Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Knight Errant Generator

This is from the upcoming Yellow Book of Brechewold. I'm thinking about putting out a zine of just the enchanted forest section while I finish the full book. The heraldry is a stripped-down version of this post to make it manageable with dice.

One of my illustrations for the book

Roll one die of each type d4-d12 and three d20s to generate a knight. The knight’s HP is equal to all the even numbers you roll added together, and the attack bonus is the first even number you roll. Assume AC is equivalent to plate + shield. Have one or two knights pre-generated as random encounter rolls.


d4 Metal
  1. Argent (silver) field, coloured charge (symbol)
  2. Coloured field, argent charge
  3. Or (gold) field, coloured charge
  4. Coloured field, or charge
d6 Colour
  1. Azure (blue)
  2. Ermine (white with black spots)
  3. Gules (red)
  4. Purpure (purple)
  5. Sable (black)
  6. Vert (green)
d8 Charge (symbol) *see following tables*
  1. Ordinary
  2. Two ordinaries
  3. Beast
  4. Two beasts
  5. Bird
  6. Sea creature
  7. Plant
  8. Object
d10 Ordinaries
  1. Chief
  2. Bend
  3. Fess
  4. Pale
  5. Chevron
  6. Saltire
  7. Cross
  8. Cross botonny
  9. Cross crosslet
  10. Cross flory
d10 Beasts
  1. Lion
  2. Wolf
  3. Bear
  4. Boar
  5. Horse
  6. Bull
  7. Hart
  8. Hound
  9. Hind
  10. Fox
d10 Birds
  1. Eagle
  2. Martlet
  3. Peacock
  4. Pelican
  5. Swan
  6. Cock
  7. Crane
  8. Dove
  9. Duck
  10. Goose
d10 Sea Creatures
  1. Pike
  2. Perch
  3. Salmon
  4. Squid
  5. Octopus
  6. Dolphin
  7. Cod
  8. Eel
  9. Whale
  10. Seashell
d10 Plants
  1. Fleur-de-lis
  2. Rose
  3. Trefoil
  4. Thistle
  5. Grapevine
  6. Oak
  7. Pine
  8. Pine-cone
  9. Aspen
  10. Willow
d10 Objects
  1. Sun
  2. Crescent
  3. Moon
  4. Star
  5. Key
  6. Constellation
  7. Ship
  8. Tower
  9. Crown
  10. Clarion


d12 Fighting Style
  1. Uses shield to steamroll opponents
  2. Only fights from horseback
  3. Stoic and defensive with greatsword
  4. Graceful duelist with sword and dagger
  5. Uses long flail to toy with opponents
  6. Berserker with two handaxes
  7. Jumpy with crossbow
  8. Bruiser with huge warhammer or battleaxe
  9. Hidden weapons all over body
  10. Claims sword has a mind of its own
  11. Only fights in by-the-book jousts or duels
  12. Invents ever more elaborate reasons not to fight
d20 Personality
  1. Dour, joyless
  2. Pompous, thinks everyone is a fan
  3. Droll, always amused
  4. Monomaniacal about quest
  5. Jaded, disillusioned
  6. Adheres to chivalry to the letter
  7. Generous and rare champion of the oppressed
  8. Insufferable warrior-poet
  9. Quick to take offense
  10. Boisterous bully
  11. Ambitious schemer
  12. Tight-lipped and suspicious, always considering worst-case scenarios
  13. Sarcastic to hide insecurity
  14. Mirthful, spontaneously bursts into song
  15. Constantly complains, especially of ill-fitting armour or undergarments
  16. Believes quest is beneath him
  17. Easily bribed or otherwise distracted by mead
  18. Is aghast at people less educated and well off than he
  19. Plays trombone (which he invented) to ease the stress of battle
  20. Hears whispers that others do not
d20 Quest
  1. Save maiden from controlling father
  2. Test self discipline and resistance to temptation
  3. Seek holy relic
  4. Slay a giant or other eater of Christians
  5. Track a beast entangled with family history
  6. Save lost, enchanted love
  7. Win the heart of a cold fairy princess
  8. Deliver dying wishes of king or queen to relative
  9. Search for lost heir to a throne
  10. Rescue noble baby stolen by fairies
  11. Protect last child of a murdered royal family
  12. Duel old rival
  13. Capture and return villain to face trial
  14. Seek advice from old hermit
  15. Hide the child of a lady’s affair from her wrathful husband
  16. Recover the Mourning Veil for a noble who wishes to deal with the Fairies
  17. Forge a sword of iron troll hearts in Brechewold’s forge Belcher
  18. Find a vizier at Brechewold to bring back to court
  19. Gain entry to the Smoking Mountain
  20. Find cure for a dying maiden
d20 Name: Sir...
  1. Lionell
  2. Bors
  3. Kay
  4. Tristram
  5. Gareth
  6. Bedivere
  7. Bleoberis (woman in disguise, true name Elaine)
  8. Lucan
  9. Palomedes
  10. Lamorak
  11. Pelleas
  12. Ector
  13. Dagonet
  14. Degore (woman in disguise, true name Laudine)
  15. Brunor
  16. Alymere
  17. Uwaine
  18. Aglovale (woman in disguise, true name Viviane)
  19. Fergus
  20. Morganore

