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Let's talk about D&D and the World of Greyhawk...
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Dirty Ernie
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:11 pm    Post subject: Let's talk about D&D and the World of Greyhawk... Reply with quote

My eldest son has suddenly developed an interest in Dungeons & Dragons. The kid that was too cool for table-top RPGs. Resisted Savage Worlds. Preferred video games.

Well, all-of-a-sudden, he's gathered all of the dice in the house into an industrial-sized draw-string sack, convinced my wife to order the 2nd edition AD&D core books that I used to own (which have just arrived, at no small cost), and is sitting at the dining room table with a calculator and a heavily-smudged character sheet, totalling his purchases from the Gear and Equipment lists.

What's worse, I'm now caught up in the nostalgia, scouring the 'net for Old Skool Greyhawk ephemera.

That I used to own. #1eek13 And man, it ain't cheap.

Yeah, I'm an Old Fart. Mean and cranky, too. Cool

Looking for help from the Olde Guard (ie. Old Farts) in converting the classic Greyhawk material to Savage Worlds.

I've seen Prof. Fate's conversion, and think it's fantastic, but would like to hear from more of you Grognards.
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Rohan
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 10:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have the hard-as-hell to find Ivid the Undying boxed set printed off in PDF format and we adventured almost exclusively in Greyhawk when I played AD&D.

What would you like to know?
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kronovan
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 9:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some months ago I was digging around in my storage room and came upon my World of Greyhawk map and gazetteer. Man was that ever a well conceived product and it immediately brought back fond memories of running a campaign in the Gran March. Of course then I immediately downloaded the AD&D core rule pdfs from dragonfoot and wondered just how the heck we ever managed to play it? Very Happy

I've thought of trying to start up a SW conversion of the Greyhawk setting, but I'm a bigger fan now of Nerath and it's Nentir Vale setting, having recently completed Bassingthwaite's excellent trilogy set in it. If you can find the Greyhawk gazetteer I think you just run the setting with the locations that are detailed in it. I've seen the various SW conversion docs round, but aside from the few player races missing from SWD or the FC I've always been of the opinion that it's better to just run it as pure SW fantasy. Unless your gaming group is well read on the Greyhawk novels or very knowledgable of that section of the D&D canon. I know in my neck of the woods you can't even buy those novels anymore.
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VonDan
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 1:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

why didnt you mention this last month, Ii traded/gave away two sets of the Glossography and Guide to the World of Greyhawk


By that I mean I would have given you one as long as it is for Youth Education
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Baiyo
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Have you been to the blog of the Greyhawk Grognard?
http://greyhawkgrognard.blogspot.com/

Check out his free resources for download on the right-hand sidebar. Most are self-explanatory. "Castle of the Mad Archmage" is his own personal take on Castle Greyhawk. And it's even the size that Castle Greyhawk was always promised to be.

Then of course there's Canonfire: http://www.canonfire.com/cfhtml/index.php
This site practically replaces the World of Greyhawk Book in terms of world info.

These resources are all for older editions of D&D, but converting to Savage Worlds doesn't really take much effort. (In my my opinion anyways.)

I got some decent mileage out of the City of Greyhawk boxed set in my younger years. Never did much with the wider world of Oerth though.
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Takeda
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 3:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hell. It was easy to convert classes (if necessary) as a package of edges & hindrances. It's the setting that appeals not the rules. You know the setting. Just run it he'll come around. It worked on my two nephews and my son.

He might be drawn to it from D&DOnline and there's where the minutiae addiction can start because it's computerised.

Just work on establishing the 'feel' but avoid drowning in all the rules. Smile Smile Smile
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Takeda
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could trick him too.

Tell him you'll run a game for him but that it's starting when his character is still a kid and you want him to play unfettered with the character sheet. Secretly make it up as Savage Worlds. Have him roll dice randomly but roll his wild die and aced rolls for him. Once he's hooked show him his real character sheet. Explain that you can enjoy the same setting and game-feel, detailed equipment list but not the 25+ books that D&D 2.5 got up to.
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Houndin
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't forget about the Atlas of the Flanness http://ghmaps.net/
Some fantastic map resources there for free (donation suggested)
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VonDan
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 7:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And don't forget my Old High school PC owns the Axe wood
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Dirty Ernie
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2012 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Baiyo - Yes, I've hit those sites and many more. There's a huge Greyhawk following out there on the 'net, and I'm looting 'em like there's no manana. Cool However, the Greyhawk Grognard's download links don't seem to work for me.

