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Thursday, August 16, 2018

20 Questions for the Kingdom of Ostschild

So I started another D&D campaign. Lost Atlantis is still going, but not as often as I'd like, so I co-opted the members of my local board game group into playing an RPG, so far so good, we're 8 or 9 sessions in now I think. It's been every Tuesday evening since at least mid June, and one Saturday prior to that. Anyway, I developed an entirely different setting for them, the fictitious medieval European kingdom of Ostschild, and eastern member state of the Holy Roman empire.

Here are the 20 Questions and their answers -

1. What is the deal with my cleric's religion?

He's probably Catholic (Latin Rite Christian), possibly some sort of heretic; unless he's Chaotic, then he's either a heretic, a heathen or a satanist.

2. Where can we go to buy standard equipment?

Lenz will get you anything on the equipment list, smaller towns have a chance.

3. Where can we go to get platemail custom fitted for this monster I just befriended?

It seems unlikely this will happen at all, but if it does, it'll be in Lenz, but it won't be cheap.


4. Who is the mightiest wizard in the land?

The Elf-King is, by far, the mightiest sorcerer alive. As far as Humans go? Probably Ambrosius, the court wizard of King Adalbert the friendly.


5. Who is the greatest warrior in the land?

The greatest in status is certainly Sir Heinrich von Bayern, Grandmaster of the order of the Knights of Charlemagne.


6. Who is the richest person in the land?

Probably one of the Guildmasters of Vecht, they are wealthy traders in that town.


7. Where can we go to get some magical healing?

Any large town has Priests capable of miraculous healing.

8. Where can we go to get cures for the following conditions: poison, disease, curse, level drain, lycanthropy, polymorph, alignment change, death, undeath?

Only the Archbishop of Lenz could effect such miracles.


9. Is there a magic guild my MU belongs to or that I can join in order to get more spells?

No, but there are said to be secret societies of sorcerers.


10. Where can I find an alchemist, sage or other expert NPC?

Definitely Lenz, Maybe Thira, Froli, Rota or Vecht.


11. Where can I hire mercenaries?

Definitely Lenz, Maybe Thira, Froli, Rota or Vecht. Sometime other towns, occasionally you'll meet them on the road.


12. Is there any place on the map where swords are illegal, magic is outlawed or any other notable hassles from Johnny Law?

Noblemen and Knights have the right to bear arms and the power to mete justice, their retainers and those so appointed by them also can commonly carry weapons. Peasants often carry simple weapons just because of the nature of the area of the kingdom of Ostschild.


13. Which way to the nearest tavern?

Proper taverns or inns only exist in large towns, most peasant villages will have someone that has a batch of ale ready to drink though, and you can usually pay a few coins to spend the night in their hovels, or share a meal with them. Sometimes a nobleman will put up travelers in his own manor house for some coin, and you can eat in the kitchen. Unless you have high enough status (knighthood at a minimum), then they'll put you up for free and feed you too.


14. What monsters are terrorizing the countryside sufficiently that if I kill them I will become famous?

The Elf-King and his wife the Queen of Air and Darkness lead hordes intermittently out of their lands and down the Golden way.


15. Are there any wars brewing I could go fight?

Not specifically in Ostschild at the moment, but the holy war against the Elf-King is a dominant theme here.


16. How about gladiatorial arenas complete with hard-won glory and fabulous cash prizes?

Tournaments with jousting are becoming quite popular, usually they include a foot melee too. The prizes are pretty good, but the losing can be costly.


17. Are there any secret societies with sinister agendas I could join and/or fight?

Yes, several. The Cult of Chaos is always a threat. There are rumors of other secret societies.


18. What is there to eat around here?

Cabbages, turnips, onions, carrots. Pork, beef, mutton, goat, goose, duck, chicken, eggs from any fowl. Wild game from venison to boar to rabbit. Lots of sausages, it's a good way to keep organ meats and blood from going bad.


19. Any legendary lost treasures I could be looking for?

The lost treasure of Attila seems pretty legendary.


20. Where is the nearest dragon or other monster with Type H treasure?

They're out there, just keep looking


Any other questions?

