Thursday, March 31, 2011

What Really Matters

I do get depressed occaisonally, though for me it's more of an inconvenience than a debilitating condition. And lately I've been sick too. When I get in an extended down mood, it doesn't stop me doing art, but my focus changes. Instead of feeling enthusiastic and energetic and having to pick between a bunch of different ideas, it's more of a struggle to find any idea at all that I want to work on. Usually I just sit down and draw whatever. I often get something I think is pretty decent. It's not a good time for working on big projects, but at least I can work.


Friday, March 25, 2011

The Next How to Host a Dungeon?

This weekend I discovered that I'm near the bottom of the second printing of How to Host a Dungeon! So now I'm starting to think about what the next printing will look like. So what do you want to see or think would be cool in a new version of How to Host a Dungeon? Good as is? Needs more monsters and villains? Or something else entirely?


Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Bigger on the Inside


The World's Reactors, No. 39, Wylfa Magnox, Wylfa, Anglesey, UK. Wall chart insert, Nuclear Engineering, 1965

I had forgotten this Flicr set of spectacular Nuclear Reactor cutaways until Boing Boing linked them this morning. You could make a truly fabulous Megadungeon out of something like this.

Lost in Stout

"Lost in Stout" is a Dwarven phrase meaning both deep meditation and madness. Given that Dwarven madness produces spectacular craftsmanship and murderous frenzy in about equal proportions, it add a bittersweet tone to any conversation about Dwarven Beer. And this brew itself provides a rare bittersweet palette that is only more appreciated the more one imbibes.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

December Compilation and an Upcoming Adventure

Nick at The Fantasy Cartographic, has been doing compilations of each month's dungeons here at Year of the Dungeon. Here's the December Compilation!

Also, Nick has been doing layout on the The Purple Worm Graveyard, an adventure for levels 1-3, which will be ready for sale very soon! Here's a glimpse of the interior art by Ed Heil:

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Friday, March 18, 2011

UFOs are Real? A Review of Mirage Men by Mark Pilkington

I have just finished reading Mirage Men: An Adventure into Paranoia, Espionage, Psychological Warfare, and UFOs.

I’m a UFO fan from way back, though I haven’t been any kind of true believer since I was 16.

The UFO movement is alive and well these days, though somewhat diminished since the days of X-files. Mirage Men purports to be a modern re-evaluation of the UFO legend. It’s a fine read full of both fascinating factual information and spectacular tall tales. Its primary goal is to chronicle the role that official disinformation, psyops, showmanship, and credulity have played in advancing the UFO legend–but with a shocking punch line.

Mirage Men offers a new narrative by which to read the UFO phenomenon. The central premise of the book is that various government agencies have at various times used the UFO community to disseminate disinformation in order to misdirect foreign and domestic eyes from black operations (like the B2 stealth bomber), while simultaneously priming and cultivating that community as a channel for disinformation. But Mirage Men ends with a fabulous disclosure, told in the best traditions of UFO inquiry, that a small group of dedicated individuals inside the System may be secretly priming the world for a true disclosure–one that is less fantastic than the tallest of UFO tales, but nevertheless something we are Not Yet Ready to Know.

Incidental to being a font of interesting stories, many of which I had never encountered before, Mirage Men could be a great sourcebook for a UFO-hunting story or RPG adventure. There is plenty of fuel here for a Men in Black style action adventure, an X-files exploration, or investigative spy game.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Slugworth's Dungeon

Slugworth is perfectly willing to show you his dungeon. For each room that Slugworth shows you, revealing the plans he and his master have spun and revealing their secrets, something happens. After the well, a swarm of inimical lost toys creeps out and silently follows the party through the dungeon. In the room of failures, the are shown horrors that shake them to their souls. Slug's Secret reveals that perfidy of those who hired the party in the first place. And in the gloom, where sign and wisdom fail, he strikes.


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Goblinoid IPA

The joys of Dwarven Stout are well known, but Goblinoid IPA has its followers as well. It's a bit harder to find, as Dwarves brew Stout by natural instinct, whereas to force Goblins to create their brew in any quantity requires a powerful leader to unite them. Nevertheless, the occaisonal stash of hapily fermenting Goblin IPA has been enough for discerning adventurers to develop a taste for this rare treat. Just don't ask what ingredient gives it that distinctive citrus tang.

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Entrance to Skarrol

Just finished a big work project, and now my brain is resting. Hence, I offer you Skarrol. No one knows what's inside. It's a brand spanking new dungeon entrance with no legends, tales, rumors, or history!


Monday, March 7, 2011

Demonhop Tower

For Paul... because you can never have too many beer-themed dungeons.

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Sunday, March 6, 2011

Emerald City Comicon

We’re back from Comicon (by we, I mean myself and my adventure partner 7-year-old Miss M). I have discovered it’s great going to a con with a super-outgoing and delightful companion, as we ended up meeting and talking to way more people that we would have otherwise.

I got to chat with Scott C, one of my all-time favorite artists. Alas, he did not have any prints of “Ben Franklin’s George Washington House”, though I did almost buy a print of “Ben Franklin’s Abraham Lincoln Robot.”

Camilla D’Errico was also there, though I didn’t get to tell her how much I like her stuff.
We met the author of Frederick the Great, who very kindly agreed to draw a picture of George Washington and mail it to Miss M!
We saw a lot of really tremendous art, which left me with a ton of new ideas. I’ m now officially a fan of Comicon.


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Entrance to Stromshire Cave

A warm wind blows from Stromshire cave every morning from sunrise for the first few hours of the day. In the evening, after sunset when the land cools, air is drawn inwards. Local legend maintains that the breath is caused by an enormous dragon living at the very bottom of the cave where a rockfall caused by a regional hero trapped it. Bennick the Sage, a feature at the local taverns, maintains that the cave itself is alive and breathing, and that it may one day take up other lifelike passtimes, such as eating or getting up and walking. Naturally the place includes the other common features of a dungeon entrance: rumors of lost treasure; missing adventurers; the occaisonal monster raid... but the mystery of the airs remains for now a mystery.


Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Another squid dungeon this morning, as I run off to work meetings...