Saturday, March 28, 2015

[Mutant Future] The Danforth Heli-Sub-Tank From "The Three Stooges In Orbit"

Required crew: Cabin holds three, though one can drive solo
Top Speed: Ground 40 MPH; Sea 60 MPH; Air 100 MPH
Cargo: 1,000 lbs.
Structural HP: 50 HP
Armor: AC 4
Weaponry: Plasma Cannon - 10d6 hp damage

Designed by Professor Danford as an experimental military vehicle, the Heli-Sub-Tank is an all-terrain motorized conveyance that can travel via air, sea, and land. It can also achieve escape velocity to go into orbit as well. The Heli-Sub-Tank is a smaller vehicle, with a cabin that can hold three passengers comfortably. The hold can hold up to 1,000 pounds of cargo (as well as more passengers, though it will be an uncomfortable fit). A rear-mounted plasma cannon is the only weapon on the vehicle, which does 10d6 hp damage to any targets.

Background: As seen in archival footage from the Bygone Year of 1962, the Heli-Sub-Tank was taken on an initial successful test-run by Prof. Danforth's three assistants when they managed to drive it across the Mojave Desert, fly it over California, and take it into low orbit for several spins around the earth before returning it to the Professor's workshop. The vehicle was commandeered by Martians who planned to have the vehicle mass-produced for a future invasion of Earth. They installed a plasma cannon to the rear of the vehicle to use as an offensive weapon during their conquest. It was only through the interference of Prof. Danforth's assistants that the vehicle was recovered and the invasion thwarted. However, due to the vehicle's bizarre design and limited applications, the prototype was shelved by the military and never put into production. It was thought lost to the ages until it resurfaced in the Mutant Future.

Friday, March 27, 2015

Sign Up Today For The Int'l TableTop Day "Boardgame Review Blog Hop"!

Just a reminder that I'm lining up bloggers who want to participate in a first-annual International TableTop Day "Boardgame Review Blog Hop"! TableTop Day will be coming up on April 11, and I'm fielding interest from bloggers and web gurus who'd like to post a review or overview of their favorite boardgame on that day. If you have a website, blog, G+ feed, whatever, and you'd like to participate by talking up your favorite boardgame on April 11, drop me an email at gameagain at gmail period com and tell me your blog's name, its URL address, and the boardgame you'd like to feature that day. On April 11, I hope we'll have many participants telling us about many boardgames they enjoy! Sign up now!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

[GameHack] OK, OK, So I Finally Made Those Monty Python Fluxx Cards I Designed...

One of my local gaming group saw on my blog that I had created several new cards for the Monty Python Fluxx card game, one of them being The Black Knight. He asked why that card (and the others) never seemed to turn up during play. I had to admit that I'd never gotten around to making physical real-world versions of any of the cards I designed. He shamed me for my laziness, so, as penance, here you go. Happy now?

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

[Korgothursday] Ancient Armory: Boom-Drupe


A Boom-Drupe is a fruit-bearing tree that grows wild all across the lands. The fruit that grows abundantly looks like an apple -- red in color and about the size of a man's fist. The Boom-Drupe has a sweet, delightful aroma and smells and looks delicious. And it *is* delicious...for the 5 seconds you enjoy it. For you see, the Boom-Drupe's fruity flesh is actually dangerously explosive. Upon consumption, the fruit will violently explode 5 seconds later. The explosion will deal 8d6 hit points of damage to the consumer (usually killing them instantly) and 4d6 hit points of damage to any within 10 feet.

Interestingly, the Boom-Drupe is only explosive when consumed, as saliva apparently triggers the explosive effect. Cutting it, crushing it, slicing it, throwing it, etc. will not trigger the fruit's explosive effects. Only by taking it into the mouth will the fruit's nature be revealed...violently. Assassins and killers have been known to crush the fruit's flesh and let it dry into a flaky dust that can be sprinkled into food and beverage. This dust will remain inert until consumed at which point it will explode with lethal force.

