Where’s Judd?

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These are the places you can regularly hear and/or see me talking about gaming or doing the thing and streaming some play. Links are both in the pictures and in the text beneath.

Here’s the link where I store my links.

You can find me on Mastodon


Daydreaming about Dragons Podcast

The logo for my podcast, Daydreaming about Dragons

In which I have a conversation with you about techniques that are shaking out at the tables where I sit and inspirational media.


The Sixth Ring, a Trophy Podcast

In which Jason and I discuss the Trophy RPG and in doing so end up talking about game culture and techniques that link up to all kinds of tabletop RPG’s.


I’m often gaming on the Actual Play twitchstream channel.

World of Dungeons, Twitch.com/ACTUALPLAY

Municipal Dungeon Delving in the fantasy city of Jaquays (pronounced Jake-Ways) in the wake of the Sorcerer-Kings, who have abandoned this world and have left their toxic labs, wyrd towers and feral pets all over the city-scape. More about the making of this game here.


I’ve been honored to play so much on the Actual Play channel, a place where I’ve made wonderful friends and played wondrous games.


What am I regularly playing off-stream?

On Thursday evenings we play our Thursday night game, founded at the start of the pandemic. We are deciding what to play in 2023 and are playing Into the Megadungeon until we all can get together, put our previous campaign to a satisfying end and get behind something new.


At the bottom of most blog posts you might notice links to my Threadless shop. A few years ago I started combining my librarian’s passion for finding old out-of-copyright pics and general geekery with the Affinity Art Suite and this Threadless shop was born. I set up the shop so the proceeds that would go to me go to amazing organizations. Below is what the shop has earned as of 11/28/22 a total of $346.69 for organizations like Medshare India, Fair Fight, National Queer and Trans Therapists of Color Network, National Center for Transgender Equity and many more.

Design examples and links to collections below:

Goth Collection
https://shopofjudd.threadless.com/collections/goth-collection
https://shopofjudd.threadless.com/collections/tabletop-role-playing-games
https://shopofjudd.threadless.com/collections/science-fiction
https://shopofjudd.threadless.com/collections/dune-collection
Geek Media Studies
https://shopofjudd.threadless.com/collections/geek-media-studies
Reddit GM Advice: Balanced Encounters, Kraken vs. Green Dragon, & DMing Style

Reddit GM Advice: Balanced Encounters, Kraken vs. Green Dragon, & DMing Style

TEXT: REDDIT GM ADVICE THREAD

PIC: Reddit logo in front of Dice Envy's beautiful rainbow dice set.

I made a list of 3 GM advice subreddits called RefAdvice.

Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts
Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts
Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts

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Campaign Ideas: The Diamond Throne

Campaign Ideas: The Diamond Throne

The Pitch: Today is your Leaveseeking Ceremony, where you will venture into the outside world for as long as you need and decide if there is something out there that rhymes with your truename. Or did your ancestors have the right of it, that the wonder in the world is eclipsed by its cruelty, better to find safety with your own people in this isolated mountain village.

You aren’t born evil because you were born of a certain race. You don’t, as a member of another race, have some manifest destiny to conquer and rule. And while there are certainly heroes and villains worthy of those titles, they are heroes or villains because of the choices they make.

The Diamond Throne by Monte Cook

I remember liking the Arcana Evolved hardcover and its weird fantasy Diamond Throne setting. When we started discussing it in an indie RPG slack I frequent, I realized I had put the books from the shelves to my desk, thinking that I might use them for a Tuesday Campaign Ideas post. I’ve got one other Campaign Ideas post about done and another outlined. I’m hoping to start a tradition. Anyway, back to Arcana Evolved…

The classes are just so cool: Akashic, Champion, Greenbond, Mage Blade, Magister, Oathsworn, Runethane, Totem Warrior (rename!), Unfettered, Warmain and Witch.

No priests, you see. Where were the gods when the Dramojh’s cruelty was raging?

Part of my is tempted to just grab the magic book and bestiary and play it in its original 3.5 ruleset. But with those rules, isn’t it silly to go with the human village rummspringa idea above? Isn’t part of the fun of 3.5 to choose race and class (ugh, RACE)?

Hence the human-centered starting point above, starting with a ceremony, a cornerstone of the setting. Delve into the weird with human eyes at first. As the characters enter into ceremonies with other folk and heritages across the setting, those folk become potential character types. Maybe you set your human villager aside while they train and pick up a verrick or litorian or giant. Perhaps you start playing one of these options because your human goes back to the village to settle down, having had enough of this world.

