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Topics - Alex Karaczun

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First Edition AD&D / Which AD&D Books Do You Use?
« on: October 03, 2017, 01:37:00 PM »
Which books, of those available for AD&D 1st Edition, do you use for your games/campaign? I'll start off...

I am currently running a campaign set in the World of Greyhawk CY576. The rules we use are the three core rule books; Monster Manual, Players Handbook and Dungeon Masters Guide. We also use the Fiend Folio, Monster Manual II, Unearthed Arcana, Dungeoneer's Survival Guide, Wilderness Survival Guide and Manual of the Planes. The World of Greyhawk Folio and Gold Boxed Set are used for world info. The Greyhawk Adventures hardback is rarely used. We also add content from Dragon Magazine from the same era. Some examples follow.

Winged Folk (Al Karak Elam)

Barbarian (revision)
Cavalier (revision)
Monk (revision)
Bounty Hunter
Bard (Minstrel)
Incantatrix (Sorcerer)
Anti-Paladin (NPC Only)
Sentinel (NPC Only)

Good Hits & Bad Misses (Critical Hits and Fumbles)
Living in a Material World (Spell Components)
Realistic Vital Statistics (Height & Weight)

We kept the Bard as presented in the Dungeon Masters Guide, the Bard from Dragon Magazine we call a Minstrel and is sort of a lesser, more common type of Bard. We call the Incantatrix a Sorcerer because Incantatrix sounds stupid;D

Fire Born Games / Fire Born Games
« on: September 25, 2017, 08:48:53 PM »
Mischief, Inc. is now Fire Born Games. I'm just popping in to let the folks here at OSRGaming know, and to say I'll be trying to be more active here and on other Social Media sites. We have a Facebook group, and a Twitter account if you'd like to follow us. We may even occasionally have special promotions for OSRGaming members, but most of that activity will be limited to members of our mailing list. The sign up form for the mailing list are in the footer of our web page. We've even had a few giveaways on our Facebook page with more to come. We've been fairly active on our Facebook page discussing our works in progress and I was recently interviewed on the Multiverse blog of TSR, Inc. It was a wonderfully fun experience and I hope to be able to do more interviews of this sort in the future.

I'll try to be available to interact with here, and to answer questions about our products and future plans as I am able.

It feels good to be back at OSRGaming!

Campaign Worlds / World of Greyhawk Maps
« on: October 17, 2016, 02:28:16 PM »
Has anyone ever scanned together the poster sized Greyhawk maps and got them printed and framed? I'm looking to do just that and would appreciate tips or hints from those who may have doen it already.

I'm probably going to use the images in the WotC PDF boxed set as my base images. Anyone tried this?

Classic D&D / MOVED: Good Rules Set for AD&D 1 or 2?
« on: October 06, 2016, 09:59:39 AM »

General Discussion / Dave Arneson Quotes
« on: September 27, 2016, 09:54:56 AM »
Anyone know of any cool, verifiable Dave Arneson quotes about role playing in general?

First Edition AD&D / Dwarven Undead
« on: July 12, 2016, 09:36:50 AM »
I'm working on a project involving a ruined dwarven city and I am wondering if there is a comprehensive list of dwarven undead for 1st Edition AD&D anywhere? I'm not interested in 2nd Edition AD&D monster listings unless they have been converted to a 1e clone, or something like Adventures Dark and Deep (huge monster book!).

General Discussion / My Blog
« on: June 01, 2016, 03:01:59 PM »
I've split my opinion blogs off from the Mischief, Inc. blog site. The new blog is Omens and Portents. There will still be a Mischief, Inc. company blog Mischief and Mayhem coming to a newly redesigned company web site that is currently in development.

