Tabletop Gaming Feeds

3 Pitches, 4 Colors 2: Days of Dr. Nightmare

Sorcerer's Skull - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 11:00
This is the second in a series of posts with brief campaign pitches for superhero games. This one is written by Michael "Aos" Gibbons of  The Metal Earth and Cosmic Tales:

The world lies at the feet of Dr. Nightmare and has for these 30 years. The lands he rules strain under the burden of his mad and sadistic ambition; those he does not struggle in vain to remain free, or exist now only as mutant infested wastelands, scorched by Zero-Bombs and stinking with the taint of gene-gas.

But the weed of hope grows in the garden of despair. A few individuals, scattered across the globe, locked in disparate lives, have begun to experience lucid waking-dreams of another, better world, where they were heroes. All of them know, even if they refuse to face it, that something has gone wrong with time, and only they can fix it- and at the cost of everything they know.

They are the Awakened, and Dr. Nightmare can taste their dreams.

Inspirations: Days of Future Past, Age Of Apocalyse, Uncanny X-Men in general. 

Rebel Minis Can't Go to Historicon Sale

Rebel Minis - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 10:40

So, we couldn't go to Historicon this year :( Well, one of our customers reminded us that we need to have another, Can't Go to Historicon Sales!

From Now until Sunday Night at Midnight, Everything on the site is 20% off! USE CODE Noshow1 at check out! See everything at:

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

OSR Innovations

19th Level - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 02:34

One thing I've enjoyed in the OSR is how it's allowed fresh looks at the games many people first picked up in the 1970s and 1980s, taking those games in directions that were, at best, rarely explored in their original era.

Probably the innovation I've enjoyed the most is the emergence of products to support sandbox play. It's one thing to advise a GM to let the players wander the "map" freely. However, that isn't always all that easy in practice. Enter a number of products designed to support free ranging players. Companies like Sine Nomine Publishing, Lamentations of the Flame Princess, Autarch, and many others have all released products designed to give a GM tools for such adventures. Now that I think of it, this has even entered more "modern" style games. For example, The One Ring and Adventures in Middle Earth both have tools for wilderness adventure that have that old school hex crawl feel to them.

Old school D&D style games have also been taken to genres they had rarely, if ever, been taken to. Some flavors of the OSR have embraced more of a weird fantasy feel. Others dive into swords and sorcery. Games like Dungeon Crawl Classics and Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea have felt comfortable at adding laser rifles right next to +1 swords. TSR made some efforts in the 1st and 2nd edition eras to fit D&D to other settings - Lankhmar is one such example as are the green historical references of AD&D 2nd edition. However in both cases it was a bit of a rough fit, whereas OGL-based games allow for a nice mixing and matching of the proper tools for a given genre.

The genres the OSR has supported are well beyond what we thought D&D could support back in the day. Stars Without Number and White Star have given a nice take on science fiction gaming. There are a number of games designed to emulate superheroes within the OSR. I'd've been shocked in 1983 at the idea of such a game.

This isn't to say the OSR is the one true way. My favorite game of all time is that living fossil, Call of Cthulhu. I've quite a bit of fun running a Star Wars game with Fate Accelerated. I'm going to try for a Golden Age Champions game at some point. And Cthulhu Dark is screaming to be tried at some point. An OSR horror game would feel very different from Call of Cthulhu which is different from Trail of Cthulhu and Cthulhu Dark. And at any given time I could be up for any or all of them.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

The Far West Kickstarter was Six Years Old Tuesday - Launched July 11, 2011

Tenkar's Tavern - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 23:49


How the fuck did I miss this anniversary? Six years. Traditionally, that's a gift of Iron in the US. All I know is that as backers all we've gotten is broken promises and lies. Shit - it almost sounds like we're in a real relationship.

Gareth has been silent for over two months now. Actually, two and a half months. The update is from May 1st of this year. April 1st may have been more appropriate.

I understand family matters and obligations. These are things one has little control over. Obviously Gareth does not have five minutes in any of his days to update his backers over the last 10 weeks.

