Friday, April 28, 2017

Hex Kit Released: I'm happy.

Hex Kit released, and after a pretty rough day of work I spend all of five minutes to put together a little map that is in theme of Chromatic Soup 2's Americana Frontier, though in my mind I've been referring to all my contributions to as an Autumnal Wilderness. A place of wide fields, sweeping tick-brushed hills, potter's fields and shallow graves, woods caught in eternal red-orange-yellow Fall, and hobos and chain-gangers aplenty trying to find their way.
Click For a Full Size of a few minute's effort.
Where little men will drink you away for forty years in the wild wood, treasure might always be buried somewhere under your nose, and civilization is as much your haven as it is your hell; as only man is cruel enough to string someone up and give them a long neck job. 

I look forward to, eventually, running a polite little hex crawl in that assumed setting. An Over the Garden Wall meets O Brother Where Art Thou? with all the strangeness of folklore, tall tell tale, and Swing You Sinners.

As for Hex Kit itself, I like it. It works for what it is, is rather intuitive, and the hexes themselves look as good as they did when I first bought the kit back when it released. It is one of those few kickstarters I am grateful I backed; the other one really only being Roll20.

If you didn't back Hex Kit, buy it. It is a solid tool, and the art is stellar. I fear it will become over-saturated, but then again it does cost money and it isn't up for commercial use.

Currently: I'm working on a series of randomizers for a project. I have 240 out of 960 written out. My goal is to burn through these this weekend and see how it turns out.

Next: Still more travel work. I move at the end of May, and June is essentially a month off without games or work---hopefully a lot of game writing will happen then.

Edit 4/29/2017: Added links to the site to buy it at the top and bottom, kept one link as a link to the faq. None of these things are of the sort I can make money off of anyway and are meant purely for utility purposes and ease of access.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Dogs of Dolmenwood (Part 2 of 2) - More Unofficial Homebrew Canine Companions & What Makes Them Unique

Further Dogs of the Dolmenwood I appreciated the positive feedback and warm reception on the first part, and since my shoulder feels better (though I accidentally got icy-hot goop in my eye) I was able to finish Dogs of Dolmenwood for today. What follows are the remaining four breeds, with what makes them useful indicated in bold on their final paragraph. The parenthetical next to their name is what you should visualize in your head. Also attached are a few charts to help spice up what sort of hot mess your pooch is, most of it coming from my own experiences dog-sitting in a living nightmare and half-remembering horror stories my friends have told me of their pets.



7. Boardog (Bull Dog + Pinscher, pronounced snout and underbite fangs a la pig’s tusks)
As is common in rural communities throughout the world, the Boardog is a constant companion of the farmer and field-worker of the northern wold. Boardogs for the uninitiated, are a squat medium breed of reliable guard dogs for livestock and home. They have a wiry haired coat that rises nearly in bristles down its back, and their name comes certainly from both this and their unusual dental structure. Boardogs possess a set of malocclusioned fangs that emerge from their bottom jaw like the tusks of a woodland boar. Their eyes are commonly a mustard yellow in color, though those with a better diet often have eyes of pale green.


Boardogs are useful for guarding swine, as well as for their ability to digest nearly anything regardless of its state of decay which sometimes sees boarhounds eating out of a pig sty latrine with their porcine wards. They will happily consume human waste, though it appears they enjoy eating anything with a soupish or gravy-like consistency. Boardogs are remarkably resilient to disease, though they can carry an infectious bite if this is the bulk of their diet.


The Boardog is a Medium Breed (d4 HD) that is a loyal guard dog to small children and livestock, it will attack anything that threatens small creatures it has been charged to protect on a 5-in-6, regardless of what is attacking. They are remarkably resilient to disease and can eat things regardless of the state of decay, which makes it a good companion on the road as it can eat any carrion that is come across without complaint or getting sick. Boardogs resist disease on a 5-in-6 if the disease is not supernatural in origin. A Boardog that feasts primarily on carrion or filth has a noxious infecting bite which can transfer disease on to the victim (On critical, does d4 CON damage for the next d6 days until the victim dies or makes a CON save or receives proper medical attention).


8. The Warty Addler (Saluki Body + Chinese Crested Hound in fur distribution and warts)
Folktale says that The Hag, Old Crust-Breath herself, was once a beautiful maiden or perhaps she just once stuck to a bewitching form. In such a guise she seduced a noble who was searching the wood for a powerful herb which might save his king. She promised him herbs in exchange for his love, and the bargin was struck to the displeasure of both parties. He received herbs for his king at the cost of his humanity, and she received his love, which in the culture of that foreign noble was said to be something which only lasts “a dog’s age.” And thus was born this strange breed of the sluggish trickle of Lake Longmere, the Warty Addler.


As a dog it looks emaciated, its body is long and either a dim blue-grey or a corpse-flesh white. Stringy strands of hair run down its head, tail and paws, but nowhere else. Its eyes are black globes that always seem to be lit by lights in the dark, making it seem eternally curious and lurking. They have a black tongue that forks at the end in two tiny nubs, and around their paws and genitals are tiny white warts. The Warty Addler enjoys swimming, salt, eating leeches, and crooning out sad lullabyes when you ought to be sleeping. It would not be tolerated by those along the lake if not for how The Hag seems to look upon them favorably.


Moreso, it is held in woodsmen myth that The Hag can transmogrify herself into a Warty Addler whenever she deems fit and that she could easily be any, one, or all the Warty Addlers in existence. She sups herself on the love a pet owner gives to their Warty Addler, getting a little hook into that which she was denied in her ancient bargin; true love. But even then, it only lasts for a dog’s age, and Warty Addlers are a breed that live only thirteen years on the dot.


The Warty Addler is a Medium Breed (d4 HD) and any one of them might be The Hag (or at least most woodsmen believe this). They are timid and not prone to combat. The Warty Addler are excellent swimmers and the denizens of the Hag’s Addle are unlikely to attack them for fear of it being The Hag. A Warty Addler that has high morale and treated nicely increases your chance of finding good herbs when in the Hag’s Addle due to potentially ancient pacts with The Hag. These dogs eat leeches and other blood-sucking parasites with glee, provided they also have some salt on the side. Their eyes always shine, which can be disorienting and frightening at night to creatures with less than 2HD.

God, this pug is cute.

9. The Rectory Pug aka The Saint’s Snorker (Toy Sharpei-Pug mix)
Many a young acolyte who has fallen to temptation and vice has seen their expulsion from the order spelled out by an Abbot’s Rectory Pug. Bred originally in the Dolmenwood and deemed unpopular in Loom (due to the more hedonistic heresies of the nobility), the Rectory Pug was born of a Saint’s desire to see that those serving under him were not tempted to sins of the flesh. Which Saint it was has been lost to history, though young men and women who desire a bit of levity curse his unknown name in their thoughts.


The Rectory Pug, or Saint’s Snorker as Abbots are known to call them, is a fat little bean of a dog. Its face droops low with heavy jowls and its paws are little more than blubbery stumps. Its eyes are often covered by folds of fat which shift and shake as it moves. Bred into them over generations is a tonsure-like fold of fat around their skull that is generally a different color of fur than the rest of them. To be honest, the only part of this breed that isn’t stumpy of pudgy is its nose; which is pronounced, profound, and powerful.


Rectory Pugs use their powerful noses to identify a few specific scents; namely those of wine, sexual fluids, arousal, and tainted materials. When a Rectory Pug gains such a scent upon its nostrils it will waddle with haste to the item of its ire and bark at it until spoken a command word (generally “Silence” in Liturgic or something each Abbot uses for this one purpose). If the item is moved or the person in question tries to flee, the Rectory Pug will spray urine on whatever has aroused its anger as quickly as possible, in the hopes that it might be able to alert its master later when the sinner is cleaning a very pungent stain.


Rectory Pugs are a Small Breed (d4/2 HD) that are found mostly in the care of anchorites, abbots, and high ranking clergymen who often have to deal with the young and sinful. They are utterly useless in a fight, possessing no desire to engage in violence as their master will certainly handle the sinful. They have a powerful nose, which will smell wine, recent sexual activity (within 1d4 days, halved if subjects bathed/washed clothes), arousal, or magical corruption at a rate of 5-in-6 times. They can smell these things from a distance of 300 feet away and are not distracted by other pungent smells like trash, corpses, or food--such are concerns for their master. Rectory Pugs have a loud yipping burp of a bark which is easily heard and they will not stop commanded to stop or if they are harmed, at which point they are smart enough to flee and fetch their master to go after any fleeing enemy. If someone tries to flee without attacking them or remove an item of its anger, a Rectory Pug will spray a quick spritz of pungent and terrible urine (DEX save to avoid) which can be easily smelled by mortal nostrils on a 3-in-6 when within 20 feet.


