Tag Archives: Stuffer Shack

Weekly Roundup: Geeky Tea Blends Edition

We found the site Adagio, which offers a whole slew of geeky themed tea blends. I don’t care what your geeky love is, they have a blend for that. (for example, or also for example)

Of course, this past week had GM’s day. In case you didn’t know, the date is marked by the passing of Gary Gygax. The Charlie Tonic Hour had a remembrance of him this week.

Geek Smash talked about how to start your first RPG group.

Alphastream is converting the Saltmarsh modules to D&D Next. (Saltmarsh being a location in the Greyhawk setting.) Keep an eye on his WotC blog for a Living Dark Sun retrospective as well!

Fantastic Maps had a 4 step tutorial on designing a town or city.

If you’re looking for a chuckle, Monkey In The Cage lamented the lameness that is Half Elves this week.

For a less humorous rant, check out Critical Ankle Bites, who discusses what healing is and isn’t in D&D (sparked by the WotC discussion of Warlord healing in D&D Next).

On the board game front this week, we saw two articles extolling the virtues of playing board games with your kids. Yourneighborhoodtoystore.org talks about it here, and Growing Up Gamers discusses it here. As if you needed an excuse to play games with your kids! There was also 10 reasons to support the upcoming Tabletop Day (March 30) at Geek Native.

Finally, if you’ve been thinking about making a new RPG system, at Stuffer Shack this week Brian Liberge encourages you to stop doubting yourself and do it!

Weekly Roundup: Weekend of Cons Edition

Ok, so it’s no longer Gencon (obviously) but there are (at least) three other major cons going on this weekend: DragonCon in Atlanta, WorldCon in Chicago, and Pax Prime in Seattle. With all that gaming going on, we’re not sure there’s even anyone around to read the roundup! Well, for those of you not at a con this weekend, here are some articles to soothe the disappointment.

Speaking of Pax, if you’d like to watch this year’s D&D Celebrity game (with Chris Perkins, Wil Wheaton, and the Penny Arcade guys) you can find it here. Really good stuff, and always fun to watch them play. It will (most likely) also eventually be archived on the WotC D&D Youtube channel.

If you’d like to win a copy of the 3 D&D 1st Edition reprints, The Secret DM is running a contest until the end of the month.

Over at The Broken Binding, our Subcontracting Your Villain Work idea is being tried.

Sly Flourish had a great article on how to design your own zone wide environmental effects. There are also examples. Environmental effects can really add a special layer to an encounter to make it memorable.

Some Space To Think wrote two great posts on skills and skill systems which set a lot of people thinking. We noticed these further thoughts from 2d6 Cents, though we suspect there were probably more responses in the blogosphere.

If you wish you were still at Gencon, check out Brian Liberge’s Gencon interview with Shelly Mezzanoble about the Rise of the Underdark campaign over at Stuffer Shack.

Gaming As Women had an article this week with some questions to ask of characters to bring them closer together as a group. You know, make them less of a roving band of misfits, and more of a team.

IntWisCha tackled the subject of Social Conflict. No, not when your gamers argue about tactics. It’s about how to end conversational conflict in our games on a “high point” the same way a fight ends with the killing blow.

As a followup to last week’s talk about the very successful Reaper Bones Kickstarter, Wired had an article highlighting it. Apparently, it was the third biggest Kickstarter ever.

And finally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t point you to this week’s WotC playtester profile. They talk to friends of the show Alphastream and Going Last.

Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: Totally Unrelated Link Edition)

Roleplaying Tips blogged about how to get your players to hand you Checkov’s Gun.  If you don’t know what Checkov’s Gun is, you can check out TV Tropes.  Do so at your own peril (and only if you have several hours at your disposal).

Weekly Roundup: CONCurrent Edition

Perhaps you’re not going to GenCon. Perhaps you’re upset about that, and would still like to do some gaming that weekend. Have no fear – CONCurrent is an online gaming con that runs parallel to GenCon. You can check out their offerings here. There’s already a bunch of stuff listed to play, and there’s sure to be more as the event draws near. Is it the same as GenCon? Of course not. Is it a great alternative if you can’t make it to GenCon? Absolutely. Check it out, make some new friends, and learn some new games.

We don’t usually post articles from earlier than the previous week, but we have been known to make exceptions. Last week, we somehow missed this awesome roundup of all sorts of gaming aids over at Going Last. This is one you need to bookmark as a resource.

Don’t know if you’ve heard about this or not, but there’s a new, free, D&D-ish RPG out there called Heroes Against Darkness. It’s worth a look, if only for its price tag. Check out what Neuroglyph Games thought of it too.

Daily Encounter brought a little Greyhawk flavor into the Netheril 4e setting by designing a new secret society, and related theme. It’s part of the “Classics Return” blog carnival. (They’re accepting submissions until Aug 14, so if you have an RPG blog, get on that!)

Stuffer Shack recently ran a “Best Worst Villain” contest. We tried to choose one or two for the roundup, but we couldn’t. There are TONS of great ideas for villains here, so check out the list of all their entries.

The Welsh Piper has a great random table this week for creating religious orders. Perhaps they’ll figure prominently in your campaign, or perhaps the PCs stumbled across one. Either way, the article is a great primer, and the table is a quick way to generate one.

Big Ball of No Fun gives us some good ideas for making an NPC memorable, even when the PCs aren’t interacting directly with them. Keeping key NPCs in the forefront of the players mind is a great trick.

Finally, have you been wondering about Dungeon Command? Check out the review over at Breakfast for Owlbears. It makes us want to give it a try…

Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: 2011 GenCon Schedule Edition)

Dice Monkey started a new series hacking Gamma World into traditional D&D. Also note the link in the article to Chaos Grenade, who is doing something similar.

 

Weekly Roundup: May Of The Dead Is Coming Edition

We haven’t seen a blogfest in a while. If you recall, we participated in Winter is Coming, A Night in the Lonesome October, and Got Loot. Starting this week, there will be another blogfest happening for the entire month of May. This one, entitled May of the Dead will be hosted by the guys at Going Last. As a participating blog, we got an early look at the calendar. It looks like there’s a lot of fun stuff lined up. We’ve also got three articles in the queue; keep an eye out for the first one this Friday.

The biggest news this week was the departure of Monte Cook from the D&D Next team. The announcement at his blog was short and vague, and others had thoughts as well. (The previous is, of course, only one opinion. We’re sure with a search, you’ll turn up more speculation than we care to read.)

Rules as UNWritten this week posted some thoughts about the Alchemy rules, both for the current edition and the next. Should all consumables simply be alchemical items, or is there something to be gained by categorizing some as magic?

Over at Geek’s Dream Girl we got a little advice on bringing non-gamers to the table. Great advice for that inevitable game night when you’re one short and your mom is the only one around.

Then there was the announcement this week at Larval Subjects of a new book coming out entitled Dungeons & Dragons & Philosophy. Might be worth checking out.

RPG Athenaeum is doing a lot of great work bringing true medieval  history to your D&D game. For example, this week’s article on real professions that you’ve probably never given to an NPC.

Finally, don’t forget about the two contests going on – Stuffer Shack‘s Site of the Year contest has its winner announced tomorrow, and tomorrow is also the deadline to get your One Page Dungeon in! (There’s still time. Really. It’s just a page. Get on it!)

Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: Gamma World Thoughts Edition)

Intwischa (like this: Int Wis Cha… get it?) posted some tips on how to run a better 4e game.  Caution: if you’re a “play by the rules” type, this article may make you angry.  Or shake your head.  That’s ok, there’s plenty to think about there, and everyone could take to heart one or two of the tips.
(4/30/11)

Weekly Roundup: First Special Ops Gameday Edition

Just yesterday, we started our new home campaign. We’re loosely using the rules from the 4e supplement Wraith Recon that drops a “special ops/splinter cell” theme into a fantasy setting. Our first play session went very well, and we hope to meet on a regular basis with rotating DMs.

If you haven’t been following the “What X Edition of D&D Got Right” over at Greywulf’s Lair you should check it out. His most recent addition was What AD&D Got Right.

With our new home campaign in mind, we really liked the Inception style skill challenge that Sly Flourish presented this week. We may have to work that in somewhere.

A Hamsterish Hoard of Dungeons and Dragons posted a random table of dragon “add ons” this week that you should check out. It doesn’t seem to be made for 4e (semi-system agnostic), but should be pretty easy to adapt. Make your dragons more unpredictable and deadly TODAY!

Neuroglyph Games posted 10 new psionic rituals for Dark Sun. I wonder if we’ll see access to any of these in an upcoming Ashes of Athas mod??

Stuffer Shack discussed the new Legends and Lore article about Epic play. He mostly disagrees with the WotC article, and has some great thoughts.

Finally, don’t miss Daily Encounter‘s second article on art for D&D Next. We especially liked the links to D&D artist’s Deviant Art galleries. Lots of good inspiration there.

 Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: Podcast Edition)

Tarrasqueous had some interesting homebrew Gamma World “monsters” called “Gamma Portals.”  This was especially interesting to us, as we just finished the first Gamma World novel “Sooner Dead” where “ripples,” similar to Gamma Portals, featured prominently.  Kind of neat to see some crunch put to the fluff in the novels.
(2/20/11)

Weekly Roundup: Out of Town Encounters Edition

This past Wednesday, I was out of town on business. Not wanting to sit around in my hotel room, I decided to find a local D&D Encounters group to play with. Where I ended up was Showcase Comics and Games at the Granite Run Mall in Media, PA. I wanted to give a big shout out to that group because they couldn’t have been more welcoming to a “new” player. Thanks! I had a blast, and if I ever find myself in Philadelphia on a Wednesday night again, I’ll be sure to crash their party. As an aside, that’s one of the cool things about Encounters; I was able to jump right into the story with my character, even though I had never played with the group.

This week Sarah Darkmagic wrote an article on how skills have historically been presented in D&D, and what she hopes to see for them in D&D Next. (As an aside, I really hope WotC comes up with a name for the next edition soon)

Speaking of D&D Next (PLEASE announce a new name…) Obsidian Portal was at DDXP this year, and was allowed to post videos from a few of the seminars. You can find the Class Design seminar and the Future D&D Products seminar on their Vimeo site. You can also get some seminar transcripts at the ENWorld site.

Blood, Sweat, and Dice had a great article about 3D terrain. Be sure to check out the pictures of the cliff that helped him win the PAX East 2011 DM Challenge!

A Walk In The Dark went into more depth this week on the subject of attack math in 4e. This was a followup to the article we linked to in last week’s roundup by The Howling Tower. Check that one out first, if you didn’t last week.

Have you ever called the DM Hotline? Did you know that sometimes Chris Perkins answers questions? Check out this video of a couple of kids who called, and asked him some rules questions.

Stuffer Shack posted an article on where to find advice when you’re stuck. You know, besides Stuffer Shack.

Need to add some paranoia and conspiracy to your game? Look no further than Geek’s Dream Girl who delved into the topic this week. After all, not EVERYthing should be just as it seems…

Finally, there was a cool article on Fast Company this week about how Hasbro and other game companies are offering more and more of their games in digital form, as well as in a box.

Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: Halfhearted Edition)

Critical Hit‘s Logan Bonner took on the differences between magic items in 3e and 4e, and discussed whether he thought the changes were good, bad, or indifferent.  Considering the fact that he’s a designer over at WotC, and worked on the Adventuer’s Vault, this is a must read.
(1/23/11)

Weekly Roundup: Reading A Night In The Lonesome October Edition

So, as you may know, we participated in the “A Night in the Lonesome October” blog carnival. What you may not know is that the carnival’s name is based upon a book. We decided to pick up the book from our local library, and have been enjoying it immensly. We’re not done yet, but from where we’re at, we’d recommend it to anyone who likes classic horror. With that, on to the articles…

Tabletop Wizard gave us the lowdown on the Call of Chuthulu RPG, which considering the time of month, plus the fact that it’s (still) Play a New RPG month, seemed appropriate to include.

Dread Gazebo has been going through a rough patch with his DMing and his group, and has been honest enough to share those struggles on his blog. Check out some of the lessons he learned.

Stuffer Shack had some great thoughts as to whether PVP in an RPG is kosher, or whether it’s bad form. Weigh in with your own thoughts in the comments their article.

If you’re looking for a quick read, Stormin Da Castle had some thoughts on the most recent Legends and Lore article. Should all the monsters from previous editions make their way into the later ones?

And congratulations to Newbie DM who was interviewed by the new CNN blog Geek Out! RPG Kids is sure making a name for itself!

Finally, this week was the Game Night Blog Carnival, so we thought we’d link to this awesome and thorough statistical analysis on getting more brains in Zombie Dice by One Gamer’s Opinion. A must read for owners of the game.

Current contests (that we’re aware of) include:

  • Goinglast.net – Win your face on a game card! Check the “News” section of the show notes, and listen to this podcast.
  • Newbie DM and Gator Games (this one ends at midnight tonight!!) – Giving away a copy of the DMG and DMG2
  • Obsidian Portal and D20 Monkey – Monthly Caption Contest
  • Also, these aren’t contests, but we thought we’d mention them anyway – 10% off print products at the Evil Hat website (until 10/31) and 25% off Dragon Chow dice bags (until 11/1 using the code CHOMPY). Looks like it’s time to try out some Dresden files and get our first Dragon Chow dice bag!

Blast from the past (Weekly Roundup – Spoooooky Edition)
Aaron over at Phelanar’s Den gave us the perfect “wishlist vs. random treasure” hybrid system for doling out the goodies to the trick or trea…. I mean the party.

 

Weekly Roundup: One Last Winter is Coming Link Edition

We really had fun writing for the Winter is Coming blog carnival this week.  It was nice to have a focused theme to write on.  But we feel bad that everything we wrote was for the DMs.  So, for all the players out there, here’s one last bit for the Winter is Coming blog carnival.  It’s a link for players who want to add a cold theme to your character. We like to call it “Frost Cheese” around here, because it’s just that good.  You can hear Hamblin discuss it on Episode 4 of Level Up, our player focused podcast. (Also, if you missed yesterday’s post, here is a PDF of all the Winter is Coming stat blocks we did this week)

If you’d like to read all the Winter is Coming articles over at Wombat’s Gaming Den of Iniquity, this is your starting point.

The Fearless DM had a bone to pick this week with LFR writers, and how skill challenges are written for LFR modules.  While we would have liked to see a solution to the problem, we do agree that sometimes LFR skill challenges can be needlessly complicated.

There was a lot of talk on Twitter this week about the recent Legends & Lore articles addressing skills in the D&D system(s).  Sarah Darkmagic posted several articles exploring her thoughts on the 4e skill system, starting with this one. (Of course, we recommend all three).  Daily Encounter also weighed in with their thoughts.

At Critical Hits Dixon explored his struggle to design and perfect the one page character sheet.  We too have tried the one page sheet, though ours is double sided.  Not sure if that’s cheating or not…

Stuffer Shack promised to multiply your game’s fun by ten by adding a simple house rule.

Neuroglyph Games gave us three reasons to give Fortune Cards a shot. We’ve gone back and forth a few times on whether they should be used, but we’re definitely leaning towards, “go for it, they’re lots of fun.”

Finally, we thought we’d remind you about the Dungeons A-Z series going on at Ben’s RPG Pile.

That’s it for this week! Let us know what you thought of the Winter is Coming blog carnival!

Weekly Roundup: 2011 Ennie Nominations Edition

Well, the Ennie nominations were announced this week.  You can check them out here; perhaps you’ll see some names, products, and blogs you recognize. And no, we don’t mean this blog.  But it is good to see our fellow bloggers getting recognition, and some for things that aren’t even blogging!  Speaking of fellow bloggers…

At Daily Encounter this week, Obsidian Crane pondered the criteria for labeling a D&D adventure as a “classic.”  Lots of good points here, and definitely worth a read.

Blood, Sweat, and Dice talked about the positive effects of nixing the Raise Dead ritual.  We like the idea of making death a final event in a character’s life.  Sometimes it feels like raise dead is too… easy.

Leonine Roar wrote a basic primer on ways to increase an encounter’s challenge and damage.  While this may or may not be information you’ve read elsewhere, a reminder is always good.

Stuffer Shack listed the 50 things about D&D you won’t find in the books.  We found ourselves chuckling and nodding our heads at most of them.  True… so true…

Finally, if you missed the cute story about the little girl who interrupted her dad’s D&D game, and the ensuing hilarity, you can read about it on the WotC forums here.

What great article did we miss this week?  Leave it in the comments!

 

Weekly Roundup – Happy GM Day Edition

Happy (belated) GM day everyone! It was on March 4th, in case you missed it; the anniversary of Gary Gygax’s passing.  Get your GM something nice, they work hard so you can have fun.  Now, read some articles. 

Ever since we started podcasting, we’ve begun to pay attention to some of the other D&D podcasts out there.  This week on The Tome Show, they discussed Gamma World.  This was especially timely for me, since I finally received my copy of Leigon of Gold.  Huzzah!

Speaking of which, Buccaneer’s Guild had a fun unboxing video and review of Legion of Gold.  You know… for those of you still contemplating getting it.

Geek’s Dream Girl had a fun article about dealing with PC death.  Good information there for new DMs, or you sissy DMs out there who have never killed a character.  (@TheAngryDM ‘s words, not mine.)

Over at The Dungeon’s Master, there were a couple of articles on designing an encounter that can’t be beat.  There’s a fine line between a really really hard encounter and one that just can’t be beat, so walk it carefully. (We realize there’s a lot of controversy over whether it’s ok to do this or not, so bring your opinions to their comment section!)

Stuffer Shack had a three part series on gaming at conventions, which we’re big fans of.  Dixon Trimline handled the subject well, and we suggest checking out all three parts.

Finally Trollish Delver had a bite sized article comparing “heroes” in original D&D to 4th edition heroes.  Where do you stand?  Do you like the way 4e handles PCs or OD&D better?

Did we overlook the best article of the week?  Leave us a link in the comments!