Avoiding the rabbit hole

Hello and welcome to a Saturday night discussion piece where I want to discuss something I struggle with, complexity.

Now its not making sure things are complex enough its going too far down a rabbit hole and, like all warrens, finding that there is a second, third, fourth and even fifth rabbit hole that has rules, systems, creatures or untapped stories that you want to explore. The issue is that when you burrow into that second tunnel it adds complexity and that complexity makes it hard for both DMs and players – an issue that I am still working out how to navigate.

An example is this weeks example – how to have those afflicted by the Sliver of Shadow curse have the mechanics they do – being present on the Material plane but unable to be seen, heard or interacted with until someone strongly willed enough finally does. What I initially thought was opening up the idea of a reversal of the astral plane mechanics – their body being present and active in the material plane but peoples ability to view them in the plane being as if trying to peer beyond the veil. Now I started to re-read up on the Astral plane to refresh my memory on its mechanics and it was.. complex to say the least, at least in the terms of how I wanted to blend it to work for me.

The first issue was that I immediately started to weave the astral plane into the plot points – my floating story line which I use to keep an idea of where I want it to go without having to cement anything down that would creature massive amounts of re-work as I write this weekly. This was a big issue for me as the added complexity to something that, to be open with, doesn’t need to be any more complex that it currently is and it also started to change and influence plot. Now as I started to mentally untangle the twine that knitted together this years campaign to start adding in the astral-thread I stopped as I started to ask myself “ok, now ‘The Shadow’ – how do they link in with the Astral plane..” the answer wasn’t a mapping session it was quite simply “IT doesn’t he is between planes but takes strength from Shadowfell” – Ok maybe a bit of a spoiler there but I believe you can forgive me. This then helped me work out the curses nature – forcing people to dwell and live like The Shadow – non-existent without being seen in the light.

The second issue was making sure that the rules, the mechanics are easy enough that new dungeon masters can read and understand with minimal study. This is the other issue with going down the rabbit hole and the complexity behind it – it gets hard to memorise so that you can run the system for the other people at the table (virtual or otherwise), the players but more on them in a minute, and with the creatures, maps, core game mechanics, the more advanced mechanics let alone the multiple race-background-class combinations that your players bring that you need to factor in with adding MORE complexity into the mix means more time reading rules, notes or books and less time playing at the minimum or forgetting something crucial and slowing down the process as you move to rectify it.

The third issue is the more complex the rules I find the players, I will refer to them as an audience for this point from now on, may become disenchanted from the session. The audience are not here to try and unpick great puzzles and unravel the secrets of the world – they want to see what happens to a party of adventurers in fantastical situations where they come out ahead against all other odds, or at least a single adventurer and how they look out for number 1, themselves. The more complex, the more rabbit holes in your warren, the more unbelievable it becomes and the easier the disenchantment becomes and they lose interest in the current scene, the session or the adventure entirely (or worse – the campaign…)

The reason for the switch in focus between player and Audience is because I also have several barely started novels sitting there waiting for meat to tie together the plot points and I struggle with keeping it simple to a few key points. For me I love high, grand fantasy where the systems, the complexity and depth is mind boggling and I aspire to produce work of comparable if not equal quality to some truly fantastic Authors. This means that I automatically associate success and ‘awesomeness’ with complexity and so I tend to dive head first into that deep deep pool when I really need to start off in the shallows first and then ease into the deep end.

So for me, keeping the complexity out is to really ensure the success of the campaign, simple. But the broader picture is also a bit of self reflection where I am aware that I tend to get bogged down in the details where I really should just take a step back and start with the basics and work my way up from there – some of the most memorable books I have read only have one or two ‘complex’ concepts and really, they aren’t that complex in the first place. Its not a new language, new ‘style’ of magic, or science, or something its just a way of doing things that I need to start at and see if complexity and further depth is neeeded at a later point.

Well that’s it for tonight, come back tomorrow for more and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Hobby update! Rats on parade

Hello one and all to a Saturday special where I wanted to show off some basing I did today. No painting was completed today, well some on Monday, but I wanted to see how much I could get done during the week and boy dis I underestimate kids holidays.

