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The entire village stood out in the cold autumnal rain, ringing the open grave. On the muddy ground at their feet lay the body of a beautiful young woman. Her pale face was dotted with rain drops and blood. The shroud drawn up over most of her body did little to hide the terrible wounds she had suffered, or the fact that her head had been cut from her body.

"In traumatic instances, at the moment of death as the soul flees the body, sometimes something else takes it's place." Brother Maynard absently adjusted his grip on the bloody [...]

Halloween Horror Hits - Best of Spooks and Zombies from Rule of the Dice

Happy Halloween, Dicers! Hopefully all of you have your horror-themed games planned for tonight or this weekend, or maybe you're watching Night of the Living Dead for the hundredth time, or maybe (like me) you'll be hiding in the dark on your porch to scare the shit out of little kids when they come to your door begging for candy. (To be fair, now that I have my own little guy, I'm starting to

A Strange End of Days: Review of Eschatology Code

With the still relatively recent release of The Strange, the new iteration of Monte Cook’s Cypher system first used in Numenera, Eschatology Code provides a quick and straight-forward adventure to get you started.

Designed for running at conventions, and actually used by the Monte Cook Games team at Gen Con 2014 this summer, it offers an introduction to the world and a potential jumping off point for longer campaigns.

Eschatology Code is a 35-page adventure for The Strange, written by Bruce Cordell and released by Monte Cook Games. The adventure itself runs to 14-pages, with the remainder of the PDF including [...]

SS Random List -- Disease Names

Diseases exist in every world and game. Below are the names for 20 diseases, but what are their symptoms, the cures and how lethal are they?

D20 Disease Name 1 Bad Burning Fester 2 Dock Plague 3 Dragon's Pink Scalp 4 Elephant's Malady 5 Flux Blindness 6 Great Atrophy 7 Infernal Stroke 8 Intestinal Sores 9 Iron Chill 10 Lady's Ague 11 Large Liver 12 Large Miasma 13 Lock Annihilation 14 Lymph Stroke 15 Orange Lunacy 16 Queen's Lock Attack 17 Stone Reflux 18 Terror Malady 19 Tick's Abyss Pain 20 Vomiting Necrosis

This list was made using results generated by the generators on Seventh Sanctum

Generator Link : Disease Generator

Happy Halloween!

Tuck Me In is a one-minute horror short based on one of those creepy two-sentence horror stories that were doing the rounds earlier this year.

Dracula (1958)- Adjusting as Needed

It took me quite a while to finally see this version of Dracula. The vampire buff in me stands now in the corner, ashamed of himself. I hope that you'll forgive him... Anyway, this version doesn't disappoints, which is quite amazing to say when considering the bad aging of most of Hammer's Films.I guess that most of you do know the plot of Dracula, but this version changes the plot of the book on the one hand and of earlier adaptations on the other hand, quite enormously. For once, Van Helsing is young, and for the other Harker is there [...]

Pathfinder: Occult Adventures goes into open playtest, and you can download it now

Paizo has released an open preview for its upcoming book Pathfinder: Occult Adventures, due for release July 2015.

According to the Paizo website:

"Occult Adventures will delve into the world of the occult (including psychic magic, mystic rituals, and esoteric sciences) with brand new materials available for players and GMs alike.

The Occult Adventures playtest document includes six new base classes for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: the kineticist, the medium, the mesmerist, the occultist, the psychic, and the spiritualist. Each one of these classes presents new options and features to incorporate elements of the occult into [...]

Marvel unearths controversial Spider-Man arc for 2015 event teaser

Now here's a controversial one. Marvel has revealed its next teaser for its 2015 ultra-mega-super event and it's definitely one that's going to strike a nerve with Spiderfans. Ladies and gentlemen...

That's right - they went there. For those unfamiliar with what I'm talking about, back in Amazing Spider-Man #21 Mary Jane and Peter Parker finally tied the knot. The big bods at Marvel weren't too keen on this, as they thought it limited Spider-Man...somehow, so in 2006 Joe Quesada drew one of the most controversial arcs in Marvel history: One More Day.

In One More Day, [...]

