Obscure RPG appreciation day 2014: who is the winner

And the winner for 2014 is....Roguelantern!

He attained a great achievement and i am quite impressed by the work that he accomplished, together with other persons who helped him along the way.

In order to clarify things, i will make use of an article posted here, i hope the blogger won't get offended but he summarized things pretty well.

[...]The Secret Treasure of Raguoc in Acirema Dungeons, the first ever Finnish role-playing game, has been made available in English! The books are free PDF downloads at the Rogue Lantern blog.

Written by Risto “Nordic” Hieta and first released in 1986 and very difficult to find nowadays, Acirema is a rather basic dungeon crawl RPG – indeed, no other mode of play is really discussed, and the core of the game is about the characters venturing into the bowels of Acirema Mountain where the evil Raguoc has hidden his treasure. There are dragons, and giants, and dwarves and evil wizards guarding it. Nevertheless, as far as introductions to role-playing go, it’s a pretty fair work. There’s an emphasis on creative solutions and advice on handling negotiation between player characters and NPCs. There are also a couple of clever ideas that I haven’t seen elsewhere

So, read the whole story here and download this new OSR game from Finland!

You won, so please post your e-mail below so that i can contact you for the prize(or if you prefer that i fill the form on your website, just let me know)


Ysgarth 6th edition got! (and trying to find a review - help needed)

Today i bought Ysgarth 6th edition (this one).


I already had a previous version of the game, but not complete, so i decided i had to get it. I don't know why, but Ysgarth has been on my mind recently.

I read Ysgarth for the first time after being already acquainted with Powers & Perils rpg, so i was "strong" enough to grasp its concepts instead of hopelessly drowning into it (in fact, that's what i said some time ago to my players: if you manage to grasp P&P rpg, you won't fear anything anymore).

Ysgarth is a strange combination of P&P and Rolemaster, in a certain sense.

There are a lot of formulaes (like P&P) but at the same time (particularly in the 6th edition that i bought today) there are supplemental tables for many rules (that is, first of all they describe to you the official rule and afterwards you find a table next to it where there are alternate approaches that you can choose instead of the standar mechanic).

Ysgarth fascinates me a lot and maybe it will replace in my heart the postion currently held by Powers & Perils someday in the future.

I'll post more as soon as the book (104 pages) reaches me.

In the meantime, i was quite surprised in not being able to find Ysgarth review neither in Dragon magazine nor in White dwarf issues.

The only review that i could find was in a Space gamer issue (#83).

How is this possible? Am i just blind or can you help in finding other Ysgarth reviews?

I find it odd that there exists only the SG review of this game, albeit Ysgarth has never been a well-known fantasy rpg.


And now i have a copy of the rarest old school fantasy rpg ever published.



and some photos that i took today:

Now you may ask what i would like to do with all the rare material that i have: in particular, i am referring to Acquitaine (see above photos), Nimolee (an alternate version of OD&D that i managed to obtain some months ago), What price glory!?, and Bifrost, Castle perilous, Daemon (an obscure fantasy rpg from 1987 no one seems to be aware about - link here)

I would like to write some clones based on some of these games in the future, or at least share this knowledge in some way.

It took me years in collecting all these precious obscure games and they should really be played nowadays in 2014 by OSR fans, believe me because i gave each of them a cursory reading and i realized their potential.

In the meantime, my original 1984 boxed set copy of Phantasy Conclave is waiting for me and hopefully it will reach my abode soon.

After that happening, i wil say farewell to my collecting obsession because there won't be anything left in the field of old fantasy rpg's that i miss.

You are advised, don't stay here if you want to listen to anything dungeons & dragons related!

Enjoy your stay and become a follower if you want to know all the rest.

At last! One more triumph for the OSR

Those interested in the history of our hobby (sardonically, just a few nowadays) may have heard about an old fantasy role playing game called Phantasy Conclave.

Now, point your browser here and rejoice


I am exchanging mails with the original author, he already sent me the cover of the upcoming game (an expanded and revised version) but i am bound not to share them at the moment.

He agreed for a long interview, i submitted my questions and you will find the answers as time passes on my blog.


The Obscure fantasy rpg appreciation day 2014: the SECOND contest!

