"Go to the sign of Harvel's Axe, a dubious inn on the edge of the Thieves Quarter, in the City of Greyhawk, and look to your own wrist. If you perceive a bracelet and dangling dice, watch for the next throw in the war between Law and Chaos and be prepared to follow the compelling geas." -Signal

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

JG - Player's Guide to the Wilderlands, Solidification

The Player's Guide to the Wilderlands from the reformed Judges Guild is exactly what it says it is. If you want a full blown campaign setting like the original Wilderlands components were you will need to buy a copy of the box set. This though could work as as an excellent starting point if you wanted to build a modified original copy. This book gives the players enough detail to be well informed on the campaign world but that would also be enough for a DM to build off of. The system is stated for the 3.5 version but since not everything is detailed the conversion would not be herculean. The setting is a very much a mash up of Tolkien's Middle Earth, Howard's Hyboria and Leiber's Lankhmar much as the original seemed to be. This is not said as a bad thing as I think most campaign settings are mash ups of previous great ones be they from literature or previously published edition. I recall one of my early one having a conclave of Mentats because I loved Dune so much...but I digress. The map for this is an excellent full color representation of the Wilderlands but not in enough detail to ruin it for the players. The book covers vital topics such as the history of the Wilderlands, The various pantheons of the people, write ups for the various races, highlights of the geography and also offers a number of new classes. I recall only the witch which has always been a personal favorite of mine. In the end for the OSR this is not immediately apparent as something to buy but I think with some work to convert it or for the ideas that can be mined from it this makes a worth addition to a collection.

Spell:

Solidification


Level: Third
Range: 6"
Duration: 1 Round/Level
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 3 Segments
Saving Throw: Special

When this spell id cast the magic user causes the molecular bonds of the affected creature to slow as if they had been subjected to an extreme cold similar to that of outer space though there is no actual change in the temperature of the creature or the surrounding area. The actual effect of this spell will vary greatly based on the type of creature/individual it is cast upon and if their save is made or not. This spell will be ineffective against creatures who would be unaffected by the effects of outer space.

Should this spell be cast on a being made entirely of energy then it will have its most adverse effect. Beings of this nature who have this spell cast on them and fail their saving throw will break apart at the molecular level. If native to the plane the spell is cast on will also break apart and will be unable to reform for the duration of the spell. If from another plane be forced back to it.  In both cases when the creatures reintegrate they will be in a greatly weakened state having only one half their normal hit points and gaining them back at one quarter the normal rate. Creatures who make their save will suffer damage equal to three times the casters level in hit points with no further save allowed.

Material beings who have this spell cast on them will also be required to make a saving throw to see if they are fully or partially affected by the spell. Those who fail their save will suffer the effects of a slow spell with the additional disadvantage of having their To Hit rolls reduced by two and losing all advantages from dexterity if any. It will have the effect of raising their AC by four due to their increased solidity though. Those who make their save are not affected by the slowing aspect nor do they gain the armor class benefit. They will suffer the To Hit modification and lose any dexterity benefit.

Lastly when cast on a creature in a non corporeal state this spell will cause them to become corporeal for the duration of the spell if they fail their saving throw. Those that make their save will be unaffected bu the spell. Those who fail their save will lose all benefits of being non corporeal and can be affected as normal creatures would be including being able to be attacked on this plane. This will most adversely affect non corporeal undead who in addition to the other affects will have their armor class worsened by four and suffer 2d10 in damage from the solidification effect.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Monday, May 30, 2011

JG - Island Book One, Cassandra's Shadowy Hound

This is the Island Book 1 - Campaign Hexagon Sub-System that was put out by Judges Guild back in 1978 give or take a year or so. This was another of those time saving boons to the early DM. This one more so than perhaps the Village Book is still almost as useful. I say that because I know of a number of village generators that can be found online but I do not know of any that generate islands. If one exists perhaps someone can mention it in a comment. Regardless all of the early Judges Guild mapping type products be they the blank map sheets to the Island Book to the full blown Wilderlands offerings were all top shelf accessories. The book has 48 maps of either single islands or chains of islands of varying sizes. Also included are three or four pages of charts for generating such items as terrain, inhabitants, possible volcanic activity, unique things to find and encounter charts. Given the generic nature of the product I think this is still one of the more useful aids that Judges Guild produced and that it has stood the test of time better than other products from that era.

Spell:

Cassandra's Shadowy Hound


Level: Fifth
Range: 6"
Duration: 6 Turns/Level
Ares Effect: None
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 1 Turn
Saving Throw: None

By means of this spell the magic user creates a temporary gate to the Plane of Shadow. The gate brings forth one Shadowy Hound for every three levels of the caster. These hounds will be friendly to the caster and any that the caster signifies as friends. The caster does not need to maintain concentration to control the hounds.

The hounds may perform very minor tasks but their real purpose is to serve as guardians for the caster and/or a given area. The hounds are not able to attack anything on this plane and any successful magical attack or a casting of Dispel Magic will send them back to the Plane of Shadow. The hounds can appear to be any largish dog and will often be mistaken for Shadow Mastiffs.

Should anyone not in the magic users party or signified as a friend of the caster come within fifty feet of the hound they will begin to issue a low growl that any creature within a fifty foot radius will be able to hear unless other noises make this impossible. If anyone other than a friend comes within 20 feet of the hound or should any of the hounds be attacked then all will start barking and yelping. Those who are within 100 feet that hear the barking and fail a save versus fear will be stopped in their tracks for 1d4 rounds though any attack on them will break this.

The caster as well as any they have signified as a friend will be immune to the yelp effect of the hounds though they can hear it if within range. Even if outside the range if they are asleep there is an 80% chance for anyone other than the caster to be awakened. There is a 100% chance that the caster will be awakened by this. This yelping will alert the magic user and their party thus preventing them from being surprised while asleep or otherwise occupied.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

B3 - Palace of the Silver Princess, Shadow Assassin


Normally the color of the module or the various printing does not make as much of a difference in value as it does this particular specimen. If you are not sure what I am talking about you can find a excellent discussion on it over at the Acaeum. If you want to check out for yourself what all the hubbub is about and can't wait for one to come up on eBay (though there are two right now) ...or have $1,500 bucks to blow you can still amazingly download if from the WotC site here. I don't have a real copy of the Orange edition and most likely never will but the PDF has allowed me to compare them and I overall prefer the modified version. I did like the ability in the original for the DM to customize it more like B1 but that can be done regardless of it being built into the module. I will say that this module won't make my top 20 and it would be rare for it to make anyone's unless they don't have a large enough pool to draw from. In the end it was an average module that through fate has become one of the most storied collectibles in the industry...not this version though.

Spell:

Shadow Assassin


Level: Sixth
Range: 1/2"/Level
Duration: Special
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: None

By means of this spell the magic user causes the shadow of the spell's target to become a self willed entity. This spell can target any human, humanoid or monster that is visible, has a tangible form and casts a shadow. The sole purpose of the shadow will become that of killing the creature it is a shadow of.

