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Monday 31 October 2016

Break Monday: Occult Bibliography Edition

These days, the problem isn't with finding occult books; they're all on Amazon! It's about knowing which ones are any good.  Those of you who've read my various posts about "real magic in RPGs" know that already.

So the big problem if you want to learn a bit about occultism is where to even start. Today's article gives you what you need: here we list 15 real books of magic that you can get from Amazon, and that can give you a decent occult education!

As usual, please respost it if you liked it!


Currently Smoking: Masonic Meerschaum + Image Virginia 

Sunday 30 October 2016

The Great neo-OSR Mashup

So, I'm pretty wasted from a very intense weekend of roleplay. I already wrote you yesterday about my Dark Albion game (an "inquisitor" campaign using Cults of Chaos) on the Friday local minicon.

Then today, after too little sleep, I ran my regular Dark Albion campaign, the one that started it all; where the PCs are now very high level (by Dark Albion's standard, 8th-14th), and are currently making their way through a variation of Castle Gargantua.

So, today, rather than have to write anymore, I'll just link you to the awesome Swords & Stitchery blog, where Eric talks about another great mashup idea:  Dark Albion with Red & Pleasant Land!



Currently Smoking: Missouri Meerschaum + Gawith's Virginia Flake

Saturday 29 October 2016

An Anecdote about New School Gamers Playing Their First Old-School Game

I have for some time now been a regular guest-GM at a local fortnightly gaming event.  Since Uruguay did not have a gaming scene in the old-school era (the earliest edition to really arrive when there was a meaningful community of gamers for it was 2e, and only very late in its history) and since most of the attendees at the gaming event are young (too young to have even been around for late 2e), for a large number of those attending who are not novice players, the D&D they know is 3rd edition (and now 5e, of course).

Now, I've been running an ongoing floating campaign of Dark Albion. Every time I attend, my table is open and I don't reserve seats, so it's the first six or seven people to sit down that get to play (my table is always swamped pretty quickly); this means there are returning players and there's also always new players that got to the table fast enough to join in, and the makeup of the party is different each night.

 Almost everyone who is playing for the first time in a given session are either total newbies to RPGs or they've only played 3e/5e.  These new players are usually totally freaked out at the notion of playing a D&D character with an average of 2-4hp (or maybe as little a 1, or in theory a max of 9 if they have a +3 Con bonus). Realizing that a single hit might kill them, and learning that healing magic is super-scarce (compared to 3e) and there's no resurrection totally shocks them, and I can see the gears turning in their head when they start as to whether they're really going to have a good time with such a 'weak' character.

But by the end of the session, everyone is hooked.

On the previous Friday session, I had a couple of women newbies (both former 3e players) who were totally surprised by how 'exciting' it was. They joined my table because they're part of Uruguay's fairly huge "Lords of Olympus" fan club, and wanted the chance to play a game (even if it wasn't LoO) with the guy who wrote it, but neither were really D&D fans.  They loved that Dark Albion is a 'more interesting' world to play in than the generic-fantasy worlds they'd seen before, they liked the medieval authenticity, they liked the "inquisitor campaign" focus on rooting out chaos and the roleplay opportunities that an investigative-style game provided.  But in terms of action one of the things they were most nervous about, but ended up most liking was the 'thrill' of knowing how dangerous everything was for their characters.   They both came away agreeing that 'regular D&D' (as they knew it) was "too easy" and that this (old-school) style was way more fun.

This week, one of the two was there again and she was quick to come play. In one session, she'd already dramatically upper her strategic thinking, resource management, and leadership qualities in the party. She was an absolute boss (it helped that her character was a cleric, with all the social influence and benefits that class gets in the Albion setting).  And as it happened, the whole rest of the party this time were newbies, and she was instrumental in assuring them that having 1-4 hit points was going to be freaking awesome.


Currently Smoking: Missouri Meerschaum + Gawith's Virginia Flake

Friday 28 October 2016

Break Friday: Study Claims Religious People are Like Autistics

So in today's article, we look at a news piece that's been going around, about how researchers of clinical psychology at the University of Helsinki did a study which they claim proves that religious people have issues understanding reality, and comparing them as similar to people with Autism.

That takes some balls, especially when what you're doing isn't a real science.

Check out the research-based proof for massive biases, and how those biases affect the so-called Soft "Sciences", in my new article: Psychologists say Religious People are Autistic? But Here's Their Bias.

As always, check it out, and if you like it please share it!


Currently smoking: Lorenzetti Solitario Egg + Hearth &  Home Chestnut

Thursday 27 October 2016

An Unusual Lords of Olympus Review

So, I've just yesterday been informed of the publication of an interview I gave. An unusual interview, about Lords of Olympus.

Mainly, it's unusual because of the interviewer! He's not an RPG blogger or forum poster. Not an RPG industry guy at all.

Also, he looks like this:

This is Hercules Invictus; afficionado of Greek Mythology, Myth in general, and the heroic journey. Motivational speaker, 'olympian path shaman', and professional e-radio host, as well as Hercules cosplayer (and Samson, from time to time).

Obviously, Hercules was interested in LoO because of the subject of the game. I did not meet him through any kind of occult background (we run in, shall we say, extremely different circles); in fact, he contacted Precis Intermedia asking them for a review copy and to interview the author.

So, if you want to see an interview about me from a non-hobbyist (though he told me later that he has in fact played RPGs), and a non-hobbyist that goes around in a Hercules outfit, check out the "Mythic Gaming Interview: the RPGPundit"!


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Poker + H&H's Chestnut

Wednesday 26 October 2016

Classic Rant: Arrows of Indra: The Importance of Family in Old-school Play

In a lot of old-school D&D games, player characters are defined as lone operatives; many games don't bother to consider much, if any, of the PC's family background. You kind of get the feeling at times that the entire party is composed of either orphans or disinherited family black-sheep. There are of course many exceptions to this in actual campaigns, but there are relatively few old-school rule-sets (or new-school rulesets, for that matter) that bother to worry a great deal about the PC's family. That's what Pendragon is for after all, right? Or, if you want a darker and more dysfunctional take, Amber.

The thing is, in Arrows of Indra at least, the setting places enormous significance on family. Its a huge part of the Indian setting's culture, and its a huge part of the background emulation of the Mahabharata story, which is ultimately a story about family.

In the Bharata Kingdoms, family is extremely important, the last of a scale of social networking that goes Caste-Clan-Family. Each is as important as the last; and a man without family, like a man without clan, or a man without caste, is a man without any proper place in Bharata society and deprived of an instant network of contacts and support that can be vital to managing everyday life in the world.

