Recently I ran across an article, An ancient exploding comet may explain why glass litters part of Chile, by Freda Kreier and it kind of captured my imagination. The article is a fascinating look at this twisted glass that covers about a 75 kilometer long corridor within the Atacama Desert in Chile. I find myself… Continue reading A Desert of Glass
You've rolled your character, arranged their ability scores to your heart's desire, and picked out their class. You've filled their inventories; picked out their spells, feats, and powers. You even managed to pick out a name before the game began. But who are they, really? Idylls of the King by Gustave Doré What made Boethius… Continue reading Backgrounds, or, Who Even Are You?
Unless you're really into the world of Greyhawk it's unlikely that you've encountered the demi-god Al'Akbar and the True Faith that surrounds his worship. So let's talk a little bit about that. The Palace Guard by Ludwig Deutsch The first mention of Al'Akbar came in the Strategic Review Volume 2, No. 2 from April 1976… Continue reading Let’s Talk about Al’Akbar of the World of Greyhawk
The world of LJN would have been an interesting footnote in the history of Dungeons and Dragons were it not for TSR attempting to make something more from the line. In 1983 TSR published AC 1: The Shady Dragon Inn. Ostensibly the Shady Dragon Inn was nothing more than a collection of non-player characters (NPCs)… Continue reading Dungeons, and Walmart, and LJN? Part 3, The Shady Dragon Inn
The world that LJN helped create had its roots in the standard world of Dungeons and Dragons, but it was its own distinctive thing as well. This world had its own unique world building; so let's take a look at what we know so far: Dwarves build castles inside huge caverns carved into the side… Continue reading Dungeons, and Walmart, and LJN? part 2
The other day I was walking through my local Walmart when I saw this: It's been a long time since we saw Dungeons & Dragons books inside a store like Walmart. Which reminds me of the old LJN Toys that came out in the early 80s. In 1983 LJN Toys, Ltd came out with series… Continue reading Dungeons, and Walmart, and LJN? Part 1, Series 1
Yesterday I went into a local used book store, looking for a deal on some new table-top role-playing game books, when I was confronted with some of the most outrageous prices I've ever seen. For a USED copy of Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes they wanted $49! For a beat up box of Tarroka cards they… Continue reading The Madness of Collector’s Prices
It is often said that the AD&D game is not a "winners-and-losers" game. This is true. The AD&D game is not a game in which one player wins at the expense of the others. But at the same time there is winning and losing, after a fashion, based on how well the group plays and… Continue reading The Importance of Experience
One last point from the article on Canon I discussed yesterday: The number of eyes on a stock beholder has been consistent throughout D&D’s history. No need to meddle with perfection, I say. On the other hand, if you’re familiar with old maps of Waterdeep, you might recall that one of its seedier avenues was… Continue reading Goodbye Slut Street, We Hardly Knew Ye
One of the things that I've struggled with for some time is this belief that I need to know everything about a setting to really "get" it. I've spent years reading into the lore of various settings in an attempt to understand where they're going and to make my own campaigns closer to the "true"… Continue reading The Freedom of DnD 5e Canon
A few years ago I published a similar image on my blog, Dyvers, but since that time two major events have happened. First, Dungeons & Dragons 5e was successfully launched. At the time of this writing D&D 5e appears to be the most commercially successful version of the game ever published - which is an… Continue reading Publication Dates of All D&D Editions
I mentioned last week that everyone should read Chapter 2: DM's Guide to the City Campaign because it provides a ton of advice for game masters of all stripes and today I wanted to focus on the six elements of a story that Douglas Niles identified. These elements are: VillainForeshadowingMysteryChallengeTimingReward Let's talk a little bit… Continue reading LRGCB: The Elements of a Story
In the World of Greyhawk boxed set the City of Dyvers has a population of 53,000 when you take in not only the city itself but its surrounding territory. By the time the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer is published the city has grown in population to 128,000 - more than doubling the original number! What drove… Continue reading What Drove the Dramatic Increase in Dyvers’ Population?
Sorry I wasn't able to publish the next part of the City of Greyhawk read through yesterday. My day job has been taking up a lot of my time this last week, and looks to be continuing to do so for the rest of this week as well. Hopefully it should get better this coming… Continue reading So much to do.
One of my favorite things about the city of Dyvers is that they promoted a badass woman, Larissa Hunter, as their new Magister after the previous one, Margus, downplayed the possibility of the city being annexed by Furyondy. She has since proceeded to pick a fight with anyone trying to rob the city of its… Continue reading Dyvers: We Promote Women