5e: Mites

Earlier this month, we released an updated version of our adventure Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider for the Fifth Edition of D&D. Inside are a number of new monsters and spiders do take up the majority of those new monsters. However, they are not the only new monsters inside. Today we want to show off the mite. These little fey are used to being kicked around. They get absolutely no respect and carry a grudge because of it. Despite their evil bent, they are not without their redeeming qualities. Find out what they are by reading this adventure today.

Download Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider today at the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

Mite

Image by Simon Buckroyd
Small fey, lawful evil
Armor Class 12
Hit Points 40 (9d6 + 9)
Speed 20 ft., climb 20 ft.


Str 6 (–2) Dex 14 (+2) Con 13 (+1)
Int 8 (−1) Wis 13 (+1) Cha 10 (+0)

Skills Perception +3, Stealth +4
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 13
Languages Deep Speech
Challenge 1/4 (50 XP)

Innate Spellcasting. The mite’s spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 10). The mite can innately cast the following spells, requiring only verbal components:
At will: prestidigitation
1/day: bane

Actions


Dagger. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4 + 2) piercing damage.
Dart. Ranged Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, range 20 ft./ 60 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4 + 2) piercing damage.
Vermin Empathy (1/day). As an action, a mite can conjure a swarm of bats, a swarm of rats, a giant centipede, 2 giant rats, or a giant wolf spider. The conjured creatures attack the closest creature except the mite. The mite has no additional control over the conjured creatures.

5e: The Spiders Have Been Unleashed Again

These Spiders Aren’t So Itsy Bitsy

Giant spiders have overrun Mossdale, and every last villager is either dead and dessicated, or cocooned and abducted. But what were they after, and who coordinated the vermin to attack en masse? Could it have been the local ettercap or a crazed arachnophile druid… or was something far more sinister behind the attack? Can the adventurers rescue the missing citizens and foil the plans of the nefarious mind behind this dastardly deed before it is too late?

Along Came a Spider is an exciting adventure module in Jon Brazer Enterprises’ Deadly Delves series for the Fifth Edition of the World’s Oldest Fantasy Roleplaying Game. This updated 29-page adventure is designed to challenge four to five 1st-level PCs like no other content has to date. Inside this volume, you’ll find:

  • 6 new monsters, 2 NPCs, a unique trap, and more material for your Fifth Edition campaign

  • Three full-color maps, one of the ruined alchemist shop, another of the an ancient stone circle where spiders and worse horrors prowl, the final is in the lair of the deadly horror

  • Enough content to get your group of 1st-level PCs through a night of play with little preparation time required, bringing your group to 2nd level

Dangers Unknown. Treasures Untold. Adventure Awaits.

Download the updated adventure Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider for Fifth Edition today at the the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

5e: Updating the Awesome

Yesterday, we rereleased Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider in PDF for Fifth Edition. The original was our first adventure we released for 5e and I think it deserves a mention as to why. The answer will give you a better picture as to who we are, the way we approach game design, and where we are going from here.

First some history. When we first released Along Came a Spider, there was no OGL or DMs Guild for 5e. If you were releasing products for 5e, you did so hoping you wouldn’t get into legal trouble with WotC. You had to be sure you were right, legally speaking. You had to know what you were doing or that might be the last thing you published. If you remember, the playtest lasted two years and it look another two years for the 5e SRD to be released. Add to that their slow release schedule. While it helped them sell books, it meant that if you didn’t want either of the adventures they released that year, you had no other options. So it was in that environment we decided to go ahead and publish for 5e without a net, so to speak.

Along Came a Spider was designed to be both a Pathfinder release as well as a 5e release. It was written by Joel Flank–a freelancer I trusted as being excellent with Pathfinder and like me and some of my editing crew switched to 5e during the playtest. We loved the new game and wanted to be apart of it right away. Heck, our adventure Rescue from Tyrkaven was written during the playtest and was converted to Pathfinder when some license wasn’t released for it right away, but that is a take for a different day.

