More Dungeon Tiles

I think I’ve finished up making my kit of Dungeon Tiles. I’ve got a few more terrain tricks up sleeve but more about those when I get them done.

I did do these in different batches and used slightly different painting techniques. So that explains the color variation. But I used the common techniques with XPS foam. Base coat of black paint and Mod Podge then an undercoat, dry brush, wash, and seal with polyurethane.

Yes, I have a dog too.

Here’s the sizes and quantity of tiles:

  • 1 each 6×8
  • 1 each 6×6
  • 2 each 4×6
  • 8 each 3×3
  • 3 each 2×2
  • 2 each 2×3
  • 2 each 2×2

I didn’t use any method to decide on how many of each or the sizes. I just used my gut instincts about what I thought would work the best, that I’d be most likely to use, and what would be the most flexible.

White Box Wednesday: Far Away Land

Here’s another one to add to your White Box arsenal. Don’t let the art fool you.

Let me get the slightly confusing bit out out of the way first. Yes, Far Away Land is a stand alone game with its own system and, yes, I think it’s pretty cool. But there’s also an OSR version based solidly around White Box. For this post, I’m going to focus on the OSR version.

As I said in the intro, “Don’t let the art fool you.” Dirk Stanley does the art and writes the material. In on old post somewhere I remember him mentioning that he likes the dichotomy of cartoon style art but brutal and dangerous combat. Just because the art looks cartoonish, the underlying game isn’t a comedy game. Now the setting is a bit gonzo, so you can run with that if you want to.

FAL-OSR has a slightly different take on the standard classes. The base ideas are still there but there’s a few little switches. The best are when it comes to spell casting. Heck, I even adapted it for my old Swords & Wizardry campaign. It’s pretty simple and works. Magic-User knows a spell then they know it. They can cast a number of spells each day equal to their INT Mod+Level. That’s it. You don’t have to worry about spell/level and all that. The spells are familiar plus there’s some new one’s.

Sure there’s a few other minor tweaks to classes so DM’s can do what they want. Of course, with a new setting, it also means new races and monsters. This is probably where most DM’s will get the most mileage. They may not use the races but who doesn’t want more monsters? Some of them may be a bit silly or gonzo for some but you know, I kind like the idea of psychic nuns riding grizzly bears into combat.

Grizzle bear riding telepathic Agnun

But wait there’s more. There’s also the addition of “Powers” . This is a simple little system for magical or otherwise weird powers that the DM’s can dole out to characters. There isn’t a set system of characters getting Powers or how they get them. That’s your call if you even use it all. It also includes suggestions for doing that good old 0-Level Character Funnel, an adventure, and, of course, the setting information for Far Away Land.

If you’re running a fantasy campaign and what to throw in a few things that are unexpected at the players. This is a really good resource. Yes, the PDF is a bit pricey but IMHO it’s worth it.

You can grab that in PDF or POD on DrivethruRPG. And you get more information on the website.

Keep rolling those dice folks.

Characters: Abilities Vs Loot

Last week, I did a post about some More Thoughts on ICRPG and this generated some good discussion over on MeWe. The subject came that ICRPG relies mostly on Loot as a means of character progression. This all got me thinking.

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It’s true that ICRPG uses Loot as a means to grant characters more unmph. Old School games were kind of like that especially for the non-casters. The only way for them to get cool/weird abilities was loot or drinking from that mysterious pool in the depths of a dungeon. But then if we look at 5E, every damned class has a super power and loot seems like an after thought. If everybody has cool abilities then just how cool are they? What’s the “right way”? Well, that’s up to you.

But here’s my thoughts. There should be a balance between the two. Loot doesn’t always have to be super cool. It can do things that a character may not otherwise be able to do. You know like food. (I know Goodberry). Or something really cool that augments a character’s abilities and/or skills. Also, Loot can become sort of the trademark for the character. Think of Elric without Stormbringer. Hmm? At the same characters should have a way either by player choice or chance or a combination of the two to get some nifty abilities or powers.

So let me sum up. Character growth and improved should be a combination of choice and chance. Somethings should character abilities and some should be from loot. And it most certainly shouldn’t be like a Chinese menu.

Dungeon Dwellers RPG. Say What?

This one totally snuck up on me. There I was just browsing away on the Internet and decided to do a little shopping and bam there it is.

Hey! This thing is by Reaper. Don’t those guys just make miniatures? Well, apparently not. Seems they also want to throw a game out there too. Well, they released the beta Players Primer on their website. And there’s some adventures over there too.

I, of course, downloaded and starting reading. Dungeon Dwellers is a variety of things from various editions and comes up with a generally streamlined game. It’s got the usual classes, races, and spells. There’s no monsters in this primer but like I said, there’s adventures there too.

They are releasing Dungeon Dwellers along with an old-school line of miniatures. That’s cool. I admit that some of the original Reaper Bones weren’t all that great. But I’ve given them another chance and I like their Bones Black and Bones USA lines. (And I like their metal mini’s too.) D&D is having wild popularity but why release your own game? I don’t want to speculate right now. I’ll just file that in the back of mind for later use.

So go ahead and check it out.

The Great Wall Experiment Part 1

Next up on Crafting List is to mess around with some ideas on wall sections. I really don’t expect or need to make a bunch of these but I am using them to do a few experiments on a couple techniques. So this is Part 1 and my delve into messing with some XPS foam.

The prep is pretty standard for doing any foam terrain. Yes, these make look a little shorter than most. That’s on purpose. My old “walls’ were 3/4 inch tall rather than 1 inch. This made them tall enough to “feel” like walls but not too tall to block line of sight to most miniatures.

My first obstacle is that the foam is so light. Many folks use nuts, washers, coins or even screws to counterbalance. But I’ve got shorter walls and wanted as much mass as possible at the bottom of the wall. So I grabbed some brad nails.

The idea is that I want to distribute as much mass as possible at the bottom of the wall to prevent them from tipping over. A simple horizontal slit on the underside and I pushed in two nails on the bottom of each wall section. When I did this I put the head of each nail opposite the other one.

Of course just to be sure, I wanted to add some small bases. For this, I opted for the good old Popsicle sticks or craft sticks cut to size. You could hot glue this. Personally, I hate hot glue guns but this is based on my own inability to use them with getting a tangle strands and making a mess. So I lifted an idea from Professor Dungeon Master from the Dungeon Craft Youtube channel. DAP Kwik Seal. It’s cheap. Water clean up. Paintable. And dries like a glue. It’s what I used for my Dungeon Stackers so it seems to work.

Then the simple part. Just slap on some paint. I know that this isn’t the best paint job. It was more about coming up with a proof of concept.

My final thoughts. It works well. The craft stick bases might be a bit of overkill but these little walls are pretty stable.

Roll Dice. Kill Monsters. Take Their Stuff. And Have Fun!

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