Tabletop Gaming Feeds

The OSR’s Fourth Wave: Cirsova, Dungeon Grappling, and Appendix N!

Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 22:31

Venger Satanis recently suggested that the OSR has a fourth wave and sketched out what he thought set it apart from the earlier phases within the scene:

4th wave OSR incorporates the spirit, tone, objectives, aesthetics, play-style, rules philosophy, mechanical principles, and hobbyist attitude from the 70’s, 80’s, and early 90’s into RPG material that does it’s own thing.  Many consider these products neo-OSR, OSRish, OSR adjacent, or quasi-OSR because they’ve taken the next logical, evolutionary step away from original D&D, Traveller, Call of Cthulhu, Gamma World, Ghostbusters, Toon, Vampire: the Masquerade, etc.

I think he’s right that this did in fact happen.

Dungeon Grappling is of course a fusion of the best ideas of the old school D&D scene mixed together with one of the most innovative designers to come out of the GURPS side of the hobby. Cirsova takes the “git it done”, “do it yourself” approach to ‘zines that fueled magazines like Fight On! and applies it to an effort to create a science fiction and fantasy magazine that is more in line with the sort of thing that inspired fantasy role-playing in the first place. My own Appendix N takes the sort of gaming commentary that typified the second wave of the OSR (and which was subsequently repudiated by third wavers), gives it a first class treatment, and then takes outside of the OSR scene and into an entirely new audience.

That’s just the stuff that I have on hand here, but there is of course more on the way. The Mixed GM’s Demons In Space fuses a popular video game franchise with a reskin of a very familiar game. And Autarch’s Heroic Fantasy & Barbarian Conquerors supplements promise to take some of the discoveries of the pulp revival and consciously apply them to one of the best retroclones on the market. (Adventure Conqueror King System, natch!)

The OSR didn’t simply declare victory and call it day when 5th edition back away from some of the more mind-splitting elements of 4th edition. A new wave of designers came along that took what the OSR had proven to work, returned to the roots of the hobby, and then went forward with their own way of doing things.

And it’s just getting started!

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

RPGNow Deal of the Day - The Wreckers of Windward Isle From Roan Studio

Tenkar's Tavern - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 21:02
Today's RPGNow Deal of the Day is The Wreckers of Windward Isle. So, what actually is The Wreckers of Windward Isle, as the boilerplate doesn't say much:Sitting at the entrance to the Bay of Spirits is an imposing rocky island that has been a hazard to ships and seafarers since the early years of exploration in the region. The weather, rough seas, pirates and the damnable Wreckers make ocean voyage in the area perilous at best. The land itself can be just as dangerous with adventure and intrigue around every corner. Yeah, doesn't really tell squat. Good news is that I ponied up my $1.79 (as it is 40% off of the usual $2.99) so I can tell you what it is. It is an OSR setting with adventure hooks and such. Maybe it is more accurately a micro-setting as it covers all of about 1.75 square miles.

I'm actually less interested in that than the locations and personalities within the setting, as they are generally the easiest to port to your own campaign, and stuff looks highly portable. Well laid out with pleasing art, this is well worth your 3 bucks, let alone a buck seventy nine. If I have a complaint, and its a fairly common one, the NPCs have too much magic. But that's my perspective and it may not be yours.

OSR non denominational, it should fit the ruleset of your choice with relative ease.

Normally $2.99, The Wreckers of Windward Isle is on sale until tomorrow morning for $1.79.

Remember, The Tavern gets paid a small amount from every purchase that uses affiliate links like the ones above. Please remember to tip your barman.

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

PWYW - ZWEIHÄNDER Grim & Perilous RPG (WFRP Clone-ish)

Tenkar's Tavern - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 14:50

Some background on my end. I ran Games Workshop's Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay (hereafter referred to as WFRP 1e) pretty much from release until the campaign ended when the party's aspiring mage fumbled a fireball as he wore a bandolier of flasks of oil. It was certainly a way to end a campaign on a fiery note.