NOTE: This deadly fruit was inspired by the post-apocalyptic, sword-and-sorcery cartoon "Korgoth of Barbaria." Let's see how much material a 22-minute pilot can provide us! Stay tuned for future installments of Korgothursday!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

[Cryptworld] New Thing: Puppeteer

A Macabre Manipulator for Cryptworld

STR: 3 (45) --- WPR: 6 (90)
DEX: 4 (60) --- PER: 4 (60)
AGL: 3 (45) --- PCN: 6 (90)
STA: 3 (45) --- PWR: 90
ATT: 1/45% --- WND: 12
MV: L 75†

Experience: 800

The Puppeteer is an evil mental manipulator who creates and controls human "puppets" as its mindless thralls. The Puppeteer uses these minions to sow discord, commit murders, and spread chaos for its own devilish amusement. It uses its puppets for all interactions with others as the Puppeteer is wildly xenophobic, avoiding contact with the "outside world" as much as it can. It leaves its lair for only two reasons: to retrieve a victim for use as a new puppet, or to flee when discovered.

A Puppeteer creates a new puppet by abducting a victim and imprisoning them in its lair. They then torment them over several weeks, subjecting them to its Usurp Willpower ability. These hallucinations cause the victim to give up all hope, causing their Willpower to eventually drain away. When the victim's Willpower is reduced to 0, their spirit is broken, and the Puppeteer can attempt to use its Create Puppet power. If successful, the victim's essence is destroyed, and they are forever a mindless shell to be manipulated by the Puppeteer. (Use stats for Zombies, CW rulebook, page 72, for all puppets.)

A Puppeteer's dominion over its puppets is absolute as they have become an extension of itself. Anything he wishes or wills, they will do. He can see through their eyes; hear what they hear; taste, touch, and smell what they do. A Puppeteer can control up to five puppets simultaneously, and its range of control is thought to be limitless, although a puppet must return to the Puppeteer's lair once a month for "upkeep". Because of this limitation, a Puppeteer usually keeps its puppets close at hand. The lair of a Puppeteer will have 2d10 puppets that it has created over the years.

However, a Puppeteer will sometimes have one puppet under control in the "outside world," doing its bidding undercover, by manipulating events and people to further the Puppeteer's unsavory goals. Friends and family of the puppet may not be aware that the victim's soul is gone, replaced by that of the Puppeteer.

When the Puppeteer grows tired of its game, or when its outside world goals are met, it will send its puppets out in waves to cause as much destruction and chaos as they can. Mass murders, catastrophic destruction, and other atrocities will be committed by the rampaging puppets as the Puppeteer orchestrates the carnage from afar -- before starting again with a new collection of puppets.

Puppeteer Powers

Usurp Willpower: Once per week, the Puppeteer subjects its imprisoned victim to mental hallucinations, visions, and nightmares that gradually drains the target's Willpower. The attack costs the Puppeteer 20 WIL and requires a specific PWR check versus the column corresponding to the victim's current WIL. If successful, a feeling of overwhelming hopelessness and despair will affect the victim. They will lose WIL as per the results below. This WIL cannot be regained unless the Puppeteer fails its check at some point during the process:
S = The victim loses 1 point of WIL from their current WIL score.
L = The victim loses 1d10/2 (round up) WIL from their current WIL score.
M = The victim loses 1d10 WIL from their current WIL score..
H = The victim loses 2d10 WIL from their current WIL score.
C = The victim loses 3d10 WIL from their current WIL score.
Create Puppet: Once a victim's Willpower is reduced to 0, a Puppeteer removes all remnants of the victim's mind (their thoughts, memories, personality -- all vestiges of what makes them uniquely human), leaving behind an empty, hollow shell. The Puppeteer must spend 1 full day uninterupted with the victim, forcing its will into the newly created puppet. The process requires the Puppeteer to make a general PWR check at a cost of 50 WIL. If successful, the victim becomes a new puppet for the Puppeteer to control. If unsuccessful, the Puppeteer must wait for one week to try again. The victim may be able to regain his lost WIL during this time.

Friday, March 20, 2015

[Thundarr Friday] Thundarr, Ookla, And Princess Ariel Statted For 5e D&D

Not sure how I let this Thundarr-related series of gaming posts slip by me! Blog-meister Kevin Chenevert of Red Kobold Games has statted out our trio of heroes from Thundarr the Barbarian. Now, my love of Thundarr is well-documented on this blog, so it's great to see Thundarr support for other systems -- especially D&D's shiny-new edition. Go check 'em out!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

[Korgothursday] Notorious NPC: Hargon, The Brigand Leader

5th Level Pure Human
STR: 11 --- INT: 8
DEX: 10 --- WIL: 12
CON: 14 --- CHA: 12
HPs: 88 --- AC: 6
Mutations: none

Hargon is a mercenary-for-hire, currently in the employ of Gog-Magog. He is a tall, thin, wiry man, with a snaggletooth that juts from his bottom jaw. He often wears a toilet plunger cup as a helm, and his right hand has been replaced with a rusty hook. Hargon usually has 1d6+6 2nd-level Pure Human underling followers under his command.

Hargon is a bombastic, volatile bully who uses threats and intimidation in place of leadership skills. Oddly, his minions fear him (although they are usually larger and stronger than Hargon), and they follow his orders to the letter. However, Hargon himself is a coward, often sending his men into dangerous situations while he watches from afar. Only when he feels his bravery is in question, or if he thinks he has his target wildly outmatched, will Hargon engage an opponent.

Hargon’s weapon of choice is his rusty hand-hook, which does 1d8 hit points in combat. Hargon is a dirty fighter, using the hook to gouge out an opponent’s eyes or slash at their throat. On a natural 20 during combat, Hargon has managed to deal a deadly blow to his opponent that will kill them outright. (If a save versus death is made, the vicitim is instead horribly mangled and they will permanently lose 1d6 points off a random attribute.)

Hargon and his men accompanied Korgoth to the floating fortress of Specules, where they proceeded to ransack and loot the wizard’s home. When Specules returned, his used his mind control powers to cause many of the men to kill themselves, although he forced Hargon and one of his minions to make out with each other. When Specules left to confront Korgoth, it can be assumed the spell wore off and Hargon managed to escape the fortress and Specules’ further wrath.

NOTE: This ruffian NPC was inspired by the post-apocalyptic, sword-and-sorcery cartoon "Korgoth of Barbaria." Let's see how much material a 22-minute pilot can provide us! Stay tuned for future installments of Korgothursday!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

International TableTop Day "Boardgame Review Blog Hop" Call For Participants

International TableTop Day will be coming up on April 11. This recently-founded event is a day where folks come together to celebrate tabletop gaming together. Gamestores will be hosting events, and gaming groups will gather in dining rooms, gamerooms, and basements around the world to Play More Games.

As a way of contributing to this event, I plan to assemble a blog hop of bloggers' boardgame reviews that will go live and run during the day-long event. What do I have in mind? I'd like to see the gaming blog community post a review or overview of their favorite boardgame. It can be a current favorite, a classic tabletop game, an obscure gaming relic -- any game that you would like to promote and talk up. (Though I'd like to steer clear of The Current Hotness in games and would rather focus on those games that never seem to be in the spotlight).

If you have a blog and would like to participate, drop me an email at gameagain at gmail period com and tell me your blog's name, its URL address, and the boardgame you'd like to feature that day. I'll post a weekly update of participants as the event draws near and will set up a blog hop Linky. Then, on April 11, we should see a plethora of boardgame reviews, previews, and overviews, giving readers a nice cross-section of games to peruse they might not otherwise have heard about or given a chance. We're a month away, so sign up now if you'd like to participate!

[Review] Toypocalypse RPG: Abandoned Toys In An Abandoned World

It's been 10 years since "The Great Dawning." For reasons unexplained, all of humanity has vanished, leaving behind a slowly decaying civilization. Also as-of-yet unexplained: the toys of the world -- mere children's playthings -- have become sentient and are now the masters of the planet. But playtime is over in this post-apocalyptic nightmare as the larger, stronger toys now rule with an oppressive iron fist. They force others to work in the stuffing mines, or to scavenge for batteries and needles and thread for power and upkeep. Those toys who escape subjugation must find his place in this lonely abandoned world -- the world of Toypocalypse.

Toypocalypse by Top Rope Games was written by Trevor Christensen as part of the 2011 24 Hour RPG contest. The game is super-tight, coming in at just 16 pages. But within those pages is a fascinating setting and an interesting dice mechanic. Let's take each in turn...

The Setting: As explained above, humanity is gone and sentient toys are now picking up the pieces of the world. The stronger powerful toys have stepped in as despicable tyrants whose word is law. The weaker playthings are enslaved and/or exploited. Those who escape are left to wander the wastelands, subjected to feral animal attacks or marauding bandits. It's an interesting juxtaposism of childhood joy and soul-crushing tyranny -- Toy Story meets Lord of the Flies meets The Road Warrior. (Visually, I see a world much like the movie 9.)

Players can choose any toy they want to play. Want to play a stuffed teddy bear? How about a battery-operated robot? Or a little green army man? Or a muscled action figure? Or even a Magic 8-Ball? Any toy can be fleshed out as a playable PC in this game, and the rules encourage this. The characters must also choose the toy's starting Condition (new-in-box, threadbare, corroded, etc.); Facets (broken, loved, discarded, assembly required, etc.); Movement (walks, rolls, hops, etc.); and Cognizance (sight, hearing, temperature sense). The player will also need to determine how the toy "fits" into this new world by deciding upon their social role (leader, schemer, mentor, zealot, etc.) as well as their public and private goals. Finally, there is a pool of pneuma (soul strength) and morale (conscious strength). When either of these is depleted, the toy is forever broken -- either physically or emotionally/mentally.

The Mechanics: Each toy has four attributes: Will (toughness/determination); Cognition (perception/aptitude); Versatility (dexterity/cunning); and Intensity (heart/soul). Rather than scores, each attribute is assigned a dice type. And each dice type represents how good a PC is in that attribute. Normal attributes are assigned 1d12 with no bonuses (so they can generate a random scale of 1-12 on a "Normal" roll); followed by Good (1d10 + 2 = a scale of 3-12); Great (1d8 + 4 = a scale of 5-12); and Superior (1d6 + 6 = a scale of 7-12). As you can see, the better your attribute, the higher your typical roll will be with that attribute. During play, an action attempt will be assigned a Target Number of 7 (average); 9 (Difficult); or 11 (Very Difficult). The player rolls the appropriate dice and must hit/exceed the target number to succeed.

Example: Mighty Man the action figure is trying to lift a car battery off of his pinned comrade. His Intensity is Superior, so he gets to roll a d6, adding 6 to the roll. The ref assigns a target number of 11 to succeed, so Mighty Man will roll between a 7 and 12 for the attempt -- a roughly 33% chance at succeeding in lifting the battery. (Better than My Little Unicorn who has a Normal Intensity who just gets to roll 1d12 for the attempt, so he'll roll a 1 to 12 -- only a 16% chance of success.) There are also rules for contested rolls and bonuses/penalties, but this is the gist of the roll mechanic.

And recall the toy's Facets, Condition, Movement, and Cognizance from earlier? A player can "invoke" these once during a play session. If they can roleplay how this comes into play, the ref can give them a +2 to a roll.

Example: Mighty Man is also "Cracked". The player explains that, as he tries to lift the battery, he curses the cracked hinge in his shoulder joint -- a permanent reminder of the rough playtimes he used to enjoy with his previous owner prior to The Great Dawning. The ref gives the player a +2 for the roleplaying and has him mark that facet as being "invoked" for this session. The player now will roll a 9 to 12 -- a 50-50 shot.

Toypocalypse has a campaign setting supplement titled Toypocalypse Falls that was born of a successful Kickstarter campaign. The supplement describes a town where the hydroelectric dam still provides electrical power -- an abundance of riches! Rival factions vie for control over the resource, with Centaur Alpha trying to retain his position as de facto leader. The wise and secluded Librarians make plans in the shadows, while The Cult of Lilly Ann worship at the feet of the last surviving human. Add in several plot hooks and a full adventure (Tomb of the Purple Crayon), and you have enough inspiration for many evenings of Rise Of The Toys adventure!

