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Saturday, July 14, 2012

What Dead Horse? A Short Chat With James Raggi

Who the fuck cast "Raise Dead" on this dead horse? heh

Anyway, I spoke with James Raggi earlier tonight via Google Chat, and he has many of the concerns I do about the funding of the current projects. Some of his assumptions did not pan out as well as he expected. Apparently, fans of RPG authors are not the same as fans of fiction authors - they don't run out to grab the author's latest necessarily. Live and learn.

That being said, James may be adding a new twist to the current projects. When he does (and hopefully he remembers to give me the heads up ;) I'll post it up here. As we all know, James tends to think out of the box. I'm very interested to see what else he has up his sleeve (and no, he didn't tell me - not even a hint). There are a handful of projects I'd like to see get funded - hopefully James' push next week will make things a bit more palatable.

He did speak with me about an upcoming limited print release + PDF he is working on. Not sure how much I can speak about it, but I will say this - I love the title, I cringed at the subject matter (he had artists turn down the work based on the subject matter), I will find a way to run it in my current ACKS campaign when it releases, and those that like to rant about distasteful and offensive gaming material and like to start petitions will have their second coming (someone please make sure the "Research Assistant" is notified when it gets released - he has me blocked - heh). Of course, James is self published, so he can tell them to "Fuck Themselves".

I'm really looking forward to it, as you can tell :)




Whereupon I Beat The Dead Horse - Taking a Sucker's Bet

I had hours to kill last night, sitting in my illegally parked car outside a Manhattan Hospital, as the rest of my family took care of events (details such as they are are in my Google+ postings).

So, what did I do?

Did I brainstorm ideas for tonight's ACKS game? No, that makes way too much sense.

Did I brainstorm new magic items for my current project? Nope

I thought about Raggi's Indiegogo Project(s) again, and what I consider to be a failure to properly execute.

There are a number of adventures that Raggi has people writing and dooig art for that I'd be interested in, but at $20 bucks a pop across multiple projects, it gets cost prohibitive quite quickly. There aren't even stretch goal to get excited about. Instead, the goal, if you will, is to get multiple projects funded so that those that pledge higher amounts potentially get more adventures in return.

Here's some of the problems (my comments are highlighted)

          From LotFP Blog
A note about the bundle deals:
Pembrooktonshire Gardening Society members get discounts on the bundles. Bigger discounts than the cost to become a member, actually. Want to become a member, or just see the usual benefits? Look here for info. (alright, adding a layer of confusion to the process is never a good start)
I really think the bundle deals are what will get projects funded. (at $160 a pop, I would guess so too) It would take 600 people going in for the PDF or 300 for the Print+PDF to get an adventure funded (with 19 projects running concurrently, that is a huge amount to ask for - how many copies of LotFP did James sell as pre-orders?) ... but only 34 if they go for the full Faithful deal (at $160 a pop it's expensive as hell- and its a gamble at that)(or just 12 if going for the Collecting Faithful hardcovers+slipcase deal). But it is a bit of money and a bit risky the way the campaigns are set up (why make supporting a publisher a risk? that makes no fucking sense whatsoever), so I offer this as an incentive: 
If you contribute to a project at the $160 level or greater and that project becomes the only one to fund, you will get a 100€ coupon code for the LotFP store (current exchange rate, that is worth $122.24 - so that $20 adventure just cost you $38.76). If that project and only one other funds, you get a 50€ coupon code (this sucks even more - as that code is just worth $61.12 - those two adventures, which might include one you would never have bought on its own, cost you $98.88 - that's one hell of a loss). These codes will be good through the end of 2014.
Strategy? (why should there ever need to be a "strategy" when it comes to crowdfunding?)
Those wanting the full bundle ($160+ levels) (full bundle ONLY breaks even if 8 projects fully fund - otherwise it is a guaranteed loss of money - not the way to keep customers or gain future ones) should put their money on one of the top three as-yet unfunded adventures and put their money down on one of those. Get adventures funded. Getting half of them funded is better than getting them all half-funded, yes? Once something's funded, don't put any more full bundle contributions on it, get the next one done. And they'll start to add up. (why put anything other than $20 on the project or two you might have an interest in? why the heck should you gamble? Indiegogo is extremely difficult to deal with when it comes to changing pledge levels, so anyone looking to pledge $160 is going to wait until the very end before they drop ANY money - why risk your money?)

