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Issue #123
July 1987

A step into the world of sorcerers and wizards.
Mike Cook
16 The Mystic College — James A. Yates
Editor The stronghold and home ground of all magic-users.
Roger E. Moore
32 Fire for Effect! — Richard W. Emerich
Assistant editor Fiction editor Flame and lightning do more damage than you might believe.
Robin Jenkins Patrick L. Price
36 Arcane Lore — Harold Dolan
Editorial assistants A new column of magical spells — beginning with the magic of fire.
Eileen Lucas Barbara G. Young
Art director 13 Music of the Forgotten Realms — Ed Greenwood
Roger Raupp What instruments do the bards of the Realms play? Find out here.

42 Lords & Legends — Matt Iden

Production Staff A second new column, with four heroes for Oriental Adventures.
Marilyn Favaro Gloria Habriga
46 Gamers Around the World — Heather Gemmen
Subscriptions Advertising Want to share your adventures with someone far away? Read on and write!
Pat Schulz Mary Parkinson
50 The Ecology of the Giant Leech — Anthony Gerard
Creative editors A tale of monsters and men — and the thin difference between.
Ed Greenwood Jeff Grubb
54 Time Flies . . . — Lisa Cabala
Contributing artists Better than a wrist-sundial: five time-tracking charts.
Donald Clavette Richard Cameron
Larry Elmore Chris Hunter 60 Just Making Time — Roger E. Moore
Jim Holloway Brian Maynard The joys and horrors of fantasy calendars.
Dwain Meyer Joseph Pillsbury
Ken Widing Lawrence Raimonda
62 Palimpsest — Tais Teng
When the old words are erased, new writing appears. . . .
David Trampier Valerie Valusek
Richard Tomasic Marvel Bullpen 68 The Whole-Earth Ecology — Danny Kretzer
Putting a STAR FRONTIERS® game world together (more easily).

72 The Marvel®-Phile — Jeff Grubb

Presenting the other three Heralds™ of Galactus™.

76 The Role of Books — John C. Bunnell

Pern, science-fiction conventions, and more.

82 Operation: Zondraker — Merle M. Rasmussen

Part 2: What do TOP SECRET® game agents do when they get to the Moon?

3 Letters 88 TSR Profiles 99 Snarfquest
4 OMG Guide 92 Gamers Guide 100 Dragonmirth
6 F o r u m 34 Convention Calendar 102 Wormy
61 Sage Advice 98 Index to Advertisers

On the night of a full moon, two youths forge a sword of great magical power —
a flame tongue, perhaps, or a blade of elemental force. Donald Clavette, an artist
from Woodbury, Connecticut, reveals the mystic glory of magic in his cover
painting for this issue.
A letter came to the office the
other day from a high-school student
who had a problem with his gaming
group. One of the players became
upset because his character was
kidnapped, and that player tore up
Cover art prints The article entitled “The Game Wizards,” by
Jeff Grubb [in issue #119], started to make me
his character sheet and left the
game, claiming that the DM was
Dear Dragon: worry. If the Forgotten Realms™ are going to be being unfair. The writer (who had
I enjoy the artwork on the cover of DRAGON® the “home base” of both the first and second been the DM) wanted to know how
Magazine. I have purchased both of the covers editions of the AD&D® game universe, what will to handle situations like that, to keep
which were sold as prints to the public. I would become of other game worlds? I for one, would
players from losing their tempers
like to be able to obtain MANY of the prints not want to abandon the world of Krynn for
from the covers. Is there any way to purchase any other game world. Will modules still be over something as silly as a game.
these prints, either from the original artist or created for worlds other than the Forgotten Well, sorry to say, there’s no way
TSR? Realms? If modules were not created for other to avoid it except to play with
Ronald D. Martin Jr. worlds, that wouldn’t be fair to many AD&D® mature* gamers, and there’s no way
Winterhaven, FL game players who would rather stay with their to test for game maturity among the
favorite world. If I had to transfer my interest players just before you start a game.
Any reader interested in obtaining a color and campaign to the Forgotten Realms, would it This problem is hardly unique to
print of a particular cover from DRAGON® Maga- be possible to place my favorite characters from role-playing, as anyone who has
zine should write a letter addressed to that my current campaign to that of the Forgotten
played bridge, poker, chess, or the
particular artist, then place it inside an enve- Realms without bending the rules severely?
lope, along with a second stamped envelope Christopher DeGraffenreid MONOPOLY® game well knows.
with your return address and the artist’s name, Wilkes-Barre PA Some time ago, a marriage counselor
and send this material to: Cover Art Request, made the news with his claim that
DRAGON® Magazine, P.O. Box 110, Lake Geneva, The answer to your question is no. TSR will not the TRIVIAL PURSUIT® game was
WI 53147. We will check the letter and forward close up shop on Oerth and Krynn just because responsible for several broken mar-
it to the artist as quickly as possible. We cannot the Forgotten Realms is being set up. Both the riages. Games are games, but people
guarantee that the artist will have prints of his WORLD OF GREYHAWK™ Fantasy Setting and are people.
or her work available for sale, but the artists that of the DRAGONLANCE® saga have a wide
Nonetheless, role-players every-
appreciate the feedback anyway. We cannot and loyal following, and it is our intention to
keep producing material for these worlds over
where can probably sympathize a
release the addresses of our artists as a matter
of policy, but we can and do forward mail to the the years. For example, later this year, we will little with the angry gamer who has
appropriate people. — RM be coming up with the DRAGONLANCE® Adven- lost a favorite character, even if
tures hardback. As “home base” for the AD&D® everyone thinks the gamer shouldn’t
game, the FORGOTTEN REALMS™ setting is to have acted in the way he did. I, for
Where'd it go? be the home for all adventures not specifically
designed for Oerth and Krynn; furthermore, it
one, read the letter and thought of
Harley D. Quinn.
Dear Dragon: is laid out so as to serve as either a full cam- Harley Davidson Quinn was a
As a player of the DUNGEONS & DRAGONS® paign setting or an interesting “world next
gnome, the first D&D® game charac-
game, I feel that we D&D® game players have door” for your own existing campaigns (which
been almost forgotten by DRAGON® Magazine. may or may not be on Krynn or Oerth).
ter that I ever managed to get to 6th
Except for a couple of articles a year, there is Now, if you or your players choose to take level. This was an incredible achieve-
hardly any mention of the D&D® game, the characters from their initial campaign and ment for me at the time, since I had
emphasis being on the AD&D® game. I was relocate them in the Realms, that has been been going through one player char-
happy to see the article, “Out of the Stone Age,” provided for as well in the Realms boxed set. acter a week at our gaming sessions
by Jake R. Patterson tissue #118), but it would The Realms, as you may have gathered, has a at Fort Bragg, N.C. Harley, though,
be nice to see more about D&D® games. wide variety of gates and portals to other hung on. He found magical weapons,
Kevin Davies planes, Prime Material and otherwise, and it is magical armor, henchmen, money,
South Gillies, Ontario possible for your characters to either visit the
treasure — Harley hit the big time.
scenic (deadly?) Forgotten Realms™, or make the
This is indeed a peculiar situation, and it has new world their home for AD&D® games. He was great.
puzzled us for some time. The D&D® game sells I’ve also been talking with Tracy Hickman, Then, in the middle of one of our
extremely well, and the new edition of the game who pointed out that there is a reason that no longer dungeon-crawls on Saturday
(Basic to Immortals Sets, revised by Frank super-high-level characters currently operate in evening, the party ran into some
Mentzer in 1983-1986) is a superb game system. Krynn. The Realms might take a number of tough opposition and some of our
For some reason, however, not many articles individuals who are too powerful for Krynn or better fighters got mangled. The
have been specifically dedicated to that game. other worlds. — Jeff Grubb group caller was looking over the
(DUNGEON® Adventures has a similar problem
character sheets to figure out what
with D&D® game modules.) Obviously this is rich
to do next when he spotted Harley’s
territory for would-be writers. We need D&D®
game articles. ‘Nuff said. — RM current level.
ERRATUM “Hey!” he yelled. “How come this
The DUNGEON™ Adventures sub- guy’s walking in the middle of the
Oerth and Krynn scription card in DRAGON® issue party?” With a start, I realized that
#122 contained an error. A one Harley was, indeed, one of the
Dear Dragon: year’s subscription to DUNGEON™ toughest fighters we had. I was
I have been playing the ADVANCED Adventures is for six issues, not accustomed to putting all of my
DUNGEONS AND DRAGONS® game for five characters in the middle of the
twelve as noted on the card. We
years. I have played on the world of Krynn and
apologize for the error! group to keep them alive just a little
that of Oerth. Krynn, in my opinion, was the
better of the two. (continued on page 40)

The Overseas Military Gamers Guide
If you are a member of the American We will print each listing at least once in GW: GAMMA WORLD® game
Armed Forces serving overseas, and if you the OMGG. Please do NOT send in a listing JB: James Bond 007 game
enjoy role-playing games, you can be listed for the OMGG if you have six months or less JD: Judge Dredd game
in the Overseas Military Gamers Guide. until you change your station or address; MERP: MIDDLE EARTH ROLE PLAYING™
(We’re taking suggestions for a shorter and wait until you have reached your new post game
better column title, too.) Just send us your before sending in your listing. MSH: MARVEL SUPER HEROES™ game
name and full address, plus your gaming When listing gaming preferences, write OA: AD&D® Oriental Adventures system
preferences (just as is done in the World out the complete title of the games you most P: PARANOIA™ game
Gamers Guide). Write to: Overseas Military enjoy. For the purposes of this column, the PEN: Pendragon game
Gamers Guide, DRAGON® Magazine, P.O. Box abbreviations listed below will be used RC: RECON® game
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themselves as a group, formal or informal in DD: D&D® game T2000: TWILIGHT: 2000™ game
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Off-post addresses outside the United States EPT: Empire of the Petal Throne game VV: VILLAINS & VIGILANTES™ game
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area locate you more easily. EQ: ELFQUEST® game

The following listings are from the World Luis J. Katigbak (AD) Andrew Mussell (AD,DD)
Gamers Guide. See the article on World 3073 Apple Street UPS III 12 Beaconsfield Road
Gamers Guide Listings on page 46 of this Parañaque, Metro Manila Christchurch
issue. PHILIPPINES Dorset BH23 1QT
Club de Ciencia Ficción “UBIK” Carl Adams (AD,DD)
(DD,T2000,VV,SF) P.O. Box 16 Russell Warner
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4 J ULY 1987
third-level spell? Expressing capacity in spell
levels, based on Unearthed Arcana’s assessment
of the number of ninth-level spells a book can
hold, yields the following schedules:

Standard book (eight ninth-level spells =

72 spell levels)
72 cantrips
72 first level
36 second level
24 third level
18 fourth level
I am writing in response to a “Forum” letter crepancy can be explained in various ways, so 14 fifth level
written by Mr. Sides in issue #119. I strongly let us turn to a detailed scrutiny of the physical 12 sixth level
disagree with his opinions of weapon specializa- aspects of standard and traveling books as 10 seventh level
tion and nonweapon proficiencies. I think described in Unearthed Arcana. The following 9 eighth level
specialization is a needed booster to the fighter analysis will focus on the largest and smallest 8 ninth level
class. It allows a fighter to pick a weapon and recommended sizes for standard books
concentrate his abilities on using it. The bonuses (18” X 12” X 6” and 12” X 12” X 6” respectively): Traveling book (two ninth-level spells =
given are sensible, and the fighter does have to 1. 12” X 12” X 6” standard book: volume = 18 spell levels)
pay the penalty of using up proficiency slots to 864 cubic inches; 18 cantrips
become better with the desired weapon. The 2. 18” X 12” X 6” standard book: volume = 18 first level
increase in fighting power allows the DM to put 1,296 cubic inches; 9 second level
in harder monsters for the PCs to fight. If the 3. 12” X 6” X 1” traveling book: volume = 6 third level
PC fighters insist on constantly using their 72 cubic inches; and, 4 fourth level
specialized weapon, then make some diverse 4. 9” X 9” X 1” traveling book: volume = 81 3 fifth or sixth level
encounters. For example: if the PC fighter cubic inches. 2 seventh, eighth, or ninth level
specialized with a melee weapon, have some The relative spell capacities are also out of
giants bombard the party with boulders from line. Depending upon which sizes of standard There is a precedent for capacity based on
the top of a hill. If your fighters are specialized and traveling books are used, a standard book spell levels — the magic item Boccob’s blessed
with a missile weapon, limit their power by has 11-18 times the volume of a traveling book, book has a capacity of 45 spell levels. The capac-
having monsters sneak up on the party before but only four times the spell capacity. In other ity schedules based on total spell levels are
the PCs can use their missiles. This will quickly words, a traveling book has up to 4½ times the actually less generous than Unearthed Arcana’s
get the party to change its ways and pick more per-unit-volume capacity of a standard book. schedules with regard to fifth- and sixth-level
diverse weapons. The sturdier construction of the standard book spells, while being more generous with regard
Note that PCs are not the only ones who can can explain part of this discrepancy — or can it? to the lowest level spells. Unearthed Arcana’s
specialize. NPC fighters may also specialize. For Unearthed Arcana states that a standard book schedules are admittedly simpler than what I
example, a 10th-level half-ogre fighter your of median size (i.e., 16” X 12” X 6”) weighs 150 propose, but only marginally so.
party runs into happens to be double special- gp. Therefore, a size 1 book (l/4 less volume) Eric Krein
ized with a bastard sword (which he can use to should weigh roughly 115 gp and a size 2 book No address
full effect in one hand). He uses a large shield in (1/8 greater volume) should weigh roughly 170
the other hand. With the not-uncommon 18/00 gp. A traveling book of either size weighs 30 gp. I am writing in protest of the use of banded
strength of the half-ogre, this opponent will be The smallest standard book thus has almost 11 mail in the AD&D® game. Banded mail is a type
able to do a maximum of 34 hp damage in one times the volume of the larger traveling book, of armor known only in illustrations of the 12th
round. Note that this is without any magical but weighs less than four times as much. Even and 13th centuries. These illustrations reveal
bonuses, which could increase damage greatly. with the unmodified 150 gp weight, the stand- alternate rows of linked solid disks, which is
About nonweapon proficiencies, Mr. Sides ard book would weigh only five times as much manifestly impossible. Many people have tried
states that all 1st-level characters will take as the traveling book. The clear implication is to explain banded mail, but all these explana-
healing and blind-fighting. But most fighter that traveling books are much more sturdily tions have a serious problem.
types (including cavaliers and paladins) will not constructed than are standard books. One explanation suggests the armor was made
be able to take these at 1st level for lack of It is not reasonable for a traveling book to with rings sewn on linen in overlapping rows. It
proficiency slots. If they do take them at the have both a greater unit-volume capacity and a was then covered on both sides with strips of
first opportunity, they will be in for a rude stouter construction than a standard book. Such leather with the stitching passing between the
awakening. For example: A party is being a state of affairs is a logical paradox and makes rows of rings. The lower edges of the leather
chased by a large band of hobgoblins, but “standard” books obsolete. I am therefore would be turned up and would cover the upper
blocking the escape route is a deep river. Since forced to conclude that the specifications given edges of the strips beneath. This would increase
no one has taken the swimming proficiency, the in Unearthed Arcana are flawed. As a result, I the thickness of the leather between the rings
party is forced to turn and make a stand. suggest the following revisions: sixfold.
In another instance, the party has been on a 1. Reduce the size of a standard book to Another explanation is that banded mail is
long expedition to find and kill a dragon that 10” X 10” X 4” (roughly the size of CRC’s simply normal chain mail with leather thongs
lives hundreds of miles from any civilization. Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, for drawn through the links. Oriental mail that is
They reach the dragon and manage to slay it. example); very similar to this explanation is in existence,
Much to their chagrin, they realize that their 2. Reduce the weight of the standard book to and has considerable resemblance to some of
supplies are exhausted. Since no one has any 130 gp and the encumbrance to 300 gp; the illustrations mentioned in the opening
food-obtaining proficiencies, they will undoubt- and, paragraph.
edly perish in the wilderness. As is obvious, 3. Use only the larger traveling book (9” X The serious problem with these explanations
there is more to AD&D® game life than healing 9” X 1”), and reduce weight and encum- is that all of the construction methods that have
and blind-fighting. brance to 20 gp and 40 gp, respectively. been proposed make for very stiff armor, and in
Nathan Perkins Using these proposed values, a standard book the old illustrations this fact tends to be shown
Highland Park IL would have five times the volume of a traveling most widely in the areas that need the most
book and would weigh 6½ times as much. This flexibility (e.g., elbows, neck, and knees). As a
I recently read the “Spell Books” section of is consistent with both the stouter construction matter of fact, no suit of mail looking like that in
Unearthed Arcana and discovered, in the words of standard books and the higher relative capac- the pictures has ever been found. It is most
of W.S. Gilbert, “a most ingenious paradox.” ity of traveling books. likely that the different methods of picturing
Unearthed Arcana states that the encumbrance I have one final suggestion: Since the vast mail all represent the same thing and were used
of a medial (16” X 12” X 6”) standard spell book majority of magic-user and illusionist spells to prevent monotony.
is 450 gp, while the Dungeon Master’s Guide require one segment per spell level to cast, the What does this mean in game terms? That is a
states that the encumbrance of a “Book, large capacity of a spell book should be expressed in matter of opinion. In my campaign, I have
metal-bound’ is only 200 gp (Appendix O, spell levels. Why should the average first-level banished banded armor completely. My players
“Encumbrance of Standard Items”). This dis- spell require as much space as the average must be content with having their characters
6 JULY 1987
look at pictures of banded mail in books and I do not intend for this letter to be another reflected this by substituting artillery engines
drawings. If banded armor is to be kept in any “realism” letter. I want to point out something for cannons, these earlier weapons don’t have
campaign, the 9” move base stated on page 27 very important that many people seem to have the same effect as cannons. In order to win a
of the DMG is ridiculous. It should be changed missed. Everyone knows that the AD&D game naval battle, it is still necessary to rely on the
to 6” at the very fastest. The weight, however, cannot be called realistic. Yet fantasy role- old ways: ramming, grappling, and bloody
does not need to be changed. playing games can be realistic! There is nothing boarding battles.
The loss of banded mail does not mean very about the addition of magic or dragons that Therefore, I believe that the post-16th century
much, as splinted mail provides the same armor means that the rules of the real world can no ship design is not good for the fantastic magic
class, costs less, and can be made more quickly. longer apply. world. But, if any DM insists on using these
In my mind, there is no place for “mythical” What people are missing is the fact that not large ships, he must have a solid idea how sea
armor in a game where the equipment is sup- only is the AD&D game not realistic, it was wars will be conducted in his game world.
posed to simulate reality and be realistic in designed from the start to be UN-realistic. In the Otherwise, his Lord Nelson, while aboard his
terms of equipping a character. I would, how- real world, we are faced with certain unroman- flagship Victory, will be told by his crew that
ever, be interested in hearing the opinions of tic facts. If (in the real world) a great hero the French “ramming” fleet is heading right on
others who know something about armor. fought one orc, he would win. If he fought two, them, and he only has his weak artillery engines
Alan Ristow he would probably still win if the orcs did not at His Excellency’s disposal.
Saline MI take full advantage of their ability to encircle Leung Chi Kong
him. If he fought three at once, he might win, Hong Kong
Larry Paisley’s suggestion in the “Forum” of but smart money would be on the orcs. If he
DRAGON® issue #119 was an interesting one was faced with four orcs at once, he would be More classes and more rules are exactly what
indeed. However, it was difficult to ascertain chopped apart in short order. The crushing the AD&D game system does not need. Most of
what kind of videotaped “gaming session” he reality is that no amount of experience or skill is us are having a hard time keeping the basic
was referring to. His first paragraph seems to going to make you any less vulnerable to a rules from the Players Handbook and Dungeon
suggest an actual gaming session, while his last sword. Agility and experience alone cannot Master’s Guide in our game, much less all the
paragraph indicates a “how-to” videocassette. make a Beowulf-type hero without becoming new rules available when two new books like
I, for one, would greatly enjoy watching totally ludicrous. the Survival Guides come out. What most of us
another DM’s gaming session — not for instruc- Here we find the most important difference want are new ideas to use in our systems, not so
tional advice, but just for entertainment. It between the AD&D game and reality. Experi- many changes to the playing systems we use
would be interesting to compare my campaign enced, skilled characters DO receive super- that we end up wondering which rule is right.
to campaigns of other DMs around the country, toughness. We have always wanted super- Almost all players of the AD&D game have a
as well as comparing player reactions, role- heroes, people who were so great that the life- system which they use and like. What do I mean
playing, etc. threatening dangers of lesser people become no by system? I mean poison rules, a ranger class,
An instructional videocassette, on the other more than annoyances to them. Moreover, we and a combat system we already use.
hand, wouldn’t be as exciting as an actual gam- wish to become such people ourselves! Now, what do I mean by ideas we can incor-
ing session (what “how-to” training ever is Hit points represent mostly sheer, super- porate into our systems? Issue #118 had perfect
exciting?), but it would be very helpful to inex- human toughness, not the character’s added examples of this. It had new ideas for play; I had
perienced DMs and players. agility. AD&D game heroes impress us with never thought of using gladiatorial combat or
On the whole, Mr. Paisley’s suggestion seems their power, not by how possible they are in the archery contests in my campaigns before. What
to be a very good one and I would greatly real world. Some RPGs entertain us by placing I don’t mean or want are rules which change
appreciate any progress towards a D&D video- us in a wholly reasonable but totally different my system. I don’t want class or rule changes
cassette. world. The AD&D game is not one of those, nor that leave me saying, “Should I make my players
After reading Patrick Sieff’s “Forum” letter in do I believe that it should be. redesign all their rangers, and should I also
the same issue, I felt compelled to speak my Tommy Sronce change all my campaigns so as not to cause a
mind. Mr. Sieff states that encounters with Long Beach MS landslide in game balance?”
bands of orcs were resolved in the campaigns The standard reply to this is: “If you don’t like
he played in “amidst general laughing and I would like to congratulate Margaret Foy for it, don’t use it!” That is the problem. I suggest
joking,” and that the encounters were a waste of her excellent article, “High Seas” in issue #116. giving more ideas for adventure plots, and
game time. If I had read this letter five or six The waterborne adventure is an always- changes for the “basic rules” only occasionally.
years ago, I would have agreed. The characters neglected area in the AD&D game. Foy’s article In short, give us ideas to expand our game; not
in my campaign roamed the corridors of various provided useful information for DMs to design disrupt its foundations. A good idea for this
dungeons slaying dozens of orcs at a time. My their high seas adventure. might be a page or so filled with descriptions
solution to the problem was simply making a But the article noted: “there is no reason why for adventures, each about a paragraph long.
larger band of orcs to combat the players. an advanced nation of a fantastic world could Just a little advice from a reader who pays good
However, I found this a poor solution, at best, as not produce ships much like the ‘big sail’ craft money for your magazine.
these high-level hackers just accumulated unde- popular during that era. Sailing ships should Uriah Blatherwick
served experience points. evolve in magical worlds as they have in our Memphis TN
One better solution is to take advantage of the technological one.”
laughing and joking during the battle. Just tell I think most DMs will agree with me that the Even dedicated gamers can forget that the
the character that “while giving your steed a fantasy world is a pre-gunpowder world. Other- AD&D game is just a game. All games need
pedicure (as is the case in Mr. Sieff's example), wise, our fighter will find his full plate armor rules to distinguish them from others and to
you fail to notice an orc sneaking up behind +5 cannot save him from a .38 revolver. make playing fair for every participant.
you, who then slips a garrot around your neck.” The development of gunpowder is an impor- Paul Griffin (issue #118) seems to think rules
Certainly this will make characters a bit more tant part in the evolution of human civilization, aren’t important. If all players were trustworthy
aware of the orcs. and it also played a decisive factor in molding and honest, I might agree with him, but I know
So what? Then the battles are finished quicker the shape of modern naval architecture. Cannon better. He says alignment rules are very restric-
since full attention is now directed at the orcs. had been used in naval warfare as early as the tive. Of course they are! Letting a player do
The answer to this is simply (although tritely) 16th century. The introduction of cannon good deeds when he wants to and sometimes do
put as: Quality is better than quantity. The orc aboard ships drastically changed the way that bad deeds in order to survive invites selfish
clans in my campaign can achieve fighter status sea battles were conducted, going from ram- players to misuse the rules. Phrases like “some-
of low level. Such clans typically have war ming, grappling, and boarding battles to cannon times” and “when he wants to” tend to give
bands consisting of 3rd-level or higher orc shooting. This was reflected in the design of the players a fantastic base to their arguments.
warriors, and clan leaders go sometimes as high naval vessels. Before the introduction of gun- Restricting a character’s alignment may not
as 7th level. Just watch your players rant and powder, the ship was designed to facilitate accurately reflect morals in the real world, but
rave when the sword thrust which would have traditional tactics. The cog and the carrack had it keeps a certain balance to game play. These
killed three normal orcs doesn’t even kill one! high stern castles that provided final strong rules make the classes what they are. Who
These situations will certainly inspire more holds for the crews if their boarding battle was trusts a Good assassin anyway? What would
respect for orcs and will create the “higher orc lost. happen if everyone wanted to play a paladin
awareness” mentioned in Mr. Sieff’s letter. After the introduction of gunpowder, ships of with “free alignment?” I mean: “Get out of my
Steven Van Veen the line had many decks to accommodate as way — I don’t want to do any good deeds
Midland Park NJ many cannons as possible. Though Ms. Foy today!” just isn’t the paladin we all know and

8 JULY 1987
love. Certain classes have been assigned align-
ment restrictions to emphasize game balance. In
general, the AD&D game stresses Good, and the
most powerful classes should be Good.
Too many people try to make the game realis-
tic. Try to remember that the AD&D game is a
fantasy game. Fantasy is only as real as one
imagines it. Of course, Mr. Griffin has the choice
of using or not using his “free alignment.” After
all, it’s his game, too.
Adam Dray
Lordstown OH

In issue #119 of DRAGON® Magazine, Mr. Jeff

Klein made some remarks about the status of
women in Oriental culture that were, at best,
misleading. It is the purpose of this letter to
correct the erroneous statements and hopefully
put the issue in a more correct perspective.
Mr. Klein states: “Women were most definitely
not encouraged to become great warriors in
feudal Japan.” This reflects a poor knowledge of
Japanese history and culture. It should be
pointed out that the supreme deity in the Japa-
nese pantheon is Amaterasu, a female. Further,
the gods Izanagi (she who invites) and Izanami
(he who invites) were the warriors responsible
for creating the islands of Japan and were
accorded equal status. The earliest chronicles of
Japanese history speak of warrior queens lead-
ing armies into battle, not the least of whom
was the Empress Jingo, who personally led an
army in a campaign against Korea (c. 360 A.D.).
In the late Heian period (12th century), we see
the example of women such as Tomoe, wife of
the famous Minamoto Yoshinaka. She occasional-
ly joined her husband on the battlefield, killed
many enemy warriors single-handedly, and on
at least one occasion presented the head of an
enemy general to her lord. Many samurai
deferred to her superior skills in horsemanship
and weapons.
Off the battlefield, but still in positions of
power, were many women of the court. The
influence of empresses or court women such as
Lady Murasaki cannot be overemphasized. And
let us not forget that women as well as men
were ninjas; in fact, a woman’s skills and posi-
tion in society might well make her a better spy
or assassin. Japanese history is full of the sud-
den and timely deaths of great generals or
leaders — too sudden and timely to all be coinci-
dental. It was also not unknown for women to
be members or leaders in Japanese organized
crime: the Yakuza.
Mr. Klein states: “Female Oriental characters
should not really be samurai or the like.” Again,
history proves this statement to be false. Any
woman of the buke (samurai caste) was still
regarded as samurai. A samurai woman was
just as loyal to her clan and lord as were her
husband, brothers, sons, etc. She would commit
ritual suicide to avoid capture by enemies or to
protest an injustice to her superiors. She was
trained in the use of many weapons and was
expected to use them if necessary.
Mr. Klein asks the question: “Who would have
trained them?” They were trained by masters of
the art, of course. While samurai women might
be trained in swordsmanship, they were espe-
cially adept at the yari (straight spear), naginata
(curved spear), and tanto (dagger). In Japan, to
this day, there are schools where women are
trained in these weapons, just as there are
schools which teach men kendo. There are local
and national rankings to reflect the skill of those
who practice the art. Few men learn naginata —
those who do are consistently outranked by
women. One would typically expect to find
more women who practice martial arts in Japan

10 JULY 1987
or China than in America. Therefore, the I am writing in response to Jeff Klein’s letter fuss about a player’s sex. I play in a group of
remark:“. . . female warriors just don’t fit into which appeared in the “Forum” in issue #119. four men and two women, with another woman
an Oriental culture” is patently untrue. Mr. Klein argued that female warriors do not fit who sometimes joins us. We are all in our early
While it may be reasonably argued that the into a realistic Oriental Adventures campaign. I to mid-thirties. I have played both male and
role of women in Oriental, especially Japanese, have found that historical evidence does not female characters, and so has one of the men.
society is unequal to that of men, women in support Mr. Klein’s argument. Medieval Oriental The woman who plays regularly and I are DMs
these cultures were not by any means without cultures were, in fact, more egalitarian than of separate campaigns; only two of the men are
influence. History teaches us that many Japa- their European counterparts. DMs. Each campaign has a different emphasis.
nese women possessed not inconsiderable Take, for example, the stories of Ng Mui and One of the men plays a straight neutral DM and
power; some even ruled the nation, either Yim Wing Chun. Ng Mui was a student at a is devilishly cunning; the other is a chaotic-good
directly or indirectly. But doesn’t one have to Shaolin monastery during the Ch’ing Dynasty in DM whose crazy sense of humor is always
dig almost as much through the crowd of face- China. She studied several styles of kung fu but creating enjoyable and amusing predicaments
less men to find a hero? And isn’t that what found that, because she was smaller than most for us. The other female DM tends to be lawful
fantasy gaming is all about — namely, the excep- of her opponents, these styles were not effective and sticks to the rule book; I’m usually neutral
tion rather than the rule? for her. So, she invented her own form of kung good and use the rules as suggested guidelines,
Finally, to Mr. Klein’s comment: “Any full- fu. She traveled around the country challenging although I remain consistent in my choices. The
blooded medieval Oriental male would feel a many of the best fighters of her time. Her other woman plays very strong and strong-
great loss of honor [sic] serving a woman,” I can success in these fights made her style quite willed characters such as fighters and rangers; I
only cite the example of the Osaka campaigns of popular. Ng Mui’s best student was also a wom- prefer magic-users, druids, and thieves. The mix
1614-1615. I cannot believe that the tens of an, Yim Wing Chun. After Ng Mui’s death, Yim of male and female players, characters, and
thousands of warriors who died in the service Wing Chun continued to teach the form, and it DMs adds much diversity and excitement to
of Yodo-gimi, mother of the Hideyoshi heir eventually became known as Wing Chun kung each campaign. I feel sorry for those who
Hideyori, died in dishonor. The word samurai fu. This is the style in which Bruce Lee was exclude women from games. They miss a great
means “those who serve” — not “those who trained, and it is still regarded as one of the deal of interesting fun in D&D® games and in
serve men,” but simply, “those who serve.” deadliest forms of martial arts. life.
T. Fujiwara But Yim Wing Chun and Ng Mui are not I introduced my daughter and two sons to the
Leominster, MA unique examples. In feudal Japan, the art of D&D game about five years ago. My daughter
naginata-jutsu, the use of the naginata, became and oldest son play regularly at their schools
known primarily as a woman’s art. A woman strategy club. All my children and four of the
This letter is in response to Jeff Klein’s letter named Itagaki was one of the greatest masters neighborhood kids “dungeon” together once a
about Chinese women in issue #119. I disagree of this weapon. She became a general and month with me as DM. I think role-playing
with Jeff’s statement that a woman cannot commanded an army of 3,000 samurai. Certain- games are wonderful for them. They have to
become a samurai. I am Chinese myself, and I ly, these men suffered no loss of honor for think and reason their way through the cam-
visited China last summer. After I returned, I serving under such a great warrior. paigns I create, and they learn cooperation. Of
studied about medieval China. A very famous Women were also readily accepted into the course, I get exasperated occasionally when
woman named Fa Mook Lan was in one of the ranks of the ninjas. In fact, female ninjas were they fight among themselves, but every game
interdynasty wars. She led her father’s dynasty so common that special training methods were gets better. They are learning how to make
to victory. It is true that in medieval China, men developed for them. reasonable choices and consider all sides of an
were considered more important than women, Finally, a look at Oriental mythology and fairy issue before plunging into danger. I hope more
and women usually stayed home to sew and tales shows women playing a much more active girls will discover how exciting and enjoyable
cook. To disguise herself, Fa Mook Lan dressed role than in European folklore. the D&D® game is.
as a man. I think DRAGON® Magazine should A Dungeon Master who has examined the D. Laslie Millitello
print an article on women in medieval China. It facts should find no legitimate reason for Brighton, IL
will interest the public and add more spice to excluding female characters from even the most
the AD&D® game. realistic Oriental campaign.
Derek Ho Richard Silva I’ve been a faithful subscriber to DRAGON
Sherborn, MA West Roxbury, MA Magazine for many years, and whenever I could
read this magazine, I always turned to the
I am really tired of hearing sexist males sound “Forum“ letters to see if anybody would discuss
off about females characters. One recent letter This letter is in response to Jeanne McGuire’s the TOP SECRET® Espionage role-playing game.
completely discounted the possibility of female letter in issue #l20. I agree that female players However, I have been disappointed for many
Oriental characters. This would be well and fine are often discriminated against and that this is months now, because nobody had written any
if all Oriental characters were played strictly wrong, but I disagree with some other points discussions, arguments, criticisms, or com-
according to what is known about ancient your letter makes. plaints about this excellent espionage role-
cultures, but do any of you actually believe that In your letter, you say that “isolating a broad playing game. Therefore, I decided to write to
any Oriental warriors had abilities and powers group of people . . . often harms more than it “Forum” instead of waiting around for someone
such as evinced by the typical high-level samu- helps.” Then you go on to do exactly that by else to talk about my favorite role-playing game.
rai? And just how much magic do you all really saying that campaigns run by 14-year-old males, First of all, if anybody out there is new to this
believe existed in old Oriental cultures? If you’re like myself, are “endless streams of mayhem, game, I bet you are frustrated about the low
going to stretch your imagination in regard to often with crude pornography interjected. . . . I margin of error allowed to the players. In other
these facts, why not in regard to female charac- suppose if you are a 14-year-old boy, this sort of words, one single mistake in this game can be
ters? Why couldn’t an Empress of China, for thing is fun.” For your information, my cam- your last. Many players in my campaign argued
example, have commissioned an elite troop of paigns are not endless streams of mayhem. In that this game system is a bit too close to reality.
female warriors? Remember, this is a game my campaign, there was a gamer who often However, the TOP SECRET® game is meant to put
bound only by the limits of your creativity, not turned ordinary situations into pornography. He players in the world of espionage, and in this
by the limits of reality. no longer plays with my group. I do not find type of living, player characters play fast and
Another point — if you realists insist on limit- disgusting, hack-and-slash campaigns fun. live even faster.
ing female character strength, then you must In your letter, you do to 14-year-old boys what In my opinion, this “modern-day” role-playing
penalize male characters’ constitution and you are telling others not to do to female game gave us a chance to deal with realistic
dexterity, since every scientific survey done on gamers. You should apply what you stated about dangers and actual world problems in our
the subject documents the fact that, pound for women to all players, whatever their age, sex, changing world. Also, I suppose that a few of
pound, women have more endurance, stability, or previous experience with AD&D® games is. the scenarios in my campaign are so realistic
and stamina than men, and are more nimble Jeremy Sacco that I wonder if the situations that occur in
and agile as well. But I have yet to see any Needham, MA these adventures can possibly happen or have
minuses on any abilities for male characters. already happened.
So, make both sexes equal in play, or penalize The issue of female players and DMs has Michael Estus
both equally, and let’s have no more partiality stirred up a hornet’s nest of controversy. As a San Antonio, TX
toward males! woman who has been playing in D&D® and
Pat Pitcavage AD&D® game campaigns for almost nine years, I
No address can’t understand why anyone would make a

12 JULY 1987
recorder (songhorn), and tambourine
However, some instruments of the
Realms have no identical counterparts on
Earth, although most would be readily
understood (though not readily mastered)
by musicians of Earth. These include the
glaur, hand-drum, thelarr, tocken,
wargong and zulkoon, described below.
The glaur is a short, broad-mouthed
and flaring curved horn, resembling a
cornucopia in shape and fashioned of
silver (which gives the clearest tone), elec-
trum, or brass. A glaur is almost always
fitted with a row of tubular valves like
those of a trumpet, so that the sound it
makes can be varied in pitch. Those glaur
without valves are known as gloon, and
are always played by large groups of musi-
cians, each having a gloon that sounds a
different note so that tunes may be fash-
ioned or fanfare chords assembled. A
glaur’s tone is a brash, bright, metallic
roar. By mouth action, a glaur-player can
make it snarl. The valves of a glaur do not
change the horn’s sound by distinct
changes of note as they are manipulated (if
the horn is winded continuously), but
rather cause the instrument’s tone to
swoop or soar from the note presently
played to that newly selected. A group of
glauren (the plural form of “glaur players”)
can make a continuous, swirling, melodic
tone, somewhat reminiscent of bagpipes.
The hand-drum is a cylinder of thick,
polished wood, sometimes of pieces bound
together with iron bands and soaked to
warp into a curve before being sealed, but
ideally an intact section of hollowed-out
trunk of ash, ironwood, or cherry tree.
Both ends of the drum, which is typically
1-2’ long and 6-8” in diameter, are covered
with tightly stretched hide to form an
instrument like a conga drum. It is typi-
cally slung on a shoulder strap and played
by beating and slapping. Its tone can be
muted by clasping the instrument to the
chest or in the crook of one arm. It is used
to hold rhythm or sometimes to indicate
danger, the sound of feet, and (by beat)
emotions in the telling of tales in taverns.
The thelarr, or whistlecane, is a long,
canelike reed cut from swamps through-
out the Realms, where it grows in standing
water up to 40’ or more (but rarely more
both, interweaving counter-melodies), and than a dozen feet above the water’s sur-
by Ed Greenwood rhythm marked by deeper horns or face). Only that portion of the reed that
drums. Both ballads and instruments in develops above the water’s surface can be
The Forgotten Realms display as rich the Realms suggest widespread intercom- used. When severed, typically in 4-5’
and varied a selection of music as does our munication between that plane and this in lengths, and dried slowly on rocks near a
own modern Earth, from the drums and the past; many instruments known to the fire of coals (or by being laid on exposed
wailing horns of orc tribes to the eerie musicians of our past are commonly used rocks or other sunlit surface in hot weath-
tone-bells of dwarves and gnomes, from in the Realms. These include the bandore, er), the reed forms a long pipe instrument.
the whistles and tantans of halflings to the cittern, dulcimer, harp, lute, lyre, mando- One end is blown into, producing a tone
haunting nosepipes and harps of the elves. lin, psaltery, and shawm (the double-reed varying in pitch according to the length of
To describe even the ballads of the instrument that was the ancestor of the the particular pipe. A player may use
humans of the North would take an entire oboe and bassoon). Other instruments several pipes laid on a rack close to hand,
book, so a summary must suffice. employed in the Realms would be immedi- but these are never fastened together like
Most music of the Realms sounds to our ately recognizable by musicians of Earth, panpipes, as the vibration of one reed
ears akin to late Medieval and Renaissance but are known in the Realms by different causes all the others to sound, and the
dance airs — mellow and sprightly, with names. These include the flute (longhorn), resulting cacophony is painful to hear. A
the melody carried by a horn or harp (or guitar (yarting), panpipes (birdpipe), thelarr’s tone always has a sawlike, buzz-

ing quality, produced by the dry fibers
within the reeds hollow interior. The hard
outer shell of the cane always remains
slightly flexible, and a skillful whistlecane-
player can vary the pitch of the tone very
slightly, causing a warbling effect, by
clamping down on the cane with his hands
at differing distances from the blown end
of the instrument.
The tocken is a set of carved oval,
open-ended wooden bells of graduated
sizes, hung in a row from a section of cane
or branch (which may in turn be affixed to
a straight or arched pole). It is played like
a xylophone, by striking the bells with a
wooden rod. Tocken are sometimes fash-
ioned of brass in the South, but such speci-
mens are sneered at in the North (roughly,
north of the latitude of Amn all across the
Realms in this case, from the Inner Sea to
the Sword Coast) as being “cowbells,” not
having the subtle tone of carved wood.
The wargong, or shieldgong, is an
instrument sometimes fashioned of the
battered metal shields of vanquished ene-
mies, but more often made of massive,
beaten brass circles, varied in tone by
weight, thickness, curvature, and the
number and pattern of cutouts — holes of
varying shapes pierced through the metal.
Wargongs are hung from tripods (when in
the field), suspended from overhanging
horizontal beams at a minstrels’ gallery of
a court hall, or borne on carved wooden
yokes on the shoulders of musicians in a
parade or when marching to war. They
are struck with wooden mallets wrapped
in cloth or strips of rubber-bark, and are
used for sudden effect (like our Oriental
gong) or tapped lightly and rhythmically to
produce a continuous, deep, rolling sound
audible for miles — making them useful
for signaling. A row of towers on a forti-
fied wall in the Realms (such as those on
the Wall of Giants, which defends
Aglarond from Thay) employs such instru-
ments as signal gongs.
The zulkoon is a long, rectangular,
wooden box that narrows at the top. Its
bottom has an accordion-bellow of heavy
hide that has a tendency to rupture (creat-
ing an annoying whistle and loss of
“wind”), which the player rests upon the
ground (or litter or chariot, if mobile) and
pumps with a foot-treadle. The wind thus
created goes up the zuldoon’s body and
emerges at a number of holes, which are
overlaid by ivory or bone keys and metal
strings, strummed or flipped by the player
to create sounds, so that the zulkoon
functions something like an accordion,
with an underlying droning sound.
Zulkoons require five or six arms to play
properly, if their controls are at all com-
plex, and some permanent court speci-
mens are larger than the norm and are
played by two musicians (plus two or
more bellows-pumpers). Organs are rare
and treasured instruments in the Realms,
and are never portable; the zulkoon serves
as a rudimentary organ when a true organ
cannot be found.
14 JULY 1987
appellation of “Chancellor,” as in sorcerer-
chancellor, wizard-chancellor, etc.

