Saturday, March 31, 2012

Ray Harryhausen Double Feature

Does it get any better then this? These are classic! 

Wasteworld Redux & Sunday Actual Play

Sunday finds me with my back against the wall.. again! Three of my players aren't making it for my Carpathian campaign. Yet the players want something old school & more then slightly new. I came across some notes about a post I did back in June about the Wasteworld Rpg. You can read some of my thoughts about the game  right Here
What is Waste World?
Here's what the setting is about: 
Waste World is a planet ravaged by ten millennia of total war, where five gigantic city-states are locked in a deadly struggle for control of the most precious substance in history: Drakonium, the ultimate energy source. Everyone knows that without Drakonium their automated factories will cease to function. Their lights will go out. Their air will become unbreathable. Their people will starve. And everyone knows that Drakonium is running out.
On Waste World five warrior cultures, forged in the crucible of a ten thousand year conflict, fight for survival. The samurai defend the Shogunate with swords of light. The mighty Cyborg Legions slay the foes of the enigmatic Machine Gods of Prometheus. The decadent aristocrats of Ikarus descend from their flying city in razor-winged battlesuits to plunder and slay. The genetically-engineered soldiers of Hydra are bred only for battle. And the Xenogens of Janus wield the terrifying power of their alien technology.
Beyond the megacities life is short and brutal. The air is poisonous. The seas are dead. The land is a desert. The world is littered with the ruins of extinct civilizations. Mutants roam the poisoned wastes. Mechanized barbarians plunder the scattered settlements. Sentient death machines stalk the survivors.
Waste World RPG is 288 pages of pure adrenaline-rush, radical cyberfantasy action. The easy-to-use character generation system allows you to design any character you want. You can choose from over 60 skills, 40 special powers, 100 pieces of equipment, and 20 psionic abilities.
Alternatively you can select one of the many pre-generated adventurers and get straight into the slaughterfest. The combat system is ultra-fast, slick and deadly with four of the most spectacularly brutal critical hit tables you are ever likely to encounter. There are comprehensive sections on skills, special abilities and psionic powers as well as a complete background for the Waste World setting. The equipment section lets you purchase anything from bionics to chainswords to a custom mega-cannon, as well as robots and vehicles.
For the Narrator there is a complete Bestiary and a comprehensive guide to running Waste World adventures.
The game itself uses a D20 combat system & its fast, lethal, & nasty in that 40K style of gaming. That's the problem actually. Its too damn lethal. I love the setting but I want something to replace it that can handle the :
The setting includes cybernetic warriors, powered armor, samurai with energy swords, giant robotic war machines, flying cities, psionics, alien species, and armies of undead. Immortal samurai with energy blades. Powered armor with razor-sharp wings. Armies of mad robots bent on destruction. Hardened wasteland warriors. Demons. Undead. Mutants. Ridiculously large guns.
This can handle some of what I'm looking to do.
This can handle the rest with little problems. What's actually in the setting's toybox?
Waste World Products 
Besides the main rulebook which clocks in at 288 pgs with color temples. Its really all you need & provides information on the five high tech city states. The other books provide more details.


Hydra is a seething cauldron of factional strife ruled by the genclans. These ancient bloodlines, part clan, part corporation, are each adapted to perform one specific function. They use advanced biotechnology to grant their people superhuman powers. Explore the city of the Posthumans and discover the darkest secrets of biotechnology and genesculpting. This 176 page sourcebook contains all you need to join the genclans in their war for survival and dominance, including new rules for bioweapons and psionics, as well as loads of new special powers.
Cover: Martina Pilcerova. Author: Bill King.
Product Code: #1003. Price: $20.00.
The hydrians are great & provide a really weird alien feel to them akin to a society mixing post humanism & Giger 
The Shogunate
The mighty Shogun rules a land riddled with hidden factions, psychic sorcerers and stealthy ninja. All of them covet the great reincarnation machines that make his followers virtually immortal. He is served by the samurai clans, masters of the forceblade and the martial arts. These clans scheme against each other as they struggle to maintain their place in the Shogun's favor, and outdo each other in power and influence.
In this indespensible sourcebook you will find complete rules for ninja, samurai, and the savage martial arts for which the Shogunate are famous.
Price: $20, 144 pages (8 in full color), Product Code: #1001.
The Shogunate are one of my favorites its the sort of setting where you mix Dune, The Shogun mini series, & 80s martial arts action!