Someone commented on G+ that only Raggi is taking a risk on his Grand Adventure Scheme. Wrong, anyone putting down $160 on any of these projects is taking a huge gamble.

If three projects fund, and you are in at the $160 level, it's costing you $53.33 an adventure, four projects is $40 an adventure - twice what you would have paid pledging to individual projects ($20 each in print). Anything less than eight and you lose. Simple as that. At this point, I'd be surprised if more that four fully fund.

It's not that the offerings are bad. There's a bunch of stuff I'd love to see get published. There's just too many at once and the pricing scheme is a horror.

Crowdfunding works best when you have stretch goals - everybody loves a carrot or two. It should NEVER be a gamble where the customer can lose value on the money they commit to get a product out the door.

Alright, time to make glue form this horse. Later ;)



Friday, July 13, 2012

I May Need to Kick My Kickstarter Habit ;)


Since May of 2011, I've supported 27 successful Kickstarters (and 2 that never fully funded)

Since March of 2012, I've supported 3 successful Indiegogo Projects (zero unfunded projects)

And this is why I can't do Raggi's latest (The Monolith from beyond Space and Time plus The God that Crawls was one of the 3 Indiegogo Projects) - I'm already averaging 2 a month and he dropped 19 on the plate.

I'm already a functional addict it seems - I don't want to go broke because of this addiction :)

Someone Got Kicked in the Indiegogo!

This shit kept me up half the night. Well, maybe not half the night, but I lost a good 20 minutes of sleep wondering "why did James put out umteen Indiegogo Projects at one time?"

The answer is quite simple: James Raggi does as James Raggi does. James thinks large. Its a gift and a curse. I suspect this time, its a curse.

19 Crowd funded project running consecutively. Each with a goal of $6000 to be raised. A print + PDF copy starts at $20 bucks or 300 supporters.

19 Projects - I felt that needed to be repeated. Some by big names (Monte Cook!) and some by no-names and a bunch from folks known in the OSR.

The hook is if you kick in $160 (if you are a member of the Gardening Society) you get a copy of every project that is funded.

Monte's project is sitting at $620 with 19 days to go. Just over 10% of goal.

Jeff Reint's is at $2,725 - almost 50%

Vince Baker is at $1780 - almost 30%

I think everything else is less than the above projects. 19 days to go.

If a project isn't funded, it goes bye bye. So, raising 5k each on 4 projects is the same as raising Zero. Money returned to sender.

Ambitious goal stretched way too thin. There are a handful of projects I'm interested in, but not enough to risk $160. Maybe $10 for a PDF 2 or 3 times.

Maybe.

If there were half the number of projects, I suspect one or more might have been funded already, but the numbers get confusing, and $160 on a project hoping at least 7 others fund seems like a fool's gamble.

The LotFP Weird Fantasy funded at just over $16k.

For the $160 pledge to be worth it's while, $48k in successful pledges would have to take place over a total of 8 separate successfully funded projects at $6k+ each.

It would need to be 3x as successful as James' last project.

I don't see it happening.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

First Look - Ooze Pits of Jonas Gralk (DCC RPG Adventure)

Jon over at Purple Sorcerer Games just gave me the go ahead to run Ooze Pits of Jonas Gralk as my Zero Level Funnel for the first session of my latest DCC RPG Arc.

Why is this so special? Besides the fact that it's pretty damn cool, it isn't even released yet. It might get released this weekend or early next week, but I've been looking at a pre-release copy for the past few days and I'm really psyched I'll get to use it.

Look at the map on the left - awesome, aint it?

Guess what?

There is actually a town to for the PCs to check out. Rumors for them to hear. Player Handouts (need to see how to work this with G+ Hangouts).

Oh, and of course kill lots of shit. Or get killed by lots of shit ;)

Damn but I'm psyched! Did i mention that already?

RuneQuest 6 - Review - Part the Second - Let's Add Some Background to That PC

Alright, last night we looked at the basics of character generation. Tonight, we look at fleshing out that character in Chapter 2 of RQ6, Culture and Community.

Culture is the first aspect of that background that we come across. It's divided into Barbarian, Civilized, Nomadic and Primitive. Your choice of Culture will give you a list of Standard Skills and Professional Skills that you can choose from (and possibly a Fighting Style - not quite sure what Fighting Style does but I'm sure i was as we go through all of this). 100 Skill points to play with in this step to allocate among the skills you have chosen.  I'm beginning to think I need to read up on skills next.

