Saturday, May 12, 2018

Dungeons and Dragons the most important gaming franchise in the world

Forbes has written an article about the upcoming book Dungeons & Dragons Art and Arcana: A Visual History an illustrated guide to the history and evolution of the beloved game, told through more than 700 pieces of artwork from each edition of the core books, supplements, and modules; decades of Dragon and Dungeon magazines; classic advertisements and merchandise; and never-before-seen sketches, large-format canvases, rare photographs, one-of-a-kind drafts, and more from the now-famous designers and artists associated with the game. The book's authors had unparalleled access to the archives of publisher Wizards of the Coast, as well as the personal collections of top collectors and the game's original designers, allowing them to compile the most comprehensive collection of D&D imagery ever assembled.

There are some real gems from the archives.

You can read the full article here:

Thursday, May 10, 2018


Some time ago I cut my copy of Chainmail apart, typed up all the text, and reformatted it into a more legible book.

One of the stand out elements of the book is how much Landsknechte are mentioned with their stats and abilities scattered all over the book. I took all the mentions and combined them into one super entry to see it all together. With how much reverence and attention is paid to these famous troops you'd think they were the greatest fighting force since the Great Heathen Army invaded the British Isles.

Point Value: 2 + Weapon value
Attack as: Light Foot
Defend as: Light Foot
Move 12”
Charge move 15”
Morale Rating: 8

Takes no prisoners (treat prisoners as kills).

Only half penalties for facing.

Fatigue in 6 melee rounds (not 3).

Landsknechte armed with pikes or pole arms facing the enemy automatically stand any charges.

Form Hedgehog: If ten or more of these troops are in a square-type formation, pikes or pole arms facing outwards in all four directions, a “hedgehog” has been constituted. A hedgehog can be moved at one-half speed. It may never charge. A Hedgehog will never be drawn into neighboring melees. It may be attacked only by troops armed with like weapons (pikes or pole weapons).

Close Formation: Landsknechte attacking in close formation (5x2 figures minimum) fight as Armored Foot, with extra die for weapons. For every two men so attacking an additional “mass shock” die is added. When defending in close order (1” or less apart), with pole arms facing the enemy, they are treated as Heavy Foot. If attacked in flank or rear, or when in open order, they are treated as Light Foot.

Pike Charge: Because of the reputation and ferocity of these troops, an enemy charged by Landsknechte pikemen (other than like troops) must roll two dice and consult the Loss table, just as if they had suffered excess casualties. However, if the unit being attacked fails to score high enough it is not removed from play; rather, it retreats 1 1/2 moves, backs to the enemy, and must rally. If they are followed up by pikemen before they rally, the unit is totally eliminated. Note: The charging pike formation must be eligible to receive “max shock” dice (at least 10 figures in 5 x 2 formation) in order to force enemy units to check morale.

Friday, April 20, 2018

Norse Bestiary Alphabet

It's been another one of those dry spells on this blog. I've been juggling several projects all at different stages. A couple of the OSR things I have in the works are very close to being ready and they will be getting some sneak previews here quite soon.

Right now I want so show you a little project I did in January and recently compiled into a book and published. It probably falls well within the interest of readers of this blog. A long time passion of mine has been Norse mythology and I've always wanted to do some projects with that theme. Then an idea struck me and I started a project called Valkyria: Shield Maidens of Asgard. It is coming along quite nicely and if you follow my Instagram you might have seen a few images from it. In the course of research I did a little art challenge where I drew a creature from Norse mythology for each letter of the alphabet and posted it each day. The images struck a chord with some people and I was urged to make a book. I'm happy to announce it is available on my Gumroad store. It's a charming little book full of factoids and (I hope) cool art.

If this is something you might want check it out at the link below:

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Hawkmoor Map Work in Progress

I've been trying to draw the Hawkmoor map in a "Tolkienesque" style. This is my second attempt.
There are 10 zones on the map. The corner zones are Dungeons (you can see the one classic "Skull cave" in the top right), the side zones are wilderness. The middle is for the village of Hammlette. Just above the village is an area to put Fate cards which are drawn each turn the party is in the village and usually give some slight advantage or bonus, but occasionally increase the Doom. Doom is a measure of power of the forces of Chaos the party is contending against. That's how the game currently plays anyways.

I wasn't satisfied with how the Skull Cave came out, so redrew it on a separate sheet. It looks much better, but didn't match well with the rest of the map when I tried to stitch them together in Photoshop. So I'm considering just redrawing the whole map again.

The game is making progress little by little. Playtime is still a little too long, trying to crunch it down to under 90 minutes without losing any of the flavor or fun. I'll post and share more as I complete the components.

Monday, March 19, 2018

D&D Had its Biggest Sales Year in 2017

Dungeons & Dragons had its best sales year since it was acquired from TSR Inc. by game publisher Wizards of the Coast in 1997, the company confirmed to SYFY WIRE.

What I find most interesting is how D&D has moved from being perceived as some weird hobby that nerds played in their parent's basement to an activity anyone can enjoy without being stigmatized.
The game gained an international stage with the release of Netflix's Stranger Things in the summer of 2016, as its main characters play Dungeons & Dragons regularly. Tito calls the show "another data point in the zeitgeist." It has also shown up on other popular TV programs like The Big Bang Theory and The Goldbergs. Even Rick and Morty co-creator Dan Harmon hosts a show called HarmonQuest, which is heavily inspired by Dungeons & Dragons. His former show, Community, also had two episodes solely devoted to playing the game.