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The Longest Night Comes!

    A log popped and hissed loudly, sending sparks drifting into the stone room. Grahlius drew her child a little closer into her breast, sighing heavily. The little girl reached up, her small fingers twirling around her the wispy hairs protruding from her mother’s chin, just like her wife had used to do. She stroked her child’s hair tenderly, feeling the lack of ease this night always brought with it.

  “Mama, why do we fear this night?” Continue reading “The Longest Night Comes!”

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Engage your Players

 

It’s easy to engage your players. Just make them do the work.

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Crumbling UpKeep: Add Holidays to your World Building

 

Have you made your own campaign world? Let’s give it some holidays to celebrate!

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The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 15

Qua’Jon’s body hit the ground with a thud. He lay there for a moment, unsure of what was happening. He had seen Gwenich walk behind him with the knife, and suddenly his body was no longer supported by the bounds that held him. He rolled to his back, soft black dirt clinging to his tattered garments. Gwenich stood above him, knife in hand. The strange smile had never left her face.

Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 15”

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Crumbling UpKeep: Using the Players Backstory

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Crumbling UpKeep: Describe Your Combat

“I rolled a 17. Does that hit?”

“Yeah. Roll for damage.”

“Okay, that’s… 8 points of piercing and 6 points of radiant damage.”

“Okay, next player…”

Sound familiar? Combat starts and the game suddenly becomes just a long drown out battle of dice rolling, especially when all your flashy powers are used up. It feels sterile and players can quickly become bored if they’re just waiting to roll above a certain number. How can you keep combat fresh and keep the players engaged?

Continue reading “Crumbling UpKeep: Describe Your Combat”

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Coming January 6, 2019: World Wide Wrestling!

We’ve been hard at work getting ready for season two of Tales from the Tower, our streaming show coming to Twitch on January 6th!  Last season was all Conan: Adventures in an Age Undreamed of, full of more grit than sandpaper in a desert. This time, we’re wrestling, and it’ll be full of blood, glitter, revenge, and tragedy.

Continue reading “Coming January 6, 2019: World Wide Wrestling!”

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A Family Gathering

The pool was a brilliant shade of blue, a dazzling contrast to the rocky hill of Red Jasper that housed it. Many alive on Samsarras believe that the demon realm of the Sribinet can not house such beauty, but they are wrong. There are sites of natural wonder in that damned place that would leave them in tears. While many of it’s denizens are monstrous in appearance, there are others who match that grotesqueness with their inhuman beauty. Those among the living that have seen them are hard pressed to say which they fear more.

Continue reading “A Family Gathering”

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The Longest Night Comes!

    A log popped and hissed loudly, sending sparks drifting into the stone room. Grahlius drew her child a little closer into her breast, sighing heavily. The little girl reached up, her small fingers twirling around her the wispy hairs protruding from her mother’s chin, just like her wife had used to do. She stroked her child’s hair tenderly, feeling the lack of ease this night always brought with it.

  “Mama, why do we fear this night?” Continue reading “The Longest Night Comes!”

Fiction 0

The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 15

Qua’Jon’s body hit the ground with a thud. He lay there for a moment, unsure of what was happening. He had seen Gwenich walk behind him with the knife, and suddenly his body was no longer supported by the bounds that held him. He rolled to his back, soft black dirt clinging to his tattered garments. Gwenich stood above him, knife in hand. The strange smile had never left her face.

Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 15”

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The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 14

“I know you like the elf, Eernon, but we can’t be riskin’ him being close to his people. He’d find some way to alert the guards and you won’t ever learn no magic. This is crazy. Jus’ let me put a point in ‘im and we don’t have to worry.”

Eernon looked at Vanlaug with anger in her eyes. “The elf lives. I’d sooner kill you at this point.”

“He’s right, Eernon. We don’t have to kill him, but we can’t take him with us.”

Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 14”

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The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 13

“Gwenich!”

The voice was Ingdols.  Gwenich could recognize it, though she could not see its source. He sounded far away, as if he were yelling through a wall. Her eyes were full of ghost images of the forest: vague outlines of trees and brush, a grey smudge where the cave had been. It was all fading slowly to black, leaving her field of vision a dark impenetrable curtain.

“Gwenich!  Yarlloth fight me, girl. Can you hear me?”

Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 13”

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Crumbling UpKeep: A Different Take on Hit Points

Some one rolls dice, you get hit, you lose hit points. You run out of hit points, you’re dead. That is how D&D works.

What are hit points, though? Most people view it as a relative measure of health.  You get stabbed, your health decreases. You get stabbed again, the process repeats itself. Eventually, you just run out of health.

What I’m proposing here isn’t a new concept. I know I got the idea from reading about it somewhere else many years ago. If I could remember where, I’d give it some credit. It was an idea that really stuck with me, though. Hit points actually represents a number of things: health, how tired you are, the strength of your sword arm… hit points ultimately show how close you are to death, but not necessarily health. Continue reading “Crumbling UpKeep: A Different Take on Hit Points”

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The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 12

She wished she could count the rain drops. They came through the air in an ever increasing rate, causing a beautiful anxiety to well up in her stomach. Gwenich was anticipating something, though what it was she did not know. There was something in the very air itself that she couldn’t quantify. It was like the charged electricity before a storm but different. It was softer and more deadly. It felt like whatever waited behind it all could tear the world apart. Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 12”

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Crumbling UpKeep: Describe Your Combat

“I rolled a 17. Does that hit?”

“Yeah. Roll for damage.”

“Okay, that’s… 8 points of piercing and 6 points of radiant damage.”

“Okay, next player…”

Sound familiar? Combat starts and the game suddenly becomes just a long drown out battle of dice rolling, especially when all your flashy powers are used up. It feels sterile and players can quickly become bored if they’re just waiting to roll above a certain number. How can you keep combat fresh and keep the players engaged?

Continue reading “Crumbling UpKeep: Describe Your Combat”

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Crumbling UpKeep: Playing Online

Nothing beats sitting around the table with your friends and playing games. It’s great to be face to face and riff off of each other, planning out rounds on a grid board and playing off of each others jokes. Share a drink or two and you have a nice low key evening full of adventure with, hopefully, some of your favorite people.

Sometimes your people aren’t in the same town, however.

Continue reading “Crumbling UpKeep: Playing Online”

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The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 11

Venul ran her soft hand over the child’s face, smoothing her hair and caressing her jaw. She was careful to stay away from the now bandaged wound Mishtil had sustained. She gazed at the unconscious goddess lovingly, a small amount of concerned pain milling with the peace in her eyes. Her finger tips trembled despite herself as she thought of what would have happened had Tadis not been hunting and came upon her.

“Sweet Tadis. You are truly a blessing. You are stern, yet soft of heart. Thank you for saving our young goddess.”

Continue reading “The Coming of the Astar Uln, Part 11”

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Crumbling UpKeep: D&D&Anxiety

Mental health has a stigma surrounding it. We all know this. It’s a tough thing to talk about, which makes it a tough thing to deal with. I’ve urged many a friend to open up and spent a good amount of time letting people know that their feelings are valid and that they aren’t their anxiety. Sometimes just being heard makes it a little better, takes the edge off. Sometimes talking about it helps.

I’ve found this advice much easier to follow when I’m on the listening side than the talking side, however.

Continue reading “Crumbling UpKeep: D&D&Anxiety”