D&D Classics

February 1, 2013

I’m sure all of you are by now aware of the new offering of PDFs of prior editions of Dungeons & Dragons over at dndclassics.com. However, I’m not sure how many of you had an opportunity to take advantage of WotC’s last offering that ended around 2007. Personally, while I was generally disappointed by the scan quality of those older releases, they were priced properly at $5 each. This new offering doubles the price of most AD&D and OD&D releases at $10 (baring those that were cheaper when released, which is mostly adventures and of lesser interest to me); even if the scans are perfect and incredibly high resolution, they’re not worth that, when hard copies of many of the books are often only slightly more than that. I’m not even willing to purchase one to compare quality; I would have if they were $5, and I would be willing to replace a number of the PDFs I do have if the quality was significantly improved. Finally, two stores offered the PDFs during the last offering: Paizo and Drive-Thru RPG (called RPGNow back then, I believe). This time, the PDFs are only offered through dndclassics.com, which is run by Drive-Thru RPG. I have heard repeatedly that if someone bought a PDF years ago that is amongst the current offering, they can download the new version for free. So on top of gouging for PDFs now, they are also screwing over a significant number of people who just happened to buy from the other store. There is very little that I can imagine to prevent a credit being given to people who bought from Paizo, as Paizo almost certainly had to make sales information available to WotC, which I would think would include the ability to verify order numbers and the like. If they did not, then they could easily have been able to lie to WotC over how many PDFs were sold, thus pocketing all the profits on the sales. Therefore, WotC should have access to what  was ordered before, or have a way to verify what was ordered before, and issue credits. Not doing this means that either WotC doesn’t care about their customer base (a definite possibility) or Paizo is refusing to assist with the information to spite D&D, which is to a degree against their own interests, considering how many people might want to convert old D&D adventures and settings to Pathfinder for their own use.

Overall, I’m incredibly disappointed and not a little bit angry over how this has gone.


The Ferrous Dragons

January 31, 2013

In issue #170 of Dragon magazine, a new subgroup of dragons was presented, the ferrous dragons. Unlike the metallic, chromatic, or gem dragons, they did not share an alignment axis. To be honest, there’s always been something I felt was lacking about them; they aren’t unified enough, and the name is rather a misnomer, as ferrous should apply only to iron and iron alloy metals. The dragons presented were the Chromium (Chrome) Dragon, the Cobalt Dragon, the Iron Dragon, the Nickel Dragon, and the Tungsten Dragon. Knowledge of most of these metals is fairly recent and can’t easily be accessed or identified without fairly modern scientific methods; of course, wizardry could easily identify different metals and could be used to replace modern smelting and chemical processes. It also seems like being metals should put them squarely in the Metallic Dragon category, or at least being *almost* Metallic (as Steel, Mercury, and Electrum Dragons are). All that said, I decided to use them as test candidates for creating my own versions of the Monstrous Compendium sheets. These sheets are formatted for double-sided printing with a gutter to allow for binding or placing in a three ring binder, although I haven’t really checked to see if there was enough space for any of that.

The Ferrous Dragons


Nomog-Geaya the General

December 25, 2012

The last member of the goblin pantheon is the patron of the hobgoblins, Nomog-Geaya. A merciless combatant and commander, he is the perfect epitome of the ideal hobgoblin warrior. His priests are brutal and belligerent fighters, leading forces into battle at any opportunity. They are so well known for their rigid discipline that Nomog-Geaya has been known to punish those who show excessive emotion, even if it is from such spells as Tasha’s Uncontrollable Hideous Laughter. Enjoy!

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Yet More Gods

December 23, 2012

It’s funny how I keep stumbling across deities to add to my project. Just recently, I discovered a single line in Dungeon #2 (in Nigel Findley’s adventure Caermor) referring to an evil dwarven god of revenge (even to undeath) called Cador, so into my project he goes! Also, Dungeon #5 has an adventure surrounding followers of the ascended tanar’ri Shami-Amourae, the goddess of debased eros and so-called Queen of Succubi. Seems fitting considering the other demon princes in the project already.

