Thursday, January 30, 2014

Game 1: The Burning Plague

When I ran this adventure at SnowCon 2014, it ended up pretty much a "march through and overpower everything" adventure. Which is odd, considering I had pregenerated the weakest characters I could find. There was no sneaking. I think they checked for traps once (after the set off a trap in the first cavern). They didn't think outside the "I hit it with my weapon/shoot it with my bow" box. I feel like it need to improve it. Hopefully my step-by-step revision will make it better. Maybe if I give them more of a character dossier than just a character sheet...

As an end-note, I do have to admit that this time through saw the most explosions than any other time I've run the game. I've had a mis-throw of a molotov cocktail in the past, but this time saw an exploding warpgun and an exploding barrel of lamp oil.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Random Kickstarter Grumble

I dislike it when a Kickstarter's apparent strategy is to get more money out of the people who already pledged instead of trying to get more individual pledges.

I've noticed it both in the Larry Elmore: The Complete Elmore Artbook and in the KODT Live Action Series Kickstarters, which have some overlapping professionals working on them. 

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Burning Plague History

I have this idea to slowly share my converted adventure of The Burning Plague. I have already altered it from D&D to WarHammer Fantasy Roleplay, but now I'm altering it more to switch the baddies from goblinoids to Skaven. It seems like a large task, but if I split it up into sections I might be able to realize it. Then, if I post a section of the map with each room description, it might be even cooler. As I said, it's a large task for the middle of a college semester.



Duvik’s Pass is a small town nestled within one of the few valleys that cross through the Grey Mountains. It has long been a waystop for travelers and adventurers seeking to rest aching limbs and drown painful memories within her gates. Moreover, it has also gained attention recently as a potential power in the area’s commerce, due to a discovery of substantial silver deposits buried in the mountains nearby. Over the past three years, the men of Duvik’s Pass have burrowed into the ground seeking the wealth therein. Able-bodied folk from neighboring villages flocked to the town, hoping to lend their strength within the mines and garner some share of the prize.

Hope and industry turned to despair and potential ruin with the advent of the Burning Plague four months ago. It began quietly enough, with the miners returning home from their work at nightfall complaining of blistering sores and an unbearable thirst. Shortly thereafter, the town’s livestock was decimated by an unknown illness and her crops began to wither. The elders of Duvik’s Pass declared that the well water had been soured by an unknown disease, but by then the Burning Plague had already begun claiming the young and the sickly. To make matters worse, the last few men still strong enough to plumb the wealth of the mine fell prey to a savage attack staged by a warband of orcs just over half a month past. This fact is not known to the townspeople (but is known to one of the pregenerated PCs), who continue to await the return of their missing sons and husbands, while praying for an end to the sickness that continues to spread within their home.

Skaven have claimed the majority of the mine from their human foes but are getting bored enough to start fighting amongst themselves. The Grey Seer heading this scheme has had to separate the forces from different clans. The clans in the various caverns have stopped intermingling.

The source of the disease is Grey Seer Tiklisp, with the aid of a few Clan Pestilens priests. His prayers to the Horned Rat (and a generous task appointed by the Council of Thirteen) led him to seek the skaven followers of Nurgle. He bullied them to revealed to him the secret of the Burning Plague. Tiklisp used his newfound power to infect the springs feeding the town’s wells as well as the other creatures dwelling within the mines. He has watched from the shadows as his plans have come to fruition.

Yet, like any good Skaven plot, all has not gone as planned. Clan Skryre rats grow impatient as they sit around waiting day after day. Clan Eshin assassins are hiding something in their secluded cavern. The Clan Pestilens priests are only happy because the will of their putrid deity is foremost in this task. Tiklisp, and his bodyguard, maintains his encampment by the springs below the earth, continuing to reinforce their corruption and awaiting an attempt to kill the weakening humans outside. It is at this point that the adventurers enter the story.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

EarthDawn (4th ed.) Kickstarter

When I signed up to play EarthDawn at SnowCon 2014, I had no idea the guy running it was also in charge of the new edition, which is currently funding on Kickstarter

Josh Harrison was extremely enthusiastic about the game. He was a fan and heavily into the online community before becoming part of the development team. He's also from around these parts, which never ceases to amaze me.

 It had been a long time since I played, but Josh brought back the excitement I had playing years ago. Our game got a little silly*, but it really cemented us in the fantasy realm.

I'm now backing it at a level that will get me the paperback player's manual (even if he is planning on making it digest size). I gave him some of my opinions on Kickstarters (very unsolicited), but he seemed like he had everything under control. I wish him the best of luck for a GenCon 2014 release.

*Ask me about the bubble pipe and extensive underground bubble trades if you really want to know.