10. Hameth’s Otterhound (Martin +lil'Maned Wolf)
Found only along the River Hameth are the Otterhounds, a strange and small breed of fisher dogs that are cunning beyond compare to other breeds and wilier than many of their would-be masters. The Otterhounds are compact animals who act as ambush predators towards frogs, eels, and fish that dwell along the coasts of the river. Their forepaws have sharp claws built for gripping and perhaps for climbing (though no one has seen them climb a tree or clifface) and their skulls possess a thick bony knob which they use sometimes to crack open oysters and mussels so that they might sup upon the sweet meats.


Otterhounds are used by clever fishermen to delve the deeps of the river. Using long leashes of thick rope, packs of Otterhound can be unleashed from a boat to swim and dive, catch fish, and line the stocks of a boat with them. So long as the Otterhound gets to eat the biggest fish that it caught, it doesn’t seem to mind being used. An Otterhound who is mistreated or witnesses others within its pack being mistreated will often wait until their master is desperate before slashing the leashes to bits under water and swimming away without offering their master any touch of a bounty.


An Otterhound has a body about a foot-and-a-half long with agile legs and a long fluffy tail. It has three different coats of fur which keep it warm in winter, dry from water, and impermeable to leeches and hagfish. They have black eyes that shine like greedy pearls. Their fur runs a variety of colors, from yellow, to black, to brown to white and occasionally red. With the changing of the seasons they will shed their fur and in winter they are nearly always white. They have long claws and webbed toes.


Hameth’s Otterhound are a Small Breed (d4/2 HD), that are reliable swimmers with only a 10% chance to drown when unconscious, as they will naturally float on their backs when harmed in water. They have razor sharp claws (2d3-1 Damage, Double on Critical) which when in a fight they will use with reckless abandon. They are smart and clever able to figure out balance puzzles, pulley systems, and tumblers if given enough time and incentive to do so at a rate of 4-in-6 chance. They are amazing fishers who will catch fish at a rate of 4-in-6 if for anyone other than themselves, with a failure meaning it likely caught a fish and has a reason not to share it with its master. They are resistant to leeches and hagfish or other bloodsucking creatures, as though their AC were 5 greater when being targeted by bite attacks by such creatures.




Morale or Loyalty
Dogs possess a Loyalty or Morale stat that operates differently than those held by common hirelings. This statistic is determined by rolling 3d6, and this number can be improved anytime a player and his dog have downtime with which to train, spoil, and pamper his pooch, gaining an additional d4 Loyalty. Depending on their personality there are situations where they will lose d4 Loyalty if they are not indulged.

To determine this stat, roll on the Personality table below.


Dog Personality - d30
d30
Personality
Will lose Loyalty if...
1
Adamant
Master doesn’t follow its lead, as it is stubborn and hardheaded.
2
Bashful
Master forces it into the center of attention, though it may do this on its own.
3
Bold
Master reigns it in from doing something on its own.
4
Brave
Master acts cowardly or runs from a danger it thinks it could beat.
5
Calm
Master acts in a bold, loud, or frightening way.
6
Careful
Master acts recklessly or messily and it effects the dog.
7
Cowardly
Master asks the dog to face something scary or dangerous.
8
Docile
Master acts violently around the dog.
9
Gentle
Master wantonly tramples, destroys or breaks things around the dog.
10
Hardy
Master cannot keep up with the dog while travelling.
11
Hasty
Master makes the dog slow down, sit, or stay when it wants to run.
12
Hot-Blooded
Master prevents the dog from attacking, hunting or mauling.
13
Impish
Master chides the dog for being a little rascal or scamp.
14
Jolly
Master refuses to give it positive attention.
15
Lazy
Master demands more of the dog than the dog wants to give.
16
Moody
Master tries too hard to bond with the dog.
17
Naive
Master tries to prevent the dog from doing something foolish.
18
Naughty
Master scolds the dog for doing something it shouldn’t have done.
19
Quiet
Master is loud, lacking in subtlety, or just being clumsy.
20
Quirky
Master tries to correct its quirks.
21
Rash
Master tries to curb its attitude.
22
Relaxed
Master causes it to panic, suffers from Fear effects.
23
Sassy
Master doesn’t respond positively to its perfect attitude.
24
Serious
Master acts foolishly or it is forced to relax rather than work.
25
Spoiled
Master refuses to lavish the dog with attention.
26
Timid
Master demands the dog rise to action or attack.
27
Vain
Master or his actions get the dog dirty and it isn’t immediately cleaned.
28
Lonely
Master won’t give the dog some attention, just a little really.
29
Modest
Dog is lavished with undo attention, as this will also make it act guilty as well.
30
Heroic
Master does not also act heroically


Dog Physical Quirks (d30, roll twice)
Physical Traits are things your dog does, or is.
d30
Physical Quirk
1
Has one buggy eye that likes to wander around, other one is fine.
2
Snaggle-toothed
3
Constant, unending, terrible dog breath.
4
Unceasing drool, even when dehydrated.
5
Farts leak from its bum constantly, they smell like the gates of Hell.
6
Extra toe on one foot.
7
Three-legged dog.
8
Only has one ear.
9
Notched tail.
10
Saggy large nipples.
11
Lolling tongue always hangs out the side of its mouth.
12
Missing most of its teeth.
13
Cock-eyed.
14
Scrotum/Vagina splays out on ground when sitting, is distracting and gross.
15
Constantly snotty nose.
16
Croaks before it barks.
17
Scars around its chest.
18
Drinks by shoving its entire head in the water.
19
Makes farting noises with its jowls.
20
Constantly shedding, never stops shedding. Dandruff too.
21
Always itching behind its ear.
22
Loudly licks its crotch before it goes to sleep.
23
Will chase its own tail when bored, to the point of puking.
24
Drags its anus across any carpet it sits on.
25
Limps to gain attention when feeling ignored.
26
Likes to bop sleeping people with its paws.
27
Must sleep with its head on someone’s belly.
28
Always rubs its back on never encountered before terrain.
29
Mis-colored eyes.
30
Spastic colon, no one can predict when it will go off.

Dog Mental Quirks (d30, roll twice)
Mental Quirks are weird things your dog thinks, or believes because it has poo brains.
d30
Mental Quirks
1
Touches all food to its chin before it eats it.
2
Dances when upset.
3
Dances when it knows it will have diarrhea.
4
Sneezes when it gets it's favorite food.
5
Loves to eat poop. If Boardog, hates to eat poop.
6
Must lick every gloved hand that isn’t holding anything when people talk.
7
Whines for attention than farts and dances when not given attention.
8
Floods urine when not given what it wants and will glare at you the whole time.
9
Cries loudly anytime you move away from it.
10
When tired, it must lay down between your legs. It will knock you down to do this.
11
Hates a specific race. Barks at them, glares at them, doesn’t attack without provocation.
12
Must sniff every chicken, fowl, or bird it sees.
13
Must smack every chicken, fowl, or bird it sees.
14
Must lick the butt of every dog it sees.
15
Must lick the butt of every person it meets.
16
Yodels when it chews its food.
17
Always humping and pumping whenever it can.
18
Enjoys humping the legs of people who are not dressed for such bestial nonsense.
19
Must sneeze on anything they’re going to eat.
20
Must sleep with a piece of your dirty smelly clothes or it’ll feel lonely.
21
Has a “baby” doll that it will go berserk if it goes missing or isn’t replaced. Will hoard babies.
22
Will lick its paws red and raw and then act like it is your fault.
23
Can never sleep at night, acts narcoleptically during the day.
24
Seizes up in weird poses when frightened, bored, or hears a loud noise (even if it causes the noise)
25
Licks up drool, spilled beverages, whatever liquid is spilling off or out of people with glee.
26
Always looks sadly at you, but appears beautiful, valiant, and cute to everyone else.
27
Loudly complains anytime it gets wet, but will go out of its way to get wet so it can complain.
28
Poops in a bedpan or a hole like a normal person. Will be sad if you watch.
29
Brings you dead animals as a gift, expects this to always be appreciated and rewarded.
30
Likes to shove its tongue in ears and armpits and up noses. Is a gross dog.
A nag hound if ever there was one.

Dog Husbandry

For breeding purposes, assign the Breed Size and one of its major traits as the B and one of its other traits (picked at random) as its b. Dog husbandry can make you some money but several breeds have people who are concerned about pedigrees and will be angry at you for interbreeding such companions together.



Punnett Square Example:
Paternal Traits
B
b
Maternal
Traits
B
BB
Bb
b
Bb
bb


It takes three generations to cement in a b trait into a B trait, which isn’t really how science works but it is useful for making sure this isn’t made into a full on bio class. I’ll actually get a science friend of mine to figure this crud out proper if it is really of interest.

Next up: Back to writing travelling rules for my own malign purposes.

Treasures of the Tomb (a d30)

At the behest of some randos, here's a d30 list of weird objects found in a tomb which might be worth something to the right buyer. Migh...