Selecting the proper location for the
school of magic is a critical decision for
the magic-user involved. Many towns and
cities aren’t excited about having a school

of magic located in the midst of their
communities. The results of an unfortu-
nate accident or experiment gone awry
could be catastrophic — a situation not
unlike living down the road from a nucle-

ar power plant. In spite of this, a goodly
number of municipalities won’t deny a
magic-user the right to open a school of
magic within their jurisdiction, provided
sufficient guarantees of safety have been
made. This usually includes some sort of
insurance payments to the community.
Some municipalities might even encourage

Magical academies
the magic-user to set up a school of magic
within their environs. Such places are
populated by people who can appreciate
for AD&D® game sorcerers the potential advantages (increased
wealth, power, and security) of having
such an establishment within their com-
The school of magic munity; they might even go so far as to
by James A. Yates The notion that educational centers exist offer the magic-user some inducement to
for the training of magic-users is a fairly locate in their community: perhaps a tax
Even in the fantastic multiverse of common theme in fantasy literature, be it break or lower construction costs for the
AD&D® games, there comes a day when a school of magic, college of wizardry, school itself.
each person must pause and consider academy of sorcery, university of necro- On the magic-user’s part, he may con-
what lies ahead. What does the future mancy, or whatever thaumaturgical insti- sider the hustle and bustle at the center of
hold in store? At 8th level, a cleric can tutional combination the phrase-fertile a thriving community an inappropriate
construct a place of worship and attract a mind can produce (see the two locale for the school of magic. The time-
body of fanatically loyal followers; at 9th DBAGONLANCE® trilogies for a specific consuming and mentally taxing research
level, he can set up an ecclesiastical state. example). Many PCs and NPCs have their and study that goes on in such an institu-
At 9th level, a fighter can establish a free- alleged origins in such establishments, and tion requires a great deal of peace and
hold and attract a force of men-at-arms. At it isn’t so far-fetched an idea to suppose quiet for those involved. However, the
10th level, a thief can organize a thieves’ that some of them might wind up running school requires a steady supply of food
guild and draw in a group of lesser such institutions later in their careers. In and other necessities, and being located in
thieves. A humble monk of only 8th level fact, establishing a school of magic could or near an urban center can facilitate this.
can open a monastery and attract a few turn out to be the wisest career move that Then there is the problem of security; a
lesser monks for his disciples. At higher any magic-user could ever make. school of magic situated behind a stout
levels, the rangers, druids, and assassins At any time after reaching 9th level city wall, protected by a competent watch
may gain special followers, while cavaliers (sorcerer), a magic-user may opt to estab- or militia, has considerably less need for
and paladins commence attracting retain- lish a school of magic. Ninth level was guards and other security measures than a
ers or men-at-arms as low as 4th level. But selected as the minimum level for this school located in the wilderness. It is
what about the magic-user? purpose because it is low enough to be because of these overriding concerns that
A magic-user can’t begin to carve out a within grasp of most magic-users (135,001 most magic-users are compelled to con-
holding until he attains 12th level. This xp), yet it is sufficiently high to command struct their schools of magic in or near an
goal requires 750,001 experience points, respect and to be a challenge to attain. established community. Only the most
many times more than most other classes Establishing a school of magic is com- powerful wizards (or the most foolhardy,
must have before they can attract fol- pletely voluntary; no magic-user is ever desperate, or secretive lesser magic-users)
lowers or begin territorial development; required to become a pedagogue. would dare to attempt the establishment
only the assassin requires more experi- Once a magic-user has decided to estab- of a school of magic isolated deep in the
ence points before he can organize his lish a school of magic, he or she discovers wilderness.
guild. And the magic-user still doesn’t that quite a task lies ahead. First, a suitable After the location of the school of magic
attract any followers. Granted, magic- location for the school must be found, has been determined, the magic-user must
users should not be permitted to attract which might entail obtaining permission next decide upon the general size of the
men-at-arms in the same manner as fight- from the local residents to allow the institution he intends to found. Does he
ers or clerics, but why not a few of their school to be built. Once this has been plan to organize an intimate academy to
own kind, as thieves, assassins, and monks accomplished, the actual construction, pass on his arcane knowledge to a select
do among themselves? A remedy to this furnishing, equipping, and advertising of few, or a medium-sized college that might
situation would be to give the magic-user the school must be undertaken. After all attract the attention of the surrounding
an interim goal to work on before he of this has been accomplished, the magic- communities? Perhaps he intends to found
begins any territorial development. Thus user attracts the faculty and students for a great university which will spread his
is born the school of magic. his school of magic, and he adopts the fame throughout the land! The general

16 JULY 1987
size chosen for the school of magic has a arranging the furniture. Numerous books necromancer-chancellor would attract a
profound effect upon its cost and the size and tomes have to be obtained for the 7th-level alchemist (two-thirds of 10 is 6 2/3,
of its student body. While it is best left to school’s library, and massive quantities of rounded up to 7); while a 24th-level
DMs and players to determine the actual magical supplies and other paraphernalia wizard-chancellor would attract only an
size of any schools of magic in their cam- must be procured for its classrooms and 11th-level alchemist, because that is as
paigns, some reasonable limits must be laboratories. Then there is the matter of high as he can go. The alchemist comes to
established. If the system set forth later in packaging the school and advertising its the school of magic for a secure place to
this article is used to advance students existence near and far, in order to attract practice his trade at good pay.
through the school of magic, the book- the faculty and students. Again, this is a Of no less importance to the school of
keeping for even a few dozen students matter best left to DMs and players; magic are the lesser magic-users attracted
could easily become a major chore. Table 1 numerous adventures could come as a to it. It is these lesser magic-users who are
sets down some general guidelines for result of this one step! the principle instructors of the school’s
establishing a school of magic. All of its Table 1 lists basic outfitting costs based students. The highest level of any lesser
entries are explained later. upon the size of the school of magic in magic-user attracted to the school of magic
Once the size of the school of magic has question. Establishing a school of magic is equal to half the level of the schools
been set, the magic-user can begin to should be a very expensive undertaking — chancellor (rounding any fractions up),
tackle the problems of constructing and even for a small school. Considerable costs but never higher than 6th level if a PC is
furnishing the building, along with har- are incurred over and above the mere establishing the school (the reason for this
nessing the considerable costs of these construction of the building itself. is explained shortly). Using this system, an
operations. The person controlling any PC 11th-level PC wizard would receive a 6th-
magic-user, or the DM operating any NPC level magician (half of 11 is 5½, rounded
magic-users, is responsible for selecting Residents of the school up to 6) as his highest ranking lesser
the form the school of magic takes. The After the magic-user has fulfilled all of magic-user. A 16th-level NPC mage would
academy could be housed in a large stone the requirements for establishing a school attract an 8th-level warlock. The level of
building, a tower, a moat house, or even a of magic, he takes the title of chancellor this top-ranking lesser magic-user was
small castle. A plan of the school must be and enlists an alchemist, a number of intentionally kept low, in relation to the
drawn up, which may be as simple or as lesser magic-users, and a body of students chancellor, so that he could not pose any
detailed as those involved can agree upon. whose number is determined by the size serious threat to the chancellor’s position
Cost for the construction of the building of the school built. These followers are as headmaster. At the minimum of 9th
can be determined by consulting pages considered a special type of henchman, level for a chancellor and 5th level for his
106-108 of the DMG. and do not count against the limit on the highest-ranking lesser magic-user, this gap
The design of the school of magic is number of henchmen allowed by the is not so pronounced, but as chancellors
something that DMs and players must chancellor’s charisma score. All of these go up in level, the difference in power
wrestle with themselves. Nevertheless, followers (except the students) must be becomes quite overwhelming. High-level
here are a few parameters which might paid a monthly wage commensurate with magic-users of evil alignment can best
prove helpful. The building should have their class and level; the details of this are appreciate this limitation, for they must
separate living quarters for every member left to the discretion of DMs and players constantly remain on guard against the
of the faculty, plus a few extra quarters (100 gp per month per level of the NPC is hazards posed by having a powerful
for possible future expansion of the fac- suggested at minimum). This and the magic-user for an assistant.
ulty or guests. Individual living quarters treatment meted out to them by the chan- After determining the highest-level
for the maximum number of students cellor chiefly determine the sort of loyalty lesser magic-user received, the chancellor
allowed by the school’s size are also these characters have for their chancellor. also attracts one additional magic-user for
required.. This insures each student and Any guards, servants, or other hirelings every level below that. For example: a 9th-
faculty member the isolation and quiet must be sought out and engaged by the level sorcerer receives a 5th-level thauma-
they must have for proper study and chancellor or his henchmen in the normal turgist, plus a 4th-level theurgist, a
meditation, Living quarters for any guards fashion. 3rd-level conjurer, a 2nd-level evoker, and
and servants who reside at the school The alchemist is an important, indeed a lst-level prestidigitator. This gives even
must also be taken into account. vital, member of the faculty of the school the lowest of chancellors a fair number of
The schools educational needs should of magic. Considering the amount of magi- supporting faculty with a good spread of
include at least three laboratories: one for cal research and study that goes on in powers.
the chancellor’s personal use, at least one such an institution, the chancellor would Finally, a number of students are also
for the faculty and students (the size of be hard-pressed to keep it operating with- attracted to the school of magic. Table 1
the school should determine this number), out an alchemist. The DM has three lists the numbers of students initially
and one for the alchemist attracted to the choices in this matter, depending upon the attracted to each size of school. The fig-
school. The school may require two sources available to him. The easiest meth- ures given assure that the faculty won’t be
libraries: one for the faculty and students, od is to use the alchemist described on teaching to empty classrooms, but allow
containing as much universal knowledge page 29 of the DMG. A DM may also use space for later enrollment. Some might
as possible (and as many duplicate vol- the more detailed alchemist presented in still argue that the number of students is
umes as can be reasonably obtained); and DRAGON® issue #45 (“NPCs for Hire,” by too small; however, aside from the afore-
a private library for the chancellor, con- Georgia and Roger Moore) or in issue #49 mentioned bookkeeping obstacle, it should
taining his private collection of those (“A Recipe for the Alchemist,” by Lenard be remembered that the toughest modern
tomes which he isn’t prepared to share Lakofka). If the last version is used, the law or medical school would be a breeze
with the entire school. The school should alchemist should be of a level equal to two- compared to any school of magic. Only a
contain at least three classrooms, one for thirds that of the school’s chancellor small percentage of the population possess
each grade of students. (rounding l/3 down and 2/3 up), with a the necessary gifts to qualify for the
Furnishing the school of magic involves minimum level of 6th and a maximum of school of magic; these students require the
much more than simply purchasing and 11th. Using these guidelines, a 10th-level utmost attention of the faculty, which they

18 JULY 1987
could not receive in a school with hun- asking: “So what? Why would any magic- makeup, these children are unable to
dreds of students. user expend so much time and money just become fighters or clerics. Towns might
All students attracted to a school of so he can call himself chancellor? Why sponsor students so that they may later
magic established by a PC are zero-level would the lesser magic-users and students return and use their magical skills in the
neophytes. This should also apply to any be willing to tie themselves down in such a service of the community. Some students
school founded by an NPC of less than place for years on end? What do they get may be attracted because of their insatia-
12th level. Schools founded by NPCs of at out of it?” ble thirst for knowledge of matters
least 12th level are assumed to have been The chancellor’s primary motive in arcane.
established some years past, and have establishing the school of magic is proba- The chancellor of the school of magic
students of higher grade (initiates and bly to use it as a means of increasing and has the hardest job of all: He must see to it
apprentices). The ratio of students in such extending his power. The chancellor can that the school continues to function. He is
schools should be along the lines of three use the lesser magic-users and students as in charge of every aspect of the schools
neophytes for every two initiates for every extensions of himself, enabling him to operation, and he is the one who must pay
one apprentice. Thus, the school of a 14th- project his power to more than one place the bills. The chancellor must provide all
level wizard-chancellor with 18 students at the same time. A desire for security the lesser magic-users, alchemists, and
would have nine neophytes, six initiates, might also be behind the founding of a hirelings with a monthly wage. In addi-
and three apprentices. This ratio can be school of magic. Many a high-level magic- tion, the chancellor must pay an annual
altered to suit personal tastes. user who’s been resurrected once too cost for upkeep as determined on Table 1.
The race of lesser magic-users and stu- often would leap at the opportunity to This upkeep cost is a percentage of the
dents is determined by consulting Table 2, settle down and surround himself with a total original cost of the school of magic,
determining the appropriate line for the circle of fellow magic-users. Then again, including all construction and original
chancellor in question, and rolling percen- some chancellors may have a genuine outfitting costs. The actual amount varies
tile dice. The alignment of lesser magic- desire to pass on the mystic secrets they for the size of the school and may fluctu-
users and students attracted to the school have acquired over the years to a new ate from year to year.
of magic is up to the DM, although it is generation of magic-users. Aside from these basic financial obliga-
reasonable to assume that most would be Power is also a strong lure for the lesser tions, the chancellor wears many hats. He
of the same morals as the chancellor, if not magic-users attracted to the school of is the final arbitrator of what is taught in
necessarily the same ethics. Consequently, magic. The sorcerer, necromancer, or his school. The chancellor oversees the
good attracts good and evil attracts evil. wizard who founded the school is much education and discipline of the students
Chancellors of extreme alignments, such more powerful than they, and he has and looks out for the welfare of all con-
as lawful good or chaotic evil, might be many spells that the lesser magic-users cerned, although a chaotic-evil chancellor
very restrictive about who is allowed to would want to add to their own spell might have some unique views on these
enroll. Those of neutral alignments are not books. These lesser magic-users might matters. The chancellor also has the pri-
so pedantic; they permit both good and even have some spells the chancellor lacks, mary responsibility for any relations the
evil initiates to join them, although this so the association could prove mutually school has with the outside world.
could well lead to friction between these beneficial on that count alone. Some of All lesser magic-users attracted to a
factions within the school. these lesser magic-users might also have school of magic must prove their commit-
The age of any teacher or student found the adventuring life a tad too stren- ment to the project by paying the chancel-
attracted to the school of magic is entirely uous for them; thus, the prospect of teach- lor a one-time entry fee of 500-1,000 gp
up to the DM in each case. Far too many ing in a safe, warm school of magic could per level of each lesser magic-user. The
variables exist to be able to give any sound have substantial appeal. Others might feel exact amount of this faculty assessment is
advice on the subject. Are all of the stu- that a few years’ association with a school determined by the DM or player operating
dents just starting out in life? Have some of magic might be a good career move — the chancellor of the school of magic.
been around for many years and are only one that could bring potions, scrolls, and Alignment may play a part in this decision.
now taking up magic? Are the faculty perhaps even magical items their way, for Lesser magic-users won’t be rejected out
members young Turks whose careers have faithful service to the chancellor. of hand simply because they can’t come up
blazed from the beginning, or are they These are motives for NPC lesser magic- with the money. Any reasonable deal (or
older types who have spent long years users. If a DM is operating a school of even unreasonable ones) can be worked-
climbing in levels? The addition of demi- magic, PC lesser magic-users of the proper out between the chancellor and a poverty-
human magic-users only complicates the levels might be permitted. In such cases, stricken potential faculty member. Such a
matter more. PCs have their own motives. Being part of contract could stipulate forfeiture of sal-
It might appear to some people that a school of magic, but not actually running ary until the fee has been paid, a cut in
Table 2 is slanted in favor of humans; it is. it, could prove an interesting change of salary until the fee is paid, a longer com-
Humans form the bulk of characters in pace, and would get the PCs away from mitment to the school of magic in lieu of
any campaign, and are thus the majority overly familiar dungeon or wilderness the fee, or a payment of something besides
of inhabitants of any school of magic. The adventures for a time. money (such as spells or magical items).
smaller numbers of half-elves and elves, Students join the school of magic Any lesser magic-users attracted to the
and the low birthrate and great longevity because they wish to learn the art and school of magic are bound to its chancellor
of the latter race in particular, dictate that science of magic. Once again, power is the until they attain 7th level (enchanter). At
humans dominate schools of magic just as key motivation: the considerable power this point, most lesser magic-users depart
they dominate all other aspects of the bestowed by mastering magic. Some may from the school to further their own inde-
game. find themselves enrolled in the school of pendent careers. There is a base 70%
magic to serve the purposes of others or chance at 7th level that any lesser magic-
Benefits and obligations as a last resort for a career. Parents may user will depart from the school of magic,
Thus far, a neat picture has been commit their children (young adults, actu- but this inclination to go solo drops off
sketched of the school of magic and its ally) to schools of magic because, for rea- rapidly at higher levels: 50% at 8th level,
residents. About now, someone is surely sons of birth, tradition, or physical 30% at 9th level, and only 10% at 10th
level. Any magic-user remaining at the each grade of students — neophytes, initi- that could result in expulsion from a
school of magic at 10th level continues to ates, and apprentices — that the school school of magic with a lawful-good chan-
stay there unless events force him to currently has (most schools won’t have cellor might be tolerated or even encour-
leave. This illustrates the likelihood that initiates and apprentices until later on). aged by a chaotic-evil chancellor.
the longer a magic-user remains with the The alchemist has a year-round job, but To the student, a mentor is a sort of big
school of magic, the less likely he is to any reasonable leave of absence should be brother or sister, as well as being a pri-
move on. It also explains why an NPC granted by the chancellor. mary instructor and guidance counselor.
chancellor can initially attract a lesser All new students attracted to the school The students attend their mentors as
magic-user of higher than 7th level; such a of magic have to pay a one-time tuition fee servants, assist them in their research and
magic-user would represent a character of 100-500 gp. The actual amount depends experiments, and may even join them on
who rose above 6th level but decided to upon the size of the school, the alignment adventures as they progress. No single
remain at the school of magic. These of its chancellor, and the whims of the person at the school of magic, aside from
guidelines can, of course, be modified to person playing the chancellor. As with the the chancellor, has a more profound effect
suit any situation that might arise. A lesser lesser magic-users, lack of money doesn’t upon their future, and a good relationship
magic-user might abandon the school of necessarily deny any student enrollment with one’s mentor is a prime requisite for
magic before reaching 7th level if mistreat- in the school of magic. Scholarships could the success of any student of magic.
ed by the chancellor. Another lesser be offered for a few promising students, Unfortunately, this relationship can be
magic-user might have his chance of leav- and the chancellor might accept the occa- ruined or perverted by even good students
ing the school of magic greatly reduced, or sional charity case for a variety of reasons: and mentors.
even eliminated altogether, if the chancel- a desire to show his magnanimity, a liking Students attending the school of magic
lor offered him sufficient inducement to for the student in question, etc. are pretty much stuck there, as the school
stay (such as naming him as the chancel- Upon enrolling in the school of magic, is a year-round endeavor for them. Still,
lor’s eventual successor). each student is assigned to a lesser magic- most schools of magic don’t operate as
How does the faculty spend its time? user of at least 3rd level. This lesser prisons. A student could be granted a
The following system is suggested. While magic-user becomes the student’s principle short leave of absence (usually no longer
bound to the school of magic, most lesser instructor and advisor — his mentor, in than a fortnight) from time to time, to
magic-users must spend eight months out essence. Exactly how the students are return home for holidays, to attend reli-
of every year doing nothing except apportioned among these lesser magic- gious festivals, or to handle important
instructing students. These lesser magic- users is another problem for DMs and family matters. Of course, any prolonged
users are the ones who must hammer players. The mentors might pick the stu- absence from the school affects the stu-
home the fundamentals of magic, while dents, the students could select their men- dent’s studies. Students who leave the
the chancellor tutors the students on the tors, it could be decided by lots, and so on. school without permission, as well as
finer points of the mystical arts. Lesser In a small school of magic, each mentor those who remain away longer than the
magic-users of higher than 6th level do not should have no more than three or four allotted time, had best have a good excuse
have to spend as much of their time teach- students assigned to him; in a large school, for their actions. Such delinquent students
ing. Those of 7th and 8th level need spend each could have a dozen or more. The could face fines, expulsion, corporal pun-
only six months each year teaching, and chancellor usually selects a few of the ishment, or worse, depending upon the
those of 9th level or higher need teach for most promising students (usually no more intentions, goals, and alignment of the
only four months each year. This lightened than 2-5, depending upon the size of the school’s chancellor.
teaching load, which grants these higher- school of magic) and acts as their personal
level, lesser magic-users more time for mentor himself. Student advancement
their own research or adventures, is a The minimum requirement of 3rd level All students of the school of magic begin
major reason for why lesser magic-users to qualify as a mentor was chosen so that with a negative experience-point total, in
remaining at the school of magic beyond the mentors would be magic-users of some much the same manner as the two classes
6th level are increasingly likely to continue experience. Any magic-users of less than of zero-level cavaliers (horsemen and
their own research or adventures, is a 3rd level at the school of magic cannot lancers). Like the zero-level cavalier, the
major reason why the lesser magic-users become mentors until they attain 3rd magic student must reduce this negative
remaining at the school of magic beyond level. At that point, all new students are experience-point total to zero before
although he probably teaches more than assigned to the newly promoted mentor becoming a 1st-level character. For the
that if he wants his students to progress until he has a number of students roughly magic student to do this, he must pass
quickly. equal to the other mentors. Should any through the three grades of zero-level
When not teaching, the chancellor can mentor leave the school of magic, his magic students described in Table 3. Pro-
concoct potions, pen scrolls, go on adven- students are reapportioned among the motion through the three grades is based
tures, and possibly fabricate magical remaining mentors. upon experience points earned from
items. Most lesser magic-users are limited A close and special relationship quickly studying the mystic arts and from possible
to adventuring in the months they are develops between a student and his men- adventuring later on.
away from teaching duties. During that tor. The mentor is the one who takes Upon enrollment in the school of magic,
time, they are not truly free; the chancel- charge of the student and oversees the the beginning student becomes a zero-
lor still has authority over them and may bulk of his magical education, although all level neophyte. To reiterate, the neophyte
require that they perform other services of the magic-users at the school have a starts with a deficit of -2,000 xp, has but
for the school of magic. It is up to the DM hand in this. After all, the mentor is not 1 hp (plus any constitution bonus), and
or player running the school to devise a likely to be present all the time. The men- makes all saving throws as a 1st-level
teaching schedule showing which instruc- tor is also the one directly in charge of magic-user, but with a penalty of -3. Even
tors (chancellor and all lesser magic-users) seeing to the discipline and well-being of with this penalty, the neophyte’s saving
are on and off duty during each month of the students in his charge. Again, the throws are superior to an ordinary zero-
the year. The only restriction is that there alignment of the school’s chancellor sets level human in almost every case — a good
must always be at least one instructor for the tone for these activities; thus, doings indication as to how well suited he is to be

20 JULY 1987
a magic-user. Neophytes, and all zero-level mentor helps them to overcome any diffi- only 15 months! The densest, most pathet-
magic students for that matter, attack in culties which might arise. The mentor also ic human student of all time might spend
combat as if they were zero-level humans instructs his students in any general 25 years or more plodding through a large
(which the combat tables show is just as knowledge that he feels appropriate to school with an indifferent chancellor. A
good as a 1st-level magic-user). their education (if it is allowed by the student of average luck and intelligence,
Shortly after admission to the school of chancellor). attending an average school with an aver-
magic, each neophyte is presented with In some respects, passing beyond the age chancellor, might make it through the
his book of cantrips, which can hold a grade of neophyte is the most difficult step school of magic by study alone in about
maximum of 36 of these simple spells. A in graduating from the school of magic. four years. Fortunately, students in the
neophyte can learn as many cantrips of Aside from attending lectures and meeting two higher grades (initiates and appren-
each type as the number of spells of each with their mentors, neophytes must do tices) can earn experience points by means
level he can learn due to his intelligence much studying on their own time, as well other than studying.
score. For example, a student with an as help keep the school of magic clean and Once a student has reduced his negative
intelligence of 12 could learn a minimum tidy, and perform any other menial tasks experience-point total to -1,000, he
of five and a maximum of seven cantrips which they might be assigned. Also, since becomes a zero-level initiate. Initiates have
in each category of useful, reversed, leger- they are restricted to the general confines 2 hp, make all saving throws as 1st-level
demain, person-affecting, and haunting of the school, it is virtually impossible for magic-users at -2, and can use two can-
cantrips. Magic students with high intelli- neophytes to reduce their negative trips per day. During this secondary stage
gence are capable of learning most, if not experience-point totals by any means of their education, the school’s 3rd- and
all, of the cantrips in each category. other than studying. 4th-level magic-users take over their week-
Cantrips must be learned just as spells At the end of each month, all students of ly lectures, sometimes assisted by the
are, though they are far less complicated the school of magic can reduce their nega- alchemist. This instruction comprises the
than even the simplest 1st-level spell. tive experience-point totals by a variable basics of more complicated spell-casting,
Because of this, all students add 20% to number of points gained from studying elementals of magic reading, the chemistry
their percentage chance to know each and practicing the arcane sciences. This of magic, and location and identification of
cantrip based on their intelligence. This number is determined by rolling 1d6, spell components found in nature. The
means that a student with an intelligence multiplying the result by the student’s mentor also continues the personal tutor-
of 9 has a 55% chance of learning each intelligence score, and applying any of the ing of any of his students who become
cantrip, instead of the normal 35% chance following bonuses or penalties which are initiates.
to know each spell. The maximum chance appropriate: At this grade, initiates are permitted to
of knowing each cantrip is 95% for stu- -5 points if the student attends a large leave the school for brief outings of no
dents with an intelligence of 17 or more; school; longer than a week, in the company of a
there must always be a chance for failure. +5 points if the student attends a small 3rd- or 4th-level magic-user, their mentor,
Cantrips may be learned at the rate of one school; or the chancellor. These jaunts, which are
per month for neophytes and two per +5 points if the student is a half-elf; not normally worthy of the title “adven-
month for initiates and apprentices. High +10 points if the student is an elf; and, tures,” are not unlike the modern class
intelligence has no affect upon this, +10 points in any month the chancellor field trip. Often, the students might also be
although it does help determine how rap- personally taught the student. accompanied by a druid or ranger friendly
idly students rise from one grade to the The bonuses for elves and half-elves to the school of magic, who sometimes
next. Neophytes use one cantrip per day. reflect those races’ natural affinity toward assists in fulfilling the purpose of the
The framework of the school of magic is magic. The school modifiers represent the outing. Sometimes these outings take the
not as rigidly structured as the medieval likelihood that students in a small school form of testing, such as having the initi-
or modern college, and the students are receive more attention from their instruc- ates locate and obtain a certain spell com-
not as strictly regimented in their scholas- tors than those in a large school. The ponent. At other times, these trips are
tic endeavors. Students of the school of bonus for the chancellor teaching reflects staged to visit local fighters or clerics, who
magic do not attend classes at regular the fact that students tend to learn more demonstrate to the students the position
hours on a daily basis. Instead, they attend from his instruction. Whether this is due held by magic-users in the world around
irregular lectures and symposia held by to his greater experience and teaching them, and expose them to the duties that
the schools chancellor and lesser magic- ability or the students’ awe or fear is might one day be expected of them.
users two or three times per week. Addi- irrelevant. During these short trips, initiates may
tionally, the students meet with their For example: In his first month studying supplement their study by earning experi-
mentor several times a week, sometimes at the school of magic, Nicomedes the ence points in the field. Normal points are
for a very short while, at other times for neophyte rolls a 3 on ld6, which is multi- awarded for any monster killed or defeat-
hours on end. plied by his intelligence score of 14 for a ed, but the magic-user in charge of the
Basic indoctrination of the neophytes is total of 42. Add + 5 to this because Nico- outing has complete control over any
assigned to the school’s lst- and 2nd-level medes is a half-elf, another +5 because he distribution to students of any treasure
magic-users. They have the often tedious attends a small school and + 10 because acquired during the trip, and is not
tasks of teaching the neophytes the vari- the chancellor taught that month This required to give any initiate so much as a
ous theories of magic and the fundamen- gives Nicomedes a total of 62 xp, which single copper piece. Fair-minded instruc-
tals of spell-casting, the verbalizations drops his negative experience-point total tors usually dole out some monetary trea-
required, proper somatic gestures, and from -1,990 to -1,928. sure or other minor tokens to the
correct use of spell components. The Using this system, the luckiest, most students, to whet their appetites and give
embryonic knowledge gained from these brilliant elven magic student who ever them a glimpse of their possible future.
lectures is expounded upon by the men- lived, attending a small school of magic Common sense must prevail in these deal-
tors during their frequent meetings with run by the most dedicated chancellor of all ings; should the members of the outing, by
their students. Here, students put into time, could glide through the three grades some stroke of fortune, come across sev-
practice what they have learned, and the of magic students and reach 1st level in eral thousand gold pieces worth of trea-

22 JULY 1987
sure, the magic-user in charge is not going could be granted concerning this. If any someone wish to play a student of the
to give any initiate enough treasure to apprentice is away from the school of school of magic, here are a couple of ideas
make 1st level. Even within these restric- magic for more than a week, he may not which could speed up the process. First,
tions, the fortuitous find of a few small roll for experience points earned from give the student a PC bonus of +25 xp
gems or some other valuable piece of studying during that month. Because of each month, which could knock a year or
merchandise could be worth more to an this penalty, the apprentice must carefully more off the time required to graduate.
initiate than a couple months of intense weigh the possible gains of adventuring The second method is to assume the stu-
study. A DM could logically declare that against the lost study time. Of course, dent had some prior private tutoring in
magic students receive no experience for most students will jump at the chance to magic, and can qualify for enrollment in
treasure found, as they have no opportuni- go adventuring, and few will ever truly the school of magic as a 2nd-grade initiate.
ty to spend or use it. examine the consequences. The mentor Whenever a student is promoted to the
When a magic student has reduced his retains absolute control of any division of faculty of the school of magic, the word
negative experience-point total to -500, treasure to apprentices, but due to their gets around, and there is a chance that a
he becomes a zero-level apprentice. special relationship, he is likely to be new student soon arrives to fill the vacan-
Apprentices have 3 hp, make all saving somewhat more generous than with an cy. Also, at the start of each new year,
throws as 1st-level magic-users at -1, and initiate. there is a chance that one or more new
can use three cantrips per day. The final Once a student has reduced his negative students are attracted to the school of
stage of the magic students’ education is experience-point total to zero, he is consid- magic. The exact percentage chance of
conducted by the school’s lesser magic- ered a graduate of the school of magic and these events occurring, and the number of
users of 5th level or higher, the mentors, becomes a 1st-level prestidigitator. He then students involved, are determined by
and the chancellor. Apprentices are rolls 1d4 for hit points but ignores the roll consulting Table 4. The only restriction on
allowed to work in the laboratory, assist- and retains the hit points he had as an results from Table 4 is that the school may
ing the magic-users in research and exper- apprentice unless a four is rolled. The never have more students than the maxi-
iments. At this point, they are exposed to school holds a celebration in his honor, at mum number allotted for its size on Table
the formulae for concocting potions, the which the chancellor congratulates him, 1. Should the school of magic find itself
process of penning magic scrolls, and welcomes him as the newest member of with fewer than its minimum requirement
much more. During this time, the appren- the faculty, and presents the newly pro- of students, one new student is automati-
tices are inundated by the chancellor, their moted prestidigitator with his book of cally attracted each month until the mini-
mentors, and all the other magic-users first-level spells. This first spell book is mum requirement is met.
with as much of the legends and lore that along the lines of those described on page
they possess and are willing to share with 39 of the DMG and page 79 of Unearthed Faculty advancement
others. The magic students must absorb as Arcana, with certain changes. The spell There are two methods by which faculty
much of this as they can, for it will assist book cannot contain any spell which is not members of the school of magic can gain
them later to have as much knowledge as currently known by at least one member experience points and rise in level: teach-
possible concerning everything from the of the school of magic. Logic also dictates ing and adventuring. Teaching can be slow
lowliest potions to the most powerful that the prestidigitator would have and laborious, but can be spiritually (if not
artifacts. reviewed its contents with those who financially) rewarding. Adventuring is
At this stage, apprentices also study and prepared the spell book, to insure that he mostly what the AD&D® game is about; the
practice something else which will be of is capable of knowing each spell placed in bold who survive gain a great profit in a
use to them in their later adventuring the book. short time. The school of magic creates a
lives: a nonweapon proficiency. Upon The prestidigitator is now considered a balance between the two, enabling weary
enrolling at the school of magic, all stu- 1st-level magic-user in all respects, and he adventurers to recuperate in the relative
dents have only two nonweapon proficien- may cast one 1st-level spell (or four can- safety of the classroom while still earning
cies. These represent knowledge or skills trips, if he requested to retain them in experience, yet allowing the bored peda-
gained by the student in his previous life. place of one of his initial allotment of 1st- gogue the opportunity to cut loose, ven-
If the DM wishes, any of these proficien- level spells) per day. However, upon gradu- ture forth into the world, and get some
cies may be higher than normal. For exam- ation from the school of magic, the excitement.
ple, Fionulla is a human who decided to student is not yet free, as the school of All faculty members at the school of
become a magic student at age 27. How- magic demands service from its graduates. magic, including the chancellor but exclud-
ever, before that she was a gemcutter of All 1st-level prestidigitators who have ing the alchemist (his teaching is very
some repute and has a skill level of 3 in graduated from the school of magic are minimal), earn experience each month that
that nonweapon proficiency. An appren- required to remain there for a period of they teach equal to 10% of the total num-
tice begins work on his third nonweapon two years to assist in the teaching of the ber of experience points earned by all the
proficiency and becomes proficient in it students, just like any other lesser magic- students at the school of magic. For exam-
upon attaining 1st level. This third non- user. The chancellor pays them a monthly ple, a school of magic has 32 students who
weapon proficiency must be an adventur- salary; in their off months, they might be earned a total of 1,620 xp in a given
ing or wilderness proficiency requiring allowed to go adventuring. At the end of month, which means that every member
only one slot. Aside from these restric- two years, these graduates are free to do of the faculty who taught that month
tions, it may be any nonweapon proficien- what they will, including remaining at the would earn 162 xp (round all fractions to
cy the DM feels the apprentice could school of magic, if that is their wish. the nearest whole number). Additionally,
acquire at the school of magic. The rules presented here for advancing each mentor, including the chancellor,
Apprentices may go on outings like a student through the school of magic gains an additional 10% for the experience
initiates and may accompany their men- were designed primarily for NPCs. As it earned by his circle of students during
tors on short adventures during the men- can take four years or more for the aver- each month he teaches. Using the above
tors’ months off from teaching. Such age student to graduate, it was felt that example, seven students belonging to one
adventures should be no longer than a most players would be reluctant to oper- mentor earned 387 of the 1,620 xp, result-
fortnight in length, although some leeway ate such a character. However, should ing in another 39 xp for their mentor, who
24 JULY 1987
earned a total of 201 xp for teaching that hand over his hard-won spoils to any constructing the wizards stronghold can
month. master, nor should be expected to do so. be determined by consulting pages 106-
This could add up to a lot of paperwork What the chancellor does get is the right 108 of the DMG. To this must be added
for a large school with a great many stu- to examine the magical items captured by another 1,000-4,000 gp (exact amount at
dents, but you were warned. It could also his lesser magic-users, perhaps to read the DM’s discretion) to advertise in the
be argued that it is wrong to give experi- over (and possibly copy) a scroll containing surrounding lands for a wizards sword
ence points to magic-users for sitting in a spell the lesser magic-user could not arm, a fighter who becomes the chief
the comfort of the classroom and teaching, normally use or to attempt the discovery military officer of the weirding hold. If a
but characters should be able to earn of the powers of some unusual item. wizard has already established a school of
experience from activities other than The changing of ownership of these magic, he can move the school to his new
“kicking the door and killing the orc.” The treasures between the lesser magic-users stronghold in the weirding hold if the hold
faculty members of the school of magic and their chancellor is a matter for DMs was designed to contain it. This entails
spend three to eight months each year and players to resolve. However, no chan- moving most of the equipment and para-
teaching, performing a valuable service cellor is going to hand over all his spells phernalia from the old school, but there is
and honing their magical skills, and it is and secrets to his lesser magic-users sim- also a minor outfitting cost added on to
only right that they gain from this experi- ply because they have gained a few levels. the basic construction of the new strong
ence. Adventuring remains the prime Besides, a newly acquired magical item hold. This outfitting cost is equal to 10% of
source of experience points; those gained could well be the key that unlocks the the total cost of the new stronghold and is
by teaching are few in comparison to chancellor’s spell books for a highly covet- added to form the new total upon which
those gained from adventuring, and it ed spell. Evil lesser magic-users could the wizard-chancellor’s annual upkeep for
would take all but the lowliest of magic- conceivably attempt to hold out on their his school of magic is based.
users many years of teaching to gain chancellors in this matter, but they must A wizard takes this major step for a
enough experience to rise even a single be prepared to suffer the consequences variety of reasons. Chancellors may find
level. should he learn of their deception. Similar- the school of magic has lost some of its
The chancellor of the school of magic ly, a chancellor might just take a magical challenge, and they may desire another
has a great influence upon the adventur- item he wants. Again, the ramifications of goal to work for. Some do it to expand
ing activities of his faculty. It is he who this could be unpleasant for all concerned. their power and to give them subjects to
decides who may leave the school of magic rule, thereby gaming a population base for
to go adventuring and for how long. At Territorial development military forces. Certain wizards see this as
any rate, no more than one-third (round The cost of maintaining a school of a single step towards greater conquest;
fractions of up or down to the nearest magic, in day-to-day running expenses and others might take over an area in an
whole number) of the school’s lesser the annual upkeep payment, can get very attempt to prevent its conquest by other
magic-users may be absent from the expensive. Some chancellors could find forces. Whatever the reasons, success in
school at any one time. Thus, the chancel- themselves hard-pressed to pay the bills establishing a weirding hold makes a wiz-
lor of a school of magic with six lesser unless they and their lesser magic-users ard far more powerful than his level might
magic-users would normally require four undertake a considerable amount of indicate.
of them to be present at all times. Also, in adventuring. Another possible way to Once the wizard has fulfilled the
most cases, the highest-ranking lesser augment the chancellor’s income is with requirements for establishing a weirding
magic-user is expected to remain at the tax revenue. In order to do this, the chan- hold, he gains the right to collect taxes
school of magic whenever the chancellor cellor must first establish a magical free- from every person residing within his
is absent. hold similar to that described on page 25 territory. The wizard also attracts a type
The right to go adventuring is a privilege of the Players Handbook. of fighter known as the wizards sword
for which lesser magic-users must pay Starting at 12th level (wizard), or any- arm, who has come to join him in
their chancellor. After all, he provides time thereafter, a magic-user may elect to response to his expensive advertising
them with bed and board, a monthly sal- establish a magical freehold — or weirding campaign. The wizards sword arm may
ary, protection, and the benefits of his vast hold, as it is often called. In order to do be drawn to the weirding hold for any
knowledge of magic. It is only fair and this, the wizard must construct a strong- number of reasons of his own. Perhaps he
proper that these lesser magic-users give hold of some sort (a school of magic is is old and tired, and seeks what he thinks
their chancellor something in return. A ideal for this) and clear the surrounding is a comfortable position. It may be the
chancellor of good alignment often territory of hostile creatures for a radius wizards magic or the thought of future
demands no more than one-third of any of 10-20 miles (or an area of 300-1,250 conquests emanating from the weirding
monetary treasure gained by his lesser square miles, if irregular in shape). It hold which lure him. Then again, the
magic-users on their adventures. A neutral should be clearly understood that no wizards sword arm may have some deep,
chancellor might insist upon one-third or wizard is ever compelled to establish a dark reason of his own for coming to the
one-half of any treasure gained, depending school of magic before he sets out to orga- weirding hold.
upon his bent. An evil chancellor claims nize a weirding hold, although doing the The wizards sword arm must be a fight-
up to two-thirds of any treasure. Of former first would probably make the er, ranger, or cavalier. He is considered a
course, these figures are suggestions; any latter task much easier. Either of these castellan (see page 34 of the DMG) in all
deal could be worked out between a chan- projects may be undertaken independently respects except that his command is the
cellor and his lesser magic-users. of each other, without each other, in any entire weirding hold. Depending upon his
The chancellor also has the right of order, or simultaneously. However, should class and level, the wizards sword arm
access to any magical treasure obtained by a wizard decide to establish both a weird- may not have any followers or men-at-
his lesser magic-users during their adven- ing hold and a school of magic at the same arms, and the wizard must provide such
tures. This does not mean that the magical time, he is forced to establish his school of troops or send his sword arm out to
treasure is simply handed over to the head magic at some distance from the nearest recruit them. This is another theme which
of the school of magic. On the contrary; community. runs through much of the literature of
no henchman would ever be willing to just As with the school of magic, the costs of swords and sorcery: the story of the great
26 JULY 1987
Table 1
Guidelines for Schools of Magic
Annual cost Maximum no. Initial no. of
Size of school Outfitting costs for upkeep students allowed students attracted
Small 10-30,000 gp 2-5% 15 7-12 (1d6 + 6)
Medium 30-50,000 gp 3-6% 30 17-24 (1d8 + 16)
Large 50-80,000 gp 5-10% 50 31-40 (1d10 + 30)

