Saturday, August 8, 2020

Lost Carcosa Update: Nearly Finished!

This might be the last or second-to-last update I make about this, since I have good news! Supplement 🜏: Lost Carcosa is nearly finished!

The most recent iteration of the document is 64 pages long, but the finished product should be 70-75 pages long.

Here is a list of what is currently featured:

  • Descriptions of 14 deities to be worshiped or feared, ranging from the benevolent Bast to the vile King in Yellow.
  • Descriptions of 13 (or 12, depending on how you count horribly mutated fused royalty) NPCs which can be encountered in Carcosa.
  • 350 interesting things to find while exploring the wilderness of Carcosa, spread across 7 regions, along with random encounter tables for each region.
  • 36 monsters with combat statistics for old school fantasy games.
  • 11 new spells drawn from weird fiction.
  • 21 eldritch and unnatural magic items.
  • 3 new playable character species.
  • A mutation table.
  • A detailed system to generate the Dark Young of Sheol-Nugganoth
  • Shoddy, amateur layout!

By the time the supplement is finished, it will also feature:
  • Tables for creating small dungeon delves to be placed in the uncharted wilderness.
  • A small sample dungeon to get things started quickly.
  • Optional, simplified rules for hex crawling in Carcosa.
  • A list of Carcosan names.
  • Carcosan dungeon encounter tables.
Hopefully I'll have a draft done in a few days, after which I'll do some testing and revise it. After that, I'll be putting it up for sale on DrivethruRPG.

Thank you all so much for your advice and support, and I hope you will enjoy reading and using Lost Carcosa as much I did making it!

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

What Do YOU Want From Lost Carcosa?

I'd say I'm about 70% done maybe with Supplement 🜏: Lost Carcosa, and I want input as to what I'm going to focus on the most. Progress has slowed a bit as I've gotten somewhat more ambitious than previously expected. My original estimate for the length of the supplement was 60 pages, now I imagine it is likely to be a little bit larger than that.

Progress is also slow because I keep reading and rereading my sources of inspiration to make sure I get the tone I want and that I'm in the right head-space.

Also, I realized I wasn't clear about this, but this will be likely sold on DrivethruRPG for 4.99.

Currently, what I have left to work on is as follows:

  • Finish writing up in digital format the random tables and locations for the Forest of Ys, the Sea of Demhe, the Colour-Blighted Wastes, the Valley of Yhtill, and the Carcosan Underworld.
  • Write up a mutation table
  • Create a brief, easy to read history of Carcosa.
  • Write up information for the deities Yig, Bast, Cthulhu, Father Dagon and Mother Hydra, Naotalba, Thale, and the Phantom of Truth.
  • Write up information for the NPCs Mr. Wilde, Hildred Castaigne, Jeanne D'Ys, Cassilda and Camilla, the Woman in The Wallpaper, Aldones and Uoht, Keziah Mason, Richard Upton Pickman, Boris Yvain, Philip Castaigne, Hali, and Haita.
  • Maybe make a little sample dungeon?

Anyway, I want to know what y'all think are the most important things I should focus on, and so I've put together a little strawpoll below:

Thank you for reading!

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Lost Carcosa Preview

The following is a work in progress excerpt from my upcoming supplement, Lost Carcosa.

Vast dunes of powdery yellow sand go on for miles, broken by the ruins of long dead civilizations. Rotan is a land of death and bleached bone, inhabited by monsters and the ferocious green men of Barsoom. Scholars say that here is where the King in Yellow first came to Aldebaran, transforming the sands a sickly yellow color and breaking down the barriers between worlds. Wanderers in Rotan seldom survive this harsh environment if they come unprepared; the landscape seems to shift and warp to lead travelers to their doom.

The Black Pyramid: Towering high into the sky, the twin suns of Aldebaran shining off its reflective obsidian surface, the Black Pyramid is a truly awe inspiring sight. Cultists devoted to the Crawling Chaos come from far and wide to worship at this place. Those few who enter the pyramid and return alive claim that it is larger on the inside than seems possible, seeming more like a vast city than a single building. They tell stories of horrible abominations that thirst for human blood, but also of vast troves of treasure, all contained within endless winding corridors and oddly angled rooms. Some believe that if you reach the center of the pyramid alive, you are granted an audience with Nyarlathotep himself.

