“I PLAYED AT THE DAVE ARNESON MEMORIAL GAMEDAY AND I WANT TO CONTINUE PLAYING 1ST EDITION GAMES.” - recent TARGA member
This is exactly the sort of response we’ve been looking for – gamers discovering what the Old School Renaissance is all about, and getting excited about it.
Tavis Allison reports that the Compleat Strategist game went well: “We had upwards of 35 people at the Arneson gameday this afternoon; I do believe a good time was had by all, except for one person who left Joe’s AD&D game because it got too loud in the Strategist’s basement – a good problem to have, even if it wasn’t entirely our own crowd that was responsible (we had five tables of games, but there were also three of Warmachine players and one of an unrelated D&D group).
“One of the people at my table had never played a tabletop RPG before! He’d gotten interested in it after listening to the Penny Arcade and Robot Chicken podcasts, and this event brought him out to try gaming in person.”
JoetheLawyer reports on his Castle Zagyg event, also a part of the combo Dave Arneson Gameday and TARGA ITGW event: “We had a good time. Lots of laughing, and “Oh Shit!” moments, especially after the nefarious Gygaxian group teleport to a random part of the dungeon, and a fall into a 10′ pit trap. When the Hippogriff carried off and ate the sturdy pack mule and large sack full of trap testing chickens, it wasn’t too bad of a moment either :)”
Forest Ray from Michigan reports: “the ITGW event at evolution games was a success at three games with five people each for a grand total of fifteen.”
Norman Harmon says: “In honor of International Traditional Gaming Week I ran my “B2 Caves of Chaos” for some of the local D&D Meetup crew this past Sunday.”
Two views of Norman’s International Traditional Gaming Week B2 game – lots of fun being had!
One of his players commented: “Thumbs up to the death & dismemberment table, which gave everyone a second chance, as both Clerics were doling out the cure light wounds asap. The simplicity of the rules and the jovial energy of the players was intoxicating. I’m totally up for another old school game.”
Another one of Norman’s players, Flip, comments in his blog on what it was like to play Old School for the first time.
Last but certainly not least are videos from the massive Chainmail miniatures game at Gary Con! Check ‘em out!
We’re taking a break as we decide what is the best way to improve the “This Week in the OSR” column.
Meanwhile, there will be TARGA representation at North Texas RPG Con and GenCon Indy! Updates about this spring’s ITRW will be up shortly.
We also have a number of interesting projects underway, soon to be launched. Thank you to everyone who provided feedback this past week – we appreciate your interest and support!
On behalf of TARGA, I made the trip to Lake Geneva to Gary Con to present a check for $350 to Luke Gygax for the Gygax Family Memorial Fund. This was an amazing opportunity to help support Gary Con, and further TARGA’s stated purpose “to assist in promoting traditional gaming, recruiting new players into the fold, and providing organizational support for judges.” If this ensures that there is a Gary Con 3 next year, then we are definitely doing our job.
Here are some photos from the event; I had an absolutely wonderful time, and look forward to being there next year. Thanks to everyone who helped make this donation happen, including Gene R. for the photos, and specifically Michael Shorten, without whom this would not have taken place.
(I’m standing on the left, with the presentation check, and Luke Gygax is on the right in the black long-sleeve Gary Con T-shirt)
We would like to take a moment to recognize that a great deal of discussion has been generated over the recent TARGA news post, specifically about “I Hit It With My Axe” – Zak’s new project which debuted on The Escapist. It has engendered a lot of debate, which is generally a good thing, and no small amount of hurt feelings, which we regret.
We are interested in what you think about this topic – do you feel that concern about adult issues is warranted? Conversely, is censorship an issue here? With so much going on in the OSR, what should we pay attention to – and how do we figure that out? Share your thoughts and feelings – and in a polite and respectful manner, please. Thanks!
Surrounded on all sides by monstrous aliens, cruel demigods, and ancient lich-kings? Pull out your +4 Plasma Blaster and Fight On! Issue 8, dedicated to cover artist Erol Otus, is ready to ROCK YOUR GAME with new races, classes, spells, tables, gods, monsters, traps, reviews, a ‘desert sandbox’ minicampaign, two longer adventures, eight minidungeons, and lots of other goodies to help you take it to the next level – or stop the PCs from getting there! With art and articles by Erol Otus, Kevin Mayle, Mark Allen, Lee Barber, Peter Jensen, Steve Robertson, Samuel Kisko, Patrick Farley, Robert Lionheart, Ramsey Dow, Jeff Rients, Gabor Lux, Age of Fable, Baz Blatt, Zachary Houghton, Erin “Taichara” Bisson, Del L. Beaudry, Geoffrey O. Dale, Michael Curtis, Tavis Allison, James Maliszewski, Tony Dowler, and many, many more, this issue is jam-packed with the old-school action adventure you crave. Don’t miss out – grab it today!