demi-humans. It is up to the DM to decide

Table 2 if any wizards sword arm can fit into his
Race of Lesser Magic-Users and Students campaign. If he doesn’t fit, the DM may
just roll again. For example, let’s say that a
Chancellor is: Percentile dice score 19th-level arch-mage attracted a high-elven
Good human 01-85 human; 86-95 half-elf; 96-00 elf1 sword arm, who turned out to be a cleric/
Neutral human 01-80 human; 81-90 half-elf; 91-00 elf fighter/magic-user. Even with a strength of
Evil human 01-95 human; 96-98 half-elf; 99-00 elf² 20, the highest level a high elf can attain as
Half-elf 01-60 human; 61-80 half-elf; 81-00 elf a fighter is 11th, yet the arch mage is
Elf 01-30 human; 31-50 half-elf; 51-00 elf entitled to a 13th-level fighter for his
sword arm. In this case, the DM could roll
All elves and half-elves who are faculty have a 25% chance of being double-classed, for another sword arm, or he could decide
and a 10% chance of being triple-classed. It is up to the DM to determine any other that being a cleric and a magic-user was
classes possessed by such demi-human magic-users. The exact alignment of the sufficient compensation for being a level
school’s chancellor should be considered in this decision; a lawful-good chancellor or two short as a fighter.
isn’t likely to attract very many lesser magic-users with the other class of thief. Any sword arm attracted who is a cava-
² An elf received by an evil human is actually a drow, but only if a lesser magic-user lier or paladin has his normal complement
is being rolled for. If no drow exist in the campaign, or if rolling for a student, treat of retainers or men-at-arms, who are
this result as a half-elf. Some may object to giving an evil chancellor a half-elven required to swear allegiance to the wizard
assistant or student, yet there is nothing that prevents a half-elf from being evil, nor whom their master has decided to serve.
a neutral half-elf from serving certain evil chancellors. This holds true for any rangers of a high
Half-elves are included as chancellors on this table due to the changes made on enough level to have attracted their band
pages 8-9 of Unearthed Arcana, which now enable exceptional half-elven magic- of followers.
users to rise as high as 10th level — more than enough to qualify as a chancellor for
a school of magic. Policies and growth
The basic fact that the ruler of the
weirding hold is a mighty wizard has a
powerful influence upon every aspect of
wizard who makes an alliance with a continue to gain experience and levels. life within the holding, and it might even
fighter to brandish the sword that he This enables PCs to get into the act and affect its relations with its neighbors. A
could not wield. The classic version of this become a wizards sword arm, which is wizard with a weirding hold, and especial-
is that of Merlin and King Arthur. actually an excellent position for an ambi- ly one with a school of magic within the
The wizards sword arm is of a level tious fighter or cavalier. The sword arm is holding, is far more likely to rely heavily
equal to two-thirds that of the wizard the man or woman in charge of the day-to- upon magic than upon the sheer brute
establishing the weirding hold, plus or day administration of the weirding hold, force of men-at-arms. This is even more
minus one level. Simply multiply the level thus freeing the wizard for more impor- evident when the wizard is an elf or half-
of the wizard in question by 2/3 (rounding tant magical activities. He is charged with elf, or has a large population of elves or
fractions up or down to the nearest whole the security of the realm, the collecting of half-elves residing in the weirding hold.
number), then roll percentile dice. A score taxes and other tributes, and enforcing the While magic may be the driving force
of 01-40 means the level drops by one, 41- wizards will. This choice position could behind the weirding holds basic philoso-
80 means it remains the same, and 81-00 possibly have more than one claimant; phy, it is still the ruling wizard who deter-
means it goes up one level. For example, a when a PC applies for the job, the DM mines the policies under which it is
14th-level wizard attracts a base sword might decide to make him earn it by governed. These policies are simplified
arm of 9th level (two-thirds of 14 is 9 1/3, fighting for it. statements of how the wizard views his
rounded down to 9). Percentile dice are When the wizards sword arm is an NPC, subjects, his neighbors, and the world in
rolled, resulting in a score of 17, which use Tables 5 and 6 to determine his race general. A wizards policies can affect
means the wizards sword arm is dropped and class. For the purposes of the wizards every facet of life in the weirding hold,
a level to 8th level. This method of deter- sword arm, all demi-humans have only a but the most apparent influence is in the
mining the wizards sword arm assures 15% chance of being double-classed and areas of taxation and population growth.
the wizard of getting a sword arm worthy only a 5% chance of being triple-classed, The policies and their effects upon those
of his level, while adding a bit of uncer- where appropriate. The reasoning behind two subjects are listed in Table 7. These
tainty and variety. this is the fact that the wizards sword arm are admittedly very basic pronouncements
Another way in which the wizards may be required to be quite high in level; upon a great variety of possible policies.
sword arm differs from a normal castellan also, operating in more than one class Even so, these policies tend to capture the
or other mercenary officer is that he is greatly restricts the ability to rise to high essence of any possible outlook a wizard
considered a normal henchman and may levels for all but the most exceptional might have.

28 JULY 1987
Table 3
Grades of Zero-Level Magic Students
Accumulated Saving Cantrips Cantrips
hit throw usable learnable
XPS Grade title points¹ penalty² per day per month
- 2,000 to - 1,001 Neophyte 1 -3 1 1
- 1,000 to - 501 Initiate 2 -2 2 2
-500 to -1 Apprentice 3 -1 3 2
Remember to add any constitution bonus.
² Zero-level magic students make all saving throws as a 1st-level magic-user, with the indicated penalty. In no case is their saving
throw ever worse than that for a zero-level human.

inely care about the subjects they have Table 4

come to rule. Such wizards take an active Enrollment of New Students
role in the many mundane affairs of the
weirding hold. They truly desire promot- Size of school Replacement student Annual new enrollment
ing the well-being of their subjects and Small 25% 60% for 1
normally levy only enough taxes to help Medium 35% 70% for 1-2
them maintain their stronghold and school Large 50% 80% for 2-4
of magic (if they have one). Relations with
most neighboring states could be cordial
or even close, although the alignments of
the wizard and any neighboring rulers
might determine otherwise. Table 5
There is much in a weirding hold to Race of Wizard’s Sword Arm
attract new settlers. Some people may be
drawn by an interest in magic or an Wizard is: Percentile dice score
appreciation of what magic may provide Good human 01-85 human; 86-90 half-elf; 91-95 elf; 96-00 dwarf
for them. (Elves and half-elves can appreci- Neutral human 01-80 human; 81-90 half elf; 91-00 elf
ate this more than most other races.) Evil human 01-85 human; 86-95 half-orc; 96-98 half-elf; 99-00 elf¹
Others might be attracted by the low tax Elf 01-30 human; 31-50 half-elf; 51-00 elf
rate and the knowledge that their future
liege is a benevolent ruler who is attempt- ¹ This elf is actually a drow; if no drow exist in the campaign, treat this result as a
ing to make life easier for them. half-elf.
No restrictions should be placed on who
may select this policy. Any good wizard
could select it, as well as any neutral one.
A lawful-evil wizard may well be benevo- attracted to a weirding hold run by an hold ruled by a malevolent wizard. Those
lent towards those he rules, as long as indifferent wizard. The key here is how that are are of the same ilk as the wizard
they remain in their place. Even a chaotic- the wizards sword arm runs things, mostly evil humans and humanoids.
evil wizard could choose this policy, if it because the indifferent wizard has given These creatures risk throwing in their lot
suits some purpose he has in mind. him free reign to do much as he wills. with the malevolent ruler because they
Indifferent wizards are those who don’t Others could be drawn here to harbor desire much the same as he does, and
really care about their subjects (or much under the protection of a powerful wiz- hope that he will use them to oppress
else for that matter, except magic). All they ard, and conduct affairs that might not be others.
are truly interested in is magical research welcomed under the rule of a benevolent No wizard is committed to the same
and study; the weirding hold is established wizard, assuming the wizards sword arm policy forever, and he may change his
only as a means for providing additional is amenable. policy at the beginning of any new year. A
funds and security for their endeavors. An Malevolent wizards are those who actu- change of policy is a serious matter,
indifferent wizard delegates most of the ally prey upon their subjects and neigh- though, and there should be a sound rea-
administration of the weirding hold to his bors. Their sole purpose in life is to son for any change. The initial policy
sword arm. In such a holding, this warrior increase their personal power, and they do selected by a wizard tends to affect the
may become the most important figure in their utmost to crush anyone or anything sort of creatures attracted to the weirding
the state, as far as the subjects are con- that stands in their way. Malevolent wiz- hold, and a radical change in policy could
cerned. Relations with neighboring states ards burden their subjects with high taxes result in some unpleasantness, to say the
may fluctuate because the wizard has no and oppress them with their harsh rule. least. Take the case of an evil wizard with
desire to offend them nor to curry their Neighbors are viewed only as potential hordes of humanoids dwelling in his
favor. Any wizard may select this policy, threats or as stepping stones to even weirding hold. If he were to wake up one
although it is difficult to envision a lawful- greater power. Only evil and certain neu- bright morning and decide to become a
good wizard choosing it. tral wizards should be allowed to select benevolent autocrat, he might well find
People who object to government play- this policy. himself besieged by these erstwhile allies
ing too large a part in their lives could be Few settlers are attracted to a weirding by lunchtime. On the other hand, an indif-
- 1% if the weirding hold is in a marsh
Table 6 or desert, due to the unhealthy climate.
Class of Wizard’s Sword Arm Use of all modifiers can result in an
annual population growth for a weirding
Sword arm is: Percentile dice score hold of 0-7%, depending upon the wizard’s
Human 01-75 fighter; 76-85 ranger1; 86-00 cavalier2 policy and terrain.
Half-elf 01-85 fighter; 86-95 ranger; 96-00 cavalier3 Example 1: A benevolent wizard rules a
Elf 01-80 fighter; 81-90 ranger; 91-00 cavalier weirding hold in the mountains with a
Dwarf/Half-orc 01-00 fighter population of 2,240. At the start of the
new year, 1d4 is rolled, resulting in 2,
If the wizard is evil, treat all results of rangers as fighters. which is raised to 3 for the basic growth
If the wizard is lawful good, there is a 25% chance that any cavalier attracted is rate; + 1 is added for the wizards benevo-
actually a paladin. lent policy and another + 1 because the
See notes in text regarding demi-human sword arms. weirding hold is located in the mountains.
This results in a total population growth of
+5%, meaning 112 new babies or immi-
grants are added to the population of the
weirding hold.
Example 2: An indifferent wizard has a
Table 7 weirding hold in a forest with a population
Weirding Hold Policies of 1,700. The 1d4 roll results in a score of
3, which is increased to 4, but no more
Wizard’s policy Basic tax rate Population growth modifier because there are no additional modifiers
Benevolent 5 sp +1% which apply to this situation. The popula-
Indifferent 6 sp 0% tion of this weirding hold rises by 4%,
Malevolent 8 sp -1% adding 68 new residents.
Example 3: A malevolent wizard rules
his desert weirding hold of 4,500 souls
with an iron hand. The 1d4 roll is 2, which
ferent wizard who knows his weirding tion. During the time frame of the typical is increased to 3, then reduced to 2
hold is in the path of a barbarian migra- AD&D® game campaign, it would take a because of the wizards malevolent policy,
tion might change to a benevolent policy series of calamitous natural disasters, and finally reduced to 1 because the
(in order to attract more new settlers and continuous warfare on a massive scale, or weirding hold is in a desert. Population
to rally the support of his neighbors) with- a real maniac for a ruler to actually cause growth is 1%, or 45 new inhabitants.
out unduly upsetting his subjects. the population of a state to decline. Once As the population of the weirding hold
The basic tax rate is exactly that: the the original population of the weirding grows over the years, the wizard might
basic amount of taxes which may be col- hold has been determined for tax pur- decide to increase his armed forces by
lected from each individual residing within, poses, the DM has the base number from enrolling some of his subjects into a stand-
the weirding hold per month. The wizard which to determine population growth. ing militia. (This is another matter that
has the option to raise or lower this rate The basic annual growth rate for a weird- must be worked out between DMs and
by 1 or 2 sp, although few malevolent ing hold is 2-5%. This figure may be modi- players.) Wizards are not meant to be
wizards are inclined to cut taxes. This fied by the wizards policy in force during warlords, however; any build-up of
variable tax rate gives the wizard some the previous year, and the following domestic military forces should be kept
room to maneuver, enabling him to react terrain modifiers: quite small. Foreign mercenaries may still
to any situation that might arise. + 1% if the weirding hold is in the be hired in any number.
Most populations tend to grow, and mountains or on the coast, due to the Incorporating schools of magic and
those of the weirding hold are no excep- healthy climate; or, weirding holds into a campaign is a good
way to liven up the magic-user class.
These institutions give higher-level magic-
users something to work for other than
the creation of magical items. They also
open new vistas for lesser magic-users and
even fighters. DMs find that whole new
areas of campaigning open up before
them. The chancellor of a new school of
magic might discover that he has inadver-
tantly infringed upon the territory of
another school of magic, resulting in possi-
ble friction, competition, or even hostility
between the two schools. The attempt to
establish a weirding hold could be the
center of a battle between good and evil
for control of a certain area. Indeed, a
penultimate battle between two weirding
holds, each with its own school of magic
and opposing alignment, gives the term
“final exam” a brand new meaning.

30 JULY 1987
The area of effect is nonselective by defini-
tion, so it should also affect the character’s
clothing, gear, treasure, and his immediate

Fire for
But how? There are no published, quan-
titative temperatures for the heat gener-
ated by something like a fireball, red

dragon’s breath, or even a normal bonfire.
There are only some qualitative phrases in
the AD&D® game books, such as the heat
“will melt soft metals” and will ignite “all
combustible materials within its blast
To quantify and define the temperature
ranges and capabilities of these fire-based
Magical fires magics, consider the temperatures at
which normal fires burn. In the DMG,

are a lot hotter than you’d think under the description of a ring of fire
resistance, a “normal” fire is defined as the
temperature at which torches or bonfires
and the other official AD&D game books. burn.2 Using untreated wood as a guide,
by Richard W. Emerich Almost all DMs abide faithfully by these which burns at temperatures of 250-300°C
written constraints: a lightning bolt cast (480-570°F),3 one can assign “normal” fires
by a magic-user has a range of 60’ plus an this range based upon the DMGs descrip-
Have you ever participated in an AD&D® additional 10’ per level of his experience; a tion. At these temperatures (up to three
game in which a magic-user’s fireball is as red dragon’s breath weapon extends in a times the boiling point of water), cotton,
selective as a cruise missile in its choice of cone 90’ long; and a fireball from a wand wood, hemp, wool, and some leathers
targets? In which a lightning bolt arcs of fire does precisely 6d6 hp damage burn easily, so that a character forced to
unerringly to hit only the monster among against the recipients who fail to make endure a “normal” fire soon finds his skin,
the circle of your attacking party mem- their saving throws. These rules are usu- clothing, and gear are burning!
bers? In which the flame strike cast by the ally followed, but what happens after the Now, consider the category of “very
party cleric burns the monsters to ash, but recipients of the fireball’s heat mark off large and hot” fires, listed as being pro-
leaves their possessions in an unaltered, the damage on their character sheets? Do duced by molten lava, demon immolation,
cool-to-the-touch condition, failing to set the PCs continue on or does the DM or a wall of fire under the same descrip
the wooden furniture and wall paneling inform the players that they are now tion.4 Molten lava, depending upon its type
on fire? faced with the problem of putting out the and proximity to the volcanic crater, can
Oftentimes, the DM and the players fires which are consuming the PCs’ cloth- be up to 750-1,100°C (1,380-2,000°F).5
concentrate only on the damaging aspects ing and leather goods, and have heated Thus, according to the listed comparisons,
and capabilities of the energy released their armor to an intolerable level? a wall of fire and the like must produce an
from magical spells or natural abilities, A good DM recognizes that the area of average temperature of about 925°C
disregarding other, inherently unavoidable effect of a spell or ability is a nonselective (1,700°F).
results of their release. These “unavoid- characteristic, meaning that everything The last mentioned description qualifier
able” results are defined, examined, and and everyone within it is unavoidably under this reference is “exceptionally hot”
discussed in this article in a game context, affected by the energy released. A poor fires, some examples of which are fire
with a focus on the consequences of the DM allows a character to cast a fireball storms, flame strikes, fireballs, red
released energy against the characters, into a wooden building and not set the dragon’s breath, etc.6 Assuming that the
their possessions, and their environment. place on fire, lets a magic-user cast a light- increment between “very large and hot”
A secondary focus is on gaming consider- ning bolt as if it were laser-guided, and and “exceptionally hot” fires is about the
ations for a more accurate, and perhaps neglects to tell the unarmored recipient of same as between “normal” and “very large
safer, handling of energy-releasing magic a red dragon’s breath that not only has he and hot,” one can assign a temperature
and abilities by the player characters, and suffered serious wounds, but his clothing range of 1,250-1,950°C (2,280-3,540°F) to
includes some recommendations for the and gear are ablaze! In short, the nonse- “exceptionally hot” fires. On the average
DM concerning a more thorough handling lectivity of the energy-releasing magic’s then, this classification of fire has a tem-
of these treatments in the game. Two main area of effect must be remembered when perature of about 1,600°C, or 16 times
categories of energy-releasing magic will it comes time for the DM to judge who and that heeded to boil water, with a peak of
be examined: fire-based, including spells what are affected by the released energy. close to 2,000°C!
such as fireball and flame strike, and Think of what this means to a character
abilities like red dragon breath or demon Into the inferno caught in such an infernal environment!
immolation; and electricity-based, such as In the case of fire-based magic, heat He is breathing superheated air sufficient
the spells of lightning bolt and call light- makes up the largest percentage of the to severely damage his lungs. Exposed
ning, as well as abilities like blue dragon energy released, and so characters and clothing, leather goods, rope, armor, and
breath. material goods within the area of effect treasure all conduct this heat, and those
Spells, breath weapons, and magical- suffer damage caused by heat exposure. A materials which reach or exceed the tem-
device discharges all have prescribed character’s wounds are handled easily perature needed for their combustion (i.e.,
ranges, durations, damage allotments, and enough — the DM rolls the appropriate flash point) burst into flames. This almost
areas of effect laid out in the Players dice and calculates the character’s damage. always includes the nonmetallic items
Handbook, the Dungeon Masters Guide, Too often, though, the process stops here. carried by a character or in the immediate

32 JULY 1987

vicinity of the area of effect, whereas ness of the catacombs, a party of adven- Some shocking news
metal goods probably suffer from super- turers near their goal: the lair of a huge, This brings us to the second main cate-
heating and melting. The character him- black dragon where untold treasure gory of energy-releasing magic originally
self also conducts this heat and suffers awaits! The thief scouts ahead and put forth: that which is based on electrici-
wounds since his body cannot possibly reports that the dragon is currently eat- ty. The energy released in this case usually
stand such high temperatures. ing, lying on one side of a pile of gold and takes the form of a discharged bolt of raw
Another ramification often overlooked goodies. power, such as that produced by a light-
or simply ignored when magical energy is The party moves quietly down the pas- ning bolt spell, blue dragon’s breath, or by
released is the effect of this heat on the sage to a point at which the party sorcerer a spell of call lightning. Treatments of
character’s surrounding environment. steps forward, invisible and wearing the these forms of electricity usually stress the
Raising the temperature of a room filled thief’s boots of elvenkind. He casts a fire- heat- and force-generating capabilities
with wood products from room tempera- ball at the dragon to “soften him up.” After more than the voltages associated with
ture (20°C) to over six times its flash point, the detonation occurs, the fighters charge these forms in the AD&D® game.
even if only for the brief time it takes to up to do hand-to-hand combat, while the Like fire-based energy releasing magic,
detonate a fireball, is more than sufficient sorcerer prepares to zap any unobstruct- no quantitative listing of the temperatures
for combustion to occur. Thus, fire-based ed part of the dragon with his wand of associated with a lightning bolt or blue
magics, when used in most medieval lightning. dragon’s breath are provided by the
homes and buildings, or outdoors within The dragon, angered by this interrup- AD&D® game books. Instead, phrases
timberlands or brushlands, not only tion of its dinner, turns toward the charg- explaining that such attacks will “melt
wound any opponents caught within the ing fighters and sprays its acid breath on metals with a low melting point” and “set
conflagration but may cause major (possi- one, then engages the others in hand-to- fire to combustibles”9 do not give the DM
bly uncontrollable) fires. This has the hand combat. The sorcerer sees an oppor- or player a good handle on the tempera-
potential of bringing much harm down on tunity to use his wand and zaps the tures produced by an electrical discharge.
the party of characters. Thus, PCs should dragon’s exposed flank, which rests atop They do, however, show that any such
carefully consider not only when and how the pile of treasure. attack will “sunder wooden doors” and
to use such energy-releasing magic, but Soon, through team effort, the dragon is “splinters up to one foot thickness of
also what the effects and aftereffects are, defeated. Now is the time to leisurely stone;“10 thus clearly qualifying its force-
and how to make preparations for dealing scoop up the loose treasure. . . . generating power.
with them. If the DM allows the characters to sim- It should be safe to assume that, because
As previously mentioned, these tempera- ply “scoop up the loose treasure,” then he lightning attacks (like fireball spells) melt
tures can also affect metal goods by heat- has not fully recognized nor considered metals with low melting points such as
ing, rather than by igniting them. These the effects of the magical energy released “lead, gold, copper, silver, and bronze,“11 the
metal goods can burn a character who during the battle. Reviewing the tempera- temperatures produced by a discharge of
attempts to handle or wear them. Temper- tures produced by a fireball, an average of lightning should be roughly equivalent to
atures can also affect metal goods by about 1,600°C, it is seen that the heat is an “exceptionally hot” fire. Therefore,
causing melting and deformation. Basic, sufficient to melt copper, gold, tin, and lightning bolts from spells and nature, and
unrefined iron, such as that often used in even platinum, to some degree, as those produced by an innate ability,
fashioning armor, weapons, and building described in the table appearing later in should all cause the same effects already
materials, suffers melting and deformation this article. In an impure state, as would discussed for the fire-based ones, as well
in the extreme temperatures of “excep- be the case with metals of a medieval as create a powerful force on impact. Use
tionally hot” and, to some degree, “very society, metals melt at considerably lower simple common sense to determine what
large and hot” fires. Iron has a melting temperatures — perhaps as low as 100- this force might feasibly do against a wall,
point of 1000-1,300°C, depending upon 400°C less. Silver, which has a pure-state a suit of plate mail, a large shield, a wag
the purity and presence of trace ele- melting point of 961°C and boils at about on, or a wooden gate. Also remember that
ments.7 Metal doors, door frames, iron 2,000°C,8 becomes a liquid at the tempera- most of these magic spells and abilities,
bands around crates, doors, gates, metal tures associated with “exceptionally hot” like their fire-based counterparts, affect
bracings, and metal weapons made of iron or “very large and hot” fires. If the heat anything within their areas of effect to.
are all affected. persists for any length of time, as with a some degree.
Imagine your party of PCs is trapped fire storm or flame strike spell, this liquid Note the use of the phrase “to some
inside a room because the group’s magi- has a chance of flowing and coming in degree” in the previous paragraph. This is
cian cast a fireball into the hallway on the contact with other metals or objects, fus- used because the rules stipulate “that
opposite side of an iron door. The action ing the lot together upon cooling. There- magic items and even normal items and
separates the group from an overpower- fore, if any of these metals are present weapons must be saved for”12 and that a
ing force of nasties, but also deforms the along the extreme edges of a pile of trea- saving throw “represents the chance for
door and causes it to stick fast from the sure and are exposed to these fires, the the figure (character) to avoid the cruel
intense heat! It’s a horrible fate, but it and result is a melted, fused, and utterly results of fate”13 The point of defining the
similar applications of the high tempera- deformed outer layer which, after cooling approximate temperatures of the fire- and
tures produced by energy-releasing magic and hardening, requires a concerted effort electricity-based energy releases is to
should be kept firmly in mind by the play- on the part of the characters (with the allow a more thorough handling of the
ers as well as the DM. appropriate tools) to chisel apart into effects and aftereffects set off by the DM
Iron is not the only metal that suffers manageable chunks. In the future, the and the players. It is not meant to imply
melting or deformation. Most treasure is players may wish to make different com- that saving throws are no longer useful
made up of precious metals that have bat plans based upon these postulated nor applicable. Saving throws are an
melting points in the same range as iron, temperatures and the applications of them important aspect of the game and should
and should be handled in a similar man- on the characters and material goods, now be used, but this does not mean that the
ner. Picture the following scenario: that a more involved and definitive han- DM needs to roll to determine the fate of
After several grueling days in the dark- dling has been discussed. every piece of equipment, furniture, cloth-
ing, or treasure. Instead, he should use detonation conform as best they can to fill lous. Instead, it must affect all who are
reasonable, bulk considerations to speed the surroundings. A fireball has just over within its area of effect, dispensing intense
the game along, such as considering a pile 33,500 cubic feet of volume as indicated in heat and force against the recipients.
of treasure as one entity and making indi- the Players Handbook. 14 Thus, if it is cast This mishandling warrants some com-
vidual saving throws for special or magical from a 10’ x 10’ corridor into a room mon sense suggestions for the players
items only. Likewise, he should consider measuring 60’ x 30’ x 10’ (18,000 cubic whose characters use such energy-
each character and his equipment as one feet), the heat and flames use up that releasing magics, and for the DM when he
entity for the saving throw, making extra room and flow 155’ down the corridor interprets the results of their use:
rolls only for special or magical items. (assuming, of course, that that much corri- 1. Always consider the nonselectivity of
Above all, common sense should be used dor is available). Those characters foolish the area of effect, making any necessary
to temper the dice rolls when determining enough to have disregarded this fact will (if rough) calculations or approximations
the degree of the effects felt by a charac- find themselves caught in their own spell’s for it. Players should position their charac-
ter or the environment, as described in area of effect. ters a safe distance from it, and DMs
the DMG (pp. 80-82). Of the electricity-based energy-releasing should give the full effects of any energy
Now that an awareness of the actual magics, the one most usually mishandled is released to those characters within the
power of energy-releasing magic has been the lightning bolt. As is characteristic of area of effect.
discussed, how can the PCs use these electricity, it follows the path of least 2. Remember what temperatures are
abilities effectively, protecting themselves resistance to discharge its immense poten- produced. Consider the effects of the heat
and keeping the damage to their sur- tial energy. It should be virtually impos- or force against the game environment,
roundings to a minimum? First, the play- sible to “fork” a bolt to avoid metal the characters and their possessions, and
ers must remember the nonselectivity of structures, metal-armored characters, and any treasure exposed to it. DMs should
the energy-releasing magic’s area of effect, other highly conductive materials that implement any effects and aftereffects
and that anything trapped inside it is might be interposed between the caster described herein when applicable.
susceptible to the full effects of the energy and the target. Instead, the bolt tends to 3. Keep space considerations in mind.
released. The most mishandled fire-based discharge upon encountering any Don’t forget that many energy-releasing
example is the fireball spell; although it “ground” — a path that offers it a chance magics conform to fill a certain volume or
has an area of effect of a 40’-diameter to discharge through to the ground. occupy a certain area. Lightning tends to
sphere, players and DMs fail to realize Therefore, having a lightning bolt strike discharge on interposing objects or crea-
that the fire and heat generated from the only one creature among many is ridicu- tures between the caster and the target; it
also rebounds from nonconducting surfac-
es back toward the caster. Energy released
in a confined area can cause unpredictable
results for the characters.
With the temperatures, types of energy
released, and the main effects of the
selected energy-releasing magic spells and
abilities thus defined, it should be easier
for the DM to apply the unavoidable and
nonselective parameters associated with
them. He should also be able to better
describe the results when PCs or NPCs
make use of them. Additionally, players
should now have a better understanding
of the actual temperatures and forces
produced under these conditions, and
should apply this knowledge to avoid the
many problems possible with the misuse
or mishandling of energy-releasing magics.
Ridiculous game occurrences can be elimi-
nated by challenging the players to have
their characters be more considerate of
the power at their fingertips and by giving
the DM the information he needs to create
a more accurate scenario for the game.

Players Handbook, p. 73.
Essentials of Fire Fighting, pp. 7-8.
Players Handbook, p. 73.
“Rock,” The World Book Encyclopedia,
1969, XVI, p. 352.
Players Handbook, p. 73.
The Merck Index, p. 735.
Ibid., p. 1221.
Players Handbook, p. 74.
34 JULY 1987
Melting and Boiling Points of Pure Metals and Alloys Depends upon the trace elements present.
Alloy composed of 80% copper and 20% zinc. Melting point
Metal Melting point (°C) Boiling point (°C) varies due to trace elements. Boiling point is estimated.
Pure metals Alloy composed of 70% copper and 30% zinc. Boiling point is
Copper 1,083 2,59515 estimated. Red brass was commonly used in medieval society.
Gold 1,064 2,70016 Alloy composed of copper and up to 25% tin (plus traces of
Iron 1,000-3,000a 3,00017 silicon). Melting points vary by tin and silicon content (the low
Lead 327 1,74018 figure means more of each is present). Boiling points are
Platinum 1,774 3,82719 estimated.
Silver 961 2,00020 Alloy composed of gold and silver. Melting and boiling points
Tin 232 2,50721 are estimated, based upon data for gold and silver.
Alloy composed of mithral silver and iron (meteorite or
Zinc 420 90822
other). Melting and boiling points are estimated, based upon
Alloys data for titanium.30
Brass, redb 985-1,000 2,435-2,45023 g
Alloy composed of iron and carbon, among other rare or
Brass, yellow c
931 2,40024 unknown metals. Melting and boiling points are estimated,
Bronze, highd 1,000-1,017 2,483-2,50025 based upon data for iron.
Electrume 1,000 2,50026 h
Alloy composed of adamantite and iron (meteorite or other).
AD&D® game alloys Melting and boiling points are estimated, based upon data for
Adamantitef 3,410 5,90027 tungsten.31
Iron, meteoriteg 1,500 3,30028 Note: A temperature of X°C may be converted to Y°F by the
Mithralh 1,800 3,90029 formula: (X + 17.78) X 1.8 =Y

Ibid. Perry, R. H., et al. Perry’s Chemical Engi- nary. Springfield, Mass.: Merriam-Webster
Ibid., p. 105. neers’ Handbook. 4th ed. New York: Inc., 1986.
Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 80. McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1963. The World Book Encyclopedia. Chicago:
Players Handbook, p. 73. Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictio- World Book, Inc., 1969.
The Merck Index, p. 358.
Ibid., p. 648.
Ibid., p. 735.
Ibid., p. 776.
Ibid., p. 1085.
Ibid., p. 1221.
Ibid., p. 1353.
Ibid., p. 1455.
Perry’s Chemical Engineers’ Handbook,
secs. 23-5, 23-41.
Ibid., secs. 23-5, 23-42.
Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictio-
nary, p. 402.
Dungeon Masters Guide, p. 164.
The Merck Index, p. 1356.
Ibid., p. 1402.

Bond, Richard E., et al., eds. The CRC
Handbook of Chemistry and Physics. 59th
ed. West Palm Beach, Fla.: CRC Press,
Budvari, Rosemary, et al., eds. The
Merck Index: An Encyclopedia of Chemi-
cals, Drugs, and Biologicals. 10th ed. Rah-
way, N.J.: Merck & Company, Inc., 1983.
Gygax, E. Gary. Dungeon Masters Guide.
Lake Geneva, Wis.: TSR, Inc., 1979.
Gygax, E. Gary. Players Handbook. Lake
Geneva, Wis.: TSR, Inc., 1978.
International Fire Service Training Asso-
ciation. Essentials of Fire Fighting. Stillwa-
ter, Okla: International Fire Service, 1977.
tive when it came to the Fire-Eye, and it
was never discovered after his death. The
description was scribed by Mellix Kabiryn,

who had the confidence of the Arch-Mage
and doubtless knew of the Fire-Eye’s
powers, but even Mellix could not discover
the whereabouts of the item after Avissar’s

Descriptions of the eight spells and the
great Fire-Eye follow.

