Saturday, July 27, 2019

Roll20 -The Orr Group Industry Report: Q2 2019 - No More "Apple to Apples"

Its been over a year since Roll20 has released an Orr Group Report, or a percentage breakdown of what players are playing on Roll20 for the 2nd quarter of 2019. Now, I knew that Pathfinder numbers were on a downward trend, but the report is striking in how much so. Be aware that they are now crunching numbers with a new method, but let's take a peek, shall we?

Notice how you no longer get pure numbers of campaigns or players. We don't even get a sample size. Wonder why that is?

There's a new category of "Uncharacterized". I'm guessing if you don't flag the system your game uses, you fit here.

D&D 5e, down to nearly 52% from 61%, but Pathfinder is down from nearly 10% to about a 6.5% share. So, if D&D lost 20% of its share, Pathfinder lost about 35%. But these numbers are "shares", and for all we know, there might be 50% more campaigns being run on Roll20 and both numbers in pure percentages rose.

Or to put it another way, if there were 6x the number of 5e games than Pathfinder games in 1st quarter 2018, there are now about 7.5 times the number of 5e games to Pathfinder. That's apples to apples, as best I can.

I'll dig a bit deeper into this over the next day or so.

Friday, July 26, 2019

Kickstarter - Cities of Hârn

"Cities of Hârn is part of the Hârnworld medieval RPG setting. Come to Hârn, where the fantasy is real."

Harn. The final frontier. A low fantasy setting for gamemasters seeking detail, not fluff. This is the 36-year publishing history of The World of Hârn...

Heh. Sorry about that ;) Harn was the second fantasy setting I found in my early gaming days, the first being the Greyhawk Folio. Harn was detailed, but for me, lacked a certain spark. But man, was it detailed.

The City of Hârn Kickstarter is going to bring that level of detail to the masses. Why is that? Back the Kickstarter for a buck and you get a 34-page city supplement in PDF within 48 hours of backing. If you like it, up your pledge to 19 bucks and you a second city and all the stretch goals (HarnWorld is the first stretch goal and is achieved -  This 58-page Hârn article is a general overview of Hârnic cultures, governments, economics, history, and more. It also includes campaign aids for such tasks as generating weather conditions and character backgrounds.) The stretch goals are where the magic is. If you want access to a detailed, low fantasy setting, 19 bucks is a bargain.

All rewards are in PDF.

Thursday, July 25, 2019

Christmas in July Sale - WotC / TSR Picks

It never ceases to amaze me the amount of classic TSR Era releases that are now available in PDF and often POD via DTRPG. All of the TSR Era PDFs are on sale for the Christmas in July Sale, and I'm going to pick out a few favs and notable ones.

Gamma World (1e) - My first (and only - in my heart of hearts) version of Gamma World, this holds a very special place in my gaming collection as the first RPG I owned after getting my core AD&D 1e books. Never like Constitution for Hit Dice though - This is the setting for a GAMMA WORLD™ campaign, with players taking on the persona of an individual character somewhere in this forbidding locale. In a quest for survival and in search of a better future, the players adventure across the land, enduring hardships and encountering dangerous obstacles and mysterious foes - never knowing quite what to expect. The result is a game which can go in many directions, but which will be challenging and fascinating no matter what the outcome. 9.99  7.49

Boot Hill Wild West Role-Playing Game (2nd Edition) - Another of my early RPG purchases, I learned about Boot Hill from the AD&D 1e DMG. Sadly, my group didn't express much interest in playing it - You step from the cool shade of the Long Branch Saloon into the midday heat of Promise City. Loosening your Colt in its holster, you look down Main Street and spot the leather and denim-clad stranger who called you out. Citizens of the town scramble for cover as they sense the forthcoming battle. The outlaw doesn't look fast enough to match your draw, but ... wait! Your keen eyes catch the unmistakable glint of the sun against gun metal from the roof of the dance hall—the yellow coward has a buddy who's going to shoot you in the back! What will you do? Think fast. or you'll be the next resident of ... BOOT HILL! 4.99  3.74