I like this set-up because the characters will learn about the setting with the players, no homework necessary. Of course I’m thinking about hacking at Into the Odd. Levels 1-3 and then you choose your class, gaining 4 HP per level, topping off at 12 HP, maximum for a person – dragons are 16 HP, of course. The training for the classes is vague in my mind, as is the magic system, but I bet we could do a Whitehack-like magic thing for the fluid and flexible magic from the later Grimoire supplements.

The first part of the Leaveseeking Ceremony is being able to walk through the village, going wherever you want and asking the elders about their Leaveseeking. What were their ambitions? What were their regrets? We’d flesh out the characters’ families and the world in one go, right at the first session and give the players enough information to make a decision about where they wanted to go.

Do you want to go up the mountain and see the Dramojh Fortress with your own eyes? Do you want to see the cruelty your ancestors survived that led them to founding this village and this ceremony?

Or do you want to venture out and find that lost cousin who graduated as a Magister and now serves a Giant Steward in the capital city? Your grandma has that sword above the fireplace and no one will talk about it but today is your Leaveseeking; she’ll talk about it today and tell you everything about her time leading an element of the Nightwalkers.

Or is it something farther and stranger? Is it the Floating Forest or the Harrowdeep or the God-King of the verrick that calls to you?

There is a big, strange world out there with lots of history and secrets. Let’s go.

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Loving the Love Letters

Loving the Love Letters

I don’t see folks mention Love Letters enough out there in the online wasteland. They are such a sweet piece of RPG-tech. Maybe it is because they are stuck in the Advanced Fuckery section of Apocalypse World.

Here are the letters I wrote up for our game later this afternoon:

Pic: Low earth orbit pic with green borealis light glowing

Text: LOVE LETTERS

Dear Lup,
You've done violence all over the L.E.O. Are there any consequences waiting for you in Luna City? Roll +Aggro:
On 10+ Your violence benefited those in power.
On 7-9, Someone is pissed but they are in a compromised position; they still might take their shot if the opportunity presents itself.
On a miss, hoo-boy, someone is pissed and they are in a position of power.
.
Love,
The M.C.

I considered digging in to the fact that Lup stepped directly INTO the Psychic Maelstom during their time on Olde Earth but I’m going to be patient and let that Weird marinate a bit.

LOVE LETTERS

Dear Bastet,
You solved the jetpack pirate problem with jingle and no violence. How'd that feel?

It felt pretty good: Cool, take +1Forward when you try to solve a problem by using your words but take +1Damage if you get into a tussle because your guilt is going to put you in the line of fire.

Felt weak and dumb: Cool, take +1Forward when you do violence but take -1 when you try to Read a Sitch because all you see is RED.
.Love,
The M.C.

Low Earth Orbit

PIC: Earth from orbit with green borealis light glowing

Bastet made a decision that was not only interesting but a bit out of character. The surly operator who in the first session fired a weapon from her spaceship into a tea room on a satellite paid some jetpack pirates to stand down and hired them as muscle while she’s in Luna City.

So good.

Moves don’t need die rolls; I forget that sometimes.

We’re playing this game later this afternoon, 1pm EST. Join us in the chat if you’d like. Link under the image below.

Apocalypse World: Burned Over
Low Earth Orbit Index
https://githyankidiaspora.com/apocalypse-world-burned-over-l-e-o-index/

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Psychic Tiger Fodder Returns!

Psychic Tiger Fodder Returns!

This is an Into the Oddish game (chargen houserules here) using DNGN as the adventure. Jeb the footpad, Taki and Tabouli are now the adventuring party – Psychic Tiger Fodder (t-shirts available, all artist’s proceeds go to the World Wildlife Fund).

Into the
MEGA
Dungeon

with special guests
PSYCHIC TGER FODDER

The same trio could make it for our Thursday night game (a huge, for zoom, group that is usually made up of 6 + me). We continued with Psychic Tiger Fodder, hirelings stuck in the depths of a (mega)dungeon after the adventuring party that hired them were mauled by a psychic tiger. Jeb the Footpad, Taki and Tabouli along with Roddy the Shieldbearer and Gill the Wizard’s Apprentice. This time I remembered that Jeb has a domesticated mimic, a pet that he keeps as an extra enticing coin pouch on his belt. LINK: Previous session’s write up.

