CAC222 - Flaming Cock Punch

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 15:43
CAC222 - Flaming Cock PunchPublisher: Postmortem Studios

A piece of 300 dpi .tif clipart to use in your personal and professional projects, subject to the attached license. 3375 x 2039 pixels.

Price: $4.00
Categories: Company News

CAC222 - Flaming Cock Punch

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 15:43
CAC222 - Flaming Cock PunchPublisher: Postmortem Studios

A piece of 300 dpi .tif clipart to use in your personal and professional projects, subject to the attached license. 3375 x 2039 pixels.

Price: $4.00
Categories: Company News

Image Portfolio Platinum Edition 16: Bruno Balixa

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 15:39
 Bruno BalixaPublisher: LPJ Design

Image Portfolio Platinum Edition is the premier line of online PDF art resource that gaming companies can use. All the art pieces in this art resource can be used in any of their upcoming RPG ideas or projects. When a person acquires Image Portfolio, any of the art in the PDF can be used in any of their own products as if they owned it them. This is due to the limited licensing agreement of Image Portfolio. This specific Image Portfolio contains 7 full color images of fantasy landscapes images.

Price: $10.99
Categories: Company News

Image Portfolio Platinum Edition 16: Bruno Balixa

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 15:39
 Bruno BalixaPublisher: LPJ Design

Image Portfolio Platinum Edition is the premier line of online PDF art resource that gaming companies can use. All the art pieces in this art resource can be used in any of their upcoming RPG ideas or projects. When a person acquires Image Portfolio, any of the art in the PDF can be used in any of their own products as if they owned it them. This is due to the limited licensing agreement of Image Portfolio. This specific Image Portfolio contains 7 full color images of fantasy landscapes images.

Price: $10.99
Categories: Company News

Parrot

Pelgrane Press Ltd - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 14:33

Parrot

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Categories: Company News

Battlemap : City Plaza

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 13:44
 City PlazaPublisher: Christian Hollnbuchner

This full color battlemap is the sixty third of a series featuring various terrains. This installment features a small plaza with a simple fountain in a residental area and the surrounding houses.

The map is 30 x 28 squares in size, with each 1 inch square scaled to represent 5 feet. It is provided in 12 segments, which need to be assembled, in a single PDF using the letter format.

Price: $1.38
Categories: Company News

Battlemap : City Plaza

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 13:44
 City PlazaPublisher: Christian Hollnbuchner

This full color battlemap is the sixty third of a series featuring various terrains. This installment features a small plaza with a simple fountain in a residental area and the surrounding houses.

The map is 30 x 28 squares in size, with each 1 inch square scaled to represent 5 feet. It is provided in 12 segments, which need to be assembled, in a single PDF using the letter format.

Price: $1.38
Categories: Company News

Epic Campain: Elder Elemental Eye #2

WoTC D&D - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 08:00
"At least when it's at this stage, the plague isn't immune to weapons."
Categories: D&D

Turning and Churning

WoTC D&D - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 08:00
Your group ventures into the crypt, knowing that undead await you. The group's cleric stands ready to brandish his or her holy symbol and handle those undead by turning them. But what does turning undead mean to you? What do you want it to mean? And if you're the DM, what would you prefer to have happen when a cleric turns undead? Mike has been giving this topic some thought, and he invites you to read about his take on this topic, plus provide us with your own preference in a poll.
Categories: D&D

Keep Things Moving

Sly Flourish - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 06:00

Nothing can suck the joy out of a game faster than a lack of action. We DMs love our story. We love the worlds we create and the depth of our characters and our villains. We want to explore them, we want them to consider their place in the rich world we have created. Our players? Not as much.

Knowing how to move the game continually forward is one of the best tips a DM can pick up to keep their players entertained and keep their game fun. Today we're going to talk about the importance of moving the action forward and provide a few tips to use in your own game.

Kick in the Door by Jay Wojciechowski, used with permission

(Artwork by Jay Wojciechowski, used with permission)

When the game stalls

A game can stall for any number of reasons. Perhaps a particular scene became too detailed, whether it be the description of a trap, an introspective look at the history of the world, or an interaction with an NPC. Such an interaction may be very interesting to a DM and the player having the conversation but the rest may quickly be reaching for their cell phones to call up Twitter.

