Saturday, March 31, 2012

Villainous Lair Gaming grand opening tomorrow 1 APRIL (not an April Fool)

I'm making sure I post this before April First, because it's not a fool. We will be there to cover the opening!

New Game store opening tomorrow on Adams Avenue.

Villainous Lair Gaming
3342 Adams Avenue
San Diego CA

Upcoming Events!

So Kingdom Con is 2 weeks away! Got your tickets yet?

Just as a reminder, I'm running a Paranoia game called "Ia, Ia, paranoia!" and my Traveller scenario "No One can hear you scream" Something about zombies in space...


Gam3rCon and Gam3rCon Gamedays. $5 to play all day (a lot cheaper than some game stores that have been having game days...)  Space will be limited.

Game Day 4/29, 12-9pm 10th Avenue Theater

Game Day 6/03, 12-9pm 10th Avenue Theater

Gamercon 7/11-7/15, 12pm-12am 10 Avenue Theater

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Pathfinder Edition Earthdawn Player's Guide

I mentioned in a thread a while back that Earthdawn is coming to Pathfinder, well here's the official announcement for pre-order!!!

Pathfinder Earthdawn Player's Guide pre-order (at up to 25% off the regular price for the pre-order; wow!)

RedBrick LLC is proud to announce its first release for the Earthdawn Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Edition line—the Earthdawn® Player's Guide!

For years humanity huddled in underground kaers, as the astral beings known as the Horrors ravaged the land in an orgy of terror and destruction. Now the dark age of the Scourge has passed, and elves, orks, trolls, dwarfs, and humans, alongside wondrous races such as the lizardlike t’skrang, the earthen obsidimen, and the mischievous windlings emerge to explore a world that teems with strange creatures, lost cities, long-forgotten treasures, and indescribable wonders; a world where the very earth and sky vibrate with powerful arcane energies, manipulated by the disciplined minds of Adepts.

Suitable for both players and Game Masters, this 276-page core rulebook is the first introduction to this exciting campaign world and contains information on the game's core setting—the province of Barsaive; game mechanics for the 8 core races; rules for being an Adept; an in-depth exploration of the 15 core Disciplines; new feats, skills, spells, and equipment; and information on the 12 Passions.

Set for a mid-April general release, the Earthdawn® Player's Guide is now available for pre-order for a limited time at special pricing—but ONLY from the RedBrick Shop! Join the brave souls of Barsaive in reclaiming their realm from the remaining Horrors while protecting it from the return of the oppressive Theran Empire. Discover the world of Earthdawn®, the Age of Legend.

Earthdawn® Player's Guide™
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Edition Core Rulebook
Published by RedBrick LLC
Format: 276 pages, 6.14" x 9.21", B+W Interior

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Review - Savage Worlds Deluxe

Here we go, I picked up the Deluxe edition of Savage Worlds a while back. So here's the review.

Savage Worlds Deluxe Edition
Produced by Studio 2 publishing under license from Pinnacle Entertainment Group
Savage Worlds Deluxe (Core Rules)
Savage Worlds is a Fast! Furious! and Fun! rules system for any genre of roleplaying game. Create your own setting, convert an existing one, or pick up one of our amazing worlds like DeadlandsSlipstream, or Weird War II.The rules give players plenty of depth to create their characters and keep bookkeeping to a minimum for the game master. If you're looking for a game that's fast and easy to set up, run, and play, Savage Worlds is for you! 
Savage Worlds Deluxe is the newest edition, providing an update to the third printing of Savage Worlds Explorer's Edition. It includes rules updates, new rules material, new art, more examples, an expanded Setting Rules section, Designer Notes to give you an insight into the development, and much more. It does not, however, invalidate prior printings of the rules, which you can continue enjoy.
This is a hardcover printed book. Full color, full-size (8.5" x 11" pages), 160 pages.

What you get: You get a 160 page full color full-sized hard-bound book.

Main Review: There are pros and cons to this edition. Full-size books are good at attracting attention, and can actually make neophytes excited when they look at the book. Con, the $29.99 price tag versus the $9.99 price tag. Larger format and higher page counts give lots of room to add more stuff. Much of the Explorer Edition Review remains valid, the rule set really only has some minor tweaks, but is effectively the same system with some streamlined changes, especially the removal of the "guts" skill. 

If you're already familiar with Savage Worlds I'm sure you've already made your decision about the Deluxe edition. If you're new to the system just know that the game is Fast, Fun & Furious. The system can cover nearly any genre, but tends to break-down if you want truly powerful games. (Savage Suzeraine has rules covering higher power games, but even those rules can't cover mega-powerful combat, for that you need the Superpowers Companion.)