Now, as a GM, you might choose to ignore all that, and of course that's fine. You can certainly run AoI the same way you might run a Greyhawk game, and just ignore all those details about family or clan (or even caste, if you care to). Maybe your players are suspicious of including it, because they fear it will just give them a big load of hassles they're not really interested in. Maybe you (the GM) are suspicious of including it, because you worry that you'll end up getting burned by a bunch of background-detail stuff from overeager players.
In any case, I would still suggest you consider it; it is possible to include family in your campaign in ways that makes it useful and interesting to players and GM alike, enriching your party's connection to the setting and the world.

This is why the Arrows of Indra rules has mechanics right at character creation for determining the makeup of a (human) PC's family. And just what he gets in the rolls can make a big difference to how he starts out. A PC might end up with a dead father and as the oldest man in the family, in which case, in Bharata society, he is the head of his immediate family. This means that on the one hand, he owns all the family property and has authority to make all the decisions for the family. On the other, it means he is responsible for the maintenance of everyone in his family. But its feasible in this system for a 1st level PC to start out the game with a farm or manor. 

On the other hand, the PC might be a minor son with a living father or elder brother; this leaves the PC free and clear of any of the hassles of supporting anyone, but it puts them under the authority of their father (or brother). The head of their family is expected to morally and financially support the PC, but he can also decide whether (and even who!) the PC should marry, to give one example. Its unlikely a paterfamilias would stop a younger son from going out adventuring; in the heroic age this brings prestige and potential fortune to the entire family, its one less mouth to feed, and it gets the PC out of everyone's hair; but should junior end up hitting it big as a major hero, dad or big-brother will want to use his kid (or kid brother) as tool to gain influence in the clan or the kingdom, and improve the whole family's lot through marriage and alliances.

In Appendix I we get rules for income from lands or profit from businesses; and the expectation is that if your PC gets land or businesses (either through adventuring or by virtue of being the paterfamilias) it will be his family that will help him to run it. A PCs brothers might end up becoming adventurers in their own right, and a clever GM might even allow these siblings to act as backup PCs for the player character should his current character die or retire, creating some continuity in the campaign. A PCs sisters will potentially be married to other NPCs of interest that could also form part of the PC's network; if the PC himself inherits the family seat while his younger sisters are still of marriageable age, he might even want to use them to form alliances by marriage to important NPCs (of course, within caste, and with the approval of his clan; but the clan will generally approve of any choice that helps bring the clan prestige). A PC party might even cement their alliance by intermarriage of sisters or daughters, turning the party into one big extended family business. Appendix I also has rules governing marriage and offspring.

A GM can (and should) tailor just how important the role of family is in his campaign; they can be largely in the background, or they can play a central part. You might want to introduce the elements of PC family-connections gradually, allowing the interconnections to develop organically. 

My best advice on this whole subject is that a good GM should avoid the "girlfriend in the refrigerator" type of syndrome, where he makes the players feel that their families are nothing but a liability: NPCs who are only there to get captured, killed, threatened, or to end up screwing up constantly and costing the PC time, money or prestige. There are more clever ways to use family. Show the players how the PC having a family, and paying attention in the game to family, will end up benefiting from this, and gaining advantages that those PCs who neglect their family will not. Dad or Uncle Rajesh might be able to set the PCs up with the local clan chief, or might know someone in the city watch, or might be able to tell the PCs about which Siddhis are trustworthy. A family that is close to the PC will shelter them and try to support them when the PCs are going through a bad spell.

This isn't to say the family can't also be a source of drama; just be careful that it isn't too much of a "21st century drama"; younger siblings should not be rebellious in the TV-teen-drama sense, they know what's good for them too, after all. Only a particularly abominable person would really reject the family rules, so the NPC siblings of the player's character shouldn't be constantly doing so. Create outside threats to a PC's family too if you like, but make it a part of the organic sandbox flow of the setting: a PCs family might live in an area being over-run by the Maghadan empire, for example, or if the PCs join Krishna's band, then King Kansa might send out Rakshasa mercenaries to exact retribution on family members living close enough to the city-state of Mathura. But what threats there are, the PC's family shouldn't just be hapless victims in need of rescue, but rather make the threats something that the family deals with together. Resist, in other words, the impulse to make the PC the only competent or clever member of his family.

And really, all of what I said above can apply just as easily to any other old-school setting as much as it applies to Arrows of Indra. Family was just as important a part of the fabric of Medieval European society as it was to Epic Indian society. So even if you're not running AoI, consider what's been written above.

Of course, if you haven't picked up Arrows of Indra yet, this might be a good time to give it a look. 


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Solitario + Stockebbye's Bull's Eye Flake

(Originally Posted September 5, 2013)

Tuesday 25 October 2016

Break Monday: Crazy Historical Politics Edition

As insane as the 2016 US Presidential elections have been, there are some other political campaigns in history that were similarly crazy. Were any of these more nuts than Trump v. Clinton?

In this week's article, I look at 10 Political Campaigns (Almost?) As Crazy As This One!  Because if we don't learn lessons from history, we're destined to repeat it.

If you like the article, please share it!


Currently Smoking: Raleigh Hawkbill + Image Virginia

Monday 24 October 2016

DCC Backstage: The Backstagening 5.5!

The second part of the epic back-room conversation going on among the players of my spectacular DCC campaign! Check it out:

Morris: Just imagine... a conversation between Chu & Whoom.

Bill: Nightmare.

Fishman/Hoom: Hoom.

Chu/Shebubu: Hoom? You know, your mutant.

Morris: Hoom? Your character!

Fishman/Hoom: Keep doing it. I'll have my revenge.

Chu/Shebubu: You should chill, my friend.


Morris: I don't know what happened to you but I can certainly try to help you in taking your revenge or whatever.

Chu/Shebubu: Well, what happens, happens it's all in His great plan.

Fishman/Hoom: You fucking deserve each other.

Morris: It was my great plan, yeah.

Chu/Shebubu: Yep, we are both humans, he's my Hugga.

Morris: Oh, you mean... forget it.

Fishman/Hoom: I said "fucking deserve" not "deserve fucking".

Chu/Shebubu: Man, way to ruin dreams.

(Pundit added Dwarven Kidnapper to the Conversation)

Pundit: I'll note I think someone left a bag of dice at my place.

Fishman/Hoom: Does it look like it was ripped by a Halfling?  No, I have mine kangaroo's scrotum in my bag.

Drunken Master/Axe-bard: is it black? maybe it's mine

Pundit: Possibly. I don't remember now. Too lazy to check. If your dice are missing, they're the ones that are here.

