Tag Archives: monster

Phoenixes of the Realms — Fire Fowl of Faerûn

Phoenixes of the Realms is our newest title on the Dungeon Master’s Guild. The book is a comprehensive collection of phoenixes and phoenix related player options, including seven phoenix subspecies. And you know how much we love phoenixes.

Phoenixes of the Realms

Here’s what you’ll find inside:

  1. The Desert Phoenix (Huge, Challenge 10)
  2. The Desolation Phoenix (Gargantuan, Challenge 18)
  3. The Imperial Phoenix (Large, Challenge 14). inspired by the Chinese Fenghuang and Japanese Houou.
  4. Two new flaming feathered familiars, including the Shield Phoenix.
  5. Rules for phoenix feather magical items.
  6. Phoenix Guardian monastic tradition
  7. Oath of the Phoenix sacred oath.
  8. The Miniature, Frost, and Hydro phoenixes.

Phoenixes of the Realms Page 5

Origins of the Book

Phoenixes of the Realms converts the rules, which first appeared in Phoenixes — A Field Guide (Pathfinder RPG), to fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. It includes new rules and is now set in Faerûn, though it is more of a monster and player option book than a setting book. Ismael Alvarez did a great job of converting the rules, while Anja Svare handled layout. We’ve added more magical phoenix feathers to round out the offering.

Phoenixes of the Realms Page 14

The book is available on the Dungeon Masters Guild and is sure to be an invaluable addition to any campaign featuring these flame-feathered creatures. It also supports the OGL, so you can add a little phoenix magic to your own roleplaying projects.

 

Rising Phoenix Games’ RPG Con is On

Rising Phoenix Games’ RPG Con is this week, all week, right here on the blog!
Rising Phoenix Games Con
Join us for articles, interviews, discounts, and more RPG fun!
Phoenixes of the Realms is 20% Off, during RPG Con only. Grab it while it’s, erm, hot.



WizKids Deep Cuts Familiars — Mini Monday 23

It’s Mini Monday, where I share customizing, scratch building, kitbashing, and miniature painting projects for your roleplaying and tabletop gaming. This week I’m painting the Pathfinder Battles: Deep Cuts Familiars, produced by WizKids and NECA.

Mini Monday Logo

Deep Cuts is my favorite RPG mini range right now, because the detail, variety, and price are spot on. The Deep Cuts Familiars blister contains a badger, bat, and a fox, which is a lot of value, even if nobody in your party is keeping a familiar around.

Deep Cuts Familiars
These little critters taxed me to the very edge of my photography skills. This will have to do.

For all of the Deep Cuts Familiars, finding good references really helped. Look for quality photos of real animals. It may sound obvious, but when you spend most of your time painting fantasy creatures, the chance to refer to nature is a rare treat.

The Key to Fur

The trick with fur is to get the countershading right.

Photo of a fox
Photo credit: Erik McLean

Countershading is the tendency animals have of having a darker coloration on their upper side and a lighter coloration on their underside, like this fox with his lighter tummy. Our badger friend is an exception, but only in that it’s flipped around for him, with his lighter top and darker underside.

You can paint countershading in a number of ways, but the important thing is to know where the graduations are and where there’s a sudden change in color. Look at how the orange fur under his eyes suddenly becomes white, while on his forelegs the change from black to orange is more gradual.

The Bat

Priming is already done for you, so we can dip right in. The stone was painted gray, then dry brushed with a lighter gray. The bat was painted a chocolate brown, then I mixed in a little white for the dry brushing highlights. Lastly, I washed the stone with a black wash.

The Badger

I painted him the same gray as the stone on the bat mini, but then dry brushed white on the top and painted the muzzle white. I touched this up with gray over his eyes to form the distinctive patterns on the badger’s face. Paint the legs black.

For the badger’s stone, I had painted it gray, but there wasn’t much contrast, so I went back over it with a dark brown, then light brown highlights. This made all the difference.

The Fox

This might be my best paint job yet. See, I’m learning!

I painted the whole fox orange, then dry brushed a lighter orange over that, with white over the tail. The nose, eyes, and mouth were all painted black. Also note that foxes have black inside their ears and on their forelegs. Getting the patterning right is half the battle, but so satisfying when you get it right.