Warlocks Journal & the Shadow Council

Once again‚ the Warlocks Journal has found its way to Tiny Gorks workshop. I saw him flipping through it’s pages a few hours ago and i do believe he was mumbling something about artifacts! Now i know that Tiny Gork is somewhat an expert on something known as the Shadow Council. What… you‚ you don’t .. you have never heard about the Shadow Council ? There once was… many fateful stories starts with these words and in this case it is no less true and yet it might still prove...

The post Warlocks Journal & the Shadow Council appeared first on [...]

Review 10/29/2014

It took two teleports but Jaren was successful at transporting the brothers red as well as Savidia, Sorosh, Maycorth, Potior and Hiens Imber to Nimbus. We were well received by a trusting Erilis and two half-dragon supplicants from the front lines. 
Erilis gave us a parchment from our first acquaintance Lopel, who recognized our encounter and the prestige it gave him. The parchments were writs of property purchased in our name, an joining estate off of his own. Interesting to note Lopel is a regular in temple worship as well. We send a message to have Lopel for dinner. 
We share our short term goals to Erilis- docks, barbarians, Lowport. When Lowport was mentioned it took us to the subject of Avericia's nemesis as Kazgorogg's chosen. As for the barbarians, they have unsettled the immediate region with their logging techniques- people are concerned. We advise that Nimbus is our primary nest while on Africa. 
Pleased as can be Erilis hosts the NPCs as we fly down to the hamlet near the docks. After some initial observations of the area we encounter the Catman we were told of earlier that day speaking with aquatic elves. We did not advance but made it clear we [...]

DC Heroes: World In the Balance

From the back cover:

Superman and Green Lantern are Missing

Nuclear Missiles Have been Stolen and a Mysterious Virus is Driving Europeans Insane

What's Next?

Someone very powerful is seeking to expand their dominion, and Justice League America and Justice League Europe must work together to find out who is behind this massive plot to hold the world hostage!

World in the Balance is a first in the DC HEROES Role-Playing Game line. In this "double adventure", 5 to 7 players alternate between two separate characters, one from each branch of the new post-Breakdowns Justice League. Or is 10-12 DC HEROES players are gathered, half play characters from Justice League America and half play characters from Justice League Europe, with both groups uniting at the end to rescue the Man of Steel and Hal Jordan and save Earth from imminent domination.

World in the Balance features: Detailed maps of the Ferris Aircraft and Aeronautics Proving Ground -- the Mojave Desert and -- S.T.A.R. Labs, as well as NEW statistics for -- The Flash III -- Libra II -- Blackrock -- Brain Storm -- Nightfall, and -- Shatterfist.

White Court Vampire -- Dresden World

If you are looking to be the hottest and sexiest person in any room, then you want this. WCV are all about looking good and making jaws drop. In Dresden there are three flavors of WCV. All of them feed off of human emotion but which they feed off of is different, hence the three clans of WCV. This play book is designed for the Raith family and they feed off of lust. Depending on how things go in the future I may write up books for the other two (fear and despair).

The WCV is the best at social manipulation. [...]

(Chicago | October 31, 2014): Rogue Games brings new options to Colonial Gothic players

Rogue Games is pleased to announce that starting today you can preorder a copy of Colonial Gothic: The Player Companion. When you order your copy today, you will automatically get the PDF version as well!

There are more things in heaven and earth…

You have traveled the Thirteen Colonies and beyond. You have faced down ancient spirits, legendary beasts and scheming magicians. You have fought for freedom, truth, and sanity. Still, there is much for you to discover.

Colonial Gothic: A Player’s Companionoffers a wide range of options, enhancements, and new material to raise your game to new heights:

  • New skills, spells, and weapons
  • New [...]

Discussion: Favorite Ghost or Ghoul

It's Halloween. What's your favorite ghost or ghoul? What spirit or other form of the undead just gets to you?

For me it's the Bansidhe (Banshee?) I'm not sure why, but ever since I've been little I've been terrified of the things. It's probably from watching Darby O'Gail and the Little People when I was too young for it or something, but it's a fear I never quite got over. Anytime a Banshee comes up in a game or fantasy story it tends to give me chills with memories of a child's terror.

How about you? What sticks [...]

