Posts Tagged ‘Shadow of the Demon Lord’

A new episode of Table Top Babble is now up!

tabble_babble_logo_2

James Introcaso sits down with game designers Rob Schwalb of Schwalb Entertainment and Teos Abadia of Alphastream to discuss what it’s like to try to make a living in the tabletop RPG industry.

Subscribe on iTunesGoogle Play, or Stitcher. Grab our RSS feed.

Follow Table Top Babble on Facebook or Twitter.

If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, like World Builder Blog on Facebook, check out my podcasts, find my products on the DMs Guild, tell your friends about the blog, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

This is an interview I conducted with Rob Schwalb of Schwalb Entertainment as part of the AetherCon V Convention Program.

aetherwebbanner

JI: Recently on the Talking Tabletop podcast you said that you always pay freelancers who work for you at the top of the industry’s pay scale. Why is it important to you that designers be compensated in this way and what lesson do you hope consumers and other small game companies take from this example?

RS: I clawed my way into the RPG design business the hard way, selling words for as little as two cents a word and there are still two large published projects I wrote but never saw a dime in compensation. RPG design and writing rates haven’t changed in the 15 years I’ve been working in the field and most companies still pay between four cents or less per word. Here’s the thing. We make products for a very niche market. If we want great product, cool ideas, and more from the brightest minds in the business, publishers have to pony up for the talent. I hope, in some small way, to nudge the publishers toward improving their rates, even if this means raising the prices of products by a modest amount to compensate. Of course, being the publisher and lead designer for my small company means I shoulder most of the writing largely to keep costs under control. Not every company can do this and I understand and so it’s a knot I’m not sure will ever get untied.

JI: Shadow of the Demon Lord is a wonderfully elegant game that’s easy to learn and play, but also provides players endless options when building characters. How did you crack the code of simple gameplay and limitless options?

RS: Hey thanks! During design, I strove to please two groups of people so I could bring them to the same table and have a great experience. The first group included the casual players, people with an interest in the hobby, but are neither willing nor interested in spending an hour making ten decisions to create a character. Furthermore, they don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the campaign or what mechanical choice they’re going to make next. Hell, they probably can’t commit to a weekly or even bimonthly game.

I also focused on invested players, people who live and breathe tabletop RPGs, who delight in making characters and tinkering with the game. These folks, especially those who come from traditional tabletop RPGs, expect to be able to make meaningful and interesting choices in character development and during game play. They have an idea about what kind of character they want to play and they expect the game to deliver the options they need to realize that character in play.

The casual audience’s needs kept my crunchy impulse in check, and let me focus on delivering those things that would keep both kinds of players at the same table. The result was a trim, flexible game engine that could adapt to a variety of circumstances and is easy to learn and master. The mechanical options, which, as you point out, are many, live inside of bigger decision points. Invested players still have lots to choose from, but they choose big packages rather than spend their time making decisions about the small things that, in my experience, don’t really matter much at all.

Rather than carve up these widgets into smaller buckets, I delivered them in big packages called paths. You choose three paths over the life of the campaign, which lets the character adapt and grow as the story progresses, while bundling interesting things together to completely bypass decision paralysis when a player is faced with combining mechanical elements from eight or more different sources. So at the start of the campaign, characters are quite simple and easy to make. Each adventure completed grows the character’s complexity from the widgets gained from previous or new big decision points. However, the player has the time to master those widgets and see how they work in play during the adventure, so that by the time the adventure ends, the player is ready to learn something new.

unnamed

JI: How did you manage to get so many quality products shipped in so little time and why is it important for you to be so prolific?

RS: As of this writing, the game has only been out 14 months and I just released the 100th title. I’ve always been prolific when it comes to game design, even if it costs me free time, sanity, happiness, and my liver. The reason for pushing hard on SotDL is that my wee company is fighting for a place in a crowded field. Offering options and expansions to the core that cover a variety of subjects reinforces to customers that the game is alive and well, supported, and offering new and exciting expansions to the core. Delivering these expansions in bite-sized pieces lets people keep up with the game each week for less than it costs to buy a cup of coffee.