The World of Greyhawk (1e) - This was all the setting we needed back in the early 80s. Heck, my original maps still have stains from the grease pencils we used to mark the territory my gaming group was conquering in the Wild Coast ;) - So the players have been complaining that the campaign is too dull, eh? Not enough detail? Why is this country at war with its neighbors? How can trade routes exist with all those wandering monsters? Most importantly, why do all of those unsacked, unlooted dungeons and ruins stand so close to the one big city all of the adventurers in the world hail from? Rejoice, Dungeon Masters, and relax! All of these questions can be answered by following the example of the volume in your hands. The World of Greyhawk is here, and is suitable for use as the backdrop of a new campaign without changes; or, as an alternative, city, country or geographical descriptions can be used to fill in details for existing campaigns. The World of Greyhawk is in the form of a gazetteer written by a historian native to the region, and as such includes the calendar systems used by the peoples of Oerth, a history of the major nations over the last thousand years, a discussion of climate in the different regions of the world, and even an appendix listing many runes and symbols (and their meanings) which are found in ancient and magical writings. 4.99  3.74

Fiend Folio (1e) - Before I owned a copy of the Monster Manual, I snagged a copy of the Fiend Folio. It was here that I learned that HDstood for Hit Dice, and WAS NOT synonymous with HP. Damn, my group was disappointed when the monsters started having more than 1 HP per HD :)  A Guidebook of Creatures Malevolent and Benign. This tome contains alphabetical listings of monsters designed for use with the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game system. Each creature is described and most are illustrated for easy identification. Using the new encounter tables contained herein, this work is sure to add new excitement to any AD&D game. 9.99  7.49

T1-4 Temple of Elemental Evil (1e) - I've heard it claimed that ToEE is not a megadungeon, and I would have to disagree. I ran it was a campaign at least three times in my high school and college years, and any dungeon that can keep a group running for months is mega in my eyes - A sinister force, long thought destroyed, stirs from the black hole that spawned it. Like an ebony darkness it prowls the land and safety is but an illusion, for it watches from every shadow and ponders possibilities. What began years ago, with the introduction of the players to the quiet village of Hommlet and the amazing lands of Greyhawk, at last is complete. Here is the long-awaited campaign adventure, featuring the ruins of the Temple of Elemental Evil, where a great evil broods and grows beneath its blasted stones. This is your chance to drive it back and scatter its force again. This product includes the village of Hommlet, the filthy shire of Nulb, and reveals the ruins of the Temple of Elemental Evil and the labyrinths that lie beneath, a warren of darkness. And beyond these ruins, even more, is revealed. For the first time, this product provides a complete campaign adventure, which will take beginning characters from 1st all the way to 8th level and possibly beyond! Hours of adventuring await you! 9.99  7.49

D&D Basic Set Rulebook - Moldvay Basic. This was the Basic Set of rules as I knew them and of course, teenage me was not impressed with anything named "Basic" as we played "Advanced". I'll admit it now, I was a fool - This is the 1981 edition of the D&D Basic Rulebook, which was sold as part of the boxed D&D Basic Set and also on its own. It was the first true standalone edition of what became "Basic D&D" as previous editions had instead been based on OD&D play. 4.99  3.74

You can also snag the D&D Expert Set Rulebook for 3.74

B2 The Keep on the Borderlands - Although I refused to play or run Basic D&D "back in the day" I had no problem running The Keep on the Borderlands with the AD&D rules. An adventure as well as a sandbox setting (and home base), it has been a go-to for me for many years -This module includes a cover folder with maps and a complete description booklet to form a ready-made scenario for DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® Basic Set. It has been specially designed for use by beginning Dungeon Masters so that they may begin play with a minimum of preparations. Within are many features to aid novice players and Dungeon Masters: legends, history and background information, a list of adventuring characters, tips on how to be an effective Dungeon Master, plus an interesting area for characters to base themselves in (the Keep) before setting out to explore the Caves of Chaos. 4.99  3.74

Yep, those are affiliate links above. By shopping via The Tavern's affiliate links, you help support The Tavern by doing what you were already going to do - buy cool shit! 