The base was painted dark gray and then dry brushed light gray.

Done!

The last thing to do it varnish them and stick them on their bases, then you’re done. I knocked all three out over a Saturday, so they don’t take much time at all.

You can get the Pathfinder Deep Cuts Unpainted Miniatures: Familiars on Paizo or at most good hobby gaming stores.

It’s Christmas in July!

Celebrate Christmas in July with Aurora’s Whole Realms Christmas Catalogue, and remember: it’s never too early to start your Christmas shopping!

 

 

Be sure to check out our other Aurora’s Seasonal Catalogues, we’ve got something for everyone!

Aurora’s Seasonal Catalogues

 

Mini Monday #15: Painting Yochlol

It’s Mini Monday, where I share customizing, scratch building, kitbashing, and miniature painting projects for your roleplaying table. This week we’re painting Yochlol from Dungeons & Dragons: The Legend of Drizzt Board Game.

Mini Monday Logo

We’ve already painted a few minis from this great game, and we’ll be painting loads more in the weeks to come. Yochlol is a pretty simple model, but it’s also perfect for highlighting a few techniques that we’ll come back to in the next few projects. Today is all about washes! (No, not handwashing, though you should be doing that too.)

Step 1: Clean and Basecoat

I base coated Yochlol white. I used to love black as a base coat, but white is nice and bright and, in this case, it’s a perfect base for step 2…

Step 2: Mellow Yellow

I painted the entire model yellow (Flash Gitz Yellow), except for Yochlol’s eye.

Painting Yochlol 1
Custard Monster!

Step 3: Flesh Wash

Paint the entire mini with Flesh Wash.

Painting Yochlol 2: Flesh Wash
A little definition goes a long way.

Flesh Wash isn’t available from GW anymore, but Coat d’Arms still sell the original Citadel Flesh Wash, now called Ink Wash: Flesh. It’s a terrible wash for skin tones, but I discovered a bunch of great uses that make this is a great paint to add to your collection. Yochlol is our first test subject.

Flesh Wash pools in the recesses of the mini and gives a nice contrast with the yellow. If too much wash pools in one spot, just use a dry brush to mop up the excess. When you’re happy, leave the mini to dry.

Step 4: Details

Paint the eye white. When that’s dry, add a little blue to your white and paint a line along the top edge of the eye. This provides a slight shadow. Paint the whole pupil and iris black. When that’s dry, paint the iris orange, being careful to paint within the “lines” or edges of the iris you painted black before. Lastly, paint the base to fit the rest of your collection.

Painting Yochlol 3: Detail
Here’s Looking at You.

Step 5: Varnish

Varnish with gloss varnish. Two coats works best. The gloss gives Yochlol a wet, slimy look. You can use a matt varnish on the base to create some variety.

That’s it, you’re done!

Painting Yochlol 4: Finished
Done!

Yochlol is a quick and easy model to paint, which also makes it perfect for trying out new things. This was the first time I’d found a good use for Flesh Wash, and the techniques I used on the eye were a first for me too. Overall, I’m very happy with the results.

Home Alone? Here’s a Free Solo Adventure!

Can’t get out to roll dice and smack skeletons? We’ve got you covered! Here’s a free copy of one of our top-selling solo adventures for D&D 5e. Please like and share.

Use the coupon code “HAPPYSOLO”

 

Stay safe out there everyone!


Tentacles of the Deep – An Undersea Monster

What do Cthulhu, an octopus, and many politicians have in common? Tentacles! That’s right, tentacles!

As roleplayers, we kind of love tentacles, don’t we. Evard’s black tentacles, Day of the Tentacle, mind flayer chins, and the Japanese porn industry – tentacles have dipped their slimy appendages into every part of geek culture.

Today, I’ll share a new monster I’m working on that’s 100% tentacle, and tell you how you can join in and playtest it at your table.

Tentacle Miniatures - Hand Made Monsters
Tentacle Miniatures. Easy handmade monsters.

The above tentacles are based off the Watcher in the Water from The Lord of the Rings movie, and the miniature Games Workshop made of it. They were relatively cheap and easy to make, too.