They went up a level this game and immediately levelled up without having to slow down the game (add d6 to hit points and roll d20 for each stat, +1 if you roll over). Easy-peasy. T asked if he’d eventually get Cleric powers from leveling, as his character was an Acolyte. I reckon we’ll get to level 3 (where Into the Odd tops out) and then figure out houserules for specialized training and the powers that might come with them.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

They mugged the bandits on level 5 but let them keep their daggers and half their gold. All things considered (they had hit Taki with their Wand of Paralyzation and demanded everyone’s treasure be turned over before the tide of the encounter turned on them), that was pretty reasonable. When the bandits went down a level (the Psychic Tiger Fodder are trying to go UP and outta here) they heard blood-curdling screams from the stairwell down and ignored it – moving on.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

They found a pile of detached thumbs with gold rings on them in a pile of bloody rags. The thumbs were fed to the domesticated mimic. Wait. WAIT! What is the pet mimic’s name? I must know. When they read off their list of treasures the gold rings are recited as, “The gold and wand we took from the bandits. And the gold rings we got off of those thumbs – probably cursed.”

NOTE: Sven is the pet mimic’s name. I messaged J, who plays Jeb the Footpad.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

Jeb’s elf-dagger got nabbed by a metal statue’s magnetic pull, sticking to the statue’s body. When Jeb tried to get the dagger back, the statue animated and knocked him unconscious and when he tried again, under cover of Roddy the Shieldbearer’s shield, it broke Roddy’s ribs. Reluctantly, Jeb left the dagger there. There was no talk at all of taking the statue on to get the dagger back. Would it have gone differently if more STRENGTH checks had been failed and more weapons were stuck to the statue? We will never know.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

Tabouli can see and talk to ghosts and so the dead gnome with a will-o-the-wisp eating its eye talked to him but didn’t take an immediately liking to him (failed WILL save). But when Tabouli asked if there was anything they could bring to the gnome ghost, Klambikurt (thank you, Fantasy Name Generator – Gnome Names), took a bit of a liking to him and told them that they weren’t 10 levels down but 3 levels down. Now they know how far they have to go.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

We ended with Psychic Tiger Fodder bloodied but still standing after Jeb took a while to pick a lock with an arrow and skeletons with sharpened fingers but no thumbs wandered in and were dispatched. We know, from Tabouli talking to a half-elf ghost that there is some kind of art in the room to the north that drove him mad. We’ll start, there, in Room 3F, next time.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

There is a kind of whimsy to it. It isn’t goofy but the situations and the things they run across bring a humor to it all, despite the fact that they are taking the premise seriously. I am going to have to think a bit about world building and what they are going to find if/when they get out of this dungeon.

Playing a game system that is dead simple with a dungeon zine that is SO EASY to read is a real pleasure. I’m really enjoying running this thing.

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Into the UVG: Caravans

Into the UVG: Caravans

IMAGE: Broken down rusted truck in a purple landscape with a blue hand buried in the sand.

TEXT: UVG/CARAVANS

This is the second blog post looking at Luka Rejec's psychadelic metal fantasy setting, UVG and the Black City, and using Chris McDowall's fantasy RPG, Into the Odd, as a foundation system to play in the setting. If any of this sounds interesting, please go grab the inspirational books above.
https://www.exaltedfuneral.com/products/the-ultra-violet-grasslands-and-the-black-city

After the blog post where I jotted down some thoughts with outlands coming to the Ultraviolet Grasslands, I thought futzing around with the Caravan Sheet from UVG with Into the Odd‘s War rules on page 40 would be easy but, like lots of game design, it wasn’t. I’ve got a working sheet and vague ideas about using tags like they are used in Apocalypse World. Meaning that, rather than keeping track of food and water, I’d use scarcity as fodder for failed rolls:

You navigate the prismatic maze but the truck is making a rattling sound the tech priest you hired says you’ll need to address at the next stop, if not before…

Or the tags will provide situation when folks are making decisions:

The shortcut will work but there is very little for the steeds to forage, so you’ll need to clear some sack space for extra food and if shit goes wrong in the emerald gorges, feeding them could be a problem.

Maybe the Caravan Leader’s WILL is the Caravan’s WILL. Their DEX is decided by their slowest pack animal and their STRENGTH by the levels of fighting folk willing to throw down to defend the caravan.

