Sunday, August 18, 2019

Gaming Legend Rick Loomis of Flying Buffalo Games in Hospital

Rick Loomis is the founder of Flying Buffalo Games and has been working in the RPG industry for over 50 years. He is perhaps best known for the Tunnels & Trolls RPG and the Grimtooth's Traps series. Dave Arneson was friends with Loomis and owned shares in Tunnels & Trolls. He also sold his own company Adventure Games to Flying Buffalo in 1985. I was actually chatting to Rick about his connections to Dave just last month. He seemed like a really nice person.

I recently learned that Loomis, 1972, was diagnosed with lymphatic cancer earlier this year. A go fund me campaign has been launched to help cover his medical bills. If you want to help this legend in gaming you can do so by visiting that site here.


Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Fredigar's Hope: New Free Adventure Explores Origins of Blackmor's Comeback Inn

My friend Yaztromo is great at keeping me up to date with the "Blackmoor Living World" project which produces free fan written adventures set in Blackmoor for the Advanced Fighting Fantasy RPG. This latest installment, titled Fredigar's Hope explores the legendary Comeback Inn and its owner Fredigar Cribbs.

As with the other Living Blackmoor Adventures, Fredigar's Hope is relatively rules light and easy to convert to any edition of D&D or other RPGs of your choice.

This adventure is available as a free download here.


Blackmoor at GenCon 2019

Its always nice to see the original fantasy RPG setting see some presence at the world's largest RPG convention! Origial Blackmoor Player and D&D designer Mike Carr was there running his Fight In the Skies game. The biggest Blackmoor related story to have come out of Gen Con 2019 is related to a certain documentary:

As reported by Secrets of Blackmoor, a screening of the Documentary by the same name was shown at Gen Con 2019, in Indianapolis this weekend. As the producers of the film were unable to attend, the event was organized by Gen Con Film Festival Organizer Chuck Budreau. It was recently announced to backers of the Kickstarter that the version distributed at vimeo would not be the final version of the documentary, but that these backers would recieve a revised version. It is unclear which version was screened at GenCon.

Did you attend GenCon 2019? Did you go to the screening of Secrets of Blackmoor? What were the highlights of your GenCon 2019 experience?

More discussion of this article here.


Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Rolling Thunder - Lost MMRPG Adventure Available At Last

As reported yesterday, we have been able to find a lost Blackmoor adventure. Episode 91 from season 4 of Blackmoor the MMRPG for some reason went missing and I had assumed it had never been written. However clues to its existence kept popping up and finally the episode has been uploaded and made available for free to fans of this series of Blackmoor adventures. This adventure introduces the Drakon'katha, a spellcasting lizardman-like race of enemies to Blackmoor as well as the Nyborg and Garthopods. We also get expansions to Dwarven lore and a wonderful dwarven war machine!

I hope you like it!

Download here!


Monday, June 24, 2019

Lost Blackmoor Adventure Discovered!

A few weeks ago, we announced that all four seasons of D&D adventures for the Blackmoor MMRPG (Organized play) had been released to the public. While we still have a few surprises left that we are going to share with you over the coming months, we genuinely believed that we had uncovered all the episodes that were written. Some numbered episodes simply do not exist because numbers were assigned and not necessarily written. However when the final episodes had been made available, fans over at the Comeback Inn Forum started asking questions. Something felt like it was missing in the final storyline.

And behold, something was missing! Thanks to MMRPG author Phil Slama, I have obtained a lost episode. The episode is #91 in the series and is called Rolling Thunder. I will be releasing this episode tomorrow, but I can reveal now that it deals with the Dwarves of Blackmoor and some of their most powerful weapons!

So, stay tuned tomorrow for Rolling Thunder! Is this the last time I will spring such surprises on you? I don't know, but I hope not! During my searching for this episode I have reached out to others who were involved with the MMRPG so maybe I will uncover more as well! If you know about anything that is not available as free downloads at The Comeback Inn, please let me know!

PS: Special thanks to Yaztromo for digging into the MMRPG episodes!

Discuss this article here.


Sunday, June 23, 2019

Richard L. Snider (1953-2009)

In November this year, it will have been 10 years since Richard Leonard Snider (August 29, 1953 - November 17, 2009) passed away. I reported on his passing in this post from 2009. Today I want to take the time to look into Richard's importance for our hobby.

Perhaps best known for designing Tabletop RPGs such as Powers & Perils (Avalon Hill) and Adventures in Fantasy (1978), Richard was an important member of Dave Arneson's Blackmoor Group and went onto become a game designer himself. Richard was also a supporter of the Blackmoor fan community and participated at the Wayfarer's Inn, a precedessor of the Comeback Inn Blackmoor Forum.

Meeting Dave Arneson

Born in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Richard and his brother John moved to Minnesota and joined the gaming club known as the Midwest Military Simulation Association, where Dave Arneson was also a member. In the 1970s and the Sniders became two of the original Blackmoor players in Dave's campaign. The First Fantasy Campaigns makes many references to "The Sniders" detailing the actions of the two brothers in Dave Arneson's Campaign. Richard most memorable character was probably the Cleric who became known as the Flying Monk. Although he was 6 years younger than Dave, Richard was also active in making rules suggestions and  other contributions to the campaign. An entire section in Dave Arneson's First Fantasy Campaign is dedicated to Richard's additions to the game. My own fan sourcebook for Blackmoor, The Eastern Marshes was in part a tribute to Richard Snider's section in the First Fantasy Campaign.

Game Designer and author

Together with Dave Arneson, he co-authored Adventures in Fantasy (Excalibre Games, 1978). In 1983, Richard created the game Powers & Perils, which he was incredibly supportive of throughout his life.  Later in life Richard still expressed an interest in publishing RPGs, though attempts to bring back Powers & Perils on a commercial basis were blocked by Wizards of the Coast. In  2007, Richard stated that he would be interested in bringing his creative ideas to the computer scene in "a computer mega-opus".

Richard was also a published Sci Fi author, having written a novel called The Leather Rose. He also wrote about 35 other unpublished novels.


Tabletop RPGs
  • Arneson, Dave First Fantasy Campaign (Judges Guild, 1977) - Additional material by Richard Snider included.
  • Arneson, Dave & Snider, Richard: Adventures in Fantasy (Excalibur Games, 1978)
  • Asprin, Robert: Thieves World (Chaosium, 1981) - Additional material
  • Snider, Richard: Powers & Perils RPG (Avalon Hill, 1983)
  • Snider, Richard: Perilous Lands (Avalon Hill, 1984) - Powers & Perils Supplement
  • Snider, Richard: Book of Tables (Avalon Hill, 1984) - Powers & Perils Supplement
  • Snider, Richard: Tower of the Dead (Avalon Hill, 1984) - Powers & Perils Supplement
Strategy Games
  • Snider, John, Snider, Richard etc: Star Empires (TSR, 1977)
  • Snider, Richard: The Leather Rose

Thanks to Bob Meyer, Greg Svenson, Chirine ba'Kal, James Mishler and others for providing additional information. If you have more information about Richard L. Snider that you think should be included, please let me know.

More discussion of this article here.


Sunday, June 16, 2019

Fall of the Dwarves: A Free PDF Campaign Expansion to the CBI-2 The Rand Sourcebook

With the overwhelming response to the Thonian Rand Sourcebook I released last month, I could not stop thinking about the lands I had described within it, drawing on many different sources linked to Dave Arneson's World of Blackmoor. While the PDF is self contained, I felt like a campaign outline might have been useful to illustrate how this booklet might be used.

CBI-2 The Thonian Rand introduces the Duchy of Evedhur. The idea with Evedhur was to expand on the lore of Dwarves from the Blackmoor Campaign Setting. In Dave Arneson’s campaign, the dwarves were ruled by Oberstar Kazakhum , the Regent of the Mines. In CBI-2, I gave him a brother, Arkalist Kazakhum.

 My idea for the character Arkalist, was that this dwarf, like his brother, wanted a kingdom of his own and settled in a mountain chain in the Thonian Empire. Arkalist’s Duchy of Evedhur also allowed me to incorporate some of the material and characters from Clock & Steam, another Blackmoor sourcebook from Zeitgeist Games written for Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition. The following is the outline for a campaign where the players will have a chance to determine the fate of the Duchy of Evedhur and perhaps the entire world of Dave Arneson’s Blackmoor™

I hope you will like this campaign expansion as much as you enjoyed the Thonian Rand Sourcebook.

Download the Fall of the Dwarves Campaign Expansion here