Cropped to remove overtly political themes
But look at that! Just went to Gareth's Twitter feed. Still tweeting away. Every day. All day.

Can't spend five minutes saying "Shit's still shitty. Hoping to have something for you soon. Will update in a few weeks" or some other method of appeasing the masses. Sure, it would be a stroke job, but for 150 bucks I deserve something ;)

See, this is what REALLY irks me. Its not the lies. Its not the broken promises. It the idea that after six years the backers just don't matter.

He went to a con and did a podcast interview shortly after his last update. He tweets every day. Yet for the backers that pledged nearly $50k to bring Far West alive, all we have gotten is carnival tricks. Smoke and mirrors.

At least we have gotten a view of the real Gareth Sharka. It aint pretty but its real.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Lolth in "Vault of the Drow"

Greyhawk Grognard - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 23:40
Over on the G+ Greyhawk group, William Tiller asked a great question. I was going to answer there, but it got a little long, so I figured I'd post it here. He asked:
Why are the PCs going after Lolth? I know why they go after Eclavdra- she is trying to take over the surface world. But as far I can tell from reading it there is no reason to attack the Fane of Lolth and go after Lolth herself on the Abyss. Or did I miss something?And he's exactly right. I discussed this module many years ago (Hextor's Balls! Nine years ago - have I really been doing this blog that long?!), but I didn't stress this particular point enough, and I think it's worth calling attention to.

First off, Tiller is entirely right to say that the PCs' goal should be the destruction of Eclavdra and House Eilservs, who abandoned the worship of the spider-demon Lolth for the Elder Elemental God when their aspirations to rule all the drow were thwarted. They're the ones who have been behind the hill, frost, and fire giant raids, but it's interesting to see that the motive isn't really spelled out until this module, and even then it's just sort of buried on page 18 (emphasis added):
The Eilservs have long seen a need for an absolute monarch to rule the Vault, and as the noble house of first precedence, they have reasoned that their mistress should be Queen of All Drow. When this was proposed, the priestesses of Lolth supported the other noble families aligned against the Eilservs, fearing that such a change would abolish their position as the final authority over all disputes and actions of the Dark Elves. Thereafter, the Eilservs and their followers turned away from the demoness and proclaimed their deity to be an Elder Elemental God (see MODULE G1-2-3). Although there is no open warfare, there is much hatred, and both factions seek to destroy each other.  An attempt to move worship of their deity into the upper world, establish a puppet kingdom there, and grow so powerful from this success that their demands for absolute rulership no longer be thwarted, was ruined of late, and the family is now retrenching.That's one thing about this whole series of modules (G1-Q1); the whole plot and setup is never spelled out for the DM, requiring an exceedingly close reading to suss out all the details and bring the whole to life.

Now here's where Tiller's question comes in. If the real enemy is the Eilservs house, and they worship the Elder Elemental God who is a rival to Lolth, why the heck are the PCs seemingly expected to attack the Fane of Lolth? Shouldn't they be on the side of the anti-Eilservs?

There are three possible answers.
  1. The PCs aren't aware of the split between the Lolth-worshiping drow and the EEG-worshiping drow, and just assume Lolth is behind everything. Honestly, this is probably the case for at least some parties playing through the adventure series.
  2. The PCs are aware of the split, and approach the Lolth-worshipers in an attempt to ally themselves with them to take out the Eilservs and the other EEG-worshiping factions that are causing trouble on the surface. That would definitely take some mithril balls on the part of the PCs, but I could definitely see it happening.
  3. The PCs somehow become aware that Lolth's egg has the keys to the prison of the EEG, and go out of their way to kill her material form in order to grab it and travel to the Abyss to shut the interdimensional crack that has allowed it to manifest on Oerth.
Truth to tell, I think the answer is "all of the above," and the details about Lolth and the Fane were included for the sake of completeness, but I think the most intriguing possibility lies in the Q1-that-never-was.