Flare (Evocation)
Level: 1 Components: V,S
Range: 0 CT: 2 segment
Duration: 1 segment ST: None

A new column of AE: Special

Explanation/Description: This spell is typi-

spells and enchantments

cally used for long-range signaling out-
doors. It produces a streak of intense light
that shoots straight up into the air from
the caster’s index finger and remains
tell of his many adventures and exploits, visible for one full segment. It is equally
by Harold Dolan but it is a little-known fact that late in his visible in daylight or darkness, and can be
life, when he grew weary of traveling, he seen from as far away as 5 miles, plus 1
“Arcane Lore” is a new column that settled in the Valley of Lanshaw and mile per level of experience the caster has
features original spells created by the founded a school for wizards there. Avis- attained.
readership of DRAGON® Magazine for all sar specialized in pyromancy — magic A flare may be used to indicate the
spell-casting AD&D® and D&D® game dealing with fire, smoke, heat, and light. position of the magic-user and his party, or
classes. Submissions for this column may As a result, the school came to be known it may be used to transmit simple mes-
be sent to the magazine, but these guide- as the Academy of Fire Magic. sages. Since the flare’s color is controlled
lines should be observed: Avissar recorded on scrolls many of the by the caster, a simple code may be
All submissions to this column should be spells created by himself and his pupils. devised for signaling between an army
on clean white paper, double-spaced, in On his death, he was succeeded as Master and its scouting parties. For instance, a
clear type or word-processor print. Partic- of the Academy by Mellix Kabiryn, his red flare might indicate that an enemy is
ular spells may be tied to a previously greatest student. The Academy prospered near, a yellow one might mean that the
published world in an AD&D® or D&D® in Mellix’s time; many scrolls of spells enemy is retreating, etc.
game product — such as Oerth, Krynn, the were added to Avissar’s collection, and
Forgotten Realms, or Kara-Tur of the they became known as the Fire-Eye Smokescreen (Evocation)
AD&D® game; or the Known World and Scrolls. Level: 2 Components: V,S,M
Blackmoor lands of the D&D® game. Spell Mellix was succeeded by Fallion of the Range: 8” CT: 2 segments
descriptions should each be no more than Torch, who was fated to be the last of the Duration: 2 rnds/lvl ST: ½
five pages long, and the pages should be Academy’s Masters. Fallion was fond of AE: 10’/lvl-radius sphere
numbered and fixed together with a staple experiments, and his goal was to develop Explanation/Description: This spell causes
or paper clip, The authors address should the ultimate magical explosive. In the end, a large sphere of thick, black smoke to
appear on the first page of each submis- he half succeeded; he lost control of his appear. The smoke created always floats 2’
sion. We may sort out spells and print experiment, and the resulting explosion above the ground, so that creatures out-
them in various groups (all magic-user was colossal. The entire Academy was side this area may breathe normally. Oth-
spells, all spells dealing with water, etc.), destroyed, and the surrounding country- erwise, creatures in the area of effect take
so don’t count too much on seeing all of side was devastated by fire. 2-5 hp damage per round due to smoke
your submissions run together as their But the Fire-Eye Scrolls survived, for inhalation; half damage is taken if a save
own group. they were stored in a great trunk made of vs. spells is successful.
Spell descriptions should be complete steel and enchanted to resist all harm. The It is not possible to see into or through
and carefully worked out to cover all trunk was found in the ruins of the Acad- the area affected by a smokescreen, and
possible uses (and abuses), and each spell emy by a band of adventurers. It passed visibility within this area is reduced to 3’.
should be balanced in terms of level and through many hands, and a great many This reduced visibility makes combat
effect. Please send no more than six spells scrolls were lost or stolen before the chest difficult; “to hit” rolls are made at - 3 on
per submission. Enclose a stamped, self- was purchased by the Mages’ Guild of the the dice.
addressed envelope if you wish your mate- city of Val Dalya. A gust of wind repels a smokescreen but
rial to be returned; we cannot be Only nine of the original Fire-Eye Scrolls cannot disperse it. The material compo-
responsible for submissions without remain in the library of the Mages’ Guild. nent of this spell is a pinch of soot.
SASEs. Magical items, unless closely tied Eight of the scrolls contain spells invented
with the spells given, are used in the by the pupils and Masters of the Academy Enchanted Torch (Alteration)
“Bazaar of the Bizarre” column. — RM of Fire Magic. The last scroll contains a Level: 3 Components: V,S,M
description of the Fire-Eye, a magical item Range: Touch CT: 1 round
The Arch-Mage Avissar Fire-Eye is of great power once possessed by the Duration: Perm. ST: None
remembered as one of the most powerful Arch-Mage Avissar Fire-Eye himself. Avis- AE: One torch
magic-users of legend in his world. Tales sar was always very possessive and secre- Explanation/Description: The material
36 JULY 1987

components of this spell are an ordinary the caster to use it in cramped areas with- even turn it upon its summoner, regard-
torch and a pinch of phosphorus. When out fear of being engulfed in his own spell. less of other circumstances.
the spell is cast, the phosphorus is sprin- The exact area of effect must be stated The material component of this spell is a
kled over the torch, causing it to be during spell-casting, but it need not be pint of oil which must be poured out and
ignited with a flame that burns indefi- specified before memorization of the spell. ignited during the casting of the spell.
nitely. The torch illuminates a 40’ radius. Second, Fallion’s fabulous fireball may
An enchanted torch cannot be extin- maneuver around corners prior to Avissar’s Flaming Weapon (Alteration)
guished by wind, or even by a gust of detonating. The fabulous fireball may turn Level: 8 Components: V,S,M
wind spell; nor will it go out if the torch is one corner for every two levels of experi- Range: Touch CT: 1 round
dropped. It may be extinguished by sub- ence the spell-caster has attained. The Duration: See below ST: None
mersion in water, lack of oxygen, or dispel magic-user must specify the path which AE: One weapon
magic. The enchantment of this spell is not the fabulous fireball is to take during Explanation/Description: The Arch-Mage
transferable; i.e., a torch, campfire, or casting, but (again) this need not be known Avissar himself created a spell which can
pool of oil ignited by an enchanted torch prior to memorization. Thus, the magic- cause any nonmagical, hand-held, bladed
burns and can be extinguished just as an user might state that the fireball is to weapon to perform with the powers of a
ordinary fire would. travel 50’, turn 90° to the right, travel 20’, sword, + 1 flame tongue (as per the weap-
turn 45° to the left, travel 30’ more, then on in the Dungeon Masters Guide, page
Mellix’s Fire Mouth (Alteration/ detonate. If the fabulous fireball contacts 165). Thus, the weapon temporarily gains
Evocation) an object before completing its path, it a + 1 enchantment and has a + 2 bonus
Level: 3 Components: V,S,M detonates there. Living beings caught in vs. regenerating creatures, + 3 vs. cold-
Range: Touch CT: 3 segments the path must individually save vs. spells using, inflammable, or avian creatures,
Duration: Special ST: ½ to avoid the spell’s path, saving a second and +4 vs. undead. A weapon so enchant-
AE: One object time against its effects if the first saving ed sheds light upon command, and its
Explanation/Description: Mellix Kabiryn throw is failed, Duration is considered to flame easily ignites oil, burns webs, and
devised this interesting variation on the be instantaneous no matter how complex sets fire to parchment, paper, dry wood,
second-level magic-user spell magic mouth. the fireball’s path is to be. Range may etc. The magic-user may cast this spell on
When this spell is cast, an object is never exceed the maximum limit of 10” another’s weapon as easily as on his own.
empowered with an enchanted mouth plus 1" per level of the caster. The material component is a ruby of at
which suddenly appears and breathes fire In all other respects, including damage, least 1,000 gp value, which vanishes upon
when a specific condition is met. The cone material components, and saving throw, expiration of the spell’s duration. If cast
of fire emitted by a fire mouth is 15’ in this spell is identical to the 3rd-level spell upon weapons other than swords (i.e.,
length, and measures 1’ at the tip and 10’ fireball. cutlasses, daggers, knives, etc.), the base
at the base. The cone is always emitted damage of the weapon is retained, and the
perpendicular to the surface upon which Fire Phantom (Conjuration/ magical bonuses are simply added to it.
this spell is cast, so its victim must be Summoning)
standing directly in front of it to be affect- Level: 3 Components: V,S,M Hellfire (Evocation)
ed. The spell is activated when a specific Range: 3” CT: 1 round Level: 9 Components: V,S,M
type of creature (named beforehand by Duration: 3 rnds/lvl ST: None Range: Touch CT: 1 round
the caster) passes directly in front of the AE: Special Duration: Perm. ST: None
enchanted object, which could be a statue, Explanation/Description: This is a spell AE: One creature
chest, wall, door, or whatever. Alternately, used to summon one of the weaker types Explanation/Description: The Arch-Mage
if no specific creature is named before- of fire elementals: the fire phantom. The Avissar is also said to have personally
hand, the spell activates the first time any summoned creature has 2 +2 HD, AC 5, devised this deadly enchantment; further,
creature steps in front of it. The victim MV 12”, and can be hit by ordinary, non- it is said that the Arch-Mage met his end
struck by the cone of fire emitted by a fire magical weaponry. The fire phantom on the vengeful point of the sword wield-
mouth takes 3-18 hp damage, plus 1 hp attacks once per round for 1-8 hp damage, ed by the brother of the spell’s first victim.
per level of the caster. and can ignite any combustible materials Thus, the spell is often referred to as
This spell normally functions but once, upon contact. The physical appearance of Avissar’s Bane.
then expires, but it may be used in con- a fire phantom is a fiery outline of a Hellfire may be cast but once per week
junction with the eighth-level spell perma- vaguely humanoid form, 7’ in height. The due to the strain placed on the spell-caster.
nency. The material components are a phantom must always remain within 30’ It requires that the spell-caster touch his
drop of oil, a pinch of sulfur, and one of the spell-caster; if it moves beyond this victim (as a hit in melee), and it may affect
tooth or scale from a red dragon. range the spell expires. Materials set any single creature, subject to the follow-
aflame by the fire phantom continue to ing conditions: It will not affect creatures
Fallion’s Fabulous Fireball (Evocation) burn normally after the phantom is gone. that may be hit only by magical weaponry;
Level: 5 Components: V,S,M The fire phantom (being of low intelli- fire-based creatures, undead, and crea-
Range: 10” + 1”/level CT: 4 segments gence) follows all commands given by its tures from planes other than the Prime
Duration: Instant. ST: ½ summoner as long as the magic-user con- Material Plane cannot be affected; and, the
AE: Variable (see below) centrates on controlling it. If the spell- victim’s hit dice/level may not exceed the
Explanation/Description: The wizard Fal- caster’s concentration is broken, the spell-caster’s level.
lion devised this variation of the third-level phantom immediately attacks the sum- There is no saving throw vs. hellfire;
magic-user spell fireball for use in close moner. Otherwise, the fire phantom however, magic resistance is effective.
quarters or in twisting dungeon passages. remains until it is destroyed or until the The victim of Avissar’s Bane suffers the
It differs from the original fireball in two spell’s duration expires, whereupon it following effects:
respects: vanishes. Note that any more powerful 1. The victim’s hit-point total is reduced
First, the area of effect is variable, rang- creature from the Elemental Plane of Fire to 1 permanently; thus, any wound results
ing from ½-2” radius sphere. This allows can dismiss the fire phantom at will, or in unconsciousness or death.
2. The victim is in constant agony; he for purposes of causing suffering. Use of right eye, the wearer gains the use of
feels as if he is being burned alive, and he this spell might entail severe consequences infravision and detect invisibility, as per
sweats continuously. if alignment is violated. the magic-user spells of the same names at
3. The victim is exhausted, and any the 18th level of ability.
fighting is done at - 4 on “to hit” and The Fire-Eye The next three powers may be used at
damage rolls. Avissar Fire-Eye derived his name from a will, one at a time, but only when the
4. There is a 15% (noncumulative) powerful and unique magical item of his monocle is worn over the left eye.
chance per hour that the victim will be own devising. The Fire-Eye is a monocle 3. Twice per day, the Fire-Eye can emit a
overcome by pain and become uncon- fabricated by the Arch-Mage and endowed 9-HD fireball with a 9” range.
scious, only to awaken 1-4 hours later, still with unique powers. Its lens is smooth and 4. Five times per day, the monocle can
in agony. This chance increases to 40% if transparent, and measures 1” in diameter; emit a ray of fire which ignites any nonliv-
the victim engages in combat or other it is reputed to be a gemstone of unearthly ing, combustible material it contacts (save
strenuous activity for more than 15 min- origin, dug from the crater of a meteorite. vs. magical fire applicable). The range of a
utes of any single hour. Each time this This lens is enclosed in a circle of mithral ray of fire is 12”; duration is instantane-
occurs, there is a 1% cumulative chance and the whole is hung on a mithral chain ous.
per round thereafter that the victim dies. of the finest craftsmanship. The gem and 5. Three times per day, the Fire-Eye can
These effects are permanent and will chain alone are worth 7,500 gp if sold, but emit a ray of melting. The range of the ray
end only with the death of the spell’s if the monocle’s magical properties are is 9”, and it persists for up to five seg-
victim. The effects of hellfire cannot be known it can be sold for up to 75,000 gp. ments. It can melt 4 cubic feet of normal
negated, save by an act of the gods, a wish The eight magical functions of the Fire- ice, or 2 cubic feet of magical ice, per
spell, or by the will of the magic-user who Eye are detailed below. Unless otherwise segment.
cast the spell originally. The material com- noted, all spell powers are performed at the 6. If the Fire-Eye is held by the end of its
ponents are a drop of oil, a pinch of sulfur, 18th level of ability. chain and slowly rocked back and forth, it
a powdered ruby of at least 5,000 gp val- 1. Mere possession of the monocle con- hums softly and glows. If it is then held
ue, and the horn of a greater devil (horned fers immunity to the harmful effects of before the eyes of any single creature, that
devil, ice devil, or pit fiend). normal fire and gives the possessor a + 3 creature must save vs. spells at -4 or
The casting of this spell is considered an bonus to all saving throws vs. magical fire become hypnotized, remaining motionless
evil act, as it draws negative heat energy attacks, and staring at the monocle for one full
from the Nine Hells directly into the victim 2. When the monocle is worn over the turn. During this time, the victim is sub-

38 JULY 1987
(continued from page 3) of paper (a beloved piece of paper,
longer in melee (not that it helped). yes, but still a piece of paper). The
Everyone joined in with mock gamers in the other room were my
friends. The DM was one of my
outrage, and Harley was quickly
ject to a single suggestion (as per the illu- friends, too. Everybody else had lost
moved up to the lead position in the
sionist spell hypnosis) from the monocle’s at least one character in the past
party. Battered but still hanging in
wielder, with no saving throw vs. spells just as beloved as Harley, but they
there, the group moved on — and
applicable for the suggestion itself. This still enjoyed themselves.
then we found The Door. It looked
enchantment is so powerful, however, that I went back and rolled up another
like any other dungeon door to us,
it is possible for the Fire-Eye’s wielder to character, carefully putting Harley’s
and we listened to it and, heard
become entranced as well. Whenever this character sheet away in my note-
nothing behind it, so we figured it
power is used, the possessor must save vs. book (I never did like tearing up
was safe. With a great show of
spells at +3. If he fails, he is entranced for character sheets). I forget whether I
confidence, Harley opened The
one turn and is therefore unable to make remembered to apologize for being
Door, and a giant snake came out
any suggestion to his victim; if the save is a jerk; I hope I did. And I went on to
and bit him, and Harley died.
successful, he is unaffected. have a good time anyway.
I was mad. I was mad at everyone
7. When it is clutched and a command That was 10 years ago, and it is
for making Harley walk in front of
word uttered, the monocle can teleport its strange to think that I actually
the group, I was mad at the DM for
possessor once per week as per the magic- learned something about maturity in
having a stupid giant snake in the
user spell of the same name. There is no a role-playing game, but you have to
dungeon, and I was mad because it
chance of error, and up to 10,000 gp grab your lessons when you can. A
hurt to lose the only character I’d
weight may be teleported along with the few years ago, I was playing in
ever had that was worth a darn. I
possessor of the monocle. another group when my 16th-level
said something in a mad tone of
8. The monocle generates a magical field half-ogre Grond was made into a
voice and walked off into the
which nullifies the power of all other crispy critter during a minor alter-
kitchen to watch several other
magical items held by its possessor. Such cation with a death slaad and an
gamers fight a naval miniatures
items regain their former powers after arch-mage, and I remember the
being outside the monocle’s field of influ- looks on the other gamers’ faces
It took some time to cool off, and
ence for one full day. This last function when they watched for my reaction.
when I did, something slowly began
seems to be an innate power of the alien I felt a little sad, but it didn’t matter.
to dawn on me.
gemstone which forms the lens of the Fire- Grond had had a good life. I asked
I was being a jerk.
(continued on page 93)
Eye, as Avissar would certainly not have It was a game. Harley was a piece
desired such a baneful power himself.

4 0 J U L Y 1 9 8 7
By popular demand, we are starring a
new DRAGON® Magazine column for role-
playing gamers: “Lords & Legends,” a
collection of heroes and heroines for use
in all TSR role-playing game campaigns as
NPC adventure generators or as special
PCs, at the DM’s discretion. “Lords &
Legends” is open to submissions from our
readers, though these guidelines must be
All submissions to this column should be
on clean white paper double-spaced, in
clear type or word-processor print. If
references were used to create the charac-
ters, the references must be included with
the submission. We cannot and will not
accept characters taken from copyrighted
sources. Thus, we prefer either PCs or
NPCs from role-playing campaigns. Char-
acters may be tied to a specific game
world — such as Oerth, Krynn, the Forgot-
ten Realms, or Kara-Tur of the AD&D®
game; the Known World and Blackmoor
lands of the D&D® game; the Earth of the
GAMMA WORLD® game; and, the Frontier
of the STAR FRONTIERS® game.

from that source. Hsu Hsun is the one

Chinese hero listed herein; he reached
hero status long before his ascension.
Note that Oriental Adventures charac-
ters are very complex. The special abilities

Male human
13th-level kensai, 6th-level monk

ARMOR CLASS: 0 (kensai abilities; no

MOVE: 20” (monk ability)
NO. OF ATTACKS: 2 (with katana) or by
martial-arts style (plus ½ additional
ATTACK BONUSES: + 7 to hit (for strength
and kensai abilities)
DAMAGE/ATTACK: By weapon type
(katana, + 8 for strength and kensai skill)
opened. Although the following heroes are or by martial-arts style (+2 hp damage)
by Matt Iden but a small sample of the Oriental store of SPECIAL ABILITIES: + 3 on initiative; +4
mythos, these and the ones in Legends & on AC bonus; can do maximum damage
Few things are more interesting in a Lore should keep a Dungeon Master quite 13 times per day with ki power; + 2 to
culture’s mythology than that culture’s happy. Any one of these heroes can be psychic duel; immune to fear, haste,
heroes, and few civilizations have a richer used as mentors, partners, or even as slow, and disease; surprised on 1 in 1d6;
list of heroes than those of the Orient. An opponents for characters at higher levels. whirlwind attack vs. all within 10' once
article such as this would have been of The following are four heroes, three of per day; can use two weapons simulta-
little use in the AD&D® game a few years which are Japanese. Many Chinese heroes neously; cause fear as a samurai; medi-
ago, but with the advent of Oriental ascend into heaven long before death, thus tate as a shukenja; use ki to reduce
Adventures, many new avenues were narrowing the list of available characters magical attack effects six times per day;

42 JULY 1987
Character descriptions should each be
no more than five pages long, and the
pages should be numbered and fixed
together with a staple or paper clip. The
author’s name and address should appear
on the first page of each character submis-
sion. We may sort out characters and print
them in various groups (all thieves, all
halflings, all mutant squirrels, etc.), so
don’t count on seeing all of your submis-
sions run together as their own group.
Descriptions should be complete and
contain notes on personalities, special
abilities, goals, and possible adventures
relating to that character. Please send no
more than six characters per submission.
Enclose a stamped, self-addressed enve-
lope if you wish your characters to be
returned; we cannot be responsible for
submissions without SASEs.
POLYHEDRON™ Newszine has a feature
similar to this one, called “The New
Rogues Gallery.” If you wish your submis-
sions to be considered for that periodical
as well as for this one, please note this on
your cover letter. — RM

particular to the classes noted herein have

not been completely outlined, and the
appropriate sections of Oriental Adven-
tures should be studied before using these

speak with animals; 74% resistant to

ESP; can fall 30’ without injury if within
4’ of a wall; can simulate death for 12
turns; + 1 on all saving throws (+ 3 vs.
will-force attacks)
ALIGNMENT: Lawful neutral
OL: 47% FT: 45% MS: 47%
HS: 37% HN: 20% CW: 90%
Ushiwaka, he vowed to avenge his family’s stantial abilities, he was soon more than a
S: 18(75) I: 16 W: 16 humiliation. Knowing that the first step to match for any of the tengu. He was then
D: 19 C: 17 CH: 18 CO: 16 revenge was in becoming an accomplished taught the ways of military strategy by
HONOR: 96 swordsman, the young boy practiced in a So-jo-bo himself.
forest outside his monastery each night. Now a complete warrior, Yoshitsune did
Yoshitsune, the youngest brother of two One night, during this strenuous regi- not forget that the divinities would play a
other warriors, was destined to be a hero. men, Yoshitsune was visited by a chief of large role in his scheme. To appease these
Yoshitsune’s family lost a civil war to a the supernatural tengu, So-jo-bo. Admiring divinities, Yoshitsune traveled to Miyako,
rival family; as a result, young Yoshitsune the boy’s perseverance, So-jo-bo assigned the town outside his monastery, every
was banished to a monastery by the Pacif- his best swordsmen to teach him. Owing night after his tutorship with the tengu to
ic Ocean. There, under the assumed name to Yoshitsune’s previous practice and sub- pay homage to the gods. To hide the fact
Hsu Hsun Benkei is Yoshitsune’s sidekick and
retainer. He is totally faithful to him (his
last action is to be killed while battling his
master’s enemies). Although a sohei,
Benkei left the monastery to look for
adventure. As a result, he cannot cast any
spells nor attract other sohei; his loyalty to
his master, though, allows him to use his ki
power normally and to fight on after
reaching 0 hp. His sohei weapon of choice
is the katana, but he also possesses a rod
of smiting.
Benkei is a jovial man and serves as a
light counterbalance to the solemn Yoshit-
sune. He welcomes tales told by travelers
and is quite friendly, though cautious after
years of being hunted.

Hsu Hsun
Male human
23rd-level wu jen, 9th-level shukenja

ARMOR CLASS: 5 (dexterity and studded

leather armor
MOVE: 12”
NO. OF ATTACKS: 1 (with weapon) or as
per spell
ATTACK BONUSES: Nil unless with magical
device or spell
DAMAGE/ATTACK: By weapon type (any
allowed) or by spell
SPECIAL ABILITIES: May cast wu jen
spells while wearing armor (unique
ability); 45% chance to remove any
curse; use ki to add + 3 to saving throws
nine times per day, as per shukenja; can
meditate and sanctify area as per shu-
kenja; immune to first- and second-level
that he was a monk, Yoshitsune wore a be encountered as any other noble or illusion/phantasm spells due to high
veil, something which intrigued all of the adventurer would. intelligence; use ki to add +3 to initia-
people of Miyako — particularly a sohei tive for 1 round/day and to cast any one
named Benkei (q.v.). spell at maximum effect once per day, as
Benkei, wanting to know if this was per wu jen; spell bonuses for 18 wisdom;
some supernatural creature, challenged Benkei +4 saving throw vs. will-force attacks
Yoshitsune. The tengu’s training came in Male human MAGIC RESISTANCE: 25% (unique ability)
handy, and Yoshitsune easily defeated 8th-level sohei ALIGNMENT: Chaotic good
Benkei without harming him. Benkei then PSIONIC ABILITY: 300 (unique ability)
humbly asked to serve as Yoshitsune’s ARMOR CLASS: 2 (dexterity and chain Attack/Defense Modes: All/All
retainer. mail)
With the aid of his two older brothers, MOVE: 9” (chain mail) S: 10 I: 20 W: 18
Yoshitsune went on to exact his revenge HIT POINTS: 65 D: 16 C: 16 CH: 18 CO: 16
and crush the rival family. Unfortunately, NO. OF ATTACKS: 3/2 (with weapon) HONOR: 100
this was the peak of his career, as his ATTACK BONUSES: +1 to hit with katana,
eldest brother became jealous of his suc- or as per other device Hsu Hsun’s early life had quite an innoc-
cess and drove Yoshitsune out of the coun- DAMAGE/ATTACK: By weapon type uous beginning when compared to the
try. From that point on, Yoshitsune’s life (katana, + 2 for strength and weapon of power he eventually achieved. Although
became a series of misfortunes. Yoshit- choice bonus, or as per other device) he studied the occult arts as a young boy,
sune’s tale is not remembered so much for SPECIAL ABILITIES: Focus ki for 1 turn/ Hsu Hsun was required to interrupt his
these problems as for the nobility and day for numerous attack and defensive studies to take up the office of magistrate.
stoicism with which he faced them. bonuses, as per sohei; use ki for fanatic This did not last for very long, and soon
Yoshitsune, if encountered by the char- combat past 0 hp Hsu Hsun returned to his home. From
acters, will be seen as a quiet but very MAGIC RESISTANCE: Standard there, he went to a range of nearby moun-
noble person. If the above story is used in ALIGNMENT: Lawful neutral tains to study the magic that had been
the lands of Kozakura, Yoshitsune could PSIONIC ABILITY: Nil taught to him by his mentor. After a time,
well be encountered anywhere, since he Hsu Hsun perfected the art and was thus
and his few retainers often wear disguises S: 17 I: 14 W: 14 able to help his province, slaying dragons
to avoid his brother’s wrath. Otherwise, D: 17 C: 16 CH: 16 CO: 12 and ending a drought by having a rock
Yoshitsune (and his retainer, Benkei) can HONOR: 81 gush water.
44 JULY 1987
Hsu Hsun is confident of his powers, but
he is not particularly aloof; he is willing to
help those in trouble. Hsu Hsun does not
appreciate characters invading his moun-
tain home, however, and deals with them
as any angry magic-user would. Hsu Hsun
places little value on wealth, though he
does own magical items which he keeps
for their utility rather than their worth.
This collection includes a diamond mace
and a mallet of luck.

Miyamoto Musashi
Male human
15th-level kensai

ARMOR CLASS: 0 (kensai abilities; no

MOVE: 15” (unique ability)
NO. OF ATTACKS: 3 (with katana and
wakizashi or with boku-toh; unique
ability) or 5/2 (with any other sword)
ATTACK BONUSES: +10 with katana,
wakizashi, or boku-toh (unique ability);
+8 with any other sword
DAMAGE/ATTACK: By weapon type
(katana and wakizashi, or boku-toh —
+11 for strength and kensai skill)
SPECIAL ABILITIES: +3 on initiative; +4
on AC bonus; use ki to do maximum
damage 15 times per day; +2 to psychic
duel; surprised 1 in 1d6; whirlwind
attack vs. all within 10’ once per day;
can use two weapon simultaneously;
cause fear as a samurai; meditate as a
shukenja; immune to fear; +1 on all
saving throws (+2 vs. will-force attacks)
ALIGNMENT: Lawful neutral

S: 18(00) I: 14 W: 15 sending him to war six times. At the age of resorts to using a pair of boku-toh (which
D: 19 C: 18 CH: 16 CO: 14 20, Musashi stopped using real swords, are dangerous enough in his hands). While
HONOR: 100 opting for a pair of boku-toh instead. In never refusing a fight, Musashi will not
this way, Musashi devoted himself to find- usually initiate a psychic duel.
Miyamoto Musashi, also known as the ing the Way — the spiritual aspect of ken- Although constantly learning himself,
Sword Saint, is perhaps the greatest hero do. Eventually, after traveling and fighting Musashi is not averse to teaching what he
in Japanese history. The tales of his prow- for many years, Musashi took up resi- knows. Any kensai or samurai who is
ess and swordsmanship have been com- dence in a cave and wrote his life’s testa- hardy enough to keep up with Musashi
memorated in numerous paintings, diaries, ment, A Book of Five Rings, the final will gain 200 xp per week of travel with
and folk tales. Even after 300 years, summary of all his knowledge. him for up to four weeks’ time (and will be
Musashi is still a popular figure in Japa- Depending on the time period in which assured of seeing some action). Musashi
nese literature. Though he actually lived, the DM places Musashi, PCs may have a must, however, be courted just as a mar-
his legend has grown larger with the tough time recognizing him as a swords- tial arts master (page 106, Oriental Adven-
passing of time. man, let alone a master. In his later years, tures), since he knows just how valuable
An orphan from age seven, young Musashi’s appearance reflects his single- his teaching can be.
Musashi was raised by his uncle, a sohei. minded dedication to learning the Way; at
His aggressive nature was encouraged by this point in his life, he appears as a Bibliography
his uncle, and it led Musashi to learn the rough, uncouth man — perhaps an unem- Ferguson, John C., and Masaharu Anesa-
ways of kendo (swordsmanship). Using his ployed bushi. Musashi rarely has time to ki. The Mythology of All Races. Cannon
newfound skill well, Musashi claimed his do anything but learn, but like most John MacCulloch, editor. Boston: Marshall
first victory at the age of 13. Musashi’s nobles, he has other, more delicate inter- Jones Co., 1937, vol. VII.
next victory came at 16 — at which point, ests as well. He is a skilled poet, artist, and Musashi, Miyamoto. A Book of Five
he embarked on his warrior’s journey sculptor, and enjoys talking to shukenjas. Rings. Victor Harris, trans. Woodstock,
across all of Japan. Musashi’s favorite weapons are swords, New York Overlook Press, 1974.
This journey took up most of Musashi’s particularly the katana and wakizashi, Random, Michael. The Martial Arts. Judy
life, leading him to more than 60 individ- which he uses together. As stated above, Boothroyd, trans. London, Wisconsin:
ual encounters (all of which he won) and after a certain time period, Musashi Peerage Books, 1984.

ests, describe your gaming group, your
gaming background, and other gaming-
related topics. In my first overseas letter, I
admitted that I’d never read a Tolkien
novel, but find gaming inspiration in the
works of Piers Anthony and Katherine
Kurtz. In response, a gamer in New
Zealand recommended Ursula Le Guin’s
Earthsea trilogy as the best fantasy he’d
ever read.
You’ve probably never visited the coun-
try to which you’re writing, and you may
know little about it and where it’s located.
Having access to a world map solves the
location mystery and lets you know that
your letter has a destination other than
that of the mailbox. A glance through an
atlas, almanac, and current newspaper or
news magazine also helps.
Many of the city names found in the
Guide aren’t printed on a world map,
because the listed gamers live in small
towns and suburbs. If you live in a small
town, referring to neighboring cities will
help your reader pinpoint your location.
One gamer boasted that he had my home
town pinpointed to within 10 km, but
added that his map tells nothing of what
the place is like. I filled him in on local
details in my next letter.
Give your reader an idea of “where
you’re coming from” by describing your
home town. This shouldn’t be limited only
to population density and how many gas
stations are nearby. Include famous local
personalities, little-known legends, some
geography, and the area’s history.
2. Start a conversation. Take the initia-
tive and share some gaming stories in the
first letter. Otherwise, it will take another
letter — and paying the postage — to use
the Guide for its intended purpose. Write
about your favorite character’s exploits or
how you, as the DM, refereed a compli-
cated encounter. You can improve your
own playing by reading about other
gamers’ experiences. I learned how to
handle PCs with powerful magical items
when I read how a low-level cleric was
required to give a newly-found relic to a
crusading member of his religious order.
situation. Whether through conversing at After telling your story, ask your reader
by Heather Gemmen conventions or by writing letters, meeting to share some. Also, ask a direct question
fellow gamers is rewarding. The latter or two: where he gets his ideas for adven-
For DRAGON® Magazine readers who isn’t as easy, however, and can be intimi- tures, or what type of adventure she
live too far away from other gamers to dating. This article offers advice on enjoys the most. Give your reader the
play role-playing games regularly, or who approaching that first letter, with mailing opportunity to tell what’s going on in local
live where there are few (if any) other information and letter etiquette, and games.
gamers, the World Gamers Guide is a explores the benefits of corresponding 3. Write to several addresses. I wrote to
source for contacting gamers in the same with other gamers. six initially, two years ago. Since my first
letter, I correspond regularly with two of
those gamers. One gamer I wrote to never
Getting started school student, college graduate, or responded, two wrote a few times, and
The first letter in any correspondence is retired executive. Therefore, do the read- one wrote five times, then stopped.
always the toughest. If you don‘t believe er a service and include your age, future Since you have no guarantee that any
that you can write an interesting letter, plans, and current interests (in addition to one particular gamer will reply, pay the
deciding what to tell a stranger living in gaming) in your first letter. Gamers are extra postage and write to three or more.
another city or country will be difficult interested not only in meeting gamers, but Admittedly, this takes some expense, but if
indeed. Try the following: in getting to know people. Write about you can find a gamer with the same zeal
1. Introduce yourself. More likely than your other hobbies, future plans, and your for writing as you have, with whom you
not, your reader won’t be able to tell by schooling or occupation. can establish a running discussion, it will
your writing whether you are a high- When writing about your gaming inter- be worth it.

46 JULY 1987
4. Use a word processor if possible. If hazy. If you keep clarifying yourself with the country of destination in capital letters
you have access to a word processor, use “but before that” and “I forgot to say,,, the on the fourth line. Always include your
it. They are practical if you write long reader won’t be able to follow the disrupt- return address on the envelope, and again
letters, and you won’t offend anyone by ed order of events. (Using a word proces- on the top right corner of the letter’s first
seeming impolite or impersonal. When I sor to edit your work helps here.) page.
first used the Guide, I wrote six letters — Fourth, good letter etiquette requires a In my experience, an airmail letter takes
by hand. If I had used a word processor, I reply to a letter within a week. However, about a week in transit between the Unit-
would’ve saved myself a lot of time and this is the ideal turnover time; realistically, ed States and Europe or Australia, based
writer’s cramp. I’ve found that gamers take from two on the postmark on the envelope and the
As well as being efficient, a word- weeks to a month to reply, and I have date I receive it. A letter may lie around
processed letter is much easier to read waited six months for a letter to arrive in for a few weeks before it is answered, so
than one written by hand — no misinter- one case. consider this when you wait for a
pretation of handwriting is likely. If you’re How long should your letters be after response.
battling the language barrier with only a the first one? This depends on your writ- For more information on international
year of German from high school, a mis- ing ability and the length of the replies mailing procedures, requirements, and
take caused by illegible penmanship could you receive, which may range from a postal rates, consult your post office. The
cause you — or your reader — ample single page to three or more. If you can U.S. Postal Service offers a free booklet
problems. easily fill three pages on gaming, and if (Publication 51) detailing international
Another attraction to the word proces- you like to write, send longer letters to rates and fees. Gamers in Canada and
sor is that you can print a copy of the those who send the same to you. Likewise, other countries can pick up a guide to
letter for yourself. I have photocopied write brief letters to those writing you inland and overseas postal services from
handwritten letters for my records, but only a page. You should wait until after their local post offices.
this requires a trip to a photocopy receiving a second letter, though, instead
machine, with the loss in time and copying of basing your decision on only one reply. The benefits
expenses. A month or more may pass Just because you can’t write a long let- 1. Idea exchange. Creating adventures
before you receive a reply, during which ter, or don’t have time to write one, does that will keep the players interested is
time you might forget what you’ve writ- not mean you shouldn’t use the Guide. In demanding on DMs — it demands their
ten. Keeping a copy of your letters in a file my correspondence I receive lengthy imaginative energies and their time to
gives you quick reference to keep your letters from one gamer, and brief letters organize for a well-planned adventure. In
discussion alive. from another — only he’s written twice as addition to the encounters necessary for
many times as the other guy. the PCs to complete their quest, the DM
Letter etiquette must generate motivated NPCs and unique
You should follow a few guidelines when Mailing procedures “side” encounters. But preparation time
writing a letter. Unlike penning a thank- There are two types of mail: domestic for DMs is limited, and so their NPCs are
you note to a rich aunt after your birth- and international. Since domestic mailing usually stock characters — merely statis-
day, corresponding with gamers should be procedures differ from country to country tics, physical descriptions, and an align-
fun: you’re writing about something you and should already be familiar to you, this ment which determines whether they help
both enjoy, and your letter should reflect article deals only with the international or hinder the party.
this. mail system. If you have some interesting NPCs that
First, write legibly if you don’t use a Basically, only one international mail you use in your campaign, ask your read-
computer or typewriter. If this means class pertains to World Gamers Guide er if he or she would like to exchange
writing slowly, do it. Hieroglyphics went correspondence. The “Letter and Letter NPCs in your letters. When you prepare
out centuries ago; don’t expect your read- Packages” class covers personal letters and an NPC, write statistics, background, and
er to decipher your penmanship or under- packages accompanied by personal corre- belongings on an index card, notebook
stand your abbreviations. spondence, of up to 4 lbs. or 2 kg weight. paper, or whichever form you have agreed
Second, use proper grammar and spell- Airmail rates in this class are set by weight upon, so your reader doesn’t have to
ing. I don’t mean you should study a gram- and are subject to change; special rates transfer the information onto another
mar book before you write, but by making apply for some destinations, so check with paper.
sure each of your sentences completes its your post office for current rates. For The same applies to short encounters
thought and follows the previous sentence example, the airmail rate for a letter from designed for PCs to meet on the road or in
in a logical sequence, and by using a dictio- the United States to Europe is (as of this the dungeon: present the encounter in a
nary when you’re unsure of a word’s issue’s date) US$.44 per .5 ounce up to 2 way that the DM can fit it into his adven-
spelling or meaning, you’ll get your ideas ounces, but to the Caribbean Islands the ture notes easily.
across and have less difficulty. rate is US$.39 per 5 ounce up to 1.5 ounc- 2. Creative outlet. Keep in mind that
After writing your letter, proofread for es. From New Zealand to South America, letter-writing does not always have to be
errors. I misspelled module in a letter letters to 10 grams are NZ$1.30, with each factual. Adding a bit of fiction, through
once, and it wasn’t until after the letter additional 10g NZ$.50; to the South Pacific, narration, makes reading and writing
was mailed that I noticed I had spelled it NZ$.80 up to 10g, each additional 10g letters more enjoyable. You might picture
“modual.” NZ$.20. in your mind a situation in which your PC
Third, don’t write with cautious formali- Surface rates are slightly lower than was the hero, as quick-witted as a charac-
ty. Be conversational, friendly, and polite. airmail rates, but surface mail may take ter in a fantasy novel. Your group already
Write as if you were talking to the reader weeks to arrive. Aerogrammes, which can knows about it (they were there!) and
in person, using proper grammar and a be folded into envelope form and sent by nongaming friends and relatives probably
conversational tone. How do the two mix? air to all countries, cost less than letters don’t want to hear about it. You could
In spoken conversation, the speaker fre- and are more convenient for short letters. report the event (“I needed a 17 to hit the
quently interrupts himself and leaves You can speed delivery of your letters by monster with a +1 short sword . . .”), or
thoughts incomplete. Obviously, a letter writing clearly (or typing) the address in you could tell the story (“Dyvin Taavar
must be organized and its ideas must flow the following manner: On the first line, slew the sahuagin baron, found his stolen
in a fairly logical pattern, or the reader print the name of addressee; on the sec- amulet in its treasure room, and left the
will become lost. This may happen when ond, the house number and street name. caverns before they filled with tidewater”).
you’re writing about an adventure long City, province, or state names, and postal Players love to rehash old adventure high-
past, and your memory of the event is code belong on the third line. Finally, print lights, whether around the gaming table
or through the mail, and your reader will
likely swap a tale to match yours in his
next letter.
3. Gaming by mail. Although gamers can
enter many different play-by-mail adven-
tures, correspondence offers another
opportunity for gaming through the mail.
Instead of describing an encounter you
created for your players, present the
information in such a way that your read-
er can run a character through it — and
experience the encounter firsthand. With
a short encounter, use index cards; set the
scene on the first card. At the bottom,
offer two or more choices with directions:
“If you enter the tower, turn to card 3; if
you search around for a turn, go to card
2.” Include monster statistics, penalties or
bonuses for combat, and other adjust-
ments. It runs a lot like a multiple-plot,
solo-adventure book, like those found in
most bookstores.
Maps depicting the adventure area on
each card can be drawn on slips of graph
paper and taped onto the back of each
card, or drawn directly onto the card. If
desired, the player can compile the map
segments on a sheet of graph paper. For
longer encounters or complete adven-
tures, full sheets of notebook paper work
4. Cultural and real-world inspiration.
How does real-world culture fit into a
fantasy setting? A nation’s history, folklore,
and customs can be adapted to characters,
fantasy nations, and adventures. In other
words, a whole campaign world can bene-
fit from a cultural exchange: knowledge
which can be gained not through reading
an encyclopedia, but through reading
letters written by someone who actually
lives there.
Through letter-writing, you can add flair
to your character and a new atmosphere
to your campaign. European folk tales are
rich with knights on quests, medieval
pageantry, and castles. Explorers of the
American continents have provided stories
of encountering age-old civilizations and of
battling the elements on a new frontier.
For the DM, nationality differences can
give his NPCs color to their actions and
thoughts. If the party travels through a
young country that recently experienced a
successful rebellion, they could encounter
NPCs who were active in the rebellion, or
others who sided with the mother country
and who aren’t at ease with their newly
won freedom. Imagine the impression you
would get if you visited Boston during the
American Revolution, from talking with a
Yankee Doodle from Washington’s camp or
with a Tory tea merchant.
It might be that you aren’t able to write
pages on gaming, so feel free to write
about other things. After a sentence or
two, the ideas will come, and you can
delete anything you wish to exclude. Writ-
ing letters to fellow game-players will
bring you closer to other gamers, other
countries, and will help you improve your
gaming. How can you lose?

