The OSE Characters, GURPSified

As is my perennial obsession, I converted the OSE characters mentioned here into GURPS DF , using both this conversion of mine for low level characters, and Peter Dell’Orto’s DF 15: Henchmen.

Lance:

100 points for a level 2 fighter

ST13/17 [50] DX 11 [20] IQ 10 [0] HT 12 [20]

HP 13 per 10 will 10 fp 12

T/s 1d+2/3d-1 Basic Lift 34lbs

BS 7.0 [5] Basic Move 6.0 Dodge 10

Parry: 10 Block: 10  DR 6 plate and chain

Damage with light club (1d+3 crush/3d crush)

               With polearm 1d+6 imp/3d+4 cut, becomes unready

[15] combat reflexes +1 to active defenses and recovery from stunning

[-] Striking ST+4 (accounted for)

[-4] unattractive 

[-5] sense of duty:Adventuring companions

[-10]code of honor:soldier’s 

[-5] overconfidence 

[-5] hamfisted 1

[-5] callousness 

[-5] stubborn

[-1]obnoxiously loud drunk

Q: grunts loudly when lifting things, prefers head shots, always wants an armor upgrade,

     Spiderweb tattoo, greedy

Leveling up (25)would be high pain tolerance [10], hp +2 [4] primary weapons +8 pts, 3 more points to other weapons)

Skills:

Brawling [2] 12

Wrestling [1] 10

Knife [2] 12

broadsword [8] 13

Shield [2] 12

Polearm [4] 12

Axe/mace [4] 12

Armory, melee weapons [1] 9

Sling[2] 10

Carousing [1] 10*

Forced entry [1] 11

Intimidation  [1] 11*

Abbyee

125 pt initiate

ST 10 [0]; DX 11 [20]; IQ 13 [60]; HT 11 [10].

Damage 1d-2/1d; BL 20 lbs.;

 HP: 10 [0]; Will 13 [0]; Per 13 [0]; FP 11 [0]; 

Basic Speed 5.00 [-10]; Basic Move 5 [0].

Dodge 8 Block 9 Damage Resistance: 3 light mail

Damage with light mace  (1d+2)

Advantages:

[20] Power Investiture 2

[24] Turning undead

[5] resistant to Evil supernatural powers +3

[1] Good with spiders

Disadvantages:

[-10] Honesty

[-5] Sense of duty, adventuring companions

[-10] Sense of duty co-religionists

[-15] greed

Quirks:tbd

Skills:

Theology [2] 12

Religious Ritual [2] 13

Esoteric Healing [2] 12

Hidden Lore: Undead [2] 13

Axe/Mace [8] 13

Shield [2] 12

First Aid [1] 13

Interrogation [1] 12

Detect lies [1] 11

Diagnosis [1] 11

Exorcism [12 12

Scrounging [1] 12

Search [1] 12

Stealth [1] 10

Climbing [1] 10

Spells:

Purify food [1] 13

Protection from evil [2] 14

Minor healing [2] 14

Aria Silverwind

125 points

ST: 10 ​[10] DX: 12​ [20] IQ: 12​ [40] HT: 10​ [0]

Thrust/Swing Damage: 1d-2/1d Basic Lift: 24 lbs.

HP: 10 [0] Will: 11 [0] Per: 12 [5] FP: 10 [0]

Basic Speed: 5.50 [0] Basic Move: 6 [0] Dodge: 9 [0] Block 9 Parry 9

Advantages:

[20] Wood Elf (ST-1, DX+1, Basic Move+1, Attractive appearance, Forest Guardian 2 (+2 to Bow, Camouflage, FastDraw (Arrow), Stealth, Survival Woodlands) Magery 0, Sense of Duty to Nature, elven gear is 10% cheaper)

[10] magery 1

[5] Magic Bolt (does 1d-3, ignores armor)

[5] Night Vision 5

Disadvantages:

