Saturday, August 13, 2016

It's a Sign! Cthulhu for President!

Yep. We had a few new members at The Tavern's Facebook Community today.

We hit a new milestone.

I think i need to break out some Iron Maiden ;)

Dyson is now up to 74 Free Commercial Use Maps - Go Patreon!

The latest Free Commercial Use Map, a classic from 2013

+Dyson Logos mentioned this on Facebook, but I thought I'd spread the word. Thanks to Dyson's Patreon supporters, there are now 74 Dyson drawn maps available for free commercial use. Did I mention there are more maps added every month?

Dyson is one of the most skilled and most prolific mappers in the gaming community, and the idea that publishers can use a selection of his creations for free in their commercial projects is nothing short of amazing.

I've already got 2 of Dyson's maps pegged for use in a current project.

Here's the link to the free commercial use maps. If you're just using for personal use, he has hundreds more.

You have no excuse. Stat out a dungeon now!  ;)

Friday, August 12, 2016

Deal of the Day - Skyscrapers & Sorcery White Box Rules Players Guide (OSR)

I almost missed this. Yes, this week has been full of distractions.

The Skyscrapers & Sorcery White Box Rules Players Guide is the player's side of the Skyscapers & Sorcery rules. Lots here to use in your OSR campaign if you enjoy taking your fantasy further afield.

Normally $3.49, on sale for the next 13 hours or so for $1.40

From the blurb:
What if the world ended and no one really noticed? 
What if almost everyone just picked themselves up the next day, dusted themselves off and went back to their routines as if nothing major had happened? 
That is what happened here. Sometime in the late part of the 19th century, something exploded in several places around the world at the same time. 
Scientists say they think it was a number of comets or some other sort of space body hitting the planet. Some people claim that we were being attacked by Martians. Some folks just didn’t really notice. The explosions caused lots of death and destruction and affected every continent in the world. 
Strange things live in the shadows of the world. Other worlds seem to have intruded upon ours and you are one of the few who decided to take notice and take action. Folks have names for people like you, the most polite of which is Adventurer. There is something that makes you want to notice the world and what goes on outside the daily humdrum lives of everyone else, and you have an itch to explore the dark corners and possibly even right some wrongs. 
It’s been several decades since the Event and you have decided that it is time to scratch the itch of Adventure. Welcome to Skyscrapers & Sorcery, may your adventures be many and fruitful and may your lives be valiant and your death be bravely faced. 
An Old School, White Box compatible game system. 
This contains all of the player pertinent information, everything from the core book except the Referee's section and the starting adventure.

Kickstarter - Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde - New 5E Monsters

Nord Games (Christopher Haskins) put the excellent Ultimate NPCs: Skulduggery for 5e, Pathfinder and S&W Kickstarter together. I received the S&W version in the mail last week and I can't wait to put it to good use this fall when i get back to gaming. Chris puts together excellent and useful gaming resources.

This time up its Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde - New 5E Monsters. While 5e is not my system of choice, I'm tempted to pick this up to see what Chris has done with some classic monsters and adapt it to S&W on my own.

From the blurb:
Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde is not another A-Z of monsters. Instead, we have focused on some of the commonly encountered monstrous races like goblins, gnolls, and orcs, detailing their cultures, environments, and attitudes, as well as introducing a wide variety of stat blocks to suit a range of challenge levels, each with their own unique artwork.