Once the spell is cast the Shadow Assassin attacks its target with complete surprise getting a +4 bonus on their To Hit roll. It makes the To Hit roll as an assassin equal to the level of the the intended victim up to a maximum of a tenth level assassin. If this attack is successful then there is a normal percentage chance of the hit being a successful assassination as per the Dungeon Masters Guide. If it is not an assassination then then normal damage is suffered including any multiples for being a back stab. The weapon used will be what was in the hand of the victim or a dagger if none was present.

If the initial attack does not kill the victim then the Shadow Assassin will continue to fight until such time as either the victim or they are dead. For combat purposes the Shadow Assassin has an armor class of zero. Attacks from others than the victim will have no effect on the Shadow Assassin. A single successful strike from the victim will cause the Shadow Assassin to be dispelled.

This spell is accomplished by infusing the victims shadow with essence from the Plane of Shadows (the Negative Material Plane can be used as an alternate if desired). It should be noted that casting this spell more than once in any given game week will have a 50% chance of drawing the attention of other inhabitants from the plane and their wrath. If there is notice made a second Assassin will come through with it's target being the caster. The chance goes up 10% with each additional casting until one week has pased since it was last cast.

The material components of this spell are a small black cloak and an obsidian dagger. Both of these can not be of less than 100 gp in value. The spell also requires a small vial of blood from a living assassin. The blood is consumed by the casting of the spell though the cloak and dagger remain.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

S1 - Tomb of Horrors (GW), Cassandra's Ring of Teleportation

If the tomb of Horrors is not the most infamous module of all time it ranks very close to the top. I regret to say that I myself have never been run through this. I have run in many times and each time the expected happens....someone dies. Sometimes when writing posts I come up with random ideas....I think someone should collect all the horror stories of how their characters died in the Tomb of Horrors and publish it. I am fairly certain it would sell well...at least among the old guard. In fact it could be called "Death in the Tomb...the Horrors of it All"...I am officially laying claim to the idea and that title.  This copy is complete but a little beat up. It is also the Games Workshop edition which makes it rarer than the standard monochrome edition. I have never compared it line by line as far as text goes. It does use black for the maps rather than the TSR blue...I prefer the blue myself. I really regret having run this before I ever had a chance to be run through it. I would like to see just how I did in figuring things out. I suspect I would not have made it through all the way. I find that as a player I tend to take more risks that I would normally let my players get away with. It has been suggested to me (and I think I said this before) that I am not an easy player to DM/GM for. The Tomb is a classic example of the first edition modules if not the archetype and a copy needs to be in everyone collection.

Spell:

Cassandra's Ring of Teleportation


Level: Sixth
Range: None
Duration: Special/Instantaneous
Ares Effect: One Ring
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 4 Turns
Saving Throw: None

With the casting of this spell the magic user places a single charge Teleport spell inside a ring to be worn by themselves or another.  The teleportation effect will return the wearer only to the location that specified when the spell was cast on the ring. This rings effect may be triggered on command or by a specified event trigger (i.e. the wearers death, psionically attached, being petrified etc.).

When the triggering event occurs or the command word is spoken by the wearer then they will immediately be teleported to the location determined in the original casting of the spell. Any attempt by anyone other than the wearer of the ring to remove or destroy the ring will also trigger the teleport spell. It is important to note that the wearer may not have more than two of these types of rings on at any given time. Each of which must have different trigger events, if any, though they can go to the same location. These do not could against the number of magic rings a character can wear at any given time.

The material component of this spell is the ring which must be of at least 1000 gold pieces in value. The ring is destroyed when the spell effect occurs.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Friday, May 27, 2011

AD&D Dungeon Masters Adventure Log, Resiliency

The Dungeon Masters Adventure Log is one of those items that some DMs find useful and only a collector who feels they need to have everything feels compelled to add to their collection. There is nothing that is done in this book that can not be done on a simple sheet of paper or sheets of paper. If the DM feels so compelled to keep all of the sheets together in one place they could use a spiral bound notebook or one of the sub dollar black composition books. It is nice in that it breaks this out into sections but again I am not sure that it is really all that essential or perhaps even desirable for most DMs. I tried to force myself to use this in the past because I thought if it was made it must be useful. In the end making all of those notes and adding the adventures each time ended up being to much work for too little return. It was suggested by Grognardia that the only useful portion of this was the sample pages. I have to admit that I had only glanced at those before and looking at them in depth they were entertaining. Being one of those guys who has to have everything I own at least one copy of this including the one I used with about six sets of sheets filled out. I think I still need a totally blank one though as apparently everyone tried to use theirs once!

Spell:

Resiliency


Level: Second
Range: Touch
Duration: 4 + 1 Round/level
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 2 Segments
Saving Throw: None

When this spell is cast the magic user may have their body, or the body of another, take on the aspect of soft rubber. This will have the effect of making the recipient immune to all attacks from crushing or blunt type weapons (i.e. maces, clubs etc) due to the pliancy of their body.

Another effect of this spell is that the recipient will be able to fall from any height, and as long as a saving throw versus petrification is made, they will suffer no damage. If the save fails they will take one eighth of the damage they would normally have taken. The recipient will suffer full damage from any edged or impaling type items they come into contact with during or at the end of the fall.

Finally the recipient will not suffer any damage, or adverse effects, from a stomp attacks from creatures such as elephants or dinosaurs. They will also not suffer damage or be affected by falling boulders unless they are still trapped under them at the end of the spells duration.

The spell does not actually transform the recipients body into rubber mere gives it the resiliency. They recipient suffers no additional adverse effects from effects that would cause damage to actual rubber items.

The material component of this spell is quantity of sap from the rubber tree plant. The caster must apply the sap liberally to the body of the intended recipient before casting of the spell begins.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Monster & Treasure Assortment , Replication

The Monster & Treasure Assortment - Sets One-Three: Levels One-Nine is a compilation of three earlier products. There have been a couple of other write ups that will be better for telling you about the products. One was written on Grognardia and the other on Delta's D&D Hotspot. I won't try and beat either of those because I really couldn't. I will suggest that when this and even more so the originals that this was created from were most likely godsends to the haggard early DM. Today we have a wealth of printed material and an Internet that will generate us hundreds of treasure hoards or encounter sets in a second. We can then print that to PDF and save it or if we want to old school it we could hard copy it. Back in 1977,1978 or even 1980 that was not an option for the average DM. To create something like this would have meant gathering all of the printers resource material at a table/desk and then writing each by hand. This item alone may have saved the early DM a full day or more of time of what would have been very repetitious work. In the end there is not much need to have this any more. It is a relic of a time when things were not so easy. So you can save money and not buy one but it is a nice reminder of what others had to do to get us to where we are today.

Spell:

Replication


Level: Fourth
Range: None
Duration: 6 Turns/Level
Ares Effect: Item Touched
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 4 Segments
Saving Throw: None

With the casting of this spell the magic user brings into existence exact duplicates of any normal non-living item of their choice. The item can be no larger than ten square feet and must weigh less than 200 pounds. The spell will allow the caster to create one copy for each level of experience though they may create less than that number if desired.

