Monday, February 8, 2021

My TOP 5 Zine Quest 3 Projects FOR NOW

Zine Quest 3 is the third edition of Kickstarter's RPG event showcasing small RPG projects in the shape of zines, and is going strong with hundreds of cool brand new mini-games and supplements for existing RPGs.

I'm in there too with Lands of Legends, the OSR six-zine set I've concocted together with my good friend Mauro Longo.

So many projects, in fact, that it's hard to figure out what are the coolest offerings. So here's my personal TOP 5 of ZQ3 projects FOR NOW, and in no particular order. More and more projects are coming in the next days, until the end of February,  so a second round will surely be in order!

The Lair of the Manticore

A Micro-Dungeon Adventure and mini-campaign setting for several systems: Savage Worlds, 5e, Swords & Wizardry, and Tiny D6. 

This one by Frank Turfler Jr. is an obvious choice for me: an old school dungeon, with stats for THREE of my favorite rulesets!

It also features several interesting stretch goals, including an amazing old style character sheet!

The Many Crypts of Lady Ingrade

A series of Old School dungeon adventures by Gothridge Manor, (with stats for Old School Essentials), focused on Lady Ingrade's crypts: the lady feared a filthy group of adventurers would violate her in death, so she compulsively built crypts to lure in tomb raiders and dispatch them with deadly traps and creatures.
Bonus points: maps are drawn by Rob Conley!

A solo journaling rpg about creating rituals you don't actually believe in, for the sake of your community. This one struck me immediately because of the parallelisms with one of my favorite Spanish novels: San Manuel Bueno Martir. This one launches on Feb the 10th, but I was so intrigued by the theme I contacted the creator Alberto Furlan to get to know more about it, and can't wait to pledge!

A tabletop role playing game with minimalist art, where you play a mech pilot and mix-and-match parts to build your own mech and fend off invading alien forces. I love mechs, and simple games, this looks perfect!

An original single-player roleplaying/strategy game about infiltration, espionage, and careful use of resources. The game begins as you, an operative of D.I.C.E (The Department of Infiltration and Covert Extraction), parachute down onto the roof of the Royal Flush Corporation headquarters; a 52-story skyscraper (represented by the deck of cards) that has been taken over by an unknown terrorist organization. I LOVE games that create content using cards!

And then there's my thing: Lands of Legends!

A set of 5+1 Old School zines packed with tables to create and run sandbox/open world campaigns!

It's just hit 100+ backers and is 500%+ funded and racing through stretch goals to fill up the sixth Companion zine with awesome tools, check it out!

New projects pop up everyday, so I'll surely post more soon!

Monday, February 1, 2021

Lands of Legends hits Kickstarter!


 Axian Spice is on Kickstarter. Here's the story!

Lands of Legends is a collection of five zines, each of which is a unique tool to craft and enrich your fantasy sandbox and adventures with unique areas, locales, encounters, and events.

It can be used with most fantasy RPGs, and occasionally refers to the basic concepts of the world's most popular role-playing game (things like Armor Class, Hit Dice, and so on), so it is readily usable with the vast majority of OSR rulesets.

Each Zine contains 10 Area tables and 10 Encounter tables, for 10 different terrain types: Civilizations, Deserts, Forests, Jungles, Mountains & Hills, Plains & Valleys, Rivers & Lakes, Seas & Islands, Swamps & Marshes, and Wastelands.

To sum up, each zine holds 100 unique areas and 100 unique encounters.

The whole set of five zines gives you FIVE HUNDRED OF EACH.

Each zine has a double use: the Special Areas tables are designed to be used as a resource when shaping and designing your campaign world, while the Encounters & Hazards tables are the tool you'll want to keep at hand while running your game.

For this reason, the print version is double-sided! Seen the video above? 

 The Lands of Legends - Mundane zine features places and situations which are perfect for low fantasy/low magic settings and campaigns: natural environmental features and commonplace events which will spark life and add depth to your adventures and campaigns.

Then there are four more zines that push and empower the magic and wonder of your fantasy world to a higher degree. Each has its own unique flavor:

 Lands of Legends - Grim: dark magic, terrible secrets, and horrific threats

 Lands of Legends - Fairy: enchanted lands of gentle wonder

 Lands of Legends - Holy: lands and events displaying the powers of the gods

 Lands of Legends - Primeval: where the brute force of Nature is at work at its utmost power

You can combine Grim and Fairy to create a sandbox campaign mixing the bleak horror and gentle wonder of both flavors into one unique setting, blending surreal and grotesque; you can set an epic campaign where Nature and the Gods are turbulent, ever-present forces just by mixing Holy and Primeval!

And on and on, you can mix two, three, or more of the flavors, or use each as the predominant note for a specific region of your campaign world: use Primeval for a "lost continent"; try Fairy for a realm of gentle fantasy, and so on. The possibilities are endless!

 Lands of Legends is our love letter to the OSR, and a set of tools Mauro Longo and I have been using for years in our games, both as GMs and as content creators. We decided to release it as a zine because we wanted to stay true to its Old School spirit, and to try and get as many people to know about it.

Find Lands of Legends on Kickstarter!!



Thursday, January 21, 2021

About Fighters & Warlords

 Fighters & Warlords is one of the latest SWAG-licensed products for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition, designed by Cyril Ronseaux, it continues his series of fantasy supplements which includes Wizards & Mystics, Bards & Minstrels, Companions & Familiars, and Tomes & Prayers. Cyril's works all share the same approach: each offers a variety of optional rules, functioning as add-ons.

The focus of Fighters & Warlords is combat, both ranged and melee. The book (53 pages) is packed with options.