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Tavern Chat - Tonight - 9 PM Eastern - Come Hang Out in the Weekly OSR Voice Chat Hangout

Hey, it's a Wednesday, and that means tonight at 9 PM we'll be hosting the weekly Tavern Chat Hangout on The Tavern's Discord server.

Here's the link if you don't already have it:


Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Kickstarter - HYPERBOREA: Otherworldly Tales (AS&SH)

You have to give it to Jeff - he brings some of the best produced, well-written adventures to the market with covers that make me drool. HYPERBOREA: Otherworldly Tales is no exception.
THE LOST TREASURE OF ATLANTIS - The Lost Treasure of Atlantis, by Chainsaw, is an adventure in HYPERBOREA designed for from four to six characters of 6th through 8th level.

In the far reaches of Hyperborea’s Crab Archipelago lies a small, mountainous island known as Crystal Point. Passing sailors recently have witnessed a crimson glow in Crystal Point’s waters and beams of russet light shining up from its steep cliffs. Too, unusually frequent lightning storms in the area have torn the sky in blinding flashes, shattering the air with their awesome sound. The seedy wharf taverns of Khromarium and elsewhere buzz with these strange tales—some even speculate that Crystal Point may hold the lost treasure of Atlantis! 
THE SEA-WOLF'S DAUGHTER - The Sea-Wolf's Daughter, by Jeffrey P. Talanian, is an adventure in HYPERBOREA designed for from four to six characters of 7th through 9th level.

Your party finds itself in the employ of Ragnarr the Sea-Wolf, a jarl of New Vinland and a reaver of old. His daughter, a shield-maiden named Gunnhildr, has been abducted by a brute called Björn Blackbeard. During a desperate search, the Sea-Wolf crossed sails with a former rival, and from the blood-flecked lips of a dying foe, he learnt the location of Blackbeard’s stronghold. Now, deep in the misty fjords of Brigand’s Bay, where cutthroats, pirates, and freebooters thrive, you have been charged with liberating the Sea-Wolf’s daughter.
Funded in 3 hours. 3 hours? Seriously? Damn! heh

As aways, jeff does good stuff.

Both adventures in PDF come to 19 bucks (10 bucks each otherwise). Print plus PDF for both is 50 (26 if you opt for either or)

Take my money Jeff ;)

Monday, July 22, 2019

Christmas in July Sale - OSR Picks - Part the first

Time for some OSR Picks for the DTRPG Christmas in July Sale. In no particular order:

Low Fantasy Gaming Deluxe Edition - I played the LFG Original (free) for a number of sessions and it was a blast. Very much and OSR feel while borrowing some mechanics and concepts from Dungeons & Dragons 5e. "Low Fantasy Gaming is a tabletop RPG built for gritty adventures in low
or moderate magic settings. It has simple rules, dangerous combat, flexible PC customization, and mysterious, unpredictable magic. Designed for
short, episodic adventures in sandbox worlds, LFG provides the mechanics and tables needed for easy GM improvisation. It’s a heady mix of the best old school, modern, and new game design, wrapped around a familiar d20 core." 20  15

HighFell: The Drifting Dungeon - the latest release from Greg Gillespie. Remember, he doesn't just design mega-dungeons, he teaches it on the college level. Must be a Canadian thing ;) "The HighFell: The Drifting Dungeon is a 246-page classic old school megadungeon for use with Labyrinth LordTM and other fantasy role-playing games. The pages of HighFell are crammed full with new material, maps, amazing art (including special surprizes by former TSR artists), as well as an amazing colour cover art by Ex-TSR artist Erol Otus that matches Barrowmaze Complete and The Forbidden Caverns of Archaia as a sister-books. HighFell: The Drifting Dungeon will keep your players on their toes and your campaign going strong for years. HighFell is brought to you by the Old School Renaissance (so don’t forget your 10’ pole)." 35  25.45