Indecision can also stall a game. Maybe the players don't quite know where to go. Maybe the choices call for a great deal of debate. Maybe the tactics of combat have delved too far into the minutia and it's time to just roll. Maybe a skill challenge just appears to be dragging on and in without any real feeling.

Many things can stall a game and, as a DM, it's important to read the body language of your group to see if they're all interested in what's going on or they're becoming bored. If they're bored, move things forward.

Move on

If you sense the players' interest is beginning to wane, it's time to move things on. Whether it's a round of combat, a skill challenge, or a bit of narrative; always have a way to move things forward. If a player seems to take too long to make a decision, push them towards a particular action they want to take. If the group is spending too much time discussing options, push them to make a choice using in-game motivators like poisonous clouds, a soon-to-be-sacrificed virgin, or an angry noble lord. It's important to give players the opportunity to weigh options, so don't be too quick to cut them off. However, make sure these investigations are providing useful fruit instead of simple circular debate.

Call for a vote

If the group seems stuck in indecision, call for a vote. Whether it's figuring out how to disable a trap, deciding on a path through a dungeon, or making a game-wide decision about the next course of action; let them have a good conversation and then ask them to vote when you feel like all the choices are on the table. Let the majority decide which course of action to take. Calling for a vote takes indecision and turns it into a binary choice — either you do something or you don't. Either you choose one path or you choose another. The quick vote is a powerful tool to keep things moving.

Speed up combat

A million articles have already covered combat speed so I'll just reference a few. Including a combat out always helps move combat forward. Reduce table transactions to keep the pace of battle fast. Add in some fast combat powers to your monsters. If a player takes a long time to make a decision, warn them that an adjacent enemy is about to take their indecision as an opportunity to attack and then follow through if they still can't decide.

Take ownership of your material

If you're running a pre-written adventure, remember that you are ultimately responsible for joy of the game — not the module. Never run something you know won't go over well with the group. Skip things, cut things down. Run things differently to match your own enjoyment and for the fun of the group. Skill challenges, for example, may be cut down to a simple series of skill checks, each one leading to a new path. Forget the whole X successes before X failure mechanic - unless that happens to be something the group enjoys.

Don't drop out of the game when making these choices, however. Nothing breaks the experience like saying "there's a whole skill challenge here but we're going to skip it" or "this battle's basically over so we'll just call it here". Always have a way to move things forward without breaking the chain of the narrative.

A holistic view of pacing in your game

Many elements interact to set the pace of your game. Whether it's preparation time by you or the players, actually getting the game started, curbing out-of-game conversations, improving combat speed, helping players choose a course of action; all of these factors result in the overall pace of the game. Only by taking a holistic view of your game can you continually keep the action moving forward and ensure that you and your players are having a great time.

If you enjoyed this article, take a look at Sly Flourish's Dungeon Master Tips and Running Epic Tier D&D Games. The Dungeon Master's Kit and Dungeon Master's Guide 2 both include great advice for keeping your game on track. Looking for some good minis? Check out the D&D Miniatures from Troll and Toad, an official Sly Flourish sponsor.

Categories: Blogs, D&D

March 12, 2012: Meet The Bosses From Hell

Steve Jackson Games - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:53
 Rogues to Riches If you think your boss is evil, clearly you don't work for one of the individuals in In Nomine Superiors 4: Rogues to Riches, newly released to e23. This supplement provides insight into five Demon Princes, whose Words cover Drugs, Technology, Secrets, Theft, and Greed.

Each Prince gets details on new attunements, Distinctions, and Rites. It also describes these Princes' goals, outlooks, associations, and enemies. Alternate versions are also provided, letting you tweak your In Nomine world as desired with more tragedy or comedy. Finally, it includes adventure seeds to help you use these baddies in your campaign.

Sure, you may not like your boss, but at least he doesn't spend eternity lurking in a pit of elemental fire. Or if he does, you should pick up In Nomine Superiors 4: Rogues to Riches anyway; it might include some good survival tips.

Steven Marsh

Warehouse 23 News: What Is Best In Life?