The caster may touch a magical item and it will be duplicated as an item of the exact same physical nature but it will be non-magical in nature. Any normal item touched will be a fully functional copy provided that the original item was in good working order to begin with. It is important to note that perishable items may not be created by means of this spell. This will include foodstuffs but not water.

The material component of this spell is a small silver mirror that is held over top of the item to be duplicated. The mirror is not consumed by the casting of the spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

UnderWorld - Urban Fantasy, Pyrokinetic Force

UnderWorld is not a game based on the movies starring Kate Beckinsale or Rhona Mitra but a role playing game of subterranean urban fantasy. The game was released in 2000 by Synister Creative. There have been other games released in what I think is a new genre of role playing since then such as HEX, Dreaming Cities and Neverwhere. Most if not all of these are a direct result of Neil Gaiman's Sandman series. I know the TV show Beauty & the Beast and other stores before it had an affect but I think Gaiman brought it to the fore. The game system is good, the material is excellent but the presentation/quality is lacking. The rules themselves are very simple fitting on basically a single page and it uses a coin flip system (similar to D6 dice pool) for actions. The characters are based on Breeds (9) and then Guilds (again 9 or perhaps it was 10) in the Breed.. They then have Traits and Skills. The real gem of this book though is in the material that can be taken from it for other games. It has a good list of inspirational source materials but the real gem is the Random Adventure Seed Generator that can generate tens if not hundreds of thousands of possible adventure combinations. The game might best be served as source material for a LARP but if you are a fan of the Beauty & the Beast TV show or the Sandman comics you want to look at this.

Spell:

Pyrokinetic Force


Level: Fourth
Range: 1"/Level
Duration: Concentration
Ares Effect: 1/2"/Level
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 3 Segments
Saving Throw: Halves

By means of this spell the magic user is able to generate a field that causes the molecular bonds of all objects in the area of effect to become agitated causing the generation of heat. On metallic objects this will have the same effect as a Druid's Heat Metal spell with the same time frame and effects. Non-metallic objects will also be affected by this spell as well though. There will be a two round delay for the effect to occur but then items will be affected as if they were flammable objects that had come into contact with an ignition source.

Living objects in the area of effect will also be affected though in a slightly different way. Living beings will after three rounds begin to take damage. The damage will begin at 1d6 and then will increase by 1d6 per round. The damage max out at 10d6 after thirteen rounds in the area of effect. The effect will then continue at that level for as long as they stay in the area of effect.

Normal non-living objects in the area of effect are not entitled to a saving throw and will suffer the full effect of the spell. Magical items are entitled to a saving throw and will make the save vs. Magic as a magic user of the same level as the items own. There is a bonus of +2 to the save in addition of to any others that it might be entitled to. Items without an owner will save as an eighth level magic user. Items which make their save will be unaffected by the spell. Beings in the area of effect that make their save will only take half damage. The save is only rolled for once and applies for the entire time in the area of effect. If an item or creature leaves the area of effect and is out of it for more than three rounds and then reenter the process starts again with new saves.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Superbabes - The Femforce RPG, Protection from Normal Weapons

Superbabes - The Femforce Role Playing Game is a hard one to pin down as to what was meant to be and what it is. It was published by Tri-City Games. It is a super hero games based on Femforce from AC Comics. I was an avid comic collector for years but do not recall having any issues of Femforce...based on the cover maybe I should. The game is either even more misogynistic that Mach Women or a true adaptation of a comic that takes a satirical look at the way women are treated in comics. I think it works either way and apparently does a fair enough job of it to warrant a number of supplements and accessories. The game was published in the middle of the 90's so it was a little less demanding period of time though. The game is point based and seems to use skills similar to Champions though with a lot more tongue in cheek names for them. Character are also rewarded in some cases for having lower stats and penalized for having higher stats which I can see might make sense in a comic book world. The game also allows for creating male characters but is obviously geared against that idea. I am not sure that I see this as an option for a long running campaign type game but it would provide an alternative to the more commonly played super hero games. In the end can be totally bad to have a game that gives you a mechanic called Bimbo Points?

Spell:

Protection from Normal Weapons


Level: Fifth
Range: Touch
Duration: 1 Turn/Level
Ares Effect: Creature Touched
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 8 segments
Saving Throw: None

The casting of this spell bestows to the recipient total immunity to non-magical melee weapons. This is similar in effect to the spell Protection from Normal Missiles. The recipient of this spell may still be attacked and hit by non-magical weapons but the weapons will do no damage or deliver any effects from attacks that hit.

This spell also grants the recipient immunity to physical attacks by creatures under three hit dice. Attacks by creatures of more than three hit dice are treated normally. Any creature of an undead, magical, supernatural or extra-planar nature will be able to cause damage to the recipient with physical attacks regardless of their hit dice but will not cause damage if normal weapons are used in the attacks.

The material component of this spell is a small piece of hide from a creature with an armor class that is naturally lower than AC2. it can alternatively be a small piece of flesh from a creature that requires a magical weapon to hit them. If the former is used it is consumed by the spell while the latter is not.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Middle Earth Role Playing - Iron Crown, Cassandra's Mystical Porters

Middle Earth Role Playing (MERP) was released in 1984 and I had a copy as soon as I knew it existed. This is either my second or third copy of the first edition rulebook. I had previously purchased the Middle earth setting product that I posted about earlier. This is one of those things that could have been a phenomenal success or an abysmal failure as most licensed products can be. This was the former rather than the latter much to my and based on the line it produced many others enjoyment. I would think that MERP would still be in production today if ICE had not lost the license in 1999. If there was any negative from the movies this had to be it. I know Decipher has since let the license lapse and I am not sure who if anyone owns it now. The system is a fairly straightforward adaptation and scaled down version of Rolemaster. The game even though scaled down was not a beginner friendly game and it had too much magic in it which for most role playing games is unavoidable. The real gem from the system are the location modules which may be some of the best done accessories ever produced.

Spell:

Cassandra's Mystical Porters


Level: Second
Range: None
Duration: 1 Day/Level
Ares Effect: None
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Turn
Saving Throw: None

By means of this spell the magic user brings into being one porter for every three levels of experience they posses. These porters will appear to be normal humans, demi-humans or humanoids of the casters choice and may be mixed if desired.  The porters will stand out though as they will have no discernible facial features and will be surrounded by a glow similar in appearance to Farie Fire. The porters are actually lesser beings of pure force brought forth from the Prime Material Plane under control of the caster.

The porters will be totally unaffected by physical attacks on them while on this place though the items they carry may be affected. They are also immune to all magical attacks except for a dispel magic which will send them back to the Positive Material Plane though they are entitled to a save as if they were the caster to prevent this. If sent by by use of Dispel Magic any items that the porters might be carrying will return with them. The porters are also unable to affect anything on this plane other than the objects that the caster has instructed them to carry.

