Thursday, April 28, 2011
My latest haul from Noble Knight Games....
Eager to try out my latest catch, I rolled up my first Tunnels & Trolls character for his turn in the Arena of Khazan...
Z'al Baaz (Human/Warrior)
ST 10 CON 7
IQ 10 DEX 11
LK 11 CHR 9
Personal Adds (Melee): +/-0
Ht: 6'1" / Wt. 200 lbs
Z'al was captured by slavers and sold to the arena... his story to follow.
Saturday, April 23, 2011
My own dice bowl...
need to find a better way to cut the felt - mine is not quite circular.
Thursday, April 21, 2011
So I fell off the bandwagon...
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
April A to Z: J is for Just Because...
Monday, April 11, 2011
April A to Z: I is for Imagery
From "The Charnel God" by C.A. Smith (can be found here).
From "Gods of the North" (aka: "The Frost Giant's Daughter") by R.E. Howard (can be found here).
Saturday, April 9, 2011
April A to Z: H is for Humanoids
Beast-Men: Beast men are genetic experiments from ages past that have survived and reproduced on their own in the wild. They are creatures of chaos, and they carry a hatred for humanity in their hearts for their miserable lot in life. They are represented by the stats for Gnolls from the Holmes edition. They are mostly animal headed (not restricted to dogs or jackals - could be goats, cats, etc) fur-covered humanoids. They are usually encountered in the Desert of the Dead Gods, though a few tribes have ventured farther afield to raid human and Sumalhi settlements. They rely on their thick hide for armor, though a few may scavenge armor taken from the dead. They fight with any weapons they can get their hands on. Each tribe has a shaman that leads them in their worship of ATUM'BOM the god of chaos and destruction of humanity.
Mutants: Mutants are the surviving members of humanity that were trapped in radiation filled zones after the collapse of the ancients. Their mutations stabilized after a few generations and were passed on to each surviving generation that followed. They are represented by Goblins, Orcs, Hobgoblins, Bugbears, and Ogres in my world. For every 20 encountered (regardless of type) one will be a "Wild Mutant", these wild mutants will have 1d6 unstable mutations (these can be determined by choosing spell effects to apply to the mutant or using your favorite Gamma World type game to generate a mutation for them). These mutants live in nomadic tribal groups, and some have ranged far beyond the Desert of the Dead Gods and may be encountered in practically any terrain. Some even reside in the slummier quarters of Ugarit and other city-states. They are treated as second class citizens by all however, which causes much resentment amongst the mutants. A recent cult (started by human sympathizers and lead by human high-priests) is very popular among the mutants, the Cult of CA'AMERKU the Avenger. This cult has inspired many mutants to rebel at their status in society and has caused some recent riots and violence in the upper city of Ugarit.
Friday, April 8, 2011
April A to Z: G is for Gnomes
The Gnomes (called the Sumalhi in my game) reside in the foothills west of Ugarit in houses carved into the steep, rocky hillsides. They stand just under 4 feet tall with ruddy brown complexions and stark white hair (no beards). They are of slender builds and average under 120 pounds. Their eyes are black and pupil-less. They are decent fighters and especially resistant to magic (+4 to saves vs. magic) They have normal eyesight and no "infravison", though they can detect slanting passages, slopes, traps, shifting walls, and new construction 1/3 of the time underground. In addition They are renown healers and are adept herbalists, a Sumalhi can cast heal light wounds once per day (this is treated as an innate ability and not a spell). They advance as Fighting Men.
The Sumalhi were an ancient star-faring race before the time of isolation and a colony was founded on this planet during the height of Human Space.
In my game the Sumalhi will replace Dwarves as player characters.
Thursday, April 7, 2011
April A to Z: F is for Fane of the Ebon Drake
The cult of the Ebon Drake has cleared out the adjoining halls to this cavern for use as their temple headquarters. It is here that the High-Priest Arkon resides. There is an abundant guard here as well to ensure none but cult members have access to this area.
The cave itself is home to DYR'KON the Black Dragon. He is a ancient, old drake (over 200 years old) and very intelligent. He allows the cult to reside here as they have proven useful in bringing him slaves and virgins to eat. In his old bloated form he is not eager to venture forth for his meals (though do not take this as a sign of weakness as he is still a cunning dragon). He has not ventured forth from his cave for near a decade now, and most folk think he has died (and believe the cult to be charlatans).
Wandering Monster Encounters Near the Fane of the Ebon Drake
1: Giant Crocodiles (only in natural caves near water)
2-4: Temple Guards (3d6)
5-7: Temple Acolytes (2d4) with Temple Guards (2d4)
8-9: Temple Priest (2nd level) with (2d4) Temple Acolytes
10: Hight Priest Arkon (3rd level) with 12 Temple Guards
Hight Priest Arkon (Cleric 3rd level, HP: 13, AC: 6, Spells: 2 1st level) He has leather armor and a ring of protection +1, a +1 dagger (called the Fang of Dyr'kon), and a scroll with Hold Person.