Drunken Master/Axe-Bard: I'm too lazy to check right now too.  We will figure it out some time, when I need them and I don't have them.

Fishman/Hoom: IT'S A LAZY-OFF

Pundit: Mainly for Dwarven Kidnapper: This is the very long thread from theRPGsite with the archive of past adventures. It's not obligatory reading, but if you want to look feel free. The archive only keeps a record of adventures played up to one full year ago.

And for a more updated glimpse at stuff that happened very recently in the campaign, here's the last two gaming logs:
"DCC Campaign: No Cleric Can Fix What's Wrong With Me"

"DCC Campaign: We're Injury Besties"

Dwarven Kidnapper: ok, i'll read it, thanks. Is this Axe-Bard's Lute-Axe?


Bill: We totally need to Mend that luteaxe.

Dwarven Kidnapper: aye, you're right my witty companion, that's an axe who must be fixed.

Chu/Shebubu: Who is going to fix it?

Bill: Bill.

Chu/Shebubu: Oh, right, you could do that. Like reverse-destroy things.

Bill: Yes. And I roll a D24 for mending.  Need to get one year in the fire plane or the magic plane to increase affinity.

Dwarven Kidnapper: If u let me "take with me" a fine dwarven lass i could wait 1 year...

Bill: Wanna come with to the fire or magic plane?

Dwarven Kidnapper: a fire dwarf who throws fire axes would be nice to be, could i become one there?

Bill: Not that I can think of, you would need some magical type of fire axe.

Chu/Shebubu: G.O.D. always finds a way.

Dwarven Kidnapper: maybe if next time we got ourselves a demon couldn't we try to capture it and use it... i don't know perhaps doing some weird soul magic thingy and make it a fire demon axe? it's that a possibility?

Chu/Shebubu: Nah. You need to know how to make magic swords.

Bill: and guess who is the only one even near that level of wizardry? But does not have the spell...

Chu/Shebubu: And either way, I am not going to go and feed him and take it out to walks.

Bill: Exactly.

Dwarven Kidnapper: A demon pet sounds nice...

Bill: we already have a potential high maintenance demon idol; plus a demon pet, sounds very expensive. Vet, food, chip, toys, flee medicine, rabies shots, all that stuff. And washing, who will wash a fire demon? I know I'm not!

Dwarven Kidnapper: We could get more people to do it for us! I know a way or two.. it's easy. And cheap!

Bill: if we get one, he is all yours, but if he turns on you, I'm gonna be obliged to say: I told you so.

Chu/Shebubu: And then again I am the only one that can potentially bind it if I ever get to level 3, But then again, I am probably going to die around the next 30 minutes If I continue the Goodie-two-shoes cleric act.

Bill: I never killed any cleric, just for his personality...Actually, I never killed a cleric, period

Chu/Shebubu: Not saying you.

Bill: Well, there seems to be a very murderous thief among us. Are you referring to him?

Chu/Shebubu: Two to be exact.

Bill: Oh yeah, the sniper thief. But I doubt that one wants to kill you just for being a cleric.

Chu/Shebubu: He wants to kill because he haves no chill : ^)
Doesn't matter, loving this cleric either way.

Bill: and as a standard, clerics are quite annoying as fuck.

Fishman/Hoom: Related to your last article:

That's it for today! Stay tuned for more later.


Currently Smoking: Lorenzetti Poker + Solani Aged Burley Flake

Sunday 23 October 2016

Wild West Campaign Update: A Death For Five Dollars

In today's session, my players figured out the basic price to get the least-fortunate citizens of Dodge to do almost anything: five dollars.

It started with a gift of $5, actually, to one of the unfortunates of the town, which led to a series of events that caused a wealthy retired US Army Major looking to buy a stake in Dodge's political class to end up confronted with James "Dog" Kelly, the figurehead-leader of the political group known as "The Gang".

(that's Kelly on the left; on the right, an unknown associate, possibly "Kid Taylor". Note the dog. Not pictured (possibly taking the photograph) is Kelly's pet bear "Paddy")

I say a figurehead because the real mastermind was Bat Masterson.

This led to the arrest of (Player Character) "Kid Taylor", for beating a Mexican near to death, and led to a proxy-duel between (Player Character) Tom "bad luck" Miller and a man the Major hired named Stan Shin, who was said to have killed 3 men in a single shootout in Deadwood.  Shin initially wanted nothing to do with it, as he was busy getting drunk and threatening people all over town. But then Wyatt Earp humiliated the fuck out of him, showed Shin for a coward and threw him violently out of the Long Branch Saloon. And Shin, desperate to try to recover his lost reputation (now clearly based on what must have just been a very lucky gunfight), accepted to duel for the Major.  Shin shot first but was so shaky he missed, and Miller shot him down with one bullet.

Meanwhile, some of the PCs, seeing what $5 could do, started to throw them around like they were candies (which tells you how successful at least some of the PCs have been in Dodge in just a year and a half).

This adventure also saw a high-stakes poker game at the Long Branch. The Mormon Gambler tried his luck but didn't do all that well (though he didn't lose his shirt, at least).  He did catch a certain cheating gambler named Tom White, though.  White had already managed to wipe out one of the participants in the game, the young and tempestuous Spike Kenedy, son and heir of the ranching magnate Miflin Kenedy.   Deputy Young managed to get White out of there and into a jail cell post-haste (to avoid White's getting lynched); only to later be surprised to find a fancy Topeka lawyer showed up to help him get the charges dismissed and give him a ticket out of town.

That's it for today. As of this adventure, the '77 cattle drive has come to an end, but the vital Dodge City elections are only two months away, and things are heating up as winter approaches in Dodge.


Currently Smoking: Neerup Bent Billiard + Image latakia

Saturday 22 October 2016

DCC Backstage: The Backstagening pt. 5.0

Ready for some more inane chatter from my DCC group?  Lately, the campaign has been so good, and the conversation about it between sessions so non-stop, that I can't really keep up.  Here's a slightly edited version of the last while.

Chu/Shebubu: I don't remember Bill finally accepting his trans-racialness but I am OK with it.


Bill: By now Bill does not give a fuck about his looks, unless he gets to be an elf again.  And even then, bill will probably not give a fuck. Right now Bill just wants his staff and to know who the fuck is the wizard guy in the nether zone and bring him back. And that's just grazing the idea that bill ever gave a fuck about anything after ted's death.

Chu/Shebubu: Well, he did have a gigantic hate boner for, Sandy, Dr Theobald and Akbasha.

Morris: And destroying Tholia, don't forget that.

Chu/Shebubu: Nah, Bill just goes to places and fucks them up, He just left Tholia in the backburner.

