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OSR Commentary - Gregorius21778: 20 Encounters in the Ruins of the Elder Beings By Kai Pütz a.k.a. Gregorius21778 'A Pay What You Want' Title For Lamentations of the Flame Princess Rpg

Swords & Stitchery - Wed, 09/21/2022 - 14:57
 "After I finished H.P. Lovecraft´s story “At the Mountains of Madness” the GM in me dreamed about an adventure that would be take place in some (other) subterranean ruins of the Elder Beings. Another city or outpost, perhaps smaller, or just the caverns that would lead to its entrance. An adventure about the strange creatures that could have developed there, based on some breeding stock the Needles
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Lovecraftian Cults & You - Using SURVIVE THIS!! What Shadows Hide - Cthulhu Sourcebook For Fun & PC Murder

Swords & Stitchery - Tue, 09/20/2022 - 22:08
 “The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the deadly light into the peace and safety of a new dark age. ”― H.P. LovecraftIf you've been following ourNeedles
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Just Because a Dungeon Numbers Every Room Doesn’t Mean Players Have To Explore Room-by-Room

DM David - Tue, 09/20/2022 - 10:43

If I had run Expedition to the Barrier Peaks when it reached me in 1980, the first session might have ended in frustration. Barrier Peaks includes lots of empty rooms. Of the 100 or so rooms on the first level, fewer than 20 contain anything of interest. I would have dutifully let the players poke through 80 rooms of “jumbled furniture and rotting goods,” gaining “only bits of rag or odd pieces of junk.” Two hours into that grind, my players would suddenly remember that their moms wanted them home.

Level 1 of Expedition to the Barrier Peaks

In 1980, we ran every dungeon room at the same speed: The pace where players describe their movement and actions in careful detail because if they fail to look under the bed, they might overlook the coins, and if they never mention checking the door, they die in its trap.

Some dungeon masters then and a few now would say that dutifully running level 1 as a room-by-room crawl builds tension. Besides, Barrier Peaks includes wandering monsters to add excitement. Then as now, the pacing of dungeon exploration depends on players. Some enjoy a more methodical pace while others grow impatient for action. But even players who favor careful play will appreciate skipping the slow parts. After the players poke through three or four rooms full of rubbish, dungeon masters can summarize groups of similar rooms by saying they hold nothing of interest.

Even though modern adventures seldom contain sprawls of empty rooms, they often include locations best summarized. For example, Dragon of Icespire peak includes Butterskull Ranch, a 10 location manor occupied by orcs. Once my players defeated the orcs and nothing threatened them, I summarized their characters’ search of the house instead of forcing a room-by-room waste of play time. When players defeat the main threat in a dungeon and erase most of the peril, they lose patience for careful exploration. You can just summarize the loot and discoveries that remain.

Any site that merits numbered locations can mix areas that deserve different paces of play from square-by-square attention to cutting to the next scene.

As you pace the game at such a site, choose between methodical exploration and a summary based on the novelty, peril, and choices ahead of the players. When players first enter a dungeon, they face all three elements. A new dungeon starts with novelty because players know little about the threats and discoveries ahead. Even with all those empty rooms, the crashed spaceship at Barrier Peaks starts with unprecedented novelty. If a dungeon lacks peril, then its just an archaeological site; summarize the discoveries. Dungeons tend to start with key choices over marching order, light, and strategy. Does the party plan to explore carefully or rush ahead to stop the midnight ritual? Will they listen at doors or check for traps? Does someone scout?

Once these choices set a pattern and the dungeon starts to seem familiar, DMs can summarize the exploration until the situation changes.

Especially when you run a big dungeon like Barrier Peaks, you can switch your pace between methodical exploration and summary many times during a session. In the areas with nothing new to discover and no threats to face, take the shortcut of summarizing. Then when the players encounter something new, slow to a pace that lets them account for every action. “What do you want to do?”

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OSR Combination Mini Campaign - Bloat Games Scorched rpg & Wretched Space Combined

Swords & Stitchery - Mon, 09/19/2022 - 22:40
 So after getting a bunch of side long glances, several phone calls, and a physical meeting with one of my fellow DM's we began to formula a plan for this upcoming campaign. And the focus of that meeting was Lazarus 3. Haven't heard of Lazarus 3 then your not alone because Lazarus three comes from Bloat Games Scorched rpg; "THE WORLD OF LAZARUS-3 Lazarus-3 is a rare, habitable planet in a distantNeedles
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OSR Mini Campaign - Bloat Games Vigilante City Rpg Ninja Beat Down & Wretched New Flesh Rpg