In most cases, the adventurers are fighting against whole monsters, but what if you wanted to only pit them against a giant’s hand, or a dragon’s claw, or the tentacles of a creature hidden deep below the waves?

That’s where the tentacle of the deep comes in. First, I’ll talk about the miniatures, then I’ll show you where to go to find the stats.

Making Tentacles

I made my tentacles with wire and modeling clay. You could probably use Green Stuff, but anything that won’t go brittle when it cures is fine. For the water effects, I used clear silicone, then painted the tips of the waves white. Lukes APS has an excellent tutorial on water effects that’s well worth checking out for this kind of project, and his silicone idea worked a treat.

I painted the miniature dark green, and used a mixture of Citadel’s Bronzed Flesh and Goblin Green on the underside. Paint the base black, because it really adds depth once the silicone is added to the top. When I was all done I used a gloss varnish to give the tentacles a wet look.

D&D Stats for Your Tentacles

We’ve published the stats for these tentacles, free, on the DMs Guild. Grab your copy here.

Tentacles of the Deep

If you like the monster, let us know or drop a tip in the tip jar. If you’ve got creative feedback, we’d love to hear from you too.

Black Friday with Rising Phoenix

This Black Friday we have a massive 50% Off Sale on Drive Thru RPG. This includes books compatible with Dungeons & Dragons and the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, as well as stand-alone games, map tiles, and all of our Solo Adventures.

Looking for some unique gaming gift ideas? Check out our Black Friday Buyer’s Guide.

Till next time, play good games!

Rodney Sloan
Rising Phoenix Games

Check out our store, subscribe to our newsletter for monthly updates, and visit us on our blog, our Facebook page and on Twitter.

We are the Stitched!

They came in a deadly whirlwind of steel and spell, annihilating all within the catacombs. In the aftermath, you awoke, gaining sentience from residual magic they’d left behind. Battered and frail, you creep forth.

Last week I wrote about flexing your game design muscle, which is where Stitched comes in. In Stitched, you play the reanimated remains of long-dead corpses, eager to feast and grow in power. The game is my entry into this year’s 200 Word RPG Contest. This month’s RPG Blog Carnival’s theme is “What Scares You,” which gives me the perfect opportunity to share the game and talk about it.

Before we jump in, a word of thanks to Reckoning of the Dead for hosting this month’s carnival.

rpg blog carnival logo

Stitched!

They came in a deadly whirlwind of steel and spell, annihilating all within the catacombs. In the aftermath, you awoke, gaining sentience from residual magic they’d left behind. Battered and frail, you creep forth.

Stitched is a game for 1–5 players and a GM. You’ll need 8d4, 4d6, 2d12, and 1d20. The GM uses a pile of counters.

The Stitched

You are undead, weakened but sentient after tomb raiders invaded your dungeon home. You begin with 1d6 to represent your abilities. As you hunt, you’ll gain dice, allowing you to attach them to your growing form by spending two similar dice: 2d4 = 1d6, 2d6 = 1d12, and 2d12 = 1d20. Each die represents a different amalgamation of necrotic flesh with a shared consciousness.

Playing the Game

The GM sets the scene, then players take turns describing their actions. Roll the dice. A 4 or more indicates success. A 1 is an injury: split the die or remove it if it’s a d4.

The GM can increase the difficulty by 1 by giving a player a token. A player can spend 2 tokens to gain 1d4.

Reap the Flesh!

The Design Perspective

So that’s the game, in all its 200-word glory. The core of the game is the dice mechanic, which I first built to emulate oozes splitting and rejoining. Playing an ooze, even a sentient one, didn’t sound like a fun session at the table, so I changed ectoplasm into limbs and got the Frankenstein’s monster-like stitched, undead that can sew more body parts onto themselves.

I hope you enjoy it.

For more games I’ve designed, check out 3 Stone Stories (free) and Claustrophobia!

Rodney Sloan
Rising Phoenix Games

Check out our store, subscribe to our newsletter for monthly updates, and visit us on our blog, our Facebook page and on Twitter.

 

Merry Christmas

To all our fans, friends and family in roleplaying, a very Merry Christmas!
2016 has been quite a year, and 2017 promises to be even better. We couldn’t have done it without you, so to say thank you, here’s a copy of Baleful Strix, a beautiful Field Guide illustrated by Bob Greyvenstein and written by Rodney Sloan.
 
