A Cat of Tindalos

A Cat of Tindalos

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Gods Fracked Us All (2016)

The Trump Cometh

“Mark my words, Seinfeld. Your day of reckoning is coming,
when an evil wind will blow through your little play world and
wipe that smug smile off your face. And I’ll be there,
in all my glory, watching, watching as it all comes
crumbling down.”
– Newman, Seinfeld

Thursday, December 29, 2016

The Essence of Noir, Dark or Grimdark Worlds or Genre

"Their characters lived in a world gone wrong, a world in which,
long before the atom bomb, civilization had created the machinery for its own
destruction, and was learning to use it with all the moronic delight of a gangster
trying out his first machine gun. The law was something to be manipulated for
profit and power. The streets were dark with something more than night.”
— Raymond Chandler, Introduction, Trouble Is My Business

My question is this: Is this "fiction" not a better description of our "real world" than most so called "facts"?

“In America politics is an arm of business and the aim of business is to make
money without care for the law, because politics, controlled by business, can
change or buy the law. Politics is interested in profit, not municipal prosperity
or civic pride. The spirit of graft and lawlessness is the American spirit.”
— Lincoln Steffens, The Shame of the Cities

Are things really so different now?

Thursday, December 22, 2016

A Classic One Page Dungeon Conversion for Dungeon World!

The Crucible 

"When the Adventurers decided to assist the sage Baerhoff with his “little alchemical difficulty,” they didn’t realize what they were agreeing to. With a spray of chemical fluorescence, the party finds they have been shrunk to nearly microscopic size, and inserted into the good Doctor’s device in order to “work out any problems!” To regain their size, Baerhoff, now a looming giant pronounces they’ll have to figure out what’s gone wrong with his experiments...from the inside!" 

Adapted for Dungeon World by Mark Tygart


Original One Page Classic by P. Aaron Potter 

Monsters? More, please!

Magic doorSolitary, Stealthy, Intelligent, Construct
Magic bolts (d10 damage)12 HP3 armor
Close, Ignores Armor
Special Qualities: Arcane Construct
Created to guard magic doors will only answer to the proper key or code word; often the answer to a riddle. Otherwise they delight in foiling intruders by sending them on a false quest, directing them to traps or simply wasting time.
Instinct: Block entry
  • Guards access
  • Lie
  • Direct to doom

DybbukSolitary, Magical, Terrifying
Personality drain (d10 damage)12 HP0 armor
Close, Ignores Armor
Special Qualities: Undead, Incorporeal, Only harmed by magic or magical weapons
A dybbuk is a misplaced soul who has eluded judgment because of a some great transgression or a pitiful suicide. Like a ghost, it lingers on in the mortal world, either trying to fulfill a need to right some great failure that has marked its soul for eternity or merely to spread torment. Most dybbuks desperately seek a new body to inhabit. A Dybbuk will "kill" a victim and then inhabit that body until driven out by death, spell or ritual.A Heal spell will be required to restore that person's personality. Often confined in a "Dybbuk Box" or other cursed item.
Instinct: Possess innocents
  • Terrify
  • Rectify failure
  • Inhabit human shells
Winter MedusaSolitary, Devious
Talons (d6 damage)12 HP0 armor
Special Qualities: Gaze turns victims into ice statues, Immune to Cold
An icy cousin of the normal medusa; the winter medusa is seldom found outside regions of extreme cold.They love conversing and taunting their victims before adding them to their collection of ice statues.
Instinct: Show disdain
  • Collect ice statues
  • Gaze victim into ice
  • Taunt
Harryhausen MedusaSolitary, Construct
Arrows (d6) or Constriction (d12 damage)12 HP2 armor
Close (Gaze or Constriction), Far (Arrows)
Special Qualities: Gaze turns humanoide to stone, Guardian of the Ancient World, Loves to talk, Darksight
A mixture of naga and medusa; more snake than woman the Harryhausen Medusa is usually a cursed guardian of ancient temples, treasures or portals to the Underworld. Amazingly strong, quick and deadly its weakness is often a fondness for toying with its prey. A keen archer even in total darkness.
Instinct: Gaze to stone
  • Collects statues, guards
  • Loves Harryhausen films
  • Likes to monologue
Yellow Musk CreeperSolitary, Large, Devious
Tendril (d6 damage)16 HP0 armor
Special Qualities: Sprays Yellow Musk Zombie Pollen
The yellow musk creeper is a hideous plant that grows in haunted graveyards, grisly battlefields, and other places where death hangs heavy in the air and thick in the soil. The yellow musk creeper's method of procreation is singularly frightful—it slays the living, infests them with its seeds and pollen, then animates them as zombies. These zombies serve the plant as a guardian, but when new zombies are created, older ones wander off, collapsing and breaking apart to give seed to a new yellow musk creeper. Custom Move: When you inhale yellow musk pollen, ROLL+WIS. On a 10+, you keep control. On a 7-9, choose 1: You're not dizzy for hours.(-1 on all rolls until you next make camp) You don't have to Defy danger vs. WIS to attack the musk. You don't take your friends for musk zombies. On a 6-, you're under the yellow musk charm. Fall asleep in the deadly embrace of the Yellow Musk Creeper, zombie soon to be...
Instinct: Create Zombies
  • Spray Pollen
  • Creates Yellow Musk Zombies
Yellow Musk ZombieGroup
Bite (d6 damage)6 HP0 armor
A yellow musk zombie is a rotting creature from which wet green vines have sprouted. Treat a yellow musk zombie as a standard zombie, but it is not undead. It is a plant creation of the Yellow Musk Creeper.
Instinct: Destroy Intruders!
  • Obey the Yellow Musk Creeper
  • Slow
  • Mindless

