Thoughts On a New Space Campaign.

‘ve been inspired by “The Orville” as it is somewhat as I imagine someone’s starship RPG campaign to look like. Unlike other TV series that take themselves too seriously at times, I think many RPG groups do pretty much insist on dropping some witty side banter and the occasional humorous situation.

Picture, if you will, “The Orville” using Star Frontiers Rules.

The sheer awesomeness of Space Freighter One.
Art by @tinyworld96

Gonna try to make my friend on Twitter, @FreighterOne proud with this one. I’m contemplating writing a short series of adventures or at least an outline for 9-12 episodes. It’s going to be centered on a smaller starship crew (the PCs and a few select NPCs) traveling through space and their wacky adventures every week.

I’ve been inspired by “The Orville” as it is somewhat as I imagine someone’s starship RPG campaign to look like. Unlike other TV series that take themselves too seriously at times, I think many RPG groups do pretty much insist on dropping some witty side banter and the occasional humorous situation. I think gamers tend to take things less seriously than Hollywood most of the time, anyway.

The only question I’m having currently is which system to use?

Nothing new, right? I’m always sort of hemming and hawing about which system I want to use for any given game. This is a campaign calling for something easy to learn, easy to play, fast and fun. This campaign will be designed around getting a group together for about a dozen sessions, so nothing too complicated.
My short list of contenders for this game:

  • ICRPG by Runehammer. Warp Shell gives us some sci-fi/space context. It’s a very easy system to work with. I could almost create a generic series of adventures and fill in the details later.
  • FATE by Evil Hat. This game company has been on a roll as of late. I like FATE for its simplicity, ease of adaptation and spiffy dice.
  • FrontierSpace by DwD. I mentioned Star Frontiers earlier. This is sort of the next generation of SF. It’s a bit crunchier than the previous two games. I like it a lot because of its harder sci-fi edge.
  • D6 System by West End Games (Nocturnal Media.) I mean, it worked for Star Wars, right? Plus I can design ships and characters in my head in less time than it takes me to write them down. I can still run this game blindfolded.
  • Shatterzone by West End Games (Precis Intermedia.) If you follow my blog, you probably know I have lots of love for old WEG products and Precis Intermedia for keeping some of them going. Shatterzone has awesome backstory and a deep world design, but it is a bit crunchier than everything else on the list.

Other thoughts included Starfinder, Cortex, SWADE, EGS, MCC, and even D&D 5E. I’m trying to minimize the crunch and find a base set of core rules that most players will have good access to. At the same time, I want a product that is more easily licensed in the event I decide to publish the campaign on DriveThruRPG.

I think with Spelljammer coming out soon, it might be fun to run a space game for a few weeks. You can only do so much fantasy, right? I think a space game set in Earth’s future might be a fun change of pace.

The next part of the series will be the first two episodes.

I like to link the first two episodes of any campaign together and usually the last two or three episodes. What can I say? I take a lot of RPG inspiration from TV and movies. My more structured campaign style functions very well with that format.

I want to do all of this without railroading the players, but unfortunately most published RPG campaigns and many adventures tend to be somewhat railroady in their presentation. I have learned a lot from Monster of the Week in terms of presentation, though. I might create episodes as missions this time.

Thanks again for stopping by. Space Freighter One isn’t helping me with any game development and probably has no idea I mentioned it. I just really wanted to give a friend a shout-out. Please go visit their site if you get a chance. I can’t think of humor and starship without thinking of SFO.

DCC Catacomb of the Wolf Lord Room: 2-2

The floor inside is grassy, covered in autumn leaves in many colors and shapes. The room has a warm, homecoming feel to it. The group is flooded with happy memories of warm meals and family at home. It’s as if they were being welcomed back after a long voyage.

You’ve faced the trials in the Happy Hunting Grounds, and now you emerge back into the hallway as if you had never left.

There remains about 10′ of dusty hallway before a tall stone arch decorated with faintly glowing blue arcane symbols all the way to its point. The room beyond appears a bit hazy, but parts of a very large skull can be seen in the room lying on the floor.

As the group approaches the arch, the runes glow a little brighter. No one has disturbed the dust on the floor in centuries.

Note to the Judge: the runes are intended as a red herring. At your discretion, there could be a force field barring the entry of the impure, but if they survived the trials of the Happy Hunting Grounds, then they should be allowed access. The mundane explanation for the runes is that they were part of the ritual allowing the body of the Wolf Lord to be entombed.

