Sunday, August 21, 2016

Review and Plug: Golden Eye of the Kobold King

+Steve C of Hogtown Games and recently published his first S&W compatible digest sized adventure. Congratulations Steve! Steve asked me to design his games company logo and you can check the evolution of the design here. 

I recently received a hard copy of this adventure that is for 6-10 characters of levels 1-2 and read through it. It is a nicely designed and laid out little module. 

Here is the front cover.

The logo I designed is at the bottom centered and it stands out and represents everything that Steve wanted. It looks nice. Reminds me though that I have to send him a version that is not on a white background so that it doesn't pop out so much. 

The cover is nicely laid out, with the title clearly at the top and prominent and in a read-able font. The image, while stock art is a nice fill for the front. I love modules with a black cover, and when highlighted with ink art it just makes my heart thud! So rarely do we see modules these days with simple black and white ink art. (Or maybe I am not looking in the right places?)

Here is the title page.

Again the Hogtown logo is prominently displayed in the center of the page and Steve even credited me with its design there. Thanks Steve!

I really like the layout of the entire book, and while I don't have photos of the rest of it, it is easy to read, the stat blocks are well done and organized and the maps that are inside are very utility and fit within the pages well. I should note that the "pay-what-you-want" version does not include interior art, and the one I printed from lulu does not have interior art either. Still it doesn't subtract from the quality of the modules writing and interesting storyline. 

The back cover reads:

"On the fringes of civilization , beneath a great dark cliff at the end of the Forsaken Gorge, loom the Dread Caves of Doom. Greebok the Kobold King occupies the Dread Caves of Doom, using them as a base to launch raids into the civilized lands. Bolstered by his war band, and the aid of a strange enchanted device known as the Golden Eye, Greebok appears unstoppable, and the frontier lands doomed to fall under his murderous rule. 

Will the daring advenuturers answer the call to launch a preemptive strike on Greebok's outpost in the Dread Caves of Doom and finally stop the merciless Kobold King? Or will they simply kill the Kobold King, loot his stuff, and ride off to the next dungeon? Are these aims mutually exclusive? Heck no!

However, Greebok and his war band are not the only threats, Hidden within the Dread Caves of Doom is an ancient alien tomb with weird technology, and the crypt of a ghoulish alien noble driven mad by endless years of undeath. 

Enjoy the mystery and death in ....


Here is a pic of the back cover:

Intrepid adventures are lead through a Wilderness Gorge where Rabid Jackals and Giant Centipedes (among others) maraud before getting to the Caves entrance. Getting into the cave is just the start of the devious tricks and traps that the Kobold King has in store in this 13 room adventure that will surely captivate new players and veteran's alike. I plan on running this for my children in the near future!

Soo.... if you are starting off with a new group of 1's ad 2's after a TPK go ahead and head over to your favorite online publisher like or check out the pdf version at It is listed at pay what you want but it is well worth a hefty donation!

I just want to thank Steve again for his patronage and in selecting me to design his games logo. It was a fun project and a great diversion from the stuff that I usually work on. 

Steve also contracted me for a few more illustrations here and here that will hopefully be joined in print with this logo. 

Thanks for looking and comments always welcome!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Rough work: Sketchbook

In an attempt to get back on schedule and to put some of my really rough work up here on this blog, I am sharing some more sketches. 

This first one was done while sitting in an seminar for work. I am a firefighter and sometimes certain sects of firefighters call fighting fire "slaying the dragon". A bit ambitious of those who call it that. Also, I wanted to show an old timey fireman in the scene as well. This started out as a doodle, and kept progressing until this stage. As of yet incomplete. It may never be finished. 

This next one is for a current project. I often play with different head wear, hairstyles and tattoos, to create the right look of the character that is being drawn. This is an example where I just copied the same head lightly and then added details to the copied head to see what looked best in the overall drawing. The nice thing about these, is they were at 100% scale, so I just cut them out and slid them over the original drawing so that I could see the concept head on the completed drawing. I chose the lower right one, but changed it a bit.

For these next few, I was playing around with barbarian concepts, and sketched this guy out. Problem with this one is that you cannot see the front features of him, still I like the hunched look and may use this in a future project. 

This one is another barbarian, I liked the action of it, and the cestus on his hand, but again when shot from the back you are not able to see his features. 
For these next two they were concepts for a new class in AS&SH really rough at this point, but I was trying to get the perspective and positioning right for the final image. It really helps to do a bunch of these little "thumbs" to get things right before putting them on final bristol with ink. 

Here is another of the same subject with a different set up. Again I am just working on the perspective of the main subject, so you can see I was playing with having him stand, or kneel and you can see several feet/lower legs that I was working with. 
This final one is a warrior figure holding a sword and perhaps attempting to cast a spell. For the most part only the head and sword arm were used in the final image. 
Alright, well there you have a glimpse into some more process pieces. I plan on putting up more final pieces as soon as the majority of the hard copies of AS&SH the Mystery at Port Greely arrive at people's door steps. I dont want to spoil anything. 

Thanks for looking, comments always welcome.