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Secrets of the Old City Conversion Notes

Secrets of the Old City, a one page dungeon classic...
I recently ran this pretty much "as is" for a group of newbie players. I wrote up my conversion notes for interested parties...(along with a copy of the classic one-page of course).

Happy Holidays!


Monday, December 19, 2016

A Few Monsters More...

Magical ChestSolitary, Small, Stealthy, Hoarder, Construct
Toothy Lid (w[2d8] damage)8 HP1 armor
Special Qualities: Arcane Construct, Full of Tricks, Liar
A minor arcane created mimic; the enchanted chest is enhanced with intelligence and arcane tricks; it will do anything to prevent loss of the treasure within but will choose lies over violence.

Instinct: To keep precious contents safe
  • Scuttle off when touched
  • Lead party to trap
  • Wail to attract other dungeon denizens
  • Pour forth flaming oil (2d6 dmg)
  • Spew smog
  • Send party on useless quest
  • Liar

Alchemical OozeSolitary, Stealthy, Amorphous
Acidic Grab (d8 damage)12 HP
Special Qualities: Steals voices, Shapeshifts,Amorphous
Formed from accumulations of runoff from arcane laboratories and regions of magical calamity, alchemical oozes are a sort of weak cousin to the true doppelganger. Briefly able to assume a human shape and mimic the voice of previous victims the ooze will seek to lure a meal to a dark, secluded spot and dine on the poor fool. Children or lost maidens are a favorite lure. Alchemical Oozes gain the voices of previous victims but are cunning as opposed to intelligent. 

Instinct: Dissolve flesh!
  • Arcane accident
  • Can mimic human shape and voice
  • Always hungry

Mechanical HydraSolitary, Large, Construct
Rends with metal teeth (d10+2 damage)20 HP2 armor
Special Qualities: Breathes steam, Arcane Construct
This steampunk horror was designed to mimic the fearsome magical hydra;its mechanic nature prevents regrowing heads but allows its three heads to breathe scalding steam (1d8) on victims. Rumored to have been invented by the infamous Engineer Ferremesz. 

Instinct: Obey master
  • Breathes steam
  • Each head gets attack
  • Slow and noisy

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Dungeon World Extras

Living Statue (Solitary, Construct)
Fists (d10 damage) 14 HP, 1 armor
Special Qualities: Arcane construct

Living Statues are constructs like Golems, but usually more fragile and achievable at lower cost - represented by the generally weaker combat statistics and fewer magical immunities. The arcane short cut to creating a Living Statue is imbuing the creation with a greater degree of will. Independent thought makes Living Statues less reliable as guards and servants -they're capable of interpreting commands loosely or abandoning their posts in the interests of self preservation. Living Statues are unaffected by Sleep, but they are affected by mind control - Charm and Hold spells can work against them - more evidence that a guiding consciousness is present within the construct, differentiating them from their more powerful Golem cousins. Living statues can be constructed from various materials but crystal and stone statues are the most common.

Instinct: Obey Creator

Ring of "Water Walking"

This ring is often made of coral or bluish metal decorated with motifs depicting rolling waves of water.

The wearer can tread on any liquid as if it were firm ground. Mud, oil, snow, quicksand, running water, ice, and even lava can be traversed easily, since the subjects’ feet hover an inch or two above the surface; protected by a magical shield. The ring's owner can walk, run, charge, or otherwise move across the surface as if it were normal ground.

Monday, December 12, 2016

The New Kitten of Tindalos name is....Piper!

