Tuesday, September 24, 2019

A few new magic items...

Just a few things to have some new material on the blog for comment spammers to add links to their online betting sites and proofreading software..

Visor of the Bat
(Usable by any allowed to wear armor.)
The visor of this simple bascinet helmet features no holes, but is engraved with the face of a bat, its mouth wide open (as if it is screeching). Normally, this helmet acts as a +1 helmet, but when the visor is closed, the helmet emits a soft, high-pitched ringing sound and the helmet provides the wearer the ability of echolocation. Without the use of traditional vision, the wearer is able to "see" in the darkness (using radar-sense provided by the closed helmet) to a distance of 30'. Because the echolocation requires the ringing sound to be effective, the helmet does not work in areas of magical silence.

Dancing Melee Band
(Usable by anyone allowed to use a single-handed melee weapon.)
Inscribed around the circumference of this flat silver band are a series of dancing figures each holding a variety of single-handed melee weapon (e.g., a sword, an axe, a dagger, etc.). During melee combat, the wearer moves so gracefully, they appear to be dancing. While engaged, this provides them a –1 bonus to AC (even against ranged attacks made into the melee), and a +1 bonus on all melee "to hit" rolls. If the wearer is not engaged, the ring provides no benefits.

Armor of Buoyancy
(Permitted to any allowed to wear plate armor.)
The surface of this icy-blue steel +1 plate armor features delicate scrollwork engraving reminiscent of curing ocean waves. Though it normally has the same weight and encumbrance as standard steel plate, it is buoyant in volumes of water or similar liquids (but not in viscous substances like lava, mud, or quicksand). The maximum swimming speed of any character wearing this armor is 30'(10').

Monday, May 20, 2019

Dragon Horde "Zine", Vol. 2, Issue 1 — "Wherein Evil Lies"

So here's the final interior preview of the book, and it should be available at the NTRPGCon in a few weeks. It's now 12 pages longer than original expected. Fully written as a BX/BECMI thing.

Now available in print for $6 through Lulu.com >>

And as PWYW PDF from DriveThruRPG >>

  • 3 new classes: Deathslayer, Witch Doctor, Half-orc (Assassin)
  • 9 new spells: fatigue, death rage, mummy's touch, ossify, revenance, wailing fear, necrotic portal, greater ossify, aura of fear
  • 6 new magic items: equinox orb, fiendish mantle, hammer of salvation, plague mace, purity ring, stole of radiance
  • 7 new basic psionic abilities: infuse terror, psychic vampire, destiny dissonance, aura of fear, psionic daze, crisis of breath, shadow twin
  • 6 new monsters: atori, cackler, crypt riddler, korper, hill haunt, spawn of Chuamisi
  • optional rules for killing vampires
  • new petty god & minion: Anguia Umbra (petty god of iophilia, toxicophilia, assassins) and his chimera minion/familiar Azamus
  • an adventure for 5-7 characters of 3rd-5th level: The Black Chapel
  • new d30 tables: quirks caused by becoming unhinged, methods of sacrifice, evil hooks & seeds for encounters and adventures





Sunday, April 14, 2019

I'm still alive and well...
and working on something new! (sort of)

Okay. Here's the preview of what I've been secretly working on the last few months (during the little time here and there that I had -- mainly as a distraction from life things). It was going to be a mini-splatbook of evil stuff, and it came out as Dragon Horde Volume 2, Issue 1. Welbo and I are still figuring out the final format (though it will be in the digest-to-6x9 range), with color cover and B&W interior.

It uses all PD images with mostly new content (1 article is picked up from an old blog post, and the new magic items were mainly pulled from the magic item community I had going over at G+). The final content includes:
  • new class: deathslayer
  • new class: shadow walker
  • new spells
  • new magic items
  • optional rules for killing vampires
  • 4 new monsters: crypt riddler, korper, hill haunt, spawn of Chuamisi
  • new petty god (Anguia Umbra, petty god of toxicophilia) and his spawn (Azamu)
  • a low-to-mid level adventure (The Black Chapel)
  • a couple of d30 tables (quirks caused by becoming unhinged; methods of sacrifice)

And here's the preview (there will be some minor changes—I've already realized one major oversight).



