The Glatisant: Issue #7

A Questing Beast Newsletter

Welcome to issue #7 of The Glatisant! This newsletter is a free service put out by the Questing Beast YouTube channel. If you aren’t subscribed, you can sign up below to get new issues sent directly to your email. Read previous issues here.

If you’d like to support Questing Beast on Patreon, the $5 and $10 tiers were recently upgraded to allow those patrons to watch my videos before YouTube, vote on videos to make next, and access the secret Questing Beast discord channel.

Upcoming Projects

Free Adventure Locations

  • The blog Whose Measure God Could Not Take presents Wild Man’s Grave, a dungeon with some Mesopotamian flair.

  • Melan at Beyond Formalhaut presents Gloomywood, a substantial hexmap region with 36 keyed locations.

  • Jensan at The Acorn Afloat presents a delightful method for generating a wizard’s tower, one level at a time.

Game Jams

Two new OSR game jams are currently in progress and accepting submissions! Game Jam of the Infinite City is all about fantasy metropolises and CryptJam focuses on horrifying locations and monsters for the Best Left Buried system.

The Eclectic Bastion Jam has wrapped up and Chris McDowall decided to read through every single one of them, the madman.

Rules

The Lizard Man Diaries presents Ordure Fantasy, a 1d6 ruleset that takes Chris McDowall’s luck roll from Electric Bastionland and puts it at the center of the game.

Ben at Mazirian’s Garden invents a system for differentiating between weapons when you are using OD&D as a base, where every weapons deals 1d6 damage. PCs can have proficiency in different tags like Crushing, Whipping, or Gouging, and when using a weapon with one of those tags, they gain access to some special perks.

DIY & Dragons examines a number of different ways to hand out exploration-based XP. For example, PCs could gain experience by selling maps of dungeons they’ve drawn.

Podcasts

The Brush Wielder’s Union interviews the artist Max Fitzgerald on #Turnip28, a muddy, pseudo-Napoleonic aesthetic/universe he kicked off in the wargaming sphere.

Chris McDowall has started a new series of podcasts interviewing game designers, like Joseph McCullough (Frostgrave and Rangers of Shadow Deep). I found the discussion about the blurred boundary between wargaming and roleplaying to be very interesting.

Alarums and Excursions

I recently discovered that June marked the 45th anniversary of Alarums and Excursions, a D&D zine that has been released almost every single month since 1975. It has featured contributions from John M. Ford, Gary Gygax, Robin Laws, and Jonathan Tweet, but today hardly anyone is aware of it.

Needless to say, I bought the most recent issue from Lee Gold (who still publishes it) and will report back once it arrives. Here’s an interview with her if you want to learn more:

Old-School Advice

Over at my Questing Beast channel, I’ve started a series of videos examining old-school D&D rules and ways to apply them to modern games. I’ve covered topics such as dungeon crawling rules, hacking encumbrance, building better traps, and most recently why random encounters are great.

Adventure Review also has a pretty good introduction to OSR principles in this video on how to survive old school adventures:

The Goblin Laws of Gaming

Worldbuilding

Free Kriegspiel Revolution

Discussions surrounding the Free Kriegspiel style of play (discussed in Issue #3 of the Glatisant) accelerated quite a bit in August. FKR (also known as Arnesonian-Style or Ancient School) focuses relentlessly on the fiction of the game, removing most visible mechanics in order to force players to imagine the world directly rather than through the lens of rules and dice mechanics.

A FKR discord channel has been set up here. It’s hosted many of the most fertile and interesting discussions I’ve seen since I first found the OSR. It has also compiled this document full of links for people curious about FKR and has started it own community zine: The Neverending Drachenschwanz.

Pits Perilous has a great post from 2016 explaining something fundamental about the play style: that stripping out most of the rules of an RPG can serve to increase the realism and complexity of the game rather than decrease it.

Aboleth Overlords expands on this idea in their “Less Rules to do More” series and gives examples for combat maneuvers and wounds.

Patrick Stuart’s Goose-Gold and Goblins game feels like it’s leaning in a FKR direction as well.

The Invicta YouTube channel has a video on the origins of wargaming, (which gave rise to the original Free Kriegspiel), as well as a follow-up interview with Jon Peterson, author of Playing at the World.

Here’s a video of Peter Cushing (Grand Moff Tarkin) with his wargaming setup.

Theory

History

Ben Riggs of the Plot Points Podcast gives a GenCon talk on why TSR failed. Peter Adkison (the guy who bought TSR) shows up in the chat.

Seth Skorkowski has Sandy Peterson (of Chaosium) on to set the record straight on why several pantheons were taken out of later editions of Deities and Demigods.

Midwinter Minis opens up a fresh 1994 Citadel Paint set and tries to recreate the look of the minis on the box.

Dicebreaker takes a look back at one of the first RPG camapigns: the one run by the Bronte Sisters.

Reviews

James Maliszewski has started posting regularly on Grognardia again (one of the first and most influential OSR blogs) after an ELEVEN YEAR hiatus. Here’s his review of Mork Borg and his experience playing the game.

Two new books achieved a “The Best” award from Ten Foot Pole this month: Bonepicker’s Tower and Darkness at Nekemte.

David Shirduan at Technical Grimoire does an audio review of a single spread of Ultraviolet Grasslands, talking through the prep he is doing to run the game.

Ben at Mazirian’s Garden explains his personal standards for reviewing zines.

Hammer and Dice is a new YouTube reviewer looking primarily at zines (in hands-only style, the best YouTube format), like The Adventurer's Guide to The Yol'Najj Forest.

Captcorajus does a retrospective on the original Gamma World.

At Questing Beast, I looked at five RPGs is August: Electric Bastionland, Super Blood Harvest, Mork Borg, 17th Century Minimalist, and Hypertellurians.

Random Tables Of Note