Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Someone Hook Zak S. up with a copy of Mesopotamia & Mazes and Minotaurs has Awesome Random Tables

a) Zak S. d&d pornstar doesn't believe anyone has written an excellent adventure, I consider Ancient Kingdoms: Mesopotamia to prove him wrong... ...I'm not going to give him my copy, but maybe someone, maybe someone froggy, would...

b) The revised edition of Mazes and Minotaurs has some pretty awesome randon tables for islands, temples and cities. Well worth checking out.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Otda'Btatle - Petty Toad-Demon-God of Battle

Name: Otda'Btatle, Petty Toad-Demon-God of Battle
Symbol: A grinning toad's face with the horns of a ram
Alignment: Chaotic (evil)
Movement: 120'(40)', swim 120'(40')
Armor Class: -2
Hit Points (Hit Dice): 128 (16)
Attacks: 2 kicks/punches or ram
Damage: 3-18/3-18 or 4-24
Save: Fighter 16
Morale: 11
Hoard Class: you figure it out Gorgonmilk
XP: ditto

Otda'Btatle, rumoured to be a Hezrou demon who became mighty through constant, gruelling combat, it the Petty Toad-Demon-God of Battle, worshipped by berserk and martially minded batrachian beings such a Ranine, Batrachians, and Tsathar. It stands 8 feet tall, bears a bear of ram-like horns on it's head, wears a spiked black harness, armbands, and kneepads, and it's mottled green-and-tan skin is covered with lurid pustules, buboes, sores and rashes. 

Otda'Btatle is a Demon, is only damaged by magical weaponry, and takes half damage from cold, electricity, fire and gas. It can teleport without error, cause darkness in a 15' radius, gate in a Type II Demon with a 90% chance of success, Cause Fear (as a wand), levitate (as a 16th-level magic-user), detect invisible objects, and telekinesis 600 lbs. of weight.

Otda'Btatle prefers to punch and kick opponents, but can ram opponents if it has 40 feet to charge at them, at +4 to hit, and if it strikes the target must make an open door roll or be flung 10-60 feet backwards. If they strike and obstacle they will take 1-6 points of damage for every 10 feet of trajectory remaining.

Those struck by Otda'Btatle must make a saving throw versus poison or contract a disgusting skin ailment that covers the victim in livid acne and rashes, and reduces their charisma by 1-4 points until the ailment is cured.

Otda'Btatle will always aid chaotic or evil frog or toad beings in battle, for all other beings a 2d6 roll determined it's reaction:

2 - Otda'Btatle goes into a berserk frenzy and attacks, gaining +2 on all attack and damage rolls, and it's morale becomes 12
3-5 - Otda'Btatale attacks
6-8 - Otda'Btatle attacks and devours one beings before teleporting away
9-11 - Otda'Btatle demands an offering of one sentient being to devour; if this offer is declined it attacks. If the offering pleases Otda'Btatle it may it may be amenable to bargaining to perform a service, ones involving slaughter preferred,  in exchange for more victims.
12 - Otda'Btatle loom, glares, and croaks balefully for 1-6 rounds; if an offering is provided it will be open to further negotiations as above. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

AD&D-derived Dexterity-based "Surprise Save (d8)"

In 1st ed. AD&D there's the Reaction/attacking Adjustment awarded for the highest (and lowest) 3 scores. This provides a modifier to missile attack rolls and also adjusts how many segments the character is surprised for.

The cool thing about this is that with this adjustment high dexterity characters could be surprised for zer oor less segments, and therefore not be surprised.

Now, if you don't use surprise segments, but you like the mechanic of high dexterity characters' pantherish reflexes allowing them to avoid surprise, what you can do when the d6 are thrown and the party is surprised is subtract the characters' dexterity bonus from the monster side initiative roll, and if that sum of that operation is equal to or less than the party's surprise roll, then the character isn't surprised.