Download your copy here.
Have a fun, safe and relaxing festive season!
Rodney Sloan
Rising Phoenix Games

Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide

Our newest book, Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide is out!

Chilling Curiosities—A Field Guide

This time we’re covering a bunch of new, low level monsters instead of the standard fantasy monsters like we’ve done before. I’m interested to see how well this does compared to Griffins and Phoenixes. Also, we’re trying the horror angle, so we’ll see if that’s a hit or not.

Some of the monsters are really fun too. We’ve got an eye in a jar, an ooze that gets more powerful when you attack it and a dream-haunting apparition. As always, Bob did excellent work on bringing the stats to life, and the layout is equally chilling.

I really want to recommend this to GMs who are running a low level (lvl 1–6) campaign, particularly a horror one. I think the new monsters will test your players in new ways, that’s exactly what I designed them to do!

Happy Thanksgiving

We’d like to wish all our US and Canadian customers a very special Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is not a custom where I’m from, but I’m blessed to have joined my American friends in Japan to celebrate this special holiday before.

Image sourced from http://www.wpclipart.com/
Image sourced from http://www.wpclipart.com/

Personally, I’m thankful that I’m running Rising Phoenix Games full-time now, and that wouldn’t be possible without your support. Some of our customers have come back again and again, some have written sterling reviews on Drive Thru RPG, and many have picked up one of our products and enjoyed them with friends, and at the end of the day, that’s a big part of what this hobby is all about.

Our newest line is our Field Guide series of monster books, which includes Griffins—A Field Guide and Phoenixes—A Field Guide. The series is illustrated by the talented Mr. Bob Greyvenstein and written by myself. We have several more Field Guides in the works, covering fantasy staples as well as new creatures and races. Now, if you sign up for our newsletter, you’ll receive a copy of Baleful Strix—A Free Field Guide.

Sign Up Here!

We’ve also put out a new 1-on-1 adventure, Dying Dead, which is compatible with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. We’re offering you a chance to win a copy by guessing what monsters we’ll be covering next in our Field Guide series. More details on the blog. But hurry, the contest ends on the 30th of November.

Have a great one and tell thrilling tales.

Rodney Sloan
Rising Phoenix Games

Griffins—A Field Guide Banner Ad


New Monsters and Free Books

We’ve been hard at work on THREE new monster books, one of which will be available as a free download to subscribers.

Our production schedule looks like this:

  1. Griffins—A Field Guide
  2. TBA—A Field Guide (Art done, writing almost done)
  3. TBA—A Free Field Guide (Art done, writing done, currently in proofreading)
  4. TBA—A Field Guide (Art done, crunch done, fluff to be done)

Griffins—A Field Guide imageAny guesses as to what we’ve got planned? Leave a comment below and one lucky reader will walk away with a free copy of Dying Dead.

And don’t forget to subscribe for a chance to get your hands on that free field guide.

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Contest Details, AKA, The Fine Print
The winner will be randomly drawn and announced on the 30th of November, 2016. To claim your prize we’ll need a valid e-mail address. Your prize will be fulfilled via Drive Thru RPG.

Griffins — Designing the Beasts

Griffins — A Field Guide, our first monster book, went up on Drive Thru RPG last week. The book, beautifully illustrated by Bob Greyvenstein, features six different griffin species, from a small griffin familiar to the large noble griffin and a terrifying evil griffin.

Designing the half-lion, half-eagle creatures presented a unique challenge. The beasts had to be varied enough to provide GMs with plenty of options, while still fitting in with the griffin theme. The trick, we discovered, was to design for specific roles. So we’ve got riding griffins (the noble, common and wingless griffin), others built for encounters (the feral and terror griffin) and the sorcerer’s griffin built as a familiar.

Our field guide approach is different from other traditional monster books in that we provide a rounded look at our subjects. We included griffin rider archetypes and a cavalier order—the Order of the Gryphon—plus sections on ecology and on rearing and training, to ensure there would be something for players too.

If you like griffins, be sure to check out the book, I think you’ll be impressed.