Monday, 30 March 2015

PDF Paper-crafting Power! Okumarts, Kev's Lounge Papercraft Dungeon, Inked Adventures and some waffle about layers in PDFs

Flammable paper civilians do
well to run from the 
Alien Death Ray / Gojira
/ Supervillain-heat-vision.
DTRPG $0.99
Okay. Super quick post, I promise, on one of my favourite topics: printable tabletop accessories.

First up - I'm really liking these Panicked Civilians minis by Okumarts (99c on DTRPG).  Twelve unique double-sided designs of the kind of fleeing people you'd expect in almost any contemporary action setting - I'm mainly thinking of superheroes and B-movie monsters, almost unaware of the "little people".  Interestingly, when printed to card or paper, I'm assured that they burn faster than real people. Not a bad PDF for a dollar (that's 67 pence in real money).  As well as a clean, dynamic, graphic novel style of illustration, Mr Okum has provided a choice of colours of attire, selectable through the layers feature. He often does this with his minis and it multiples the number of individual figures significantly.  It's definitely worth a download if you're planning a campaign where hopeless citizens of God Fear City are being terrified by unimaginable terrors... Mwhahaha.

A stupendous number of options, for terrain, features, grids.
Ridiculously good value.  Ridiculous, I tell you!
Kev's Lounge Battlegrounds Meadow Tiles
$3 on DTRPG, RPGNow and PapercraftDungeon
Now, talking of layers, I'm always astonished at the sheer vast humongous range of designs which can be created from customisable PDFs.  I've just been browsing Kev's Lounge Battlegrounds Meadow Tiles ($3/£2 on DriveThru). Not only are flippable layers used here, but there's randomiser button for those moments when inspiration is dragging.

There's a video below which shows off all of the features, and to be honest I get a little jealous when I see such high production values and variety in one pack at such a low price, I mean, I get impressed if I can produce a hand drawn pack (for Inked Adventures) which can print ten different designs, never mind 2 trillion.

Naturally, stock up on ink before tackling this beasty.  Kev has been producing excellent tiles for some time now and has many low price and free sets of ingenious design to download at and Kev's Lounge on DTRPG 

Inked Adventures: Arcane Library Tile
& Sections
$3.95 on DTRPG
Alright, I'll come clean, this post is an elaborate ruse to sneak in some self-promotion of my latest Inked Adventures title, which just so happens to also be a printable tabletop accessory: Arcane Library Tile and Sections  ($3.95usd/£2.65gbp)

By way of contrast, my sets don't use layers, for which I've had some flack from reviewers, because I will sometimes provide a duplicate document for a different styles/ textures - in the case of the Arcane Library there is colour art and black/white line art, both with their own PDFs - since I've had requests from customers who want to save on ink and like to colour the work in themselves by hand with their children.  In Teach Your Kids to Game Week, many gamers online posted how the creation in preparation for games was almost as fun as the games themselves.  It goes without saying that I often provide separate documents for Letter and A4 page sizes - definite less complaints about that (except maybe that the formats are too small).  With square tiles, my personal preference is to think in terms of pages and not as an editing layer.  This might also make life easier if you're assigning printing to a third party (like a copyshop, some of my US customers seem to love copyshops, which are hopefully cheaper than their UK counterparts), i.e. "Extra copies of pages 5, 11 and 20, please".  That doesn't meant that I'm impressed by multifunction PDFs, I'm very impressed, they are currently just not my style.

In defence of flat one-layer PDFs, they can be browsed on almost any platform or device without needing Adobe's proprietorial software.  Basically, I can browse, print and plan from my iPad or even my phone if I need to like all my other DriveThru downloads (not that I recommend planning dungeons from a phone...).  Another reason is that I like the idea of publishing a set of pages as browsable documents - maybe because maybe it's more like a book?  (There must be a self-publishing vanity or 80's thing going on here, my ego can be strange)  Also constructing PDFs without layers can produced from open source software and I'm going through a LibreOffice phase at the moment. Besides, I'm rubbish at adding code to PDFs.  So for the moment I'm hiding my technical shortcomings and lack of content behind a principle of sorts. ;)

Arcane Library Tile with modular antechamber sections
A handful of possible arrangements. ;)
(click for low res -larger view)
But back to the library... this product is so overdue that it almost has it's own CV.  As a slightly paranoid artist, I'll dumbly point out here that it has flaws, stemming from the hand drawing to paper (then scanning) process. Tiny, tiny flaws, imprecision in the joins, and the occasional graph paper mark showing through. Most of those flaws are only visible when you zoom right into the page on the screen, but again I have to protest that as a printed product, players' eyes are not set to a zillion DPI. All that aside, as a four page "tile" I think the size on the gaming table gives it a solid Pow! factor that some of my previous modular designs lack.

If the hand drawn (slightly 1980's boardgame) illustrative style, multi-level dungeon rooms, is your thang, you might like to check out the Arcane Library Pack (on DTRPG) and keep me in pens and guacamole for a little while longer.

Yes, that's what my prices are based on, fresh guacamole and fine-line pens, and cat food pouches (for emergencies, and muggings by street cats).

Saturday, 7 March 2015


Is there actually a niche of gamers out there for players who love both the Pathfinder system and My Little Pony? So much so that they want to play different classes of pony and go on quests in equine themed fantasy worlds?  Apparently there is. The Ponyfinder RPG titles (Silver Games LLC) are doing very well in the Hottest Small Press listings on DriveThru at the moment.  It’s times like these when I realize that I really don’t have a clue about what people are really playing these days. 
Hay, I have absolutely neigh idea what this is all about. ;)

Silver Games LLC / Ponyfinder range on DTRPG:

Thursday, 5 March 2015

Happy GM's Gygax Day (and Sale on DTRPG)

Happy Gygax Memorial / GM's Day / Cheap PDF Games Week!
30% off many titles, way too numerous to mention. I'm sure your Dropbox account could squeeze in just a few more scenarios. ;)
Until March 10th.
LLAP in order to play more games... ! \\//
(Or just download rules for your reading pleasure)