Sunday, August 17, 2014

Issue #10 of & Magazine

For those who don't have this in their feed.

The Latest Issue: #10 – Shape Changers

cover issue 10

The & Publishing Group announces their tenth issue, an issue focused on shape changers! This issue's features include articles about the shape changer's point of view, a question on where your pants go when you change, a new take on druids vs. lycanthropes, and a question about what lycanthropy is.

Bonus articles include more about the Fae Otherworld, an expansion of the rules on missile fire, and thoughts on text based gaming in the OSR. Our regular columns? We will not disappoint with four new shape changing monsters, a couple of unique NPCs, new spells, new food (real gamers need to eat!), new hex crawls and a mini-adventure, and – of course – new magic items!
Download Issue 10 today and feast your eyes on 92 pages of new material for your OSR game! Available now at http://www.and-mag.com

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

40th Anniversary Special

For those folks who don't have this in their feed, though I'd share the love.
Felicia Day narrated a short story in this 40th anniversary special!

Published on Aug 12, 2014
A look inside the Audible Studios recording of The Legend of Drizzt, a Dungeons & Dragons anthology - performed by an all-star cast! Free audiobook download starting 8/12/14, for a limited time.

Narrators include Sean Astin, Michael Chiklis, Felicia Day, David Duchovny, Tom Felton, Greg Grunberg, Dan Harmon, Ice-T, Danny Pudi, Melissa Rauch, Wil Wheaton and Al Yankovic,and a bunch of other cool people, each do a short story from D&D. Download them for free at audible.com/d&d

The Legend of Drizzt: The Collected Stories showcases just why the titular hero Drizzt Do'Urden has become a beloved character in the D&D world – and with a dungeon master’s dream line-up of narrators, listeners can travel to the Forgotten Realms for FREE – but only for a limited time!


Sunday, July 6, 2014

Edge of Tomorrow

Without any preconceived notions I went ahead and watched "Edge of Tomorrow." I must say I was pleasantly surprised. If I had to describe it I would have to say it was a mash-up of "Groundhog Day" and "Starship Troopers" with a definite video game feel to it. Fight..die..reset, going back to the beginning and use what you've learned to get further than you did last time.

Now I have to preface this by saying that I'm not really a big fan of Cruise, but the main character Cage (played by Cruise) is what won me over to this movie. Cage starts out as pretty much of a complete a**hole. This might not be what you think turns you on to a movie, but take away all the aliens and CGI and this turns out to be a pretty straightforward redemption story. It's a solid story, told well, and the thing about it is, Cage has to really work for his redemption.  I mean really work for it, so by the end of the movie it’s very clear he’s grown and learned and come out of this a completely, believably changed person.

I loved this because it isn't often Hollywood give us such flawed heroes. I’m not talking about the “bad boy with a heart of gold” kind of character that usually gets passed off as a flawed hero, I’m talking the “jerk who gets his head bit off first in a Jurassic Park movie” kind of character. With such a difficult road to redemption, and whatever else happens throughout the film, whatever other flaws I could point to, that, for me, made it worthwhile.

Let's not forget about Emily Blunt either, the kick-ass heroine  who happens to be the poster girl for the war against the aliens.  She's not just there as a prize for the hero.  Or if she is, it’s really ambiguous. She stands up on her own merits, which is a nice change of pace for a summer film, or any film for that matter.

I've also got to say that I thought Bill Paxton was absolutely hilarious as Master Sgt. Farrel. He's certainly come a long way from Pvt. Hudson, but is no less amusing.

So overall a recommendation to see this summer.

Friday, July 4, 2014

5e Free PDF is Out

In Case You Missed It - 5e Basic PDF has been release.
5e Basic Credits
5e Basic is here. No, really go take a look. It weighs in at a very light 2.7 Mb and just 110 pages, so it should be quick.

I really didn't take the time to read all of it, just skimmed through parts.

I'm still mulling it over. If pressed, I'd say I'm underwhelmed, but then my bias for 1ed should not be news to anyone here. I don't think it's a bad game -- the presentation alone makes it seem both simpler and quicker to dive into than anything D&D has been in too long a time. But it didn't spark a feeling of "I have to play this, and soon." This one doesn't appear, to me at least, to have much of a personality. It's very smooth, very straightforward, a homogenized mash up of 4ed & 1ed, but leaning towards very high survivability, very high attributes, and very high power level compared to 1ed. The one thing that stood out for me was that you can mostly set up and level a character without ever having to roll a single die.

As I said my overall impressions is, meh.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Play report


This is just a little excerpt from the current 'Greyhawk Back to the Beginning' campaign that will soon be approaching the 5 year playing mark.