If you haven’t used it yet, the Lulu code Ides is good for the month of March, granting a 10% discount on any order. A new issue of Fight On! is always a treat and I can’t wait to read this one!
Rended Press has released its first, full length adventure: Temple of the Ghoul. Available as a free pdf, TotG is an Osric compatible module, designed for low-level characters. Congratulations! Here’s looking forward to many more releases from this new publishing enterprise.
If you head on over to Dragonsfoot, you’ll find a couple of new downloads. The Corrupt Crypt of Ilmater and HS1 – The Village of Rashtan. More free pdf’s, for your gaming pleasure!
At The Warlock’s Home Brew Lulu Storefront, DC-1 The Outpost on the Edge of the Far Reaches is now available as a free pdf download! The print version is available for $7.35. Outpost is a great, low-level adventure and if you haven’t checked it out yet, now’s the time to do so.
An ancient outpost, abandoned centuries ago by a empire in decline, sits atop a lonely hill overlooking a bleak wilderness. Why was it deserted and left unattended all those years? Surely treasures that once littered the courtyard must have been claimed long ago. But still… vague murmurings of a hidden cellar have been overheard as well as visions of long dead veterans still haunting the battlements. Surely tales told in the evening in front of a fire to frighten gullible travelers. Perhaps there is something more here than meets the eye? The elements in this adventure module have been left open enough to be adaptable with most old-school style fantasy role-playing game rules and worlds and should fit easily into any GM’s sandbox with but a few alterations and modifications. This eBook now includes the color cover as well as 3 maps colored blue instead of heavy black.
I recently wrote a review for this module, which you can check out, here. Thanks to Mr. Fini, for making this great adventure, available for free!
After Swords & Wizardry came out, index card character sheets were all the rage. ze bulette has given us an index card Dungeon Adventure! Den of the Water Naga may be downloaded at this blog post. Let’s see if the format catches on.
Head over to Brave Halfling Publishing, where you can get a 2nd printing copy of the Swords & Wizardry Whitebox Boxed Set! $30.00.
This Boxed Set Contains everything you need to play:
- 6″ x 9″ Game Box (This is an actual game box manufactured for just this purpose)
- Four Rule Booklets (Characters, Spells, Monsters, & Treasures)
- A digest-sized copy of Matt Finch’s, “Quick Primer for Old-School Gaming”
- A Pad of 10 digest-sized Character Sheets
- Set of Polyhedral Dice
- An 11″ x 17″ full-color poster (not shown)
More stuff, from the wonderfully, creative OSR community! Click the link to this thread at the OD&D Forums, where Greyharp has put together the cream of the crop of various Carcosa related postings. Carcosa Coacervation is available as a free download and features, amongst other things, that really cool color Carcosa map, I posted about a few weeks ago. Available in booklet or A-4 pdf format, the latter running to 40 pages.
James Edward Raggi IV has released his latest preview version, of LotFP Weird Fantasy Role-Playing, V 0.04. Check it out and give him some feedback!
Events and Happenings!
The Gygax Memorial Fund website, has a testimonial page, where you can leave a message, relating how Gary Gygax influenced your life. This is being used to help make the case for the memorial:
Gary encouraged millions of men and women to excel in literature, math and science all by making it fun for them to open a book in order to excel at the game. Please take a moment to tell us how Gary affected your life as part of the testimonial we will be presenting to the Lake Geneva City Council with our request for the site.
I Hit It With My Axe, featuring Zak Smith and the gang playing D&D, debuted on The Escapist, this week. The first episode was introductory in nature and my only complaint, was that it was rather short. Zak, Mandy, Kimberly, Satine, Frankie, Connie and Sascha invite us to their gaming table, to see how they roll. Congratulations to all involved!
