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Tuesday, March 13, 2018

What's New With Gamers & Grognards

Hey there, folks! I've been absent for a while, I know. Those that follow me over on G+ will know that I spent a lot of the winter car hunting after my OSCar (a '93 Dynasty I had been driving since getting a great deal on a barely used one back in 2012) decided to finally break down. In addition, the work life has kept me busy. However, despite not being on the blog often (which I should remedy, at least with updates,) I have not been idle on the gaming front.
Work has continued, both in research and development of my OE clone & houseruled system, mentioned earlier this year. The current working title of the game is "Gateway to Adventure. My plan, to both provide readers with content and get feed back is to release snippets of what I am doing as PWYW pdfs over on DriveThruRPG.com in the Appendix N Entertainment store. I'll make announcements as the "sneak peak" documents are released. That said, I've also been working toward legitimizing Appendix N Entertainment as a company. That should come to fruition very shortly.
Last, I have been mulling over a few things regarding Swords & Wizardry Appreciation Day. I have talked with Matt Finch, and will be making an announcement later in the week regarding a huge change for this year's day. Keep your eyes here for the announcement!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

UPDATED - SOME DATES DROPPED - Metro Detroit OSR Society Public Game Nights Return to the Loaded Die Game Nights!


Well, it's a new year and time for me to get back out and run some games (and evangelize the style I love.) With that, I will be resuming the OSR nights at The Loaded Die's Game Nights at both Dragonmead and Brooks Brewing.
Every game I run publicly for the time being will be public play test of "Gateway to Adventure" the OD&D/Swords & Wizardy variant I spoke about in this post. That is, I will be running OD&D and Swords & Wizardry as the system, dropping my variants in to see how they play out.
If you have a character in any of my public games (including convention games) you can bring, and play, that character to any of the game nights that I am running.
This is the current winter schedule that I will be running. Note, that if weather is bad, I will not be out. A spring schedule will be announced in March, after my return from Gary Con.
Games Nights Start at 5:00 PM. Presume OSR games around 6:00 PM.
Dragonmead - Thursday 1/18  CANCELLED
Brooks Brewing - Monday 1/22  CANCELLED
Dragonmead - Thursday 2/1
Brooks Brewing - Monday 2/5 CANCELLED
Dragonmead - Thursday 2/22
I hope to see Metro Detroiters there!


Friday, December 22, 2017

State of the Blog, Things to Come and New Ownership of the Swords & Wizardry G+ Community

For those who follow the blog, you will have noticed a big slump in posts. If you were following along early in the fall, you know that I hit some massive overtime at work. The holidays started closing in right after that happened. It's been pretty busy at work, despite not having the overtime. Really, though, I could have been back at it about three to four weeks ago. I've kept my recreation time pretty full. I'll let you know what with later in the post. But, first, an announcement.
Due to time constraints, I have had to make some decisions about where I can spend my time in gaming. This relates to the above mentioned time filler, my work life and parenting time. Therefore, I am resigning as the owner of the Swords & Wizardry G+ Community. I am turning the community over to the Silver Bulettes. As of now Jason "Rocky" Gardner  and Ian McGarty are the new owners of the community. Through the holidays and a few weeks following, I will stay on to iron out any hiccups.
So what have I and will I be doing with my time? Well, a lot of the small amount of real free time I have has been going over legal info on starting a publishing house. In the coming year I will be staring a small company called "Appendix N Entertainment." I have a children's card game in the works, that I intend to have complete in the coming year. So there is that. You will see more on both the game and ANE here, as this blog will often act as a mouth piece for it.
In the past few months I have poured over the material that I have written for publication as Swords & Wizardry supplements, as well as looking over my house rules. More and more I have thought that what it has to be is a variant OD&D/S&W system, rather than a set of supplements. So, the little splat books and modules I have been working on are being shelved for a moment. I have begun reading every OD&D book and all OD&D material in The Strategic Review and The Dragon. I will also be pouring over Holmes, AD&D and B/X. I am specifically trying to review all of the rules and the things that make me love these games. My intent, in the end, is to produce and OD&D "clone" with two books. One that re-produces the best of OD&D/S&W and one that will be a set of variant rules. Some of the optional variances will be my own house rules, while others will be cloned rules and options from other editions and variants like "Warlock" and "The Arduin Grimoire."
This is where I am now. Some of my rules will appear here, for the reader's input. I hope that you will enjoy them as much as I enjoy creating them. Thank you for your patience with everything over the past few months. This blog, and now ANE do not exist without the readers.

