Saturday, March 4, 2017

A Peek at Some Optional Rules Included in the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light Beta

What follows are some optional rules that will be included with the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light Beta Release.

These are OPTIONAL - use or not as you see fit as a GM. Add your own or none at all.

We'll see if we can get a public release of the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light Beta PDF in the next few weeks. There are various iterations of the SWCL rules currently in playtest as well as being used as reference by creators of SWL content. We want to lock down the rules before moving on to the rest of the release.

As I've stated before, the full release will add 16 to 20 pages of adventures and setting to the 16 pages of actual rules. So, complete game and campaign material in 32 to 36 pages.

On a side note - we just commissioned a logo for the Torchlight zine. Things are progressing well ;)

Optional Rules for Swords & Wizardry Continual Light

-Start all characters with maximum Hit Points for their class at 1st Level. Helps with low level survivability.

-Allow humans to swap their lowest ability score with a 15. Answers the “Why play a human? “ question.

-Treat 1st Level Clerics as having “Zero” 1st level spells and allow them their bonus spell for high wisdom if they have one.


Here's how Perks work. After attaining 7th level, PCs can still accumulate game session  / adventure "credit" for playing and they can spend this "credit" as follows:

1 Credit - Add 1 HP to their HP total.  This perk can be bought a maximum of 10 times. Note, these are not HD and a Constitution Bonus does not apply. Also, see below.

2 Credits - Lower Saving Throw by 1 point. This perk can be bought a maximum of 5 times.

2 Credits - Cleric and Magic-user only - Add 1 First Level spell slot – This perk can be bought a maximum of 3 times.

3 Credits - Fighter only - + 1 to BAB - This perk can be bought a maximum of 5 times.

4 Credits - Cleric and Thief Only - + 1 BAB. This perk may only be bought a maximum of 2 times.

4 Credits – Cleric and Magic-user only - Add 1 Second Level spell slot. This perk can be bought a maximum of 2 times.

5 Credits - Thief Only - Add a 1 in 6 chance to Thief Skills. This Perk may only be bought once.

5 Credits – Add 1 HP to their HP total. There is no maximum number of times this perk can be bought. Note, these are not HD and a Constitution Bonus does not apply.

6 Credits – Cleric and Magic-user only. Add 1 Third Level spell slot. This perk can only be bought once.

8 Credits – Magic-user only. Add 1 Fourth Level spell slot. This perk can only be bought once.

Knights of the Dinner Table Live action Series Facebook Page is Live!

So, how can we tell #ConManKen put the page together?

Shouldn't that be @KOTDTLAS?

"Action" should also be capitalized
"Knight" should be Knights
"t" should be "T"

"the" should be "they"
Everything was posts February 26th, 2017. Nothing since.

Ah well, at least Ken is true to form. Link for the curious: https://www.facebook.com/LODTLAS/

Test Covers for the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light Beta - and more SWL News

Ignore the waviness - the are laying on a pillow (damn cat wouldn't give me desk space ;)

Anyhow, the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light (SWCL) Beta is going to come in at 20 digest sized pages, with even the inside covers printed on.

We have a choice of white or blue for the covers. I'm partial to the blue but let me know what you think.

Now, the full release (planned for the Spring of '17) will also include seven adventures (one for each character level in the rules) as well as a sandbox setting. Pricing to be determined.

There will be 30 signed and numbered copies (and a handful of unsigned and unnumbered copies). I'll be bringing about a dozen signed and numbered copies to Gary Con at the end of the month as well as mailing some to the higher level Patreon Backers. Gary Con copies will be handed out free (first 8 are reserved and not counted towards the dozen we will be handing out.) There will be other Swords & Wizardry Light loot at Gary Con too, so look for +Zach Glazar , +Michael Badolato and myself for SWL goodness.

I've also released a handful of SWCL PDF copies into the hands of playtesters. They are free to print out copies for their own use and that of their groups.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Get Your Genuine Faux Unofficial but we will Milk it for all it is Worth, "Negan" Bat from the Walking Dead

So, you thought Marcus had milked the Walking Dead connection to death when he was billing #ConManKen as a Walking Dead star for his walk on part. You had the privilege of paying for a "Photo with Ken" as well as the signature of a virtual illiterate - allegedly.

Well, now you can own your very own Faux "Negan" Bat - absolutely not licensed by anyone with any authority involved with the Walking Dead itself. Because when you align yourself with Ken, why follow the rules? Why get a license? Why not just scam? Oh wait, they are.

Wait - let's infringe on yet another intellectual property.