Or you could just roll a d8 "Surprise Save", that I crunched the numbers for using the AD&D guidelines, and ignoring weird AD&D corner case where a monster isn't surprised because the party is more surprised, and got this:
Dexterity Missile Attack Modifier - d8 save to not be Surprised
+1 - 1/d8
+2 - 3/d8
+3 - 5/d8

You can streamline the process by having the DM or one of the players make the Surprise Save for the high-dex members of the party.

The OD&D Reprints? Brave Halfling... make us a dang box for them!

The only reason I never nabbed the Brave Halfling lurid D&D game boxes was that they weren't digest sized.

With the upcoming re-release of OD&D in a gigantic, hideous box, this is a perfect opportunity for Brave Halfling to benefit from Wizards' mistake!

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Oldschool Conversion of Newschool : Shadowdancer Prestige Class for Thieves

When a thief has enough experience points to attain 8th level they can choose to prestige class into Shadowdancer; they lose any progression past 7th level thief abilities in backstabbing, climb, pick locks, and remove traps; they do not gain the ability to use scrolls; and they lose any future stronghold or follower benefits. They keep the same hit dice, attacks and saving throws, and gain the following benefits at the following levels (as per the 3E Shadowdancer Prestige Class):

8th level - Hide in Plain Sight
9th level - Infravision
10th level - Shadow Illusion, Summon Shadow
11th level - Shadow Jump
12th level - Defensive Roll
14th level - Slippery Mind

Prerequisite: When a seventh level thief has gained enough experience points to advance to 8th level, and they wish to become a Shadowdancer, they must unabashedly perform The Dance of Shadows for the other players' and the DM's entertainment in order to qualify for this class.

Or, if your game uses them, the character must blow a non-weapon proficiency or skill on Dancing.

This is my Perfect Underdark...

False  Machine

This cat's vision of the undeworld is pretty much perfect; I want to play in his game.

Reading his entries had me thinking about the vast subterranean vaults of pulp fantasy as the megadungeon, which led to me thinking of the underworld as a wilderness.

If you have a dungeon/underworld complex that spans the tens of thousands of feet, and you use the snails-pace oldschool D&D underground travel rates, you end up in a situation where it takes ~1 day of travel to cover ~1 mile.

Suddenly bringing food and water is even more important.

I love the idea of a megadungeon composed of a complex of miles-spanning caverns and tunnels, connecting various dungeon complexes.

Journey to the Center of the Earth; Descent into the Depth of the Earth; The Descent (novel); mega-spelunking. Caches. Base camps.

Friday, January 25, 2013

The Warlord (Fighter Subclass)

Requirements: Intelligence and Charisma 13+, Strength 9+; a Warlord with 15+ in all three scores gains a +10% bonus to all earned experience points.
Experience Points, Hit Points, Combat and Saving Throws: As a Cleric.
Weapon and Armor Restrictions: None.

Special Abilities:

All special abilities require the Warlord speaking or shouting, and for the affected party to be with 60 feet of the Warlord; to have an Intelligence of 3+; and to be able to clearly understand the Warlord's communications. A Warlord is unable to use any of their special abilities if they are stunned, unconscious, paralyzed, or otherwise unable to clearly communicate with the subject(s).

Diplomacy & Leadership: +1(2d6)/+10% on all Reaction, Loyalty, Morale and similar checks.

Inspiring Word: Twice per melee/encounter, but only once per round, an ally gains 1d6 temporary hit points for the duration of the melee/encounter. The amount of temporary hit points gained can not exceed the different between the subject's current and maximum hit points. At 11th level the Warlord can use Inspiring Word 3 times per melee.

Auras: A Warlord of second or higher level is able to project an aura that affects themselves and all allies within range.  Only one aura can affect a subject at a time. As the Warlord gains levels the effect of the auras increase.

Level - Auras Known/Bonus
1 - 0/0
2 - 1/+1
3 - 1/+1
4 - 1/+1
5 - 2/+1
6 - 2/+1
7 - 2/+2
8 - 2/+2
9 - 3/+2
10 - 3/+2
11 - 3/+2
12 - 3/+2
13 - 3/+2
14 - 4/+3
15 - 4/+3
16 - 4/+3
17 - 4/+3
18 - 4/+3
19 - 4/+3
20 - 5/+4


Motivate Ardor : The ally gains the bonus to all weapon and unrmed damage rolls.
Motivate Attack: The ally gains the bonus to all melee attack rolls.
Motivate Care: The ally gains the bonus to armor class.
Resilient Troops: The ally gains the bonus to all saving throws.
Steady Hand: The ally gains the bonus to all ranged attacks.

Grand Urgency: Starting at fourth level, once per day, the Warlord can grant, to any or all allies within range, an additional move of up to half their normal movement rate. A subject can only be effected by one Grant Urgency per round. As the Warlord gains levels they are able to Grant Urgency multiple times per day as follows:

Level - Grant Urgency/per Day
1 - 0
2 - 0
3 - 0
4 - 1
5 - 1
6 - 1
7 - 1
8 - 2
9 - 2
10 - 2
11 - 2
12 - 3
13 - 3
14 - 3
15 - 3
16 - 4
17 - 4
18 - 4
19 - 4
20 - 4


Saturday, January 19, 2013

How Would You Do a Bloodsport-style Scenario in Oldschool D&D?

I just watched Bloodsport, and I enjoyed it so much I want to do a Bloodsport-inspired scenario.

This is actually something that could be pretty cool under the Flailsnails paradigm.

Here's my current thoughts

- Is it going to be more like Mortal Combat, with the supernatural aspects of D&D, or a "Martial Class Only", no spells, no magic items, sort of thing?

- This screams for some sort of combat maneuver system. Ideally I'd cherry pick from a bunch of simple options and format/present them as a quick cheat sheet.

- Would NPC antagonists have abilities that PC don't have access to? i.e. a sumo wrestler with special fat-belly attack abilities?

- Armor or no armor?

- Bloodsport soundtrack music would be a must. KUMITE! KUMITE! KUMITE!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Trans-edition Oldschool Conversion: Serpent Anathema

Armor Class: 0
Move: 150' (50'), climb 90' (30'), swim 90' (30')
Hit Dice: 22
Attacks: Claws for 1-8/1-8 or giant scimitar for 2-16, plus bite for 1-10+poison
Special: Poison; constrict 1-8; +3 or better magic weapons to hit; regenerate 3 hit points per round; spells; 60% magic resistance; speak with any snake or snake-like monster; become a swarm of poisonous snakes at will
Intelligence: Godlike
Alignment: Chaotic evil
Size: Huge
Spells: 3/day - cause fear, darkness, detect poison, entangle, haste, neutralize poison, polymorph other, snake charm, sticks to snakes, suggestion
Serpent Anathema are worshipped as avatars of their loathsome gods by serpentine races such as Inphidians and Ophidians. They resemble a gigantic snake 20-30 feet long, with a humanoid torso and arms, and possessing a mass of six long-necked snakes instead of a head. An opponent bitten by a Serpent Anathema must save versus poison or die; those that survive will be constricted by one of the snake heads for 1-8 points of damage per round. As long as all six heads are not constricting victims the Serpent Anathema can continue to make bite attacks.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Ape, Giant Carnivorous & Post Your Oldschool Conversions

Armor Class: 6
Move: 150 (50), climb 150' (50)
Hit Dice: 10
Attacks: 1-10/1-10/3-18
Special: Hurl rock 100' for 2-24; grab and hurl
Intelligence: Low (upper)
Alignment: Neutral
Size: Huge

Grab and hurl: If a Giant Carnivorous Ape hits strikes a man-sized opponent with both hands they will be lifted up and hurled next round, as a rock, inflicting 3-18 points of damage to the target and the projectile.

I can't believe those guy's didn't think of that...

Post your conversions of post-oldschool D&D monsters!