I've discussed the connection between the Elder Elemental God and the Temple of Elemental Evil at length in the past (particularly here and here), and it seems relevant here as well. In the original conception for Q1, according to Gygax:
Q: At the end of D3, the party can end up with the "egg". "In the egg are an iron pyramid, a silver sphere, a bronze star of eight points, and a cube of pale blue crystal." [Great Fane of Lolth, Dungeon Level, Room 5.] The pyramid, sphere, eight-pointed star, and cube evolved into the triangle, circle, eight-pointed star, and square from the ToEE correct [see p.108 of ToEE]? Did you intend the items in the egg to be associated with the elements as they turned out being in the ToEE?A: When I wrote an adventure I always tried to put in a few disguised hooks for later exploitation, or not, as the creative muse moved me.As you note, the shapes were repeated in the ToEE as I did intend to tie the latter into the series. Lolth was to be connected to the temple, she the key to activation of that which would remove the imprisoning bonds from the Elder Elemental God. Of course that would have been by unintended consequences of her actions when the PCs discovered her.How it was all to operate was something I never did get fleshed out. This was to happen in the lower levels of the temple, the development of which I never got around to because of my work out on the West Coast. (EnWorld Q&A part III)In the Queen of the Demonweb Pits module as it ended up being written, the weird objects in the egg ended up being nothing more than a means to teleport from one level of the web to another (and a superfluous one at that). Ah, but in the original concept, those items in the egg were going to be keys to the prison of the Elder Elemental God, which the PCs could either release by accident or close off the breach in its prison that allowed it to aid the Eilservs:
I had what I consider a much more interesting plan for the conclusion of the G-D series, one in which the PC party could loose the Elder Elemental god or send him into deeper isolation, thus assisting Lolth to become more powerful. By very astute play, they could have thwarted the designs of both evil entities. The Demonweb Pits were indeed envisioned as maze like, but there were to be no machines therein. (EnWorld Q&A part I)I can't say for sure, but I strongly suspect that's the reason for the inclusion of all the details about the Fane of Lolth and the Demon Queen of Spiders herself. If the PCs really wanted to take out the threat behind the giant uprisings forever, they could use the keys hidden in the egg to finally end the Elder Elemental God's influence once and for all. If these are the same PCs that went through the Temple of Elemental Evil (as I am convinced it was originally intended to be run, which includes a link to the EEG), and thus had previous experience with it, that would make all kinds of sense.

Just as we (including the DM!) don't learn the true motivation behind the giant uprising until Vault of the Drow, so too would we not learn the real means to end the threat until Queen of the Demonweb Pits. Unfortunately, that version of the module never got published, and so all those lovely hints that were scattered throughout Vault of the Drow were never realized in their fullest form.

But let's rewind just a second and consider the implications of what I wrote above:
The PCs somehow become aware that Lolth's egg has the keys to the prison of the EEG, and go out of their way to kill her material form in order to grab it and travel to the Abyss to shut the interdimensional crack that has allowed it to manifest on Oerth.Just effing imagine the implications of that!

Not only would the PCs have to have some sort of way of learning all that backstory about the EEG, but they'd also have to learn that Lolth has the keys hidden in the egg that only manifests if she is slain. And then figure out a way to make it happen, before they ever make it to the Demonweb Pits themselves.

Ehlonna's tits! What an adventure that would make, just in and of itself! I can envision a whole new module, perhaps a D4, set up as an urban adventure in Erelhei-Cinlu, where the PCs need to navigate through the treacherous city to track down all the pieces to the puzzle. First they'd have to find and engage with the enemies of the EEG to find out what its weakness is, and then find and engage with the enemies of Lolth to figure out how to get to the egg. There's a balancing act that would require world-class play, right there, going through dives and dens of iniquity to find contacts, then maybe dealing with drow sages and renegades, all the while trying to evade the forces of both Lolth and Eclavdra and keep them both from figuring out what's going on. And then go on to the Abyss itself to bring the plan to fruition, having just alerted Lolth to the scheme by killing her!