 This was the first contest.Remember?

Every blogger who wish to participate in the event, will have to write a post centered around an obscure/lesser known old-school fantasy rpg, of the kind i write about here on my site (to get a rough idea)..

The post can contain anything related to that game: a rant, a deep analysis, new material, much like the posts created by enthusiasts from all over the blogosphere one year ago.

The game must be fantasy genre and must have been published between 1975 and 1989. These are the two basic and mandatory rules to be followed.

You have 30 days from now to make your post.

You may have noticed that some hidden gems has been recently unveiled by me on these pages, so you have an advantage now, since you could dig something out of those games as well.

I will choose the best post among those that will be published and then bestow my gift.

So, time to share the love for obscure fantasy role-playing games of the past!

You have plenty of time ahead of you to write your shining post. Good luck.

The gift this time will be a surprise for the winner.

Who gets the first swing? (Dragon magazine 71)

I'm adopting this method for initiative, as found in Dragon magazine issue 71.

Inititative in Powers & Perils is normally based on weapon lenght, whereas the clever method presented in that issue has separate tables for weapon lenght and weapon speed when you are in close combat situations.

I know that that article had been praised somewhere and so i decided to give it a read. It's cool, and it even has tables for all of the monsters found in Monster manual for ad&d 1st edition.

So, what i did was basically to change the weapon lenght values as found in book II of P&P and i used those values as weapon speeds instead.

Once you got to know what weapon speed you have (fastest weapons are thrown ones, which get a WS of just 1), you subtract from that value your bonus in strenght and dexterity and at that point you have your "attack priority number".

You should subtract your "experience level" as well, but i skipped those passage because in P&P the speed of monsters attacks is based on their OCV (same as hit dices in AD&D), so i couldn't add those value for calculating the total speed of player characters in combat, otherwise they would have add an obvious advantage over monsters.

If you use a slow weapon (such as a two-handed sword), you start with a weapon speed of 8. Let's say you are a strong fighter then you have bonuses of +1 both in strenght and dexterity, so your actual attack priority value is 6 (8-2).

You roll 1D10 for initiative. The lowest score, the better. You roll a 5, so 5+6=11, that's your initiative speed total for that round.

I decided to only use the IN RANGE modifiers and not the CLOSING modifier from the article cited, to speed up things a little bit, but all in all i'm pretty satisfied at how initiative now works in my game, because i thought the rule in P&P was limited, for the simple reason that it took into account just weapon lenght and consequently a character with a longer weapon ALWAYS attacked first in each round. That seemed a little weird in my humble opinion.

Yes, Powers & Perils is almost perfect as for rules details (together with its closest rivals Rolemaster and Chivalry & Sorcery), but sometimes you found odd rules even in the most detailed systems.


Chivalry & Sorcery 2nd edition

Need i say more?

Probably, the best fantasy rpg ever written.

The second edition of Chivalry & Sorcery includes three core rulebooks.

Book 1 discusses character creation, special character traits, experience and advancement, and an introduction to fantasy role-playing games.
Book 2 discusses combat, feudal age economics, and tournaments.
Book 3 discusses magic, magical combat, demons, beasts, monsters, non-player characters, and the undead.

All three books contain lots of charts and illustrations.


Krabat: The Sorcerer's Apprentice (1978)

Krabat, a beggar boy in early 18th century Lusatia, is lured to become an apprentice to an evil, one-eyed sorcerer. Together with a number of other boys, he works at the sorcerer's mill under slave-like conditions while learning black magic, such as guising himself as a raven and other animals. Every Christmas one of the boys has to face the master in a magical duel of life and death, where the boy never stands a chance because the master is the only person who is allowed to use his secret grimoire: The Koraktor, or the Force of Hell.

One Easter while performing an annual ritual near a small village, Krabat meets a girl and falls in love, but has to keep the romance secret in order to protect her. After witnessing his friends one after one being helplessly slaughtered by the master every Christmas, Krabat starts to sneak up at night to study the forbidden book. On the last page of the book, Krabat finds a phrase saying: "Love is stronger than any spell." This is used when he ultimately has to defeat his master for the sake of love.

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