Thursday, August 22, 2019

"Sinking Temple of Gorth"

Hi all! Back from a fun weekend at Dragonflight 40, killing monsters and taking their stuff. Played with some familiar faces, met a few new folks, and didn't realize I was rolling with another local blogger until after the fact - good to meet you, JB - your "Random B/X Headgear Generator" is required for all my char-gen.

So, another quick statting of a Daniel Walthall map, this time his "Sinking Temple of Gorth"


So, a couple of design notes- I renumbered the rooms, as the original sequence is out of order (to me). While I populated it with only one set monster and one puzzle/trap, the time pressure of the flooding chambers should provide some good tension (along with whatever wandering stuff tunnels in at an inappropriate moment). And you never know if/when the water flow into the temple will increase...

So take a look, feel free to play/comment/tweak.  Statted out using Swords & Wizardry, but playable/adjustable for any old-ish system.

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Lost Tomes 7 - Oddball Spellbooks

1d12 crap spellbooks:

Some of these could be most awesome for your mage to find, but most are simply white elephants.  Have fun...
  1. Mica-leafed, heavy and fragile, requires a special polarized lens to read the inscribed spells. Typically used for uncommon spells of illusionist or evocation nature.
  2. Written on the hide of a living wild steer. Common to the plains herbimancers. The spells are only viable as long as the bovine remains alive. The spellbook is generally docile, but large and awkward, not suited for subterranean travels.
  3. Shells strung on thongs, the spells glowing iridescent within the mother of pearl. Rattley.
  4. A bag of prisms. Spells may only be read by projection through a specialized lamp. Typically houses illusions. 
  5. A puzzle-cylinder, requiring proper alignment of the rings to make spells legible.
  6. Quiver of animated quills - the selected quill will dance and write out the spell for memorization. Using these quills to create scrolls will require half effort/resources.
  7. Mimic! The critter impersonated a mage's spellbook and was inadvertently dictated upon. Requires food/cajoling to convince it to manifest the desired spell pages.
  8. Spell-infused tobaccos, requires smoking to memorize/absorb the desired spell knowledge. Probably need to get hooked up with a halfling dealer to replenish the particular blends. 
  9. Jug of skittering, metallic beetles. Spells are scribed upon their jeweled wings. A pain to sort and grab. Possibly bitey.
  10. Bones of a deceased mage, the spells that were held in their mind at time of death are now permanently etched upon the surface of the bones. 
  11. Scroll that magically lengthens to allow inscription of any new spell. Never runs out of parchment.
  12. Multidimensional hypercube requiring specific twistings and manipulations to "pull" the desired spell page into user's dimension.
Have at it, and remember to feed the spellboook....

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Come on in, the spores are fine!

Matt released his "Lair of the Mushroom Baron" out into the wild.
Wild mushroom hunting... hmm.

So there are rumors or discoveries of oddly-synthesized or rare potions associated with a local forest. Who is this mysterious alchemist that is cooking up these oddball concoctions contained in gourd containers?

Maybe we'd better take a look, and see if they are the amicable type... click below...
Welcome to the Lair
(statted out generally using Swords & Wizardry and/or a few things ganked from 1e).

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Beware the Goblin Peehole!

Well, Bryce reviewed/savaged a few of my released adventures... Within his usual snark was some serviceable criticism - I do need to tighten up my writing on some aspects of descriptions and such, and make sure the important details are up front for the GM. (I do appreciate feedback, after all - pro or con).

One criticism was redundancy and superfluous room description, using a statted 'guardpost' room as an egregious example... yeah - I over-wrote it.  But then there's the detail of the peephole in the post's door, where intruders may be spotted - per Bryce:

"The guardroom has a peerhole and a couple of monsters poking around in the rubble, with a small chance of them using the peehole. " (italics mine)

My own snark here, but if you're reviewing and criticizing someone's work and quality, proofread your own blog. Typos set me off. I may not be the best writer, but I proofread/spellcheck my stuff.

But peehole...  And the associated goblin guards... 

"There is a 2-in-6 chance that one of the goblins will hear someone outside the door, leap onto the door, and urinate through the peephole.  Any PC attempting to spy through the peephole will be drenched..."

Save vs disease or contract a virulent goblin malady:
  1. Screaming Buboes  - The buboes scream, not the patient. No chance of silent movement. No one gets any sleep.
  2. Crawling Pox - Oh gawd where am I gonna itch today?
  3. Spitting Sores - Any uncovered sore spatters ichor up to six feet. Anyone struck with the fluid must save vs disease or become infected in turn.
  4. Glowing Rash - Infected glows as per candlelight - possibly useful, probably a liability.
  5. Honking Cough - Infected sounds like a flock of arguing geese. Don't even think of trying to sneak up on anything.
  6. Walking Lockjaw - Seizes up a different random joint each day.
  7. Steaming Boils - Infected is surrounded by a vaporous mist. Some boils may intermittently whistle. The boils put off a putrid miasma (troglodyte equivalent).
  8. Hopping Tremors - The infected is consumed by involuntary hopping and jittering. No sleep-based recovery allowed.
The effects typically last 1d6 days, although there is a 20% chance that the PC has acquired a particularly virulent strain, lasting 1d6 weeks, and a 10% chance that the affliction is chronic... Cure disease should do the trick. Maybe... Hopefully...