Campaign log June 27, 2014


Brian's version;
I should a known it would be a weird night when I arrived, because Gabe and Monkey were already there! We took care of a lot of stuff and met with the assassins guild, just three of us. [against the advice of another player who couldn't make the session]. He [assassin's guild representative] very politely requested 50k to "protect us" which I turned down and we went our separate ways. Someone had a brilliant idea to give them the gold throne [from the ToEE] since it is hardly worth it to melt down for bullion (3k). However I soured on that idea when they poisoned our food (just the three of us). So - issue still open.
Then we failed our intelligence checks. I say this because in my mind we decided to go after a 10th level Mage (Necromancer is the level title). Clearly delusional from the poison - we took 5 pcs and the Npc cleric (illusionist was busy with spell research).
I knew Al would make it interesting but figured we had enough firepower.
So on to the crypt. We wiped out a host of ghouls and an interesting Stone golem of Tharizdun without too much trouble. We then bypassed a room full of bones by using rock to mud and got a lucky roll as the half elf found a secret passage that bypassed more rot rippers. Although I was loathe to jump in a teleportation circle, we did it and found two lovely dracoliches. Due to some lucky initiative rolls, we were able to take out the undead dragons and we were still in decent shape. That's when Al gleefully broke out 18 six sided dice. The thief went down to a delayed blast fireball, but the rest of the party was still up. That's when the Lich became visible. Alright, no panic yet.
Being trained in the arcane arts, the druid suddenly realized there was a shimmering globe around the Lich and correctly guessed that it was a prismatic sphere. This is when the soiling of the pants commenced. I called for a wall of force, Etheridge picked up the singed halfling thief, and we ran for our lives through the teleportation circle while the Lich disintegrated the force shield and started to cast again.
It was then that Al reminded us he clearly told us that this Necromancer was known as the Undying. Duh......
So, we returned home, quickly counted our treasure (that would be Zero) and lived to fight another day.

Gabe's recollection;
He was a Lich [lol]. Other than that we made quick work of two dracolichs and the rest of the crypt was honestly kind of a quick run, we used a few things to navigate around some of the nastier traps and the most challenging thing we found was a named golem (can't recall it's name right now) that had the potential to a) cause us all to see the room in reversed role (friends as foe and foe as friend) or b) just confuse us. It also had a persistent effect that at the top of the round it would have a random effect (we only saw the two aforementioned things), and it's attacks seemed like they could have been strong but it missed on the one physical attack it tried against a -2 AC. It had the properties of a stone golem, we didn't realize that stone to mud would have effected it until after the fight.
We used wizard eye to scout and saw a bunch of rot rippers, this also happened to be in a room full of bones. Like knee high 80' x 80' room full of bones, so we decided to stone to mud that room. We figured it was one of Lareth's infamous bone sentinels. 

Then it was an uneventful walk to the Lichs area. The only thing we got stuck on was a pentagram on the floor with magical energies emanating forth; we didn't know exactly what would happen so we did our usual 'three wishes or die' mentality and hopped in after some experimenting. That was what lead us to the Lichs quarters. There was a room with a huge blood pool, nothing eventful there then there was a stairway that lead to the source of the blood pool, and in that room was two dracolichs playing cards with Tiamat... We made decent quick work of them; Kromvist [the halfling thief] fell however. Then the Lich appeared, toting a prismatic sphere and opening up with a delayed blast fireball...That kind of set us back so we had to run.


Saturday, June 21, 2014

Map of the Flanaess


This is mostly as a reference for the players to get a better idea of the geography of the world they're adventuring in.

Flanaess (click for larger size)



Map of Oerth (click for larger size)

Notes for the world map:

  • The location of New Empyrea is a "best guess." New Empyrea is from Frank Mentzer's Aquaria campaign (originally published in modules R1 through R4, and later repackaged as I12 Egg of the Phoenix), and was originally set "5000 miles to the east of the Flanaess" according to the module R4 Doc's Island. However, the Solnor Ocean is only 3000 miles wide, and the only land in that direction is the other side of the Oerik continent. Aquaria was supposed to be on its own continent. Plus, the geography of the map in R4 does not match up with anything in Western Oerik. Additionally, R4 describes a frontier with a minimal human presence, which does not really match the vast empires of Western Oerik. Fireland is the closes approximate landmass in the area and the closest to the same climate.
  • The Draconic Empire of Lynn, Ishtar, Tharque Empire, Red Kingdom, Tribes of Enllaves, Barbarian Seameast are all from Francois Marcela-Froideval's Black Moon ChroniclesWiki comic books. Froideval's campaign was given an official home in Western Oerik by Gary Gygax. The locations ended up being official in a map of Oerth printed in Dragon Annual #1 in 1996.
  • Khemit is also from the Black Moon Chronicles, but Froideval called it "Erypt" in his works (and it is called that on the Dragon Annual map). It is the home of the character Methraton and based on ancient Egypt.
  • Thalos, Mordengard, the Free States, Ravilla, Drazen's Horde, Ahmut's Legion, and Naresh come from the short-lived Chainmail reboot from 2001 by Chris Pramas.
  • The Baklien Khanates derive their name from the Chainmail reboot as well--they are described as mongol-like horsemen from the east in Dragon #286
  • "The Celestial Imperium" on the Dragon Annual map was named Shaofeng in Expedition to Castle Greyhawk and was called "Suhfang" in Gary Gygax's Gord the Rogue novels. It is Greyhawk's version of China.
  • "Nippon" is from the Dragon Annual map. It's named Ryuujinin in Dragon #277. It is Greyhawk's version of Japan.
  • Mur, Komal, and Risay are briefly described in Dungeon #136 and the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer
  • "Hyperborea" in the Dragon Annual map is called "Hyborea" in the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer. It is renamed Telchuria in Dungeon #136.
  • "Zindia" on the Dragon Annual map is called "Jahind" in Gygax's Gord the Rogue novels. It is Greyhawk's version of India.
  • "Darak Urtag" is a fan-name for the region called "Orcreich" on the Dragon Annual map.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Pantheons of Greyhawk


The Baklunish Pantheon

Al'Akbar, demigod of dignity, duty, faithfulness and guardianship
Al'Asran (Pelor)
Al'Zarad (Boccob)
Azor'alq, hero-deity of light, purity, courage and strength
Daoud, hero-deity of humility, clarity and immediacy
Geshtai, goddess of lakes, rivers, wells and streams
Istus, goddess of fate, destiny, divination, the future and honesty
Mouqol, god of trade, negotiation, ventures, appraisal and reciprocity
Xan Yae, goddess of twilight, shadows, stealth and mental power
Zuoken, god of physical and mental mastery

The Celbit (Kobold) Pantheon

Dakarnok
Gaknulak
Kuraulyek
Kurtulmak

The Common Pantheon

Bleredd, god of metal, mines and smiths
Boccob, god of magic, arcane knowledge, balance and foresight
Cyndor, god of time, infinity and continuity
Ehlonna, goddess of forests, woodlands, flora, fauna and fertility
Incabulos, god of plagues, sickness, famine, nightmares, drought and disasters
Joramy, goddess of fire, volcanoes, wrath, anger and quarrels
Kelanen, hero-deity of swords, sword skills and balance
Lirr, goddess of prose, poetry, literature and art
Mayaheine, demigoddess of protection, justice and valor
Myhriss, goddess of love, romance and beauty
Olidammara, god of music, revels, wine, rogues, humor and tricks
Ralishaz, god of chance, ill luck, misfortune and insanity
Saint Cuthbert, god of wisdom, dedication and zeal
Trithereon, god of individuality, liberty, retribution and self-defense
Ulaa, goddess of hills, mountains and gemstones
Zagyg, demigod of humor, occult lore, eccentricity and unpredictability

The Demonic Pantheon

Demogorgon
Ereshkigal
Graz'zt
Juiblex
Kostchtchie
Lolth
Nergel
Orcus
Pazuzu
Yeenoghu

The Diabolic Pantheon

Asmodeus
Baalzebul
Dispater
Geryon
Mammon
Pantheon

The Draconic Pantheon

Bahamut the Platinum Dragon, king of good dragons and god of wind, wisdom and enlightened justice
Nathair Sgiathach, god of pseudo-dragons, mischief and pranks
Tiamat, the Chromatic Dragon, queen and mother of all evil dragons and goddess of conquest, greed and evil dragonkind


The Drow Pantheon

Lolth, Demon Queen of Spiders, goddess of the drow, darkness and evil
Keptolo, god of drow males, flattery, intoxication, rumor and opportunism
Kiarnasali, goddess of slavery, vengeance and the undead
Vhaerun, god of thievery, drow males, and evil activity on the surface world
Zinzerna, goddess of chaos and assassins
Elder Elemental Eye (Tharizdun) -- heretical in drow society

The Dwur (Dwarf) Pantheon

Abbathor, god of greed
Berronar Truesilver, goddess of safety, truth, home and healing
Clanggedin Silverbeard, god of war and just warriors
Dugmaren Brightmantle, god of scholarship, discovery and invention
Dumathoin, god of mining and underground exploration, protector of the dwarven dead
Gendwar Argrim, hero-deity of fatalism and obsession
Moradin, chief god of the dwarves
Muamman Duathal, god of wanderers, expatriates and lightning
Vergadain, god of wealth and luck

