Monday, February 13, 2017

AMERU-KA 300: The Hodag

Hodag
Size: Large
Type: Monster
Hit Dice: 15
Armor Class: 17
Attack: Bite (1d8), gore (2d8) or trample (4d8)
Movement: 30′
Save: 9
Intelligence: Animal
Alignment: Neutral (N)
No. App: 1d4
XP/CL: 1,500/16

SA— Stink (see below)
SD—Immunity (disease, paralysis).

The Hodag (Tauroceratophoneus sp.) is a fearsome critter. It has the head of a bull, the back of a dinosaur, and the leering features of a demon. Its legs are short, its claws are long, and it is covered in tough scales. Though fearsome creatures, the Hodag is generally considered a friend to mankind as they enjoy the taste of the undead and of many poisonous aberrations and plants found in the wastelands. They have a particular fondness for creepy crawlers and ghoul flesh. Because of this, the hodag is considered a good luck animal and encouraged to breed in areas where irradiated ruins are nearby. The cult of Paul Bunyan (Beastmasters and Fighting cult) often depict Babe the Blue Ox as an enormous Hodag. Some brave individuals have been known to raise Hodag pups for use as draft animals, though this is usually only attempted by Druids or Sorcerers.
In combat a hodag will charge, lashing out with all attacks, pounding its foe into mush to be consumed later. The stink of the creature is so intense that all creatures within 50' must make a saving throw or be stunned for 1d4 rounds. This smell has been known to curdle milk, yellow paper and cause eggs to spoil under hens. Only another hodag and those without a sense of smell are immune. Use of alchemical and herbal solutions (such as intensely nasty lozenges) can immunize a person to the reek of a hodag.


This setting uses the Blood and Treasure 2E rules system by Jon Stater. Its a D20 game with an old-school feel. Try it out, all the cool kids are doing it.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

AMERU-KA 300: Giant Hamsters

Giant Hamster
Type: Animal
Size: Large
Hit Dice: 4 (30 hp)
Armor Class: 13
Attack: Bite +7 (2d8) or Trample (2d6)
Movement: 25 ft., Burrow 10 ft
Save: 15
Intelligence: Animal
Alignment: Neutral
No. Appearing: 1d4
XP/CL: 400/5

SA—Swallow Whole (pouch), Trample
SQ—Immunity (disease, parasites)

Giant hamsters are exactly what they sound like-cute but brown-bear-sized rodents with thick fur. They are found in lands with large numbers of gnomes (such as Tunkerton) and working on the tread-wheels of some Landships and Paddle-boats. Giant hamsters were initially bred by gnome magic-users for this purpose, and now these creatures are quite numerous. Giant hamsters come in a variety of colors, but are usually golden brown with white underbellies, bands, and spots. They are well muscled but appear fat. A giant hamster can store up to 200 lbs. of food in its cheeks.
Giant hamsters normally have only one mode of attack – a nasty bite. They avoid even this on most occasions, as domestic breeds are quite cowardly. However, wild breeds are more aggressive, and they briefly charge at anyone who approaches a burrow. Careless gnome (or other small person) handlers have sometimes been bitten and (on a successful attack roll of 19 or better) stuffed into a cheek pouch, from which the gnome may escape if he rolls a successful Saving throw or Escape Artist roll on a subsequent round. Trapped gnomes are merely covered in hamster spit, and are eventually spat out like old chewing gum when the hamster sees food.
A giant hamster may be purchased from a gnome breeder for 50gp. These creatures may be used as draft animals and mounts (using a special saddle and harness costing 4gp) by gnomes, but are too stupid for other races. A giant hamster can carry as much as a heavy warhorse. Giant hamsters eat twice the amount of feed per day as a horse, but can and will supplement during travel, eating trees, giant mushrooms, roots and grass. 


