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Monday, December 19, 2016

DCC-Dune: Swordhands

The Sword of this Dune-a-fied setting is very much like the Warrior class of DCC-RPG. There are certain changes and flavour text to get it a science fiction vibe, but ultimately that will come in to play through the scifi weapons and adventures.

Shielding Fighting (or Dueling) is quintessential to Dune and I will finally go into detail about it further below!



Swordhand


You are a skilled warrior bound by a sworn oath to protect and serve your House. There is no melee weapon with which you are not skilled. You may be a royal guard, an instructor to the heir, the commander of a garrison, or perhaps all three.


After the invention of the personal shield the use of projectiles became rather futile. Master Assassins became the currency on which disputes were settled and masters of the sword became the necessity for which the noble families were protected. All Swordhands learn their trade on the harsh planet of Hizaal. There after a lifetime of trials the trainees, if they survive, leave the planetary school as adepts skilled in all manor of melee weapons and hand-to-hand combat techniques to join the Noble-house of their home world.


Swordhands serve their houses with the utter most loyalty; however, there have been reported instances of swordhands going rogue. These few often become sell swords and are known to be extremely dangerous.


Hit points: A swordhand gains 1d12 hit points at each level.


Weapon training: A swordhand is trained in the use of all weapons and if using a melee weapon of any kind the swordhand’s initiative and deed dice are both raised +1d.


Alignment: A swordhand is usually always of the same alignment of the Noble-house they serve.


Attack modifier: (Same as DCC Warrior class)


Mighty Deeds of Arms: (Same as DCC Warrior class)


Shield Fighting: See below...


Critical hits: (Same as DCC Warrior class)


Initiative: A swordhand adds his class level to his initiative rolls.


Luck: At first level, a swordhand’s Luck modifier applies to attack rolls with one specific kind of weapon. This is the weapon they were most superior with on Hizaal. It must be chosen at first level and the modifier is fixed at its starting value – neither the weapon nor the modifier changes over the course of the swordhand’s career.


Action dice: A swordhand always uses his action dice for attacks. At 5th level, a warrior gains a second attack each round with his second action die.


Languages: Common, House’s secret battle language, plus 1 additional language for every +1 Intelligence modifier.


Level
Attack
Crit Die/ Table
Threat Range
Action Dice
Deed Die
Ref
Fort
Will
1
+d3
1d12/III
19-20
1d20
d3
+1
+1
+0
2
+d4
1d14/III
19-20
1d20
d4
+1
+2
+0
3
+d5
1d16IV
18-20
1d20
d5
+2
+2
+1
4
+d6
1d20/IV
18-20
1d20
d6
+2
+3
+1
5
+d7
1d24/V
17-20
1d20+1d14
d7
+3
+3
+2


Level
Title (Lawful)
Title (Neutral)
Title (Chaotic)
1
Serviceman
Soldier
Raider
2
Swordsman
Brigand
Brigand
3
Knight
Cavalier
Marauder
4
Champion
Defender
Ravager
5
Master
Adept
Reaver




Shield Dueling
Shield Dueling is a fairly new style of fencing designed to take advantage of the slight vulnerability of the personal shield. With the careful precision of a slow moving object, usually that of a dagger, an attacker can penetrate an opponent's shield. Prolonged shield dueling however is extremely dangerous as the increased friction between the two phase-fields can cause a Phlogiston Disturbance!

To make a precise strike during a shield duel, the attacker must land a successful attack roll when his or her’s Precision is equal to or greater than his or her’s opponent’s current AC.

Below are the basic rules by which the art of Shield Dueling is accomplished:

  1. Both fighting players set a d20 in front of their person. This d20 represents their Prescision. At the start of the duel both fighters set their d20 to 10.
  2. Both fighters roll for initiative. Whomever wins the initiative attacks first and sets their precision tracker to 11.
  3. The attacker rolls his action die (usually 1d20) and adds their attack bonus plus their Agility modifier. If the roll is equal to or above the defender’s AC the attack lands and the attacker raises their precision die by a number equal to their Agility modifier. If the attack was a miss the attacker lowers their precision die by a number equal to their Agility modifier.
  4. The defender now rolls to attack following the rules above.
  5. If an attacker fumbles their roll they must roll on the Fumble Table (DCC-RPG p. XX) and lower their precision tracker while their opponent raises theirs.
  6. If an attacker rolls a critical they score an automatic hit through the shield which wounds their opponent.
  7. The Judge rolls a percentage die to determine if the shield duel has resulted in a Phlogiston Disturbance! This is a 2% cumulative chance each round.
  8. Both opponents re-roll initiative and begin the second round of fighting.


