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Found 11 results

  1. sirgourls

    Running the Game

    Hi all! I've been a fan of Matt Colville for awhile and his Running the Game series for awhile now and thought I'd spread the goodness here. For the uninitiated, this series of YouTube videos is aimed at newer DMs who are looking to start running D&D for the first time (especially at the beginning of the series), but there's plenty of good stuff for DMs of any experience level to mine. I've found them incredibly instructive for how I run and think about my game to be sure. And, while there's a focus on D&D, there's certainly material that is transferable to any game you're running. Anyway, have a gander (note: this isn't the first of the series, but rather the first of his I saw, which is about railroad campaigns vs the sandbox)! https://youtu.be/EkXMxiAGUWg
  2. kacey3

    Fiasco! Seats Available

    As of Wednesday @ 11am, we still have seven slots for Fiasco! Attack of the 50 Foot Fiasco - A sendup of 50's B-Movie horror.Friday at 10am Four seats available Unaussprechlichen Klutzen - Bad decisions in the style of HP Lovcraft.Friday at 2pm Three seats available We need a minimum of three people to play, so reserve your seats now.
  3. This is Just to Say I have painted the gnolls that were in the side bin and which you were probably saving for Gen Con Forgive me they were so vicious full armed and so cute
  4. As a GM I often find the need to put in a new angle on various monsters that have been otherwise worn out through overuse. Here's one I thought of this morning (I don't plan to use it since I'm not going to be running D&D for a while). Mind Flayers are usually depicted as running a society based on enthralling other creatures through mind control and using them as a combination of labor force, food source, and breeding bodies. The life of the thralls is dull and horrible. But suppose that the touch of an Illithid tentacle to a brain stimulated vast ecstatic pleasure better than any sensation in life. Instead of mind controlled slaves, the thralls would be tentacle-touch addicts, eager to work for and please their Illithid masters. Illithid infiltration of cities would be like the wokrings of a drug cartel. The Mind Flayers would have armies of eager servants, begging to be recognized and given more contact. As for brain eating, with such a large population serving them, the Illithids can give the dying a day or so of pleasure then consume their brains. As for Cerebromorphosis. the Illithid breeding cycle wherein a larval flayer consumes a brain over the course of a week and takes over their body, that would be the greatest experience of all, one solid week of pure, unending bliss followed by death. The thralls would be vying for the honor and experience of it. This makes the job of adventurers trying to overthrow mind flayers even harder, because they have to contend with willing servants and secret addicts. For added measure one can make the Githyanki and the Githzerai immune to this effect provided they live lives of grim unhappiness.
  5. I was reading this thread today in reference to another question someone asked, and thought about how buying a cool miniature led not only to a fun NPC but a hilarious running gag in my campaign a few years back: http://forum.reapermini.com/index.php?/topic/53734-personalities-npcs-and-miniatures/?hl=heckelmeyer It led me to think about some of the other things I've done in the interest of versimilitude. I will list the first ones that spring to mind: 1. POTIONS What does a potion taste like? Look like? How does it manage? RPG characters slam potions between swings of sword and twitch of somatic gesture, no trouble at all. I got an idea when I saw these fancy glass perfume bottles (empty) for sale, and decided to see what would happen. So one day, upon finding a treasure hoard, I put several glass bottles full of ... who knows what... before the players. On the table. And let them try to figure out what the potions were... You never saw such consternation. Having your character sip a potion to figure it out, no big deal. Putting a weird colored liquid in front of a human and having him try to figure it out, you'd think you were asking him to sample fricaseed turd in arsenic sauce. It was great fun. Still remember the one potion that made Big Dave go "AAAAGH! POISON! THIS IS HORRIBLE!" It was coffee, with a spoonful of strawberry ice cream melted into it, and a dab of green food coloring, just for giggles... 2. DROOLOK CHIPS The players had never encountered a droolok, and so were most interested when the village was all in a tizzy because a droolok had been sighted nearby. It had to be hunted down and killed before it slaughtered us all! The players even signed up for a hunting party, but did not find the droolok; Gaston, the mighty hunter, an NPC who lived nearby, brought it down with his mighty bow. The players never got to see it. However, a day or so later, at the inn, they saw a special on the chalkboard: DROOLOK CHIPS 2 GP WHYLE THEY LASST Well, this piqued their interest. Bar food in Docworld generally consists of potato chips, fried shieldmoss, or sausages, and is generally counted in copper as opposed to gold. So they ordered a bowl of droolok chips, out of curiosity. I promptly got up from the table, went to a cupboard, and brought them a bowl of irregularly shaped thick brown... chip things. They stared at them for quite some time. Hobbes picked one up and examined it. It was a few inches by a few inches, fairly thick for a chip, and appeared to be some kind of thinly sliced crispy fried meat. He carefully put it back in the bowl. "You're not going to at least TASTE it?" someone said. "F&%#, no," said Hobbes. Everyone looked at me. I took the chip Hobbes had touched, and ate it. It crunched. Everyone looked at the bowl. Eventually, Nathan worked up the courage to select a chip, and eat it. He crunched it thoughtfully. "Tastes kinda like bacon, except not quite. Kinda salty, but not bad." Hobbes looked at me. "I'm a ranger. I should know what a droolok is. What's a droolok?" I replied, "A droolok is not a normal woodland creature for your selected area of ecological knowledge; you don't know what a droolok is for the same reason you've never seen a panda or a polar bear. For you, a droolok is a monster, and one you have never encountered." They ate the chips. Even Hobbes, who can't even eat shrimp, because they look too much like bugs...* 3. TROLL PIE In the course of the party's travels, they settled into an inn one night, and asked the innkeeper's daughter what they had for supper. Their options were the usual mulligan stew, something off the menu, or troll pie, which was being served for free. Well, this piqued the party's interest. Troll pie? And it's free? It was explained: Apparently, another party had encountered a troll nearby, and had slain the beast, only to find that an evil wizard had cast fire resistance on the dratted thing. They couldn't burn the parts! The best they could do was to build a large bonfire and keep the dratted thing IN it; roasted troll doesn't regenerate. Yet. Cooked troll wouldn't start regenerating for a good 24 hours after being cooked, so they'd done the best they could: field dressed the monster and cut him into niblets. The local inn had been serving him up in pies for the past month, and twice in the night since then, they'd had a pitched battle in the kitchen as they'd mistimed things, and a troll began to hatch from a pie that hadn't been served in time... please, good sirs, there are only a few pies left... won't you help to rid us of this horror? It's free! "Do we get XP if we do?" said Hobbes. And so the party ordered the few remaining troll pies, and some fine ale to wash them down. And I got up and headed for the stove. And the players uttered a collective "Oh, $%&@." They'd played this game before. And from the oven, I drew five small pies, about the size of chicken pot pies you buy at the store... but irregular, obviously homemade. And the crusts... were green. And had warts. "Oh, @$&%." I put the pies before the players. Hobbes said, brightly, "I eat the pie. Yum, yum, yum. How many XP do I get?" His hands did not move, nor did he touch his fork. "Man, I only got an eight wisdom, and even I know that isn't going to work," said Justin. He picked up his fork and broke the crust. Rich, creamy green stuff waited inside. The pie was still hot, and steamed slightly. Scott shrugged and dug in. "It's not bad," he said. "I'm not sure if it tastes weird because it's weird... or if it just tastes weird because it's green." Everyone cautiously began to eat. Except Hobbes, who sat there and looked at his green little pie and looked mournful. "You going to eat that?" asked Justin, finishing his own pie.**
  6. I added it to my signature a couple weeks ago, but just wanted to point people towards my new gaming blog, figure it might be interesting to some board members. It's a mix of RPGs, wargames, miniatures, and computer game projects I've worked on or otherwise have thoughts about; mostly Pathfinder and CAV at the moment. Mods--can't remember if this is kosher but didn't see anything in the board rules; my apologies if I missed it.
  7. Dr.Bedlam