Oh, there are also Cultural Passions, which are optional. They include one Loyalty, one Love and one Hate. They are also dealt with later in the rules. I'm going to assume that they are there for roleplay and story hook purposes, but I guess we will find out for sure later.

Next up is Background Events. They're optional but useful for fleshing out your character's background and possibly even generating a campaign hook or two. You may roll or choose from the table, or roll until you like a result I guess. Which would be like choosing your roll ;)

Ah, Social Class. I remember when AD&D's Unearthed Arcana added that to AD&D. Didn't fit there. Seems to fit here. This is generally a random roll, because wealth does equal more power, or at least better starting equipment.

Starting Money gets determined by a 4d6 roll multiplied by anywhere from 10-75 silver pieces, depending on the PC's culture. This is then modified by the Social Class result - x 1/4 if you are an Outcast all of the way up to x 5 if you are of the Ruling Class (Civilized Culture). See, I told you Social  Class meant power ;)

You can also determine your family size, if you have living parents, if you are married (what spouse would let their significant other go adventuring?), family reputation, allies, contacts, rivals, enemies - all the crap that a good DM knows to make sure the players are part of a campaign setting that feels real for them. This part is easily yokeable to other RPGs.

Passions - didn't have to wait nearly as long as I thought to find out more about them. They get rated like skills, and generally start at around 50% + or -. Wait, they really are dealt with in Chapter 6 - this is just the initial generation of them. Ah well.

Damn, that was all of Chapter 2. Chapter 3 is Careers and Development. Tomorrow we'll get get to distribute even more skill points. I don't remember all of these points back in RQ 2+3, but I'm not complaining.

Class Levels or Skill Levels (Paper or Plastic)?

I've always been a "Class Levels" kinda guy. I came to RPGs via AD&D, and Classes & Levels were my first experience.

Shortly thereafter I was introduced to Traveller. It didn't have levels. Heck, you never really got better at stuff, you just acquired better stuff. (that was my first attempt at houseruling - putting expo and skill increases into Traveller)

My first non-level / non-class RPG gaming experience was Runequest 3 (Avalon Hill). Shortly after finding RQ3 I stumbled on RQ2 discounted at a convention. I liked RQ2 more than RQ3.

I liked the lack of classes and levels in this alternative fantasy RPG, almost as much as I liked levels and classes in my main RPG - AD&D.

I wound up running a RQ2/3 hybrid campaign using Pavis and Big Rubble for the better part of a year (with some AD&D / Traveller gaming mixed in).

I'm getting very tempted to consider putting together a RQ6 game, and all I've done is read the first chapter and skim the rest of the PDF. It really is hitting the right notes in me.

Goddamn Gamer's ADD!

(as a side note - Legend struck none of these notes in me - go figure)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Pavis Rises For a Buck (RuneQuest)

There is a selection of MRQ 1+2 available for a buck a piece. I mean, at that price, it's hard to go wrong.

My favorite supplements from RQ2 was Pavis and Big Rubble. My God but that was an awesome campaign.

Now that I'm reviewing RQ6, I'm looking to see what Glorantha products are available on the cheap.

Pavis Rises and Glorantha: 2nd Age are both a buck a piece. Written for MRQ2, they should both be highly compatible with RQ6 (and are fully compatible with Legend). A campaign world and a book of adventures for a buck a piece. Hard to beat.

I can tell you what I'll be reviewing next in the RuneQuest line after I finish the RQ6 review. ;)

RuneQuest 6 - Review - Part The First - Make Me a Character!

As I stated earlier, RuneQuest 6 is a pretty sizable book to digest. I'm not going to attempt to break it down by chapter, as there are 16 Chapters and that will take forever, but there is no way I'll be able to cover this in two or even three parts for review purposes. It takes however long it takes ;)

The first three chapters cover Character Generation.  Chapter One is Basic Character Creation and probably the best place to start.

I'd like to remind you that my RQ experience is with RQ2 and RQ3. MRQ and Legend, pieces of which I may own, are not part of my play experience. Additionally, My RQ experience probably topped on in 1992 at the latest - some I'm at least 20 years removed from the game. I might not be new to it, but I am far from conversant in it. I may bring less baggage to the review, but I probably also bring  game memories that have been buffed and sweetened with the passage of time.

Oh, almost forgot something about the layout of the RuneQuest 6 PDF - it is two columns with a sidebar. The sidebar during the initial character generation chapter deals with Anathaym, the female warrior that graces the cover. Se is uses as the example to follow as one goes through the steps of character generation.

On to the Chapter 1. We are introduced to the usual RQ Characteristics of STR, CON, SIZ, DEX, INT, POW and CHA. Not horribly different than the attributes on associates with the usual OSR style games. Most are generated using the 3d6 method, but INT and SIZ use 2d6+6. (I don't remember the boost to POW and INT in RQ 2+3).

From these Characteristics you determine your Attributes: Action Pts, Dam Mod, HP, XP Mod, etc. It's a list of 10, and some seem very new to me.

Action Points determine the number of actions a character can take in a combat round. Most characters will fall in the range of 2 actions, but some with high scores in INT and DEX will get 3. I haven't gotten to the combat section get, but I would assume an extra action is a nice boon for a PC.

Here's something I don't recall seeing in most RPGs - The Reasons Why... Why does INT and DEX affect your number of action points? In RQ6, it's spelled out for you:

The Reasons Why…
INT: Clever characters can more easily exploit openings and opportunities that lend them an edge in combat 
҉҉DEX: Agile characters react more quickly and can therefore act more often during combat
After the Attributes we are shown the Standard Skills. The starting score of these skills is equal to either 2x a Characteristic or the sum of 2 Characteristics. These are things like Ride, Unarmed Combat, First Aid and the like.

The chapter concludes with a with visual aid for the basic character generation process. This is probably one of the better character generation aids I've come across in an RPG - as very few included anything like it. I'm including a screen shot below for review purposes.

Crap - that was just covering the first chapter ;)




Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Disorganized Organization Methods Are Killing My Productivity

I've never been overly organized. Alright, more accurately, I'm organized in the old "I know it's somewhere in that pile" sort of method. Sooner or later that shit is gonna bite me in the ass.

Well, I'm working my way through a bite right now.

The Magical Toys piece I've been working on in various brain storming sessions (I suspect they would be better with beer, but the timing is never right) is literally spread about everywhere:

  • I've saved bits via voice memo to my iphone
  • I've saved bits via voice memo to my itouch
  • I've written bits on sticky tags at work
  • I've emailed ideas to myself
  • I've written them out in OmmWriter on my computer
  • I've written ideas on index cards
As you can see, my shit is all over the place. Heck, I've written the same piece more than once because I forgot I had written it out previously.

The art for the pieces I've submitted have started to come in, and if there was ever a motivation to be more organized AND more more productive its seeing your work brought to life.

Yep, spent the night tracking down some of the wandering pieces of the puzzle.

Hopefully I'll be able to post a sneak peek or two of the art in the coming weeks. It really is damn good!

First Look at RuneQuest 6

Coming in at 458 pages for the PDF, the RuneQuest 6 core rulebook is a large game to read through. To put things into perspective, the DCC RPG PDF comes in at 488 pages (I've run 2 session and have yet to read the full DCC RPG rulebook). It is not a light weight book. Also, it is priced similarly to the DCC RPG Corebook, coming in at $25 for the PDF. Neither is cheap. Neither is what I would classify as an "Impulse Buy".

Still, as PDFs go, this one is definitely user friendly, which certainly adds to the value. Not only is it bookmarked but it has an extensively hyperlinked Table of Contents (something the DCC RPG certainly could use).

The designers of RQ6 state a number of goals they had in mind when designing the latest edition of RQ. I'm going to quote that piece from the introduction below, as these are some of the things I'll be referring to as I review RQ6 in later posts:

In designing RuneQuest Sixth edition we had several aims foremost in our minds:


To recapture the spirit and feel of the earlier editions of RuneQuest.


Provide a comprehensive fantasy roleplaying game that capitalises on Rune-Quest’s strengths.


Streamline the system, but also introduce new mechanics and systems that reflect what is happening in 21st Century roleplaying games.


Bring RuneQuest to a new audience, and continue to care for its old fans.


It will be interesting to see if they accomplish their goals, especially as I'm a RQ Game Master from the 2nd and 3rd editions of the game. Guess I better get reading ;)

Did I mention I love the cover?  Yep, it rocks!

No Session Recap - Technical Difficulties+

Between work, health, miscommunication and technical issues, we were down to two players. Needless to say, we are pushing the start of the current DCC Arc back a week.

