Friday, November 29, 2019

Blackmoor-Castle-Convention-Handout-1984-Incredibly-Rare (Recent eBay Auction)

This was in a recent Paul Stormberg eBay auction.

Now for the funny part:

This is too much! A blog post by Chirine ba Kal titled  Blackmoor Castle Map - I Hope You'll Pardon My Amusement..

But there is a really interesting bit down in paragraph four about the stairways on the map. I highly recommend the blog:

chirine's workbench

Secrets of Blackmoor - The Bonus DVD Sources - Ross Maker (a sample from the Bonus DVD)

Secrets of Blackmoor@Blackmoor_Film shared a sample from the Bonus DVD for the Secrets of Blackmoor.
How about a sample from the Bonus DVD?
A little video to watch on this day of Thanksgiving. 
Ross Maker talks about the early days: 
Thanks everyone for Following us. We can't do it without you. 
A short excerpt from the 2 hour Bonus DVD for KickStarter supporters of Secrets of Blackmoor. 
Ross Maker was the first person to play a Dwarf Character in an RPG. He played that same character for roughly 40 years. 
As part of the Blackmoor Bunch, Ross witnessed the invention and evolution of Arneson's fantasy campaign 
In his real life career he has been a game designer and computer programmer. As a founder of the 4D Interactive team he helped port many games produced by Coleco such as Zaxxon. 
This is raw footage without color or sound enhancement. 
Ross appears in the completed documentary which can be seen here: 
The Bonus DVD Sources - Ross Maker

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Craig VanGrasstek - "Rules to the Game of Dungeon" (1974)

Craig VanGrasstek responded to a post on The Ruins of Murkhill™ Forum regarding his 'Rules to the Game of Dungeon' which he wrote down in 1974 when he was 14 years old. If you are interested you can check out the thread here Rules to the Game of Dungeon (1974) and he comes in starting with this post Craig VanGrasstek.

The thread has links to Jon Peterson's Blog "Playing at the World" where he talks about this game.

Update: a direct link to some newly posted recollections by Craig VanGrasstek.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

An Open Letter To Cecilia D'Anastasio by Chirine ba Kal

An Open Letter to Cecilia D'Anastasio by Chirine ba Kal over at chirine's workbench.

I think most of us will understand his viewpoint on several of her recent articles. I am in agreement with him, although having not been there and having not known any of the people directly, I am better able to ignore and filter out the dross. With all the people who were there back in the day it is much more personal and it detracts from their talking about gaming. There has been a lot published about peoples warts that to me are just TMI.

I fixed the link!

'System Mastery' vs. 'World Settings' from chirine's workbench

'System Mastery' vs. 'World Settings' 
This is from back in July at  chirine's workbench Jeff Berry's Blog.

Early last year, an experienced D&D 5e gamer told me I should get out of the campaign that I'd been playing for a while, as I was "holding the party back because I didn't have system mastery on the 5e rules". So, since I agreed with him, I handed my player-character sheets back to the very patient GM, and left the campaign. (And the table, and the game store, but that's a different story.)

It got me thinking. ...
Interesting perspective, one with which I agree. Like Mr. Berry, I also played the same way bitd. It is to my mind more fun when the players are playing in a world and not knowing/reading/studying the rule set, but focused on the world itself. I love having people in my games who have never played before and have no preconceived expectations from "ruleset" knowledge. IMO it is more fun for the player and for the ref.

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Robert J Kuntz 3rd Column Post at EN World

Here is a link to Gary’s Immersion in Castle El Raja Key: The Four-Way Footsteps wherein he discusses what he (Rob) and Gary learned about immersion from Dave Arneson and then gives an example of how you do it.
(Very early 1973, 1st level of my Castle El Raja Key) -- In November of 1972 four stalwarts of the LGTSA (Lake Geneva Tactical Studies Association; of which I was then its current president)--namely Gary Gygax, myself, Ernie Gygax and my brother Terry Kuntz--experienced our first, and also comprehensive, RPG adventure via Dave Arneson’s Blackmoor setting. During it we also experienced the various levels of DM interactive strategies that Arneson could and did wield.
Rob mentions Alfred Hitchcock:
Both Gary and I were big Alfred Hitchcock fans and Hitchcock was the master of suspense and, due to that, of anxiety.
I watched a ton of Hitchcock movies growing up and they have always influenced how I ran my games from day one. I also am a big Edgar Allan Poe fan. I discovered Poe about 5th grade and a few of my favorites are:

The Cask of Amontillado
A Descent Into The Maelstrom
The Fall of the House of Usher
The Gold Bug
The Masque of the Red Death
The Murders in the Rue Morgue
The Pit and the Pendulum
The Premature Burial
The Tell-Tale Heart

You can read these and more at

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Additional Information Relevant to the Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio

I had forgotten about this informative blog post from earlier this year.

Over at From Kuroth's Quill - grodog's AD&D blog back on January 9th, 2019 this was posted:

Paul Stormberg reddit "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) on Gygax Manuscripts Archive

Quoting for context:
This afternoon today, Paul Stormberg of The Collector's Trove held a Q&A session over on reddit about the contents of Gary Gygax's unpublished manuscripts:
This is an AMA, wherein I allow adventurers to ask me anything about the trove of treasures left behind by Gary Gygax, co-creator of Dungeons & Dragons, and what traps and guardians await them. 
Gail Gygax's agent, Gina Ramirez, also participated in the AMA, covering questions around licensing as well as future publishing plans for computer games, RPGs, etc.
Adventurers wanted for hazardous journey, small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return doubtful, honor and recognition in case of success!
grodog provide a lengthy summary of the contents of the reddit thread. Good reading, excellent resource and pertinent to the Public Notice  Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio.

My first two posts on the subject:

Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio

RE: Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio UPDATE

Monday, November 4, 2019

What's an unpopular D&D / RPG opinion that you hold and won't concede?

Over on Twitter the OneCritWonder@OneCritWonder asked "What's an unpopular D&D / RPG opinion that you hold and won't concede?".

I thought it was and is a great topic. I replied as follows:

The original way to play was a game of exploration and combat was to be avoided when possible. Murderhobo's should be treated to the angry villager rule. Especially those who specialize in killing innocents.
Enough with the cannot handle more than 3-5 players. With OD&D you can run 12-15 players and on occasion even more, this is no sweat with experienced adult players. I have run 15 players where at least 7 of them were 10-12 years old.
Massive amounts of preparation are not necessary or IMO desirable. At any moment of the day you could tap me on the shoulder and I could sit down and run an 8 hour game with no prep. That is one of the beauties of a homebrew OD&D campaign that you have fully created.
There is no off the map, there are no worries about the players breaking your world and no NPC is untouchable. If the players want to topple a kingdom, go for it. There is no pre-written railroaded script of a story IMC. Story is what is told after the game play has occurred.

RE: Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio UPDATE

There has already been a development directly related to it. Transformers Producer Drops Lawsuit Against Gary Gygax's Widow Gail Some very interesting things in this article. Especially in light of Rob's post.

See first post on this blog at Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Public Notice Filed by Robert J Kuntz of Three Line Studio

This is a link to a Public Notice to Private and Public RPG/Game Collectors, to all Game Companies, to RPG Historians, Film Industry Companies and all and Other.

PUBLIC NOTICE Posted October 30, 2019 Posted by Robert J. Kuntz

Saturday, November 2, 2019

Friday, November 1, 2019

Planet Eris Gazetteer

El Borak the Admin posted this over on the forum.
Planet Eris Gazetteer

64-page booklet now available on &
A5 Booklet from
Digest Size Booklet from
Planet Eris World Map

Large, 24 x 36 inch glossy poster map on 100 weight poster paper now available from The Scribes of Sparn.
Poster Print (available only for shipping in the U.S.A.):
Instructions for downloading the electronic map, a 150 dpi JPEG file, are provided in the print and PDF versions of the Planet Eris Gazetteer booklet.
1 hex = 15 miles.
I have permission to post this mini-review of the above:
Thaddeus Moore
I just picked up The Planet Eris Gazzeteer by Jim Johnson this morning. It is a 64 page campaign setting for OD&D but the material essentially system agnostic. Eris is a planet which absorbed successive waves of involuntary human and alien migration (forced to flee dying planets). An unknown span of time has passed, presumably tens of thousands of years later, the humans have become the dominate civilizations on the planet. The once space faring cultures have reverted to medieval technology levels as have the alien races which are essentially proxies for demihumans. Humans, as we are want to do have adopted old names and old gods. The setting has an ancient feeling with a deep history. 
A 24”x 36” world poster map on glossy paper can be purchase separately for $9 here:
Update: Poster Print now available for shipping worldwide.
Large, 24 x 36 inch glossy poster map on 100 weight poster paper now available from The Scribes of Sparn.
Poster Print (now available for shipping worldwide)

Instructions for downloading the electronic map, a 150 dpi JPEG file, are provided in the print and PDF versions of the Planet Eris Gazetteer booklet.
Oh and BTW here is a link to Jim Johnson's house rules.