    The Use Of Props

    Inspired by a Facebook post: do any of you use physical props in your RPGs? 1. I often used actual weirdly-made ornamental perfume bottles to represent potions. On one occasion, I implied heavily that drinking this one potion would cause a one point increase in a random stat... but the PLAYER had to actually drink the contents of the bottle! The players looked in the bottle. They smelled it. One of them wanted to do the "dip the finger and taste" test, but I ruled that doing this would invalidate the potion. It had to be CHUGGED. Turned out that the main ingredients were coffee and lemon juice... 2. A friendly troll once served the party a pie. When the party agreed to sample the pie, I stood up, opened the stove, and took out an actual pie I had made before the game. It was still warm. And it was green. And had warts. (I'd used green food coloring in the crust and pie itself). The players... stared at it. One of them asked for a knife. I gave them one. He cut the pie open. Inside was thick, runny green stuff, green chunks, and unidentifiable colored bits. The party stared. I said, "The troll is looking at you expectantly. Do any of you try his pie?" It was actually a homemade chicken pot pie with dyed vegetables and cream gravy filling (albeit the color of broccoli). But it took them a while to figure this out. And one guy nearly heaved, despite knowing what was in the pie...
  8. I'm kicking off my 5e game tomorrow night *joy!* set in my own home brew world. Starting in a city tavern (city is based on attack on Titan city) and then leading into the first "dungeon" of the lost minis of phandelver. I've asked them nicely for the first couple of session if they could bite my adventure hooks and once we have a firm grasp on the rules it will be a free for all in the city (and beyond) I've got a bunch of stuff prepped like 5 different weapon brands and a few things like that. Is there any last minute tips you would recommend me prepping or anything? I have run 3 campaigns (all 4e) and I'm pretty good off the cuff but I want this one to truly be something special (as I like the system a lot and want my players to be *wowed*)
  9. TGP