@Takeda - I'm trying to remain rules-neutral at this time. He knows I'm a Savage Worlds fan, but I wanna let him run on his own steam and discover the hobby for himself. I'm giving AD&D a fair shake for nostalgia's sake, but I think we're already a bit frustrated with the page-turnin', multi-tome crunchiness. Hell, I wanted to bash my brains out on the table when, after several hours of character generation, I took a step back and realized I was actually doing accounting and shopping for...

- a belt
- a tunic
- two sheaths for my daggers
- a scabbard for my short sword
- pouches, shoes, a sash, a cap...

I was gettin' a bit peeved that there were no entries for socks or underwear, but fortunately, I came to my senses and realized that, like real life, those are all optional. #1eek13 Saved me some copper pieces.

kronovan wrote:
...and wondered just how the heck we ever managed to play it? Very Happy

At the time, it was pretty much all we had. And we were damned happy to have it.

Good times. Smile

Thanks fellas for all your comments, but it's past my bedtime, and I'll be back tomorrow to address the rest of ya.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 3:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you oughta leave Hellfrost lying around for him to stumble over...




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Dirty Ernie
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 11:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

VonDan wrote:
why didnt you mention this last month, Ii traded/gave away two sets of the Glossography and Guide to the World of Greyhawk

By that I mean I would have given you one as long as it is for Youth Education

Well, why didn't ya ask? #1eek13 For the record, consult me first if you wanna give away any RPG Educational Material. For the Children, of course. I wan... that is, they seem to have a special fondness in their precious little hearts for classic Greyhawk material of late. Cool

Houndin wrote:
Don't forget about the Atlas of the Flanness...

Yep, I stumbled across that site as well. As a lover of maps, I gotta say that it's truly a wonder to behold. Believe me, when the Greyhawk Nostalgia Bug bit me, the first thing I did was Google images of "The Map".

Snate56 wrote:
I think you oughta leave Hellfrost lying around for him to stumble over...

Unfortunately, I don't own that setting. I pretty much left the fantasy genre behind in my late-teens/early twenties, and am only now getting back into it due to my son's interest.
Frankly, I'm a bit put-off by the icy/snowy/viking-ish vibe of Hellfrost, and not really looking for a new setting due to my fondness for Greyhawk.

I think he's more into the brand-name appeal/mystique/legend that is Dungeons & Dragons at the moment, so I'm not applying any Savage Worlds pressure... yet. My plan is to let him burn out on his own (he wants to DM), then when he's at his weakest, I strike. Twisted Evil In a sensitive, compassionate, fatherly, bringing-sight-to-the-blind way, of course.

Rohan wrote:
I have the hard-as-hell to find Ivid the Undying boxed set printed off in PDF format and we adventured almost exclusively in Greyhawk when I played AD&D.

Yes, I managed to find the free download for that.
I'm thinking I wanna use the original sandbox-y Greyhawk set before the Wars. As a fan of the setting, I love all the detail, but for playing, I think blank spaces on the map and a wide-open feel is the way to go. A "make it your own" vibe if you will.

Rohan wrote:
What would you like to know?

Sorry, I was kinda vague in my original post. I'd like to hear from other D&D/Greyhawk veterans that have since discovered Savage Worlds.

I've snagged most of the conversions/modifications/tweaks for transitioning between systems.

Do they scratch that itch for Old Skool fun? Is it folly to turn a system into something it's not? Is there a middle ground?

I wanna hear from folks that have actually GM'ed or played.
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kronovan
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2012 8:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dirty Ernie wrote:
Houndin wrote:
Don't forget about the Atlas of the Flanness...

Yep, I stumbled across that site as well. As a lover of maps, I gotta say that it's truly a wonder to behold. Believe me, when the Greyhawk Nostalgia Bug bit me, the first thing I did was Google images of "The Map".

Something to bare in mind, is that the atlas on that site only covers central Flanaess. So if you want a map depicting some of the more interesting hinter regions like the Barabarian lands, Sea Barons, Spindrift Isles, Crystalmist mountains, Hellfurnaces and the Dry Steppes that map won't cut it.
Quote:
I'm thinking I wanna use the original sandbox-y Greyhawk set before the Wars. As a fan of the setting, I love all the detail, but for playing, I think blank spaces on the map and a wide-open feel is the way to go. A "make it your own" vibe if you will.

