grodog's Gaming Page

The information on this page supports some of my favorite games, many of which are roleplaying games, but not all:

  • Roleplaying Games (Dungeons & Dragons, Ars Magica, Call of Cthulhu, Blue Planet, etc.)
  • Card Games (Collectible and Traditional Card Games like Highlander, Lunch Money, Speed Uno, etc.)
  • Board Games (games which I'm playing a lot right now:  Settlers of Catan in particular)
  • War Games (Titan, Kings & Things, Junta, Kingmaker, etc.)
  • Other Games (games I haven't played in ages, for the most part)

Roleplaying Games

The World of Greyhawk was my first love in D&D, and I have returned to my roots with the release of D&D 3rd edition.  My Greyhawk page features esoteric, scholarly Greyhawk lore as I get around to writing it. 

Different Worlds Publications is the role playing game company run by Tadashi Ehara, formerly of Chaosium (and publisher/editor of the venerable Different Worlds magazine).  We're publishing d20 books for use with Third Edition (well, 3.5 technically) D&D, including Rob Kuntz's The Eight Kings and Ryan "Destan" Smalley's Valus and The Return of Ippizicus Child-Eater.  I am acting as project manager, editor, developer, and wear other hats as necessary too.  Visit us at GenCon Indy 2004, in booth # 2025!

Event Horizon Productions, Inc., was a role playing game publisher for whom I wrote and owned from 1996 to 1999.  All of our products are out of print, at least so far as I know, but I have copies of each if anyone is interested.  Our game lines included Hong Kong Action Theatre!, Heaven & Earth, and Swords of the Middle Kingdom.  One of my EHP partners and I just secured the rights to SMK; at present we are considering whether or not to republish it, license it, etc.  If you're interested in more details, email me.

Biohazard Games' Blue Planet rpg was released in July 1997, and was followed up with Archipelago in June of 1998 (warning: the link connects to a large image file of the kick-ass cover of this book).  In January 2000, Biohazard licensed Blue Planet to Fantasy Flight Games, rather fine chaps who publish some Cthulhu supplements (among other things).  Earth colonizes Lambda Serpentis.  Aliens. Water.  Plague.   Mystery.  You have to read it to believe how cool this game is.  (A somewhat biased opinion, I admit, as I've got a small stake in the game, having written for BioHazard for the past five years).  Also check out a keen map of Poseidon, done in Campaign Cartographer format.

Chaosium, Inc. publishes Call of Cthulhu, one of my favorite rpg's, based upon the fiction of Howard Phillips Lovecraft (Necronomicon Press and Arkham House publish a cornucopia of HPL literature).  Pagan Publishing also supports CoC.  Blair Reynolds, renown and infamous Pagan Publishing artist, offers Black Sands, a graphic horror novella starring Nyarlathotep (sort of, but not really).  His publishing house, Room 308, has their own page now too.  You should send him email and ask when Black Sands #2 will be printed; he likes that.  In terms of real-life strange books, browse the Voynich Manuscript, perhaps the most famous cryptographic enigma of the 20th century.

Many resources for Ars Magica, perhaps my favorite RPG, exist on the net.  Check out Atlas Games's page, as they're the current owner/producers of Ars Magica Fourth Edition material.  The old Berkeley archives still contain plenty of useful writings, which is no surprise since they were maintained by Shannon Appel, who also has his own Ars Magica page..  David Chart's web site also has useful material, and is apparently the new home to Project Redcap; you might also check out his Sanctum HermeticumDomus Ebonrise is another fresh page, while a set of links on Lydia Leong's Pendragon page may also prove to be generally useful to Ars players.

Storyteller is the system published as various lines of games (Vampire, Werewolf, Mage, Wraith, Changling, etc.) from White Wolf Game Studios (who also publish Michael Moorcock's Eternal Champion saga in its most current versions).  For upcoming product info, see Rick Jones' Coming Attractions FAQ.   No listing would be complete without mentioning Anders Sandberg's Mage page, which is a must for anyone even remotely interested in that game.

Holistic Design's Fading Suns rpg is a brilliant blend of familiar WW-like mechanics, a setting inspired by the best of Frank Herbert's Dune and Dan Simmons' Hyperion.  Highly recommended, with supplements of excellent quality.  Of course it never hurts that everyone who works at HDI are very cool people, too. 

Miscellaneous RPG Links

For general info, be sure to check out Surge's page, Etrigan's page, and, of course,  Perhaps also of interest would be, The Zone (which hosts many free and downloadable games), and The Gamemaster's Bookshelf (in association with; it contains lots of good suggestions for GM reading (and you can always use your library to track them down, too).

For local, Bay Area, gaming, visit the Bay Area RolePlaying Society.  Just don't use Netscape 4.75 or 4.76 to do it, since it will kill your session.

Card Games:  Collectible and Traditional

Highlander:  The Gathering

Having sold my Magic the Gathering to help pay off lots of credit card debt, the only CCG that I still play from time-to-time is Highlander, a game based on one of my favorite movies.  Thunder Castle Games, conveniently located in nearly Kasnas City, has returned from the dead, having released several sets of cards in 1998.  The Watcher's Journal hosts unique personas, while you might also want to check out the Highlander (card game) email list, as well as a movie and tv show discussion list, and/or the official Highlander movie web site.

Lunch Money

Lunch Money--brainchild of Atlas Games--really needs no introduction; well, it probably does, but read about it on their web site instead:  they get paid for all the effort, you know.  Suffice to say that any game in which you mug your fellows on the playground for their small change, with such brilliant photography, is a winner!

Speed Uno

Well, OK, I'm not too sure that our Speed Uno variations would be considered "traditional" by most folks, but we seem to enjoy it (even sober, from time-to-time!).  Here's how Speed Uno differs from normal/boring Uno:

  • You may play ANY CARD out of turn if you match the last card played in color and number/letter; play then proceeds as if the person who threw the last-played card was next in sequence; yes, it is entirely possible that slow people don't play cards for minutes at a time:  that's why we call it Speed Uno and not Slow-Poke Uno
  • You draw cards until you're able to (or choose) to play one; Wild Draw 4's may be played legally even if you have other legal cards to play in your hand
  • Draw Two and Wild Draw Four cards stack upon one another, and if you draw a matching card (suit and color) while drawing your 2/4/8/etc. cards, the next victim must continue to draw the remaining cards left in your draw, plus the two or four additional cards for the D2/WD4 you played
  • Skips and Reverse--like any card--are playable out of turn when you match color and letter, but they can get a little confusing (Skips less so, Reverses moreso); a handy rule of thumb for Reverses is that if an odd number of Reverses were played, game-play proceeds in Reverse (relative to the direction of the person who played the first Reverse) from the person who played the last Reverse, but if the total number of Reverses played is even, then play continues in the same direction as when the first Reverse was played, to the player after the last-played Reverse (the Reverses cancel each other out, basically) [I think I need a Speed Uno rules-savvy editor here; any assistance would be appreciated!]
  • When you play a 1 of any color, you may (at your discretion; this is not mandatory) switch hands with any other player  (Wild Cards don't count, only "natural" 1's count); if you are too slow and someone else plays a matching-colored 1 atop your 1, and you have not yet declared your desire to switch hands, you're too late and cannot switch; if you therefore gain a hand with only 1 card, and fail to say "Uno" prior to another card being played and get caught, you must draw the standard two cards
  • When anyone plays a 0 in any color, play stops and no one is allowed to "speed play" another 0 atop the current one; all players switch hands to the left or the right according to the current direction of play; after all players' hands have switched, another 0 may be played at that time; again, if you gain a hand with only 1 card, and fail to say "Uno" prior to another card being played and get caught, you must draw the standard two cards

We usually play to 750 or 1000 points, depending on how many people (and their level of sobriety/patience) are available.  We normally play with three to five decks at any one time. 

Crazy Eights

My youngest brother Brian created this master-minded, inspired, and rules-intensive variation on Crazy Eights; unfortunately, I lost the rules to it, so I'm looking through old journals, etc. for them.  When I find them, or he and I recreate them from scratch, you'll be the first to know.

Board Games

[working on this]

War Games

Other Games

Thankfully, I do play games other, slightly-more-normal games.  The links below are shorthand for my lazy lack of time to devote to creating nifty pages about these games myself.  All in good time . . . .


Dai-dai Shogi

While I prefer the dai-dai variant to shogi, there's not too much in the way of net resources devoted to it; I'll eventualy get around to making some up, but until then you'll have to settle for plain old shogi links:

Abalone and Cathedral

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