Classic Dungeons and Dragons and Old School Gaming

D&D etc.

"Heir to a crumbling summit: to a sea of nettles: to an empire of rust: to rituals' footprints ankle-deep in stone."

-Mervyn Peake

"...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped."

-Sir Bedevere in Monty Python and the Holy Grail

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Vault of the Romulons

Not too long ago I bought this:
Mine looks just like this, but more beat up.  It's not written all over like a lot of these old modules are though.  I've never been big on published adventures at all, but lately I''ve been wanting to try them out more, the classics like this one as well as newer ones.  It is great to have more Gygaxian prose on my shelf, and reading through it I REALLY want to use it.  So, I'm thinking of using it in the Space Mutant DnD campaign.

The thing is, I don't like the Drow at all.  But I've come up with a great solution:

In Space Mutant DnD the elves seem to be all gone, but they used to be major players a long time ago and really they were a space faring race that crash-landed on the planet and they looked like this:

They called themselves the "Volk."

The Volk, if the players ever find any maybe by reviving them from a cryonic chamber or something, will use Eladrin stats but have "nerve pinch" as an encounter power and a chance to have some psi powers instead of their teleport power.

Anyway, in this situation who are the Drow? that is who are the Anti-Elves?

The "Romulons" of course!

I'm thinking of calling the city in Vault of the Drow Romulopolis instead of Erelhei-Cinlu.  maybe the Romulons call it one but everybody else calls it another.  Or maybe Romulopolis was built on the bones of Erelhei-Cinlu... There will be much amok there for the players to run in, I shall use Vornheim.  On the way there there's a good chance they'll run into some of Peddlers of the Deep Dark. (I'll have to add tribbles to one of those tables of goods they carry)  I bet the Romulons and the Sleestaks have all kinds of high-stakes backstabby trade shenanagans going on between them too.

I can't find in the module right now exactly what the drow's spider silk cloaks do, maybe that's in one of the earlier modules?  But I would make each cloak have woven into it a "cloaking device"  which makes it so that only other people with a Romu-cloak can see you.

Ahhhhh! and the big canyon where the Kuo-toa are supposed to be is gonna be called "The Neutral Zone"

Ok, I better stop now.

Maybe if we can fund Broodmother Sky Fortress then I can have the players go back in time and run around with kaiju inspired giants that they will already know are being used by the Romulons (because they're from the future), but then the Romulons will send a Robo-Romulon back in time after them....

Monday, July 23, 2012

Sleestak Reproduction and the Grand Adventure Campaign

We ran our first game of Space Mutant DnD.  There was one more player, so in addition to the characters I listed in the last post, there was a Chaotic Good Sleestak Cleric.  Because I made Slestaks have free hirelings the party of five was actually a party of nine.
The new player, for reasons I don't think i can even begin to speculate on, drew six boobs on her character in the little "character portait" box.  This lead to a brief discusion of speculation on the anatomy and reproductive physiology and rituals between the two Sleestak players as they hashed out their respective and seemingly conflicting views on the subject.  I freaking love D&D.

The characters were in town preparing for an expedition to the bleak forest to raid the Tomb of the Elf King when the sky opened up and this fell out and landed over the next hill:

They investigated, snuck into the Star City and rescued the Lazer Dwarves from their subjugation under the evil Psi-Witches.  along the way they met the little guy in the top picture (They could talk to him because one of the players spoke Space Imp.  We  rolled a D6 and it said so)  When they where victorious the Lazer Dwarves gave them a tank.