Each porter will be able to carry a base amount of 5000 gp weight plus an additional 1000 gp weight for every level of the cater above third. The porters will be able to understand commands given to them by the caster, and only the caster, regardless of the language used. These commands will be obeyed and followed unerringly to the literal letter as the porters have no means to interpret the meanings and intent of any orders given to them.

The material components for this spell are a drop of the casters blood and a pouch of five gold pieces for each porter summoned. The blood is consumed at the casting of the spell and the pouches vanish with the porters when they return to the Positive Material Plane.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Basic Rulebook - Holmes, Cassandra's Mystical Mirror

I won't spend a lot of time writing about this as it is being reviewed in great detail right now and has been discussed at length in many others. This is not the one that began it all but for many it was the one that began it for them. I came in at the tail end of this and the release of AD&D. My first character was rolled using the AD&D Players Handbook but this is the first book I read on the game. It was lent to me by our first DM who was our high school calculus teacher. I know I poured over this again and again just amazed at the concept of it as a game and enthralled at the effect it had on my imagination. I still have at lest one copy of this within easy reach almost all the time. This may not be my favorite edition of the game but it is was my first D&D rulebook I was able to read (the first I bought was the AD&D PHB) and we always know how we adore our firsts.

Spell:

Cassandra's Mystical Mirror


Level: Fifth
Range: 3"
Duration: 6 Turns/Level
Ares Effect: 1/2 SqFt/level
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Turn
Saving Throw: None

This spell has two distinct version of it that may be cast. The first will cause the area effected to act as a crystal ball to any area that the caster has ever seen or been to. The second will create a reflective surface that will show all on it in their true form. Either spell may be cast but the version is determined at the time of casting and it may not be changed once cast.

An area affected by the first version will in all ways act as the basic version of a magical crystal ball. The exception to this is that it is limited to places. People may not be the default subject though people in the area specified will be seen. Individuals of a normal nature will will not be able to detect that they are being observed but magical, supernatural or extra-planar being may do so as per standard rules for this. There is a 10% chance per round that any being that has detected that they are being observed will then be able to view those who are observing them through the mirror but the caster is immediately aware of this. Most creatures will despise being viewed in this manner and will have a 25% chance to become fixated on finding those who viewed it.

The second version of the spell will show any who are reflected on their surface as they really are. This will affect illusion, polymorphed creatures, petrified creatures as well as showing any who are invisible. Naturally invisible creatures will be seen as a smokey silhouette. Supernatural beings in their natural form will be seen with an aura surrounding the form. The mirror will also cause creatures passing by it on the Astral or Ethereal plane to be seen on its surface.

Another effect of the second version is that it will cause normal beings who are looking at the mirror from the caster side to see what their spirit or soul would look like if it could be seen. This will happen if more than one turn is spent looking at the mirror. For all intents and purposes their sins and true nature are being laid bare to them. Those who see their inner being must make a saving throw versus spells. Good aligned beings will save at +2, Neutral aligned save normally and Evil aligned save at -2. Those who fail the save are stunned and stare transfixed for 2-5 rounds and then must save again and those who fail will flee the presence of the mirror.

The material component for this spell is the same regardless of the version cast. The component is a small silver mirror which will shatter at the end of the spells duration or upon it being dispelled.

Spell Commentary: I had forgotten about the second effect of the second casting until I was typping it in. I have always thought the idea in Shallow Hal was neat. Now I see why. Wonder if my idea was poached?

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Delta Green - Pagan, Mystical Healing

Delta Green from Pagan Publishing is an award winning campaign setting for the Call of Cthulhu. It takes place in the modern (1990s) era but the setting has a rich and detailed back story. The Delta Green organization was founded after the incident at Innsmouth mentioned at the end of  Lovecraft's "Shadow Over Innsmouth". The group draws upon elements of most if not all the standard fare of governmental organizations (FBI,CIA, DEA, ATF, CDC etc) but is not one that operates in the light or with public knowledge. This idea in and of itself (very much like the SAVE group from Chill works to help support the campaign as it gives new or replacement characters an in. There are many like myself who want to compare this to the X-Files and and say that it must have spawned from that. The comparison is a fair one though even with the depth of Delta Green its mythology is easier to follow than the X-Files. The fact of the matter is that the first mention of Delta Green, from The Unspeakable Oath, predates the X-File for about a year. It will take some serious reading an has a bit of a learning curve but if you want a well thought out and detailed campaign setting for your CoC or any horror/modern game this would work for you.

Spell:

Mystical Healing (R)


Level: First
Range: Touch
Duration: Instantaneous
Ares Effect: Creature Touched
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 3,5,7 or 9 Segments
Saving Throw: Special

This spell allows the caster to heal damage that they or another may have suffered to be healed. Damage that can not normally be cured through clerical based healing will also not be able to be healed by this spell though. The spell opens a very minor channel to the Positive Material Plane and then using themselves as a conduit to direct the energy into the recipient. The amount of damage that can be healed by use of this spell is dependent on the level of the caster as higher level casters can maintain the a larger channel for a longer period of time. The caster will heal an amount equal to their level plus a random amount. The amounts that can be healed and the casting times at various levels follows:

Level        Casting             Amount
1-5          3 segments        1d4
6-10        5 segments        1d6
11-15      7 segments        1d8
16+         9 segments        1d12

The reverse of this spell will by means of opening a channel to the Negative Material Plane cause an amount of damage equal to what would be healed at the same level and will have the same casting time. The reverse entitles the intended victim to a saving throw. The save if successful will mean that the victim only suffers half damage. If the caster misses the To Hit roll or if the intended victim makes their save then the caster will take the remainder (or whole amount) of the damage due to the negative energy remaining in their bodies.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Dragon #54, Cassandra's Minor Replicas

I try to not use issues of Dragon magazine too much. I will use them sparingly and only when they have some significance to me or stand out for some reason. Issue #54 is one of the ones that stand out in my mind. This issue very much IMHO could be the benchmark for why Dragon Magazine back in the early days was so good. This issue has "Cavern Quest" which is a competition module. I will not say it was the best module they ever used but I liked it because it was different. The next item of note was the write up on how to create a DM designed mythos even though it was, unbeknown to me,  from the setting that would later replace my much beloved Greyhawk as the default TSR game world. The next item of note is one of the two best parts of the issue. This is the multipage write up on Ruins and how to construct what is in them. I may have used this article as much as any I ever read during my early DM days. Next there is a great article on "Weapon Dame"....not to the victim but to the weapon and with fumbles. I did not implement that but it was mined for ideas. Next comes a write up of the Jabberwock which was just it for me as far as monster write ups. There is also an expanded write up for Boot Hill dealing with price lists and equipment and the final episode of Finieous Fingers for Dragon Magazine. The best though was the short fiction called "Abomination" by D. Aaron Achen. I won't spoil it for those that have not read it but there are few short fiction pieces I remember almost 30 years after first reading them. Do they still make gaming magazines this jam packed with worthwhile material? If so can someone tell me the name of them.