First Edition AD&D / Combat: Theater of the Mind vs Tactical Grid
« on: May 16, 2016, 10:33:40 AM »
I am slowly, but surely gearing up to run a 1st Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons game once we move to a new house with (hopefully) a finished basement. What I am looking for in this thread are explanations of how other 1E AD&D Dungeon Masters interpret the rules governing non-tactical combat (or as it is now known, Theater of the Mind). I am not looking for heavily house ruled, or 1E/2E mixed descriptions. Just 1E (with UA if applicable).

My earliest recollections of running non-tactical combat are of assuming both sides "formed up" and fought 1st-Rank vs 1st-Rank with back ranks providing cover fire, or casting spells regardless of the width of the fighting space. When a 1st-Rank combatant for either side went down, someone from the back ranks filled in. We used the # of attackers vs size of opponent rules, so that often times front rank fighters would have several smaller opponents able to attack them. When a "gap" finally appeared in the front rank then enemies could begin attacking back rank combatants. This had the advantage of letting the players choose who they felt could take the most punishment, and put them up front. It also allowed the squishies in the back rank to only have to defend against missles for most, if not all of the battle. The biggest disadvantage was it removed a lot of the chaos and creativity that can happen in a combat. Characters weren't vaulting over tables, swinging from chandeliers and so forth.

The second method we tried to use was way more dynamic allowing anything the players could think of, like jumping off ledges onto opponents, or trying to outflank opponents, but it soon devolved into arguments about where characters or monsters were actually standing, and why some things were allowed and others weren't based on the DM's mental picture of the battle.

After the above method caused more arguments than I can count, there was a change to pseudo-tactical combat where we penciled in letters and numbers on the players' map and erased and rewrote them when someone moved. This helped clear up positonal questions, but became a chore and really led to using a larger grid and miniatures.

I've considered using a similar method to the first one I described, but after so many years of doing tactical grid combat it seems kind of strange, and I want to know if there are any tips and tricks, or simply actual rules I have forgotten that help keep track of it all, or clearly explain how to do it.

First Edition AD&D / Old School TSR Dungeon Map Symbols
« on: March 29, 2016, 08:54:21 AM »
Hey everyone! I have a question for the AD&D fans here.

Are any of you aware of Old School TSR Blue Dungeon Map Symbol collections in standard image formats (PNG, JPG, GIF, TIFF, etc.)? We do our product maps using Dungeonographer, but every so often I want a symbol not included in the program. Making my own pit, chest or table is easy enough, but occasionally I need something more detailed an IAMAI (I am NOT and illustrator). Having a go-to source that I can convert or trace would be a great boon to me so I don't have to kick that work out to our real illustrators.

Any help appreciated!

General Discussion / Trying to track down an illustrator
« on: February 14, 2016, 06:59:23 PM »
So for a couple of years I've been trying to track down the illustrator who did this piece.

The JPG file is tagged Gray Sapphire. Even though I contacted them a couple of times on DeviantArt offering to pay for the right to use this illustration in one of our products, I've heard nothing back.

Does anyone know the artist, or where they might hangout online? I'm thinking I may just commission another illustrator to do their own take on this piece, but I want to make sure I have done my due diligence in trying to track down the creator.

Thanks in advance for any leads.

We're live with Mischief, Inc.'s first Kickstarter First Edition Adventure Module A1 A Forgotten Evil!

We're just shy of 90% funded with 12 days to go! We'd really love your support!

You can get A1 A Forgotten Evil in PDF and print, F1 The Tomb of Rakoss the Undying in PDF and print (a Kickstarter exclusive) and a signed and number lithograph of the front cover illustration of A1 A Forgotten Evil "Street Fight" by Jordan Worley (also a Kickstarter exclusive).

General Discussion / Using Basic, Expert and Advanced Interchangeably
« on: February 04, 2016, 02:47:46 PM »
How many Dungeon Masters back in the late 70s and through the 80s used Basic, Expert and Advanced Dungeons & Dragons adventure modules and Dragon Magazine adventures interchangeably?

This is something I did a lot. It was mostly out of ignorance I suppose, of the actual differences between the systems. I had Holmes Basic and the Advanced books, but never really bothered to compare them side-by-side.