JI: I follow you on social media. I’ve never seen a setting that so well represents the designer’s personality, fears, and sense of humor as Shadow of the Demon Lord. How do you tap into something so personal while writing and how do you make those feelings accessible?

It’s probably bad to say this, but I am terrible at work-life balance. I wanted this game to reflect my tastes and sensibilities and I drew from all the things I love about the hobby, all my fears and disappointments, frustrations and blinding hatred that the business, games, and everything else awakens inside of me. My head is a garden in which anxiety, stress, depression, doubt, and so many other terrible things grow. So, I guess, the game is a harvest of those horrors growing there.

JI: What do you think separates Shadow of the Demon Lord from other RPGs?

RS: I was very pragmatic about the design. We’re busy people, maybe busier now than ever before. We have responsibilities. We have competing interests. We live complex and difficult lives. Who the hell has three years to invest in a campaign? Who can make all the game sessions making up the adventure? Heck, I sure can’t. SotDL drags the best part of the campaign—the world-ending, world-shaking event—to the fore. A campaign asks players to commit to some number of adventures no greater than eleven. And, each adventure is a self-contained contained story, ideally playable in a single sitting, so if you can’t make the next session, it’s no big deal. SotDL a game for adults busy doing adult things but who still want to climb out of their lives for a few hours and kill a few demons with their friends over beers and pizza.

JI: There are more than 25 adventures out for Shadow of the Demon Lord. What are some of your favorites and why?

RS: You know, all of the adventures we’ve released hold a special place in my dark heart since most of them represent a designer’s interpretation of my game. Some are linear, some are not. Some are simple, while others are quite complex. We have disgusting adventures, moral dilemmas, and tragedies. Of the adventures I did not write, some of my favorites include The Apple of Her Eye by Steve Kenson. I’ve run this one several times and it almost always ends in a “feel bad” way. A Measure of Faith by Steve Townsend is also great fun as it has a strong and interesting story, while also leveraging the rampant, widespread madness. TS Luikart’s Beware the Tides of Karshoon was a ton of fun since it was like going back to the WFRP days. Finally, I really dug Cam Banks’ The Gorgon’s Tears as it delivered an interesting mystery with interesting consequences.

Of the ones I’ve written, The Curious Case of Farmer Ham (see Tales of the Demon Lord) was one of the first I wrote for the game and thus has a special place in my heart. My Father Left Forever, inside Terrible Beauty, takes a good long look at what it means to be enslaved by a faerie.

JI: What’s do you think consumers should do to help change the way RPG industry professionals are compensated?

RS: If I knew the answer to this question, I would hope to be working less and making more than I do. It’s a sinkhole from which I’m not sure we can escape. I think the trouble is that some folks don’t place value on the product. I mean, it’s not like there’s a shortage of playable RPGs, right? But, where I stumble is when I think about console games. One might give you 20-40 hours of steady enjoyment and people are willing to shell out $60 to play it. A tabletop RPG could provide countless hours of enjoyment for everyone at the table, yet $50 is considered high. It’s true that a tabletop RPG takes less capital and time to create than does a video game, but a tabletop RPG and supplements are made from a smaller pool of people who work the same kinds of hours, who have to master a broad range of design skills, and get a modest return, if they’re lucky, on their investment. This all said, I’m not sure seeking and fighting for fair compensation in the tabletop world is anything more than tilting at windmills and thus I focus on paying fair rates and producing on top notch products in the hopes of inspiring others to do the same.

JI: The Schwalb Entertainment website and online shop appear to be built to handle more product lines than just Shadow of the Demon Lord. Can you give us a hint about what’s to come?

We have some fun things coming next year, all driven by Kickstarter campaigns, though the next batch of products will be further expansions on Shadow of the Demon Lord, though with a far saner release schedule. We’re going to be bringing Freeport to the world the Demon Lord, plus produce a delicious bestiary, a book on magic, and rules for playing legendary characters, though who move beyond the group to become movers and shakers in the world. While working on these, I will starting design on a new game powered by the Demon Lord that I hope to reveal in 2018. Fun stuff coming, so stay tuned!