Temple Priests & Acolytes have 1 or 2 HD, and AC 7 as well with leather armor and daggers.
Temple Guards (Move 120'/turn, HD 1d6, HP 4, AC 7) Each has leather armor and short sword.
DYR'KON the Ebon Drake
Move: 90'/turn or 240'/turn Flying
Attacks: Breath or 2 claws / 1 Bite
Damage: 1d6 claw, 4d6 bite or Acid 60'x'5 cone
(Note: My mission here is to use ONLY the Holmes Edition as a complete game, so no characters above 3rd level. Spells above 2nd level are only available via scrolls.)
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
April A to Z: E is for Encounter Tables
Monday, April 4, 2011
April A to Z: D is for Desert of the Dead Gods & The Lack of Demihumans
The city of Ugarit rests on the western edge of the Narrow Sea at the foot of the Sumalhi Hills. Beyond the Sumalhi hills lies the vast plain of the Desert of the Dead Gods. The land here was once the prosperous and vibrant land where the ancients had vast cities that dotted the plain. Now the plain is sun baked and fire blasted by weapons in ages lost to history. These weapons laid cities to waste and turned some areas of the land into black baked glass. The area is now home to numerous nomadic bands of mutants and beast-men who were rumored to be the slaves of the ancients. Few are brave or adventurous enough to explore these lands, but it is rumored that the ruins are littered with artifacts and treasures of the ancients that once lived here.
Encounters in the Desert of the Dead Gods:
1: Wild Dogs (3d12)
2: Ghouls (2d10)
3-5: Nomadic Tribe* (3d100)
6: Iron Golem (1)
7: Band of Adventurers** (3d4)
8: Giant Spitting Snake (1d3)
9: Giant Ants (2d100)
10-11: Giant Scorpions (2d4)
12: Blink Dogs (3d6)
*The Nomadic tribes will be either:
1-3: Mutant Humanoids (use the following creatures as the tribe members: Goblins, Bugbears, Hobgoblins, and Ogres - these are mutated humans or experiments of the ancients, their true origin is not known).
4-6: Beast-Men (use Gnolls as beast-men stats - the Beast-men are jackal headed humanoids that hunt the Desert of the Dead Gods looking for slaves and treasures).
**The Band of adventurers will be composed of the following:
2d4 Fighting Men
1d3 Clerics or Draala (1-2 = human cleric, 3 = draala)
2d6 Slaves / Porters carrying equipment
The Ugarit campaign while using the Holmes edition and the Monster Manual, does NOT use Elves, Halflings, and Dwarves. Nor does it use any of the standard monster races (well not by name anyway). Some new character races will be introduced as substitutes for these races.
I will use the Draala (a very familiar race to players of Star Frontiers) in my game - this race was described in detail in the latest issue of Fight On! #11 written by Jason Vasche.
April A to Z: C is for Cults of Ugarit
There are many more cults than what I have described here but I provide a sample of some of the cults vying for control of Ugarit and the under-city.
Cult of Yamm – As mentioned in my “B” entry, the cult of Yamm is a very active (and aggressive) cult in the under-city. Yamm is the god of primordial chaos and represents the power of the sea, untamed and raging. His cult thrives on violence and are the most feared cult in the city. They have no presence in the above ground city of Ugarit as the other cults banded together to abolish their temple years ago, but they thrive in the under-city where it is much harder to root out secret temples. The priests of Yamm are not restricted to any melee weapons, however they cannot use missile weapons as they are seen as weak and unworthy of use.
Cult of the Ebon Wyrm – This cult reveres an ancient black dragon rumored to lair deep within the under-city. Some cult members make pilgrimages to the lower levels once a year in hopes of receiving special blessings from the fabled drake. Most cult members wear dark hooded cloaks and carry wicked curved daggers as a symbol of the wyrm’s fangs. Priests of the Ebon Wyrm cult can make use of short swords, daggers, and short bows in addition to clubs and maces.Cult of the Virgin Spear - This cult reveres Anat the War Goddess. The followers of Anat are all females and must remain virgins until they have killed their first man in combat. So the cult of the Virgin Spear is composed of all the virgin followers of Anat that have yet to kill in battle. The priests of the Virgin Spear are able to use both spears and short swords in combat.
Saturday, April 2, 2011
April A to Z: B is for Berserkers of Yamm
A band of Berserkers of Yamm will typically number between 6-36 members, anytime a band of 12 or more are encountered, they will be lead by an Acolyte of Yamm (a 1st or 2nd level cleric, roll d6, 1-4 1st level, 5-6 2nd level). These acolytes will also have dyed hair and green stained hands (though their stains are from administering the Yazeem to their party rather than ingesting it themselves). Most often these bands are out hunting out other cults or searching for slaves.
