Star Wars Wednesday - GamerNation Con 2019

GamerNation Con is next up on my look at the past few weeks of conventions in reverse order. Hosted by d20Radio and the creators of the Order 66 podcast, GN Con is up to its 6th year, which is pretty amazing and continues to draw people from around the world - Australia, Norway, Canada, the US, and probably others I’m overlooking at the moment. At least one or more of the regulars skipped it due to Star Wars Celebration the following week, which from a health standpoint probably would have been a good idea for me as well…

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Star Wars Wednesday - Preview and....post view?

It’s November, which always brings a convention and often an end of the year project or two, and this year is no exception. There usually seems to be one or more previews of upcoming or soon to be released works, and that too is on schedule.

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New Podcast Interview - Board at Work by Pawn and Pint

BoardatWork Podcast.PNG

I was invited to appear on the new Pawn and Pint podcast series Board at Work. Pawn and Pint is a game pub in downtown Kansas City, Missouri. They have a gigantic wall of board games and many RPG events.

Board at Work by Pawn and Pint: EP 003 Talking Star Wars with writer and game designer Sterling Hershey - Donald the DM and I discuss the span of my career as a writer and game designer for the Star Wars role-playing games. And some other bits.

Star Wars Wednesday - GamerNation Con 5

Star Wars Wednesday - GamerNation Con 5

Thanks to deadlines, work travel, and more, I've been remiss in posting these past few weeks. This lasted right up until last week when I was on my way to GamerNation Con 5, The Order of the Gamers (with a Harry Potter theme). I was the Guest of Honor this year, and it was a great time. Lots of Star Wars RPGs were played, and much more.

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DMs Day Sale at DMs Guild & DriveThruRPG

The rather inaccurately named DMs Day Sale at Dungeon Masters Guild and Drive Thru RPG is on, and runs thru March 11th (so, DMs Week). Most of my offerings are available at a discount. If you use the links below or on my Storefront page to purchase items, I get also a small affiliate credit. Thanks. 


As a side note, I just realized that The Game Mechanics pdfs are no longer available.

Roaming Chult Released on DMs Guild

I'm happy to announce the release of Roaming Chult, my latest DM's Guild product for Dungeons and Dragons (5e).

Roaming Chult is a collection of new items and resources for players and Dungeon Masters playing in Chult for Tomb of Annihilation campaigns or other jungle adventures.

Player features:

  • 100 New trinkets, inspiried by Chult, its people, and its adventursome visitors.
  • 5 New backgrounds for PCs from Chult (great options for mid-campaign replacement characters).
    • Chult Castaway
    • Chult Dinosaur Racer
    • Chult Merchant
    • Chult Miner
    • Chult Righteous Defender

DM features:

  • 9 New magic items of the trickster gods, with powers and hinderances reflecting each of their personailties and motives.
  • 20 New magic items of the denizens of Chult.
  • Expedition Log for tracking exploration progress and basic supplies through the jungles (or any campaign). Print and fill out at the table during the game. Also PDF form fillable. For DM or player use.
  • Expedition Journal Pages for DM handouts or player journals and notes. One is ruled, the other features a grid for maps and sketches. Print and use at the table. Both are also PDF form fillable.

The PDF file has printer friendly pages, except for the Log and Journal Pages, which are full page color. 

Pick it up today!

Star Wars Wednesday - Various Updates

So, with a week to go before The Last Jedi release, I'm still largely in spoiler avoidance mode. I've done a pretty decent job avoiding the rumor mill. The only Journey to the Last Jedi books I've read it are a couple of out of order issues of the Captain Phasma comic. Out of order because there's been a couple of hiccups in my recent comic book store deliveries. 

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The Last Parsec: Pranac Pursuit Now Available on Fantasy Grounds

I'm pleased to announce that Pranac Pursuit, my adventure for The Last Parsec setting for the Savage Worlds roleplaying game is now available on Fantasy Grounds (The Virtual Tabletop for Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games). Pranac Pursuit joins four other Last Parsec titles already available on Fantasy Grounds. The adventure requires the Savage Worlds core rules and the Science Fiction Companion Setting rules (but not The Last Parsec core setting rules). 

I converted the adventure to Fantasy Grounds myself. It includes all of the text, art, and maps originally provided in the PDF version, plus new tokens for the NPCs. Encounters are linked to the text, and the maps have pins linked to each encounter or other elements on the map. There are screenshots in the Fantasy Grounds catalog listing.

This is my second Fantasy Grounds conversion, the first being my D&D 5e Adventurers League adventure, Drums in the Marsh (Tyranny of Dragons story line). It is available on DMs Guild, where it recently achieved Platinum Best Seller status. 

D&D Drums in the Marsh Fantasy Grounds and Map Pack Now Available

Over at the DMs Guild, I've updated my D&D Adventurers League adventure DDEX1-07 Drums in the Marsh (Tyranny of Dragons) to include complete files for use with the Fantasy Grounds 2 virtual tabletop. Since the VTT environment works better with more maps, I've included three new encounter maps and redrew the existing encounter map. The new maps are based on my sketches for some maps originally submitted with the adventure, but not included in the final version that was released. They aren't required to run the game, but they can help.

Thanks to Fantasy Grounds for the opportunity to create these files. It was easier than I expected once I got the hang of it. I plan to make use of this for some future DMs Guild works. 

For those who play at the tabletop or on other VTT products like Roll20.net, I also released a separate Drums in the Marsh Map Pack

The pack includes:

  • Separate DM and player versions. 
  • Print versions for use as handouts at the table.
  • JPG files for use with virtual tabletop programs. (These maps are already integrated into the Fantasy Grounds version of the DDEX1-7 adventure file.) The maps include guides to aid in setting up grids in some VTT software. The VTT version of each map includes a players map without grids, a players map with grids, and a DMs map with notes and no grids.
  • Note: Due to the large size of the encounter areas, this pack does not include files suitable for printing at 1" miniature scale. 

The areas included are: 

  • Farm area map (new map).
  • Twilight Marsh encounter areas (2 new maps).
  • Redrawn final encounter map.


Star Wars Wednesday - MidAmeriCon II Worldcon 74

It's not every year that the world's most prestigious literary science fiction convention comes to town, so Worldcon was definitely not an event to miss. Then I found out there was a gaming area, so I knew I had to try and participate. Then they announced they were having a Star Wars Day, and I definitely wanted to be involved in some capacity. I went in for pretty much the full Worldcon experience, buying a membership early on and getting in on the Hugo award voting process. 

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Star Wars Wednesday - KCCC Rolling into MidAmericCon II / Worldcon

Kansas City Comic Con last weekend, and now MidAmeriCon II / 74th Worldcon starts today. Same venue, but two very different events. I'm excited to see how Worldcon compares, though some differences are already apparent. With three conventions in three weeks (and two world class), it's definitely been the busiest con season I've had for a while. It definitely helps having two of them in town, and even better that both had good Star Wars connections. 

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MidAmeriCon II / Worldcon 74 - Panel & Games

This year, the 74th annual World Science Fiction Convention (Worldcon) is being held in Kansas City as MidAmeriCon II, August 17-21, 2016. Among the events, such as the noted Hugo awards, is Star Wars Day. The original MidAmeriCon hosted Worldcon in 1976, and featured a promotional panel of an upcoming sci-fi movie called Star Wars. Mark Hamill, Charles Lippincott and producer Gary Kurtz attended. This year's convention is welcoming back Lippincott and Kurtz for a return visit, along with novelist Alan Dean Foster.

There will be a number of other events for Star Wars Day. I will be part of the Star Wars Tie In panel, discussing novels, games, and other elements beyond the movies. Stephen Saffel (past Del Rey editorial director for the Essential Guides, etc.) will be the moderator, and the other panelists are Kevin J Anderson (Jedi Academy Trilogy, etc.), Rebecca Moesta (Young Jedi Knights series), and William Dietz (Dark Forces trilogy).

I will also be running Star Wars RPG games and demos. The demos will feature the just-released Star Wars the Force Awakens Beginner Game RPG. The full 4-hour games will feature the main RPG lines. I am also running one session of Dungeons & Dragons (5e).

My full schedule is here.

Sign up for games ahead of time on Warhorn. My events are not yet listed, but hopefully will appear soon. My games are listed on my full schedule (link above).

Now available: DM Combat Tabs on Dungeon Masters Guild

DM Combat Tabs is my new product now available at the Dungeon Masters Guild.  

Track initiative, conditions, and more on any DM screen.

The kit includes 37 tab types:

  • Player Character, Monster (2 types), NPC, Ally, Your Turn
  • Blinded, Charmed, Deafened, Frightened, Grappled, Incapacitated, Invisible, Paralyzed, Petrified, Poisoned, Prone, Restrained, Stunned, Turned, Unconscious
  • Death Save (Fail), Death Save (Success), Stable, Dead
  • Concentration, Inspiration, Reaction Used, Ready Action, Other
  • Lair Action Active, Legend Used, Recharge
  • Advantage, Disadvantage, Spell Effect, Roll to End Effect
  • "More Problems" tab extension for those unfortunate monsters suffering many effects at once.

DM side.

Fill the PC and Monster tabs out by hand after printing, or use the PDF form fillable options before printing. Forms can be saved for reuse.

Customize tabs for your game. Do you want to track different conditions, spell effects, or other information not provided in the kit? Do you run the same adventure often and want to create tabs for the specific monsters used? Use the customizable tabs to add your own text to the front and/or back of the tabs. Add images to the front of the PC and Monster tabs.

5 fully customizable tab types:

An example of a customized tab page.

  • Player Character (Front and back: character name, class, level, race, faction, player Name. Front only: image. Back only: AC, HP, Passive Perception, Vision type and distance)
  • Monster (2 types)/NPC/Ally, (Front and back: Name. Front only: Image. Back only: AC, HP, minimal notes)
  • Condition tabs: Long and short.

Tabletop Tab Rack.

Keep organized and find the right tab quickly during the game using one of two rack types:
DM Screen Tab Rack: This pair of racks hangs right on the DM's screen to minimize loss of table space. It works with the official standard D&D screens or most any other screen type.
Tabletop Tab Rack: A simpler rack folded into a sawtooth shape to hold the tabs. It sits on the table top. 

Storage options: Assemble the included custom box to store the DM Screen Tab Racks with the tabs still in place. Other storage suggestions are also included.

DM Screen Tab Racks and Storage Box.

Also use on table tents and minis.

Printing on cardstock is highly recommended, but thick or regular paper can be used. Cutting and folding is required to use the tabs and the racks. Assembly of the optional storage box requires glue or tape.

Formatted for US letter sized paper. 

Player side view.

DM side view

Storage box.

DMs Guild: Uncommoners Now Available

My latest DungeonMastersGuild.com product is now available for Dungeons and Dragons (5e). 

Uncommoners is a collection of 10 new backgrounds for characters starting their adventuring careers from commoner roles and unusual jobs. These backgrounds are suitable for most characters, particularly those starting in villages, settlements, or cities. Some characters may continue to use their backgrounds while adventuring, while others have moved on to greater things.

Uncommoners includes the following backgrounds, complete with features, personality traits, ideals, bonds, and flaws.

Boat Handler
Master Builder (Apprentice Builder)
Town Crier
Each background has flavorful story ideas to spur creativity for players and DMs alike. For example, the Falconer includes advice for using a trained bird in the game. The Butler features a table of reasons for their loss of employment that likely spurring them to a life of adventuring. Many backgrounds include possible ties to individuals at different levels of society. The Lamplighter is an expert on life taking place on the city streets at all hours. The Boat Handler knows vessels and waterways. The Sexton tends a religious site or building, often with a graveyard, and possibly one that requires extra precautions due to restless spirits. 

DMs Guild

Wizards of the Coast announced the new Dungeon Masters Guild today. It's an online store selling D&D 5e PDF works. Here are a few of basic highlights: 

  • It is selling earlier Adventurers League adventures. 
  • People may create new D&D content referencing official books, though it must be for Forgotten Realms or setting agnostic.
  • Wizards splits the sales with the author for both the author's new works and Adventurers league adventures.
  • The system runs through OneBookShelf / DriveThru RPG / DND Classics / RPG Now, so people with one of the various DriveThru sites already have an account they can use.  

The new open gaming license SDK is also now available, and there are differences between publishing thru the GMs Guild and on your own using the license. 

My Adventurers League Expeditions Tyranny of Dragons adventure DDEX1-07 Drums in the Marsh is available right now for purchase and download. 

I've also updated my Store page for my other titles available on DriveThruRPG.

I have additional content I hope to post soon (the site went live a bit earlier than I expected). 


Star Wars Wednesday - A Big Map Game

Last weekend's Midwest GameFest was a success. The new venue and setup worked well, and though there are always things to improve upon, it went very well. I kept very busy, as I was slated to do something every slot. It didn't always happen - they had the D&D Adventurers League tables covered so I didn't end up running AL. That wasn't a bad thing, though, since I was still putting aspects of my other games together. I'd been derailed by work, a freelance deadline, and the Royals great playoff run. I ran a session of Numenera, a couple of Savage Worlds The Last Parsec, and a couple of different Star Wars RPG adventures. I also participated in a couple of panels and wrapped up with an Aethercon panel on Sunday. More on that later. For the Star Wars RPG games, though, I tried a few new ideas...
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Star Wars Wednesday - Game On

OK, so I'm writing this during Game 2 of the World Series, so it will be brief. How so? I started to do this after the 1st inning. It's now the start of the fifth and here we are still at the intro. After Jason Fry's visit a few weeks ago, it has turned out that its the Royals vs Mets, so both of our twitter feeds have more than a little baseball right now. The Royals won last night in an epic 14 inning game. The Mets are up at the moment by one run. Beyond these games, it has been a week for Star Wars gaming as well. 
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Star Wars Wednesday - KCGF 2014

Sorry about yet another short hiatus. Travel, deadlines, cons, work...more or less the usual culprits. Last week was KC Game Fair, which I while I did get out some news about what I'd be running, I didn't get it posted here. Unlike past years, I had very little to do with convention planning this time, but I did sign up to run games almost every slot. Just one of those years I didn't want to leave anything out. 
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