(Map to follow)

As the group passes through the archway, the room is illuminated with the warm glow of autumn dusk.

The room lights up and the bones of an enormous wolf lay in front of what appears to be a gigantic tree on the back wall. Puzzling, because there is no tree on the surface that corresponds with the roots/trunk.

The floor inside is grassy, covered in autumn leaves in many colors and shapes. The room has a warm, homecoming feel to it. The group is flooded with happy memories of warm meals and family at home. It’s as if they were being welcomed back after a long voyage.

There is a great deal of open ground in front of the party. In front and to the right are the bones of the Wolf Lord’s corporeal body. To the left are the bones of a human skeleton dressed in ceremonial robes. A grimoire and a journal lie next to the body, along with a medium sized chest.

Before the group gets a chance to investigate the body, a portal opens on the left wall. 5 large, snarling, hideous, frightening werewolves led by some sort of huge wolf demon burst through it!

Demon Werewolves: Init +7; Atk bite +8 melee (1d8+2) Claw +6 melee (1d6+2) ; Crit 19-20; AC 16; HD 4d6+4 ea; MV 40’; Act 1d24+ 1d20; SV Fort +6, Ref +6, Will +5; AL C. Infravision. Return to home plane when destroyed.
Immune to non-magical weapons or natural attacks from creatures of 3 HD or less; half damage from fire, acid, cold, electricity, gas. Vulnerable to Magic Weapons, Silver, Cold wrought Iron and wolfsbane.

Being bitten by one of these creatures causes a debilitating form of Lycanthropy. Fort Save DC 15. If afflicted, the character will rise on the next full moon as a minion of the Werewolf Lord under the control of the Judge. A meal of raw meat must be consumed each time the character transforms or lose 1 point of Stamina each night and transform again each night regardless of the moon until such a meal is consumed. The character’s alignment will also gradually change to Chaotic if it wasn’t already. The disease can be cured by the Remove Disease or similar higher level spell.

These Large werewolves are led by the Demon Servant of the Werewolf Lord. Their sole purpose is to prevent the reawakening of the Wolf Lord. The Demon Wolf servants of the Werewolf Lord are larger than average wolves with thick black fur, red eyes and sabretooth fangs.

Alpha Servant of the Werewolf Lord: (Type III Demon) Init +7; Atk bite +10 melee (1d10+2) Claw +9 melee (1d8+2) ; Crit 18-20; AC 17; HD 6d6+6; MV 40’; Act 1d24+ 1d20; SV Fort +6, Ref +6, Will +5; AL C. Infravision. Return to home plane when destroyed. Immune to weapons of less than +2 enchantment or natural attacks from creatures of 5 HD or less; half-damage from fire, acid, cold, electricity, gas; Vulnerable to Magic Weapons, Silver, Cold wrought Iron and wolfsbane. Being bitten by this creature applies a debilitating form of lycanthropy. (See above.)

This Huge beast has been sent to kill anyone attempting to awaken the Wolf Lord from his slumber at any cost. He appears similar to the Large members of his pack, but more horrible, frightening, and hunched over.

*At the Judge’s discretion, the werewolves may teleport away at 3/4 of their starting hit points, choosing to face punishment at the hands of their master.

After the battle, the Wolf Lord appears.

Read aloud:
As soon as the last of the demons falls, they all vanish into dust. The Wolf Lord appears as a light blue, glowing ghost of his former self.
“Thank you for coming to me after these long years of rest. Unto you I will bestow a few humble gifts. After you return to your world above, please spread the word of my return to the forests and hills of my home world. You are akin to my pack now. I will forever be in your debt.

The group will have the opportunity to speak to the Wolf Lord and ask as many reasonable questions as they like. The Judge is free to fill in the details. The Wolf Lord is benevolent and considers the group to be his new pack.

The Wolf Lord will allow the survivors to speak with fallen members of their group. He would be able to revive a fallen member of the group if they request it. Otherwise, fallen PCs may be resurrected as wolves or allowed to return to The Happy Hunting Grounds if they wish.

Loot: The sword Wolf’s Fang will be awarded to whoever carries the wolf’s tooth. The cloak will be awarded to a suitable roguish type. The Grimoire that explains the Wolf Lord’s Coven and benefits of converting to being one of his followers. Finally, the witch’s journal details 3 new spells specific to the Wolf Lord and those who follow him.