Despite having perhaps two afternoons of doing what I pleased I didn’t manage to get much significant painting done, which is an issue. So today I spent some time, a hour or so, finishing up the basing process I did for my painted clanrats.

So enjoy the short reel and hope you like the progress!


Maybe the hardest model to paint, hence the extreme sub assembly…

Dry fitted together. Great little model – one day it will have better rules but until then its a good looking model nonetheless.

Thanks for joining me to look at my small hobby progress. 27 models with paint, 25 done, 1 nearly done (banner) and 1 half way done (doomwheel).

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for the end of week write-up and as always, Don’t forget to roll with advantage,

The Brazen Wolfe

Easter eggs

Hi all and welcome to a Saturday write-up where tonight I wanted to explore the concept of easter eggs. What I mean by this isnt the delectables that are left around the house, found, gorged upon then forgotten on a top shelf for 11 months I am referring to the little bits of something that pop up in an adventure only for the party to realise later their significance.

Now, the term easter egg may not be quite correct for this but tis the season so I had to give it a shot…


Now the trouble with these is they need to be significant enough that they are recognisable but not so much that they are at the forefront of the players minds.

I have historically bad attempts at trying to bring this into play and normaly the attempts that come close are where the party uncover a book, a scroll or an item with a symbol that is super relevant to the story line but ambiguous enough that when describing it to the party they dont instantly pick up on it.

For me they need a few common traits (and this is just my personal opinion and not something quoted from the internet so let’s have an open discussion in the comments if you have a different view)

I’ll use a symbol in a book that belongs to a cult that worships undead dragons as an example. Perhaps the book is explaining the finer points of gem cutting, written by a pseudo famous dwarven gem cutter to make sure that they are finely crafted and pure, even the slightest imperfection or blemish may cause them to lose value. Next to the lengthy paragraph about this gem cutting is a shorter paragraph scrawled out with a specific symbol sketched, perhaps doodled, next to it explaining the vital importance of making sure there is no flaw in the crystal lest it too frail and weak for their biggest customers.

1. Relevant. As I mentioned before it the symbol, words, phrase or what ever Macguffin is used needs to be relevant to some point of the story.

2. Vague. The above appears to be vague, the book itself may be the work of any dwarven Gem cutter but the scrawl could be a note from the previous owner to clarify the importance of the passage regarding gem cutting for larger clients.

3. Detailed. Now not to confuse with vague but it needs to be specifically worded and detailed enough that its memorable, this part is both the hardest and easiest part. Easy in the way that if you describe something detailed enough with specific components and it should be memorable. For most of us being able to write something down that flows in with the rest of the plot is easy but it gets difficult in creating the right time difference between the easter egg and the discovery of importance.

This is what I find to be the hardest in the way that you need to write something that is detailed enough, specific enough (yet vague) that it enables that Eureka moment at a point of choosing. Let’s be honest it’s unlikely that we will have the luxury of dictating the exact real world time difference between that initial discovery and when we put though the next trigger point.

In our example above the trigger point could be at the middle crest of the adventure, I believe I’ve mentioned it before that having a specific spike (twist or secondary hook) about mid way through the adventure is key to renewing vigor and hooking players further into the campaign by reserving, in this case, a journal which has engraved/embossed the symbol that accompanied the hand written paragraph explains the details around creating a lich using a focus point, the more pure the foci the stronger the connection to the body.


Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for the end of week write-up where we check how our party is braving the marsh in search for reagents. Also I hope to put out some more hobby progress something tomorrow so whilst enjoying easter sunday feel free to check in on my amateur painting skill!

And lastly, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

NPC refinement

Hi all and welcome to another night here at Brazen Wolfe Tabletop! Tonight I wanted to touch on how we can refine our important NPCs just that little bit more so that when a player asks us them a question like “Whats your family like?” we are prepared with a well thought out answer – whether or not the NPC chooses to disclose this answer is another story.

So taking a leaf out of the Soulbound core book I wanted to delve a bit more into the idea of refining those key NPCs. I wouldn’t suggest spending hours on these questions for all NPCs but maybe limiting it to a quick minute for each significant (not Key) NPC so we can look at having something prepared for for when our players do ask these questions (or similar ones).