Monday, October 30, 2017

The Horla For Swords & Wizardry: Octhorrorfest Creature Feature

The Horla is a creature not well known outside of the fans of Vincent Price and die hard fans of weird fiction who have read the original short story, which created the entity. The Horla is an extra planar entity which first appeared in a short story named after the creature itself. The story "The Horla" was written by Guy de Maupassant in 1887. The story served as an inspiration to H.P. Lovecraft who, in 1927, interpreted it thus:
"Relating the advent in France of an invisible being who lives on water and milk, sways the minds of others, and seems to be the vanguard of a horde of extra-terrestrial organisms arrived on earth to subjugate and overwhelm mankind, this tense narrative is perhaps without peer in its particular department."
The story later served as one of three inspirations (all three being Maupassant stories) for the 1963 Vincent Price film "Diary of a Madman." The entity is changed a bit in the film, and I will used what I believe to be the best aspects of the Horla from both the short story and the film.
HD 2; AC -1[20]; Atk Slam 1d4 or by weapon; Move 12; Save 16; AL C; CL/XP 9/1,100; Special: invisibility, possession, obsession, limited telekinesis
The horla are a race of extra planar (or extra terrestrial) entities bent upon the domination of chaos and evil over the peoples of the world. They achieve this goal through the haunting of individual hosts while manifest upon the material plane, causing their hosts to commit unspeakable acts. When these entities manifest upon the material plane they live upon water and milk, though it is unclear as to why these are the substances which support them. There seems to be some sort of law in effect which allows the horla to only acquire a host in one of two ways. The first is for the host to hail or summon the horla in some way. This can even be an accident (waving at a vessel the horla is on, saying "hello" into the darkness to see if someone is there etc.) The second way is to come into physical contact with someone being haunted by a horla, violently or otherwise. At this time the horla can switch hosts.
A horla, in it's physical form, is always invisible. Spells which cause invisible creatures to be seen are of no effect. The creature can only be seen if something covers it. All horla have minor telekinetic abilities. They can move relatively heavy objects with their minds, but not with much force. A large urn could be pushed from a pedestal, doors could be slammed, but a weapon cannot be properly wielded. The horla can, however attempt to use it's host to achieve its evil ends. The horla will begin it's haunting by attempting to play on it's host's desires through conversation and an attempt to drive the host mad to obsession. If this is unsuccessful, the horla will outright possess the body of the host. Rules on both obsession and possession can be found in this post. The horla will always attempt to corrupt and cause obsession in a host first, preferring to cause the host to turn to chaos and evil itself.
In regions where the horla are known, it is rumored that cults of chaos and horla worship can be found. The members of these cults actually seeking to be hosts to the horla, that their evil ends might come to fruition.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

The Blob For Swords & Wizardry: Octhorrorfest Creature Feature

Since it's inception the world of Dungeons & Dragons and it's simulacra has been filled with all manner of vile oozes, slimes and jellies. However, I have found, that while these are all deadly in their own right, none quite imitate or replicate my favorite jelly of all, the Blob. For statistics, I will be basing the creature on the original 1958 film, using Swords & Wizardry as my system of choice.
The Blob
HD Half-scalable; AC 5[14]; Atk Slam (1d4 scalable); Move 3; Save 18 scalable; AL N; CL/XP 5/240 scalable; Special: dissolve after hit, automatically latches on to target after hit, absorbs target after death, immune to all damage except cold
Sages believe that blobs may hail from another star, having traveled the cosmos by meteor. Whether this is their origin or not, is uncertain. Blobs are, however, often found in locations where meteors have touched down.
Blobs appear in many sizes and look like large globs of translucent red to purple jelly. Blobs move slowly by sliding across surfaces. A blob is amorphous and can squeeze through nearly any crack or crevice, regardless of the blob's size. A blog can even split itself to ooze through multiple passages at once, so long as it rejoins itself on the other side.
Blobs begin life as small insignificant things. They are, however to be feared. The smallest blobs begin no larger than an apple. When a blob hits a target, the target must make a saving throw with a penalty of the damage dealt. If the target fails the save, the blob latches on and begins to absorb the target, automatically dealing it's damage every round, growing larger with every round, until the target is wholly consumed. The blob gains mass equal to each of it's victims, as well as gaining the victims hit dice. Meaning, if a 1HD blob consumes a level 2 fighter, it will grow by the size of the fighter and become a 3HD monster. All statistics dependent upon HD will increase according to the blobs new HD along with the blob's CL/XP. For every 3 HD a blob has, it's damage will increase accordingly: >1HD-2HD 1d4, 3HD 1d6, 6HD 1d8, 9HD 1d10, 12HD 2d6, 15HD 3d6, 18HD 5d4, 21+HD 7d4
In truth there is no known way to kill a blob. Indeed, blobs are immune to all damage, save that of cold. In fact, the cold damage will not kill a blob outright. However, when a blob is exposed to extreme cold, it will be frozen solid. If a blob take it's hit points in cold damage, it will likewise, be frozen. A blob will do all it can to flee from cold.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

State of the Blog and Octhorrorfest 2017

Time for the triumphant return of Gamers & Grognards! Or not so much. For about a little over a month now, I have been filling in for a co-worker out on leave for back surgery. This has had me working two 40 hour + a week positions in our busy time. With business as it is, I would likely be working 50-60 hours, without the added responsibilities. This has put me behind in everything that I do outside of work, including parenting. Luckily, my parents help me out with taking care of my daughter. I've lost any game time that normally would have happened, including putting the Metro Detroit Swords & Wizardry Tap Room tour on hiatus for a while. For the hour of time I have in the evening and what little time I can scrounge on the weekend, I've been avoiding anything that even resembles work. That has included writing, game design and blogging.
I've decided to try to get some of my yearly Octhorrorfest blogs up, despite my work load. Starting this week, and every week until Halloween, I plan to get and Octhorrorfest Creature Feature up. This will be stating out a creature from a classic horror film, urban legend or cryptozoology/folklore for Swords & Wizardry. I will likely keep mostly to classic horror films. That said, with how busy I have been, I want the help of my readers! Using G+, comment on this blog with a creature from any of the above categories. I'll do my best to get to my favorite suggestions, along with the few that I already have planned!
Happy Hauntings!

