Dungeon23: Week Eleven

Holy crow, eleven weeks in. I just might be developing a small pile of these things :O

We have clashing creeds this week, with an invasive and violent cult trying to mow down, slaughter and/or assimilate a rotating enclave of nice chill folks —

(I actually got this one to scan reasonably competently omg)

As always, a bigger version of the image can be found here on Mastodon ~

Dungeon23: Week Ten

Still in a cavern this week, but this time I tried to thumbnail-sketch out a smallish community down in the deep dark.

I admit this one fought me. New kind of map, trying to think of what to put in there and also squeeze it in, and this week was not what I’d call stress-free. I think I got a nice skeleton put together, at least.

Then the scanning/photo fought back and I about tore my hair out *sighs*

But I’m still here, and still trying!

A larger copy of the image can be found in this post on Mastodon ~

Dungeon23: Week Nine

I’m actually kind of proud of the fact that I’ve been able to keep these up even with outside stress and increased work hours for the last bit. No idea how long I’ll keep going but so far, I’m still enjoying things —

Tried some caverns this time, and I might need to tinker some more. I think they get the point across though; it’s good enough for me to read.

Larger image can be found on this Mastodon post ~

Dungeon23: Week Eight

And now back to a weird map, I guess as counterbalance to the one-and-done kind of basic map from week seven.

We got us some weird cultists besides, and some weird shit that they’re still trying to worship …

I’ve also gotten some jobs done for the rewrite of the Blue Lotus Hack into something based on Crack!, and I might meander in a post about what made me make the decision I finally did after weeks of wharrgarbl if I can manage it at some point …

Larger image can be found in this Mastodon post ~

Dungeon23: Week Seven

The past week has been a flurry of rescheduled dental appts, friends having not-cool stuff happen, and me trying to wrangle an indulgent self-published novel after putting it off forever (and there’s another even worse still to be wrangled).

Which is a lot of words to say that I decided this was indeed a good time to do something more “basic”; a dungeon with no connectors, and full of bandits. Nice and simple.

Then the knights happened. I like knights and loyalty and undead dudes, what can I say ~

Mastodon post with a larger image can be found here ~

Dungeon23: Week Six

I didn’t freeze at work this time, yay!

I did have a pile of other wtfery to deal with, but I managed. Also I got a shitton of comb honey and chunk honey at the farmer’s market on the way home, so ~

Possibly I need to make a dungeon that doesn’t involve some kind of long-dead society, though, just for a change of pace >.>;;

Mastodon post with clickable bigger image over here ~

Dungeon23: Week Four

Well this week sure ended with another rollercoaster on top of a rollercoaster for rpgland, didn’t it?

If I can gather up my scattered wits and thoughts, I’ll probably make some kind of rambling post about the whole OGL/CC/etc etc thing or at least how it affects me (or not) personally, if only to exorcise the metaphorical demons; but for now, another dungeon!

More deer-goblins, and now they have fancier faeries setting them to work. But also a blast from my own past and the return of my “green rat people” and their abiding love for chickens ~


Link to Mastodon post (with larger image, hopefully) here

Spirit Stones, and experience point musing

A thought that marched hand-in-glove with my tinkering with a B/X cultivator class (which took me the better part of a year to actually commit to and I can’t believe I’m admitting that ye gods), and that I kept on coming back over and over again, involved spirit stones.

Spirit stones (lingshi) are fancy mystical stones — or jewels, or crystals, or some kind of bit of shiny valuable rock/crystal/whatever — that have a pile of descriptions (or none at all, lol) in cultivation novels. They’re basically storehouses of spiritual energy, and cultivators can use them as energy sources or —

— this is the bit that I kept circling back to —

— to boost their cultivation level.

There’s even varying grades or levels of power for these stones, and apparently some series have higher powered versions also (“god stones” and the like) although I haven’t spotted those yet myself. Cultivators hoard spirit stones, use them like candy, treat them as currency, squabble over sources of them, and on and on. Sometimes they, or jewels a lot like them, get found inside the carcasses of powerful monsters or demons, even.

I bet you can see where I’m going with this ~

Spirit Stones and Experience Points

There’s a whole pile of extra bits and bobs that could get piled onto the spirit stone concept as applied to OSR stuff, but the crux that I’ve been rolling around is this:

If treasure = xp up to this point, but say you don’t want to just run a treasure hunter kind of campaign — or you can’t wrap your brain around just what the PCs are doing with that treasure to justify the xp gains, or the treasure piles are just piling up, well, why not decouple it altogether?

Have piles of normal loot for awesome normal loot reasons.

Have finding — or claiming, or stealing, or carving out — and then consuming spirit stones as the actual source of experience points.

You could even make up a set of tiers for grades of stones (type, colour, names, whatever) like in the source material; low-grade stones have 50 or 100 or whatever xp in them, sage-grade stones have thousands or more. Give them different appearances, and go to town.

– some combat encounters could give a lot of spirit stones/xp, if the target is likely to carry them. some, not so much. choose wisely.

– that said, think of the stone or stones likely to be found in the roiling innards of a mighty dragon, or condensed in the core of an ancient, sorcerous undead prince, or or or

Which brings me to notion number two!

Claiming stones from innately powerful creatures is one way to get powerful stones fast, if the GM enables that, yeah. But what if there’s a side effect of shortcutting one’s way through the shortcut, and too many spirit stones (too much xp) gained from a specific kind of source twists or changes you.

Consume too many demonic cores, start to take on demonic traits. That probably won’t go over well with a lot of people. Might be better to be cautious.

I’d probably decide on some particular ratio of “flavoured” xp vs. “standard” xp.

And yes, yes, I know, this sounds like some unholy amalgamation of “gold = xp” and “milestones” and an esoteric economy straight from satan’s arsecrack, but I’m still tempted to beat out a few more details and try it sometime, lol.

Imagine the possibilities! Players might even be tempted to slow their characters’ progressions (not consuming stones) in order to use them to wheel and deal and influence by trade/barter/etc etc. And that’s without layering on any other possible uses for the things …