Sunday, April 20, 2014

Winners of the 5-Year Giveaway

Thanks to those who responded.  Sometimes I like to hear from the lurkers who visit.  There were a batch of readers I don't think I've heard from before.  Glad you stopped by and said hello.  Much appreciated.

Now for the winners.  There was one print and three PDF giveaways.  Here's who won.


Print version goes out to Jeremy [Retro] who is indeed a very special person in need of a giveaway.  You win Jeremy.

The three PDF winners are:
+Christian Sturke aka the rorschachhamster
+Jay Murphy
+Moe Tousignant

Just Google+ me or email me at elder(underscore)sensa(at)yahoo(dot)com.  And let me know what you'd like to receive.  Anything it up for grabs: any of the Manors, Adventures or the soon to be released Starter Adventures. 

Thanks again to all the took the time to stop by.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Gothridge Manor Turns 5 and a Giveaway


Howdy folks.  Today my place in the blogosphere turns 5.  I'm not feeling very nostalgic or sentimental so I won't go on about my last five years.  However, if you are a regular to my blog and either love it or hate it or want something free, just comment below. 

I'll select one person who will win a print version from anything in my catalog.  Even the as yet to be released Starter Adventures.  This offer is not restricted to US entries.  If you're living in Greece or Australia or Tibet I'll ship it to you.

For every 20 comments, I'll select an additional winner to chose anything of mine in PDF.

It's my way of thanking all the cool readers out there who spend a little of their day here.  And it's good to hear from people that I know visit.  Thanks for making the Gothridge Manor my fun place on the net.

Now go comment and win something.  I'll keep this post up until Sunday when I'll announce the winners.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Starter Adventure Proof in Hand

As the title reads, I got my proof copy of Starter Adventures.  It looks good, but the cover needed tweaking.  The reds were muted.  That was my fault.  I used a textured red and it didn't translate well.  I changed it up with a more striking red that will make the words and cover pop a little more.  Ivy also said, "put your name on the damn cover, that's where it belongs".  So I added it at the bottom.  That's a light glare in the bottom right corner.


On the back cover, the picture's colors and reds were also muted.  I changed the contrast on the picture and that improved it.  Ivy also said, "put your blog address on the damn back cover, that's where it belongs".  So I added it at the bottom.  The upper left corner got dinged pretty good during shipping.


Here's a glance of what it looks inside.  It came out better than expected.  I'm happy with the guts of it.  And look at how +Jason Sholtis and +John Larrey and +Rob Conley made it look amazing.


A little trivia.  Jason drew a picture of stirges for me way back when this project started.  While this project languished in land of dust bunnies he needed a stirge picture for Frog God Games, Monstrosities.  It looks spectacular in those pages.  So Jason drew me a whole new stirge picture.  I think my stirges are scarier.


I absolutely love the map Rob drew for me for the adventure.  You'll find several masterful maps by Rob inside.  And Jason captured the final moment of an adventurer with an unfortunate name.

I tweaked the covers and submitted the changes to RPGNow and await their approval.  Last time it took six days.  I'm going to release Starter Adventures on PDF for $8 and print at $16.  If you purchase the print version you get the PDF for free.  I'm also going to see if Rob can create me a VTT friendly version so GMs can use it on Roll 20 or Fantasy Grounds without the room numbers.  This will avoid any complains from grumpy dwarves or metro-sexual elves. 

If you have any questions, please let me know.  You can email me, Google + me or just comment.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

New Monster: Scourge Goblin

Here are the stat lines of the scourge goblins.  I'm using Swords & Wizardry for the system.  I'm not a fan of alignment or assigning a single set of stats because I like a range.  In this case I've given you stats for 1HD to 5HD goblins.  Their damage increases by 1 point per HD. 

Scourge Goblins
Hit Dice: 1 to 5 
Armor Class: 5 [14]
Attacks: 2 fists (1d2) and 1 bite (1d3)
Saving Throw: 17 to 12
Special: Immunities
Move: 12
Alignment: Neutral
Number Encountered: 1d4 x 100
Challenge Level/XP: 1/15 to 5/240

Scourge goblins are much like a locus swarm, when a group settles into an area they consume all plant and animal life creating a dead land.  These creatures were created many years ago when the necromancers to the south decided to expand their territories beyond the great river.  The massive goblin tribes were between the undead army and the human kingdoms to the north.  The undead slaughtered all but one tribe who sought assistance from the humans.  The mage-king, Barakus, agreed to aid the goblins by giving them the power to fight the undead.

Barakus's plan succeeded beyond his imagination.  The goblins were now imbued with the immunities against the undead.  They are not paralyzed by a ghouls touch, not drained by a wight nor will they contract a disease by a mummy.  They are immune to the undead's natural abilities.  This immunity does not expand beyond the undead.  A mage casting paralyze has a normal chance of succeeding.  The goblins fought back the undead.  In fact they ate any of the remains they came across.

What occurred afterwards, Barakus has no way of expecting.  The goblins began consuming and multiplying at an alarming rate.  He soon found his kingdom being consumed by his own creation.

Scourge goblins have an extremely high metabolism.   They need food constantly.  They also age and multiply quickly.  The goblin females instead of having one offspring now have a litter of goblins.  A horde of scourge goblins can double in size in one month.

Scourge goblins build very distinct settlements.  There are grouped villages surrounded by a large earthen wall that wraps around miles of area.  They are able to construct these massive walls extremely quick.  Once the wall is completed, they begin devouring the countryside.  It seems the only things they will not eat are the four elements, even water.  They usually stay in one location for two to three months before moving on. A stark dead land marks their path.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Goblin Scourge


I settled on Goblin Scourge as the new name for my goblin offshoot.  Here's the map I drew that got me to thinking about them.  As you can see the brown, 'dead' areas.  They move into areas and the destruction begins.  As you can see a chain of farming villages are protected by the river...for now.

The gray lines within the dead areas are the earthen fortification.  Scourge goblins are masters at building these structures. 

I'll try to write up something for a post tomorrow, to stat them.

Getting Ideas from Maps

One of my favorite fantasy tropes to play with is goblins.  I've written about them in past posts, Re-imagining the Goblin and Goblins! because in my campaign I find them very versatile.  While having a crazed horde of goblins storming across the country side is a lot of fun, it also lacks any depth.  It's just another goblin horde.

The goblins I have in my campaign are very skilled at adapting to their environment.  Some type of goblin can be found in nearly every part of the world.  And their ability to adapt is not just environmental, but culturally.  Goblins are adept at assimilating the predominate culture in the area.  They have no gods, traditions or history.  I've covered this in the previous posts.

Last night while drawing a map I was playing around with another idea.  Where goblins become a sort of pestilence.  Or blight on the land.

In this version, the goblins are vicious omnivores that consume plant and animal life at an alarming rate.  They will settle into an area and quickly build primitive fortifications on a massive scale, covering miles of territory.

The creation of these goblins came about as a answer to an outbreak of undead.  These goblins consume the undead, bones and all.  They are immune to the paralyzing touch of the ghoul and the drain touch of the wight.  They cannot effect incorporeal undead, but put them against a horde of skeletons and zombies, they'll make short work of them and you won't have to clean up the mess.

Of course the problem was that after they finishes consuming the masses of the undead, they began devouring everything around them.  Only stones are dirt seem to be not of their taste.

This is a idea seed I got from my map...that I can't show you because I am at work and my map is at home.  

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Starter Adventures Approved


Yesterday I got the okay from RPGNow to order a proof copy.  Ordered it ASAP.  Now I'm waiting on that.  In the meantime I need to go over to Lulu and do the same thing and get the PDF finalized.  I'm very excited about getting this done and out there.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Got My 3rd Printer from Epson and it Didn't go Well


Not sure exactly why they are unable to send us a printer that works correctly, but now they they have decided to avoided our inquires.  The help center would not put us through to a manager.  After Ivy's insistence she is still on hold 35 minutes later.

I'm not nearly as upset as she is, but I am ready to move on.  I won't be buying an Epson again.  While they tried to fix the problem, they just created even more problems.  Three Epson printers in five days.  I doubt there will be any difference on the forth or fifth.

Good-bye Epson. 