Force Shield

This beautifully illustrated four section screen lets a Narrator see all the rules and tables needed for the Waste World RPG. It comes with a 48 page booklet of adventures introducing the remote habzone of Toxic Springs and the wild wastelands that surround it. Give your players a chance to hunt down brutal Skavengers and do battle with huge Apokalypse Virus infested war-machines. You'll find all you need to kickstart a campaign in the barren deserts of Waste World in this one package.
Cover by Martina Pilcerova. Adventures by Paul Beakley. New rules by Bill King.  
Product Code: #1002. Price: $12.00.

Its a DM's screen which seems like not essential piece but actually this screen contains a great location, gangs, & the town of  Toxic Springs

A Fist Full of Credits (Adventure/Demo Pack)

A Fist Full of Credits doubles as an Adventure Pack and Demo Kit. In it there is an adventure, a brief back-ground of the game world, a stripped down version of the rules (4 pages), and pre-generated character templates that can be pulled out from the book and used immediately. Try the game with virtually no preparation time!
 Cover: Martina Pilcerova.  Author: Bill King
Retail Price: $5.  40 pages.  Product Code: #1004
Possibly one of the best things to come out for the game was this little booklet. Seriously this packs a location, npcs, premade PCs, monsters, & everything you need to get started! You can read the rules & adventure Here
Sounds like all of your post apocalyptic fantasies!  Right!  

Waste World & The OSR 

The problem with Waste World is the system. It works a bit too well. Its lethal.  This is the reason I'm switching out the system. All of the post apocalyptic tropes are there with one exception. The reason for politics, warring city states, mutants, etc. 
The world is running out of power & there's only one power source from the pen of Bill King 

"Drakonium, an organic crystal that uses solar power to grow. It is a product of ancient nano-technology that blooms in the desert and needs to be harvested by enormous fleets of factory crawlers. Raw Drakonium is poisonous but when processed it is an incredibly potent energy source. In fact, in a world where fossil fuels were long ago exhausted and nuclear reactors proved too dangerous, it is the only energy source.

Everybody needs Drakonium. Without it their city will be blacked out. The great recycling machines that keep the air pure will stop. The factories that produce food and weapons will grind to a halt and the city will die. So the landfleets of the megacities scour the world looking for Drakonium, and they fight wherever they encounter each other."

So exploration & all of the usual post apocalyptic tropes are colored by the pursuing of  Drakonium

So far this setting sounds like Gamma World on roids. Not really.. Its several tech. levels above Gamma World.  This is an intergalactic world cut off from the rest of the universe. The Galactic Compact left & they cut off Advernus off from the rest of the universe. They're not letting you off of the planet... Ever. Just to make sure they left defense droids  & battle stations armed with rail guns. 

The Ultimate Kitchen Sink Setting 


So you want post apocalyptic science fantasy with the party starting out some place that doesn't  have them blowing holes at each other? A place where Vulcan traders & Eldar might be found in the shadow of a giant ruined space elevator?
Welcome to Janus! Here's a blurb about a source book that never made it out. 


Amid the rubble of Janus, the last remnants of the alien Xenogen races dream of their days of glory. They dwell in the shadow of the Startower, a titanic elevator that rises into the darkness of outer space. Janus is the home to merchants and mercenaries, and many others who have come here seeking their fortune in the world’s last open trading city. It is a place where everything has its price, even the human soul. Visit Waste World’s largest free trade zone. Involve yourself in the deadly skirmishes of the Trading Houses. Start your own mercenary company. All of this and much more is covered in this detailed supplement.
Available: fourth quarter, 1998. Price: $20.
The rule book fleshes out just enough so that you can use Janus as your jumping off point. A mixed party is best for this type of a game actually. This is where my party will be starting from.
Another point is about the map of the planet. We are given a rough map of the city states & that's it. The sky is the limit to add other countries, mutants, etc.  Well me & three other people on the planet have actually heard of this game. 