I’m not sure that this is something I’ll get to the table with the Thursday night group anytime soon but it is a fun idea to have in hand. We can figure out any holes in this these ideas.

My attempt to make the UVG Caravan Sheet my own.

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Reddit GM Advice: Sun-Killers, Skillshare with Strahd, & the B-Game

Reddit GM Advice: Sun-Killers, Skillshare with Strahd, & the B-Game

TEXT: REDDIT GM ADVICE THREAD

PIC: Reddit logo in front of Dice Envy's beautiful rainbow dice set.

I made a list of 3 GM advice subreddits called RefAdvice.

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Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts
Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts

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The Velinken Barrow Fortune

The Velinken Barrow Fortune

I like keeping track of wealth in some games but don’t like bean-counting. Here’s my compromise.

The Into the Odd-ish game that began with Into the Borgenwold has become our Sunday night B-game on the Actual Play twitch channel. As always, I wanted a way to keep track of a small fortune the players have amassed without counting thousands or even hundreds of coins – a few dozen tops.

Cockatrice heraldry above 4 rows of 5 ancient coins

TEXT: You own a jarl's ransom in wealth after selling what you dragged out of the Velinken barrow. Every time you want to purchase something of considerable value, we will mark off one or more coins.
In the wild places of the world, coins are just metal discs but until all of the coins are marked, living simply in a town or city can be taken for granted without worry. If you want to put on airs and live like a priviledged princeling, we will start marking coins. 

1 coin: starting a humble business, raw materials to make your own fine piece of armor or legendary weapon
3 coin: purchasing fine armor or a legendary weapon
5 coin: servants for 1 year
10 coin: noble title/land or laying  the foundation of a powerful organization, professional knights as house guard for 1 year, 
20 coin: crude wooden fort that in 10+ years could be a fortress, ransom a jarl
30 coin: castle, foundation of a cathedral, ransom a monarch or heir

I’ve done this before:

This time I added a few examples, including some that are well outside of their price range. The bigger things still require time and expertise as well as money. I put this as the background on a jamboard page and mark off coins as players spend.

Same pic as above but on a jamboard with a few coins blocked off.

It is an easy port over to Into the Odd’s Enterprises system. One thing I might add to that is one has to invest the amount of the next die type. So if your enterprise is going from d4 to d6, you have to set aside 6 coin before the enterprise goes up.

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Reddit GM Advice: Pattern of Consequences, Downtime Help, & an Outburst

Reddit GM Advice: Pattern of Consequences, Downtime Help, & an Outburst

Reddit Icon in front of my lovely rainbow dice from Dice Envy.

TEXT: REDDIT GM ADVICE THREAD

I made a list of 3 GM advice subreddits called RefAdvice.

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Emiel Boven's Fun Skulls Subject Divider

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https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts
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https://www.patreon.com/emielboven/posts

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Svinifrilijihirim, Gnome City built around an arcane university

Svinifrilijihirim, Gnome City built around an arcane university

This morning I saw the following video:

And if you like that video, he has a patreon worth checking out.

Inspired, I jumped onto Affinity Designer and got started with the word GNOME, all jumbled up.

The letters to the word, Gnome, jumbled up so I can make a city as detailed in the video above.

I had an old blog post about Underground Cities and always liked the Gnome city built around a university, Svinifrilijihirim.

The spaces between the jumbled letters above are colored in. It almost looks like a city. Almost.

Time to name the districts.

Walls and towers are around the city. The districts are named: 5 Towers University, Chalk District, Wizardtown, Prrenticetown, The 3 Hells, Little Anvil.

It is beginning to take shape. 5 Towers is an homage to a wizard-ruled city I had in a high fantasy game I attempted to run with Ars Magica as an undergrad.

Walls and towers are around the city. The districts are named: 5 Towers University, Chalk District, Wizardtown, Prrenticetown, The 3 Hells, Little Anvil.

TEXT: Svinifrilijihirim /Deeptown Svinifrilijihirim is a gnomish city founded so deep under the ground that planar travel is often necessary to find it.  It is sometimes called Deeptown and is governed by a powerful council of wizards. Svinifrilijihirim is perfect for doing research, finding tutoring or gaining formal wizard training. It does boast the underdeep's only Bard College, attached to the wizard's university that is home to one of the finest libraries in the underdeep, rivaled only by Kitji-Naal and Endë-Osto.