Crap. I might just have to write this.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Carousing at the Dancing Frog - Fortunes Won & Lost AAR Part 3

Two Hour Wargames - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 23:31
Part Two

I decide that AZ Bob, Jefferson, and Sarah Jane will go on a Hunting Encounter – as in hunting for a place to have a drink and carouse.
You’ll see that with THW games you can pick and choose different mechanics from different rules to do just about anything you want. It’s your Story, your game, so feel free to customize as needed. Carousing at the Dancing FrogSarah Jane – Adventurer Rep 4  Arizona Bob – Adventurer Rep 5  Jefferson Davis Saunders – Adventurer Rep 5 As in Fortunes Won & Lost and Mission St. Marywe resolve PEFs – Possible Enemy Force markers. Depending upon the rules you’re using this could be between 1 and 5 PEFS. Default in most rules is 3 so I’ll resolve 3. As I’m not playing in the countryside I choose to resolve 3 of them in a row – one after the other.Here I go – again, I have no idea what I will run into or what could happen.A typical night of carousing is interaction, drinking, gambling and companionship – some to socialize with. While some rules have specifics for this, Fortunes Won & Lost and Mission St. Mary do not.Using the Universal Interaction and Challenge Table allows me to do it all.
2    Universal Interaction and Challenge                                                    (Taken versus Rep or applicable Skill)                                                      A score of “6” is always a failure.
Circumstance Modifier Difficult Challenge – If the Challenge is difficult. -1 Easy Challenge – If the Challenge is easy. +1 Gift or Tool – if giving a gift or using a tool that increases the chance of success. +1

# D6 Passed Result
2 Success! Character succeeds and gets his reward. Gain one Increasing Rep d6 or one Character Point. 1 Really want to do it?·        Can choose to quit the Challenge.Or·        Can choose to immediately re-take the Challenge counting a passing 1d6 result as passing 0d6. 0 Failure! Character fails and suffers the consequences. Gain one Decreasing Rep d6 or lose one Character Point.
Gambling with the UIC TableI decide that AZ wants to gamble. I can choose to roll per each time I gamble (hand, throw if the dice) or once for the whole thing. The first way has the potential to win more Increasing Rep d6 or Character Points so that would be good.  Now that’s pretty simple, right? It’s a great way to milk the system to increase your Rep or Skill, right? Well, not exactly. Here’s why:·        When you gain Increasing Rep d6 or Character Points equal to your current Rep roll 1d6.·        Score a success – 1, 2, or 3 – and you have a Confrontation with 1+1/2d6 opponents. Who? That’s for you to do.·        Score a failure – 4, 5 or 6 – and you’re okay.And if you have a Confrontation and lose – you lose all your Increasing Rep d6 or Character Points. JAnyway, back to AZ’s gambling using the UIC Table.·        I decide there will be 1+ 1/2d6 NPCs to play against. I could have rolled for more or assigned a number. I score a total of 3.·        Who are they? I choose to make them Italian soldiers. Why? Because I have some cool Italian Colonial Army figures from Askari Miniatures. ·        I roll 3d6 on the European – Military List and score a 4, 5 and 5. This gives me one Rep 4 (the Leader) and two Rep 3s.It’s time to gamble and I want to make it simple. Each character will roll on the UIC Table and after all the results are done I’ll apply them.·        AZ passes 1d6. He tries again and passes 2d6.   ·        Rep 4 Soldiers passes 1d6 and then passes 0d6. Lose 1 Character Point.·        Rep 3 soldier passes 0d6. Lose 1 Character Point.·        Rep 3 soldier passes 2d6.AZ and one Rep 3 continue to play.·        AZ passes 2d6.·        Rep 3 soldier passes 1d6 and then passes 0d6. Lose 1 Character Point.I decide that AZ gains the 3 Character Points lost by the Italians.Gaining Companionship using the UIC Table.Jefferson Davis or JD seeks Companionship. I roll on the European – Civilians List in Fortunes Won & Lost to see the Rep of the lady he met at the bar. I score a 6 – She’ll be Rep 3. As her Rep is 2 less than JD’s I figure this is an Easy Challenge. I roll 2d6 versus Rep of 6 (5 +1), score a 1 and 2 and pass 2d6.  JD gains some Companionship and 1 Character Point. JD and the lady leave the Dancing Frog.