The B and X series modules I ran in my AD&D campaign ran smoothly and I never felt the need to makes sure things lined up with Advanced assumptions, even in later years when I realized there were in fact differences.

How about the rest of you?

Fire Born Games / Q&A: Fire Born Games Products
« on: February 02, 2016, 04:40:11 PM »
This thread will be for asking question about Fire Born Games products. Please change the Subject of your post to the title of the product you are asking about.

Campaign Worlds / Mischief, Inc.'s Twelve Kingdoms™ Campaign Setting
« on: February 02, 2016, 09:48:43 AM »
Mischief, Inc.'s adventure modules use a default world to tie them all together in a consistent setting. This world is know as Dearoedd™ and the setting The Twelve Kingdoms™. We are releasing information on this setting primarily through the modules themselves, but there are also some blog posts that drill down on cities and the gods of the world. I will provide links at the bottom of this post.

To aid Dungeon Masters in running campaigns based in this setting, I will be available here to answer questions that arise to the best of my ability. Keep in mind that reveals planned for future adventure modules will likely be answered cryptically, but I will always try to give something to anyone who is willing to ask a question. Some general information follows.

Daearoedd (‘dd’ is pronounced as a ‘th’) is the name given to the world by the Werin people of the Twelve Kingdoms, other peoples have different names for the world. The Abaedan of the Maere Empire call the world Eorð (‘ð’ is pronounced ‘th’). The dwarves Jörð, and the elves Ardh. To the orcs it is Qarga.

The Twelve Kingdoms and the Maere Empire occupy the central area of a large continent separated roughly down the middle by a north-south running range of mountains known as the Ganlaw Mountains. Areas to the north of the map are inhabited by human barbarians, and orc tribes. Little is known about areas to the south, but some humans travel north over the Arian Hills to trade in the Twelve Kingdoms.

The Twelve Kingdoms is an area once a single kingdom known as the Kingdom of Cadarn. Cadarn and Maere fought dozens of wars over the course of centuries, but it was not either rival that brought about the other's fall. Almost 200 years ago, during the rule of Merric Brudd III, an orc hoard swept out of the north and laid waste to town after town. During the course of the war that followed Merric and all his heirs died. In the following chaos the representative to the King's Council of each of the twelve major cities in the kingdom declared themselves ruler. Open war broke out among the cities for several years until a uneasy peace was reached. From that point on each city became a city-state under the rule of a local noble claiming various titles from Lord Mayor to King.

This is the state of things when new player characters start campaigning in the year 712.

Useful Links

Caer Arail


I look forward to fielding your questions!

Classic D&D / My Top 5 Favorite B/X Adventure Modules
« on: January 31, 2016, 09:42:58 AM »
I thought it would be fun to post my Top 5 Favorite Adventure Modules for D&D, and ask other to do the same. These are my favorite B/X modules as I was firmly entrenched in AD&D by the time the Mentzer BECMI boxes were being released.

Honorable Mention: O1 The Gem and the Staff

Two fun adventures in one package. Very important to avoid combat as often as possible.

5. B3 The Palace of the Silver Princess

One word, Decapus!

4. B4 The Lost City

Cool expandable, sandbox-y adventure. Zargon is a bad dude! The Cynidiceans are crazy fun!

3. X1 The Isle of Dread

Possibly the best sandbox adventure for Expert. All kinds of "land that time forgot" goodness here!

2. B2 The Keep on the Borderlands

The quintessential dungeon crawl. Not much of a story here, but possibly the coolest dungeon map ever drawn. Bree-yark baby, bree-yark!

1. X2 Castle Amber (Château d'Amberville)

One of the most creative, strange, and fun adventures I have ever game mastered. The d'Ambreville family (thanks to Bruce Heard for the correct spelling) is bat-guano crazy and so much fun to play. The boxing match in the Grand Salon is one of my favorite encounters ever!

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