Giant Hamster Breeding
In the Post-Ragnarok land of Ameru-Ka, Giant Hamsters are the product of the gnomes of Tunkerton (New Branson). They were initially bred to develop a relatively passive creature large enough to wind up the giant rubber bands attached to the huge running wheels inside gnomish vehicles. The giant hamsters can run for hours inside their big wheels, producing considerable power. Many hamster ranches simply breed giant hamsters as livestock, as they have tasty meat.
These creatures breed prodigiously, producing several litters per year and reaching breeding adulthood in two years. A pack of giant hamsters will always have at least one female, with a 20% chance per adult female of 1d4 young being present and another 20% chance per adult female of 1d4 juveniles being present.  Gnomes are unable to figure out how to reduce their breeding rate, aside from separating the sexes (this conclusion was suggested after a 22-year-long research program that included five gnome fatalities).

Giant Hamster, Juvenile
Type: Animal Size: Medium Hit Dice: 2 (11hp) Armor Class: 13 Attack: Bite +2 (1d4) Movement: 20ft., Burrow 5ft Save: 16 Intelligence: Animal Alignment: Neutral No. Appearing: 1d4 per adult female XP/CL: 100/4 SQ—Immunity (disease, parasites)

Giant Hamster, Young
Type: Animal Size: Small Hit Dice: 1 (4hp) Armor Class: 13 Attack: Nil Movement: 10ft. Save: 16 Intelligence: Animal Alignment: Neutral No. Appearing: 1d4 per adult female XP/CL: 50/2
SQ—Immunity (disease, parasites)

Other Variations
Gnome hamster breeders are always trying to create new and exciting types of Giant Hamster. Some varieties of note are the Sabre-Tooth Giant Hamster, the Fire Breathing Giant Hamster, Armor Plated Giant Hamster and even the Colossal-sized Hamstersaurus Rex. 

Monday, February 6, 2017

AMERU-KA 300: Major Nations


Based on the above map, there are a number of major regions that should be mentioned. I will get into tighter detail concerning regions as the game progresses as well as more detailed maps.

Glydenborg (New Chicago)
The "Golden City"is a powerful city-state and seat of Manheim in Ameru-Ka. The city is walled off, built from salvaged stone, ferro-concrete and steel. It is built atop the ruins of the Fourth Age city of Chicago. The city is ruled by Earl Glyden and his parliamentary Council of Lords. Glydenborg has a large army and navy. Industry here is run by the Guilds who set rates and coordinate with the Council of Lords. Glydenborg maintains its own police, peopled mostly by ex-soldiers. Humans are the majority here, but Dwarves, Gnomes and Halflings have a large presence, and a number of Elves Half-Elves and Half-Ogres can be found here as well.
The city is a mix of medieval and modern design, with packed earth and gravel streets (kept clean by honeywagons), winding lanes and close housing. Most of the city uses gutters, but the wealthier sections have sewers and indoor plumbing. Foot traffic and animals compete with rickshaws and pedicabs in a jumbled mess. The northeast sections of the city are slums, and are also the location of the cities industrial yards such as plastic melting vats, tanners, slaughterhouses and such smelly industry.
The New Asgardians are openly revered here, especially Alvis, Balder, Paul Bunyan, Smokey Pete and Thrudd are all popular. There are also followers of the Druidry and those following tribal Shamanism (Druid varient). There is also a potent and active Wizard Guild, which teaches magic of all schools, alchemy and engineering. Glydenborg is Neutral in alignment regarding business and magic, as long as the rule of law is maintained. 

Maskinborg (Machine City)
Located in a region that was once known as Wyoming in ancient times. Its is a bustling city of machines and industry. Ruled by the Sulphur King Alberich VIII, the town is peopled by industrialist Dwarves and Humans, but welcome all races coming with gold and an interest in business. A large number of Goblins and Gremlins also live here, working with the Dwarves to create ever more complex and devious inventions. The streets are patrolled by Goblin and Hobgoblin mercenaries, and the dwarves have numerous mechanical monsters to keep the peace.
The city is jumbled place guarded by stout stone walls and guarded by Iron Golems, Iron Living Statues and war machines of devlish construction. The sky here is continually blacked from smoke and fumes and the cobblestone streets dusted with soot. The towns engines draw from the elemental furnaces drawn from the Yellow Stone elemental font, a source of great mystical power. The city is politically neutral, trading with all powers without prejudice, though elves are rarely seen here. 