When it came to making it a 5e module, we had a number of hurdles about which we had to make tough decisions. Everything from the monster stat blocks to the use of advantage and disadvantage had to be discussed. Ultimately, we decided to go with a Pathfinder-inspired monster stat block since we were using the Pathfinder OGL as our base. Doing so, however, meant that our monster stats did not look like 5e stat blocks. While not a big deal as all the stats were 5e stats and not Pathfinder, it was a barrier to using our module effortlessly. A core philosophy in our modules and any other GM-related products we create is to make the GM’s job easier. We decided that the benefit of a GM having the option of another module to choose from outweighed any barrier of having the monster stat blocks and similar legal hoops we jumped through to make this safe. When we decided to redo this module, fixing the monster stat blocks and similar barriers was at the to of our to-do list.

Then there is the issue of layout. The original version of Along Came a Spider appears almost identical our Pathfinder version. Having run far more Pathfinder modules than 5e modules at that point, I was quite use to having monster stat blocks right in the text and did not like having to flip to the back of the book for all the monsters. Since that time, we have heard from many 5e fans that said they prefer having their monsters in the back. Since those early days, I’ve run more 5e modules and I must say I like having all the monster together when I am running a module from a PDF because it means I can print out the monsters and not have to print out the adventure along with it.

There is one other major difference in this version over the original: a third map. Our budget for modules back in those days was pretty low. We had just enough for only two maps. We decided the maps should cover what we felt were the most critical and visually appealing fights. Ultimately, we decided to not have a map for the final few fights since they were in caves, figuring a cave map is pretty easy to come up with. All the reviews and comments we received concerning Along Came a Spider mentioned the lack of a final map and I knew that if we ever revisited Thai adventure, this would be one of the things we addressed. I am happy to report, those final fights have a map that we can be proud of that will inspire GMs and players in these final moments.

Download Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider today at the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

Adventure Review Roundup Part 1

So I wondered this morning when the last time I had a review roundup. Oh it was only May 2017!!! Oops. Well Let me do a new review roundup. There have been enough that I will have to do them in small groups or else it will take me many more months before this one gets done. Today we are going to start off with adventures, and even then we have enough that we have to split them into multiple posts. Quick FYI, all my summaries are spoiler-free. I can’t make that same claim about the reviews themselves that we link to.

Deadly Delves: The Gilded Gauntlet

First up, we have the Deadly Delves: The Gilded Gauntlet. Endzeitgeist gave this adventure “5 stars + seal of approval – and this qualifies as a candidate for my Top Ten of 2017” So what did he say?

Gauntlets are hard to make and cater to a specific demographic. And they often suck hardcore. … A good gauntlet is a bit like the extreme-sport version of dungeoneering: It remains constantly challenging for PC and player; it is lethal – but it needs to remain fair. It needs to alternate the way in which it challenges the PCs and players without getting boring…and in a published adventure, it also should tell a decent story, remain plausible. …

[The Gilded Gauntlet] manages just that. This is one of the hardest dungeon-complexes I have ever had the pleasure to run…

This is a module that requires both brains and brawn to solve and it will challenge even groups that usually waltz through published modules. In short: This is glorious.

Download Deadly Delves: The Gilded Gauntlet for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game today at the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

Deadly Delves: The Chaosfire Incursion

Next up we have another review by Endzeitgeist, this time for the Deadly Delves: The Chaosfire Incursion adventure. This one got rated 4.5 Stars. Why did it earn such high praise?

Joel Flank’s “Chaosfire Incursion” is a module that starts off with a great bang: The first act is cool and makes clear that the stakes are high … Once the PCs have found the apparatus, things become amazing, though: The idea is glorious…

This [adventure] sports some seriously nice scenes: The monsters are often modified in unique ways; the module is challenging and the final boss appropriately brutal. Moreover, we a) don’t get many modules in the high-level range and b), the artifacts that can be gained … can make for absolutely fantastic ways to transition the PCs from regular adventuring to the wonders of the planes.

Download Deadly Delves: The Chaosfire Incursion for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game today at the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider

Now for the three-in-a-row reviews from Endzeitgeist and back to back adventures written by Joel Flank, we share with you the review of Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider. He gives this one a solid 3.5 rating!

Joel Flank’s “Along Came a Spider” is a solid critter-theme module; the foes employed are pretty deadly for first level characters, making this a challenging, but fair module, particularly if the PCs don’t try to murder-hobo everything. I absolutely love the BBEG of this module and how it can be used as a great recurring villain that could theoretically carry a whole campaign

Download Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game today at the JBE Shop, DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

5e/Pathfinder: 3 Steps to Start GMing

Being the game master is a rough business. There’s a ton of rules, you never know where the players are going to go, and no one knows how things are going to turn out. Despite this, there is a yearning inside you to be the one that is not just a player in the story but the one telling the story. So here are our hints and tricks to help get you started in this new year as the game master.

