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Topics - WillInNewHaven

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News and Adverts / Overland Travel in the Westwood Setting
« on: December 09, 2020, 03:20:39 pm »
Tables of random encounters linked to encounter descriptions in a woodland setting with fantasy peoples and creatures. Encounter descriptions for games using Glory Road Roleplay and OSR/D20 rules.

News and Adverts / Targeting & Armor Avoidance 2
« on: November 22, 2020, 04:15:03 pm »
This is an optional sub-system for Glory Road combat. It is optional because it adds a layer of complexity to an already-complex combat system. When I was ready to publish the full game rules, I realized that the targeting and armor avoidance system we had used over the years was too complex and had largely fallen into disuse, although it was quite popular with some, a sizeable minority, of the players. This is a much simpler system, although it is still not simple.
It does, however, have its advantages. It often makes combat quicker. Using the sub-system may make one round of combat more complex but it can reduce the number of combat rounds. It gives the combatants more meaningful options. If the player-characters use it and their foes do not, it can give the PCs a unique advantage. I admit that I am a meanie and the NPC foes of my characters will use these options but they don’t use them as often as the PCs.

News and Adverts / A Misplaced Prince, an OSR/D20 Adventure
« on: November 14, 2020, 06:32:17 pm »

AKA: the Hexcrawl
Confession: One of the reasons I did this is so future modules in this setting will require less w*rk.

News and Adverts / Two New Brief PDFs for Glory Road Roleplay
« on: September 11, 2020, 01:29:59 pm »

Brigandine Because I omitted this important armor in the core rules, I put a free PDF on Drivethru.
I haven't used it much in my campaigns because whatever history is in with the fantasy is from an earlier period but it is much too important to leave out completely.
Suggestions and Shortcuts
This is a short, free PDF that clears up problems encountered by people running and playing the game. I will add to it if and when I find more ways to help the GMs and players. If anyone has a problem and/or a suggested solution, email me at

News and Adverts / Coming Out This Week on Drivethru
« on: August 26, 2020, 11:18:29 am »
A second adventure in the Silk Road setting for Glory Road Roleplay. An OSR/D20 version will be out soon.

Blue Pool on the Silk Road
From Bill Reich

Watermarked PDF

Blue Pool on the Silk Road
This adventure is set in a fictional version of central Asia, in the fictional Eren Basin, on the Silk Road, the legendary trade route. This is a very different environment than the Black Mountain District in Glon' where our previous adventured all occurred or at least started. However, it is assumed to be on the same game world because it is on the same planet in my campaigns, although a GM can certainly change that or simply ignore it. Since this is our first look at the Blue Pool or the overall Silk Road setting, we will devote a few pages to the setting.
An OSR/D20 adaptation is being playtested.

I had to delay doing this until I had nailed down when all of this happened. The events are clear in my head but I had to ask my friend Simon about the dates and it turns out I had them wildly wrong.
During the summer of 1975 (much earlier than I had thought) Simon and I were playing what must have been an incomplete rules set that I had bought at a hobby shop on Chapel Street. I was soon running games for other friends that fall. I had begun playing "D & D" the previous Halloween after a meeting of the local SF club.
Anyway, the rules we had did not have clear rules about when you hit something. So, I worked out my own. As you got better, at combat, you got better at hitting things and at avoiding being hit. Armor mitigated damage. I did see how many  HP you got and that improved by level but I consciously rejected that, preferring one larger HP total. I think it was your Con score at first but then it became 2*Con or Con + 10, whichever was better. I retained the chargen rules and the classes and levels and, to the extent it existed in that rules set, the magic system. The players and I still called it "D & D," just as the game John Leyland had run at the SF club was D & D, even though he used something with little resemblance to the rules as written. Both games attracted a lot of players.
Then someone got a more complete rules set. I was not impressed and continued to run my rules, as did some other game masters who ran them and the other people running games in the area still did not much run RaW.
I will continue this and talk about when I decided that the game I was running was not D & D after dinner or tomorrow..

News and Adverts / Low-Fantasy Gaming with Glory Road Roleplay
« on: May 03, 2020, 12:24:54 am »
The definition of a low-fantasy setting varies from gamer to gamer but some elements are common to almost all definitions.
1.   "Monsters" are other. They, most of them, are outside the experience of most people. If the player-characters encounter one, it is almost certainly the first monster of that type that any of them have ever encountered. There are legends and tales but there are no blasé guidelines and little solid information.
2.   Magic is other. There are no magic schools and player-character mages either don't exist or have to hide what they are. Lists of well-defined spells, such as the one in our Core Rules, don't exist.
3.   Non-humans are other. The player-character's world does not include the usual elves, dwarfs and hobgoblins. If they exist at all, it is outside the cozy circle of civilizations.

What I am going to do in this brief book is go from chapter to chapter of the Core Rules and suggest how to modify the rules so that you can run low-fantasy adventures. Then, I will go though the Encounters book and do the same.
Because you will need the Core Rules, I am not charging anything for this brief volume.