Wednesday, November 14, 2018

A long time coming. An infinitely-sized "Thank you."

So this post is a long time coming.

At the NTRPGCon, many of you have had the distinct pleasure of meeting my beautiful, funny and eternally-patient wife Terri--either at my vendor table, or maybe having a drink or dinner at the hotel.

The truth is, if it weren't for her, there would be no d30 books, no BX Psionics, really there'd probably be no New Big Dragon at all.

The old saying that behind every great man there is a great woman, that's true. But I can't really call myself great. I can call her great, though. Because she is. She's an eternal optimist, and her smile brightens my life.

She understood my need to game and create, and she indulged it.

And I'm the schmuck that never thought to even include a "Thank you," to her in any of my books.

So this is really just a late and extremely-overdeserved "Thank you," and "I love you," and a small statement to the gaming community to profess that, even in this small way.

Monday, September 3, 2018

"Where in the infinite layers of the Abyss have you been?" (Plus BX GM Screen PDF, plus Fifty Fiends, plus BXΨ GM Screen, plus free BXΨ stuff. Oh my!)

With summer gone and hardly a peep from me round the interwebs, I'm guessing a few of you might be wondering, "Where in the infinite layers of the Abyss have you been?"

The short answer is, I've been crazy busy—and unfortunately not with RPG stuff.

The longer answer includes: 1) picking up a summer design class to teach (which is on a shorter, and therefore-more-demanding, timeline than a Fall or Spring class), 2) having a (thankfully) heavy roster of client work (always good for a freelancer), 3) spending an inordinate amount of time with my wife prepping our house to get it on the market (we're talking about 2 near-Hoarders-level estate sales and innumerous trips to Catholic Charities to donate the stuff we didn't sell), and 4) looking, looking, and more looking for a new house. We haven't moved yet, but we've got a contract on the house we want, and are closing in a possible sale of our current house. (St. Joseph, pray for us.)

In the meantime, I've been hired to temporarily fill a full-time design communication professor spot for the 2018-2019 academic year at the college where I've been part-time teaching for the last twenty years. Except for still having a good amount of freelance client work going on, this is actually a really good thing for my schedule. I have to keep office hours, but those hours aren't always consumed with class-related work.

And now, thanks to Labor Day weekend, I've had the opportunity to get some files prepped (that have otherwise been languishing unattended). This should help clear my RPG workload to focus back on Steve Marsh's Shattered Norns and figure out the best way to birth the final product into the world. So there's a lot of stuff to talk about...



Old School Adventures™ Accessory FX1: Fifty Fiends

From the cover...

Extra-planar beings come in many forms, and for outsiders hailing from the lower planes, almost every one of them comes in some shade of evil. From the vicious malevolence of the demons of the Abyss, to the merciless schemes of the devils of Hell, to the psychopathic sadism of the yamadutas of the Naraka, the planes provide an unending parade of cruelty, immorality, corruption, and depravity.

Collected herein are 50 fiends from the darkest reaches of the outer planes, including the Abyss, Hell, Naraka, Pandemonium, Limbo, the Dreamlands, and the Beyond (a terrifyingly remote place of madness, aberration, entropy, and pure chaos.

This book is designed for use with classic (BX/BECMI/LL) editions of the world’s original role-playing game, and with Old School AdventuresTM Accessory PX1: Basic Psionics Handbook. It additionally provides information on dual-axis alignment, the planes of existence, languages spoken throughout the planes, and descriptions for a number of planes- and fiend-related spells and magic items.


Available as a $1 PDF from RPGNow >>
Available in print for $9.95 + shipping from the NBD Storefront (US only) >>
Available in print for $9.95 + shipping from Lulu.com (best int'l option) >>



Old School Adventures™ Accessory GM1a: Games Masters Screen PDF Pack

This is a PDF pack of the various components that were part of the physical screen kickstarter.