Nastrond (New Akron)
A city-state located on the edge of toxic swamplands atop the ruins of the fourth age city of Akron. This is an outlaw city and home to many degenerate cults and strange magic. Despite its bad reputation, Nastrond is wealthy and prosperous as it is a place where anything and everything may be bought and sold. Salvage from the many landfills here as well as delving into dark magic are major businesses here. Goblin-kin, humans, hags and trolls are all found here, but it is humans who dominate. 

Okolnir (Dwarf Kingdom)
The Dwarf land of Okolnir is a very strong and militarily potent nation. In these desert mountains and valleys the dwarves have established a veritable paradise, with the main city garden enclosed under a huge geodesic dome of glassteel and watered via cunning and engineering. The main dwarf city is underground and a home of marvelous ingenuity and wealth. Militarily, Okolnir is mighty, with a vast army of golems (stone and iron), dwarves and many cunning weapons guard her borders. The government of Okolnir is a Parliament of Guild-masters, and thoroughly socialist.
The dwarf god Sindri (Creation Cult) is revered here and presently at peace with the New Asgardians. Dwarf ancestor worship is the only other major faith, whose clerics as standard Lawful clerics. 

Trolgard
This wild and savage city-state is home of a group of Hags, Trolls, Ogres and other descendants of the ancient Jotunn armies of Ragnarok. The city itself is rough-hewn and raggid, though its walls are strong. Trolgard is an outlaw city, situated in poisoned and irradiated lands that give rise to many mutations and restless dead of many types. The rulers here are a powerful covey of Hags and their Troll and Ogre lackeys as well as mutants and wild humans. The economy here is based on magic and misery, with slaves, foul narcotics and other criminal enterprises being the stock-in-trade of the rulers and merchants here.  

Tunkerton (New Branson)
Tunkerton is a land of wild invention and has the feel of a never-ending carnival. Gnomes and Halflings can be found here in large numbers, with a Gnomish Council of Craftsmen as the rulers. All manner of strange and improbable devices can be found here. Magic is a major subject here, especially anything to do with Wondrous Items, Constructs and Scientific Devices. The cult of Alviss (Scholar cult) and Smokey Pete (Technology cult) are all very active here, though Magic Users are just as prevalent as spiritual teachers. 

New Risaland (Giant Land)
This region is controlled by the Giant remnants of the Jotunn armies and have chosen to remain here rather than return to Jotunheim. Since the war, this remnant has degenerated considerably, perhaps due to the poisons now rampant on the ravaged land of Midgard. Though a small handful of true Jotunn remain (use Titan stats) along with some true giants, the majority of their children are born warped and stunted to the extent that the majority of giant kind are misshapen creatures such as Athach, Cyclops, Ettin, Hill Giants (with variations), Ogres and other beings. Trolls are also quite numerous, but keep their own lands and culture.
The Jotunn of Risaland live in barbaric castles, crude wooden forts and in family estates, living wild. Out of this land come all manner of immense creatures not seen on Earth in eons such as Mammoths, Dire Elk, Dire bears and other giant animals. It is said that these animals were brought from Jotunheim or bred using magic of the Jotun. Whatever the source, this is truly a land of giants.

Glasir Plains (Great Plains)
These Great Plains are vast grassland and prairie that is mostly empty of mankind. It is the home of herds of Buffalo, some of which are giant-sized breeds from New Risaland. It is a region of fierce storms, tornado and salty dust that can dry the skin terribly. But it is a beautiful and vibrant land. Wind wagons are used to cross these plains, and are favored by nomads, particularly Halflings and Gnomes. Gnomish and Dwarf-made landships can also be found, using arcane technology to drive these vehicles across these planes.

THE LAND ITSELF 
Most of the world has returned to primeval wilderness, with deep, dense forests, wild hills and windy plains. But dangers old and new are here as well.