I personally preferred the 'From the Ashes' era for the Greyhawk setting, which IIRC was CY 585. It didn't add too much in population, but I thought its darker flavor due to evil having triumphed in many regions over the previous decade did a better job of explaining a world that's sparcely populated; almost post-apocalyptic in a Medieval way. Wink It was a heckuva lot darker though, so maybe not appropriate for all Teens.

Something I recall about DM'ing in Flanaess, was that the sparceness of towns and cities made narrating adventures a bit of challenge. You had to be comforable with narrating long passages of time/distance or plan for a lot of encounters. I didn't care much for the encounter tables in the setting or core rule books. I remember having to put a fair amount of effort in creating encounters that in some ways were more like simple 1-page adventures, which I'd just insert when an encounter roll called for it. Unless your starting in Greyhawk city which has a good variety of adventuring areas close by, a campaign -heck even an adventure- can bog down quite quickly in that world.
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Pfr_Fate
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Still poking it around. I've added a few things to it since and decided to work magic as such:

Spells work as in AD&D: you have a certain amount of slots that you fill with spells that are good for one casting each until you've had time to replace them in your brain. There is one big exception, though. Some spells are listed as Minor Spells. These spells have minor and usually non-combat effects. You do not fill a slot with a particular Minor Spell - you just list the Minor Spells you know, and when you need to cast a Minor Spell you burn a slot that was locked into another Spell. So a spell caster might have 3 slots and memorized the following Magic Missile, Magic Missile, Invisibility. Along the way, he suddenly finds a desperate need for Light (a Minor Spell of the three Minor Spells he knows), so burns a Magic Missile slot to cast Light.

Spells will be created by the DM as they are found by the PC or as used by the DM (through adventure, character creation, enemy combat, etc). This is done for three reasons:
1) There are a TON of D&D spells and no-one wants to convert them all at once or (usually) can agree on the conversion details.
2) We all know that spell-casters are very limited early on....however, if you add the mystery of not knowing the details of every available spell and the chance that there are spells out there you know nothing about, then a spell-caster is a very scary mystery indeed. You may draw your sword on some poor beggar, only to find that a few words from him causes your arm to fall off!
3) Since magic is now a little mysterious and controlled, the finding of a new spell or any spell is HIGHLY sought after! Who cares about the gold and the +1 sword...thats a scroll !

Did I mention that, like AD&D, spells take a full round or so to cast...but...they always hit. Saving throws still occur (as Opposed Rolls), so you need that Arcane Skill to be good. But, you got to love the joy of just reaching out and causing Magic Missile within Line-Of-Sight... Archers can't hit...how's about three arrows right now? Powpowpow...

Yeah Greyhawk magic is deadly...that is why it is rare....
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Cryonic
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pfr_Fate wrote:

Did I mention that, like AD&D, spells take a full round or so to cast...but...they always hit. Saving throws still occur (as Opposed Rolls), so you need that Arcane Skill to be good. But, you got to love the joy of just reaching out and causing Magic Missile within Line-Of-Sight... Archers can't hit...how's about three arrows right now? Powpowpow...

Yeah Greyhawk magic is deadly...that is why it is rare....


Spells don't take a full round to cast. You're limited to casting one spell a round, but that doesn't prevent you from moving.
Magic Missile, while able to auto-hit, wasn't able to kill any character other than a wizard with a poor Constitution in one casting. Most other spells either required a to-hit roll or granted the target a saving throw to avoid at least some of the effects. (and 3 Magic Missiles means a 5th level spellcaster to get that out in one casting and they would just nibble at the health of any appropriate threat)
The vast majority of D&D spells are just a given power in SW with the right trapping.
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Bavix
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honestly Dirty Ernie, if you can find them, I'd use the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer as the base setting book and the poster maps from Dragon Magazine from Paizo. They're the most up to date and consistent references out there for Greyhawk and I don't think the LGG has a single stat block in it—it's completely system neutral.
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Kristian Serrano
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bavix wrote:
Honestly Dirty Ernie, if you can find them, I'd use the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer as the base setting book and the poster maps from Dragon Magazine from Paizo. They're the most up to date and consistent references out there for Greyhawk and I don't think the LGG has a single stat block in it—it's completely system neutral.

This. I have both resources, and they are indispensable. In fact, I even have the 32-page 3e Gazetteer as a lighter version of the LGG, too.

