Brace For Impact
Hooks , Releases / July 25, 2017

For those moments when your players hit the JUMP button too soon or warp right out of the path the adventure has set for their rendezvous with doom, Brace For Impact! takes a leaf out of the random table book established by From Unformed Realms. Brace For Impact! offers 18-pages packed with tables presenting high sci-fi encounter seeds based at the point of arrival for your unsuspecting characters, with room for taking notes and generating odd details like a ship names, types of debris, and failing systems. It won’t replace an adventure – but, at a pinch, it will create the seed for an encounter, the in media res moment for a mission, or distract the players just long enough for you to improvise the meat of something else.

Fire and Fury
Hooks / June 21, 2016

While created to generate quick horrors of the unknown for games like The Cthulhu Hack, there’s nothing stopping you from using From Unformed Realms as a way to kickstart monsters for other games. Throw a few six-sided dice (different colours help, deciding in advance which come first, second and third – but you could just read them left to right as they fall) or use an online randomizer, and you can set down the skeletal potentials of a new opponent. As a basic guide, for Hack games, add a Hit Dice for each ability or characteristic generated or – conversely – decide the power level of the horror and roll as many times as it has Hit Dice. So, I rolled three times, aiming for something 3HD – then rolled another die for form, which I didn’t count for hit dice. The entity shimmers and gleams with sweat (+1HD) Sharp and dark prickles cluster across its horny hide (+1AV, +1HD) Thorns can fire like projectiles – fluid scalds with an extreme temperature (+1HD) Ophidian Out of that I get: Ss’nda (3HD, +1 AV; when damaged, DEX Save or inflict 1d4 damage) Commonly mistaken for the salamander in folktale, the Ss’nda admittedly have much in…

Crochet Borders
Hooks / April 9, 2015

Today’s random pull from the Storey Publishing Backlist deck of cards – “Around the Corner Crochet Borders“, a collection of 150 colourful crochet frames, each with detailed instructions for working around a corner. While an absolute must for intermediate crotchet enthusiasts in its own right, also the creative nudge for today’s random table of disputed and protected territorial lines. The scattered kingdoms, principalities and provinces of the world have very different views on maintaining border controls. Roll d6, twice: 1: A twisted borderland of monstrous briar, tended by (1-2: anxiously attentive animists; 3-4: societally dysfunctional druids; 5-6: begrudgingly belligerent briar elementals) 2: A shredded landscape of lines and cables, (1-2: a witch’s effort to hold off ten thousand years of geological movement and scant frayed threads away from a cataclysmic release; 3-4: a diplomatic minefield of fragmented zones under contractual discussion through long distance magical protocol demanding delicate negotiations to traverse by way of phantasmal civil servants; 5-6: an alchemist’s government-funded experiment, which extracts essences from those crossing the border and carries them back, underground, to his not too distant lab for cataloguing) 3: An imposing range of mountainous (1-2: golem, quested to remain here by a forgotten emperor for an act of war,…

Raising Chickens
Hooks / April 8, 2015

Random plot hooks for whole adventures, encounters or just rumours, based on a random book title drawn from my Storey Publishing deck of cards. This time we have the untapped potential of the farmyard from the Storey’s Guide to Raising Chickens. Rolls d12: 1: Intellect – local scholar seeks to teach chickens rudimentary language skills to serve as a resource for his studies and field trips – much to the chagrin of local farmers 2: Awareness – wily street-monger trains chickens to harass customers into his pitch, swarming hapless travellers and passersby 3: Capital – beggars stealing chickens from local peasants and farmers to raise money 4: Family – a wild eyed woman, spattered with feathers and guano, seeks to adopt chickens into her extended household 5: Fuss – conniving hookman* scattered food around front doors to excite chickens as a means to draw attention away from his back window thievery 6: Questions – long-toothed street philosopher compares everything to the acts and wants of chickens, but much of his advice rings true and his reputation draws numerous onlookers 7: Rumpus – circus performer juggles and does seemingly impossible magical tricks with chickens 8: Expectations – aspiring champion of the…