Monthly Archives: June 2016

Much like role playing games, there are still things I enjoy doing from my childhood.  One example is watching He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.  Yah, it is true, I still enjoy cartoons.

Lately, I’ve been watching the remake of the series from the 2000’s, and I just viewed the episode, Out of the Past.  While there is plenty going on in this episode, including hinting at Teela’s origins, the monsters that Skeletor sent after Teela and the village she was staying in really grabbed my interest.  Skeletons bolstered by necromancy and strange, green clay which seems to have magical properties as well!

So here is my take on these clay ooze skeletons.  I hope you enjoy using them in an upcoming campaign, a little something to keep your players on their toes!

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Already fully funded (in 2 hours!), and blasting through stretch goals, Kobold Press‘ Creature Codex for D&D 5E, the follow up to their amazing Tome of Beasts, is up on Kickstarter!

While this is not a Wanderer’s Haven Publications book, I am among the designers who brought these monsters to life for your 5th Edition gaming fun!  If all of my creations make it through play testing, expect to see over two dozen monstrous creations from yours truly included in the pages of this amazing Codex.

A ghost dragon and a simurg (one of my creations!), just two of over 300 creations appearing in the Creature Codex!

What is more, backers are invited to submit their own monstrous creations for D&D 5th Edition for possibly inclusion in the Creature Codex!  The current stretch goal has made room for 15 monsters created by Kickstarter backers!

Just like the Tome of Beasts, the Creature Codex will have a Pawn collection, so players and DMs will be able to make use of art work from the Codex to visualize their combats and interactions on a battle map.

Head over and pre-order yours today!


My first foray into D&D cartography in D&D is now live on DMs Guild! The city of Thentia is present, with updates for 5th Edition, and even includes GIGANTIC 48×36 files for printing (you know you missed those huge poster maps!). Check it out!

Traveling the Moonsea?  Pick up your map of Thentia, city of wonder and magic on the northern shores of the region.  These maps include locations that appear in Con-Created Content for the Adventurers League.  As such, this will be a living document, updated as new events unfold in the city of Thentia!

The included maps include a commercial license, and are able to be used in your DMs Guild products.  You may not include these maps as part of another stock art collection, or as a selling point for your products.

I am proud to announce that my first Con-Created Content for the D&D 5E Adventurers League program will be premiering at the Origins Game Fair (June 14th – 18th) in Ohio, and the inaugural Druids & Dragons Convention (July 13th – 16th) in Colorado!

This series, the Zhentil Keep Trilogy, takes players from the city of Phlan to the ruins of Zhentil Keep, where they will deal with warlords, fight off undead, and deal with the ultimate machinations of a dark necromancer.  Designed for Tier 3 (levels 11-16) of play, each module will run 4 hours long at the conventions.  If you plan on attending either (or both) conventions, sign up to check out the games!

The Zhentil Keep Trilogy will be released for public play in August, 2017 on

The adventure modules are :
CCCROZK01-01 : Binder’s Torment
CCCROZK01-02 : Zhentarim’s Lament
CCCROZK01-03 : Necromancer’s Ascent

Sometimes, the best of intentions turn out for the absolute worst.  Such was the case of Diana, a young girl whose case of photosensitivity was so severe, being in direct sunlight would cause her skin to blister and peel.  When doctors attempted a form of radical treatment…exposing Diana to extremely bright lights…they did not only fail in curing her, but apparently killed her in the process, her body disappearing and leaving behind only the blackened outline of where she once sat.

But this was not the end of Diana…in fact, she now exists as a creature entirely different, something that cannot be seen in direct light.  But in the dark, her strength and rage know no bounds…and she hungers for vengeance against the living.

If you haven’t seen Lights Out, I do recommend it!  Diana is the basis for this “scorched soul” write up, which I hope you enjoy using in your own games.

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Lights Out : Diana


It’s Halloween weekend, and it’s time for all the spooks and specters to come out and play!  One of my favorite Halloween movies is Trick’r Treat, an anthology of interconnected tales set on Halloween.  The hero (or anti-hero?) of the movie is Sam, a child-like creature who appears to be dressed in a shabby costume for trick-or-treating.  But, as we find out many times in the movie, nothing is quite as it seems.  Check out the stats for the immortal Sam, in all his pumpkin-headed glory!  Be safe, and don’t forget to light those jack-o-lanterns…  Happy Halloween!