Once the group is done collecting their loot, a portal appears in the tree roots behind the wolf bones. It leads back to the surface above. It closes once everyone steps through.


1d12 Random Potion of Appearance Effects for any Fantasy RPG.

Roll 1d12 and consult the following table. Potion effects wear off after 1d12 hours when applicable. AND

Roll 1d12 at least once per travel session.

Roll 1d12 and consult the following table. Potion effects wear off after 1d12 hours when applicable.

  1. Slow Shrinking: Character loses approximately one inch of height per minute for 1d12 minutes.
  2. Slow Growth. Character gains approximately one inch of height per minute for 1d12 minutes.
  3. Hair Growth: Character grows 1d12 feet of hair uncontrollably, even from places hair doesn’t normally grow! Can be cut/trimmed/shaved as normal.
  4. Hair Loss: All of the character’s hair falls out. Grows back as normal over the regular number of days/years.
  5. Skin Thickening: Character suddenly grows a full inch deep layer of thick, callused, numb skin over the entire body. Returns to normal when the potion wears off.
  6. Bright Glowing: Character begins to glow brightly after 1d12 minutes. Regardless of clothing/armor, the glow is as bright as an open bonfire until it wears off.
  7. Opacity Reduction: (This one is kinda euww.) Character’s skin becomes 90% transparent. Whatever muscles, bones, or blood vessels are under the skin become visible until the potion wears off.
  8. Toenail Growth: Fingernails/Toenails and even horns/claws permanently grow 1d12 inches until trimmed/cut.
  9. Bizarreness: Character’s eyes, ears, nose and mouth sprout 1d12 inch tentacle stalks, wiggling about on the ends. Character must concentrate to look in a specific location until the potion wears off.
  10. Sweaty Mucus: (This is pretty euww.) Character emits a thick, green, slippery, strange-smelling mucus through pores in the skin until the potion wears off. Bonuses/Penalties subject to GM approval.
  11. Bug Eyes: Character’s regular eyes are replaced by large, geospherical insectoid eyes until the potion wears off. If the character was already an insect, the effect is reversed giving human appearance until it wears off.
  12. Awkward Bloating: Character puffs up like a marshmallow. No physical effects, it just looks inflated.
Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

1d12 Temporal Fantasy Forest Camping Hazards.

Roll 1d12 at least once per travel session.

  1. Swarming Mosquitoes of Unusual Size: They are huge. Camp was accidentally set too close to their breeding ground. They bite. The may possibly be carrying disease. They are large enough to carry off a fully loaded pack mule en masse. Fire and smoke repel them.
  2. Quick Mud: Character rapidly sinks 1d12 feet into a seemingly normal patch of ground. Drowning may result per quicksand rules. (1d12’x 5′) x (1d12′ x 5′) patch of ground.
  3. Contaminated Water Source: A magic user upstream has dumped a bunch of magical potion ingredients and it ended up pooling near camp. Drinking and cooking with this water may likely have some freaky effects. Bathe in it at your own risk.
  4. Whirling Dervishes: Strike the camp randomly at awkward momentsThese miniature tornadoes are attracted to the spot where the group has set up camp. They will blow tents around, possibly spook the group’s animals and extinguish campfires. Overall they are harmless, just very annoying gusts of wind.
  5. Ants! If you thought the mosquitoes were bad, these ants are more efficient and apparently hungry. The group must have accidentally set their campsite up near the ant hill. The ants will make off with as much food and other edible provisions as they can carry.
  6. Magical Magpies: nest nearby. They are harmless, but imitate the voices of any conversation within range making things very confusing.
  7. Dungeon Entraaaance! Somehow the group manages to set up camp near the entrance to an abandoned underground complex of the GM’s making. One character will accidentally fall into a hole leading to the complex. Lucky them?
  8. Raspy Berries: Raspberries plucked from a nearby bush seem perfectly normal. For some magical and unknown reason, these berries cause whoever eats them to be afflicted with a hoarse, raspy voice for 1d12 hours.
  9. Mice: These mice live in a nearby tree stump and will try to sneak into camp for food, warmth and polite conversation. They are harmless regular mice except they are moderately intelligent and can speak. Let the cartoonish antics begin!
  10. Fungus Among Us: Rapidly advancing magical moss from nearby trees blankets anything it touches in a matter of hours. It covers one 5′ square per hour advancing toward the group’s campsite. It is otherwise harmless, just slimy and annoying.
  11. Spiders! These extremely zealous web weavers cover the area while the group sleeps in sticky white webbing. There is a chance the group can see these mostly harmless pests coming by observing their surroundings. However, if the group stumbles too close, a hatching cloud of the baby arachnids might rain down upon them. At least they’re not venomous.
  12. Freaky Firewood: The group has managed to acquire firewood from a sleeping treant. Hopefully they only picked up discarded branches from the ground nearby, but it might wish to speak to them about that fire. (Intended as a non combat encounter.)