Check out more great interviews like this one by grabbing your copy of the AetherCon V Convention Program being released Nov/1/2016 here: www.aethercon.com.

If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, like World Builder Blog on Facebook, check out my podcasts, find my products on the DMs Guild, tell your friends about the blog, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

A new episode of my podcast, The Round Table, is up on The Tome Show’s website.


I sit down with Rudy Basso to discuss our upcoming fantasy, comedy, radio drama podcast, Have Spellbook Will Travel. Then I hang with Henry Lopez and Pedro Barrenechea of Paradigm Concepts to talk about their long-running campaign setting, Arcanis, and Kickstarter for Forged in Magic. Finally it’s an interview with game designer Mike Myler about his Kickstarter for Mists of Akuma. These podcasts were recorded on April 3, 5, and 28, 2016.




Please rate and review The Tome Show on iTunes. It only takes 30 seconds and helps us so much!

Links:

If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcasts, Bonus Action and Gamer to Gamer, find my products on the DMs Guild, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

As you may know this month I’m hosting the RPG Blog Carnival. The theme is “Homebrew Holiday Gifts,” and I’m asking bloggers everywhere to share their RPG creations for their favorite systems with me. At the end of the month I’ll make a list linking all participating blog posts so everyone can checkout the fine homebrew creations in one place. That brings me to my second entry for the month – MORE Shadow of the Demon Lord pregens! Now you can get starting, novice, expert, and master pregens below!

I recently played a wonderful game of Shadow of the Demon Lord. Game designer Rob Schwalb has put together an amazing RPG with fun, easy-to-learn rules. At first glance this appears to be a simple dark fantasy tabletop RPG (which would be awesome by itself), but read beyond the table of contents and you’ll find it’s a world of deliciously wicked rules that twists tropes and archetypes you know well into something original and different.

You can hear more about Shadow of the Demon Lord in the Gamer to Gamer podcast I recorded with Rob back in March when his (super duper successful) Kickstarter launched. Since then he’s published the core rulebook and a ton of adventures by many amazing designers you can buy.

I noticed that since the game is new there aren’t many pregens online, so I made a few of my own. Below are pregens for starting (level 0), novice (level 1), expert (level 3), and master (level 7) PCs. You can always grab these pregens on the Free Game Resources section of the site.

Starting

Changeling

Clockwork

Dwarf

Goblin

Human

Orc

Novice

Changeling Magician Level 1

Clockwork Warrior Level 1

Dwarf Priest Level 1

Goblin Rogue Level 1

Human Priest Level 1

Orc Warrior Level 1

Expert

Changeling Magician Witch Level 3

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Level 3

Dwarf Priest Paladin Level 3

Goblin Rogue Thief Level 3

Human Priest Cleric Level 3

Orc Warrior Berserker Level 3

Master

Changeling Magician Witch Technomancer Level 7

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Weapon Master Level 7

Dwarf Priest Paladin Healer Level 7

Goblin Rogue Thief Acrobat Level 7

Human Priest Cleric Astromancer Level 7

Orc Warrior Berserker Brute Level 7

Hey if you want more RPG homebrew goodness, check out the Free Game Resources section of this site. You can find a lot of fifth edition D&D resources there like backgroundsmagic items, monstersD&D fifth edition rules modulesspellsadventures, and more created by yours truly.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

Bones for the Demon Lord!

As you may know this month I’m hosting the RPG Blog Carnival. The theme is “Homebrew Holiday Gifts,” and I’m asking bloggers everywhere to share their RPG creations for their favorite systems with me. At the end of the month I’ll make a list linking all participating blog posts so everyone can checkout the fine homebrew creations in one place. That brings me to my first entry for the month – Shadow of the Demon Lord pregens!