1) Know that Everything Will Be Alright

More than anything else I can tell you, knowing that everything will be alright is the most critical step to being a game master. You are not running a giant multinational corporation; you’re just setting the getting in front of your friends for one evening and telling a story. You can do that, and you’ll be fine afterwards.

Put it another way: what is the worst that could happen? Will your friends stop being friends if the game goes poorly? Absolutely not. Will you completely flop, proving to the world that you are not fit to play a character, let along be the GM? Definitely not. Will you start a spiral of suckatude so great that it will form a trans-dimensional vortex that pulls in all matter from the universe, collapsing all of space and time around us? No. Even Bob in Accounting didn’t do that his first time GMing (no offense to anyone named Bob that works in accounting).

So what will most likely happen? Well you do great at some aspects and others will need improvement, just like everyone else. Ask your gamers afterwards to tell you what you did good and what needs improved. They’ll tell you. The parts that need improved, try harder next time. You can do this.

2) Ask Someone Else to be Your Rules Arbitrator

It can be really intimidating to have to know all the rules for every corner case, because you know there’s one gamer at the table that will try to find some loophole to do something crazy. That is where a rules arbitrator comes in. Ask a player you trust at the table to be the one says, “I’m sorry, Mike, but that is not allowed,” so you don’t have to make that call. This way, you can focus on the story.

Now there’s the critical part of that, make a note on that rule question and after the game ask the rules arbitrator to show you exactly where that rule is and explain to you exactly what it means. Then read that rules and all the rules around it since you probably missed them as well. This will help you be a better GM.

3) Use a Pre-Published Adventure

This is exactly why adventures are written: to help new or busy GMs with the story they want to tell. For your first game or two, run them as is, so you can see how it goes. As time goes on, vary up the adventures some: vary up a few monsters, add an NPC to connect it to one of the characters’ backstory, change the reason they are going on this adventure. Make the adventure your own.

The place to start is with short adventures, not a long campaign book or a full adventure path. First find out if you like GMing. Once you get the bug and want to do it more and more, then look at those longer campaigns.

You can find our collection of adventures right here at JonBrazer.com. I recommend starting with Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider, available for both Pathfinder and Fifth Edition. It is a great 1st-level adventure to start off with involving a bunch of spiders taking over a town. If you like it, you can follow it up with Deadly Delves: Rescue from Tyrkaven, also available for Pathfinder and Fifth Edition. You can get these adventures today for 30% off their regular price with the “holiday2017” coupon code. Download these today, and run your first game. Take your first steps into a whole new world.

Pathfinder: Adventures Ideal for Conventions

We mentioned last week a number of Fifth Edition adventures that are perfect for running at a convention if you are looking to run something a little different than the norm. We also have a number of Pathfinder adventures that make excellent convention games that you should check out.

Deadly Delves: The Gilded Gauntlet – Level 9

The city of Hunstoc is experiencing a rash of calamity. Livestock and horses are falling ill, children and elderly people are dying off without any explanation, and the city’s clerics can’t manage to cure the mysterious malady. The Mayor’s Office has posted a bounty on strange clockwork creatures that keep emerging from the nearby foothills outside Hunstoc’s gates. Investigating these sinister happenings leads to a massive underground complex full of devious puzzles, dangerous traps, and alchemical wonders beyond anyone’s wildest imaginings—and only the most cunning of adventurers will survive the journey into its depths! What would you do for limitless wealth? How far would you delve? What horrors would you be willing to face?

Deadly Delves: Rescue from Tyrkaven – Level 2

When hobgoblin raiders kidnap a caravan full of workers and supplies, the adventurers set off to get them all back. But neither the raiders nor the adventurers know what terrifying horrors await them in the depths of their cavern hideout. Now, the adventurers must risk it all to prevent the minions of an ancient enemy from visiting death and destruction upon the land. Can the heroes rescue the captives from the hobgoblins and deliver them from this ancient foe—or will they all perish, ushering in the rise of a forgotten deity?

Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider – Level 1

Giant spiders have overrun Mossdale, and every last villager is either dead and dessicated, or cocooned and abducted. But what were they after, and who coordinated the vermin to attack en masse? Could it have been the local ettercap or a crazed arachnophile druid… or was something far more sinister behind the attack? Can the adventurers rescue the missing citizens and foil the plans of the nefarious mind behind this dastardly deed before it is too late?

Deadly Delves: Doom of the Sky Sword – Level 1

Following the disappearance of personnel at a lumber camp, a mysterious sword drops from the sky, cleaving the very earth to deliver a pronouncement of doom upon all who refuse to leave the logging site. Can the adventurers ferret out the source of this ominous portent and put a stop to it before it wreaks further havoc on the loggers?

Check out all of our Pathfinder products at the Jon Brazer Enterprises Shop, DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

5e Adventures for Conventions

If you are running a Fifth Edition game at a convention this fall, you could run an adventure from the official living game that is designed for the players to “win” or you could run an adventure built for fun with intrigue in mind, like ours are. Three of our Deadly Delve adventures are both short enough for a convention game and provide a different experience than anything in the official living campaign does.

Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider – Level 1

Giant spiders have overrun Mossdale, and every last villager is either dead and dessicated, or cocooned and abducted. But what were they after, and who coordinated the vermin to attack en masse? Could it have been the local ettercap or a crazed arachnophile druid… or was something far more sinister behind the attack? Can the adventurers rescue the missing citizens and foil the plans of the nefarious mind behind this dastardly deed before it is too late?

Deadly Delves: Doom of the Sky Sword – Level 1

Following the disappearance of personnel at a lumber camp, a mysterious sword drops from the sky, cleaving the very earth to deliver a pronouncement of doom upon all who refuse to leave the logging site. Can the adventurers ferret out the source of this ominous portent and put a stop to it before it wreaks further havoc on the loggers?

Deadly Delves: Rescue from Tyrkaven – Level 2

When hobgoblin raiders kidnap a caravan full of workers and supplies, the adventurers set off to get them all back. But neither the raiders nor the adventurers know what terrifying horrors await them in the depths of their cavern hideout. Now, the adventurers must risk it all to prevent the minions of an ancient enemy from visiting death and destruction upon the land. Can the heroes rescue the captives from the hobgoblins and deliver them from this ancient foe—or will they all perish, ushering in the rise of a forgotten deity?

Check out all of our Fifth Edition products at the Jon Brazer Enterprises Shop, DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, Paizo, and the Open Gaming Store.

Lots of 4- and 5-STAR Reviews

It was the end of last summer when I did the most recent review roundup. We have much to share since then so let’s jump right to it. Lets start with the 5-STAR review by Rick H. we got last night for our newest adventure Deadly Delves: The Gilded Gauntlet.

There are, however, many out-of-the-box problems that need to be carefully considered. I really liked this approach- the information the characters require is readily available, but making sense of it is key. Further, the encounters mix monsters with hazards in interesting environments. There’s a lot of content for the price, and I look forward to using it.

Read the full review at DriveThruRPG

Book of Heroic Races: Advanced Skinwalkers (PFRPG)I would also like to give a special shout out to John McCoy (no relation) for his first review ever. It was a 5-STAR review for Book of Heroic Races: Advanced Skinwalkers, and his review is short and sweet.

Love Skinwalkers, and this pdf is a great addition to them.

Thank you, John. We hope you write more reviews in the future!

D66 Compendium 2Let’s skip over to Traveller and take a look at the reviews here. The d66 Compendium and D66 Compendium 2 are two of the most useful books in all of Traveller and people continue to recognize that. One person, James J, left very similar 5-STAR reviews for the both review for both, saying

Solid product. I bundled this and Compendium into a binder to take with me to Traveller sessions as Referee. Great stuff for ideas. This also works as a brainstroming setup for writing.

Another reviewer gave the D66 Compendium 2 a 5-STAR reviews, describing it thus:

Very useful, … I find it useful for both RPGs and Sci-fi wargames.

d66 Compendium (Traveller)The d66 Compendium received another new 5-STAR review as well, saying:

It too is filled with lots of great d66 charts. But to be honest it also is a gold mine of great ideas. Just looking over some of the lists causes ideas to spring up in my mind. Not just a great place to randomly select a name, but to look at a name and begin to build out who or what it is. I have had fun just reading various entries and charts. I strongly encourage any GM to pick both this compendium and the 2nd one as well. They are both great additions to my collection and will be very helpful resources in my creative efforts.