Morris: But that's a problem, because if we kill that 1000th minotaur, that weird wizard will be immortal.

Bill: Hate and giving a fuck is different.

Morris: And that's immoral... because *?

Chu/Shebubu: Eh, it doesn't really matter if he is or isn't immortal.

Bill: Immortal and unkillable is very different.

Morris: I don't want to accomplish his fucking dream

Chu/Shebubu: I mean if we really cared about people with immortality we would go and try to stop the Snake King in the southern continent so he would stop cutting the heads of kings.

Morris: What the actual fuck?

Bill: That's still a thing?


Bill: We could totally do that after Coolland.

Chu/Shebubu: Who knows, it has been like 2 months since the last information we got from him, but sadly, I don't think anyone that knew about him is alive.

Bill: We could go places and be like a pacifying force.

Morris: Meh, I can wait, killing spontaneous minotaurs is fun.

Bill: Especially when not being the minotaur's main target.

Morris: I mean, if we stop these minotaurs.. I'll miss them.

Chu/Shebubu: Yeah, I think we should leave the minotaurs for now until we solve the Bill staff thing, which would send us to that convocation where we will probably fuck everything up again.

Morris: I'm sure

Chu/Shebubu: I actually forgot about asking Palombo.

Morris: Yay fucking everything up is fun!

Drunken Master/Axe-Bard: fucking everything up is not what we want, but it's what we do.

Chu/Shebubu: Yep, byproduct of our adventures.

Morris: Hey, yes I want

Bill: Collateral Damage. You don't make an omelette without breaking eggs. 

Morris: Unless your eggs are already broken. I only have on testicle left thanks to the minotaurs.

Chu/Shebubu: They haven't really hit you at all.

Morris: Not after meeting you.

Bill: Well, smart-pants guerrilla. You don't make an omelette without scrambling them eggs!

Morris: You are my meat shields. I mean, best friends!

Bill: Someone wants the warrior to take his remaining testicle...

Morris: That's... that's fair enough.

Bill: That might turn down your sex drive a bit and make you less creepy. And would add a safety against halfling attacks.  We would have a eunuch in the party, which we never had so far.  Yeah fuck it, let's castrate the thief.

Chu/Shebubu: More diversity in the party is better. :D

Bill: If you become only a small percentage as smart as Varis, Tholia has no chance! I'm sure we can crowd fund your complete castration, imagine all the likes you would get back at the capital of cooland.



Currently Smoking: Brigham Anniversary Pipe + Image Latakia

Friday 21 October 2016

Classic Rant: Lords of Olympus: Scrying And Mortal Cabals

In the classical world, I mean in the real historical world of the Greeks and Romans, many forms of what we might term “magic” were either looked upon poorly or directly forbidden. But divination, which could be said to include both attempts to perceive the future by signs (“augury”), attempts to receive visions of other people or places in the present, and communication with spirits (or even gods), or even the spirits of the dead, in order to receive information and tutelage, was considered a highly honored science.

At the same time, the ancients were quite clear about these sciences being highly complicated, and not something that just anyone could practice. It was understood that there were both frauds who were clearly fake diviners, and also differing degrees of skilled fortune-tellers, some who had much more talent or expertise than others. Some of it was believed to depend upon benediction from the Gods (and tied to formal priesthood or initiation in mystery cults), while in other cases there was a suggestion that bloodline could influence one’s raw talent at the art.

In Lords of Olympus the Scrying Power is something that could be seen as the “real” or “ideal” version of this power that mortals can only barely touch upon. The power-levels related to using Scrying pair up nicely with this, so that mortals can only receive “the vaguest glimpses”, while the gods can gain the most clear visions. Likewise, in terms of communication, the gods have sufficient power to be able to use Scrying as an inter-dimensional communication system with one another, while mortals can only accomplish the same with extreme difficulty.

The obvious use in a LoO campaign for scrying is to allow PCs to communicate with each other and with NPCs, and (in its Advanced version) even create a magical Gate between themselves and where/who they are scrying with for a shortcut in traveling the multiverse.

But thinking about the above setting-information, a number of interesting ideas arise; its amusing to think that Scrying could also be used in a campaign as a plot device, where Mortals may try to contact a PC as part of mortal magic-use. 

Imagine, for example, that a cabal of mortal mages might end up trying to use Scrying as a way to communicate with an immortal to gain said deity as a powerful patron. Or, perhaps in a more sinister motive, to use a young godling for who-knows-what unspeakable blood-rites, or perhaps some kind of a breeding program, or to sacrifice to some supposedly powerful entity.

Its even possible that this could be something weaponized in a Modern or futuristic world; where a government agency aware of the existence of the gods and the viability of magic could try to use Scrying as a way to gather information on these powerful non-human beings they don’t worship as gods, but consider potentially world-threatening beings that need to be studied and perhaps destroyed to protect the security of their civilization!

In general in a Lords of Olympus games, mortals are rarely considered powerful enough to be a real threat to even starting-level Olympian PCs. But it can be a challenging and interesting experiment for a GM to try to see just how dangerous, powerful, or influential he could make a fully-mortal Secret Order, Cabal, or Government Agency (without relying on going beyond the “rules” of the game or involving actual divine agents). In my own experience, its the type of thing players (particularly experienced players) will rarely expect.


Currently Smoking: Italian Redbark + Argento Latakia

(Originally Posted August 20, 2013)

Thursday 20 October 2016

Break Thursday: The REAL Reason Why "After-School Satan" Sucks!

So, in today's article I take a look at the "After School Satan" kids club that has been making the news.  As it turns out, it's awful! But NOT for the reason the fundies might say.  I mean, if you're a kid who wants to learn black magic and worship Lucifer, the After School Satan club sucks major ass.

Find out why in my in-depth investigation, where I go inside the workings of the After-School Satan Club and the Satanic Temple, the organization that's promoting it.

If you like it, please share it!


Currently Smoking: Missouri Meerschaum + Stockebbye's Bull's Eye Flake

Wednesday 19 October 2016

Jonathan Tweet Challenged me to React to a Feminist Article About how Gamers Aren't Inclusive

So, I made a pass-over comment to something Jonathan Tweet had said in response to yet another feminist blog entry from some Canadian "political activist" (guess which side of politics?), writing about "How to Make Women Feel Welcome" at gaming tables; the assumption, of course, being that women are not presently welcome.  Here's what I said:

"The Outrage Brigade, gaming division, thinks I'm gaming's greatest right-wing monster. And yet I've never ever had problem getting women to my games. I have had a 30% ratio of women players on average to my games for years.
Just Friday I had a whole group of women gamers here in a local gaming event in Uruguay chatting with me in praise for my Lords of Olympus game, and praising how I handled the balance of medieval-authenticity with roles for female characters in Dark Albion.