Interaction using the UIC Table.
Sarah Jane decides to Interact with the bartender. He’s a Rep 5 so this is a bit of a Difficult Challenge as she has a lower Rep (4) so her Rep counts as 3. She scores a 1 and a 4, passing 0d6. She decides not to try again. Nothing gained, nothing lost.
AZ and Sarah Jane leave the Dancing Frog. The Italian soldiers follow close behind. When our duo gets outside ...

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

The Heart of the Matter

The Splintered Realm - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 17:52
Okay, so I started rambling about symbolism and iconic heroes… so let’s ramble some more.
I guess we have to start with what makes a character iconic? It seems like the simpler the better for iconic characters, and in many ways that is true. You want to be able to describe a character in one sentence, and have everyone get it. That’s great. However, I think that the reason iconic characters resonate and endure is because of something beyond simplicity. I think the answer is conflict.
The most iconic characters represent conflicts between opposing forces by their very natures. Superman endures in part because he was the first superhero. In part, he endures because his basic power set (without all of the extras) is pretty simple: he is strong, bulletproof, and can fly. Everything else is gravy; those are his powers. You take away heat vision and he’s still superman. You take away strength, and he’s something else. But, he’s also a character who embodies a wide range of conflicts. How can you be both impenetrable yet sensitive and caring? How can you be both a farmer and a big city slicker? How can you be both an alien and a human? You are immune to everything, but one green rock that glows makes you the weakest person in the world. You are brave and daring, but your alter ego is bumbling and awkward.
And this extends to your foil characters. These are part of the mix. Superman needs Batman to be in full balance. He is light, Batman is dark. Superman is hope, Batman is grim reality. Superman is above the dirty details; Batman makes that his wheelhouse. Superman relies on his own abilities; Batman has a veritable armory he carries into battle every day.
It’s his villains, too. Superman is strong; Luthor is smart. Superman pushes aside fame and glory; Luthor craves these.
So, you don’t create an iconic character like Superman by taking superman and filing off the serial numbers. You have to get to the heart of the matter.
For Marvel, this character is Captain America. And, we see a different but equally effective parallelism happening; Is Cap in the past or the present? He lives in the fringe between idealism and reality. His American dream comes directly against the tyranny of the Red Skull. His dogged belief in the good of the individual and trust in your own two fists comes directly into conflict with Iron Man’s need to keep tabs on everything and rely on increasingly powerful battle suits. Cap is a poor kid from the Bronx; Iron Man is one of the richest men in the world. Heck, they are born out of different wars: Cap comes from the World War that most clearly defined good and evil. Iron Man comes from the war that generated profound disagreement about what was good, and who would decide.  

The first character needs to be designed with his or her primary foil. They need to balance. They are the first team up, and they need to set the gait. They are brothers in a very real sense (and maybe literally… we will see).

Publishers - Tomorrow is Your Last Chance to Sign up for Christmas in July Sales at OneBookShelf

Tenkar's Tavern - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 15:56

I got this email last night and thought I should share it. I know I've been told in the past from other publishers that they've missed certain notifications from OBS and I'm trying to expand the bandwidth.Dear publishers, This is a final reminder that our annual "Chrismas in July" sale, the biggest sitewide promotion of the year, is fast approaching. During Christmas in July, we offer many thousands of titles all at 25% off, across DriveThruRPG/RPGnow, DriveThruCards, DriveThruComics, and DriveThruFiction. If you would like to take part in this major promotion, please make sure to opt in using the "Opt in or out of site-wide sales" tool page ( by 10 AM (EST) this Friday, July 14, at the latest.

