Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Into the Frostgrave

Ahh, Felstad. Ancient, illustrious, doomed. An icy hellhole. Perfect for pilfering and chock full of dead secrets and money.

I had the original Mordheim - after Necromunda it seemed like a good bet. We tried it a bit, and it didn't go over as well as Necromunda, and so it was shelved. I confessed at my gaming group yesterday that in a fit of pique at lugging that shit around for a decade, I threw it all in a trash can and sulked off. I recanted (of course!) but the trash was gone in the morning, and I've always had a little bit of great deal of remorse about it. I still have the pretty perfect rule book.

The good thing is that Frostgrave scratches that itch quite nicely. We started up a campaign yesterday and it was great fun. The focus on the game is not really the combat so much between the two groups of wizards and henchmen, but rather on Getting The Phat Loot and Getting Out Alive Intact. There was a great deal of stuff going on in our 3x4 stretch of wintery wasteland - the group has a house rule that collection of treasure tokens spawns a random monster from the Frostgrave Bestiary and of course I am thinking of ways to tweak that out to fit scenarios of my own devising... You could alter (add/elide) the list, insert monsters, change spawn points with special rules. I mean, it bears hacking which is maybe my favorite thing about the game, after its simplicity and speed.

Anyhow, I will tinker with it and we'll see what we'll see. Painting of zombies from TWD:AOW is slow, but getting done. Assembly of Necromunda has not even started. I'm liking the rules and figs but not totally sold on the modular approach - I note with some chagrin that I don't mind the modular approach of Frostgrave (by comparison) owing to the relative costs!

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Rust Phoenix

So this guy, a really unpleasant Beast Wizard, he captured a Rust Phoenix. They’re not related to the standard immortality kind of Phoenix, but they have beautiful coppery red and (you guessed it) rust colored plumage. Owing to quirks in their biology and diets, they concentrate certain sorts of magic. Feather Fall, turn arrows, dimension door. That kind of thing. Something to do with ferrous metals and breakdown at the nuclear level. Unstable magnetic fields. Tachyon and gluon shedding. It’s beyond me. They eat electric mice, mithril-laced beetles, drift for days on thermals above the dead strongholds of the Dvergr-men and their quiet Gold Purifiers

So, you crack a Rust Phoenix egg before it is ready to hatch and you get a little smear of long lasting residue that (provided you know a variant of Teleport, Planar Step, or Dimension Door pretty well) you can BLOOP right over there to where the egg was broken, or pretty close. A paradimensional scramble right there. Easy to commodify. Very cheap to produce, highly useful, and pretty delicate and short-lived. Because If you don’t break the egg, then the little bird’s accelerated embryonic development completes and it hatches at full size, irritated, and causes weird degeneration of non-magical metals. Rust. Every metal thing within about a 100’ radius of a properly incubated Rust Phoenix egg gets rusty, pocked, and pitted.

This Beast Wizard, he captured a male and a harem of females and he pumps out a fortune, selling the eggs (for which there is a long waiting list) for a king’s ransom to teleporting-interested groups and also for warfare.

The males are generally very striking in terms of appearance: jagged, sharp, crumbly, prickly. An amazing ventral plume that is dangerously sharp. A fine sediment of rust precipitates from the air around them and settles on things. Also, the males have a warbling and haunting song that causes metal objects nearby to degenerate and shatter - magical items are more or less resistant but common metal ones can actually cause damage to bearers by forceful explosion into fragments

Rust Phoenix DCC Stats (I don’t know, just regular bird stats let’s not dwell on minutiae, eh?)

Rust Phoenix Dungeon World stats (maybe more on that later, but a motive/driver definitely to escape captivity, nest in secure locations, revenge upon captors I mean no need for a noble beast to be a good one)

Related spells (Transition Egg, Magnetic Cascade, Singularity Song)

Related items (Rust Phoenix Egg, Rust Phoenix Down, Feathers)

Caught in a Faraday cage, warbling a sinister tune, a legendary beast become a machine for the wealth of a greedy merchant

Tuesday, January 9, 2018


You didn't believe I would do it, or that I had done it on several occasions, but here is what you get when you use google translate to fuck up the text of your adventure in new and exciting ways. This example is English->Romanian->English.  I almost threw Gujarati in the mix, but I didn't recognize any Gujarati characters so I chickened out.