RPG BS Session I is in the Books

Last night I host a RPG BS Session on Google Hangouts.  I was surprised by the turn out and got to meet a lot of gamer dudes.  In Hangouts there is only room for 10 folks and we were at that max for most of the night with people dropping in and out.  Here's who showed up or at least paid the doorman to get in.
+Rob Conley
+Random Wizard
+Joseph Bloch
+Jim Pacek 
+Joe D
+Erik Tenkar
+B. Portly
+trey causey
+Edgar Johnson
+Christopher Helton
+Chris C.
+Mike Evans 
+Richard LeBlanc
+Zzarchov Kowolski
+Douglas Cole
+Keith J Davies

I would have liked to have spoken to some of the guys more in-depth, but with ten of us in the hangout it's a juggling act to get everyone included.  When it wound down near the end, about six of us were in the hangout and much easier to get into more depth of conversation. 

My intent for running this BS session was to just get guys together to talk about gaming, stuff that they're working on, past gaming stories, share ideas and products, and telling dumb jokes and still laughing at them.  I had a blast.  It was a lot of fun and a few asked if this would become a regular thing.  I hadn't really thought about doing it more than once, but I may do another one in a month.  But if someone else would like to host an RPG BS session, please do and let me know. 

I appreciate to all those who participated and made it fun.  To those who were trying to get and couldn't, I wish there could have been a away to open a 2nd room.  Maybe if we do this again I'll get a 2nd gamer to host a 2nd room.  If anyone has a suggestion on how to run it better let me know.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Look Babe, Your Printer Arrived

Only I can't lift the box so Bug and Wiggy are keeping an eye on it for you.  Now, as long as this one doesn't vomit yellow everywhere too, you'll be good to go on the next Manor.

PS: We're out of Turkey Hill Chocolate Marshmallow.  Please stop on the ride home.  Thanks and smooch. 

PPS: All your gamer dudes out there.  Aren't you glad your wives don't know the passwords to your blogs? 

PPPS: For those that might not know.  Tim's Epson started crapping yellow ink back after about a year of owning it.  They did nothing even though this was a known Epson ink issue. 

Then on Monday I found a different contact number and called for a free replacement.  Only thing, it's a refurbished model.  I asked the girl if it was going to be the same piece of crap we have now, or if it would work.  She assured me it would work.

Now, we have to wait for Poop-a-doopers to get home and see if it really works.  They also sent free ink.  It's a good day.


I Know This Isn't True at All, but it's the Entertainment that's Important

Session #4 of Ephemera by the illustrious, the incredible and the well deodorized +Chris C. from The Clash of Spear on Shield.  Hold your applause, I'm going to tell you a story about my character, Connor, a simple, but brilliant mage, how he matched wits with the devious and deadly Chris the Krazy Killer GM.

The game opens up moments after the final scene from last session.  The body of the dispatched village leader at our feet, the new leader, a fine outdoors woman named Lona, wiping the blood from her blade.  There was a new sheriff in town.  The hobbled, one-legged boy was now safe and sound.

Or we were north of the village and standing over a little minotaur body who had a restaurant named Ellison's.  But we won't waste time on the whereabouts of Connor because wherever he was, he was looking good.

But with the viscous ice demon defeated what is a party of one brilliant mage and two barely above plant life mages to do?  We did what all good mages do...we went on a road trip.

We headed for the Village of Tarn.  There we met a panicked you man who was putting "elbow to knee" as the French say.  +Ken H mage, I believe his name is Darius, or Darin, or Darla, charmed the young boy in mid stride.  From the young boy we learned information about horrible king with many dark dwarves, taking children to an unknown destination, but only the dwarves returned.

We can't have that.

Our council of mages considered a plan of action.  Half-baked ideas flew around the campfire like bake goods at a fair for the blind.  I allows my fellow mages to exhaust their verbal diarrhea so I could allow them to hear my plan.  Of course when they heard it they immediately agreed I was beyond their scope of tactical genius.  I nodded humbly and told them they should stand.  Their kneeling was getting embarassing.

Across the river we went.  And no, I did not walk on the water.  I slugged through the chilly water just like the rest.  We then found a hiding place and waited for the dwarves to leave the village with the children and to follow them.  We wanted to discover where they were taking them.