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Burning Plague Introduction

I have this idea to slowly share my converted adventure of The Burning Plague. I have already altered it from D&D to WarHammer Fantasy Roleplay, but now I'm altering it more to switch the baddies from goblinoids to Skaven. It seems like a large task, but if I split it up into sections I might be able to realize it. Then, if I post a section of the map with each room description, it might be even cooler. As I said, it's a large task for the middle of a college semester.


A sickness has come unto the simple mining community of Duvik’s Pass, poisoning their wells and blighting their crops. With the pestilence leaving the strongest men of the town’s guard a few short days away from death, the burden of descending into the mines and purging the wellspring of whatever evil has settled there falls to an intrepid collections of the town’s outcasts and ne’er do wells (who just happen to all be immune to disease). Can these unlikely heroes prevail within the depths of Duvik’s Pass, or will they too fall victim to the perils of The Burning Plague?

The Burning Plague is a DUNGEONS & DRAGONS adventure by Miguel Duran, adapted to WarHammer FRP by Roger, and designed for a party of four to six characters of 1st career. Game Masters (GMs) should feel free to adjust the adventure as necessary to accommodate groups not falling within this range. However, given the fairly low power level of the inhabitants of the mines at Duvik’s Pass, it should be noted that parties consisting of 8 or more total players are unlikely to find satisfactory challenge within The Burning Plague.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Regarding My SnowCon Games

I realized that the three different adventures I'm running at SnowCon are three different types of games. The first adventure has a specific goal: Stop the bad guy from doing bad stuff. If the party doesn't do that, they have failed. 

The second adventure is almost like a story, with the party taking on character roles. There is a goal, but it's not the focus of the adventure. One fight in the beginning, a lot of roleplaying in the middle, an unexpected fight toward the end. The party's goal switches before the end, and survival becomes paramount over making it from point A to point B.

The third adventure is exploration. There is no goal. There is no end fight. There is no specific treasure. 

I think it would be kind of me to mention these things when we start the game. Imagine the players expecting a big boss at the end of the dungeon crawl and coming away without. They might feel like they lost out. It's good to know these things ahead of time.

Monday, January 13, 2014

SnowCon 2014 Game 3

The third SnowCon game I'm running is actually Dwimmermount. Last year I ran this using Ambition & Avarice rules. As fun as those rules are, I really needed a game I could just jump into with little prep this year. Warhammer is that game for me, so I'm moving Dwimmermount to the Warhammer world.

I've got to set the megadungeon in Lustria to help explain some of the more...technological...aspects. Convention-goers won't care where the dungeon is set; it doesn't really matter in the four-hour scope of the game. For my purposes, though, I need it to make sense. Plus, I want to continue it each year at SnowCon.

Here's my game blurb:
After years of rumors, the gates of Dwimmermount have opened. Of the first conscripts sent in, only one returned. He was insane, mumbling about ghosts and undead warriors...but he had a map. Now it's your turn to see what the fuss is about.
I have all the pregenerated characters made. This group will be starting out without any extra advances or experience. They are, however, a bit more powerful careers than my Burning Plague (Game 1) pregens.

Monday, January 6, 2014

SnowCon 2014 Game 2

The second SnowCon game I'm running is the adventure from the back of the second edition player's handbook. It won't take but a few tweaks to convert to first edition. I also have a surprise at the end, so anyone who has read the adventure won't be bored. Here's the blurb I gave my listing:

Beastmen approach from the south. The town's patched-up defenses aren't strong enough to hold back this large a warband. The inhabitants must evacuate. The players take the role of protectors, providers, and even investigators as the townfolk seek the safety of Middenheim. What nefarious forces will get in their way?

I have yet to make the pregenerated characters, but I know they will be a little tougher than the ones in my first game.

Friday, January 3, 2014

WFRP Dwarves vs Chaos Dwarves

I was rereading the history of the Known World in the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 1e book (seriously, if you need inspiration for your game/adventure/campaign, look there) when an idea hit me. Chaos dwarves were regular dwarves who were warped by chaos because they live too far north. In their heart, though, they are still dwarves.

In my game, chaos dwarves are shamed by and will not fight regular dwarves. Chaos dwarves will happily fight everyone else, humans, goblins, and especially elves, but they will not raise a hand against regular dwarves. This is due to a lingering sense of honor.

Perhaps this only applies to chaos dwarves who were alive and were regular dwarves themselves before chaos tainted them. Perhaps new generations of chaos dwarves never knew anything other than their current situation and therefore have no problem slaughtering their normal kin.

Or maybe chaos dwarves don't procreate and every new "generation" is another wave of chaos corrupting another normal dwarf. There's another idea to ponder.