TARGA’s International Traditional Gaming Week, kicks off tomorrow! I reported on a couple of events, last week, to which I need to add that Bat of Ancient Vaults and Eldritch Secrets will also be running a marathon B2 session. Details, here.
Goblinoid Games is looking for Module Submissions! More info here.
Michael Curtis’ The Dungeon Alphabet has Sold Out! Goodman’s working on a second printing, but if you can’t wait that long, head on over to RPGNOW for the pdf! It’s currently occupying their #2 spot and has also become a Popular Copper Pick!
That’s it for Now!
Send News of New Releases, Events, or anything else you want to share, to:
Wow. Simply wow. You guys rocked hard and helped TARGA to collect $350 in the Pledge an Auction drive to donate to GaryCon/Gygax Family Memorial. With TARGA’s mission being “putting butts in chairs at traditional roleplaying games”, our support of GaryCon just all fits right in and it’s great to see us able to help. I don’t know if $350 is a drop in a bucket or a big help, but I certain hope to see a GaryCon 2011 and I hope our contribution goes a long way to making it happen. Keeping Gary’s legacy of playing games and having fun is very important to us.
Most importantly, those of you who contributed items, bid on items and won, you guys made this happen so THANK YOU VERY MUCH! I can’t say that enough.
GaryCon kicks off tomorrow and it should be a great time! We hope to hear some great game recaps. GaryCon also marks the kickoff of TARGA’s International Traditional Gaming Week! It is just sheer coolness that we have 3 B2-Keep on the Borderland adventures going: I’m (Chgowiz) running a 12 hour Holmes/B2 marathon, Norman of TrollandFlame blog is running B2 and so is Bat of AncientVaults. It would be neat if we could get some Gamma World, Metamorphosis Alpha, Tunnels & Trolls, Classic Traveller or just some regular games listed, but we’re working on that. Small steps, grasshopper, small steps.
New OSR Releases
The ancient halls of the long lost wizardpriest of chaos Belzir have been rediscovered. Can the party discover its secrets and find his legendary amulet? A module for 4-6 characters of levels 4-6.
Available as a free download, running 36 pages in pdf form. Many thanks, to all involved.
Swords & Wizardry Whitebox booklets, are now for sale, individually! At $4.00 each and $16.00 for the set of four, here’s a chance for those not into boxes, to save some cash. There’s also a deal on Referee’s Bundles, so visit the Halfling and check it out!
Expeditious Retreat Press has released Advanced Adventures # 13 – White Dragon Run, by James Boney! With art by Peter Mullen, John Bingham and Jason Walton. Available for $6.00 in pdf and running 16 pages, you can pick this up at RPGNOW or Your Games Now. The publisher’s site doesn’t have a listing for the print product, yet. Their preview page lists the module as an April release, so maybe a print copy will be available, then. Let’s see what the blurb from RPGNOW says:
White Dragon Run is An OSRIC(tm) module designed for 4-6 adventures of levels 2-4
The little village of White Dragon Run is at the edge of civilization – the place where monsters are a constant threat and adventurers thrive. It is here that reputations are made or broken, and deeds are performed only to be set in verse decades after the real story is long lost. On this thin line between country and chaos lies White Dragon Run. The last stop for the civilized before the well-trodden road becomes the weed-infested trail leading to creatures that would rather fight than herd, fish or farm. There’s a fortune to be made for the up and coming adventurer with the strength, the wile, and the cunning to strike out against dangers both natural and unnatural. White Dragon Run is the final stop before meeting one’s destiny behind the sword, stave, dagger, or holy symbol.
The preview file on RPGNOW looks good! I might go back and buy this, tonight!
On the Horizon
Last month, I reported on some plans by Goblinoid Games and Otherworld Miniatures. Well, the official announcement has been made! Coming in August of 2010, a series of official LL miniatures will be released. These will be level specific and each will be packaged with an adventure. The adventures, will be capable of standing alone, or can be linked together, to form a campaign. As Mr. Proctor wrote:
Adventures will be written by some of the best writers of the old-school gaming scene, including Jeff Talanian, James Maliszewski, Rob Conley and Michael Curtis, and many others.
Otherworld, is going to get some of my money, yet!
Events & Happenings
Chgowiz, will be running a Marathon Keep on the Borderlands session, at Chicagoland Games, on March 27, from 9:00 AM to 9:00 PM. The event is in celebration of TARGA’s International Traditional Gaming Week and I truly wish, I lived in Chicago!