  • Five art panels (including cover) featuring artwork by the legendary artist Arthur Rackham
  • Seven GM screen content pages with all the pertinent information any Classic (BX/LL) GM needs to run their game.
  • 8 Master Character Sheets (1 Generic Sheet + 7 Class-specific Sheets): Each of the 7 class-specific character record sheet contains the most pertinent information each player needs (e.g., notes on which types of weapons & armor may be used by the class, additional experience earned based on prime requisites, and special abilities like clerics' turning and thieves' abilities). In addition to the 7 classic character class sheets (cleric, dwarf, elf, fighter, halfling, magic-user, and thief), an 8th "generic" sheet is usable by any character class.
  • Spells Record Sheet: This record sheet is usable by any spellcasting PC, and includes places to list each known spell's name, range, duration, and area of effect, as well as other pertinent notes.
  • Character Record Log: This record sheet provides a place to write the information a GM needs for up to 6 PCs or NPCs, including the basics (name, class, hp, level, AC, etc.) as well as ability scores, saving throws, equipment/inventory, and other notes.
  • 8-page Cleric Spell Handout: The cover of this digest-sized piece notes spells gained by level, and the inside includes all the key information (e.g., range, duration, spell notes, etc.) for all the cleric spells contained in the classic red and blue rule books (plus a few additional core spells from other early editions).
  • 12-page Magic-user Spell Handout: The cover of this digest-sized piece notes spells gained by level, and the inside includes all the key information (e.g., range, duration, spell notes, etc.) for all the magic-user spells contained in the classic red and blue rule books (plus a few additional core spells from other early editions).

Available for $10 as a PDF bundle from RPGNow >>



Old School Adventures™ Accessory GM2: Basic Psionics GM Screen Pack

A few of you were lucky enough to pick this up at this past June's NTRPGCon. Now it's available in print exclusively from the NBD Storefront (includes a complimentary PDF).

2-panel (4-page) Referee's screen designed for use with Old School Adventures™ Accessory PX1: Basic Psionics Handbook. Includes the key information any GM running BXΨ needs at their table, including: the psionic combat sequence, the psionic and attack mode combat matrix, psionic-related attack and saving throw modifiers, saving throws for mystics and monks, chakra attainment charts, PSP costs for discipline use, psionic conversions for adapting creatures and characters from other editions, and key information related to psionic items, magic spells that mimic psionic affects, and how psionics interact with relevant magic spells. [Printed on 110 lb. cover stock.]

5 Individual Card Stock Master Character Sheets (1 Generic Psionic Character Record Sheet, 1 Mystic Character Record Sheet, 1 Monk Character Record Sheet, 1 Disciplines Record Sheet, and 1 Modes/Conditions/Disciplines Record Sheet. [Printed on an 80# uncoated cover stock.]

Also includes the new limited edition "Psi" button.

Includes a PDF copy of everything included in the print package (sent as free download code from OBS to your email address).


Available in print for $9.95 + shipping from the NBD Storefront (US only) >>



Old School Adventures™ Accessory GM2a: Basic Psionics GM Screen Pack (FREE PDF!)

Referee and player materials designed for use with Old School Adventures™ Accessory PX1: Basic Psionics Handbook.

Includes the key information any GM running BXΨ needs at their table, including: the psionic combat sequence, the psionic and attack mode combat matrix, psionic-related attack and saving throw modifiers, saving throws for mystics and monks, chakra attainment charts, PSP costs for disciplines and modes, psionic conversions for adapting creatures and characters from other editions, and key information related to psionic items, magic spells that mimic psionic affects, and how psionics interact with relevant magic spells.

Also includes the following BXΨ Character Sheets: 1 Generic Psionic Character Record Sheet, 1 Mystic Character Record Sheet, 1 Monk Character Record Sheet, 1 Disciplines Record Sheet, and 1 Modes/Conditions/Disciplines Record Sheet.