I had to search for 'Pyrocaustic' to find the thing, but anyways:

1) Trinkets. Ultrabronze and bones / peel shell (maybe a pin-nose). Hurriedly. The traces of dust go further into the hallway. Signs of destruction of the blows. Some dice alveoli have eleven rushes on the hall floor. A long bone is somewhat on the ceiling here.2) consumables. A small pick, made of plastic. The handle is cracked and should not trust heavy use.3) Cutting trap - a macachite mechanism erupts from the floor AND the ceiling - these two rows of 3 are blood and silver knives, covered with dry blood. They will hit any character who fails a DC 9 Reflex Save for 2d10 points. TOK TOK TOK TOK TOK4) Pit Trap - a hole opens wide. Suddenly, the floor no longer exists, in a quantum sense. Several long-established states have collapsed and hung for a moment in the middle of the air. If you can not get married or you are not tied to a friend and you also fail a DC 16 Reflex Save, then you get into a randomized Phlogiston disorder. (Note: try not to make your life immediately, Your Judge)5) Spectacle - the eye of the pyrocaetic globe: sees all things and is a local manifestation of Jaguar that will come at the end of time. He will proudly enjoy the Prophecy coins, manifest the Phlogiston event in the worst possible way, and leave an eye with a thunder. Do not touch it, otherwise you are burned in ashes, and what is coming back is like you, but without language, and it is related to Obitu-Que in addition to any Patrons of your previous fulfillment.6) Shields thrown into a free circle7) An oracle. You have to be a dissatisfied Aerethian, possibly descendant from the gentlemen of old Aereth who commissioned this place (Halfleans, Humans, Elves or Dwarves only). A 3-point blood loss point occurs if you touch this ultra-bronze scorpion-type device; is moving for a moment and a graceful pedipalp beats to take a sample of blood. If you pass the genetic test (automatically for the types of characters described), then you are given a certain view of yourself; burned and shaken, but powerful and vengeful, on a stone pyramid with a sunken eclipse behind you. Throw a head on the pyramid stairs and see it is ...8) A dead, poisoned, bleeding and burning mummy. It has 3 commodities worth rolling. It will not last long unless it has been cured by 3 damage points. If the party wants it, they can acquire a trustworthy character, but they are absolutely loyal (to the character that saves it). His gaze fits with the flattened forehead and the teeth cut by those in the pictoglifs that surround you here. It also has a data matrix that provides the coordinates of this Barrow, but no other information.9) Texts / prophecies - 2 spell-level 3 scrolls, one (and only one) can be copied by an expert in his spellbook10) The Ultrabronze Statue - the stretched arm of a muscular warrior defies the party that is approaching retreat defiantly. It seems to be extremely dangerous, and his head clothing suggests a pre-supernova sunburner. His pierced nose has an adamantian tip through him. There is a real skeleton inside this thing and it will give off evil and chaotic magic, but it will not interact with the party in any way but warn it. This could be a long time dead or an image of the one who will still be11) 12.5 Quicksilver Panther's home - he is a great cyclist priest, a fearless and flaming, flame-free eye. He longs for discussions and news from outside. He will answer honestly any questions that have been addressed to him with the prophecy, but he will retain it and will do his best to quit otherwise. Any attack or abnormality will cause a teleportation attack, with the offender being teleported away a hundred miles if it does not save magic. He is no more than the teleporter of the offender, if he is also rude. He will propose for a while a walk down and it will be hard to stop him. He will offer a Patron Bond to the local manifestation of a bad patron (whatever the player wants, but a malicious and / or chaotic version of it) - this is a unique offer and only open to those who will walk the full circuit of the complex with he and discuss the teleological philosophy and the end of time. He lets know that the End is near - but will easily retain concrete details.


(started sometime around Christmas 2017) 

+Dunkey Halton's I Do Not Remember That Move blog - suggestive rather than explicit. There's a dungeon generator in there that I love

(note, it's this: in which the number at the end is the number of 'rooms' or areas you wish to generate - don't expect it to fully make sense, but DO expect it to brighten up some lobes in your brain for a second or 10)

Dungeon Generators and nonsensical procedural generation as a positive rather than a negative

The appeal of novelty, unexpected incongruence, and exploration.

MASHUPS and recombination

Spelling variations stolen from german words : The umlaut.  Like, what if a Dragon ist really ein DragU:n with an umlaut, there where the 'u' is? Like a Dragon with a GUN for the head or tail or legs? Eh?

the AE character (i always like that character and it makes me happy to use it in texts, especially with IM Fell font and OpenType features)

(1/9/18 it's good to return to these notes on an irregular basis so that I can renew those neuronal linkages. these ideas have merit, still, but I am not yet returned to the frame of mind necessary to compleat them!)

I wonder what your most recent blog post dungeon bullshit power trip would sound like if you translated it to German or Dutch or Romanian and then back again?


Why do I ask? I dunno. Give a try you lout!

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