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Free Penny Tray for Free RPG Day Retailers!

Posted by on 11:42 am in Latest News | 0 comments

Free Penny Tray for Free RPG Day Retailers!

We really like Free RPG Day. I mean REALLY like. I mean we’re already putting out great new books for Free RPG Day—but why stop there? As if our two Free RPG Day offerings weren’t awesome enough already, we have something else for you! Every retailer who signs up for Free RPG Day will receive this DCC penny tray! For free! Take a penny, leave a penny, DCC style! If you’re a DCC fan, make sure you visit your local store on Free RPG Day and pay in cash—so you can leave a penny in their new tray! Find the store closest to you participating in the 2018 Free RPG Day!...

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Original Ken Kelly Art For Sale!

Posted by on 11:35 am in Latest News | 0 comments

Original Ken Kelly Art For Sale!

Yes, you read that correctly. As you know, Goodman Games prides itself on working with classic artists. All of the art we publish for our Dungeon Crawl Classics line is art that leaves behind a physical memento. That means there is an actual “canvas with paint on it” when the art is done—not just a digital phantom. In some ways this limits who we can work with, since so many modern artists are only trained to paint digitally. But that’s okay, because we like working with old-school artists! One of those artists who we recently announced collaboration with is Ken Kelly. Many fans will know Ken Kelly for his work on the classic Warren Publishing magazines Eerie and Creepy, as well as his mentorship at the hands of Frank Frazetta. Ken was kind enough to paint the cover to our 2nd printing of Beyond the Black Gate as well as the cover to one of our DCC Lankhmar adventures. It appears that Ken also painted an image of a coffin with chains around it. Hmm, very interesting! We haven’t announced this project yet, but the original art is up for sale on his web site. You can view it here. For those of who are interested in owning original art by a well-known fantasy painter—that also happens to be related to Goodman Games and old-school RPG’s—here is your chance!...

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Roadworthy: Judge David “Sluggo” Shaefer

Posted by on 11:23 am in Latest News, Roadworthy Judges | 0 comments

Roadworthy: Judge David “Sluggo” Shaefer

Welcome to Roadworthy! This is a chance to show off a Road Crew Judge and allow them to share their experience and wisdom. We provide these profiles to help provide insight into their personality and style, and maybe give up-and-coming Judges some advice on improving their game. The Road Crew theme for 2018 is Strange New Worlds! Head out and find unique places to run games for willing participants. Do something that makes us take notice! Who knows, maybe we’ll put you up on our website. Jump on into the Road Crew program for your chance! This time we go to the northern wilds of Indiana to meet Judge David “Sluggo” Shaefer! Roadworthy: Judge David “Sluggo” Shaefer What’s your name, where do you live (and game), and how would you describe yourself? I’m David Shaefer, I live in Elkhart, Indiana (so far north, if I sneezed hard enough I’d be in Michigan), and I describe myself a neurotic worrier about details in DCC adventures.  Why is the adventure happening here?  Why are there people and things in this area?  How does the geography contribute?  Like I said, neurotic. How did you first discover DCC? My son wanted some comic books, so we headed down to Secret Door Games.  I saw their role-playing games and mentioned them to Mandy (the manager), who then started telling me about DCC, adventuring like it’s 1974, and that (formerly profiled) Judge Joan Troyer ran a game.  We decided to give it a go, and here we are now.  Her group got a bit unwieldy in size, so we split it up into three games! As of “right now,” how many Road Crew games have you run in 2017? Or 2018? I didn’t run any games in 2017.  Our game split was effective this winter.  I’ve run all of four games in 2018, all home-brewed.  We’re having fun, though, despite my shortcomings. I’m learning a lot in a hurry. What’s your favorite Road Crew game experience so far? My first game, “Gnashgnab’s Gauntlet” was a lot of fun because it was a one-off and was written with some serious encounters and some silliness as well.  However, in “The Scuttling Swarm of the Sands” when an explosion sent guards and players flying through the air, one of the players at the table (btw, all my current players are 12 years old) said, “It’s Raining Men!”  Possible quote of the year stuff there. Tell us where you run your Road Crew games. I run my Road Crew games at Secret Door Games, 215 Main Street, Elkhart, IN 46516.  We’ve been running every other Saturday night, but we’re going to switch to every other Friday night because Saturdays are getting so popular there that it’s hard to find a table!  Pretty great place to run games, and I think it’s pretty impressive that there are three different DCC games being run there.  I think that says a great deal about Secret Door’s promotion of DCC! What advice would you give to other Road Crew judges? I heartily recommend writing your own material.  The creative outlet is very satisfying to me.  Appendix N is a great place to start, although I try to take cues from tv, movies, news, and casual conversations to guide me in my ideas for adventures.  Remember to make sure to put some silliness in adventures, and HAVE FUN.  If you’re not having fun, why are you doing...