The very same James J. gave Scenes of Space Hex Battle Maps a 5-STAR review, saying

I liked this a lot. I used the asteroid map in a recent Traveler Session. nice big hexes on four sheets. I like that there are different sizes. No problems printing and cutting these pieces to fit together with some tape. … I would buy more if there were more in the series.

Thank you very much, good sir.

Book of Beasts: Monsters of the Forbidden Woods (5e)Switching over to Fifth Edition, we are rather proud of Book of Beasts: Monsters of the Forbidden Woods getting Ismael A’s rating of “5 out of 5 stars, and my royal seal.” Let me reprint the whole review.

Now, I have to say that I am massively impressed with this product. It is not a bestiary so much as it is an ecology primer on a bunch of new creatures that are original, inspiring, and effective. Ranging from animal to elemental to monstrocity, there are plenty of interesting and original creatures to use in your campaigns. For each creature or type we are given a wide number of alternative builds, whether they be stronger versions of the base creature, or full distinct variations on a similar theme. For instance, we get young, adult, and elder spider bears, while the druidic guardians are varied by elemental type.

Each cluster of creatures comes with plot hooks, potential treasure (when it makes sense), and pointers for how a creature might behave in battle. This, coupled with the brief but comprehensive descriptions give creatures a depth that is not conveyed in a 1 page stat block. And although the hit point values are a bit low for a given CR, the creatures themselves are excellently represented for 5th edition statistics.

I very much look forward to seeing more books like this, and it has even changed my view on what shorter bestiaties should be. Without the history of older and established monsters, every new beast needs to be as fleshed out as the ones in this book.

Book of Heroic Races: Player Races 1 (5e)Gaeton V reviewed Book of Heroic Races: Player Races 1, giving it 4-stars, describing it thus:

Overall though, I’m impressed. There are lots of “freebie” races out in the wilds of the internet, but very few of them have as much detail as these ones.

Deadly Delves: Along Came A Spider (PFRPG)Martin S give a spoiler heavy 4-Star review of Pathfinder’s Deadly Delves: Along Came a Spider so I will only share his conclusions:

I think this is a good module and one that not only reaches its goal, but that offers many possibilities to expand on the material presented here.

That is a total Eight 5-STAR Reviews and only a pair of 4-Star reviews and nothing else in that time frame. Jon Brazer Enterprises has a reputation for exceptionally high quality work that does not disappoint. We do not release very fast because we take the time to do it right. Tell you friends about Jon Brazer Enterprises books for their games today.

Download all of Jon Brazer Enterprises book at DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, the OpenGamingStore, and Paizo.com.

Pathfinder: The Witch as Grim Reaper

As we’re nearing Halloween, I thought I would theme the hexes with a more spooky feel for a few weeks. First let me just remind you of all our previous set of patron witch hexes: agility, elements, light, and shadow. And now, here are our hexes of death.

Death Hexes

Fear of Death (Su): The witch stares into the eyes of a creature within 30 feet and the creature sees visions of death. If the creature fails a Will save, it is shaken for a number of rounds equal to the witch’s Intelligence modifier. At 5th level, a creature that fails the Will save is frightened instead. The creature and the witch must be able to see each other. Any creature that is immune to blindness is also immune to this ability. A creature affected by the fear of death hex cannot be affected by it again for 24 hours.

Steal Life (Su): The witch touches a living creature and deals 1d8 points of negative energy damage + 1 per witch level (to a maximum of 10). The witch gains a number of temporary hit points equal to the amount of damage dealt. These temporary hit points last for 1 hour. A creature targeted by this hex cannot be targeted by this hex again for 24 hours.

Major Hex: Drain Life (Su): The witch spits a curse at a creature within 30 feet and the creature begins to feel its life draining away. If the creature fails a Fortitude save, it suffers 1 temporary negative level. The creature must attempt another Fortitude save on the following round or take an additional temporary negative level. This continues until the creature succeeds 1 Fortitude save, a number of Fortitude saves equal to the witch’s Intelligence modifier have been failed, or the creature has a number of temporary negative levels equal to its HD (at which point the creature dies). A creature affected by the drain life hex cannot be affected by this hex again for 24 hours.

Download the Book of Magic: Patron Hexes for Pathfinder at the JBE Shop. You can also find it at DriveThruRPGPaizo.com, and the OpenGamingStore.

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