Now instead of “What is your name?” “What is your quest?” and “What is your favourite colour” these questions are designed to prod and poke a bit further and to encourage character development.


“5” Questions

What was your childhood like?

This question really drives a few deeper thoughts, did they have present parents? A guardian? A community? No one.? Was there siblings or people they got along with? What was their social economic status like? Wealthy, poor, somewhere in between? Happy, sad, filled with fear or love or both?

This question poses a few bigger thoughts and can probably be enough to flesh out enough of a basic character that the party doesn’t spend a lot of time with.


Who do you least want to run into and why?

Old romantic interest and how did it end (if it did)? What’s their name? How did you meet? What did they do to you? What did you do to them? Where would be the most common place to meet them and why?

Establishing a connection can help drive narrative and quests or at least adventures for the party. Having a person responsible for grief, anxiety or fear means that there is a response when that person is encountered by the party which drives the story and character development.


What motivates you to do what you do?

What do you desire? What do you fear? What are you running from or towards? Why are you doing this?

This one is maybe a bit of a bigger more ambiguous question but it can help with an important question – what motivates the character to do what they are doing – plain and simple.


What do you think is overrated in this world?

A virtue? A freedom? Money? Food? What is it that they think the world could do without?

This one isn’t too difficult and I would maybe save this one for those really deep and importance characters that you just want to really develop and refine. This could help identify character flaws, their alignment (Evil-good), refine their motivations and potentially get a bigger glimpse at their personalities than what the other questions could reveal.


What can’t you live without?

A pet, item, trinket or other possession? A substance (addiction)? A person? A faith or belief? A talent or skill?

Short of the obvious (food, water, air, sunlight) this can introduce interesting little character flaws, dependencies or traits that make the character who they are. If they have an alcohol problem but believe in the guidance and forgiveness of Torm then this is also something that can be explored and used by a good DM to drive plots, stories and the Player character development by interacting with this individual.


The above questions, although maybe not as comprehensive as some that are out there like this one (The Ultimate Character Questionnaire) could be used to flesh out an important NPC or Character in general to help shape and drive their involvement in the stories you write or facilitate (as the players are the real story tellers in our games).


Thanks for joining tonight for a little refinement workshop on NPCs, I will practice the above and hopefully this week come back with a more full and refined character for our D&D campaign.

Don’t forget to come back again tomorrow to look at the midweek madness that is twists, turns and pivot night where we look at what else can shape the adventure we are working on and what can enhance the adventure we create.

And as I wish and remind you each and every night, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Soulbound – Warhammer Age of Sigmar TTRPG

Hi all and welcome to a Saturday writeup where it was triggered by a message coming through this morning. Like most Saturday mornings I was greeted by the bombardment of notifications informing me that thee was another post in the Warhammer group that I am a member of and I was greeted by a welcome surprise.

Soulbound – the TTRPG that was released by Cubical7 in conjunction with games workshop had a humblebundle where you could get 24 books, yup, 24 books for the TTRPG for the the low price of around $25au. Now my love for TTRPGs as well as my love for Warhammer merged into one low priced bundle that supports charity – how can I say no?

To be truthful I had been looking at soulbound for some time now, not that I have grown out of love with Dungeons & Dragons or OpenLegendRPG but as a way that I can explore another format, another set of rules and broaden my understanding of what’s out there while I try and work out the best system for me when I try to create a RPG system of my own – but more on that another time when I hopefully have it more fleshed out.

So the long and short of Soulbound is really you take command of a hero from one of the forces of order, death or destruction and you take your character and fight your way through Goblins, Orruks (Orcs), zombies, ghouls, Skaven (my favourite little critters) and a whole bunch of other chaos warped things to sink and axe, hammer or arrow into.

Your hero will have a set of Skills, Attributes and talents that generate more dice for the pools which you can use to achieve actions by meeting a difficulty number (DN) and generating the required number of successes based on the requirement the GM put on the check.

