Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Tools of the Trade II

Back in June I posted a modest picture of the gaming supplies I used in my devising of scenarios and such while preparing my new campaign in Helsinki.

I called it Tools of the Trade, after the Carcass song.

Now I'm preparing another campaign in Helsinki, as I've been mentioning often, and I've got a whole new set of tools. Many of these tools were decorated and embellished by my new wuvvy duvvy Maria, who will also help me model my new gaming implements.

First is the master shot of Command Center Theta, which houses my computer, all my supplies, and a really cool view of some modern Helsinki office buildings, an arts center, and a little bit of the harbor.

Next is the cart which usually sits behind me when I'm at the desk. It's got three drawers, and there's a three-tier file tray on top of it. The bottom drawer has my printer paper and ink supplies, the middle drawer has my miscellaneous supplies like rulers, rubber bands, thumbtacks, and all sorts of fun stuff like that, and the top drawer has... well...

It has my supply of graph paper (note the three different sizes, so I never feel compelled to oversize a dungeon just because there are that many more squares to fill!) and a couple of notebooks.

Now on to the Maria craftworks. This first one is a leather cover for a notebook, complete with wolf's head thong fastener.

This looks like a common notebook, but in Finland it's graph paper that's commonly used for everyday notebook paper, and lined paper like this is harder to find. Pretty much a reverse situation from the States, so putting a leather cover on a notebook like this isn't complete overkill.

This next one is really cool. Maria took a box and made it my gaming box. Note how excited she is to show it to you all.

Of course, it's the inside of the box that's cool. Not only is the exterior painted black, but the interior is lined with grey felt. Inside are a dicebag (that can fit four sets of dice) with black velvet exterior, grey silk lining, and silver ribbon drawstrings. Also inside is a rolling cup, also painted black with grey felt lining. The top of the box is also lined with the felt so it becomes a rolling surface. No more watching my dice flying off the table or otherwise going out of control. Just flip the rolling cup and deposit the die on the proper surface. The felt lining should also help dice keep their proper edges.

Then we come to the binders. Plain binders for this campaign just won't cut it. Here is my "working binder," which contains various essays, dungeon-building methods, the Monster and Treasure Assortment book, the latest updates to my Creature Generator, and all the tools I need to generate adventure materials. The covers have classic (and classic-to-be) images placed on the surfaces with a découpage technique. There are also pictures on the inside of the binder covers. Note the Green Devil Face as the front cover, constantly reminding me when creating adventure material that the best threats are the ones that are obvious and tempt players into killing their own characters without any outside influence at all.

Here are a series of silk-covered binders with various things in them. The red one contains the Holmes Basic book, the Moldvay Basic book, and the Marsh/Cook Expert book, all printed on A5 paper for easy handling. I won't deal with full-sized books anymore. Gaming materials serve my needs, not the other way around. The blue binder will hold the character, equipment, spell, and whatever sheets for the new campaign. The black binder, also featuring decorative stitching, holds the finished details of Olden Domain locations. Right now it just contains the beginning area of the hex map and the basic outline for the closest exploration area, but I hope to fill that thing up in the months to come.

Next is my binder with the 1974 D&D booklets, first three Supplements (screw Supplement IV, and I have a genuine hardcopy of Supplement V so no need to print it out on A5 to stick in a binder; it sits on the desk and might be barely visible on the master Command Center photo), and Chainmail. I had wanted it to be white silk to match the others, but Maria advised me that the white cover will likely get dirty and silk would not be simple to wash. So my "White Box" binder is covered in white flannel. Albino Grunge!

I just had to show the inside of the binder and my original edition D&D printouts. They rock.

There is one more item that was created... see, I've accumulated a lot of dice over the years, and the dice bag that goes in the gaming box only accomodates a few sets. I don't use the remainder, but don't want to lose them, so a bigger dice bag was made for them. It too is black velvet lined with grey silk, but with a yellow ribbon drawstring. And since it's unfair to tittilate you with all these cleavage shots and not give any payoff, Maria and I figured we should show you a little more to showcase the bigger dicebag:

Happy New Year! :D


  1. "the latest updates to my Creature Generator"


    What sort of updates? Have you made this even better?

  2. So there I was thinking "what a nice way to start the New Year, what a good woman that Maria is", when I came to the last photo and then I was torn somewhere between an incredible feeling of disappointment - James Raggi with a bag of dice up his bum, and a weird compulsion to throw off my shoes and run barefoot through that luxuriant lawn of hair.

  3. Your sexy just got all over my D&D.

  4. My eyes! The goggles do nothing!

  5. Man, now I'm excited about that goddamn box too! So is my fiancee, if that makes it any better...

    Happy New Year!

  6. Man, someone one really loves you to make all that. I hope you give her an extra starting level or something.

  7. Oh, James you magnificent bastard! If you are not drunk, then I am little concerned. Great set up.

    Happy New Year!

  8. Coming in 2009: LotFP Macros

    "My dice bag -- Let me show you it."

  9. I failed my save vs. Gaze attack...

  10. As for Creature Generator updates...

    Just fooling around with formatting and adding options for intelligent creatures (and their motivations) and packs of creatures and such. Nothing's been used/tested yet.