Saturday, April 22, 2023

State of The Tavern Keeper - Covid Round 2 - the Colding

Rach & I had Round 1 of our Covid experience ringing in the new year in 2021. It was a mostly miserable experience, and largely resembled a nasty flu that lingered for over a week, and lethargy and sleeping 10-12 hours a night for the better part of a month. For me, brain fog lingered for a few months before slowly lifting. Not fun, but could have been far worse. 

Last Saturday, Rach got hit with a bad cold. I had some severe stomach issues on Monday, but nothing that would raise Covid flags. Rach still had cold symptoms on Tuesday, and with my mother's nagging (which is a prerequisite of motherhood) we tested Rach on Tuesday for Covid. She was positive. I was negative but started to have cold symptoms. By Thursday, I was testing positive.

No meds - we were both too far along for plaxlovid to be effective according to our docs, with Covid expected to last 5 to 7 days (Rach called her doc Wednesday morning). We were both up for a 40-minute dog walk this afternoon, although we have spent all of our energies now.

My spirits are high, my sinuses are slowly drying up, and I look forward to getting back into the swing of things next week. Maybe I'll go to sleep reading my ShadowDark PDFs on my iPad...

Friday, April 21, 2023

Deal of the Day - Demon Dog (Stand Alone Mork Borg RPG)

Demon Dog is a role-playing game set in a medieval history that never was. You play "Dogs", revenants that were snatched from purgatory by Demon Barons, seeking redemption and a pint. You're not a hero now and you weren't one before you lived, but you're possibly making things better, or worse, or at the very least less boring.

I must admit, Demon Dog looks interesting. I'm not sure if it would work well as an ongoing campaign, but Demon Dog looks like a fun change of pace for a one-shot or convention play.

Demon Dog is usually 17.50 in PDF, but until tomorrow morning, it is on sale in PDF for 5.95.

This book here, well, the PDF of it as that's what's here on DTRPG, its got Nightfall Games' splatterpunk style and dark humour, but they've cranked it up to 12 cause this here game is an ode to punk and the OSR revival. An' just cause we use words like "ode" an' shite, don't mean we didn't make an awesome game. Demon Dog is an irreverent game set in an irreverent age. It is MÖRK BORG, punk-style.

What Do I Get? 

A full colour, high-quality A5-sized PDF, including all you need to pick up and play Demon Dog:

  • 80 messy pages of background, art, stats and rules.
  • A brief look at the world and history of the Dogs. 
  • The six Demon Barons and their back story.
  • Background for the world of Demon Dog.
  • A smattering of locations for the Dogs to get drunk in and kicked out of.
  • Loads of creatures and baddies to stick the boot into.
  • Fun tables to chuck dice at.

Be sure to grab Eight Page Goose (it's the PWYW Quickstart you've been waiting for)!  

Demon Dog is based on MÖRK BORG, a fantastic lightweight and brutal system that gets out of the way as much as it can, allowing you to get your havoc on without getting bogged down with complicated tables and stuff. MÖRK BORG is a rules-lite doom metal album of a game in the OSR genre and Demon Dog takes the same thesis and applies it to the Punk aesthetic.

While iinspired by MÖRK BORG and is compatible with it, Demon Dog is a stand-alone product. You can smash together the ideas in both books or pull ideas from one into the other!


The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. 

DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  You can catch the daily Tavern Chat cast on AnchorYouTube or wherever you listen to your podcast collection. - Tenkar

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Deal of the Day - Through Sunken Lands and Other Adventures

Through Sunken Lands and Other Adventures is one of the better OSR rulesets, bar none. Sword & Sorcery via familiar rules, it truly reads as if after 2 or 3 sessions, the rules will simply blend into the background.

Through Sunken Lands and Other Adventures is today's Deal of the Day. Normally 9.99 in PDF, but until tomorrow morning it is on sale for 4 bucks.

Danger and glory await the bold...

In the common rooms of the great city’s countless inns, in the bathhouses of the merchant quarter, and before the altars of a thousand gods, brave and desperate adventurers meet and make plans. They leave every day and seek their fortunes in the Sunken Lands.

Travel with us through sunken lands...

