Monday, December 26, 2022

Feycatchers BFRPG Setting (WIP)

Koffing & Weezing from Pokémon 
©️1997 Nintendo Entertainment 
 So, my oldest son caught a bad case of Pokémania this year. Pokémon cards, cartoons, dolls, and more are running rampant through my house and infecting his imagination.  I have been trying to dodge this phenomenon since he turned four. To no avail. It has been so intense that I am to the point where I have decided "If I can't beat 'em, I might as well join 'em."

But on my terms.

For Christmas,  among the Pokémon cards and Pikachu dolls, was a copy of Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game, and a set of dice from me.

I decided to make this gift a little more attractive, by tying it in to his new obsession. I decided to build a campaign world that mixed Pokémon, Fantasy Role-Playing, and a bit of Celtic Mythology. Into a new campaign setting. 

Monday, December 19, 2022

Developing A World Through Encounter Tables

 Random encounter and wandering monster tables are underused; not only from a mechanical standpoint, as thy have fallen out of favor in modern play and so their power to build tension has been lost, but from a world-building angle as well. A good  encounter table is capable of providing hooks and lore by showing, not telling.

I want to provide an example from my daily blog for the Dungeon23 challenge: Into the Devouring Wilderness. This is a area that runs down the center of the hex crawl I am building,

Here's the original article:

Sunday, December 11, 2022

Random Encounters: The Inkandi

Listen, I know you are really curious about who or what is lighting the torches in this dungeon. I was once, too. Unfortunately for me, I got an answer.

The Inkandi are not spoken of and better not seen. Just be sure to mark your gratitude in the ashes when you pass, and don't look too deeply into the shadows. Those who insist on noticing them and meeting their gaze are taken away to the hidden pocket worlds in which they nest. Such people are fed toxins and left as bait for the grues they war with in the gloom.

And make no mistake, if there are torches lit with no sign of who lit them, there are grues about, too.

Friday, December 9, 2022

Into the Devouring Wilderness

 I have started my Hex23 content a little ahead of 2023 to give myself some wiggle room later, and get the biggest, most complicated entries out of the way before the holidays.

You can catch all this cool new Deathtrap Lite content on my new secondary blog Into the Devouring Wilderness.

Thursday, December 8, 2022


"Undercroft Entry of Burg Drachenfels", CC-BY-SA Haselburg-müller

 Sean McCoy, the creator of the awesome Scifi-Horror TTRPG Mothership, has recently started a challenge for himself he calls Dungeon23, which has gone viral in the OSR Crowd.

The premise is simple: create one dungeon room a day every day in 2023 , and in the end he will have a sprawling 365-room mega dungeon.

I liked the challenge, as did my buddies from the Weirth campaign.

While we were chatting about it, I proposed a modified version of it that would appeal to me personally:

Monday, December 5, 2022

My Go-to Places to Hunt for Art

Bisqit's Brandy poster
by Alphonse Mucha
Lithograph, 1899

As an amateur indie RPG developer, I want to be able to include art in my books. I want them to look beautiful. I want the benefits of easier absorption, reader inspiration, and desirability that good art adds to my work.

However, I don't make a great deal off of my creative work. The proceeds of my modules and manuals thus far have gone to getting more books for review on this website.

I have a long way to go before I can leave something as visually interesting as I would like that is full of commissioned artworks.

This means I spend a great deal of time hunting for artwork to use in my books and modules. Thankfully, I've had some good tips over the years. Guilherme Gontijo's "How to Make Cool RPG Pamphlets" was a good starting point for me. Since then I have slowly expanded my selection of resources. Below are some of my favorite places to find Art for my role playing books at low or no budget.

Sunday, December 4, 2022

The Dungeon that Ate Itself

Ochre Jelly, CC0 image
by Marianna Villarreal Ruiz
 I would like to relay I'm interesting development that occurred while I was running Greg Gillespie's Highfell last night.

If you are not familiar, Highfell: the Drifting Dungeon is the second of Greg Gillespie's old- school mega-dungeons. These are huge, sprawling environments with hundreds of rooms, peppered with puzzles, traps, both classic and weird monsters, and bizarre, over-the-top factions. Highfell is a floating island that was once a college of wizards. It's made up of a collection of towers, many of which have single-floor dungeons beneath them, with the dungeon's "level" set more by the towers' distance from the center of the island then by its depth underground.

I am running as vanilla an AD&D1e game as I can; 50% of the play time has been dedicated to traditional dungeon crawling, complete with regular wandering monster rolls. My only house rules are that I'm using the B/X versions of morale and NPC reactions because they are just quicker for me to use from memory.

During their exploration of the Crumbling Collegium of Kalguumer, a sprawling 55 room dungeon filled with secret doors and pit traps, the player characters literally kicked off s bizarre chain-reaction.