The Elemental Pantheon

Cryonax
Imix
Ogrémoch
Olhydra
Yan-C-Bin

The Euroz (Orc) Pantheon

Bahgtru, god of strength and combat
Gruumsh, patron god of the orcs, god of conquest, survival, strength and territory
Ilneval, god of warfare and leadership
Luthic, goddess of fertility, medicine, females and servitude
Shargaas, god of darkness, night, stealth, thieves and the undead
Yurtrus, god of death and disease

The Flan Pantheon

Allitur, god of ethics and propriety
Beory, goddess of the Oerth, nature and rain
Berei, goddess of agriculture, family and home
Earth Dragon, spirit of earth, weather, and hidden treasures
Kyuss, god of the undead
Myhriss, goddess of love, romance and beauty
Nerull, god of death, darkness, murder, and the Underworld
Obad-Hai, god of nature, woodlands, freedom, hunting and beasts
Pelor, god of sun, light, strength and healing
Rao, god of peace, reason and serenity
Red Fox, animal spirit that taught men crafts and fire-making
The Serpent, an entity believed to be the personification of arcane magic
Vathris, hero-deity of anguish, lost causes and revenge
Vecna, god of destructive & evil secrets, magic, hidden knowledge, and intrigue
Zodal, god of mercy, hope and benevolence

The Giant Pantheon

Diancastra
Grolantor
Hiatea
Iallanis
Karontor
Skoraeus Stonebones
Surtur
Thrym

The Hobniz (Halfling) Pantheon

Arvoreen, god of protection, vigilance and war
Brandobaris, god of stealth, thievery, rogues and adventuring
Cyrrollalee, goddess of friendship, trust and the home
Sheela Peryroyl, goddess of nature, agriculture and the weather
Urogalan, god of earth and death
Yondalla, chief halfling deity, goddess of protection, fertility, the halfling race, children, security, leadership, diplomacy, wisdom, the cycle of life, creation, family, tradition, community, harmony, and prosperity

The Jebli (Goblin) Pantheon

Grankhul
Hruggek
Khurgorbaeyag
Maglubiyet
Nomog-Geaya

The Nonhuman Pantheon

Blibdoolpoolp
Chareah
Eadro
Koriel
Laogzed
Panzuriel
Ramenos
Ravanna
Raxivort
Rexfelis
Rhamaldrig
Sarthis
Sekolah
Semuanya
Shekinester
Skerrit
Squerrik
Syranita
Trishina
Triton
Vaprak
Verenestra
Xuanaux

The Noniz (Gnome) Pantheon

Baervan Wildwanderer, god of forests, travel and nature
Baravar Cloakshadow, god of illusions, protection and deception
Callarduran Smoothhands, god of the earth, mining and protection
Flandal Steelskin, god of mining, smithing and fitness
Gaerdal Ironhand, god of protection, vigilance and combat
Garl Glittergold, patron deity of the gnomish race
Gelf Darkhearth, god of entropy and revenge
Nebelun, god of inventions and good luck
Segojan Earthcaller, god of earth and nature beneath the earth
Sheyanna Flaxenstrand, goddess of love, beauty and passion
Urdlen, god of greed and blood

The Oeridian Pantheon

Bleredd, god of metal, mines and smiths
Celestian, god of stars, space and wanderers
Cyndor, god of time, infinity and continuity
Daern, hero-deity of defenses and fortifications
Delleb, god of reason, intellect and study
Erythnul, god of hate, malice, panic, ugliness and slaughter
Fharlanghn, god of horizons, distance, travel and roads
Heironeous, god of chivalry, justice, honor, war, daring and valor
Hextor, god of war, discord, massacres, conflict, fitness and tyranny
Johydee, hero-goddess of deception, espionage and protection
Kurell, god of jealousy, revenge and thievery
Kuroth, hero-god of theft and treasure-finding
Lirr, goddess of prose, poetry, literature and art
Merikka, demigoddess of agriculture, farming and the home
Olidammara, god of music, revels, wine, rogues, humor and tricks
Pholtus, god of light, resolution, law, inflexibility, the sun and the moons
Procan, god of seas, sea life, salt, sea weather and navigation
Rudd, goddess of chance, good luck and skill
Sol (Pelor)
Stern Alia, demigoddess of oeridian culture, law and motherhood
Stratis, god of the art of war, strategy and battle skills (dead)
Velnius, god of the sky and weather
Telchur, god of winter, cold and the north wind
Atroa, goddess of spring, renewal and the east wind
Sotillion, goddess of summer, ease, comfort and the south wind
Wenta, goddess of autumn, brewing, harvest and the west wind
Zilchus, god of power, prestige, money, business and influence