Articulations from Arthur - Alignment Change

King Arthur returns from all sorts of misadventure across Mystara, as both a DM and a player.  He wanted to share this with everyone, after some of those hijinks nearly introduced him to the TPK.  As his discovery of gaming in general is really just beginning, it will be interesting to see what he has to say from time to time - to give us old, crotchety folk a fresh perspective that is unburdened with expectation or nostalgia.

In my budding experience, I have encountered an alignment change.  This particular change of heart was forced upon me, for [...]

Halloween Countdown, Day 2

Citizens of Ponyville! We have graced your tiny village with our presence so that you might behold the real Princess of the Night! From this moment forth, the night will last forever!
cf. Lasombra

GMprov Part 2 -- Bargains & Interrogations

Last week, I talked about peppering conversations with information so that any eavesdroppers can learn something useful. Today, I discuss how to improvise bartering and interrogations.

Before I do, let me share with you one of my favorite Improv exercises: the Bus Stop. These are the rules:

  1. There is a bus stop with a short bench next to it. The bus is a very full bus (due to arrive soon), and it will only have enough room for one more person.
  2. Player 1 starts on stage, sitting in the first seat at a bus stop. This person is first in line, and thus [...]


Savage Worlds: The Widening Gyre

Savage Worlds: The Widening Gyre


Welcome to The 19th Century That Never Was!


It is a world of wonder, of horror, of adventure, of magic, of strange technology and unprecedented cultural revolution. This is the age that nearly was, filled with radium-powered flying machines, clockwork automata, and steam-driven computers. It is an age of dark magic, sinister secrets, and unholy cults. It is a time in which the world teeters on the edge of disaster, where the enlightened scientific mind battled against ancient superstition and ignorance, in which the souls of all mankind hung in the balance.


The Widening Gyre presents an original [...]

Dungeon Crawl Classics #24: Legend of the Ripper - Free Until Halloween

I would have missed this if not for OSRToday.

Dungeon Crawl Classics #24: Legend of the Ripper is free until tomorrow, Halloween.

So, grab it!
An Adventure for Character Levels 1-3 . The city is gripped in fear! The Ripper has returned after a 125-year absence and is once again carving a trail of blood through the slums of Millers Court. Also returned is the ghost of Mari Kell, his last victim from more than a century ago, and she haunts the streets where she was killed. The city watch is at a loss to solve this supernatural mystery, much less apprehend the Ripper himself. All the clues point back to the hovel where Mari Kell was slain long ago. If the heroes are [...]

All Hallows E'en DTRPG Sale, Free Ravenloft, Fighting Fantasy, Big Jars

Happy Halloween  (roll on All Saints Day when we can get back to burning the pagans or at least putting them on trial before on Bonfire Night, or have I got that wrong?)

One day left to pick a possible freebie and heavily reduced PDF products (and maybe some print) in the DriveThru Sale.  There was a rather juicy Ravenloft title going for free last time I looked. You owe it to Strahd, you know you do.


UK gamebook fans still have a chance to buy tickets for the a talk given by Jonathon [...]

Terror Dog

Terror Dog

STR: 4 (60) WPR: 3 (45)  
DEX: NA          PER: NA  
AGL: 6 (90) PCN: 6 (90)  
STA: 5 (75) PWR: 100  
ATT: 2/75% WND: 15  
MV: L 225  
Experience: 500
The Terror Dogs are a vicious breed of demonic hellhounds found in the Ghostbusters franchise, dating as far back as the original film.

Terror Dogs are large and bulky monsters vaguely resembling actual dogs but have horns and glowing red eyes as well as a degree of intelligence and [...]

On Why Digital Fails

WoTC delivered another blow to digital support for their system again today. Many, myself included, consider that a failure but why do they repeatedly fail to deliver useful tools? It all begins at what you define as a useful system.

First and foremost, people desire electronic documents so they don’t have to haul around pounds of books. Most publishers have adopted that approach. Even WotC with the release of hundreds of older titles. Still, they have been silent regarding new releases. By all signs, they have the intention of once [...]

Fantasy Grounds 2 to Support 5e?

Saw this pointed out in the D&D Next G+ Community:

Are they supporting it in much the same way as 3rd party adventures are supporting 5e, using the OGL as a work around? There currently is no license, not even a GSL, for 5e.

There really is a way for WotC to monetize this...

Post-Reading Generation?