Spell:

Cassandra's Minor Replicas


Level: Fifth
Range: 6"
Duration: 1 Round/Level
Ares Effect: Caster
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: None

With the casting of this spell the magic user brings into being a number of physical replicas of themselves. There will be 2-5 replicas created for each casting of the spell. Each replica will be free acting and will not require any direction from the magic user but will know immediately what the caster would and will want done as soon as the caster thinks it. The replicas will have non-magical version of any equipments that the caster may have but these items will have no special abilities. It should be noted that the replicas will have working copies of any material components in the casters immediate possession.

The replicas will each have one quarter of the casters hit points and their armor class regardless of what armor is worn will be AC6 less one for every two levels over 9th. The replicas will have none of the casters magical abilities but can go through the motions of casting spells just as the caster would. If engaged in combat the replicas will fight as if they are one half the level of the caster. Should a replica be killed before the duration of the spell expires or the caster ends it the caster will suffer 2-5 points of damage.

The material component of this spell is a small wax figure in the general shape of the caster. The wax figure must contain some part of the caster be it hair, blood or even part of a mail etc. The wax figure is destroyed with the casting of the spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

JG - Character Codex, Minor Petrification

I have always been a junkie for Judges Guild products. This is my second favorite character sheet that I ever used. Top honors belong to a home brew character sheet that was made by the gaming group that my first DM belonged too. He was our high school calculus teacher and would sell them too us for $.10 each. I remember buying stacks of them and still have a handful of the unused one left. This comes in second though. The pack came with 112 so that should have been enough for an entire group except for the fact that these each had an illustration, by none other than Paul Jaquays of a specific class and race combination. The ADD in me would not let me use a sheet for any other option. In addition the sheet had a blank shield where the player could create a Coat of Arms for the character. The sheet was one sided but on the back was a list of equipment and costs. Now as a DM I thought what if my equipments costs are different but it was still a nice touch. If you are looking for some old school type character sheets you could do worse than these and might be hard pressed to do better. Anyone care to share what their favorite character sheet was?

Spell:

Minor Petrification


Level: Fourth
Range: 6"
Duration: 1 Turn + 1 Round/Level
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 6 segments
Saving Throw: Negates

When this spell is cast it causes the intended victim to become encased in a layer of porous but exceptionally strong stone like material. The material will form around the victim causing them to freeze in whatever position that they were in when the spell triggered. The material fists very close to the body but will allow for enough expansion of the chest cavity for the victim to breathe. A successful save means that the victim was not affected by the spell.

The material the victim is encased in is sturdy enough that it will take a complete turn to chip an individual out. The one turn estimate is based on a single person doing the chipping. The total time will be divided by the number of people working on getting the individual out but is round up. For each person chipping at the material the encased victim will take one point of damage per round due to the collateral damage of what is being done to the material. If the victim is actually being attacked the damage is increased to two points per attack but that is all that will get through. When trying to remove them the damage can be avoided but will double the amount of time it takes to free the victim.

Should an individual affected by this spell be attacked with damage causing spells all damage will automatically be halved and a successful save versus magic means only one quarter damage is taken. If the spell normally allows a save for half damage then a successful save means no damage is taken. Spells will also have the effect of causing one round of damage per level of the spell to the material encasing the victim.

The material component of this spell is a small chunk of lava rock or sandstone. The stone is crushed and will be consumed (used up not eaten) during the casting of the spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Chill, Maximization

Chill was originally published by Pacesetter and then picked up by Mayfair. The edition pictured is the Mayfair edition though I have the earlier edition somewhere, just not scanned yet. I actually like the core rulebook for the Mayfair edition better for ease of use. Though the source books for the first edition get the nod when looking at supplemental material. Chill was the fallback horror game in our group after CoC though if we played horror for any extended period of time I think we would have fallen into playing Chill more. This may sound strange and not be a plus to some but it is a less dark horror game in that the baddies are less global and more what you think of as classic horror. Chill is a simple enough system though as I recall there were time when combat drug on a little bit. The system is well supported in both editions and Mayfair even published a board game based on the system but then again what else would Mayfair do :) In the end if you are looking for an alternative to the Elder Gods as prey or opponents why not join up with Societas Argenti Viae Eternitata and help save things on a smaller scale.

Spell:

Maximization (R)


Level: Fourth
Range: Touch or 6"
Duration: 1 Turn/Level
Ares Effect: One Creature
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: Special

By means of this spell the caster is able to cause the next spell to be cast on the recipient to have the maximum possible effect. If it is a spell with multiple options as far as effects got then the recipient can choose the one they desire. This spell is triggered by any spell cast on the recipient, even spells that or damaging or hostile in nature. This means that the maximum amount of damage is caused though normal saves are still allowed. If the harmful spell has variable effects then the recipient gets to select that as well. For the purpose of this spell magical effects from wands and the like will be considered spells.

The reverse of this spell is Minimization. When this spell is cast on an individual then the next spell cast on them will have the minimum possible effect for that spell. If there are multiple options then the least favorable option will be the one to occur. As with the former casting of the spell it will be triggered by any spell or spell effect regardless of the caster or thir intention.

The saving throw is determined by how the spell is cast on the recipient. If the recipient is touched by the caster either willingly or using a to hit roll in combat or is a willing recipient when the spell is cast with range then there is no saving throw allowed.  If the spell is cast at range and the recipient is not a willing recipient then they are entitled to a saving throw. A successful save means they are not affected.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Birthright Conspectus, Mass Teleport

The Conspectus series was released in the middle of the 1990's by TSR as a means to let people know about the various game worlds that they published for. I do ot recall where i picked them up...if it was at a FLGS or at conventions. They were all really nice but I think the best of them was probably the one released for Birthright. Other than the Mystara setting I am not sure any other setting has received as well done write ups as the Birthright setting has. The Conspectus gave us not only a poster sized map of the realm but also supplemental information about the realm. This along with all of the other items in the Conspectus line are worth picking up.

Spell:

Mass Teleport


Level: Seventh
Range: None/12"
Duration: Instantaneous
Ares Effect: Special
Components: V
Casting Time: 6 segments   
Saving Throw: Special

Through the use of this spell the caster is able to teleport a variable number of creatures or beings to a location of their specification. The number of creatures that the caster can teleport depends on how the spell is being used.

If all of those to be affected are in contact either directly or through a chain of contact then the number is limited to all that can fit within a 1" diameter of the caster provided they are in contact and willing to be teleported. If the spell is being used at then the number affected is equal to one person/being for every two levels of the caster. Those who are not willing participants in the teleportation are entitled to a save and if this is made they are unaffected.

The weight limits that exist on the singular version of this spell exist per individual in this version as well. The effect is measured per person and not as a group so any excess allowance is not carried over to others.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Monday, May 16, 2011

GURPS - Riverworld, Mass Suggestion

GURPS though not the best system overall does what it is supposed to do. It is open enough to allow for any setting to be played under it. It might even be suggested that in today's litigious society that SJG could sue TSR/WotC for patent infringement with the idea of D20.The settings available under GURPS is nothing short of amazing. I have many but not all and I think at last count I had 59 different settings or World ideas and  maybe half that again in supplements.