Just to brag, I've 3 copies of the Paizo maps. One copy of the four maps laminated, one copy of the maps still in the original bags, and one copy in PDF format.

I just wish Paizo could offer a single image of the entire map in high resolution or a printed copy of the entire map as one whole.
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kronovan
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bavix wrote:
Honestly Dirty Ernie, if you can find them, I'd use the Living Greyhawk Gazetteer as the base setting book and the poster maps from Dragon Magazine from Paizo. They're the most up to date and consistent references out there for Greyhawk and I don't think the LGG has a single stat block in it—it's completely system neutral.


Correct me if I'm wrong, but those have all the new settlements and population increases that were added when WotC had the setting updated in the late 90's? From what Ernie stated earlier, he wants to run with the less settled world of the original 1e map and gazetteer. So I wouldn't neccessarily say those products would be suitable for what he wants.
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Pfr_Fate
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 13, 2012 3:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cryonic:

I am going back to 1st edition AD&D (Gygax's Greyhaw) and Basic D&D.

A 5th level fighter would have an average of 35 hp (16 CON). Magic Missile did 1d4+1 and at 5th level, a Magic-user could throw three of them.

Now that would not drop his HP to zero by any streatch, of course (doing an average of 9 hp damage). But, remember that HP was made up of body fortitude, combat experience, and heroic luck. Your average mook would have about 3 hp. it should kill a mook and cut a Wild Card 'Seasoned' fighter to drop by one-fourth.



Also, AD&D had one minute rounds of combat and spells took a little time (segments based upon the level of the spell).

So, to translate, Magic Missile would be cast with one action and would do 1d6+1d4 damage per bolt (one at Novice, two at Seasoned, three at Veteran, four at Heroic, five at Legendary). Getting hit by three of those would likely cause Seasoned Wild-Card to take a Wound and/or use a Bennie and should kill a Extra.

Not bad for an automatic thing. If he uses three slots of those, watch out! And he can spread the pain to multiple targets.

The key is 'automatic'. You argue with a wizard and you may be dead in the next few seconds with just a word. Yeah..in a dungeon or arena - not so much...but in a large city where almost anyone could be a magic-user? The odds a re slim, but that scrawny guy who you want to bully could have six times (1d6+1d4) at you in two rounds....
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Cryonic
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 14, 2012 12:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pfr_Fate wrote:
Cryonic:

I am going back to 1st edition AD&D (Gygax's Greyhaw) and Basic D&D.

A 5th level fighter would have an average of 35 hp (16 CON). Magic Missile did 1d4+1 and at 5th level, a Magic-user could throw three of them.

Now that would not drop his HP to zero by any streatch, of course (doing an average of 9 hp damage). But, remember that HP was made up of body fortitude, combat experience, and heroic luck. Your average mook would have about 3 hp. it should kill a mook and cut a Wild Card 'Seasoned' fighter to drop by one-fourth.



Also, AD&D had one minute rounds of combat and spells took a little time (segments based upon the level of the spell).



Yes, I'm aware that 1st/2nd ed D&D was 1 minute rounds vs the 6 second rounds of 3rd Ed/Savage Worlds/D6 or 3 seconds for Shadowrun or 1 second for GURPS, or 12 comic panels for HERO system.
Swinging a sword added its speed factor to your initiative to determine when you swing in a round, but that doesn't make a spell take a "full round" to cast.
There are no average "mooks" in D&D. There were 0th level NPCs and then there were monsters and/or NPCs with Class Levels (like the retired level 9 fighter who is now a Lord somewhere, or a 3rd level fighter as the innkeeper).

Quote:


So, to translate, Magic Missile would be cast with one action and would do 1d6+1d4 damage per bolt (one at Novice, two at Seasoned, three at Veteran, four at Heroic, five at Legendary). Getting hit by three of those would likely cause Seasoned Wild-Card to take a Wound and/or use a Bennie and should kill a Extra.

Not bad for an automatic thing. If he uses three slots of those, watch out! And he can spread the pain to multiple targets.

The key is 'automatic'. You argue with a wizard and you may be dead in the next few seconds with just a word. Yeah..in a dungeon or arena - not so much...but in a large city where almost anyone could be a magic-user? The odds a re slim, but that scrawny guy who you want to bully could have six times (1d6+1d4) at you in two rounds....


Magic users were probably less than 1 in a 10000 in D&D. You're more likely to run into someone with a gun in Chicago than a magic user in the streets of any city in Greyhawk.
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