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Today was our bi-monthly NoCo RPG Writers Workshop, and it was the first time we did a group exercise.  We talked a bit about monster design, some generally, some specifically for D&D 5E.  Then we spent awhile making a monster based on artwork from Baizilla on Deviant Art!  Check out the Shambling Spore, a nasty plant creature we came up for your homebrew D&D 5E game!

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Contributors : Bryan Gillispie, Jon Elder, Stefan Pettine, Jess Hall, Eric Schubert, Melissa Schubert, Apotheon, Jeremy Hochhalter

Inspiration often strikes us when we are not expecting it…  Like when you are cleaning off a game board shelf, and a Mage Knight figure falls off, hits you in the face, then breaks on the floor.  Ok, it was the figure that struck me…but inspiration followed soon there after!

Back during the first iteration of Mage Knight, some pretty hefty, large figures came out for the game.  Several dragons, a giant that had dwarves riding in armored baskets on its shoulders, some vehicles, and more.  The one in question was the Doom Blade Cyclops, and is still one of my favorite pieces from that game.

So while the super glue was doing its work, I was debating what such a creature would be like in 5E D&D.  What if the scythes on its arms weren’t strapped there, as they are on the figure, but were actually welded to the bone during a ritual of terrible surgeries and magicks?  And strong?  These things look like they’d use lesser cyclops for toothpicks.  Yah, some 5E monster making had to be done.  Check out the conversion from Mage Knight figure to RPG monster below!

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Sometimes, you’re in the middle of a game, and your group find themselves in a shitty situation…literally.  As was the case last week when a D&D group I run found themselves heading down what appeared to be a sewer entrance.  This naturally led to some side conversation, and what topic should arise?  The Golgothan Shit Demon, also known as an excremental, from the movie Dogma.  Well, of course that was too good to pass up, so below are the D&D 5e stats for this poo-flinging fiend.

In the movie, the creature is said to be a demon created by the body waste left upon a field where many people had been crucified.  The 5e write up has a sidebar, which offers some other origin options as well, both as an undead creature, or even as a foul elemental.

Enjoy, and don’t forget your hand sanitizer!  😉

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In Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition, warlocks are magic users who have forged a pact with some being far more powerful than them, in exchange for power of their own.  These powers manifest as spells and other abilities, dependent on the force they made the pact with.  More often than not, these beings are fiends or elder gods of other dimensions that have interest in manipulating events on the Material plane, and so they gladly accept the soul of those wishing to become warlocks in exchange for a little bit of magical power.  But not all of these powerful entities are malignant.  For those that are benign, spells such as Hunger of Hadar don’t necessarily make sense.  If I was some celestial being residing in the Plane of Light or some such, I wouldn’t want my warlock to be running around, tearing holes in the fabric of space and time, and letting darkness from between the stars loose on the world.

Below is an optional replacement for Hunger of Hadar.  It essentially does the same thing, though its description and damage types are different.  As a DM or player, I’d really want to switch up what my spells do, if I was a warlock of some being of Light or Goodness, so feel free to explain HOW your spells look different when you cast them.  Hellish Rebuke?  Maybe it’s Divine Rebuke, and your fiery response to being attacked is instead a beam of golden light.  You get the idea.  😉

Bounty of Jwo
3rd-level conjuration

Casting Time : 1 action
Range : 150 feet
Components : V, S, M (fleck of mica and a pinch of phosporus)
Duration : Concentration, up to 1 minute

Piercing the veil of reality, you open a window to a realm of brilliance and divinity.  A 20-ft. radius sphere of light, so bright that you cannot see through it, appears centered on a point within range and lasting for the duration.  The light emits a low hum, and music weaves softly through it.  Sounds like that of huge, flapping wings accompany the music, and can be heard up to 30 feet away.  The sphere provides bright illumination for up to 100 feet, but the sphere itself is so brilliant that any creature within it is blinded.

The sphere is literally the presence of another plane upon yours, and distortions created within make the area difficult terrain.  Any creature that begins its turn inside the sphere takes 2d6 radiant damage.  Any creature that ends its turn in the area of effect must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw or take 2d6 force damage, as unseen energies collide with them.