Wednesday, December 20, 2017

OSR Mayhem & Messy Christmas Haul Massacre Commentary

So yesterday was the Christmas gift avalanche from aboard alright mostly the U.K. but only mostly. First up is the two wonderful tee shirts that my other half sent me! These are awesome! Thanks honey! The first tee shirt is a homage to John Carpenter's 81 classic The Thing with a Stranger Things Season two twist. Its a pretty damn nice gift & its one that has some potential to worry the players at the table.

The second one is a religious themed super hero/Jesus metaphor centered tee on high quality fabric. The take down is the way that the DC movies have been using Christian morality blends while the philosophy & message of Christianity is buried. Its a great & thought provoking tee & very well done in my humble opinion. Its going to cause some serious debate around the table or over beer but I really don't care. Its a great & thought provoking piece & right in line with how the 'wife to be' thinks. Love you & thanks honey!

The third gift came out of no place really & thanks to Glynn Seal over at Monkey Blood Design I'm now the very proud owner of a deluxe hard back of the Midderland  mini campaign setting. There was some great stuff in the package which will be used in upcoming games btw! If you ever gotten books from Lulu publishing or some of the other hobby/game guys on ebay then you know where I'm coming from on the following which doesn't apply to James Raggi IV of Lamentations of the Flame Princess or  Jeffrey Talanian of North Wind Adventures who both along with Glynn Seal know how to package to heck out of stuff!

I just want to take a minute to show all of you garage band rpg & OSR publishers as well as lulu how to package a hardback and maps!  So we've got cardboard followed by bubble wrap! Then hardback resting within its cocoon of bubble wrap. See this is the way to package stuff especially when you've got Evil-Lyn as your mail carrier.

Then the actual book itself which is sealed to heck & back with clear seal packing tape. The knife made short work of it and tad da I've gotten a brand new hardback of the Midderlands.

The hardback & maps of the Midderlands are gorgeous. The book's quality is possibly just a few notches below Lamentations quality but not by much in terms of its binding but the artwork is top drawer! Seriously impressed with it on every level. The Midderlands is a retro old school setting echoing early White Dwarf magazine & Warhammer Fantasy first edition with that twist of English fantasy adventure to be its own thing. The setting is top drawer with lots & lots of details on the locals, monsters, ecology,weather, etc. with lots of opportunities to get the adventurers into trouble or worse.

Let's talk about the cartography here for a moment. The maps lay everything out whilst giving the DM enough to wet the appetite, give details, and yet leave enough meat on the bloody bone to cobble together an adventure quickly & easily.

Every square surface of the book is useful with PC sheets in end papers, lots of weird details & the book marks are also PC sheets as well! None of these do I want to write in as a DM. I want to take these to the local printer and get copies made right now! 

The Midderlands hardback itself is packed with information & wall to wall artwork! You've got a take down of EVERYTHING in the mini setting with lots of room to DYI in your own creations into the weird England of  'The Midderlands' setting background.

The locations look like they came from the pages of early White Dwarf magazines or TSR U.K. products maybe Fighting Fantasy books. I don't know but the style is achingly familiar echoing an earlier time in gaming straight out of the good quality period of early Games Workshop. But this is a modern OSR setting that could be dropped straight into Lamentations, Swords & Wizardry or your favorite OSR retroclone system.

Its the little touches that get me like this Call of Cthulhu style size comparison chart for the Midderland monsters & creatures that echoes that nostalgia  factor while plugging into the actual useful end of DM aids. This stirs the mind & gets a DM's juices flowing.

There is old school quality & quantity here that echoes all of my favorite things about old school GW products without all of the baggage that seems to go with those. Monkey Blood did a fantastic job & this was a great Christmas present from Monkey Blood Designs.


 Now with that said I got another envelop from MAXIMUM MAYHEM DUNGEONS

& a new copy of Villains of The Undercity Written by Mark Taormino. This is a basic but very well written adventure that takes place in the city of Los Far Port where a lone survivor chokes out his last breath leaving the PC's with a mystery & a literal quest into the bowels & dungeons of the city. There is lots happening in this first through third level adventure. I'm going to have to do a new review coming up! Thanks  Mark Taormino Merry Christmas to you & your family & happy holidays!

Thanks for all of the gifts my friends & my players will hate you all for all them! They will be used in good health at the table top coming up!

Special Thanks For All of the Gifts & Merry Christmas to all my fans, readers, friends, & especially family!
May you all have a blessed & joyous holiday from us all here at Swords & Stitchery. More to come & for now keep em rolling!

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