A place wherein this Dwarven Cleric can share his love of maps, dice, miniatures, and all things involving gaming and general geekery--not to mention the occasional witty non-gaming observations--whilst escaping from the humdrum existence of his routine Terran existence.

Hail and Well Met, fellow traveler! May my Stronghold provide a place for enlightenment and amusement, and somewhere to keep your dice dry. Enter and rest awhile.

18 January 2016

Haggling Over Price--CONTEST

George Bernard Shaw: Madam, would you sleep with me for a million pounds?
Actress: My goodness, Well, I’d certainly think about it.
Shaw: Would you sleep with me for a pound?
Actress: Certainly not! What kind of woman do you think I am?!
Shaw: Madam, we’ve already established that. Now we are haggling about the price.

I've been hovering between 98 and 99 followers to the Stronghold Blog for quite a while now. My ego needs a bit of a stroking, so I'd like to see the triple digit boundary finally crossed.

So. Here's what I propose.

I have here a spare copy of a Pathfinder Campaign Setting Bestiary that's taking up 64 pages (and nearly 50 monsters) worth of shelf space. I'd like to give it away to a deserving—and desiring—home. I'm offering it up to followers of the blog only.
  • If you're a follower and would like a Pathfinder book, leave a comment. 
  • If you're a follower—and are strictly Old School—but know someone who would like a Pathfinder book, have them come on over and follow the blog.
  • If you're not a follower and would like a Pathfinder book, follow the blog and leave a comment.
  • If you're not a follower—and are strictly Old School—but know someone who would like a Pathfinder book, have them come on over and follow the blog. And follow it yourself, just for good measure.
I'll keep the contest open until midnight, January 31, 2016 (MST). Anyone who wants to participate and leaves a comment before that time will be considered. Winners will be determined by a random dice roll.

That's it. Let the commenting and following begin. I really want to get this book to a good home.

14 January 2016

[Found Items] Thrift Store Swords and Starships!

OK. I need to brag.

On a whim I stopped by the local thrift store on the way home tonight. Occasionally they'll have bags of Lego bricks (I've found a few bags of miscellaneous pieces; my son found an entire 10" tall Bionicle warrior once...and most recently an Imperial TIE Defender...missing only one piece and the pilot) or perfectly serviceable Nerf dart guns. I rarely look at the book section because it's dominated with either Stephen King titles that I already have or Harlequin romances.

Tonight? No Lego bricks, although there was a large bag of fake MegaBlok knock-offs that I passed over. Decided to wander through the books and videos, hoping to find a copy of Labyrinth somewhere. No luck on that, but the minuscule Sci-Fi/Fantasy section had a bit of a treasure.

Picked up all six of these titles for a total of $7.50, including tax. Books 1–3 of the Mageworld Saga by Debra Doyle & James D. McDonald and the three Books of the Sword by Fred Saberhagen.

Now, I've had the Mageworld Saga for years, and found copies of the first two Books of the Sword a couple years ago at a Convention. My Mageworld copies are pretty ragged, even with as careful as I am with books, they've been read and re-read—They're quite well-loved, actually. And my Saberhagens saw much better days years before I picked them up. They're pretty ragged; I only picked them up because I'd been looking for them for a couple years.

I wanted secondary copies of these, of course. But even better—aside from the price—was the fact that these 6 books are pristine. They don't look like they've ever been opened; admittedly, The First Book of Swords has a bit of a spine-crease and the front cover of The Second Book of Swords has some ink transfer on it. Apparently, a National Geographic Society membership card from 1990 (which was stuck to the cover) will adhere to—and the ink transfer to—a book cover if left pressed against it long enough.

If you've never read the Mageworld Saga, I'd highly recommend it. A ripping good space opera series, with a good bit of action and a nice helping of magic added in...good stuff. The Saberhagen also comes highly recommended; I enjoyed the first book and the others have been working their way to the top of my "To Read" pile.

This just five days after getting a neat little haul from a downtown used book store, the largest one in the state. Dropped in with my wife while walking to my office holiday party (yeah, a post-New Year's Christmas party). It's a dangerous place, because I could literally spend hundreds of dollars there if I was allowed to do so.

I've always wanted to read Asprin's "Myth" books and was pleasantly surprised to find a 2-in-1 copy. The Face of a Stranger is a great Victorian mystery (an English detective wakes up in the hospital with a bad case of amnesia, and must discover his own identity while solving an important case involving the nobility). And a neat-looking little mystery from Isaac Asimov that I'm looking forward to reading.

All told, I'm pleased with my finds this past week; it's been a long time since I've been quite so lucky with great books for my library.

And just so I don't run afoul of the Joesky tax, here's a quick little random d20 table of books (and things stuck inside them) that you might find in that mage's dusty old library—hooks and idea germs for encounters, adventures, or campaigns:

d20 Roll
The Everyday Application of Novel Divination
The Axe: A Tutorial
Heretics Opposing the Fire God
The Storm God's Invocations
The Minor Powers of the Great Traveling Gods
The Wonderful Stories of the Mysterious Plant God
An Expose of the Theocratic Earldom's Early Pirates
Sleeping Patterns of the Bugbear
The Trident: A Tutorial to Maintenance
The Subtle Truths of the Sky God
A Treatise of Thaumaturgy
Legendary Warlords
Virtues of the Revenge Gods
Hunting Habits of the Basilisk
A Magus' Text on Remedial Summoning
An Examination of the Kingdom's Cultural Annals
A Study of Basic Magical Arts
Essential Alchemy
Classic Evocations of the Journeyman
Theological Crimes in the Empire

Roll d4 times on the following table to find out "What's Inside."

d20 Roll
What's Inside
Dog-eared pages marking pages with underlined passages
A shopping list written in code
Several love letters stuck haphazardly into the book
Hand-written notes in the margins totally unrelated to the subject of the book
Personal notes in the margins of several concurrent pages warning of a coming doomsday
A hand-written dedication in the front of the book
Bookmarks (d6) marking pages with errors
Triangular scraps of paper with notes in a foreign language
A document with a list of dates in the back of the book
A list of foreign locations in an archaic language
Three scraps of parchment in some kind of code that seem to have no connection
A list of birthdays in an archaic tongue secreted in the binding
A map of a local castle or keep, including secret doors and passageways
A map of a lost city tucked inside the binding

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