Roll of 2 Six Sided Dice
Monster Encountered
Feral Thoats
Feral Calots
Green Men
Skeletons (See BOOK II of the core rules)
Cats from Saturn
Dimensional Shamblers
Mummies (See BOOK II of the core rules)
Larvae of the Great Old Ones


Percentile Die 
Thing To Find
A huge cactus stands atop a dune, grown into 
the shape of the Yellow Sign.
A well, at the bottom of which lurks a 
weakened and hungry shoggoth.
A sandstone obelisk carved with strange 
symbols which seem to write and change.
A seemingly beautiful oasis, whose waters 
and foliage hide lurking monsters.
A small grove of dead, gray trees, 
half-buried with sand.
An ancient temple to a long-dead god, 
partially submerged in sand.
A dune moves like a living creature, 
groaning like a whale in pain.
A small, abandoned town inhabited only by ghosts.
A broken statue depicting a winged god.
Sarcophagi containing the mummified 
remains of ancient royalty.
A wandering caravan of traders who 
are selling strange magical objects.
A group of raiders, traveling aboard a 
strange ship made to travel over sand dunes on skis.
The enormous bones of some ancient, primeval creature.
A flock of buzzards flying through the 
sky, their formation mimicking the Yellow Sign.
A vast plain of partially buried bones 
and discarded weapons.
A tomb containing dozens of mummified 
corpses stacked on top of each other.
A pit so deep that one cannot see the bottom.
The wind whispers the names of the party 
members, and tells them how they will be killed by 
the King in Yellow.
A field of rocks that are sharp as knives, 
stained with fresh blood.
A sandstorm, the general outline of which 
resembles a vast hooded figure.
A spiraling “whirlpool” of sand.
Huge spires of sandstone, sticking out of the 
ground like broken ribs.
A mirage that shows the city of Carcosa.
A sandstone cliff, dotted with various caves. 
A light comes from one of them.
A huge canyon which descends at least a 
mile downwards. Various ruins can be seen at the bottom.
A grove of succulents and cacti the size of 
trees, inhabited by odd, hairless zoogs.
A beautiful and well maintained garden 
made entirely from stone.
An abandoned mine shaft with graffiti 
declaring ominous warnings.
A large, partially ruined arena, where a 
clan of green men cheer at a battle between 
 gladiators and white apes.
A dried up lake bed with the bleached bones 
of an aquatic monster.
A large ant mound with human remains 
sticking out of it.
A large, featureless yellow monolith. 
Standing near it causes a sense of intense unease.
A group of thoats stuck in bubbling tar pits.
A herd of camels with human faces 
emitting shrill screams.
A field of drought resistant fungus, 
tended by green men.
A decrepit, ruined fortress, inhabited by 
cultists devoted to Nyarlathotep.
A larva of the great old ones, chained to 
a rock covered with binding sigils.
A small encampment of friendly nomads 
who are happy to trade both supplies and stories.
A patch of long destroyed farmland, 
with a ruined farm house.
The crumbling ruins of a once great pyramid.
A huge statue depicting a creature with the 
lower body of a thoat and the upper body of a green man.
A small tomb containing mummies of 
some strange inhuman species.
A group of ghoul grave robbers, 
looking for “finely aged” meat.
Dozens of horse-sized lizards, basking in 
the light of Aldebaran’s twin suns.
A dried up river, with ancient boats still resting on its bed.
Fossilized remains of elder things, exposed by a sandstorm.
A library of forbidden lore, half-sunken into the sand.
A vast lake of black, viscous oil. 
Shoggoths hide beneath its surface, blending in easily.
The ruins of an enormous sandstone wall, 
covered with faded murals.
Dozens of ambulatory, vampiric tumbleweeds.

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Lost Carcosa Update And ADHD Version 1.1

I am making great progress towards the completion of the Lost Carcosa supplement. Currently I have completed the Men and Magic section of Supplement 🜏, and I'm almost complete with the Monsters and Treasure section.

After these portions are completed, I will begin work on what I hope will be the most interesting and useful section of the book: Adventures in Carcosa.

I have come up with 6 regions of Carcosa, and each of these will have a table of 50 possible locations/things to find while exploring those regions (somewhat similar to the "Lay of the Land" tables in Hubris). These regions are:

The Yellow Desert of Rotan
The Colour-Blighted Wastes
The Peaks of Yad-Thoon
The Valley of Yhtill
The Sea of Demhe
The Forest of Ys

In addition to the 50 random features of each region, each region also has at least one more detailed area, and I will also be writing some encounter tables.

I will also be detailing the various gods of Carcosa, which are not limited to the Great Old Ones, though they of course have prominent placement.

At a rough estimate I'd say the finished product should be around 60 pages, but keep in mind I'm not very good at estimates.

Also, in unrelated news, I've updated Adventures in Distressingly Hazardous Dungeons to include some slightly modified wilderness travel rules which are somewhat closer to the OD&D rules.

This updated version can be found here.

Saturday, May 23, 2020

Lost Carcosa Announcement (What I've Been Up To)

So I know there is already an OD&D/OSR supplement about Carcosa, with a lot of inspiration from the Cthulhu mythos, but when I read it it honestly wasn't my cup of tea. I know other folks really liked it, but the gross sexual content, the die rolling system, the skin color based alien species, and the extreme lack of detail really turned me off to it.

But I do really really like Robert W. Chamber's The King In Yellow stories quite a lot, and I really like a lot of parts of the Cthulhu mythos, so I thought I'd try my own hand at creating a Carcosan supplement.

I present to you; Supplement 🜏: Lost Carcosa!

It is designed to be compatible with the original 3 OD&D booklets, but I will include notes for use with other games. Rather than having a sparsely detailed hex-map, the book will contain a rough map of the Carcosan region of the planet Aldebaran, some detailed notes on certain locations, and random tables to generate features.

The book itself takes inspiration from the works of HP Lovecraft (particularly The Dreamquest of Unknown Kadath), Robert E. Howard's Worms of the Earth, Edgar Rice Burroughs' A Princess of Mars and The Monster Men, and a slight reference to Lord Dunsany, because I don't really like Lovecraft's proper name for the Black Goat of the Woods with a Thousand Young, so I swapped it out for Sheol-Nugganoth.

Currently, art is going to be composed of black and white public domain illustrations, though this may change depending on if I suddenly magically become a talented artist.

Right now I'd say the book is about 10-20% complete (what can I say? I work slow).

On the topic of things you can immediately get your hands on, I have completed the most recent edition of the OSR hack formerly known as JABOM: Adventuring in Distressingly Hazardous Dungeons, or ADHD for short!

Click the image to read the document!

After some playtesting and feedback, this is the final version that I can see for the foreseeable future. I currently also have some documents of monsters and magic items that I'm working on separately.

That's all for now folks! Sorry for the dry spell of posts.

Sunday, April 19, 2020

Some Body Horror Tables

There is some gross/gory stuff on this post, so I'm putting it behind a jump break.

Thursday, April 9, 2020

The Kingdom of Blackwood

It has been a hot minute since I've posted to this blog, so I decided to put up a summary of the kingdom of Blackwood from my home setting.

1. What is the government like here?
Blackwood is ruled by a monarch, a ruler with supreme authority over the whole nation. Monarchs are selected by completing quests that are determined by the Questing Crown, a sentient magic item. Depending on how much the Questing Crown likes the current ruler, the quests will be relatively easy or extremely difficult. The Questing Crown’s quest is broadcast in the dreams of everyone in Blackwood.

2. What are the people like here?
The people of Blackwood are extremely tolerant, as anyone can become the monarch of Blackwood regardless of ethnicity, species, gender, or sexuality, so long as they are able to complete the quest assigned by the Questing Crown. People of all sorts live in Blackwood, and there is no dominant ethnicity.

3. What religious beliefs do people follow here?
All religions are tolerated in Blackwood, so long as they do not explicitly call for violence. Churches and temples of countless faiths can be found throughout the land, including missionaries from Norenlund attempting to “save the heathens”.

4. What are some notable cities/settlements?
The capital city of Pinehaven is located deep in the heart of Blackwood. It is the location of Blackwood castle, the reigning monarch’s home. Far to the north of Pinehaven is Rimebridge, a relatively large city known for its frigid cold and the many ancient ruins nearby. In addition to these two settlements, there are numerous small towns and villages scattered throughout the nation.

5. Who are some noteworthy people who live here?
The current reigning monarch is Queen Julia, an extremely strong warrior from northern Blackwood. She has short black hair, dark skin, and piercing brown eyes that seem to gaze into the soul. Julia is stoic, but compassionate, and slew a foul vampire for her quest in order to become monarch. She wants to do what is best for Blackwood. The monarch who was in control before Julia took over was Elric Quickfingers, a former thief who stabbed his companions in the back to obtain an ancient tome of magic, the quest assigned at the time. He is vengeful and wants his throne back, and is willing to hire other adventurers to do the dirty work, so long as he completes the quest.

6. What goods are available to purchase here?
Magical items, while not as bizarrely plentiful as in Arcturon, is more common than in other parts of Visterra. The occasional magic shop can be found, mostly in larger cities though. Blackwoodish armor and weapons tend to be good quality, though not necessarily the most technologically advanced. Some gunsmiths exist, but they aren’t very common.

7. What unusual laws are there which PCs should be aware of?
The one unusual law of Blackwood is its method for choosing monarchs. Other than that, laws are fairly standard.

8. What kind of adventures can be had here?
There are many old ruins and caves inhabited by monsters to be slain throughout Blackwood, and always there is a quest broadcast in the dreams of the nation’s inhabitants.

9. What is the environment like?
Blackwood is, as its name suggests, mostly forested, with trees sometimes reaching hundreds of feet tall. Most settlements are nestled in clearings, sometimes hand-made by loggers. In addition, there are some marshes and areas of hilly grassland.

10. What is a brief history of this place?
Blackwood is a very old country, with a history dating back thousands of years. Huge volumes compiling the exploits and laws of its many rulers fill entire library shelves. Famously, however, the first king of Blackwood was named Elwin, a sorcerer who bound his soul to the Questing Crown after he died, so that he could retain some modicum of control over the nation forevermore.