Friday, March 30, 2012

Barsoom Woodland/Jungle Random Encounter Table

Barsoom Woodland/Jungle Random Encounter Table 1d20 

  1. A pride of  Woodland Banths 1d6  3 hit dice each. Coming back from the hunt empty handed & very hungry 
  2. A group of red neanderthals 1d4 2 hit points each armed with spears & sling shots  
  3. A green slime 2 hit dice over hanging a tree limb. 1d4 points of acid damage 
  4. A group of 1d6 pygmies armed with poison tipped arrows 
  5.  A group red warriors armed with radium pistols 1d8 & explosive ammo. They are looking for a an escaped princess 
  6. Flying Woodland Murderers 3 hot point flying manta ray like creatures each capable of a nasty bite for 1d3 points of damage 
  7. A group of green warrior tharks 1d6 warriors armed with swords & radium pistols. 2nd level fighters
  8. A group of murderous  giant birds 2 hit dice each  
  9. A group of wild cadlots 1d4 2 hit dice each 30% of random mutations 
  10. Family of white apes 1d6 individuals, 3 hit dice & in a foul mood 
  11. Giant flying insect its caught in the underbrush & waiting for some schmuck to free it 
  12. A crazed green warrior sniper 2 hit dice & armed with a radium rifle 1d8 60 yard range . Sort of really out of his mind on fungi but wants to kill everything so he's saving because their infected with the plague 
  13. An undead prince has woken up to this strange new world. He's hungry & uses the classic stats from OD&D 
  14. A rot grub pit trap filled to the brim with the little spawn
  15. A green man druid is getting ready to sacrifice a  red imperial on the alter of some forgotten jungle god 
  16. A dangerous giant insect out for its afternoon snack. 1d10 bit 4 hit dice 
  17. A group of giant mutant rats 3 hit dice with  multiple  heads wants you for lunch 
  18. A lost robot has actived from 3,000 years ago. Will not attack unless provoked.4 hit dice armed with lasers 1d6 damage each shot 
  19. Another group of warrior.mages looking for an escaped apprentice with a price on his head 
  20. John Carter comes bouncing by! Waves & moves way past your characters  

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Snakemen Of The Plumed Serpent A Post Apocalyptic Mars - Actual Play

The players made it to the outer edges of the Temple of the Plumed Serpent. The caravan met its first real resistance & players got caught in the middle of a fire fight between their caravan & a group of Thork slavers 
It wasn't pretty at all! The caravan was wiped out in a quick succession of a roll of the dice! 

The Thorks began to clean up the remains of the caravan & the amazons & green men were taken by the Thorks in the aftermath.

The worst thing they faced down was Thork Steam punk scout mech. The thing took slaves very quickly. A color spray & an artifact let them cover their tracks as their patron was captured by the Thorks! 

It all looked lost for our heroes at this point! They decided to double back & take the game trails back to the city!
They need to mount a rescue at this point! There patron will be sacrificed to the Plumed Serpent in 2days  as the Mar moon becomes the Serpent's eye soon! 

One player character missed a saving throw tonight gave up the ghost  to a jungle parasite which rotted the flesh from his character's leg.. 

The characters picked up a few surviving Green Mutant Warrior mercs & were beating it back to the city as fast as they could when a craft flew over head. It dropped robotic spiders & they fought hard against them. Finally making the main game trails. 

Three things are happening tonight that they missed vital clues to: 
  1. They have a naga bounty hunter whose in the employ of the serpent men 
  2. They have to cross the Dark Martian turf to get back to the red imperial city 
  3. There's lots of jungle between them & that city!
     The megadungeon remains & there are serpents spawning in the darkness. They're going to recruit more players to take down this twisted foul degenerate place of sin & depravity. If they get back to the city alive! 

Actual Play Snakemen of A Post Apocalyptic Mars

To recap tonight the party is delving deeper into the woodland/jungles of Mars. There are several interesting encounters coming up! The party is going to bump into a pride of jungle banths tonight!

 There are slavers who will be returning from the temple after a successful sale of sacrifices

These are going to be Thorks a combination of orcs & green mutant stock! These guys act as muscle for the serpent men outside of the temple in regular Martain society.

One of my players read through my blog & thought I'd be using giant snakes to guard the temple! Umm how quaint really.I'll be using giant white ape snake hybrids. An unholy creation of snakemen super science & sorcery. 
 More tonight after actual play! 

Ghala-kilig( The wings of the Un-Divine) For Crypts & Things

no girl had ever moved me with a story of spiritual suffering and so beautifully her soul showing out radiant as an angel wandering in hell and the hell the selfsame streets I’d roamed in watching, watching for someone just like her and never dreaming the darkness and the mystery and eventuality of our meeting in eternity,””

We came to the vault doors that lead to the tomb of St. Sebastian The Reckless in the hope of putting down the cult instead we found blood & death. The doors were flanked by these statutes of purest marble. Our thief  moved in to pick the locks & that's when it all went wrong. The skin, the skin split open & then there was the fangs. There was blood everywhere! 
But through it all was the blue eyes of my darling tonight I'm going to see her. You believe me don't you? 
Ghala-kilig( The wings of the Un-Divine)
Type : Other 
Armor Class: 6(13) 
Attacks: Bite (1d10 plus poison)
Saving throw:3 
Special: Charm, Bite 
Move: 12 ground/18 fly 
Challenge Level/XP :4/120 
They are the Ghala-kilig( The wings of the Un-Divine). These monsters belong to no god for no god will have them. The Ghala-kilig wear the pleasing shapes of art & life that flow through the minds of men as stone. They move unseen among the statues & buildings of our cities They may appear as perfect male or female angels but always in the shape of an angel to mock the divine.  Their gaze acts a charm spell unless a save versus spells is rolled
They feed on the lowest animals & dirt of the Earth but this is only a pretense. They lust after the flesh & blood of men. Such is their cursed state. 
 Wizards of all stripes call upon them from the darkness of the night. Even in their fallen state they remember the all of the forbidden lore & secrets of creation itself. They may grant one 1st or a 2nd level grey or black magic spell once per month at the time of the blood moon's ascension. 
This comes with a terrible price however! The monster must feed on the flesh of an innocent man.
 The creature  splits its perfect unblemished skin to reveal row after row of stinking teeth from grown to head. A bite from these monsters causes 1d10 points of damage. The stinking poisoned filled wounds will not heal unless expensive magic is used on them. 
From Fire & Rage beyond the world itself these monsters may summon a great flaming sword. The thing screams with the praises of a thousand damned souls. The sword acts as a +2 magic long sword. The weapon will last for 1d20 rounds before returning to its realm of rage & fire! The Ghala-kilig must consume flesh after using this weapon in combat! 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

High Tech Mysticism & High Caliber Adventure- Occupy Dr. Doom's Latveria

Out of all of the Marvel Villians of the Fanatastic Four no one except Galactus comes close to Victor Von Doom! No one.  For a super Merc campaign campaign to have a great patron you need one who pays on time, demands results, & has the technology no how to give the best toys! If the situation demands it.
This guy makes Steve Jobs look like a choir boy!
Dr. Doom’s Latverian Currency : By Chris Tirri
Dr. Doom’s Latverian Currency : By Chris Tirri

With all of the happenings of  the  many comic universes you can bet your bottom dollar that Doom is going to be investigating them! He's not  about to waste valuable technological resources when he can simply pay a few mercs send them in his name & get the results.

Hell they might not even know if their dealing with the real doom or simply another doom bot. 