Bugbears -  Ruled by augury and ritual superstition, bugbears are lead by a mixture of mystics and warriors. They excel at silently hunting their quarry, be it deer, troll, or man.
Gnolls - Scavengers or hunters, whatever niche gnolls fill, they undertake their role with remorseless savagery. The 3 most common types are the powerful and aggressive plains gnoll, the cowardly and opportunistic gutter gnoll, and the cunning and elusive rock gnoll. 
Goblins - Cowardly and sadistic bullies, goblins are divided into 3 distinct subgroups; forest goblins, stealthy guerrilla hunters and trappers; hill goblins, the most organized and martial variety; and cave goblins, a degenerate and twisted breed living deep underground. 
Hobgoblins - Utterly focused on waging war with other races, hobgoblins are not to be trifled with. Like a plague of insects, their great hosts will consume all a land has to offer, and march its former occupants off in chains.  
Kobolds - Kobolds divide neatly into 2 distinct subtypes. Warren kobolds are kobolds left to their own devices; simple miners and trap builders. When a colony discovers, or seeks out a dragon egg or wyrmling, their society entirely changes to that of the more grandiose and self-important dragon kobolds. ***Content contributor Wolfgang Baur of Kobold Press!*** 
Ogres - Ogres are defined by their violent cruelty, immense strength, and monumental stupidity. They are inordinately proud of all these things. 
Okiti - Usually a mischievous nuisance in port towns, okiti can prove deadly if pushed, with huge numbers at their disposal and a knowledge of deadly poisons.   
Orcs - Orcs revel in chaos and destruction, and their violent warrior culture allows for no weakness.  
Trolls - Immensely adaptable, trolls are shaped by their environment into perfect ambush predators. 
Yeah, there is definitely stuff I can steal for my games ;)

Thursday, August 11, 2016

State of The Tavern Tavern Keeper - Update - Time to Trim the Fat

The fatty liver that is. Ultrasound showed no fluids in the abdomen, no tumors (as a cancer survivor, always on your mind) but did show my liver is going through a "fatty process". That and my blood sugar and cholesterol are higher than they should be according to the blood works.

Time to lose a few more pounds, add folic acid and vitamin b1 to my diet and watch what I eat. Maybe I can get the pub to swap out fries for a nice salad instead ;)

The bloat is mostly gone but the side with the liver is still a bit swollen. Time is what I need to heal and I have that in spades.

Tomorrow might still be an off day for me but I should be back in full swing for the weekend.


Rant - Your Gamebook is NOT a "#1 Amazon Bestseller"

One thing the OSR is usually good about is hype, or lack there of. Even out best selling products do so by word of mouth, not manipulation of truth.

So things like Arena Fighters (Rule Book) from M. R. Mathias really piss me off. Why? Here's the screenshot at DriveThruRPG:

Look Ma! It's a #1 Amazon Bestseller! It must fucking rock!

So, it went up on OBS August 10th, 2016. That's yesterday. When did it go up on Amazon to make the bestseller list?

It went up on August 4th, 2016. Wow, less that a week and it made #1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Humor & Entertainment > Puzzles & Games > Science Fiction & Fantasy Gaming > Dungeons & Dragons. Er? Okay.

And it is #1 in that very specific category. 1 of 1 that is.

That's it. Its the only book in the category.

Its 2 of 2 in Changleing. How it dropped there, no f'n idea.

So no, asshole, Arena Fighters is NOT a #1 bestseller. Its in a category unto itself.

Is the author prolific when it comes to Kindle Fantasy Fiction? Yes. 

Is he awesome? Just read what he has to say about himself:

Eh, might be hard to read as a screenshot:
M.R. Mathias rose from unknown to award-winning, best-selling author at a pace most authors can only dream about. He is a prolific writer of epic fantasy novels, novellas, and short stories. Despite his busy writing, publishing, and promotional schedule Mathias continues to aid his fellow indie authors by posting about their books at Twitter and Facebook etc. 
He shared his considerable knowledge of self-promotion in publishing The First Ten Steps. The book has become an important indie guide for navigating the often murky waters of using social media sites to get your eBook in front of avid readers. 
Mathias has taken cross promotion to a new level in his "Indie Kindy" giveaways where he gives away a FREE Kindle Touch and or Kindle Fire loaded with independently published books. These events create a great deal of interest for the authors involved and to independently published books as a whole.
I can't speak for his fiction, but his first gaming release on OBS is a social media fail.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Adventures in Middle Earth (D&D 5e) Table of Contents Picture

Thanks to +Ray Chapel for pointing me to the Israeli gaming site that posted a pic of the Adventures in Middle Earth Player's Guide table of contents.

Of course, most interesting to be is The Classes. I'm glad I dont see any outright spell casters.

This might actually get me running some D&D 5e...

Tavern Chat - Tonight - 930 PM Eastern

Yep, it's Wednesday which means time for another Tavern Chat tonight.

Where? The chatwing box to the right side of this page.

How? Log in using most social media services.

Why? Because you never know who is going to drop in ;)

Roll20 Article on Slate - Welcome to the Virtual Tabletop (Finally, there’s a good way to play Dungeons & Dragons online)

Roll20 (and Dungeons & Dragons 5e) have a nice article up on Slate.

Yep, the D&D media love just keeps rolling along.

Gail couldn't have timed her licensing of Gary's works better if she had had a crystal ball...

Here's a small piece from the article:
But if technological developments partly supplanted D&D’s appeal, they may yet also contribute to its recent resurgence. The leader here may be Roll20, a web-based system that attempts to re-create the experience of classic pen-and-paper gaming—not just for Dungeons & Dragons, but for other titles as well. The sophisticated application creates a shared platform for many of the game’s fundamental elements, allowing users to simulate dice rolls and move character and monster tokens around maps (drawn by the game master or imported from the community-generated library). 
Though it’s not quite the same as sharing a pizza in someone’s basement while fumbling for your lucky 20-sided die, it comes surprisingly close. Log in and you’ll be given the opportunity to create a new game or join one in progress. Take the former option, and an array of tools in the sidebar will allow you to draw maps, place monsters, and otherwise prepare things for your players. It’s simple enough to draw a crude map on one of the graphing paper–like templates, but members of Roll20’s community also create and distribute more sophisticated art resources through the site’s marketplace. A shareable URL lets others join the game. Once they do, their faces will pop up in video streaming boxes in the lower third of the screen, offering something like face-to-face interaction.
It seems like there is hope for the hobby yet.

Hey, maybe Gail could license some of Gary's work to Roll20...

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

State of The Tavern Keeper - Oh That Bloated Feeling

Your Tavern Keeper has been under the weather the past few days with a bloated tummy and finally went to his doc this afternoon.


I've got fluid in my belly. Blood works taken and sonogram scheduled for Thursday morning.

Joy. No pain, just bloat.

All vitals are normal otherwise.

I've been spending a good amount of my time lying on my side hoping to pass gas... TMI?

So, if I seem distracted or slow to get to something you're waiting on, you now know why.

Good news is I've gotten my weight down to just 5 pounds above my Police Academy weight ;)

Kickstarter - Cthulhu Insanity Dice (RPG Dice)

I'll admit it. I have a bit of a dice fetish. There's just something magical about polyhedral dice, even if they never get used by me these days (except for cons, I game exclusively via Roll20).

Cthulhu Insanity Dice are just what my dice collections needs. Not that I need them, but the collection is whispering...
The first die has ten different Insanity results. You never know what your character is going to do that moment they come face to face with the unspeakable horror and your character's mind snaps. 
The second die has ten different phobia's your character can pick up later, which often gets forgotten and never added to the character.
I wonder if that whispering is linked to an insanity. 1 in 10 chance ;)

Monday, August 8, 2016

There is a MacGyver Remake in the Works and Whitman is in the First Episode

Mark your calendars for Friday, September 23, 2016.

A new MacGyver series in coming to the small screen and Ken is in the first episode.

No, I don't know details, but look at Kenny's friendly little mug...

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Kickstarter - Barrowmaze: The Forbidden Caverns of the Archaia (OSR Megadungeon)

Just in case you didn't get enough Barrowmaze+Greg Gillespie brings us Barrowmaze: The Forbidden Caverns of the Archaia.

Let me start this off by saying I backed this at $100 on the first day of the Kickstarter. Greg does some of the most accessible writing of Megadungeons that I've seen, and Barrowmaze Complete, while huge, is made to be broken down into easily digestible pieces (and if you don't already have BM Complete, you can add it for a mere 50 bucks)

More Barrowmaze is, quite simply, more better :)

Seriously, at a session a week you could probably game for years with Greg's releases, and why wouldn't you? It's a blast (I enjoyed running Barrowmaze with my regular group)

I can't wait for the summer to be over and the return of active gaming...

Just How Excited Were Folks Over the ENnies Winners over on ENWorld?

The ENnies were announced Friday Night.

It is now Sunday Morning.

I hope we can generate more excitement than that when the Old School Recognition Awards kick off.
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