Lots of times, we want to play a roleplaying game but just don’t have the time for all the prep work involved. No more. Through Sunken Lands is a kit to make a motley crew of ruthless sellswords, gifted sorceresses, and cunning thieves, and send them off in search of gold and glory. Now we have this simple swords and sorcery roleplaying game that gives a group all the tools they need to play an exciting adventure in a single evening, no homework, no fuss.

Anyone with a background in OSR games will already be comfortable with the core rules of Through Sunken Lands.

• Inspired by the works of Michael Moorcock, Fritz Leiber, and Robert E. Howard.

• Character Playbooks and Scenario Packs for play in a single evening with no prep.

• Player driven setting design for fleshing out the great city and the world beyond.

• A sample sword and sorcery setting: the impossible city of Jundarr and the Hundred Seas.

• Nine Character Playbooks, including the Spell Thief and the Eldritch Sorcerer King.

• Three Scenario Packs: the Mysterious Island, the Treasure Hunt, and the Wizard’s Tower.

DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  You can catch the daily Tavern Chat cast on AnchorYouTube or wherever you listen to your podcast collection. - Tenkar

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Deal of the Day - The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck

I own a physical deck of The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck and I'd love to actually use it in game. I have played with it to generate adventure seeds, and it's fun and useful. I'm not sure I could use it to run a full session on the fly, but I may have to try at some point.

Normally 9.99 in PDF, until tomorrow morning The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck is 1.50 in PDF as DTRPG's Deal of the Day. I suggest at that price, you snag the PDF and if it seems it will be useful in your games, consider going back and grabbing the printed deck at 20 bucks.

The GameMaster's Apprentice is a genre-and-system-neutral deck of cards that can be used as either a supplement for traditional tabletop RPGs or as a complete game engine for GM-free solo or group RPGs. 

You can view the cards' complete instructions for free by clicking the preview link beneath the thumbnail above, or view the Quickstart Guide and a set of quick-reference PnP/PoD Instruction Cards here on DriveThru if you prefer (if you wish to purchase the Print on Demand instruction cards to keep with your deck, be sure to combine the order with the deck itself! They are only six cards, and DriveThru will not print orders that small). You can also scroll down to view the card overview image and watch a video of the cards in use! 

On each card is a set of fourteen individual randomizers; with 60 double-sided cards, you can generate literally millions of possible adventures, all without having to hunt through a book or PDF for a single table!

With these cards, you can:

  • Instantly generate NPCs with randomized names, motivations, and backgrounds.
  • Create random events or story seeds.
  • Provide sensory details or random loot for characters searching or stealing.
  • Run games without a human GameMaster!
  • And more--they even work brilliantly as creative writing prompt generators, and have been playtested by 9th-12th grade students of both English and Game Design.

If you want specifics, including examples of how to use the randomizers on the cards, the complete instructions are available in the downloadable PDF preview linked below the cover image/thumbnail, but you can take a look at the overview below to see the quick and dirty version of what is on each card, and you can view a video preview from the original Kickstarter that explains how to use the cards to run a GM-free game or generate a story for a traditional RPG. This video is the second in a series, so if you want to see the first (which details initial generation of the story), check out our website, www.LarcenousDesigns.com! 

The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. 

DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  You can catch the daily Tavern Chat cast on AnchorYouTube or wherever you listen to your podcast collection. - Tenkar

Monday, April 17, 2023

Bundle of Holding - Tiny Dungeon Mega (Tiny d6)

I'm a fan of the Tiny d6 system, which isn't a surprise, as I like my RPGs quick and dirty. I believe Tiny Dungeon was my first encounter with Tiny d6, and it's one of the few RPGs that aren't old-school in their roots that I grocked right away.

The Tiny Dungeon Mega Bundle over at Bundle of Holding is an amazing value. You get six Tiny D6 RPGs for less than 20 bucks, and for about 39 bucks total you add another 7 titles

Adventurer! This giant new Tiny Dungeon Megabundle presents many tabletop roleplaying games from Gallant Knight Games that use the streamlined, minimalist TinyD6 rules. These Tiny games play fast, have characters you can describe on an index card, and cover a huge range of genres: fantasy, space opera, superheroes, mecha, post-apocalypse, Wild West, pirates, zombie and Mythos horror, and, ummm, fishing. Can't forget fishing. And you can mash them all together, to play supers and imperious magicians fighting kaiju in an apocalyptic alien zombie-haunted Weird-West wasteland. While on a fishing trip.

Ideal for convention games, one-shots, and novice roleplayers, the tiny boatload of .PDF ebooks in this jumbo bargain-priced offer – intended especially for players new to TinyD6 – gives you everything you need for every kind of itty-bitty adventure. Pay a tiny US$19.95 to get all fourteen games and play aids in our enormous Tiny Starter Collection (retail value $94) as DRM-free ebooks, including the complete Tiny Dungeon Second Edition core rulebook (plus its Bestiary Deck, Treasure Deck, and GM Screen); Tiny Wastelands (plus its Enclave Deck and GM Screen); Tiny Frontiers Revised; Tiny Pirates (plus its Duel Deck); Tiny Gunslingers (plus the Poker Deck and Bounties); and Tiny Living Dead.

And if you pay more than the threshold price of $38.31, you'll level up and also get our colossal Tiny Bonus Collection with eleven more games and supplements worth an additional $117, including Advanced Tiny Dungeon; Tiny Taverns and its expansion Tiny Taverns: A La Carte (and, of course, the Extremely Necessary Fishing Minigame); the newly updated Mecha & Monsters: Evolved (plus a novella set in that universe, Welcome to Paradise); Tiny Cthulhu; Tiny Supers and its recent GallantVerse Campaign Guide (plus the Tiny Supers GM Screen); and Tiny Spies.

The Tavern is supported by readers like you. The easiest way to support The Tavern is to shop via our affiliate links. 

DTRPGAmazon, and Humble Bundle are affiliate programs that support The Tavern.  You can catch the daily Tavern Chat cast on AnchorYouTube or wherever you listen to your podcast collection. - Tenkar

Sunday, April 16, 2023

Two Weeks in: D&D Honor Among Thieves


Two Weeks in: D&D Honor Among Thieves
So it's been two weeks since the D&D movie came out and I've been seeing a metric butt-ton of YouTube videos about it. A lot of reviews, good and bad, but I'd say at least half were "explanation" pieces trying to point out all of the D&D references or make me understand the ending of the movie.....I didn't know it needed to be explained, but whatever.

For the most part I'm so not a fan of having things pointed out or explained to me, but I did have one of these video slide-in behind the video I was playing in the background and I did learn something  that I will not outright share because spoilers and whatnot.

The real question I did have though was, "Is Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves" successful? Of course this depends on your definition of success, but I'm thinking along the lines of....."Did it make enough money to warrant a sequel?"

I've read online that the movie "cost" $150M, which....IIRC, is roughly 50/50 production costs and advertising.  According to Screen Dollars, the movie has made $37.2M in the opening weekend and $74M in the first two weeks (week three began on April 14th). Almost half of these sales are from overseas. Further reading online tells me, as much as these things can.....movie studios are known for doing weird math.....that for a studio to think a movie "profitable" it has to make 3x the production budget, so for the D&D movie that would be $225M. 

Personally I think that this movie might kill it with DVD/Blu-Ray sales, but that's even more fuzzy math I can't even fathom. What would be a better indicator is the drop-off in sales between the opening weekend and the second. "Normal" is about 40%, but 60% is considered problematic. This movie went down 47%, so more than normal, but not terrible......

....which not be a bad thing. The Super Mario movie is decimating the box office right now and John Wick 4 is doing twice as well as the D&D movie. If you factor in all of the box office shuffling because of COVID (yes, it's still affecting the movies and will be for a while)...well the jury is still out.

Sorry.....I started this post before I started my research, so let's look at some "critical" reviews:

Metacritic gives it a 72 (Generally Favorable)

Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 90% Tomatometer (Professional/Critical Reviews) and a 93% Audience Score

My gut says that the movie will probably be declared a success, but not make enough extra cash for Hasbro to pony up for an additional film in the franchise.

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