Tag Archives: Swords & Wizardry

Xoth, Not Forgotten

It’s been way too long since I wrote anything about Xoth and it’s coming back to my mind with a vengeance. In case you’ve been keeping up, I’m trying to get the old gaming group back together.

I’ll admit that I have nothing against the Standard D&D type game and I can even tolerate the Cantina Scene type parties. But then there’s times when I want to go all Swords & Sorcery. For me, that means Conan and Robert E Howard. So it’s back to Xoth as one of my pitches.

I had picked some of the stuff way back when during the days of Pathfinder 1St Edition. Sure I played Pathfinder but I never would want to run it. But I liked the writing and changes so much that it always stayed in the back of mind.

This gets me to where we are today. I was searching the Internets and lo, there’s a 5E Player’s Guide for Xoth. Now this could be interesting and it is. This takes the 5E rules and makes them perfectly friendly to a grimmer more down to earth type of campaign.

Let me break the basics down for you. First, Races & Classes. It’s all human but there’s still various “cultures” that replace the mechanics of Race. There’s the Savage, Civilized, Enlightened, Decadent, and Degenerate. Each gets a stat boost and some neat skill-boosts/tricks. But each as a disadvantage. And their pretty big disadvantages. Like the Savage. +2 Strength, +1 AC, Advantage on Perception Checks. Cool right? Oh wait. You also take disadvantage on attack rolls against aberrations, undead, and fiends. It’s a cool tweak.

Then there’s classes. Of course, all of the classes aren’t allowed because they just don’t fit the setting. So, there’s no Bards, Clerics, Paladins, Wizards, and Sorcerers. The remaining have some tweaks. No archetypes that have any magical or “super” abilities. No Eldritch Knights or Arcane Tricksters. Rangers don’t have spells but they get some other tricks. And the Druid and Warlock have some additional tweaks to them. And there’s three new classes: Conqueror (sort of the Paladin replacement), Cultist (as close as you’re going to get to a cleric), and Courtesan (Bard/Social class).

And of course there some rules tweaks on spells, magic items, healing and combat. All of it giving the campaign that Howard type feel. Oh and the best part the Players Guide to Xoth is free. Available on Xoth.net and DrivethruRPG. Note: On DrivethruRPG, you’ll have to login since it’s behind the adult filter because there be boobies.

If you want a more detailed review you can check this one out.

So back to what I might do with this. Of course, I could just use it with 5E. It’s the RPG that most of the players are familiar with. But then I’m a crazy OSR guy. So I can pull up Swords & Wizardry, Crypts & Things, or even my own Forgotten Tales of Sword & Sorcery and run with that. Sure I’ll do some tweaking and house rules and all of those rules are kissing cousins. But since I’ve got a bunch of Pathfinder and now 5E stuff, it’s really easy to convert that material into an old school game. But then Barbaric! is another of my newly found favorites. Sure it’s easy on the rules crunch and character generation but conversion will take some doing.

What’s actually going to happen? I dunno. But I’ll keep posting about it here and we’ll see what happens.

Temple of Dagon & Death Ship of the Roach Princess

In case you don’t follow the blog regularly, I am a big fan of Swords & Wizardry. It’s my go to game for old school play. Also, Frog God Games via Necromancer Games have been doing quick crowd funding projects for adventures on Indiegogo. Well, I backed these two and got the PDF’s fast enough that putting my random thoughts on these into one post. As usual, I’ll try to do this without spoilers.

Temple of Dagon. I mean just look at the title. I had to get this one. The plot on this one is pretty straight forward. Ancient lost temple. Grab some artifacts and loot. Fight evil. So nothing to surprising there. Also, large parts of the adventure occur underwater. I’ve never been a fan of underwater adventures and I knew this going in. It always seems that the party needs to grab a bunch of specialty magic items to complete the adventure. But that’s just opinion. YMMV.

The good thing is it’s pretty easy to move some of the dungeon environs to not completely underwater. I really do like the adventure. There’s some real inspirational and useful material in there. Namely, I can see it as the groundwork for making the Cult of Dagon a regular villain group. It would still take some fleshing out by the DM but that’s part of the job.

Of course, there’s some new monsters and magic items. Overall, it’s a good adventure. It’s available for Swords & Wizard, Pathfinder 1E, and 5E. You can grab it up on DrivethruRPG or Frog God Games.

The second adventure to hit my inbox is Death Ship of The Roach Princess. This one was written by Matt Finch and when heard that players at conventions were getting the creeps when he ran it then I just had to get this one too.

This is one is pretty hard to describe without at least giving a little bit away. But the title gives you the biggies of the adventure. The Death Ship and the Roach Princess (Teratashia).

Let’s talk a little about Teratashia first. She’s the demon lord of roaches and she’s into all the nooks and crannies. Even those between dimensions and plans. And then there’s the Death Ship. Well. Death Ship pretty much says it all. Oh and it’s cursed.

The adventure starts off easy. It shouldn’t be any problems. The characters from some reason have to go an investigate a mysterious ship in the harbor. Things quickly go sideways. Remember, cursed death ship? Well, the real adventure isn’t kick in the door, kill the monster, and take the treasure. It’s get off the the cursed ship. It’s going to take some brain power on the part of the players to get off the ship. It’s no easy task and there are plenty of places where they could easily end up as just another cursed soul. Sure there’s treasure if they plan well.

Death Ship is really much creepier and challenging adventure. And if you don’t like cockroaches then you are going to squirm like crazy. This a creepy and really challenging adventure.

Of course, you can grab this up on DrivethruRPG or Frog God Games’ site as well.

With these adventures and the recently funded Blood Lagoon, I can’t help but think that these would be a perfect fit for a Razor Coast campaign.

Swords & Wizardry Boxed Set

I know I haven’t blogged about Swords & Wizardry in a long time. So in case you’ve missed my other rants, this is my go-to game for old school play. It just hits all the right marks for me. Clear rules and really easy to tweak and house rule. And converting stuff into it is a breeze.

So the boxed set isn’t anything new nor is it a new edition. It’s the Swords & Wizardry Complete rules broken down into smaller digest-sized books ala BX Essentials/Old School Essentials. It’s handy at the table and on the go.

And I grabbed up that Accessory Pack Add On. That’s Moar Monsters!, an adventure, and the above pictured GM Screen. Now I haven’t used GM screens in a long time. Most just get in the way. But this one is low enough to not get in the way and still tall enough to hide my notes. It’s just got the attack charts but I’ve never seen a GM screen for any game that had the charts that I wanted.

Now if you missed out on the Kickstarter, you might be out of luck. I think they may have a limited number of extra boxed sets available after fulfillment is completed. So you’re going to have to keep on eye Frog God Games for that.

Forgotten Tales of Sword & Sorcery: The Home Stretch

Wow. What a trip this has been. I’m hitting the home stretch on Forgotten Tales. That means that the final editing and lay out has begun. I’ve no idea how long this will take but I will say it’s down hill from here on out.

The rules are basically done. And may say a lot has changed since I started this. A few things that started off as optional rules worked their way into the core rules. Thank god for feedback. Since there have been a few changes I decided to redo the example characters from scratch. Yes, the came out a little different but that’s cool. And I did them as 1st level characters so they’d be handy for pregens or full blown NPC’s.

NPC Portraits created with ePic Character Generator.

And here’s some late breaking inspiration that just showed up on Youtube in case you haven’t seen it yet.

The best news is that while I’m nearly done with this, I’ve already got a couple of ideas for the future but we’ll gave to see where those lead. Stay tuned.