Thursday, February 28, 2013

Creator of Diplomacy, RIP

Any of you who have been reading Playing at the World, the excellent history of our hobby, know the important influence of Diplomacy. I was sorry to hear that Allan B. Calhamer, the creator of Diplomacy, passed away on the 25th. Please keep his family in your thoughts.

Monday, February 25, 2013

OD&D reprint pre-orders available

The OD&D reprints are now available for pre-order. The Amazon price is $104.

Chile’s secret witch cave

The always excellent Smithsonian history blog Past Imperfect posted about Chilean witches with headquarters in a secret cave:

The most important of the warlocks brought to court in 1880 was a Chilote farmer by the name of Mateo Coñuecar. He was then 70 years old, and by his own admission had been a member of the Righteous Province for more than two decades. According to Coñuecar’s testimony, the society was an important power on the island, with numerous members, an elaborate hierarchy of “kings” and “viceroys”—and a headquarters located in a vast cavern, 40 or more yards long, whose secret entrance had been cleverly concealed in the side of a ravine. This cave (which Chilote tradition asserts was lit by torches burning human fat) was hidden somewhere outside the little coastal village of Quicavi, and was—Coñuecar and other witnesses swore—home to a pair of monsters that guarded the society’s most treasured possessions: an ancient leather book of magic and a bowl that, filled with water, allowed secrets to be seen.

That's pretty ripe for write up as an adventure.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Awesome caterpillar monster

I just though this actual caterpillar from WTF, Evolution? was awesome. You'd have to show your players the picture.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

OD&D Reprint

Wow. Untimely broke the news that WotC is reprinting original D&D in a deluxe edition.

I'm trilled that Wizards is doing this, although hopefully the final product will be more refined than what we see in this picture.

ISBN 978-0-7869-6465-9 isn't listed on Amazon, so no pre-orders yet.

(And I just finished typesetting my own personal edition!)

Monday, February 18, 2013

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Clever Vikings with axes

I happened across this Viking-centric amateur experimental archaeology site, and thought I'd share these two pics of Vikings being clever with axes:


Maybe you could reasonably hold a torch and a shield in the same hand?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Maps from the Denver Public Library

An article about a behind-the-scenes visit to the Denver Public Library had a couple interesting a potentially D&D-useful things:

Peeling, partially unstuck, and warped into curling waves like oceans, the pages play host to a century or more of built structures, renovations, and replacements, keeping close tabs on what can be insured, for how much, and under what circumstances.
"Botanical Profile representing the Forest Trees along the route explored by Lieut. A. W. Whipple, Corps. of Top. Eng., near the Parallel of 35º North Latitude, 1853-1854." Prepared by J. M. Bigelow, M.D., Botanist to the Expedition. U.S. Pacific Rail Road Exploration & Survey, War Department.

I can imagine this style of visualization being useful in adventure design, particularly for wilderness adventures.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

New releases at

Zeb Cook's Expert rulebook is now available from dndclassics. They've also added B10, the 1e Dungeoneer's and Wilderness survival guides, and MMII.

This is a modest release compared to the initial offering. Unfortunately, there's no sign yet of the OD&D booklets.