With the extra space in the book, they added an archetypes section, which lets new players pick an archetype and roll. New race options for characters, including a build your own race section, similar to what many other systems already had. 

Cost: $29.99 Print edition. $19.99 PDF @ Drive-thru

Value: I really feel that Pinnacle took a step in the wrong direction by driving the price-point so much higher. If Paizo can set the bar for a 500+ page book that retails for $49.99 at $9.99 for the PDF, Pinnacle should as well. If the price is too high people won't buy it, they'll steal it, because they're already feeling ripped off. I hope they return a smaller book for $9.99. Perhaps a Deluxe Explorer's Guide...There's enough new info in the books to justify the print copy, I can't bring myself to get a PDF of a book I have if it's too expensive. 

Artwork: Savage Worlds was already know for reusing artwork, this manual comes with lots of new art though. Pretty nice artwork, though it does have some reprints, which is fine because they work with the system. 

Family Rating: PG, for visual content (some artwork is mildly graphic)

of 20
It's good, but the wrong size.

Note: I will be adding additional content to this review as I continue to read the book, and note the changes. 

Comprehensive list of changes: (in work):
Guts skill removed in base
More races added
Race creation rules added
Chase rules added
Dramatic Tasks skill checks
Interludes added
Edges expanded to be more comprehensive
Optional rules by setting included

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Review - Bestiary (Pathfinder)

I know I did the reviews backwards, but I bought the Bestiary long before I started the blog, I believe I even had B2 before then, so I'm working backwards.

Paizo Publishing, LLC

Here there be monsters!

What is a hero without monsters to vanquish? This 328-page book presents hundreds of different creatures for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Within this tome you’ll find fire-breathing dragons and blood-drinking vampires, vile demons and shapechanging werewolves, sadistic goblins and lumbering giants, and so much more! Yet not all the creatures in this book are enemies, for some can serve lucky heroes as allies or advisors, be they summoned angels or capricious nymphs. And it doesn’t stop there—with full rules for advancing monsters, adapting monsters to different roles, and designing your own unique creations, you’ll never be without a band of hideous minions again!
The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is the must-have companion volume to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.
    The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary includes:
  • More than 350 different monsters
  • Dozens of monstrous variants to modify creatures and keep players on their toes
  • Numerous lists of monsters to aid in navigation, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat
  • Extensive rules for creating effective and balanced monsters
  • Rules for advancing monsters by hit dice, template, or class level
  • Universal monster rules to simplify special attacks, defenses, and qualities like breath weapons, damage reduction, and regeneration
  • More than a dozen feats tailored especially for monsters
  • Suggestions for monstrous cohorts
  • Two dozen additional animal companions
  • More than a dozen different wandering monster encounter tables
  • ISBN 978-1-60125-183-1
What you get: This is the other half of the Core assumption of the Pathfinder Role-playing game. With over 350 monsters you can play entire campaigns using just the Core Rulebook and the Bestiary.  358 page hard cover full color with thick pages. 

Main Review: While you can play straight out of the book, they included monster design rules, so Game Masters that feel like they need to emulate something specific can do that as well. This book really set the bar for art for Pathfinder more so than the Core Rulebook. Many traditional monsters had face-lifts, or face asunders in the case of the Troll. The look of many monsters has really made them stand out as something special. Ogres really received an interesting change from their 3.5 counterparts, which was based upon the Rise of the Runelords ogres, rather than looking like some Japanese yokai, now they are hillbilly ogres; with all that entails, yes, I mean they have Ho-downs. 

The book covers the basics you need, demons, devils, dragons, lots of goblinoids, and many of the same monsters you'll find in the Monster Manual 1. They do deal with some things differently. XP using Pathfinder is given out by the monster more like 1st edition. There are icons on the name bar of the stat block, indicating creature type, climate and terrain. They handled creatures which normally advance by class differently by adding Character stats for races that have stat mods and racial abilities. The last major thing they added that I really love, is the variants. Skeletons don't include just the standard skeleton, they include two variants as well, basically a simple template to overlay to create even more challenges. 

Some classic monsters from the best of the best OD&D modules make their way into this Bestiary. Monsters such as the Froghemoth, and vegepygmy. Others are removed from their old roles, such as the retriever and kyton. While new categories separate old groups, such as the celestials being split into more factions, like the Azata, Archons and Angels. Of course the most famous of all the reworked monsters is that little ball of insanity, the Goblin.

Great monster book, as the core of Pathfinder, if you're running this game you need this book.