Its all okay though. I'm sure Ken is telling Marcus exactly how to do things right...

Kickstarter - The Tavern Companion (system neutral)

A sourcebook for taverns. What could be more appropriate for The Tavern to peek at than a book about taverns in RPGs? That's right - The Tavern Companion.

A few things stand out right away:

- The funding only runs for a week. There are five days left as I type this

- The reward is in PDF only and there is only one pledge level (although you can back for more for some extras)

- The pledge level is a single British Pound - about $1.24 USC. Want to name a bar patron? Toss in another pound.

- Looking to raise a modest goal of 500 pounds, they've raise 307 pounds. Not bad at all.

- Its a book about taverns. I mean, common! heh
The Tavern Companion includes: 
A list of 25 Tavern names with heaps of flavour text; designed to be dropped into any game, anywhere. Ensuring that no Dm/Gm can get caught off guard by players deciding to swing by a tavern in an uncharted part of the world.  
A series of 100 quest hooks and rumours that can be heard within any Tavern. Perfect for sidequesting or distracting unsuspecting PC's away from their main objectives. This can be used as a D100 table of Tavern noise and hubbub or use it to drum up some minor story arcs and side quests.  
Ten fully fleshed out rough and ready NPC's complete with flaws and quirky personalities itching to meet your players! This comprises a list of bar staff, bards and patrons to fill your taverns with character! 
What's a Tavern without a fully stocked bar? We've thrown in a list of fine beverages from hearty dwarves ale to delicate elven wines complete with price lists. The highly trained, self taught innkeepers and bar staff will recommend your players the finest tipple to accompany their next quest. 
Its a buck twenty four. Really - and damn bargain.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

S&W Light Micro-Adventure - Born as Two, Die as One - Tim Shorts - Patreon

I've been supporting +Tim Shorts Patreon since... forever. Tim does excellent adventures with full color maps (often laminated) that are prefect for dropping into your campaign.

Since December of last year, Tim has been writing his adventures using Swords & Wizardry Light as the ruleset of choice (Tim - I have an update to SWCL - drop me a message and I'll send to you)

Its really exciting watching the ruleset you authored get used in someone else's projects.

Above is a pic of Tim's latest. Just got it in the mail a few minutes ago. It feels like Christmas :)

Check out Tim's Patreon - you won't be disappointed.

edit - damn keyboard always wants to spell out "Time Shorts"

GM's Day Sale is Live at RPGNow - Here is Your OSR Link of Goodness

Yep, the annual GM's Sale is here. RPGNow has thousands of products on sale at 30% (or more) off.

Those tagged with the OSR label number over 900 (and I'm sure hundreds are missing and need a little digging to find.

Heck, even WotC has a PDF bundle - The Yawning Portal - that includes four AD&D 1e classic adventures - C1 The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan (1e) - G1-3 Against the Giants (1e) - S1 Tomb of Horrors (1e) - S2 White Plume Mountain (1e) (as well as two 3e and one 5e release) at a nearly 60% discount - 20 bucks.

The sale lasts for 12 more days, so I'll be going through it will a fine comb and highlighting some OSR releases that shouldn't be missed.

Remember, all purchases using The Tavern's OBS affiliate links puts 5% of your purchase price into The Tavern's coffers. Don't leave that money on the table for the greedy corps! Tip your barman!  ;)

The Return of Alternity - at Least in Name

Alternity holds a strange place in my gaming history. Released in 1998, it came about a year or so after my high school / college group disbanded due to my new work hours. Of course, that didn't stop me from buying RPGs, especially TSR releases.

I had the Alternity boxed set, Star*Drive and Dark*Matter. Here's the kicker though - I recall nothing about the system itself although I enjoyed the shit out of reading Dark*Matter.

You see, I knew I wasn't going to be actively gaming at the time, so I was more focused on setting and less about the rules.

Now, Alternity is returning. Kinda. Sorta.

It appears to be returning in much the way TSR returned - even if it is mostly "name only", with some of the originals attached to the name.