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Post Kickstarter Update #1

It's been quite a while since I last posted an update here (many of my updates currently have been posted through Kickstarter). So today I will combined all those updates into one long post!

On Writing

Before launching the Kickstarter my 0-level funnel Sky ov Crimson Flame was 100% written and ready to go to the printers upon the completion of the campaign and a few remain art pieces. That was before I had even really considered the first 3 stretch goals would be reached followed by the final stretch goal of a newly written 1st level mini-campaign called Blights ov the Eastern Forest. As of this writing it's been a little over 1 month since the Kickstarter was funded and in that month I'd say 90% (or so) of the new adventure is fully written and laid out in Adobe Indesign.

The Eastern Forest adventure setting will consist of 6 different locations with a bestiary of creatures that can be randomly encountered whilst traversing the forest. 5 of the locations will be written by yours truly and 1 is a collaborative piece written by +Clint Bohaty of +Order of the Quill. His current area outline sounds really awesome and I'm really excited to be fleshing out the sordid history of the Eastern Forest with him.

I foresee all the written material for Blights ov the Eastern Forest to be finished within the next two weeks.

On Art

Both adventures are going to feature a lot of artwork from the likes of OSR faves and newcomers alike. Here are some of the most current pieces I've commissioned from +Stefan Poag, each of which were stretch goals for Sky ov Crimson Flame.

0-level Character Sheet Border

Random Item Table Border

Nexus Event Table Border

That's it for now friends. In the coming weeks I will have new artwork and further details on each of 6 locations found throughout the dreaded Eastern Forest!



Thursday, October 20, 2016

802%

Sky ov Crimson Flame -- Kicktraq Mini


To say Sky ov Crimson Flame (SovCF)was successful might be an understatement. I still can't believe it took off the way it did and I have at least 420+ people to thank. Our gaming community is amazing and throughout the creation of this adventure I have met a lot of great people through the magic of the interwebs! If nothing else was successful that would have been enough.

What's Next?

Right now I've got three artists working on new and old pieces for the adventure and I'm currently talking to three others for the follow up mini-campaign Blights of the Eastern Forest (BotEF) that was unlocked via Kickstarter.


In SovCF your party travels from the village of Reed through the Eastern Forest and to the Ancient Keep (wherein most of the adventure then takes place). With Blights of the Eastern Forest the survivors of the funnel can then go adventuring for glory and fame as they restore the balance from Chaos to Law.
My idea is to have a mini map of the forest that features highlighted locations that will then be described in further detail. Some of them may be mini dungeon crawls, puzzles or just a mini boss fight of sorts. Along with the new areas the adventure will also feature a random encounters table of creatures found within the blighted woods. New artwork will of course accompany the pages through-out.
As of right now I'm about 4,000+ words in possibly another 6,000 to go!

New Art

The most recent piece I've received for SovCF is the one below by +Nicolò Maioli.



I think this might be my new favorite piece! Well folks that's it for this update. If you backed the Kickstarter a thousand thank yous! If you didn't, well you'll just have to want a couple months to get a copy!

- Cheers!
- Thorin



Monday, September 19, 2016

Let the Ceremony Commence!

Tonight, a thunderous boom ripples across the land as a Crimson Star ignites in the eastern sky just above the Horned Moon rising. Strange ululations cry out as fleeting shadows ride across the wind. Who will unravel the mystery and brave the bowels of that foul Keep where surely unspeakable horrors must await!

YES! it has finally begun! Months of toll and torment and typing until blood spurts from my finger tips (okay I may be exaggerating) has finally come to this! Sky ov Crimson Flame, my 0-level adventure for DCCRPG, is now live on Kickstarter!