When WFRP 2e was releases by Green Ronin, I grabbed much of that line. When FFG releases WFRP 3e, I picked up the boxed rules and realized the latest edition of WFRP was not for me. Cubicle 7 is releasing a 4th edition, which will harken back to 1st and 2nd edition.

So, where does that put Zweihander? Its pretty much a house ruled WFRP 1e with many of the serial numbers scratched off. It has the right feel even if much of the WFRP tropes aren't accessible due to trademarks and the like.

Oh, and its big. 631 pages big. The PWYW version is sans art and called "early access" but really, its the full game. The full art, finalized version is available for 20 bucks in PDF.

Do you have fond memories of WFRP? Never played it and want a glimpse of what it was before the horrors of 3rd edition? Here's you chance at no risk.
ZWEIHÄNDER Grim & Perilous RPG is a bloodier, grimmer and grittier version of classic tabletop role-playing games you may already familiar with. The community calls this style of gaming the “pathetic aesthetic”, but we simply call it grim & perilous gaming. WHAT IS ZWEIHÄNDERZWEIHÄNDER Grim & Perilous RPG is an OSR Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay loveletter/retroclone/heartbreaker released under Creative Commons License Share-Alike. It is a fantasy tabletop role-playing game, one where adventurers will: Live in a gritty, ‘realistic’ fantasy world
Make morally grey decisions & enact vicious reprisals
Uncover insidious plots & political intrigue
Desperately fight in clandestine & open field combat
Defend themselves from injuries, madness & mutations
Take part in heart-pumping chase scenes
Venture into the wilderness & survive its perils
Encounter sanity-blasting creatures & their minions Using the classical D100 system, you will create grim characters, write perilous adventures and build low fantasy & dark fantasy campaigns. These rules are perfectly suitable to run Renaissance and medieval-styled adventures, too. You can also use this book to craft homebrew stories set in the works of Andrzej Sapkowski, George R.R. Martin, Glen Cook, Scott Lynch and other ‘grimdark’-inspired worlds. This all-in-one game includes most of what you need to play: a character creation guide, game mastery rules and a bestiary brimming with creatures both fair & foul. All that’s left to gather are a few friends, pencils and a handful of dice.A percentage of sales made through The Tavern's RPGNow affiliate links are returned to The Tavern. We appreciate your support. We'll keep the doors open late...
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High Weirdness, Ghostly Action, & Sword & Sorcery Strangeess - An Actual Play Report For Tegel Manor

Swords & Stitchery - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 14:36
So during tonight's Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea game the PC's got into Tegel Manor through the kitchen after avoiding a garden full of vampire vines & the machinations of the manor's malevolent personality. The PC's were guided to the manor by another member of the Rump clan one of the many illegitimate children who serve the family as one of the lower tier grounds Needles
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[REVIEW] The Flooded Temple

