map (more than a dozen rooms) like one of these and stuck it with features and treasure and traps and whatever. There are two groups fighting over it so they make up all the encounters. Mark an area on each sides with a faction's color and leave a decent sized buffer zone.

Each room/encounter check roll 2d8, preferably one red and one blue.
-If the room is within the higher die's territory, subtract the lower and take the result.
-If in the enemy's territory, take each result separately. The stronger result somehow infiltrated and has been found out by a “native” and now they are battling. If the intruder survives this becomes contested space.
-If in contested space, the stronger has just killed the weaker (if a tie they are both dying or it's just empty).

Example factions


Extradimensional parasites burning in the lungs

1 - Singed Prophet. Anoints with oil while babbling. 2HD, casts Burning Hands
2 - Naked axolotl spiramander. Screams when wounded. 1HD, stats as dog, glowing gill fronds
3 - Hunchback in sodden robes. Larval spiramanders pop out of back to croak-cast Scorching Rays. 3HD
4 - 1d3 Facehuggers. Try to grapple, lay eggs if attached for three rounds. 1HD
5 - Wereshark fighter thrall, singed and glowing gills, scimitar. 2HD, AC plate
6 - 1d6 dwarves with tongues replaced by long larvae. Can whip out to grapple and burn. 2HD
7 - Emberhoof Ogre. Steps smolder, smoking meteoric club deals 2d8. 3HD
8 - Adult Salamandramorph. 4HD, AC chain, attacks x2, ignite on hit


Honor takes second place in the battle for surface flesh

1 - 1d3 human form knights in armor. 1HD, AC plate, attack with sickles
2 - Hybrid with tail (as club, sends flying on max damage), plate armor coming loose. 2HD, AC leather
3 - 1d4 sharkshead knights. Nonverbal, attack with longswords and hooks. 1HD, AC plate
4 - Hammerhead knight. Chains to grapple and drag. 2HD, AC chain
5 - Hybrid lancer. On bridled salamander larva, charge attacks double damage. AC chain
6 - 1d6 Dogfish halflings. High Dex, sneak attack as thieves. 2HD
7 - Great White Knight. Wields greataxe, covered in remoras that can be thrown as spears that cause bleed, 4HD, AC plate
8 - Mako priest. Rasping mace causes bleed on hit unless they save. AC leather, casts Blood in the Water - summons from this table, roll 1d6

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

peter ian power hour is a go

So Peter and I starting recording ourselves talking (incredibly poorly in my case) about some game stuff and put it online here.

Listen only if you have an affection for pretentious nerdism

pic unrelated

Monday, December 10, 2018

fauna palettes

From Yoon-Suin, pg 222: "The Amethyst Medusa. A woman with hair composed of living, moving centipedes, whose vision transforms her victims into pillars of pure amethyst. She lives on an island on a lake on an island on a lake. Her stats are as a standard medusa."

A trick for populating a foreign land in a hurry: swapping out the components of a familiar chimeric creature with their indigenous equivalents. This goes back almost as far as using Google Translate to come up with renames

This seems like an ideal mix of old and new - the familiar shape of a fantastic beast combined with local flavor in an easy to comprehend form.

An example: fantasy Yucatan
MtG Resplendent Griffin

Some local animals: Macaw, Mosquito, Jaguar, Bird of Paradise, Spider Monkey, Tree Frog, Python, Puma, Iguana, Quetzal, Hummingbird

Chimeric animals from the MM (some similar ones ignored): centaur, chimera, gnoll, griffon, harpy, hippocampus, hippogriff, jackalwere, leucrotta, lycanthrope, manticore, medusa, merman, mind flayer, naga, owlbear, pegasus, rakshasa, satyr, sphinx

Some are cuter than others too

With a minute's work we quickly have mosquito-headed mind flayers, were-iguanas, and a sphinx with features of a jaguar and quetzal bird - and none particularly need re-statted or -conceived.