    Ability Scores

    Dexterity It is one of the core stats for old D&D. It covers juggling ability, sleight-of-hand, reflexes, lock picking, speed, agility, dodging, all things to do with speed and motion even aiming. But I got to thinking about it and I wondered why all those things were automatically lumped together. 17 Dex That is a high score: Consider a Tree-Sloth: it is incredibly agile - 17 makes sense; its hands (and feet!) display tremendous dexterity - 17, sure; but is if fast? no, it should get a 4-5 Dex when considering its speed. Consider a Gnomish Clockmaker: very, very, good with his hands - 17 makes sense; but only average agility (10 Dex?); not very fast with the short legs (7 Dex?); might be a deadly shot with a clockwork crossbow - back to 17 for aiming again. Human Acrobats - could easily be good at juggling, sleight-of-hand, reflexes, tumbling, agility, dodging; but might not run so fast or be any good with fiddly tasks wanting fine motor skill like picking locks or adjusting clocks. :upside: _______________ Has anybody else run into this sort of conundrum or made adjustments to the rules of their RPG to address this kind of thing?
  10. I'm curious what your favorite failed/less successful games are. We all have them, games that you thought were awesome but which just didn't catch on. For RPG's I love: Dark Ages Fae from White Wolf. I don't care particularly for White Wolf's rules usually but I really love this book, both for its rules implementation of fae and for the setting and fluff stories. This is still the only rpg description of fae that actually both makes sense internally, both in setting and in rules, and still has the anything goes feel of faery myths. And while it kinda-sorta has splats like other White Wolf books, they're implemented in a way that actually works and make sense for the setting without being the straightjacket that their splats usually end up. I re-read this book every year or so but as much as I love it dearly, I've never played it because my group would never go for it and every Changeling group I've ever known doesn't like it. Supercrew by Tobias Radesäter. This is an absolutely brilliant super hero rule set contained in a 32 page comic book. It's very light but very well thought out mechanically. It's intended for four color supers but could be used for just about anything as long as you don't mind not having 'leveling up' rules. I've thought about running everything from Thundarr the Barbarian, to Avengers style games, to Dungeons and Dragons with it. Does require a group willing to be creative in their narration of actions for the game to be fun. For Wargames I love: AT-43 from Rackham. The rules for this were good and had some interesting touches but I'll admit that they had me at Gorillas in Power Armor. I bought a truly ridiculous quantity of them and still use them for 40K. Inquisitor from an imaginary GW that doesn't shoot itself in the foot. I love the art, fluff, and concept of Inquisitor. The actual rule-set and decision to go with a totally different scale than their other games made me grind my teeth. This could have been a great game if they had used the exact same fluff and concept and applied something like the Necromunda rules to it. Or just paid the guys that do In the Emperor's Name to write their rules for them. Anyway, what's yours?
  11. So, in an epic failure of my Google-fu to find some record of how Wizards of the Coast did or did not flub its advertising of Dungeons and Dragons 4.0 to earlier D&D players, I ran across a blog post unhappy with various aspects of the game. I was particularly struck by the issue the blogger had with the Alignment system: I found it interesting that the author considered keeping to the lawful good alignment to be boring and a limitation of player creativity. I happen not to agree, but I wonder how common the attitude is. I'll start with an admission that the alignment system is artificial and a little silly, a relic of Gary Gygax's infatuation with the work of Michael Moorcock and his whole law and chaos thing. But it is part of the rules, and it can be fun and challenging to take it up. I've played with lots of people over the years, and most of us have gotten as much entertainment out of the alignment system as any other aspect of D&D rules. We've played characters of all alignments, and I've seen my friends be inspired in all sorts of interesting ways by trying to act in accord with them. A paladin, to take one example, could be priggish, or boisterous, or slightly off-key and carrying a book of etiquette for every occasion, all while faithfully adhering to the lawful good alignment. He or she could be stern, merry, contemplative, ambitious, humble or pushy, all the while promoting justice and questy stuff the way the rulebooks say paladins should. Sometimes they don't quite make it. I'll just put in a mention here of poor Dudley Didwrong, the post-mortal not-quite paladin from a friend's campaign. He tried, the poor dope. My thesis is that playing to alignment rather than stifling individuality and creativity can be liberating and open up new possibilities in roleplaying. What are other people's opinions?
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