Berserker of Yamm
Move: 240 feet/turn
Hit Dice: 1d8+1 hit point
Armor Class: 9
Treasure: 3d8 coppers
Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Damage: By weapon
Acolyte of Yamm (1st level)
Move: 120 feet/turn
Hit Dice: 1d6
Armor Class: 7
Treasure: 3d8 silver
Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Damage: By Weapon
Acolyte of Yamm (2nd level)
Move: 120 feet/turn
Hit Dice: 2d6
Armor Class: 7
Treasure: 3d6 gold
Alignment: Chaotic Evil
Damage: By Weapon
Magic: 1 1st level spell
Friday, April 1, 2011
April A to Z: A is for Acolytes of Ugarit
For my first installment of A to Z April, I present to you six NPC clerics for the Holmes edition of my Ugarit setting. These clerics could be potential allies or adversaries in the ancient-under city of Ugarit. The ancient under-city has numerous temples to the various cults found within the city walls of Ugarit. Each cult vies for control of more and more territory of the under-city. There are priceless artifacts from the forgotten age hidden amongst the ruins of the ancient city.
The city of Ugarit has been inhabited since the time of founding some 60,000 years ago and has survived massive devastation and countless empires only to be built again atop the ruins. There are many layers to the under-city each inhabited by cults and creatures that have retreated from the blinding sun of the arid world above.
AKKOR - Acolyte of Hadad (1st Level Cleric)
[STR 16, INT 8, CON 9, WIS 12, DEX 6, CHA 13, AC 6, HP 5]
Equipment: Leather armor, shield, mace, small pouch containing 14gp, small vial of holy water in leather pouch worn around his neck.
Akkor is a brute of a man, though slow witted and fat, he is as strong as a bull and easy to get along with. He enjoys a good laugh and can drink most under the table.
BASHERA - Acolyte of Anat (1st Level Cleric)
[STR 11, INT 10, CON 13, WIS 14, DEX 9, CHA 9, AC 4, HP 5]
Equipment: Mail, shield, mace, small pouch containing 6gp, copper arm band worn as symbol of martial strength on right arm
Bashera is a fiercely independent priestess of Anat the war goddess. She thrives on violence and likes to compose poetry of her battle glories to recite afterwards. She takes offense at those who mock or scoff her poetry. When not fighting or working on poetry, she tends to be quiet and sullen. Bashera is tall and fair.
JESHEM - Acolyte of Yamm (1st Level Cleric)
[STR 10, INT 14, CON 8, WIS 13, DEX 11, CHA 7, AC 7, HP 4]
Equipment: Leather armor, club, small pouch with 12gp, dagger, small holy symbol* worn on leather thong around neck
*The holy symbol of Yamm is a round, bronze disk with a wave symbol cutting through the center (~).
Jeshem is a wicked, cunning young priest. He has a keen eye for potential slaves and will not hesitate to take those he considers weak and sell them into slavery. He is somewhat paranoid and will trust no one fully. (Nor should they trust him!) Jeshem is short, lean, and wiry. As is the custom for cultists of Yamm, Jeshem’s hair is dyed green as his is short-cropped beard.
NYKO – Acolyite of Ea (2nd Level Cleric)
[STR 8, INT 14, CON 9, WIS 14, DEX 8, CHA 11, AC 9, HP 8]
Spells: 1 1st level spell
Equipment: no armor, small pouch containing 16gp, copper wrist band, wooden staff carved with cuneiform script (as symbol of Ea, go of knowledge)
Nyko is an aloof, sage-like priest. His knowledge is immense as is his ego. He can recite histories, poems, and sagas of all cultures and religions. He is tall, lean and bald.
TULEK – Acolyte of Shalim (2nd Level Cleric)
[STR 10, INT 9, CON 13, WIS 11, DEX 13, CHA 8, AC 7, HP 10]
Spells: 1 1st level spell
Equipment: Leather armor, hooded cloak, club, small pouch containing 14gp, copper ring with onyx stone (worth 5gp, symbol of Shalim god of Dusk).
Tulek is a man of little words. His devotion to Shalim (god of Dusk and Assassins) has given him the skills to work quickly and quietly. He is small, and of dark hair and complexion.
ULMAC – Acolyte of Ashima (2nd Level Cleric)
[STR 10, INT 10, CON 9, WIS 17, DEX 10, CHA 12, AC 7, HP 9]
Spells: 1 1st level spell
Equipment: Leather armor, club, small pouch containing 10gp, 2 knuckle bone dice in leather pouch worn on thong around his neck.
Ulmac is a boisterous, jolly soul. He casts his dice (fates) for those that ask (and that supply him a few coppers for his troubles). He is quick to point out that Ashima is fickle and nothing is carved in stone until it has come to pass. He is tall and barrel chested with a bald head and red beard.
The pdf of these NPCs can be found here and in my download sidebar.