I agree that there are INDIVIDUALS who are hostile to women gamers in the tabletop RPG world, but I fundamentally disagree with the notion that the hobby as a whole is 'unwelcoming' to women, LGBT or anyone else. Especially old-school gamers. Feminists demand that we have to change the nature of the hobby itself because it is somehow 'unwelcoming' but that's bullshit. 90% of gamers don't give a twopenny fuck about anything to do with your gender/race/sexuality, they only care whether you want to play D&D or not. They're more likely to treat you like shit for liking 4e (and justifiably so) than for the color of your skin or the form of your genitals.

Also, the "X card" is the biggest piece of bullshit in the history of ridiculously stupid ideas of this hobby. I have never seen it being used as anything other than a weapon.

In short, this article demands we make take fundamental assumptions as 'truth': that the hobby and hobby spaces are inherently hostile to women, that only making radical changes involving making a certain group of leftist-activists Censors of the hobby will change that, and that anyone who disagrees is one step removed from a rapist.

I reject all those assumptions.
So in response to my comment, Tweet asked me to elaborate, and, well, I did. Here is a point by point analysis of the dubious article:

1st paragraph: I think that it's a serious exaggeration to imagine a woman 'awash in a sea of people who are not like you'. First, if you are a gamer who is there to play some D&D you are exactly like the people in that room. They're all gamers who want to play some RPGs too. It's not the Pick Up Artist convention or something.

'from in-game rape, to out of game harassment (and yes, sometimes rape there too), to snide comments, and the jokes about women and gaming, the popular demographic has left a foul taste in a lot of women's mouths when it comes to gaming'

Do these things happen? Yes. But this article implies that any of these things are ubiquitous and endemic.
They aren't. I'm a game designer, blogger, have been GMing for decades, own one of the major gaming forums. I've never seen anywhere in these contexts any game or gamers above the age of 14 or so who have thought rape was funny, who wanted to have "in game rape", or who thought harassing women (in the sense of "unwanted sexual attention" as opposed to in the Regressive Left sense of 'disagreeing with anything a feminist says') was OK

"when we tried to get more women GMs to our tables, they said they felt uncomfortable because often they'd been running for all men, and that past harassment had left them nervous or anxious"

Is this account possible? Sure. But then there's Contessa, and all the women GMs I know, and all the women players I know, and who have played in my games (in spite of the false rumors spread about me by the Outrage Brigade of what a terrible sexist I am) and none of them seem afraid of playing or running a game. 

Why do we hear this same narrative every time, always from self-style "political activists" (like the author of the article), presenting women as these incredibly fragile trauma-prone delicate flowers who need all kinds of special (usually totalitarian) concessions to be able to do what we see women doing ALL THE TIME in the real world without any difficulty? Why is it that in this day and age, no one infantilizes women and suggests women are helpless emotionally inferior hysterics more than self-style "feminists" of the 3rd wave?

On women facilitating and organizing games: I have no problem with this. Like I said: I, the big bad RPGPundit, owner of the big bad RPGsite, was one of the first people to endorse Contessa, while the feminists of rpgnet were calling it 'problematic' because Stacy Dellorfano wanted it to be about women motherfucking gaming rather than about holding panels about how awful sexism is and how women can't possibly game unless we radically redesign the entire hobby and D&D as a game.

Harassment Policy: I have no problem with a clear, explicit, and universally applied harassment policy. But all too often, the 'harassment policy' that the Regressive Outrage Brigade wants is one what is intentionally vague where they can use it as a weapon against ideological enemies. Ones where if anyone FEELS offended for any given reason whatsoever (or just claims to be) they can ban/throw-out attendees, GMs, speakers, audience members at panels, or game companies selling products. But only so long as the person feeling offended is part of the right identity-politics group. And not even then, if that person isn't of the right political allegiance (a conservative woman claiming to be offended by a male-feminist leftist will be laughed at, if not thrown out herself).

re Tools: I've already made my position on the X-card clear. It is a fundamental attack on the very structure of the RPG. It disrupts the entire balance of the play group and the GM/player authority dynamic. It was directly inspired by the same kind of thinking that Storygames has been trying to push on gaming for nearly 15 years now: to neuter the 'unfair' authority of the GM. 

I'll add that I think it would be fine if games AT CONS had 'ratings' or were asked to include some kind of mention in their description if their game had elements that were sensitive. 

The one absolute authority a player should have is the power to stand up and say "I'm not playing this game anymore". But aside from that, in a convention or game-event situation, it is a good idea in general (for the GM as much as the players) for everyone to know if a game is potentially going to touch on sexual issues, or maybe certain other elements that potential players could feel uncomfortable getting into.

Women Guests: Um, sure. But they should be there for some kind of merit. If the women who've never designed anything other than a political activism blog suffer from "impostor syndrome" its probably because they are in fact impostors. 
People should be chosen for their qualifications, not for their gender or other features. It was disgusting to me, this year, that Mike Pondsmith, who is an amazing game designer and a massively qualified hero of the hobby, and totally worthy to be Guest of Honor at Gencon, was made guest of honor not for any of those reasons but only because he has black skin. I can think of no greater insult to the man and everything he has accomplished that he was clearly and blatantly chosen only for that reason, and that if, say Kevin Siembieda was black and Mike Pondsmith was white, it would have been Siembieda at Gencon instead. 
That's the kind of bullshit Identity Politics leads to. Not only does it undeservedly give false importance to unqualified people on the basis of their gender or skin color, but it tells people of amazing merit and accomplishment that the only thing that matters about them and the only reason they're being honored is their gender or skin color.

"GM takes steps to be inclusive": What a fucking ridiculous example she gives. So we're supposed to remove some of the most basic story elements of mythology and literature because this idiot's concept of 'feminism' is that women can never be portrayed as enduring any kind of hardship without it being sexist? Women in the real world don't get kidnapped? 

I can absolutely get if a GM creates a scenario where women are ONLY portrayed as helpless ninnies who exist for sex appeal and nothing else. But read what she's saying here: it isn't that. She's saying that we can't ever portray any woman ever as being in danger, we can't portray any woman ever as being beautiful, even, because this is 'noninclusive'. 