d12 Tables Terrain for Hex Crawl

The starting hexes for my DCC hexcrawl campaign. These tables have not been thoroughly tested yet. Constructive feedback welcome.

Working on building random Hexes and Events for my Dungeon Crawl Classics Hexcrawl game.

Roll 1d12 or choose as appropriate.
(If the Judge deems necessary, the terrain may match a connecting hex.)

  1. Chaos! Roll on the Elemental Chaos table.
  2. Arctic. Snow and ice everywhere. Sudden windstorms and freezing temperatures.
  3. Tundra/Taiga. Frozen plains with some forested area possible.
  4. Civilization! Roll for size and disposition on Urban Settlement table.
  5. Temperate Forest. Deciduous Trees and conifers. Fairly dense underbrush.
  6. Plains. Grasslands with an occasional tree or pond.
  7. Grassy Hills. Rolling hills covered in grass. Occasional tree or pond.
  8. Water. Could be the start of an ocean or just a lake or river. Roll 1d12 for adjoining hexes. 1-7 = Water (same type.) 8-12 = Land.
  9. Swamp. Thick vegetation. Lots of water. Lots of living creatures.
  10. Desert. Sand everywhere. Very little by way of water or vegetation.
  11. Mountains. Jagged rocks, valleys, canyons and of course, mountains.
  12. Jungle: Vegetation thick and overgrown everywhere. Very warm.

Elemental Chaos Subtable:

  1. Water
  2. Ice (Water/Air)
  3. Steam (Fire/Water)
  4. Mud (Water/Earth
  5. Earth
  6. Dust (Air/Earth)
  7. Magma (Earth/Fire)
  8. Fire
  9. Smoke (Air/Fire)
  10. Air
  11. Aether (Ghost/Spirit World) Keeper may wish to roll terrain above.
  12. Astral! Air is still breathable, but all other terrain effects are completely chaotic.

Civilization and Ruin Subtable

Roll 1d12 or choose if Keeper deems appropriate.

  1. Necropolis: There once was a thriving settlement here. Now abandoned and in ruin. Could easily be populated by any number of creatures, demons, or un-dead.
  2. Empty.
  3. Small settlement, no larger than 100 beings.
  4. Road. May be only traces of an old road or trail
  5. Village. 100-200 beings.
  6. Dungeon! An underground complex filled with treasures and monsters.
  7. Eerily Empty.
  8. Abandoned settlement or village. Why is it empty now?
  9. Hidden settlement. 1-120 beings living in the terrain out of sight.
  10. Town. 200-300 beings with most amenities, trade, and services.
  11. Hidden lair: A dragon, demon, powerful un-dead, elemental, giant, or other huge nasty dwells here out of sight.
  12. City or large civilized area. May include a castle, keep, or fortress.

D12 Tables

1d12 is my go-to die for random tables in just about every campaign, every system.

I could make a 1d12 table of 1d12 tables I want to make.

That’s how much fun they are. I won’t bore you with that one here, but it could be done. I make d12 tables a lot for just about every game.

I make 1d12 tables for a lot of odd random things as a DM, though. They add all kinds of spicy goodness to bland encounters. They work for weather, travel, global events, some NPC attitudes, and of course, random monster encounters. I know I’m old school, but I still believe in the old wandering monster table. Because maybe the troll down the hall decides to go for a stroll about the time the party thinks they’re going to rest. Bwah ha ha! Rolled an 11. Meet the troll.

I think the d12 is the most underrated dice in any game, except ICRPG. Yay! I suppose they’re good in SWADE and EGS, too if I remember right. But D&D and Pathfinder are very reserved in their use of the d12. My solution is to use them for any and every thing I can think of. I carry the things for fun every day. Really.