In Dungeons & Dragons and many other d20 systems you have a few dice, modifiers or items that enable you to meet and beet a Difficulty Class (DC) which determines the success or fail of the action. With Soulbound you have a pool of dice that you would roll to try and beat the difficulty number with each dice. So each dice you roll has the potential to cause you to succeed and what’s more – its only a d6 (not a d20) so if you needed to roll a 4 (DN4:1) and the check, to jump a fence or barricade for example, required you roll succeed only once. Then if you roll a 3 dice on average you should be fine. This style of mechanics means the more dice you roll the more likely you are to succeed and I do have a fondness for rolling lots of dice.

Now I have only spent a hour or so skimming over the character creation guide (from the core rulebook) but the concept is looking at adding your base ability (Body- Physical prowess, Mind-mental aptitude, and Soul-Spiritual presence.. I guess) to the skills you are trained in to establish what your Melee, Accuracy (Ranged) and Defence rating is from Poor to Exceptional. The higher number your skills and attributes the higher quality your rating is and the higher rung in “The ladder” you are in.

This Ladder is used primarily to determine the difference in quality between the attackers skill and the defenders defence. This determines the Difficulty number on the attack roll to deal damage to try and defeat your opponent. This is a bit complex but once the maths is over then the system is quite.. simple from what it looks like.

I will look at this a bit more over the coming week and hopefully I may try and have a Soulbound Saturday where I post some Soulbound content where I play the game with my fellow warhammer players – well that’s the idea.

While the bundle is cheap on Humble-bundle I would suggest going to have a look at it and see if its something for you. Saving (I think) a bit over 90% of the total cost of the books that are in the bundle for this amount of content is pretty incredible.

Don’t forget tomorrow is the final writeup for the week where we take the party into the temple and confront a bunch of snakes, and their abyssal lord.

Oh, and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Island escape

Hi all welcome to a Saturday special where tonight I tried my hand at.. well hand drawing an isometric map now that I have isometric graph paper on hand supplied by worksheetworks.com.

This is just the first iteration of the small little temple/dungeon that I came up with whilst fighting my brain in ignoring the desire to draw a ship in isometric style, which was not working out for me – not at my current experience of this hand-drawn style.

So hope you like the format, scanned in pdf format and I hope to expand a little bit more on it in the future when and if I decide to use it for the party at some stage!

Temple to the serpent

210SaTttS

The temple is located on an island a day or two off the coast of Daye heading due east. The Island itself contains the last readily available fresh water and fruit (which is plentiful) before the gruelling two week journey across the sea and as such as become a stop over point for the Red Fleet.

The island itself has a single large mountain that has a supply of freshwater that trickles down into pools at its base, naturally filtered by the porous rock and minerals that make up the mountain itself. Though citrus fruit and some vegetables can be found across the island in groups those who visit the island rarely sleep or stay on the island after sunset as many sailor or adventurer has gone missing in the darkness beyond the safety of their boats and ships. Those who have explored the island report statues covered in vegetable matter depicting great serpents coiled around a hand that is always found to be reaching upwards from the ground. Ruins and archways litter the island and those who have ventured towards the lowest point of the mountain have reported that there is a great archway there where the stone of it has been carved into giant snakes coiled around bound humans forming a large archway that leads to a large stone building a few hundred feet further into the mountains, carved into the rock itself. No one who has ventured towards the building has returned.

The temple itself seems to be long forgotten, large cracks spread across the floor itself as you enter the first chamber and a large stone snake statue sits against the far wall where a dank breeze can be felt flowing from its back. The statue itself is twenty feet tall where the coils of the snake seem to have had steps carved into it approaching its face where two perfectly white fangs carved from a hard stone have been set into the mottled grey stone of the body.

The snake itself seems to be too heavy and too hard to move or damage and attempts to break the stone or chip away at the snake seem to only damage the weapons or tools of those foolhardy enough to try. The astute investigators or those perceptive and clever enough would notice a slow trickle of green ichor dripping from the white fangs and the ancient stains of blood have tarnished the white stone when viewed from up close.

