The Glatisant: Issue #12

A Questing Beast Newsletter

Welcome to the one-year anniversary issue of The Glatisant, a newsletter by the Questing Beast YouTube channel. You can read previous issues here and help support the channel on Patreon here. Also, remember to check out our sponsors at the end! There’s some amazing-looking products in there, and their sponsorship helps keep this newsletter running.

Reviews

Ten Foot Pole has declared three adventures “The Best” this month! First, The Pit in the Forest (review here).

It pours out flavour in nearly every word, creating delicious situations for the party to interact with.

Second, The Evils of Illmire (review here).

The designer knows what makes for a good regional area: a lot going on. It is pushing hard up against the limitations of the format, being as big as it is, but is not so off the rails, in verbosity, format or design, as to make it unusable. A de-light-ful little region to toss some PC’s in to!

Lastly, Shadow of the Beakmen (review here).

This sixteen page adventure details about twelve encounters, mostly inside a beastman obelisk. Evocative & interactive, the adventure does a great job creating a feel in the DM that they can then translate to the players.

Disciples of Bone and Shadow: Unconquered Sun Edition, a meaty solo game, gets reviewed at Perplexing Ruins.

Alex has done tremendous work here, creating a product with a lot of inspiration for gamers. It is robust, offers some excellent tools, much creativity, and good use of art throughout. Solo players could likely use this as there go-to roleplaying system for years, supplementing it with other resources if they need to, although everything needed to get started is here.

Speaking of solo gaming, Geek Gamers has a video review of the best solo gaming experiences of 2020, and my own game Maze Rats came in at #3! She also has a video of a solo Maze Rats game.

Over at Questing Beast I also did my own awards show, running through the best products I reviewed in 2020:

I also reviewed Gabor Lux’s whimsical megadungeon Castle Xyntillan

…and the massive OSR-compendium Knock! I Cast Light also has a great rundown of the book here, comparing it to the AD&D DMG.

New and Upcoming Products

Theory and Practice

  • Mundane is the New Magical - Tailoring equipment to inspire player creativity.

  • Monster Type: Army - Some practical tips for running combat when your players have to fight an army. You are throwing armies at your players, right?

  • Porn Logic - (Not actually about porn) A look at how emphasizing a game’s mechanical systems over the “invisible rulebook” tends to constrict the game’s scope and make its tactics more flat.

  • The Healing System - A system for tracking each type of damage received separately. This allows players to picture exactly what their injuries look like and forces them to find creative ways to heal their different wound types.

  • On Abstraction and Saving Throws - An explanation of why the old saving throw types (Death Ray, Dragons Breath, etc) allow for greater player creativity.

  • Monster Reaction Subtable for Old-School D&D - Adds a d6 table to each of the standard five monster reactions, making things more unpredictable.

  • The Art of Active Magical Defense - Improving the counterspell system by having opposing energy and element types cancel each other out when cast in opposition.

  • Example of Play in Diceless Combat - I find it very hard to picture running purely diceless combat. This post helped clarify things for me.

History

  • Jon Peterson’s new RPG history book The Elusive Shift is out, and proving to be a fascinating look at how adventures games became roleplaying games. He’s also begun posting at his blog in support of the book, including this piece on The Origins of Rule Zero.

  • The team behind the solo RPG AIDungeon have an article where they trace the origins of RPGs and adventure games back to the renaissance.

  • Geek Gaming Scenics demonstrates how to melt down old Warhammer figures and recast them using Prince August moulds.

Solo RPGs

  • Chris McDowall has a five part series on a solo system called Ask the Stars, which uses an oracular, tarot-like system for generating twists and turns.

  • Chris also has a video exploring the potential of the AIDungeon to run Electric Bastionland.

  • Violet City Vagabonds feeds AIDungeon setting material from Luka Rejec’s Ultraviolet Grasslands and gets some impressive results.

  • Geek Gamers has a video walking through the basics of running a solo RPG, using an interesting hodgepodge of boardgame and RPG materials. There’s lots of other great solo RPG material on her channel as well.

Worldbuilding

99 - The Heavens Have Opened – The Gates have opened to – The Silver Sea? Holy water pours down on Sigil. Fiendish folks run for cover while Celestials stand and enjoy the cool, sweet, rain. The city looks cleaner than it has in living memory afterwards.

…wearing a ring of horn shows that you accept the enmity and its consequences. If the sender then kills the wearer in broad daylight, it will at least be seen as a duel instead of a murder. It is an open invitation to violence.

And Now A Word From Our Sponsors…

Our sponsors this month have a ton of crazy new products to explore. These folks help keep The Glatisant a free service, so show them some love! You can contact me at questingmaps at gmail dot com if you’d like to place an ad for The Glatisant’s 5,500+ subscribers.

  • Games That Goblins Play: A zine based on the idea that goblins play card games. There are new card games, random encounters, goblin treasure hoards, and a hex crawl board game. Will your players draw from a Deck of Goblin Things? The zine and cards are on Kickstarter now!

  • Mighty, the solo fitness RPG, is looking for playtesters! Complete regular workouts to generate action tokens, and gamble those tokens in push-your-luck missions to stay ahead of your rivals, aid your allies, and shape the world. Links to the free ruleset here.

  • REALMS OF PERIL is a classic fantasy adventure game focusing on OSR principles and West Marches campaigns. Complete with everything needed to run amazing “open-persistent sandbox” wilderness and dungeon crawls. Clear layout and concise procedures featured in a pair of lavishly illustrated full-color zines. Explore if you dare at RealmsofPeril.com!

  • THE DRAGONWILDS is a classic fantasy hexcrawl campaign for just about any OSR game. Discover something exciting in each of the 248 fully detailed hexes. Includes over a dozen interactive, flavorful dungeons, ranging from small to huge, inhabited by monsters both familiar and new. Start your journey at TheDragonwilds.com

  • YOU’RE A SKULL WITH A PROBLEM. You live in a nice little dungeon, and a bunch of wanna-be heroes are about to raid it. Know what that means? Time to power up with magyk, build weird traps, and put these raiders in graves! SKÜLLBOX — 40 punk pages of mayhem!

  • Desert Moon of Karth is a space western sandbox zine for Mothership RPG. Harvest ossified coral corpses to live forever. Become an involuntary organ donor. Dodge ancient orbital defenses. Hunt the fearsome sandsquid. Ride camels through the desert. Drink whiskey until you’ve forgotten your name. Launch on February 8th.

  • Calling all game mechanic aficionados! Dieku Games is inviting you to be part of the upcoming playtest of a new rules light system, so simple, it can be conveyed in an IKEA instruction manual! Learn more at DiekuGames.com

  • The Bat is back. Stratosfiend 3 is here. Metallic Bat Drones, Blood Mechs, Half-Ogre Demon Hunters, Pteranodons and these are just the playable classes. A New DCC zine with new items, classes, spells, the bat navy, wing-suited cultists, and the new Surgical God. TENTACLES AND SORCERY FOR ALL!

  • Old Roads, a book of isometric maps, launches on Feb 3rd and runs until the 17th! Each hand-drawn map illustrates a bespoke set-piece that would be perfect for your next one-shot or major combat encounter! No rules, no stat blocks, just beautiful maps!

  • Flik Silverpen’s Guide to Dragon Town: a low-level adventure playable with or without combat! A whimsical town full of mysteries, slimes, zombies, goat people, magic apples, and a ruined castle to explore. 32 pages packed with fun illustrations and maps. 5E and OSR compatible! Kickstarter runs Feb 1 - 14!