The first section of the book is about medieval weapons, both melee and ranged, including black powder weapons. Let me say this straight: this chapter alone (23 pages) is worth the price, if you plan to run a fantasy (or historical) game. Why? Because it lists a LOT of weapons, and makes them interesting and different, while staying true to the FFF spirit of Savage Worlds. The sheer amount and variety of weapons means more interesting options for players, which is always good.

The second chapter introduces new Edges. Some of these were, in my opinion, sorely needed and are very good to finally have, such as those empowering two-handed weapons, which have no dedicated Edge in Savage Worlds core.

Weapon Proficiency is also introduced. It is an Edge which replaces Trademark Weapon, and offers unique effects for each weapon category, so I consider this a good addition too.

The next session is about Combat Options, i.e. specific maneuvers such as Reload, Grapple, or Trip. This chapter does a great job at both clarifying existing mechanics (such as Grapple), and/or adding more options (such as FORCE THROW for Grapple!)

Exactly like the other books in the series, the final chapter consist of a group of "sample characters". These eleven characters are presented at various ranks, from Novice to Heroic, and can be useful both as premade player characters or as NPCs. Each includes an interesting background and a sort of combat guide explaining how to put to use their Edges, skills and gear.

All in all this is a very good book, highly recommended if you enjoy a deeper combat, with more options for your players, and it is also part of a bundle collecting all the fantasy Add-Ons by Cyril Ronseaux.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

The Holiday Dungeon Bundle!

 As a way of celebrating the holiday season, we've put up a special, limited time bundle with four Gold & Glory products!

So what's inside? Let's take a look!

 Gold & Glory - Seven Deadly Dungeons: The acclaimed core book, a toolkit to play classic fantasy dungeon adventures with close to no preparation, with Savage Worlds Adventure Edition. It features a random character generator that actually works, two new arcane backgrounds, setting rules for dungeons, simplified encumbrance, LOTS of new monsters and magic items, the Dungeon Deck system, and the titular Seven Deadly Dungeons: seven dungeon adventures that you can play dozens of times, and will always be new and engaging, thanks to the randomizing of the Dungeon Deck system.

 Gold & Glory - Old School Gaming in Savage Worlds:
 A simple guide to enrich and empower the old school style in your Savage Worlds games - wether you're playing Gold & Glory or not! Topics such as player skill vs character skill, risk/difficulty/reward, linear and non-linear adventuring, attrition, and Gold & Glory as a toolbox for YOUR games!

 Gold & Glory - Solo, GMless and One-on-One Adventures:
 The best-selling guide to play Gold & Glory games in a variety of modes. Also includes the Abstract Clues system, which you can use in ANY type of game, and rules for hiring various types of henchmen, a useful resource for solo and one-on-one games!

 Gold & Glory - Ebenezer's Gold:
 A festive-themed dungeon adventure by acclaimed Savage Worlds guru Richard Woolcock, and part of the Deadly Dungeon Hosts series. Will the heroes find Ebenezer's Gold, or will they fall victims to his greed, just like him?

The limited time Holiday Dungeon Bundle is available at a special price at DrivethruRPG!

Friday, December 18, 2020

About the Inn Between Worlds

 Inn Between Worlds is a supplement for Savage Worlds Adventure Edition, designed by Robert Sullivan, and released under the SWAG license.

It has immediately piqued my interest because of the unique type of content, which I'm going to explain now.

The first chapter of the book describes the Inn (which doubles as a caravanserai or modern hotel, so as to suit the current campaign type), detailing the structure and all its locations. It includes a sort of mini-game to randomly generate the features of the Inn, with the option of involving the whole group in the process, making it the core of a session: a cool idea IF you are going to use the Inn as the home base of the group, or the center of a small campaign. All the relevant, possible features of the Inn are described in detail, so they are ready to use. Note that the download also includes fully detailed maps of both the caravanserai and hotel versions of the Inn, if you don't want to generate your own.

The second chapter details all the relevant NPCs: owners, staff, and customers.

The third chapter describes the "Cascade": a tearing in time/space that turns the Inn into a multidimensional location. That's why it is an Inn Between Worlds, and the cool idea that you may use to connect various Savage Worlds settings. This chapter has random tables for locations and encounters through the Cascade, and then tables for random destinations: the cool thing here is that each destination result is briefly described, and also includes a small list of possible published setting books that may be used for that destination!

The fourth chapter is about encounters and plot hooks revolving around the Inn, including a few bizarre creatures and tables to get the party involved.

The last chapter introduces a few new Edges and Hindrances and a new Arcane Background and powers, all related to the Cascade and its effects.

As you can see, the book is designed to be plugged into any type of campaign.

The book states classics such as Hodgson's House on the Borderland and the films The Saragossa Manuscript, The Cell and Being John Malkovich, along with M. C. Escher's art, as its sources of inspiration: such works clearly contributed to the inter-dimensional features of the Inn.

One interesting feature of the book is that it makes ample use of references to the TV Tropes, instead of detailing typical story elements that may come into play in association with various places and NPCs.

As a whole, is the kind of supplement that's suited for GMs who like to cook their own campaigns and adventures, and are happy to find ready-made locations, foes, and adventure hooks. This includes dropping most of the book (and Inn, and time/space fracture) as is, in settings such as Deadlands or East Texas University, which can definitely handle all the weirdness going on; or picking just the interesting bits.

All in all, it is a very atypical supplement, with a lot going on, and one which will require some extra GM work, but full of ideas and re-usable bits. Considering the price (just $2.50 at the time of writing, which makes me forgive the very basic layout), I definitely recommend it if you think you might want to make an inn, hotel or similar establishment the centerpiece of a campaign or the setting for some adventures (even without the Cascade thing). It may serve as a Rippers Lodge for sure!

Popular posts