Beyond Fomalhaut - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 14:24
[REVIEW] The Flooded Templeby Morten GreisSelf-published
The Flooded Temple“Hidden in flooded ravines lies an ancient temple on the bordering the realm of death.” So begins this 18-page adventure about a ruined multi-level temple and the rival monster factions that inhabit it. The scenario was originally written for Hinterlandet, a Danish old-school system, and it is billed as “[a]n OSR-style low-level adventure for daring adventurers using the greatest roleplaying system of our age”. It is the GM’s responsibility to decide which of the several hundred D&D-like systems that “greatest” refers to, and to substitute the appropriate stats – a fairly easy task, since the module mostly features standard monsters with small changes that largely affect their description.
This kind of light customisation is one of the adventure’s strong points. You are not just encountering kobolds, bugbears and lizardmen, but kobolds who have contracted a terminal disease and use the ruined temple as part of an elaborate (and rather creepy) death ritual, bugbears who are here as part of a coming-of-age test, and lizardmen who have arrived to claim the temple for their own purposes. Just adding the players would create enough chaos to make the adventure run itself, but a fifth party – an evil cult looking for the same thing as the PCs – adds a dynamic, timed component to the experience. There are a lot of ways this combustible mixture could blow up, and you just have to supply the burning fuse to light it up.
Also add the ruined temple-complex. This is one exciting structure. A building cut into the sides of a gorge around a flowing river, reminiscent of Petra and just the kind of location you’d expect to see in an Indiana Jones movie. You can row your boat right to the front entrance. You can infiltrate the place through one of several large windows. You can swim through a crack in the wall. You might even climb up on top and descend from above. Parts of the structure are flooded, and there is a central open-air courtyard bypassing multiple levels which allows for a lot of rope-related tomfoolery. This opens up the scenario and lets the players devise crazy plans which may or may not work, but, combined with the factions, will invariably result in a lot of chaotic fun. There is a central mystery, too, more Indiana Jones stuff revolving around puzzles and a little archaeology. You decipher clues hidden in the decoration and unearth mysteries. The treasure is very scarce (even by conservative standards), but it comes with interesting dilemmas (“Do we dare loot this dead guy who has seemingly succumbed to a terrible tropical disease?”), and the magic items are all superb sword&sorcery fare; full of mystery and danger.
But “factions” and “temple-complex” is perhaps putting things too generously. Three of the four factions are represented by single encounters clustered in one room, while the temple is your typical 20-room affair (25 if you count sub-entries) in a verycompact space. There is simultaneously too little and too much. Forget the often criticised “monster condos” of early dungeon design, this is pretty much the equivalent of letting an adventuring party loose in an apartment block. When it blows up, it blows up.
I am conflicted about these design choices. Things are close enough together that something happening in one room should have consequences in nearby rooms, and since the temple is a neat 3D structure with lots of connection points through staircases and the open courtyard in the middle, this means any action can start unpredictable chain reactions. It can be great if the GM can pull it off, or it can lead to confusion and missed opportunities (“Damn I should have let the bugbears come and search the area”). Certainly, you need to study the adventure very carefully to run the faction interactions effectively, something the lengthy and sometimes opaque text doesn’t always help with. There is too much exposition, and some of the room entries run too long to make it effective.
Like this, but with koboldsAnd of course, it is too small. Yes, I have been beating that drum through many reviews (and many more I could have written, but didn’t), but it does in fact matter. The temple is too small. There is not enough space to develop the web of alliances and conflicts sufficiently. There is not enough empty room where chance encounters and conflicts can take place. There are no out of the way sections where somethingcould be lurking (and lurk it should!). There are not enough side rooms to hide when someone is coming. Things can’t really happen between two factions because once someone raises a ruckus, everyone will be looking on. Think of Red Nails taking place in a small, tight condo instead of a sprawling ruined city. It lessens the concept, and robs the adventure of its potential.
It appears to me that The Flooded Temple is balanced on the edge between the kind of disappointing mini-adventures I have been too dispirited to review lately, and complex, imaginatively written scenarios which take the Caverns of Thracia playbook and use it to produce interesting, open-ended adventures where the clash of opposed agendas can produce shaky alliances, shifting tactical situations, and unpredictable bursts of violence. It is almost there, but not there. The strong visual imagination, sense of place and the potential for internecine strife give the adventure its charm. It could be truly excellent if the map was twice the current size, and had roughly the same number of keyed entries (or perhaps a few more areas without plot relevance), while the writing was edited a little for length and utility. There is much promise here. I hope this promise will one day be realised.
No playtesters were credited in the adventure.

Rating: *** / *****
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Return to the Tower of Zenopus

Zenopus Archives - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 10:40
As I wrote in my last post, this weekend marks 40 years since Origins III in 1977, the first known public release of the Holmes Basic Set. How I am celebrating?