There are 4 reasons for working for Dr.Doom : 
  1. He pays on time & in cash according to his Marvel Universe entry 
  2. He's honorable which means he will pay 
  3. He will not send resources on full suicide missions. Yes your characters are expendable but it doesn't me he's a murderer only a despot 
  4. He has a time machine able to go forward, backward, & sideways in time. Alternative Earths, mystic dimensions, places beyond the ken of men are not beyond the reach of  Doom!
    Giorgio Comolo -DrDoom 
    Dr Doom/Red Skull Comic Art
Dungeon Mastering Doom! 
Surely there aren't any resources out there that a DM can use for a Doom heavy campaign? Actually there are! Possibly one of the best of these is 

Basically this came out for the Marvel Super Heroes game back in '92. This is an indespensible piece of  gamage for those wishing to run with Doom. Here's why:
Lands of Dr. Doom [BOX SET]
• Domains of Doom, a 96-page book with Doom's history, a bibliography, a chronology of comic book appearances, an atlas of Latveria, Symkaria, and Transia.
• Machines of Doom, a 64-page book with new rules for technology and Doom's inventions.
• Deeds of Doom, a 32-page book of adventures.
• Two poster maps covering Castle Doom and Doomstadt.

"Know this now—and know it forever! DOCTOR DOOM has no rivals! None! NONE! In all the world, there is none to match me! None can rival DR. DOOM in total mastery of the diabolical!!"
(Text by Stan Lee, FANTASTIC FOUR #85)

For years, the secrets of the metal-clad monarch known as Victor Von Doom have remained his own. Now, in this 30th year as the premiere villain of the Marvel Comics universe, all those secrets are revealed to the world!

The Lands of DOCTOR DOOM Campaign Set is a comprehensive source on Doctor Doom, providing a closely detailed history, as well as delving into his "unrivalled" psyche to discover who truly lurks behind the iron mask. Marvel Europe is also drawn into the spotlight, exposing everything from the tourism to the technology of the Balkan States. Learn about Latveria, home of Doom and self-proclaimed "Gem of the Balkans." Discover Symkaria, home to Silver Sabre and her Wild Pack. Wonder at the wondrous Mount Wundagore in Transia, sometime-home to the High Evolutionary and prison of the Elder God Chthon. All this and more is waiting within The Lands of DR. DOOM Campaign Set."

1992 ... Anthony Herring & Scott Davis & Steven Schend ... TSR 6905 ... ISBN 156076404X

These sets are now going for 35.00 to 100.00 on ebay. Hoo Hum 
You can download the whole set right Here
The Armors of Doom 


Want to have more options for armor & the weapons of  Doom that didn't make it into the Lands of Doom box set? Then go over here & download the Dragon Magazine Marvel Phile compilation for a complete set of  options!
Right Here
Mega Dungeons of Doom 
Doom isn't a guy that thinks small. So all over the world are mini Castle Von Dooms including one in The Adirondack Mountains   in New York State.

You can find all of the artwork of Giorgio Comolo Here

Gaining Employment With Doom

Mercs wishing employment with the Latverian Overlord must go through a Latverian embassy contact. The chooses for assignments are endless. These can range from Carcosa to Post Apocalyptic Earths. Remember the Marvel multiverse contains lots & lots versions of Doom. 

Horror Beyond The Grave For Crypts & Things: "Knights from the East."

"Knights from the East."

Type: Undead 
Armor Class:8(11) or 7(12) with shield 
Hit dice:2
Attacks: Weapon or Strike (1d8)
Saving Throw :16 
Special: Immune To Sleep & Charm, Hunts By Sound (20 yard radius)
Challenge Level/XP:2/30 

The "Knights from the East." are an evil cult of knights known as the Templars they tortured and murdered innocent victims in a quest for eternal life. After a revolt by the local townspeople, the Templar knights were executed and their corpses left for the crows to peck out their eyes. Years later, terror begins again as the eyeless undead knights rise from their tombs to hunt their victims by sound. 
 The Templar knights are basicly mummified skeletons that wear robes and usualy hack or slash their victims with swords and drink their blood.
These beings are summoned from some nether hell where their eyes have been put out to keep them from escaping.
Many think that they can escape their grasp. 
Well you can run as fast as you want, but the knights are always faster than you are, somehow taking shortcuts through thin air and always having their skeletal steeds available as if pulling them out of their armors' pockets!

