Friday, March 28, 2014

RIP - David A. Trampier

It seems the rumors of DAT's demise turned to be true after all, unfortunately. From the article by TOR;

David A. Trampier, the Illustrator Who Defined the Look of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, Has Passed Away, 1954-2014
David A. Trampier
The Southern Illinoisian, the regional paper for Carbondale, Illinois, has listed an obituary for David A. Trampier, the artist responsible for defining the look of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, from the first edition and onwards.
Trampier was doggedly reserved throughout his life, to such an extent that most D&D fans know his work more than they know his name. He disappeared in 1988, leaving his ongoing comic D&D Wormy abruptly unfinished, and retired from illustration to drive a Yellow Taxi in Carbdondale, Illinois. (The above photo from 2003 is one of the only pictures ever snapped of Trampier.)
According to the Castle Perilous Games & Books store blog, Trampier suffered a stroke late last year but was considering convention appearances and some illustration work in the future. You can read further details in their recollection and see more about his work here.
Thank you, David Trampier for bringing character and life to a gaming series that means so much to so many.
Take a look at Trampier's iconic illustrations below:
David A. Trampier Advanced Dungeons and Dragons art


And yes, "Lokerimon the Lawful" is not a Tramp illustration, but rather a piece by Jason Edwards in homage to Dave's famous "Emirikol the Chaotic" illustration in the original Dungeon Masters Guide



 It got stuck in there with the original article set of illustrations for some reason.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The Raven

The Raven (1963) Poster

The Raven (1963)




I was just watching this old classic when it occurred to me how many magic user attributes and spells this movie actually portrayed. Two main characters are part of a sorcerous brotherhood and the lead, Vincent Price, is the son of it's former Grandmaster.

For those of you who haven't actually seen this gem before here is the film's synopsis from IMDB ;
In this tongue-in-cheek movie inspired by Poe's poem, Dr. Craven is the son of a great sorcerer (now dead) who was once himself quite skilled at that profession, but has since abandoned it. One evening, a cowardly fool of a magician named Bedlo comes to Craven for help- the evil Scarabus has turned him into a raven and he needs someone to change him back. He also tells the reluctant wizard that Craven's long-lost wife Lenore, whom he loved greatly and thought dead, is living with the despised Scarabus.

A pretty good plot hook for any adventure, eh? Anyway, as I started off originally there are a slew of spells cast about in this including;
  1. Polymorph Other
  2. Fly
  3. Fireball
  4. Magic Missile (various flavors)
  5. Control Weather
  6. Call Lightning
  7. Passwall
  8. Contingency
  9. some form of Bigby's Hand Spell
  10. Teleport
  11. some form of Color/Prismatic Spray
  12. Telekinesis
  13. as well as some potion making
It just surprised me at how many of these were in there is all. Well if you haven't seen this old classic I would highly recommend it.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

What's your AD&D 1ed Alignment?


Neutral Good

1 chaos, -12 evil and 14 balance!
Neutral Good
"The struggle of humanity against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting."
...
-- MILAN KUNDERA
...
...
With regards to Law and Chaos, you are Neutral
With regards to Good and Evil, you are Good

Neutral Good people are practical romantics. Which might sound like a contradiction in terms, and maybe it is. They don't care though. They know the world doesn't always make sense, and that you can't put all your faith in cut-&-dried definitions. A Neutral Good person generally takes the moderate position. Both security (order) and liberty (chaos) can be good things, but one isn't necessarily better than another. In some situations the law brings the most benefit, in other cases personal freedom is more desirable. It's all relative. Order and chaos are just theoretical constructs. They are means to an end, not ends in themselves. The greater good is just that : whatever brings the greatest amount of actual good to the world. People get too hung up on definitions. Many people believe "good" has a single concrete meaning, and anyone that disagrees with their interpretation is the bad guy. Good people fight each other over different shades of meaning, never understanding that the other guy is not all that different from them. Neutral Good seeks to avoid this, knowing that a real understanding of the world is only achieved by respecting human life, keeping an open mind, and seeking Truth in all things. In the words of Socrates, "There is only one good -- knowledge. And one evil -- ignorance."

Neutral Good is "absolute goodness." It is the purest of the good alignments, the one most concerned with bringing peace, prosperity, and happiness to the world. Being pure good, it understands pure evil better than anyone. Mankind has an almost limitless capacity for self-deception -- in the right circumstances, people will believe anything. Evil individuals or groups will try to cloud your understanding of truth and replace it with their own agenda, until eventually you believe that war is peace or two plus two equals five. Once you can no longer think objectively, they've got you where they want you. Evil's best chance of defeating good is by making people forget that good even exists ... by making them forget they have a choice. The struggle of humanity against oppression and domination can only be won by remembering what humanity actually is. To this end, Neutral Good opposes the manipulation and control of innocent people in any way, striving for an egalitarian Utopia where nobody can take advantage of anyone else. A nice idea in theory, although it'll probably never happen. Just further proof of the unrealistic incompetence that defines the good alignments in general. Unfortunately, the people who would do the most good in positions of power are often the people least capable of achieving power in the first place. And vice-versa. 


Quick Scoring Guide
evil scores of -8 to -19 : generally good
evil scores of -20 to -29 : exceptionally good
evil scores of -30 & down : saint
Your polar opposite is : Neutral Evil

Fictional Examples of NEUTRAL GOOD
Bilbo Baggins after his adventure, Frodo Baggins, and Gandalf (Tolkien) ... MacLeod (Highlander) ... Jack Sawyer and Speedy Parker (The Talisman) ... Winston Smith (1984) ... Luke Skywalker and Obi Wan Kenobi (Star Wars) ...

Possible Real-Life Examples of NEUTRAL GOOD
Socrates, and perhaps Aristotle ... Thomas Jefferson (the best government is the least governed) ... George Orwell ... Mother Theresa ... Salvatore Guiliano aka "the Sicilian"

Your Destination in the Afterlife : ELYSIUM

According to Gygax, your soul is going to Elysium. This was the "Heaven" of the ancient Greeks, the Golden Country in the eternal west where the sun never sets. Most souls in ancient Greece simply went to the Land of the Dead, a grey and gloomy place of perpetual twilight. Only the purest and most noble souls could reach Elysium. To give you an idea, it was probably something along the lines of the Roman Afterlife in the movie "Gladiator" ... the blue skies and warm winds and endless fields of grain. In this place, you've come home.

In the AD&D universe, Elysium has four levels and lies between Paradise and The Happy Hunting Grounds. Gygax placed this plane in the very center of the higher planes, at the zenith of the sky. This is the highest plane of all, the best of the best. Congratulations. Or since it's Greek, maybe I should say kudos.
And may The Force be with you, always.  ;-)

Your Analysis (Vertical line = Average)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Latest Issue of & Magazine


As most of you should already know Issue 8: Urban Adventures of & Magazine has been published. Click the caption below to download it.


Issue #8: Urban Adventures   


And the best part is the price - Free. So go get your copy.





Friday, February 14, 2014

Star Wars Posters

Everybody is familiar with  the iconic Star Wars poster - x-wings, light sabres, the Death Star, Luke, Princess Leia, and Darth looming in the background. Below are some movie posters not everyone has seen.

From a post over on io9

The very first Star Wars poster by Brothers Hildebrandt, 1976, before the film was introduced

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

(via Posterwire)

A New Hope, Italy, 1977, by Michelangelo Papuzza

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via Space 1970)

A New Hope, Romania, 1977

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via gk)

A New Hope, Israel, 1977

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via eBay)

A New Hope, Japan, 1977

A New Hope, US, 1977, Drew Struzan

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

(via Posterwire)

A New Hope, Poland, 1978, by Jakub Erol

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via eBay)

A New Hope, Hungary, 1979, by András Felvidéki

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

A New Hope, Hungary, 1979, by Tibor Helényi

The Empire Strikes Back, Hong Kong, 1980

The Empire Strikes Back, France, 1980

The Empire Strikes Back, Japan, 1980

The Empire Strikes Back, Japan, 1980, Noriyoshi Ohrai

The Empire Strikes Back, Turkey, 1980

The Empire Strikes Back, Hong Kong, 1980

The Empire Strikes Back, Germany, 1980

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

The Empire Strikes Back, Romania, 1981

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via gk)

The Empire Strikes Back, Hungary, 1982, by Tibor Helényi

The Empire Strikes Back, Poland, 1982, Jakub Erol

The Empire Strikes Back, Poland, 1983, Miroslaw Lakomski

Return of the Jedi, Hungary, 1984, by Tibor Helényi

Return of the Jedi, Turkey, 1983

Return of the Jedi, Poland, 1984, Witold Dybowski

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via Rowsdowr)

Russia, 1990, by Yury Bokser and Alexander Chantsev

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World(via eBay)

Russia, 1990, by Yury Bokser and Alexander Chantsev

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World
(via Anywhen)

Russia, 1990, by Yury Bokser and Alexander Chantsev

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

Russia, 1990, by Yury Bokser and Alexander Chantsev

A Treasury of Rare and Weird Star Wars Posters From Around the World

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Branton's Tower

This is an update to the Griffithton Village map I posted a while back. The mage (Branton) has been slowly amassing his fortune and spending it to upgrade the original plans to his wizard tower. He has also been steadily gathering the contents for a full lab and library, as well. Since he has apprenticed himself to Crus who's speciality is the Underdark he has also added a secret tunnel entrance to these dark depths. The tunnel is currently collapsed by the dwarves working on the construction of the tower, since he doesn't want any unexpected guests showing up until he can provide the appropriate welcoming committee. Granted he (Branton) is still a couple of levels away from name level where he would be eligible for his own tower, but you have to remember it's still under construction and since the party is ready to start exploring the elemental nodes in the ToEE that day is not so far away. Anyway, below is the updated plan for the (new) Wizard Tower in Griffithton.