Available as a FREE PDF from RPGNow! >>



Okay. That does it for now. (As if that wasn't enough for a while.)



(Comments are now locked due to consistent spam comments on this post.)

Sunday, June 24, 2018

New Oe/1e/BX Monster: Forsaker

As was mentioned on my Google+ post of this image, it was inspired by beholder doodle from Dyson Logos. It's a a forsaker (the opposite of a beholder?). Instead of one gaping maw and a bunch of eyes, it has one eye and a bunch of gaping maws with different bite effects. So here is the full set of stats/description as promised.






The forsaker (mouth slave, flail of many mouths) is the stuff of nightmares—an aberration likely originating from the kind chaos that can only be birthed from the Beyond. These freakish things are found mainly underground but encountered occasionally in desolate wilderness locations.

The “body” of this savage is a central unblinking eye, set on all sides by a septet of gaping maws filled with dagger-like teeth. They are often referred to as “mouth slaves” for they are servants to their own insatiable appetites, always on a quest to eat, to consume, to devour—never fulfilled. Ironically, it moves regretfully slowly about as it wills through the power of levitation. Nonetheless, those who encounter such a beast have their work cut out for them.

Any seeing creature that gazes upon its unblinking eye must save vs. spells or flee in fear for 2 turns, and those with 3 Hit Dice or fewer fail automatically.

Each round, the first four of its mouths may strike to its front side and the last three may strike to its rear side. Those strikes to the rear suffer a –2 “to hit” penalty due to limited scope of vision. Sneak attacks to the creatures rear (e.g., theives’ backstabbing) are unaffected. Each successful attack not only does 2d4 damage from the bite, the victim of such a bite must save vs. poision or suffer a venomous effect that coordinates with each mouth as outlined below:
  1. confusion (as spell): 2d4 rounds
  2. charm (as philter of love, with the forsaker as its love interest): 3d6 turns
  3. paralysis: 1d4 turns
  4. acid: +1d6 damage
  5. slow: movement halved, –1 “to hit,” and +1 AC for 2d4 rounds
  6. disease: temporary loss of 1 point of Strength and 1 point of Constitution until cured, then recovered at a rate of 1 point of each per full day’s rest
  7. blindness: 4d4 turns

Rarely does a forsaker establish a true lair, opting instead to take up residence only temporarily in the den of a previous victim, resting as needed before continuing on its quest to consume. However, it has been known for some forsakers with a slightly higher intelligence to stay in locations that potential prey is known to frequent (e.g., watering holes in the wilderness, places where treasure hunters regularly seek reward, etc.). The latter conditions are represented by the Percent in Lair and Treasure Types indications noted in parentheses above.

Forsakers speak deep speech (barely), and have their own language which is incomprehensible when spoken (even with the use of an ability like comprehend languages). Telepathic communication with a forsaker is possible, but mentally draining on the creature trying to communicate with it. Those communicating telepathically with a forsaker must save vs. paralysis each round or temporarily lose 1 point of Intelligence (recovered at a rate of 1 point per full day’s rest).
Oe/1E STATS
FREQUENCY: Very rare
NO. APPEARING: 1
ARMOR CLASS: 0
MOVE: //3"
HIT DICE: 7
% IN LAIR: 0 (30%)
TREASURE TYPE: Nil (F)
NO. OF ATTACKS: 7
DAMAGE/ATTACK: See below
SPECIAL ATTACKS: See below
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Nil
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Standard
INTELLIGENCE: Low
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic evil
SIZE: L (15' across)
PSIONIC ABILITY: Nil
Attack/Defense Modes: Nil


BX STATS
ARMOR CLASS: 0
HIT DICE: 7
MOVE: //30'(10')
ATTACKS: 7 bites/1 ray
DAMAGE: See below
NO. APPEARING: 1
SAVE AS: Fighter:7
MORALE: 10
TREASURE TYPE: Nil (F)
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic