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This is Dan and Andrew’s Gaming Place. ¬†We will be making posts on Tuesdays.

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Nuisance Encounter Tables

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A problem that referees in a fantasy game sometimes face is players that cannot focus. Discussing the latest movie, scandal, or contretemps displaces the modest level of focus needed for players to steer their characters through a scenario. The eternal debate about the validity of pineapple as a pizza topping may displace your carefully crafted adventure. In this edition of Dan and Andrew’s Game Place we introduce encounter tables for use on inattentive players. These tables contain nothing too lethal, but these encounters may get players to listen up. Have them roll the dice — this makes it their fault — and rolling dice will help grab their attention.

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The Cobalt Moon

topHere at Dan and Andrews, we proposed that you spice up your campaign with moons. These are celestial bodies with monsters, treasure, and even civilizations that show up in the skies above your campaign world whenever you want them to. So far we have released the chimerical moon, the mercantile moon, Metropoluna, the dread moon of ashes, the faerie moon, the dinosaur moon, the enigmatic library moon, and the disgusting moon of slime. This week we present the Cobalt Moon, the blue moon of legend, with a great forest ruled by druids with many sorts of helpers. A PDF of the Realm of the powers source book for this moon is here. If you need the core rules, they are here.

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Monster Magic Items

topIn his fantasy classic The Magic Goes Away, author Larry Niven postulates a powerful sword made by binding a demon in the shape of a sword. As a weapon it is problematic as it bites the wielder’s hand and will not let go. In The Doomfarers of Coramonde by Brian Daley, the evil wizard has a flying ship that was crafted by binding a fire elemental into the ship. In Dan and Andrew’s post The Chronicle of the Ultimate Machine we postulate metal elementals that can replace body parts and integrate with a character. This post looks farther into the notion of magic items that are, or which incorporate, monsters.

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The Inn Outside of the World

topKeeping a multiverse of parallel timelines moving smoothly can require a little grease. The Inn Outside of the World is a game mechanic that helps with this. It also gives you a way to let characters cross between different campaign worlds. It can act as a mechanism for the action of fate or destiny, or, it may just be a remarkably good tavern. The basic idea is this: someone has built an Inn, with rooms and a tavern, in a space outside of the world with access to many different parallel worlds. It can usually only be blundered into, at night on a misty moor or some similar circumstance. In the rest of this post, we look at some examples from literature and talk about your options for integrating this into your campaign world.

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A Game of Operations

This post introduces a game that requires (or improves) skill in arithmetic and in the order of arithmetic operations. The game starts by choosing a set of digits. The goal is to make numbers from those digits using arithmetic — including exponents, roots, and the factorial operator. A classic version of this game is the four fours puzzle, a key to which appears below, which asks the players to make the numbers from zero to twenty using for fours. Note that 44 uses two fours — you are allowed to concatenate digits.

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An Attack from Beyond Time


topThis post is about an outer god from Realm of the Powers horror sourcebook. We are still working on the sourcebook, but the entity depicted in this post can actually be used in almost any fantasy roleplaying game. It is a transtemporal remnant of a dead universe, one that it ate itself, and it’s trying to break into our larger, richer universe. It lives on a scale, in both space and time, that prevent it from even interacting with human beings. It has servants, that have minions, that have lackeys that get down to the human scale of space and time. The action of this creature shapes history in its attempt to crack the universe like a luscious energy-filled egg.

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Parasitic Races in Fantasy Games

topThis post is about a phenomenon that occurs a number of times in the fantasy literature, in different forms. What do the dryads in the Belgariad, witches in Kelly Armstrong’s Women of the Otherworld series, werewolves, and vampires have in common? All of these types of fantasy creatures either require normal humans to reproduce, or can also reproduce by using humans. As races, they are parasitic on humanity. This is an interesting mechanic for a fantasy game. In this post we look at examples of parasitic races and make suggestions about how to design your own for your fantasy campaign.

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