Scott Holden
Sales, Data, and Special Projects
OneBookShelf, Inc.
scott@onebookshelf.comWhich means for The Tavern's general readers - there's a big sale from OBS coming up soon :)
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

1d4 Random Treasures & Relics of Mammon For Your Old School Campaigns

Swords & Stitchery - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 15:53
"Who is that?" 'Rel The Strong' the red Martian mercenary was squinting his eyes  at the horizon. Hashic Vro Tholian occultist looked on the horizon with dismay. "We should hide before it sees us" the voice of the occultist was polite as always but firm"It?!" "It was one of the human colonists who seems to have found the vaults of the God of Greed" "You mean?!" 'Rel The Strong' held a Needles
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

ENnies - Breaking Their Own Rules When it Comes to Judges (Disregard - I Can't do Basic Math)

Tenkar's Tavern - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 15:46
edit: This is what happens when you are your own editor - 2016 to 2018 is 2 years? right? wrong, as we are only in 2017 - Yes, three of the four perennial judges are NOT running this year - I guess they decided to get a head start on the impending new rules THAT ARE NOT YET IN EFFECT. Kurt is within the rules to run this year - but not next. The three not running this year CAN run next.

So, read this post as an example of what happens when I do fuck up - I correct, retract but I do not delete. Enjoy my embarrassment. It is well deserved - Tenkar

Look at the highlighted part of the rules to apply to nominate yourself to be an ENnies judge:

So, you can't be a judge if you've been a judge for the last two years. Simple enough, right?

I guess two consecutive years is no good, but SIX consecutive years is just peachy! Please tell me how both the applicant (Kurt Weigel) and the ENnies "powers that be" just overlooked this.

Its all on the level kids. Its all on the level.
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

ENnies Voting Has Started - Time to Do Some "All Star" Voting - Here's The Tavern's List

Tenkar's Tavern - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 14:32

Yep, its ENnies time. Time time to vote from every McDonalds or library within driving distance. Wait, that's what they do in Chicago or something.

Here's The Tavern's Picks:

Best Adventure
Blood in the Chocolate (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) - its actually a damn good adventure that your PCs might survive.

Best Aid/Accessory
Kobold Guide to Plots & Campaigns (Kobold Press) - Kobold Press - need I say more?

Best Art, Cover

Best Art, Interior
Baby Bestiary Handbook Vol 2 (Metal Weave Games) - amazing art - simply one of the best.
S. Petersen’s Field Guide to Lovecraftian Horrors (Chaosium) - also excellent

Best Blog
Gnome Stew: The Gaming Blog - To be honest, I never heard of the other four...

Best Cartography
The Cursed Chateau (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) - It is an OSR pick. We gotta represent.

Best Electronic Book
Hubris: A World of Visceral Adventure (DIY RPG Productions) - Stuffed full of inspiration. Savor the reading, as it is a five course meal and then some.

Best Family Game

Best Free Product
What, no SWL?

Best Game
Not my bag, man

Best Miniature Product

Best Monster/Adversary
S. Petersen’s Field Guide to Lovecraftian Horrors (Chaosium) - Simply on of the best. Timeless
Veins of the Earth (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) - 66 fucking Euros? Holy shit! No wonder I hadn't heard of it before.

Best Podcast
Spellburn - Excellent podcast and unscripted. Can't say the same about others

Best Production Values
Call of Cthulhu – 7th Edition Slipcase Set (Chaosium) - a beauty to behold - it does justice and more for CoC
Baby Bestiary, Collector’s Edition (Metal Weave Games) - you need to see it to believe it

Best RPG Related Product
Call of Cthulhu: The Coloring Book (Chaosium) - I haven't seen it but I can imagine.

Best Rules
Adventures in Middle-Earth Player’s Guide (Cubicle 7 Entertainment) - If I only ran 5e
Veins of the Earth (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) - How much is 66 Euros in USC?

Best Setting
Le sigh

Best Supplement
The One Ring – Horse-Lords of Rohan (Cubicle 7 Entertainments) - Well, it is Tolkien

Best Website
Nothing to say

Best Writing
Veins of the Earth (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) - $75.32. Goddamn
The One Ring – Horse-Lords of Rohan (Cubicle 7 Entertainments) - Tolkien

Product of the Year
Veins of the Earth (Lamentations of the Flame Princess) Times like this is when retirement sucks.

Voting this year will take place from July 11 to July 21.