Artwork: One of the best things that Paizo has done is re-envisioned many of the monsters. Wayne Reynolds did the cover as usual, featuring a Troll, the new Goblins and a Marilith. Aditional art by 

Family Rating: As this is a core rulebook, I will add a family rating. Some racy artwork and some particularly frightening pieces (to young children) in the book, so I'd say rated PG, parental guidance is suggested.

Cost: $39.99 Print, $9.99 PDF

Overall Rating: Must Have

of 20

Monday, March 26, 2012

Old School with Jeff Dee (T-shirts incoming)

So I guess Jeff Dee had a kickstarter to re-create some of his old artwork from the original Deities & Demigods and print them as T-shirts,

Talk about some gold-like threads!!!

Check it out!

Last Chance for DCCRPG pre-orders

Last Chance for DCC RPG Pre-Order Offer!
Expires April 1: Pre-orders Receive an Exclusive Adventure Module!

DCC RPG cover
DCC RPG foil cover DCC 665 cover

The DCC RPG pre-order offer ends April 1! Place your order before it's too late to receive:

  • A free PDF e-book edition of DCC RPG, sent via e-mail when DCC RPG goes to the printer (in early April)
  • A free copy of DCC #66.5: Doom of the Savage Kings, shipped with your pre-order copy of the core rules, available exclusively in the first 1,000 printed copies of DCC RPG.
DCC #66.5: Doom of the Savage Kings is available exclusively by pre-ordering DCC RPG before it releases. The first 1,000 copies of DCC RPG will have this adventure module inserted as a free pre-order incentive. It is not available for sale separately. Did we mention the limited edition gold foil cover? The awesome one with the vintage 1970's styling, complete with a hidden message in the art? The pre-order offer is valid with pre-orders of both the regular color-cover version of DCC RPG and the limited edition gold foil cover (available only at launch).
Visit our web site for additional details on pre-ordering at a retail store and upgrading an existing pre-order to the gold foil edition!

Sunday, March 25, 2012


I'm fighting a nasty cold at the moment. So no new posts today.

On a side note: You may have noticed that I didn't put up a Fun Friday feature. If you like the Fun Friday stuff, let me know with a comment, or email me; otherwise I won't waste time on them when I could be using that time for reviews or other articles, I don't see a lot of pageviews for the Fun Friday stuff when looking at stats, so I'm thinking they may be a waste of time.

Please let me know...I want comments, I want feedback.

Epic Prime

Friday, March 23, 2012

Review - Bestiary 2 (Pathfinder)

Bestiary 2
Produced by Paizo Publications, LLC

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Bestiary 2 (OGL)
Go beyond goblins with an army of fantasy’s most fearsome foes! Bestiary 2 presents hundreds of different creatures for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Within this collection of creatures you’ll find undead dragons and mischievous gremlins, shrieking banshees and unstoppable titans, the infamous jabberwock, and so much more! Yet not all these monsters need to be foes, as new breeds of otherworldly guardians, living shadows, and vampires all might take up adventure’s call. In addition, new rules for customizing and advancing monsters and an expanded glossary of creature abilities ensure that you’ll be prepared to challenge your heroes wherever adventure takes them!

The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 2 is the second indispensable volume of monsters for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and serves as a companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook and Pathfinder RPG Bestiary. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.
    The 320-page Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 2 includes:
  • More than 300 different monsters
  • Creatures both new and familiar, drawing upon the best-known beasts of legend, literature, and Pathfinder RPG adventures
  • Challenges for any adventure and every level of play
  • Hosts of new templates and variants, including simple templates for on-the-fly creature customization
  • Numerous lists of monsters to aid in navigation, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat
  • New rules for creating and running high-level menaces
  • Expanded universal monster rules to simplify special attacks, defenses, and qualities
  • New familiars, animal companions, and other allies
        ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-268-5

What you get: This is from the main product line for the Pathfinder Role-Playing Game. It is a 320 page hard-bound full color monster book. Within it are more than 300 monsters, each entry has full color artwork. On the cover is one of Wayne Reynolds great pieces of artwork, featuring the Jabberwock, a protean and some of the gremlins.

Main Review: Having already reviewed Bestiary 3, this one actually drops back a little bit, my second copy actually arrived with a glue bubble on the inside back cover. (My first copy the box apparently got hurled across a warehouse in a game of hedonistic malevolence at the USPS, which Paizo graciously replaced for free). This book offers lots of fun stuff for Game Masters to throw at their players and especially brings the first Adventure path monsters into PFRPG rules, so that sinspawn, rune giants etc, have updated monster entries. 