Norman Harman of Troll and Flame, fame, will be running B2 as well, for ITGW. March 21, is the date and the event will take place at the Austin D&D March Meetup. If anyone else has open events, for ITGW, drop me a line and I’ll shout it out, hither and yon.
In Case You Missed It…
And, back to Troll And Flame, as Norman takes a look at recent history.
That’s it for Now…
Send News of New Releases, Events, or anything else you want to share, to:
With 5 days left in the auction drive for GaryCon, we have collected over $300 (with the current auction at a $4.95 bid price) and I personally could not be prouder of all those involved. I really hope that you can get in any final items – we will be writing the check to the Gygax Family Memorial shortly before GaryCon so the donation button will stay up till then.
Thanks and happy bidding/auctioning!
New OSR Releases
Faster Monkey’s tribute to a classic dungeon crawl gives you tons of old-school goodness — rooms and tunnels, wandering monsters, traps and treasures — in a fast-playing modern form. "The Hidden Serpent" pits low-level Labyrinth Lord™ characters against a secret complex full of varied foes, some working together and some at odds. More than other Faster Monkey products, this dungeon emulates the humor and zaniness of modules from the hobby’s golden age, hitting the party with plenty of classic risks and rewards.
The PDF is $6.00, but, if you head over to RPG NOW between now and March 8th, you can still take advantage of their GM’s Day sale and snag it for $4.50. While you’re there, Wheel of Evil is also on sale, for the same price! James Maliszewski, recently wrote a very positive review of WoE, so be sure to check it out!
A shaft has been discovered below the old watchtower outside of town. Worse yet, a boy has fallen into it! Your party must race against time to save the boy and sift through the remains of the watchtower on the hill!
This is an OSRIC/1e module, the color version is 32 pages and the B&W is 28.
Trollzine, a free Tunnels & Trolls fanzine from Flying Buffalo is available from Drivethru RPG. 57 pages of articles & art from Ken St. Andre, et al. Atom Kid turned me on to this, so a big thanks and check out his original post, for more info. Let’s have another blurb, from the sellers site:
TrollsZine is a new magazine created by and for fans of Tunnels and Trolls. Issue 1 has all new material and includes a short solo adventure, new magic items, The Troll Chefs Cookbook, original fiction, articles on T&T stunts, the dice issue, running T&T solos with other systems and a number of locations for the busy Games Master to use in their campaign. Ken St Andre has contributed a piece and there is art by Jeff Freels, ME Volmar, Chad Thorson, Kevin Bracey, Alex Cook and Mike Hill.
The Village of Larm
by Moritz Mehlem
with art by Andy Taylor
An Detailed Village and Three Small Adventures
Every RPG needs a small village as a starting point and safe haven for the adventurers. It should include a smaller dungeon and some opportunities for role-playing, too.
This 26 page accessory does exactly that for LABYRINTH LORD. Larm is a small village of just over 100 inhabitants (112 to be precise) located on the borderlands, descriptions of all the major inhabitants, a lot of smaller tasks the characters can do for the village, with 2 mysterious places to be explored and a goblin camp nearby… The Mill (Appendix 1) is designed as a small starter dungeon to introduce the players to the mechanics of the game. The Abandoned Temple (Appendix 2) is a somewhat bigger dungeon where the players are confronted with various types of undead and the necessity of drawing a map. The Goblin Camp (Appendix 3) is set to test the tactical skill of the players, having to fight a group of weak, but organized humanoids.
If you purchase the print version, you get a free pdf! Otherwise, you can go to RPG NOW and purchase the pdf alone, for $8.95. The pdf runs 28 pages. If you previously purchased a pdf of Larm, your RPG NOW download has been updated with the revised version, so BONUS! Woo-hoo!
Fantasy Adventure Studios, has released World of Onn: Core Rules, following up on World of Onn: Supplement 1. That last, is a setting and rules supplement for Swords & Wizardry. In the just released today, Core Rules, James Bobb has expanded his Onn material and written a complete set of rules, still based on S&W. From the Lulu sales page:
Party up like it’s 1979 again! Enter the World of Onn™, a land blasted by a mysterious cataclysm long ago that still affects the land and people thousands of years later. The lands of Ossus and Var-Ultar are laid out for you to set your adventures in, with maps of the lands provided as well as information on the major places and realms. The World of Onn: Core Rules™ is a complete game system expanding on the award-winning Swords & Wizardry Core Rules™ system and is compatible with Original, ‘Red’ Basic, ‘Blue’ Expert and Advanced Edition old-school games and the Swords & Wizardry line. Inside you will find new races, classes, spells and equipment for players to choose from and a wealth of monsters and treasures to make exciting adventures, as well as guidelines and advice for Referees. Players and Referees will find rules to take adventurers from 1st to 15th level, found their own personal holdings or become wandering legends.
