Sunday, November 29, 2009

Gaming Tools

I made a DM tool this weekend that I'm really proud of and would like to share. Have you ever tried to roll dice on a crowded table or better yet on a book while lying on the living room floor?  Or how about playing a game with little ones who tend to throw the dice off the table?  We I got to thinking about this.  I've seen dice mats on line, but being a cheapskate, I would never shell out the big bucks for these.  I thought about making my own dice table out of wood and staining it a dark color, but then I thought about something easier.  A trip to Walmart and about $4 later and I have a perfect dice table that any DM would be proud to own.  Picture frames come cheap (plastic ones anyway).  And I was able to find one with an antique brass colored frame.  I popped the glass out, used some spray adhesive and attached a black felt cloth to it.  The felt actually had a backing on it and had I inspected it more carefully, would have realized that the paper pulled off and had a sticky backing ready to go.  Nevertheless, when reassembled, I had a flat, noiseless, rolling surface with a classy frame.  The dice stay in really well (unless you get carried away and really fling them hard).  This could be solved by finding a frame with deeper sides.  Anyway, there are millions of styles of frames out there and many are cheap  to come by.  The whole process took about ten minutes and was well worth it.

Osric rulebook (free download) is pretty much a clone of the AD&D 1st edition rules reorganized.  I used it for some adventure ideas and for the monster manual.  I could easily use my 1st edition books, but it was just as easy to have it installed on the laptop for quick reference.  I used Open Office Draw and MS Paint to create simple maps.  Open Office makes a great (and free) word processing application.  It took me very little time to draw a simple map of the Winding Woods and make ten encounters for the adventure.  The kids had a blast playing and so did I.  Thomas and I each have two new characters now [3rd level all, dwarven cleric, human fighter, human ranger, and elven wizard]

House rules—we added a few rules to the Microlite20 for our campaign. Charge rule, cover and concealment modifiers, starting spellbooks, surprise, flanking and attack from behind.  Just a few extra goodies to add to our game.  And best part is that none of it will cause us to dig open the books.