I have little need to wonder what someone like her would think of a setting like Dark Albion, based on actual medieval authenticity, where in my games women can be very powerful but also face a fundamentally unfair world, where some of their roles and opportunities are restricted to them. 
Just last Friday I was running a Dark Albion game at a local gaming minicon, and I had a couple of young women come to my table (rushed to my table, actually) to get a vaunted slot to play. Here in Uruguay "Lords of Olympus" is insanely popular and they wanted the chance to play a game with the guy who had written it, even if it wasn't what I was running. They did have some doubts about the description of my Dark Albion campaign. They wanted to know if they could even play women characters.
I explained that yes, in Dark Albion as a setting I didn't want to completely eliminate the fundamentally sexist nature of 15th century Europe but there are several options for women. The (invented) element of the Clerical Order consists of people given miraculous power by the Unconquered Sun, and the Unconquered Sun gives miracles to men or women alike, so the order has as many women clerics as men. Internally it treats female clerics the same as male clerics, though for reasons relating to the sexism of the Church in general women have only very rarely reached up to the very highest administrative positions in the order. 

Titled Magisters are all men because the great collegiums (Oxford and Cambridge, as well as others on the continent) do not accept women; but there are many noble women who study magic in secret and many 'wise women' who practice handed down unauthorized magic. this is a dangerous path for any woman because while not strictly forbidden, magic-using women are among the first suspected of chaos-sorcery whenever some evil is afoot. Women fighters are rare but there are women raised in mercenary companies or even daughters of knights raised to be fighters; they face sexist opposition but can rise up to positions of prestige if they demonstrate their ability (more so, ironically, among the lower-class soldiery who care more about fighting skill, than among the nobility where social-roles are more rigid). etc. etc.

My two would-be new players were satisfied with this and played a Cleric and a thief (crime having little concern with gender distinction, after all). They both had a great time, and played a central part in the game (especially the cleric), and both appreciated the elements of play that involved them having to maneuver through a society that presented them with occasional challenges related to their gender. Somehow I'm betting the author of the article would have found it all terribly offensive, though.

Of course, I'll add that if I should see any player at one of these games acting like an asshole to female players, I would certainly speak up and put them in their place. But it's never happened at any table of mine in years of gaming at gaming clubs, community events, or being a guest GM at cons like the one I went to on Friday. The closest thing I can think of was one occasion (at a local gaming con)with a group that were almost all under-18s where I saw that the players, trying to decide what to do at some moment in the game, were all talking above or interrupting the single female player. I don't think its so much that she was a girl, because they were interrupting each other just as much, as that she was not as willing to interrupt back or talk over the boys. So finally I said "For fuck's sake let her speak!", and believe it or not they did just that. Crazy, right? "Male terrorists" (I won't say 'white' because they were all Latinos, and the Left only counts Latinos as 'white' if they're voting Republican) realizing that they had been ignoring another player and correcting themselves?

Inclusive Games: I absolutely agree that there "aren't 'girl' games and 'boy' games". So why the flying fuck does the author think that gaming events have to fill a quota of Storygames for women to actually feel 'safe' to play? It's HER SIDE that keeps pretending you need to have special 'girl' games or 'queer' games or 'Latino' games because somehow if you just run D&D and aren't discriminatory that won't be enough. As if there aren't women or people of color or LGBT people who want to have fun slaughtering orcs and firing magic missiles. Someone better tell that to the Latinos in my groups: they don't want some kind of "Storygame about the 3rd world" or "inclusive RPG set in an Inca world"; most of them want to play in the fucking Forgotten Realms, Star Wars, Paranoia, Vampire, or play the kids of Greek Gods in Lords of Olympus (or cult-hunters in Dark Albion). Tell that also to the women who play at my con games, or the ones who play elven stoners or human torturers in my DCC game, or Clerics or nobles in my Dark Albion game or have played in my Amber campaigns; or to the bisexual guy who played a superhero in my ICONS "Golden Age" game, or to the gender-fluid kid who loved playing a crazy wizard in my DCC game. 

Now I'm not saying a Con can't have someone running "monsterhearts" (whatever the fuck that is), that's fine. But I think there's something incredibly smarmy and self-serving about a bunch of fucking Storygamer Swine who hate D&D claiming that we need to impose a quota of special game slots for otherwise-famously-unpopular Storygames that their friends all wrote or else we're all rapists or something. That shows off the real agenda here: personal power and obtaining influence in a hobby their total lack of talent and ability would otherwise prevent them from getting.

Diverse pre-gen characters: I don't know. OSR characters can be rolled up in minutes, so we don't usually have this problem.

Harassment Taken Seriously: Sure. Real harassment, not the crazy cuckoo-land definition that 3rd wave feminism uses, should ALWAYS be taken seriously. A guy trying to hit on a girl in mid-game session should probably always be called out. Unwanted touching of any kind should almost always see the perpetrator thrown out of the table if not the event itself.

Inclusive Space: The author here suggests literal censorship of game products. That's not an 'inclusive space'. That's totalitarianism. If a cover has some kind of art which could be considered obscene it should probably be kept in a special section with some kind of warning. Other than that, grow the fuck up and stop being such a fucking fascist.

So I'll sum up with another quote of mine from that thread:

But here's what the Outrage Brigade does: 
a) claim that because racism/sexism/homophobia we need to impose these new gaming mechanics or fire someone or hire someone else on the basis of skin color or not play someone's game or make gamers play someone else's game.

b) when people disagree, present that as PROOF that gamers hate women/people-of-color/LGBT

It's a disgusting little shell game. A three-card-monte meant to get them attention and power in the hobby (in the names of people they in no way represent and have no real interest in), and of course patreon-dollars. 
You know how I get women gamers playing my games? I make kick-ass games and settings that people like playing. How do I make them feel welcome at my table? I make it very clear they're welcome to sit down and play some fucking D&D, and then run a kick-ass game in my Dark Albion setting. I don't infantilize them; I treat them like adults and assume they don't need special tools or special exceptions just for them. 


Currently Smoking: Missouri Meerschaum + Gawith Virginia Flake 

Tuesday 18 October 2016 Tuesday: Occult Elections Edition

Today: Find out the occult angle to the 2016 presidential elections.  No, this isn't about Hillary being in the Illuminati or something like that, it's about groups of witches, pagans, magicians and other weirdos who are trying to use magic to affect the election.

Find out about the group of witches who put a curse on Trump's hair. Or why the Wiccan ritual to get Bernie the nomination went wrong! Or about the ceremonial magicians trying to make Hillary die. Or about the psychotic occult lunatic running as a Libertarian senate candidate!

It's all here, in "How Witches and Wizards are Voting"!

Check it out, and please share!


Monday 17 October 2016

Break Monday: Crazy Temples!

If you want inspiration for your game, or love amazing architecture or weird religion, check this out:

The World's Weirdest Temples!

As always please share it or retweet it or whatever, anywhere you can!