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Welcome to Brechewold

Saints preserve us, I'm writing a book. The map I posted the other day is from that. I don't quite know how to feel about joining in on OSR oversaturation and commercialization except to say that I don't feel this is a play for "relevance" or "hype," and certainly not for "money." I just think it's a good idea that I can do well.

It is called The Yellow Book of Brechewold unless I can think of something better. It will detail a small campaign setting: a school for magicians (the titular Brechewold) and its environs in post-Arthurian western Britain. It will include:
  1. A completely keyed big (what's the cutoff for "mega?") dungeon: the school and abandoned, haunted levels beneath including tombs, a zoo, a body farm, a giant orrery, portals to other planets and fairy pocket-dimensions, a goblin diploma mill, seniors growing drugs, and more!
  2. Detailed faculty with personalities and goals, and a more sparsely detailed student body
  3. A small keyed enchanted forest surrounding the school including knights, giants, witches, elfs and other fairies, a unicorn, a relic from the Last Supper, religious hermits, anarcho-atheist bandits, &c
  4. A chapter on the conflicts between factions and individuals to facilitate sandbox play
  5. A chapter summarizing the treasures found elsewhere in the book, for ease of reference
  6. Full color player-facing maps and illustrations, black and white DM-facing maps and illustrations
  7. As many of the best practices of OSR design as I've been able to absorb
Here's a portrait of the headmaster and the introduction. It will be ready when it's ready.

1. Introduction

You may have heard, old chap, that wizards are wise. This is untrue. Don’t let their robes, beards, or pig Latin fool you. Wizards are lazy, greedy, vain clowns who would rather spend a lifetime in a library looking for shortcuts around reality than do a single honest day’s work. The only thing worse than a wizard is two wizards, and the only thing worse than that is a damned college of them. Welcome to Brechewold.

The first wizard who got it into his head to teach magic on this rock in the woods was that hoary necromancer Merlyn. Yes, the Merlyn who made a right mess of England because he thought he knew best of all how to pick its ruler. I’m not saying I would have done better in Art’s place, mind you, but I am saying that I’ve never slept with my sister.

Merlyn, knowing as he did that his time among the men of Albion was nearing an end, hung a sign on the old Celtic fort at Brechewold Promontory that anyone who wished to learn a few tricks and incantations in defense of the realm was welcome. A nest of knaves coagulated, and the old boy left this world to let the living sort out his mess.

A brief scuffle for succession followed, and Gertrude Malory of Newbold Revel became the school’s first headmistress. As the years stretched into centuries, the school grew like a layer cake into the current Brechewold Castle. Wings now exist which have lain unoccupied for decades. The castle squats like a great cephalopod above Lake Hart, its lower tentacles fallen into disuse.