Since she can yowl like a bagpipe! And steal your heart like the pied variety...

Dagoth Lives!

Dagoth (Lizard demon)Solitary, Large, Planar
Talons (d12+4 damage)16 HP1 armor
Special Qualities: Reverts to statue if horn removed, Only damaged by magic or magical weapons, immune from harm as a statute or horn

Dagoth, also referred to as the Dreaming God, was a demon worshipped by the people of Shadizar, particularly Queen Taramis. He participated in a large battle with other evil beings, during which his source of power, a jeweled horn, was broken off. Dagoth fell to Earth in a weakened state and his body turned into stone, becoming a statue. As written in the ancient Scrolls of Skelos, if the horn were found placed in the forehead of the statue, it would bring about the evil god's resurrection, and as long as a virgin girl was sacrificed at the hour of the god's rebirth (in this case, Taramis' niece Jehnna), everything would be fine. Legend holds that Dagoth will grant any wish his restorer desires, but great care should be used in the exact words used for the wish. Unfortunately, the ritual was interrupted by Conan and his companions and Taramis' vizier speared by Zula before he could sacrifice Jehnna, and the end result of this is that Dagoth became angered and transformed into a monstrous, lizard-like beast. The wizard Akiro deduced that Dagoth's horn was his life, and in tearing the horn from the ex-god's forehead, returned Dagoth to his statute form. Later both horn and statue vanished from Shalizar in different eras. Scholars speculate that Dagoth may be related to the ancient evil Zargon in some fashion. 

Instinct: Destroy
  • Rage monster
  • Demon of the Ancient World
  • Likes Conan the Barbarian movie better than sequel

New Dungeon World Monsters inspired by J.E. Holmes "Maze of Peril"

Dagonite PriestSolitary, Magical, Intelligent
Warps reality (d8 damage)12 HP0 armor

A human priest of the Cult of Dagon, now touched by the madness of the Old Ones. 

Instinct: Corrupt
  • Transform Human Cultists into Dagonites
  • Serve the Cult of Dagon (Cthulhu)
  • Command Dagonites
  • Spread Madness

DagoniteGroup, Small, Construct
Trident (d6 damage)3 HP0 armor
Special Qualities: Human transformed by Dagonite Priest, Slave Capturing Nets, Cannabalistic, Aquatic

A worshipper of Dagon (Cthulhu) transformed by a Dagonite Priest in a foul ritual into a sterile servitor slave race of frog-fish men. Dagonites will go insane if their controlling creator Dagonite Priest is killed. Some (50%) will then attack everything in sight in a berserker rage (+1 to all attacks) including each other while others (50%) mindlessly flee. If any survive long enough they will return to human form now loathing the Cult and its entire works. Recovered humans can never be transformed again but retain their gills and ability to breathe water. A distant, lesser cousin to true Deep Ones or the Underdark's Kuo-Toas; Dagonites are used as cannon fodder in the Cult of Dagon's War against the Amazons and the Cult's pirate raids and slavery operations.

Instinct: Devour Infidels
  • Worship Dagon
  • Obey your Priest Master
  • Capture Slaves
  • Hope the world will end

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Beware the Giant Amoeba!

Giant AmoebaSolitary, Large, Amorphous
Acidic Grab (d10 damage)12 HP0 armor

A giant amoeba is a shapeless mass of living, liquid protoplasm. Though naturally translucent with darker interior spots, its surface is slightly sticky and tends to collect dirt and other debris from its environment; therefore, a moving giant amoeba looks like muddy water. A weaker cousin of creatures such as the gray ooze and black pudding the giant amoeba is the result of an alchemist's experiment gone horribly wrong. 

Instinct: Dissolve flesh
  • Slithers
  • Mindless
  • Relentless

Friday, December 9, 2016

Bite (b[2d10+2] damage)16 HP0 armor
Close, Messy
Special Qualities: Vulnerable to Silver

The wereshark is an avaricious hybrid of man and shark. These huge predators destroy large caches of fish (and fishermen) and have been known to attack nearly any form of aquatic life, including the intelligent races such as tritons, sea elves, and mermen. The wereshark is a huge, muscular brute when in human form, and it takes the form of a great white shark when transformed. Cruel and arrogant in its human form, a wereshark is even more vicious in its shark form.

Custom Move: (When a lycanthrope bites you, ROLL+WIS. On a 10+, you repel the curse. On a 7-9, you go into a bloodthirsty rage for murder until you sleep/fall unconscious. On a 6-, the next full moon will see you join the lycanthrope family.)

Instinct: Consume
  • Bully
  • Serve Cthulhu
  • Devour

Sunday, December 4, 2016