Reading Material Week of October 17th

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I read a lot of random things to help generate ideas. Here are the things I have been reading in the past week:

[contentcards url="http://monstersandmanuals.blogspot.com/2015/08/instantiations-from-other-worlds.html" target="_blank"]

You need something from other worlds that is different from typical D&D Outer Planes stuff? There are so many adventure seeds that come to mind from some of the creatures I've generated with this.

Steel Miner

The Steel Miner has been seen from time to time near the entrance to the mine. Encounters are rare as the mine has been closed for several years, but some foolish souls visit from time to time hoping to glean a bit more silver from the depleted cavern.

It is described as a ghostly metallic man with thick arms and legs trudging through the tunnels. It disappears by going through a cave wall. A few have attempted to attack the creature, but any non-magical implements pass through the shadowy figure.

It is believed to wield several powers, but the most notable is the beam of burning like that comes from its mouth. Using the beam, the lumbering man carves deep gouges into the cave walls. It is believed that the apparition is searching for another vein of silver.

Steel Miner: HD 5; AC 2 [17]; Atk Beam of Light (2d6+2); Move 6; Save 12; AL N; CL/XP 12/2,000; Special: Darkness 15' radius, Feeblemind, Magic Missile, Polymorph Other, Telekineses, Can only be harmed by magic weapons.

[contentcards url="http://www.unifon.org/pages/unifon-characters.html" target="_blank"]

Who doesn't want to make cool inscriptions? I am thinking about using this font for White Star or magical circles. One of the things I like about it is that this could be a system that the players could learn over time. For someone with a thief, I would pass along certain clues as they got closer to 9th level.

Snowflake Settings! (Couldn't create a content card for this, so go read hillcantons.blogspot.com for everything. Really. Go. Now.

Long live the Snowflake Settings! Holy cow, I come up with a new one every month or so, but only sketch out many one every two years or so.  I look forward to more settings like this. Maybe I will eventually finish one. 🙂

[contentcards url="http://ancienthistory.about.com/od/latinlanguage/qt/LatinMeter.htm" target="_blank"]

Latin meters strike me for all the vocabulary words in here. In a perfect world, I would write spell descriptions based on these meters (changing long/short vowel to stress/unstressed).

Anapest Animal Growth

Spell Level: Druid, 5th Level; Magic-User, 5th Level
Range: 120 feet
Duration: 2 hours

Up to six creatures grow to the size of a troll. While it lasts they hit hard, double dice of the norm.

I do not always hear the rhythms correctly, so feel free to correct any errors.

[contentcards url="http://bxblackrazor.blogspot.com/2015/10/48-pages-to-glory.html" target="_blank"]

Forty-eight pages is a noble goal. I would love to make my game that uses six-siders and a deck of cards into only 48 pages.

[contentcards url="http://thealexandrian.net/wordpress/37916/roleplaying-games/universal-npc-roleplaying-template" target="_blank"]

I think about stuff like this to help me organize all the time. I still have to chew on this. I love the idea, especially the note that an NPC really only needs one mannerism.

[contentcards url="http://rumorsofwarcomic.com/2015/10/revisiting-three-hundred-sixty/" target="_blank"]

Making 360 locations feels to me like an massive sandbox. Would I make that many locations into a railroad? Still so much to ponder on this one, too.

That's what I'm reading this week. This is an irregular type of post, so I may not make another one of these until November.

Looking for eBook Resources

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I have a Kindle Paperwhite and with it, I have enjoyed reading again. Thanks to Project Gutenberg, I have been catching up on Robert E. Howard and other public domain authors.

I recently discovered that OSRIC is available in mobi format. I immediately downloaded it and I enjoy reading it. I am very happy that this has been done. I reference this quite a bit because it is easier for me to read on a Kindle.

Like a few other folks, I wondered how on earth Stuart managed to get tables to display well.

OSRIC in PaperWhite

 

Not too bad, actually.

One thing that is obvious to me, though, is that eBooks are not good at long tables. I imagine that this would make reading Fate Core, Risus and Microlite20 easier to read. After all, they do not have long tables. Having said that, the best way to reference tables is to go to the index of tables and tap on the one you want. When I look for say, the Illusionist's Advancement table, it appears very well.

I looked at stat blocks and quickly realized that the one line format is almost certainly the way to go. I was disappointed by this, because I love the AD&D standard monster stat block. See for yourself the "Humanoid" entry for OSRIC:

what kind are you using?

who were they again?

Again, I am overjoyed to have OSRIC on my Kindle. Many other monsters appear with a lot fewer issues.

As I explore publishing my own work on a Kindle, however, I can see that I would need an index of monster stat blocks. I begrudgingly come to the conclusion that I will also need to stick to one line stat blocks, instead of the columns. This means that similar monsters, like the humanoids, will require one entry per stat block.

Again, I am quite happy to have OSRIC on my Kindle. I would like other publishers to do the same. I will buy stuff on Kindle. It's true that there are technological challenges, but I'd be happy to help. I can, at the very least, test it on a Kindle Paperwhite for you.

Do you know of any mobi formatted resources?