The Glatisant: Issue #20

The Questing Beast Old-School RPG Newsletter

Reviews

This 68 page digest adventure features a two level dungeon with about forty rooms . . . Multiple zones, subplots, mysteries, a variety of things to do. It is CRAMMED. Could use a little more focus on consistent evocative descriptions, and it’s going to take some study cause it ain’t holding your hand. But, if you have to study, make for an interesting dungeon … and this one’s interesting.


News

  • Jon Peterson has a new book coming out soon called Game Wizards, focusing on the early history of TSR. In related news, Ben Riggs of the Plot Points podcast is also working on a history of late TSR and has something he wants you to know…

  • WotC has announced that a “New Evolution” of D&D will be published in 2024 for the 10th anniversary of 5e and the 50th anniversary of the game. It’s most likely going to be a backwards-compatible 5.5e of sorts, rather than a full new edition.


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  • Crown of the Oathbreaker is a 500-page D&D 5e adventure module and a campaign setting. The book features dozens of new monsters, subclasses, feats, spells, and magic items. The adventure incorporates over 30 dungeon maps and three regional maps with over 100 locations, taking characters from level 5 to 12.

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Have an upcoming Kickstarter or an OSR project in the works? Advertise in The Glatisant (7,800+ subscribers) or on Questing Beast (47,900+ subscribers) by emailing me at questingmaps at gmail dot com.


History

The granularity of the game is usually at the d6 level, except when death is on the line (an attack or saving throw), at which point the detail "zooms in" to the d20 level.

  • At Questing Beast I posted a number of images of the Kriegsspiel table built for King Wilhelm III by George Leopold von Reisswitz in 1812. In many ways it’s the origin point of what we call hobby gaming today.

The appeal of D&D 5e is that it's open to interpretation, and not in a way that a generic system like Genesys is. While each game of Call of Cthulhu is certainly a cosmic horror session with the tropes you expect, players fill the void of identity that 5e lacks. A silly comedy about a band of bards, a serious sword and sorcery against frost giants, a science fantasy intrigue in Ravnica. It's a generic system without being truly generic - doing enough to servicably run all these different types of games but not doing any one thing really well.


Theory and Advice

Unconventional steeds are always a hit. This includes bears, giant snails, and horses who are kidnapped princesses of the horse kingdom. Also horses who are just absolute bastards. Name all of them.

  • At Questing Beast, I did an overview of the Free Kriegsspiel Revival playstyle.


Worldbuilding

Only the gods have powers. But very few people believe in those gods these days. So you can get powers, borrowed ones of course, by doing the gods a few favours. They don’t mind too much what. Find the god in your local pub and slip her a tenner, and you can walk through the air between rooftops for a night. A tip on the horses and she’ll let you borrow the ability to pull water from the ground. If you get to know her well enough that she asks you to look after your cats, you may just about be able to make it as a wizard.

3. The king is trying to integrate a recently-conquered frontier region into his kingdom, and he needs someone to do a spiritual survey. Your job is to roam from shrine to shrine among a resentful and rebellious population, cataloguing their local gods/saints/spirits and working out which of them, if any, might be worth adding to the national cult.


Interviews


Rules and Game Design

  • Goodberry Monthly lays out the rules for character creation in Wizard City as well as how PC parties can deal with armies of enemies.

  • Chris McDowall discusses what rules he added and which he cut when creating the remastered version of Into the Odd.

  • A Cratered, Blasted Land has a new GLOG hack called Gooseflesh with lots of interesting rules.

  • Mindstorm builds off of the idea of Hex Flowers from Goblin’s Henchmen with Ladder Tables: tables you can move up or down on to produce different effects.

  • At Questing Beast, I take a look at the use of Grit and Flesh in OSR games, for when you want to separate luck points and meat points.

Art

  • Miniac has a video showcasing the sounds of tabletop gaming. Wear headphones.


That’s it for this issue! If you’d like to support this newsletter, you can do so at the Questing Beast Patreon or by buying my games.