The one I am putting up today is Philip Jose Farmer's Riverworld. For those not familiar with the story I can not recommend it enough. Do yourself a favor and do not watch either of the made for TV movies the ScyFy Channel released though. The premise is simple enough to start with...everyone who has ever lived wakes up on the planet after dying....but all at about the same time. It is a river ranging from a few hundred yards to maybe more than a mile wide in points. There is more too it than that and the story is the quest by a the protagonists to uncover the mystery and more than that. I won't spoil it more than I have. There were three books in the original series though I think one or may two more have been written. This world would pose a great collaborative fiction setting if allowed.  The game is very good the books are great. Both deserve a place on your shelves.

Spell:

Mass Suggestion


Level: Sixth
Range: 6"
Duration: 6 Turns + 6 Turns/level
Ares Effect: 1 Creature per 2/levels
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: Negates

This spell is in all ways similar to the singular variety of the spell except for casting time, creatures affected, the addition of a somatic component and an additional material component. The somatic portion is the designation of the desired targets and the material component is a gem of no less than 100gp in value for each creature over the first that is to be affected. The gem is consumed with the casting of the spell.

Each creature that is targeted by the spell is entitled to an individual saving throw. This has the same limitations of the original spell with additions based on the targets affected. The first creature to make a save attempt makes so as per the standard spell. If they fail then the next target is at a -1 or if the first person saved then they are at a +1 and so on down the line.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

L3 Deep Dwarven Delve, Mass Polymorph

L3 was listed at one time as the last official 1e release by TSR. I am not sure if this is still true but it most likely is. This module has a long and storied history that eventually led to it being released in the Silver Anniversary product. It was originally written and run as a tournament module in 1979. It was then converted over to be third in the L series and released as such through normal channels. For whatever reason this did not occur and the module languished in the vaults at TSR. When the decision to publish the Silver Anniversary product was made it was decided that L3 would be included. Apparently though the vaults at TSR were not safe or very disorganized because the module was not complete when it pulled out to be published. It had to go through a rewrite and based on reports from Len Lakofka it is only about 80% of what was originally intended. He has also released L4 through Dragonsfoot. The module can of course be found in the Silver Anniversary Boxed Set but it can also occasionally be found for sale individually on eBay.



Spell:

Mass Polymorph


Level: Seventh
Range: 6"
Duration: Until Dispelled
Ares Effect: Up to 6 Creatures
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 3 Rounds
Saving Throw: Negates

By means of this spell the magic user may cause up to six creatures to be affected in all ways as if a Polymorph Other spell had been cast on them individually. The caster is limited in the number of creatures that the recipients can be polymorphed into though. The caster can choose up to three creatures for the recipients to be changed into but the division is determined solely by the caster. If the recipient of the spell is willing then the saving throw is not required.  In all ways the effect will be the same as the Polymorph Other spell and will have the same material components though one set of components is required for each creature type the caster selected.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Cyberpunk, Cassandra's Mark of Friendship


If it were not for Shadowrun this would have most likely been my favorite SciFi game. The dark future setting is one that I have always enjoyed be it Cyberpunk, Shadowrun or even Paranoia. Cyberpunk 2020 is the second edition of the game and cleaned up and simplified many of the rule issues from the first edition. This setting is closer to the genre made famous by William Gibson. The secondary material for the game system is top notch as well. If you are looking for a dark future game and you don't want magic or a psychotic computer looking to ruin everyone's life then go with Cyberpunk.


Spell:

Cassandra's Mark of Friendship


Level: First
Range: None
Duration: Permanent
Ares Effect: Creature Touched
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 Round
Saving Throw: None

This spell is cast on a frind or associate of the magic user and when completed an invisible mark appears on the recipients forehead. The mark can only be seen by the caster, the recipient and all others who bear a mark from the same caster and all who see it will know what it means. True Seeing will enable the mark to be seen but will not impart its meaning. Anyone bearing this mark will radiate a minor aura of magic that can be detected by spell or ability.

In addition to the obvious effect of the spell it also has the effect of immediatley alerting the caster and all others bearing their mark when one of the bearers dies. The spell does not alert them to how the person died but it does let them know who died and the approximate location of the persons demise. The knowledge of the persons death will be accompanied by an intense series of pains that will cause 1d4 of damage to all with the mark. Other than the awaremess and the resulting damage there is no obligation to act.

The reverse of this spell puts a mark on the recipient thay will be visible only to those bearing the Mark of Friendship and by the caster. This mark clearly indicates that the bearer is the sworn enemy of the caster. The bearer of the Mark of Friendship is under no obligation to act in any way on this.

Either mark may only be removed thru use of a Limited Wish or Wish spell or by the free will of  the caster. The caster may not alter the type of mark though they can remove the old one and replace it with a new one.

The material components of this spell are a drop of blood from both the caster and the recipient of the mark as well as a small patch of dog fur for the former casting of the spell. The latter requires a small serpent whos head is crushed under the heel of the caster during the casting of this spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Permanent Character Folder, Cassandra's Growing Snowball

 The Permanent Character Folder is an item thta I have never used byt have always had goo intentions of doing so. The idea is good and it would allow you to keep track of things about your character better. In the end I guess I am just not that much of a record keeper. The art work is amazing on the cover and is possibly one of my favorites of the early accessories from TSR. This was actually a hard item for me to relocate when I needed to find it again for my collection. I am assuming it is one of those item that people used and even though it had a good print run it may be scarcer than expected. Mostly for completists I guess.

Spell:

Cassandra's Growing Snowball


Level: Fourth
Range: 3"
Duration: 1 round/level
Ares Effect: 2" Path/level
Components: V,S
Casting Time: 3 segments
Saving Throw: Special

When this spell is cast it brings into being a snowball that appears at the casters feet. The snowball will then begin rolling in the direction that the caster desires. The snowball will grow rapidly as it rolls. Growing to a 10' diameter withing hte first 30' it rolls and will continue to grow at a rate of 1' for every 10' it rolls to a maximum of a 20' diameter.

Any who are in the path of the snowball must make a save versus their dexterity. Those who fail this save will be picked up by the snowball and will continue along with it as it moves. Those who make their save are assumed to have gotten out of the path of the snowball in time.

The snowball will continue to roll along at a rate of 20' a round plus 5'/level of the caster. The snowball can pick up any number of passengers during it's journey. The caster controls the path and speed of the snowball through concentration. If concentration is lost or stopped the snowball will continue along the path it was on and maintain the same speed.

If the snowball does not run into any barriers before the expiration of the spell then those creatures trapped in the snowball will be required to spend 2-8 rounds digging themselves out of the snowball. If the snowball does encounter an obstacle then all will be immediatly freed but will be stunned for a period of 3-6 rounds due to the effect of the impact. Those stunned will be unable to perform any actions other than defending themselves while in this state.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Adventures of Baron Munchausen, Globe of Intoxication plus Fringe & SG:U

There is not much I can write about this game. I bought it fairly recently but boxed it up without having a chance to read it. I have heard good things about it. I loved the movie by the same name but I think I mentioned that when I wrote about Time Bandits. I understand this is not your traditional role playing game but plays out more like a beer and pretzel type game though that might be a stretch. Long story short you are supposed to build off the story the previous person tole but take it up a whole bunch of notches. Sounds fun and exactly like what the movie was. I also recently purchased the book both were based on but I bet it is some time before I get to read that.