Clocking in at 228 pages, the print version is available for $14.96, with the pdf running $7.50.
In case there’s any confusion in the above, I’m appending a comment from the author:
It should be noted that World of Onn Supplement 1 is meant as an add-on product for Swords & Wizardry, while the World of Onn: Core Rules is a stand-alone game that is S&W compatible and incorporates slightly more ‘advanced’ elements.
Thanks Mr. Bobb and Good Luck with your new release!
Ye Olde Games has released Swords & Wizardry WhiteBox Reference Sheets! Available in print for $5.25 from the author, or you can pick up the pdf for $1.99 from RPG NOW. Time for another seller page blurb:
Speed up your game!
The Swords & Wizardry Reference Sheets provide ready access to the charts, tables and summary information for a Game Referee to run wilderness and dungeon adventures. No need to flip through a rulebook when you can have all the information you need in an easy to use digest format!
These sheets, formatted for convent digest printing on 8.5×11 (US letter) paper, combine existing Open Game Content from Swords & Wizardry Whitebox – 2nd printing, David Bowman’s Monster by CL lists, and brand new content for wilderness encounters and revamped Treasure Generation tables. The PDF also includes basic booklet printing instructions.
This accessory is inspired by the set of Reference Sheets that came with the original 1974 fantasy roleplaying game.
List of tables included:
Class Info/Statistics up to 10th level
Attack Rolls for Characters and Monsters
Basic Equipment List (including weapons/armor)
Magic User Spells
Monsters (all from Whitebox plus a couple of new monsters)
XP Values by CL
Monster Dungeon Encounters
Monsters by CL Levels
Wilderness Encounters (new content)
Wilderness Encounter Types and subtables (new content)
Treasure Tables and Generation (revamped/simplified/clarified)
Print these sheets, stick them in your pocket or book bag and go play some games!
Congratulations to all and thanks for your dedication to creating cool stuff for your fellow gamers!
And Speaking of Miniatures…
…instead of hiring sculptors and commissioning new production molds, we’re going to change focus and buy a bunch of old production molds from vintage minis that barely saw the light of day before they disappeared again. Right at the golden age of miniature sculpting, back in the 1980s, the market collapsed and several fantastic sculpting companies went under. As a result, a staggering number of production molds for excellent miniatures have been sitting in storage for decades, unseen and gathering dust or were released only in limited quantities. Since giant 30mm figures became the new “standard” when the market for miniatures re-emerged, these older 25mm figures weren’t ever re-cast. And because those figures are hidden out there, and can be produced at far less expense than new ones, we’ve decided to go back in time for the first several Swords & Wizardry miniatures, a time machine into the lost and unseen part of the 1970s and 1980s miniatures market.
Check out the full announcement, on the Swords & Wizardry forums, here!
And Speaking of Upcoming Releases…
And Speaking of Kick-Ass Gaming…
If you’re not following Planet Algol, here’s yet another reason, you should be!
The OSR is Growing!
And, it’s quite impossible for one person, to keep up with it all! Johnny Rook announced their new product, two weeks ago. There’s no telling, what I might be missing. So, if you have any news, please send it my way!
Send anything you want to share to:
And Speaking of not having enough Time…
Don’t have time to keep up with ALL the OSR blogs? Not to worry! Help has arrived!
“ONCE UPON A TIME, long, long ago there was a little group known as the Castle and Crusade Society. Their fantasy rules were published, and to this writer’s knowledge, brought about much of the current interest in fantasy wargaming.
But those whose imaginations know no bounds will find that these rules are the answer to their prayers. With this last bit of advice we invite you to read on and enjoy a “world” where the fantastic is fact and magic really works!
- Men & Magic (D&D, Vol 1, 1974)
- E. Gary Gygax (July 27, 1938 – March 4, 2008)
Thank you, Gary. We miss you and we game on in the worlds that you opened the door to.