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Saturday, June 13, 2020

Humble RPG Book Bundle: 5th Edition Dungeons, Mazes & Barrows


While I am not a player (nor GM) of D&D 5e, it is certainly easy enough to convert 5e to the OSR ruleset of your choice on the fly. The Humble RPG Book Bundle: 5th Edition Dungeons, Mazes & Barrows is simply an amazing bang for your buck.





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Friday, June 12, 2020

I Missed The Tavern’s 11th Anniversary...


May 31st was the 11th anniversary of Tenkar’s Tavern. It slipped my mind as it was the day before the procedure for my fourth heart stent. 2020 has been one wicked ride, and I dont mean that in a good way. Heh

11 years. Holy shit.

I guess that means we are at the beginning of the 12th year of The Tavern.

There are plans for the second half of 2020. Gaming content is on the front end of that :)

Thanks o all. Those that have been here since the beginning and those that have. Only recently found The Tavern and everyone else in between. Without you, this never would have been and wouldn’t currently be. I owe all of you more than I can ever fully pay back, but I will try.




Thursday, June 11, 2020

A Little Help (for Information) From the Tavern...

A Little Help (for Information) From the Tavern...
After a brief "conversation" with Erik I have permission to help enlist the Tavern to help me with a pet project of mine. For the record, I don't intend to make a dime off of this and the whopping $10/year domain name registration is my only out-of-pocket cost.

A couple years ago I had an idea to start a blog that was dedicated to a relatively narrow focus: OSR Zines. No reviews, no affiliate links, nothing but news of new issues and letting folks know what zines are out there.

The thing is......I'm not really sure what is out there. Current, discontinued, new issues.....I only know about what I stumble across and for older & discontinued issues mostly. This is where I could use the Tavern's help.

I'd appreciate finding out about new/current fanzines, especially new issues. There is a contact form at OSRZine.com and I could easily be emailed through my gmail (FrugalGM). Links, pointers, pictures of issues, etc are all helpful. I did populate the site with some Zines....two years ago, so you can see examples of the info I've been looking to put up on the site.

Any assistance would be most appreciated. I plan on doing updates on the weekends.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Deal of the Day - For Coin & Blood (OSR)


Today's Deal of the Day is For Coin & Blood. Looking for a dark version of Swords & Wizardry? For Coin & Blood may be right up your alley. Normally 9.99, until tomorrow morning its on sale for 4 bucks.
FOR COIN & BLOOD is a classically inspired d20 fantasy roleplaying game with a twist... 
...a twist of the knife! 
Embracing the literary genre known as "grimdark", and inspired by stories of mercenaries, sellswords and blackguards, FOR COIN & BLOOD keeps you on your toes, as you tell stories about the terrible things that happen to people, when they head out in search of coin, passion, and revenge... 
FOR COIN & BLOOD uses a modified version of Swords & Wizardry: WhiteBox, but is a complete game.
Yep, that is an affiliate link above. Support The Tavern by using our affiliate links.  

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

DTRPG Deal of the Day Worth Checking Out: Old-School Essentials Player's Rules Tome

DTRPG Deal of the Day Worth Checking Out: Old-School Essentials Player's Rules Tome
This one almost slipped by me, but I thought it was worthwhile to share, so here I am....

For the next 13 hours or so the Old School Essentials Player's Rules Tome is on sale for $5. That's half off and for over 100 pages of content.....totally worth it.

You'll have to just take my word on this with a grain of salt because technically I haven't read this particular tome. I picked up the all-in-one Rules Tome, which contains the info from the Player's Rules Tome.

Anyway I have been enjoying Old-School Essentials quite a bit and so far I dare say it's my favorite BX flavor yet. The cool thing, aside from the the sale itself is that if you're on the fence you can check out the art-free light/free/sample edition of this product here.

Support Chris as he supports The Tavern by using the affiliate link above - Tenkar

Kickstarter - Modern Mythos and Machine (Stock Art)


It’s not easy being an indie / self publisher. Ideas are easy, good affordable art is expensive. Answer? Stock art. One of the best artists to offer stock art? James Shields. Today, James launched the Modern Mythos and Machine Kickstarter. I’m already backing at 95 bucks :)

This project will be a collection of 75 to 100 stock illustrations with a Modern, Sci-Fi, or Lovecraft theme. There will be a total of SEVEN categories of artwork:

FONTS - ONE font for each of the Modern, Sci-Fi, and Lovecraft Themes.

FULL PAGE / COVER ART - THREE vertical full page illustrations designed to also be usable as cover art. Each illustration will be divided into foreground, middle, and background images.

VEHICLES - FIVE images of various modes of transportation. These will include up to 3 variants each with a minimum of 12 total variants.*

SCENES - SEVEN half page illustrations of action or display of skill. Like the full page art, these will be broken into foreground, middle, and background images. Each image will include up to 3 variants with a minimum of 15 total variants.*

EFFECTS - NINE images of various effects such as explosions, weather, gunshots, and more. These will be accompanied by an appropriate text effect such as: BOOM, ZAP, CRACK, etc.

CHARACTERS - ELEVEN characters and creatures posed to be used in a scene. Each of these will include up to 3 variants with a minimum of 24 total characters or creatures.*

ITEMS - THIRTEEN illustrations of various items and equipment. These also will have up to 3 variants each with a minimum of 27 total variations.*

*The actual number of variants per illustration will depend upon the complexity of converting the image to another genre.