Well, first off - my contributor copy of Tales of Peril arrived, and I opened it up late last night. It's a beautiful book. More on that later.

I'm thinking about a Holmes-inspired game I'd like to run at Gary Con next year. One idea I've had is a Return to the Tower of Zenopus. This would be set 40 years (naturally) after the events of the original when the smugglers were defeated and the dungeon entrance was sealed. Lady Lemunda is now the ruler of the town and trouble is stirring in the old dungeon. I would re-stock the dungeon using material from Maze of Peril, due to the thematic similarities. The pre-generated characters would be Boinger, Zereth & Murray (drawing from their character sheets in Tales of Peril) plus Hortensa, Geoffrey, Brother Ambrose, etc.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Kickstarter - Dungeons of Doom 3 - Dragon Slayers - Star Hat Miniatures

Tenkar's Tavern - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 04:03

Darcy Perry does some really fine sculpts. In his last Kickstarter, Darcy did a sculpt of Tenkar the Dwarf, and holy shit, was it on target. He sent me a painted version of Tenkar and I keep it dearly - there is magic there.

Anyhow, Darcy has a new Kickstarter with new sculpts and they look damn fine.

So, here's my suggestion. Back Delvers Lost in the Dungeons of Doom III and ask if you can add Tenkar as an add on. The mini really is awesome. I'm so glad I said yes when asked ;)

Oh, yes, I'll be backing the latest Kickstarter from Darcy. Simply put, the man does amazing work and even if I haven't gotten around to painting minis after a year in retirement, you never know ;)

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Appendix N: That Moment When The Box Arrives

Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog - Sun, 07/23/2017 - 02:52

You know the scene. Marty McFly has come back from 1955 after saving history with his pal Doc Brown. But something is different.

Instead of wrecking the car, Biff is waxing it. Instead of working a Burger King, Marty’s brother has job at an office. And George McFly… he’s cool, confident, and at the top of his game.

But this isn’t enough to establish that things have really changed. There’s one more beat to go here in order to clinch it. Biff shows up with a box: it’s George Mcfly’s book. He’s a big time published author and he now hows the hard cover book with his name on it!

I remember seeing that movie when it came out and thinking… that’s going to be me some day.

Well, today is the day!

And yes. This thing is certainly turning heads.

You can get it at Amazon for either Kindle or in hardback.

What are people saying? Well here’s a sample:

I gave up reading for ten years maybe only reading a handful of novels in the last five years. But then I read Jeffros posts and downloaded Pirates of Venus and now have a tbr list of seventy books.

Thank you for giving me back the joy of reading.

Get your copy today and join the revolution in publishing!

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Youtube - Tim Kask on TSR - From GaryCon 2016

Tenkar's Tavern - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 21:33

This video popped up in my NTRPG Con Facebok feed yesterday and it shocked me that I hadn't seen it before. Tim Kask talks about the early days of TSR and more.

Its 2 hours long and I haven't finished it yet.

Still, here's to you Tim! Cheers!

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

PWYW - Orb of Undying Light (Swords & Wizardry Light)

Tenkar's Tavern - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 19:28

Last night Orb of Undying Light popped up on my Hottest Items widget on the left side of the page here at The Tavern. Its cycled off now, but I captured it when it was up.

Orb of Undying Light is Ian McGarty's second one-sheet adventure for Swords & Wizardry Light. One sheet, two pages, pay what you want. Really, what can go wrong>

BTW, printed out it fits right into the snazzy SWL rules folder...