This has been a long time in the making and I'm pretty proud of what I've achieved. However, I'm just the writer and there are plenty of people who have helped me out along the way. First I have to thank +Stefan Poag for his amazing cover art. When I first saw the final piece it really cemented in my head that "Hey, this is really a thing! This is real!" The piece truly captures the chaos and zaniness (that's a word right?) of the adventure.

+Nicolò Maioli and +Jordyn Boci have both delivered excellent pieces as well that highlight the creatures and characters met throughout the adventure. +Harley Stroh and +Jon Hershberger have both provided me with powerful insight into the wild world of self publishing. Of course I can't forget all the play testers who sacrificed braved characters in order for me to get a better grasp on the adventure. Their deaths will be remembered! Many of you reading this have probably provided insight and encouragement and I thank thee here and now! The Dark Lord himself +Joseph Goodman has blessed this adventure and many thanks to him too!

Now my pretty ones! Go out and spread this chaos to all corners of the land! Let it be known that evil is a foot and must be snuffed out! The flight of Owl Knight Publishing begins here, now, today!




Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Light at the End of the Dungeon!

After many months of writing draft after draft, commissioning artwork and banging my head against the wall there is finally some light at the end of this insanity laden journey! For LO & BEHOLD my 0-level funnel Sky ov Crimson Flame has been approved to carry the moniker of Compatible with DCC! (Thanks Joseph Goodman!)


Look! There it is!
So what are the next steps and when can you get this bad boy? Well I've commissioned the last pieces of art and should be getting those in the next couple of weeks. My overall goal for this adventure was not to just release PDF or Print-on-Demand copies, but to have a physical inventory to take to conventions, local shops, and throw at random people walking down the street.

I will be launching a Kickstarter next Monday (Sept. 19th) to raise the funds in order to take this adventure to print. Throughout the campaign (time willing) I will try to run as many session as I can via Google Hangouts or Roll 20.

If you're interested in perusing the Kickstarter page hit this LINK! Any feedback would be helpful; especially if I misspelled something or sound like a complete dolt! 


Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Tromping through the Shudder Mountains, Part 7

Chapter 5: A New Journey

  • Slithering through a humid jungle, he was catching up to his prey. Hairy things that within the past few centuries learned to walk on two legs. He thought they looked silly. They couldn't out run him and the male knew it. He turned to face him with a rudimentary spear, but the serpent blade whipped out with a flash, cutting him down. Wet blood spurt on his face and..
  • Pinky woke as cold water sprayed his face. What a crazy dream... He looked around. His head was pounding. He was on a raft? Floating down the river? "Where am I?"
  • "Ah you're up!" replied an older halfling. He was dressed in old torn and dirty clothes. His hair and sideburns were grey and both poofed out wildly. He smiled at Pinky with yellow buck teeth, "It's me son! Your Father!"
  • Pinky looked on the raft again. Only Hans, sun kissed and completely hairless, lay with him. "Father?" Pinky was suspicious. "What happened? Where are the others?"
  • "Weren't no others! You and him's all I found. Hellva mess up there?"
  • Pinky asked why he left him and his father Frobert merely replied that it was a long story, fit for a better time.
  • "Well Dad... Where are we headed?"
  • "A town yonder, down the river! Gotta get supplies before our adventure."
  • "What adventure?"
  • "Oh don't you give it no mind! It'll be great! Just sit back and relax. You still need to rest!"
  • So Pinky sat and studied this strange old hobbit claiming to be his father. Eventually Hans woke up and had a lot of the same questions, but his faith some what restored he decided to let fate take over.