Tuesday I had about 25 students at my after school Strategy Games Club and we hosted the following games:

  • Shadows Over Camelot
  • Risk: Godstorm
  • Arkham High (a d20-ed FASERIP Homebrew Cthulhu-Buffy Mashup!)
  • D&D 5th ed.
  • Smallworld

Two of my awesome high school volunteers ran Shadows and Risk, while one of my most talented 8th graders continued her Arkham scenario.  The young fellow who volunteered to manage the game of Smallworld assured me (twice) that he knew the rules and was ready and able to manage things.

So with that settled, I dug in with my D&D group.  We completed character generation [...]

Doctor Who is Eyein Mah Lemon Drink

Spoilers are often found in the deep, dark Forest.

     Every now and then I have to stop and remind myself that Doctor Who is, at its core, a children's show. A family show. It always has been, even through its darkest periods, it's a show friendly for kids, especially very clever kids. The writing can be snappy, the themes mature, the visuals gruesome, and the namesake irascible, but it's not until you literally fill the TARDIS with children that I am reminded who the target audience is. It's comforting that I still don't feel out of place [...]

Updated Warden Class for S&W Whitebox and Labyrinth Lord

I’ve updated my Warden class for both Labyrinth Lord and Swords & Wizardry Whitebox, mainly to clean them up a bit, and add new rules around bow expertise. The LL version in particular needed some work to remove the OD&D-style hit dice. The table of bonuses for bow attacks in the LL version is based on the Combat Options Supplement for BFRPG. Here are the links to the latest versions:

The Warden (v4) for Swords & Wizardry Whitebox (PDF)

The Warden (v3) for Labyrinth Lord (PDF)

Halloween Time

Close to putting up some of the work that’s been getting done – but still busy there. Should have enough of the right parts to show/ explain where it’s at in about a week.

For now, how about some Halloween tales?

Gaelic Werewolves

The Cailleach


Shadowrun 2070 Campaign Report and New Seattle Scream (#46)

It has been sometime since my last update (unless you count PinkCat‘s) but Shadowrun has been continuing, the shared campaign has slowed considerably, with two GMs mostly dropping out of running, but the NorCal branch is still going on (expect another episode of Running in the Shade soon).

Turnout was been low for the last game, only three players, which was interesting as I have been used to six player plus groups but nice as I can actually pay attention to everyone and there is very little confusion. Unfortunately, we are losing one of our newer (but dedicated) players who is [...]

Occult Adventures Playtest: First Impressions

Yesterday, Paizo released the playtest document for Occult Adventures, the hardcover rulebook they will be releasing next Summer. This book will contain rules for more occult topics, like auras and occult rituals, give advice on how to incorporate such topics into your Pathfinder campaign, and introduces six new classes that utilize a new form of magic: psychic magic. 
Having read the playtest document and the six new classes, I thought I'd give my first impressions of each. Unlike the previous Advanced Class Guide playtest, my overall opinion is much more positive this time around. Each class feels unique, possessing interesting [...]

Shadowrun 2070 Campaign Report and New Seattle Scream (#46)

It has been sometime since my last update (unless you count PinkCat‘s) but Shadowrun has been continuing, the shared campaign has slowed considerably, with two GMs mostly dropping out of running, but the NorCal branch is still going on (expect another episode of Running in the Shade soon).

Turnout was been low for the last game, only three players, which was interesting as I have been used to six player plus groups but nice as I can actually pay attention to everyone and there is very little confusion. Unfortunately, we are losing one of our newer (but dedicated) players who is [...]

Star Wars: Age of Rebellion: Stay on Target: A Sourcebook for Aces

Star Wars: Age of Rebellion: Stay on Target: A Sourcebook for Aces



The first book-length rules supplement for the Star Wars: Age of Rebellion Roleplaying Game, Stay on Target focuses on expanding the Ace career, making it more versatile and allowing your Ace characters to hone their talents to all-new levels!


You'll find three new Ace specializations, as well as new signature abilities, playable species, starfighters, modifications and equipment. While the new rules and materials in Stay on Target may focus on the Ace career, they also offer new options for any character looking to master a starfighter, vehicle, or alien mount.

EN World Review -- Castles & Crusades: Night of the Spirits by Troll Lord Games

Happy Halloween Eve, Gentle Readers!

