Tag Archives: Lamentations of the Flame Princess

Lamentations of the Flame Princess, duh.

I rewatched the awful Solomon Kane movie over the weekend. Sure I may be a wee bit prejudice against since I had read Howard’s original stories. So it’s not that good of a movie. But the opening sequence is pretty cool. So at least that’s worth a few minutes of your time.

This got me thinking. Wow. Wouldn’t a Black Powder & Black Magic game be fun? Like a total idiot I spent about 45 minutes googling what was out there and it was right there on my shelf. Buff coats and all.

LOTFP has got weird magic, gritty rules, and some decent black powder rules (but they could a little clean up and made a little easier). Throw in a few those 2nd Edition play test rules and there you go. Sure the LOTFP adventures took a turn to the total negadungeon, whack weird stuff. The core game is basically on this theme.

But wait there’s more. Or should I say that I can’t leave well enough alone. Running with the Black Powder & Black Magic theme pretty much means that the good old Elves, Dwarves, and Halflings are out. But what to throw in their place?? Hmm. I think it’s time to make note of what I said in the About the Blog, “I ain’t no scholar.” So which leads us to what Fifth Edition calls Tieflings and Aasimar but let’s look a little more closely at these.

Tieflings well they’ve got demonic ancestry and Aasimar basically have angelic ancestry. While D&D has the Cambion as a half-fiend, if I do a little research online then I come up with Cambion as the offspring of an incubus, succubus, or other demon and a human. And if we do the same basic thing with Nephilim which (depending on which source you are looking at) is the product of the union of human and a fallen angel. So yeah one of your parents did the horizontal shuffle with a demon or an angel.

So what we do with these in a gritty LOTFP game? Easy make them racial classes. Even easier, it’s already done. Magic-User becomes the racial class for Cambions and Cleric becomes the racial class for Nephilim. That does leave Fighter and Specialist as “human” only classes but that doesn’t mean that a human character can’t be a priest or a student of the arcane. It’s just that their power is no where near that of those whose blood is tainted and a tad bit of house ruling.

And to keep things grim dark, well, because these characters actually have cool magic powers, there’s a good chance that they might end up getting burned at the stake or splayed out on some scholar’s table for vivisection.

There you go. As Elvira says, “Unpleasant dreams…”

What’s Next? Part 1

Yes, it’s time again for me to start thinking about what to run next. I know that my little gaming group is only a few sessions into the 5E game but I always start planning months out. And there’s a lot reasons I’m doing it on this one.

It’s all about really coming to grips about what I really like. I’ve always leaned more towards Sword & Sorcery and coloring outside of the lines just a bit but never going full Edgelord. Never go full Edgelord. I really love house ruling, kit bashing, and just tweaking rules. And lastly. 5E is just really loosing its luster for me. Sure, when it first came out. I liked it. And I still think it’s a good game system for a vanilla modern D&D setting. But I just think it won’t work that well with kind of game this going to turn into.

I went a long time without going “Oh wow! That’s cool.” But a few publishers really sparked my imagination. Planet X Games with the Phylactery Zines and Magic & Shit; the wild and crazy adventures by Dark Wizard Games; the Black Label adventures by Art of the Genre; and finally the recent Kickstarter for Hypreborea. To put it simple, these folks are talking my language. A little pulpy, grind house, B-Move Inspired weird fantasy material with a dark sense of humor without going full on Edgelord. So I have to fully admit that this sort of thing is right in my wheelhouse.

My first step is come up with what game I want to use the foundation/chassis to build this campaign around then start adding bits and pieces to make the characters fit the setting/genre.

I know I’ve ranted a lot about Barbaric! And it has a lot going for it. It’s an easy system for new players to pick up. Character generation is very quick and easy. And it’s cheap. (I won’t need to be asking players to shell out a bunch of money). There a couple of things going against it. Most of my players are only familiar with d20 based games (especially 5e) and I have so much material that based on old school d20 games on hand. I suppose I could convert the adventures and stuff. But it add another layer to any GM prep time and, well, I’m lazy. And I’m not sure how well it would work for a long term campaign.

I’m also looking at White Box. So it fulfills the cheap for the players and d20 based. The rules are very simple and I’ve done plenty of hacks on them. The only minor thing is converting monster damage and spells from later editions like BX or even AD&D. It wouldn’t be that hard. So that’s a definite possibility.

Swords & Wizardry has been my go to old school game for a long time. Some of the group even played in Blight Campaign. Easy to house rule and convert on the fly. The monster stat blocks are really easy to use and there are ton of monsters available. So yeah there’s that one.

Old School Essentials/Labyrinth Lord OK, these two are basically the same game. I did run a Labyrinth Lord game for the group and they liked it. I do have to say that OSE is the old-school darling of the day and is laid out and organized much better. Lamentations of the Flame Princess also basically has many of the same rules and some interesting spells.

Hyperborea has taken a lot my attention of late and the setting itself is very close to whole vibe I’m going for. While there are some extras from AD&D era, I don’t think it’s anything really overwhelming.

These games for me start with the best frame works to start working from. Sure I do love me some Dungeon Crawl Classics and Castles & Crusades does have a special place in my heart. But so much of what I’m planning is a total Franken-Game. Grabbing the best bits from various games or just being inspired by them. So yeah there will bits and ideas from all of the above but right now I’m trying to think which one I’m going to hack apart and put back together with the extra ideas and inspiration. What’s strange is that I’ve already got 40 pages of notes that I’ve copied and pasted from old house rules, random ideas, and various inspirational material. So needless to say, the final setup will have a bit of a different vibe going for it.

So I guess this really long post is a gigantic teaser about what’s coming up here on the blog and maybe on my Patreon.


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Happy Anniversary: LOTFP Ref Book

Well, it’s been a year since the last update on Indiegogo as of this writing. What can I really say? According to that they’ve got the complete draft and no follow up after that on Indiegogo. There was a little update in December on the LOTFP Page: “But now it’s time to advance again. Looks like the next releases won’t be to the printer until March or so (five months later than I’d hoped… sigh) and then the release cycle after that… seriously… the Ref book. So I need to conserve resources for all that, but there is much to do between now and then.” So maybe some months after March? I dunno.

I want to laugh but Raggi’s been sitting on the other people’s money (including some from me) for a long time. The last video on Youtube was basically, we’ve got a plan and we’re coming back! I can only take this as, we’re trying to keep the lights on (after last year’s financial troubles). But then everybody has had some pretty tough times last year.

Plenty has been written about the missteps and faux pas that have occurred over the past years so I’m not going to reiterate all that crap here. But I will say this, if the goal is to rebuild the brand then a good place to start is fulfilling those past commitments or at least be more transparent about what is going on.

Hacking Mork Borg

I’ve been re-reading Mork Borg because you just really can’t get this game with one reading since it’s got all that crazy layout. I can’t help to get the vibe of much of the early Lamentations of the Flame Princess stuff. Maybe because in my free time, I’m also reading Womb Cult and Black Blade of the Demon King. Of course, my next thought was why not hack this thing. I’m going to look at this two ways.

The first thought was grabbing the underlying game mechanics which aren’t bad and use those without any of the setting material as an old-school style game. Keep the basic classes and their HD. Weapons would be no problem to convert. Armor just compare to the Mork Borg armors with standard armors. Do a little mod on the spells. And pretty much there you go. Yes, converting monsters would be the biggest pain. So while a fun project probably something better left to someone with lots of time on their hands.

The second thought and the more interesting one is take all the setting material and take it over to your rules of choice. I mean that’s easy. Most of the setting material is in the form of random tables. Random tables for starting money and equipment. That’s a time saver. The crazy optional tables for Terrible Traits, Broken Bodies, Bad Habits, and Troubling Tales add that weird twist to characters. Maybe play around with the magic spells and tables. The optional Mork Borg classes kind of have direct correlations to your basic classes. So give those a little hack.

This is just some crazy thought that popped up in my head. Maybe I’ll play around with more or maybe I’ll do something else with it. I dunno. Only time and warped imagination can tell.

OSR Retrospective Part 3: Lamentations of the Flame Princess


Ok, I was going to post this one much later but word has gone out that Lamentations is having some financial troubles. They may be on their way to making their goal to stay afloat but we’ll see for how long.
There’s a lot that can be said about Lamentations of the Flame Princess. Way more than I’m going to rant about here. But there are still some good points and bad points that I’m going to mention. For the TLDR version: A solid core game that’s been outweighed by its own controversies and shock just for shock value.
First off, the game itself is solid. Basically, your standard classes and races with a few tweaks here and there like the Fighter is the only class whose Attack Bonus improves and the Specialist (Thief replacement) is the only one who gets better at skills. And speaking of skills it uses a simple x in d6 system. There’s even a pretty easy encumbrance system. Plus some new spells and variations of ideas on existing spells. So that’s the good part. The core game is fully usable and takes a few of the tropes into new and interesting directions.
A lot of people are put off by the graphic art. I mean really graphic. I’m not but I can understand the “Ew!” reaction that many folks have. But there are some free art-free PDF’s legally available over on Drivethru here and here.
I thought some of the early adventures; A Single Small Cut, Scenic Dunnsmouth, and Weird New World; were pretty good. But as time wore on the adventures became more and more one-way death traps or shock just for shock value. You know sort of like Spinal Tap, “The shock goes to 11.”
Now, you can’t think about Lamentations of the Flame Princess without bringing up controversy. In hindsight, it seems that controversy and shock value were the marketing plan. There’s always been some sort drama surrounding the game. It was the art. It was personalities. Or something. Back in the days of G+, it seems like there was one every month or so. IMHO, all the drama and the “Shock Factor 11” adventures just wore out a lot of the fan base. I know it did me. So I pretty much stopped paying attention to it.
And there’s one more 800 pound gorilla out there. The now infamous Ref Book Indiegogo Campaign. Yes, I backed it. That was like 7 years ago. The last update on the campaign was in February and with the recent financial problems, it might be another 7 years if at all. Of course, a lot of folks are a bit pissed considering all the other stuff that’s been published. Crap, he had the money to make promotional buckets. Yes, buckets… You might be able still get one. No Ref Book but you can have bucket.