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Announcing our Free RPG Day Releases!

Posted by on 1:43 pm in Latest News | 0 comments

Announcing our Free RPG Day Releases!

Did you know that Goodman Games is one of the originators of Free RPG Day? Joseph Goodman is one of the brains behind the concept of Free RPG Day, and we have been a part of every one since its inception. Did you further know that Free RPG Day 2018 is June 16? That puts it right around the corner! If you want to be a part of it, we suggest you plan now for your big gaming day! Visit FreeRPGDay.com to find a retailer near you. Make sure to get to the store early since many stores sell out! And since we’ve been a part of every one of them, you know that Goodman Games is going to be a big part of this year’s event, right? In fact, we’re excited to offer TWO freebies this year. Here are our two releases: Fifth Edition Fantasy #14: Beneath The Keep Written By: Chris Doyle A level 1 adventure for D&D 5E During a brief stop-over at a wilderness stronghold, a simple trip to a local provisioner reveals foul play! The shop has been broken into, and the shopkeeper is missing. But the place has not been burglarized. The heroes are thrust into an investigation. Clues discovered by the heroes hint at larger corruption that festers among the borderlands surrounding the stronghold. What sinister forces lurk beneath the keep? This all-new 5E adventure module includes new magic items, a new spell, and is ready to play right now! Dungeon Crawl Classics Quick Start Rules A new version of the Quick Start Rules, featuring a new adventure! This year’s Quick Start Rules includes all the rules you need to play a DCC RPG game from level 0 through level 2, as well as an all-new adventure! “Man-Bait for the Soul Stealer” is a level 2 adventure by Terry Olson. A shield maiden’s statue begs for liberation! Will the party brave the steaming pits of Odag, her elemancer master, and kill him to free her? His island lair is guarded by elemental monstrosities, but Odag’s treasure awaits one brave enough to claim it. Only the PCs can save the stone damsel! In addition, this year’s Quick Start Rules includes different spells than last year. We’ve also taken a second pass at the streamlining so this QSR is more compact than last year’s. It’s still 100% the same game as “regular” DCC RPG at levels 0-2, only now the Quick Start Rules are even more exciting and streamlined. Both products are a part of the Free RPG Day package! Make sure you get to your FLGS early enough to get your hands on both product. They’re sure to go fast! Find the store closest to you participating in the 2018 Free RPG...

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Con Season is in Full Swing!

Posted by on 11:36 am in Latest News | 0 comments

Con Season is in Full Swing!

You can tell that it’s con season. The easiest way is to simply look up and see that Goodman Games will be making FOUR appearances in the next TWO weeks. So if you are in the Atlanta region we’ve got some great news. If you are in the UK, you might already know about it, but Judge Brendan’s arrival is right around the corner. And if you are a retailer, we hope to see you up in Wisconsin this week. So many shows in such little time. How do we do it? Well, we aren’t saying, but…what do you think Patrons are for, anyway? Let’s get right to the details! What: Momocon Where: Georgia World Congress Center – Atlanta, GA When: May 24th – 27th The largest anime convention of the southeast welcomes us back with open arms! Goodman Games made our Momo-debut last year, and we had an amazing time. This year we are back with a bigger presence, more games, a few surprises, and more fun than ever before! Come check out our booth and play in a game with the one-and-only Judge Brendan! What: The Final Dungeon Where: Woodstock, GA When: May 23rd – 5:00pm to 9:00pm The night before Momocon begins, Judge Brendan is plying his wares at an Atlanta-based store! Come visit The Final Dungeon, in Woodstock, GA and meet Judge Brendan and play in some Dungeon Crawl Classics adventure! What: UK Games Expo Where: NEC Hilton Metropole – Birmingham, UK When: June 1st – 3rd You can check out Judge Brendan’s full schedule for the show right here. How many events does this guy do? And how does he keep the energy up so high? Well, the good news is that he does it, and you get to be the beneficiary of his amazing skills. And for you retailers: What: ACD Games Day Where: Madison, WI When: May 23rd – 25th We will be up at the ACD Games Day show in Madison, WI showing off our wares and answering questions for retailers. We hope to see many of you there for a great...

