Gaming in the ‘Verse: The Companion


Claire: “Perhaps, captain, I can be of help. I once had a client…Mistress Serin of house Sin-Chai, who owns a fairly prominent…well, that’s not important. What is important is that Mistress Serin can provide us with a safe haven and supplies. I’ve arranged to discuss the matter with her over dinner and a massage. Of course, that only happens if you apologize for calling me a whore.” -Jasmine Asir, Registered Companion Trampas: The Companion is a challenging role-playing experience, focusing on diplomacy over action. The Companion is an ambassador, carrying the right credentials to get your crew into places they… Read More

Gaming in the ‘Verse: The Bard


MUSIC: Eavesdown Docks by the Bedlam Bards as bed music. “Gather round friends, as I sing you the tale of Mack-Jaw McKay’s daring raid upon the Alliance during the War of Unification, and how he gave voice to freedom!” -Mack-Jaw Mckay, Bard of the Black MUSIC: Fades out. Out in the lonely Black is a ‘verse filled with harsh environments, ne’er-do-wells, and an oppressive government. From this arises a tradition that is said to originate from Earth-That-Was. Enter the Bard, a vagabond who travels the world of the Rim, making a living through entertainment and fun. The Bard is a… Read More

Gaming in the ‘Verse: The Pilot


MUSIC: Leaf on the Wind – Bedlam Bards (don’t recall exact title) “I don’t plan on running from them, captain. I intend to go right through them. The Alliance won’t be expecting a bootlegger’s turn. After that, we hit full burn.” – Jack Tyler, pilot MUSIC FADES OUT The pilot is an essential part of any crew, flying your boat through the Black and out of Alliance hands. Pilots are free spirits who love the thrill of flying. Whether in atmo or out in the Black, the pilot can often be the key component to ensuring that you fly another… Read More

Sun’s Lament and Moonlight Sorrow

Sun’s lament and moonlight sorrowWill not bring my yesterdays back tomorrowFaded memory of life so sweetEyes not open to what we will meet Hurried voices of days gone byI sob and I sorrow and then I cryCome around front for my bitter endSeeking the counsel of a forgotten friend Cast away cast away into the nightCast away cast away fear and frightFaded away are the sights I did seeEyes to the future is my eternity Read More

Deva Heritage: Elan

The exact origins of elan devas are unknown. Some say that a special enclave of deva, known as the Cullers, seeks out deva with psionic potential. Those who pass the screening process undergo a ritual that causes them to be reborn in the next lifetime with psionic powers. Physical Description: Elan devas tend to have chalk white skin with dark patterns on their bodies. Unlike other devas, elan devas have red hair. They also tend to wear red clothing. Language: Elans speak Common and may choose two other languages. Elans are known for adding phrases to their speech from other… Read More

XDM: X-Treme Dungeon Mastery Review

Disclaimer: I should say up front that I have known Tracy Hickman for many years and will endeavor to remain as impartial as possible. XDM: X-Treme Dungeon Mastery is written by New York Times bestselling author and game designer Tracy Hickman and his son Curtis Hickman, with illustrations by Howard Tayler. According to editor Sandra Tayler, Tracy and Curtis “wanted to find a way to help role playing gamers remember to enjoy their games rather than get caught up in the mechanics of systems.” This book does just that. Throughout XDM, one theme is clear: ditch the rules, the fiddly… Read More

Drive Review


When I first heard of Drive, I knew I would like it. I grew up on car shows and movies, such as The Dukes of Hazzard, Cannonball Run, and Smokey and the Bandit. Plus, this show had one of my favorite actors in it – Nathan Fillion. Now perhaps Nathan’s character in Drive acted a bit much like Malcolm Reynolds from Firefly, but that’s okay. Both had lost something very important to them. The difference is that Malcolm Reynolds had little to live for save for flying another day while Alex Tully was obsessed with finding his kidnapped wife. The… Read More

Dragonhelm Keep is Live!

Greetings, friends, and welcome to the new and improved Dragonhelm Keep! I’ve had this site for a while, piddled around with it, but have done nothing serious with it until now. For those that don’t know me, I’m the administrator of the Dragonlance Nexus fan site, the host and producer of the Dragonlance Canticle podcast, a Dragonlance RPG designer, and a voice within the podosphere. So why have my own blog? I believe in having a voice on the internet, where I can talk about the things that interest me without having to worry about other peoples’ format. This is… Read More

Who says that role-playing stops when the dice drop?

In some recent episodes of Fear the Boot, Chad has made the statement that role-playing stops when combat begins. He ascertains that the world somehow is put on pause while the dice are brought out, to-hit and damage calculations are made, and monsters are wiped from the field. Chad makes a very convincing argument, which you should check recent episodes for. I will state up front that I think Chad is fan-tastic! He has a lot of good thoughts, and I truly enjoy him on the show. However, I have to call shenanigans on this one. I have been in… Read More

Evil Characters

It is said amongst gamers that you should never allow evil characters in the party. There is a good reason for this. As a Dragonlance fan, I’m reminded of the Law of the Dark Queen, which states that evil feeds on itself. This is a truth that surpasses the Dragonlance setting. When you have an evil character in the party, they often cause untold havoc. They don’t work as part of the team, as their motives are self-serving. In other words, they don’t play well with others. I experienced this phenomenon a couple of times myself. I will say upfront… Read More