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Forests in fantasy roleplaying games are dark places, full of secrets. With this project, we bring the Old Margreve to the 5th Edition of the world's most popular RPG. The Margreve is an ancient, enchanted forest that defends itself from those who come to cut its timber, poach its creatures, or steal its magic. Within its borders the Old Ways are strong, the word of the druids carries great weight, and griffons, dragons, and stranger creatures nest and hunt, undisturbed by humans, dwarves, or other lordlings.
Until your adventuring party shows up. Then things get really interesting.
The Margreve Kickstarter offers three main elements:
1) the Tales of the Old Margreve adventure campaign hardcover for the GM, with adventures from levels 1 to 10
2) a Margreve Player's Guide softcover book of new player options, including new races, druid and ranger subclasses and tools, backgrounds, and forest-themed spells.
3) (if unlocked) a set of thick cardboard standups, the Margreve Pawns, which are similar to those created for Tome of Beastsand the Creature Codex. Here is a small sample of what that would look like; we anticipate producing 150 to 200 pawns (depending on stretch goals).
Together with some book-expanding stretch goals, this project provides new deep-forest character options and a full sequence of adventures to draw adventurers into the wilderness and keep them on their toes.
WHY KICKSTART THIS?
Initially we debated this as a softcover adventure collection, but we soon realized that it was large enough and compelling enough to make into a hardcover volume playable in 5th Edition fantasy campaigns, together with a player supplement. Why not go big?
Kobold Press is doing something a little different with its digital offerings this time. We're putting our effort into the two print books, and possibly a custom set of pawns—and digitally, full sets of virtual tabletop (VTT) files. That means that we'll have the Old Margreve adventures and source material available on Roll20 and on Fantasy Grounds shortly after the hardcover and softcover volumes ship.
With terrific map management, full suites of digital tokens, pre-set monster stats, and more, virtual tabletops make it easier than ever to just sit down and play. The VTT packages for the Old Margreve will be extensive and include everything provided in the print edition—plus the flexibility and speed of online play. We're partnering directly with Roll20 and Fantasy Gournds, two of the leading VTT companies, to make these digital versions complete and powerful.
The designers on this project include lead designer Matt Corley plus contributing designers Dan Dillon, Jon Sawatsky, James Introcaso, and Wolfgang Baur.
They build on earlier Margreve work by Richard Pett, Ben McFarland, Tim & Eileen Connors, Dan Voyce, Michael Furlanetto, Wolfgang Baur, and others.
Shipping costs from the US to anywhere outside North America have risen sharply in recent years, so we are once again partnering with groups in Canada, in the EU, and likely in Australia (depending on the volume of backers there), and if so then Kobold Press will pay customs and import duties for those packages.
Our best guess for those Canada-friendly and EU-friendly costs right now are roughly $22 shipping for Canada and roughly $30-and-a-bit for shipping to the EU. We do not have an Australia estimate yet.
To calculate shipping to your location from the US, you can use the US Postal Service calculator and assume a Medium size flat rate box: https://postcalc.usps.com/
As some of you may have read elsewhere, I have been playing Village Attacks and painted the vampire. When I did I kept close to the concept art because I figured if I ever get someone else to play they'll be looking at the game cards, so the minis should look like what the player expects. When I looked closely at more of the cards though, it became apparent there was a bit of a problem. The monsters all have inhumanly pale skin and generally dark color schemes. The peasants look drab as well. While that is cool as concept art, having a couple 20 minis on the table that are all kind of muted colors is going to blend together more than I would like so a new plan is needed. That is to stick close to the concept art, but make everything a little more vibrant. I figure as slowly as I'll be painting these there will be plenty of time to stop for pics, so why not a thread.
Next I'll be working on the banshee, but first a bit of background. You see there is another mini I would like to pull down off of the shelf of shame and work on but it has a problem. I want to paint part of it jade, but the jade paint I have kind of sucks. I like the color, but the paint itself is super shiny and too translucent. So I picked up Reaper's cool green triad to try out. The color swatch showed me Reaper's Jade wasn't quite what I wanted, but real jade comes in several variations of green. I'll find a use for it somewhere.
Here's a sampling of some of the greens that I have. You can see the Reaper Jade 09015 is nothing like the VGC Jade 72026, but real Jade comes in both flavors so it's fine. I have a plan, but first I want to try the Triad out on its own just to see how it looks.
Enter the banshee. Her concept art has her is a very desaturated garment with some green accents. The new cloth color will instead be the Reaper Triad and then put the green accents beside them. She will be very green. First 09013. I had originally painted the cloth but decided to texture the base before I went any further. It was messy and got some grit on her. I wasn't very thorough in removing it.
Next is 09014. I just blocked it in to see what it looked like. It is noticeably warmer than the shadow color. At first it seems to stand out but...
Once the jade is slapped on it really falls back into the shadows, as you can see below. My highlighting here isn't exactly accurate, but that's why we call it tabletop. There should be a step between 09014 & 09015 that I'll have to mix at some point. Under normal lighting the green just goes from dark to jade.
Actually if you look at the colors there is another problem. This triad has no pop. Fortunately pop is easy. It's called VMC Ivory and solves (almost) all your contrast needs. Here it's actually mixed with the jade to create a highlight that will actually stand out.
Just remember your painting lesson for today. VMC Ivory = POP and eliminates those pesky "more contrast" comments.
Given that the real purpose here is to learn the triad, I'll be going back to refine things later and see how I can get it to look. Before that though I want to block in everything else so my green has something to work with.
That though, is a project for tomorrow.
Looks like its been awhile since I last posted up here. I've been playing Village Attacks for a couple weeks now and decided to give some of the monsters a quick paint. Today I painted the Vampire. If the cast would have been better I might have spent some more time on him, but he had enough flaws that I didn't feel it worth the effort. I did a bit of an experiment with creating textures on the cloak, which worked better in the blue portion than the black. I didn't quite have the energy to freehand on the veins like in the reference art, but I might go ahead and darken the claws now that I see how it looks.
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