I recently played a wonderful game of Shadow of the Demon Lord. Game designer Rob Schwalb has put together an amazing RPG with fun, easy-to-learn rules. At first glance this appears to be a simple dark fantasy tabletop RPG (which would be awesome by itself), but read beyond the table of contents and you’ll find it’s a world of deliciously wicked rules that twists tropes and archetypes you know well into something original and different.

You can hear more about Shadow of the Demon Lord in the Gamer to Gamer podcast I recorded with Rob back in March when his (super duper successful) Kickstarter launched. Since then he’s published the core rulebook and a ton of adventures by many amazing designers you can buy.

I noticed that since the game is new there aren’t many pregens online, so I made a few of my own. Below are pregens for starting (level 0), novice (level 1), and expert (level 3) PCs. You can always grab these pregens on the Free Game Resources section of the site.

Starting

Changeling

Clockwork

Dwarf

Goblin

Human

Orc

Novice

Changeling Magician Level 1

Clockwork Warrior Level 1

Dwarf Priest Level 1

Goblin Rogue Level 1

Human Priest Level 1

Orc Warrior Level 1

Expert

Changeling Magician Witch Level 3

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Level 3

Dwarf Priest Paladin Level 3

Goblin Rogue Thief Level 3

Human Priest Cleric Level 3

Orc Warrior Berserker Level 3

Master

Changeling Magician Witch Technomancer Level 7

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Weapon Master Level 7

Dwarf Priest Paladin Healer Level 7

Goblin Rogue Thief Acrobat Level 7

Human Priest Cleric Astromancer Level 7

Orc Warrior Berserker Brute Level 7

More Shadow of the Demon Lord pregens to come! Gotta get those master ones out there!

Hey if you want more RPG homebrew goodness, check out the Free Game Resources section of this site. You can find a lot of fifth edition D&D resources there like backgroundsmagic items, monstersD&D fifth edition rules modulesspellsadventures, and more created by yours truly.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

To my friends in the United States – Happy Thanksgiving!

Since I started this blog I’ve been taking part in the monthly RPG Blog Carnival. Currently organized by Johnn Four over at Roleplaying Tips, the carnival is hosted by a different blog each month. The owner of the hosting blog picks a RPG-related theme and then invites other bloggers to write at least one post on that theme in their own blogs. Those bloggers then provide a link to their posts somewhere in the comments of the host blog’s introductory carnival post. At the end of the month, the blog hosting the carnival gathers up all of the links in a new blog post and puts them together in a nice little package for all to see. Check out November’s carnival theme “A Stack of Surprises,” hosted by Mike Bourke of Campaign Mastery.

In December, I’ll be hosting the carnival. If you’ve been following me for a while or you’ve checked out the Free Game Resources section of this site, you know I love crafting homebrew creations. For fifth edition Dungeons and Dragons I’ve created numerous backgroundsmagic items, monstersD&D fifth edition rules modulesspellsadventures, and more. I’ve also been on a Shadow of the Demon Lord pregen creation kick recently, since there don’t seem to be many out there for this new game yet.

Now I’m inviting others to join in the fun. This holiday season, give the gift of your gaming creations. Create a new monsters, feat, spell, force power, weapon, magic item, NPC, PC, adventure, map, world, background, rule, society, or anything else you can dream up. It could be for your favorite game system or something system agnostic! It doesn’t matter. Heck get into the spirit and stat out Santa or go dark and make a murderous longsword forged in the blood of demons. Your imagination is the only limit. No creation is too small if it’s one that came right out of your brain.

Leave links to those creations in the comments below and at the end of the month I’ll post them up in a nice blogtastic package for GMs everywhere to steal for their games! Give the gift of gaming, my friends. There’s going to be plenty homebrew fun to come from this blog as well, so stay tuned!

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

IntroConso was amazing. What’s that? You never heard of IntroConso? That’s because my friends and I made it up.

My great pal, fellow Tome Show podcaster, and amazing Night’s Black Agents Game Master, Rudy Basso, and I have been going to Gen Con together for the last two years. 60,000 people who are all down to roll some dice and have a great time for four days straight. We make it a point to experience a lot of new games since we play fifth edition Dungeons and Dragons a majority of the time we game. It’s always a rush to discover a new game.

We’ve been trying to get our own friends from college to go for years, but things like distance, expense, and time away from work and family make it difficult for many of our buds to attend. Last year while at Gen Con it hit me. Why not plan our own convention? Well, not really a convention. We’d invite just a few friends to join us for a weekend of gaming somewhere more convenient. They all live on in the Northeast, so we could simply gather at one person’s home. Suddenly expense, travel, and time away were less of an issue. It wasn’t a 60,000 person con, but it was a weekend with some of the coolest people I know.

We organized this bash and I sent out an email to the dudes who were immediately on board. I jokingly called it James Con, which Alex Basso, Rudy’s awesome brother, changed to IntroConso. The name stuck. We just wrapped up the first get together and there were eleven people total (including Round Table panelists Greg Blair, Andrew Timmes, Vegas Lancaster, Ray Fallon, and John Fischer). We introduced those dudes to a bunch of new games over the weekend and they introduced Rudy and I to some new stuff. Anyone out there who can take a weekend, day, or even just a few hours to experience a new tabletop RPG with some should definitely do it! We had so much fun, but we also learned a lot of new mechanics which we enjoyed.

Now that life is back to normal, we’re going to be resuming our usual awesome gaming meal of fifth edition Dungeons and Dragons. So with that in mind, here’s a few my favorite mechanics from the games we played that could be stolen and brought into fifth edition.

13th Age

Created by Jonathan Tweet and Rob Heinsoo, 13th Age takes a lot of the good mechanics from third edition D&D, which Jonathan helped design, and a lot of the good mechanics from fourth edition D&D, which Rob helped design, and mixes them with some brand new story and game rules to create something really special. The game is one of the best out there for creating an epic fantasy story in which your PCs really feel like badass heroes.

Icon Roles

The Rule: In the default 13th Age setting, there are 13 icons. Icons are basically high level, archetype NPCs like the Emperor, the Lich King, the High Priestess, and the Dwarf King with whom your players share some sort of relationship. During character creation, players have three relationship points to spend on their PCs’ positive, negative, and conflicted relationships with one or more specific icons. The players describe why they have a relationship with NPC (e.g. “The forces of the Lich King killed my parents so we have a negative relationship,” or “I served in an army commanded by the Dwarf King and respected the decisions he made so we have a positive relationship.”)

At the start of each game session players roll 1d6 per relationship point. If any of those results come up 6, something good happens to the player’s PC during the session because of that relationship. For instance the icon or its agents might give the PC a magic item or a henchman to help with a quest. If the player rolls a 5, something good happens to the PC because of their relationship with the icon, but it comes with strings attached. The player might have to complete a side quest, surrender some resources, or give up an item in return for the aid they receive. All other results are ignored because over the course of a long campaign, each player will roll many 5s and 6s, especially since a PC gains more relationship points as they progress in levels.

How It Can Work in 5e: You can use the rule as written and set your fifth edition campaign in the default world of 13th Age, you could create your own icons and use them, or have the gods (which are more active in the lives of mortals in many D&D games than in 13th Age) be your icons.

PCs start with three relationship points at first level, gain another at seventh, and a fifth at fourteenth. Otherwise use the rule as written.

One Unique Thing

The Rule: During character creation, every player picks something about their character that is unique and applies only to their character. “I am the bastard son of the Emperor,” or “I am the only elf ale brewer.” These unique things make PCs special right off the bat and help define the game world since they are limiting. You can find a bunch of examples here.

How It Can Work in 5e: Use the rule as written.

Escalation Die

The Rule: During 13th Age combat the PCs get into a groove and gain a sort of momentum which allows them to get better at swinging their swords and casting their spells. At the end of the first round of combat the escalation die appears. This six-sided looks like any other. It starts showing number one and at the end of everyone round of combat increase by one until hit six, where it stays until the end of the battle.