blade venom from the leech’s spit, the
venom which could make a man bleed to
death from a single cut. Then, by One
Eye’s Spear, they’d all have reason to fear
Jaffang. And he would kill Sasher first —
of that he was certain.
The water was warm, almost like fresh
blood. Jaffang’s bare feet sank ankle deep
from a leather belt pouch, he rubbed it into the receptive ooze on the bottom. He
by Anthony Gerard vigorously over several spots on his pants pulled the raft along the trail Sasher cre-
and shirt before he took a bite. That was ated as he pushed through the water
Slowly, like a drugged man regaining also the human in him — afraid to eat a plants. Suddenly, Jaffang tripped on an
consciousness, the sun rose over the dead dirty onion. What more could one expect underwater snag, fell headlong, and came
water. The quavering calls of the night of a half-breed? up sputtering. Sasher looked back and
birds, the croaking of the frogs, and the Drawn by his companion’s gaze, Sasher laughed out loud.
hidden plops and gurgles were slowly looked at Jaffang. Jaffang tried to smile, Laugh now, Jaffang thought. He decided
replaced by the drone of the day insects but it didn’t work. He thought of running to kill Sasher slowly. But first he needed to
and the songs of distant sparrows. The his spear through Sasher and the smile learn about the leeches and the blade
sun began to burn away the night mist, came, but by that time Sasher had turned venom.
revealing the thousands of shades of green away. “Where do we find these leeches?” Jaf-
in the vast swamp of the Wet Maze. “Light enough. Better take off your fang asked, to cover his rage more than to
Jaffang watched it all and hated it. It armor,” Sasher said, as if to no one in get a response.
was the wrong place for a full-blooded particular. Sasher maintained his distant gaze. “We
orc. He hated the birds, the frogs, the Jaffang’s immediate suspicion was slowly don’t,” he replied. “They find us.”
insects, the green of the plants. Most of all, replaced by the realization that he couldn’t Jaffang looked suspiciously at the water,
he hated Sasher. swim well, and that armor would just be a belly-deep on him. “Ragshaf says they’re
He looked at his silent companion. bother. As Jaffang removed his armor, bigger than a man.” It was more of a ques-
Sasher squatted motionless, looking out Sasher arranged a wooden box on a shield- tion than a statement.
across the water; only his yellow eyes sized raft, then waded out waist-deep in “Ragshaf’s a fool. Besides, he’s only seen
moved. A myriad of gnats and mosquitoes the swamp’s green water, probing with the one.” Sasher seemed more talkative than
swarmed around his face and arms, but he butt of his spear as he went. “You bring usual. So much the better.
made no effort to slap them away. On the box,” he said. “When?”
either forearm were curious Y-shaped Jaffang started to curse but caught “Not long after I got into the guild.”
scars — probably the brand of the thieves’ himself. With Sasher in front, the half- Sasher rarely talked about anything at all,
or assassins’ guild. Sasher liked it here. breed would be the first to meet any possi- much less about guild activities. “Me,
Jaffang knew he did. It was the human ble danger. Jaffang contented himself by Ragshaf, and a couple of other boys from
half of him. Sasher liked it here, and he watching the place between Sasher’s the canting crew were supposed to pop a
probably liked it that much more because shoulder blades — the place where one smuggler coming down river at night.”
he knew Jaffang hated it. Jaffang hated day an orcish spear would rest. Sasher smiled as he stared into the dis-
him that much more for it. For now, Sasher was necessary. Soon, tance. “Ol’ Jandamon was along to guide
Sasher stood up slowly. Taking an onion Jaffang would learn the secret of making us. We were in a boat on the river, not

50 JULY 1987
knowin’ exactly when he’d come by, so we Sasher spat. “Better mother than my stained jerkin up the back.
decided to draw lots for a watcher while own — they ride their babies on their “Oh, ho, now!” he murmured. “Don’t you
the others slept. bellies, like little piglets on a sow.” boys look fat and happy!”
“Anyway, after a while Ragshaf — it was Sasher was making fun of him now. Big Attached to the middle of Jaffang’s back
his watch — got spooked over something mother worms riding their babies around! were two glistening leeches, each mottled
and woke us, all but Jandamon. We went Damn him for a half-human anyway! Soon red and green, and each a forearm in
to wake him, but he’s as limp as a worm. enough, he’d wish he’d been respectful. length. Sasher found a third of similar size
When we rolled him over, there was a Jaffang asked no more questions, and on Jaffang’s calf.
leech as big as your leg and just as thick, Sasher lapsed into his usual silence. Sasher removed a small pouch from
hanging on his neck. It must have crawled around his neck and took out a pinch of
over the side. Killed him while he slept, salt. Gently, he sprinkled the salt over one
and he never so much as squeaked. And The sun was straight overhead as Jaf- of the leeches. The passive leech released
him such a warrior and all. We laughed so fang jerked the raft across yet another its hold and began a series of wild undula-
hard our prize heard us, and we lost him. snag. The full sunlight hurt his eyes, and tions. Sasher splashed a handful of water
Ragshaf killed the leech with the boat gaff, his jerkin and pants were heavy with mud over the leech and quickly worked the
which was a real waste.” and water. He had begun to fall further parasite into the bag.
“I thought the leeches breathed water.” and further behind Sasher. Often, he lost Where the leech had been attached, a
“They don’t have to. They live just fine sight of the half-breed altogether and was neat Y-shaped cut began to well up with
as long as they’re wet, so they come out at left with only the trail through the water thin, watery blood. Sasher repeated the
night or in a rain. Good climbers, too. weeds to follow. He would eventually operation for the other two leeches.
Watch for some on the tree trunks — it’s come upon Sasher sitting on a fallen log or Wasting no time, Sasher removed a
still early enough yet.” leaned against a tree. Sasher would imme- smaller leech from a pouch on his belt and
Sasher stopped. From a fallen tree, a diately lead out again, without time for a put it in the bag with the others. Each
sinuous, mottled gray-brown form lazily rest, but always with an amused smile. By time he was well ahead of Jaffang, Sasher
sculled across the stagnant water toward the Cave Mother’s Claws, Jaffang thought, had searched himself carefully for leeches.
them. You’ll eat that smile and choke on it. He The onion had worked well; only one had
“A leech! A leech!” Jaffang cried as he was going to love killing Sasher. dared get near him.
readied his spear. Now that they had Sasher was ahead of him again and out Sasher turned to go but stopped short.
found their quarry, he was not sure what of sight. Jaffang began feeling the heavy Out from a tangle of roots at the water’s
to do next. press of exhaustion. This was worse than edge, a leech worked its way up the bank.
“It’s a marsh adder,” Sasher said, leaving the forced march on the Dunlands last The leech’s head waved back and forth as
the word “fool” unspoken. He reached for year. Jaffang shoved the raft through a it followed the thin stream of blood which
an arm-long cane tube slung across his thick mat of cattails. Following through, he ran from Jaffang’s body. Sasher gently
back. As the adder swam slowly past, he found Sasher sitting cross-legged on the placed the opening of the bag in the
put the tube to his lips and puffed his bank, eating an onion. Why was this place leech’s path, and the leech obligingly
cheeks. After what seemed to be the longest so familiar . . . no! crawled inside.
seconds Jaffang could remember, the snake It was the place from which they’d start- Five leeches. It had been a good day’s
convulsed violently and disappeared ed! Sasher had played him for a fool! Jaf- work, even if he did have to spend it mak-
underwater. fang had hauled the damned raft through ing conversation with an orc.
“A leech wiggles up and down when he a swamp all day for no reason, and Sasher
swims, not side to side like a snake,, was smiling about it! Notes
Sasher murmured, putting the blowpipe He’d kill Sasher now — to the Hells with 1. Leeches (both the small variety of our
away. “Leeches swim fast, too.” the blade venom! Tired as he was, Jaffang world and the giant variety of AD&D®
Jaffang stared. at the water where the knew he could still handle any half-human game worlds) are segmented worms. The
adder had vanished. “Can one swim down dog. posterior and anterior segments of leeches
a man?” Dropping the raft rope, Jaffang are modified into suction disks. The poste-
“Probably could, but they don’t. Leeches advanced purposely toward the bank, rior disk is larger and is used only to hold
sit and wait for something to pass by. They clutching his spear. Then it hit him — the leech in place against rocks and the
only swim to get away from something.” something was wrong. He hefted his spear like. The smaller anterior disk contains the
“What would a giant leech need to get to throw, but he fumbled it in clumsy leech’s mouth, which is equipped with
away from?” fingers. The spear fell and splashed into three jaws of teeth which make a clean,
“Big snapper turtles, garfish, lots of the green water. Jaffang swayed but man- Y-shaped incision.
things. Kobolds spit ‘em on a stick and aged to stagger forward again, pulling his A leech’s saliva contains an anesthetic;
roast them like a rack of lamb — when the dagger free with a nerveless hand. Some- because of this, a leech bite is painless and
runts can catch ‘em, and if the leeches thing. . . something was very . . . very . . . almost always goes unnoticed. This viscous
don’t eat the kobolds first.” Sasher watched Jaffang come toward saliva acts immediately upon contact with
“How many people wade through here him. The fool meant to kill him. The fact the victim’s skin, and is only removed by
for leeches to eat? They must have a long that he was still walking was a credit to alcohol, ether, or similar liquids. Addition-
time between feeds.” his race’s endurance; he might even have ally, leech saliva contains an anticoagulant
Sasher smiled crookedly. “You think they to be finished by a dart in the throat. (hirudin) and a substance which enlarges
eat nothing but people and orcs? I’ve nev- Perhaps it would be wise to . . . the blood vessels in the area of the bite (a
er seen a swamp troll without a couple on Jaffang dropped his dagger. As Sasher vasodilator, in medical terms) for
him — ‘course, trolls don’t care. A leech’ll relaxed and watched, the life drained from increased blood flow. Some leech saliva
eat other things than just blood, too — the orc’s eyes like liquid from a slashed even contains a substance which dissolves
frogs, mud dragon eggs, eels, and the like. wineskin. The orc stumbled ashore and pre-existing blood clots.
Mama leech feeds her brood on small fell face forward onto the grassy bank. Due to these anticoagulants, blood con-
frogs. They may suckle on her, too; I’m not Sasher finished his onion. Tossing the tinues to flow from a leech bite much
real sure. After a good meal, they just find core aside, he waded out and retrieved the longer than from a normal wound. Char-
a hiding place and lie low for a time.” raft. Taking a large heavy canvas sack out acters bitten by a leech lose blood at the
Jaffang sneered. “Mama leech? You of the box, Sasher dumped its contents of rate of 1-4 hp per melee round for l-12
expect me to believe that a big worm takes rocks. Returning to Jaffang’s body, Sasher rounds after the leech is removed (or until
care of its babies?” drew a dagger and slit the orc’s mud- the wound is bound). Clerical healing

spells negate this excessive blood loss, as evil forces in the AD&D® game world to vertical undulations, but it will not attack
may other actions at the DM’s discretion. keep blood used in ceremonial liquids for prey in this manner.
As an example, some swamp-dwelling a longer duration. Leeches do not bite in self-defense. If
races commonly use spider webs to help 3. A leech’s eyes typically consist of attacked while unattached, a leech tries to
clot leech bites. groups of light receptive cells (ocelli) escape as soon as it is wounded. An escap-
In addition to anticoagulants and vasodi- which register light intensity but cannot ing leech swims away or attempts to crawl
lators, a leech’s saliva contains antibiotics, see images. Leeches often react when light into a protective tangle. Since leeches are
so leech bites rarely become infected. It is conditions change, such as when a shadow invertebrates, a relatively large leech can
suggested that the Monster Manual section is cast by a passing boat, fish, or a wading crawl through a very small space.
dealing with increased chance of disease person. 5. While attached to prey, leeches are
from leech bites be disregarded, and that Receptor cells on the leech’s skin are very unresponsive to outside stimuli. Salt,
leech bites should be treated as any other sensitive to slight amounts of certain ashes, or other dehydrating substances
wound for chances of infection. chemicals. This keen sense of “smell” cause them to release their hold quickly, as
2. Not all leech species are blood-sucking allows leeches to home in on substances or will an open flame. An attached leech
parasites. Many are predacious species organisms attractive to the leech or to which is slain continues to draw blood at
which feed on other animals, and many avoid those which may be harmful. the normal rate for an additional 1-4
parasitic species eat other animals on Blood-sucking species may be attracted rounds.
occasion. Some leech species also eat to bloody areas in the water. In AD&D® 6. Leeches are hermaphroditic, but they
carrion. game terms, the chance for encountering cannot fertilize their own eggs. Eggs may
Leeches typically rest attached to plants giant leeches should be doubled for be laid in protective cocoons attached to
and other underwater objects, waiting for wounded characters. underwater rocks or logs, or buried in the
prey to pass by. Extremely sensitive to 4. Leeches have two main modes of bottom ooze. Some species of leech carry
vibrations, leeches become restless and locomotion. The most common is an “inch- their eggs in membranous sacs on their
attempt to locate the source of the vibra- worm” movement, by which the leech underside. In such cases, the young live
tions by stretching and waving their ante- stretches forward and attaches its anterior for a time attached to the parent’s ventral
rior disk through the water. disk, then moves the posterior disk for- surface, although they gain no nourish-
A leech may thrive for months on a ward and attaches it in turn. This method ment from the parent in this manner.
single meal. Once sated, a leech typically is slow (3”/round) but very efficient. A 7. Leeches are very sensitive to traces of
finds a sheltered place and stays relatively leech can climb any vertical or overhang- metals in the water. Copper in their water
inactive for a time. A well-fed leech cannot ing surface in this manner, although it always proves fatal to captive leeches.
be induced to feed again for weeks. generally avoids those that are potentially Additionally, captive leeches must be pro-
It has long been known that blood in a harmful (such as one covered with thorns vided with a rock or other rough surface
leech’s digestive tract does not coagulate. or salt). Additionally, a leech may swim to rub against, in order to slough off old
This knowledge may be exploited by some very rapidly (12”/round) by employing skin.

52 JULY 1987
by Lisa Cabala Green: The onset of disease.
Brown: When a journey begins.
Purple: When a spell is cast.
If AD&D® and D&D® game characters 1 year = 360 days A pink line should be drawn horizontally
wore digital watches, timekeeping would = 12 months across the month table at the time of sun-
be a lot easier for their Dungeon Master — = 60 weeks rise and sunset for a particular month. A
but they don’t. In campaign worlds where 1 month = 30 days dotted blue line drawn horizontally across
sundials, solar reckoning, and hourglasses = 5 weeks the month table can be used to mark high
prevail, it’s up to the DM to let characters and low tides.
know when it’s time to stop and eat, when 1 week = 6 days The back of the month table provides
they’re getting too sleepy to go on, when 1 day = 24 hours spaces for recording the month (common
darkness falls, or when a new day dawns. names, like “January” can be used), cam-
1 hour = 60 minutes paign area, adventure or module being
Charting time in a campaign world can
keep a DM scrambling after stray bits of = 6 turns played, and the name of the DM. The 30
paper. Often, these scraps are covered = 60 rounds numbered spaces provide room for
with so many scribbles and notes that they = 600 segments recording information pertinent to a
have become as indecipherable to the DM 1 turn = 10 minutes particular day.
as a ninth-level spell is to a novice magic- = 10 rounds Suggested information to be recorded
user. There is a better way. = 100 segments under this section includes: major reli-
The grid tables presented here will allow gious celebrations or festivals; when a
1 round = 1 minute (60 seconds) character is released from servitude or
you to keep track of time, either year-by-
year, month-by-month, day-by-day, hour- = 10 segments prison — or is executed; tithe collection or
by-hour, or turn-by-turn. To use the tables, 1 segment = 6 seconds census days; when a disease (e.g., lycan-
first accept the statistics to the right (many thropy, insanity) manifests itself; when
of which will be familiar to users of the visitors arrive at a town; when a caravan
AD&D® game system). reaches its destination; on what days it
The year has been shortened to 360 rains (plot this out in advance for the
days, with 12 equal, 30-day months to (when winter, fall, summer, or spring month); when a spell that requires several
allow a date to be generated randomly by begins); when natural or man-made disas- days to be cast takes effect; when the
a die roll. To determine a date, roll 1d12 ters occur (i.e., earthquakes, floods, fam- moon is full and provides enough light to
and 1d30. The result will give the month ines, wars, plagues, etc.); the dates of see by, etc.
and day. (This method can be used to annual celebrations and festivals; or when To use the turns grid tables, first note
determine a character’s date of birth.) a ruler came to power. that a turn (10 minutes) is represented by
The year chart is primarily useful in The month chart is useful both in short one large, divided box. A round (one min-
long campaigns or for extended wilder- wilderness adventures and with individual ute) is represented by one of the smaller
ness travel. To use it, tick off four marks dungeon modules. To keep track of time, squares that this box is divided into. Each
in each day square, as checks for random tick off six marks in each hour square. AD&D® game segment (six seconds) is rep
monster encounters are made: morning, Each mark will represent the passing of a resented by a single tick mark. The turn
afternoon, evening, and night. On the back turn (10 minutes). These marks should be grid tables can therefore be used either to
of the year chart, spaces are available to color coded to provide information at a keep track of rounds (a single tick in each
record the year, campaign area, adventure glance: small square will do) or to keep track of
module currently being used, and the Red: When a torch or fire was lit. segments (recorded as 10 ticks to the small
Dungeon Master’s name. Twelve large Orange: When a lantern was lit. box).
boxes on the back of the year chart pro- Yellow: When a candle was lit. By using these tables, timekeeping
vide space to record important dates upon Blue: When a character goes under is made easy and the month, year, or hour
which an event will occur or to record water, when water begins to rise, or when that something will occur can be deter-
general monthly information. rain begins to fall. mined quickly. You’ll even be able to sat-
Suggested information to be recorded Black: When a character dies. isfy those characters who insist on
under this section includes the following: Grey: When a character is knocked strapping an hourglass or sundial to their
general weather conditions for the month unconscious. wrists so they know the exact hour.

54 JULY 1987
Year Campaign area:

DM Adventure

Important Dates/Notes
Month Campaign

DRAGONLANCE® saga, has a zodiac of 12
constellations, so its year (which is 365.25
days long, necessitating the use of a leap

year day) has 12 months with either 30 or
31 days apiece. However, Krynn also has
three moons: white Solinari (which gov-
erns the use of good magic), red Lunitari

Making Time
(governing neutral magical effects), and
black — hence, generally invisible —
Nuitari (governing evil magicks). The orbit-
al periods of these satellites are not listed
in any of the modules, but it is assumed

No two that astrologers, sages, and wizards moni-

tor the progress and cycles of these
calendars (like worlds) need be alike moons, since the very nature of magic on
Krynn depends so heavily upon their
months of 30 days and four months of 31 The Known World of the D&D® game is,
days. Each season (marked out by the in fact, a prehistoric parallel Earth. The
by Roger E. Moore phases of Celene) would have two months DM’s Guide to Immortals (page 5) notes
of 30 days and one month of 31 days. Just that the continental positions on the
Establishing a consistent fantasy calen- which month has how many days is not Known World maps were meant to be
dar is not usually a high priority when noted in the Glossography booklet for the similar to the broken-up land masses of
creating a campaign game world. Every- WORLD OF GREYHAWK™ Fantasy Setting Pangea. But the Known World has a year
one (including the Dungeon Master) tends boxed set (pages 18-20) or in the Guide of only 336 days, as revealed in GAZ 1,
to make the assumption that the game booklet in the same set (page 4). The Grand Duchy of Karameikos (page
world is Earthlike in all respects, with one The FORGOTTEN REALMS™ Fantasy 33). The months are based on a lunar
large moon, a year of 12 months (365.25 Setting has another calendar system, first cycle of 28 days each (again, the major
days, each 24 hours long), and so on. outlined by Ed Greenwood in “The Merry visible satellite is an analog of the Earths
However, the previous article by Lisa Month of . . . Myrtul?” (DRAGON® issue Moon). Magical and Immortal-caused phe-
Cabala has demonstrated that a calendar #47, reprinted in the Best of DRAGON® nomena are common in the astronomical
can be useful, workable, and original, as Magazine Anthology, vol. 5). The world of and astrological records of the Known
long as it is carefully created. But not all the Realms, like Oerth and Earth, has a World, as they are on Krynn and Oerth
calendars are alike. What if the worlds giant natural satellite with a 30-day period. (and possibly the Forgotten Realms™ as
year isn’t 365.25 days long? And there’s no The year is 365 days long, and a lunar- well), but the calendar is quite consistent
law that says a year has to have 12 cycle system is used for month-marking, despite them.
months. In fact, of the various fantasy so there are 12 months, each with three If all of this seems very confusing, con-
campaign calendars produced by TSR, 10-day weeks. The five additional days sider the real-life horrors of our own
Inc., no two are alike. However, the same given are “monthless,” serving as special calendar system and the process through
principles governing the layout and design occasions (Midwinter, Greengrass, Mid- which it developed. The 1987 editions of
of timekeeping record sheets, as in the summer, etc.). Because of these five days, the Information Please Almanac and World
previous article, can be applied to these the phases of the moon of the Realms fall Almanac and Book of Facts are sufficient
calendars as well. The Wilderness Survival progressively further out of cycle with the to send even the hoariest Dungeon Master
Guide (page 107) makes this same point months as the year advances. into a fit with their comments on local civil
about variable calendars, though it is However, the Realms were not blessed time, Julian vs. Gregorian calendars, past
assumed that most calendars produced with a clockwork-perfect calendar as were and future attempts at calendar reform,
would still resemble the one with which the lands of Greyhawk. Every fourth year Caesar’s 445-day year, and so on. The
we are familiar — e.g., a year with 365 in the Realms is a leap year, at which time effects of natural satellites on the tides and
days, or a year with 360 days and 12 an extra day is added to straighten out the harvesting seasons, of the campaign
months, each with 30 days. fractional remainders in the calendar. worlds solar orbit on its year and climate,
The WORLD OF GREYHAWK™ Fantasy Kara-Tur, on the other side of the world of axial tilt upon seasonal variations — this
Setting has a well-defined calendar that from the Realms, has a calendar of its is stuff for only the strongest and most
falls together rather neatly. Greyhawk’s own, as shown on page 107 of Oriental obsessive stomachs.
world of Oerth is an Earth-sized planet Adventures. Eight months of 30 days and Calendar building, in short, can be as
with a 24-hour day, and it makes one four months of 29 days make up the year. simple or complicated as the DM wishes it
revolution around its sun every 364 days, The monthly cycles were created by the to be. Simple calendars are usually the
exactly. Oerth is gifted with two natural local inhabitants from a 12-part zodiac (as best if accurate and easy timekeeping is
satellites: the Great Moon (also known as revealed in conversation with David “Zeb” desired, and most players (sadly enough)
Luna), which has an orbital period of Cook, the designer). The number of days don’t care if the campaign world has one
exactly 28 days; and the Handmaiden only totals to 356, but a nine-day festival, moon; nine moons, or no moons at all. A
(Celene), which is small and has an orbital held after the last day of the month of Tu creative Dungeon Master with a pocket
period of 91 days. and prior to the first day of Tsou, computer and some astronomical refer-
As with our own Earth, the year’s divi- accounts for the rest. By imperial decree, ences could create a work of art guaran-
sion into 12 months has nothing to do with this festival time can be extended by one teed to dazzle even the most jaded
the Great Moon’s cycles. Instead, the pas- day every four years (i.e., for leap year). dragonslayer — but how easy is the calen-
sage of the local sun through Oerth’s zodi- The festival is even accounted for in the dar to use in game-related timekeeping?
ac (which has the “standard” 12 zodiac; the Kara-Tur system of astronomy Playability will eventually win out over
constellations) determines the months. leaves an unclaimed space between two of originality and complexity for gaming
Some groups on Oerth might use a lunar- the constellations on the zodiac, which purposes. Thus, the simpler calendars are
based yearly calendar of 13 months of 28 legend says is jointly owned by all other indeed best — and the basics of Ms. Caba-
days each; the rest of the planet, however, constellations and celestial powers. la’s system should serve everyone’s
probably divides the 12 months into eight The world of Krynn, from the needs.

60 JULY 1987
Each foraging character finds enough
food to sustain himself for one day if the
foraging is successful. Each hunting char-
acter obtains enough food to sustain two
people for one day if the hunt is success-
ful. Actually amounts of food collected
vary widely, depending on what sort of
food was found.

What is the special damage done

by storm giants?
If a bastard sword is used one- A storm giant’s special attack is its ability
by Skip Williams handed, does the user still lose to call down lightning, as per page 50 of
initiative? the Expert Rulebook.
If you have any questions on the games You lose initiative when using the sword
produced by TSR, Inc., write to: two-handed, but not when using it one- What are a roc’s saving throws?
Sage Advice handed. See the Master Players’ Book A roc saves as a fighter of 3rd, 6th, or
TSR, Inc. (pages 19 and 21) for more details. 18th level, depending on its hit dice (see
P.O. Box 509 page 55, Expert Rulebook).
Lake Geneva WI 53147 What is a war hammer, +3 boom-
This column continues our focus on the erang? Can it be thrown? Does a lightning bolt always
D&D® game, with a look at the Masters and Yes, it can be thrown. See the Master expand to its full length if it strikes
Expert Sets. Future columns are open to Players’ Book, Weapon Mastery Section. a solid object before going its full
questions on the AD&D®, TOP SECRET®, The war hammer is listed in the Weapons distance? Or does it “double back,”
GAMMA WORLD®, STAR FRONTIERS®, and Charts under “Hand-Held Weapons Rarely possibly leaving the caster
MARVEL SUPER HEROES® games, as well Thrown.” A war hammer, + 3 boomerang unharmed? Or does it bounce like a
as any other TSR™ game products. is just what the name implies — a + 3 billiard ball, flying off at an angle
weapon that returns to the user when it is from the object it struck?
thrown. Use the war hammer statistics Your first guess is technically correct
D&D® Masters Set from the Weapons Charts in the Master and in common use. A lightning bolt has a
Players’ Book (pages 20-21) for range and fixed length and width, and it must
A horse’s natural armor class is 7. damage. expand to its full length just as a fireball
Why, then, does leather barding also fills its fixed volume. That is, a lightning
give a horse an armor class of 7? D&D® Expert Set bolt is always 60’ long and 5’ wide. If it
What’s the point of using leather hits a solid object, it extends back 60’ from
barding? How much damage does a lance the point of impact in a direct line to the
Use the following table for equine armor do? Can thieves use lances? caster. If the caster is less than 60’ from
classes: A lance is a one-handed weapon, and it the point of impact, then he gets fried.
is usable by thieves. Note, however, that a Some DMs prefer the “billiard bounce”
Barding type AC
lance can be used only from the back of a method. Here’s some advice if you decide
Joust -1
charging mount. In all other cases it is to use it: 1) The angle of incidence equals
Field 1
treated just like a spear (except that a the angle of reflection. 2) The bolt might
Plate 2
lance cannot be thrown). A lance does strike a target more than once if it. bounc-
Banded 3
1d10 hp damage when used from the back es around a confined space, but the bolt
Chain 4
of a charging mount. can only deliver its stated damage, never
Scale 5
more. For example, a 22-hp lightning bolt
Leather 6
What is a javelin and how much that hits a character three times still only
The encumbrance and cost of each type damage does it do? delivers 22 hp, or half if the character
of barding remains unchanged (see the A javelin is a light throwing spear. It saves. You may opt to have the character
D&D® Master Players’ Book, page 15). does 1d6 hp damage and has the following save each time the bolt strikes, taking the
ranges: 30/60/90. worst result. This method can lead to
What is the effect of a light cata- some sticky situations; take extra care-to
pult on a castle? How about on The combat charts on page 29 of adjudicate them fairly and accurately.
creatures? the Expert Rulebook show saving
Light catapults and other siege engines throws different from what the The invisible stalker spell is sub-
are covered in the Masters Players’ Book, individual character listings show. ject to considerable abuse in my
pages 23-32. Which is correct? campaign. Isn’t this spell over-
Page 29 is correct. powered?
What exactly are the differences An invisible stalker always tries to sub-
between light crossbows and heavy The water movement chart on vert any long and onerous mission that it
crossbows? page 43 of the 1983 Expert Rulebook is given. If told to serve a character until
Light crossbows have ranges 60/120/180 shows some split numbers on the he dies, a stalker might promptly fetch the
and can be fired once per round. Heavy Miles/Day column. Why is this, and character’s slippers, run his bath water,
crossbows have ranges 80/160/240 and can which numbers should I use? and do the dishes, but will refuse to fight,
be fired once every two rounds unless the The split number indicates a craft with track, or carry treasure. Personal ser-
user has an 18 strength, in which case the both oars and sails. The number before vants, after all, are domestic in nature. If
heavy crossbow may be fired every round. the slash is for movement with oars only; ordered to protect a character and keep
Light crossbows cost 30 gp and have an the number after the slash is movement him from all harm, the stalker will try to
encumbrance of 50 cn. Heavy crossbows with sails and oars. carry the character off to the Elemental
cost 40 gp and have an encumbrance of 70 Plane of Air, the stalker’s home plane,
cn. See the Master Players’ Book (pages 17, How much food is actually gained where protecting the character will be
18, and 20) for more information. when foraging or hunting? much easier.
62 JULY 1987
hey raided the palace of the Earl of
Magember in the height of the two-
hour day: seventeen men clad in iron
chain mail, their crossbows loaded
with quarrels of illegally wrought
steel. In the searing light the walls of
the stronghold were no more substan-
tial than mist, and the raiders smashed the gate like a man
brushes away a spiderweb. It broke with the sound of
tearing parchment, the gate’s arm-long splinters hovering
on the afternoon breezes.
Several elves woke from their deep slumber, but they
moved in slow motion, their swords turned to wands of
springy willow, and their strongest enchantments were
only mumbled words.
Winslow found the earl in one of the deepest halls, his by Tais Teng
naked body reclining on a mound of freshly turned earth.
The faintest hint of magic still lingered, and the damp
walls seemed hung with spectral goblins, the threads of
fairy gold gleaming dully.
Winslow stepped forward to study his enemy. The skin
was very pale with the silvery hue sometimes found on the
wings of certain moths. The earl’s face seemed a clever
mask of ivory, but a more precious ivory than any human
would ever handle. Peering closer, Winslow noticed that
the skin was ivory-smooth, too. No pockmarks disfigured
the slender body, and it was devoid of pores. Clearly, the
elves were made of finer stuff than their subjects. Still,
they could be killed like any living thing.
Winslow touched the pulsing jugular with the tip of his
dirk, and the elflord opened his eyes: cloudy orbs of twi-
light blue, seemingly blind in the light of the torches. His
pupils were contracted to pinpricks, tiny flaws in the
aquamarine of his eyes.
“You come in the rough glare of burning firs. The
humblest tree, fit only for trolls and mortals. You carry
iron fashioned from the bones of the First Hag. You come
to take my life.” His voice was low and melodious, and
the words issued from the thin air, the carved lips of the
earl never moving once.
“Such is the case,” Winslow replied. “I won’t bore you
with the enumeration of your crimes. I doubt if you would
even understand why they are crimes. In some ways
you’re innocent. Like the wolf is innocent of any wrong-
doing when he savages a little child.”
“Yet you kill wolves.”
“Certainly. But I don’t have to hate them. It is just
something that should be done.”
“I see.”

Winslow didn’t have to clean his dagger: the ruby

blood evaporated the moment it was touched by the rays
of the sun. The raiders opened leather sacks of finely
ground iron and seeded the hill. The misty walls crum-
bled, sinking in the sedge. The central tower wavered and
turned into a gnarled oak. A cloud of pale bats rose, chit-
Winslow felt the magic dissipate, the coarser stuff of
daytime reality filling the void. Illustrations by Valerie Valusek

“They’ll never rebuild,” Manfred, the blacksmith, said. horrible silence, more oppressive than any sound.
“We poisoned their damn hill. No more hell-music to lure Strangely enough her first panicked thought was: I hope
our maidens.” they don’t wake the baby! But Thomas slept on, his head
Winslow nodded absently, gazing at the sun, which cradled on the red rag doll. Joseline Winslowswife opened
moved perceptibly across the sky. Twenty minutes left. At the door a crack, peering in the troubled twilight. The
most. elves had halted at the improvised hedge of barbed wire,
“We’d better hurry. Twilight is pretty close, and we steering their horses away from the poisonous metal. She
want to be deep in the forest before they discover the Gos- threw the door completely open and stepped outside. Jose-
samer Palace is gone.” He stopped one of the younger line noticed the hiss of indrawn breath, but the other
boys before he upended their last sack of iron fillings. doors remained closed. Indistinct forms moved behind the
“We’ll need that. Dust our footprints. Cold iron will con- windows of pigs’ bladders, but the villagers seemed quite
fuse their wolves.” content to let her act as spokeswoman.
“The caverns aren’t that far,” Manfred objected. “We’ll She recognized one of the elves: Gespalidor of the Bot-
be there before twilight falls. Better use the dust where it tomless Well. Reputedly the sire of the Earl Magember,
will do some good.” though elves seldom acknowledged the bonds of blood.
“We’re not even sure if the dwarfs will give us sanctu- Still, in this case . . .
ary. True, they have no reason to love the elves, but we She clutched the jade amulet between her breasts, find-
have swindled them often, too. Perhaps too often. We may ing a measure of the comfort in the smiling face of Jezus
have to flee a long way.” of Nazareth, the Gentle Sage Who Loves All Men. She
Twilight found them halfway to the caverns. The sky could hope for little gentleness from these stern lords, who
hung low: a sheet of grainy indigo, shot through with had nothing to learn from the Saviour, being born soul-
green flickerings. The stars circled like trapped fireflies. less. For a moment she yearned for a more savage guide,
The stench of magic gradually filled their nostrils: freshly for there was no strong magic in dying at three years and
turned earth, mouldering copper, night-blooming orchids. thirty, surrounded by disciples and well-wishers.
In the distance the elfhorns sounded. She lifted her head and looked Gespalidor right into his
“We’ll give them a hard time,” Manfred said, his voice unhuman eyes. It disturbed her to find no hate there, only
gone flat with despair. “Nothing magic can penetrate sadness.
iron.” He threw a handful of filings in the air. They ig- “I suppose they’re dead,” she said quietly.
nited, each mote burning with a yellow flame that feebly It wasn’t even a question.
mimicked sunlight. The elflord nodded. He gestured with a pale hand.
Once again the haunting tones drifted through the for- “See.”
est. They didn’t sound distant at all. A stir at the edge of the wood: seventeen skeletons, their
“I think we’d better halt,” Winslow said. “Make our bones gleaming in the cold moonlight, stepped into the
stand here. Before we’re totally winded.” clearing. Some still carried their crossbows.
They spread their last iron dust in a circle and cocked “They murdered Earl Magember and all of his fol-
their crossbows. I wonder how many we killed, Winslow lowers. The elfhill is blighted for a thousand years. I sup-
mused, Perhaps all twelve times twelve of them. We had a lot of pose they had some justification for their crimes. The
dust. reign of my son seems to have been needlessly harsh. The
He sneezed and blinked his eyes. Iron dust covered the Unnamed gave us dominion over the Garden of Eden,
raiders and made their eyes burn. A haze of drifting motes over the mute animals and the animals that speak and
surrounded the humans, negating the omnipresent en- feel. We’re meant to be the gardeners of men, and accord-
chantments for a moment. He glimpsed the sky, and the ing to the testimony of the dead, Earl Magember behaved
twilight stars were frozen in fixed patterns, no longer more like a wolverine.”
circling. They seemed impossibly remote, farther even One of the skeletons stepped closer. With a pang of
than dragon-infested Cathay, and somehow huge. Yet he horror she recognized the copper ring on his fleshless fin-
once had seen elves gathering those same stars, dislodging ger. The dead man raised his hand. “All my passions are
them with long wands of carved bone. spent. I have killed, and I have been killed. This is my
The dark boles of beechs surrounded them like the pil- counsel: let these awful deeds fade in the past. Hate
lars of a pagan temple, their tops lost in the gloom. Most breeds hate, and a drop of blood spilt in anger can drown
of the clearing was lit by the ghostly glow of reacting iron, a world in a crimson flood.” Winslow pointed his finger at
so they clearly saw their doom. the elflord: “You, Lord Gespalidor will foster my son,
They came in a dark tide, streaming across the fallen Thomas, forging a bridge between man and elf. The vil-
leaves. They were quite small individually, but there were lage will renounce all use of iron and show the elves the
millions of them. hidden veins of ore so suitable warding spells can be set.”
Ants have no reason to fear iron. “I’m willing,” the elflord said almost instantly. He
looked very noble and wise, and Joseline hated him with a
raging yellow repugnance.
2 She scowled. “I don’t think we have much choice, eh?
Of course, we agree.”
The sound of hoofs, converging on the hidden village.
* * *
The neighing of fairy steeds. Followed by a sudden,

