Posts Tagged ‘role playing’

Second draft of floor one

July 3, 2010 3 comments

I finished the initial “final draft” of floor one of The City of Nightmares. I’m calling it the final, but lord knows I’ll probably go over it a half-dozen more times before it’s finished.

And now, for your viewing pleasure:

Dungeon map

Here is the current draft of the first floor of my dungeon, The City of Nightmares

As always, any comments/criticisms are appreciated!


Waxing Sun and Daylight’s End

April 4, 2010 Leave a comment

It’s a magical item day today! The Waxing Sun is a paladin’s sword found in a ruined abbey in my Greyfeather Downs campaign.

Waxing Sun

This +1 Longsword is a paladin’s weapon. It shines with bright sunlight (and all the effects that sunlight has) out to 15′, and deals an extra d6 damage against undead and hellish enemies.

Any Chaotic character taking the sword must make a Save -1 check. If they fail, they take d6 + [level] damage and drop the blade. If they succeed, the blade transforms into the Daylight’s End.

Daylight’s End

The Daylight’s End is a +2 Longsword, and it glows with a dim green flame out to 30′ (enough to see and navigate, but not to read). The fire in the Daylight’s End is a hellish fire, and does not create heat.

The Daylight’s End is a dark knight’s blade. If an Order character tries to wield it, he must make a Save check or take d8 + [level] damage and drop the blade. If he succeeds, it transforms into the Waxing Sun.

Character Sheets for NPCs and Hirelings

March 25, 2010 Leave a comment

NPC and Hireling Char Sheet

Here is the page I use to print out character sheets for NPCs and hirelings for my Swords and Wizardry game. The little boxes are 3″x2.5″, and a standard index card fits two of them perfectly (make sure you stack them top-to-bottom on the card, not side-to-side), which can then be cut into easily managed half-card character sheets! It’s perfect!

I realize that I don’t have room for their stats, but that’s because I have taken to generating NPCs and hirelings like monsters; it makes it easy to come up with them on the fly. I usually use the first line of the Spells/Special/Inventory part of the card to make a note of approximately how much it costs to hire that particular person.

I also don’t have a space for EXP; this is a house rule of mine–NPCs don’t receive a share of monster experience; they level up when they get an amount of GP equal to the EXP required to level.

I hope you like the sheets. Comments are appreciated! I also have a four-to-a-page character sheet for S&W that I will upload in a couple days, if you’re interested.

Magical Item: The Fetish of Eddermung

February 19, 2010 1 comment


Swords & Wizardry Magic Item Dog Skull

The Fetish of Eddermung

The Fetish of Eddermung is a sentient demon skull  connected to a living demon corpse in the astral plane. The physical skull has been encased in a thin layer of living stone and, when placed atop a staff or spear, is used by the Eddermung tribe of hobgoblins as a watchdog. As hate incarnate, the skull both envies and despises all true life, cursing and demeaning them in every living language and ten thousand forgotten ones.

Superstitious, relatively unintelligent species (they must be sentient) can often be kept at bay simply by posting the Fetish outside a room or cave. It can see perfectly well in utter darkness or blinding light, and its half-phased body exists in the astral plane. This splice is what makes it immobile, but allows it to attack any beings that attempt to pass by it while phasing. More than one magic user has met his end by accidentally transporting himself while carrying the Fetish in his pack.

An adventuring party could make use of the Fetish as a sentry or a ward against wandering monsters reclaiming a dungeon that they are in the process of claiming. By carrying the Fetish in a sealed sack, or by securing its eyes with a blindfold, the Fetish can be transported in silence. If it catches sight of your party, however, its screaching could alert several hundred feet of dungeon to your presence.

On skills in 0e and 4e

February 12, 2010 3 comments

This is from a comment by me on

“I actually agree, for the most part, with the quoted editorial. I think that the further we get from the ’skill lists’ of 3e, the closer we’ll get to role playing. Of course, as a word of caution, I mostly play Swords & Wizardry, which has a combined total of zero skills, so there you go ;-)

I like to handle skills like I handle everything else in 0e campaigns–with panache. Seriously. If a player can’t convince me that his character knows how to build a sword, he’s not getting one built without paying. Whether that means that his background includes a stint as a smithy’s apprentice (with all the negatives that come from spending years as a ‘dirty commoner’) or a member of a dwarvish clan of ironshapers doesn’t really matter.

Role playing, for me, is about consistency, fun, and spontaneity.

I think that 4e is a great step in the right direction for where DnD needs to go, in my opinion. I love the wargame feel of combat in it, and I love the MMO-like character advancement. At the same time, they have abandoned the tome that was the skill list, allowing people to more fully role play their characters while also creating uniform, entertaining combat scenes.”

I stand by what I said. I think that the role-playing combat of the retro clones is excellent, and find that my players and I often have more fun coming up with eccentric combat moves and imagining their effects in our heads while playing S&W, but the case for 4e is strong, and there are times when I definitely prefer playing the structured, balanced game. But in both I love that they’re shying away from the statgrind that was 3rd.