Swords & Stitchery - Mon, 09/19/2022 - 19:04
 So over the weekend, we've been tossing some ideas about doing a Wretched Flesh/Space crossover campaign for sometime. But there's been 'real life' stuff getting in the way work schedules, family commitments, etc. with myself & my players. So the other half of the group that I've been involved with want a Bloat Games Vigilante City campaign. Now we had one going for a while. But again the same Needles
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OSR Commentary - My Time Encountering Heward's Mystical Organ

Swords & Stitchery - Mon, 09/19/2022 - 04:06
 My history as a player of original Dungeons & Dragons is well known but not my misgiving encounters with an infamous artifact of Eldritch Wizardry. Let's get a bit of background & history on Eldritch Wizardry;" Eldritch Wizardry was written by Gary Gygax and Brian Blume and published by TSR in 1976 as a sixty-page digest-sized book, and was the third supplement to the original D&D rules.[4] The Needles
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Post Apocalpytic Solar System Campaign Commentary -Lovecraft showdown - A Warriors of The Red Planet & Hyperborea rpg - Actual Play Event Part III

Swords & Stitchery - Sun, 09/18/2022 - 15:15
 Jesus this was a hard fight as we battled higher caste Mi Go warriors, and we had to call on Green Martian warriors to help turn the tide. Two hours of melee & fracus we were able to destroy the Mi Go swarm of warriors. We hate these things. This play report is going to pick right up from here.  We destroyed any magic items left behind. Classic Call of Cthulhu rpg artwork used without Needles
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OSR Commentary On The Hostile Rpg & The Shoulder of Orion Military campaign- Session Report - HG Giger Attack

Swords & Stitchery - Sun, 09/18/2022 - 04:27
 The Giger wasps came in hot and heavy, we hidden within the shadow of a nearby system's asteroid. Our Gypsy fighters drew the bastards away from our base station into a trap. These things are basically a fighter around a hyperspace bio engine loaded with conventional weapons. For the Hostile rpg they are a part of the tide that takes out anything that comes through  the Taunhauser gate Needles
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Review & Commentary On Axioms Issue 13: Machinery to the Max by Alexander Macris, & Darren Wheeler For The Adventurer, Conqueror, King rpg

Swords & Stitchery - Sat, 09/17/2022 - 16:49
 There are times when it's easy to see the forrest for the trees and today is one of em. It's been a few years since the spine on our Adventurer, Conqueror, King rpg book has been cracked. Last night was one of those nights. Why?! Because of the fact that the veneer of ACK's has filtered down among so many of our campaigns over the years. Adventurer, Conqueror, King's Players Companion adds a Needles
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Review & Commentary On The Wretched Space rpg By The Red Room For Your Wretched rpg Campaign Universe

Swords & Stitchery - Fri, 09/16/2022 - 22:10
 "Wretched is an old-school role-playing game designed to play anti-hero characters in a cinematic setting. In Wretched Space, the genre is space opera. But unlike most other space operas, this one isn’t about heroic characters whose actions have significant consequences for the future of civilization. Here you are meant to play on a smaller scale, and the higher purpose your character serves is Needles
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Post Apocalpytic Solar System Campaign Commentary -Lovecraft showdown - A Warriors of The Red Planet & Hyperborea rpg - Actual Play Event Part II

Swords & Stitchery - Fri, 09/16/2022 - 19:54
 Alright so it's been beyond busy & we almost got slaughtered dealing with the Mi Go their charges and the held Green Martian village. We set the village fission reactor to blow and then moved our forces into position around what passes for a mini hive among the village center. Planting several plasma grenades around the parameter of the hive we moved into the necromancer's villa. Because of the Needles
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S3 Expediation to the Barrier Peaks, Gamma World 1st or 2nd edition & the Arduin Grimoire By Dave Hargrave

Swords & Stitchery - Fri, 09/16/2022 - 05:49
 This blog entry is going to pick up right from our classic Gamma World & Dungeons & Dragons crossover blog entry from here.  But after talking with a bunch of my gaming buddies this morning I began to talk about a very distinctive idea using the Arduin Grimoire triliogy with Gamma World. Arduin artwork used without permission Screwing around with the classic Bloody,Bloody, Arduin rpg books. Needles
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Red Room A Wretch Flesh Mail Call - Wretched New Flesh - Postcards from Avalidad Rpg By Miguel Ribeiro, Sílvia Clemente, & Manuel Sousa OSR Commentary - Blackguard update.

Swords & Stitchery - Thu, 09/15/2022 - 19:27
 Hustlers of the world, there is one mark you cannot beat: the mark inside. William S. BurroughsThanks to the Red Room I got an updated Lulu copy of Wretch Flesh Post Cards from Availad. And yes, we went for the expensive hardcover. There's a lot to take within this three hundred & seventy nine page behemoth. Please ignore that copy of Invisible College rpg my players and concentrate Wretched NewNeedles
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Review & Commentary On Subsector Sourcebook: Cascadia By John Watts For The Clement Sector Rpg, Cepheus Engine rpg, & Old School 2d6 Science Fiction Games

Swords & Stitchery - Thu, 09/15/2022 - 02:29
 "Welcome to Cascadia Subsector! Cascadia Subsector is both one of the four core subsectors of Clement Sector (along with Hub, Franklin, and Sequoyah) and on the edge of the frontier. The sparsely populated Dawn Subsector (unless you’re on Cascadia and then you’d better call it “Lancaster Subsector”) is just to trailing of Cascadia Subsector. After that, it’s the wide-open frontier where few, if Needles
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OSR Commentary On The Lexicon Geographicum Arcanum vol 1 Species of the Hollow Earth By Andrew Marrington For The Lamentations of the Flame Princess Rpg

Swords & Stitchery - Wed, 09/14/2022 - 20:20
  Lexicon Geographicum Arcanum vol 1 Species of the Hollow Earth By Andrew Marrington is one of those campaign setting books that deserves more time in the light. Years ago we did a review on and then nothing. The campaign's review is something that I'm going to stick by; "What the 'volume of Lexicon Geographicum Arcanum' does is provide the Dungeon Master & his players with a richly detailed Needles
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OSR Review & Commentary On Orbital Platforms By Paul Elliott For The Hostile Rpg & Other Cepheus Engine rpg Or Other Old School 2d6 Science Fiction Rpg's

Swords & Stitchery - Wed, 09/14/2022 - 01:34
 "Not all colonists within the American Sector settle on the surface of hostile planets. Many work in the depths of space or in planetary orbits on artificial platforms or space stations. There are hundreds in use, varying wildly in size from the 600-ton Pioneer class to the 20,000-ton Bay class and up to the million-ton Morozov class giants. Their purpose varies as much as their size. Orbital Needles
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G1 Legion of Gold & GW2 Famine In Far- Go as Advanced Dungeons & Dragons Campaign Basis

Swords & Stitchery - Tue, 09/13/2022 - 18:34
 ""Far-Go is dying... the people are afraid... the animals are wasting away... the crops are withering in the fields. No one, even Arx Skystone, the high priest, knows what has caused Far-Go's misfortune. You are part of a group of young adventurers about to begin the sacred Rite of Adulthood. The last hope of survival for Far-Go rests with your party. On your journey to the Forest of Knowledge, Needles
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Keeping Strict Time Records in Lord of the Rings

Bat in the Attic - Mon, 09/12/2022 - 19:51

 So apparently J.R.R. Tolkien kept strict time records.

Chronology of the Lord of the Ring ($20)

Rob's Note: This is a link to a PDF purchase of an academic article. You can read the synopsis for free.

Rob's Note: I realize the sample image is hard to read. It was the best avaliable.

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Shut Down Cha'alt - Cha'lting Escalation Campaign Update!

Swords & Stitchery - Mon, 09/12/2022 - 16:29
 So over the weekend we took a quick look at the Cha'alt first edition hard back to see where the entries are for our current campaign.Why?! Because the Cha'alt trilogy is very expansive & there's a lot of questions that the players have come up with. The players at this point don't simply want to explore & clear the dungeons. They want a piece of the sleazy underworld action of Cha'alt for the Needles
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Terror in the Old Fell Forest

Ten Foot Pole - Mon, 09/12/2022 - 11:11
By Lord Eldrad Wolfsbane Self Published B/X Levels 1-5 (Quite the range, eh?)

You all meet in a a loud and smokey tavern! It’s a sad time for the quaint village of Valehaven. For the bawdy son of the portly mayor and his foppish and foolish friends have went missing. The foolish group of young adventurers went North into the Old Fell Forest some two weeks ago. They sadly and alarmingly have not returned. Dark and ominous tales are whispered about the foul Old Forest. The party is hired by the portly mayor to find out the whereabouts of a foolish group of adventurers far to the north into the Old Forest. The mayor Miles Kaxzwell is a pale fat balding winy self righteous type of man who truly believes himself far superior to others as he is of noble blood! His “son” and his adventuring party of his friends, left a few weeks ago and nothing has been heard from them since. The people of Valehaven don’t seem to be sad at all.

This 28 page digest adventure is a series of scenes. It’s cute, if you’re in to reading things.  This isn’t really an adventure. It’s more a series of ideas, strung together and not really in a form to run. 

Eldrad is an idea machine. He does a great job coming up with things and jotting down terse and memorable things about them. You got the whole “get hired by the mayor to find his son and friends” things from the intro blurb, right? One of the rumors is “We hopes that mayor’s son and his friends don’t come back! They was knocking up the entire village! Even their own sisters, aunts and cousins!” Also, the mayor has fifteen sons. Also, he has multiple wives and gets rid of them Henry 8 style. THis theme is repeated everywhere in the small town. Also “Barracks: Here is the upstairs of a gigantic warehouse and store is where the barracks are. Various distant kin to the mayor and hangers On our employees Town guards. Talk around town if they’re very corrupt.” Thus, the repetition builds to something that even the most dense party can’t ignore. But, hey, there’s gold! It’s a fun little thing. I like it a lot. The town goes on to describe the local temple, with the line “He had quite and impressive torture chamber where he does inquisitions parties for the nobility as he tortures people for the crowd’s amusement. It is all work for the gods!” Uh hu uh huh … getting the picture? DId I mention that staying in the stable csts 2cp a night and the poorhouse only costs 1cp a night … ? Eldrad does a really good job. Everything really works together to paint the scene.

The writing, the evocative imagery, is really well done, when he engages in it. “A mysterious stone archway opens the way into the forest wall of the Old Forest after a day of travel.” Or, maybe “The Old Forest has huge ancient pines so big that it would take 20 men to surround one of these trees. The light is dim and the ground covered in pine straw. A few chatterings of birds above is the old sounds of life. The old cobblestone road continues into the bleak dim light. From above, giant pinecones rain down and one smashes one of the militiamen causing his head to explode and gore, brains, blood, eyes and teeth splat onto everyone and everything around! Giant Squirrels are protecting their territory!“ So, yeah. And, if you find the diary of a certain halfling out in the forest, a dead halfling mind you, and bring it back to his beloved in town then … “If Matilda Berrywine is told about the death of Tommy Took, she climbs to the top of the local temple and jumps to her death.” Yeah. Eldrad knows what he’s doing.

But, also, man, the thing is a fucking mess. The maps are handdrawn and then, maybe, a photo taken of them? They are blurry as fuck. And the garden in town? “It’s guarded by a wood golum named Oak tree Edd who will chase anyone away from the garden who don’t belong.” And then there’s “The Pit: The mayor brings in monsters from all over as well as adventures in most of the time on Lucky townspeople to fight to the death for gold and betting. The arena can hold a thousand people in its seats.” The vibe is all mixed up. We go from local hick inbreeding to a community of thousands with magic wood golems at the garden. It’s mismatched.

But, alas, all is not well in Eldradville. Could it be the treasure? “Treasure: EP: 2000, GP: 1000, Magic: Axe +1” Certainly, not awe-inspiring … Well, though, we are a just and merciful reviewer .. .how about the monsters? “30 zombies” Hmmm, while I’m enamored with the number 30, and thus the implication that this is NOT combat, I’m afraid that just will not do. And points to the main problem. Or, one of them anyway.

The road not taken is that this is just a series of scenes. You walk down the right path and encounter Z. Then as you sleep X happens. Then you meet B the next morning. This is, then, a home adventure. The kind you scrawl on a piece of paper two hours before the game because you need something. I think we can do better in a published adventure, yes?

But, more importantly, Eldrad doesn’t follow though. FOr while we get all of these great bits in town, about one great bit per location and several more scattered through the text … he can’t seem to sustain this. Thus a barrow complex has three barrows, with one bit per barrow. Sure, there are three numbered location, or six, or whatever, ut only one concept. It’s not a dungeon. It’s a scene. Everything is a scene. Everyone is a point in time with little to connect it. If it were Moria it would be three scenes and nothing more. They are unfulfilling. If the monster is the centerpoint then you get a bit with the monster and nothing about the environment. All this is a collection of ideas and nothing more. Here’s an ideal for this thing. Run with it. These are not adventuring locales. For every good rumor there are sixteen meh ones that don’t do anything r are not special at all. 

“On the second morning, no matter where the party has stayed early in the Morn, a stench is in the air, smells of beer, wine and unwashed ass, a visit from some locals. A crowd of about 27 smelly peasants Say…”


Great fucking imagination, but you need to sustain it to the logical end to create an actual adventure. As is, it’s performance art.

This is $3 at DriveThru. There is no preview.

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