Friday, September 1, 2017

U-Con Event Submission Extension! Submit today! Need more Role Playing, OSR and Tekumel Events!



As the OSR event coordinator I am looking for Referees, Judges and Dungeon Masters to come run old school games! U-Con will be held November 17-19, 2017 at the Marriott Ann Arbor Ypsilanti at Eagle Crest.

Did you also know that U-Con has a Tekumel Track? If you are a fan of Tekumel and want a platform to run at, U-Con is the place! Our Tekumel Track allows for any game system so long as you are running a Tekumel game! Submit your Tekumel events today!
What qualifies as an OSR event this year?
Official D&D:
All TSR Era D&D qualifies,
AD&D 2nd Edition
Rules Cyclopedia
Other TSR Era Stuff:
Gamma World (TSR editions)
Boot Hill
Metamorphosis Alpha
Star Frontiers
Top Secret
Alternity etc.
Other Early Era RPGs/Supplements:
Early Chaosium products (RuneQuest 2nd Edition, Elfquest, Sandy Petersen era Call of Cthulhu etc)
RuneQuest (yes I know I mentioned it before)
Tunnels & Trolls (all editions)
Dragonquest (all editions)
Traveller (early editions)
Chivalry & Sorcery
Pacesetter System Games (Chill, Time Master, Crypt World etc.)
Middle Earth Role Playing (I.C.E.)
The Complete Warlock
Rapier & Dagger
Cyborg Commando (Did he really just say Cyborg Commando AGAIN?)
WEG D6 Star Wars
WEG D6 Ghostbusters
The Fantasy Trip
Pre 2000s Palladium Games (TMNT, Palladium RPG, early RIFTS etc)
If I missed your favorite, contact me and make sure, but it will likely be fine to run.
Swords & Wizardry
Labyrinth Lord
Mutant Future
Dark Dungeons
Delving Deeper
For Gold & Glory
Spellcraft & Swordplay etc.
Near Clones:
Dungeon Crawl Classics
Mutant Crawl Classics
Adventurer Conqueror King
Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea
Castles & Crusades
White Star
The Hero's Journey
The Black Hack
Adventures Dark & Deep
Lamentations of the Flame Princess: Weird Fantasy Roleplaying Game etc.
As always, this list is hardly exhaustive regarding all of the great Old School RPGs in the world. If you have one you want to run and it isn't here, just let me know. Let's make this thing huge. I want to give your favorite Old School game a place to live and breathe.  When you register and OSR game, be sure to note that it is an OSR game in the comment so that we get it registered properly.
Now, here is the official announcement from our website regarding requirements, what you get as a GM, where to submit events etc:


Gamemasters are crucial to the success of U-Con. The games and events you bring are why people show up.  Gamemasters are the creative force behind U-Con. We appreciate your willingness to contribute your time, and we wish to make your convention experience enjoyable!
This page provides information for individual and small-group gamemasters. Other places to look for information include:

Event Submission

Online Submission

To join us as a gamemaster, we need to know a few things about you and the games you want to run. We have an online event submission form which takes a few minutes to fill out. If you have multiple events, you may follow the prompts to add them before you complete your submission. Children 12 and under please have a parent or guardian fill out the form.  We ask for:
  • Your name and contact information
  • Description of the event(s)
  • Scheduling preferences, including how much time to reserve for your event(s)
We ask each gamemaster to run at least 6 hours of events in order to receive a gamemaster badge, though we make exceptions for those who organize larger events such as LARPs.
update-note-arvin61r58-64pxGamemasters who go above and beyond by running a total of 16 hours of games can earn a Play Games All Weekend Ribbon.  This ribbon grants access to events all weekend long as if you had generics.  Free ribbons will be included in the preregistration materials of those who qualify. Here is the link for registering for a gamemaster badge.
You can use our contact form to request a status update regarding your event(s) or a copy of your schedule at any time. Please also send your event corrections by the contact form. In case of errors or an incomplete submission, we will contact you. If we can’t reach you, we might not be able to accept your event, so it is important you provide us a valid email address. We will do our best to accommodate your requests regarding the schedule. Gamemasters who are running in many slots can provide us a schedule.
We will accept events before the final deadline as long as we have space. Event submission deadlines are listed on the home page of our web site.
Convention related materials can be picked up on site (as described below). We do not mail anything in advance. The gamemaster is responsible for other materials necessary to run the event (e.g. a board game or rpg characters). Any exceptions to this rule of thumb should be mentioned in your event description (e.g. “please bring 4th level characters”).