Thursday, March 8, 2018

20 Questions for Lost Atlantis



  1. What is the deal with my cleric's religion?
    Your Cleric worships a pantheon of gods, although he might be more dedicated to one, such as the Special Priest of Jupiter, this isn't monotheism, all of the gods are important.
  2. Where can we go to buy standard equipment?
    Neptune City is it right now. It is currently the only civilized settlement on the entire continent.
  3. Where can we go to get platemail custom fitted for this monster I just befriended?
    Neptune City again.
  4. Who is the mightiest wizard in the land?
    Chief Arcanist Quintus Flavonius Dava, attached to the headquarters of the 9th Legion (Legio IX).
  5. Who is the greatest warrior in the land?
    Currently it's looking like Tiberius Virius Congrio, Dwarf, Veteran of the 31st Legion, current riverine explorer.
  6. Who is the richest person in the land?
    Tough to say, but most likely the Proconsular Governor of Atlantis province, Gaius Quinctius Flamininus.
  7. Where can we go to get some magical healing?
    The temple of Neptune Atlantis, near the port is your best bet, although the temple of Mars and Bellona in the forum is popular with soldiers.
  8. Where can we go to get cures for the following conditions: poison, disease, curse, level drain, lycanthropy, polymorph, alignment change, death, undeath?
    Currently your only chance here is going to be the temple of Neptune Atlantis.
  9. Is there a magic guild my MU belongs to or that I can join in order to get more spells?
    The Ordo Arcanum is the most common place to learn the arcane arts. They maintain libraries in most major cities in the empire, and have a school in Alexandria.
  10. Where can I find an alchemist, sage or other expert NPC?
    Pickings are slim in Neptune City right now, and it's your only shot, but more people are arriving every day.
  11. Where can I hire mercenaries?
    Neptune City, but there aren't any real organized bands there (yet), just individuals willing to sell their swords, or occasionally a small band of friends. They are all mostly legionary or auxiliary veterans, former gladiators or just desperate men willing to do what they can to strike it rich.
  12. Is there any place on the map where swords are illegal, magic is outlawed or any other notable hassles from Johnny Law?
    Not yet, currently it's the pre-Wyatt Earp old west here.
  13. Which way to the nearest tavern?
    Tenkar's is right inside the west gate, on the south side of the gate. It's the most popular with explorers and treasure hunters currently. Ferria's is just off the docks and is popular with sailors and dockworkers. The “Golden Goose” is at the foot of Patrician's Hill, and is popular with the wealthy.
  14. What monsters are terrorizing the countryside sufficiently that if I kill them I will become famous?
    Currently rumors fly of a Giant Crocodile near the area being cleared by the municipal slaves.
  15. Are there any wars brewing I could go fight?
    No, not just yet.
  16. How about gladiatorial arenas complete with hard-won glory and fabulous cash prizes?
    Absolutely, there is an arena in Jupiter City, across from the olive grove, and a Gladiator School (Ludus Gladiatorum) has opened near the south gate, next to the Spanish quarter.
  17. Are there any secret societies with sinister agendas I could join and/or fight?
    There are more factions in the empire than you can shake a stick at, the most reviled secret faction is the Temple of Set. The most admired is the Ordo Aquila. Neither are proven to actually exist, because they are secret societies, but the rumors and lore surrounding them make for compelling conspiracy theories.
  18. What is there to eat around here?
    Mostly fish and other seafood, and grain products. Almost all of the food in Neptune city is still imported from the empire proper. People are raising chickens, ducks and geese in the city, but they are mostly used for their egg production. One unpopular entrepreneur has brought over a cargo of pigs to raise for meat, and they keep breaking loose from their pen and wandering around the city. Fishing boats bring back a decent catch every day though, and the municipal slaves are slowly clearing and draining the land around the city with the aid of the corps of legionary engineers to start raising crops. There is a pre-existing olive grove in the city limits, but it hasn't produced a crop yet, and it will be a very small crop. The governor is desperate to find better farm land for crops and the grazing of sheep and cattle.
  19. Any legendary lost treasures I could be looking for?
    This is Atlantis, lost magic and technology are just waiting to be discovered.
  20. Where is the nearest dragon or other monster with Type H treasure?
    Only everywhere, who dares wins, eh? It's a booming, gold rush economy here, look how much Congrio's crew pulled out of the swamp yesterday.
Any other questions?

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Name Your Poison




I am currently running a Roman themed AD&D (1st edition, heavy on the house rules) game on Roll20. I am giving serious thought to also running an OD&D (or Swords & Wizardry Whitebox) game there too. I am thinking of giving it a Norman/Crusader theme, kind of roll out with extra medievalisms, like jousting, maybe eliminate non-human characters so everything “other” is special and supernatural. Write up a bit of a culture packet, like I did with the Romans and see how that goes. I don't even know if I'll add Thieves.

The real kicker is that I think I might do it as a megadungeon campaign. My Roman themed “Lost Atlantis” campaign was decided, by player vote, to be a hex crawl and I'd kind of like to run some dungeon delving too.

I think I'd like to run jousting tournaments and stuff too. Maybe I'll have players make their characters like in Mike Davison's Flailsnails Jousting Tourney book.

I guess the point here is that I have a lot of time on my hands these days, since Mona died, and I'd like to fill it with some gaming. Pick either game, or both.

Find me on Facebook here - https://www.facebook.com/wdowie

Look to my gaming Discord server here - https://discord.gg/jYCvjPY


Keep in mind that I am a "theater of the mind" guy, so I rarely use minis in person on a real tabletop, I have yet to even try on Roll20.




Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Lost Atlantis

So I started a new (heavily house ruled) AD&D campaign, a mini-setting, part of my larger "Garnia" campaign setting. I call it lost Atlantis. I am running it as a "cloud" or"West Marches" style game. I asked all my friends (and family that play D&D) what kind of a game they wanted and they picked Exploration over Mega-Dungeon, so that's the focus.

Originally it was supposed to be an in person, local game, but it's like herding cats to get everyone's schedules to mesh, then we had bad weather cancel our only two scheduled games, so I opened it up to the possibility of online play via Roll20 and Discord, that gave me some more possible players, people I used to play with that had moved out of area and such.

I found a couple of other guys that are local through a gaming meet up.

We played a few times and I felt a little more confident. I don't use minis most of the time at home, so much of Roll20 is wasted on me, but it does make for a good dice roller and a repository for character sheets and the various documents I have written for the setting, which is, basically, the Roman empire discovers a new continent, where there never was one before. It's got a bunch of other accretions from my roughly 35 years of DMing in this world, but that's close enough to start.

I mention this now, because I am probably going to keep sharing stuff like my "Schrodinger's Adventurer" rule, which is now a house rule in the game, and also in case anyone want to check it out. We're playing tonight at 7:00PM. I'll be there sometime before 7:00PM (eastern US) to assist with rolling characters.

Here's the Discord link for voice- https://discord.gg/jYCvjPY

Here's the Roll20 link for the rest - https://app.roll20.net/join/2998862/sQwuRg

There is also a Facebook group for the game, which is used for scheduling (until I figure out a better way), as a secondary repository of campaign documents, and for talking about the game. Find it here - https://www.facebook.com/groups/260202304516526/


I still kind of consider my online game to be a beta, so I am slowly rolling it out for public consumption, but loyal blog readers should get the beta pass.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Schrodinger's Adventurer Rule


An alternate take on death and dying in D&D.



Essentially, when a PC or named NPC drops to zero or fewer Hit Points he is in a state of being neither dead, nor alive until we check on him, usually after combat. As soon as he is checked on (an action that takes a round for one PC), or the combat ends (Perhaps due to a TPK or the party's retreat from the battlefield),  the PC (or NPC) then makes a Save vs. Death to see whether or not he (or she) has shuffled off this mortal coil. The save is made at -2 if there was no one checking (this assumes that the person checking is acting as a combat medic/first responder, binding wounds, doing first aid, mouth to mouth, whatever). If the save is successful, the PC is unconscious at zero Hit Points and rolls on table A below; if not he is dead.

Table A-

1. Nothing happened, just got knocked silly somehow.
2. Roll 1d6 1-4 Gnarly scar, cool story, maybe a free drink every now and again, chicks dig it. 5-6 Gross scar -1CHA.
3. Head wound, make a Saving Throw vs Death for ½ effect, save at +4 if wearing a Helmet,  roll a d6 1-2 lose 1d4 INT, 3-4 lose 1d4 WIS, 5-6 lose 1d4 CHA, save again in a week, failure makes it permanent. Can be fixed with a Restoration spell.
4. Picked up a limp -25% movement rate, Save again in a week to see if it gets better, then again in a month, if it isn't better then, it never will be.
5. Broken limb, Roll a d6, 1-4 arm/hand, 5-6 Leg/Foot. Roll a d6: 1-4 dominant side, 5-6 off side, takes 2d4+2 weeks to heal.
6. Lost a body part, roll on table B.
7. Never heals right, -1 CON, natural healing is at 50% of normal from now on. Can be fixed with a Heal spell (50% chance), or a Regenerate spell (100% chance). Either way a rest of 2d10 days is necessary before full function is restored.
8. Mortal Wound, PC may be healed magically, but health will continue to decline losing 1d4 CON per day until 0 CON and death, or a regenerate spell is cast. Some kind of organ damage or internal bleeding or something.

Table B-

1. Fingers (or toes 10% chance), 1d4 fingers lost (75% chance on dominant hand side).
2. Hand (or foot, 5% chance), 75% chance on dominant side.
3. Arm (or leg) 75% chance dominant side, 75% chance below the elbow (or knee).
4. NOT THE FACE! Eye (50%), nose (25%) or mouth (25%), All of these leave a scar, with the eye it's got a 50% chance of being gnarly. Eye leaves you with a loss of vision to one side and a lack of depth perception (-2 to all ranged attacks until a Saving Throw is made, thereafter -1), loss of the nose always is gross, as is the loss of teeth from a mouth hit until the teeth can be regrown or false teeth are acquired.