The core rules for Toypocalypse are available at Drive Through RPG on a Pay What You Want basis. Toypocalypse Falls is $4.95 at Drive Through RPG. Sniderman says "Check them out!"

Friday, March 13, 2015

How Many Dice Bags Are In Your Dice Bag?

Like most of you out there, I have a lot of dice. (A loooooooot of dice...) Sitting on top of my gaming collection is a big "dice box" that I keep all of my loose dice in. But those dice are not for playing with. No, instead I have a primary dice bag that I keep my "playin' dice" in. Ta-da...

My primary "bring it to the gaming table dice bag" is this big ol' Crown Royal dice bag. The classic gamer's dice bag since the days gaming began. However, I *hate* having all of my dice jumbled up and randomly tossed in, so I keep my dice sub-divided into even MORE dice bags within...

Inside are five MORE dice bags, each with their own set of sub-divided dice for use depending on the gaming system at hand...

My Dungeon Crawl Classics dice bag has a nice set of Koplow polys with all of the various oddball DCC-necessary polyhedrals. (They're also oversized so I can read them a bit easier.

My "onomatopoeia" dice bag (AKA "comic book sound effects") is filled with d12s, which I use to run games of Cartoon Action Hour by Spectrum Games.

When the need for d6s arises, I grab my trusty Ghostbusters dice bag. Though these d6s can be used for any d6-oriented game, my preference is, of course, WEG's Ghostbusters RPG. Even have a couple of laser-etched ghost dice on hand.

My radiation dice bag could be considered my "primary" dice bag, as it contains a full set of standard polyhedrals. If I find myself in a game of AD&D, Labyrinth Lord, Mutant Future, and other d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d20 systems, this is the bag I use. It also contains my favorite set of percentiles for any games of Cryptworld, Timemaster, or Call of Cthulhu I may find myself in.

Finally, my "dungeon map" dice bag has become a staple at conventions as I use it for any swag and promotional dice I may want to give out at the gaming table. Here you see a small pile of remaining Pacesetter and Savage AfterWorld dice left over from my recent Gamicon trip.

Admittedly, when filled, the Crown Royal bag gets a bit unwieldy. (You could club a person to death with it.) But it's a great way to keep all of my sub-bags organized and out of the way. Anyone else have subsets of their dice on standby for quick action when needed?

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

[Korgothursday] Ancient Armory: The Golden Goblin

The Golden Goblin

Coveted by the evil, wicked, and powerful, the Golden Goblin is a Bygone artifact from "The Fourth Age of Man." Gog-Magog described the statuette as a "rare and curious trinket" possessed by the powerful wizard Specules. Its exact abilities were left undescribed by the Baron of Thieves though he wished to possess its power. When taken from the wizard, Korgoth was informed by Specules that "It has powers beyond your reckoning." With a bored look, Korgoth pressed the Goblin's belly button, activating it. The Golden Goblin began playing a tinny music box tune as the figure danced a little jig. It appears to be a cheap novelty item from the Ancient Days that has no true magical or intrinsic value.

Or does it?

When activated, Specules was shown trying to dance along with the Golden Goblin, revealing that the item has the power to hypnotize all who see and hear it, compelling them to dance along with the Goblin. When the button is pressed and the Goblin begins its dance, all within earshot must make a save versus Willpower. Those who fail will be entranced by the Golden Goblin's gyrations. They will be unable to do anything other than dance along with the grotesque icon for 30 seconds while the device plays its tune. Those who make the save will not be entranced and can act normally. The Golden Goblin can play once before needing to be rewound, a process that takes another 30 seconds of time. Also, those who have fallen victim to the Golden Goblin's entrancement are immune to further trances for 24 hours, as they have apparently become quickly bored by the tiresome music.

