Star Trek Continues

I have loved Star Trek ever since I had first watched it on my local PBS station back in the mid 80’s. I remember trying to stay up late on Saturday nights to watch it, and I remember during the beg-a-thons that if the station reached its pledge goal for that night, they would run episodes during the hours they would have normally been off the air. And I would force myself to stay up and watch them until I would pass out. Even with all of its campiness, there was something phenomenal about this series, and I couldn’t–still can’t–get enough. I am thankful that someone has continued from where the original series left off.

I have been following this series for awhile and I really think that the production captures the essence of that original Trek I fell in love with. They have three episodes now (one just went online today) and two of them are sequels to episodes in the original series. The first follows ‘Who Mourns for Adonis’ and the third follows ‘Mirror, mirror’. I’ve enjoyed all of them, and I think true Trekkers will enjoy them as well.

The Call of Cthulhu (for Beginning Readers)

Dr. Faustus at DeviantArt

When I saw this Artist Creates Horror Books for Children in Dr. Seuss Style over at The Escapist, I went back to his site and I nearly… Well let’s just say it made me happy to see he has continued his work.

Years ago I linked to his work on The Call of Cthulhu and went so far as to make a booklet pdf and print it out for myself. I liked it that much, to spend hours cutting and pasting in MS Publisher. It looked like shit in greyscale but I loved it anyway. So what brings me to post again?

I see that he is in process of having The Call of Cthulhu (for Beginning Readers) printed by none other than Chaosium. Click on the cover to go to his site on Deviant Art and see all of creations. You can go directly to his The Call of Cthulhu Gallery here, but I strongly recommend you look at everything he has created. It just boggles my mind.

Update to 1977 Character Sheet

White Box Original D&D Character Record

Original D&D Character Record 1977 Front

Woops.

I didn’t realize until today that my previous version of Quentin Caps was not embedding properly. I procured a new version that properly embeds and have since rebuilt the sheet. I’m sorry that I hadn’t caught it sooner. You can download the new version from either this post or the original.

Original Dungeons & Dragons Character Record 1977 UPDATED

White Box Original D&D Character Record

Original D&D Character Record 1977 Front

So when I was looking for character sheets to use with my new OD&D Reprint Box Set, I had found several. I didn’t bother to mention that I had also found the official sheet from 1977, but it was blurry. So, I spent the better part of the weekend building a new one that mimicked it. This one was much more difficult because none of the measurements were working out very well. Plus I never fully identified the font. I ended up using a font called Highway Gothic Wide/Expanded that once manipulated in Publisher, worked fairly well.

White Box Original D&D Character Record

Original D&D Character Record 1977 Back

Like my previous OD&D sheet I made only very slight variations with this one. The only one to note is that I changed the ‘Gold’ box to read ‘Treasure’.

Anyway, I like how this one turned out so I hope you enjoy it as well. Click on either picture to download the PDF. The borders are between 1/4 and 3/8 so if your printer can handle it, I would recommend you print it at actual size, not sized to fit.

MASSIVE UPDATE: Unbeknownst to me, my previous version of Quentin Caps was not embedding. Using Microsoft’s Typography Font Extension I found that the version I had been using restricted embedding. I have since procured a version that will embed and have since uploaded a new version of the character sheet. Sorry for not catching this sooner.

Original Dungeons & Dragons Character Record 1975/76

Several weeks ago I bought WOTC’s Original D&D reprint from Barnes & Noble for less than $100 with shipping. While I am not sure when I will be able to break it open to play, I scoured the web looking for character sheets to use with it. I know, heresy, who the hell needs a character sheet for OD&D? Well I wanted one anyway.

My first stop was Mad Irishman Productions as he has one of the largest collections of homemade characters sheets I have found. Not only that but he obviously has taken great pains to recreate the look of the originals. But alas, there was none for OD&D to be found.

Scan of an Edited Original D&D Character Record

Scan of an Edited Original D&D Character Record

Eventually I found my way to Dragonsfoot.org. Now there are some fantastic sheets there, but none for OD&D. I did find buried in the forum, a character sheet that someone had created, but they had filled it in, so it wasn’t particularly useful. What I liked about it though was that he added Race, Armor Class, and Hit Points to the upper middle box. Info that I can’t believe wasn’t on the original sheet.

Basic Dungeons & Dragons Character Sheet

Basic D&D Character Sheet

Except it had not been lost on me that one of my most popular posts has been my Mentzer Basic D&D Character Sheet so I figured what the hell. Lets see if I could recreate the original sheet from 1976.

Man was it a bitch! I determined very easily that the font was Clarendon or some variation thereof, but it appeared to have been manipulated. Using Microsoft Publisher, I had to increase the spacing between the letters and widen the characters. But once I was finished, when held up to the light, everything lined up and was nearly identical to this gentleman’s scan.

White Box Original D&D Character Record

White Box Original D&D Character Record 1975/76

So this pdf on the left was the result. I made a few adjustments of my own such as renaming the ‘Gold’ box to ‘Treasure’ and changing the ‘Spells’ box to ‘Spells/Abilities. You be the judge if I got it right. Let me know what you think.

Unfortunately I have no idea what is on the reverse side of the original sheet, so if anyone has a scan they can provide, I’d love to make this sheet complete. Assuming of course that there was anything on the other side to begin with.

As with all of my stuff, feel free to use for your personal game.

Mentzer’s Level 2 Isometric

Mentzer's Level 2 Isometric

Mentzer’s Level 2 Isometric


Ok where to start today. The baby was sick this weekend so I had a lot of downtime while taking care of her and put some of that time to good use. Wifey thought I should have napped more, but the game must go on right?

Anyway, The Scarlet Avenger continued exploring the southern section of Level Two of my Mentzer’s Solo Dungeon. But that wasn’t enough, I wanted to experiment a little more so I created some isometric sheets from the Incompetech Graph Paper web site. The thing I noticed about this map is that it is one of the few that seems like a level hub. It has more stairwells that most other maps of mine, so I wanted to see what it would look like from a different view.

Now I love how the 2 Central and 1 East sections look, but I think I screwed up with the 2 East section. I have all of the maps in front of me and this map still looks confusing. I’d be interested to anyone’s impressions, and how I might go about making it more clear how 1 East and 2 East relate to each other vertically. BTW, I intend to post both of those maps in the future; I just need to redraw them to make them look a little more prettified.

Years ago in meatspace, one of my players remarked on why my stairwells were always so long. Well, I think this map shows why. I have the math somewhere around here that shows that with a drop of ten feet for every twenty lateral feet traveled, I would need about forty lateral feet to get rooms with ten foot high walls and ten more feet to the bottom of the next level up. While I subscribe to the ‘mythic underworld’ philosophy of dungeon design, I just cannot stand dungeons that do not follow physical laws. It is something I have noticed in maps around the net where I see tunnels that pass under corridors but they only drop the distance of five-foot steps. Physically it is something that cannot exist and as a player would bother me.[/rant]

Anyway, hope you enjoy this map. For the most part I like how this one turned out. Feel free to use this for your personal game.

The Dungeon of Lost Coppers

Dungeon of Lost Coppers

The Dungeon of Lost Coppers

Dyson Logos over at Dyson’s Dodecahedron is running/ran a contest to finish one of his maps. Since I like the maps he makes, how could I refuse to participate? So here is my entry for your enjoyment. I only have a few notes about it.

As you can see from the picture, there is a sharp difference in the darkness between the portion of the map Dyson presented, and the work that I did to complete it. Nothing I could do with GIMP would fix it, but it doesn’t look too bad when printed out. On the other hand, the line work I did for the shaft looks like crap, but I’m not sure how I can do it to make it look better. Oh well.

I’m not sure how Dyson will be presenting all of the entries, but this one on my site is just a tad bit different. After printing it out, I didn’t like how the title fit on the map, so I made it a little bigger. Other than that, it is no different.

To try and come up with something a little different than everyone else, I figured that I would take the ‘Lost Coppers’ literally and make the pool on the right side fit at the bottom of a deep shaft from the surface. Though the statue presented a problem if I expected people to throw coppers down the well. Well, I solved that by making him crouch while holding a shield over his head. Maybe the statue is of a heroic dragon-slayer, and the quote, ‘coins falling, breath of fire’ is supposed to hint at that. I was actually thinking of both the scene in Disney’s Sleeping Beauty where the prince is fighting Maleficent as a dragon and the point in the NES game Shadowgate where the player must raise his shield to protect from the dragon’s flames.

I also like that I incorporated a side view on this map like Dyson has done on other maps of his. I especially like how I was envisioning someone standing on the small hill to the right and arcing coins in. I almost drew someone doing just that–I may do it afterall.

Since I like combining things I have created, the circular room in the upper left houses the ‘magic item’ I created for Tenkar’s OSR Competition. Once I post that item I will link to it in this post.

I wanted to make a final comment about the quote, ‘coins falling, breath of fire”. While I claim to be a writer, I never claim to be a poet. Thank god I didn’t have more room on the map, or I may have subjected you to the following lines, ‘shield of granite protects those kneeling.’

Well anyway, hope you like this map. Please feel free to use it for your personal game and visit my Downloads section for other maps and gaming goodness.