64 JULY 1987
3 4

She waited for three months until she was quite certain Thomas was twelve years old when he awoke in the
that the fickle elves had lost all interest in the rebel village. middle of the day. His sleeping pattern imitated that of the
The graveyard lay in a hollow, the thick boughs of oaks elves, and he had learned to dislike the short intervals of
sheltering the dead from the alien sky. Winslow’s marker searing glare punctuating the long twilight of the elfish
was still bare of moss, a rough slab of granite, his name realm.
deeply etched and filled with yellow clay. The small mi- A soundless voice had spoken his name. It wasn’t the
mosa she had planted in front had died, the flowers having first time. Nor, he feared, the last.
shriveled to brittle brown husks. He kept his eyes closed for almost twenty minutes,
She laid her amulet in the damp moss, the smiling face fighting the compulsion, and listened to the dry scram-
downward. The Gentle Sage frowned on the dark arts and bling of bats, the slow drip of a hidden well. Rest eluded
would no doubt have urged her to forgive, to turn her him, and the earth felt unbearably lumpy and damp. He
other cheek. But there were other, more forceful, gods left finally opened his eyes and scratched his belly. A long-
from the ages when the sun still shone for half of each day legged spider walked across his left arm, and he flicked it
and twilight was but a fleeting moment. away with a sweep of his hand.
She placed three stalks of ripe corn on the cold stone, The Hall of Peaceful Dreams became suddenly an op-
crushed a handful of berries. She next took an iron pin pressive and cramped place, with the rows of elves lying
from her tresses and jabbed her wrist. Blood dripped on like bloodless corpses in the dim glow of mushrooms.
the ears of corn, mingled with the purple berries.
She had but scant knowledge of magic, but her hate was She waited just outside the gate. His mother seemed
strong, and hate had always been the most vital ingredient older than the last time, her face a furrowed field, grey
of the dark enchantments. invading her black tresses. Or it might be just the merci-
“I call you from the sunny lands, the far lands. I call less glare of the sun, which hid nothing and always
you from the elfless lands, promised by the Martyred seemed intent on highlighting the world’s imperfections.
Friar. Anubis, unlock for him your toothed gates, for he She eyed his pale body with some distaste, noticing that
was a virtuous man. Helios-Ra, light his long way. the white of his eyes had acquired the slightest tinge of
Winslow my husband, by your seed that made my womb elfish blue. “I see you have learned to fear the sun.”
blossom, by the kisses we shared, come to me. My love He shook his head, but not in negation. “Why do you
will be your bridge, my hate will be your mantel. Rise, keep troubling me, Mother? I’m happy here. Almost. At
like Lazarus rose.” Her voice lowered to a whisper: “Or least happier than I would have been grubbing the earth
take the darker road, the earthen tunnel that nosferatu in your village. I’m learning important things.”
travel.” She tried to smile. “Elf magic. I suppose that’s quite
The moonlight yellowed, the stars froze in their course, fascinating. Still, they wouldn’t show a mere human the
and a dark form stood at the edge of the wood, his face a truly important things.”
lump of clay, his hair a shock of brittle grass. “They hide nothing! I’m one of them!”
“Joseline.” His voice was a low rumble, joyless, tired. “Ah. Even so, there are secrets they wouldn’t care to
“Blood calls to blood,” he said. “I came for the love we show a human changeling.”
once shared. But be warned. Though the dead are wise, “Such as?”
their wisdom is a heavy and useless burden and seldom “Their mining spell for instance. The words they use to
profits the living.” refine the rocks in aluminum, copper. The words that call
She hissed in anger. “The first time you counseled us, the gold from the hidden veins.”
we lost all able-bodied men. The second time, you stole He snorted. “That was one of the first things they
my son! Tell me, did your fleshless skeleton speak the taught me. It’s easy.” He tore a lumpy rock from the
truth or were you but a puppet of the elves? Your bones grass, spoke three words in the liquid syllables of the
manipulated by elvish enchantment?” elves. The stone flowed like wet mud, separated in tiny
“You want to destroy our overlords. I tell you, it is an nuggets that gleamed in the sun. “Copper,” he said. “I
easy thing to do. But it would avail you nothing and take could as easily call forth silver or black carbon.”
away what little humans still have left. Know that the “A multipurpose spell? How ingenious. Must be hard
world, all of reality, is a palimpsest. A lie written over to do. For a mere human.”
older, awful words that are horribly true. You live a “Not at all!” His face shone with enthusiasm. “Look.”
dream, you are a dream. Don’t force the world to wake, He repeated the first part of the spell. “Now the final
for you will stand with empty hands and even those hands word, it says how heavy the stuff is you want to have. If
will fade.” you say seventy-nine, you get gold. Eighty-two gives you
“So you wanted me to lose my only child. How you lead.”
must have hated me! Go! Go! My love is ashes.” He smiled, and his smile was almost elfish. “I know
“Children are not meant to be swords, Joseline.” what you’re thinking. But the moment a human uses the
She made the gesture of dismissal, and the moonlight spell to refine iron the elves will know.” He had no illu-
coloured silver. sions about his mother, but he saw no reason to dislike her
on that account. Crafty treachery had always been ad-
mired by the elves, and he liked her unbroken spirit. Also,
she was his mother. Fall of the Roman Empire in the section with tall tales, fan-
They strolled for some time along the White Way, a cies, and songs, while it clearly should be placed on the
road of stone slabs that showed many cracks and sagged in shelves for genealogy and natural philosophy?”
several places where the once molten stone was overlaid “So? You never let me read those.”
with a dark glaze. He once again marvelled at the differ- “I think the time has come to enlighten you. You know
ences between the sunlit world and the elvish realm. In the word ‘palimpsest’? If you reuse an old piece of vellum,
starlight no trace remained of the White Way. Nor of the you scrape off the words that are already written there and
crumbling ruins that lined the road. ink your own words. But it’s hard to clean the vellum
They parted at the edge of the forest while the sun sank completely. Most of the time you can still read the old
like a ruby moon behind the treetops. A single kiss, al- words. Thus, it is with our own world. We’re but a thin
most a token, and he saw her walk away in the gathering film over words already written there. Words that are
shadows. more true.”
If only she could forget, he thought. Or forgive. “The sun? The short day? That’s part of the first
The starlight changed the book she had found in the “It's the shadow of the true words, distorted by our
ruined daytime library into a slab of moldy wood, the title sorceries.” He took a black mantle from a peg and a silver
becoming no more than a meaningless tracery or worm- mask, the eyeholes covered with thin lenses of black obsid-
holes. It didn’t matter, she knew it by heart. ian. “I’ll show you the truth. The sun rises soon, and in
The Wonderful World of Chemistry, an Introduction. her light it’s often terribly easy to see the lineaments of the
Page 23, describing Magnesium, especially fascinated true world.”
her: “An extremely light and common metal, magnesium
combines with oxygen in an actinic flare. Its ultraviolet
radiation has been used in the early photographic proc- 6
esses because it so clearly resembled sunlight.”
A common metal, found everywhere. Captive sunlight! They crossed the dry meadow and walked half a mile
And unshielded sunlight would gravely harm and finally along the White Way. The ruins were almost hidden by
kill an elf. the trees.
The librarian gestured. “Even the endless forest where
the mortals hide, even her green leagues are part of our
5 dream.” He stamped on the crumbly grey stone. “Less
real than this, though the Way vanishes in twilight and the
Thomas read the passage again, frowning. The Latin ruins are seen no more.”
seemed archaic and strangely matter-of-fact. Not at all like They climbed a cobweb-garlanded stair, and the librar-
the ornate language of the more recent Lives of the Saints or ian halted in front of a tiny round window. The purplish
Devotions of a Grasshopper. glass had miraculously been left intact. He scratched the
“Returning with an additional three legions, Julius caked dust away. “Part of the first world, it annuls our
Caesar crossed the borders of Faery. He was victorious in enchantments. See the true world, my child.”
the first engagement, the battle taking place in the after- He stepped aside, and Thomas gazed outside.
noon. But the moment twilight fell, the elves returned, The forest was gone, the sky altered to a brooding pur-
armed with fearful sorceries, and not a single soldier was ple dome with scudding, storm-torn clouds the color of
left alive. gall. Ruins dotted the ashen plain. Nothing grew.
“Now the Empire of Faery had grown somnolent and Thomas searched the indistinct horizon: the mountains
weary, the elves caring little for the affairs of mortals. seemed too low and had a molten, scorched look. Ice rose
Caesar’s invasion woke them from their long slumber, and beyond them in dirty grey turrets, circling the plain.
they left their hills, swarming over the forest of Gaul. “The mortals fought a war, unleashing the powers of
Vanishing in the light of day, ever victorious in the twi- the sun herself. You killed the world. Not a single animal
light, it took them a scant three years to conquer the Ro- was left alive, no seed survived.
man Empire and make the lands of Man a part of their “A horrible void was left, and the mighty stream of
twilit realm. Time itself halted. We filled that void. We are dreams,
“Let the name of Julius Caesar be reviled, for his greed history that should never have happened. A second-choice
has brought us calamities untold and a bondage sore!” reality that is quite improbable and very, very fragile.”
Looking up from the brittle parchment, Thomas found The elf nodded. “If any mortal had been left alive, he
the librarian studying him. He liked the ancient elf who would have called it World War Three.”
tended the catacombs, feeding the sluggish spiders juicy “Dreams,” Thomas mused. “You’re all figments.”
ants and ladybugs. “This here, it’s true?” “Just like you.”
The elf smiled. “To some degree. It describes what
happened, but not all things that happened were true.”
Thomas shrugged. “And I suppose it’ll take me another 7
thousand years to understand what you mean with that
riddle?” Joseline intoned the words, the nineteen village leaders
“Hardly. Perhaps you noticed that I filed the Rise and standing in front of her. A tiny movement, the earth stir-

66 JULY 1987
ring. Five lumps coalesced from the loam. Lumps of a dull the hall. In the confusion, nobody tried to stop him: any-
silvery grey metal. way, he was clearly too short to be an elf.
“Magnesium,” she said. “Hand me a torch.” Thomas took the steps three at a time. He felt strangely
The lumps ignited with a dazzling flame, a glare so light, as if gravity was relinquishing her hold on his body,
fierce it left pulsating afterimages. rejecting his reality.
One of the leaders started to laugh, his eyes streaming. He turned the last corner and glimpsed a segment of
“Iron? Who needs iron when we have this! They’ll burn blue sky. For an impossible short moment, the window
like moths in a candle flame!” framed the silhouette of a swallow. It was the most beauti-
ful thing he had ever seen.
The sky turned a dull red, and the temperature dropped
8 sharply. He halted. He knew too well what he would find
outside. Only the nuclear Fimbul winter, the empty ruins.
Thomas woke to impossible sunlight. Tall shadows Raising his hands, he noticed that they had already
danced through the sleeping hall, brandishing copper grown quite transparent. If only she could have forgiven, he
swords. thought. And then, with melancholy curiosity, for he had
Trolls! was his first thought, and he grabbed his sword. become more than half-elf, I wonder what the Hand will write
A ray of horribly bright light swept the hall and touched next. . . .
his weapon. His magic sword shuddered and reverted to a
stalk of dry weed. For three heartbeats he stood frozen,
stupidly staring at his uesless weapon.
A spear nicked his left arm, and he jumped back. The
glare wavered and died, and his elf-learned night vision
returned. He stepped back in a niche, searching the hall
from the sheltering overhang.
All the elves had died. Their naked bodies were covered
with deep, smoking burns, their skin blackening and peel-
ing. Human warriors swarmed through the hall, an old
woman exhorting them from the gate with shrill cries.
Two warriors squatted, cursing in front of several metal
poles, striking sparks from a disc of flint. A spark arced
into the dry moss and rose in a wavering flame. They
shoved their poles in the flame, and the metal ignited
promptly. The sun returned.
He draped his shuddering body with the blood-soaked
mantle of a dead invader and stumbled to the entrance of

Nearly every mammal has fur or hair,
serving as insulation for the creature and,
if thick enough, as armor (to a limited
extent). Fish, birds, and amphibians have
no fur, but the referee may wish to have
lizards, for example, grow fur in arctic
regions. Some dinosaurs are believed to
have had fur or feathers.
Physical form: Certain creatures might
not be completely solid in form. Inverte-
brates such as the slug, worm, jellyfish,
and medusa have no rigid internal struc-
ture; some creatures could almost be
liquids. Such creatures would usually
dwell in oceans or other mediums which
would support their weight.
Attack forms: Almost all creatures have
one or more methods of attack. Carnivores
would usually attack with jaws or claws,
and sometimes with a tail slap or sting.
Herbivores generally attack only with
limbs (like a horse’s hooves) or by ram-
ming and goring (like a rhino’s horn).
Sometimes, if large enough, herbivores
can trample. Herbivores may bite but
rarely do so by preference.
Plants that attack might have mouthlike
leaves like those on a Venus flytrap. Alien
adapted to their environment that players plants would likely “attack” with thorns
by Danny Kretzer begin to wonder how these creatures (perhaps poisoned) or with poisonous
manage to survive. Referees create exotic spores.
Glakket and his Yazirian companion plants and animals which could never The referee should feel encouraged to
slashed their way through the dense jun- really live together in one environment. create brand new attack forms, such as an
gle. Suddenly, a gigantic bird swooped The presence of unrealistic alien ecologies acid spray, special venom, or maybe a
down, claws flashing. In an instant, the often cause players to wonder if there is sonic boom. However, attack forms should
Yazirian was gone, leaving the Vrusk any special reason for the flaws they per- be suited to the creature using them, and
explorer alone. . . . ceive. The first thing players will suspect should reasonably be expected to work
“Whaaaaat?!” cried the player. “How is that Sathar may have tampered with the against the creature’s worst biological
could a giant-sized bird even budge some- ecology of the planet, sending the PCs off enemy. Avoid completely ridiculous attack
thing with a Yazirian’s mass? And how the track of the actual adventure in search forms unless you can find an analog for
could it find room to fly, much less swoop, of a Sathar base. Keeping the game on them in Earthly biology.
in the middle of a dense jungle?” track and keeping the game balanced and Defense forms: All creatures have one
“Well, I guess there was a break in the believable are good reasons for a well- form of defense or another. Herbivores
branches,” replied the referee, nervously planned ecology. and omnivores usually have more effective
ignoring the first question. When designing other-worldly crea- defenses since they need them the most.
“This jungle is miles in diameter! Why tures, the referee should add the following Defense forms include protective shells,
would a creature spend time flying above guidelines to those given in the STAR thick hides, heavy fur, increased speed,
it in hopes that another creature would be FRONTIERS® Expanded Game Rules. Note and sharpened senses. The referee should
in one of the few clearings at the same that these are very general guidelines, and decide what bonus the creature should get
time it flew over?” numerous exceptions could exist for each from a defense; for example, a creature
The referee simply shrugged. such suggestion. with a fur coat 5 cm thick might get a
“Well, where is its natural habitat?” Appearance: Creatures often have the bonus of - 15 to the attacker’s hit roll with
“Um . . . in the mountains to the south. same colors on their dorsal sides as their melee weapons, and it could take 5 points
But sometimes it goes hunting over the surroundings (“dorsal” means the back of off the damage roll from nonenergy weap-
woods,” said the referee. a creature), with white or pale colors on ons. Large carnivores living on a planet
“So, it does fly over this extremely dense their ventral sides (i.e., the underbelly of a that has no intelligent weapon-wielding
jungle in hopes that a meal will conven- creature). Many small creatures, such as predators will likely not be well defended
iently pass through the clearings. But it’s a insects, are brightly colored when conceal- unless they need protecting from their
fact that birds need to eat their weight or ment is of minor concern or color is preys’ attacks or from other carnivores.
more in food each day, so there’s no way important for social identification. How Speed: Small creatures would usually be
that a giant flying bird could survive in well any natural camouflage works is fast or very fast. The referee should keep
these circumstances and have strength to completely up to the referee, though it in mind that defenses like armor plating or
pick a hireling out of a jungle. In real life, should usually be helpful. heavy fur impede the speed of a creature
that bird would not have the strength to Consider, too, the location of a creature’s and should only be given to large crea-
lift its own head off the ground due to lack eyes. As a general biological rule, preda- tures that usually move slowly anyway.
of nourishment!” tors have eyes on the fronts of their heads Herbivores that are medium- to small-
The referee sighed. Perhaps it was time (to coordinate their attacks with binocular sized should never be any slower than
to try a fantasy game. No one ever ques- vision), and their prey have eyes on the medium speed, unless the predators are
tioned giant flying birds there. sides of their heads (to detect predators equally sluggish or unless the herbivores
over wide visual areas). The location of the have a powerful defense form. Likewise,
All too often in STAR FRONTIERS® eyes helps the referee determine how this rule should apply to carnivores. Giant-
games, I see creatures that are so poorly easily a creature can be surprised. and large-sized creatures are usually slow-
68 JULY 1987
er (unless they can fly), as are herbivores then its prey is bound to take advantage of plicate matters, the Sathar also told the
of this size, since they have more weight it. To give a modern example, killer whales natives that Sathars were gods who had to
to move around. cannot survive on land. When one attacks be obeyed. It was a challenge for the PCs
Flying: Carnivorous flying creatures a group of penguins, they quickly swim to to take on a bunch of armed alien religious
usually hunt prey on the open ground or land or a floating ice floe. This prevents fanatics who weren’t talking and could
on the surface of water. The terrain over the whale from completely wiping out the easily beat the PCs in combat.
which they are found usually helps deter- penguins, though a few penguins are Parasites: Parasites are found on all
mine their size. In the opening instance usually caught anyway, thus allowing the planets. These are creatures that feed on
with the Yazirian-eating bird, the crea- orca to survive; both prey and predator larger creatures called hosts. Parasites
ture’s size would impede its flight capabili- benefit from the restriction, since a loss of have many ways of entering or attaching
ty through the trees, and it couldn’t see prey means a loss of predators. The to a host; one way is through the digestive
very well through the branches to catch restrictions don’t always have to be as system (swallowing). Once inside, the
its prey. In the woods, flying carnivores obvious as this example. Restrictions parasite feeds off one or more of the host’s
should never be larger than medium at should never allow every member of the natural features (blood, flesh, etc.). The
best, and only that large in extreme cases. prey’s group to survive, or else the preda- parasite’s feeding should affect the host in
Larger flyers generally stick to the moun- tor dies out. Of course, clever characters at least one way; for example, a parasite
tains or open areas. Smaller flyers will will observe the restrictions of different might lower a character’s reaction speed
stay away from exceptionally windy areas, creatures and use them in their favor. by 10. The parasite should rarely be capa-
since they would be blown around like Intelligence: Almost every highly intelli- ble of killing its host, since this is against
leaves. And please note that even the gent creature I’ve seen in any game adven- its best interests. If the host dies, then the
largest flying creatures in existence today ture has been roughly man-sized and parasite dies with it. Parasites should be a
would be unable to lift a medium-sized humanoid in design. Just because it hap- minor annoyance to the PCs and not a
dog, much less a grouchy Yazirian with pened that way on Earth doesn’t mean it fatal threat.
full combat/exploration gear! has to be that way on other planets. I’ve Microorganisms: Earth is crawling with
Numbers: Tiny and small creatures are never seen a tiny creature or an aquatic or bacteria and other organisms that are
often found in large groups if they are fishlike creature be the most intelligent microscopic. It seems very likely that
social, especially if they have attack forms race on a planet. And look at Vrusk and other planets would be host to similar
which can be combined to be dangerous Dralasites! Challenge your players with a organisms. Only a relative few microorgan-
to larger creatures. Medium-sized crea- civilization of tiny lizard creatures that isms on Earth cause harm to humans; this
tures might also be found in packs and can talk and fight. resistance evolved over millions of years
herds. Medium carnivore numbers vary, I’ve also rarely seen a newly created of exposure to these organisms. However,
since some travel in packs (like wolves) race of intelligent aliens that have devel- microorganisms on planets that humans or
while others will hunt alone (like moun- oped firearms or motor-powered trans- other PC races have never visited before
tain lions). Hunting techniques may thus ports. It’s likely that sooner or later the have a greater likelihood of being harmful
dictate group sizes. UPF will uncover a planet with beings that to PCs (remember War of the Worlds, by
Large- to giant-sized creatures might be have developed technology to a point H.G. Wells?). I’ve only seen one occasion on
found in smaller groups if they are her- where they have sophisticated inventions which a microorganism was a threat to
bivores, but carnivores will rarely be and weapons or even early space explora- the PCs in a STAR FRONTIERS® game
found in groups larger than packs or tion. Hours of exciting roleplaying are adventure.
prides of eight individuals or less. This is possible when a group of PCs uncovers a Microorganisms can become a very
because large carnivores that must hunt technologically advanced planet and tries interesting problem for the PCs and can
and bring down prey cannot stand great to get them to join the UPF. For example, a affect them in several ways. The first and
competition for food. Imagine the food group of PCs and NPCs exploring a remote most obvious is to have an effect similar to
requirements of a herd of tyrannosaurs! star system in a game I ran discovered a poisons, diseases, or infections, as shown
On a planetary scale, there should be a crude exploration satellite with primitive in the Expanded Rulebook. The second is
great many small creatures serving as photography equipment attached to it. to give exposure to the microorganisms a
prey, a good number of medium prey and This led them to a medium-sized planet, bizarre effect, such as causing insanity or
small predators, few large prey and medi- second from its sun. When they passed psychological deterioration. The third and
um predators, and very few large preda- over it, they discovered the world was most terrifying effect is (obviously) swift
tors. The referee should remember this covered with settlements — some as large onset of illness and death. This should
when he is making a random encounter as cities. When they landed, the PCs met only be used when the bacteria are in an
table and make large predators a less the planet‘s military forces. Once their area in which PCs wouldn’t normally
likely encounter. This guideline, the food- poly-voxes were adjusted to the aliens’ encounter them: a depressurized drifting
chain ratio, is rarely applied but is critical language and they had established their hulk, for example. If this type of effect is
if a realistic ecology is desired. peaceful intentions, they were brought used, the referee may wish to introduce
Special abilities: When a referee decides before the world’s ruling council. This was new anticontamination equipment to the
to give any creature a special ability, he an interesting point in the game, as the campaign. The effect should usually
should take into account the following: PCs discovered that they had allies and become obvious upon exposure to NPCs or
size, special attacks or defenses, intelli- enemies on the council. They worked to lab animals (don’t kill off PCs too rapidly).
gence, and dietary type (carnivore, her- convert those who were opposed to them. In a recent adventure I ran, the PCs dis-
bivore, or omnivore). A large, intelligent In the end, after much intrigue, the PCs covered a hulk full of dead bodies. When
carnivore with a poison sting should have got the planet to join the UPF. This got the they brought a corpse back to their own
few and limited (if any!) special abilities. A PCs promoted in the UPF fleet. More ship, a careless NPC exposed himself to the
small herbivore of low intelligence without important, it gave the players hours of body and its bacteria, and subsequently
any attack or defense to speak of can have fun. Now they knew how the aliens who died. The PCs spent the rest of the adven-
more and better special abilities. Her- come to Earth in the movies might feel! ture fighting faulty equipment and each
bivores or omnivores that are preyed The above example is one of several other in. an attempt to find a cure for the
upon will usually have special abilities adventures in which I had the native ali- disease.
keyed toward defense or camouflage. ens possess firearms. On another occasion, The last type of effect that microorga-
Restrictions: Most, if not all, creatures the Sathar got to the planet first and nisms can have is to damage equipment,
have some type of restriction. If a carni- armed the natives, giving orders to kill weapons, or even starships. This can leave
vore has a restriction (which it should), anyone in UPF uniforms. To further com- the PCs stranded on a planet if the referee
chooses. The Andromeda Strain, by damage done by others. They can even be or mercenaries, but the PCs must have
Michael Crichton, makes useful reading. a mixed blessing, like one that raises a PC’s something of value with which to pay the
Microorganisms don’t have to affect all Stamina but impedes his vision (“Hey, who creatures. Credits aren’t likely to be
races. In fact, there may be a type of turned out the lights?“). accepted by aliens who have no contact
microorganism that only affects the Lairs: In nature, a lair usually serves as a with the UPF!
Sathar. The UPF would want to get their place to raise young, sleep, and eat food.
hands on it so they could use it to make Some creatures may store items that they Summary
new weapons (like grenades) for the Star consider valuable in their lairs. If the By using the guidelines above, referees
Law Rangers to use against their foes. creature lives on a planet where there are should be able to create more realistic
Corporations may also want to market a large deposits of a valuable mineral, it may alien lifeforms. The referee should use the
new pesticide and send PCs to collect collect that mineral and even compete following rules in particular:
samples. with prospecting PCs for control of a 1. There should be more weaker crea-
The native animals on certain planets mineral deposit. Unintelligent aliens might tures than powerful ones in a worlds
should have a very small chance of being keep valuable items for odd reasons, like ecology.
affected by the microorganisms of their the Australia bowerbird that builds a nest 2. The ecology should allow both preda-
own planet since they probably would of shiny objects to attract female bower- tor and prey to survive.
have developed immunity. But, if exposed birds. 3. Intelligence should not be restricted to
to PCs or brought to another planet, aliens Uses: When the referee creates a crea- man-sized creatures, nor should technology
may die from contact with seemingly ture, he should decide if there are any be so restricted.
harmless microorganisms (again, as in War possible ways in which PCs could use that 4. Most important, just because some-
of the Worlds). creature. Wild animals could be ridden by thing hasn’t happened on Earth doesn’t
Microorganisms are almost always found the PCs or used as pack animals on over- mean that it can’t happen on other plan-
in great numbers, and they usually move land trails. The referee should decide how ets. In other words, the referee should not
by wind or water currents. Some microor- fast a creature moves while burdened allow his imagination to be limited by the
ganisms cause harm only under certain with a rider or gear (or both), and what way things are here on Earth. If a creature
circumstances. For instance, an alien bac- penalties are assessed against encumbered is believable and consistent in its own
teria may only take effect when inhaled, beasts. environment, the game will be improved.
but can attach itself to skin and be carried A creature can also be used for food. (Note: One excellent reference book for
by the victim even if he is wearing a gas Some creatures that are preyed upon ecology- and alien-builders is Dougal Dix-
mask. Other microorganisms are only (most notably insects) have toxic chemicals on’s After Man (New York: St. Martin’s
effective when they are swallowed or in their bloodstreams that are most effec- Press, 1981), which depicts a future ecol-
enter the bloodstream through a cut. tive against their natural predators. These ogy on Earth, 50 million years after the
Not all microorganisms have to be dan- poisons may or may not affect the PCs. extinction of mankind. It’s hard to beat for
gerous. Some may act as a cure for the Intelligent creatures may act as guides imagination and detail. — RM).

70 JULY 1987
Before plunging into the matter at hand, I’ve gotten some letters over the past are not only for Scourge (who appeared in
it’s time for yet another general-interest few months requesting Scourge, a vigilan- MA2, Avengers™ Coast-to-Coast), but for all
question. In the past, such questions have te who went around popping off the the people he’s bumped off. A lot of these
brought forth a huge amount of mail on majority of the third-banana villains (and a latter individuals are minor characters
various subjects; so — not learning from couple of important ones as well) in the who, all together, had only a handful of
our mistakes — I’m going to do it again. Marvel Universe. However, these requests appearances and are unlikely to receive

72 JULY 1987
mention in any upcoming TSR product. “Justice Is Served” Moore. While you’re at AIR-WALKER™
The rub is that there are almost 30 of it, include any other individuals you want Gabriel Lan of Xandar
these ex-villains, ranging from such long- to see in this column (we’ve covered a lot
standing foes as Miracle Man, the Melter, of them, but there are a lot more left).
F AM (50) Health: 275
and Hammer and Anvil to lesser lights Okay, then, on to new business. As A MN (75)
such as Turner D. Century and Megatak. shown above, being dead does not neces- S AM (50) Karma: 155
If we are to do the rogue’s gallery of all sarily prevent a hero or villain from being E UN (100)
of Scourge‘s victims, it will have to be a covered in the Marvel®-Phile. Back in the Resources: n/a
R RM (30)
major section in DRAGON® Magazine — a early history of this column, in DRAGON® I MN (75)
total of 12- or 16-pages, possibly run in issue #92, we covered three of the recog- P AM (50) Popularity: 0
two or three issues. Whether we do this nized Heralds of Galactus — one of whom,
or not depends entirely on your feedback. Terrax, is among the deceased. Now, we
If you want to see it, send in your mail, finally get to handle the other half of the Known Powers:
care of DRAGON Magazine (P.O. Box 110, group. Power Cosmic: Air-Walker had the ability
Lake Geneva, WI 53147), to me or Roger to gather, channel, and manipulate vast
quantities of cosmic energy with Mon-
strous ability, within a range of 2,000
miles. Air-Walker could perform the fol-
lowing power stunts with this power:
* Create energy attacks of Monstrous
* Generate heat, magnetism, and electrici-
ty of Monstrous levels; and,
* Enhance any one of his personal abilities
to the Unearthly rank, once per day, for
1-10 rounds.
Air-Walker was capable of manipulating
matter at the molecular level, as Silver
Surfer can, but it is not known if he was
as proficient at this as the Silver Surfer is.
Air-Walker would manifest this Power
Cosmic as a set of crimson and gold
“wings” issuing from his back.
Flight: Air-Walker could move between the
stars at Class 5000 speeds, but usually
curtailed his movement within planetary
atmospheres. He could also hover in place.
Unlike Terrax, Firelord, or the Surfer, Air-
Walker required no additional parapher-
nalia in order to fly.
Body Armor: Air-Walker had Amazing
protection from energy and physical
attacks, which he could boost to Mon-
strous levels for 1-10 rounds. He was
invulnerable to heat and cold (with Class
1000 resistance) and could survive in
space for extended periods of time with-
out need of food or air.
Horn of Galactus: Both the original Air-
Walker™ and his robotic replacement were
provided with a golden, trumpetlike
device which issued a hyper-space signal.
Both used the trumpet to summon Galac-
tus to planets which looked suitable for
Galactus’s “dinner.”
The Air-Walker Robot: After the death of
Gabriel Lan, Galactus built a robot, then
DESTROYER™ invested it with the Power Cosmic and the
remains of Lan’s personality. This robot
had statistics similar to those of the origi-

Marvel, Marvel Universe, and all Marvel characters and character likenesses are trademarks of Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc.
©1987 Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

nal Air-Walker, and in addition had repair Gabriel’s consciousness into a robotic nately, the Machinesmith could not under-
circuitry allowing it to heal as a living duplicate. While this duplicate served stand the Air-Walker Robot’s alien wiring.
creature. The source of the robot’s power admirably, it lacked the curiosity and drive The Machinesmith did manage to activate
was its winglike “cloak,” which gathered of the original Gabriel Lan, so that Galac- the self-repair circuitry in the ex-Herald,
cosmic energy. The Air-Walker Robot was tus finally dispatched it to Earth to however, allowing Air- Walker to rebuild
- 1CS in all of its abilities if unable to use retrieve the then-imprisoned Silver Surfer. itself. Seeking vengeance against the Silver
the cloak. This attempt to recover the former Herald Surfer, Air-Walker instead encountered
met with failure, resulting in the destruc- and fought Thor, who destroyed it and
Air-Walker’s story: Gabriel Lan was a tion of the bulk of the Air-Walker Robot, apparently ruined its repair circuitry. The
native of the now-destroyed world of leaving Galactus without a Herald again. robotic remains of the Air-Walker were
Xandar, and was the captain of the space The Air-Walker Robot was retrieved by taken into space by the former Herald
ship Way-Opener The Way-Opener made the robotic servants of the Machinesmith, Firelord, who buried them on an asteroid
contact with Galactus’s ship when the a human/robot villain, who sought to use in the Xandar system.
Eater of Worlds was seeking a replace- the powerful robot as a servant. Unfortu-
ment for his first Herald, the Silver Surfer.
Sensing Lan’s spirit, Galactus teleported
him into his presence and offered him the
Power Cosmic. Given the opportunity to Pyreus Kril of Xandar
powers, but within inhabited solar sys-
explore the universe as Galactus’s Herald, tems he restricts himself to the Unearthly
Gabriel accepted and was invested with F MN (75) Health: 325
ranks. In addition, by using the Power
the Power Cosmic. A UN (100)
Karma: 110 Cosmic, he may project and control light,
Gabriel Lan served Galactus faithfully S AM (50)
E UN (100) sound, gravity, and radio as power stunts.
for several years until he returned from a He may be able to use the healing and
new-found planet suitable for Galactus’s R RM (30) Resources: n/a
matter-manipulation ability of the Silver
needs and encountered a fleet of Ovoid I AM (50)
Popularity: 0 Surfer, but he has never demonstrated
warships. The fleet had been on patrol P RM (30)
them (treat these abilities as first-time
and was aware of Galactus’s presence in power stunts, if used). The fire-based
their part of the galaxy; they were also Known Powers:
manifestations of the Power Cosmic,
carrying weaponry which was designed to including Firelord’s flaming hair, cannot be
slay Galactus. They fired at Air-Walker Power Cosmic: Firelord has the Power
smothered by water, though a sufficient
instead, killing him. Cosmic of Unearthly rank, and he usually
chooses to channel it into the form of fiery amount of water or flame retardant may
Galactus found his dying Herald, but had reduce their effects.
no available power to save Air-Walker’s effects. In deep space, Firelord has Class
life. Instead, he transferred the bulk of 1000 flame-generation and fire-control Body Armor: Firelord has Amazing body
armor against physical attacks and may
superheat his body (as a power stunt) so
that normal weapons and materials vapor-
ize on contact with him, leaving him
unharmed. Firelord is immune to disease,
aging, and the effects of starvation and
vacuum. Firelord cannot be slain save by
the complete scattering of his molecules
(apparently a new power common to
Heralds since the death of Air-Walker).
Flight: Like all Heralds of Galactus, Fire-
lord can fly at Class 1000 speeds and enter
hyperspace at will. In planetary atmo-
spheres, he flies at Unearthly speeds.
Firelord’s Staff: Firelord can wield his fire-
generating power through a 5’-long staff,
allowing him a + 1 CS to hit targets. This
staff is made of Class 1000 materials and
may be used as a striking weapon, inflict-
ing Monstrous damage in Firelord’s hands.
Firelord’s story: Pyreus Kril was the
first officer on the Way-Opener, under the
command of Gabriel Lan (Air-Walker).
Captain Lan was teleported away from the
ship into Galactus’s presence, and Pyreus
and his crew followed to retrieve their
captain. Pyreus caught up with Galactus
after the destruction of the Air-Walker
Robot, and the Eater of Worlds volun-
teered to reveal the fate of Gabriel Lan if
Pyreus would agree to serve as his Herald.
Pyreus did so and was transformed into
Firelord served Galactus for a short
time, until Thor had him released from
service by exchanging the Asgardian con-

74 JULY 1987
struct known as the Destroyer for Kril’s elements and molecules, as well as to alter with both Odin and Thor. Thor, unaware
freedom. Firelord retired to Earth, the site densities of substances, at Class 1000 of Odin’s true purpose in creating the
of the Air-Walker Robot’s death. Following power; and, Destroyer armor, eventually bartered it to
Thor’s battle with the reactivated Air- * A disintegrator beam that takes two Galactus in exchange for Firelord’s free-
Walker Robot, Firelord took that con- rounds to charge, but once activated, fires dom. The Eater of Worlds accepted, but
struct’s remains and buried them in the a beam of pure disintegrating force with a the need to animate the armor fully and
Xandar system. Firelord wandered exten- 5-area range and Class 1000 power. Inani- its overly destructive tendencies caused
sively, but following the destruction of mate items of less than Class 1000 material Galactus to place the armor aside — at
Xandar by the mercenary Nebula, joined strength are immediately destroyed, while which point, Loki stole it back for yet
the former Avenger Starfox to hunt for living beings must make an Endurance another plot against Asgard.
this space marauder. FEAT against the intensity of the blast to With the arrival of the Celestial Fourth
avoid a similar fate. Host, Odin summoned the life-forces of all
the gods of Asgard (except Thor) into the
The Destroyer’s story: The enchanted Destroyer and, wielding the Odinsword,
DESTROYER™ Destroyer armor was created by Odin’s took on the Celestials. The Destroyer was
Construct of Odin finest craftsmen from an unknown Asgar- quickly beaten by the Celestial Host, but
dian element stronger than Adamantium something as invulnerable as the
F UN (100) Health: 3,275 Destroyer was not entirely destroyed, and
or Uru, and was further enchanted by
A MN (75)
Odin and the other leading “gods” of vari- its form was (again) located and rescued
S UN (100) Karma: 0
ous pantheons with its present powers. by Loki. On this occasion, Loki gave over
E CL 3000
The Destroyer was built by these entities the Destroyer armor to Thor during a
R n/a Resources: n/a
as a trump card in the eventuality of war squabble with Loki’s daughter, Hela. The
I n/a
with the Celestials, a race of space-gods Thor-powered Destroyer demolished a
P MN (100) Popularity: - 100 whose powers equalled or exceeded those large section of Hela’s realm before the
of Odin, Zeus, and the other deities. The Norse death-goddess surrendered. As a
Known Powers:
Destroyer was created only to destroy, last act, Thor used the armor’s matter-
and those who are absorbed into the manipulating abilities to encase itself in a
Animation: The Destroyer is an enchanted armor eventually become killing machines thick prism of unbreakable (Class 5000)
suit of armor which may capture the devoid of any other desire. crystal, as a monument to Hela’s folly.
consciousness of its user in order to gain Odin hid the Destroyer armor in an The Destroyer was the only one of
movement and direction. Such a con- underground temple in Indochina, where Galactus’s official Heralds that was an
sciousness may be a willing entity within it was located in later years by Loki. The unliving thing, and thus did not agree with
10’ of the empty armor, an unwilling enti- God of Mischief used the Destroyer on its transformation into a Herald. As such,
ty who touches the armor and fails a
several occasions as a pawn in his battles it never wielded the Power Cosmic.
Psyche FEAT of Monstrous rank, or a
willing and powerful entity with magical
abilities who can project his astral form
into the armor. In any case, the body of
the consciousness occupying the armor
remains inactive until the spirit leaves the
Destroyer armor and returns to its origi-
nal body (which does not need to be in
contact to make the switch).
Anyone occupying the Destroyer armor
gains the attributes listed above, adding
his own Reason and Intuition scores to the
appropriate areas. He must make a Psyche
FEAT against the Destroyer’s own Mon-
strous Psyche each time he uses one of the
construct’s powers or makes a FEAT roll
using the armor. The failure of this FEAT
means the user’s personality is consumed
by the Destroyer’s own will, and the
Destroyer becomes a juggernaut of
destructive power.
Body Armor: The Destroyer is made of
metal enchanted beyond the levels of
Adamantium itself, making it Class 3000
protection against all forms of attack,
including physical, energy, force, mental,
and magical powers. Its “wearer” has no
need to breathe, eat, or sleep.
Weaponry: In addition to its powerful
attributes and near-invulnerability, the
Destroyer has a number of powerful,
inherent weapon systems, including:
* Energy bolts of Shift Z power;
* Force bolts of Shift Z power;
* Flame generation of Shift Z power;
* Magnetic generation of Shift Y power;
* The ability to transmute and arrange

fending off marriage plans from the girl
across the street. His sidekicks also call
Inverness home, but they’re old enough to
get senior citizen rates at hotels and res-
taurants. And the situations Lincoln must
face include a modern skyjacking and
jungle ambushes.
If the description of the novel sounds
like the formula for thousands of adven-
ture movies, novels, and games (the TOP
SECRET® or Mercenaries, Spies & Private
Eyes games in this case), it shouldn’t be a
surprise. Marsh is indeed writing a formu-
la book, but his gift is to lend a crisp exe-
cution to the text that barely gives readers
time to notice. Plot, pace, and scenery
interlock with fine-tuned precision, and
the result is an excellent example of how
this kind of yarn ought to be put together.
Game masters and writers who can figure
out how Marsh does it have long and
successful careers ahead of them.