[-5] Sense of duty: Adventuring Companions

[-5] Overconfident

[-10] Honesty

[-10] impulsive

Quirks:

 Curious,Wary, Truthful

Skills

Bow at DX+3 [4]15^,

Camouflage (E) IQ+2 [1]13^,

Fast Draw (Arrow) (E) DX+2 [1]14^,

Stealth at DX+1 [1]13^ 

Survival (woodlands) (A) Per+1 [1]12^

Shield [1] 12

Shortsword [4] 13

Tracking [1] 12

Meditation [2] 10

Search [2] 12

spells:

Foolishness [1] 11, Daze [1] 11, Sleep [1] 11, Mass Sleep [1] 11

Drucila

ST: 9​ [-10]; DX: 11 ​ [20]; IQ: 12​ [40]; HT: 10​ [0].

Thrust/Swing: 1d-2/1d-1; Basic Lift 16 lbs.

HP 9 [0]; Will 12 [0]; Per 10 [10]; FP 13 [9]

Basic Speed 5.25 [0]; Basic Move 5 [0] Dodge 8 Parry 9

Damage with dagger is 1d-3 impale

Advantages:

[35] Magery 3

Disadvantages:

[-5] sense of duty: Adventuring companions

[-15]Weirdness magnet

[-10] Low Pain Threshold

Quirks:

Skills:

Thaumatology [4] 14

Occultism [4] 13

Hazardous materials, Magical [4] 13

Hidden Lore: Magic Items [1] 11

                      Undead [1] 11

                      Magical Writing [1] 11

Natural Philosophy [1] 10

Meditation [1] 10

Knife [4] 13

Throw Knife [1] 11

First Aid [1] 12

Throwing [1] 9

Spells:

Sense Evil [1] 11

Protection from Evil [4] 14

Lend Energy [1] 11

Recover Energy [8] 15

Who knows what the future holds?

In Northport, practically nobody.  Several years ago (or just over 2 weeks game time) a band of evil cultists murdered everyone with any type of oracular or divinatory ability in order to cloak their planned summonings and actions.

Among the casualties were the Oracle of Eos, a nymph upon whom one not cast one’s eyes or you would be unable to ask a question, slain by cultists who had put their eyes out just to perform this act of infernal devotion, and the one Sahudese who had a copy of the Classic of Changes. Dozens of divination devices were captured and destroyed, a whole expedition was mounted to reclaim one of them, that involved the slaying of a summoned demon and subsequent sale of its gear.

So who does this leave?

Ludlow has recently acquired a functional pack of tarot cards, and has learned cartomancy, but it has led to Christine Bjorn, a mountain elf fire wizard with a golem (bought with points for cash, not as an ally) heading south to learn Pyromancy from the members of a dragon cult. Christine was one of the earlier PC’s in my game, and had a number of oddball disadvantages, including coitophobia and Evil Twin. The Evil Twin turned out to be a Bard named Marie who left a scattering of blue haired half elves known as the Sons of Marie, who were looking for their mother… Recently one of the two survivors of her massacre of trolls by her, an archer, took out Marie… looks like Christine will need to change Evil Twin to Enemy!

Meanwhile, available now on drivethru are these two collections of stock art:

Goblinoids can be got for $4.99

and Evil Things for half that amount.

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It came from the 90’s

Recently, my DF game intersected with a theme from a  GURPS Horror game I ran for a few years. We had played a lot of 1920’s, using CoC sourcebooks but GURPS rules, and we also played a contemporary game.  The characters included an albino taxi driver and roadie who became a were python, an FBI agent, an illegal Irish building contractor, a dilettante millionaire, a used car salesman, and an agent of the Shop,  (the Office of Scientific Investigation, from Firestarter).  They dealt with things like a giant silverfish in the NYC subway tunnels, punk werewolves on angel dust, vampires (the millionaire eventually became one, and carried on along with a ghoul from the 1920’s game when we played a Horror/Cyberpunk game later on), but the major plot, drawn from an assortment of Settings books, like GURPS Cabal, came from ‘Investigative Journalist’ Maury Terry’s book about a conspiracy of drug dealers posing as serial killers and the intersect between the hallucinogen and snuff industries in the 1970’s, called The Ultimate Evil.