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Adventures in Fiction: Manly Wade Wellman

Posted by on 1:10 pm in Adventures in Fiction, Latest News | 0 comments

Adventures in Fiction: Manly Wade Wellman

Adventures in Fiction: Manly Wade Wellman By Michael Curtis At Goodman Games we recognize the importance of Appendix N in the history of D&D and DCC. May 21 marks the 115th anniversary of the birth of Manly Wade Wellman, a unique contributor to Appendix N. Here is some more information on this important writer. Manly Wade Wellman arrived in this world on May 21st, 1903, born literally an ocean away from the place he’d be forever associated with in his later life. Young Manly’s playground was the land of Portuguese West Africa (now Angola), where his father was stationed as a medical officer. It was undoubtedly here, in a land far removed from the staid world of 20th century America, that the seeds of Manly’s imagination found their first fertile ground. Wellman would grow to become an accomplished writer, penning stories in the genres of science fiction, fantasy, occult detective stories, prehistoric adventure, and horror during a career lasting almost 75 years. While all of Wellman’s oeuvre is worth reading, it is his Silver John stories that most impacted the world of fantasy role-playing. Wellman is one of the names on Gygax’s Appendix N roster of influential authors. Although no specific title is listed alongside his name, it’s been suggested that the character of Silver John influenced the bard class in D&D—a wandering troubadour who uses song, magic, and knowledge to defeat supernatural menaces. Stripped of the pseudo-medieval trappings of D&D, the bard and Silver John become almost indistinguishable from one another. The Silver John stories influenced the world of Dungeon Crawl Classics in a much different manner, however. Rather than inspire a single character class, Wellman’s tales of the witch-haunted hills and hollows of the Appalachians served as the germ for DCC #83: The Chained Coffin. That adventure is set in the fantastic region of the Shudder Mountains, a realm inhabited by goodly-hearted yet superstitious folk who share their mountain home with witches, devils, and secrets harkening back to a time before time. Gamers looking for adventures set somewhere other than the standard sword & sorcery inspired settings of fantasy role-playing will find a familiar yet eerily different world in the Shudder Mountains. The Shudders are a place where Manly Wade Wellman would have felt right at home and we here at Goodman Games raise a glass of good ol’ blockade whiskey on this 115th anniversary of his birth. For more information and plenty of Appalachian-style adventures for your Dungeon Crawl Classics campaign, please check out DCC #83: The Chained Coffin, DCC #83.1: Tales from the Shudder Mountains, and DCC #83.2: Death Among the Pines. Be sure to visit our Appendix N reprint section and the Adventures in Fiction page for more information on classic pulp...

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Adventures in Fiction: Gardner Fox

Posted by on 1:20 pm in Adventures in Fiction, Latest News | 0 comments

Adventures in Fiction: Gardner Fox

Adventures in Fiction: Gardner Fox By Jeff Goad Today is the birthday of Gardner F. Fox. Most people know him as the legendary and prolific writer for DC Comics who created the Justice Society of America as well as many of the most iconic DC Comics characters including Doctor Fate, the Flash, Hawkman, and Sandman. He also wrote many of the earliest Batman stories and was the first to introduce the Batarang. His contribution to the world of comics is well documented and uncontested. But when people see his name on the list of Appendix N authors, there’s often no recognition of his name as a writer of fantasy. He has passed into relative obscurity for contemporary fans of the genre. It is not surprising considering that he is best known as the author of the Kothar books (discounted by many as a cheap knockoff of Conan) and the Kyric books (a likewise discounted knockoff of Elric). Paperbacks like Kothar Barbarian Swordsman often littered the shelves of 70s and 80s bookstores beside similar fare like Brak the Barbarian and Thongor of Lemuria. So why does the Appendix N specifically suggest that we read: Fox, Gardner: “Kothar” series; “Kyrik” series; et al? Stick with me kid, and I’ll show you why. First off, what is a lich? Ask any fantasy enthusiast and they will tell you it is a powerful undead wizard. Well that wasn’t true before D&D. The word “lich” was just an obsolete word for “corpse”. But in Kothar Barbarian Swordsman, Kothar meets an undead wizard named Afgorkon (who casts healing spells… just sayin’….) and he is described as a lich. After reading this story, Gary Gygax added the lich to the 1975 Greyhawk supplement and it has been a focal point of the game ever since. Afgorkon is also a great example of a patron in Dungeon Crawl Classics. He is a powerful entity who exists out of time and he offers help in exchange for services, but his requests are never as simple as they seem…. Reading the Kothar books beside more literary inclusions in Appendix N like The Lord of the Rings, The Blue Star, or King of Elfland’s Daughter definitely show that Kothar Barbarian Swordsman is no piece of great literature. Sometimes we want Citizen Kane and sometimes we want The Evil Dead. Kothar is like the latter because it’s fun, thrilling, fast-paced, frothing with creativity, and when you laugh you know the author is laughing with you. Like the comic book heroes Fox wrote about, he also had multiple identities. In 1965 and 1967, he published two novels about Commander Craig (a kind of James Bond in space) under the pseudonym of Bart Somers. In 1969 and 1970, he used the name of Rod Gray to publish the four erotic novels that form the Lady from L.U.S.T. series, with not-so-subtle titles like The Poisoned Pussy and The Copulation Explosion. He also published other titles under the names of Simon Majors, Kevin Matthews, and others. His willingness to adopt different identities can have pretty hilarious results. For instance, look at the academic introduction to Kothar Barbarian Swordsman, written by Donald MacIvers, Ph.D. He talks about the great importance of the work and relies heavily on quotes from “a German philosopher no longer widely read” named Albert...

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Adventures in Fiction: Fred Saberhagen

Posted by on 11:50 am in Adventures in Fiction, Latest News | 0 comments

Adventures in Fiction: Fred Saberhagen

Adventures in Fiction: Fred Saberhagen By Jim Wampler At Goodman Games we recognize the importance of Appendix N in the history of D&D and DCC. May 18 marks the 88th anniversary of the birth of Fred Saberhagen, a key contributor to Appendix N. Here is some more information on this important writer. Science fiction and fantasy author Fred Saberhagen was born in Chicago, Illinois on May 18, 1930. Beginning his professional writing career at age 30 with a short story published in a 1961 issue of Galaxy Magazine, Saberhagen went on to become best known for his works featuring the characters Dracula and Sherlock Holmes. Fantasy role playing enthusiasts of a certain age are probably much more familiar with Saberhagen’s second-most popular work, The Swords Trilogy, which began being published in 1983, just as the Dungeons & Dragons craze was hitting its peak. Saberhagen followed that up with a subsequent sequel series, The Book of Lost Swords, which totaled eight additional books in all. And yet it was naturally a much earlier Saberhagen work that E. Gary Gygax cited in his famed Appendix N listing on page 232 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide. That honor was reserved for Changeling Earth (1973) — itself the third novel in a trilogy collectively referred to as the Empire of the East series. What makes the Empire of the East series so very interesting is its deft blending of post-apocalyptic science fiction elements with magic, demons, and god-like Artificial Intelligences. In fact, Saberhagen linked his two great science fantasy works, making The Swords Trilogy books a sequel to the Empire of the East, albeit it set 50,000 years after the first series. Reading these books, one can easily see the influence on Dungeons & Dragons, with its early penchant for mixing-and-matching elements from both traditional fantasy and science fiction literature. It’s also easy to see that by intentionally hewing the Dungeon Crawl Classics system back to the original inspirational sources of Gygax’s Appendix N literature, many of these genre-mashing DNA threads have ended up hale and hearty in DCC RPG as well. And of course, one cannot long contemplate mutated creatures, lost ancient technology, semi-sentient animals, and god-like AIs without taking the next logical step — an entire game system devoted to that precise genre, such as the Mutant Crawl Classics RPG. Sound enticing? To celebrate Fred Saberhagen’s birthday and perhaps explore these concepts via fantastic role playing with paper, dice, and pencil, be sure and check out DCC #79: Frozen in Time, DCC #84: Peril on the Purple Planet, DCC #87: Against the Atomic Overlord, and of course the new Mutant Crawl Classics RPG line. Be sure to visit our Appendix N reprint section and the Adventures in Fiction page for more information on classic pulp adventure! [Show...

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Remembering Bob Bledsaw Sr.

Posted by on 12:06 pm in Latest News | 0 comments

Remembering Bob Bledsaw Sr.