One member of the party (It is the GM's option who it might be or it could be randomized. Most likely, it will be one who is very interested in money and who spends time in bars and/or gambling amid the dregs of the city) meets an elderly dwarf named Durin Dryden in a card game. They find over time that get along well and the old fellow starts a half-drunken monologue when they are alone very late in a tavern in Iron Town Under.
"Oh, lad, it is my shame that I never followed my dreams beyond the next pint of ale and the next deal of the cards. I had in my hands, IN MY HANDS, a key to great wealth but I got distracted and have wasted the last two centuries lollygagging around Iron Town when I could have, should have, taken a chance and won a fortune."
Nothing comes of that immediately, even if the player-character tries to find out more, but two weeks later a dwarf mutual acquaintance tells the player-character "Old Durin thinks he's breathin' his last, and it seems like he might be right. He has things he wants to tell ya."
If the player-character hurries to the old dwarf's side, he finds him stone sober and breathing and speaking with difficulty.
"When the great Lords of Glon' grew tired of the raiding and looting by the Baron of Mondragon, they sent an army against the Baron and defeated him, even though he had Svein Firehair and his sworn men fighting for him. It was a fierce battle, I'll tell you, for I was young and foolish and marched with the District Militia. Many brave men and dwarfs and many who may not have been sa brave fell that day and the commanders could barely restrain the men, and even the dwarfs, from slaughtering prisoners because the fighting had been sa fierce.
Me, I was for mercy and for following the orders but men get more excited than we do, that's why we are called the moderate people. So, I had to keep a couple of the fellows from finishing off a wounded lad and making sport with his sister. The boy thanked me but he was clearly going to die before any healer could get to him, that's the sorrow and the pity and him no older than forty. He gave me this"
And the old dwarf handed the character a brass key.
"And told me that he had served the Baron as his treasurer after his father, who had held the job, had died. He said that there was a room with great treasure down under the Keep and that he wanted me to get the treasure.  One thing, the treasure room door is not visible. It is in the middle of the right-hand wall of the main room of that floor and the key will fit in what looks like a crack in the plaster.
He might a' told me what level it was on but I've forgotten. Damn my old mind.
I could not be getting any great treasure with that army all around the place, not and keep it, so I was going to have to wait and come back. Besides, he charged me with getting his sister to relatives here in the District and I did that. And I never got back to get the treasure. I want ya to have it, lad, but you'd better gather friends for the way to that keep is rarely traveled the now and there are dangers. And who knows what is in a keep that is deserted for two centuries?"  
Then, the old dwarf wanted to play cards and they pegged a board for a few hours until the old fellow's breathing got even worse and he took a drink and lay back "to rest a moment" and died.

News and Adverts / New Glory Road Roleplay Product on Drivethru
« on: March 17, 2020, 06:54:50 pm »
This is a collection of ready to use player-characters for Glory Road Roleplay. It was supposed to be twenty characters but one of the characters so obviously would need a couple of servants that I added two more characters, designed to be NPCs.
As to when you would use characters like that, there are several possibilities. I am going to run a game at a gaming store and I am going to give one of these characters to anyone who shows up too late to make their own character. I think that the idea that a player can play off the character sheet, without ever opening the book during play, will make people more interested in playing the game.
My motto is "the crunch is in the prep" and these characters make the game less crunchy for players who fear or dislike crunch. Understand, I love the crunch of creating Glory Road characters and most of my players do also but having more players is good, so I like making it possible to play without the crunch. For that matter, I enjoy the crunch of making a setting and an adventure for my players but some people don't have the time. And that's why I'm making modules available, modules that are adventures my group has played over the past several decades.

Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / What IS Old School?
« on: January 20, 2020, 10:37:08 am »
Because of a recent discussion on Facebook and perhaps because of a perverse fondness for definitions, I would like to bring this up here. I am not specifically talking about Old School Revival (OSR) In addition to the qualities I am mentioning, I believe OSR requires having roots in early editions of D&D but otherwise I think it embraces these qualities at least for the most part.
A set of rules can be old school or not and so can a campaign. I am not saying that old school games are better than modern games or vice versa, I'm just defining them. I discuss each quality that makes up old school and then I add a second paragraph saying why I prefer that quality over its opposite. In every case, there can be shades of grey.

1: In an old-school game or campaign the setting is concrete. It is created by the GM or taken from published material and does not change in order to improve the story or because a player wants to change it. The rivers, towns and other features are where they are and do not shift around.
     Playing a character in such an environment makes immersion easier for me and for many people I have played with.

2: In an old-school game or campaign, once character-creation is over,  player-agency is largely character-agency. A player makes decisions for the character and can use any power that the character has. However, the player has no out-of-character agency. The player does not make decisions that the character could not make or even know about.
      Assets such as Fate Points make sense if you are playing a game against the Game Master but not if you are inhabiting a character.

3: In an old-school game or campaign, a character can have many different motivations and can make decisions based on those. However, making a better story does not seem to be a real motivation for characters. The GM cannot force a story on the players because that violates their agency.
            Looking back on the story we have inadvertently told is quite satisfying.

Whether one prefers old-school games or not, I think that these characteristics are what make them old-school

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