Our mixed bag of heroes started hunting someone they called The Visine Thief, and eventually called Lidless, who they thought was a serial killer.  He was killing a lot of people, and robbing Duane Reade’s of cases of artificial tears. A low level villian with a fridged girlfriend (Yes, a horrible trope. Thirty years ago, I was a horribly unaware person) who he had had to watch killed with his eyelids sliced off, he was hunting members of his former organization.  Terry had gathered the threads of his grand conspiracy from random clippings and interviews with Son of Sam, who he was convinced was a murderer, even a multiple murderer, but also a member of a psuedo satanic cult of drug dealers who coerced the members into murders which they filmed, and held power over by threats to kill their families. The proposed modus operandi of this group was to kill drug dealers who were holding out, and then off a bunch of people that looked like them so that the well funded narcotics squad wasn’t assigned the case, but that the understaffed and minimally experienced serial killer division was handed the work.  Multiple killers using the same gun further confounded things.

This conspiracy theory was tangled up with the suggestion that the Tate killings were related to the LSD trade, and that later traffic in ecstasy was handled by the same batch of goons, who lured members into their covens with drugs, then revealed the “truth” of a triumvirate of Yahweh, Lucifer, and Satan, which was itself a front for the drug and snuff film business.  Just wacky enough to support a kitchen sink of supernatural enemies entangled in a web of vice and death. It made for a good game.

How does any of this drift into Dungeon Fantasy? I have been making the primary enemies in the city/upper works of the megadungeon cultists of the elder gods masquerading as a demonic pleasure cult, and also a fertility cult tangled up with succubi.  Their attempts at parleying had them quoting talking points about autonomy and free will from the Satanic Church.

The posse of demon hunters accompanied by Kalima the four armed Celestial demon slayer and Benny Morales, a Dungeon Saint of Hermes, started combing through the brazen alley, an area where religious articles are made for devotion, but often by non-believers. There they encountered Aloysius the Undamned, an infernal friar of the One Holy Triunist Church, who has been Forgiven. While the Slayer wanted him dead, and caused a smoking wound with the tip of her Demon Slaying Spear, the others put him to the question and realized that he was actually good.  They also got a whiff of the above cult, when he described some heretics who indulged heavily in sacramental intoxicants.

Why do I have so many demon cults creeping about? It might be that I need non-undead opponents who can be freely dispatched, since so many of the commonly monstrous races are player character options, and are mostly just living their lives and not planning human massacres.

In this I have been ahead of WoTC’s disclaimer about the content of some of the seventies-eighties era games, with gender based ability score caps, and inclusion of proposals for clearing land and intimidating humanoids that were taken straight out of King Leopold’s playbook, and quoting Chivington’s “nits make lice” justification for genocide. The founding fathers of our games, while appreciate their combined creation of our hobby, were nowhere near as nice a bunch of guys as they thought themselves to be, and if you have fun playing through B2, it is something you need to keep in mind, just as you need to be aware of the content of Lovecraft’s personal letters and the name of his cat if you going to read his fiction.  Racism is an insidious thing, and is interlaced throughout the tropes of our cultural history. This doesn’t mean you need to burn books, but it does mean that you need to be a conscious consumer, or you will risk integrating some of that quiet content into your worldview. Know that it is there, and you have more choices.

