Archive for Useful Websites

Penny Arcade and D&D

Posted in D&D 4e Content, Gaming News with tags , , , , , , , on August 20, 2010 by boccobsblog

I have been a fan of Penny Arcade for many years now, but in the last year or so since Gabe started playing D&D, the site has gotten even better. It all started when Wizards of the Coast asked the creators of Penny Arcade to play-test fourth edition and record the session for a podcast that would be released via the D&D website and available from Itunes.

The podcast was a huge success and the guys have since done two additional “seasons”. The second series of podcasts added Wil Wheaton to the cast (whose character gets killed live on the air), and the third is set in Athas as the guys test Darksun with Tycho as the DM.

I find it so unbelievable that Gabe has never played D&D before, he has posted some of his quests on the site and they are nothing short of amazing.

If you like Penny Arcade, then you will greatly enjoy listening to the podcasts, and even if you don’t know what PA is, you’ll enjoy listening to some very funny guys play D&D and crack jokes as they go.

-Andy

The Podcasts

Penny Arcade’s site

Gabe’s D&D Page

Gabe’s D&D Twitter

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20 free 3.5e monsters

Posted in D&D 3.5e DM Content with tags , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2010 by boccobsblog

Do you want some new monsters but don’t want to pay for additional monster manuals? Well the following are monsters from the D&D 3.5 archive and posted here for use in your game.

Alkilith (Tanar’ri), Myrmyxicus (Tanar’ri),Fey Touched Template  (Fiend Folio)

Effigy, Gravorg, Mountain Giant (MM II)

Ambush Drake, Boneclaw, Dracotaur, Grisgol, Summoning Ooze, Wood Woad  (MM III)

Black Rock Triskelion, Defacer, Dwarf Ancestor, Bluespawn Godslayer (MM IV)

Arcadian Avenger, Dragons of the Great Game, Verdant Reaver  (MM V)

Shunned (Drow of the Underdark)

The 3.5 archives are full of valuable information and though it is more difficult to find since 4th edition, it is still there if you’re willing to hunt around for it.

-Andy

Amazing resource for Call of Cthulhu players

Posted in The Crafty DM with tags , , , , , , on August 4, 2010 by boccobsblog

Propnomicon is an amazing resource for Call of Cthulhu players, and any gamer that likes to use props in their game. Along with several articles related to CoC gaming, Propnomicon has an impressive list of Mythos-related websites displayed on its main page. CoC gamers, LARPers, or any gamers that use props to enhance their role-playing experience will find something useful on this site.

Two web shows every gamer should watch

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Gaming News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 2, 2010 by boccobsblog

The Guild

The Guild, follows the exploits of a group of online gamers deeply entrenched in WoW-parody MMO. The show’s spot-on depictions of online gamers and hilarious scripts have made the Knights of Good an overnight web sensation. Fans of Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog, will recognize the show’s star and head writer, Felicia Day, along with Effinfunny.com creator, Sandeep Parikh. The Guild has just started its fourth season (and can be seen here).

The Knights of Good

Legends of Neil

If you’re like me, then you have often wondered what would happen if you got drunk, and auto-erotically asphyxiated yourself with a Nintendo controller all while playing the original Legend of Zelda. Well, my hung over, sticky palmed friends wait no more, because Legends of Neil takes on such deep philosophical issues in the funniest, adult-themed Zelda parody show about an alcoholic gas station attendant on the web. The Legends of Neil can be found (for free) in its entirety on Effinfunny.com, or by pressing this link.

Both The Guild, and Legends of Neil are completely hilarious, completely free and a great way to spend an hour of your boring workday.

Mapping software

Posted in Product Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2010 by boccobsblog

Campaign Cartographer 3

CC3 from Profantasy software is the height of mapmaking. With time and skill you are able to create maps of the quality found in professional game products. The program uses a system of layers, each adding a new dimension of detail. The program is easy to learn, but much harder to master. If you expect to produce pro-quality maps right of the bat, you may be disappointed. It takes time and effort to learn the small details that take a map from good to great (details that I’m not sure I have fully learned yet).

While there is something of a learning curve to CC3, the people at Profantasy are extremely helpful and have a series of detailed videos posted on Youtube to help you learn. At forty-five dollars, the software is a bit of an investment, but if you want quality and have the time to pursue it, CC3 is for you.

Hexographer

Hexographer is an amazing site for several reasons. While it doesn’t offer the same flexibility as CC3, it is much easier to use while still producing high quality maps. You start by telling the program how big you want your map (in hexes), then you simply select a terrain style (forest, mountains, grasslands, etc) and click the empty hexes. This approach to mapping is very quick and easy to learn. You can speed things up even further by setting a terrain style as the default. For example, if your map is a large archipelago, you can set the default to water and then place land over top of the water.

There are two things I love about this software (above and beyond its ease of use). First, they offer a free demo of several of their programs on their site. These demos allow you to create complete maps and save them to your computer or print them out. Second, the maps are an exact match to the old hex maps popular in second edition. When I saw the example maps on the site for the first, I was pulled back to 1991, because the maps have the feel of the Mystara maps in the Rules Cyclopedia.

The Pro version is thirty dollars for a full license, or ten dollars for one year.

Both of these programs will greatly enhance your games and help you create stunning maps, check them out.

-Andy

Two Useful Websites for 3.5e (and they’re free!)

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content with tags , , , , , , , on June 25, 2010 by boccobsblog

The following are two websites that I use frequently, and they have been extremely useful so I thought I would share them with you.

The Hypertext D20 SRD

The SRD (or System Reference Document) is a website that contains all the open license information found in the Player’s Handbook, Dungeon Master’s Guide, Monster Manual, Epic Level Handbook, Deities and Demigods, and the Expanded Psionics Handbook (Plus the open content from Unearthed Arcana). The site allows for quick reference without the need for costly game books.

The website is laid out in a clear and organized manner so finding what you need is a breeze. The only drawbacks to the site (which are due to legal constraints, not design flaws) are that some content is not available. Anything that is property of Wizards of the Coast will not appear on the site. For example, Mind Flayer, Slaad, and Displacer Beast are copy written creations and cannot be published under the open gaming license.

The site itself is free, but it can be downloaded for greater ease and mobility for ten dollars.

Monster Advancer ™

This site, true to its name, automatically advances the hit dice of the chosen monster. Also, the site has a number of templates that can be applied and then does the math for you. For example, you can select a basilisk, advance it up to 18 hit dice, and apply a fiendish template, click the button and a printer friendly version will appear in a new window. Along with the ability to increase hit dice, and add templates, the site allows you to add levels to your monsters.

I cannot begin to explain how useful this site is for busy DM’s that don’t have the time to sit and rework the monsters in their game. We all know how tedious it can be to add templates, increase the size, and add levels to monsters. The site breathes new life into monsters that your players have outgrown, and allows for maximum use of expensive miniatures. Haven’t been able to use that CR 7 Hill Giant because your party is too powerful? Literally, with two clicks from a drop down menu, you can advance that Hill Giant to 24 hit dice, add ten levels of Barbarian and you have a CR 20 bruiser ready to crush anything in its path.

My only complaint about the site (and it is a small one), is that the ability score increases that each monster receives every four levels are not automatically calculated. That said the advanced entry will have a line that tells the DM how many ability points the monster has accrued.

As with d20srd.org, the site does not have creatures that fall outside of the open game license. The site also has a quickened version of its program as well as a random monster chart generator.

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Both of these sites are free (though they do appreciate donations from grateful gamers), and they will make planning your games easier and quicker.

-Andy