Saturday, October 24, 2015

Review And Commentary On The FREE OSR PDF: Underworld Lore The Occult Issue #4 By Gorgon Milk and Co.For Your Old School Sword and Sorcery Campaign

So I'm always on the look out for another OSR resource or two, sometimes things slip under the radar case in point is this issue of Underworld Lore. Underworld Lore issue #4 focuses on the OSR occult in a  sort of 'Crowley by way of Ringling Brothers and Barnaby Circus' vibe, this is an issue that crosses into the gonzo and back again in several articles. Alright it crosses over into the gonzo and has a toe in the OSR occult multiple times. But in a good way, you know that sort of discovering that the neighbors had a really cool occult reference book that you happen to find at the local tag sale.
You can download it right over HERE
So what makes this issue so valuable right around this time of year? There a metric ton here of resources, like the first article. Did you ever wonder about those three gods on the artwork in back of the 1st edition AD&D Deities and Demigods book? Yeah me too!
Those folks watching over the entire proceedings? Well wonder no more. The article 'Three Dead Gods' by Gavin Norman goes into exactly who and what  these entities are. For use with any old school campaign.

 Then there's a well done demon generator by  using D6's and D30's and besides you can never have to many demon generators and given the Halloween season its a pretty natural fit. Christian Sturke does a nice job with this generator and its got some amazing possibilities especially for a sword and sorcery game such as Astonishing Swordsmen and Sorcerers of Hyperborea or Lamentations of the Flame Princess.
Michael Raston gives us Lam in which the article details on Lam, how to summon Lam, and possible results of said summoning. Believe me your old school campaigns will never be the same again when Lam appears.
We get a pretty damn complete interview with Paolo Greco, author of the Chthonic Codex and some nice details about this OSR product. There are few bits and details on the product if your looking to learn more about the product.  Obscure Sources of Occult Power is a really stand out artitcle,  a d12 table of unusual magic items which is perfect for Dungeon Crawl Classics. Many of these items are shall we say unique and rather classy! Mezzoglunes is an adventure location by James Garrison & 

Greg Gorgonmilk which details a d12 table of psychic real estate accessible to mortals only through the act of dreaming. There's a ton of OSR adventure location potential in this article for any number of OSR games in which the details of Lovecraft's Dreamlands or some other dreaming world is used. Plenty going on under the hood to keep this adventure location going for months.  Arcane Accommodations is a d30 table of magical dwellings for your favorite wizard or other unusual magical practitioner. I had a hand in this table but completely forgot that I did so. Anyhow this table has potential for Lamentations, AS&SH, and lots of other games where a wizard's domicile is needed. This also includes the post apocalyptic world where wizard's having unusual lairs is the norm and not the exception.

Finally we get into a whole lot of trouble with the Delver's Dictionary an article of strange slang terms and weird words of adventurer's vocabulary by
Greg Gorgonmilk & Matthew W. Schmeer. These will be creeping into your adventures regardless if you want them too or not. Finally we get a look at  The Thief 's Plan for Salvation by Christian Sturke which is damn well done. I also have to love the vintage adds and real world adds in this issue along with the pinups and what not.
All in all this is a good issue if you as the DM want to add a bit more occult zip into your campaigns. Nothing here is particularly Earth or campaign shattering but there's enough here to work with to create a perfect sword and sorcery old school campaign and even perhaps link it back upon itself to create a modern/OSR adventure that could be run back to back with each other.

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