Hellwalkers- Archaierai for DF

Recently, while exploring the Autumn gate from tge gates of the four seasons found in the temple of Janus, a group of holy warriors and a celestial cleric, along with a reluctant Bouda warrior, fought an import from the Fiend folio, an Archaierai, or as I renamed them,  Hellwalkers

Here are the stats I gave them:

SM +4, only legs attackable without missiles
St 30 dx 12 iq 11 ht 13
Hp 30 per 12 will 12 fp 16
Bs 6 mv 9 dodge 12 (-4)
DR on legs: 6 DR on body :2

Leg HP 15
Tongue HP 12

Hard to kill 2
Fragile, unnatural

I jury tolerance,  no neck
Injury resistant to non silver/magical weapons
Unkillable (tongue must be cut out to kill it)

Body vulnerable to crushing, +1D
Immune to met hazzards, resistant to fire/electricity
Bloodlust, bully, sadism, bad temper
Imperturbable, unfazeable, lifebane

Demon:truly evil, affected by banish and pentagram
Vulnerable to holy+1d
Claw 15 damage 3d impaling
Bite 15 damage: 3d cutting plus swallow on 6 or less
Sonic shriek 1fp, 15, does cone 10yds×4yds 3d sonic damage
When 3 legs are cut down, it belches out toxic smoke:
This is actually a toxifier demon!!!
Cutting its tongue usually has to be done in this cloud!
They are known to have 16+1 gemstones in their gizzards;
Their feathers can be used to enchant fans that cause air jet damage to diffuse beings like toxifiers

 

 

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Groty i Giganci and a farewell to the Ymid

I recently discovered another gaming product that used a great deal of my artwork, the Polish language Groty i Giganci written by Simon Piecha, and based on Swords & Wizardry Whitebox.

There is also a supplement available from the same source, also loaded with my artwork, called Osteria. I wish I could read them , the books are beautifully done.

Meanwhile, after several years of play by post gaming in my DFRPG game Northport over on rpol.net, the juniors group have finally said farewell to the Ymid. The Ymid was a creation of GarrisonJames, over at the blog Hereticwerks. After very loosely assisting in the destruction of a demonic shop, (the Ymid, being an elder thing, is both curious and indifferent to their cause, but did help convert one of the PC’s into a Cultist of the Elder Gods, armed with gate spells that helped them shut down the shop).

They had just helped the Ymid rebuild his floating skiff, which had been crushed by a dhole exiting the gate from the Vale of Pnath… The skiff was powered by a lead acid battery that stimulated four pig hearts to circulate a gallon of flying porions through a series of bladders and arteries built into the frame of the skiff, and the outer ring had millions of cockroach wings under it to provide both a creepy hum, and some ability for steering.

They had paid for the flying potions by selling a Yr-go to an alchemist (the monocular fungal creation had grown from an eye snatched from one of the Vejovian cultists the group’s priest had following them around, leaving Pierre the One Eyed victim to strange visions and dreams), along with a chunk of bile covered gold the Yhad given them from a dead gods gallbladder it used as a purse.

I even had them rescue the Ymid from a giant spiderweb, just like in Clatterdelve, and at the same time, one of the PC’s got a giant spider familiar.

Starica Babicka and more Warlockery

hag ss

My crew of feybloods who are busy fighting a group of armband wearing racial supremacists (because I am far from apolitical) recently had made a side trip into a swamp to meet a hag. They did so because of a critical failure on Faerie Lore, but got a little information about the workings of the Winter Court.

Surprise, the Summer Court is deeply into the lives of mortals (Most Feybloods exist for a reason) but the Winter Court is only disinterested in them. Mortals scarcely matter to most of those fey. However, a faction that is offended by the “Dilution of pure fey bloodlines” is involved in glamouring small minded humans to act antagonistically against those different from themselves.  If it were true in our world, a circle of iron could put an end to racism, but here we are, in a world where we cannot blame otherworldly creatures for our own expressions of hatred.

Here is the local ruler of the swamps east of Northport, Starica (Strega) Babicka, assorted Folk tales of Baba Yaga, and a bit of Dolmenwood, as filtered through GURPS: Fairie, Lloyd Alexander and Charle De Lint.

 

Starica Babicka

Hag fairie, strong 

ST:16 [60] DX: 13 [60] IQ: 14 [80] HT:13 [30]

HP: 16 [0] Per: 14/16 [0] Will [14] FP:13*25

Bs: 7.5 MV: 7 Dodge:11 Oar Parry:12

DR: 2 SM +1 (0)

Oar (16) 2d+4 cutting or crushing.

Claw (15) 1d+2 crushing

Bite (15) 1d-1 cutting;can unhinge jaw and swallow SM-2 or smaller on a critical success.

 

Advantages:

Winter court rank 2 [10] Differential smell [15]

Acute sense of smell+2 [4],  Enhanced magic resistance +4 [20]

Magery 4 [45] Energy reserve +12 [36] Terror(switcheable) [33]

Injury Tolerance (except to meteoric iron, magical weapons and fire) [30]

Hard to kill +2 [4] Hard to Subdue +2 [4] DR 2 [6]

 

Disadvantages:

Code of honor, fae [-10] cannot harm innocents [-10] Jealous [-10]

Stubborn [-5] Odious Personal Habit: eats sentients (only bad children) [-15]

Vulnerable to meteoric iron (1d) [-10]

 Quirks:

easily offended, suspicious, Likes riddles,Avoids full sunlight,

fond of frogs as food (they test their bravery by seeing how long they can stay in reach of her), 

SKILLS:

Staff 16 [12]

Polearm 16 [12]

Brawling 15 [4]

Wrestling 15 [8]

Area knowledge, swamp 15 [4]

Current events, faerie court 14 [1]

Savoir faire, faerie court 14* [1]

Hidden Lore, Faeries 17 [12]

Naturalist 18 [20]

Survival, wetlands -15 [2]

Natural Philosophy 18 [20]

Thaumatology 18 [8]

Alchemy 16 [16]

Herb lore 16 [12]]

Occultism 16 [8]

Dungeon butcher 16 [8]

Fishing 14 [1]

Boating 15 [8]

Cooking 16 [8]

 

Spells:

All at 16:  Alarm, nightingale, mystic mist, the entire plant college; much of the Animal college (communication spells),seek, shape, create +3 more in all four elements, most food and illusion spells, 

All at 20:  Curse, perfect illusion, illusion disguise, dispell magic, missile shield, magelock, create object, mystic mark, recover energy, Sense life, sense foes, resist fire.

 

She travels in a leather corracle that she can sling over her shoulder(it changes size from a yard to three yards wide, is waterproof,  fireproof, has DR 10 and self repairs),

and uses a carved oar (dragonbone staff/poleaxe) With which she has 16 skill and gives her 10 fp as a power item.

 

Now the cluster of 125 point characters would have been no match for her if she had been angry, but they placated her with honeycomb found with a Survival roll and a meat pie purchased in the market, even with the handful of hazelnuts that granted beast speech…

warlockery

Meanwhile, Ruby Fire Games has put out  a bunch of supplements for Warlock! that are all full of my artwork, and have some wicked good ideas on handling corruption from spellcasting (all magic in Warlock comes from pacts with demons) and has rules for elves, dwarves, and halflings and cool things like a Hand of Glory.

You can get a look at the main book for warlock here.

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Do some good and donate to end racism in our world

 

 

Gaming in a time of plague

I work in a major New York hospital, and things are pretty horrible for a lot of people. My family was very lucky with our brush with this thing, generally very light cases, although my wife and eldest had worse versions of it than I did. I used my time in quarantine to finish writing up a game, and my return to work has humbled me in the face of the monumental task that nurses have caring for these critically ill patients. I am grateful for my health, for even breathing.

The game I wrote is an Odysseys and Overlords version of an adventureI have mentioned previously, set in my home campaign, in the city of Northport.

I have been working on this setting for about 18 years in different versions of GURPS, and because I am not Douglas Cole, and do not have a license for GURPS material, I am releasing it in a system with an OGL. One of the primary conceits, as mentioned previously came from one of my favorite Dragon Magazines, number 138. This had to do with a campaign set in a post plague world, which for me gave a twist on the borderlands idea; it is not the colonial border of human lands and an inhabited land to be conquered, but the edge of the remnant of a semi-collapsed civilization, adjacent to places depopulated by fatal sickness, and chock full of under maintained ruins, still full of treasure, where the remaining inhabitants are beset by banditry and an unchecked level of monstrous incursions.

When I wrote a lot of Northport, I designed a dungeon under a city that was full of mass graves of plague victims that had become undead due to improper burial, I had not conceived of the reality of the same thing (minus the undead) happening now, to patients I knew and had worked with. The concept hits me a lot harder, and fills me with sadness.

The idea of a rat borne plague has featured in the other gaming products I have written; in both Beneath the Fallen Tower, and in Northport, it spread because available adventurers were doing mercenary work in local wars, and no one was left to chase the rats out of an innkeeper’s cellar.

Meanwhile, as the need to engage social distancing to save our lives prohibits actual tabletop play, my preferred method of gaming, play by post, works as well as it ever has, although there is a hell of a lot less downtime at work to post.

It fells awkward having the pretend issues of my game suddenly become relevant in real life; gaming is supposed to be an escape.

Be safe out there people.

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Tiger King

Like most of you, I spent some of quarantine watching stories on netflix that were so sensational that they bordered on fiction… here are some somewhat fictional versions of those larger than life characters.

As a disclaimer, a relative of mine once owned a roadside attraction in Florida, featuring retired circus animals

Joe Exotic

ST 9 DX 11 IQ 12 HT 12

Adv:

10 Ally group (workers)

5 Ally Partner

5 versatile

10 Animal Empathy

20 a wealth of Tigers

10 Charisma+2

Dis:

-4 Unattractive

-10 Struggling

-5 Overconfident

-5 obsession: Carole Baskin

-10 Miserly

-5 Selfish

-10 Enemy: Carole Baskin

Q

flamboyant, with tattoos and piercings;

likes to blow shit up; jealous of attention;

substance abuse; bad leg

Skills

Animal handling 14

Vetrinary 12

First Aid 12

Psychology tigers 12

Physiology tigers 10

Performance 13

Singing 13

Leadership 11

Politics 10

Propaganda 10

Sex Appeal 12

Fast talk 14

Carousing 12

Guns: pistol 13

Semi auto 12

Demolition 13

Driving 10

Drive ATV 11

Carole Baskin

ST 10 DX 11 IQ 13 HT 11

Adv:

8 beautiful

50 Millionaire

5 Ally:Peta

10 Ally group

5 Higher Purpose: Save the Tigers

20 wealth of tigers

10 reputation+2 as friend to Animals

Dis

-5 obsession: Joe Exotic

-5 enemy: Joe Exotic

-20 Secret (murderer)

-5 overconfidence

-10 sense of duty to animals in captivity

Q

-petty, cheap, wears flower garland,

loves to ride her bike on the grounds,

wears animal prints

Sklls:

Animal handling 12

Psychology tigers 12

Public speaking 14

Acting 13

Politics 12

Performance 11

Leadership 12

Propaganda 15

Sex appeal 14

Forensics 12

bicycle 12

Doc Antle

ST 11 DX 11 IQ 13 HT 11

Adv:

4 Attractive

15 Charisma+3

Will+1

30 very wealthy

20 wealth of tigers and other exotics

5 flexible

10 rep+2 as excellent animal handler

10 ally group

10 animal empathy

Dis:

-15 Lecherous

-20 megalomania

-5 professional code of honor

-5 disciplines of faith

-5 sense of duty to his animals

-pony tail, considers himself a spiritual leader,

controlling, extravagant,has all his women get

breast implants

Skills:

Performance 13

Sex appeal 16

Public speaking 15

Leadership 15

Intimidation 16

Psychology 12

animal handling 18

Veterinary 14

Physiology great cats 12

Breath control 14

Meditation 15

Sexual arts 12

Philosophy 12

Riding, Elephant 12

Mario

ST 11 DX 12 IQ 12 HT 12

Adv:

10 abundance of animals

10 animal Empathy

10 charisma+2

10 comfortable

Dis:

-5 social stigma: criminal

-5 callous

-5 Overconfident

-5 loves tigers

-10 bad temper

-10 bully

-5 pirate’s code of honor

-5 Reputation as brutal drug trafficker

Q -truthful

Skills:

Smuggling 13

Streetwise 14

Pharmacy 13

Intimidation 16

Guns 12

Knife 12

Brawling 12

Wrestling 11

Forensics 10

Fast talk 12

Sex appeal 13

carousing 14

Animal Handling 15

Vetrinary 12

Demons and Patrons in Basic Era Games

I am working on converting both my adventure Beneath the Fallen Tower and the Redoubt of Hades from GURPS (because I don’t have a license) to BFRPG (in particul;ar my publisher’s variant Odysseys and Overlords) and OSE.  BFRPG is very easy to pick up; it was designed as a quick and cheap starter game that anyone could immediately pick up and play. Old School Essentials is an elegant and accurate re-framing of B/X D&D. A circumstance I have discovered is that while my games feature a lot of summonable creatures, infernal, celestial, and elder entities, BX has no such thing.

Literally, in addition to the menagerie a couple of the druids are porting in, the Necromancers accompanied by the spirits of their ancestors, and the earth priest with his pet elemental, there is a character with elder thing power investiture from an otherworldly sorcerer that keeps rolling insanely good reaction rolls, a wildly talented bureaucrat who summoned a celestial demonslayer, and another player who has a hellhound, demonic servant,  and ‘Spirtitual adviser’. It is a lot.

Neither old school game system has any spells for summoning,  which makes things less of a headache for the DM, and generally kept these editions from triggering Satanic Panic responses, but they do have devices for summoning elementals and both djinn and efreet. Therefore, I propose items for summoning other extradimensional entities, perhaps graded for the HD of what they summon, 1d12 HD, with lemures, larvae, or manes at the low end, and a demon lordling at the high end, and an extra chance for getting something higher level.

   Brazier of Extraplanar Summoning

brazier

This iron or bronze brazier, incised with runes and chased with enamels or silver inlay , is inscribed with the name of a being from a nearby dimension. Any item of this type is good for summoning that singular being, for a period of up to one hour, and can be used no more than 6 times per owner.  For any given brazier, roll 1d12, and on a roll of 12, roll an additional d8. The total number rolled is the HD of the creature that can be  summoned by performing a ritual with the brazier as the central feature, involving candles and diagrams on the floor. The creature summoned may be of any alignment, and this can be determined by random die roll.  The summonee must perform a service for the summoner, but may make a save vs spells (minus the summoner’s wisdom bonus, if any) to resist. Braziers are worth 1000 GP per HD summonable.

Now, you can find game stats for any sort of extradimensional being in most advanced rulebooks, and in a variety of blogs ( such as Hereticwerks  where I got the Ymid from), but if you want to keep B/X formatting, I can recommend New Big Dragon’s Fifty Fiends (available on Drivethrurpg for only a buck!)

And for that matter, you can get a bunch of neat pictures of demons from me too!

(Or from Jeremy Hart )

And now that demons are in play, what about patrons? DCC did this excellently, but here I have

20 answers to the question: What does your warlock’s patron want in exchange for power?

1 to spread chaos! Go out there and blow shit up!

2 to be entertained.  They are bored, and find your actions interesting…until they don’t.

3 to be amused. They find the supplicant ridiculous, even pathetic. 

4 to annoy a rival, by showing them up with their own fancy minions.

5 to annoy a rival, by encouraging the destruction of their (equally) nefarious plan.

6 to spread their own influence; use of their powers tags an area with their signature,  the entity with the most tags wins something, as if our world was a boardgame to them.

7 to manifest themselves in our world; the more their power is used, the greater their ability to enter our plane.

8 to void excess energy that is causing them etheric indigestion. 

9 to silence your yapping. You are annoying, but not yet worth the bother of destroying.

10 to alleviate the irritation of the sense of debt; the entity cannot tolerate supplication without response; it itches.

11 to appease their sense of vanity. They desire worship.

12 to appease their curiosity. Whatever will the minion do with a little power.

13 to appease their hunger. Blood and Souls!

14 to appease their hunger. Only creatures empowered by and flavored like them can fulfill their hideous appetites

15 to appease their unnatural lust. Only creatures empowered and flavored like them can fulfill their hideous appetites.

16 to better observe our plane. Buying a pair of eyes is cheaper than actually manifesting.

17 to relieve their aching loneliness. Being immortal makes it hard to keep friends.

18 to pay a gambling debt. The being is making the pact because of an unfortunate forfeiture on a wager.

19 to pay back a favor. The summoning and binding spells are vestiges of an ancient promise made to someone who liberated the being from imprisonment, and then forgot that they were still active.

20 to be left alone. Power is cast out to deflect contact.

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Marginalia and a few products I like

Following a Black Friday sale of 80% of all of my gear on Drivethru that netted me my largest payday from OBS (just imagine if that stuff was full price!) I released a bundle of small filler art. I enjoyed the process so much, I may do more of these.

marginalia cover

The inspiration comes from a couple of places; Sergio Argonne’s border cartoons in Mad Magazine, medieval manuscript illuminated filler, and these panels of adventurers by David C. Sutherland  III from the DMG

sergioilluminated marginaliadmg delver artTo that end, I have included some of my staple characters, the thief from my first Character stock art is here climbing a rope, and the elf and knight stumbling upon the secret door in Dungeon Scenes 1 are now climbing a mountain.  I will definitely be building more of these scenes.

fathoms below pic

A friend of mine released a water based setting for 5e on DM’s Guild called Fathoms Below that I thought was pretty good. It has a nice backstory (Tritons took over a Sahugin fort, and built it into a starfish shaped major trading city, full of intrigue, with an anchored flotilla of rafts directly above, where your air breathers can live, if they are not in some of the domes below. There are some tongue in cheek character backgrounds that pay homage to the Little Mermaid without getting too campy. All too often water based adventures are shunted into auxiliary rules dependent on magic items, and in this case, while there are limits on what surface characters can do, there are a plethora of underwater races (the ones that aren’t new have to be found in other rulebooks, WoTC doesn’t let you quote whole slabs of character abilities), including the usual suspects like sea elves and mermen, along with jellyfish and octopus folk. The variety was surprising, and I recomend the book, along with its  supplement .

As usual, when contemplating GURPSifying races from other games, the huge cost of things like Amphibious, Extra Limbs and Flexible make things like half octopus characters dreadfully expensive, but that is one of the things I like about point buy systems; it costs more to be exotic and powerful up front, rather than using level limits or added XP cost – neither of those methods address starting level character balance, and adding a racial template of assorted boni to a fully fleshed out class template results in a more costly one; building the racial template into the class template (by 86ing other advantage options) results in a character who might be less than starting equivalent for others of their template -DF’s 250 point base builds characters with a rough equivalence to 5th-8th level AD&D characters, and dropping in a 25 point racial template makes you almost a level lower. Most of the PC races are in the 20 point range, but some (mostly those infused with the supernatural) cost 75 points, making them relatively weaker when compared to characters built as human.

 

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