October is finally done – tomorrow is Halloween but it feels like the summer was only days ago! I honestly don’t know where time has gone, but I have a feeling some of it has to do with having so many great game releases – both tabletop and video – coming out in the past few months!

This weekend looks like it will be quite busy for me, although not necessarily with games. In addition to the typical Halloween parties going on, the anime and cosplay convention Youmacon will be held at Cobo Arena in Detroit this [...]

The Pearl 024


“So the badass in full plate unleashes a lightning bolt in the dragon’s face as it pounces on him! Andersson, you’re up! What do you do? . . . Andersson? you there?” *yawn*, “What’s that? I fell asleep . . .”



The Pearl 024

What was that? A plot device?

This month’s the blog carnival peers into the darkness and finds . . . . A creak heard just outside the bedroom door . . . . A tapping on the window pane . . . . A sound of … Continue reading →

Podcast Episode The Boardgame Review Room: Sentinel Tactics

When Sentinels of the Multiverse came out, it rightly turned some faces. Because the game is rather terrific. Or I think so at least. Not everyone liked it, like my colleague Michael, who found it too bland for his card games tastes. To each their own! Now, after a few expansion, a few more hundred [...]

The post Podcast Episode The Boardgame Review Room: Sentinel Tactics appeared first on G*M*S Magazine.

Considering Witches

Didn't have much time yesterday (don't have much time today, either). I'm still considering what would be the "set spell lists" or even the choice of "schools" should I go that route (as discussed a couple days ago). In other words, haven't made any progress on dismantling the magic system already written for the new fantasy heartbreaker.

Maybe it's because (subconsciously?) I think it's a bad idea? Maybe.
But flavor...I like flavor. Flavor is important. It makes a game tasty. Without flavor, you might have a robust game system, chock-full of nutritious, caloric-value (just to carry an analogy too [...]

Deja Vu All Over Again - Just Like 4e, 5e's Digital App is a Bust

Dungeonscape, formerly Codename: Morningstar, is no longer going to be 5e's Virtual Companion. Sound familiar? (read about it at OSRToday and ENWorld for more details)

WotC just can't seem to get this right, can they?

With 4e, they tried twice with Virtual Table Tops, and never were able to integrate it into their DDI. One failed due to personal tragedy, and the second version just failed. Although the first version did steal the graphics from Fantasy Grounds for the 3d dice "visualization" if I recall correctly. The 2nd version never made it out of beta and was killed without much fanfare in July of 2012.

Is there money to be made from a VTT for WotC? Sure. Even with the options already [...]

Munchkin Game Changers

Munchkin Game Changers



Munchkin Game Changers contains all the cards from Munchkin Fairy Dust, Munchkin Fairy Dust Dice, Munchkinomicon, Munchkin Monster Enhancers, and Munchkin Reloaded!


It also includes some bonus items -- new Fairy Dust and Munchkinomicon level counters, and four cards formerly only available directly from Steve Jackson Games.




3-6 players

Ages 10+

1-2 hour play time



68 cards

Two level counters

Two 19mm six-sided dice


Prep in Progress: Chapter 29, Part 2

  Arcane mutants, Fungus Forest& faster prep   The Prep in Progress entries are short summaries of my prep for my ongoing campaignThe Tales of the Hero Wars.   Despite having a day in Norwich, I still found the time for some game prep. I completed the session outline, which is my central tool for …

Continue reading »

Play Report: Last Night on Earth

Since it's Halloweek, we decided that our last game of the night should be thematically appropriate. I had just bought last night on earth, so we opened it up and got cracking. Here are my thoughts on the game: 1) Packaging. The box has tons of room, but the interior plastic trays are poorly thought out. When the game is new and all the tokens are still in their cardboard frame, it fits

Player Empowerment: Play on Target Podcast Ep. 35

In this episode of Play on Target we consider the question of player empowerment, but we come it from an unusual place. As we mention in the podcast this topic arose from someone asking if RPGs are power fantasies. I think the suggestion was more, "are they simply power fantasies?" So here we dance around that topic and consider how gamers talk about that as a positive or negative in gaming. I think its worth pointing out that there's definitely a bias in our conversation. We're three gamemasters, male, white, and generally not "killer GMs." I don't mean that as [...]


