Free GM Resource: Swords & Wizardry Light

Free GM Resource: Swords & Wizardry Light
This week's Free GM Resource is a companion to another Free GM Resource from back in 2015...over three years ago.

Swords & Wizardry Light is a labor of love from none other that Eric Tenkar (of Tenkar's Tavern fame).

Technically this "freebie" is a PWYW and a bit of a twofer. 1st you have the 4 page Fast-Play Rules and then you have these Character Cards.

The whole ruleset is already "out there" and featured back in March, 2015, but the cool thing about these two products is that they are really stripped down versions of the game, perfect for introducing to newbs or running a real quick one-off.


My "Work-In-Progress" Wizard's Tower

My "Work-In-Progress" Wizard's Tower
Wonky Wizard's Tower with a Crappy RoofFor the last few months I've been collecting supplies to build some towers for terrain pieces. The idea was to make them out of pink insulation foam and to use old booze bottle tubes (they probably have a proper name that escapes me) as the base. I currently work at a liquor store, so these basic supplies are easy enough to get.

While I was collecting supplies I went and built...and rebuilt...a hot wire foam cutter that works pretty decent. I think I'll probably save up to buy a proper cutter only because I think it'll be faster and even more precise than what I have now.

This morning I finally finished my 1st tower and I'm calling it very much a "work-in-progress" build, even though this stage is done. The idea was to have a somewhat "wonky" wizard tower. I think I accomplished that with the tower, although the way I did the build proved difficult to paint & seal properly. It doesn't show up that bad in normal light, but there were a lot of cracks and crevices that still show pink foam. The top of the tower was definitely "wonky" before I started tiling it, but the tiles covered it up too much. The tiles themselves are too think and didn't paint up the way I wanted them to, so it's back to the drawing board on them. I already have another idea to try out. I was going more for wood shingles, so there is a brownish base (unpainted cardstock), greyish/weathered parts, and a light coating of green to represent moss.

The top actually comes off fairly easy and the inside could be used for storage. What I'll probably end up doing is figuring out the new roof and simply replacing this roof with one I like better.

Free GM Resource: Warped Clips YouTube Channel

Free GM Resource: Warped Clips YouTube Channel
It might be germane to note that I don't watch on-air television, I don't have cable, and *gasp* I don't even have Netflix. I do watch a lot of movies, some cartoons, and a lot...I mean a lot...of YouTube.

This week's Free GM Resource is another YouTube channel. This time around it is Warped Clips. What I like about Warped Clips is that most of the builds are things I haven't seen elsewhere and the clips themselves tend to be quite short.

Take this short video on making mini candles for your terrain. The guy pretty much makes actual mini candles and the finished result is simply brilliant.

Warped Clips isn't a big channel, so it has probably skipped most people's radar.....


Free GM Resource: Vulpinize Your Maps!

Free GM Resource: Map Tutorials
This week's Free GM Resource is another one of those "have I used this before?" things that I had to take some extra time to check out. I'm not adverse to re-visiting earlier resources, but I like those re-visits to be deliberate and not too-often.

These Map Tutorials are a series of Blog posts over at the Observations of the Fox, which is Michael Weman's blog.

Personally, I suck at drawing maps so tutorials like these have really helped me out in the past, serving as a base that I can use to work off of as I try to figure out my own style.

Free GM Resource: Vulpinize Your Maps!
Example Graphic
Each post has a graphic outlying the info from the post. It's clearly a scan of a page, but it is useful to save the pics. I only wish they were higher resolution so I could print them out into a booklet for me to reference when I'm trying my hand at drawing (which I don't do often because....well I already stated I suck at drawing).

The Map Tutorials are definitely worth checking out!


Free GM Resource: Village Map Generator

Free GM Resource: Village Map Generator
This week's Free GM Resource is an online Village Map Generator from our old friend over at Inkwell Ideas.

This generator is on a bit of a back page that has probably been forgotten about for some time, bu I think it could be rather useful for some GMs. There are something like 9 options you can force onto the generator, or just hit some random seed.

The only problem I've run into using this Village Map Generator is trying to save the resulting generation. There are some brief instructions on the page, but that was a bit cumbersome and just didn't work for me. I ended up just taking a couple of screen shots and stitch them together in Photoshop. While I was there I screwed around a bit to get rid of the gradient in the background.

Quick randomly-seeded village map

Same map with a tweaked background

These maps might be quite simple, but the real value is the fact you can tweak the settings to get something that can be quite useful....and quick. I think the Village Map Generator from Inkwell Ideas is worth bookmarking.....


I've Decided to Get Back Into Patreon...for Reasons!

I've Decided to Get Back Into Patreon...for Reasons!
A couple months ago I pretty much gave up on Patreon and...surprise, surprise it has had a negative impact on my creativeness and straight-out production.

In short.....I've done diddly squat RPG-wise since "quitting".

This is not good. Evidently I need the motivation. This is why I'm jumping back on the Patreon bandwagon again, but I'm going to change things up:

1st off I will only have one Patron/Reward tier and that is $1 a month. Oh yeah, instead of a "per creation" model I'm switching over to a monthly model. The only problem I have with this change is that it appears that Patreon's only option for a monthly campaign is an up-front charge, which I do not want because that could incentivize me to not produce, which is kind of the point in the first place.

I'm hoping that I can do a bit of a work-around by officially not making any changes until after the beginning of April. If I make the change mid-month before I post anything then my Patrons would get charged in May, technically for the month of May, but good enough for my purposes.

Since I want to do a monthly model my goal is one map, one Tweak & Toss, and then one "other" thing a month. Get back to d30 Tables, maybe another map, bonus monsters, or just something altogether different.

I still have some work to do on the actual Patreon campaign page, but you can check in if you want to see what I'm attempting to do.....


Free GM Resource: DesktopHero 3D

Free GM Resource: DesktopHero 3D
I'm still recovering from a bout of sickness last week, but I wanted to make sure I got a Free GM Resource posted this week.

For your gaming goodness this week I have a rather interesting model generator....for 3D printing called DesktopHero.

From the application's "about" page: "DesktopHero is an open-source, open-library character maker for 3D printing! It began as a Kickstarter in mid 2016, then became a real thing over the course of the next year and a half. The webapp was released to the public in January 2018."

The webapp is .....interesting. I've seen some minor glitches and oddities here & there and while it might seem a bit odd, there are a lot of options and you probably need to invest some time to get good while playing around with the application. Luckily there are some examples of what other people have done and it might be easier to start with one of those.

It is easy to export a character/mini that you have created (or is a work in progress) and you might be a bit confused when the app downloads a .dhc file. That isn't a 3d printing file, but just a file type for this application. You have to use the other download icon to save the creation as a STL file for 3d printing.

If you have a 3d printer you should check out DesktopHero3d.


Thinking About GaryCon....

Thinking About GaryCon....
Today....well technically yesterday as I'm posting this at 1 AM, was the 10th Anniversary of Gary Gygax's passing. I'm disappointed that I never got to meet the man, especially since his life's work has had such an impact on my life.

It's no secret that HackMaster is my game of choice and back in 2008 HackMaster was on it's "4th Edition." It was actually the 1st edition, but it was the spiritual successor to AD&D when the official 3rd Edition came out (and quickly followed by 3.5). HackMaster was a fictional game in the Knights of the Dinner Table (KoDT) comic strip.

HackMaster owes it's existence to WotC deciding to publish/create the Dragon Magazine archive on PDF. In short, they didn't have the rights to republish the one-page Knights of the Dinner Table strips and KoDT had recently become part of KenzerCo. I won't get more into the minutia, but basically KenzerCo go the rights to AD&D from WotC/Hasbro. They probably thought something along the lines of "Since we're making 3rd Edition nobody will want to play with the old rules and these guys will burn out in a year, so no big loss." I contend this makes HackMaster the 1st OSR game (outside of AD&D, duh) and HackMaster is basically 50% 1st Edition, 25% 2nd Edition, and 25% Home Rules from the KenzerCo D-Team.

Anyway....back to March, 2008. I was in the process of inviting friends from across the country to play here in Boise when we got word about Gary Gygax's passing. The gaming weekend was re-dubbed GaryCon Boise and we had players from Idaho, Utah, Oklahoma, and Tennessee.

Little did we know that there would be a "real" GaryCon, which is celebrating it's 10th year next weekend in Lake Geneva, WI. I've only been once and I do plan on attending in the future, assuming I have the resources to do so.

This was the graphic for a refrigerator magnet I made for GaryCon Boise. I made enough for all attendees and a few extra to give to friends who couldn't attend. I still have one or two floating about.....