A version of the animate dead spell from the Sumerian Thal version of the Necronomicon contains a formula that allows the necromancer to summon double the number of these warriors from the Outer Darkness. But they will not be under the control of the necromancer!

There have been dozens of sightings of these monsters throughout Europe as the supernatural energies course through the ether raising these foul things up on their own. 

Many towns have placated them with yearly sacrifices of flesh. This only satisfies their eternal hunger for a time. The monsters always come for the living eventually.
They can be set ablaze, hacked to death, or destroyed with sufficient force. Many times their victims simply seem to give up as the aura of evil they radiate tears through the sanity of the place where these foul things have risen!

These foul beings may be found anywhere that this evil cult flourished. Pockets of these monsters have been found across the planet. There have been incidents of these monsters being summoned from beyond time & space to plague the living by some insane necromancer or evil wizard! 

Notes:  These monsters are very quickly done & their powers are ill defined on purpose. I'm a huge Blind Dead fan & these were done because one of my players complained that zombies as monsters are overdone! So I statted up these guys fast for my Saturday/Sunday C&T game.
I came across this bit on wiki :
The film nearly ended up being severely rewritten for its English language release, to turn it into a "Planet of the Apes" cash-in. The original plan for its US release, was that the film would be completely re-written to be a post-Apocalyptic future where the undead would be deceased intelligent apes similar to the ones seen in Planet of the Apes. This was ultimately aborted however, though location footage scenes from the film were edited together and a narration explaining the premise was commissioned and finished before the decision was made to simply adapt the original script.
Very weird.

 The concept artist Billy George has been hard at work doing a Blind Dead comic book. There are some nipples in the comic so you've been warned! See his awesome site Here

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Ralph McQuarrie Mega Dungeon Among The Clouds

A while back I was able to find a book that I had 'borrowed" by a fellow player back in the 90s called The Illustrated Star Wars Universe. I just got this one in a Good Will find back about 2 weeks ago. One of my favorite bits of the book was Bespin. 
We're given this inredible overview by Councilman Po Ruddle Lingshot about cloud city. The ins & outs with the various miners of the gas, the history, etc.

 The interesting bit about this chapter was this bit

Your looking at Tibannopolis an abandoned derelict boom town in the sky. The place went bust in the early days of the Tiberian gas mining operations.
The repulorlifts are dwindling, the whole place has been stripped of metal! The ruins are adrift in the clouds. Time & again when I've run Star Wars D6 this location was one of my main stays. Slavers, gamblers, & all types of rogues use the place for meetings & what have you.
Strangely enough all of  my players were scoundrels & rogues of the deepest dye. They weren't ever Jedi or the guys trying to save the day.
They ended up on Tibannopolis  in the middle of a fierce storm that they had to weather through. The place proved to be inhabited by fierce gas hunter creatures.
Tibannopolis in the OSR campaign  

The place or something like it recently showed up thanks to Carl Sagan's Cosmos. The above illustration is of a gas giant which sustains extraterritorial life. I used the ruins of  a Tibannopolis city floating among the atmosphere of this planet.
I stole lots from Carl Sagan's Cosmos including the floaters 

The hunters & the grazers.. 
I had Star Wars fans frantically searching through books for these entities. The Jovian ecosystem would also have its share of predators which Sagan and Salpeter named, appropriately, hunters. The hunters were envisioned as being fast and able to maneuver, preying on the floaters “for their organic molecules and for their stores of pure hydrogen.” The Jovians were briefly introduced in a magnificent painting made by artist Adolf Schaller & Carl Sagan.

So basically I borrowed the idea for this megadungeon from
,the art of Ralph McQuarrie and  Kevin J. Anderson.Adolf Schaller & Carl Sagan.
There are 47 levels on this city in my campaign for Human Space Empires.