I seem to have this incessant need to find MOAR GODS to add to the project. I’ve already added Grond Peaksmasher, a giantish demigod of firbolgs from the Moonshaes in the Forgotten Realms, Refnara the gnollish god of fear from Dungeon #48, Krocaa, an aarakocra god from one issue of Dragon (can’t recall which offhand), and of course the large expansion of draconic and centaur gods. Now I’m also considering a number of others. Anguileusis, the Anguillian god from Sea Devils Monstrous Arcana book, is one I’ll probably take on, even though I do not particularly like the god or the monsters who worship him; however, they are canonically in FR’s underdark. Then you’ve got the deities worshipped by grippli and grung; adding them could form the basis of a remnant amphibian/batrachian pantheon along with Ramenos. Of course, I’d have to come up with names for them, histories, relationships, etc. Then there is the deity worshipped by the squirrel-like kercpa, which is another god I’d need to name, and even Orcus himself. My fear with that last one is treading on toes or canon, since he has long been one of the popular great evils (and is mentioned in many products) in D&D history. There are a few others I’m considering, such as the Wise Queen of the K’r’r’r, an arachnid race from Spelljammer, the thri-kreen Mantis God of the Eternal Lotus, and the Vedic god of Rakshasas, Ravanna. Some pantheons have been mentioned but undetailed, which I am considering working on as well, such as the Neogi pantheon, the Dracon pantheon, and the Grommam pantheon. One problem with the latter two pantheons is that we know they exist, but that’s it; no individual gods are specified. Finally, there are a small number of 3rd edition gods I might add to the project, such as the drow god Keptolo and some of the new Elven gods from Races of the Wild; I’ve pretty much ruled out the gnomish gods, the halfling gods, and most of the dwarvish gods for various reasons such as unnecessary similarity to existing gods and unimaginative and/or apocryphal nature.

I’m interested in what others think of these gods, and if there’s been any other work done to expand some of these deities (the few I’ve searched for don’t seem to have had much published).


Meriadar the Patient One

December 10, 2012

Like Stalker, Meriadar is an outlier amongst the goblinoid deities. However, unlike that spiteful power, Meriadar has a race to call his own: the oft-enslaved mongrelmen. Through patience, tolerance, and understanding, he hopes to bring all the goblinoid races out from the shadow of evil. Enjoy!

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Gaknulak the Trapmaker

November 25, 2012

Gaknulak is one of the few goblinkin deities with a primarily constructive aspect, being the kobold god of invention, traps, and protective construction. He is reluctantly subservient to Kurtulmak, and is frequently dragged into Steelscales’ ill-fated plots against the Gnomish gods. Enjoy!

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Stalker, the Hateful Shadow

November 10, 2012

Stalker is not fully a part of any goblinoid pantheon,  but is propitiated in many local pantheons as a god of death, particularly amongst the bugbears. It seeks nothing but death and revenge, hunting after all the goblinoid races and anything else that lives in the dark places. Its rare followers operate in secret, plotting revenge and murder upon their personal enemies. Enjoy!

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Bargrivyek the Peacekeeper

October 21, 2012

With a title like The Peacekeeper, one might expect Bargrivyek to be an exile from the goblin pantheon. One could not be more wrong, however; he preaches peace, not between all races, but between goblin tribes so they can more effectively wage war on non-goblins. His priesthood is of particular importance in large goblin and hobgoblin kingdoms, keeping tribal disputes to a lower key or subtly directing blame from goblins to humans, elves, dwarves, or other nearby enemies. Enjoy!

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Skiggaret the Deranged One

September 30, 2012

The last of the bugbear racial deities, Skiggaret the Deranged One is the god of fear, madness, and insanity. He is sent by the other gods of the pantheon to punish tribes or drive them to acts of violence through the fear he brings. He is propitiated by bugbears, but rarely worshiped directly. Those few who do tend to be exiles and wanderers, living on the edge of bugbear society, but too frightening for the members of the tribe to actually kill. Skiggaret was one of  the most enjoyable gods I’ve worked on recently. Enjoy!

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Dakarnok the Raider

September 10, 2012

The small kobold pantheon is filled with a number of local deified heroes and minor gods, few of which are genuine powers. Of those that have, Dakarnok is by far the most powerful and widely known. He has become the deity of kobold warriors, focusing on destruction and plunder.

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