Irradiated Zones
Places marked with an atomic symbol, are regions that were so decimated from the use of Nuclear, Biological and Chemical weapons, that they are still saturated by the energies of those weapons. Such radiation is considered "Negative Energy" in gaming terms. This energy comes in Minor or Major levels. In regions with Minor Negative Energy living creatures take 1d6 points of damage per round. At 0 hit points or lower, they crumble into ash. Major negative-dominant areas are even more severe. Each round, those within must make a saving throw or lose one level to energy drain. A creature whose level is reduced to zero is slain, becoming a wraith. Death ward protects a traveler from the damage and energy drain of a negative-dominant regions. Undead gain regeneration in irradiated areas, and thus are very likely to dwell there.
Living creatures that dwell near such places, often sheltering in underground areas, grow into twisted monsters, often becoming twisted and sprouting weird growths. This is the source of many of the Aberrations, mutants and other things found wandering the wastelands.

More to come!


Thursday, February 2, 2017

AMERU-KA 300: POST RAGNAROK AMERICA

Looks like I will be starting up a new Blood and Treasure Campaign! And so I am throwing together a grim and somewhat gonzo fantasy setting for the occasion. This setting is partially inspired by this article by John Stater, but also by my favorite cartoons, comics, books and of course Norse and other examples of classic myth and folklore. This game will use the Blood and Treasure 2nd Edition rules.

THE SETTING

The War of The Gods came and went. The Aesir, Vanir, the Jotun and their allies were all destroyed (most of them anyways) along with the majority of the planet. This mighty conflict also coincided with nuclear, biological and chemical wars between the Earthly powers. Now, three hundred years after this war, mankind has emerged from the wastelands, and is busy re-building civilization amidst ruins of the past, and struggling against the remnants of the Jotunn hordes and each other.
The game world will center on the post-war continent of North America, renamed Ameru-Ka (Realm of the White Worm). Most of this land has returned to primeval wilderness, but magical, biological and chemical poisons and radiation have twisted the land, and many monsters from the Jotun hordes haunt the land. It is a land of constant danger, but also a chance for glory.


THE NEW ASGARDIANS (Clerics)
Most of the Old Gods are now gone, slain during the battles of Ragnarok. A handful remain, and lead the New Asgardians. Standard Lawful Clerics serve the entire pantheon of New Asgardians or individual members. They must be of Lawful Alignment (LG, CG, NG), and have the abilities of standard Lawful Clerics. Neutral clerics who serve the New Asgardians, or who wish to revere a particular type of god or goddess must be specialty priests (see page 16-18 in the Blood and Treasure PHB). Below is a small list of the pantheon:
Balder (Beaver)- The son of Odin has returned from the dead, and now leads the New Asgardians. His specialty priests are Paladins and members of a Creation cult. 
Alvíss (Mr. Cricket)- Gnome god of knowledge, wisdom and invention. Married to Thrudd. His specialty priests are members of a Scholar Cult.
Eldora (Lady Nossa)- Eldora is an Elven Goddess who belongs to the tribe of deities known as the Vanir. Eldora is a Goddess associated with beauty, desire, grace and lust. Her specialty priests are members of a Trickery cult.
Magni/Modi (The Little Thunders)- Twin sons of Thor, these two young gods are still children, but are inheritors of Mjolnir. Specialty priests of the Twin Thunders are members of a Fighting cult.
Paul Bunyan (Big Joe Mufferaw)- Giant-sized god of the wanderers and lumberjacks. He appears as a huge man or giant with an axe, accompanied by a huge Blue Ox. His specialty priests are Beastmasters (Barbarian varient).
Rasselbock (Peter The Hare, Jackrabbit)- Wily Jackalope god of travelers, spring and secret pathways. He appears as an anthropomorphic hare, Jackelope or as a halfling wearing a rabbit-skin coat. His specialty priests are members of a Travel cult.
Smokey Pete (Bollox, Sooty Pete)- Fiery god of frustration, boilers and engines. Appears as a half-machine person bellowing smoke. His specialty priests are members of a Machine cult
Thrudd (White Buffalo Woman, Lady Liberty)- Thrudd is the daughter of Thor and the leader of the new Valkyries. She appears as a powerful and beautiful human or dwarf woman. Her specialty priests are  members of a Guardian cult.
Sister Wyrd (Aunt Nancy Arachnae): Sister Wyrd is the goddess of weaving, prophecy and strange dreams. She appears as a stout black woman, a huge spider, or a mix of the two. Her specialty priests are members of a Weird cult.
-------------------------------------
Other gods certainly exist but either keep to themselves or are among the surviving Jotunn and monsters. Druids are very active in the world, as are of the Shaman class (Druid variant). 

