Tag Archives: The Labyrinth

Weekly Roundup: Gencon Excitement Edition

We’re excited for Gencon this week. Not the 9 hour drive before and after, but hey, gotta take the good with the bad, right? We’re hoping to get in some good gaming, have fun at the Ennies, and run some memorable Ashes of Athas adventures for unsuspecting con-goers. Should be fun. On to the articles…

First up this week is a well researched article on the second roleplaying game ever invented. There’s some interesting history here. Have you heard of it? (Check out the rest of the Playing at the World blog for other articles on the early history of the hobby…)

We know you’ve been missing Flumphs lately, and that’s why we give you this hilarious meme, presented by The Looney DM.

The Land of Nod had a fun tutorial on drawing old school maps in Excel. Hey, use what you’ve got, right?

And of course, we couldn’t ignore the 5 reasons to play D&D over at Grimm Wisdom this week. Via Boing Boing, natch.

And while we’re doing lists, The Rhetorical Gamer had a list of 10 reasons D&D is better than an MMORPG.

Swords and Dorkery had a shivers inducing idea for DIY bug miniatures. Shivers in a good way. And yes, you’re probably assuming correctly. Sort of.

If your party is due to encounter a basilisk anytime soon, you may want to invest in some mirrored armor and rakes. i09 has all the details on hunting them.

The Rhetorical Gamer had some great thoughts on why games should be hard. He starts with video games, but then asks, should that apply to RPGs?

Finally, we haven’t linked to one of The Labyrinth‘s awesome blank maps in a while, so here’s one for you to fill in, at your leisure.

Now get back to packing for Gencon!

 

Weekly Roundup: Unhallowed Grove Map Edition

So this weekend, I decided to dust off Dundjinni and whip up a quick map for Friday’s Unhallowed Grove encounter. You can find it below, and I’ve also added it to the article’s page. The article’s page includes explanations. It’s not super fancy, but then, it’s been a while since I used the program. I’m beginning to remember how easy and fun the program is, so I hope to make some more maps in the coming months.

There was a great article at The Illuminerdy this week about how to make cons more fun. Everyone needs to add the phrase to their vocabulary, so that we all have more fun at cons.

Steve Winter at The Howling Tower mused upon the random encounter. Once a staple of D&D, it has in recent editions gone away. Steve takes on what a random encounter should be, and how to make them a good part of your game.

The Dungeon’s Master this week addressed the use of torture by PCs. Also, how intimidate is not the same thing. We have also addressed this subject (from a different angle) here.

Alex Schroeder, the guy who runs the One Page Dungeon Contest, wrote up a cool little post on how he strung together some of his favorite one page dungeons from the contest to make a campaign out of them.

We haven’t linked to The Labyrinth in a while, but they’re still making some beautiful, free world maps over there!

From The Sorcerer’s Skull posted the true story of a cave that was found in North America, full of skeletons and treasure. Complete with a map just begging to be dropped into a game.

The Retro Roleplaying blog talked about why some OSR players reject improvements to the D&D system. We disagree to an extent, and feel that the author cherry picked some of his examples, but it’s still worth a read.

Finally, in Wired this month, there was a very interesting article that I think absolutely should have talked about D&D. But it didn’t. Apparently the author, Clive Thompson, doesn’t know what we do. Check it out, and here’s a quote – email the author if this sounds familiar:

Paracosms are the fantasy worlds that many dreamy, imaginative kids like to invent when they’re young. Some of history’s most creative adults had engaged in “worldplay” as children. The Brontë siblings, in one famous example, concocted paracosms so elaborate that they documented them with meticulous maps, drawings, and hundreds of pages of encyclopedic writing.

Blast From The Past (Weekly Roundup: Last Call For Dungeon Geomorph Dice Edition)

Initiative Or What? had a cool article this week on different found objects that were useful as props for their D&D game.  We especially like the idea to use novelty ice cube trays for casting 3D terrain decorations.
(5/14/11)

Weekly Roundup: Beyond the Stat Block Edition

This week, we received an email from Corey, letting us know about his web project – Beyond the Stat Block.  We could describe it for you, but instead we’ll use his words:

A new project launched a couple of weeks ago, with the goal of providing flavor text for every creature power across the D&D 4e universe. It’s all starting with MM1. You can sign up for an account and start writing, and you level up (and gain editorial powers) as you write flavor text and gain XP. It’s a big, ambitious project that really needs help from the community.

That’s right.  The community is being called upon to provide flavor text for monster powers.  Get those creative juices flowing, go forth, and write!  But first, read some articles!

 NewbieDM had a guest article on making flying stands for minis.  We’ve been thinking about doing this very thing for a while now (even have the extendable “antennas” sitting around here somewhere), so it was nice to see a tutorial to save on trial and error.  These look really good!

