Saturday, April 27, 2024

Deal of the Day - Castles & Crusades Castle Keepers Guide 4th Printing

I really like Castles & Crusades. It marked my return to gaming in general, and it's how I found the OSR. It's essentially AD&D 1e, built of the 3rd edition SRD.

Today's Deal of the Day is Castles & Crusades Castle Keepers Guide 4th Printing from Troll Lord Games. Normally 20.99 in PDF, until tomorrow morning the Castle Keeper's Guide is on sale for 8.40

The Castle Keepers Guide includes a host of new material for the role playing enthusiast; from world creation, to dungeon designs, managing non-player characters, character attributes at high levels, spell use and cost, equipment its use and wastage, the tumult of storms, from warfare to combat, monsters, treasure, death and more. The Castle Keepers Guide provides the CK and the Player with a host of new tools for their use; tools designed to enhance play, not hinder it; designed to be malleable from gaming table to gaming table.

Table of Contents

  • Expanding the Character: In this chapter we explore new attribute modifiers, god like attributes, beauty as an attribute, creating new races and role playing examples.
  • Magic: Digging into the magic using classes with spellbooks, starting spells, components, pricing magical components, playing without components, wands and holy symbols, illusion magic as healing, buying, selling and trading spells, scroll use, non caster scroll use and so much more.
  • Expanding Equipment: A fresh look at equipment includes types of carrying items, stabling, costs of lodging and meals, a complete illustrated study of wagons with costs, speed and cargo, a similar treatment of boats and ships, general equipment and a new look at backpacks (abbreviated from the Adventurers Backpack).
  • NPCs: A complete breakdown and explanation of the three types of NPCs (Adherents, Hirelings and Henchmen), how to use them, what their skills are, tracking loyalty, hiring them permanent or part time and developing their personalities.
  • World Building: A guide on building your own world, beginning with planetary design and exploring everything from plate tectonics to weathering. Ten different types of climates are discussed and a host of biomes. Terrain, weather, movement charts and historical ages are all covered in this chapter. A complete how to will get you started on your world building journey.
  • The City: In creating urban environments we explore populations, governments, culture, economic systems, economic systems, cost of goods and bartering, social stratification, types of religions and how to integrate them. Also it explores the types of settlements from the single dwelling to the metropolis, fully illustrated. Occupations, construction and criminal codes round out the chapter.
  • Dungeons: Beginning with a study of light, temperature, humidity and movement underground it expands in to caves and types of caves (erosional, solution caves, coastal and so on), to terminology of both caves and underground structures: dungeons. A look at ecosystems, building dungeons, tunnels, gases and traps rounds the chapter out. Everything you need to know to build a complete dungeon.
  • Air and Water Adventures: Chapter 8 allows you to expand you adventure into heights its never been. Movement in the air and under water as well as combat, combat maneuvers, spells, magic underwater and monsters with aerial combat ratings.
  • Equipment Wastage: Role playing equipment is a wonderful tool that every CK should learn to do. From equipment wear and tear to destruction in combat, from both mundane, magical and monstrous means (what does dragon fire do to +1 armor?). This section is filled with examples and charts to help you along.
  • Land as Treasure: In this chapter we explore using land as treasure, where noble titles mark the characters and NPCs with title, rank, stipends, men at arms, offerings and so much more. Broken down by class it allows for the master of the druid's grove and the king or queen of vast realms. Rank/title is assigned by level if that is the direction desired.
  • Going to War: Here we explore mass combat and introduce a system fully explored in Fields of Battle that allows your table to conduct massive battles with minis, chits or home made pieces. From morale to siege engines it covers the vast array of encounters that afflict armies in the field. It touches on sea battles as well.
  • Monsters: Here the most common monsters are discussed, their ecological niches, geological niches, and geographic regionalization. From arrow hawks to ogre magi the host of monsters supplies the game master with a mountain of material to enhance game play and offer a lead into other monster development. Basic encounter tables serve to get you started.
  • The Future: An introduction to the Siege Engine as it applies in a host of different game genres: space age, horror fiction, pulp noir, post apocalyptical and more. It includes guidelines on how to introduce your standard classes into these genres with little effort. Also find guns, canon and laser weapons, all the tools needed to launch a game in a new genre.
  • Advancing the Game: A complete break down for starting and continuing RPG sessions. This chapter is dedicate to novice and experienced game masters. Addressing such issues as game balance, leveling, mood, tone, as well as awarding experience and managing expectations.
  • The Siege Engine: Here we break apart the Siege Engine. The extremely simple game mechanic is driven by a variety of processes and game design theory. Learn how to expand, change or mold the Engine to your game and table. It further explores attributes and their never end value at the table.
  • Treasure: A new look at an old subject. Exploring treasure as a backdrop and role playing tool from quests to unusual coins. Here we discuss extraordinary items, precious metals, gems and more. It includes such subjects as class restrictions and hiring magical services. Scrolls, silver items, destroying and purchasing magic items, treasure is explored for top to bottom.
  • Combat: Here we explore the nature of combat at the table, how to run combat and how to pace it. It also expands the idea of inter personal combat with critical hit tables, critical fumble tables and host of combat maneuvers as well as attribute checks, line of sight, ranged, damage reduction and a host of other optional elements.
  • Skill Packages: In skill packages we demonstrate the versatility of the game by paving the way for the CK to allow players extraordinary skills that go beyond the class and race skills outlined in the Players Handbook. From orc hunters to elves with enhanced empathy. Furthermore it opens a world of secondary class skills such as armorer, hunter etc.
  • Character Death: Lastly we explore the deaths of characters, both the loved and unloved. We look at the impact of their death and explore ways in which they day from combat to disease. It includes a system for Luck Points, Hero Points and more.


The Castle Keepers Guide is a tool box with almost limitless optional rules, ideas, concepts and theories. A tool box you will want at your table, no matter what game you play.


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