PCs, and usually only PCs, add the escalation die’s number to their attack rolls. This helps combat go a little more quickly and rewards PCs for staying in a tough fight.

How It Can Work in 5e: Use the rule as written for PCs. Legendary creatures (like dragons, beholders, vampires, etc.) also gain the benefit of the escalation die.

Shadow of the Demon Lord

Set in a dark fantasy world from the mind of Rob Schwalb, Shadow of the Demon Lord is one of my favorite new RPGs. You can tell because I’ve been creating many pregens for the system lately. It’s a gritty, violent, hard-to-survive game with spells like hateful defecation (which is exactly what you think). If you’re into horror, you have to check this game out.

Initiative

The Rule: This was one of my favorite mechanics I discovered at IntroConso the players seemed to agree. It really helped speed up our combat.

During combat PCs and monsters can take fast turns or slow turns. During fast turns you either make one move or one action, but during slow turns you get to make one move and one action. What sort of action you take determines how you act initiative. Initiative goes in the following phases:

  1. PCs taking fast turns.
  2. Monsters taking fast turns.
  3. PCs taking slow turns.
  4. Monsters taking slow turns.

During each PC phase, the PCs determine who acts in which order. If they can’t decide, the GM decides for them. This made things move very quickly.

How It Can Work in 5e: This rule takes a couple tweaks to work in fifth edition, but they are pretty easy. Here’s what I’d change.

  1. Fast turns and slow turns can include bonus actions.
  2. Effects and abilities that wear off “at the start/end of your next turn,” would end at the start/end of the same phase in the next round.

Gamma World

Gamma World’s seventh edition is one of the greatest things to come out of fourth edition D&D. The post-apocalyptic, zany game designed by Rich Baker and Bruce Cordell is based on D&D 4e’s rules, but has a lot more random mechanics that really keep the game interesting as PCs pick up crazy omega tech, constantly mutate their bodies, and roll for random origins, skill proficiencies, and equipment.

Alpha Mutations

The Rule: In Gamma World PCs gain a single random Alpha Mutation at the start of each game which is swapped out with a new random one whenever they gain finish an encounter. These alpha mutations appear on cards which are drawn from a deck. At higher levels, PCs gain more Alpha Mutations.

How It Can Work in 5e: While they aren’t right for every fifth edition game, you could have players roll randomly to have a single cantrip they can cast after being exposed to some sort of strange magic. Have all PCs pick either Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma as their spellcasting modifier if they don’t already have one, create a table of every cantrip, have the PCs roll after each battle and at the start of each session to determine which cantrip they get. PCs gain an additional random cantrip at seventh level and fourteenth level.

What About You?

What have you stolen from other systems to bring into another? Sound off in the comments below!

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

This is an update to a post written on Tuesday this week. If you want the new pregen goodness, skip down to the links below.

sotdl-cover

I love Shadow of the Demon Lord. Game designer Rob Schwalb has put together an amazing RPG with fun, easy-to-learn rules. At first glance this appears to be a simple dark fantasy tabletop RPG (which would be awesome by itself), but read beyond the table of contents and you’ll find it’s a deliciously wicked world of rules that twists tropes and archetypes you know well into something original and different.

You can hear more about Shadow of the Demon Lord in the Gamer to Gamer podcast I recorded with Rob back in March when his (super duper successful) Kickstarter launched. Since then he’s published the core rulebook and a ton of adventures by many amazing designers you can buy.

I have a very busy week this week and one reason is because I’m preparing to run my first ever game of Shadow of the Demon Lord with some players this Saturday. While we’re all seasoned with years of Dungeons and Dragons experience this will be their first time playing Rob’s game as well. We’re also limited on time, so as simple as Shadow of the Demon Lord’s character creation is, I went looking for pregens online. I couldn’t find any so I decided to make my own. I figured since I was going to make them, I might as well share them with you! Now they do exist online.

Below are pregens for starting (level 0) and novice (level 1) PCs. Note I fixed some typos and updated the starting PCs as well. You can always grab these pregens on the Free Game Resources section of the site.