The Shadow of Golgotha (B/X) - Nice! A Whitcher styled setting for the OSR. "Get ready for OSR gothic fantasy in the style of Castlevania, Vampire Hunter D, and The Witcher! The Machines conquered us. The Vampires saved us. Now all Christendom lies under their rule. In the gothic future of The Shadow of Golgotha, the vampire scions of Christ have carved up the known world amongst themselves. Their nobility and Church rain down prosperity, for the small price of hot red blood. But the forests and moors are still haunted by gruesome creatures, from clockwork mutants to Death Herself. Lady Regina Drake and the Ruby Paladin grapple for power in the heartland, while Mother Medusa and her anchoresses plot their heresies on the frontiers. Now is the time for bastard children, defrocked nuns, and gasoline witches to
make their mark, to solve the murders of monks and sack crimson cathedrals, to explore Earth's longest nights beneath... The Shadow of Golgotha! This book includes: A
complete gothic fantasy setting. 32 monsters with special abilities, crit effects, and rumor tables. Detailed tools to randomly generate settlements, including regions, landmarks, troubles, and quirky inhabitants." 9.99  7.49

The Stygian Library - somehow this Platinum Best Seller has escaped my radar before now. Looks like I'll need to snag a copy. "The Stygian Library is a creepily genteel dungeon set in an infinite extradimensional library. Each expedition generates its route as it explores, resulting in new locations being discovered with every visit. Included within: Systems for generating locations within the library, including Entrance Foyers, Map Galleries, Tea Rooms,  Planetariums, Calculation Engines, Phantom Databanks, Paper Beehives, Phantom Pumps, Jarred Brains and the Sheol Computer. 40 monsters tailored to the Library, including Lantern Bearers, Skeleton Crew, Origami Golems, Guardian Shades, Lost Souls, Ink Elementals, Animate Spells, Archivist-Liches, Infernal Merchants, Escaped Fictions, Educated Rodents, Conceptual Wells and the orders of Librarians themselves. A system for searching for specific knowledge within the library's depths, as well as 30 unusual books and the secret knowledge they contain. Tables for generating treasure, dreams, rumors, and various other useful details. A unique class of Mummified Sages, post-human academics who've dwelled in the Library for decades or more.  It's a big spooky library full of dangerous knowledge, spiritual automata, and ghost-fueled computers." 5  3.75

DARK PLACES & DEMOGORGONS - Survive This!! - Core Rule Book OSR RPG - You got your Stranger Things in my OSR! - "Following in the tradition of SURVIVE THIS!! Zombies! comes SURVIVE THIS!! Dark Places & Demogorgons, a tabletop roleplaying game that uses the Original 1970s Fantasy Roleplaying game rules but mutates it into this retro nightmare. It’s sleek, slender and creepy as Hell. In Dark Places & Demogorgons, you play as high school students during the early 1980s. The town you live in has had a rash of disappearances and strange happenings. The adults seem lost as what to do, the police are as clueless as ever and aren’t helping and Reverend Phillips is on another witch-hunt. It’s up to you and your friends to figure out what’s going on and stop it from happening again!" 7.99  5.99

Yep, those are affiliate links above. By shopping via The Tavern's affiliate links, you help support The Tavern by doing what you were already going to do - buy cool shit! 

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Christmas in July - DTRPG Sale - OSR Highlights

Yep, its that time again - Christmas in July - at least at DTRPG.com. Right now I'm going to link the OSR titles that are part of the sale. If you go to the below link, it will take you right to the OSR releases on sale, with "hottest titles" showing first. Later today I'll start making some "Tavern Picks".

OSR Christmas in July Sale 

If you are mostly focused on Swords & Wizardry, there's a link for that too ;)

Swords & Wizardry Christmas in July Sale

Main Christmas in July Sale Link

Even Swords & Wizardry Continual Light is on sale for 1.88 in PDF :)

Those certainly are affiliate links above. Shopping via The Tavern's affiliate links keeps the taps flowing here at The Tavern. I thank you in advance.

Tenkar's Tavern is supported by various affiliate programs, including Amazon, RPGNow,
and Humble Bundle as well as Patreon. Your patronage is appreciated and helps keep the
lights on and the taps flowing. Your Humble Bartender, Tenkar

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