Beware of GTDs - Goblin Transmitted Diseases

Saturday, July 13, 2019

A quick visit to The Weary Wench

That Jackson fellow drafted up a cozy tavern while on vacation.

“This is a little place in Scaldwater called The Weary Wench. Skavos, a large burly lumberjack, serves awesome clam chowder (just like I had yesterday at The Warren Tavern!) and can tell you a tale or two. So pull up a stool, drop a couple silver on the bar, and enjoy a good bowl or two.”

So - a one-hour (more or less) writing exercise to fill it with backstory and local color.  Here ya go:

Skavos bought the place after losing three fingers of his right hand in a felling accident. Not much use for a 'jack who could no longer swing an axe. But one thing he still had was his maw-maw's recipe for chowder. So he slicked his hair back, put on an apron, and fired up the stove.

The establishment is unassuming, but cozy. Rough-hewn tables and bar are slowly getting smoothed and polished from the constant rubbing of elbows, thumping of tankards, and spilling of food. Skavos trundles between the bar and kitchen like an affable bear, shouting greetings and winked admonishments to both guest and employee in equal turn. In addition to his prized chowder, guests may partake of bread, roast root vegetables, and boiled eggs. Behind the bar are a few casks of passable ale, although Skavos keeps a keg of decent perry under the bar for those who know to ask.

He's helped around the tavern by any or all of three employees, depending on the night and the crowd: Ellowyn, his daughter, who inherited both her father's build and joyful presence. “Mad Mary,” an orphan dropped at the dock two years back, who converses both with the customers, and the voices in her head. And young Peter van Kuik, who divides his time between splitting wood and tending fire at the tavern, and riding as a courier out past the town gates.

Skavos' ears are as sharp as his wit, and one hears much coming though a little port like Skaldwater. Peter occasionally whispers of the packets he carries out to the redoubts and hamlets along the trade road, as well, in spite of being sworn to strict confidence... Given a good night and a discreet tip, or some good information in return, Skavos is well known as a clearinghouse of information and tales. Once the evening rush has settled a bit, he wipes his hands and starts in on a tale imparted from some sailor or caravaneer...

Personae Dramatis:
  1. 'Zigzag' Nottley lolls at a table next to the fire. Late-arrivals will have the misfortune to sit next to him as he slobbers and stinks. The old wet-brain lost his ship and staggers between the tavern and a shack under the dock.
  2. Josep and Kitto Kestle stop in to check on their old colleague from the trees. The brothers are both built like oak stumps.
  3. Balla Ramóna plies her trade, seeking to provide companionship to a lonely sailor or caravan drover. Ellowyn stares daggers at her.
  4. Jan Hofste and his crewman Tijl Oldeman supply a share of their catch to Skavos for his chowder. Tijl has been saving his pay to buy a farm in the hopes of asking for Ellowyn's hand.
  5. Father Vincze arrives when he knows “Mad Mary” to be on duty. He surreptitiously keeps notes of her ramblings.
  6. Sheriff Demetrios Anagnas hovers at the end of the bar, twirling his spoon in an empty bowl. A teetotaler, he steeps an herbal concoction in a mug of boiling water provided by Skavos.
Rumors and seeds:
  1. The mage Iviar the Black has put up a bounty for an immature owlbear, if someone is foolhardy enough to wrest one from its mother.
  2. The halfling Williver Root was found outside the town gate, hallucinating and ranting of mushroom-men and their fabulous potions deep within the Horston Woods. He had several gourds containing unknown substances on his person.
  3. The bandit band led by Grinning Dudly hit another caravan last week.
  4. The cargo galley Pegase is in need of extra marines for safeguarding a cargo of value.
  5. A pair of desert elves arrived last week, seeking ship passage. These arid wanderers are well-known to fear open water.
  6. Arcano-mechanical walkers were spotted out past the trade road. Probably just gnomes up to no good, but best be cautious.
  7. A representative of the Prince Regent passed through recently, discreetly inquiring on the loyalty of the Sheriff.
  8. A Priest of the Divine Will has posted a flier seeking compatriots for a pilgrimage out into the Tomblands.
  9. The caravan of Udolf 'One Legged' Drakkar went missing last week. They were rumored to carry odd ingots purchased by an elementalist.
  10. The Broadrose River ran red for three days, and fish were killed out beyond the delta.