In Sertorius magic is innate, you are either born a caster or you are not. However the rules of the game hint at other possible sources of magic in the setting. For example items can be created when a Sertori imbues his or her soul into an object and a Sertori skull can be tapped for residual magical energy. Blood Magic takes this idea and runs with it, making magic available to non-Sertori who perform rituals and use Sertori blood to produce magic effects. 

This concept isn't my own, though I have been using it in my campaigns. My friend [...]

Get The First Starship Tyche RPG Adventure For Just $1!

When the Starship Tyche encounters a strange energy field that causes a crewman to suddenly develop psionic powers, the crew must find a way to escape, or else the ship will be destroyed!

Be Not Afraid is a space opera adventure set in the Starship Tyche universe. It is designed to be played in one game session, as an episode of the fictional Starship Tyche television series. It can be played with those rules, or as a stand-alone using Fate Accelerated Edition.

This weekend only you can get this adventure for just $1. You must use the links in this postto redeem [...]

Get The First Starship Tyche RPG Adventure For Just $1!

When the Starship Tyche encounters a strange energy field that causes a crewman to suddenly develop psionic powers, the crew must find a way to escape, or else the ship will be destroyed!

Be Not Afraid is a space opera adventure set in the Starship Tyche universe. It is designed to be played in one game session, as an episode of the fictional Starship Tyche television series. It can be played with those rules, or as a stand-alone using Fate Accelerated Edition.

This weekend only you can get this adventure for just $1. You must use the links in this postto redeem [...]

A BIG Update

Here's a bit to chew on...

1. The core rules for Saga of the Splintered Realm are now available (thanks to the Kickstarter backers!) as a pay what you want download. The rules are going to see some minor tweaks to aesthetics of the layout and tables over the next few months before the print edition is released, but this core book is good to go. Get your copy now! I'd love to hear what you think, since many of the final decisions were made behind the scenes, and were not part of discussions I threw out there...

Star Wars (finally)

Well I've been meaning to write this for a long time, and I've been talking about it for the last few entries, but here it is finally, a post about the Star Wars game we've been playing for the past few months.

We're playing the current Fantasy Flight Star Wars Game (using both Edge of the Empire and Age of Rebellion). We've got several of the supplements and we're using those too. Some supplement books seem to be better than others (and some are bafflingly absent, like why on earth is there a supplement about Colonials, but NOT one for Scoundrels?!).

While I'm talking about the products themselves, I really wish they had a license that let them sell PDF's there are certain things that'd be a lot easier to find in those big books with a simple text search. Hopefully when the license comes up for [...]

[Spotlight] Unbelievable Simple Roleplaying 2.0

USR is a very rules-lite generic roleplaying game and it does what it says: it's dead simple. There are some optional rules to make it more "advanced" but in its heart it is still a very lightweight system.

The second iteration of this game is more like a revised edition instead of a revolutionary overhaul. The layout has changed and looks more modern, combat rules have been modified (combat specialisms work a bit differently) and there are some ideas for Narrative Points.
Another addition is some advice for new players. In my opinion this something the game could have gone [...]

Phantasm- Meeting the NPCs in Normal Situations

Some movies leave you with a lasting impression, others just don't. Phantasm belongs to the second group. It's not that it is a bad movie, or that I didn't enjoy it, but it just wasn't that good either. For me, it didn't have anything memorable within its 90 minutes, and even The Tall Man himself wasn't anything inspiring. I mean- after knowing The Slender Man, all I can say in benefit of this movie is that it was a nice inspiration for some great artistry. Too bad it's all I can say for this film.Anyway, this movie's plot is pretty [...]

Wizards of the Coast fumbles the digital ball. Again.

Wizards of the Coast cancelled the Dungeonscape (Codename: Morningstar) project with the same lack of fanfare with which they announced it.

The announcement came in their news section in an extraordinarily brief press release:

One last look before we say goodbye."Wizards of the Coast has ended its relationship with Trapdoor Technologies and their DungeonScape application. If you participated in the beta and have questions regarding the application itself, please contact Trapdoor directly.

It's never easy to end a relationship with one of our business partners, but we remain committed to creating great tabletop and digital gaming experiences for Dungeons & Dragons players and [...]
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