Friday, August 31, 2012

Brookgreen Gardens

About a month ago, I was able to spend a few days at Brookgreen Gardens in South Carolina.  While there, I took hundreds of photos of the many, many statues and fountains.  The photos are up on Facebook in six albums: one from the first day, one, two, three, and four from the second day, and a last of the zoo portion of the gardens on my third day there.  There should be a great deal of inspiration to be had for how to decorate your tabletop roleplaying settings' gardens.  Enjoy!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sails on Modern Ships

Here's a great idea for a post-apoc setting or even just a near-future setting: adding sails to modern cargo ships.  Apparently at least some folks are thinking about doing just that in our real world.  Read more here!

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Medieval Paint

Over on the Storm the Castle YouTube channel is a new video on how to make Medieval paints, a little detail you might add to your own tabletop roleplaying setting.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Black History by the Library Full

Over on is an article from earlier this year on The Manuscripts of Timbuktu.  Read more here!

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Species by Any Other Term

As I work through some of the final terminology for the Grymvald setting, regarding how to generally refer to both player character and nonplayer characters, as humans, elves, etc., I find myself running into a lot of variance in thought in the community as to what is acceptable and what could be and/or should be changed, or not.  Then, a few days ago, when I was just about settled on the term "sentient species" as a catch-all that could work, an article appears on called, "Prominent scientists sign declaration that animals have conscious awareness, just like us" and my thinking has to take some additional turns before I can nail this down.  Read more here!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Wasp vs Tarantula

Witness tenacity and strength in action as a wasp takes on a tarantula in this old documentary footage.  Amazing to watch and think about how combat works for creatures built in other ways than ourselves.  Enjoy!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

A Spider with Claws

In a recent article, they detail a type of spider with claws.  This is something that could add some new tricks to the spiders in your tabletop roleplaying game setting.  Read more here!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Devoured Planet

On the website is an article about a star devouring a planet.  There is also a very nice image though it does not appear to be credited.  Lots of good information for a sci-fi tabletop roleplaying setting.  Read more here!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Richard III Badges

You might not need no stinking badges in your tabletop roleplaying setting, but in real medieval times they were quite useful at identifying others in your political faction.  There is a new article on the website discussing the acquisition of a badge that would have been worn by those in the faction of Richard III.  Read more here!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Stone Forest in China

There is an amazing place known as the Stone Forest located in Shilin Yi Autonomous County in the Yunnan Province of China that you wouldn't believe existed if someone simply told you so.  However, now that you know, you're going to want to add such a place to your tabletop roleplaying setting.  Read more here and here!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

12 Questions on Magic had a recent article asking "12 Questions to Ask Yourself About the System of Magic in Your Fantasy Novel" that I think translate well to questions one might also ask when including magic in a tabletop roleplaying setting.  Read more here!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Mars/Earth Similarities and Map Retrospective

An excellent article on Scientific American's blog recently detailed some similarities between the Earth and Mars and gave some great information on maps of Mars over the years.  If you're a gamemaster who likes to detail more than just one planet in your campaign setting, this is a good article for inspiration.  Read more here!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Bridge Between Cliffs

Sadly, I cannot recall the real world location for this image I saved, so please comment if you know it.  It's a bridge between two tunnels coming out of cliff faces and adding something similar to your own tabletop roleplaying setting seems a no-brainer.  Check it out!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Pearl of Lao Tze

My buddy Craig, master of all things undersea, pointed me toward some information on The Pearl of Lao Tze, as well as the world's largest luminous pearl.  Read more here and here then add something similar to your tabletop roleplaying setting!

Friday, August 17, 2012

17th Century Shipwreck to be Freeze-Dried and Rebuilt

I immediately started thinking of modern day tabletop roleplaying games scenarios when I was pointed toward this story of a 17th century shipwreck being freeze-dried and rebuilt.  My first thought involved Old Ones and the accidental freezing and transferring of some nameless horror along with the wreck.  Read more here!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Argiope Orb Weaver Spider

There is a cool video of a Argiope Orb Weaver Spider that will help inform tabletop roleplaying gamers regarding the very deliberate movements of these beautiful creatures.  Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Sarcastic Fringehead

One of the most bizarre creatures you can add to the underwater portions of your tabletop roleplaying setting is the Sarcastic Fringehead.  Check it out in this video where it takes on an octopus and other prey.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Computer Learning

A recent New York Times article delves into what strides the Google X labs have made regarding whether computers can teach themselves.  Something to consider for your next futuristic tabletop roleplaying game setting.  Read more here!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Old School Maps in Excel with Paint

There is an interesting new technique for drawing Old School maps using Excel and Paint that a Facebook Friend pointed out on The Land of Nod blog ( that I thought I'd share.  Read more here!

Sunday, August 12, 2012

3D Printed Scale Armor

If you are into using props at the game table, as a way to add some immersion to your tabletop roleplaying game, then the advent of 3D printing will be a very interesting development for gamers.  Check out this recent article on regarding "3D Printed Scale Armor."  Read more here!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Pumice Island

Just recently it was reported by several news services that 7500 square miles of pumice from an underwater volcano were found floating off the coast of New Zealand.  Read more here!

Friday, August 10, 2012

David T Wenzel - Illustrator

I often cite real world locations and elements of nature as inspirational to creating good settings, and that's true enough, but for this blog post I thought I would point out an illustrator, David T Wenzel, who has worked for decades producing some very cool work that I want to highlight.  See more here!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

50 Amazing Places

There is a nice photo essay on 50 Amazing Places over on the website including the "Fjords and the Preikestolen Cliff."  See more here!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Dracula's Castle

Over on the Castles and Palaces of the World website, is a write up on the castle of Dracula.  Read more here!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Fishing Spider vs. Frog

A recent National Geographic YouTube channel video shows how a spider, without using webbing, can manage to make prey of a frog much larger than itself.  Check it out!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Monastery of Tatev

The Monastery of Tatev is an amazingly secure location in Armenia from the Ninth Century.  Read more here!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Swamp Angels on Atlas Obscura

The excellent website,, has some details on the infamous Swamp Angels, said to be much tougher than the other Gangs of New York. Read more here!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Ancient Civilizations in your Setting

Over on the website, a recent article titled "10 Civilizations That Disappeared Under Mysterious Circumstances" might be inspirational to you in developing some pre-history for your own tabletop roleplaying setting. Read more here!

Friday, August 3, 2012 on Machiavelli

Over on the blog is an excellent article on Machiavelli and Florence that will inspire anyone creating NPCs for the tabletop roleplaying setting.  Read more here!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Beast of Brooklyn

There is a new mystery in NYC, being touted as the Beast of Brooklyn.  It washed up on shore near the famous bridge and has been described as a "ghoulish carcass" which "has a mutilated face, hairless flesh and five human-like fingers at the end of its limbs."  Read more here!

(Local ABC 7 posted a photo)

Wednesday, August 1, 2012