If we keep playing it'll turn into a hex crawl via tank.  At least until they find one of these:

Also, I really really really really really hope that Jeff Rients and Vincent Baker and everybody else in the Lamentations of the Flame Princess Grand Adventure Campaign get to make awesome adventures for us to play.   These guys will each make an awesome adventure, but the fact that they are both (especially Baker) are planning something that can be used again and again is brilliant.  A kit to make random wizard towers inspired by Jack Vance, full of moving parts for PCs to mess with and back story and where did the wizard go... are you kidding?  Why is The Seclusium of Orphone not way past it's goal already?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Space Mutant DnD

I wrote up Jeff's 20 Questions and gave them to the players to introduce the campaign since I'm aiming for something other than vanilla DnD, something I'm calling:



Characters begin in Foulcrest, a dwarven factory town on bluffs overlooking mud flats At the top of an inland sea/lake.  Sleesport is on a peninsula at the south end of the lake with access to a larger sea.  Across the lake from Foulcrest is the ruined city of Xenos.  The Elf King's Tomb is in the bleak forest: a place even the elves don't go.

Character Races:
Sleestak, Dwarf, Human,  Kobold.  More playable races can be unlocked in game.

Character Classes:
all PHB classes.  Maybe more may be unlocked in game.


1.    What is the deal with my cleric's religion?
You're Cleric most likely worships the Lord of Light, the Lazer God.  He lives in the City of Angels and looks like this:

There are also rumors of cults of Warlocks in Xenos.

2.    Where can we go to buy standard equipment?
 Foulcrest for most things or Sleesport for larger sea-going ships or weirder items.

3.    Where can we go to get platemail custom fitted for this monster I just befriended?
 Pay the dwarves of Foulcrest extra and they can do it.  They are quite industrious.

4.    Who is the mightiest wizard in the land?
 Well there used to be the elves...  Maybe the Shroud of Xenos? Who knows really.

5.    Who is the greatest warrior in the land?
 The chief of the Dwarves of Foulcrest is pretty tough, otherwise maybe one of the barbarians.

6.    Who is the richest person in the land?
 One of the Dwarf or Sleestak merchant houses who run Foulcrest and Sleesport.

7.    Where can we go to get some magical healing?
 The Temple of the Lord of Light in Foulcrest.

8.    Where can we go to get cures for the following conditions: poison, disease, curse, level drain, lycanthropy, polymorph, alignment change, death, undeath?
 The Clerics of the Lord of Light in Foulcrest might have to direct you to one of their monasteries in the Blade Mountains.  You can hire a Runner to guide you.

9.    Is there a magic guild my MU belongs to or that I can join in order to get more spells?
 Nope.  Wizards are lonely weirdos.  They may find items or spells on their adventures.

10.    Where can I find an alchemist, sage or other expert NPC?
 Maybe Sleesport.

11.    Where can I hire mercenaries?
 Foulcrest is full of disgruntled workers (mostly human and dwarf) in the dwarven mills.  Offer them two weeks pay and they'll follow you, offer them 2 months pay and they'll follow you anywhere. 

12.    Is there any place on the map where swords are illegal, magic is outlawed or any other notable hassles from Johnny Law?
 Well, it's bad news to get on the wrong side of the law in any town.  The Sleestaks are known to be especially nasty.  They run Sleesport like bug-eyed, lizard-clawed Bugsy Siegels.

13.    Which way to the nearest tavern?
 Plenty in Foulcrest and more in Sleesport.

14.    What monsters are terrorizing the countryside sufficiently that if I kill them I will become famous?
Funny you should ask...

15.    Are there any wars brewing I could go fight?
Maybe later.

16.    How about gladiatorial arenas complete with hard-won glory and fabulous cash prizes?
Some say the Lord of Light has contests to determine a champion who is granted special boons, but these are usually quests, not gladiatorial fights.

17.    Are there any secret societies with sinister agendas I could join and/or fight?
Yep: The Sleestak Mafia.  The Dwarven Counter-Sleestak Insurgency.  The Cults of Xenos. Just to name a few.

18.    What is there to eat around here?
Deep fried dinosaur.  Giant Strawberries.  Dwarven Ale.  Sleestaks are vegetarians for the most part, though some say they prize certain mammals as delicacies.

19.    Any legendary lost treasures I could be looking for?
There's the Crown of the Elf King...

20.    Where is the nearest dragon or other monster with Type H treasure?
Some say there is a secret court of alien vampires in Xenos.  And there is a Chimera to the north.