Lawrence Watt-Evans
Del Rey 0-345-32616-4 $3.50
About a year and a half ago, a series of
letters in the “Forum” column debated
whether a powerful dragon could survive
the onslaught of 25th-level characters with
+ 5 everything. With a Single Spell makes
the debate irrelevant, as Lawrence Watt-
Evans offers a tale in which the requisite
dragon is slain through what amounts to
the use of a firefinger cantrip.
That particular episode, though, is only
part of what makes Watt-Evans’s latest
novel especially intriguing to players of
low-level magic-users. The adventures of
Tobas of Telven are a veritable warehouse
of ideas for gamers who want to inject
variety and a degree of realism into the
process of advancing to the rank of mage.
Tobas starts the book with only the
aforementioned spell in his repertoire —
it’s the only one his master has taught him,
and old Roggit has just died. Desperate to
learn more in order to launch his career,
Tobas tries to open Roggit’s spell book, but
the tome explodes and ends up destroying
the dead wizards cottage. That sends
Tobas out into the world seeking his for-
tune, and a series of adventures quite
naturally begins.
Watt-Evans uses a brand of magic slight-
ly removed from the D&D® game norm,
but there are enough parallels so that
most of the novel’s wizardcraft can be
frey Marsh’s book for pulp fiction written translated effectively. In particular, the use
by John C. Bunnell 40 years earlier. The tale has all the classic of “order” rather than “level” to refer to a
hallmarks: death-dealing cliffhangers spell’s relative difficulty is a good touch,
THE KING OF SATAN’S EYES concluding each chapter; beautiful wom- and Tobas’s problems with material com-
Geoffrey Marsh en, sometimes trustworthy and sometimes ponents show dramatically how DMs
Tor 0-812-50650-2 $3.50 not; world-spanning trails of evil hench- might resolve similar situations. Even the
It’s appropriate that the typography for men and obscure clues; and a dangerously nonmagical plot twists (especially the
the title of this book recalls the Indiana powerful object out of legend to tie the reward offered for slaying that dragon)
Jones movie logos. If anything, The King of chases together. are neatly and logically unveiled.
Satan’s Eyes is an even more direct descen- The present-day elements are somewhat With a Single Spell is set in the same
dant of the old movie serials and pulp more subtle. Hero Lincoln Blackthorne realm as its predecessor, The Misen-
novels than are Steven Spielberg’s films. lives between adventures in a sleepy New chanted Sword, and like the earlier book,
In fact, only occasional touches of the Jersey town and divides his time there takes a low-key situation and a plausible,
1980s keep readers from mistaking Geof- between crafting expensive suits and sympathetic character from humble ori-
76 JULY 1987
gins to a satisfying conclusion. Perhaps because it is one of the few novels around To THE HAUNTED MOUNTAINS
having offered readers a wizard and a that treats the world of science-fiction Ru Emerson
warrior in this context, Watt-Evans will try fandom in serious, if lighthearted, fashion. Ace 0-441-79558-7 $2.95
a healer’s or thief’s tale next. If so, the The Wilderness Survival Guide provided
stories are likely to be rewarding, since ARROWS OF THE QUEEN the rules and statistics for DMs to expand
the author has now proven his ability to Mercedes Lackey and refine wilderness adventures in their
tell them twice over. DAW 0-88677-189-7 $2.95 campaigns. Now Ru Emerson’s second
The story told in Arrows of the Queen is novel, the first in a trilogy about the realm
BIMBOS OF THE DEATH SUN an engaging one, and future volumes of of Nedao, provides the atmosphere.
Sharyn McCrumb the trilogy it begins will be worth reading. Emerson’s yarn has barely started before
Windwalker/TSR 0-88038-455-7 $2.95 But there is a catch: Mercedes Lackey the journey begins. Nedao’s capital has been
It’s not exactly a murder mystery (like seems to have three kinds of stories in sacked, and its heir must flee to a distant
the author’s three earlier books), an mind, yet tells only one of them in her refuge over a difficult mountainous route.
insider’s guide to science-fiction and fanta- chronicle of the Heralds, defenders of a Complicating the trek are companions
sy conventions (though it tries hard), or a kingdom threatened from within by including Princess Ylia’s old nurse and the
fantasy adventure (as it’s described on the intrigue and from without by rumors of partly bespelled daughter of a noble house,
spine). Yet Bimbos of the Death Sun con- war. neither well prepared for the arduous
tains elements of all three categories, and One missing story involves the potential travel. But the party does have unusual
the ingredients blend into a smooth combi- conflict between the psionic disciplines of resources, in the form of Ylia’s awakening
nation. Does that mean Sharyn McCrumb “Herald’s magic” and the supposedly lost magical Gifts and of Nisana, a being who is
has written a successful novel? power of “real magic.” While Lackey hints rather more than Ylia’s cat and who also
The convention setting is the primary at the presence of real magic in one criti- carries a share of sorcerous power.
ingredient, and while the overall atmo- cal phase of the plot, she raises the ques- The character of Emerson’s wilderness is
sphere is skillfully conveyed, it suffers tion only to leave it unexplored — save authentically rough and realistically popu-
from curious inconsistencies. The mythical perhaps in the next book. The other over- lated with a balance of streams, rugged
Rubicon takes up most of a large hotel and looked conflict concerns a faction of dissi- woods, and rocky ground. Both the book’s
attracts crowds of filksingers, Star Trek dent nobles which engineers a narrowly dedication and the author’s comments at a
fans, fanzine publishers, and (of course) aborted coup, is eventually discovered, spring science-fiction convention reveal
gamers. Yet it is apparently run by a single and finally faces the death penalty, all the solid, on-the-spot research that under-
person, the programming seems to omit offstage with barely so much as a lies Ylia’s journey.
tournament gaming or a formal masquer- Hitchcock-style cameo appearance. The personalities voyaging through the
ade entirely, and the only professional Instead, the tale focuses squarely on book’s terrain are a somewhat different
guests of any sort are two authors — one Talia, a girl rescued from a hard life on the yet no less intriguing matter. The story
whose Norse barbarian is a cult hero, and outskirts of Valdemar and brought to the itself is told in a slightly musical, strongly
one whose first hard science-fiction novel Herald’s Collegium for training. Some of cadenced prose that manages to combine a
has just been published by an impossibly her lessons are academic or physical, distant-sounding tone with occasional
inept paperback house. The paradoxes while others gradually transform Talia’s thrusts deep into her characters’ thoughts
become more puzzling when McCrumb dangerous reticence into the skilled self- a style that makes distinctive but vague-
displays specific knowledge of genre assurance she will need as the Queen’s ly unsettling reading. The third-person
authors, fanzines, and filk lyrics in one Own Herald in a kingdom where danger text, meanwhile, is matched with short
scene, then misspells a Star Trek charac- walks with unusual subtlety. commentaries from the cat-character
ter’s name in the next. The story Lackey has chosen to tell has Nisana which begin each chapter. It’s a
The murder mystery suffers less from some very strong echoes of Anne McCaf- device that generally works well, for of all
logical flaws than from inattention. The frey’s Dragonsong and Dragonsinger Like the cast, Nisana is probably the most inter-
murder itself doesn’t occur until halfway McCaffrey’s Menolly, Talia is a roughly esting, but it isn’t quite clear how the two
into the story, and sharp readers will solve raised girl thrust into an academic envi- narratives (Nisana’s and Emerson’s) are
it in the sentence before it happens. Oddly ronment which is both unfamiliar and supposed to relate to each other within
enough, though, the thin puzzle doesn’t fascinating — and the Heralds’ Compan- the context of the story.
detract much from the story, which ions, intelligent horses from an unknown What emerges from the blend of authen-
spends most of its time chronicling the world, have psychic abilities which resem- tic outdoor setting and unusual storytell-
crazier situations occurring during the ble those of McCaffrey’s dragons. ing style is a tale that has much to
convention weekend. But despite the structural resemblances, recommend it, yet is probably something
That emphasis is what qualifies Bimbos Arrows of the Queen stands up reasonably of an acquired taste. The very things that
of the Death Sun as fantasy adventure. well on its own. Lackey’s characters are make To the Haunted Mountains better-
McCrumb’s knowledge of fandom may almost unrelentingly likable — even the crafted and more skillfully told than many
have gaps, but her characterizations are obnoxious ones — and Lackey takes her current fantasies require readers to give
uncannily accurate and her sense of tale in different directions than those more concentration to Emerson’s tale than
humor is likewise in tune with the chaotic McCaffrey pursues. There are occasional they would to a pure adventure yarn. Still,
convention setting. In addition, the snatch- problems, including some awkward view- the rewards are generally worth the
es of actual gaming incorporated into the point shifts and the rather abrupt dis- effort, and the Nedao trilogy promises to
tale do ring true, though the “ultimate missal of Talia’s family, but on the whole, be a fascinating addition to the genre’s
role-playing climax” promised by the cover the novel is well told and captivating. ranks.
copy is fortunately implausible in real life. Gamers should find the concept of Heralds
Few readers are likely to be totally satis- especially intriguing, with definite poten- WINTER OF MAGIC’S RETURN
fied with McCrumb’s novel — seasoned tial as a character class. Pamela F. Service
convention-goers will spot too many tech- The book’s best feature, though, may be Fawcett Juniper 0-449-70202-2 $2.50
nical glitches, whodunit fans will wish for that it is reasonably self-contained, so It’s been five centuries since a nuclear
a more devious puzzle, and gamers won’t forthcoming sequels can spin new stories attack blasted the British Isles, and while
find enough specific D&D® game action. rather than repeat the one already told. much of English civilization survives, life is
However — and this is a major however — Lackey clearly has more threads to unrav- neither overly comfortable nor very reli-
most readers should enjoy the book el, and the pattern of her tapestry can ant on technology. Into this world of
enough to make it worth reading anyway, only improve from their addition. mutants and military schools comes the
slow rise of magic, in one of the most for instance, of Susan Cooper’s Dark Is for a trade paperback, and the interior
unusual Arthurian tales to appear in quite Rising books. illustrations seem a bit undersized for the
a while. But the story need not be a classic to be pages — rather as if they were created
Pamela Service’s novel postulates rather worth reading, and Service’s adventure with a mass-market edition in mind. If
less confusion about its nuclear holocaust should interest a much wider audience readers are interested in the historical
than does the GAMMA WORLD® game, than the one that typically haunts the aspects of the novel, they will lose very
but there’s a similar flavor nonetheless. “young adult” racks at bookstores. (There little by waiting for the less expensive
And her borrowings from the Arthurian is also room for sequels, and in a world as edition to appear.
legends draw more on romance than on distinctive as Service’s, any new tale is
history, yet they remain entirely plausible worth hoping for.)
as they are introduced. The blend is unu- Recurring Roles
sual, but it’s presented matter-of-factly The best news in the continuing-series
enough to suppress most quibbles. UNICORN & DRAGON category this month is Patricia Wrede’s
Even the most daring aspect of the story, Lynn Abbey Caught In Crystal (Ace $2.95). Wrede
Merlin’s return as a teenaged orphan Avon 0-380-75061-9 $5.95 returns to the world of Lyra with a story
hampered by a bout with amnesia, is First, a truth-in-advertising notice: there that combines her usual knack for intrigu-
persuasively woven into the fabric of are neither unicorns nor dragons in Uni- ing magical mysteries and the worries of a
Service’s narrative. Joined by a pair of corn & Dragon. The title is purely sym- mother who must take her two children
young people who also don’t fit in at their bolic, referring to the two young women on a complex quest. (Who says adventur-
Welsh boarding school, Merlin embarks on who are at the center of Lynn Abbey’s ers have to retire when they start a fami-
a race with his old enemy, Morgan, to novel. Second, a historical note: Abbey’s ly?) It’s light adventure fare, but Wrede’s
reach Avalon and the faerie kingdom book is set in England just before the writing is practiced, and the plusses
where King Arthur waits to face his new invasion of William the Conqueror. Third, include a more complete map and new
destiny. Winter of Magic’s Return is billed a warning: Despite a considerable effort to chronological background for Lyra.
as a young adult novel, but the writing is sustain a detailed image of manor house Almost as successful is The Fisherman’s
straightforward rather than simple, and life in that place and time, the book is Curse (Questar, $3.50), M. Coleman Eas-
the story will hold readers of all ages. ultimately more confusing than valuable. ton’s sequel to Masters of Glass. This time
Service keeps her overt moralizing to a The problem is quite simply that Abbey glass-mistress Kyala must face distrustful
minimum and includes a few references has too many stories to tell and seems not fisher-folk, a three-bodied sea monster,
teenage audiences may not catch. At the to know which one to give center stage. and the prospect of falling in love. Easton’s
same time, though, her relatively light There is the struggle between Normans ideas are as interesting as ever, but his
tone and realistically young-minded heroes and Saxons for political control of characters have devoted very little energy
combine so that the novel doesn’t quite England, in which Geoffrey Hafwynder is to thinking out their religious systems, and
transcend its origins — it’s not the equal, caught and forced to shed his carefully Easton appears to have no more grasp of
maintained neutrality. There is the magical the problem than his cast does. It doesn’t
mystery of Lady Ygurna, the manor’s help that he seems to have run out of good
domestic manager, whose waning powers names in this book — there are some
come into conflict with those of an even exceptionally bad ones floating about.
more obscure sorcerer who has allied Another volume seems likely, which may
with the Normans. There is the romantic be a mixed blessing.
relationship which finds both Alison and From the author of the highly amusing
Wildecent, daughters of Hafwynder The Duchess of Kneedeep comes — of all
Manor, drawn toward a wounded courier things — a science-fictional sendup of
who seeks refuge in their household. And Edgar Allen Poe mysteries in Murder on
there are the questions surrounding the Usher’s Planet (Avon, $2.95). While the
parentage of both girls that leave the yarn is easily as funny as its predecessor,
manor’s succession very much in doubt. the mystery element is less polished. A
Abbey does sustain the atmosphere of critic once described Poe as “three-fifths of
an early medieval manor with reasonable him genius and two-fifths sheer fudge”; in
effectiveness, describing a variety of use- this case, the proportions seem to be
ful points ranging from details of house- reversed, and most of the genius has gone
keeping and medical lore to the nature of into the gags. Still, players of humorous
local peacekeeping in Hafwynder’s day. At science-fiction games should have fun, and
times, in fact, the plot seems less impor- Atanielle Annyn Noel, the novel’s author,
tant than the presentation of another retains a fair amount of writing skill.
tidbit gleaned from medieval lore. In the case of Michael Jan Friedman,
Although gamers might logically be matters are more puzzling. The Glove of
interested in Abbey’s reconstruction of Maiden’s Hair (Questar, $3.50) departs
11th-century England, it just isn’t worth from Friedman’s variant Norse cosmos to
wading through plot developments piled offer the tale of a New York college profes-
one after another with little real advance- sor and a warrior elf from another world
ment, or trying to understand characters who are drawn into a romantic triangle.
who seem to take their cues from the The book’s advertising correctly pegs the
author’s typewriter rather than from any novel in the same cubbyhole as much of
internal motivation. Abbey may describe Barbara Hambly’s work (while misspelling
her setting well, but she simply fails to Hambly’s name), but not one of Friedman’s
make it interesting. characters emerges as sympathetic, and
A word about the physical presentation his ending is as close to tragic as anyone
of Unicorn & Dragon is also in order. On has tried to come in a long time. This
the plus side, Robert Gould’s cover and novel misfires badly, which is a surprise
drawings are attractive and hauntingly coming from Friedman.
styled, but the book is on the small side
78 JULY 1987
by Merle M. Rasmussen

The following “future history“ is an

example of a space-oriented campaign
background that a dedicated TOP
SECRET® game referee could set up for
his players. A space-related campaign
could be run as an alternative to a normal
modern-day spy campaign, providing
players with an excuse to have their char-
acters roam further afield on their mis-
sions than dull, boring places like London,
Paris, or New York City.

Campaign background
Renewed interest in lunar occupation
began with the launch of Zond 9, a lunar
polar orbiter by the Soviet Union in late
1989. The European Space Agency, unable
to interest the United States in projects
other than Space Shuttle flights and satel-
lite deployments, decided to join the Sovi-
ets in their quest for occupying the Moon.
The Soviets desired a southern launch
facility in order to economically launch
their massive payloads by heavy launch
vehicles, and they quickly agreed to the
joint venture. Early in 1991, two more
Soviet lunar polar orbiters, Zond 10 and
Zond 22, were launched from the ESA‘s
facility at Kourou, French Guiana.
Construction began on the Soviet
manned lunar spacecraft as D-class rock-
ets carried Luna 25 and Luna 26 aloft in
1991. With the aid of the three orbiting
lunar satellites, both automated soil
retrievers touched down on the Moon’s
Far Side and were shut off for later use.
Two more soil retrievers were launched in
1992 and ordered, via the still-orbiting
satellites, to land 25 kilometers from the
waiting soil retrievers. Following orders
from Earth, Lunokhod 3 and Lunokhod 4
traveled toward their respective retriev-
ers, picking up interesting soil samples
along the way. They transferred their
samples to the retrievers and drove back
toward their descent stages. Meanwhile,
the activated retrievers fired their ascent
engines and returned the collected sam-
ples to Earth three days later. Not only
were these automated activities technolog-
ical successes, proving the Moon’s Far Side
could be reached, they assured the
U.S.S.R. of lunar occupation.
Soyuz L3-1, with its international crew
of three, was launched by a heavy lift
vehicle; 27 years after the Apollo 11 mis-
sion. On cue, the stubby-legged spacecraft
touched down near Crater Kepler on the
Ocean of Storms, August 16, 1996. It was
the first Eurasian moon landing. The
descent stage of the spacecraft became
Soyuzskaya (Union Base), a self-contained
lunar station. Gagarinskaya was founded
within a year at the south lunar pole with
the landing of Soyuz L3-2. Gagarinskaya is
within the Moon’s latitudinal libration
zone and is without line-of-sight communi-
cation with Earth for 14.8 days of the
82 JULY 1987
month. This success prophesied good ready for immediate use. Lunar Lander with others and the central-
fortune for the founding of Titovskaya in Although small, Soyuzskaya seems to be ly located dome. Since the Moon has no
the exact center of the Far Side, on August the friendliest of the bases, with lots of ionosphere, all communication is by line-
14, 1998. Able to communicate with Earth camaraderie, singing, laughter, English gin, of-sight, and the two bases cannot commu-
only through communication satellites, and French wine. The most “European” of nicate directly. Both bases communicate
Titovskaya is the most remote manned the U.S.S.R./ESA bases, Soyuzskaya has directly with Earth or via visiting Apollo
base from Earth to date. developed a reputation for its hospitality, Command Modules in lunar orbit. Apollo
Awakened by the roar of Zond 9, the hot apple crumb cake, orange marmalade, Lunar Modules and “moon buggies” stand
U.S.A. sought a partner to help pay for and competitive darts. The six-member on the outskirts of each base ready for
lunar base research and construction team at Soyuzskaya specializes in geother- use. Stored inside the bases are a few
beyond its space program budget. Japan, mal research, maria exploration, Earth experimental “jet packs,” individual rocket
seeing a ripe opportunity to apply its and solar observation, and direct Earth propulsion systems used for short hops.
technologies and make further advances communication. Explosives are used for seismic research.
in its space research, agreed to a joint U.S. Gagarinskaya, the base named in honor Armstrong Base, named in honor of the
venture. While the Soviets and the ESA of the first human in orbital flight, is first human to walk on the Moon, is much
flooded the world’s headlines with their located on the Far Side near the south larger than Shepard Base. Armstrong
successes, the Japanese and Americans lunar pole, with the libration problems personnel boast of having the first lunar
toiled with off-the-shelf space hardware to noted earlier. This positioning allows the golf course with quarter-mile links. Its
create a lunar base as economically as base astronomers to change their focus occupants are a mixture of 18 medical
possible. Using data and hardware which from long-range spectrography to Earth- experts, astronomers, physicists, chemists,
had been neglected since the Apollo and watching, as desired. Other base duties selenologists, and administrators. Nine
Skylab eras, the two nations jointly devel- include polar exploration plus biological personnel are from Japan. Base activities
oped the Lunar Lander, a Skylab-sized and agricultural experimentation. Chem- include geothermal exploration, astrono-
cylinder supported by Lunar-Module-style ists, biologists, physicians, and medical my, biomedical research, and industrial
legs and topped by a Lunar Module ascent technicians make up the remainder of the engineering.
stage. Solar panels and antennas sprouted lo-member base population. A major area Shepard Base, named in honor of the
from each Lunar Lander, as required by of biological research involves altering first American in space, is primarily an
its interior hardware. A different internal human circadian rhythms. American outpost. Its 12 occupants are
configuration was developed for each Titovskaya, the base named in honor of mainly military personnel working as
Lander which became a part of the fin- the second Soviet cosmonaut in space, is a engineers, physicists, chemists, astrono-
ished base. One Lander contained the radio astronomer’s paradise. Centered on mers, and selenologists. Base activities
living quarters and storage, another com- the moon’s Far Side and sheltered by 2,000 include geothermal exploration, Earth
munications and power generation, a third miles of solid rock, Titovskaya is shielded observation, biological experimentation,
the astronomy and geology laboratory, and from Earth’s everpresent radio static. A and civil engineering.
a fourth the life support and biological “pure science” outpost, Titovskaya is The astronauts, primarily civilians from
laboratory. The bases could be expanded known for its luxurious accommodations, the United States and Japan with a few
by landing additional units. Each Lander which include a steam bath. The 14 occu- foreign guests, eat a wide variety of good
also carried part of a geodesic dome which pants of Titovskaya are mostly astrono- quality food. They drink both beer and
increased the base’s living space and mers, selenologists, and physicists. wine, and relax by reading, listening to
served as a hub connecting the-separate Lunar cosmonauts are primarily military music, building models, watching movies,
units. personnel from the Soviet Union and its playing cards and table tennis, or shooting
Armstrong Base was founded by the allies, plus several European nations. The pool. The Japanese contingent enjoys
Living Quarters Lander touchdown near cosmonauts have tablecloths, coffee tables, seafood, saki, hot baths, and computer
Crater Alphonsus, less than seven months crystal glasses, vodka, cognac, and plenty video games. Astronauts are friendly, do
after Gagarinskaya’s founding. Other of hearty food. They barter clothing, not discuss Earth politics, and allow free
Lunar Landers soon arrived, and the base equipment, books, liquor, food, and water inspection of their bases at all times. The
dome was erected within six months of its for things they need from the Americans. Americans think the Russians are driven
founding. Nearly two years later, Shepard Being much less militaristic than their by toil, and they feel the living conditions
Base was founded near the crater Aris- Earth-orbiting fellows, they drink toasts to at the Soviet bases are harsh. The Japa-
tarchus. The Near Side sites were chosen the Moon, space exploration, and the nese think (but never say) that the Ameri-
for their geothermal proclivities and memory of astronauts and cosmonauts cans could stand to work a little harder,
because direct Earth communication could who have died. The European contingent and regard the Soviets as their major
be made without the extra trouble and is a multilingual group that enjoys lan- future competitors in space; they doubt
cost of orbiting lunar satellites — a critical guage classes, classical music, light gam- America’s dedication to the space effort.
point to the cost-conscious Americans. bling, and fine cooking. They are friendly, As noted in DRAGON® issue #122, Amer-
do not discuss Earth politics, and allow ican and Japanese “space-pionage” opera-
The Moon: 1999 A.D. free inspection of their bases at all times. tions on Earth’s Moon unofficially come
The Soviet/European bases are stark and Cosmonauts work seven days a week. under the heading of Operation: Zondra-
ascetically furnished. Surface structures They relax with movies, reading, domi- ker. “Zondraker” is a name given to any
have curved ceilings which are elegantly noes, chess, and by listening to daily politician fearful of Soviet activities in
high: an old-world extravagance. Surface broadcasts from Radio Moscow and the space, or to an intelligence officer assign-
structures include cylinders and spheres ESA command center. They think the ing agents to lunar missions. One particu-
built on the spot and wrapped in reflective American bases have too many personnel larly zealous operator was codenamed
gold foil. The cramped but warm under- and not enough work. This situation, they “The Wizard of Oz.” The program was first
ground quarters were blasted out of solid say, leads to daydreaming, which leads the named by someone with tongue in cheek,
rock by pyrotechnic devices. Plastic explo- Americans to psychological problems. combining the early Soviet lunar program
sives are used for further excavations. The The American/Japanese bases are clus- project (Zond, meaning “sound”) with the
bases keep in touch with Earth and each tered villages of cylinders sprouting solar Moonraker book and movie title.
other by orbiting polar communication panels. One astronaut described Arm-
satellites and Salyut 10, a moon-orbiting strong and Shepard Bases as “grounded Adventuring on Earth’s Moon
space station. Soyuz landers and one- fleets of Skylabs standing on stubby legs.” Three possible lunar missions for Zon-
person “go-carts” stand beside the bases, Cables and inflated tunnels connect each draker operators are given below. Others
could be developed with a little creative scratched by hand on its surface in Rus- bases can be inspected at any time. Article
effort from the Admin (and the help of a sian: “Nikolai L. Kuzmin — 21 July 1969.” If XII states that all stations, installations,
few good references). the stones are removed, the space-suited equipment and space vehicles on the Moon
body of a Soviet cosmonaut is discovered. and other celestial bodies shall be open to
Code Name: STARFALL Upon close examination, it appears the representatives of other states who signed
Mission: Soviet crash-site investigation male cosmonaut died instantly of multiple the treaty on a basis of reciprocity. Such
(Collecting Data and Communication). bone fractures, concussion, and internal representatives should give reasonable
Cover: No cover necessary. bleeding. advance notice of a projected visit, in
Team: As needed; at least one Investiga- If the crushed capsule is inspected, the order that appropriate consultations may
tor is suggested. reclining body of a second cosmonaut is be held and so maximum precautions may
Duration: As needed. found in his wrecked seat. His suit is cov- be taken to assure safety and to avoid
Point of Embarkation: Armstrong Base. ered with lunar dust. He appears to have interference with normal operations in the
Equipment: Lunar roving vehicles, cam- died of asphyxiation from lack of oxygen; facility to be visited.
eras, and other devices as needed. all air tanks aboard the craft are empty, Cover Assignment: Agents are to deter-
Target Site: Luna 15 crash site, Seas of and the radio is ruined. In his right hand, mine the number and activities of person-
Crises 17°N latitude, 60°E longitude, Near the cosmonaut holds a lunar rock. nel stationed at Soyuzskaya, and to
Side, Earth’s Moon. The revelation that Luna 15 was a transmit the information to their home
Briefing: The Soviet Union has never manned mission would certainly astonish government. Reasonable advance notice is
revealed the purpose of Luna 15. The American space experts, many of whom determined by convention to be 24 hours
spacecraft was launched three days before questioned the Soviets’ ability to place men for internal inspections, but no limit is set
Apollo 11, performed 52 lunar revolutions, on the Moon. Soviet cosmonauts on the for external observations.
changed lunar orbit four times, and Moon would immediately move to take Team: As needed; at least one Investiga-
crashed into the Sea of Crises after Arm- possession of the crashed vehicle and the tor, Confiscator, Logistician, or Technician
strong and Aldrin had walked on the bodies of its crew. American and Japanese is suggested.
Moon. It appeared the Soviets wanted to agents are not required to prevent the Duration: As needed.
upstage or at least downgrade the impor- Soviets from doing so, but the Soviets Point of Embarkation: Armstrong or
tance of the first manned lunar landing. would not appreciate learning that the Shepard Base.
There is still argument as to whether Luna craft was unnecessarily damaged or the Taget Site: Soviet lunar base, Soy-
15 was a soil retriever, a rover lander, an bodies stolen. uzskaya, Crater Kepler, Near Side, Earth’s
animal experiment with a dog as a passen- Moon.
ger, or an actual manned attempt. Code Name: ARIES (The Ram) Equipment: Lunar roving vehicles, cam-
Assignment: Agents are to travel to the (This mission is a continuation of the eras, and other devices as needed.
Luna 15 crash site and determine the mission entitled Code Name: ARIES, from Briefing: The Soviets have reportedly
spacecraft’s purpose. The craft reportedly DRAGON issue #121.) developed space suits and equipment for
impacted at a velocity of about 480 KPH Mission: Hardware information and combat purposes in space and on Earth’s
(300 MPH). Fragments of wreckage should retrieval (Collecting Data, Stealing, and Moon. The assignment is to verify the
be strewn around the cratered impact site. Transportation of Goods). report and, if possible, obtain the hard-
‘Any information obtained should be Article IV of the UN’s 1967 Outer Space ware for the agents’ agency to analyze.
recorded by camera and transmitted to Treaty forbids the establishment of mili- Complications: Exterior surveillance of
the appropriate home government(s). tary bases on the moon. It states in part: the base reveals nothing out of the ordi-
Soviet permission is not required. Soviet “The establishment of military bases, nary. Internal Soviet security at Soyuz-
objection is not expected, but the Soviets installations and fortifications, the testing skaya, however, is very tight. Although
may attempt to conceal the evidence if the of any type of weapons and the conduct of cosmonauts are quite cordial, outside
agents’ intentions-are revealed. military manoeuvres on celestial bodies visitors are not greeted with open arms.
Administrator’s Notes: One and a half shall be forbidden. The use of military The chilly reception and red tape involved
miles from the crash site, a tiny red rec- personnel for scientific research or for in entering the base buildings seem out of
tangle appears on the horizon beside a any other peaceful purposes shall not be place on the Moon. It seems as if the
grayish-green sphere. On closer inspec- prohibited.” Due to the large percentage of agents have stepped back into the 1950s’
tion, the red rectangle turns out to be a military personnel and increased security Cold War on Earth, and their every move
flag of the Soviet Union, unfurled beside a at Soyuzskaya, it is suspected the Soviets is scrutinized; things were not this
large, damaged lunar lander. The spherical may be in violation of this treaty. unfriendly in previous visits to this base.
lander has crushed its four landing legs Actual Assignment: Agents are to visit Even the ESA cosmonauts seem distant.
and pressed them into a small crater cre- Soyuzskaya to determine if the 1967 Space Administrator’s Notes: It is up to the
ated on impact with the lunar surface. Treaty is still in force. If the treaty is being Admin whether the Soviets have and are
Between the flag and the lander is a rec- violated, the agents are to confiscate any using weapons. If they are using weapons,
tangular pile of stones, approximately one hand-held weapons and photograph any detail one or more pieces of Soviet equip-
meter wide by two meters long. Crisp boot fixed weapon system or military activity. ment to be discovered or confiscated at
prints, not made by NASA lunar boots, Photographic intelligence (photint) is to be Soyuzskaya. The equipment is being worn
connect the lander to the pile of stones transmitted immediately to their home by armed Soviet cosmonauts who cannot
and the flag. government. be bribed or coerced into giving up the
At the base of the flag is a small metal It is expected that if weapons exist, the equipment. Typical items of experimental
plaque, inscribed in Russian and bearing a Soviets will try to prevent exposure of this Soviet equipment would include an
picture of the Earth showing the eastern fact. Any confiscated evidence is to be extravehicular helmet with blast shield,
hemisphere and Earth’s Moon connected securely held until the next USA/Japan chest protectors, bulletproof shields,
by an arc of light. If any agents can read flight back to Earth. Proceed with caution. recoilless devices for rifle, laser targeting
Russian, the plaque states: “On this site, Cover: Diplomatic Inspection (overt devices, and wide-angle scope eyepieces
human beings from the planet Earth set surveillance). for use with space helmets (see DRAGON®
foot on Earth’s natural satellite. The Union Thanks to Article XII of the 1967 United issue #122).
of Soviet Socialist Republics sends peaceful Nation’s “Treaty on Principles Governing Unknown to the rest of the world, the
greetings to all who read this.” the Activities of States in the Exploration latter two Lunokhods did not cease func-
Standing at one end of the pile of rocks and Use of Outer Space, Including the tioning at the times reported by the Sovi-
is a piece of metal with the following, Moon and Other Celestial Bodies,” lunar ets. Instead of running out of battery

84 JULY 1987
power or falling into a ditch on the Far wealth of Earths Moon (as well as the rest any large meteorite strikes recently).
Side as claimed, the wheeled robots of the Solar System) are at stake. The Lunar satellite photos reveal no damage to
roamed the Moon and performed Near Soviets are not likely to want any nation’s the base and nothing out of the ordinary.
Side exploration. In 1995, by plain dumb diplomats snooping around the area. Two Architectural and mechanical safeguards
luck, Lunokhod 3 spotted a selenologist’s access hatchways beneath two different prevent all sections of the base from
dream: the mouth of a cave. Such vertical lunar shelters lead to the series of under- simultaneously losing atmosphere or being
openings are hidden from orbital observa- ground caverns. The only cavern maps are filled by some noxious gas. Food poisoning
tion and routinely dismissed as rock over- carefully guarded by the Soviet cosmo- or the rapid spread of a virulent disease
hangs. Only observation from the Moon’s nauts against intrusion by Zondraker are possible but improbable. Deliberate
surface could spot such a find. personnel (the purpose of the current visit sabotage is also possible, but mutiny is
The celestial body which created Crater by Zondraker astronauts was learned by more advantageous to space-weary cosmo-
Kepler had crashed through dome-shaped the Soviets in advance). nauts. Defectors would likely contact US/
caverns formed by hot subsurface gases Japanese bases soon after leaving or
beneath the Sea of Storms. The honey- Code Name: COMETTAIL overpowering loyal comrades.
combed rock was an ideal location for Mission: Soviet lunar base inspection Administrator‘s Notes: The reason for
storing condensed gases, and the meteor (Full Investigation) Titovskaya’s silence is monumental. Soon
or comet may have supplied some addi- Actual Assignment: Agents are to visit after transmitting their routine “wake up”
tional gaseous and frozen material. Titovskaya to determine why the base is call to Earth, base personnel reported to
Lunukhod 3 entered the mouth of the under radio silence. If members of the their work stations. One of the radio
cave and sampled rock from the cavern Soviet lunar base are in distress, the astronomers focused the crater-sized
floor. The very discovery of a cave on the agents are to aid them to the best of their receiver, called “Big Dish” by the cosmo-
Moon was already under a news blackout. abilities by any means available. If the base nauts, on a star cluster in the constellation
When the soil retriever Luna 25 reached members are not in distress, the agents Taurus. The usual radio wave chatter was
Earth, its samples were analyzed under are to investigate and report the reason collected — and the signal-translating
the tightest security. Among its samples, a for the radio silence to their home computer noted that a strange, nonrandom
substance more precious than petroleum, government or agency. signal was being received that matched no
uranium, or gold was found. Lunokhod 3 Cover: Article XII of the 1967 United known radio source. Wishing to rule out
had discovered water ice. Nation’s Outer Space Treaty (See Code any natural anomalies such as pulsars, the
Lunokhod 4 was immediately directed to Name: ARIES, above). antenna was meticulously focused on each
the cave opening to verify the existence of Team: As needed; at least one Investiga- star in the cluster separately; most regis-
the buried ice and to measure the extent tor, Technician, or Protector is suggested. tered normal, regular radio patterns. By
of the caverns. It became apparent that Duration: As needed. concentrating on the section of sky with
the cavern was one of a series of interlock- Point of Embarkation: Shepard Base. the higher probability of signal origin and
ing chambers ringing Crater Kepler and Target Site: Soviet lunar base Titovskaya, taking into account interference and drift,
running along fissures deep in the lunar Crater Mendeleyev, Far Side, Earths a single source in the Pleiades was located
crust. Dropping an antenna dish at the Moon. which spiked the graph and demanded
cave’s entrance, Lunokhod 4 went inside Equipment: Lunar roving vehicles, cam- attention. The signal appeared to be artifi-
and began exploring. Project development eras, rescue equipment, extra supplies, cial in origin — i.e., the Soviets had found
time and political priorities stalled further and equipment as needed. aliens. The radio astronomers were ecstat-
exploration until 1996, but the landing Briefing: The cosmonauts of Soyuzskaya ic, but they decided for practicality that
sight was a foregone conclusion: Crater and Gagarinskaya reported separately to their finding be further recorded and
Kepler. Moscow that neither base had received a researched before being announced pre-
Currently, only the cosmonauts at Soy- radio transmission via satellite from maturely.
uzskaya and a tiny handful of Soviet and Titovskaya in the past 24 hours. They both In an effort to contain the excitement
European scientists and politicians on wanted to know if Moscow had received generated by the discovery, the base com-
Earth are aware of the discovery. The any transmissions via satellite from the Far mander in charge of Titovskaya ordered
landing parties are kept small, and the Side. The last word Moscow had received the radio communications transmitter shut
team members carefully selected to was a routine “wake up” call the day down and put under guard temporarily.
reduce the chance of a news leak. The before. Everything sounded normal. Later Security at Titovskaya is extremely tight.
major work of the cosmonauts at Soy- that day, no messages were sent from Although any outsiders will be freely
uzskaya is cave exploration, mapping, Titovskaya, and no transmissions from admitted, they will not be permitted to
hydrologic experimentation, and civil Earth were acknowledged. Fearing the leave the base or transmit any message
engineering. If the caves can be sealed and worst, Moscow ordered the cosmonauts until allowed by the officer in charge. He
pressurized, ready-made living quarters from Soyuzskaya and Gagarinskaya to will allow outside contact when the
and work places for many cosmonauts attempt to raise Titovskaya on various authenticity of the intelligent extraterres-
would be available. The wealth of ice can emergency radio frequencies. So far, trial radio signal is verified. After all, not
be converted into both water and oxygen, Titovskaya remains silent. Neither the only is this a moment of staggering histori-
supplying the essentials of human habita- Soviet/ESA consortium nor the US/Japan cal significance for the entire human race,
tion. Colonization and large-scale mining alliance have a launch vehicle ready on but Soviet political and scientific pride are
operations will soon follow with the Earth which can reach Titovskaya in a at stake!
chance that the Moon will be claimed, or hurry. Neither the Soviet/ESA Near Side
at least controlled, by the Soviet Union. base nor the South Pole base have ade-
Unknown to everyone but the Soviets, the quate surface or suborbital capabilities to Bibliography
ESA cosmonauts present actually work for visit the silent base. An assortment of books and references
the KGB as moles, and may eventually Complications: It is highly irregular that for general information on the space pro-
renounce their own countries to work Titovskaya has not reported in at all. Radio grams of the United States and other
directly for the U.S.S.R. failure is usually reported using emer- countries follows. Most were used in writ-
The Soviets at Soyuzskaya are under- gency backup systems. A complete power ing this article series. See the reference list
staffed and working against time. They failure is unlikely due to solar energy and given in “Operation: Zenith” (issue #120)
know their discovery cannot be kept battery storage. Meteor bombardment is for other useful books on this topic. Cer-
secret forever. The future colonization and mathematically improbable but possible tain references are especially recom-
exploitation of the mineral and solar (however seismic monitors have not noted mended and are so noted.
Air Force Systems Command. Air Force Books, 1985. Recommended. Random House, 1982. A “what if?” account
Systems Command. Andrews Air Force Scott, David R. “What is it Like to Walk of an Apollo mission which ends in disas-
Base, Maryland: AFSC/PAI, n.d. on the Moon?” National Geographic. 3 ter on the Moon. Good reading and inter-
“Ariane.” The Illustrated Science and (1973), pp. 326-331. esting ideas.
Invention Encyclopedia. 1982 ed. “Soviets Develop Heavy Boosters Amid Rosenberger, Joseph. Operation
Asimov, Isaac. “The Next Frontier?” Massive Military Space Buildup.” Aviation Skyhook. New York: Pinnacle Books, 1981.
National Geographic. 1 (1976), pp. 76-89. Week & Space Technology (March 18, Though badly written, this has useful
Canby, Thomas Y. “Satellites that Serve 1985), pp. 120-121. ideas (but only a few). Agents battle for a
us.” National Geographic. 3 (1983), pp. 281- ”Spacelab.” The Illustrated Science and downed Soviet killer satellite in Indonesia.
334. Invention Encyclopedia. 1982 ed. Searls, Hank. The Pilgrim Project. New
Canby, Thomas Y. “Skylab, Outpost on “Space Shuttle.” The Illustrated Science York: PBI Books, 1979. A 1960s novel of a
the Frontier of Space.” National Geograph- and Invention Encyclopedia. 1982 ed. crash American lunar program. Well writ-
ic. (1974), pp. 441-469. United Nations. Text of the Agreement ten; has some interesting scenario ideas
Cline, Dr. Ray S., Intelligence Warfare. on the Rescue of Astronauts, the Return of (what if such a thing was secretly tried?).
New York: Crescent Books, 1983. Astronauts and the Return of Objects
Covault, Craig. “Soviets Begin Orbiter Launched into Outer Space. 1968. Administrators with home VCRs may
Tests Following Engine Installation.” Avia- United Nations. Text of the Convention also wish to view the following video
tion Week & Space Technology. (April 14, on International Liability for Damage movies with space and space-espionage
1986), pp. 16-18. Caused by Space Objects. 1972. themes. They certainly make the adven-
Covault, Craig. “USSR’s Reusable Orbiter United Nations. Text of the Treaty on tures seem much more real! Admins
Nears Approach, Landing Tests.” Aviation Principles Governing the Activities of should note that the James Bond movies
Week & Space Technology. (December 3, States in the Exploration and Use of Outer bear virtually no relationship to the novels
1984), pp. 18-19. Space, Including the Moon and Other by Ian Fleming. — RM
Cromie, William J. “Astronaut.” World Celestial Bodies. 1967. Capricorn One. VHS, 123 minutes.
Book Encyclopedia. 1983. Vogt, Gregory. The Space Shuttle. New Capricorn One Association, 1978.
Crook, Wilson W., III. “The Unmanned York: Franklin Watts, 1983. Distributed by Magnetic Video Corpor-
Luna Series.” Space World. (March 1986), Vogt, Gregory L. “Space Stations: The ation. NASA fakes a Mars landing, then
pp. 30-31. Recommended. Next Step.” Odyssey (September 1982), pp. tries to kill off the “crew.”
Crook, Wilson W., III. “Zond: The Soviet 12-19. Countdown. VHS, 102 minutes. Warner
Manned Moon Program.” Space World. Weaver, Kenneth F. “Have We Solved the Brothers — Seven Arts, 1967. Distributed
(March 1986), pp. 28-31. Recommended. Mysteries of the Moon?” National Geo- by Warner Home Video. Concerns a crash
David, Leonard. “Anniversary to Mark graphic. 3 (1973), pp. 309-325. American lunar program, hard-pressed by
Soviet Space Spectaculars.” Space World. Young, John W. and Robert L. Crippen. the Soviets. Based on The Pilgrim Project
(October 1982), pp. 5-9. “Our Phenomenal First Flight.” National (see above).
Dorr, Les, Jr. “The Russians are Com- Geographic. 4 (1981), pp. 478-503. Marooned. VHS, 134 minutes. Columbia,
ing?” Space World. (November 1985), pp. 1969. A space rescue story involving an
14-17. Fiction and home video Apollo crew, with both American and
Freeman, Michael. Space Traveller’s The following are a few fictional Soviet teams racing to the capsule. Much
Handbook. New York: Sovereign Books, accounts of space missions, highly useful like the book, but very slow in places.
1979. for creating new adventure plots. — RM Moonraker. VHS, 126 minutes. United
French, Bevan M. The Moon Book. West- Caidin, Martin. Marooned. New York: Artists, 1979. Distributed by CBS FOX
ford, Mass.: Penguin Books, 1977. Recom- E.P. Dutton, 1964. Originally written for Video. The ultimate espionage-in-space
mended. the Mercury program, this details the movie, starring (ahem) Roger Moore as
Henry, George E. Tomorrow’s Moon. rescue of a stranded Apollo crew in Earth James Bond. A private corporation
Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 1969. orbit, with Soviet and American spacecraft attempts to destroy humanity using germ
Recommended. participating. Fairly good. warfare, Space Shuttle technology, and its
Kundig, Konrad J.A. “The Year in Space.” Carter, Nick. Death Orbit. New York: own space station. Some interesting space-
Information Please Almanac. 1982 ed. Charter Books, 1982. Spies, the Space combat scenes.
Long, Michael E. “Spacelab 1.” National Shuttle, and a stealth-capable Salyut with 2001: A Space Odyssey VHS, 139 min-
Geographic. 3 (1983), pp. 300-307. nuclear weapons mix it up. Good spy utes. MGM Inc., 1968. Distributed by
McDougall, Water A. . . .The Heavens thriller. MGM/UA Home Video. Contains some
and the Earth. New York: Basic Books, Inc., Cussler, Clive. Cyclops. New York: Pocket interesting material for lunar and post-
1985. Books, 1986. Superb thriller with a secret 2000 era missions. The STAR FRONTIERS®
Moore, Roger E. “Physiological and Per- American Moon base, lunar warfare, and game module based on this movie (which
formance Effects of Weightlessness.” Diss. more — in 1989, no less. goes by the same name) is of help, since it
University of Louisville, 1983. Drury, Allen. The Throne of Saturn. contains blueprints for the Discovery
“Nations of the World: Soviet Union.” New York: Avon Books, 1971. Written in spacecraft and maps of the lunar surface.
Readers Digest Almanac and Yearbook. the Apollo era, this concerns Soviet and 2010: The Year We Make Contact. VHS,
1979 ed. American rivalry (and sabotage) in the 116 minutes. MGM/UA Entertainment
Oberg, James Edward. Mission to Mars. race to land on Mars. Company, 1984. Distributed by MGM/UA
New York: New American Library, 1982. Fleming, Ian. Moonraker. New York: Home Video. This movie, too, contains
Recommended. Jove, 1979. James Bond‘s only rocket- some interesting material for near-future,
O’Connor, Karen. Sally Ride and the New related exploits in novel form, concerning deep-space missions. Also produced as a
Astronauts: Scientists in Space. New York: an ICBM attack against London. Good STAR FRONTIERS® game module (2010:
Franklin Watts, 1983. reading. Odyssey Two Adventure) with even more
“Payloads Aboard Shuttle.” Air & Space. Hay, Jacob, and John Keshishian. blueprints of the advanced spacecraft
(May-June 1979), pp. 11-13. Autopsy for a Cosmonaut. New York: involved and space maps as well.
Pesavento, Peter. “Soviets to the Moon: Little, Brown, & Co., 1969. A Gemini mis- You Only Live Twice. VHS, 117 minutes.
The Untold Story.” Astronomy (December sion is launched to examine a “dead” Sovi- United Artists, 1967. Distributed by CBS
1984), pp. 9-23. Recommended. et spacecraft which might have an atomic FOX Video. James Bond fights SPECTRE,
Pogue, William R. How Do You Go To bomb aboard. Excellent story. which is skyjacking American and Soviet
The Bathroom In Space? New York: Tor Michener, James. Space. New York: spacecraft with its own manned missions.