Remember boys & girls, purchases made via The Tavern's RPGNow affiliate links return a portion of the monies paid to The Tavern. Keep a man in beer. Good beer. Mmmmmm.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

1d6 Random Legendary Lovecraftian Hoards Table For Your Old School Campaigns

Swords & Stitchery - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 17:20
Between the time when the oceans took Atlantis, the seas have tasted many treasures from across the empire itself. From the hand of outlaw to renegade there have been ancient treasures that have passed across the bloody boards of history. These items take on a life of their own & are often haunted things of the past seldom does any one person know the full history or extent of the curses thatNeedles
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Bundle of Holding - Rifts (Believe it or Not)

Tenkar's Tavern - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 13:45

I did a double take when I noticed Rifts was one of the offers at Bundle of Holding. I don't see Kevin as one offering discounts that often. Then I saw the discount and I was less impressed.

$17.95 for the Starter Collection? It should be half that in my opinion. The idea is to bring people in with a nice discount and 18 bucks for the core rules a sourcebook and a fairly worthless GM kit doesn't quite do it in my eyes.

The Bonus Collection comes in at a hair under $27. While its a better value than just opting for the Starter Collection, I don't see it as all that great a value.

How the hell is "Sourcebook One" and "Ultimate Edition" trademarks? At least they aren't claiming a trademark for "Game Master Kit." Yet.

Ah well, Kevin is true to his usual self:

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Another 1d5 Random Strange & Twisted Dungeon Locations Encounter Table For Your Old School Campaigns

Swords & Stitchery - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 06:33
There are ruins & twisted locations that that have slipped down between the cracks of reality into their own dark and twisted Hells of their own making. They wander across the dimensions under their own power taking adventurers and lives as they want. These places have an agenda all of their own & love to take the souls of those whose egos & reputation attract their attention. Adventurers Needles
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Tavern Picks for the Christmas in July Sale - Part the First

Tenkar's Tavern - Sat, 07/22/2017 - 03:24
So, go figure. I was able to filter the Christmas in July Sale to show the Hottest OSR releases that are on sale. Damn, but that's extremely useful.

Here's the link for the Hottest on Sale OSR releases.

Now, on to the picks ;)

Class Compendium - Barrel Rider Games - James' quality and production speed simply can't be matched. If you are looking for class options for your B/X / Labyrinth Lord game this is simply, off the shelf goodness. Most of this will also work off the shelf with Swords & Wizardry and other OSR games although you will need to use the occasional tweak. "Class Compendium compiles the best classes from four years of material previously released by barrel rider games into a single tome – and a whole lot of extras! New art, rules for firearms and weapon mastery, new equipment, and three never before released classes! Top it off with an indexed spell compendium featuring every spell used by every class found in these pages, and you've got it all in one package!" Over 50 new classes.  9.99  7.49

Dyson's Delves - ZERO Barrier - Dyson does maps. Period. Wait, that doesn't explain much, does it? Dyson is one of the premiere mappers in the OSR or the hobby as a whole. His work, showcased at his Dyson's Dodecahedron are simply amazing and the style is uniquely his own. With the support of his Patreon backers, Dyson releases maps every month for free commercial use. You want maps? Dyson does maps. "Adventures and maps set under the earth for old-school fantasy roleplaying games (OSR games). Dyson's Delves contains over 140 pages of maps and adventures featuring the unique mapping style of Dyson Logos. Five full adventures fill out the beginning of the book, followed by 44 additional dungeon maps each with a page for the GM to key and make notes about each dungeon.  9.99  7.49

Tome of Horrors Complete - Swords and Wizardry Edition - Frog God Games - True story, I used to keep the hardcover of ToHC right next to my desk. My cat, Ashley, who sees my desk as her own playground, knocked a glass of water partial on ToHC because I wasn't giving her enough attention. Ah well. This book has been my go to for a number of years. Its worth it for the encounters alone. "Monsters from the aberrant to the yellow musk zombie appear in this book, and everything in between-that's over 700 monsters. But it's more than just that, because the entire compilation has also been updated to the Swords & Wizardry rules for release as another version of the volume. And in this version, the space freed up by the smaller stat blocks is filled by sample monster lairs and encounters with the hundreds of different monster types featured in the tome.  So you've got the monsters-both from the original edition of the game and new-the templates, the multiple appendices on rules, planes, and the n'gathau, and a truckload of sample encounters and lairs to throw at your players, all together in one easy-to-use book. That's why we call it The Tome of Horrors Complete!"  29.99  22.49

Sorrowblight Fields- A Swords & Wizardry Mini-Dungeon - Creation's Edge Games - Notice a trend here? Yeah, its no surprise that I am a HUGE Swords & Wizardry fan. I also like things that are small and yet still packed with options (thus Swords & Wizardry Light) Well, Snowblight Fields is that - 11 pages of OSR adventure written for S&W characters of levels 1 to 3. Heck, seems a perfect fit for SWL ;) "A strange disease is spreading quickly across the farmlands, devastating the local crops. And now there’s news of goblins being spotted in the hills to the west. Is there some connection between the goblins and this blight? Sorrowblight Fields is the first of a series of mini-dungeons designed to drop into existing adventures or campaigns. Use them as side quests or a way of getting in a quick adventure when you’re short on time." 1.50  1.13

Amazing Adventures! - Troll Lord Games - Looking for some Pulp in your OSR gaming? Swords & sorcery in the roaring 20s? Well, this might be the pick you've been waiting for. Its a good game built off of the Castles & Crusades Siege Engine and often overlooked. "Amazing Adventures: The RPG of science, sorcery, pugilistic pummeling, gun-toting, sword-wielding, B17-flying, gadget carrying adventure! Whether your game is 1920's, 30's, 40's, 50's or modern, Amazing Adventures will get you there! Complete rules to create and run games, character creation, combat, secret societies, a rogue's gallery and an attribute check system that allows the game master and player to pummel any challenge to a pulp! Amazing Adventures! It’s yours! Take it!" 20.00  15.00

Alright, those are my picks for tonight. Remember, purchases made via The Tavern's RPGNow affiliate links goes to support The Tavern. Show Rach that in my retirement, blogging and writing is better than some part time gig ;)
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Christmas in July sale!

Greyhawk Grognard - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 23:10
OneBookShelf is running its annual "Christmas in July" sale, and naturally BRW Games is participating. That means you can get everything in the BRW catalog at deep discounts:

Click here to see the whole kit and kaboodle.

What's that? You want specifics? Well, roll these around your brain and see if it doesn't scream BUY ME!!!

The original Castle of the Mad Archmage, in print, no less, for under $45. Yes, that includes both print and pdf! Seriously, you could literally spend years with your players in this dungeon. 13+ levels, thousands of encounter areas, new monsters, new magic, the thing is effing HUGE.

Not enough? How about this...

The Adventures Dark and Deep core rulebooks and DM's screen, for under $100. Yes, again, that's both print and pdf! What is it? Why, it's 1E meets Gygax's original plans for the next version of the game. Start with the 1E rules, streamline the stuff that needs streamlining, add new classes and spells and monsters and magic, and off we go! If you liked Unearthed Arcana, you'll love Adventures Dark and Deep.

Plus there's a whole bunch of other stuff also on sale; expansion modules, adventures, my take on a fantasy China expansion rulebook (all completely compatible with most Advanced RPGs... ahem).

So head on over and check out the sale! I wrote most of it, but honestly, it's a really good deal, and stuff you'll get a ton of use out of for years.

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Mini OSR Fall Campaign Idea Using - B10 Night's Dark Terror By Jim Bambra, Graeme Morris, Phil Gallagher & Some Free Old School Appendix N Downloads

Swords & Stitchery - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 18:39
"Barely one day's march from Kelven, the uncharted tracts of the Dymrak forest conceal horrors enough to freeze the blood of civilized folk. Those who have ventured there tell how death comes quick to the unwary - for the woods at night are far worse than any dungeon. But you are adventurers, veterans of many battles, and the call of the will is strong. Will you answer the call, or areNeedles
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Are you a Trog or a Troll Complete Debuting @ Gen Con 50 For Shadowrun

Gamer Goggles - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 17:46

They can call you a trog. Sure they can. Let ’em think it’s smear. Let them show you what they don’t know. Let them ignore history, the great accomplishments orks and trolls have made in every field in the Sixth World, the homes and enclaves they’ve built out of nothing. There’s enough talent in the trog population to punch, hack, rig, charm, or enchant that smug smile right off their face. You know what you are. They’ll learn—fast, if they know what’s good for them.

The Complete Trog is the definitive guide for ork and troll characters in Shadowrun. With information on what it’s like to be an ork or troll in dozens of spots across the globe, details on working in corps as a trog (including in ork- and troll-dominated corps) and the heroes and enemies of trog culture, the book helps players add flavor and depth to their characters and the world around them. On top of that, it has gear, qualities, and life modules compatible with both Shadowrun, Fifth Edition and Shadowrun: Anarchy. Plunge into the rich culture of trogs and watch them turn that slur on its head.

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Christmas in July Sale at RPGNow - 25% off Many PDFs - Tavern Picks will be Forthcoming

Tenkar's Tavern - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 15:32

Yep, its that time of the year again - its Christmas in July at RPGNow, with a whole swatch of PDFs at 25% off.

I'll be going through some of the offerings and highlighting those that may be of interest to The Tavern's readers. There are 1,530 products under the OSR label that are on sale for Christmas in July (and a whole bunch more that aren't yet labeled OSR I'm sure, so digging will be needed)

In the meantime, Black Pudding #3 just released in PDF. +James V West has done an amazing job yet again. It PWYW, so there is no excuse for you not to grab a copy. Trust me on this. You WANT this. (You also want issues #1 and #2 if you haven't snagged them yet)

Now THIS is a Christmas in July Gift :)

Remember, all purchases made with The Tavern's RPGNow affiliate links return a small portion of the purchase price to The Tavern. As always, we appreciate your support.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs


Sorcerer's Skull - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 11:00
Luc Besson's new film Valerian and the City of A Thousand Planets is based on the French comic book series Valérian et Laureline by by writer Pierre Christin and artist Jean-Claude Mézières (The film seems largely drawn from the sixth story in the series, Ambassador of Shadows). It's good source material for Besson, has the exotic locales of the comic and multitude of aliens give plenty of opportunity for him to engage in the in the stunning visuals that have been part of his previous science fiction efforts.

Valerian and Laureline are special agents of the Federation, with a bantering, unresolved sexual tension thing going. After acquiring a cute and valuable alien organism, the Mul Converter, to the massive, multi-species space station Alpha, to save it from a mysterious threat. All is not as it seems, and Alpha's Commander has secret plans of his own. Our heroes make their way through the alien locales of the station to solve the mystery and save everybody.

The plot is perfunctory, its drama is simplistic, and the characters are thin, but the sort of science fiction films Besson makes have never particularly focused on those things. The Fifth Element had an breeziness about some of the core dramatic elements, but did a lot with action, humor, and a Heavy Metal visual sensibility. Valerian may not become a the cult classic it has, but would make a good double feature with it.

In rpg terms, the visuals in Besson's film will likely give plenty of fodder with sci-fi gaming. Valerian and the City of A Thousand Planets: The Art of the Film, is worth picking up for that purpose, even if you don't like the film.

1d15 Random Finds Inside The Astronaut's Skull Table For Your Old School Campaigns

Swords & Stitchery - Fri, 07/21/2017 - 05:29
Sometimes adventurers & outlaws run across some surprising finds out in the wastelands of Old Earth & Mars. There are the unfortunate souls who cross times, dimensions, & spaces as they venture into space & the Outer Void. The corpses of these 'victims of circumstance' often have fallen afield of disaster or misadventure having sometimes very surprising items or finds inside their skulls. Needles
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs


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