Remembering Bob Bledsaw, Sr. Robert Eugene Bledsaw, or “Bob” to those who knew him, was born on May 18, 1942. In 1976 he and Bill Owen founded Judges Guild. Bob passed away on April 19, 2008. Judges Guild was the first company to publish a D&D adventure module, and was hugely influential on the evolution of fantasy role playing games. Goodman Games has collected some of Bob’s work in our Judges Guild Deluxe Collector’s Edition. On this 76th anniversary of the birth of Bob Bledsaw Sr., we offer this homage, first written several years ago by his good friend and colleague Bill Owen, the co-founder of Judges Guild. My buddy Bob Bledsaw and I, both being avid wargamers, became fast friends in the fall of 1974. Dungeons & Dragons was the first game we played together and this launched a flurry of weekly adventures that he hosted at his house for about 18 months. Bob was an “older guy” of age 31; the rest of us were in our late teens. Along with D&D being a brand new game concept, we were in awe of his prodigious pace of campaign material production. I later learned that perhaps he had some insomnia that gave him more time than the average guy. That he had the time was especially remarkable as he had a wife and three young boys. The only other explanation was that he had been laid off as a designer at the local General Electric plant that made record players. It’s one thing to have the time to produce such a wide-ranging fantasy game campaign. What held us in thrall was his creativity and story-telling ability. Where did that come from? Over time I noted the dozens if not hundreds of comics and hardback books that one found in his house. This rich background of Swords & Sorcery styles is part of it. And Tolkien’s Middle Earth was the natural common reference for all of Bob’s players—we had devoured the Lord of the Rings trilogy so we had a base to launch from. And we even launched into the outer atmosphere finding ourselves on another planet! We paid little attention to the TSR approach, which struck me as dark, and domineering. Bob’s vision was expansive and frequently surprising. So many times, I remember the sheer adrenalin and excitement of reacting to some turn of events that had snuck up on us. Realism was often the goal of historical wargames and with fantasy, what is real? Objectively, fear and maltemper ought to be “realistic” in a scenario of powerful monsters. Instead Bob lit the fuse on high spirits, hilarious word play (yes, puns, alliterations and irony were all parts) and opportunities for helpful non-played characters to come into our retinue. These NPCs allowed Bob another avenue to play in the game along side us and not only via his plaintive cry, “My poor monsters!” If you missed a game, he’d bring you up to date in a matter-of-fact, bland speaking style that was leavened by the crazy subject matter such as how he relayed about Markham’s wife being kidnapped by orcs and other news. Yes, several of us teenagers’ characters “married” NPCs and I’m sure that Bob, the married man, probably had his own private thoughts about our grandiose romances...

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Roadworthy: Judge Evie

Posted by on 11:57 am in Latest News, Roadworthy Judges | 0 comments

Roadworthy: Judge Evie

Welcome to Roadworthy! This is a chance to show off a Road Crew Judge and allow them to share their experience and wisdom. We provide these profiles to help provide insight into their personality and style, and maybe give up-and-coming Judges some advice on improving their game. The Road Crew theme for 2018 is Strange New Worlds! Head out and find unique places to run games for willing participants. Do something that makes us take notice! Who knows, maybe we’ll put you up on our website. Jump on into the Road Crew program for your chance! This time we join the youth movement. Time to meet the incomparable Judge Evie! Roadworthy: Judge Evie What’s your name, where do you live (and game), and how would you describe yourself? My name is Evie Walls, and I live in North Huntingdon, PA. I am 11 years old and game at our local game club, the Norwin Game Knights. I also game at our local game store, Phantom of the Attic, or just at home! I would describe myself as friendly, but fierce. It’s all “nice Evie until the dice come out.” How did you first discover DCC? I started playing DCC when I was 8. My Dad was the Judge, and he ran The Portal Under the Stars. I has some pretty weird characters including Casey Ryback, and Bunnyface. Yeah weird. We played with my mom, Carrie, and our friend Frank. It was super fun! Since I was still a bit new to the concept, I asked some pretty weird things like “is death contagious?” As of “right now,” how many Road Crew games have you run in 2017? Or 2018? I believe I have run a total of 6 Road Crew events, 5 last year and 1 this year. I am looking forward to running many more in the future. Each one of them has been an experience I will always remember. Whether it was giving life to magical sticks in Nebin Pendlebrook’s Perilous Pantry, or my players driving cars in HECK on Inferno Road, I will never forget them. What’s your favorite Road Crew game experience so far? My favorite Road Crew game event that I have ran would have to be when I helped run Inferno Road at Gen Con 50. Being around other Judges that love the same thing as you do is amazing. I always look forward to running games with fellow Judges, because they are the ones who will understand you. Inferno Road was one of those scenarios. Also, nothing is better than running a game in HECK! Absolutely nothing. Tell us where you run your Road Crew games. I run most of my Road Crew games at our game club, the Norwin Game Knights. I plan on running a few games at Gen Con this year too. Tabletop Day is right around the corner, so there is another opportunity. Maybe Gary Con next year? What advice would you give to other Road Crew judges? My advice to other Road Crew judges would be don’t feel like you have to stick to the adventure exactly. If you are basing an adventure on cereal, don’t feel the need to keep a werewolf monster. Use a giant evil bowl of dry cereal who is evil because the milk ran out. Be creative! That is what these games are about, so go big or go...

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