RACES
This setting has the following races available for play:
Humans- All of the modern races mixed though necessity, with many variations of white, brown and black skin tones. Some are more one than another.
Dwarves (Awwakkulé, Nirumbee)- These beings have returned from the realm of Nidavellir one of the Nine Worlds, and are quickly becoming a power in Midgard. They are great craftsmen and traders.
Elves (Kachina, Star People)– The Light Elves often return to Midgard from the heavenly realm of Alfheim to visit and have even set up kingdoms. They are generally considered a lazy and self-indulgent people who use their magic and beauty to beguile and enslave others. 
Gnomes (Jogah, Nikommo)- The Gnomes came to Midgard after Ragnarok, looking to re-settle old lands. Many are master salvagers, traders and magicians. Many gnomes travel the wastes in Landships seeking salvage and trade and out of a love of testing their magical devices.
Halflings (Atosee, Bohpoli)- This small folk returned to Midgard from otherworld’s and from hidden places in Midgard. Halflings have integrated strongly with mankind and have their own lands. Many halflings work as cooks, laborers, farmers and craftsfolk.
Half-Elves – All elves are beautiful, and many a mortal has been smitten by elven charm. Half elves are not hated, though many are envied for their longer lives and beauty.
Half-Orcs- Orcs are not present in the setting, and thus no half-orcs. These are replaced with Half-Ogres. See below:

Half-Ogres 
“I am what I am, an’ I’m not ashamed. 'Never be ashamed,’ my ol’ dad used ter say, ‘there’s some who’ll hold it against you, but they’re not worth botherin’ with.” -Rubeus Hagrid 
Ogres (Lofa, Kolowa) were foot-soldiers in the armies of the Jotnar, and so mingling of Ogre and Human is inevitable. Half-ogres are the children of humans and ogres. They look like brutish humans with swarthy and dull complexion, dark and lank hair, and large canine teeth. Half-ogres have no society of their own. If they live with ogres, they are the quick-thinking members of the tribe, ever on their toes to prove themselves worthy. If a half-ogre is reared in a human community, he learns to live with suspicion and fear, and often turns to a military or solitary occupation.
In the lands of Ameru-Ka, half-ogres can be found working alongside humans as laborers and soldiers, and are generally allowed to live their lives. Though this is not to say that they are liked by most folk. Memory of giant raids and tales of man-eating ogres are to recent. Dwarves and gnomes in general hate ogres and half-ogres, and halflings fear them. Most half-ogres live in the border marches near giant country, but some dwell in the ruins more to their liking.
Half-ogres average 84″ in height and are built like gorillas. They have a movement rate of 30′ per round. Half-ogres live to be 80 years old. They start the game speaking Common and Ogre plus bonus languages for high intelligence. They can see 60′ in the dark.
At character creation, half-orcs add +1 to strength and constitution (max. of 18) and subtract 1 from their starting intelligence and charisma (min. of 3).
Half-Ogres can wield large weapons as though they were medium weapons.
Half-ogres may dual-class as do humans.


CLASSES 
All of the basic classes found in Blood and Treasure are allowed except for the Monk. Added to the available list are the following classes:
Animorph: Shapeshifting warriors.
Guardian : Superheroes of a fantasy sort.
Spider Mage: Mutant followers of Sister Wyrd, The Spider Goddess (see above).

I saw Eternity the other night,
Like a great ring of pure and endless light
-- Henry Vaughan