It appears one of the main things this particular bestiary does is bring in the various new outsiders that Paizo has defined into their cosmology. Lots of unique entries, from the Aeons, Agathions, and Azata, to Nightshades, protean and qlippoth; lots of outer planar challenges for anywhere in the Great Beyond.  

One of the coolest things that Paizo has done with the various 'fiends' is given each of them an individual path, most notably, the Daemons (which first appeared in Fiend Folio, actually I think the D-series of modules was first), become the destroyers, the harbingers of ruin. This feels right for the neutral evil fiends. The four horseman of the apocalypse are daemons in the Pathfinder cosmology. This makes it easier for game masters to role-play their role more effectively. 

One of the most challenging this in this book is of course, the Jabberwock at Challenge Rating 23, with DR15/vorpal. This makes it flow with the original poem very nicely.

Value: Another great bestiary from paizo. For a 300 page full color hard bound, $39.99 is perfectly reasonable. The PDF at $9.99 is a phenomenal value.

Cost: $39.99 print and $9.99 PDF

Overall Rating: A strong showing, with lots of great entries, but not quite Epic, as most of the entries have very specific uses.

Kingdom Con inbound!!!

So next con up is

Kingdom Con 2012

San Diego's only dedicated Role-playing and Wargaming Game convention. Last year was a blast...

Pre-order your tickets
$45 for a three-day pass.
$30 for Friday or Saturday single day pass,
and $25 for Sunday.


Kingdom-Con 2012, is a 3-day gaming convention full of board games, miniature games, card games, and RPGs. This year is going to be the best yet, with regional tournaments, painting competitions, panels, LARPs, casual play and much more. As always, the goal of the convention is to bring people together to play games and have a good time. This is the convention's third year and we are looking forward to providing an awesome gaming experience. The convention is being held at the Crowne Plaza in San Diego Mission Valley, parking is $3 a day unless you have a room.  
The more games you play the more prizes you can win! In the program for the convention, there will be a page where you can track the games you have played. Then you can report this to the "Treasury" and you will be able to collect prizes for the number of points you have scored. The prizes come from all the different sponsors we have, and there is alot of stuff! 
We are still accepting game events and volunteers for the convention. If you would like to be a part of the convention, please send an email to

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Review - Bestiary 3 (Pathfinder)

Bestiary 3
Produced by Paizo Publications, LLC
Test your courage against the most infamous foes of myth and legend! Bestiary 3 presents hundreds of monsters for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Within this book you’ll find demiliches and demodands, grave knights and goblin snakes, norns and nephilim, imperial dragons and unfettered eidolons, and so much more! Yet not every creature needs to be an enemy, as winged garudas, crafty tanukis, and leonine lammasus all wait to join your party and answer the call of glory.

The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 3 is the third indispensable volume of monsters for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and serves as a companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook and Pathfinder RPG Bestiary. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time bestselling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.

The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 3 includes:
  • More than 300 different monsters
  • Classic terrors from myth and literature, from the frumious bandersnatch and the righteous valkyrie to the cunning dybbuk and elusive kappa
  • Hordes of new creatures you can construct, grow, or summon to aid your party in its adventures
  • New player-friendly races to let you adventure as canny ratfolk, genie-blooded sulis, and more
  • New familiars, animal companions, and other allies
  • Challenges for any adventure and every level of play
  • Some of the strangest and most beloved creatures from fantasy roleplaying history and the Pathfinder campaign setting
  • Hosts of new templates and variants
  • Appendices to aid in monster navigation, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat
  • Expanded universal monster rules to simplify special attacks, defenses, and qualities

What you get: This is from the main product line for the Pathfinder Role-Playing Game. It is a 320 page hard-bound full color monster book. Within it are more than 300 monsters, each entry has full color artwork. A monster entry without artwork is a travesty. On the cover is another of Wayne Reynolds great pieces of artwork, featuring the great cyclops, grave knight and kappa. 

Main Review: What can I say, this is another great book from Paizo. While some recent material hasn't been Epic in my eyes, this book is phenomenal, probably better than Bestiary 2 in my eyes. This bestiary features many monsters which have been out of print for awhile, or have never seen print. It brings many OGL monsters into the PFRPG ruleset. Many of the creatures from the Adventure paths are brought into easily accessible print form in the single manual. Some great entries in here, the Bandersnatch joins the Jabberwock in pathfinder, the axe beak, atomie, and especially, the ROT GRUB, and the Rot Grub swarm. Really there are too many monsters to review every one, check it out at your FLGS!!