86 JULY 1987

Before Warren was even seat for

this interview, he had started talk-
ing. This interview is in good order,
but if your want to know how the sto-
ry was REALLY told, get out your
scissors and cut out each of these sen-
tences. Put them in a hat, then draw
them out one by one. That would be
an accurate simulation of the story of
Warren's life as told by Warren.
Warren Spector, TSR's newest game
editor, started life on October 2, 1955.
Plunked in the middle of Manhattan,
W arren was forced to battle his way to
school in a hostile environment where
“short, pudgy, Jewish kids didn’t fare well.”
Early obsessions with dinosaurs and air-
planes gave way to an interest in law by the
time Warren was in sixth grade. This was the
beginning of a life filled with intense devo-
tion to whatever topic caught his fancy at a weekly entertainment magazine I used to
particular time. By high school, Warren’s ob- edit in college. Anyway, he said that he was
sessions were movies, cars, and basketball. now editor of Space Gamer magazine and
At the age of 13, Warren decided he asked if I wanted a job. So, in the fall of
wanted to be a film critic. He later attended 1983, I started as an editor.”
Northwestern University in Illinois with Space Gamer magazine was owned and
those very same intentions in mind. “I re- published by Steve Jackson Games. Within
ally came into my own in college,” Warren a short time, Warren became the editor-in-
says. “I knew more about movies than a lot chief for all Steve Jackson Games products.
of my teachers.” A Bachelors degree in Ra- “I supervised game development, typeset-
dio-TV-Film was followed by a Masters de- ting, and the art and graphic departments,”
gree at the University of Texas at Austin in Warren explains.
1980. “I spent seven years in grad school “Toward the end of 1983, Greg Costikyan
and I almost have my Ph.D. Sorry, Mom.” submitted a game that just knocked me out
W arren enjoyed playing games all talk about potential! This is the project I
through college. “I played Avalon Hill think I’m most proud of working on so far. It
games mainly, and a lot of OGRE® and was the TOON® game, which has been
G.E.V.® games, and Rivets from Metagam- quite successful for Steve Jackson Games.”
ing. It was all boardgames until I became The following year, Warren met Caroline
friends with science-fiction writers who Chase at a comic-book store in Austin book #5, One Thing After
were into D&D® games, so I gave the game where she was employed. As soon as he Another, due out in June, and,
a try. I was hooked.” saw her, he said, “This is it! That’s the with Tracy Hickman, is working
Warren went on to teach several classes one!” As coincidence would have it, Caro- on TS1, Operation Starfire, the
of “450 screaming undergraduates” at the line got a job at Steve Jackson Games first TOP SECRET/S.I. game module
University of Texas at Austin. His subject shortly afterwards, and shortly after that, a (TS1 will be out in September). He and
was the history, theory, and criticism of romance began. On April 11, 1987, Warren Caroline are also teaming up to write
film, and he showed movies to the class to and Caroline were married. MX3, Reap the Whirlwind, for use with the
illustrate his lectures. Some of the movies Warren was hired at TSR in March 1987. MARVEL SUPER HEROES® Advanced
were especially useful because they were so “They made me an offer I couldn’t refuse,” Game rules.
bad; Bela Lugosi Meets a Brooklyn Gorilla he says with a sigh. Warren is currently When Warren has free time, he enjoys
was a favorite. hard at work editing the new TOP SECRET/ reading science fiction; trashy thriller espio-
In 1983, he got a job at a research library S.I.™ espionage role-playing game. “The nage books, and car magazines. He is a
as an archivist in charge of the David O. rules for this new game make it easy to rabid fan of the New York Knicks and the
Selznick collection. Unfortunately, the posi- play. Things move fast, so play never gets University of Texas Longhorns. “My obses-
tion ended after a few months. “I was sit- bogged down.” sive personality has most recently kept me
ting around, wondering how I was going to An accomplished author, he has also occupied with chess. Maybe someday I can
pay the next month’s rent, when I got a call written MARVEL SUPER HEROES™ Game- win a game with Caroline,” he says sadly.
from Chris Frink. He was a writer for a Warren’s advice? “Hook ‘em, Horns!”
NEW PRODUCTS FOR AUGUST 1987 S1-4 Realms of Horror Green Circle Blues
AD&D® Special Adventure CAR WARS™ Gamebook #5
The FORGOTTEN REALMS™ Adventure Set by TSR Staff by Scott Haring
AD&D® Game Boxed Set This special module contains four adventures, The Green Circle terrorists have planted a bomb
by Ed Greenwood and Jeff Grubb originally written by Gary Gygax and Lawrence that will destroy a vital food factory-unless you can
Discover the unknown in the new AD&D® game Schick, now reprinted and revised from their classic get Mitchell Havelock, an eccentric genius, to Seattle
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complete campaign world which introduces the or travel to the far reaches of deadly mountains Suggested Retail Price: $2.95
FORGOTTEN REALMS™ world. Many AD&D® game where a strange fortress awaits. . . . Prod. No.: 8018
adventures now take place here, so this adventure set Suggested Retail Price: $9.95
will be an invaluable guide for gaming. Prod. No.: 9209 The Price of Power
Suggested Retail Price: $15.00 GREYHAWK™ Adventures #4
Product No.: 1031 MX3 Reap the Whirlwind by Rose Estes
MARVEL SUPER HEROES™ Adventure In the WORLD Of GREYHAWK™ fantasy Setting,
TOP SECRET® Espionage Game by, Warren and Caroline Spector the hero must find the stolen Sceptre of the Ancient
by Douglas Niles This adventure is the penultimate chapter in the Gods. The sceptre will give him the power he needs,
The world’s first and best espionage role-playing Future in Flames saga. The adventure pits your but little does he suspect the cost.
game just got better! This complete, new espionage home-town heroes against the mightiest collection of Suggested Retail Price: $3.95
role-playing game is faster and easier to play, but still villains ever to endanger the world! Prod. No.: 8243
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Suggested Retail Price: $15.00 GAMMARAUDERS™ Game by Mark Acres
Product No.: 7620 by Allen Varney This is the first in a new line of adventure
Introducing the exciting, fast-paced, role-playing gamebooks that realistically capture the world of
game of marauding robots and plundering bioborgs! espionage and terrorism. The mission is to recover
This combat game plays out the spirited battle the data banks from a destroyed satellite that has
among the high-tech creatures of the GAMMA recorded secret Soviet information.
UNIVERSE, and includes rules, maps, and short Suggested Retail Price: $2.95
NEW PRODUCTS FOR SEPTEMBER 1987 introductory adventures. Prod. No.: 8082
Suggested Retail Price: $15.00
IM3 The Best of Intentions Prod. No.: 7015 Blast Out in Lebanon
D&D® Game Adventure TOP SECRET™ Adventure Gamebook #2
by Ken Rolston TSAC1 The 64 File: Guns, Gadgets, and by Dana Kramer
Rookie Immortals must handle the dirty work in Getaway Gear A battle-hardened mercenary lives by only one
this light-hearted adventure. from Herculean tasks to TOP SECRET® Accessory rule: Never work for free. But when his friend is
the political problems of the Norse gods, the by Merle Rasmussen kidnapped, one mercenary decides that rules were
adventurers learn what it takes to be an Immortal. This catalog of weapons, charts, vehicles, and made to be broken.
Suggested Retail Price: $5.95 special equipment is for use with the new TOP Suggested Retail Price: $2.95
Product No.: 9207 SECRET® game. An indispensible aid for game Prod. No.: 8083
players of all experience levels.
GAZ3 The Principalities of Glantri Suggested Retail Price: $8.95 Invisible Rival
D&D® Game Accessory Prod. No.: 7623 LAZER TAG™ Adventure #3
by Bruce Heard by TSR Staff
The principalities of this kingdom are described in Trail Sinister When their arch-rivals don’t show up at an
detail in this special Gazetteer that expands the AD&D® Adventure Gamebook #14 interstellar meet, the LAZER TAGn™ sharpshooting
players’ knowledge of the D&D® game’s Known by James Brumbaugh team is accused of foul play. Before they can clear
World. This accessory offers short adventures and a To save your father’s kingdom from the mercenary themselves or find the missing team, they are barred
large, full-color map. bands of marauding trolls, you and your companions from competition. What could go wrong next?
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Prod. No.: 9208 magical stone tablets. Prod. No.: 8282
Suggested Retail Price: $2.95
Prod. No.: 8964 Unless otherwise noted:
® denotes registered trademarks owned by TSR, Inc.
CAR WARS® & ©1987 Steve Jackson Games. All
™ denotes other trademarks owned by TSR, Inc.
Rights Reserved. ©1987 TSR, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

92 JULY 1987
(continued from page 40) one feels when he can’t enjoy a
the DM if I could role-play Grond’s game for what it is: goofing off and
hench-ogre instead, and he agreed, having a good time with friends.
and we went on to have a pretty Why else do people play games of
amusing evening. Grond was eventu- any kind? If things go wrong in a
ally brought back to life, but it game nowadays, and everything
wouldn’t have mattered if it had looks like it’s about to go to the dogs,
turned out otherwise. I wanted to I think of Harley, and everything
enjoy myself, and I did. turns out okay anyway.
We all like to win, we all hate to Harley was a good gnome. He
lose, and we all feel the hurt some- taught me a lot.

* Notice that I said “mature” and not

“adult.” I’ve gamed with 11-year-olds
who had more maturity than some
35-year-olds I’ve met.

and auction, the Nazgul Tavern, a 24-hour video
room, a costume contest and bacchanal, a
dealers’ room, and a gaming area. Membership
rates are $16 (in Canadian currency) until July 1
and $20 thereafter. For more information, write
to: CON-VERSION, P.O. Box 1088, Station M,
Calgary, Alberta, CANADA, T2P 2K9.


The 18th annual Mythopoeic Conference will
be held at Marquette University in Milwaukee,
Wis. The theme of the convention, “Looking
Tenn. Guests of honor include L. Sprague and Back From Weathertop: A 50 Years’ Retrospec-
Convention Calendar Policies Catherine Crook de Camp, Vincent di Fate, and tive,” celebrates the 50th anniversary of The
Wilson “Bob” Tucker. Programming includes Hobbit. The guests of honor are John Bellairs,
This column is offered as a service to our panel discussions, autograph sessions, two author of The Face in the Frost, and Chris-
readers around the world. Anyone may dances, a sanctioned Singles Bridge Tournament, topher Tolkien, editor of The Silmarillion and
place a free listing for a game convention a miniatures-painting workshop, an art show The History of Middle-Earth. Special events
here, but the following guidelines must be and auction, and a dealers’ room. Preregistra- include many papers and presentations on
observed. tion is $15 before July 15 and $20 thereafter. fantasy literature, especially that of Tolkien,
In order to ensure that all convention Registration is limited to 750 people, so advance Eddison, Peake, and the Inklings, as well as
listings contain accurate and timely infor- registration is advised. For more details, contact: displays of Tolkien’s manuscripts and artwork,
mation, all material should be either typed LIBERTYCON, P.O. Box 695, Hixson, TN 37343. a dealers’ room, and an art show. Registration
double-spaced or printed legibly on 8½” X fees are $45 and $15 for the banquet, or $160
11 paper. The contents of each listing COLONIAL CITY GAMEFEST V, July 11-12 for the entire packet; this covers room and
should be short, succinct, and under 150 The Mount Vernon Gamers Association will board from Friday afternoon to Monday noon,
words in length. hold this convention at the Memorial Building registration, and the banquet. For more infor-
The information given in the listing must on East High Street in Mount Vernon, Ohio. A mation, write to: MYTHCON XVIII, P.O. Box
include the following information, in the wide variety of role-playing and boardgaming 537, Milwaukee WI 53201, or call (414) 273-
following order: events and a game auction are sponsored. 1616.
1. Convention title and dates held; Preregistration fees are $4 for the entire week-
2. Site and location; end; regular fees are $3 per day. For more
3. Guests of honor (if applicable); information, write to: Mount Vernon Gamers
Canton’s only gaming convention will be held
4. Special events offered; Association, 205 West Gambier Street, Mount
at the Memorial Civic Center in Canton, Ohio.
5. Registration fees or attendance Vernon OH 43050, or call (614) 397-3785.
requirements; Featured events include a variety of board,
card, computer, and role-playing games. There
6. Address(es) and telephone number(s) EMPEROR’S BIRTHDAY CONVENTION XVI
is also a games auction for both new and used
where additional information and confirma- July 11-12
tion can be obtained. This gaming convention will be held at games, as well as a dealers’ room full of game
displays. For more information, write to: The
Convention flyers, brochures, newslet- Indiana University in South Bend, Ind. Events
Ohio Tournament Association, c/o Steve Robin-
ters, and other mass-mailed announce- include miniatures competitions, RPGA™ Net-
son, 4605 12th Street NW, Canton, OH 44708, or
ments run the risk of not being considered work AD&D® tournaments, and a number of
for use in this column; we prefer to see a other gaming competitions. The first-round call (216) 478-2910.
cover letter with the announcement as well. RPGA™ event begins at 10 A.M. on Saturday; the
No call-in listings are accepted. Domestic second-round event takes place at 3 P.M. that CAPITOLCON III, July 25
and foreign conventions are welcome. same day. For preregistration packet and infor- This gaming convention will be held at the
WARNING: We are not responsible for mation, send an SASE to: R. Hagerty, 227 North Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield,
incorrect information sent to us by conven- 2nd Street, Apt. G, Elkhart, IN 46516. For infor- Ill. Boardgames, miniatures games, and role-
tion staff members. Please check your mation regarding RPGA™ events, contact: The playing games are sponsored. For more infor-
convention listing carefully! Our wide Brigade Gaming Group, P.O. Box 252, Elkhart, IN mation, write to: Bill Wilson, 3320 Gaines Mill
circulation ensures that up to a quarter of a 46516. Road, Apt. 4, Springfield IL 62704, or call (217)
million readers see each issue. Accurate 787-7092.
information is your responsibility! DOVERCON III, July 1 18-19
Convention listings should be mailed by This year, DOVERCON will be staged at the KINGCON III, July 25
the copy deadline date to Convention University of New Hampshire’s Memorial Union This one-day convention will be held in the
Calendar, DRAGON® Magazine, P.O. Box Building (MUB) in Durham, N.H. Featured games Lewis Building at the City Park in Mount
110, Lake Geneva WI 53147. Copy dead- include AD&D®, CALL OF CTHULHU®, CAR Vernon, Ill. This gaming event runs from 8 A.M.
line dates are the last Monday of each WARS®, DIPLOMACY®, GURPS®, D&D®, MERP™, to 8 P.M., and features a two-round AD&D®
month, two months prior to the on-sale PARANOIA™, Star Fleet Battles, STAR TREK®, tournament, a miniatures-painting contest,
date of an issue. For example, the copy and TOP SECRET® games, and a host of others. continuous movies, a dealers’ room, and a
deadline for the December 1987 issue is Registration for events is on a first-come basis. variety of role-playing games and boardgames.
the last Monday of October 1987. Plan A flea market, film festival, miniatures-painting Preregistration is $5 until July 1; thereafter,
ahead; early listings pay off! competition, art contest, and open-gaming area registration is $6.50 for the day. For more
If a convention listing must be changed are also provided. Preregistration rates (which information, send a SASE to KINGCON III, Rt. 1,
because the convention has been can- must be received by July 1) are $7 for both Box 202, Kell, IL 62853.
celled, the dates have changed, or incor- days; at-the-door rates are $8 for both days and
rect information has been printed, please $5 for one day. There is a $1 entry fee for each WINDSOR GAMEFEST V, July 25-26
contact us immediately! For any ques- event. Vendor and game master inquiries are This gaming convention takes place at the
tions or changes related to this column, welcome. For further information, write to: Ambassador Auditorium in the University
please call either Robin Jenkins or Roger Information, DOVERCON III, P.O. Box 622, Centre at the University of Windsor. Featured
E. Moore at (414) 248-3625. Dover, NH 03820. events include role-playing and miniatures
games, boardgames, free movies, and a dealers’
CON-VERSION IV, July 24-26 area. Registration for this event is $10 for
indicates an Alaskan convention. This science-fiction and fantasy convention preregistered admission, $12 for regular regis-
indicates a Canadian convention. will held at the Carriage House Inn, 9030 tration, and $7 for a daily pass. For further
indicates a United Kingdom convention. MacLeod Trail South, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. information, contact: W.R.P.A., P.O. Box 2055,
Joan D. Vinge is the guest of honor and Jim Walkerville Station, Windsor, Ontario, CANADA,
LIBERTYCON 1, July 10-12 Frenkel is toastmaster. Special guests include N8Y 4R5. Telephone inquiries can be made by
This science-fiction convention will be held at Jack Williamson and William Gibson. Scheduled contacting Kristine Sheffiel at (519) 734-1150 or
the Sheraton City Center Hotel in Chattanooga, events include panel discussions, an art show John Schippers, Jr. at (519) 735-5233.

94 JULY 1987
ATLANTA FANTASY FAIR ‘87 registrations are $5. Tables cost $10 for a whole
July 31-August 2 table or $6.50 for a half. PROJECT...GENESIS CONSPIRACY ‘87
This fantasy fiction and gaming convention needs judges for a number of events; those August 27-September 1
will be held at the Omni Hotel in Atlanta, Ga. accepted receive a refund on their registration The 45th World Science Fiction Convention
Room rates for this event are at a flat rate of fees. For more details, write to: PATCO, c/o Tony takes place this year at the Brighton Centre and
$65 for single, double, triple, and quad accom- Barber, 2203 E. Harvey, Fresno CA 93701, or call Metropole Hotel in Brighton, England. Thus far,
modations. Guests of honor include Darwin Phil Pittz at (209) 255-4682. the guest program includes Alfred Bester, Doris
Bromley (Mayfair Games), Alan Hammack, Chris Lessing, Brian Aldiss, Boris and Arkady Stru-
Marrinan and Pete McDonnell (pencillers on the VULCON XIV, August 6-9 gatsky, Larry Niven, Robert Silverberg, Gene
CHAMPIONS® comics), John Nathan-Turner, This 14th annual science-fiction and fantasy Wolfe, Ursula K. Le Guin, John Brunner, Fred
Nichelle Nichols, Jenette Goldstein (Vasquez of festival will be held at the International Hotel, Pohl, and many others. Events include a major
Aliens), Tom Savini (special effects/make-up 300 Canal Street, New Orleans, La. Guests of art exhibit and auction, a stunning laser show
artist), and Boris Vallejo. Only at-the-door regis- honor include Tom Savini and Richard Herd. (provided by Laser Creations of London), a
trations are currently available; these are $30 Events include a costume contest and dance, a costume contest, spaceflight exhibits, computer
for all three days, $20 for Saturday and Sunday, dealers’ room, open gaming, and a host of other games, wargames, and much more. Membership
and $10 for Sunday only. To register, please activities. For more information, contact: rates as of August 1 £38.00 for all six days and
send checks, money orders, or SASEs to: The VULCON, P.O. Box 8087, New Orleans, LA 70182, £10.00 for a single day. (Exchange rates for
ATLANTA FANTASY FAIR, 482 Gardner Road, or call (504) 454-0963. pounds and dollars are available from most
Stockbridge GA 30281, or call (404) 474-6102. banks.) For more information on this event,
HOUSTON FANTASY FAIR, August 7-9 please write to: 45th World Science Fiction
OMACON 7, July 31-August 2 Sponsored by Bulldog Productions, this comic- Convention, PO. Box 43, Cambridge, CB1 355,
This science-fiction and gaming convention book, science-fiction, and film supershow takes United Kingdom.
will be held at the Holiday Inn Central at 72nd place at the Houston Marriott Astrodome. This
and Grover St. in Omaha, Nebr. Numerous event includes appearances by dozens of comic- GATEWAY 7, September 4-7
gaming, science-fiction, and pro-space events book artists, writers, editors, and publishers, as The seventh running of this Labor Day con-
are scheduled. For convention and registration well as a number of film personalities. Other vention will be held at the LAX Hyatt Hotel.
information, write to: Craig A. Cleaver, 9738 features include a huge dealers’ room, a profes- Featured events include role-playing games,
Brentwood Road, Omaha NE 68114, or call (402) sional art show, an art contest, an art auction, wargames, family games, and computer games
397-0159. video rooms, a masquerade, numerous work- tournaments. Other events include seminars,
shops, previews of upcoming motion pictures, demonstrations, auctions, flea markets, and an
WEAPONSCON, July 31-August 2 and a variety of gaming events and open gaming exhibitors’ area. Preregistration is $16 until
The first annual North American Science competition. Tickets for this three-day event are August 21, and $20 at the door. For more infor-
Fiction and Fantasy WEAPONSCON will be held $20 through July 15 and $25 thereafter. For mation, contact: GATEWAY ‘87, c/o DTI, P.O. Box
at the Holiday Inn Alanta Airport, North Virgin- more information, contact: Bulldog Productions, 8399, Long Beach CA 90808, or call (213)420-
ia Avenue off I-85. L. Neil Smith is the guest of PO. Box 820488, Dallas TX 75382, or call (214) 3675.
honor, and John Maddox Roberts is master of 349-3367.
ceremonies. Other guests include Robert NANCON-88 IX, September 4-7
Adams, Jerry and Sharon Ahern, David Drake, ORLANDO SKIRMISHES ‘87, August 7-9 This annual, four-day gaming convention will
Jim Morris, and Sharon Webb. A western quick- LISTING CHANGE: SKIRMISHES presents be held at the Ramada North West Crossing in
draw exhibition features Floyd Hamlett and this role-playing/wargaming convention at the Houston, Texas. Tournament events include
Melvin Wood. Special events include 48-hour Omni International in Orlando, Fla. Events AD&D®, PARANOIA™, Squad Leader, Star Fleet
con suites, science-fiction and fantasy weapons include AD&D®, TRAVELLER®, Star Fleet Bat- Battles, and Nuclear War games, and a variety of
programs, two masquerades, two art shows tles, and CAR WARS® games, with Napoleonics others. A large dealers’ room and open-gaming
(regular and weapons), martial-arts demonstra- and various boardgaming competitions. Prere- room are also provided. For more details, send a
tions, a dealers’ room, and much more. Conven- gistration is $12 until July 1, and $18 thereafter. SASE to: NAN’S GAME HQ, 2011 Southwest
tion guests must wear a weapon at this con at Hotel reservations may be made by calling (305) Freeway, Houston TX 77098 (Attn: NANCON).
all times, even if it’s only a paper dagger. A 843-6664. For further information regarding
liability wavier/agreement must be signed at the convention events and registration, contact: PACIFICON ‘87, September 4-7
door (by parents of guardians, if under 18) in SKIRMISHES, 1803 Third Court SE #A, Win- The 11th annual PACIFICON gaming conven-
order to attend. Tickets to the banquet are $15 terhaven FL 33880, or call (813) 294-9166. tion will be held at the Dunfey Hotel in San
until July 11, and $20 thereafter. There are only Mateo, Calif. Special room rates are available
150 seats available, so buy your tickets early. GEN CON® 20 GAME FAIR & TRADE SHOW from the hotel for convention participants.
For more information, send a SASE to: Irv Koch, August 20-23 Featured events include role-playing and
835 Chattanooga Bank Building, Chattanooga TN This year’s original gaming convention will be boardgaming tournaments, a flea market, semi-
37402, or call (404) 767-7360. held at the MECCA Arena in Milwaukee, Wis. nars, movies, miniatures-painting contests,
For preregistration materials or for judging auctions, miniatures gaming, open gaming, SCA
WESTCON III, August 1-2 forms, write to: GEN CON® Game Fair, P.O. Box demonstrations, and a dealers’ room. For fur-
This gaming convention will be held at the 756, Lake Geneva, WI 53147. Please indicate on ther information, write to: PACIFICON, P.O. Box
Departure Bay Community Center in Nanaimo, the envelope which information you are 2625, Fremont CA 94536.
B.C., Canada. Events include AD&D®, CAR requesting (i.e., “Pre-reg info” or “Judging info”).
WARS®, and BATTLETECH® games, as well as a For information on assisting the RPGA™ Net- WINGAMES VIII, September 4-7 *
LAZER TAG™ tournament, a miniatures contest, work Tournament Headquarters, write: RPGA™ This gaming convention will be held at the
and a full-scale maze. Registration for this Network HQ PO. Box 509, Lake Geneva WI University Center on the University of Manitoba
convention is $3 for one day or $5 for the 53147. campus in Winnipeg, Man. This convention
weekend, For more information, contact: WEST- usually draws around 300 gamers. All inquiries
CON III, P.O. Box 231, Cedar B.C., CANADA VOR SL RALLY ‘87, August 22-23 should be directed to: WINGAMES VIII, PO. Box
1J0, or call (604) 722-3269 or (604) 753-3054. This rally is for all Squad Leader gamers. The 80, University Center, University of Manitoba,
ON ALL FRONTS 3rd National Tournament Winnipeg, Man., CANADA R3T 2N2.
PROJECT...GENESIS, August 2 takes place at the Holiday Inn on Rt. 65B in
A PATCO Protoriginal, this convention will Conway, Ark. Four rounds of round-robin GOLD CON ‘87, September 5-6
celebrate its beginnings at Chimenello’s Hall, tournaments are played over these two days in This gaming convention will be held at the
2221 N. Webber in Fresno, Calif. Featured each of the following: Squad Leader, Cross of OMNI Auditorium in Coconut Creek, Fla. For
tournaments include events in BATTLETECH®, Iron, GI: Anvil of Victory, and Advanced Squad more details on scheduled events and registra-
AD&D®, Star Fleet Battles, DC™ HEROES, and Leader. Prizes are awarded for these events. tion rates, write to: GOLD CON ‘87, OMNI
CHAMPIONS™ games, and more. Open gaming Other events include a scenario design seminar, Auditorium, B.C.C. North, 1000 Coconut Creek
is available to all, along with a swap meet for games sales, and various other activities. Regis- Parkway, Coconut Creek FL 33066, or call (305)
those wishing to buy, sell, and trade old games, tration is $6 before July 15 and $8 thereafter. 973-2249.
game materials, books, or whatever (table space For registration forms and more information,
is required). Preregistration for this event is $3 write to: ON ALL FRONTS, P.O. Box 265, Mar- MIRACLECON ‘87, September 12
for the day if paid before July 20; after that, shall, AR 72650, or call Terry at (501) 448-3066. This one-day gaming convention will be held

96 JULY 1987
from 9 A.M. to midnight at the Day’s Inn in Held at the Mount Prospect Holiday Inn at 200 CONTRADICTION SEVEN, October 2-4
Springfield, Ohio. Sponsored events include an East Rand Road in Mount Prospect, III., SPYCON This science-fiction and fantasy convention
AD&D® tournament, a dealers’ room, a 5 features a dealers’ room, art show, film room, will be held at the Ramada Inn 401 Buffalo
miniatures-painting contest, a game auction, and and a host of other events. Featured programs Avenue, Niagara Falls, N.Y. Anne McCaffrey is
a variety of other gaming programs. Registra- include episodes from The Man From the pro guest of honor, with Mike Glicksohn as
tion is $5 for the day, with no additional fees for U.N.C.L.E., The Avengers, Rat Patrol, The Pro- fan guest. Other guests include Joan Vinge,
separate events. For more details, contact. fessionals, Get Smart, and a wide variety of Nancy Kress, Jim Frenkel, and T.S. Huff Events
MIRACLECON ‘87, c/o Timothy A. Riley, 308 others. Registration fees are $18 through Sept offered include a costume contest ($25 for best
West Church Street, Urbana OH 43078, or call 18, and $20 at the door. For more information, costume), an art auction, videos, parties, a
(513) 653-7848. send a SASE to: SPYCON 5, 2710 Rohlwing Road, people and thing auction, panels, wargaming,
Rolling Meadows IL 60008. filksinging and other fannish activities. Regis-
SAN ANTONIO FANTASY FAIR tration is $13 until July 11, $16 until Sept. 12,
September 18-20 and $20 thereafter. For more details, contact:
Sponsored by Bulldog Productions, this comic- UNICON I, September 26-27 CONTRADICTIONS, P.O. Box 2043, Newmarket
book, science-fiction, and film supershow takes The Anchorage Community College Gamers Station, Niagara Falls, NY 14301. Please send a
place at a location which has yet to be Association and the University of Alaska, SASE if you require confirmation.
announced. This event includes appearances by Anchorage Gaming Society are proud to intro-
dozens of comic-book artists, writers, editors, duce UNICON I, which will be held on the SUNCOAST SKIRMISHES ‘87, October 2-4
and publishers, as well as a number of film University of Alaska, Anchorage/Anchorage LISTING CHANGE: SKIRMISHES presents
personalities. Other features include a huge Community College Campus. Tournaments the seventh annual production of this gaming
dealers’ room, a professional art show, an art include AD&D®, GAMMA WORLD®, Talisman, extravaganza at the Howard Johnson Plaza
contest, an art auction, video rooms, a masquer- RISK®, Blood Bowl, and Advanced Squad Leader Hotel in Tampa, Fla. Events include historical
ade, numerous workshops, previews of upcom- events, as well as a miniatures-painting contest, miniatures, role-playing, and boardgaming
ing motion pictures, and a variety of gaming open gaming, and other activities. The conven- competitions Live-action tournaments, a
events and open gaming competition. Tickets tion is open from 9 A.M. to midnight on Saturday dealers room numerous seminars, and a host
for this three-day event are S15 through Sep- and from 9 A.M. to 8 PM on Sunday. Preregiatra- of other events are also sponsored Preregis-
tember 1 and $20 thereafter. For more informa- tion is $4 for UAA/ACC students and $5 for all tration for this three-day event is $12 until
tion, contact: Bulldog Productions, PO. Box others until September 12. Thereafter registra- Sept. 1: thereafter, all registrations are $18.
820488, Dallas TX 75382. or call (214) 349-3367. tion is $8 for both days or $5 for one day. For Hotel reservations may be made by calling
more information, send a SASE to: UAA Gaming (813) 873-7900 For more information and
SPYCON 5, September 18-20 Society, University of Alaska, Anchorage, 3211 registration packets, contact: SKIRMISHES.
This special convention should be of interest Providence Drive, Anchorage AK 99508, or call 1803 Third Court SE #A, Winterhaven, FL
to all fans of spy/undercover police TV shows. Greg Gibbs at (907) 786-7770. 33880, or call (813) 294-9166.

When, in the course of human

Index to Advertisers
events, the editors make mistakes
Of course, editors NEVER make
mistakes. We just — okay, we make
mistakes, and we need to set the
record straight on a few things
AMAZING® Stories . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21, insert card concerning REF4, The Book of Lairs.
Armory, The . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48-49 One of the best things about REF4
Bard Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 was the number of people involved
Chaosium Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .7, 74 in the design and editing. “Many
hands make light work.” Except, of
Doubleday SF Book Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .5 course, for the coordinators of those
DRAGON® Magazine. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .49, insert cards many hands. Keeping all the names
DUNGEON™ Adventures . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Insert card with their proper contributions was
Fantasy Games Unlimited . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14,34 a major headache, and while we
FASA Corporation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. .9, 25 were out taking our Tylenol, some
of them moved. We didn’t see it
Game Designers’ Workshop. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .23,27 happening until it was too late.
Games Workshop. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Inside front cover, Without further ado, here are the
inside back cover correct authors:
GEN CON® 20 Games Fair . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 John Terra Wrote the lairs for
Iron Crown Enterprises, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Back cover Gnomes and Beholder;
Bruce Nesmith Wrote the lairs for
Leading Edge Games. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 the Efreeti, Hippogriffs, and Mer-
Mattmark...........................................11 men; and,
Mayfair Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .39, 71 Warren Spector was inadvertently
Palladium Books . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .31,53,89 left out of the master author list at
Ral Partha Enterprises . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .35 the front of the book (but WAS
credited correctly for the Displacer
SkyRealms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .4 1 Beast lair, on the page where that
Steve Jackson Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38, 75 appears.
Task Force Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70 Our sincere apologies to those
TSR,Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .87,90,95,97 who were slighted — we didn’t
TSR Previews. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .91 mean to upset anyone. Honest.
Karen S. Martin
West End Games. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .52, 80-81 Freelance Editing Coordinator
TSR, Inc.

98 JULY 1987
100 JULY 1987
104 JULY 1987