Leveling up, of course. Add Conan to your Munchkin game with the Munchkin Conan the Barbarian booster pack. Barbarian Booties sold separately.
Categories: Company News

A Hero’s Journey

A Walk In the Dark - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:45

A Hero's Journey

So I've sent The Heart of Fire to a few people who volunteered to edit it; I haven't heard from them in a few days, so either I've stupified them with my awesome writing or my writing is soi abysmal that I compelled them to jump off a bridge. You can never tell with these sort of things...

In the meantime, inspired by Thick Skull Adventure's upcoming Dungeon Crawl Classics adventure "Attack of the Frawgs!" (which I help edit), I had an idea for a level 0 mini-adventure. I would have written it for the DCC ruleset, but all I have for now are the "beta" rules. I could have waited, I know... But I'm impatient. Once I get an idea in my head I need to get it done and out there.

So I decided to create the module using the level 0 rules for D&D 4E that were documented by the "A Hero's First Steps: Rules for Level 0 Characters" article by Philippe-Antoine Menard (a.k.a. @ChattyDM) that was published in Dragon magazine #403 (DDI subscription required). Here is the intro, in all its vague glory:

    For years you have followed in the footsteps of your master, watching his every move and learning through observation and study. You longed for the day when you might actually be able to follow in his footsteps and become an adventurer yourself, basking in the fame and glory that comes with such an honor.

     One day, during what should have been a normal expedition for your master and the other members of his group, everything changes. You suddenly find yourselves alone, the only hope for a city in desperate need of salvation, and you must put what you have observed in to practice. Can you step up and become the hero you were destined to be?

It's very short - less than 20 pages - and really only has a couple of encounters. I designed it with roleplaying in mind, where the players can really get in to character when their simple level 0 characters are thrust in to danger and must deal with forces beyond their understanding.

The hardest part of this module was coming up with names... The city had three different names - an online random name generator seriously suggested the name "Cloverclover" - until I settled on the name Feldspar. It's a strange name I know, but I'm sure someone can come up with a good reason for it to be called that? And I also had to find a name for a pirate ship, and even though the online "pirate ship name generator" are far from appropriate, it did help me come up with the ship name as The Red Barnacle.

Anyway, you can purchase the mini-adventure A Hero's Journey for the low price of $1.99 at Drive Thru RPG!

Map Pack M3: Crypt Entrance

While I was creating the adventure, I ended up creating a tactical map that I really liked: the entrance to an underground crypt. So I decided to make that in to a high resolution image (200 DPI) and release it as a map pack. This new map pack, brilliantly titled M3: Crypt Entrance (I suck at names... sue me) is also available at Drive Thru RPG.

Once I feel comfortable about The Heart of Fire - which will hopefully be soon - that will be released.

Categories: Blogs

Map Pack M3: Crypt Entrance

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:20
 Crypt EntrancePublisher: Darklight Interactive
M3: Crypt Entrance

     The crypt lay undisturbed for centuries. Not only was the approach wrought with peril, but the entrance was sealed off from the rest of the world by a heavy stone slab. Its mysteries lay hidden in the dark...

     Only recently has a bold group of adventurers come to the crypt, pushing aside the massive stone to reveal the entrance below. Who knows what wonders - and what dangers - lie in the depths of the crypt?

-=O=-

     The Crypt Entrance is a focal point in A Hero's Journey, a mini-adventure for level 0 characters by Darklight Interactive.

     This pack includes low resolution (50 DPI) and high resolution (200 DPI) images of the entrance in full color. Package also includes images without grid lines for use in third party applications.

Price: $1.99
Categories: Company News

Map Pack M3: Crypt Entrance

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:20
 Crypt EntrancePublisher: Darklight Interactive
M3: Crypt Entrance

     The crypt lay undisturbed for centuries. Not only was the approach wrought with peril, but the entrance was sealed off from the rest of the world by a heavy stone slab. Its mysteries lay hidden in the dark...

     Only recently has a bold group of adventurers come to the crypt, pushing aside the massive stone to reveal the entrance below. Who knows what wonders - and what dangers - lie in the depths of the crypt?

-=O=-

     The Crypt Entrance is a focal point in A Hero's Journey, a mini-adventure for level 0 characters by Darklight Interactive.

     This pack includes low resolution (50 DPI) and high resolution (200 DPI) images of the entrance in full color. Package also includes images without grid lines for use in third party applications.

