'Barbarism is the natural state of mankind,' the borderer said, still staring somberly at the Cimmerian. 'Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph.'

-Robert E. Howard
Beyond The Black River

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Thursday, April 9, 2020

Tool Trunk Thursday: Quill & Parchment

The mysterious Stygian plague continues to haunt the countryside, but I remain safely locked away in my stronghold. I trust my fellow warriors are likewise safe behind locked doors. Brothers and Sisters, we will defeat this scourge sent upon us. Stay strong. Stay Healthy! It is, of course, Thursday and so today we open that mysterious chest once more to see what interesting piece of equipment we might find today.

Quill & Parchment



In the beginning of humanity we told stories around campfires, eventually we sought to record these stories on the walls of our caves with paintings. As we became more sophisticated we began to look to other ways to record our ideas and stories. Writing became available and so scholars and sorcerers began to record ideas and knowledge. Certainly some of these writings can drive someone to madness, but others are more banal holding only basic information about places and things.

These nundane parchments, and the quills to make notes, are far more commonplace and can often be found for little gold to provide information about a region. It is unlikely you will find scrolls with information about Vanaheim in Argos, but scrolls about the Forest of Ghouls between Argos and Zingara will almost assuredly be available.

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Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Setting up 2d20 on Roll20: The Combat Dice.

I have been playing around with the free Roll20 for awhile, learning how it works and what we could do with it for Conan 2d20.

Conan 2d20 and other 2d20 systems use combat dice to determine damage and weapon effects. We can, of course, simple roll a d6 and note the results but we have a way to make it a little more automated if we desire. This is accomplished via the Roll20 roll table.

The process is pretty simple, and although it is not a perfect solution, it is easy to do and can be done completely with the free version of Roll20.

Step 1: Making the Table

On the top right of Roll20 you will find the Collection Icon. Clicking on it will bring up the tab that gives us control over a lot of the automated processes; macros, decks and rollable tables. Near the bottom you will find Rollable tables. The first thing we need to do is to create a new Rollable table.



Step 2: Naming the table and adding the items

Once we have the table created, clicking on the table name that appeared when we added the new table. This will open up the new table dialog. From here rename the table to "CD" and begin adding each of the following Items: "1","2","0","0","1 + Effect","1 + Effect".



Once you have completed adding your items into the table, it should look like this. When you are happy with it. Hit "Save Changes"



Step 3: Testing the roll

Switch back to the chat dialog box and type the following roll command into chat "/roll 3t[CD]", you should get a result similar to this image. This will show you the total damage that was rolled, but you will have to manually add in any extra damage you get from effects like Vicious(Conan),Sharp(JCoM), etc.



And that is all there is to setting up a roll20 rollable table to handle your Combat Dice in roll20.

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Thursday, April 2, 2020

Tool Trunk Thursday: Rune Sword

Dog Brothers and Sword Sisters, welcome to another installment of Tool Trunk Thursday! We are 3 weeks into our self imposed isolation to slow the stem of the COVID-19 virus. One of the great things about the Hyborian Age is that we can see the monsters that need slaying, although sometimes maybe our heroes might need a keen edge to do it....

Rune Sword



Before the Hyborian Kingdoms spreads across the world in the west, before the mighty kingdoms of the east, before even Stygia there were people that dwelled in these lands. Their mark upon the world is largely erased by war and cataclysm. Still, some places hold glimmers of those long forgotten kingdoms and times, ancient ruins or tombs untouched by the shifting lands. Some of these even hold rare artifacts like this, an ancient sword forged by some unearthly metal. It's edge remains sharp even after the centuries; it's balance is unlike that of the swords of the Hyborian age.

Warriors using such a weapon gain an advantage in combat over their foes, how could they not?

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Thursday, March 26, 2020

Tool Trunk Thursday: Ground Crystal

Welcome to another Tool Trunk Thursday! As I write this I am half way through week 2 of working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic. I have also been crazy busy transferring my in house John Carter game onto Roll 20 so we can continue our adventures on Barsoom. Thinking today was Wednesday I didn't realize I needed to post today's piece of equipment until now, at least it is not Friday like last week!? I hope everyone is doing well and is safe. Stay Strong. Raise your sword against the storm.

Ground Crystal



Similar to the blinding sand implemented by the alchemists of the Hyborian Age, this represents a cruder, less "magical" option. Cheaper and more plentiful than hiring an alchemist to craft a blinding powder this ground dust renders an opponent temporarily unable to defend themselves.

This is certainly not going to make you look like a wizard, but hopefully your opponent dies quickly after this, so who cares?

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Friday, March 20, 2020

Tool Trunk Thursday: Healing Injections

TOOL TRUNK.....Friday? The world is a little crazy at the moment, and while things here are fine, it has apparently screwed with my schedule more than normal. I have more time, but the days have begun to run together with no actual commute to work. Either way I present to you the new piece of kit for your Conan 2d20 game!

Healing Injections


Those brave enough to drink the concoction of an alchemist know that they can be an effective treatment to many ailments. Some of the crazier alchemists have devised ways to get their mixtures into people in a quicker, less voluntary way. Those who seek to help have developed serums that allow the injured and the weak to be rejuvenated through the injection of some mysterious substance found in the Black Kingdoms.

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Monday, March 16, 2020

Buying New Paintbrushes (from Canada)

Like many of you, I watch Youtube videos. I am sure at least a few of you watch some of the various miniature painting channels out there. From time to time I feel the need to check out some of the brushes these channels recommend and so I go in search of brands like Windsor & Newton, Rosemary & Co, Raphael, Broken Toad, Army Painter, GW etc.

If you are from Canada and don't have an art store close to you, or conveniently located, you are probably going to hit Amazon and try and buy some. Whenever I have tried this I end up finding ok priced brushes with huge shipping costs or hugely expensive brushes with free shipping. Generally, these brushes aren't even a Prime item, so you are waiting for several weeks. What advantage do we get buying from Amazon?

I will admit if you are buying something like Army Painter, you can grab these on Amazon as a Prime item. Still, we are looking at about $35 for a set of 3, and we are limited in what we are buying. I have certainly gone down this route, but I haven't used them. I don't paint a lot and when one of these died I didn't want to have to spend another $35 for the pack.

Looking for brushes this time I felt frustrated and felt like I had no real options. This isn't the first time I have looked, but something clicked in my brain this time and I realized I had become 100% reliant on Amazon. As convenient as it can be they don't always have the best price or the product I want. Still, I was warry about shipping prices, but decided to have a look around to see what else was out there.

I had a couple of places recommended, and to be fair they were probably better than Amazon, but the shipping was still pretty high. While I was looking I did come across a website, https://www.jacksonsart.com/, upon opening it I was greeted with a pop-up asking if I wanted to shop in CAD dollars and that if I ordered over $85 I got free shipping. Why yes, I DO want to shop in CAD! Off I went expecting to find ultra-expensive brushes. What I found were reasonably priced brushes. Not cheap, but not the horrible prices I was expecting. We are talking sub $20CAD here for a Size 1. For an "apples to apples" comparison they have a W&N Series 7 size 1 for ~$16CAD, certainly cheaper than the $25 at Amazon.

If you have done any shopping online, you know shipping can make or break your decision. Finding a $15 item with $20 shipping isn't going to rush to make you click that checkout button. Happy with the prices but a little nervous about the shipping, especially given that the company was situated in the UK, I added a couple of Raphael 8404s to the cart and a new pen. I clicked checkout to see how bad the shipping was. I have polled a number of friends to guess how much the shipping would be. Guesses ranged from about $10 to about $30. Frankly, I felt these were decent guesses. But what did I actually pay to get my two brushes and a pen to Canada?



Yes. That is correct. $1.82CAD. Not only did I click yes, but I wrote an article about this experience so more of you can have the same one. This isn't overnight "PRIME" shipping, but it was listed as 2 weeks, which is pretty close to the time the W&N Series 7 from Amazon was listed to get to me. How did they do time-wise? I order the brushes on Feb 14th, 2020 and I received them on March 4th 2020. 19 total days from Order to arrival. Pretty decent and close to the time estimation, and for $1.82CAD from the UK? I will certainly order again.



The only thing I haven't had to check out is their customer service, ie how well they handle a complaint if a brush arrives broken etc. Until I have an experience with them that is bad I will give them the benefit of the doubt in this regard and give them..........


FIVE SKULLS OF MY ENEMIES!


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Thursday, March 12, 2020

Tool Trunk Thursday: Arcane Tome

Thursday has come again, as it always does. And much like the inevitability of the changing days, the Tool Trunk grows ever fuller. Sword sisters and dog brothers! Open the chest and take what you may need!

Arcane Tome

Since man could write, or perhaps since man was plagued by the curiosity of the Outer Dark, there have been tomes of arcane knowledge. These books hold the secrets of men and demons. The words, images and rituals held with these pages are ones of great power. The horrors, both physical and mental, shown on these pages are enough to drive the most stalwart wizard insane.

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