Friday, January 16, 2015

Want More Women In Gaming? Make Better Shit.

"No school due to ice today. My six year old daughter spotted Red and Pleasant Land on the table and was drawn in by the blonde girl in a pretty dress and also the possibility that that might be blood dripping down in the background. 

I don't usually share my gaming books with her because of all the murder and horror. But I spent a short while this morning telling her all about R&PL. She loves vampires and Alice in Wonderland, she was very happy to see all the girls in interesting dresses through out,

...although equally interested in the green pigs....

....I realized just how perfect this book is for her. the contents are what she is all about. It all makes sense to her, crazy gravity, inside out rooms, lakes of blood on the ceiling. Best of all it inspires her. Which is what a good DIY D&D book should do. So we spent awhile this morning drawing vampires. 

Her vampires are a mother and two daughters, although the one with the ears is secretly a gremlin. They had to move out of the small castle (which is far away) and move into the large castle (which is close up) because "That place got all jacked up by gremlins". The squiggly lines are roads and or roller coasters that move people around and it doesn't matter if the vampires fall off the roller coasters because they can fly.

I'm going to tell her about the Vampire Brides who can change into kittens when she gets home."
See, ladies love quality.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

The Demon Prison of MadLibMount

So on Monday I wrote about how--since Dwimmermount is released on an Open Game License--you can make your own dungeon by MadLibbing it using content from your own campaign.

I used level 1 as a proof-of-concept. Today, instead of plodding ahead to level 2, I skipped ahead to level 8 which is the second to lowest level--because the actual lowest level has a lot of empty space to be filled in by the GM. 'Cause I figured variety is cool, y'know?

Directions for how to use the Search-and-Replace function on your word processor to instantly make a MadLib dungeon are here. Ready? Go:

(Device big enough to climb into)
Click to enlarge

MadLibMount Level 8

Wandering Monsters for this Level

1 (WeirdConstruct)
2 d2 (StrangeKindOfWizard)
3 (SeriouslyScaryGreaterDemon)
4 (DifferentKindOfBadassDemon)
5 (MostEpicKindOfMajorDemon)
6 (GrossConstruct)
7 d8 (ScaryMindlessUndead)
8 (SummonedFireCreature) 
9 d4 (DecayingUndead) 
10 4+d4 (RelictArchitectFaction) cultists
11 (GoopyMonster)
12 (CrazyDangerousAnimalIntelligenceCarnivorousMonster)

1. Fuck all.

2. (AutomatedConstruct) attacks anyone without (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity)

3. (MessageDeliveringDevice) says to place (ValuableItemOrBodyPart) into a niche.
-If someone performs the action and makes a save vs device, a (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity) appears
-If they fail a (StigmatisingMark) is placed on the (ValuableItemOrBodyPart) and also d4 (AutomatedConstruct)s come from Rms 8 and 9 and attack.
_If--after 2 minutes--no-one places their (ValuableItemOrBodyPart) into the niche, d4 (AutomatedConstruct)s come from Rms 8 and 9 and attack.

4. If the (MeansOfAccessingThisArea) has been available for more than a day: 8 guards from (RelictArchitectFaction)
If it has not, the rooms contains (Demon'sName) a (KindOfBadassMajorDemon).

5.(EsotericName) a (StrangeKindOfWizard) is here and, if (Demon'sName) isn't in Rm 4, (Demon'sName) is here, too.
(EsotericName) is trying to deactivate the (MethodOfPreventingEntryToARoom) that cuts off access to Rm 41from this room and Rm 27 and will try to cajole the party into helping. (EsotericName) has (ThreeBadassMagicItems) and two (MinorMagicItems). If (EsotericName) must flee, it will be to Rm 7 or, if that fails, to Rm 6.

6.  Preserved but violently mutilated (CommonIntelligentLifeform) corpses--failed (ScaryMindlessUndead) from
Rm 24. If you ingest the substance coating them you have to save or become (ScaryMindlessUndead).

7. (DifferentKindOfBadassDemon) placed here as a guard by (EsotericName). Will attack any mortal on site and do little to protect (EsotericName) if they appear here.

8. and 9. Each contains 4 (AutomatedConstruct)s that attack anyone with (StigmatisingMark).

10. Locked--can be opened with (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity). Contains bones of the dead.

11. Storage. Contains (ACoolMagicItem) however it's cursed so if it is used by any but (IntelligentHumanoidSpecies) it will have a 50% chance of backfiring and hurting the user.

12. Damaged (Artwork) representing actions characteristic of (Alignment) any cleric of (Alignment) praying here for 10 minutes will have their spells refreshed.

13a-13b Cell off of 13a can only be opened with (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity). Otherwise touching them results in 8d6 (SomeKindOfEnergy) damage--save for half. Inside there is (AwesomeMagicWeapon) belonging to the (KindOfWarrior) in Rm 49.

14 Area at 14a controls cell at 14b. If two (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity)s are used here, a (MessageDeliveringDevice) will ask if 14b should be unlocked. Answering 'yes' will release a (CrazyDangerousAnimalIntelligenceCarnivorousMonster) from suspended animation in 14b which will try to eat whatever it finds. Closing 14b also requires two (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity)s--whatever is locked inside will be placed in suspended animation.

15. Two (AutomatedConstruct)s attack anyone without (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity).

16. Door to this room is visible and usable by creatures of (Alignment), invisible and impassable to those of (OtherAlignment), and visible but impassable to those of (ThirdAlignment). Contains fallen hero with 3270 gp and (ThreeGoodMagicItems).

17. Shrine to (LawDeity) and (WiseDeity), their statue (BodyPart)s are here. 30% chance of containing d8 (ScaryMindlessUndead).

18. A (KindOfFurniture)--using it prevents the user from (PerformingOrdinaryButNonSurvivalEssentialActivity) for 3o mins.

19. Contains 600gp, (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity) and (DeviceThatProtectsYouAndServesAsABadgeOfOffice). If (MeansOfAccessingThisArea) has been available for more than a day there are three members of (RelictArchitectFaction), one of whom is a wizard.

20. Four (AutomatedConstruct)s attack anyone with (StigmatisingMark). Any (AutomatedConstruct)s summoned by alarms trig- gered on the southern half of the level will be drawn from this room and/or from Rm 28.

21. Mostly empty. Clear liquid marked "In case of emergency" in (RelictArchitectFaction) language. Contains (KindOfIngestivePoison).

22. (AmbientDisturbingEffect) save or be disoriented. 4 (ScaryMindlessUndead).

23. Door to RM 24 is locked from the inside. Sign reads, in (RelictArchitectFaction) language "In case of emergency, activate (ArchitecturalFeature) . Out in the hall, there are 4 nooks, instructing the reader to perform the same action as in Rm 3.
1: If the user is a cleric of (LawDeity) or (WiseDeity), the northwest (ArchitecturalFeature) reveals a (SweetMagicWeaponForClerics). Otherwise, the (MessageDeliveringDevice) says “Intruders! Intruders!” to summon 1d4  (AutomatedConstruct)s (Room 28) to slay them.
2: If the user is (alignment), the southwest  (ArchitecturalFeature) reveals a (SweetMagicWeapon). Otherwise as 1
3: If the user is a cleric of (LawDeity) or (WiseDeity), the northeast (ArchitecturalFeature) reveals a (MagicItemForClerics) otherwise as 1
4: If the user is (alignment), the southeast (ArchitecturalFeature) reveals a (VeryCoolMagicWeapon). Otherwise as 1.

Make  wandering monster check each time a(n) (ArchitecturalFeature) is activated. It's loud. 

24. Any failed attempt to unlock or force open the doors alerts the room’s occupants. Prison containing (DemonPrince)--who is fucked up from being imprisoned. There are six (RelictArchitectFaction) hooked up to the prison being transformed into (ScaryMindlessUndead) in d6 rounds unless cure disease or neutralize poison is used.
(StrangeKindOfWizard) inside holds the keys to the doors and oversees this process, protected by 4 (ScaryMindlessUndead). The (StrangeKindOfWizard) has (TwoNeatMagicItemsOneOffensiveOneDefensive).

(StrangeKindOfWizard) will flee to Rm 26 if things go poorly and will immediately flee if (DemonPrince)'s prison is shattered. It will shatter if successfully struck (v. AC 0/20) with a deliberate attack from an enchanted weapon that deals at least 5 points of damage, or if the tube sustains 25 or more points of damage from being in the area of effect of spells.

If the holding tube is shattered, (DemonPrince) will begin to return to its former state, gaining 10 hit points per round until it reaches 100 and has full powers and intelligence, fucking everyone up.

25. 13625 gp worth of treasure.

26. 6 (ScaryMindlessUndead). Complicated barrier to next level down having to do with what happens in Rm 40 level 6B.

27. Area controls (AutomatedConstruct)s. Anyone with (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity) and (ItemFunctioningLikeAKey) can change the (AutomatedConstruct)s with a successful Int check at -4.   Each successful check allows a user to command them to attack a specific type of target or stop targeting a specific type of target as the user wishes—but not both. 
A (StrangeKindOfWizard) is here along with 2 (AutomatedConstruct)s. If the (MeansOfAccessingThisArea) has been available for more than a day there will be 4 (RelictArchitectFaction) guards, if it has not, the rooms contains the (MostEpicKindOfMajorDemon) from Rm 34.

28. Four (AutomatedConstruct)s attack anyone with (StigmatisingMark). Any (AutomatedConstruct)s summoned by alarms trig- gered on the southern half of the level will be drawn from this room and/or from Rm 20.

29. The hatch to this room is locked and barred from the outside. If a character presses themself (or is pressed) into one of the niches, they must immediately make a saving throw or become (alignment). The alignment shift is a zealous one, meaning that anyone who uses a pillar will no longer associate or cooperate with anyone of a very different alignment. The effect can be reversed through the use of remove curse or similar spells.

30. The hatch to this room is locked. Inside one of desk drawers is a(n) (EmblemOfRankInChurchOfLocalDeity). Books worth 5000gp.

31. Pieces to make (PrettyGoodArmor) and two (PrettyGoodMissileWeapons).

32. Angry (GreaterDemonOfSomeSort). Scent of burnt wood coming from Rm 33.

33. Brazier burning incense which causes (NegativeEffect) if a (SpellcastingClass) tries to regain spells within. 4 more blocks of incense.

34.  (MostEpicKindOfMajorDemon) 

35. Remains of dead creature wearing (CursedItem)

36. Scorch marks leading toward Rm 37.

37. (SummonedFireCreature) bound to remain within 100 feet of (HeavyButMundaneObjectHere) unless that object is destroyed.

38. Fuck all.

39. Mural of individuals suffering (MagicalPunishment) anyone observing the windowlike structure on the far wall must save or suffer that punishment.

40. Wreckage-fixable using tools from next level down.. (ItemFunctioningLikeAKey).

41. Barrier to entry has 3 states:
A-Impassable. It starts this way.
B-Anyone may enter, but only (Alignment) characters may leave. Achievable using mechanisms in Level 6b, Rm 40.
C-Passable to all. The bad guys on this level are trying to do this.

41a. Roll:
1-6 (LocalDeity) in (ArtificialBattleConstruct)
7-24 (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (FemaleName)
25-42 (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (MaleName)
43-60 (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (NameOfIndeterminateGender)
61-00 Empty

42.  (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (FemaleName) 25% here if not encountered in 41a, 33% Rm 45, 32% Rm 49, would die before allowing harm to come to (LocalDeity).

43. (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (MaleName) 25% here if not encountered in 41a, 75% Rm 45. Despairs of ever escaping open to possibility of mutiny against (LocalDeity).

44. (StrangeKindOfWizard) with (NameOfIndeterminateGender) 25% here if not encountered in 41a, 75% Rm 45.  Would sacrifice (LocalDeity) if it meant they could escape this prison.

45. (LocalDeity) if not encountered in 41a, 30% of being here, otherwise Rm 51. If here, (LocalDeity) will not be alone.  Whenever outside this cell, (LocalDeity) wears a (ArtificialBattleConstruct). Within his quarters, however, it is just a head.

46. Door to here is locked, (LocalDeity) has key. Bones of martyr. If an (alignment) worshipper of (LawDeity) carries a bone fragment it grants a (KindOfBoon) vs opponents of distant alignment.

47. Fuck all.

48. Circle on floor--any being not native to this plane who passes over its edge will become imprisoned and powerless until the circle is broken by someone not bound by it.

49. Locked; the key is kept by (FemaleName). An heroic (KindOfWarrior) is kept here and periodically tortured with (ExoticTortureDevice). If freed, the (KindOfWarrior) will ask for a weapon and help the party.

50. Stasis-(Device big enough to climb into).

51. Locked (the key is kept at all times by (LocalDeity). Circle on floor--any being not native to this plane who passes over its edge will become imprisoned and powerless until the circle is broken by someone not bound by it. Inside the circle is (AngelicCreature) trapped and opposed to (LocalDeity) who'll help anyone who isn't (ThirdAlignment).

Monday, January 12, 2015

MadLibMount--You Now Own A Megadungeon

"By an agreement negotiated between James and Autarch, we are proud to release the entirety of Dwimmermount as open game content under the terms of the OGL, a great contribution to the OSR effort that was suggested by cartographer Robert S. Conley."
-Dwimmermount, p. 17

Once upon a time there was a blog called Grognardia. Everybody in the Old School D&D Renaissance read it. (Some of them complained about it and read it, but whatever--it was free.)

Grognardia was really important--it was the go-to place for reviews of cool new DIY D&D products and retrospectives on old ones, introduced tons of people to great D&Dish authors like Jack Vance, and was occasionally wonderfully insightful.

So when Grognardia author James Maliszewski announced he would be crowdfunding the publication of his homemade megadungeon (did he coin that term?) Dwimmermount a gajillion people were eager to hand over tens of thousands of dollars.

To make a long (and much argued about) story short, although most of the levels were sketched out, James had a personal crises midway thru and stopped blogging and Dwimmermount got all messed up and the guys at his publisher had to finish up the project.

Anyway, it is out. And it is big and it is a dungeon and, as it says above, cartographer Rob Conley made sure there was one very special thing about it: it is the only colossal dungeon released on the Open Game License.

What this means in practical terms is anybody can make their own version of Dwimmermount.  The blog that brought so much of the Old School D&D scene together has, after a lot of bad blood, spawned a dungeon which we can all share. Dwimmermount is all ours now.

Which is fucking awesome because it allows us to take it and do stuff like this...


MadLibMount is a project which transforms the huge ruined pile that is Dwimmermount into a search-and-replace dungeon. Basically allowing you to re-skin the dungeon to fit your own campaign in just a few minutes.


Step 1
Cut the entire text below the map and paste it into a word processor--without reading it first!

Step 2
Use the Find-Replace function on your word processor to replace each of the descriptive terms below in parenthesis with one that fits your setting in the text throughout the entire document. So, like if you were running an Egyptian setting you could replace (MainVillain) with "MummyLich" or ~(InterestingSubstance) with "blood from the sun".

Step 3
Pick or make a map--the maps in Dwimmermount are open-game content but you can use the map I made (which is totally different but has the same number of rooms and the important connections are in the same areas), or you can draw your own 68-room map (with rooms anywhere). I have marked rooms which need to be connected in order for the dungeon to make sense in bold below

Step 4
Enlarge the map and read your new dungeon. Report any bugs here. Add in any stuff you like (the Uncommon Perplexities table in Red & Pleasant Land is good for making things weird fast). Note that since only level 1is shown here, obviously references to other levels lead off the map to stuff I haven't done yet.

Step 5
Pick an entrance and run it.

Step 6
Repeat and alter method as needed.

(wandering monster check)
(he rules those creatures)
(Or make up another effect)
Click to enlarge--you can use this map, it's part of the
Dwimmermount Open Game License

An alternate map--Click To Enlarge

MadLibMount Level 1 

Wandering Monsters

1. 4d4 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s
2. 2d4 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s
3. 3d6 (SacredConstruct)s
4. 3d6 (GiantVerminMonster)s
5. 2d4 (GiantVerminMonster2)s
6. d4 (AnimalIntMonster)s
7. (StealthyMonster)
8. d8  (HungryAnimalIntMonsters)s
9.  d6 (GoodHumanoidFaction)s
10. 4+d4 member NPC party
11. (OozyMonster)
12. Roll twice, with 2nd result coming to investigate d4 turns after 1st result


1. (KindOfSculpture) , (BodyParts)s are not original. Replacing (BodyParts) w/(BodyParts) in dungeon grants boon appropriate to deity.

2. Fuck all.

3. 6 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s, w/leader. Scouting area, from Level 2A.

4. Dusty. Save or sneeze/cough for d4 rounds. Wandering monster check for every sneeze.

5. 5 (SymbolsOfAuthority) on wall. One on floor. Save or die (-2) gas-trap behind ones on wall. (SymbolsOfAuthority) give a bonus to reaction roll from creatures traditionally subservient to (RelictArchitectFaction).

6. 2 (GoodHumanoidFaction)s turned to (InertSubstance). Weapons usable if bodies smashed. 3 dead allies of theirs in Rm 16, 1 survivor in Rm 68, 2 survivors in Level 2a, Rm 22

7. Door locked, pickable or key in Rm 25. 8500gp of treasure, treasure map worth 16000gp. 3 magic random items. (NastyGreedyUndead)

8. Chapel to (LocalDeity) 3 (SacredConstruct)s attack anyone not bearing symbols of (LocalDeity). Secret door to 9 behind altar.

9. Approx 700gp worth of treasure. Head of (LuckyDeity) usable in Rm 1. (HorriblyCursedMagicItem).

10. Fuck all.

11. (KindOfSculpture) (WarDeity), head is (LocalDeity)

12. 70gp scattered around.

13. Fuck all.

14. Murmurs in ancient language of (RelictArchitectFaction), bones of same. Burying bones outside dungeon results in (Blessing) of (WarDeity).

15. Stairs down to level 2B Rm 1.

Six (MundaneItems) in (ExoticMaterial) touching them releases memories of this place:

1st: Battle between (RelictArchitectFaction) and evil creatures controlled by (EvilOutsiderSpecies)
2nd: Fighting in the dungeon between (RelictArchitectFaction) and chaotic defenders
3rd: A visit from (RelictArchitectFaction) emperor.
4th: Wizards being interrogated by soldiers.
5th: Wizards commanding soldierd.
6th: Soldiers around an (OrdinaryMetal) head of (LocalDeity)

16. 3 (GoodHumanoidFaction)s turned to (InertSubstance). Weapons, mundane adventuring equipment. Wineskin is printing cylinder--if inked and rolled reveals map of this level, worth 880gp. All the  (GoodHumanoidFaction)s listed in Rm 6 know how this cylinder works.

17. 10 switches. 1-9 activate (MinorLocalConstructs) and seal door to room. 10th deactivates all switches.

18. Fuck all.

19. Library. Useful texts:
-Text on subject specialized in by (CharacterClass). Member of (CharacterClass) reading it gains 500gp.
-Map to birthplace of (LocalDeity) worth 500gp to a sage.
-Partial wizard scroll: 50% of (ProtectionSpell) 50% of erasing lowest level spell of user.
-A book about (TechnicalSubject)

20. Storeroom. Lair of 11 (WimpyHumanoidFaction), sent to patrol by (MinorDemonBoss). Approx 1gp treasure total.

21. 3 small machines. Messing with them triggers d4 rounds of noise (wandering monster check) and gust of scalding steam d10hp save for half.

22. Eastern 2/3rds of room is (ActivatableTrap). Defends room 23.

23. 10 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s possess means of activating trap in Rm 22. Approx 2gp treasure.

24. Many (InconspicuousRoomFeature)s one is hollow, containing 110gp.

25. 3 Murals of (RelictArchitectFaction). Carefully examining one reveals key to Rm 7.

26. Dead victims of (AnimalIntMonster).

27. 3 (AnimalIntMonster)s.

28. Concealed shaft on ceiling up to surface. Pool of (MagicLiquid). If drunk, save vs spell. Failure=no effect and can't be affected by pool for # of days proportional to degree of failure. Success=effect that lasts for # of days proportional to degree of success.
Effects (d10)
1-4 (PrettyBadCurse), (PrettyGoodBoon)
5-7 (Curse), (Boon)
8-10 (MinorBoon)
11-15 (ReverseOfCurse), (ReverseOfBoon)
15-20 (ReverseOfPrettyBadCurse), (ReverseOfPrettyGoodBoon)

29. 3 (AlarmMonster)s

30. Stairs up to surface. Fresh adventurers corpses--gear, weapons, lantern.

31. Freshly gnawed bones.

32. Ambush--10 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s. Less than 1gp total. They will retreat to RM 33 and then 34.

33. Storage used by (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s containing 5 barrels of (UsefulMundaneLiquid) and 2 barrels of (UsefulMundaneSubstance)

34. 27 statues of (GoodHumanoidFaction)s. An insane (GoodHumanoidFaction) named (NameOfADerangedMemberOfGoodHumanoidFaction) in Rm 40 has been animating them into  (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s . 8 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s w/ less than 2gp treasure.

35. Search reveals alcove in which is hidden reliquary containing (MinorHolyRelic).

36. Shrine to (LuckyDeity). 82gp in hands. Adding coins grants donor blessing of (LuckyDeity) for 24 hrs. Only may be received once. Take coins: rocks fall 2d6 damage, save for half. Resets. (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s avoids this room.

37. Spring of (ScaryMagicLiquid) . One gallon. If you travel down the tube to the source, there's a chart which I haven't got here yet.

38. 16 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s, zealously guarding area leading to 41 and (MinorDemonBoss) about 2gp between them. They have flaming oil.

39. Between Rms 38 and 41. 4  Negligible treasure. (AnimalIntMonster)s which attack anything that isn't a (WimpyHumanoidFaction).

40. (NameOfADerangedMemberOfGoodHumanoidFaction), a deranged  (GoodHumanoidFaction), protected by 6 (WimpyHumanoidFaction)s (he rules those creatures) and a pet (AnimalIntMonster). (NameOfADerangedMemberOfGoodHumanoidFaction) has 60gp and (MinorDefensiveMagicItem) (MinorOffensiveMagicItem).

41. (MinorDemonBoss)--will attempt to seduce PCs with promises of power. 110gp and (Shape)-shaped, runecarved item that operates the elevator in Rm 56. Can only be entered from Rm 39.

42. Fuck all.

43. Crates. One contains (MinorDefensiveMagicItem2)

44. Door toward stairs down to level 2 (Rm 45)  is locked and trapped. With (NonMagicTrap).

45. Stairs down to Level 2A Rm 1. (FungoidMonster).

46. 9 (GiantVerminMonster), 1050gp worth of treasure 2000 of which is in copper coins. Lawyer tears.

47. Mosaics depicting area outside dungeon. 6 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s  2375gp.

48. Fuck all.

49. Clean, untouched-looking room. Detects as magic.  Time does not pass here. (Or make up another effect).

50. Secret doors from Rms 52 & 48 lead here. Illusion of (IntimidatingMonster) fights as 4hd creature until hit (AC 9).

51. Can only be entered from  50. 450gp of treasure, (UsefulMagicItem).

52. Fuck all.

53. 7 (HungryAnimalIntMonsters)

54. Crack. 6 bubbles of (ScaryMagicLiquid) . Do d6 damage to anyone coming w/in 5 ft and failing a dex check. Each exploding bubbles has a 2 in 6 chance of setting off another bubble.

55. Access to rat-sized water pipes.

56. Contains an elevator. Symbol matches (Shape) from Rm 41. Leads to Level 4  Rm 13 and Level 0 Rm 1. Elevator doors can be opened with the(Shape) or by force. Only using the (Shape) and restoring power in Lvl 4 Rm 14 or Lvl 6b RM 40 allows you to operate the elevator but there's a 250 ft shaft full of slime you could climb thru.

57. 6 (GiantVerminMonster2)s

58. Access to rat-sized pipes.

59. Voices debating (TechnicalSubject) . Placing a book about it on table makes voices disappear and grants boon of (CleverDeity).

60. Fuck all.

61. (SpookyObject) carved with runes decipherable to those who learned the language in Lvl 5 Rm 19. Touching it causes (BalefulEffect) to a creature for d6 turns. Roll wandering monster check every turn PCs are here.

62. Fuck all.

63. 6 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s. 1000gp. Door here to Rm 65 is locked.

64. Metal face of (AnyCreatureWithAMouth) emits unintelligible sounds. Lubricating it will make it say, in the language of (RelictArchitectFaction) : “Ask a question, if you have one. I’ll answer truth- fully, but then you’re done.” It answers one question per day in the language of (RelictArchitectFaction) . Only knows that language, only knows out of date info about this dungeon.

65. (MinorUsefulMundaneItem)

66. Secret door to Rm 68.

67. 7 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s.

68. 4 (EvilHumanoidFaction)s performing (AHostileAct)ing on a (GoodHumanoidFaction)--an ally of the (GoodHumanoidFaction)s in Rm 6 and elsewhere on this level. The (GoodHumanoidFaction) will pay 500gp if rescued and brought back to his/her nearby home. Secret door to Rm 66.

The words “Autarch” and “Dwimmermount” are product identity in accordance with section 1(e) of the Open Game License version 1.0a and are trademarks of Autarch LLC and Dwimmermount is a trademark of James Maliszewski

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Smart Campaign with Intrigue And Relationships And Also Lava Babies

When last we left our heroines, they had just defeated a massive Decimator in front of the Pale King.
Impressed, the Pale King offered the group a round and kingly sum if they could hold off a force of Nephilidian vampires approaching that bridge up there until he had time to rally reinforcements.

The ladies agreed, contacted the approaching Nephilidians, told them that if they'd hold off their assault for one day and pay them off, the girls would sabotage the bridge for them so it'd crumble after the first thrust. One persuasion roll and...hey look at that.

(An interesting effect of converting from my 3e/1e hybrid to something more like 5e is people are better at stuff and worse at stuff than they used to be. Connie's thief is now very charming.)

Then everybody took a cigarette break and then fuck yeah our Red & Pleasant Lands came!

(That bridge on the table is one of those 10$ wooden model kits and comes in handy a lot. I like the look of that sailing ship, too.)

So anyway after a lot of flipping through the book being like "Oh fuck those guys, I hate them!" the PCs proceeded to get day-drunk and have a bridge-trashing party to make it look like there'd been a savage battle there.

Since the session up 'til then had been a lotta skulking and negotiation, almost everybody took the opportunity to carouse for bonus xp.  This resulted in Connie getting into a brawl with three Nephildians Alondra and Laney had offended during the ad hoc reception for Stokely's drunken wedding to a Nephilidian bishop.
Sorry folks--she's taken. Married off to Lady Orchid of Nexis, Priestess of Slime that was weird. Stokes told the wife to meet her in two days at the Heart Palace while the party tried to get as far away as possible from the angry in-laws and from whatever was going to be left of the probably-going-to-be-pretty pissed Pale army.

So 2 hours in and all we've had is weddings, double-crosses, and breaches of etiquette. And all because why? Giving experience points for gold and for getting drunk.

Anyway after buying three dogs they went dungeoning away until there was room 5' deep in some kind of lubricating oil.

Then there was a hatch.

Then a noise like GooOOOOooogoowooIhiHikittoooo! behind the door and then Laney was like That sounds cute I open it and then...
(painting from this series)
...4 lava babies actually, luckily I have a bunch of these...
When I show he picture Laney and Mandy both immediately go "Oooooh, weird babies!" and Stokely Alondra and Connie all go "Eww, weird babies." Which I'm gonna say is the mark of a quality monster--good job Fiend Folio.

Anyway so the thing about these lava children is they aren't very tough but as soon as you see them you have to save vs charm or...

That's 2d30 damage per hug right there. ProTip: if you're running a 5th edition D&D where the players are like level 13, invest in d30s.

Now lava children are creatures of the Red Hand of Tiamat (or, more precisely, the Red Hand are creatures of the Lava Children) and Laney is, through a difficult-to-describe-series-of-events and not wanting to be fat, a creature of the Jade Claw of Tiamat, so Laney actually manages to take half damage from this and is spirited away to safety.

Though nearby, just above the room full of (now boiling because lava) oil, newlywed Stokely is spider-climbing round the room's rim when she locks eyes with the incendiary infants gurgling through the goo and begins to creep down, fascinated.

Then we all stopped playing to go to a party and there was famous people and cake and a big Hollywood house and a rockstar gave me a hat and Mandy almost punched a rapper but didn't. Got home at 7.

 What Will Become Of Stokely? Will This Be The Shortest Wedding In Voivodjan History? Does Lady Orchid Like Her Brides Well Done? Will the GM look good in this hat? Find Out Next Time On Playing D&D With Porn Stars.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Mandy on the Anatomy of A Harassment Campaign

So Mandy wrote a thing about recent events--if you do tumblr and retumbl things, the original post is here. There's a handy diagram at the end if it's TooLong;Didn'tRead for you.

If you're all Oh Screw This Drama I Wanna Read About Elves. Here's some monsters and stuff, don't say I never gave you nothin'.

With that out of the way, here's Mandy...

I’m A Chainmail Bikini Feminist And I’m Fucking Sick Of Being Harassedby Mandy Morbid
(Got this response a few hours after the post went up)

So in the Dungeons & Dragons/tabletop gaming community right now there’s a lot of people and groups of people who talk about about harassment of women on-line. How it’s terrible, and what should be done to stop it and who’s doing it. 
Right now I am being harassed. And I’ve been harassed about being a gamer for years at this point. And the people in games who talk about how to stop harassment aren’t doing anything. This is because it’s much easier to talk about harassment from anonymous strangers than from people you know. A group of trolls is attacking me and my game group and they are connected to important members of the RPG community.
Here’s the most recent example, from a few days ago:
My boyfriend Zak called out someone for being sexist—largely because me and the other women in my gaming group agreed they were and told Zak so. 
(link here)
How silly of me, it’s been a few years I should have remembered that women who choose adult entertainment for their occupations have absolutely no agency or opinions apart from our work do we?
I am apparently paid to agree with my boyfriend because I have no mind of my own of course.
Sounds like this person got their information about day-to-day workings of the industry from a radical fundamentalist anti-porn website.
This kind of thing is no surprise when you see:
So, my boyfriend who has never hired me to do anything, “exploits” me how exactly? The main people making money off my porn movies right now are me and Kimberly Kane (director)—winner of a 2011 Feminist Porn Award—and a giant porn company called Vivid Entertainment. In fact Kimberly Kane hires Zak to perform in the films she directs, not the other way around.
Now I don’t know the people writing on this forum and have never talked to them. All I know about this person “moths” is they started harassing me on this forum in this same thread in August of 2010, along with lots of other people…
Then they got ahold of my Amazon wishlist, complaining that I wanted electrical cords and a tattoo kit…
Go that? I’m fat and a 5 and Connie is a “stay at home scratcher” because we wanted to tattoo my pre-existing conditions on Zak’s arm…
But this is run-of-the-mill on Something Awful—a forum where you run into things like the following all the time (trigger warning, racism, censored by me)
So, yeah, Something Awful is—unsurpringly—awful. But the internet is full of chan-style troll forums, right? Why care about this one?
Because as I keep reading through the thread referring to me, I see I know someone involved: “Rulebook Heavily” aka minor RPG-scene jerk Andri Erlingsson who shows up on the next page to join in the harassment. And then I notice someone a few pages earlier attacking Zak—“Kemper Boyd” aka Jussi Marttila. And I know someone who could’ve done something about it and chose not to—the forum moderator, another RPG scenester named Paul Ettin.
So now I can actually report harassment by real, identifiable people to a real person. Paul (and fellow Something Awful alum Winson Paine) take this harassment complaint oh so seriously…
These aren’t loose cannons taking advantage of a lax moderator to wreck Ettin’s forum—they’re his friends
What does Andri “Rulebook Heavily” have to say for himself? And why do we know he’s full of shit? 
So, straight up there’s Andri butting into a (friendly) conversation I’m having to harass me—then lying about it. And being backed up by troll friends from—you guessed it—Something Awful.
And what does the larger RPG community—which has been so up in arms about harassment of women—say about this?
Hi Tracy.
Because harassment isn’t real when it happens to porn actresses.
Let’s talk about this deadnaming accusation then. I have nothing to hide, trolls. Let’s dissect this shit, so I can move on to my real point about how all of this works, where this comes from and how it’s been allowed to go on so long. And how come the people who supposedly care so much about sexism in gaming have never ever stood up for me and my girls.
Also “claming they’re fake” Andri-Troll? Let’s see you post some evidence of that. 
I can however provide evidence about what happened and why these trolls are trying to use a real serious issue to bolster their pathetic personal grudges. 
Here is where the deadnaming supposedly took place—it’s was edited as soon as someone pointed out to me that the person using multiple online names was trans—I did not know this beforehand and there are quite a lot of different pseudonyms being used by this one individual. (Because chan-style trolls do that sort of thing.) 
It’s the part about Mikan aka Schmelz aka tablehop aka something else now. Who is Mikan? Surprise surprise—a troll from the same Something Awful subforum that’s attacked us on and off for 4 years. Mikan hates anything connected to tabletop gaming’s Old School Renaissance or “OSR”—that is, Mikan hates people, like me, who play old versions of Dungeons and Dragons and (like my boyfriend) have the temerity to blog about it.
These are the kinds of brilliant contributions to game theory you can read in the complete log of Mikan’s trolling here. (Note: some of that is Mikan, and some of it is stuff Mikan posted just to make fun of it.)
So, as you go through what’s below, remember: this is a troll who paid money to join a troll forum and hang out with people who call random porn stars fat, rate their appearances on a scale of 1-10 and allege they are drug-bound mannequins with no opinions of their own all because they play the wrong kind of Dungeons and Dragons.
Let’s be clear here: I do not know or have ever spoken to this person. All these various names were used and still IN use when I posted my blog. I made no assumptions about nor did I refer to gender in my post. The names were not private—Both the supposed “dead name” and the new name were in use online. This was changed just hours after it was pointed out that I had posted about the ongoing harassment I was getting. 
So what really happened?
Trolling—courtesy of Mikan’s friend and fellow forum member Tom Hatfield.
Zak has explained before:
(for the rest of that person’s testimony see this and this.)
Mikan apparently claimed (through an intermediary) that she’d contacted me before I wrote my blog post. But that makes no sense—we don’t talk and never have. And, as Kirin (author of Old School Hack and curator of Women Fighters In Reasonable Armor tumblr) and Gareth (of Adamant Entertainent) explain here…

So, yeah, this is the situation. We play D&D with transfolk, we support them in the community, we have never said or done any different. And, of course, what do I gain from outing someone? Nothing. I want to discredit her trolling (which the rest of Something Awful will pick up whether she is around or not), not her gender expression (which is local to her). What do Mikan and Mikan’s troll friends have to gain by clinging to a debunked lie? Sympathy and attention—because the only attention these “game designers” have ever gotten is from harassing us.
I’ve never hung on on troll forums and talked shit about people who play different editions of games than I do. I happen to be an adult performer who plays D&D, we also made a webshow about it. That’s it.
If I have a history of anything but defending myself when people attack me and my gaming group I want to see it.
The accusations about me and my gaming group have been thoroughly refuted at this point. We’re past that yet the harassment won’t stop. They just will not leave me or my group alone.
 And what do the alleged activists in the RPG scene do about this harassment?
That exchange there happened while I was hospitalized due to my stomach and intestines being paralyzed. Poor me.
Oh yeah, ignoring anti-porn misogyny sure helps you make gaming more inclusive doesn’t it?  These people, who often call themselves advocates of inclusion. have personal (and petty) problems with my gaming group which I’ll remind you is mostly comprised of LGBT women, women with disabilities, and women of colour. 
Connie, Satine Phoenix and Kimberly Kane—half-elf rogue, elf rogue, half-elf barbarian.
So why don’t gaming gadflies and big indie designers like Fred Hicks (at Evil Hat), GeekyLyndsay, David A Hill Jr (Machine Age Productions), Ryan Macklin (Paizo), Bruce Baugh (Onyx Path), Elizabeth Sampat, Wundergeek, Christopher Allen and Shannon Appelcline (who employ Something Awful members Ettin and Kai Tave at and Tracy Hurley care that these attacks and the people inflicting them originated in a troll forum?
Because long ago we irritated them by playing a different game than them and refusing to let them lecture us about how we’re wrong and because we wear chainmail bikinis on Halloween and aren’t ashamed. Because, for example, Wundergeek and David Hill have real problems with tentacle hentai—and I made a live action tentacle porn because I wanted to. So who cares if I get harassed? I’m the wrong kind of feminist.
And whenever I’ve tried to reach out to them, like when I was in the hospital and I asked a mutual acquaintance to help me address some of this built up hate with GeekyLyndsay, nothing comes of it. I reached out to an intermediary because I didn’t want to make her uncomfortable. They’ve done nothing.
So when Tom Hatfield (“wordmercenary" on the Something Awful and twitter) wrote his article full of totally disproved accusations about us, they just sent it along and spread it around, because for them it’s a small leap from “Had a different opinion about sexy art, or what kinds of games to play, or made us feel bad” to “is guilty of hate crimes”. They piled on it and shared it and now that everyone knows it was a lie straight out of this misogynistic troll factory of a message board, they still refuse to apologize or admit they did something wrong.
If, unlike them, you’re interested in where it all actually got started, you can watch the major memes of the witch-hunt form over the course of 40 pages in the Something Awful forum right here, in response to the news of Zak working on the 5th edition of D&D. Few if any of the forum members ask each other for evidence, of course, and they trust each other completely as they begin to spin sickening violent fantasies:
"Let’s find out where a disabled porn star lives and attack her caretaker.” 
Here you can watch more known personalities—see Paul Ettin’s fellow RPGnet moderator Kai Tave join in the harassment as well as Alex Norris aka “Lemon Kurdistan”—one of the first people to take the harassment to twitter in the day following the announcement. As the days go on in thread, you can see members also attack Dungeon World designer Sage LaTorra and D&D lead designer Mike Mearls for not believing them.
They searched for months to find anything anything over the line any of us ever said or did so they could send it to Wizards Of The Coast (the company that publishes D&D) or even to post on-line and couldn’t find anything incriminating. Just a lot of arguments about games and art that they were sore about not winning instantly—and a lot of random bad things that happened to them that they try to (and can’t) connect to us having vocally disagreed with them. Anon sent you a mean email? Must be those porn people. Your dog ran away? The porn people “incited” it to. As if no-one would ever have a problem with UK-porn law style kinkshaming like “harem anime is pathetic and disgusting. Fetish anime ditto. Hentai ditto.” or straight up idiocy like “OSR people smell their own farts” unless we told them to have a problem with it.
And, on top of that, we’ve repeatedly told anyone reading us not to harass anyone. Somebody “found” Zak asking his friends to help stop someone on Twitter naively spreading Tom Hatfield’s post (“tweet at him, send him links”)—that’s about the extent of our horrible conspiracy.
Meanwhile we’ve got mountains of evidence of trolling and sexist attacks against us going back years and they don’t care. Some of them still disingenuously pretend Tom’s article’s true (and refuse to discuss it or give any evidence):
…”extremely established journalist” who never sourced anything and couldn’t get the article published by any real news source. A Something Awful troll with friends and a blog, in other words.
Of course, most of this is phrased as attacks on Zak and “his” opinions. When you attack Zak’s positions as if he’s the only one who holds them, you intentionally pretend we don’t exist, aren’t intelligent, and don’t back him up 100% or that we’ve “internalized the patriarchy”. Pretending our opinions are a result of Zak pulling the strings is one of the most sexist thing I can imagine and the holier-than-thou RPG community has been comforting itself by doing it since we showed up. 
I want to stress this: You have a problem with that man, you have a problem with me. You have a problem with all the girls I’ve played D&D with. When you ignore his questions and concerns, you ignore ours.
Which is nothing new: You always have ignored what I have to say, what Connie has to say. You ignore any woman gamer who doesn’t buy into your white knight bullshit excuses for harassment. Most of the time when Zak is attacked by white knights he’s QUOTING me saying something pro-sex feminist. Or Connie or KK or Karolyn or Laney, or Stoya or Molly Crabapple, or Charlotte or Scrap (trans) or Contessa’s Stacy Dellorfano (who’s super fucking clever and should be listened to) etc etc etc. 
If there’s these little ” ” symbols that’s a direct quote. Those symbols exist for a reason. So I am speaking for myself. Which is exactly what these trolls hate—-and do their best to discredit and ignore. It’s disgusting and disingenous. What Zak’s doing that’s being labeled so often as sexist is REPORTING what I and my friends actually say. But nobody wants to get in a fight with an lgbt feminist in a wheelchair about these ideas, so they take the extremely sexist step of assigning my words to him.
It’s a dodge to pretend that Zak’s using a “but my friends are black” type argument when he isn’t. That’s a pretty nasty way to twist what me and my game group’s other women are saying. We are women speaking from experience as much as any other woman. 
So what happens when women who have opinions and beliefs like mine go online and try to engage directly? I’ve posted about this before but it looks like I’m just going to have to repeat myself until the end of time. We get White Knighted. Here’s a bunch of people doing it, with moderator Paul Ettin helping. 
These guys think Frank Frazetta art keeps women from interacting with the rest of the hobby online? No—it’s the behavior of real-life men, like this shit on the forums that keeps women away from gaming. 
This sexism is unsurprising considering RPGnet still runs ads like this on its front page and claims it couldn’t possibly change ad servers:
This is nothing new—long before all this, if you read through the comments here you can see another anti-sex White Knight (the Greg the post is addressed to) who later became a Men’s Right’s Activist….yeah ‘cause they’re not sexist at all right?
None of the people in the hipster gaming scene helped out with Greg. They also didn’t help when we were kicking the conservatives out of the old school community (which worked very well, thanks) after we were attacked on the blogs for doing I Hit It With My Axe. None of them showed up to defend us from sexist harassment on the forums when the show went live and the internet exploded with accusations that we were being paid to pretend to play D&D. We were being called Fake Geek Girls before Fake Geek Girls was a thing and where were they? And where are they now?
They only care about their own.
And let’s address this “marketing strategy” bullshit. Zak is an artist. He has work in the MOMA and the Whitney. I dare you call up his gallery and ask how much a painting of his sells for. Go on, I’m waiting. Our livelihood, it doesn’t come from gaming. This is our hobby. We play to enjoy ourselves and when we make a webshow or Zak makes a gaming product it’s because we want to share our hobby and our fun with other people. There’s no marketing strategy here. Perhaps you were confused by statements like “if you’re going to attacks us it only benefits us so you should probably stop”. Or “If there’s gonna be controversy, may as well take advantage of it” but Zak and his game publisher aren’t the ones on forums making people constantly talk shit about me or my friends.
And because these people are upset by the fact that women won’t fall in line they will overlook any fact you put in front of them. This is our “original sin” as far as they’re concerned:image
Oh, really? Zak discovered your forum because a podcast was “snickering”. Actually Zak came and had a talk with your forum because the people on the podcast were being sexist, condescending fucks and he came to ask for an apology—which he got.
This kind of “support” from the indie rpg community almost made me want to stop doing I Hit It With My Axe altogether. They could not have pushed the women of DIY D&D away harder. We were playing our game because we wanted to, not because we didn’t know any better.
Bradley’s explanation is completely accurate and fair—but when it’s time to attack someone, these indie gamers never go back and check anything.
So, what are you going to do—keep complaining that you got in a fight about dice once and we were mean to you, or stand up and apologize for enabling these harassers over and over and over?
These Something Awful trolls are harassers.
Paul Ettin is a harasser.
Andri Erlingsson is a harasser.
Jussi Marttila is a harasser.
Alex Norris is a harasser.
Kai Tave is a harasser.
Tom Hatfield is a harasser.
Everyone who forwarded the attacks on us is enabling and supporting their harassment. And you need to go beyond ”Well we don’t support harassment of anybody” and stand up and admit you were wrong and you’ve been ignoring it and these are the people who have been doing it.
If you mean what you say about inclusivity in gaming and not supporting harassment or trolling then accept and respect the fact that we want to be left alone to play our game and be ourselves. We don’t deserve to be subjected to years of ongoing misogynistic attacks and bizarre speculation because of our gender, occupation, or choice of fucking game or because you can’t relate. And it adds insult to injury to continue to deny my experience of these attacks just because we happen to be different.
Maybe you’ve made some mistakes.
Here’s the reaction so far…

So a woman didn’t actually write the thing she wrote about being harassed —her boyfriend wrote it for her? Classic sexism guys, classic.

TL;DR? Here: