A Cat of Tindalos

A Cat of Tindalos

Monday, March 19, 2018

Monday, March 12, 2018

More Weirdness update

This is the current state of the draft of the More Weirdness collection.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Monsters of Japanese Myth for Dungeon World

Solitary, Large, Amorphous
Talons (d10+2 damage)
16 HP
4 armor
Special Qualities: Damaged only by magic or magic weapons, Undead

The Gashadokuro are undead that take the form of giant skeletons and are fifteen times taller than an average person, said to be created from the amassed bones of people who died of starvation or in battle, without being buried. These monsters roam after midnight, grabbing lone travelers and biting off their heads to drink their spraying blood. There is a way to know of their approach, as the victim would hear the sound of loud ringing in the ear. The Gashadokuro are said to possess the powers of indestructibility; though Shinto charms are said to ward them off. 

Instinct: Consume the Living
  • Hide from the Sun
  • Haunt battlefields
  • Patrol unholy graves

 Large, Stealthy, Amorphous
Blood Drain (d6 damage)
14 HP
2 armor
Special Qualities: Undead, Leaves act as bandages

According to Japanese folklore, it appears in former battlefields where many people have died, and its appearance does not differ that much from ordinary trees. Since it becomes an undead tree by sucking up large quantities of blood from the dead, it lives on human blood. When a human being happens to pass by, it supposedly captures the victim and, changing its branches into the shape of a tube, sucks the blood out of the victim. A Jubokko that sucks life out of human beings in such a way is said to always maintain a fresh appearance. When a Jubokko is cut, blood trickles out. It is said that a Jubokko's leaves could heal and decontaminate an injured person. 

Instinct: Drain the living
  • Consume Life
  • Ambush
  • Haunt
KitsuneSolitary, Stealthy, Intelligent, Hoarder
Talons (w[2d8] damage)12 HP0 armor
Special Qualities: Shape shifter, Illusionist, Trickster Guardian
Kitsune (狐, キツネ, IPA: [kitsɯne] (About this sound listen)) is the Japanese word for the fox. Foxes are a common subject of Japanese folklore; in English, kitsune refers to them in this context. Stories depict them as intelligent beings and as possessing paranormal abilities that increase with their age and wisdom. According to Yōkai folklore, all foxes have the ability to shape shift into human form. While some folktales speak of kitsune employing this ability to trick others— as foxes in folklore often do— other stories portray them as faithful guardians, friends, lovers, and wives. Foxes and humans lived close together in ancient Japan; this companionship gave rise to legends about the creatures. Kitsune have become closely associated with Inari, a Shinto kami or spirit, and serve as its messengers. This role has reinforced the fox's supernatural significance. The more tails a kitsune has—they may have as many as nine—the older, wiser, and more powerful it is. Because of their potential power and influence, some people make sacrifices to them as to a deity. Conversely foxes were often seen as "witch animals", especially during the superstitious Edo period (1603–1867), and were goblins who could not be trusted (similar to some badgers and cats) Instinct: Cast Illusions

  • Pretends to be human
  • Shape shifter
  • Be resourceful for evil or good

 Small, Stealthy, Intelligent
(d8 damage)
3 HP
2 armor
Special Qualities: Aquatic
The kappa is typically depicted as roughly humanoid in form and about the size of a child. Its scaly reptilian skin ranges in color from green to yellow or blue. Kappa supposedly inhabits the ponds and rivers of Japan, and has various features to aid them in this environment, such as webbed hands and feet. They are sometimes said to smell like fish and they can swim like them. The expression kappa no kawa nagare ("a kappa drowning in a river") conveys the idea that even experts make mistakes. Although their appearance varies from region to region, the most consistent features are a beak, a shell, and a plate (sara), a flat hairless region on the top of the head that is always wet, and that is regarded as the source of the kappa's power. Kappas are usually seen as mischievous troublemakers or trickster figures. Their pranks range from the relatively innocent, such as looking up women's kimonos, to the malevolent, such as drowning people and animals, kidnaps children, raping women and at times eating human flesh. Folk beliefs claim the cucumber as their traditional favorite meal. Kappa may also be related to the Kelpie of Scotland and the Neck of Scandinavia. Like the Japanese description of the beast, in Scandinavian lore this beast is infamous for kidnapping and drowning people as well as horses. The Siyokoy of the Philippine islands is also known for kidnapping children by the water's edge. 

Instinct: Trickster
  • Misleads
  • Drowns innocents
  • Devours child

Solitary, Large
Iron Club Smash (b[2d10] damage)
16 HP
0 armor
Special Qualities: Repelled by holly and monkey statutes

Oni () are a kind of yōkai, or supernatural ogre, or trolls in Japanese folklore. They are popular characters in Japanese art, literature, and theatre. Depictions of oni vary widely but usually portray them as hideous, gigantic ogre-like creatures with sharp claws, wild hair, and two long horns growing from their heads. They are humanoid for the most part, but occasionally, they are shown with unnatural features such as odd numbers of eyes or extra fingers and toes. Their skin may be any number of colors, but red and blue are particularly common. They are often depicted wearing tiger-skin loincloths and carrying iron clubs called kanabō (金棒). This image leads to the expression "oni with an iron club" (鬼に金棒 oni-ni-kanabō), that is, to be invincible. It can also be used in the sense of "strong beyond strong", or having one's natural quality enhanced or supplemented by the use of some tool. In addition to this, it can mean to go overboard, or be unnecessarily strong or powerful. In more recent times, oni have lost some of their original wickedness and sometimes take on a more protective function. Men in oni costumes often lead Japanese parades to ward off any bad luck, for example. Japanese buildings sometimes include oni-faced roof tiles called onigawara (鬼瓦), which are thought to ward away bad luck, much like gargoyles in Western tradition.
 Instinct: Smash
  • Devour
  • Doom
  • Destroy

Group, Small, Intelligent, Construct
Talons (d8 damage)
6 HP
0 armor
Special Qualities: Cursed Buddhist priests, Flight

Tengu are impish Japanese mountain goblins that play tricks on people, featured in countless folktales and considered purely evil until about the 14th century. They were originally depicted as birdlike, with wings and beaks, though now the beak is often replaced with a comically large nose. They are known to lead people away from Buddhism, tie priests to tall trees and towers, start fires in temples, and kidnap children. Many legends say the tengu were hypocritical priests who must now live the rest of their lives as mountain goblins as punishment. Locals made offerings to the tengu to avoid their mischief, and there are still festivals in Japan dedicated to them today. Instinct: Subverts Buddhists

  • Makes Mischief

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

More Weirdness!

From Michael Sands:

Because this came up in a comment, and interested folks might not have read it, I'll repeat here the current status of the MORE WEIRDNESS book for Monster of the Week. Currently: I am doing the last few bits of editing, waiting on some art, and then we will go to layout & final version. I won't mention a date because that would bring down a curse, but soon! What: Planning on print on demand and PDF via Drivethrurpg. It will include: - Rules for Weird Phenomena mysteries (i.e. more Fringe/X Files than Supernatural/Buffy) - Alternative basic weird moves for your hunters (i.e. to swap in for "use magic" if you want a variety of weird hunters or to make your game less magic-focused) - Two new hunter classes: The Hex (witchy magic user) and Pararomantic (lover of a monster). - A bunch of advice articles from different people about a range of topics (making gothic mysteries, using pop culture, playing games in the office, spellbooks, etc) - Loads of mysteries you can use in your game from all different authors and in all sorts of styles. (I don't have the exact count available here, but it's more than twenty). Who: I wrote the new rules, everything else is other people (many of whom you will find on this community, such as +Mark Tygart who got it all started). You can have a look at the draft of the weirdness rules over on my website: (https://genericgames.co.nz/files/MotW_more_weirdness.pdf It's cleaned up a lot but the basics are the same as the draft)

Monday, March 5, 2018

Inuit Cosmology

According to Inuit cosmology, the cosmos is ruled by no one. The Inuk writer Rachel Attituq Qitsualik-Tinsley has noted that “There are no divine mother and father figures. There are no wind gods and solar creators. There are no eternal punishments in the hereafter, as there are no punishments for children or adults in the here and now.”
The Shaman is the spiritual healer in most Inuit communities. Its role varies depending on the particular community. Among the Canadian Inuit, its duties are to help the community when sea mammals are scarce. According to legend, when there are not enough seals, walruses, and sea lions, it means that the Sea Woman ("Sedna") keeps them imprisoned at the bottom of the sea.
The Shaman must use its shamanic techniques to conjure the Sea Woman and make her release the animals for the hunters.

Inuit Monsters of the Frozen North for Dungeon World (In Honor of AMC's The Terror)

Group, Intelligent
Talons (d8 damage) 6 HP 0 armor
Adlet are a race of people in Inuit legends usually said to have the lower body of dogs and the upper body of humans. Typically, they're believed to be the offspring of an Inuit woman and a dog, brought about through an unnatural mating. The Adlet are typically portrayed as aggressive savages who will attack men when they cross paths.
Instinct: Devours
• Hunts Humans

Group, Intelligent
Spear (d8 damage) 6 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Tribal Hunter-Gathers
Inuit are a group of culturally similar indigenous peoples inhabiting the Arctic regions. The Inuit have traditionally been fishers and hunters. For the Inuit there was a set way of doing things: Maligait refers to what has to be followed, Piqujait refers to what has to be done, and the Tirigusuusiit refers to what has to be avoided. If an individual's actions went against the Tirigusuusiit, Maligait or Piqujait, the shaman might have to intervene, lest the consequences be dire to the individual or the community. Instinct: Hunt
• Survive
• Guard Community
• Welcome peaceful strangers

Group, Stealthy
Claws (d8 damage) 6 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Aquatic, Immune to cold
Qalupalik is an Inuit mythological creature. It is a human-sized marine goblin-demon that lives at the bottom of the sea, with long hair, green skin, and long fingernails. The myth is that qalupaliks wear an amautiit (a form of pouch that Inuit parents wear to carry their children) so they can take babies and children away who disobey their parents to become qalupaliks. The story was used to prevent children from wandering off alone, lest the qalupalik take those children in her amautik underwater and keep them forever. Qalupaliks are said to make a distinctive humming sound; therefore, they can be heard before they appear. Instinct: Steal Children
• Lives in the Inuit marine Underworld
• Charms children
• Make a distinctive humming sound

Solitary, Planar
Nails (d10 damage 1 piercing) 16 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Immune to Cold, Immune to non-magical weapons
Mahaha is a maniacal Inuit demon that terrorized parts of the arctic. This creature is described as a thin sinewy being, ice blue in colour and cold to the touch. Mahaha’s eyes are white and they peer through the long stringy hair that hangs in its face. This demon is always smiling and giggling. It is strong, very strong and it is always barefoot. Mahaha is usually seen with almost no clothing on yet it never seems to be bothered by the cold. This cold demon takes pleasure in tickling its victims to death with sharp vicious nails attached to its long bony fingers. Many elders have remarked on the expression of the dead victims Mahaha leaves behind. It seems all of the victim have a similar expression on their dead faces – a twisted frozen smile. Although this demon is twisted and evil, Mahaha is easily fooled. Most of the stories told about Mahaha end with it being fooled. Usually Mahaha is tricked into leaning over a water hole to take a drink and is pushed into the open water and swept away by the currents.
Instinct: Tortures
• Haunts
• Beguiles
• Murders

Solitary, Large
Claws (d10 damage) 16 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Immune to cold
The Inuit Yeti or Bigfoot; these solitary creatures are nomadic, roaming the wastes to settle temporarily where they are lucky enough to find food, shelter, or both. They are omnivorous, but the climate dictates that the lion's share of their diet is meat, and Saumen Kars consumes the flesh of any creature but their own kind.
Instinct: Devour
• Hunts Humans

Solitary, Divine, Magical, Planar
Skeleton talons (d10+2 damage 1 piercing) 25 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Divine, Primary Inuit goddess, Does not suffer fools, Aquatic, Immune to magic, Immune to non-magical weapons, Commands dead spirits
Sedna is the Inuit Goddess of the Underworld and the Ocean. The Inuit believe the afterlife to be located at the bottom of the sea; which Sedna rules. Sedna started existence as a simple Inuit girl. Sedna was killed by her father. Varying legends each give different rationales for Sedna's murder. Yet, in each version, her father takes her to sea in his kayak, chopping off her fingers and throwing her into the sea. In each version she sinks to the bottom of the sea; to be worshiped by hunters who depend on her goodwill to supply marine sea creatures to hunt. She is generally considered a vengeful goddess, and hunters must placate and pray to her to release the sea animals from the ocean depths for their hunt. She is often depicted with a fish tail, like a mermaid. Inuit souls are sent to her for a year after death before they are reincarnated back into their tribe.
Instinct: Punishes
• Rules Inuit underworld and oceans
• Commands sea creatures and the dead
• Inuit Goddess; appears as an arctic mermaid with skeleton talons

Solitary, Divine
Arctic curse (w[2d10+2] damage) 12 HP 0 armor
Close, Far
Special Qualities: Heal travellers, Bless weapons to hit demons, Mute
A rare type of Inunit guardian shaman found in Dan Simmons’ novel “The Terror”. The shaman of a community of Inuit was not the leader, but rather a sort of healer and psychotherapist, who tended wounds and offered advice, as well as invoking the spirits to assist people in their lives. His or her role was to see, interpret and exhort the subtle and unseen. The Tuunbaq can be pacified by the throat singing of an otherwise mute Sixam ieua (special Inuit shaman), rendering it as close to docile as it can be made. This entire shaman group has had their tongues removed to gain their special powers and usually refrain from all forms of physical violence against human beings.(Inspired by Dan Simmons' novel "The Terror"')
Instinct: Protect
• Guide
• Heal
• Bless

Horde, Large
Bite (d6 damage 1 piercing) 7 HP 0 armor
Special Qualities: Aquatic
In Inuit mythology, the Tizheruk are large, snake-like sea creatures that are believed to roam Alaska's waters. They are described as having a head 7 feet long with a tail ending in a flipper, for a total of 12 to 15 feet long. Tizheruk were said to snatch people from docks and piers.
Instinct: Snatch prey
• Consume
• Ambush
• Return to the deep

Solitary, Large, Planar
Bite (b[2d12] damage) 20 HP 1 armor
Special Qualities: Impervious to non-magical weapons, Demon, Immune to cold
The Tuunbaq is an Inuit Demon, a devourer of souls and eater of flesh. The Tuunbaq is encountered as a large polar bear with an extended if not elongated neck, and is impervious to non-magical weapons. The Tuunbaq can be pacified by the throat singing of a Sixam Ieua (special Inuit shamans), rendering it as close to docile as it can be made. The Tuunbaq was created by the Inuit Goddess Sedna to murder the other Inuit pagan gods, when it failed she exiled it to the far north and taught special shamans how to confine it there. Instinct: Consumes souls (Inspired by Dan Simmons novel)
• Haunts
• Ancient Demon of Frozen Wastes
• Players killed by Tuunbaq may not be restored unless it is destroyed

Zenopus Classic

Sadly I won't have much time for Dungeon World adventures this month, as personal and professional obligations have arisen meaning the forces of evil will have to wait their doom patiently in April. I can offer up something I did last month to celebrate J.E. Holmes' birthday. I've run various versions of his famous "Tower of Zenopus" before but this time I tried to convert it as closely as possible to Holmes' classic dungeon. I offer this conversion "Zenopus Classic" to Dungeon World fans: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1hBWJytgZ_M1pKqJ1OfjMMb2pZzctI9jZ

Happy Delving!