A blog about games, gamers, and various and sundry geek culture-related ephemera and paraphernalia.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hot Elf Chicks with Swords!

Taking a cue from James at The Underdark Gazette, here's a post with the sole intention of drawing folks to the OSR blogosphere. It's a slice of sheer internet marketing brilliance: use hot elf chicks to lure Google (and presumably other) searchers to our little neck of the woods.

So, as promised, I present a couple of elf chicks with swords:

I've decided to take James' idea just a step further, though, and use this post to stack the keyword deck, so to speak. After all, the idea of drawing folks to suckle at the large supple white breasts of the OSR really is something that even Charlie Sheen should be willing to spill a little tiger blood over, don't you think? So what if it means talking about posting sexy pics of naked elf girls? It's just a little healthy adult entertainment - nothing kinky. And you won't find videos of elf girl-on-girl action (nothing bisexual, just good, old-fashioned bi-winning!) or dwarf women with big butts here; just good, clean stuff that even Megan Fox would be proud to sit with Justin Bieber and read while they listen to Lady Gaga. There's no need to have a Mel Gibson moment. Oh, and who knows - maybe some day the OSR will expand to include Android and iPhone apps and free ringtones. It could happen...

Yep, that's the OSR.

If you just found us via your favorite search engine:

Welcome! Okay, so you probably didn't find what you were looking for, but since you're here you might as well take a look at all the great things the OSR has to offer. Take a look at the blog roll over there on the right - it's full of great gaming blogs, each in itself chock full of brilliant ideas from some really imaginative and creative people. And it's growing daily. (And we even have our own porn stars.)

So take a break from your search for porn or entertainment news or free stuff for your smartphone and go, explore. The rest will still be there when you get back...

(It's too bad James' idea didn't fall closer to the end of the month because it occurs to me that this would be a great April Fool's post. Oh, well - I'll just have to come up with something else for that special day.)

[Edit: BTW, it should be noted that I normally avoid internet - especially OSR - memes like the plague. But this one was just too good to pass up!]

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Friday, March 4, 2011

More Captcha-Inspired Henchmen (Order of the D30)

Sorry, I just couldn't stop at 30. Here's another list of misfitted minions:
  1. Loghfu - He's deadly when wielding firewood.
  2. Heetmed - He's a little dyslexic and a lot dumb.
  3. Obulent - What? It's a perfectly promulent name.
  4. Nutjahb - He's not crazy - his mother had him tested.
  5. Prias - Between meals, he can walk twice as far as any other henchmen.
  6. Cherrip - His pants have tears at the top of each pant leg. You don't want to be behind him when he bends over.
  7. Soccineye - He's a little confrontational, and every argument ends the same way.
  8. Ozoan - She's just a little spacey.
  9. Gyrojigli - She's out to prove that there's nothing wrong with heavy belly dancers.
  10. Subhort - If your fellow PC's are cohorts, this is a perfect name for a henchman.
  11. Uriastoses - I don't know what it is or how he caught it, but it doesn't sound like fun. "God, my penis hurts when I urinate."
  12. Biltslo - He's a loyal henchman, but don't let him set up the tent - you'll be waiting all night.
  13. Tredo - He has a "thing" for saplings.
  14. Miasmer - He's surrounded by a perpetual cloud of stink. Keep him away from the pork and beans.
  15. Dismor - Keep him away from any depressed party members, lest they become suicidal. "It'll rain, I shouldn't wonder."
  16. Mingdula - She henches to pay her way through med school, so she can become a brain chirurgeon. "It's right below the cerabulum, which is near the omnipitol globe."
  17. Arthur - He henches to pay for part-time accounting classes. His battle cry: "Not the face! Not the face!"
  18. Seisit - He moonlights as a motivational speaker.
  19. Outamybloni - He's very protective of his lunch meats.
  20. Phertawl - Keep your less chaste party members away from her, unless they want children.
  21. Explorco - He keeps pitching his plan to create an LLC and turn the party into a franchise.
  22. Bermen - Explorco's partner, has plans to expand the franchise until people are so sick of it that they're ready to puke at the mere mention of its name.
  23. Whaman - He has a tendency to repeat the last syllable of each sentence. Be sure to wake him up before you go go.
  24. Tonibazl - She's too old to dress like that, and she has a stalkerific thing for some guy named "Mickey."
  25. Undic - He's an abrasive henchman from France.
  26. Amega - He was once more popular than his father, the Commodore, and his grandfather, Vic, but has since become obsolete in the henching field.
  27. Hemshic - He has some fabulous ideas to modernize the party's "drab and lifeless ensembles."
  28. Ploshie - He always wears furry animal skins, and has a "thing" for others who do the same.
  29. Imaterd - Sorry, my brain froze on this one; believe it or not, that's a letter-for-letter lift from Captcha.
  30. Deend - Dat's it - dat's all she wrote.

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Captcha-Inspired Henchmen (Order of the D30)

I've posted a couple of Captcha-inspired name lists before, and I thought I'd do it again. But I didn't want to post "just another list" - I wanted to make something a little more... entertaining. So, here's a D30 list of henchmen, each with his or her own quirk. Each of these is taken from Captcha's word-verification system, although a few have had a letter or two changed to fit the bill. Hopefully, this will add a little humorous entertainment to your players' next hiring session:

  1. Nomap - Whatever you do, don't let this guy serve as your dungeon mapper.
  2. Slymes - Ask this guy about his collection. Go ahead - I dare ya!
  3. Laziboi - Good luck getting your money's worth out of this guy.
  4. Suxplode - Ask him about his John Belushi imitation.
  5. Perpo - Keep him away from your valuables.
  6. Purvo - Perpo's bro - keep him away from your women.
  7. Scench - Better stock up on those little pine-tree air fresheners before the next dungeon crawl.
  8. Mytopy - The lowest paid wilderness scout in history.
  9. Satedd - She spends a lot of time lying in bed, smoking cigarettes.
  10. Skidwo - The lowest paid wagon driver in history.
  11. Pookase - Don't ask him what he keeps in that stinky wooden box - he just might show you!
  12. Hatearbl - "What's an 'arbl'?" you ask? Get ready for a five-hour diatribe...
  13. Frothlot - The town's token madman. Works for free for anybody that's stupid enough willing to take him on.
  14. Hylybagi - Is there anything that guy can't hide in the folds of his clothes?
  15. Knoknoc - The jokes never cease...
  16. Ablepa - He may be older than dirt, but he can get the job done.
  17. Sincess - Says she a princess whose royal family has been exiled from a foreign land. She just "entertains" to keep food on the table.
  18. Ashnudg - One of those guys who sits in silence, poking the edge of the fire with his toe.
  19. Cutm - Don't cross this guy or you may wake up one morning a little short on genitalia.
  20. Zipnada - She's hot, but the temperature drops to absolute zero when she's nearby.
  21. Cupical - She's always trying to play matchmaker for the party members.
  22. Edgerts - His skin looks a little loose. "Is this better?"
  23. Frigno - Don't make him angry - you wouldn't like him when he's angry.
  24. Nuturt - When he's not complaining about his "discomfort," he's "adjusting" himself.
  25. Dialises - I got nothin'. But the name's just too good not to include in this list.
  26. Bootia - Henchwoman. 'Nuff said.
  27. Crefufio - Was a top interior designer before the bad economy forced him to take up henching.
  28. Dicro - Claims to be well endowed. To prove it, he often tells a story about being adrift in a rowboat with no paddle.
  29. Unksel - Has a hereditary, ubbi-dubbi-ish speech impediment. Ask him about his nsieces and nsephews.
  30. Greenicci - Not sure what she's got, but it's emerald-hued and highly contagious.

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Scanning Project: Gilbert Island (Call of Cthulhu/Bureau 13)

As promised in my last post, here's a bit of my gaming history: a map and list of NPC's, originally created for TriTac's Bureau 13: Stalking the Night Fantastic and ported (much) later to Call of Cthulhu.

I first ran the Gilbert Island scenario during my Gaming RenaissanceTM. I'm not sure of the exact date, but it must have been mid-1991 or thereabouts. It was during this period that I really began to explore new gaming systems (and nurturing the seeds that would eventually germinate into a life-long case of of Gamer ADD). Before this, my gaming experience had mostly been limited to the ubiquitous TSR boxed sets (Moldvay D&D and Top Secret seeing the most action, but I had them all); Villians & Vigilantes and Chill being the notable exceptions. But in 1989 (IIRC) I was introduced to several people who would be the core of my gaming group for the next decade, and to a game that would reinvigorate my love for all things horror, especially horror RPG's: Beyond the Supernatural. (More on this later; I'll never forget that first BtS game, and the character I made for it - well, we'll save that for an upcoming post...)

Eventually, BtS led me to Bureau 13.

At this point in time, B13 was the go-to game for our group. We'd gather in my second-floor flat at least once a week, generally on Friday night after I concluded the 40-hour work week at my craptacular job as a stock clerk at the local grocery store. My friends and I would play all night, then they' most likely end up crashing in the living room - and we'd continue gaming through the following Saturday. At least once a month, this would evolve into a weekend-long affair, with everybody finally retiring to their respective abodes on Sunday evening.

Needless to say (but I'll say it anyway) we played a lot of B13. I can't remember every B13 game we played. That's saying a lot, since I can remember most of the games of D&D I played in the decade prior. But we played so many games of B13, I just can't recall them all.