Sunday 16 October 2016

Classic Rant: The Pseudoactivist Swines’ End Game

Someone asked: just what is it that the pseudo-activist Swine hope to accomplish? I mean, they know there isn’t some government resource or board or censorship they’ll just be able to take over that would let them ban all the games they don’t like; so how do they really hope to be able to force gaming companies to do what they want? Even moreso, how could they possibly force indie or small press publishers to do what they want?

Well, the end game is twofold: first the Pseudoactivist Swine want to take control of language and of the fundamental assumptions of discourse, so as to create an environment of conversation where certain things are taken for granted; that is to say, make certain things appear as ‘facts’ and forbidden to be even questioned.

Second, they want their own particular group of collectively-approved elites to be the ones who get to define by “consensus” (false consensus) what those unquestionable truths get to be; so that they can declare “you can’t have RPGs with x” or “RPG X is clearly racist” and it will be indisputable (in the sense that anyone crossing them will automatically be viewed by the “unwashed masses” they despise but seek to manipulate as being incorrigible racists/sexists/homophobes/monsters/ for even daring to doubt their declarations).

So its pretty much the exact same tactic they attempted to use to get GNS pushed through as a default concept in the RPG hobby, only they’re now hypocritically using “Activist causes” as their theatre of operations, tugging on emotional triggers (i.e., “you’re a GOOD person if you agree with us, and a terrible person if you don’t”) rather than intellectual ones (i.e., “you’re a clever intellectual if you agree with us, and an incoherent brain damaged idiot if you don’t”).

Thus, the end result that they hope to achieve is a gaming hobby where they get to control definitions; and in that way make the hobby what they want: scaring or manipulating publishers in general into only publishing things they want, and cancelling the games (or firing the people) they don’t want. And marginalizing those small press games that they oppose, while promoting others on the basis of their approval.

This is what they mean when they say they want to “change the culture”; they want to impose their vision on the gaming culture by trying to marginalize all opposition to their agenda as being the work of racists, sexists or homophobes, even though their vision has precious little to do with real activism. They just want to get to define what the hobby looks like and who is in charge of it (them, obviously).

Can they actually achieve this? Not if I have anything to say about it.


(Originally posted August 10, 2013)

Saturday 15 October 2016

DCC Campaign Update: Almost Everyone Useful is Dead... and the Fishman

As of the end of last adventure, the stalwart PCs were inside an ancient  giant robot presumably in the shape of the Lord of Blood and Fire.  They had found, at the bottom of the mecha/statue a kind of service elevator leading down to a cave, and were considering exploring it; since even though they had Mended the mecha they were unable to figure out how to power it up.


-"Woof woof! There are people out here! I do not know these people! Woof woof woof!"

-The people that Wally the Airedale-Terrier/scout/lookout alerted the PCs to turn out to be more PCs! The Drunken Master has arrived along with a trio of newbies.
The Drunken Master was last seen abandoned by the rest of the party, unconscious in a field full of adorable bunnies that the PCs later learned were the spies and agents of Queen Zoey of Coolland (for whom they are now questing). He was given CPR by the bunnies and wandered off into the woods after his recovery.

-"*hic* Hello! I'm looking for my group..."
"... we wish you luck with that!"

-The newbies accompanying him are a Dwarven Kidnapper, a Halfling Chicken-Rider, and a Yellow-mutant Hobo.

-"Hey.. is there a doctor with you guys? I don't think my pee should be red!"

-"We have a job for you. We want you and your new friends to go down this elevator into a dark pit."
"I'm drunk, not stupid. I told my last party that!"
"We were your last party!"

-"So who's going down the shaft?"
(in stereo) "The Newbies!"

-"Look, we're only going to lower them halfway down so they can get a view of the cave. It's not like we're sending them to their certain doom!"
"Well, knowing you guys.."

-"We're trying to find some crystals, we think that they power the giant robot/statue"
"I still think we can just stuff corpses into the furnace."
"Corpses, crystals... more testing is required."

-"So if we tap on the basket three times, someone will pull us up?"
"No, but if you start to scream in agony and terror we'll cut the cable and close the hatch."

-"Guys are we even sure the libram of whatever is up there?"
"Holy shit, that was like two adventures ago, you fucking drunk!"

-"you know.. there could be alcohol down there.."
"I told you already, I may be drunk but I'm not... how much alcohol?"

-"Are you telling me not one of you fucking guys has a torch?!"
"well *hic* I don't like to get too close to fire.."

-"Fishman, can your new spell create the illusion of light??"
"He can't even create the illusion of competence!"
"man, when even the GM is making fun of your character..."
"That wasn't me, that was the NPC priest... but I do feel the same way."

-"Wait, can't Ekim's Mystical Mask give you infravision?"
"It can! Holy shit, it's actually fucking useful!"
"Wait.. it can only do that for 2 rounds."
"Oh for fuck's sake!"
"LOL, for one brief shining moment you thought that spell didn't totally suck!"

-"Oh wait you guys, I actually have a flashlight on me! I forgot!"
"fuck's sake!"

-"ok, get us down three-quarters of the way!"
"I can't! I'm shit at fractions!"

-"There's something moving down there... keep going but not all the way!"
"That's what she said!"

-Bill takes a literal 'shot in the dark' with a pistol.
"You can't do that with a magic missile, you know."

-"Why don't we just toss Morris down the hole?"
"I don't think we should be encouraging the creep to get anywhere near holes."

-"You know I have Spider Climb.. I am helpful sometimes!"
"Oh yeah... it's so rarely that we forget."

-Bill tries to cast a spell, but ends up receiving a vision from Sezrekan that would allow him to gain a new spell if he spends 24 hours in pure meditation.
"We're going to wait 24 hours, so we can be 'stronger together'".
"I've never trusted anyone who ever said that."

-The halfling is looking for a giant chicken to tame and ride; it's a test of manhood among his tribe.
"Well, you might just get yourself a magic chicken..we're hoping to receive another call from the Grand Council of Wizards".

-"So what do you do, dwarf?"
"I'm a professional kidnapper."
"What do you know? We now have a literal kidnapper in our party, and Morris is still the creepiest guy in the group."

-"This party once had a literal agent of the Lord of All Flesh, daemon of hedonism and erotic perversity, and he was less creepy than Morris!"

-"Cleric Zabaz, how about you take first watch with me?"
"How about fuck you, I won't do any watch. You want cure light wounds in the morning, don't you bitch?"
"So does Cure Disease cure lung cancer, dude?"

-The next morning, there's a minotaur attack! Morris spends 3 luck points on doing extra damage, but doesn't quite kill him!
"Drunken master, you have the chance to do the kill shot!"
"You had me at 'shot'"

-In fact, the drunken master fails his chance, so Morris spends another 2 points to finally get the kill. That means he starts the day 5 luck points down.

