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January 26, 2011 / JBencomo

The Abyssal Plague: The Return of (SaveEnds) Blog

Hello everyone, this short post is to announce 2 great thing, (SaveEnds) blog is back on line, after a really short lived time (you just don’t get to decide when your laptop is going to blow up ^^) I`m resuming my regular (and originally intended) blogging, now with more experience about DMing and looking to expand to other great RPG games (Don’t be surprised if a Dragon Age subsection appears in the near future)

Anyhow, my focus is, and will be for the long time to come D&D 4th edition, and I decided to come back with a little subsection about what has captured my attention recently, I’m a sucker for hype, and the guys at WoTC got totally me with The Abyssal plague, so i compiled  all the information i could gather right before the DDXP where I’m sure more will be revealed, the Abyssal Plague section will be updated frequently, hopefully in the few days to come, so go check it out :)


July 16, 2010 / JBencomo

Evil Factions: Implementing Antagonistic groups in a campaign

“Geran, Hamil said silently. The swordsman sensed his small companion’s
sudden alertness and slowed his steps. He followed Hamil’s gaze and saw
what the halfling saw—a gang of five men watching over the street. Three
lounged on the sagging stoop of a dismal alehouse, and two gathered
around a firepit on the opposite side of the street. They carried cudgels and
knives, and each man wore a red-dyed leather gauntlet wrapped in chains
on his left hand. Crimson Chains. Slavers.”

For those of you who don’t know, that’s and excerpt from the Forgotten Realms book “Swordmage: blades of the Moonsea” by Richard Baker, which I was reading last night while looking for inspiration to write a post and finally came to find it in that paragraph. Many DM’s have proven and like to use on regular bases a recurrent villain, the evil mastermind that pulls the strings behind scene just to make quick and nefarious apparitions ‘til the very end, but most of us underuse and underestimate the many unique features a organized evil group brings to the story, so i decided to talk a little of how create and introduce them to your campaign and why.

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July 14, 2010 / JBencomo

Dungeons & Dragons Essentials 101

Starting in September Wizard of the Coast is releasing a new product line called D&D Essentials… and there has been some controversy about it, mixed with a lot of confusion of what this products are and what their intent is, so I tried to make it simple and did a little overview of what Essentials are as a point of reference and address my point of view in the controversy about them.

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July 7, 2010 / JBencomo

Playing Dr. Frankenstein, 3 Quick Tips on Monster Design

“Only a great villain can transform a good try into a triumph” Roger Ebert

The foundation of DMing art is imagination, our goal is no other but to combine creativity with the proper set of tools in order to create. Worlds, stories, monsters, events, in the end are just the pieces we use to form an entertaining experience. I’ve have already talked a little bit about World creation, today I want to provide a set of 3 short tips to facilitate another aspect of the Dungeon Master labor: Monster Creation.

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July 1, 2010 / JBencomo

Getting your players sick. What Diseases can bring to your campaign

A DM tool box is filled with an incredible array of items (going from mechanics to fluff) whose ultimate goal is to provide a fun, interesting, compelling and challenging playground. That being said, Diseases fall into the “under used” category in most DM’s répertoire even though they provide a unique feature other challenges (encounters, traps, etc) do not: lasting threat.

When your players hear “roll initiative” they might fell an  impending threat, until the last enemy hits the ground. Yes they will feel threatened when the skill dices start bouncing on the table to deactivate the trap, but once that *click* sounds, for better or worse, the threat will end and relief will come. But maybe that’s not your intention at all… perhaps you need the party to be concern about their well being, even (specially) when they decide is time for an extended rest… they just might wake up worse… That’s when Diseases in 4th edition come in.

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June 25, 2010 / JBencomo

9 Reasons to get the new D&D 4th Edition Monster Manual 3

To get or not to get? …is that really the question?

Last week the new Monster Manual for 4th Edition D&D hit the stores, escorted by excellent previews and a lot of anticipation from gamers, today I’m going to give you a list of 9 things you will find inside this book that more than justify adding it to your D&D collection.

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June 23, 2010 / JBencomo

So you want to play god? How to create a campaign setting world

Mind: “So why don’t you make your campaign world?”

Me: “I wouldn’t know where to begin”

Mind: “Sure you do, we read those things about campaign session in the DM guide remember?”

Me: “Now that you mention it…. no, it was 3 am when we read that”

Mind: “  -.- better start typing or ill give you a headache”

Finally i gave in to his so called “logic”; I’ve been toying with the idea of creating a campaign setting for a while and with the imminent start of my first session as a DM in a few weeks i had no more room for excuses, already having some loose thoughts about the “feeling” and general traits my setting would have, it occurred to me that creating the world would be a great start, and while in the process of making such world i came up with a few steps and tips that really help out the process

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