Exports: Wizards-for-hire, Bards-for-hire, magic items, alien gems, gates to other worlds, spell components, gnomish inventions

I wanted to flesh out the districts.

The five towers were the first buildings erected when this city was founded by five ambitious wizards long before the Elvish Civil War. They built the university and the city around that. The founding wizard's tombs were built in caverns, mushroom forests and waterfalls all around the city.
Today the university is known for educating the finest wizards and bards. The wizards go on to erect their own towers in the farthest reaches of the worlds, counsel governments, invent spells and gathering the most famous heroes to their adventuring fellowships. The bards go on to become the most adept spies, wise tutors and dynamic entertainers.
But the university can be an institution without pity. The streets of Deeptown have their share of lost former students, for whom a structured education in the Gnomish arcane tradition does not resonate.
5 Towers is almost a city within the city, with its own guard, laws and judicial system.
The five wizards, known as Tower Mages or Pentadi, set the tone for their college. There are traditional schools of magic but as new Pentadi take over, the university's philosophy of magical categorization can change over time as our understanding about how arcane laws change.
3 Hells is named for the 3 clans of Devil-folk, among the first refugees to find safety in Deeptown within the first century of its founding. Now 3 Hells' three largest populations are a noble-house-in-exile of Starless Elves, humans from a broken world and Forged-folk who left a world that did not consider them sapient beings. The tennement houses that folk who live in this district (often called Hellers or Trins) call home are a diverse mix of cultures and customs.
The neighborhood is very proud of its first Pentadi taking up residence in one of the university's five towers. Grishnali the Summoner grew up among the neighborhood's feuding Devil-folk and earned a coveted spot as a student in 5 Towers University. She is known for giving back to the community and is a major force behind the current peace between the 3 founding clans of Devil-folk who have been feuding since the neighborhood's founding.
Little Anvil is a one fortified castle with every aspect of Dwarven Society within its walls. There is a craft guild, a bank, a mercenary company and several mining operations. As agreed when the castle's foundation was first laid, almost fifty years ago, the guilds and companies hire from all over the city. This policy was enacted in hopes that Dwarven crafts would spread throughout the city's districts but that has not quite been the result.
The craft guild is an umbrella guild representing gem-cutting, masons and smiths. The bank is the most stable financial institution in Deeptown with investments and loans all over the city. The mercenary company is carefully regulated, never having more than three dozen armed soldiers in the city at any one time and with a percentage of any money earned going into the city's coffers; the company is known for its adept warmages. Critics say Deeptown profits from conflict and political instability elsewhere in the underdeeps.
As a neighborhood it is more walled off and isolated than the self-important university or affluent Wizardtown but pieces of Little Anvil's cultural touchstones make their way into the rest of the city - from finely carved gargoyles to seemingly bottomless pots of goat stew at many inns and pubs.
The Chalk district is where university students and wizards' apprentices live in ramshackle affordable housing. Cafe tables and some pub walls are made of a locally quarried slate so that students with chalk can jot down arcane equations and proofs.
Most residents of this district don't stay long, either graduating to Prenticetown or leaving Deeptown all together once their desired level of education and training is achieved. As a result, the only long term residents are bartenders, baristas, building superintendents and tutors.
This district ebbs and flows with the university's academic calendar. During tests and exams, tensions can reach a fever pitch. During university breaks, the district can seem like a ghost-town. When new learning periods begin, the streets are like a carnival as the students exude their hope and excitement.
When university students make the decision to continue their studies and become wizards with their own tome and wand, they inevitably end up in Prenticetown. Once a mercantile district full of warehouses, the buildings have become repurposed into housing with arcane laboratories. Due to the apprentice's more independent learning, they are less tied to any academic calendar. This district has a flourishing cadre of artists who are highly educated and often radically angry.
There is a new class of arcane practitioner growing in Prenticetown, a user of magic who don't find success in the university system and are creating their own networks of support and education. It is only a matter of time before Prenticetown creates its own institution of learning, a kind of revolutionary reaction to 5 Towers.
Wizardtown is an affluent series of cottages, towers and manors inhabited by well-to-do arcane practitioners and magic-users. There is a main avenue ,Staff and Tome Street, cuts a jagged line across the district; it is cobblestoned in a series of beautiful mosiacs depicting history's finest arcane discoveries.
The City Guard stay clear of the affluent district, allow the wizards' personal security forces and powerful wards to keep the peace. Some of the most powerful wizards in existence have homes here, so they have somewhere to stay when they are doing research in the university's amazing libraries.
Honey Fungus Street was not ony any map, named for a mushroom beloved by one of the city's first architects and city planners. When a fire started by a rambunctious student cleared away the buildings from this series of side-alleys, the rebuilding was delayed again and again due to a disagreement between the city and university governments about who was to pay for what. In that time, the Honey Fungus Street Market took hold and the rebuilding never occurred.
Now the market is a labyrinth of stalls and hastily erected tents where one can find any number of mundane foodstuff, arcane ingredients needed for potions and alchemy alongside virtuoso buskers and street performers. The market is the one place where everyone in the city rubs shoulders, where the arch-mage and the cutthroat and the tomb robber might listen to a fey-blooded violinist play a heart-breaking ballad on the edge of a gurgling city fountain.
Deeptown is nestled in a cyclopean cavern in the underdeeps. Keeping the city safe are not only wards but walls erected by mighty earth elementals.
Building a tower is serious business in a city governed by wizards. Only in Wizardtown, and even then only rarely, has the city's government issued the permits necessary to build a tower. The last such permit was issued almost a thousand years ago. Even purchasing a tower or living within one comes with close governmental scrutiny.
1 Mage's Gate
2 Merchant's Gate
3 Hammer's Gate
4 Axe's Gate
5 Exodus Gate
6 Scholar's Gate
7 Arch-Mage's Gate

