• A mini review: GURPS Dungeon Fantasy Denizens: Thieves

    Dungeon Fantasy Denizens: Thieves is a new entry in the Denizens sub-series of the Dungeon Fantasy series for GURPS. It joins the earlier Dungeon Fantasy Denizens: Barbarians and Dungeon Fantasy Denizens: Swashbucklers as the third work to explore and expand a Dungeon Fantasy profession. (Or the fourth if you count Dungeon Fantasy 7 Clerics, but that’s a different sort of entry.) What’s in there Like its sub-series predecessors, Thieves aims for completeness in detailing its profession. The main text compiles lots of new and old information: In short, it’s a catalog of traits and gear for thievish characters. Which on its own would feel incomplete, but call-out boxes add thoughts…

  • A questionable resource: Names for things in fantasy games

    A clump of collective nouns So we have collective nouns for animals, from the mundane “herd of cattle” and “flock of birds” to the twee “pounce of cats” and “cackle of hyenas”. Gamers have taken up the baton to suggest similar words for fantasy beings: “a band of bards”, “a convocation of clerics”, and what not. I hereby suggest a few of my own, with GURPS Dungeon Fantasy and Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game foremost in mind. Below is my beginning (and not-too-serious) mess of monikers for your collective consideration. (You can expect – if not exactly look forward to – updates as more names come to mind.) Characters Creatures Cockatrice,…

  • 31 reasons why you want to pick up Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (and fast!)

    Gamers! If you missed the first appearance of Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (DFRPG), fate and Steve Jackson games (SJG) have granted you a second – but fleeting – chance to pick up a box. It’s happening through a successful Kickstarter campaign that will reprint the boxed set, launch a new Monsters 2 book, and offer a bunch of add-ons. (The campaign ends Sat, March 23 2019 7:13 AM UTC!) Why do you want this game? There are as many reasons as there are flavors at that one ice cream chain. There are so many reasons, in fact, that only a logorrheic hack blogger could list them all.  That’s my cue! Updates 2019-03-16: Added…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG character: Leonidas of Nemea, Cat-Folk barbarian

    Hey, look! It’s a fully-fledged character for Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game—or GURPS Dungeon Fantasy, with maybe a small tweak or two. Yes, you’re looking at a cat-folk—a lion-folk, that is!—with He-Man’s goofy pageboy haircut instead of a noble mane. There’s a reason for that… Leonidas of Nemea 250-Point Cat-Folk Barbarian The dry plains of far-away Nemea are home to cat-folk—fierce, strapping lion-folk, in fact. And at six and a half feet in height and 250 pounds, the lion-boy Leonidas stands tall even among… Wait a second. Isn’t “Leonidas” just too twee a name for a warrior lion? Yes, it would seem so—but this young pride-leader has taken the name for…

  • Dungeon dining: Exotic eats and remarkable rations for Fantasy travelers

    The dungeon is an eat-or-be-eaten world. Eat your rations, or you’ll get all woozy and a fuscous slime will eat your lunch. And your legs. Delvers far from the nearest inn don’t need to worry. Travel-ready rations are cheap and light: just $2 and 0.5 lbs. per meal in the worlds of Dungeon Fantasy (DF) and Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (DFRPG).  But… What is that stuff? Hard cheese and harder bread, again? With some over-salted, meat-like stuff you dismiss as Dire Pemmican?  It gets old. So you dabble in dwarven rations, stocking up at that one Costco a mile under Ghrimmbil’s Gate. At $5 and 1 lb. per meal, it’s…

  • The talented thief: Stealing the spotlight in GURPS and DFRPG

    You know how it goes. You think “Hey, I’ll toss out some quick new Talents for thief characters”… and the next thing you know, it’s an essay on where weaknesses lie in the fantasy thief template, why you would want to nab more Talents, what’s already available, how new ones should be designed, how much your thief should spend on them, what else can boost the profession… Yeesh, it’s already looking like some unsolicited (and low-rent) first draft of Dungeon Fantasy Denizens: Thieves down there. Well, this article may not be the shortest thing you read today, but it’ll slip you a swag bag of valuable (?) new Talents for characters (even…

  • Assassin (Creative Commons)

    Beware the assassin’s blade

    DFRPG idea: “Assassin’s weapons”. Has small notches, grooves, etc. on blade, supposedly to carry more poison. Probably not real, but let it be in game.Add cost to blade. Gives +1 to Poisons roll to use extra poison (Practical Poisoning, Exploits p58). Also lets poison survive 4, not 3, blocked its (Adventurers p116). However, Armory (Melee Weapons) +5 roll (= IQ) makes purpose clear; gives negative reactions!  You may have heard of the “assassin’s weapon” or “assassin’s blade” or some such: a blade etched with grooves that help carry poison and more effectively deliver it to the target. This isn’t necessarily something that was used in real life (or so I’ve…

  • Magical mystery tours: Three GURPS Dungeon Fantasy adventure seeds for bards

    Three… bardventures? No. Let’s not do that. What we have here is simply three adventure seeds that highlight PCs of the musical persuasion, though of course other Dungeon Fantasy professions may be involved. The scenarios came up while I was writing Dungeon Fantasy: The Musical! feat. Bards, a look at all things bardic that could go into a future Bards installment in the Dungeon Fantasy Denizens series. I didn’t include the storylines in that article because the Denizens series doesn’t deal in adventure seeds, and because no one would use these ideas anyway. But what the heck. They do no good sitting in my slush pile. So here you go: a…

  • Dungeon Fantasy: The Musical! (feat. Bards)

    Ooh, look! Yet another “They oughta write a book” article from me! Because it’s so darn easy to lay out the work that someone else should do for my amusement! You know the still-nascent Dungeon Fantasy: Denizens sub-series of books, each showcasing an adventurer archetype? The next installment ought to be Bards. Actually, when the sub-series first launched with Denizens: Barbarians, I thought Bards would be next. You see, I drew on my knowledge of game industry publishing, brought the full breadth of my intellect and reasoning skills to bear, examined and analyzed all relevant factors, and arrived at a deduction: “Bard” comes after “Barbarian” alphabetically, so that should be…