Critical Hits reviewed Conquest of Nerath, WotC’s new D&D based boardgame.  There’s been a lot of talk about this one because it does not follow the same template as earlier D&D boardgames, and is instead more like “Risk.”

The Labyrinth wondered if GenCon is turning into a board game convention. The numbers are impressive, but we think it’s also important to note that RPGs have been steadily increasing every year as well.

In recognition of Origins this weekend, we thought we’d point you to Eclipse Phase‘s Jack Graham. In his blog this week, he discusses why the Origins Game Awards still matter.

Intwischa talked about the importance of maps in your campaign.  This was one of the stark differences I noticed when comparing the re-made Gamma World adventures to their originals.  The originals had detailed maps of locations.

Finally, in light of that, we thought we’d point you to Dave’s Mapper.  It’s not a blog post, it’s an instant dungeon (cavern, city) generator that we just discovered this week.  It’s fun to play around with, just don’t lose track of time… The best part about this dungeon generator?  It uses actual art by other bloggers.  Check it out!

Hope everyone at Origins has fun.  If you see Hamblin, be sure to say hi!

Weekly Roundup – Dungeon Geomorph Dice Edition

This week, we found the Dungeon Geomorph Dice project on Kickstarter.  We were so excited, we threw $40 in the pot for two sets of dice (and crossed our fingers for the second “caverns” set).  Here’s why you should, too: we will be developing some free supplements to these dice for you to use.  Just to be clear, we’re not affiliated with this project in any way; we just think they’re really cool, and wanted to try and make them as useful as possible.  We won’t start working on this project until we have the dice in hand and see what kind of supplements have been shipped with them.  The stuff we develop will be completely 4e compatible.  Spread the word by using the Facebook, Twitter, and other icons at the end of this post!

On to the articles…

The Labyrinth had an interesting discussion on generating ability scores based upon percentiles instead of 4d6.  The most intriguing part of his system was the racial adjustments of probabilites for each stat.

Then there was Dread Gazebo (with his fancy new blog layout!) who encouraged DMs to abandon the XP budget.  This, of course, sparked some debate, and Sarah Darkmagic weighed in with a counterpoint.

Did we mention there’s a contest to win Heroes of Shadow over at A Walk in the Dark? Yup.  Go check it out if you want to win it.

On the podcast side of things, we urge you to check out the Going Last podcast.  There’s lots of miniatures talk, and non-D&D “general gaming” talk as well, so if you’re into that sort of thing, give it a listen.

Finally, The Rhetorical Gamer talked about what 4e got wrong, in his opinion.  And, to be fair, last week he also wrote about what it got right.  Check it out, and see if you agree.

Who are we missing?  Anyone?  Anyone?

Weekly Roundup – DDXP 2011 Edition

It’s quite possible most of you are still detoxing from DDXP.  We’ve got what you need! More D&D!  In the form of articles!  For you to read!  Check out this week’s best (non-DDXP)  articles.

RPG Musings pointed us to a great resource for campaign ideas that’s right in front of you.  Why didn’t we think of this first? Brilliant!

If you haven’t been following Sersa over at Save Vs. Death and his “Fourthcore” philosophy, you should.  There’s lots of great usable content over there, and all of it deliciously deadly.  Don’t know what Fourthcore is?  Never fear, this week a FAQ was posted.

And did you hear the news about the prison who won’t let its inmates play D&D because it threatens prison security? No? Geeks are Sexy had a great blog post covering the story.

The Weem posted a fun Twitter interview with WotC. Quick read, since questions and answers are limited to Twitter’s 140 characters.

Finally, The Labyrinth had a great article about the process they used to find a new player for their game.  While their success rate varied, you might find a resource here that you haven’t used yet.  Or you might just find the story of them trying to find a new player entertaining.

Leave us a link to YOUR blog in the comments!

Weekly Roundup – Impending Holidays Edition

We’re all getting ready for the holidays…what kinds of holiday swag are you hoping to get?  New dice?  Minis?  Dare I say it….Dwarven Forge???

Save Versus Death pointed us to the new article he wrote for Kobold Quarterly.  It’s a fully fleshed out encounter with an undead guardian that sends the PCs on three quests.  Definitely worth checking out!

Arcane Springboard over at This is My Game talked about how receiving the Red Box from his grandparents when he was a kid was more than just the gift of a game.  Made us think about how it’s important to bring new people into the hobby, and how D&D is more than “just a game.”

We were interested in The Labyrinth‘s call for a good Mass Combat System.  Everyone readily admits that D&D is no good for mass combat, which is fine because it’s not meant to be.  However, it’s always nice to have something like this in your back pocket.  (Here are the preliminary results)

Level 30 Yinzer wrote a great article on combat alternatives to “kill all the monsters.”  Worth a read if the “kill everything in sight” tactic is the only way your group plays, and you’d like to switch it up somehow.

What? Your article isn’t listed? Leave it for everyone in the comments!!