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Darva Shriver
That which doesn't kill me, is probably not worth a whole lot of XP.
That which doesn't kill me, is probably not worth a whole lot of XP.


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The Known World Setting- A Few New Druid Magic Items
In Classic D&D, and pre-AD&D Mystara, druids are powerful clerics, given to the protection of the natural world. Unlike druids in other incarnations of the game, Known World druids have a respectable career as a cleric already behind them, and should be cap...

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The Known World Setting - A Few New Minor Magic Items
After a while, the limited lists of magic items in the BECMI rulebooks can get a little boring, and I often end up creating new things to amuse the players. I've found that when you're giving out mysterious, unique things, they usually don't have to be supe...

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Campaign Mood - Aleena the Doomed, or, How to Annoy the Players with their Hirelings
Aleena and the Bargle incident are often remembered with tongue in cheek fondness by many gamers, and for good reason, she's a memorable NPC, it's a cool campaign starter adventure hook, and Larry Elmore's art for her is D&D cheesecake gold. But, let's look...

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House Rules - Expanded Lock Picking Houserules
We like to give some variety to locks and traps, to make things a little more interesting than the old "ok, roll to unlock/disarm it". While intricate detail of the workings of the device is overkill in most cases, I found that a simple system to differenti...

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House Rules - Variant Non-Magical Arrows
In the standard rules all attacks with a bow do 1d6 points of damage. I wanted to add a little variety for characters who use bows heavily, as well as give the DM some options to use with NPCs and monsters who make use of archery in combat, so here's a coll...

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Experience Awards for noncombat activities
Overall, there's nothing really wrong with the XP awards as written, but I like to have some loose guidelines for XP awards for non-combat activities. Since I do not use the 1gp=1xp rule granting experience just for gathering treasure, these help give the p...

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Scaling the Cleric's cure spells
Editor's Note: This is another slightly edited and cleaned up post from the blog archive, by original blog owner Rich Trickey, aka chatdemon. ~Olga~ Here's a breakdown of the Cleric's "cure" spells, by level he can cast them and amount of damage healed: Lev...

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Campaign Mood - Mundane Animals as Mundane "Monsters"
Another trick I like to use to establish a better sense of fantasy and wonder in the campaign is to start things out very mundane and down to earth. Bandits will be humans rather than orcs. The owlbear stealing chickens from the local farm turns out to be a...

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Campaign Mood - Portraying Character Knowledge vs. Player Knowledge. Or, how much DO commonfolk know about magic and monsters?
Being a fan of fantasy literature, folklore and mythology, I get tired of the default assumptions that have crept into the game over the years. Monsters everywhere, magic everywhere, and it's more than that, everyone recognizes and accepts them. Joe the far...

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Classic D&D Class Options List, revisited
Over the years, one of the common topics of discussion among BECMI, and those of the other Classic D&D editions, players has been the "limited" class options in the game. It's always tempting to write up a bunch of homebrew classes, or try and split up the ...
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