Don't forget to vote Frog God Games as Fan Favorite Publisher. Vote early and vote often. Well, I mean, get your friends, family and pets with an intelligence of 3 or higher to vote. Don't submit multiple votes yourself. That would be wrong. Neither Frog God Games nor The Tavern advocate ballot stuffing. Heck, the Frogs have no nominations and neither does The Tavern. Don't vote. See if I care.

Grumble... Grumble... Get off my lawn ya damn kids and take your peeing dog with you!

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

3 Pitches 4-Colors 1: OMEGA TEAM!

Sorcerer's Skull - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 11:00
This is the first in a series of posts with brief campaign pitches for superhero games. The others to follow are written by some other gaming bloggers you might know...

All of the world, individuals with anomalous and fantastic powers are increasing in number: mutants or victims of strange accidents, these individuals are feared and ostracized. A secret organization located beneath a governmental office building has need of these so-called freaks. The voice of Control describes the coming threat: The work of a brilliant Dr. Rankin has clearly indicated the danger. The ever-increasing number of “freaks,” extraterrestrial contacts, and weird phenomena, can be plotted on a curve showing inexorable progress nothing less that the destruction of humankind as we know it, if it’s trajectory is not altered. A team of special individuals--freaks--can bend this curve. They are the last line of defense: the Omega Team!

Style: Silver Age veneer on Modern Age construction; like Arnold Drake writing Grant Morrison’s  Doom Patrol, or maybe Steve Gerber writing Drake’s Doom Patrol.
Inspirations: Doom Patrol, Challengers of the Unknown, Atlas-era  monsters/horror, Xombi, Thriller, Outer Limits, X-Men.

1d6 Random Warped Lovecraftian Elemental Demonic Patrons Table For Your Old School Game Campaigns

Swords & Stitchery - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 06:15
Deep in the western parts of the Old Solar System are places with alien has taken root & ancient spirits not seen on Old Earth for a billion years haunt strange woods. There are weird spirits who hunt in the dreams of men & were old when the first stone hinges were reared in decrepit Mu. There are spirits of storm, chaos, & the savagery of the alien elemental forces that still call to men Needles
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Soft Reboot

The Splintered Realm - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 23:51
Since I had a little time in the last two weeks between classes and projects, I pulled out the good ‘ol Echo City rules and rolled up a few characters for fun. And then, as they always do, the wheels started turning. As I was reading through, I realized that I really, really, like this game. Sure, it’s got a small wart here or an odd turn of phrase there, but by and large this is a great little game.However, the area where I was less pleased with the overall game was in the presentation of the game world. For every solid character with a great background, there is a weaker character or (worse yet) a character who is simply a surrogate from a well-known property with the serial numbers filed off.
In thinking about the game world, I have two competing schools of thought.
1) The game world should provide a rich roleplaying opportunity for the players; the setting’s characters (especially the heroes) should fade to the background. Games are about the PCs, not the system’s default heroes. This is one of the problems with playing in established universes; why is my level 3 hero needed when the Justice League is literally living in a bunker around the corner?
2) The game world is defined by the main characters. This one is trickier. Gotham City is not just a setting for comics… it is an extension of Batman’s entire persona. You have to understand Batman in order to really understand Gotham.

While I want #1 to be true, I think you have to embrace #2 at least in part for the setting to really pop.
In effect, we are talking about the inherent symbolism of characters, and what they can communicate. The best characters carry powerful symbolism with them, and that symbolism extends into their adventures, their adversaries, and their environment. If you want to create an iconic setting, you need to create iconic characters who inhabit it. So, if I’m going to reboot the world of Echo City, I need to start with the characters who live there. So, I’ll be posting (as time permits) my thoughts about Echo City’s characters, rebuilding them from the ground up.
In effect, I get to play a fun minigame for the game… if I am designing a cinematic universe for my own unique superhero world, what goes into it, and why?

25% Off Annual Historicon Sale

Two Hour Wargames - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 23:31

Use the coupon code ...


and get 25% off your whole order though the 16th. Great time top catch up on THW titles or start a new period. 

 More info
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Reminder - Tavern Chat Tonight - #ConManKen, Torchlight, Hats, Assorted Sh!t - 9 PM Eastern

Tenkar's Tavern - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 21:23

Tonight is a Wednesday Night, and that means Tavern Chat.