Beyond the hidden doorway behind the “Subjugation to the serpent” test lies a simple temple that descends deeper into the mountain itself. Many rooms were constructed and the deeper the warmer and more humid the temple becomes, a perfect breeding grounds for the creatures the temple worships. Traps and some treasure can be found within its halls and the constant scrape of scales on stone can be heard for any who dare bare an arm to the snake god and descent into its temples moist depths…


Hope you liked the content tonight – a small glimpse and foreshadowing preview of a temple/dungeon that the party may have to encounter and test their resolve in hopes to earn themselves knowledge and treasure.

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for the end of month write up, and as always don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Future-proofing

Hi all and welcome to Brazen Wolfe Tabletop!

Tonight, being Thursday, is generally reserved to the exciting endeavour of ‘something that adds to the adventure’ whether that is maps, additional content, a new stat-block for a creature, a magical item or some lore or information.

Now tonight I had big plans and as soon as I started to put them in to motion they started to degrade into a pile of dust – but not because of what was mentioned the other night but because of what I found to enact my plan!

So tonight I want to give a bit of a spotlight hour to something I hope to really sink my teeth into, wolf-like or not, over the weekend so that I can have something exciting in the coming weeks to present to you for a future Thursday – hence future proofing.

Now..

Homebrew is both a wondrous and painful thing. You can create the most beautiful creatures, magical items, classes, races, spells, feats, skills.. I think you get the point, the D&D world is yours for the taking and yours to manipulate and adjust how you see fit – but a lot of the time the inexperienced will end up shooting themselves in the foot with something too powerful, or, those who are overly cautious (like myself mind you) will create things that are not powerful enough so that when they are put before the heroic adventurer you get a mild “Meh” from those you hoped to impress.

When it comes to the balance, that’s a tricky story and something for another day but for me sometimes its the format and how you present something that can be the selling point.

The tool practically sells itself in its very own webpage too!

Let me introduce to you The Homebrewery!

(less work for me -albeit the quote feature didn’t like cut and paste so I had to type it all out by hand anyway…)

The Homebrewery makes the creation and sharing of authentic looking Fifth-edition homebrews easy. It uses Markdown with a little CSS magic to make your brews come to life.

https://homebrewery.naturalcrit.com/

Looking at this tool, and having a small amount of experience with markdown from work the concept is simple yet, amazingly beautiful in what it can accomplish.

The format of the tool is simple, you have a text field on the left and a PDF preview on the right which updates as you type.

The markdown and CSS really do take care of the rest. By spending a few minutes you can get something you really want out of this website and really, it was a bit of fun editing it (but I have always loved these things… so maybe it’s just me)

Now The Homebrewery is not a sponsor – it even feels weird having to clarify that, same as the other tools, websites and platforms I use – but I post them up here because I either make good use out of them or intend to and this website has already gone into my BWT bookmarks folder.

I don’t want to spoil too much but this website, this tool that has been created here was just too good to not share and the creator has already decided that it will remain free for ever – but if you, like me, enjoy it and get value from it why not support a fellow content creator out there, just saying.

So hopefully I can sink a few hours into this over the weekend and in the process I hope I can create some truly professional looking homebrew for you all to enjoy.

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow, I can’t say no to a good fight-night post so I anticipate uploading some form of random encounter fun times and on the weekend I hope to, in between helping some people move house, take up the challenge laid before me and write another 30 minute adventure using Candour (as was gloriously nominated last week) for this weeks Challenge – not going to lie its been a struggle to not start mapping out some potential notes for the adventure so I am looking forward to Saturday.

Oh, and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Mid week musings

Hi all and welcome to another night at Brazen Wolfe Tabletop. Tonight I don’t have much planned for new content (as this week is really not producing anything new as such) but tonight being about secondary plot hooks, twists, turns or pivots I want to just touch on something that we may all have experienced on or off the table.

That pivot or shift in direction.

Now when it comes to me painting miniatures it happens all the time, I blame myself firstly and all the awesome influencers and other painters out there who produce simply awesome miniatures and pieces of art that I think to myself “Wow, that’s awesome. I am going to incorporate that in my current project”. This isn’t inherently a bad thing but it can be dangerous to your project as with Warhammer in general the idea of painting these many models is, generally, to have them look like a cohesive force across the unit they are in and then across the army as a whole.