As usual with most of my projects, illustrations will be chosen from submitted ideas. These ideas will be curated and voted upon to determine the actual contents of this project.

Monday, June 8, 2020

New Release - Toughest Dungeon in the World - solo adventure - Tunnels & Trolls


I've been a huge Tunnels & Trolls fan for years. Interestingly enough, when I was introduced to it in high school in the early 80s, it did not impress me. It took about 20 years for me to appreciate the charm of this focused on solo play RPG.

The Toughest Dungeon in the World is an update of a previously released Tunnels & Trolls adventure (way back in 1980). Sadly, I think my original is locked away in storage.
The Toughest Dungeon in the World is a solitaire adventure that can be played with Monsters! Monsters! or Tunnels & Trolls. Written by Ken St. Andre it was first published in 1980 by Judges Guild. Now, 40 years later, Ken has updated and enhanced this classic solo adventure, bringing it back to life in new and exciting ways. Artists Phil Longmeier and Steve Crompton have enhanced this solo with new illustrations and graphics more suitable for this wild monster-mash solitaire adventure. 
This new expanded edition is now 48 pages long and will keep any player busy for a lot of adventure in caverns and tunnels deep below Trollworld. What makes this the toughest dungeon and what or who is the Lord of Shadows? It dwells in the depths waiting for you. Will you avoid its power or be corrupted by it? Can you conquer this difficult solo and will you find the ruined dwarven city that lays beyond the caverns? If you are brave enough bring your toughest character into the caverns of Hael!
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Sunday, June 7, 2020

Using my Soapbox to "Discourage" a Problem at Some Tables...

Using my Soapbox to "Discourage" a Problem at Some Tables...
So I'm not 100% when this post will be, well posted, but I'm running with the assumption that this will be my 1st weekly entry here at the Tavern.

There's so many things I could write about, but one thing popped into my head, something I feel strongly about and something that has a back story. There are probably three things I'm passionate about, well maybe five things, or 50........I really don't keep track, but clearly I'm a passionate, passionate man.....

So here I am with an audience....not entirely mine, but hey....I really ought to use this pulpit to educate and eradicate this one particular bane of RPGs. Seriously, there is no worse scourge than the abomination that is the.....wait for it....

The GMPC.

Not the GameMaster working some temporary Non-Player Characters, but a full-on Player Character being run in the game side-by-side with the rest of the players. What's the harm in this, you might ask? Well 1st off, the GM should be impartial when running a game. I know some systems have the GM working in more of an adversarial role, but even if it was a cooperative game system, letting the GM run a PC is just.....it's just wrong. They should not be benefiting from the rulings they make at the table. If the GM wants to actually play on the other side of the table, then by all means....sit down as a player....with someone else serving as the GM. Switch off the duties and spread that work load around.

I was asked to join a gaming group once and eventually the GM left and another player stepped up to GM....but we had to let him run his PC with the others. Best damned thief you ever saw.....never missed a trap, always managed to land a backstab when the party needed it, etc. It was a little childish, but hey...it was a game....until it became too much. Because not everyone could game every week we had two different campaigns: one large group and one smaller group.

The larger group was running the Temple of Elemental Evil and I was playing a Pacifist Monk. It was a very specific build.......and wouldn't you know it, the GM had himself a PC with the same build! Thanks for letting me have something unique! The GMPC Monk was actually one of two GMPCs he had in this campaign. As we were going through the adventure there was one big battle where we were clearly heading for a Total Party Kill (TPK). More than half of the party was already dead, and most everyone else was sucking on fumes with single-digit HP left. My PC was in a position to make a break for it and flee the battle, which only made sense because the authorities needed to know what was going on and TPK would prevent that. Of course once my PC bolts the one GMPC, the other Pacifist Monk, miraculously manages to disengage as well. The next week's game we meet and somehow the GM justifies bringing all the dead PCs back to life, save one. His dead PC.....somehow managed to come back actually stronger than he was before he died....seriously, WTF?

We had his awesome Thief in the smaller group and nothing ever touched this PC, which was normal. Nothing new here, but without the other/older GM playing the level of control this PC had over our game was a bit much. Of course he always got the best magic items. I'd try to get the group to agree to some other method for the division of treasure. Didn't really matter, the GMPC got first pick again. This time though, we had one extra magic item, a cursed item at that. The PC who ended up with the last pick got the extra item.....which was my guy. The GM allowed us to sell whatever we didn't want based on some formula in the book, whatever. I had already sold the "extra".....come on it was cursed...item and was divvying that coin out to the other PCs when the GM pipes up, basically telling me to STFU because this time...this time my guy got two magic items when everybody else only got one.

That was the straw that broke the camel's back with me. I told him I'm out and he could go play with himself all he wanted.

The fun part was that on the next business day the GM stopped by my place of work to tell me that he talked with the group and he was "uncomfortable" GMing with me at the table.....wow...what part of "I quit" didn't he get.

Yeah, no more GMPCs at any table I'm playing at....never again. Sure you could write off that this GM was just an asshat or something else, but outside of the GMPC BS he ran a decent enough game. Clearly the temptation to...well I'll just say it....cheat, was too much. A GM cheating is a post in and of itself, but for the purposes of this post, a GM should not be in position where cheating gives a tangible benefit.
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