Today we are looking at the Monsters section of the BEOWULF: Age of Heroes rulebook. This is the last chapter before the Appendices but it’s a big one so we might split it apart.
The first section discusses the subject of enemies is general, including the distinction beteen foes and monsters. In the BEOWULF rules, Monsters with a capital-M are special. They have a feature, Undefeatable, that helps keep them alive until the Hero uses a special weapon, technique or special action that does standard damage to them. This makes Monsters unique in the game and rewards players for social encounters or investigations. A player that pushes past those components of the game in order to roll dice in combat will not be very successful. This is a reflection of the poem… think of Beowulf’s intuition to fight Grendel hand-to-hand and his seeking out of the only magic sword that can defeat his mother.
The Three Ogre Brothers was designed to be the sample adventure for BEOWULF: Age of Heroes. Unlike some sample adventures, it is purposefully designed to be repetitive, in order to strongly establish the tropes of BEOWULF adventures and provide opportunities for a Player to experiment with the format. After an initial introduction scene that provides the Hero with enough background information to be confident in the situation, they are introduced to the Ogre Lands and given a fairly direct path to the first ogre brother, or they can travel further inland to meet another of the brothers first.
The next chapter in BEOWULF: Age of Heroes is all about treasure. We divide treasure into non-magical and magical and encourage the Gamemaster to present non-magical treasure items in a variety of forms. Very little treasure is found in piles of easily divided coins.
Today, we’re discussing the time between adventures for BEOWULF: Age of Heroes. While it can be exciting to rush from one Monster to the next, having downtime can help break up adventures and give a better sense of pacing to your Player. It also gives them time for the Hero to think about and work on long-term goals.
In Spoons, In Knives is about to enter layout. After that we’ll be supporting The Silver Road with Maskwitches of Forgotten Doggerland, a semi-psychedelic imaginary Ice Age setting, placing your stories in Forgotten Doggerland – the land that lies drowned beneath the North Sea.
At the end of the last ice age, what we now call Doggerland was subject to an unimaginably vast tidal wave, and was lost forever. We know precious little about this place, and as such it makes a marvellous place to set weird tales of the now-forgotten witches.
Written by Jon Hodgson, this setting book will be again illustrated with the Midjourney AI. We have created hundreds of weird art pieces, and this supplement will double as an art book for the setting.
In The Silver Road each character has two things they’re good at and two things they are bad at. In Maskwitches of Forgotten Doggerland, these take the form of the masks the witches wear, and amulets they carry. Witches are able to trade and change their masks, making their characters’ identities extremely fluid.
There are several suggested modes of play offered, but the main one is that the players take the role of witches who respond to the problems of the hunter gatherer communities of Forgotten Doggerland. Problems which frequently manifest into strange and horrific creatures which much be defeated in ritualised magical warfare.
In addition to the imagined Ice Age setting, Maskwitches also presents a 1970s setting in the vein of the novels of Susan Cooper and Alan Garner to overlay the core setting, with Ice Age events taking place in flashback, and significant objects and entities connected across the ages.
Maskwitches will be presented in the same 21cm square format as The Silver Road, but is anticipated to be a considerably longer, and perfect bound softcover. We are currently looking at a limited edition of hardcover books. Anticipated release is August 2022.
We have reached the final component of an adventure, the Monster. In BEOWULF: Age of Heroes, the capital-m Monster is special and has a fundamental part to play in the story of the adventure. It is likely that when the Monster is first met that it is undefeatable, the Hero can only do minimal damage to it.
You can grab a bunch of cool BEOWULF merchandise at Redbubble. We sporadically add new designs, so keep checking back. The various designs are available of a ton of different items, including large desk mats, art prints, drinking bottles, T shirts and loads more!