-Bill completes his meditation, and successfully obtains the Magic Shield spell.
"So what does that do?"
"Well, there's two things you have to know about Magic Shield.  The First is that it's a shield..."

-The party finally piles into the elevator; Morris volunteers to stay up top and pull the crank to lower the rest of the group, figuring he'll be safer that way.  Unfortunately, a shadow-creature that had been hiding in the room chooses that moment to attack (when the party are about halfway down the 200' drop to the cave).  Panicked, Morris snaps the crank and pulls himself down the rope, while the elevator plunges the rest of the way down doing massive damage to everyone inside.
"Thanks to you half the party might be dead!"
"I feel guilty about that."
"You ARE guilty!"
"Killing most of the party is frowned upon, you know!"

-Tragically, the Fishman is dead!  So is the yellow mutant and the halfling chicken-rider but no one cares much about that.

-Bill, Chu, and the Drunken Master survived. The Drunken Master is particularly affected by his brush with the grim reaper.
"I'm going to change my life, you guys.. I swear from this day forward I'll never set foot inside an elevator again."

-"Morris pretends to be sad, but on the inside he's really happy"

-The cave they fell into is full of extra-mutated radioactive mutants! There's a brief fight, but they get scared off after the party shoots a couple of them and Bill 'flames on' with Control Fire.
Since Bill is stuck being on fire for another hour or so, Chu chops up the Fishman and makes cooks fishman-kebobs off Bill's aura of flame.

-The party moves on to a cave filled with gems; but when Chu approaches a big pile of gems there turns out to be a pair of hideous demons hiding in the pile! Chu gets himself poisoned by their attacks.

-The Drunken Master manages to take up the fight, and one of the demons falls, but then the Drunken Master is taken down by a demon too.

-Zabaz uses Word of Command on the other demon: "Fuck!"
The demon immediately starts humping his fallen partner's corpse.

-Sadly, both Chu and the Drunken Master are dead now too. The rest of the PCs mourn, and then stuff every last gem they can into the briefcase of holding.

-"well, almost everyone who could actually do anything in this party is dead... and the Fishman"

-"We're going to have to proceed as usual: planning carefully at every step."
"We do that?"

-"Everyone is dead because of you, you shit!"
"You aren't dead..."
"Only because G.O.D. won't let me die!"

-The party makes their way to the shore of an underground pond. There, they find that the radioactive mutants have set up a cage filled with sacrificial prisoners/replacement PCs.  There's a Cold Mutant Thief that the party already met previously, and a human they previously knew too (only now he's become a Cleric in the Cult of Ack'basha, and renamed himself "Uncle Shebubu").  There's also a hideous Transparent Mutant sailor, a mutant rock-musician bard with a combination lute/axe (who can't actually speak or sing above a whisper), and a human shit-disturber from Arkhome.

-The transparent mutant sailor is also a cyclops, but he still has an eyepatch, he just puts it to the side of his head, in a desperate and doomed attempt to fit in.

-Just as the characters are getting introduced, a Giant Tentacle bursts out of the pond and starts to attack. Note that it's not a 'tentacle monster', just a seemingly autonomous Giant Tentacle.

-"I failed my Holy Sanctuary spell! Why, G.O.D, why??"
"Welcome to the life of a cleric, bitch!"

-The Cold Mutant is actually self-aware; he and the Fishman had both been temporarily swept up to the Crown of Creation when Nikos the Wizard had his apotheosis, and as a result they both came to realize that they were in fact just player characters, and for the same player. Thus, the Cold Mutant knows he was also the Fishman, and he's pretty pissed at his character having just died.

-"So what's the Cold Mutant's name?"
"No! Goddamnit don't you dare!"
"So Hum goes next?"
"too late"
"So now you've gone from playing a guy whose name no one remembered to playing one Hum's name no one will allow you to forget."

-"You're supposed to be a fucking cleric?? What happened to your dignity?"
"What dignity? I'm a cultist of Ack'Basha!"

-"That transparent mutant is hideous!"
"Yeah, he could actually use Ekim's Mystical Mask...ironic."

-"What did you fuckers do with my previous body??"
"Which one was it? There were so many corpses this adventure.."

-Transparent mutants are apparently Bill the Elf fans; on account of how both they and Bill are almost universally despised.
"Wait, are you Bill the Elf??"
"...depends who's asking?"

-"that Cold Mutant is the fucking Fishman somehow! I'm telling you, he switched bodies, like Bill supposedly did!"
"Maybe the Fishman was working for Sezrekhan all along?"
"Could that be one of the powers of Ekim's Mystical Mask?"

-"Shebubu" the Ack'basha cultist of course thinks Bill is the 'evil one'. He and the Cold Mutant squabble. Bill doesn't really give a fuck.

-The party moves on and finds an elaborate chest, which turns out to be trapped. Morris tries very delicately to disarm and open it. But the Shit Disturber accuses the whole party of cowardice and breaks the chest open, activating the explosive fire trap.  Incredibly, in spite of having only 4 Luck, he survives it.

-The chest contains a variety of riches, and a mysterious key.
"I was the one who opened the chest, so I'm the one who should get the stuff inside."
"I agree, and also I'm going to be staying the fuck away from you."

-"I'm not a selfish person.."
"You killed half the party just to avoid a shadow!"

-"There's a lot of fucking division in this party. I blame G.O.D."
"I blame the guy who killed half the party!"

-the group then finds their way into a ritual chamber which contains a portal to the demiplane of Blood & Fire. Unfortunately, a hideous bloody flaming creature that looks like a cross between a triceratops and a flying insect comes through the gate and attacks!
"Look out a..."
"A tricerawasp!"

-the Tricerawasp manages to kill the incredibly unlucky shit-disturber.

-"I'll throw a jug of rum at the tricerawasp!"
"Your alcoholic PC is turning in his grave."

-"Use your Word of Command: Shit spell!"
"No, it'll shit fire or something!"

-"You hit it with your lute-axe. Now your lute-axe is on fire"
"I rock out!"

-(whispered) "My lute has burned up... I'll have to become a vocalist"

The demon of the Plane of Blood and Fire, Bill Ward-Portals the hell out of the gateway. Now the PCs just have to find out how to get out of these caves and back up to the Demon Mecha before the Duke of Abstinence gets to it. They are still divided between whether they want to try to make it work, or just destroy it and beat the Duke in some other fashion.

Stay tuned for more DCC greatness!


Currently Smoking: Neerup Poker + C&D's Bailey's Front Porch