We followed for a couple days before the weather turned bad.  We set upon the bumbling dark dwarves.  +Rob Conley man, Egbert, put them to sleep.  And then he cast a real spell.  ha ha ha, that joke always gets me.  We then woke one up and Darla charmed him.  We plied the midget with questions and he willingly showed up where he was taking them.

I know its not a dwarf, but it's the sleeping that's important.

We came upon a temple.  A ziggurat to the uninitiated.  We ended and while my fellow party members bumbled in the dark, I walked over to the mural of the sunrise on the wall and shook my head.  These people have evolved very little since they were sperm.  After I pushed the sunrise the lights came on in the temple for all to see.  I said, "Please, please stand.  This kneeling and thanking me is getting quite embarrassing." 

I know they aren't mages, but it's the kneeling that's important.
We then went into a cloak room.  I knew there was something to be found in this room.  I explored the cloaks and was beset upon by the most vicious bathrobe ever to exist.  An abomination if ever I have seen one.  While it flapped at me.  I stood my ground to make sure my fellow party member were safe.  This demonic robe was relentless.  After a titanic battle the fell robe...well, it fell.

We searched the next room and a horde of skeletons swarmed after us.  Darla slammed the door shut and Egbert commanded his minions to spike it close.  And so it was.

I know this isn't a door, but it's the spikes that are important.
We then encountered another room with skeletons.  A room full of supplies.  Egbert had his man grab a table to use as a wall, I suppose.  Since the table measured smaller than the shield his man carried it did very little in the way of blocking anything...except our progress.  While I applaud his attempt, there is a time and place for those who should be seen and not heard...to not be heard.  I commanded the minions to topple the stored crates and barrels atop the brittle boned skeletons.  This was more than enough to return them to death.

We then explored farther.  We found some interesting rooms that I cannot remember.  We returned to the skeleton room that was spiked and quickly dispatched them also.  And that is where our session ended for the evening.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

RPG BS Session is Set

Last week I had the idea of starting a hangout to just BS about games.  I know before and after game chat is just as enjoyable as the game itself, but with all of our schedules, I know it's difficult to squeeze in game time.  So I thought why not just set aside some time just to sit back and talk to others about the games.  So that's what I'm doing.

I sent out invitations to people about the RPG BS Session, but I wasn't aware I couldn't invite a circle.  I had to select each one individually.  That got tiring.  Anyone who reads my blog is of course invited to join in. 


Can't make it til later?  No problem, just drop in when you get a chance.  Need to leave early?  No problem.  It's a casual get together, no commitments.  If you have a mic and a camera great, but neither are necessary. 

Since this is my first event I've attempted and there is very little structure to it, if we get a bunch of folks we may need to split it into a couple of rooms so we aren't talking over one another. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

Starter Adventures Sent for Approval and a Peak at the Backside Cover


Finally did it.  I sent in my files to RPGNow to get approval to get it printed.  Then I can order a copy of it and see how it looks.  That is if it gets approved.  I'm sorta flying blind here.  I tried to watch videos and read about the best way to do it, but most if it I didn't understand so I do what I always do, throw the manual over my shoulder and learn by doing.  We'll see.

Love the cover.  +Jason Sholtis sent me this one a while back wondering if I could use it for anything.  I replied, "That's my cover!"  I love the twilight hues of light against the trees.  It's also one of the scenarios in the book, The Last Potion.

While most of you know what the front cover looks like, he's what the backside looks like...and the backside of a goblin.  I think this picture sets the tone for the book, it is written with casual tone, a bit sarcastic in places and hopefully funny.  A goblin who moons the party while making smoochy noises is funny to me.


Sunday, April 6, 2014

RPG Mall

I decided to make a link page to all the RPG stores I like to virtual shop and browse.  You can find the page under my blog title to the right.  I thought it might be cool to have a virtual mall that you (and me) can check out the different stores.  Right now I have a small collection and know there are many more.  Some of the stores I'll need to add are some of the ones I go to eBay for and I know there are more Etsy stores to add.

If you have a store or frequent a cool store that features RPG stuff let me know so I can add it.  I know a lot of the big boys stores, so I am looking more for the smaller individual storefronts.  Those are the ones I need the most help with.  But if you see any store I haven't added let me know.  I'm cool with it as long as the store is about gaming and RPGs.