This actually may work out really well. for the group. If all goes well I should be able to run Ooze Pits of Jonas Gralk (Purple Sorcerer Games) as the funnel.

Should be fun no matter what I run, but the sneak peak of Ooze Pits I've seen has been really promising.

Monday, July 9, 2012

WotC Virtual Table Top - Here Today, Gone July 30th

WotC VTT - We Hardly Knew You

































What? You didn't know WotC was working on their own VTT for like - forever?

Well, it's too late now. VTT go bye bye soon. As per ENWorld:

This comes from Wotc_Josh from the group D&D Insider Beta.
"I wanted to inform you all about an important decision that Wizards has made regarding the D&D Virtual Table and Virtual Table Beta. While we appreciate the enthusiasm and participation in the Beta phase, we were unable to generate enough support for the tool to launch a full version to the public. Effective July 30, 2012 the D&D Virtual Table Beta will be coming to an end and the VT will be closed.
Over the next three weeks, we encourage you to wrap up your existing campaigns and make sure to gather contact information from your online group members so that you can stay in touch if you like. We realize that because all data generated in the tool is in a proprietary format usable only by the Virtual Table, it is not possible to export your campaigns for use in another tool. You can, however, take screenshots of any notes, maps or adventures that you would like to hang on to or use in your home games. 
We would like to thank everyone who participated in the VT Beta and look forward to continuing to support D&D game play through our D&D Insider digital tools and D&D Next."
I really like how all your shit that you entered onto their VTT is in proprietary format and can't be exported.

That's the way to support your customers!

Games From the Basement - Mutazoids 2nd Edition

Oh my God! Look! The blurb on the cover says "One of the best SCI-FI Role-Playing Games EVER!" It must be true!

Mutazoids 2e - Post-Holocaust Roleplaying in a world of Mutants & Super Powers.

Look at that cover.  Cops with their black & white patrol car and six shooter revolvers confronting some sort of bat-man and a scantily clad woman with horns at her knees and elbows. Hubba hubba!

This game came out in 1992, so it's 20 years old this year. I don't recall ever running it. I don't recall ever wanting to run it. 46 of the 112 pages are devoted to character generation. Looking at the random charts involved in character generation for the players, I can't see my old group looking to run it either.

Hmm, here's a quote from the back cover:

"Players create Enforcers - the futures equivalent to police officers who carry out laws passed by the cruel government known as the Second Republic".

Sorry, I'd rather play the human-bat-guy or the Horney lady on the cover. :)

Games From the Basement - Paranoia 1E Playtest Material

So, after getting home from work and walking the dog, I continued my quest to find some of my older dungeon maps. I thought I scored when I found a graph paper notebook, but most of the maps within were from one of the early Bard's Tale computer games for the Commodore 64. Not saying I didn't find anything useful, just not all that I hoped for.

I did, however, find briefing material for the playtest of Hil Sector Blues for Paranoia 1E. I remember playtesting this in Manhattan way back in the day in the old West End Games offices late one Friday night. I have no idea who ran the session, but there were three playtesters - myself and my friends Andrew and Lenny. I guess someone didn't want their playtest material, as I have two copies of the Internal Security Hil Sector Gazette.

I think I'll add the second copy as a prize in one of this blog upcoming contests. This shit has to be at least as valuable as a Mark McGuire rookie card ;)

Running My Second DCC RPG Arc Tonight - Funnel Casualties Expected ;)

Running the start of my second DCC RPG Arc tonight - It's Funnel time!

For the last funnel I used the funnel from the DCC RPG rulebook because it was the shortest of my options. I'm leaning towards doing the same again tonight for the following reasons:

1 - It's the first time getting this group of players together, so there will be some time lost in the beginning sorting things out.

2 - Last time I had 4 players and we ran with 4 PCs each. This time I have 6, maybe 7 players - we'll be rolling with 3 PCs each I think tonight.

3 - We only have a 3 hr time block, so I'd rather complete everything early than run way too late.

4 - We'll be using TableTop Forge for the G+ Hangout, and that may have a small learning curve involved.

5 - I've run it before - less stress, no mess

Wish us luck ;)

Mapping the Past With Dungeons

Back in the early 80's, when I was first bitten by the AD&D bug, creating dungeon maps was a game unto itself.

Sometimes I used the random tables in the back of the DMG. On a few of those times, I used a party of the appropriate level to fight the randomly placed monsters from the encounter charts. Solo play back in the day (I didn't own Tunnels & Trolls).