NOTE: This "magical" device was inspired by the post-apocalyptic, sword-and-sorcery cartoon "Korgoth of Barbaria." Let's see how much material a 22-minute pilot can provide us! Stay tuned for future installments of Korgothursday!

Friday, March 6, 2015

Secret Santicore 2015 Is ALIVE!!!

This year's Secret Santicore mega-supplement is now out! The beastly book of RPG inspiration is a whopping 355 pages with more than 100 entries! This year's beast is so big, it's been divided up into five separate sections for downloading: Adventures, People, Monsters, Places, and Things. Grab them all or grab the section that interests you.

(And be sure to check out my offering: "Plague of the Vermin Guild", a Labyrinth Lord adventure found in the Adventures volume!)

Click Ol' Sanicore above to go to the gaming goodness! Nice work to everyone involved this year as the offerings are amazing!

"United We Roll" D&D Shirt Available At Teespring
Whether your Dungeons & Dragons tastes run toward D&D, AD&D, 2e, 3/3.5e, 4e, or 5e, this t-shirt from Teespring has you covered. Can't see the awesomeness in the image above? Here, try this enlarged version (excuse the aliasing):
Old school, new school... Regardless of your favorite edition, this shirt proclaims Dungeons & Dragons is loved by all gamers. "United We Roll!" Act fact if you want the shirt as the offer for this design is live for the next 10 days only. Click the link below or the images above for ordering info:

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

[Korgothursday] Savage Menagerie: Arborghast

NOTE: Two years ago, I posted a few creatures and NPCs for Mutant Future based on that most-metal of cartoon barbarians: Korgoth of Barbaria! But unlike that one-off cartoon pilot, we're not through yet! Let's get "Korgothursday" rolling again with today's new entry...

No. Enc.: 0 (1d4)
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement: 60' (20')
Armor Class: 5
Hit Dice: 10
Attacks: 3 (claw/claw/bite)
Damage: 2d6/2d6/2d8
Save: L5
Morale: 9
Hoard Class: X

One of the most vicious forms of plantlife in the world of Korgoth the Barbarian is the deadly Arborghast. When first encountered in a swampy or marshy area, the creature appears to be a typical leafless tree standing within the shallow brackish water; its root system appears exposed due to erosion. When approached, numerous leering yellow eyes suddenly open on its branches while a large gaping mouth opens vertically upon its trunk. The Arborghast then uses its clawed hand-like limbs to grab a victim to draw him toward its mouth in order to feed.

The Arborghast's claws can rake at its prey for 2d6 hit points of damage. If it manages to bite a victim, its crushing jaws will do 2d8 hit points of damage. If a natural 20 is rolled on a bite attack, the victim is swallowed whole by the creature. The Arborghast can rise up on its roots and scamper after its prey, using the roots as a form of tendril-movement. Scattered around in the water around the creature will be bits of treasure and valuables dropped by its former victims.

After feeding, the Arborghast drops into a 72-hour trance-like stupor while it digests its prey. The creature will be inactive and immobile during this time. Nefarious bandits and brigands will sometimes use the Arborghast as a trap, "baiting" the monster by hanging a valuable item from its branches or tying a "helpless victim" to its trunk (away from the hidden mouth). When the unwary approach the tree to investigate, the Arborghast will lash out and attack.

Mutations: free movement, full senses, prehensile tendrils, carnivore

NOTE: This creature was inspired by the post-apocalyptic, sword-and-sorcery cartoon "Korgoth of Barbaria." Let's see how much material a 22-minute pilot can provide us! Stay tuned for future installments of Korgothursday!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Happy GM's Day! Take 40% Off All Savage AfterWorld Products!

Happy International GM's Day, everyone! Every March Fourth ("March forth!" Get it?), the gaming community takes a moment to thank the tireless referees, GMs, DMs, and shield jockeys who run the games we love to play. Drive Through RPG has its annual GM Day Sale in progress, so zip over there and grab some items for yourself, or gift your favorite GM with some new swag.

And I'll join the festivities by offering a blanket 40% off on all Savage AfterWorld supplements for Mutant Future -- print or PDF!