Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Review & Commentary on The Free OSR PC Resource From Three Toad Stools - The Myrmidon For Your Old School Campaigns


Shane Ward of 3 Toadstools has put out some really wonderful OSR resources over the last year or so. Now he's given a the OSR mythological, sword and sandal or sword & sorcery campaigns. The class is intended for Labyrinth Lord but I can see far more potential then simply another Greek themed adventure game warrior PC class addition or option.
What are Myrmidons? Well according to Wiki -
"The Myrmidons or Myrmidones (Greek: Μυρμιδόνες) were a legendary people of Greek history. They were very brave warriors: trained and commanded by Achilles,[1] as described in Homer's Iliad. Their eponymous ancestor was Myrmidon, a king of Thessalian Phthia, who was the son of Zeus and "wide-ruling" Eurymedousa, a princess of Phthia.
An etiological myth of their origins, expanding upon their etymology — the name in Classical Greek was interpreted as "ant-people", from μυρμηδών (murmedon) "ant's nest"[2] and that from μύρμηξ (murmex) "ant"[3] — was first mentioned by Ovid, in Metamorphoses: in Ovid's telling, King Aeacus of Aegina, Achilles' grandfather, pleaded with Zeus to populate his country after a terrible plague. Zeus said his people would number as the ants on his sacred oak, and from the ants sprang the people of Aegina, the Myrmidons. In Manichaeism, the name myrmidons is used to refer to a certain class of demonic soldiers that fight for darkness against light. This has been found by archaeologists in papyri known as Coptic Manichaean Psalm-books. These papyri were found in Medinet Maadi, Egypt"
 This fighter class is well balanced and works out very well for a sword and sorcery style game as well as the usual sword and sandal games. I've used variation of the class before from second edition but because I've been drifting lately more and more back to OD&D, retroclones, and near clones The Myrmidon was a welcome addition to my arsenal. These guys make excellent additions to Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea games.  The fact that separates these PC warriors;"Myrmidon are mighty fighters, followers of Achilles (or some other great warrior). What separates Myrmidon's from typical fighters is their ability to survive under the harshest conditions and gravest wounds."
This little addition marks these fighter types as just that bit different and puts me as a DM into the head space of pulpy adventure goodness. In case I haven't said to grab this then go grab it right now. Its free and incredibly useful for a DM planning on playing in a sword and sandal, mythological arena, or even a sword and sorcery campaign.

This is only a seven pages of old school PC fun but it provides everything the player needs to get started using the Myrmidon straight out of the gate. I can only say enough good things about using this class to get the ball rolling for a campaign. Three toad stool did a damn fine job on this class. I was put in the mind of the original Ray Harryhausen creations the original Jason and Argonauts and  Class of the Titans.  The addition of elite warriors willing to die or rise to challenge of mythological horror fits the Myrmidon class very well.

There has been plenty of Greek mythological  inspired madness in the air tonight, Brett Slocum also threw together D12 Fighter Subclasses for Greek-themed Campaigns. Because of the very nature of the time lost warriors in AS&SH any of these fighters might also make an appearance on the shores of Hyperborea. This makes the addition of the Myrmidon  both welcome and a solid addition to an old school DM's arsenal. The Myrmidon also makes a fantastic hireling or elite guard for high level PC's.

There always some fantastic resources that come down the pike and never enough time to implement all of them into a class OSR style campaign. But the Myrmidon is a welcome addition to the OSR stage.

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