  • They arrived at the town of Lonelywood around noon, resupplied and met a conjure-man named Dagwood who was planning to make the journey up river anyways and would accompany them. [Dagwood is Alex's 3rd new character as I kept killing his other ones.]
  • Frobert explains that he is searching for three ingredients for an elixir he needs. He doesn't specify why... Once they have the ingredients and some spoil water; then Pinky, being a brewer, can cook it up! Frobert promises any treasure they find and of course the chance to catch up with dear old Dad.
  • The three ingredients are: The red milk from the lactating Gybrlyywock, feathers from each member of an order of sentient birds, and petals from The-Man-With-Roses-That-Grow-From-His-Hands.
  • On their river journey, they come across a giant taking a piss and unfortunately float right between his legs as a waterfall of urine rains down. The giant attacks, Pinky cut off his reaching fingers and Dagwood holds the giant at bay with his rope magic long enough for the raft to reach the quicker currents.
  • At one point a large cat fish, with female like features and tiny arms where fins should be, hops on the deck. Dagwood kills the fish and searches it's stomach, finding a strange statue carved in the likeness of woman. They push the fish back in the water and it floats down stream ahead of them.
  • Later on they hear a strange wailing, "Sister! Mah Sister!" Several of the Catgals (imagine mermaids mixed with cat fish) are crying over the mutilated body of their sister. Hans calls Dagwood an idiot for killing the creature as he fears they will avenge her if found out. The party silently hits the deck as they get closer and manage to skirt by the mourning Catgals.
Not quite, what I envisioned...
  • Some bad directions were taken and the raft is sent down rushing rapids. It gets dashed against the rocks. Dagwood loses his staff. Pinky and Frobert almost drown. Hans continues to let fate decide and lets the waters carry him under, but as he begins to down a branch catches him and he is pulled above the water. He sighs and decides to continue living.
  • With the raft gone they must continue on foot towards the mountain in which the Gybrlyywock resides. Along the way they run into a young blonde haired man named Igneous [Alana's new character, a thief. This is her 3rd character too. DCC is unforgiving.]
  • Igneous was heading to an abandoned tower, where he heard there may be treasure, the same tower Dagwood was looking to find as it was once used by a powerful wizard.
  • They head to the tower and find it abandoned, with very little treasure in the way of gold, but several potions and a few books that are still intact. As they explore the top floor there's a odd cooing sound as a horrible winged man beast lands on the balcony.
  • The cooing along with the things bright red swirling eyes is hypnotizing and has it's effects on some of the party. [This has been so long ago now I don't remember the exact details, but the party barely makes it out alive.] When the beast is killed it changes into a feeble old man. Hans heals who he can, but his disapproval is rising.
  • After a few more days of travel through the mountains and a few more random encounters; the party finally reaches the mountain of which legends state The Great & Terrible Gybrlyywock lives.
To be continued in... Chapter 6: The Lair of the Gybrlyywock



Monday, August 15, 2016

Tromping through the Shudder Mountains, Part 6

Chapter 4: The House of Cosmic Horror


Our "Heroes" have just recently escaped the ancient underground serpent tunnels, where many horrors were fought, Pinky, the halfling brewer, found an magical serpent blade and Darcy, the elf bard, met an ill fate. Poetically enough they have emerged from the frying pan, to find themselves in the fire! Literally, their town is a flame, as shadowy demons swoop down from the night sky to snatch the children away.

  • Tom Dankers runs out from his tavern to embrace Rynila. He was concerned the demons had snatch her away too.
  • They ask Tom what the hell is going on and he mentions old man McEvan, an old conjure-man who should have long been dead, but his connections with the devils of the mountains has kept him alive. For years he's been shunned by the townsfolk and just the other day he cursed the town and told them of a reckonin'-a-comin'! The shadow demons seem to be only taking the towns daughters.

  • Hans, the mad Braar, becomes enraged! They must stop these fiends! So together, with the help of two of Tom Danker's sons, Don the town drunkard and another fellow who we'll just call Bob (0-levels rolled up for Alex, who was playing Darcy in the last session) they head off.
  • The party borrows some horses and races up the old mountain path that leads to the McEvans farmstead. Along the way Pinky spots a pair of glowing eyes watching them from the shadows of the forest. The thing quickly hops away, making quite a racket and they press their horses harder.
  • As they reach the farmstead, their horses become frightened, treading no further. Thunderous noises and chanting come from within the half collapsed farmhouse.
  • They hear a noise coming from the barn nearby and go to investigate.
  • The inside is a mixture of hay and entrails. An old, tumor ridden nag in a stall is chewing loudly. It lifts its head, showing a shout covered in dripping gore.
  • The party looks into the stall to find a female corpse tied upside down against the wall. The nag is feasting on her insides from the groin down. Failing a Fort save, Don the drunkard, vomits out his reserve of ale. [Warning: Do NOT Google "tumor horse"]
  • Hans puts the horse brutally to death just as four of the McEvans boys jump down from the rafters.
  • The boys are all half-wits, caked in mud and hay and sporting crowns of antlers. Incest has turned this family into monsters.