Tonights topics may include:




Assorted Shit

When: 9 PM Eastern

Where: Here - ChatWing Box on the right side

Why: Because its fun as shit

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

World of Chaldea Casting Call

Gamer Goggles - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 17:40


Casting Call Opens for Hundreds of Extras to Be Drawn into the World of Chaldea

Join Director Peter Adkison on Facebook Live at 12:00pm Pacific Today
SEATTLE, WA (July 10, 2017): World of Chaldea, the new web series by Peter Adkison, founder of Wizards of the Coast, co-owner of Gen Con and filmmaker (Chaldea: War Room and The Devil Walks in Salem), opens today a casting call for gamers and fantasy fans everywhere with World of Chaldea’s Part of the Picture. Hundreds of extras from fantasy and history will be immortalized in Chaldea’s graphic novel scenes – from local folk to Legionnaires, necromancers to knights, druids to drunks and many more.

The Part of the Picture call is open to anyone ages 13 and up and requires no previous acting experience. To become #PartofThePicture, fans will pick a character from the extras list, take a couple of photos in costume inspired by the character and post them to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with the hashtags #PartofThePicture and #WorldofChaldea, along with the name of the character they are portraying. For complete details, including the extras list and guidelines, visit:
“Initially, we started to create characters from scratch until we realized that it would be a lot of fun to make these characters look like people we know. Then we realized, if we think this is fun, maybe others will too, so we’re opening it up for everyone!”, says Adkison, World of Chaldea director.

Adkison will be live on at 12:00pm Pacific Time today, Monday July 10, for a behind-the-scenes look at the World of Chaldea and to answer questions about the casting call.

The World of Chaldea series is currently in production, featuring a cast that includes Jen Page, Conner Marx, Sarah Moore, Brandon Marino, Jesse Cheever, Stefan Hajek, Yasmine Aker and Eric Ray Anderson. Created by Adkison along with long-time collaborator Steve Conard, and developed directly from scenarios gamed by players in Adkison’s RPG campaigns dating back to 1981, World of Chaldea brings those games to life in a trans-media web series, using graphic novel art, music, sound, and live action film sequences. Chaldea has adult themes, traditional fantasy roots mixed with real-world places and times in history, and real-world pantheons of deities, all of which are brought together in an epic tale in an innovative blend of film, comics, and fiction.

Those cast by Adkison through #PartofthePicture will be drawn into the graphic novel pages that will become a part of the series. They will also receive a custom digital portrait of themselves as their character and an “extras” name credit.

Photos will be accepted through 12:00pm Pacific Time, September 15, 2017.

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Chris Holmes on Tell Me About Your Character

Zenopus Archives - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 17:31

Listen to Chris Holmes on the 3rd season of the short podcast Tell Me About Your Character, talking about his third favorite D&D character after Boinger and Zereth
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

Outlander Panel Set to Return to San Diego Comic-Con 2017

Cryptozoic - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 17:00

The Outlander fan community is buzzing with excitement as the hit Starz drama series has officially announced its return to San Diego Comic-Con next weekend! The star-studded panel is planned for Friday, July 21 at 5:00 p.m. in Ballroom 20. 

Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs

#ConManKen - Mad Ox Games & Comics is Closing Its Doors July 30th - Time for Another Gig for Ken

Tenkar's Tavern - Wed, 07/12/2017 - 14:55

Mad Ox Games & Comics is closing its doors for good July 30th. #ConManKen's record of success (or lack there of) is maintained. The universe can now let out its held breath. All is right in the world of Ken.

Why would anyone want to buy a stocked Games & Comics store for $20k that is abruptly closing? I'd want to know why the abrupt closing before putting my money down.

I'm guessing the above has something to do with the store closing. Both postings were from last night.

Damn, Ken is always the victim. Now Marcus is closing the store he's been faithfully managing right out from under him.

Poo Poo Face - AKA Erik Tenkar reporting from the interwebs...
Categories: Tabletop Gaming Blogs


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