Here's the press release from Sasquatch Game Studio:
Sasquatch Game Studio is pleased to announce the return of Alternity (TM), a modular science fiction roleplaying game where you create your own future! The game system will launch in 2017 with a 256+ page hardbound book. 
The game, which shares a name and heritage with a popular RPG from the 1990s, covers such action-packed scenes as starfighter dogfights, zero-G combat, and powered-armor troopers blasting aliens into their constituent atoms. The Alternity rules set is modular, so gamemasters can support the story arcs they create with the specific rules they need. A story of far-future space exploration, for example, will use a capital starship rules module, while a dystopian cyberpunk setting will use a virtual reality/hacking module instead. 
Developed with guidance from Alternity’s original designers. Richard Baker and Bill Slavicsek, Alternity will feature a publicly available playtest packet in early 2017. Based on feedback from those external playtesters, Sasquatch plans to release the game in the second half of the year.
Am I interested? Sure. But I'm more interested in any attached settings than the new crunch.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Sneak Peek at an Upcoming Swords & Wizardry Light Release

Perhaps a release at Gary Con...

Did someone say "let there be Light?"

It's Wednesday - Tonight is a Tavern Chat Night! 930 Eastern - Be There or Be Not

Yep, today is a Tavern Chat Night - 930 Eastern - in that little chat box on the right side of this page.

As a side note, I will not be hosting Tavern Chat in three weeks time. I will be at Gary Con. or maybe I will be hosting - who knows? ;)

This weeks topic of discussion - Swords & Wizardry Continual Light - The Beta is done, just a few tweaks left - the complete release will have seven adventures and a setting, but should we release the Beta into the wilds?

Also - sex in D&D - do we need rules to tell us how to get it done?

Bonus topic - @ConManKen - when will the indictments be coming?

Kickstarter - The Book of Passion (OGL 3.75; Mature Audiences)

I know many of you expect snark from me. Not this time.

Just a simple observation.

OGL 3.75 is a code word for "Pathfinder", correct?

I'm guessing the subject matter in The Book of Passion is not in line with the Pathfinder Compatibility License.

There we go.

Anyhow, +Timothy Brannan is involved with the project, so you know it involves Witches ;)

Obviously not my cup of tea. Of course, an OSR book on the same topic would be half the size and leave much of it in the GM's hands... uhm, never mind...

Deal of the Day - GM's Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing (System Neutral Edition) - (Note - 90 minutes left at posting)

Yep, I missed this yesterday and the sale price ends at 1059 Eastern Time this morning, so you have just over 90 minutes to score your copy of GM's Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing (System Neutral Edition) atthe sale price!

PDF - normally $13.99 on sale for $6.99

Print plus PDF - normally $29.98, on sale for $10.98

GM's Miscellany is an amazing series and Wilderness Dressing is excellent - Hint, I already own it ;)

A System Neutral GM's Resource by John Bennett, Creighton Broadhurst, Seamus Conneely, Brian Gregory, Eric Hindley, Brian Wiborg Monster, David Posener, Josh Vogt and Mike Welham

Tired of glossing over the details of your PCs’ overland journey (except for the inevitable, violent random encounters)? Want to add in minor features of interest to their journeys? Want to make their journeys seem more “real”? Then GM’s Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing is for you! A compilation of the Wilderness Dressing line, each instalment focuses on a different type of wilderness or a feature therein and gives the harried GM the tools to bring such features to life with interesting and cool noteworthy features.

GM’s Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing presents loads of great features and details to enliven your PCs’ travel both overland and by sea. Designed to be used both during preparation or actual play, GM’s Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing is an invaluable addition to any GM's armoury!

GM’s Miscellany: Wilderness Dressing presents the material originally appearing in:

Wilderness Dressing: Bandits
Wilderness Dressing: Castles
Wilderness Dressing: Deserts
Wilderness Dressing: Extreme Weather
Wilderness Dressing: Hills
Wilderness Dressing: Mountains
Wilderness Dressing: Plains
Wilderness Dressing: Primal Forests
Wilderness Dressing: Ruins
Wilderness Dressing: Sea Voyages
Wilderness Dressing: Snow and Ice
Wilderness Dressing: Swamps
Wilderness Dressing: Travellers
Wilderness Dressing: Woodlands

Remember, all purchases using The Tavern's OBS affiliate links puts 5% of your purchase price into The Tavern's coffers. Don't leave that money on the table for the greedy corps! Tip your barman!  ;)

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Bundle of Holding - Designers. Dragons & More

Yep, this is for the gaming historian in you - Designers, Dragons & More.

Designers & Dragons is probably the best history of RPGs that you can find, and this is coming from a guy who has his BA in History. I'm a history buff, but this is enjoyable reading even if you aren't.

8 bucks gets your the first volume of four of Designers & Dragons: The 70's. Its an amazing read. Can't personally speak for the other two offerings at the 8 buck level, but I'll be checking it out.