Starting

Changeling

Clockwork

Dwarf

Goblin

Human

Orc

Novice

Changeling Magician Level 1

Clockwork Warrior Level 1

Dwarf Priest Level 1

Goblin Rogue Level 1

Human Priest Level 1

Orc Warrior Level 1

Expert

Changeling Magician Witch Level 3

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Level 3

Dwarf Priest Paladin Level 3

Goblin Rogue Thief Level 3

Human Priest Cleric Level 3

Orc Warrior Berserker Level 3

Master

Changeling Magician Witch Technomancer Level 7

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Weapon Master Level 7

Dwarf Priest Paladin Healer Level 7

Goblin Rogue Thief Acrobat Level 7

Human Priest Cleric Astromancer Level 7

Orc Warrior Berserker Brute Level 7

More Shadow of the Demon Lord pregens to come! Gotta get those expert and master ones out there!

Hey if you want more RPG goodness, check out the Free Game Resources section of this site. You can find a lot of fifth edition D&D resources there like backgroundsmagic items, monstersD&D fifth edition rules modulesspellsadventures, and more created by yours truly.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

I love Shadow of the Demon Lord. Game designer Rob Schwalb has put together an amazing RPG with fun, easy-to-learn rules. At first glance this appears to be a simple dark fantasy tabletop RPG (which would be awesome by itself), but read beyond the table of contents and you’ll find it’s a deliciously wicked world of rules that twists tropes and archetypes you know well into something original and different.

You can hear more about Shadow of the Demon Lord in the Gamer to Gamer podcast I recorded with Rob back in March when his (super duper successful) Kickstarter launched. Since then he’s published the core rulebook and a ton of adventures by many amazing designers you can buy.

I have a very busy week this week and one reason is because I’m preparing to run my first ever game of Shadow of the Demon Lord with some players this Saturday. While we’re all seasoned with years of Dungeons and Dragons experience this will be their first time playing Rob’s game as well. We’re also limited on time, so as simple as Shadow of the Demon Lord’s character creation is, I went looking for pregens online. I couldn’t find any so I decided to make my own. I figured since I was going to make them, I might as well share them with you! Now they do exist online.

Starting characters (level 0) in Shadow of the Demon Lord only have an ancestry so these were easy to whip up. Still if you’re in a crunch go ahead and grab them. Look forward to Thursday when I’ll post up some level 1 versions of these bad boys!

Starting

Changeling

Clockwork

Dwarf

Goblin

Human

Orc

Novice

Changeling Magician Level 1

Clockwork Warrior Level 1

Dwarf Priest Level 1

Goblin Rogue Level 1

Human Priest Level 1

Orc Warrior Level 1

Expert

Changeling Magician Witch Level 3

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Level 3

Dwarf Priest Paladin Level 3

Goblin Rogue Thief Level 3

Human Priest Cleric Level 3

Orc Warrior Berserker Level 3

Master

Changeling Magician Witch Technomancer Level 7

Clockwork Warrior Fighter Weapon Master Level 7

Dwarf Priest Paladin Healer Level 7

Goblin Rogue Thief Acrobat Level 7

Human Priest Cleric Astromancer Level 7

Orc Warrior Berserker Brute Level 7

More Shadow of the Demon Lord pregens to come!

Hey if you want more RPG goodness, check out the Free Game Resources section of this site. You can find a lot of fifth edition D&D resources there like backgroundsmagic items, monstersD&D fifth edition rules modulesspellsadventures, and more created by yours truly.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends and share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!


I sit down with Rob Schwalb, professional game designer who has worked for Green Ronin, Mongoose Publishing, Fantasy Flight Games, Monte Cook Games, Wizards of the Coast, and more. Rob was one of the designers ofDungeons and Dragons fifth edition and has launched his own company, Schwalb Entertainment which is currently running a Kickstarter campaign for its upcoming release of Shadow of the Demon Lord on March 12. This podcast was recorded on February 17, 2015.

Links:

If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcasts, The Round Table and Bonus Action, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!