My players have called me out on it in the past. I have a pattern for most of my tables. You can probably guess the pattern. 1’s are, of course going to be catastrophically bad or unwanted news. 12’s are, naturally, something favorable or at least more favorable. 2-3 are usually something unwanted but not scary bad. 10-11 are usually the pretty good end of whatever the table is. Everything else is likely meaningful but random. I’ve done more random variants, but that’s the gist.

I have more d12s in my bag than d20s. Yes, I rolled a Nat 12!

Let me throw down a sample:

Roll 1d12. Average Night at the Stable:

  1. The stable catches fire! If the group has mounts there, the animals are in danger! One of the stable hands running into the inn a major panic to get help and save the animals.
  2. Horse thieves! Choose a random party member who had a mount in the stables. Their mount is now missing.
  3. Oops. The stable boy accidentally left the stall door open when he was cleaning. Choose a random party member. Their mount is now out wandering around somewhere.
  4. Asleep on the job. Stable keeper accidentally loaned one of the characters’ mounts out to a local merchant. The animal is treated well, but won’t be in the stable until the next night.
  5. Where did they find this kid? The stable boy decided to ignore his chores. The animals are not fed or watered, and stalls are not cleaned out. This will lead to somewhat moody, fatigued, smelly mounts the next day.
  6. All is well. The stable keeper feeds the all of the animals a treat! Unfortunately, it doesn’t agree with one of the mount’s tummies the next day. (Choose a random mount.)
  7. All of the mounts are well fed, well treated, and are ready for action the next day.
  8. The stable keeper notices an issue with a horse shoe and takes care of it, free of charge. He lets the group know the next morning.
  9. The stable keeper chases off a predator outside the stable. He lets the group know about it in the morning. One of the characters’ mounts is still skittish. The stable keeper will offer to loan out his personal thoroughbred for free if desired.
  10. The mounts are well-loved. They receive a +1 discretionary bonus to any one given roll during the day.
  11. What’s in that feed? Whatever the stable keeper fed the mounts, is working very well. The group receives an Advantage on any ONE given roll related to travel or the mounts.
  12. Holy buckets! The mounts are well fed, loved and ready to go! ALL mounts gain a +1 discretionary bonus and Advantage on one travel/mount related roll. They will also automatically pass the first morale roll within 24 hours automatically! The mounts are happy.

Saucerhead. A new Power Rangers RPG Threat.

Not your average foam rubber suit monster.

Not your average foam rubber suit monster.

“I was okay when it was just a flyin saucer.” –Brock, Black Lightning Force Ranger.

Could almost be a foam rubber suit, I guess.
(Art by Jeff Craigmile.)

THREAT LEVEL: 8
SIZE: HUGE | HEALTH: 12
TOUGHNESS: 18 | EVASION: 16
WILLPOWER: 13 | CLEVERNESS: 14
GROUND MOVEMENT: 30 ft.
AERIAL MOVEMENT: 90 ft. (Transformed)
Saucerhead is a living construct created by General Gnarl and General Slayn to try to prove their worth in the Triumvirate. He is mostly robotic. The lower portion looks like a 1950’s mechanical sci-fi robot packing a Raygun and at Tesla-coil style probe hand. It speaks in a mechanical robot voice. It is fascinated with Earth cows for some inexplicable reason.
SKILLS:
Initiative +d4
Intimidation +d4
Melee +d6
Perception +d4*
Targeting +d8*
PERKS:
Transform: Saucerhead’s entire body retracts into the saucer portion of his head. He can move up to 90 ft per turn, perform maneuvers that would squish a regular pilot, and stop on a dime. It receives Edge on all Ranged attacks while transformed. Transformation takes 1 turn.
ATTACKS:
Probe arm (Melee): +d6, Reach
(Toughness, 1 Stun Damage)

2 Raygun Blasts (Targeting): +d8, Range 45 feet
(Evasion, 3 Energy Damage each) Can be set on Stun.

OR

1 Raygun Beam Blast. (Targeting): +d8, Range 30 feet straight line, targets all in the line. (Evasion, 2 Electric Damage all within the line.) Can be set on Stun.

POWERS:
Summon Landing Putties. Summon 2d6 Modified Small Putty Patrollers per Encounter. Putties are Small size, armed with Rayguns and look like stereotypical Gray Aliens. Raygun: Targeting +d4, Range 20′ 1 Electrical.

Deflective Armor: Saucerhead’s chrome metal shell provides him with deflective armor.

HANGUPS:
Easily Distracted: Serious Irrational attraction to Earth cattle. It will literally stop what it is doing to admire a cow.

Thanks for stopping by. The gigantified version and possibly some artwork by yours truly will be published later. (It gets freakier.) I appreciate you! Have a fabulous weekend!

Monster of the Week 1d12 Tables

A couple of modern horror RPG tables just for fun.

Or any generic modern horror campaign.

Roll 1d12 on the table below:

Viral Internet videos and photos:

  1. Drone footage of a clown in a nearby field.
  2. UFO over the city within the last week.
  3. Large, hairy biped seen in the woods a few miles of town.
  4. Extraterrestrial caught on camera in a local driveway just passing through.
  5. Vague Cryptid seen walking through a convenience store parking lot in the early morning hours. Could be a dog? Or maybe a monkey?
  6. Gray alien caught on doorbell camera late at night.
  7. Local hunter sees ghost on trap camera.
  8. Kids conducting a seance at 3:00AM in a local cemetery get really freaked out and run away from unseen force.
  9. Local ghost hunters have multiple positive contacts in a downtown building recently scheduled for demolition.
  10. Child goes missing in the middle of the night only to be found the next day in a field 20 miles away bewildered and unharmed.
  11. Local police officer catches photos of a black dog with eerie red eyes crossing the street late at night.
  12. Local kids shoot video of objects moving around the house with them.

Bonus Table: Freaky Locations for strange happenings.

Roll 1d12. Randonautica, eat your heart out.

  1. A shed in a suburban backyard far older than the surrounding houses.
  2. A pair of grave markers in a well known town park.
  3. An abandoned car from the 1930’s in a field on the edge of town.
  4. The old veterans hospital near the center of town.
  5. A Freemason temple now a hospice.
  6. An old Native American burial ground underneath a residential district.
  7. A house in an old residential neighborhood abandoned for over a decade.
  8. A pauper’s graveyard covered by a high school football field.
  9. The WW1 exhibit at the local museum.
  10. Junkyard/Landfill built on top of a Civil War battlefield.
  11. Under an old bridge.
  12. An old well on the farm nearest town.

Catacomb of the Wolf Lord: Room 1-3

Room 1-3 of Catacomb of the Wolf Lord. The group may have found treasure, but is it cursed?

The “Treasure” Room.

The entrance to the Treasure Room 1-3 is concealed under a thick layer of old mud and gravel. In the dim lighting and all of the mud, the door will be difficult to find. If the group “plays” with the elementals, more earth will be caked onto the old mud. Ask the players if/how they are searching.

If the group finds the door and excavates it, it opens into Room 1-2. Beyond the door, there is a 5’x5′ unlit hallway leading to another door. Across the way, is a wrought iron bound locked door. The lock is trapped and will drop a 1 ton granite block on the trap victim and blocking the hallway. (Detect Trap DC15.)
Pick Lock DC 18. 8d6 damage from the block + being pinned. Reflex Save for no damage.

If successful, the door opens into a magically lit 15′ x 15′ room, domed ceiling with a faint glowing light in it, with a magical circle drawn on the floor. Inside the circle are four items. The first is a dagger (athame) in an ornate wooden box. The second is a leather bound book with a lock and key. It looks to be very old. The third is a gray fur cloak with an ornate wolf’s head clasp. The fourth and final item is a wolf’s fang.

Once the first character fully enters the room, a ghostly wolf appears. It speaks clearly to the group. It points to each item with its nose and states, Cleric, the dagger; Wizard, the book; Thief, the cloak, and Fighter, the tooth. Read the following aloud:

The ghost stares at you, or possibly through you. It points to each item and states clearly a second time Cleric, the dagger; Wizard, the book; Thief, the cloak, and Fighter, the tooth. Choose wisely. You make only keep one. Bring it to my final resting place for your real reward if you are so worthy.The rest are cursed.

It sits and says, “I’m waiting for your answer. You may ask one question of each item if you wish. One I shed. One was my end. One was my life. One is my gift to you if you are worthy.”

The ghost, a spirit messenger of the Wolf Lord, will answer truthfully one question of each item within reason. Its answers will always be cryptic and vague. It won’t try to encourage or discourage the group from choosing any of the items. It might also answer a little more about itself.

The Wolf Lord wasn’t always a wolf. It lived for a while as a man to better understand men. He took an elven bride and had two children: Koga and Kei. Koga became feral and ran away at a young age to join a wolf pack. Kei grew up to be a refined elven lady. (Current whereabouts unknown.) The Wolf Lord eventually rejoined his spirit pack and left his mortal family behind.

After many centuries, the great animal lords were forgotten. In turn, each returned to a sacred place where a coven of followers put their bodies to rest and sealed them away from the mortal world.

*Note: If any of the cursed items have the curse removed, the item is rendered permanently inert.

A) The athame is a cursed dagger +1. It radiates strong magic. The wielder must feed it one hp per day or lose 1 Stamina each day the hp requirement is not met. The wielder may not give its own hp.

B) The Coven’s Spellbook: The Coven’s Spellbook is a cursed antithesis of all that is Lawful or Neutral. Any mage who opens it will automatically become Chaotic, and will turn more toward being un-dead with each page read. Any/all spells copied or cast from the book with automatically backfire. Any creatures summoned automatically turn on the caster. It was never meant for the world of the living.

C) The Cloak of the Gray Wolf: At first, this cloak appears to not be cursed. It offers a +1 Agility bonus to Stealth and +1 bonus to AC. Once per day it allows the wearer to shapeshift into a normal wolf. All items become part of the new form. Mental stats stay the same.

Wolf, common: Init +3; Atk bite +2 melee (1d4); AC 12; HD
as wearer; MV 40’; Act 1d20; SV Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +1;

The ability resets at sunrise.
But the cloak is cursed. At the first full moon after acquisition, the wearer transforms permanently into a wolf under the control of the GM until the curse can be lifted.

D) The tooth is a regular tooth. It is not cursed, nor is it terribly useful yet. However, it is the key to unlocking the real treasure in Room 2-2, the Wolf Lord’s burial chamber.

While the Wolf Lord is considered a demigod and will grant certain spells to his followers, this is clearly not the book to do it with. The Wolf Lord will be available as a Mage Patron and as a Demigod to be detailed elsewhere.

Once an item is chosen, the rest vanish along with the circle and the lights in the room. The eerie outline of the spirit can still be seen, but it will not interact after the choice is made.

That’s it for this room. It’s obvious the other party never made it to this room. The journal makes no reference to tests or treasure beyond a vague mention of some kind of treasure believed to be buried with the bones of the Wolf Lord himself.

Thanks for being here! I appreciate you. Can’t wait to see what happens in Room 1-4 and 1-5? Hang in there. They’re coming soon.

Power Rangers RPG vs the Military? Part 2.

Oh, and they’re Krohn’s Putties disguised as soldiers. (Did you really think I’d make the Rangers duke it out with real soldiers? Pffft!)

What happens when they say “No.”

In the previous article, I went over what might happen when the group agrees to join the US Army and the absolute nightmares that would follow. The Morphing Grid and Zordon will not likely agree to this plan. So then what happens?

Let’s give the American Military DIA of Earth 129 some credit. They’ve done their homework. The know where the Ranger’s base is. They’ve managed to hack into the base communications and Alpha 4. If the group rejects the offer to join, the military will strike!

Monsters are one thing, but live soldiers?

Okay, there are some plot elements I haven’t mentioned yet. First, because the Triumvirate, the Season 1 bad guys are a military type organization, General Krohn has infiltrated the Army and kidnapped General Bronson and replaced him with a clone, the monster General Mayhem.

The soldiers going in to arrest the Rangers aren’t armed with regular firearms. They have stun staves and blaster pistols. Oh, and they’re Krohn’s Putties disguised as soldiers. (Did you really think I’d make the Rangers duke it out with real soldiers? Pffft!)

Just before the military strikes, the group is going to be distracted by a kaiju attack. Gnarl has sent down Gigalon to threaten Bennet’s Cove. Once the Rangers are engaged with the giant monster using their Megazord, the “military” will shut down the base and the teleporters completely, override and shut down Alphour, and force the base closed.

The plot thickens.

Zordon of Earth 129 was sent to protect the Ninja Steel encased Zeo Crystal. Rather than let the location of the Crystal fall into enemy hands, Zordon will seal the secret chamber to the Morphing Grid interface and retreat within the Grid itself.

Alphour will behave a little differently once she is hacked. The group knows she is fascinated with humans and wants to become more like them. However, hacked Alphour will revert back to her cold, robotic personality. She’s fighting the hacker’s control. She will subtly hint that things are not right in the base, followed by notifying the group that the teleportation system is down. (Locked out to prevent the military from gaining control.)

After that, it’s a typical Rangers RPG adventure.

The Rangers will travel back to the Zord’s hangar in their Zords after dispatching the kaiju. Once everyone is in, General Mayhem will appear and the trap will be sprung! The group will slug it out with the K Putties.

Alphour finally shakes off the hacker’s control, becoming a fully sentient AI. She unlocks the teleportation system and transports the whole works outside. She also back hacks the military and finds the secluded warehouse where the real General Bronson is being held.

Once the K Putties and General Mayhem is defeated (for now,) Alphour teleports the group to rescue the real general. Of course, in true Rangers fashion, once General Bronson is rescued, the monster goes Mega mode and will be ready for that giant monster fight.

Aftermath…

General Bronson is grateful and somewhat indebted to the Rangers for rescuing him. Things could have gone much, much worse. The Rangers (Morphed) are awarded with a medal for bravery. The military agrees to only call upon them to help with giant monsters and other such villainy.

Krohn leaves a few spies in the military unrevealed for future schemes. Even though Alphour has beefed up the firewalls and base defenses both physical and computer. While defeated, the Triumvirate is one step closer to finding the Crystal.

The ROTC comedy relief characters are back to their zany antics and life goes on in Bennet’s Cove.

I’ll put up the stats for General Mayhem and the K Putties in the near future. Of course, we all know no plot survives a run-in with the actual players. Who knows what will actually go down. I can only plan for my NPCs and the bad guys.

I know Krohn is going to continue to manipulate the Army into other plots involving the Rangers. Truth be told, I can’t resist creating an attack helicopter Zord and equipping a land Zord with 120mm cannons. Also, I’m pretty excited for GI Joe RPG… I mean, there’s a Street Fighter/Rangers crossover.

Thank you for being here! I appreciate you. I hope this was useful for you. Please feel free to steal this plot and rock it in your own games. Game on!

DCC Catacomb of the Wolf Lord Room 1-1

Over a century ago, the physical bones of the Wolf Lord were lay to rest. A sword of legend and other riches lay within the tomb.

This is the first room of my new dungeon.

Room 1-1 and the hallway leading to the dungeon. What mysteries lay within?

A couple of farm kids accidentally excavated an entrance to an ancient burial mound deep within the ground. It is perfect for adventurers who want to make a name for themselves exploring the tunnel and beyond.

The tunnel is long and unlit. The walls are mostly made of packed earth and stone with the occasional very old wooden brace. Those familiar with the earth may make a check to notice the grade of the floor. The long tunnel goes down about 3′ for every 5′ square. There are torches sunk into the walls every 30′ of the 120 foot tunnel.

The walls are old, but have held up exceptionally well over the years. The whole place smells earthy and musty. It is obvious no one has passed through here in many years.

Room 1-1: At the end of the long tunnel are 6 alcoves, 3 on each side of the wall with what at first may appear to be dirty old bronze or iron statues. Closer inspection reveals they are actually zombies that activate and attack!

6 Zombies: Init -4; Atk bite +3 melee (1d4); AC 9; HD 3d6; MV
20’; Act 1d20; SP un-dead; SV Fort +4, Ref -4, Will +2; AL C.

After the battle, the party will see two huge iron banded thick wooden doors. Both are locked. In front of the door are the corpses of what appear to be two dead adventurers. The bodies are very old, perhaps a century or more. There is little more than scraps of cloth and bones. Closer inspection will indicate the doors were closed by the adventurers before they succumbed to their wounds.

Loot: Rummaging through the deceased adventurers will yield a Silver Dagger, a pristine set of Thieves Tools, a scroll with the Level 1 Spell- Ropework, a solid staff, a Level 2 Enchanter’s (Neutral Wizard) spellbook with 7 First Level Spells, and a journal with entries regarding the Wolf Lord. (See Bevin’s Journal.)

The two large stone doors are locked. The lock is centered between the two doors. A large bronze carving of a wolf’s head is above each door. The lock is DC 15 with a Poison Needle trap within that triggers when the lock is opened with anything other than the proper key. Trap DC 15 to detect/disarm. The poison is the equivalent of Asp Poison Fort Save DC 20 1d3 Agi/1d6 Agi. Normal healing.

Once the doors are opened… To be continued.

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