Price: $1.99
Categories: Company News

War of the Dead: Chapter Four (Week 2)

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:02
 Chapter Four (Week 2)Publisher: Daring Entertainment

The characters are trapped in a maze of death as they attempt a last ditch effort to get out of the prison. Assaulted by outlaws that made it into the facility, they must fight for their lives against the combined forces of the invaders and the remaining Ragers.

But the battle for survival is barely the beginning, as the characters make a startling discovery about the Ragers that could spell the end of humankind.

Price: $1.99
Categories: Company News

War of the Dead: Chapter Four (Week 2)

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 05:02
 Chapter Four (Week 2)Publisher: Daring Entertainment

The characters are trapped in a maze of death as they attempt a last ditch effort to get out of the prison. Assaulted by outlaws that made it into the facility, they must fight for their lives against the combined forces of the invaders and the remaining Ragers.

But the battle for survival is barely the beginning, as the characters make a startling discovery about the Ragers that could spell the end of humankind.

Price: $1.99
Categories: Company News

Hoard

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 02:17
HoardPublisher: Levi Kornelsen

Dragons live in the Reach, a series of islands off to one side of the human empire.  They have their own traditions, distinctions, and powers - all of which they use in their ongoing stuggle to survive and to dominate.

You should know.  You're one of them.

System: Hoard includes two different resolution mechanics - one based on active description of the traits your dragon uses, and one based on bidding tokens to support proposed "scripts" of what-happens-next.  Groups may prefer one or the other, or may switch between them as is useful (the default assumption).

Price: $0.00
Categories: Company News

Extreme Future Galaxy Politics Map

RPGNow - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 01:38
Extreme Future Galaxy Politics MapPublisher: Starbright

This is a map of the galaxy which acts as a backdrop to the Extreme Future role-playing game. The map shows the entire galaxy, focusing on the concentration of human power blocks, nations, empires and democracies extending out in a long quadrant to the right.

They are surrounded by various other threats, enemies, neutral powers and unknowable alien intelligences. The map also shows the areas of space which have been taken over by robot intelligences, some after a bloody rebellion, some after fleeing persecution, but at least one claims to have evolved independently of organic life.

The largest feature is the fragmenting Lizardeen empire to the left. They still control an almost unimaginably huge area of space, but are unable to hold it together any more as their technology is lost to decay and incomprehension.

The map is a large high-quality image file that can be printed out to use as a nice handout during sessions playing Extreme Future – take a look at the rule book here

Price: $0.00
Categories: Company News

RPG Review: Outer Veil (2011)

RPGnet - Mon, 03/12/2012 - 00:00
Capsule Review by Tom Zunder (3/5):

Should you buy it? Yes: if it sets your teeth on edge explaining away OTUs tech levels and historical absurdity, or you dont want aliens, or you want a new brave frontier. No: if your love the OTU and are happy and love the depth and scale of all the existing material. Maybe: if you fancy a read, might port some of the ships and careers to your game or back to OTU, and since it doesnt really break Traveller, just like the idea of diversity.

Am I pleased I have it? Hell Yes!

Categories: Reviews

A Hero's Journey (DnD 4e)

RPGNow - Sun, 03/11/2012 - 23:48
A Hero's Journey (DnD 4e)Publisher: Darklight Interactive

"A Hero's Journey" is a short delve for a group of of level 0 characters, compatible with the Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition game system.

Characters must be created using the guidelines published in the article "A Hero's First Steps" by Philippe-Antoine Menard  in Dragon issue #403, available on the Wizards of the Coast website (DDI subscription required).

     For years you have followed in the footsteps of your master, watching his every move and learning through observation and study. You longed for the day when you might actually be able to follow in his footsteps and become an adventurer yourself, basking in the fame and glory that comes with such an honor.

     One day, during what should have been a normal expedition for your master and the other members of his group, everything changes. You suddenly find yourselves alone, the only hope for a city in desperate need of salvation, and you must put what you have observed in to practice. Can you step up and become the hero you were destined to be?

Cover photo: "A Calm at a Mediterranean Port" © 2008 Randy Robertson, used under a Creative Commons license.

Price: $1.99
Categories: Company News

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