While there are only a few "PC" scale 1/2 HD creatures, the ones in this manual are pretty cool, I know the Catfolk at least Epic Ian will want to play. The others are Ratfolk, perfect for players who like were-rats and certain rat creatures from a workshop that makes games. Vanara made their appearance in the Dragon Empires Gazeteer, and are presented in full monster format here. Vishkanya seem to be an Indian myth, so they would be at home in Vudra and make the perfect poisoning rogue or ninja.

As this book is also supporting the future release of the World Guide for the Tian Xia area, it features many Asian inspired monsters, including several creature types, including Oni, Asura, Kami, and of course Rakshasa.  5 Imperial dragons also grace the pages, Forest, Sea, Sky, Sovereign and Underworld. Other archetypal Asian creatures include the kappa, kirin, penanggalen, and of course the tanuki. The terra-cotta soldier is one of my favorites, but the Jiang-Shi and Yuki-Onna are some of the coolest from mythology.

Value: Another great bestiary from paizo. For a 300 page full color hard bound, $39.99 is perfectly reasonable. The PDF at $9.99 is a phenomenal value.

Cost: $39.99 print and $9.99 PDF

Overall Rating:  EPIC! This is one of my favorite bestiaries from any game, and definitely keeps the bar high for Bestiary 4. 

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Artist's Updated

I got all the additional artist pics up and all linked, Check it out

Hectic time right now, so I'll resume normal operations tomorrow.

Monday, March 19, 2012

News - New Store coming soon

Villainous Lair Comics at 3371 Adams Avenue is going to be opening a new Game Store a few doors down from the Comic Store. Grand Opening is Sunday, April 1st. I will be there will you?

Villainous Lair Gaming
3342 Adams Avenue
San Diego, CA

Villainous Lair Comics
3371 Adams Avenue
San Diego, CA

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Day 3, end of Anime Conji 3

So, day 3 of Anime Conji.

The End of Anime Conji, we started out with the Japanese Mythology, as presented by Dr. Anime of Gigaventure. Here's a selection of books, that Dr. Anime recommends when it comes to Yokai....and  Japanese Mythologies. While some minor technical difficulties robbed us of the projector, we persevered and got closer (I know, scary on Day 3) to see the presentation on the laptop.

We headed up to the Video Game room, but the Table Top room wasn't open yet, got to play some Super Smash Bros, Pinball and some Soul Calibre V! I was a little bummed the Table-Top game room wasn't open since we wanted to play some Dominion together.

We also went to the Propping Up panel by Tadao Tomomatsu (actor, comedian and cosplayer), to get a few tips on creating props for costumes, from the L0 prop (basically a painted out of the box squirtgun) to L1 to L4 (from extensive mod to simple fabrication). We stuck around and talked to Tadao for a little while while he packed up, at one point, things got "out of hand". Great guy, great panel, great tips!

Here's some other costumes from the day!


Yeah....her's IS bigger

Angelic Halo

She spent a lot of time on camera today...

Seeing Double....double dollar rewards...

Some Vash details

Ryan & Bianca plus's ADVENTURE TIME!!!

Your Money or your life...

"What color hair tomorrow?"


Where's the Avatar?


Simple yet cool

It was COLD and windy for this shot...can you tell?

Yes, this is someone's costume...complete with boom-box

Peace Bonded wasn't they're giving you balloon weapons...

Super Simple

The costumes look simple...

Pokemon, I choose...uh....which one is this Sean?
Emolga he says...

Gimme your best Troll-face....whoa, that's perfect...

Green Lantern regenerated into the Doctor again!

Security brought to you by Umbrella we're in real trouble...

More Street Fighter!

Nice Costume

Costume Malfunction...but nice costumes none the less

Last pic of the con for us...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Anime Conji Day 2 update

Epic Mario, David Gallagher, and Epic Luigi

Amazing Costume

Voice Acting Panel
Gundam Workshop Panel

Award Winning Gundam

Another Angle

And top view

Amigurumi Workshop

Amigurumi Workshop

Nice intricate Batman Costume

Before the half-time show at the Masquerade....

Getting ready for some Intrigue in Dominion...I won...nice

Settlers of Catan 

Gathering some relaxation

Lot more computers in the Lan Party today

A finished Amigurumi riceball...

A young trio of Cosplayers...
Come get some

You want some art?

Epic Sean with his new moustachio, since it fell off...

Another wonderful creation

Doctor Who changes into the Green Lantern!!

Assassin's Creed...

Link and Zelda

Big Blade and Bigger Fronds


Nerdcore from above

More Tabletop views


Another Angle

Rob Zombie as played by Dead Mau and friend

Raket and Dead Mau doing Dragula!

Even is that costume, Raket is rock'n those drums on expert

Epic Sean gets some Halo in

Add caption

Introducing the Masquerade

Raket and  Fantasee