The Olman Pantheon

Camazotz, god of bats and evil
Chitza-Atlan, demigod who guards the gates of the Underworld
Coatlicue, goddess of the earth, life, and the dead
Huhueteotl, god of time and destructive fire
Hurakan, god of floods and unrestrained fury
Mictlantecuhtli, god of death, darkness, murder and the Underworld
Ometeotl, god of creation
Quetzalcoatl, god of air, wisdom, birds and snakes
Tezcatlipoca, god of the sun, moon, night, scheming and betrayals
Tlaloc, god of rain and moisture
Tlazoteotl, mother goddess of the earth
Tonatiuh, fifth and current sun god

The Olven (Elven) Pantheon

Aerdrie Faenya, goddess of Air, Weather, Birds, and Avariel.
Alathrien Druanna, the Rune Mistress.
Alobal Lorfiril, god of Hedonism, Mirth, Magic, and Revelry.
Araleth Letheranil, god of Light.
Corellon Larethian, god of Elves, Magic, Music, Arts, Crafts, Poetry, and Warfare.
Darahl Firecloak, god of Earth and Flame
Deep Sashelas, god of Water, Knowledge, Beauty, Magic, and Aquatic Elves.
Elebrin Liothiel, god of Nature, Gardens, Orchards, and the Harvest.
Erevan Ilesere, god of Mischief, Change, and Rogues.
Fenmarel Mestarine, god of Exiles, Scapegoats, and Grugach.
Gadhelyn, hero-god of Independence, Outlawry, Feasting, and Hunting.
Hanali Celanil, goddess of Romantic Love and Beauty.
Kirith Sotheril, goddess of Divinations and Enchantments.
Labelas Enoreth, god of Time and Longevity.
Melira Taralen, goddess of Bards and Minstrels.
Mythrien Sarath, god of Protection and Mythals.
Naralis Analor, god of Healing, Easing of Pain, and Death.
Rellavar Danuvien, god of Frost Sprites and Protection from Cold.
Rillifane Rallathil, god of Nature, Woodlands, and Wood Elves.
Sarula Iliene, goddess of Lakes, Streams, Nixies, and Water Magic.
Sehanine Moonbow, goddess of the Moon, Mysticism, Dreams, Far Journeys, Death, and Transcendence.
Solonor Thelandira, god of Hunting, Archery, and Survival.
Tarsellis Meunniduin, god of Winter, Mountains, and Snow Elves.
Tethrin Veraldé, god of Bladesingers.
Vandria Gilmadrith, goddess of War, Guardianship, Justice, Grief, Vigilance, and Decision.
Ye'Cind, god of Music and Magical Songs.

The Slaad Pantheon

Ssendam
Ygorl

The Suel Pantheon

Beltar, goddess of malice, caves and pits
Bralm, goddess of insects and industriousness
Dalt, god of portals, doors, enclosures, locks and keys
Fortubo, god of stone, metals, mountains and guardianship
Jascar, god of hills and mountains
Kord, god of athletics, sports, brawling, strength and courage
Lendor, god of time, tedium, patience and study
Llerg, god of beasts and strength
Lydia, goddess of music, knowledge and daylight
Norebo, god of luck, gambling and risks
Osprem, goddess of sea voyages, ships and sailors
Phaulkon, god of air, wind, clouds, birds and archery
Phyton, god of nature, beauty and farming
Pyremius, god of assassins, fire, poison and murder
Ranet, goddess of fire (dead)
Syrul, goddess of lies, deceit, treachery and false promises
Vatun, god of northern barbarians, cold, winter and arctic beasts
Wee Jas, goddess of magic, death, vanity and law
Xerbo, god of the sea, sailing, money and business

The Touv Pantheon

Berna, goddess of passion and forgiveness
Breeka, goddess of living things
Damaran, god of vermin and flight
Katay, god of decay, inevitability, order and time
Kundo, god of building, noise, music and defense
Meyanok, god of serpents, poison, discord, darkness and famine
Nola, goddess of the sun
Uvot, god of prosperity
Vara, goddess of nightmares and fear
Vogan, god of rain, storms and water
Xanag, goddess of metals and beauty

The Unknown Pantheon

Earth Dragon
The Green Man, demigod of growth and abundance
Tharizdun, god of eternal darkness, decay, entropy, malign knowledge, insanity and cold
Wastri, god of amphibians, bigotry and self-deception


For a more complete listing of the humancentric deities see the older post.