Cleric Domain: Beer OR Sacred Waters

On the first day of Cleric-mas, my GM gave to me:
Beer … (in a tree)

Those words, paraphrased from the Wise Brothers McKenzie, open the first day of Cleric-mas. I’ve started with the domain that I created for the Midgard one-shot at ValorCon Chicago, as that’s what got this whole idea moving along. Since most 13th Age cleric domains use two possible descriptors, I’ve done the same here. In addition, I’ve posted a new 1st-level spell, anoint, that fits with the domain’s ability. Continue reading  

the 12 Days of Cleric-mas

Welcome to the 12 Days of Cleric-mas!

What’s Cleric-mas?

A completely made-up holiday reference I’m using as an excuse to post new ideas and mechanics for clerics in the 13th Age role-playing game.

Seems unnecessarily elaborate

Probably, and even a little silly. But I had ideas for 12 posts about clerics, and it’s the holiday season, so the idea stuck.

What are the 12 days?

I’m glad you asked. Each time I post in the next few weeks, I’ll update this list with the new link. It’s like an Advent calendar, except the posts won’t necessarily be on consecutive days and its after Christmas. And you’ll get words instead of chocolate. And we’re dealing with fictional religions instead of real-world ones. Otherwise, just like an Advent calendar. Continue reading  

Midgard Heroes for 13th Age: Darakhul

‘Twas the night before Cleric-mas, camped near the lake,
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mist drake;
Except for the party’s darakhul cleric,
Because the living dead never sleep a lick.

Next week begins the ’12 Days of Cleric-mas,’ a series of posts in the vein of 13th Age Monthly, but with a sillier name. Oh, and they’re all focused around new domains, spells, and possibilities for playing clerics in 13th Age.

A couple of the posts reference undead player-characters, due to the fact that I’m drawing from the Midgard setting for inspiration. This setting, published by Kobold Press, is a little more far-flung and Grimm than a lot of Western F20 settings. Its take on deities and how they overlap amongst cultures is what grabbed my attention.

Before I get to the clerics, though, I’m spending a moment on the darakhul, the high-functioning ghouls of Midgard whose subterranean empire is a constant threat to the above-ground world.  Continue reading  

RPG Artifacts: the Anti-Life Symbol


I’ve been surprised how much I’ve enjoyed creating material for 13th Age games. It’s as though, after decades of supernatural and horror-based RPGs, my brain is throwing out all the fantasy & myth ideas it’s been saving up. Not surprisingly, the influence of darker RPGs still pokes through, as evidenced by a cursed magical item I created for a recent campaign.

True magic items in 13th Age are meant to be rare and priceless, even though the canonic world of the game is one of prevalent magic. How free that magic is, or who controls & directs such magic, is a common point of tension and narrative hooks. This item subverts that idea a bit. Continue reading  

Monstrous Dramaturgy: Five Hooks for the Hodag

You! You look like a fine GM, a man or woman of cultivated tastes who runs only the choicest role-playing games in the horror, supernatural, or related genre. This means, naturally, that you are always on the lookout for interesting and compelling monsters for your game. In that vein, I have one question for you:

Hast thou considered the hodag?


No? Well, then I invite you to read on, and take a gander at the five options laid out below for using this cryptozoological critter in your next game of supernatural horror. Continue reading