Spell:

Cassandra's Globe of Intoxication


Level: Second
Range: 12"
Duration: 1 turn/level
Ares Effect: 1" radius/level
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 3 rounds
Saving Throw: Negates

When this spell is cast all creatures in the area of effect of the spell who fail their saving throw are affected as if they are greatly intoxicated as per the rules in the DMG. All creatures under this effect will behave in totally unpredictable manner and stand a 50/50 chance of either becoming openly belligerent or overly friendly.

Those who become belligerent can not be prevented from getting into some type of altercation with the closest person to them. If there is more than one person affected by the spell there is a 30% chance that they will turn to fighting amongst themselves initially and a 25% chance that they will turn on themselves for each new round of combat. If they are not presented with someone to fight with they will either become destructive to things around them or deeply depressed with an equal chance of either occurring.

Those who become friendly will behave as if the caster and his party were life long friends and any denial by the party of this will immediately turn them over to the belligerent state. While under the effect of the spell any attempts to steal from them by a thief will be at +25% chance of success and even untrained will have a 25% chance of success. There is also a 20% chance that they will trade items for more intoxicants if any are offered.

If this spell is cast twice on the same person or on an individual who is already intoxicated there is a 5% chance that they will become ill and eventually die from alcoholic poisoning though they are entitled to a save versus death. Those who don't will fall into a deep sleep which they can not be roused from for five to eight hours. They will also have a -4 to all saves and abilities for six to eight hours after waking as well.

The material component of this spell is a small flask of high proof alcohol that the caster drinks while casting. If the caster consumes leprechaun ale or alcohol from similar types of creatures the saves for all effects will be at -4 and percentages and durations will be doubled though the caster must save versus poison at -4 or be affected as well.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Commentary on Fringe and SG:U

Short and only a minor spoiler.


Fringe - Did not see that coming twice. May be at the same time the best and worst way I have ever seen a character apparently written out of  a series.


SG:U - Why did they end it? Possibly the worst ending sine Quantum Leap. Finally they deserved better. For once there were SG characters you could care about and were more than cardboard cut outs.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Serenity, Ghoul Touch

Serenity the RPG is based on the movie by the same name and thus on the TV series called Firefly. I really wish they had called it Firefly but that is being nit picky. Not since the original Star Trek series has such a short lived TV series attracted and maintained such a fan base. I am not a fanatic so as to call myself a Browncoat or anything like that but I am a fan of the show and of the movie that came out as a result of the fans. The RPG does a good job of being faithful to the feel of the show and the existing source material. The presentation is also top notch being full of full color photos from the show and other images. The setting is better than most adaptations based on a TV series or movie in that the characters in the show (other than River) are everyman. They were even on the losing side of the war. This means that the level of expectations and actions that need to take place are not set at the epic Luke/Kirk type of level. The adventures can be more along the lines of a typical D&D game but set in space. An excellent thing since the show had more than a little feel that it was Boot Hill in space. If you are looking for a non d20 Science Fiction game and you want something newer then this is the game for you. That and the base material comes from Joss Whedon so how wrong could you go with trying it out.

Spell:

Ghoul Touch


Level: Fourth
Range: Touch
Duration: 1 round/level
Ares Effect: Creature Touched
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 5 segments
Saving Throw: Negates

When this spell is cast the magic user grants themselves or another of their choice the ability of paralyzation by touch similar to the touch of a ghoul. The individual with spell on them will cause all they hit to save versus paralyzation or become paralyzed when attacking by hand without a weapon. Those who save will only suffer normal hand to hand damage from the attack. Those who fail will suffer the hand to hand damage and will become paralyzed for 3-6 rounds.

This spell may not be cast on an elf nor will the touch of anyone with this spell cast on them have any of the Ghoul effect on an elf. This immunity will also apply to other creatures or beings that would normally be immune to the touch of a ghoul or other paralyzation based effect.

The material components of this spell are a small piece of ghoul flesh as well as a small arachnid or insect (alive or dead) that affects its victims with paralyzation. Both of these will be eaten by the magic user or intended recipient of the spell as it is being cast.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

MA2 Avengers Coast-To-Coast, Elemental Immunity

MA2 is a source book for everything Avenger. It covers the original Avengers all the way through the much maligned West Coast Avengers. The Avengers have at one time or another included anyone that isn't a mutant or in the Fantastic Four (Spidey not withstanding though he did try out). There are few stragglers but this will have a darn good portion of the non mutant heroes in it, including today's golden boy Thor! If you want to play Marvel Super Heroes then this is one of the books you will want to pick up. Children of the Atom, Fantastic Four Compendium, Realms of Magic & the Ultimate Powers books would be about every other must have. Still this provides perhaps the best cross section of the Marvel heroes.

Spell:

Elemental Immunity (R)


Level: Fifth
Range: Touch
Duration: 1 round/level
Ares Effect: Creature Touched
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 1 round
Saving Throw: Special

When this spell is cast the magic user makes the creature touched totally immune to element chosen when the spell is cast. This immunity extends to naturally occurring forms of the element that would cause the recipient damage. Immunity also extends to any creature, effect, spell or item that is based upon the element immunity is granted to. This means that a person given immunity to earth would not be affected by mineral based poisons, a stone to flesh spell, the stoning affect of a cockatrice, spell effects from a Ring of Earth Elemental Control as well as Earth Elementals. This spell may be cast for any of the four natural elements (Air, Earth, Fore or Water). An individual may only have one immunity on them at any given time. If a second immunity spell is cast on them the first is nullified.

The reverse of this spell is Elemental Vulnerability. This spell causes the recipient to become exceptionally vulnerable to one element of the caster's choice. This will have the effect of causing the victim to take double damage from any normal or magical attack that is based on that element. spells or effects that would normally entitle the victim to a saving throw will not when affected by this spell. The victim of the spell will also suffer damage from exposure to normal instances of the element as well. The damage is slight being one hit point per round of exposure though this is enough to interfere with normal abilities and casting of spells. In game terms for this spell heat over 76 degrees Fahrenheit, any form of precipitation (including fog), winds over five miles per hour will cause damage. For Earth affect any exposure to metals will be enough to cause damage.

The latter casting of this spell entitles the victim to a saving throw and if successful then the spell will have no effect. With the former casting of this spell, but not the latter, the immunity extends to any items or effects currently in place for the duration of the spell. The material components for this spell are a small quantity of the various element and a gemstone, of not less than 50gp in value, that would be associated with that element. Both components will be consumed with the casting of the spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Destiny of Kings, Dispel Invisibility

This is the 2e edition of the module "Destiny of Kings" which was originally published under the first edition as N3. The modules are basically identical except where changes were made to bring the reprint into line with the newer editions rules. I will speak about them interchangeably for that reason. The plot reads like a script from history books. The King is assassinated and the brother seizes the crown because the Prince is missing. The players come in when they are asked by someone loyal to the Prince to locate him and help him ascend to the throne as was destined. The module overall is fairly well done and contains a number of different locals for the players to explore including a castle. It might be a little light on Machiavellian intrigue but it is hard to fit back story, stats, location and plot into a 32 page module.  I would think that this version or even better the earlier version that had Parkinson art on the cover might be the better option though the later version might be cheaper to pick up. If you loved Hamlet and enjoy the court politics in Braveheart you should like this.

Spell:

Dispel Invisibility


Level: Fourth
Range: None
Duration: 1 round/level
Ares Effect: 1" radius/level
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 4 segments
Saving Throw: None

When this spell is cast it causes all invisible creatures or items in the area of effect of the spell to become visible to all other creatures in the area of effect but they will remain invisible to those outside the area. This will affect all types of invisibility spells as well as invisibility that is granted through the use of magic items. It will not affect creatures or items that are by nature invisible nor does it affect the thief's Hide In Shadows ability. There is a fifty percent chance that this spell will make visible those who are invisible by psionic means.

The spell is centered on the caster and will move with them. This will possibly cause items or creatures to to pass in and out of invisibility as the enter and leave the area of effect. Creatures that pass out of the area of effect will have any minuses to be hit halved as the attacker can possibly predict the action and direction of the creature.

The material component of this spell is a colored example of a gemstone that would normally be transparent. The value of the gem will need to be no less than 50gp. The gemstone is powdered and then cast into the air when the spell is cast. The magic user will be able to get enough material component for one casting for every 50gp in value of the gemstone rounded down.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Friday, May 6, 2011

1B The Village of Oester, Control Weapon

The d20 adventure "The Village of Oester" is the second in the Whitethorn campaign setting. The adventure reads well though I have never had a chance to run it or be run in it. Since it is a 3.x adventure I will most likely never play it as it is or under the system it was created for but the material itself is well done but will not be noted for breaking new ground idea wise. The illustrations and maps are both well done and may be some of the best parts of the layout. It features two parts the journey and then the dungeon crawl. There is a curse, zombies and well written strange NPCs for the party to encounter. The GM may need to get the players some board passes to get them into the adventure though as the motivation for finding the place and investigating are thin to non existent. Still the module could be adapted with some effort though I think if I ever run it I will wing the conversion with some some basic stat block conversions and a little improvisation. Even though this came out in the early part of the last decade it is still seen on a regular basis in the aftermarket. I would pick it up if you can find it at a good price.

Spell:

Control Weapon


Level: Fourth
Range: 3"
Duration: 1 round/ level
Ares Effect: Single Weapon
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 4 segments
Saving Throw: Special

When this spell is cast the magic user is able to take control of any one weapon that is within the range of the spell. Any type of weapon can be controlled even those that would not normally be usable by the magic user. The weapon will attack with the same chance to hit as if it were wielded by a thief of the same level as the caster. The controlled weapon will act as a Dancing Sword for the caster one it is controlled. The controlled weapon will not need to be held and used once every five rounds though.

Should the caster attempt to take control of a weapon already in the possession of another then the possessor is entitled to make a saving throw versus magic and if successful the weapon does not fall under control of the caster though they can attempt to wrest control of another weapon the next round but not the same weapon. If the save fails then the weapon is ripped from the wielder and comes under control of the caster.

If control is attempted on an intelligent magical weapon then not only is the wielder of the weapon entitled to a save and if that fails then the caster is forced into an ego battle with the weapon. If the battle is successful then the caster can control the weapon as the spell would normally allow. Should the caster lose the ego battle they will suffer one point of damage for every point of intelligence the weapon possesses (save for half damage) and the weapon will fall to the ground for the duration of the spell unusable by anyone.

The material component of this spell is a small silver charm in the shape of any common weapon. The charm must be specifically crafted for this purpose. The cost of the charm will be not less than 10gp. The charm is not consumed by the casting of the spell.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Warriors of Heaven, Conjure Undead

Warriors of Heaven is a product so system mechanics specific that it is out of date with the release of the Fourth edition and is all but useless. It is mostly tables based on the older system and lacks any real quantity of background material. For people still playing 3.0 and to a small extent 3.5 this is still going to be acceptable material. If you are playing an older version of the game, a new version or any other game system this is not going to be something you will want to spend too much money on. If you could get it cheap enough it would be worth picking up just to take a little something from it. If you are looking for a non Planescape supplement dealing with the inhabitants of the higher planes you might be better served grabbing a copy of the old Mayfair Games Sentinels product.

Spell:

Conjure Undead


Level: Fifth
Range: 1/2"/level
Duration: 5 rounds + 1/round level
Ares Effect: Creature Conjured
Components: V,S,M
Casting Time: 3 Rounds
Saving Throw: None

By means of this spell the magic user is able to conjure forth creatures from the Negative Material Plane to do their bidding. This is accomplished by the opening of a of a minor gate to the Negative Material Plane which allows living energy from that plane to seep into the Prime Material and take usable forms. This is unlike the creation of undead as the beings are not truly undead but the energy normally connected with undead beings in a controlled state. The entities crated are not inherently evil in nature.

To determine what form the energy conjured will take the magic user must roll on the clerical turning table. For the purpose of this roll the magic user will be considered a cleric equal to one half their level rounded up. The number of undead conjured will be determined just like the number of undead affected by a turn attempt. This will normally be 1d12 though at higher levels it becomes 6+1D6.

The conjured undead will have all of the normal abilities of the monsters of the same name created in the normal manner except that their alignment will be true neutral. The caster will determine the action of the conjured undead. The actions will last as long as concentration is maintained, the appointed task is completed or the duration of the spell expires. If the caster is opting for concentration and it is lost the conjured beings will continue performing the task they were on and when completed will become inert. They will take no action not even defending themselves against attacks. The caster can reestablish concentration by sending one round doing nothing else and can then command the undead again. When the creatures are summoned the magic user can also assign a simple task  that can be completed in one sentence and this will be done without the need of concentration. When the duration expires or the conjured beings suffer damage equal to their hit points the energy looses for and will return to the Negative Material Plane.

The material components for this spell are a piece of humanoid bone, grave dust and black opal of not less than 100 gold pieces in value. The bone and grave dust are not consumed by the casting of the spell though the opal will. The opal is taken as payment by the powers on the negative Material Plane for use of the energy conjured forth.

Disclaimer: The spells that you will see, for how ever long the write ups last, were all written up back in the 80's so the terminology may not appropriate for anything other than 1e and depending on how well I did back then it may be slightly off for that as well. If there is any duplication of spells that exist now it is most likely I wrote mine first :) Please feel free to comment on them but try not to be too hard on me. If anyone wishes to use these in anything they print please let me know in advance and all I ask is proper credit.

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