For about $18.50 you get the next three volumes of Designers & Dragons as well as Hobby Games: The 100 Best. Again, can't speak about the Hobby Games title, but the next three volumes of Designers & Dragons are an excellent read.

Really, you can't go wrong.

Kickstarter - Fosc Anansi - RPG Adventure Module - 1E & 5E

Fail Squad Games / +Lloyd Metcalf is back with another project. This time it is Fosc Anansi, an adventure that will be published with 1e & 5e stats in the same booklet.

So, what exactly is Fosc Anansi?
Help us bring the next Fail Squad Games adventure module to print! This is a REVISED edition of the copy produced for RPG Crate in January 2017. 
It will be published including: 
1E/OSRIC AND 5E rule sets in the same book
52 Pages
Unique monsters and challenges
1E and 5E character sheets
The writing, illustration, layout and editing is FINISHED! We just need your support to take this project to print.
If you haven't checked out Lloyd's work yet, you really should. Top notch art and excellent ideas and execution. He's hit the mark with every project too - on time or early.

Softcover is $15, hardcover is $20. Signed and numbered hardcover is $35 - just a few left.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Gareth Sharka - Still Stirring Shit on Twitter 5 Years and Going Strong - Far West

Hey Gareth! Fuck you!

Sorry for making it personal for my readers, but telling folks that haven't asked for refunds that they can't bitch and complain pisses me off. Why?

Five months ago Gareth told us there would be no refunds until release. So, why ask for something that isn't going to happen.

Or did Gareth misspeak. No, he's not a lawyer, so it must be something else.

Are there refunds? Are there not refunds? Are those that are partially refunded still allowed to complain?

Keep your lies and stories straight. It helps in the long run when your are fucking backers over. All you are doing is trolling yourself.

I'm eagerly awaiting this supposed announcement later this week:


Can't comment, can only view. Echo Chamber in full effect. Feel free to comment here Gareth. We don't block, edit or delete comments or views we disagree with. Explain your position. Make sense of the disconnect between your statements. Salvage what little you have left of your rep.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Far West - You Want to Know What's Going On? Don't Expect an Update - Email Gareth - Seriously

So, Gareth, the man who has a project that is over five years late (and has punted the completion date so many times we are now sitting on the 63 excuses / release dates / fairy tales), so late there is a website delegated to it being late, is telling his backers to "email me directly" for news on the project.

Dude! WTF?

Kickstarter updates are supposed to appear on Kickstarter. Not on your Twitter account. Not when some pissed off fool has to track down your email to ask you "can I have my refund now? please!"

But hey, backers are not customers - not that customers are treated any better - Buckaroo Banzai Pre-orders anyone?

Gareth certainly knows the way to turn a successful small press company into an unsuccessful small press company and pissing on your customers - past, present and future, is certainly the way to do it. At least I will say this about Gareth - he is consistent in ignoring his own failure. You almost need to admire that.

Far West. Far Far West. In a galaxy, far far west away...

edit - so some of us can smile in the midst of Gareth's "storytelling"...

Swords & Wizardry Continual Light - Print at Home Beta Proof

As I mentioned earlier, +James Spahn laid out the working beta / playtest version of the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light rules. I decided to print a digest sized reference copy for myself. Damn but it's sweet!

I have heavier paper I could have used for the cover, but this was just a quick test to see how it would come out digest sized - 5 8"x10.5" sheets. The print is small but readable, even for my nearly 50 year old eyes.

I still have a page of optional rules that I have to tighten up and we still have 7 adventures and a mini hex sandbox (or non quite a sandbox - more on that later) to include - so we are guessing 32 to 36 pages for the full final project - 16 pages or so for the rules, about the same about for adventures and setting.

I expect I'll be bringing a dozen or so "final beta" copies (lacking adventure and setting but with the rules pretty much locked down) of SWCL to GaryCon. Maybe we'll do colored covers or something ;)

Hoping to Have a Swords & Wizardry Continual Light "Ashcan" Ready for GaryCon

Cover Art by Luigi Castelli
+James Spahn forwarded me and the rest of our playtest group the most recent version of the of the Swords & Wizardry Continual Light beta in PDF format Its 90% + where it needs to be, heck, probably 95% +. Certainly close enough for me to print out a copy in digest form later on this week and see what it looks like in hand. Sixteen pages plus the cover sheet. This is simply very exciting.

If all goes well I may have a dozen or so "ashcan" versions of SWCL to bring with me to GaryCon. I'll update as we get closer.

Of course the plan is for the final release to include seven adventures - one for each level and maybe a small sandbox setting. We're getting there ;)
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