I don't believe the maps I found so far were randomly generated by the tables in the back of the DMG, but I do believe they were randomly stocked. At least I hope they were randomly stocked - from what I've seen so far I notice little rhyme or reason to the dungeon inhabitants linked to my old maps.

Before I truly start the project of turning my early maps into a "mega-dungeon" of sorts, I want to see if I have another stash hidden away in storage. I have some fairly clear memories of maps other than the ones I've unearthed so far. I'd like to make sure I have the most complete pool to work with.

At least I have a theme to link the disparate maps - they were the work of an insane Dwarven Cleric, who enslaved Goblin to build it. This should help explain some of the craziness of the old style maps ;)

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Mini Review: DCC #68 - The Emerald Enchanter (DCC RPG)

The Emerald Enchanter is the 2nd adventure released in the DCC RPG Line of adventures for 2nd level characters after Purple Duck Games' release of Bone Hoard of the Dancing Horror. If you are a referee that prefers to use prewritten adventures in your gaming, the DCC RPG is has the strong beginnings of a varied assortment to choose from.

The Emerald Enchanter isn't just the name of the adventure, it's also the hook that draws the players in - townsfolk have gone missing, and the Emerald Enchanter is the likely culprit.

I must say I'm really digging the adversaries in this adventure. The grunts have a nice twist to them. The more specialized adversaries? Awesome twists to them. I will never look at mosaic artwork the same way again. Ever ;)

The ability to work potential replacement characters into the adventure is in itself a great thing, especially with the potential lethality of the DCC system. I'm glad to see the author placed some replacements if needed. I'd suggest using the PC generator over at Purple Sorcerer Games and letting the player choose the best out of the four for his new PC if it comes down to this. Consider it an "off screen funnel" if you will.

The challenges are great, but so are the rewards. I think it is a pretty well balanced adventure, both in the challenge department and in the goodies the PCs might acquire. I think having a Wizard or an Elf in the party is pretty much needed for the party to succeed but I could be wrong. It's a shame I won't get a chance to run this until sometime in August at the earliest.

The artwork is, as always, many lawyers layers (damn typos) of awesome. I'll say it again: Goodman, start selling art prints!

Oh, and the PDF is bookmarked as always. Nice job.

From the blurb:

Villagers have gone missing! A mix of clues, superstitions, and omens point to the brooding citadel of the emerald sorcerer. This silent monolith has sat undisturbed atop a windy ridge for centuries. Legends say that a green-skinned sorcerer dwells there, where he conducts strange experiments and builds enigmatic machinery. His green-skinned constructs patrol the grounds of his citadel, and he is seen only rarely when he ventures out on nefarious errands that end in horrid screams and strange lights coming from his citadel. Now it is time to penetrate his inner sanctum…

Mega-Dungeon Concept - Reuse Dungeon Maps From 1985 For 2012 Sensibilities

I'm very seriously considering reusing my re-found dungeon maps from the late 80's in a modern style sensibility "Mega-Dungeon".

For my personal use, I'd probably use the ACKS system for the stating out of the critters, as that is the system I'm using for my current campaign.

If I release it for free download, I will probably go the "generic" route, as I have no intention of worrying if I'm obeying the fine print of the OGL or one of the clone licensees.

I wouldn't worry too much about how I fleshed out the dungeons back in the day - that was 100% using the tables in the back of the DMG. I'd be aiming for some internal consistency and maybe even some dungeon history thrown into the package.

I thought that way once, as evidenced by the room descriptions attached. Wish I could find the accompanying map, but no dice so far.


Free Pantheon of Gods - Circa 1986

I can't believe I had both the time and the inclination to write up a whole panthon of gods. I'm putting this at around 1986, as by that time I was pretty much a full time GM for my High School / College group, and I was working on my own setting.

Yep, that's also around the time I got my hands on hexagonal graph paper and decided to try my hands at world design. I apparently didn't get very far. It's also a photocopy of the original, which was done in color pencils if I recall correctly.

My issues with world design were that my vision was always much larger than either my ability or my free time. I never completed a world / setting / major geographical area. So I generally found an area in Greyhawk or the Forgotten Realms that was out of the way and pretty much did whatever it was I wanted to do - but with pre-drawn maps and pantheons.

Still interesting pieces from my own collection. I'm half tempted to make the dungeon maps into a new mega-dungeon of sorts for my players. i still have a few more I need to post ;)