  • A battle ensues and the boys are slain, but not before killing Tom Danker's two sons and Bob (the 0-level characters) leaving only Don, the drunkard.
  • Rynila grieves for her brothers and must be pressed to continue onward.
  • They cautiously head towards the house (and to my dismay avoid the well house all together).
  • Inside they find a real shit-hole. It looks as though animals were living there. The floors are covered in filth. Roots and vines grown up along the walls.
  • They find the dining room and other one of old McEvan's sons. The younger man snickers under the table saying, "You'll not save them! You can even save yourselves now! HahaHAHA!" Then with a silver blade he slices his throat wide open, gurgling some strange words before death. Rynila takes the silver blade.
  • They creep through the house, careful not to make too much noise. Thumping and chanting comes from the rooms above.
  • They decide to quickly search some of the rooms downstairs for any of the stolen daughters.
  • Entering one room, a loud mewing sound comes from the makeshift crib of antlers and roots. Next to the crib is a pile of dead rabbits and squirrels. Inside the crib they find an Eraserhead baby. Hans puts the baby out of it's miserable life.

  • They find a girl's bedroom and a diary. They discover it was Margo's (a 0-level character from the Sour Springs Hollow, who was a witch's apprentice). In the diary she states that her Father wants her to take the Witch-liquor to Tom Danker's wedding. She doesn't want to, but her Father will hurt her if she doesn't, or worse send her to the well. (Margo died in the 0-level funnel).
  • In another room, some lump of thing dressed in a filthy and tattered red robe shrinks into the corner as the PCs approach. Its frowning fat face rolls into it's neck. Chubby fingers point towards a writing desk on the other side of the room. 
  • The desk holds a large book with writing of an expert calligraphy. The book details the McEvan family tree. Deaths, births, mostly sons. Perusing the book they discover Han's wife and son's name. Reading further it states that she was taken and gave birth to a son. A son he thought was his... A son who drowned in the lake... A wife who then hung herself...
  • Han's becomes madden with rage and wants to beat the fat ugly mutant scribe, but is talked down. Everything he believed was a lie and he curses the Sovereign!
  • They finally rush up stairs and bust down the doors to the master bedroom. A horrible scene unfolds:
  • Old Man McEvan on his knees facing away from the PCs inside a summoning circle surrounded by lit candles. On three sides of the room bloated pregnant young women from the town wail and moan. Mid-wives tend to the victims.
  • Old Man McEvan slices his gut open down the middle and begins pulling out his intestines praising an elder god to rise, screaming his name over and over, ''YOG-SOGTHOTH!" Before collapsing in the circle.
  • The earth begins to quake and the women scream in pain as a floating, pulsing, bubbling horror pushes out from between their thighs.

  • Once they overcome their fear the party moves into action!
  • Rynila rushes to free the women, but finds the crazed mid-wives ready to kill.
  • Don rushes to help too, just as a spectre rises from the corpse of the old man and attacks. Don attempts to defend himself, but the ghost is too powerful. He falls... (All of Alex's characters have died, again.)
  • Pinky attempts to fend off the shadow with his serpent sword and fairs better than Don.
  • The young women burst open and the ceiling begins to crack as the elder-god fills the room, spilling over into the night sky.
  • Hans, his faith shaken, attempts once more to believe, calling upon the Sovereign for aid.
  • The shadow attempts a killing strike on Pinky and the mid-wives surround Rynila while Hans continues to pray.
  • Suddenly a wave of heat fills Hans body. He lifts off the floor as his skin begins to glow and his clothling catches fire. His wild unkempt hair and beard burns away. Hans radiates an inner light and the shadows of his bones can be seen through his skin.
  • This holy light is released in one gigantic wave that sweeps out in all directions, like a ring, cutting through the elder-god and the house alike. The old farm house collapses and there is blackness as the rubble covers all.

To be continued...?