Monday, March 8, 2010


How you should get your tires aligned.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Tools and jokes

Tools I found:
  • Cool D&D Character names
  • Been using this to keep track of my game KeyNote.  (Unfortunately, the new version the website references crashes frequently so I'm useing the old one.)
This may be old news for most D&Ders, but I got a big kick out of them if you played Advanced D&D back in the 80s:

Monday, February 8, 2010

February links

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Wasteland Wiki online

Got tired of working with Google Docs so here's all the info gradually being added:

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Back online!

Our game has fortunately started up again so postings should resume again soon.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

D&D Offline

I've decided to take a break from the site and from D&D while I work on getting a job.  Although a magnificent one, its a distraction and I don't want to be an unemployed DM.

I tried to keep going with the blog despite setting the game aside but I'm stretched too thin.  I hope to come back to it very soon.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I draw a lot of ideas from African Masks.  They're just so interesting, they get your mind running.

My game has been on hiatus for a while so posts will get a bit slower but I'm by no means done.

Friday, July 3, 2009

D&D software reviews

  • DM Genie - the best so far just because it seems like a complete product but very big. Not really sure its something I want to spend money on if I don't end up using. Happily there's a 60 day evaluation so I can try a few things.
  • Official D&D demo software from 2002. Unfortunately in many regards this software is completely broken but its simple and clean and works.
  • RolePlayingMaster - uses a closed format for generation, not too many options -- couldn't seem to make much use out of it
  • PCGen - seems broken. I've talked about this before. Annoying that so much time was put into an obviously huge collaborative effort that simply doesn't work. Every time I try to add items it complains I don't have the money or that I need to customize it. When I read the help on how to customize the items or get money, its useless. The help menu/documentation seems always a version or two behind. I gave up.
  • Autorealm - very basic, hasn't been updated in a while, not very easy to use. I gave up pretty fast.
  • jMapEditor - so simple its almost unusable. Drawing walls is very unintuitive and slow and it doesn't appear to output to anything printable or other formats. Seems more like a proof of concept program than an actual level-editor.
  • Dungeon Crafter III - blessedly simple with some nice, basic map settings. Unfortunately no undo function and the output looks NOTHING like the screenshots. How did they come up with those?
  • DM Cheatsheet - A great idea but really ugly on my windows firefox browser. Unusably so and definitely not going to see any more updates since the last one was in '05
  • Storybook - untested but might be a good way to keep track of major characters in a more political setting.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Using to create D&D maps

I find even just a little preparation setting up maps makes my life SO much easier. Graph paper is adequate but I'm trying to do everything digitally and current D&D resources on this topic haven't done the trick. If characters want to go back the way they came, I need to know where they were and what was there.

I'm currently trying out resources but here's one trick using
  1. Create a simple 100 x 100 pixel map
  2. Zoom in 1200%
  3. In the menu, select "view" and choose "grid"
  4. Use the fill tool to create a dark grey background
Then, draw out some areas and designate different available colors for different map symbols. I picked some that seemed right to me and then put a legend to the side of the page.

To add more detail to the map, change the canvas size to 700 x 700 or take a screen capture of the picture using FastStone Capture. Those tiny boxes will now become very big ones that you can draw more detail into or type text explanations.

Random findings

To flesh out locations, I like to give random findings to the characters that aren't just a pile of gold and gems but maybe still worth something.  Maybe one of them has magic properties or has enormous sentimental value?

* Small figurine of a cat
* Beautifully crafted wooden horse
* Pot with an old, rotted away plant
* Pouch full of silver coins of an unknown origin
* Sewing kit with various buttons and thread
* 3 old torches that still have the smell of fuel
* Carving of a tree
* Tiny knife on a thin, gold chain
* Old matted red hat
* Dirty map of some indiscernable place
* Silver horseshoes
* Nails (rusted or new) and boards
* Religious icon of unknown origin
* Sharp bronze spear tip
* Gold tiara
* Heavy figurine of a beautiful dragon
* Ring that always gives off a soft glow