The characters, on the other hand - these I remember well. From paranoid-schizo Virgil Greene, to crotchety old Father William Aeon Fox, to Ezra Fielding (poor Ezra, those B13 hit location tables were unmerciful to that boy's genitalia), to Fred Carter - oh, wait, later post. /wink/ Even the NPC's became memorable, as the campaign evolved from a poorly fleshed out rip-off of Chaosium's "Arkham Unveiled" into a living, breathing thing. There was Julie, the clerk at my then-fiancee's/later wife's/even later ex-wife's PC's antique shop. (Liberally lifted from Friday the 13th: The Series.) There was Ray, the hitman sent to kill the PC's, only to discover what they did for a "living" (although it didn't pay so well - or at all) and change to their side. There was Dave Dietrich, local police sergeant (later captain) who knew more about the seedy underside of Arkham than he wished to.

And then there were the nemeses. From the mundane (Special Agent Braddox, FBI) to the psychotic (Dr. Lazarus Kane) to the supernatural (the list is long, but unquestionably topped by the demon Forcas, who was cleverly defeated by the PC's on multiple occasions - his loss of face among his peers is the topic of amusing discussion at almost every B13 session).

Gilbert Island was one of the memorable sessions.

The PC's were sought out by a distraught mother to help her find her missing son (because they were the Winchesters of the B13 campaign world). After a bit of "bippity-boppity-boo" by the group's necromancer/demonolator, it was determined (via a little communing with the spirit world) that the boy had been spirited away to a small island off the Maine coast. With little knowledge of the island, the PC's beat feet to the coast of Maine. They then began interacting with the NPC's I'd prepped for the game:

Over the course of the game (which must have been one of our all-day sessions, given how much ground the players and their characters covered) many of the NPC's took on lives of their own. The PC's learned of the shady Gil Kramer and his huge partner, the odd-looking Reggie Black. They made friends with the local lighthouse keeper, Jack Kelly, and his wife, Polly. They befriended happy librarian Connie Dillinford.

After much investigation, they staked out the cliff-side home of Gil Kramer. His odd and secretive behavior, combined with the hostile demeanor of his thug, Reggie, led the players to believe that the two were somehow involved in the missing child's disappearance. When, early one morning, they spied the pair coming up from Kramer's private dock lugging an unwieldy bagged something, they sprang into action. What ensued was a complete Charlie Foxtrot, ending with copious amounts of automatic weapons fire from the kidnappers and returned copious amounts of pistol fire from the PC's. Oops, wrong suspects. The something in the bag wasn't the boy, as the players had believed; it was a huge cache of marijuana, fresh from Kramer's Canadian connection. Scratch two drug dealers - and the PC's were no closer to locating the boy.

After further investigation, the PC's found themselves on the beach below the lighthouse, interviewing "crazy old Zed Blake" at his beach-side shack. There, the PC's got an earful; they learned about the dark secret of Gilbert Island and its residents' Innsmouth-esque pact with the Deep Ones that dwelt offshore. As they began to realize the bear trap into which they'd stepped, they watched in horror as Zed's head exploded into a fine red mist. Turns out, Polly - the lighthouse keeper's wife - was one of the descendants of the island's original inhabitants, the Gilbert family itself. And was a Deep One hybrid - with a high-powered rifle, amazing aim, and a complete view of the beach from her perch upon the light. A really lucky shot from one of the PC's weapons eliminated the threat from the Lone Gunman, and gave the PC's leave to exit the beach - via Zed's battered old boat - as the Deep Ones stepped from the surf on the other side.

A harried flight (not literally - they were in a mother-fucking boat) later they made landfall on the rocky coast of Maine, on Death's front stoop from GSW's, Deep One claw wounds, and exposure. The boy - they later discovered - had been dead since before they set foot on Gilbert Island. (Those damn spirits can be so literal. Yes, he was on the island - in a sense.) They'd lost before they'd even started playing the game...

That's how I'll always remember Gilbert Island.

I retooled the game for Call of Cthulhu (as you can see by some of the scribble son the NPC sheet) to run for a different group - half-filled with unfamiliar faces - a decade later. Unfortunately, those newbies didn't know my gaming style. They were apparently used to having an adversarial relationship with their gamemaster. They didn't know that I wasn't out to kill them arbitrarily, using the rules as an accomplice. (That's never been my style. My players sink or swim on their own. I'm never out to get them - I just want to have fun, and to do so the players have to have fun, as well.) This led to a confrontational game, and players who couldn't enjoy the session because they were waiting for me to drop the hammer. More's the shame...

Anyway, there you go. Gilbert Island - a piece of my gaming history and a bevy of fond memories. Enjoy.

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In Which I Put Up a Post Using "In Which" in the Title Because It Sounds So Cool

It occurs to me that it's been a Very Long Time since I posted anything of real use to my readers here. I apologize for this - and for the necessity of allowing crass commercialism to invade my blog. (A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do, ya know?)

It also occurs to me that, since my move last fall, I have access to much of my older gaming materials - stuff I haven't had available to me since the end of 2008, shortly before I founded this blog.

So, I'm going to rectify the former situation by exploiting the latter situation. Namely, I'm going to get off my gluteus maximus and scan more of my old maps and such for your consumption.

Watch this space...

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