I’d want to write up some questions about the setting.

What civil strife occurs when revolutionaries in Prenticetown put up their own tower?

When will the Little Anvil mercs attempt to take over the city?

Who in Wizardtown is going to get the next permit to erect their tower?

What will break the peace between the Devil-folk clans?

That is a fun bunch of color but I’m not sure I have the tools to play just yet. If I was going to run a game in this setting, I’d make a few d6 tables so I could roll 3d6 and make a quick 3 word inspiration tables for a quick student, quick apprentice, quick wizard, quick locals, quick refugees, quick Devil-folk. I’d write up the Pentadi and think about what they are studying.

But considering I watched a video about making a fast city on Sunday morning, this is a fine, fast way to flesh out a city that has been rattling around in my head for years.

Psychic Tiger Fodder

Psychic Tiger Fodder

Into the Megadungeon

Memories of how you got down there are hazy because the Psi-Tiger that rampaged through the party damaged memories as it died. Players are the torchbearers and hirelings.

Into the Odd-like: Into the Megadungeon
Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

We are in the process of ending the Sigil 6 campaign and figuring out what to play next in this Thursday night slot. But only 3 of 6 players could get to the digital table tonight, so I proposed a few games and we elected to play hirelings whose adventuring party has been decimated by a psychic tiger, leaving everyone’s memories hazy.

Character creation from this blog post made interesting characters. I liked what we ended up with. We used jamboard to store the character sheets. A thief’s follower, Jeb the Footpad, was chosen by a Thief Deity. Tabouli the Acolyte knows the Cthonic written world and can see/hear ghosts.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

I grabbed the DNGN zine, the gold standard in layout and at-the-table-use. I stuck them X levels down, in an area that I thought was interesting and got to playing.

Psychic Tiger Fodder logo with a blue tiger with red eyes and a blue and red lightning bolts and red and blue fire as a subject divider.

I rolled randomly to see which of the party members was still alive and it was Conrad the Thief. He’s got a compound fracture in his sword-arm and he’s concussed, so they are on their own. The random rolls for the surviving gear from the adventuring party worked out well. Having a character who can see ghosts meant I had to make some fast decisions about the fate of souls in this dungeon, which was fun.

The players were concerned about light, thinking about their lantern oil. When I mentioned that some rooms were lit by flasks of burning oil, they quickly began stealing oil from the flasks for more lantern-light time. They skinned and de-toothed and de-eyed the psychic tiger.

Had a really interesting moment late in the game when they realized they could count the used flasks of oil that had already been used to see how long they’ve been in this dungeon. I could’ve said the flasks were broken in the fight with the psychic tiger but loved the ingenuity. They realized that they had been in the dungeon for around 5 hours or so.

The vibe was a little goofy but everyone at the table was taking the premise seriously and doing plenty of careful exploring and creative problem solving.

I really liked the result and would use this set-up again when gaming friends were visiting or when everyone can’t show up to the main game.

Anthony dubbed the party’s name: Psychic Tiger Fodder.

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