For D&D or other TTRPGs its not so bad as the mid-session pivot may be, let’s use a recent example, that the Family are not actually the ones who are evil, that Katya’s grief at losing her parents was soo great that her un disciplined divine power was simply too much to control and she unknowingly created this mass compulsion (see the spell command) across the village. Now that is a very different outcome to the one we ended up going ahead with but its not a bad thing.

Shifts like this can be moments that really define the uniqueness of the adventure and in hindsight I may have even gone with the “Katya’s power was too great” approach instead of the “Keep the magical maiden safe for our dark master by manipulating and lying to her” one we went with. I think the end result for my party would be the same, there would be a search, a learning, a confrontation of sorts but the ending may have resulted in “The Family” being spared as opposed to being put to the pyre.

Sometimes these pivots are not just limited to a painting and army theme or a single adventure twist but can be for an entire TTRPG System. I have used D&D for just about all of my TTRPGs but I have actually ended up shifting from D&D 5e to utilising Open Legend RPG for an adventure campaign I was running because I felt and saw that Open Legend RPG was more versatile, easier to use and fit the setting a bit easier than D&D. To make my life easier was the first deciding point, the second was to discuss it with my players and after realising that they too were excited for the switch of gaming system then the decision was easy. But that was the clincher, making sure the players were involved in that decision – it’s not going to work shifting from one system to another if no one wants to play in that system so that was the deciding factor, as opposed to the first point that made me explore that as an option.

Regardless of the shift it can be a success story like a different TTRPG system or a potential to learn and explore something for next time, like a change in the potential outcome of a adventure plot or it could… sadly… result in the delay of painting your Skaven army for close to two years, yeah, I really should finish them.

Change is a good thing in our hobby space and if you approach it wisely and understand the potential outcome of these changes before jumping both feet first then they can result in some great hobby.

That’s all for tonight, don’t forget to explore your options out there and, as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

The journey ahead

Hi all and welcome to an end of the month Monday!

Tonight I want to briefly explore what I have planned for next, how Katya interacts with it and also give a glimpse of what waits for the party after their return back to the village of Bracken Hollow and what lies ahead along the path back to Daye.


What’s next

This year I want to further explore what really kick started my imagination when it came to D&D and in particular what really cemented my love for being the dungeon master as opposed to a player. I am not saying that I don’t love having my own Player character and exploring a world already thought of for me, it’s a great experience, a nice break from running the game and you can get some really good tips and hints into what you want to do or include in your next adventure, but for me that sense of wonderment and that want for more after every D&D session is what really drove me down that path more.

So for me I hope to do justice to what I have planned and will have a relatively rapid escalation plan set in motion, each month another milestone for the party and another set of challenges and experiences for them to engage in and at the end of the year I want to have a cohesive multi-staged adventure campaign that you, I and our players can sit down and enjoy.


Bringing the family in

So in January we met the people of Daye, the Red Fleet (a exotic merchant fleet who brought literal boatloads of magical talismans to the town of Daye) and a ancestral spirit that had not been seen before on these lands. We were also introduced to a child protégé, Lizbet, who after being saved by the party and protected by the Red Fleet felt like there could be something.. more to life. So she acted on knowledge that has been passed down to her and requested the party to find one more powerful, more connected to Chauntea than her and bring her back if willing, this girl is our Katya.

Now you can probably see how Katya is involved but the next step is really quite exciting, an adventure that begins with another request from Lizbet. A voyage for Lizbet to explore another culture and follow her deities guiding light into a new land.


Departure

Katya smiled at the villagers around her and prayed with all her being that they would prosper and that their lives would be both richer and easier from here on out now that the shadow from the Manor on the hill, her family home, was no more. A few shed tears, many smiled and waved happily just happy that she could escape and carry on with her life away from her captors.

“Shall we set off then” a cheery voice said from behind her left shoulder, Carline.

“Yes, we best set off before its dark I suppose” Katya said, nodding to the party and Paul who was at the head of the wagon in which she crouched in. Nodding and smiling, a somewhat goofy smile Katya thought, Paul flicked the reigns and the draft horses out front carried on down the road heading towards Daye.

The party had explained that a high priestess there had requested for them to find her and see if she would be interested in joining the priest-hood of Chauntea in Daye where she would be able to learn to talk to the goddess who had apparently chosen her. That was a foreign idea and as she started the ride downhill hill from the village she watched the snow recede as she passed and flowers start to push through the blanket of white at a startling rate.

If what she had been told during the last two days after her family home was mysteriously burnt down it was believed it was due to the strength of her potential connection to Chauntea that had the deities magic slowing out of her soo easily and readily – if she could learn to control it then she would be able to not just melt some ice and grow some flowers but would have the power to help the sick, heal the land and its people as well as a great number of other things.

Leaning back against the travelling pack the Dwarven tavern owners had given her she snuggled in, a touch of sadness washing over her as she look back at the ruins on the hill knowing that it would be a very long time before she saw them again. Not sure whether to be sad or happy about that she began to thumb her way through the book that had been found in what was the library.

Carline started up a happy tune on her lute and the four adventurers travelled close to the wagon and were watching the roads, the woods and the farmland with a dedication that Katya one day hoped she would have.


Thanks for joining me tonight for this little glimpse of what was and will be coming this way in a few days time. As always if you have any comments, questions or ideas about what you have read here don’t put off replying and I am more than happy to have a chat about D&D or table top in general.

Don’t forget to come back again this week to look at more content as I begin the process of wrapping up this Months adventure (although I am one month behind so I may have to update two…) and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe

Taking time away from the table.

Hello all and welcome to a weekend post where I wanted to talk briefly around my thoughts on that I, and maybe we, spend just that little bit too much time focusing on the tabletop.

Now, coming from someone who writes content for a TTRPG daily, pending when I fail to publish it correctly, who is surrounded by four Warhammer armies worth of models and has too many dice all together this may not be a surprise that I spend a lot of time on table top. I have friends who stay up until the early hours of the night, every night, painting miniatures that are beautiful, simply beautiful. I also have players (old and new) who have requested to have weekly TTRPG sessions instead of the normal fortnightly because they can’t quite get enough of the sweet table top, but I generally try and have a hour or two, outside of work and father & husband roles, that I set aside where I do not think about table top.

The reason is quite simple, I love this hobby and I don’t want to get burnt out on it. Now not every night is a dream when I am typing up content for that evening and sometimes what normally flows out of me like fire from a red dragon is more of a dribble, like a mage learning how to shape water for the first time. These nights probably show with content that is, perhaps not as thorough as what I may be used to but for me this project, the adventure a week (well every day there is parts of an adventure), is something that I put to myself to really hone these dungeon master skills that I have been building for many years and to test myself to see if I could write about my DMing approach.

Now, I don’t think saying to yourself ‘I don’t feel like it tonight’ or ‘I’ve got a block, I can’t think of anything’ is a bad thing, not in the tiniest bit but I want to stress that you should be able to say this to your players and peers too. Going to your party “I just need a break for this week/fortnight/month” isn’t a bad thing and your players will understand, like mine have in the past. They know its a lot of effort and a big commitment to play a TTRPG game and even more so if you are the Game Master as you have to prepare the adventure, create the NPCs, the encounters, the puzzles, traps, maps, twists, turns and what ever else goes into your adventure – they understand if you need time.

For some you may feel like you don’t need to pause, no breaks, no half time, nothing. And this is fine too but I would caution to look for the signs that you need to step away from your fantasy or Sci-fi world for a bit and just take a night off. Watch a movie, read a book, go out to dinner or drinks. Play a game tabletop or electronic (a different tabletop game still counts as time off!).

Lately I have been playing online with an old friend of mine, having a few beers and playing or a few hours to just reset the clock, or, exploring a game that my new PC can actually run (unlike my old PC that couldn’t run it…) and strangely enough, some elements of my table top are being influenced by these games, movies and TV shows that I use as my downtime from table top. For me, its just becoming part of the process.

So, after all that’s said and done – I am off to find some legendary Storm drake and build a castle or sit down with my wife and watch a movie we have been putting off for a few weeks now and who knows, if a future adventure involves the harvesting of raw materials to build a fort then you know what inspired that adventure.

So, don’t forget to look after yourself, watch for the signs of hobby fatigue and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe