Rise To. A poem.

Survival by any other name
A test of will and vitriol
A circuitous route to endings
And beginnings and
Everything in between
I rise to the occasion

For more Poetry, click here.

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For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

This Sin. A poem.

This sin lies heavily
Upon hapless shoulders
Falling with the burden
Rising with responsibility
And sinking in a tide
Designed to drown
A better man

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

After the Show. A poem.

Where did you go
When the curtain fell
And the audience went home
Critiquing the show
No after party tryst
No drink for the damned
Just a lonely player
On an empty stage
Stealing Shakespeare
And fittingly rebuked

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Play. A poem.

Each day my play begins
Screen play and type play
Mouse play and horse play
Print play and scan play
Role play and life play
Each day behind the keyboard
My play begins

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Back Again. A poem.

Back on the train
Standing in line
With all the star-crossed
And befuddled
With tickets to nowhere
And a pocketful of change

Back in the game
Standing in line
With all the peacocks
And pistoleros
With tickets on themselves
And a pocketful of shame

And so it goes

Again

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Laidback DM: Raw Dice and Partying on the Edge

I know you’ve been there, no doubt many times: a planned encounter, meticulously balanced to allow the party a measure of challenge, but one that you know they should get through reasonably well. And then: amazingly bad dice rolls; the astoundingly poor use of abilities; the splitting of the party at the worst of times; the tenuous bonds of friendship deteriorating as the encounter goes south and the players turn on each other looking for someone to blame. Okay, it’s not always that bad, but sometimes the perfect encounter can be overturned by bad rolls and the party ends up looking like the fantasy equivalent of The Hangover. But that’s not always a bad thing.

I don’t fudge my die rolls. In fact, when I play IRL (as opposed to socially isolated Roll20 as a result of Covid-19, as I do now) I get my players to make every roll (you want to see tension? Watch their faces as one of them rolls the damage for the 7th-level fireball cast against them by that evil mage). As we all know a DM can choose to fudge rolls if they don’t want a TPK on their hands. I choose to let the dice and fate decide—‘raw dice’ as I like to call it. That’s all well and good, but if you have an encounter where everything goes wrong, you find yourself wondering if raw dice policy is the best option. I’ve been very lucky over the years—there has only been two occasions where I’ve had to use a deus ex machina solution to pull a party’s butt out of the fire to prevent a TPK (in my B/X days I just let them all die—suffice to say I’m a more even-handed DM now). I’m not going to rave on about how to avoid TPKs—you can read all about that here.

One of the major benefits I’ve found from raw dice is the sheer feeling of undeniable excitement and tension as the southward encounter plays out. And when the PCs (hopefully) triumph, the feeling of relief, exaltation and exhilaration as the players (and I) celebrate the win and their survival. There’s something about a really difficult encounter that brings out the worst, but ultimately the best, about players and their characters. And it’s those moments that are remembered and talked about for years to come. Long term memories are formed as a result of the depth of positive or traumatic emotion and experience attached to them. And whilst role playing is not real life, the same principles apply.

So if you or your players aren’t feeling that, take them to the edge a little more often. You can fudge your rolls if you like, but sometimes it’s better to let the dice demigods take control.

Game on!

Steve

For more Laidback DM, click here.

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Road Song. A poem.

Your road sings to me
And I whisper in return,
And I drive until sunrise
And don’t stop to rest
Until you lull me to sleep.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Listen. A poem.

Here in the unyielding silence,

I hear lonely, pensive thoughts;
Feel anxious heart beats drumming;
Sense ageless rain extinguishing the fires of a thousand shining lights.

A constant elegy,
Soundtrack to my existence.

Do you hear it, too?

Listen

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Old Ones. A poem.

I wonder what the old ones think
When they see young eyes upon the brink
Who tell them what they think they know
Ignoring the wisdom of their growth

Do they roll their eyes, nod and smile
Do they walk a metre, like we walk a mile
Wiling away their remaining days
Waiting for a stage on which to play

I wonder what the old ones feel
As the new young rise and supersede
With their new ideals and platitudes
Technologies and attitudes

I wonder what the old ones think
And if they’re proud, or if hearts sink
Because it wasn’t much easier, then
When they were young, before time caught them

I wonder what the old ones think.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Snow Angels. A poem.

I craved your attention,
But you were content
Creating snow angels
And only dreaming
Of the new day sun.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Submission. A haiku.

I’m in remission:
Contemplating my fission
And my submission.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Screens. A poem.

My reflection on the screen
Is a reflection of my soul
Empty and two-dimensional

At times our eyes are one
Mixing and mingling
Like ghosts in the electrical ether

There is only need and want
As our fingers touch
Across fine lines of neon tracery

Blending in the shadows
And phosphor brightness
Of dual suns in heat

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Seekers. A haiku.

Darkness is no friend
To those who seek out the light
Their first time outside

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Lockdown. A poem.

Another day in paradise:
Locked down in my place
Of subtle introspection
And outrageous fortune.

Savouring the sweet scents
Of ‘Le perspiration’ and ‘Le boredom’;
The gentle, beseeching touch
Of stubble and sweatpants;
Bewitching sights and sounds
Of out of tune guitars
And phosphorus screens;
The incessant clacking
Of typewriter keys and backspacing.

The shadowed sky outside
Reflects the enmity of it all,
Until I realise I’m not the only one.
Because we are all alone here—
Together.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Forgotten. A poem.

Blinkered, leading the way from behind
This train of thought left the station long ago
Left you standing vacant on the platform
Waiting for another to come along
But you’ve forgotten who you are
And they’ve forgotten you and your scars
Consideration and commiseration
Time to come in from the cold

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Isolated. A poem.

I’m here, you’re there.
The screen flickers and lags
As broadband strains under the weight
Of so many hellos and goodbyes

Here in the cultured iniquity
Of my room, my world

My sense of reason defied
By a virus so small and nondescript
But spreading so quickly and killing so easily
That flattening the curve becomes a tragic misnomer

Books, games, Netflix and writing
All these things to keep me amused and involved and circumspect
Trolling old hobbies like they’re the new solution
A quick fix to a sobering malediction

Online has become the new face-to-face
As human touch is replaced by social distancing
And the blue light of the screen
Is a signal flare in the sky
A light that leads the way out of this tunnel of night

And I wait, like a good, socially responsible being
As others flaunt and spread their disease
And I judge and feel and hurt and hate
And wish it was all over so I can return to my life

Of living here in the cultured iniquity
Of my room, my world

Just as isolated as I was before

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

The Darkness Won. A poem.

When darkness kneads my shoulder
Like an old and long, lost friend,
Tar dripping from his fingers
Bringing pain and bitter ends.


I kneel and bear that heavy weight
And thank him for his visit.
And sink below, a drowning man
With a lead weight for his business.


And darkness smiles, cackles with glee,
His foot upon my face.
And crushes the last vestiges,
My soul gone, without a trace.


And before he leaves, he glances back,
To make sure his work is done.
And there I lie, a craven corpse –
Thus, has the darkness won.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Laidback DM: Pathfinder 2e Reviews – Bestiary Battle Cards

The Pathfinder 2e Bestiary Battle Cards are a heavy box of 450 large-sized monster cards for GMs who run live games. Every monster in the P2e Bestiary book is included, the more powerful ones sometimes spanning two cards. Each card is 4 x 6 inches and has great artwork from the Bestiary.

As a DM who makes my own monster cards for games, I was relieved to see Paizo providing a great alternative for P2e. The convenience of having cards on hand means it’s easy to use stats for multiple monsters without taking up too much table space and without having to refer to cumbersome books all the time – just lean them against the inside of your screen. That’s the theory, anyway.

For most cards in this package it’s fine – they contain all of the necessary information you need to run a combat encounter with that monster. Some monsters, however, feature ‘standardized’ abilities/actions listed in the Bestiary in the back, no doubt to save space in the book’s main monster listings. The cards do NOT list these effects, just the name of the ability e.g. “Throw Rock (1 action)” with either minimal explanation or nothing at all detailing the effects. And there is often room on the card(s) to detail more. It’s the same with monsters that have abilities listed under an earlier type – Dragons, for instance. Instead of a complete listing for “Draconic Frenzy (2 actions)”, it adds “see Pathfinder Bestiary page xx”. The whole idea of having monster cards is to NOT have to reference the books, otherwise what’s the point. My home-made D&D 5e monster cards include all the abilities because I know I need to have them all on hand for combat; with some of these P2e cards I STILL have to refer to the Bestiary book. Not happy, Paizo, especially considering I paid $75 AU for this box, almost what I paid for the Bestiary book itself. I feel a bit ripped off.

P2e Bestiary Battle Cards is a decent product that could have had some elements implemented better.

Rating: 7.5/10

For more Laidback DM posts, click here.

You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM
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Laidback DM: Pathfinder 2e Reviews – The Show Must Go On

Right on the heels of the Age of Ashes Adventure Path comes Extinction Curse. I’m very impressed at the way Paizo churns out adventures for their products every month, especially when they are all of such excellent quality. Each one is packed full of new monsters, spells, feats, magic items and lore, and the packaging is bright, colourful and consistently good. The Show Must Go On is no exception.

The Show Must Go On is the first in the Extinction Curse path, a story that once again ties closely into the history of Golarion, the Pathfinder 2e world. Looks like the Aeon orbs the dead god Aroden brought onto the islands of Kortos and Erran to make them fertile weren’t ‘liberated’ from the Darklands, and now the islands may just pay the price.

Extinction Curse1

This adventure features an unusual backdrop – the PCs are circus performers and by the end of the story they will be the de facto owners of a travelling circus. Some interesting rules are included that allow the party to develop their circus and put on regular shows to earn money and accolades. This is the first time I’ve ever seen this in a fantasy RPG, so thumbs up to whoever at Paizo came up with the idea. The idea of being circus performers may not appeal to all players, however, and throughout the adventure there is an underlying assumption they are going to do the right thing. If this doesn’t sound like your group, you should talk with them first prior to running it.

The four adventures contained in this book take players from 1st-4th level and involve a murder, town investigation and two dungeon crawls. They are well designed and serve as a strong beginning to the adventure path, which will eventually take PCs to 20th level. Along the way the party will learn more about the Aeon Orbs, the real villains and a ritual that threatens all life on the islands. They’ll also meet NPCs who contribute interesting new acts that can benefit their circus if recruited.

The Show Must Go On is a great adventure. Buy it and have some show-stopping fun.

Rating: 8.5/10

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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at​ https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM

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#2ManyBooks. A Poem.

I have far too many books. Far

#2ManyBooks

Too many to read in one month, or one day,
one afternoon a plenty, one year or decade.
I read a few at a time: one here and one there;
how many more, who’s to say, who’s to care?

#2ManyBooks

I’m an organizational champ, a pedantic time loon,
But with so much to do, so very much to do.
My bookcase keeps growing and I’m sure you’ll agree
it’s remains never ending, no matter how much I read.

#2ManyBooks

I have far too many books and this much is true:
I would not lose them for anyone

#NotEvenYou

 

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Laidback DM: P2e Review – Bestiary Pawn Box

I love combat on a grid, but minis are too costly and take up too much space. I prefer to use pawns for this reason and Paizo makes some of the best.

I recently bought the new Pathfinder 2e Bestiary Pawn Box, which is absolutely huge. It contains 378 pawns featuring every single monster from the bestiary, with a few duplicates of the more common monsters. The artwork for each pawn is from the P2e Bestiary book and is excellent. There’s also an assortment of plastic bases included, in medium, large and huge size (convenient for both D&D 5e and Pathfinder 2e games).

The pawns are printed on thick card so they’re pretty durable. I’m already using them in my games and find they’re fairly convenient to stow and carry. I DM games away from home so I travel a lot (although the current Covid-19 crisis has me looking into online gaming). I don’t take the whole box with me – it’s fairly bulky – I tend to take a selection of pawns based on the adventure we’re playing and some extras just in case I need to improvise an encounter or two.

Even though many of the monsters are different from D&D, you’ll find something in here that will match what you’re looking for (although most of the giants are a size-class smaller in P2e).

I’m very happy with these and would recommend them to any GM/DM looking for a reasonably cheap and easy to transport replacement for minis.

Rating: 9/10

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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM
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Laidback DM: P2e Review – Broken Promises

Time I got back to reviewing some Pathfinder stuff! I’ve been buying literally everything, so here’s my opinion.

All good things come to an end, and this final adventure in the Age of Ashes Adventure Path pulls no punches. It’s for 18th-20th level characters and features some pretty hard challenges. An assault on the PC’s citadel (gained in the first adventure and built up over time) and home town, then it’s off to the idyllic city of Promise, where things are not all they seem. I’m not going to spoil this adventure, because this is a fantastic conclusion to this saga and should be experienced fresh.

Paizo have outdone themselves with their first Adventure Path for Pathfinder 2e. I’ve been most impressed by the attention to detail, impeccable production and the loads of additional content they present in every adventure. This book is no different, with a gazetteer of the island of Hermea and the city of Promise, 4 new backgrounds for the children of the heroes of this campaign, 3 new magic items, 12 new feats, 2 new focus spells, 8 new high-level monsters (including Pathfinder’s Tarrasque, which leaves the D&D version for dead) and detailed NPC stats.

Great work Paizo!

Rating: 9/10

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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM
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Laidback DM: Taking the Roll20 Plunge…

I’ve always played tabletop role playing games (TTRPGs) face-to-face, ever since I was knee-high to a tadpole, a loooooooooong time ago. Yes, I have a background in information technology; yes, at one point I could program…stuff; yes, everyone always came to me at work to fix their computer issues (“Have you tried switching it on and off?”). I use computers every day in my current job. Heck, I’ve played Zelda and Skyrim. So, I guess it’s a little surprising that I’ve never played a TTRPG online.

All that is about to change, however. Social distancing and social isolation are the new buzzwords, Covid-19 is the new bad guy (um, bad it?) and Skype and Facetime are the new hugs. And that makes virtual tabletop platforms like Roll20 and Fantasy Grounds the new ‘face-to-face’ for TTRPGs.

Why have I avoided online TTRPG’ing for so long? Is it the torrid tales of low bandwidth voice and video dropouts, the loss of tactile dice rolling replaced by button pushing apps, the thought of avatars rather than real faces? Or maybe it’s just that I’ve invested so much money in physical gaming aids (maps, pawns, books, etc.) that I’m reluctant to give up the face-to-face experience.

Well, with nothing but a computer in my room at the moment (yep, even my girlfriend is socially isolated from me), I’ve decided to take the plunge and not only play a Roll20 game, but also DM one as well. I got on the Roll20 platform the other day, muddled around and watched a few videos, did a test run with some players and now I’m reasonably confident we can run a game online. My players may not be so gung ho, however. Fear of technology? I don’t think so. Fear of embarrassing gaffs? Certainly not. Fear of my DMing? Well, they ARE a new group. Maybe your players are a bit reticent as well.

I’ve put together a VERY basic task card to help alleviate a few of the initial fears some people may have about the platform. I can’t guarantee it’s going to fix everything, but it’s a start. Possibly for a conversation with your die-hard, face-to-face-only, gaming group.

Laidback DM - Roll20 Task Card

You can download this A4-size Roll20 players task card by right clicking and selecting ‘save picture as’ on PC, or hold your finger on it on your phone or tablet until the device offers to save it.

So, here’s to the virtual near future. Not sure how long this pandemic is going to last, but at least I won’t get bored in the meantime. And here’s hoping you don’t either.

Game on!

Steve, Laidback DM 

For more Laidback DM posts, click here.
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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at​ https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM

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Laidback DM: SHOTGLASS ADVENTURES 3: BLACK MERIDIAN HEART in Print/Digital

SHOTGLASS ADVENTURES 3: BLACK MERIDIAN HEART is now available in digital PDF and print from DrivethruRPG! 136 pages of awesome, mind bending adventures and campaign materials for 5e and OSR role playing games!

Published under the OGL, inside you’ll find:

· 10 one-shot adventures of all varieties – investigation, dungeon crawl, planar, puzzle, quest, role playing, sci-fi – complete with full color maps! The adventures are for PCs of 11th-15th level, designed for minimal preparation and flexible delivery. Each adventure can be run as a ‘one-shot’ for 2-3 gaming sessions (8-12 hours) or played as a mini-campaign. Over 100 hours of gaming content! High-level adventures mean greater challenges – these adventures are longer and feature more content than the previous books.

· Hand-drawn, full-color maps – old school style with new school flair!

·  31 New Monsters + 19 Monsters from Kobold’s Tome of Beasts/Creature Codex! 5e stats included! New monsters include life-drinking Covenantals, manastatically-mutated Meridian Wyrms, mania-inducing Shrooms and the planet-sized Great Old One Asgarte!

·  13 New Magic Items and Vehicles! New items include the mystical Plume Stones, spirit-controlling Ghost Collar, psionic Gerth’r Mentor Helm, legendary ForNev’r Shards and deck plan and stats for the Gerth’r Planar Assault Ship!

· All new city setting of Meridian’s End, complete with important NPCs, factions, backgrounds, rumors, adventure seeds and city map! A frontier town, bordering the wasteland of the Black Meridian, Meridian’s End stands frozen in time, a legacy to Invicia’s defeat of the old Kereshi Empire. There are dark secrets here, whispered behind closed doors in trembling voices as the Baron’s undead guardians glide overhead, always watching. Corruption and fear pervade this new magical frontier…

· New rules and tables for magic, travel and weather, background lore, random encounters and adventures seeds for the magical wasteland known as the Black Meridian! A vast desert created by a magical disaster centuries ago, the Black Meridian is the only source of the valuable but cursed mystical Plume Stones. There are ruins and treasures untold in that desert, trapped behind a magical barrier that only the most courageous – or most foolish – pass. Are you brave enough to face the rampant manastatic storms, bizarre temporal and spacial effects and mutated monsters of the ForNev’r wastes?

· Random Ruin Generation tables! Roll up a ruin – its size, type, features, inhabitants, manastatic effects and adventure seeds! Perfect for creating a ruin on the fly for sandbox play or preparing a dungeon ruin in advance.

· Expanded Verona Province – updated two-page map and extended lore for the region featured in SHOTGLASS ADVENTURES I and SHOTGLASS ADVENTURES II!

· Loads of new and revised lore for the Invician Empire – everything you need for campaign play!

· Full guide for OSR conversions!

· Two bonus Laidback DM articles: on running sandbox campaigns and how to handle split parties.  

· Includes bonus unkeyed maps to use in your own adventures!

 

For more Laidback DM posts, click here.

You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM

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Laidback DM: P2e Review – Against the Scarlet Triad

Time I got back to reviewing some Pathfinder stuff! I’ve been buying literally everything, so here’s my opinion.

The 5th adventure in the Age of Ashes Adventure Path progresses characters from 15th-17th level. It’s time to face the Scarlet Triad in their home town of Katapesh, battling a Wendigo in the town of Flinderplain and networking and influencing the guilds of Katapesh to gain some credibility before an all-out assault on the Triad’s Red Pyramid base. Lots of mission variety in this adventure, including gladiatorial contests, animal hunting, infiltration, investigation, dungeon crawls and preventing assassination attempts!

My favourite adventure in this series so far. It includes lore about the Witchwyrds and Lost Aiudara gates, new items, feats, poisons, companions, a new archetype with 5 new feats and 12 new monsters. If you don’t play any of the others, play this one. Well designed and well worth the investment of money and time.

Rating 10/10

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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM
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Laidback DM: P2e Review – Fires of the Haunted City

Time I got back to reviewing some Pathfinder stuff! I’ve been buying literally everything, so here’s my (short) opinion.

The Age of Ashes Adventure Path continues with this adventure for 12th-14th level characters. The PCs use one of their portals to get to the underground Dwarven city of Kovlar and the nearby haunted city of Saggorak. They’re on the trail of the Scarlet Triad and have to influence the Court of Regents in Kovlar to help them out (a cool mini-game within a game), battle Accursed Forge-Spurned, explore the haunted city and face the Scarlet Triad and Veshumirix, a huge Magma Dragon!

Another exciting adventure with high production standards, wonderful art and maps, a gazetteer of Kovlar, 7 new magic items, a new archetype with 4 feats and a focus spell, 11 new monsters and detailed NPC stats.

Rating: 9/10

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You can find my D&D 5e and OSR products at https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM
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RightWhereUWant2B. A poem.

U make things so hard
When they should B E Z

But E Z is not
What U want
What U need

(A little inconsistency
A little conspiracy
A little paranoid delusion
A little freaked-out seclusion)

And U R right where
U want 2 B
U need 2 B

U make things so hard
When they should B E Z

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Cold, Hard Facts. A poem.

Empty out these cold, hard facts
Pour them in a bowl to inspect
The entrails, mysteries unsolved
By the clueless and the klutzes

Cold, hard facts and nothing else
But a ringing that won’t leave
Your heart and ears, a reminder
That you had it better, once

Before these cold, hard facts
Blew you away one lonely
Windswept day in August
And left you better off dead

All these cold, hard facts
Pounding at your temple
Like a barrel to your head
A bullet of cold, hard facts

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Until. A haiku.

My soul is rooted
In selfishness and conceit
Until You lift me

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Ice Cold. A poem.

A perilous montage
Belies the truth
A potent mix that
Soaks in waters
Where icebergs
And submersibles
Hide bittersweet
Goodbyes

A dangerous place
Windswept with lies
A potent reminder
That all is not
As it was or could be
An icy reminder
Of yesterday’s
Foreshadowing

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Outside and In. A poem.

How I miss you
Even when you’re here
Prostrate beside me
Worshiping rod and staff
Valley and furrow
Driven to excess
And shaken to the core

How I miss you
Outside and in

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Kal-el. A poem.

Sky of blue up here
Where cacophony
And constancy
Plies the airwaves
And escape is the stuff
Of fantasy
Where responsibility
Is a tribulation
Accepted righteously
The world cries
In hypocrisy
And only a refugee
Can address it
With moral consistency
Two feet on the ground
Head in the clouds

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Products for Sale!

Hi all!

Far be it for me to spruik for a living, but hey – it’s how I make a living now. So, here are some of my products available on DrivethruRPG in print/PDF/digital. You can buy any or all of these fine products by visiting this nifty little link:

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/13989/Laidback-DM?term=laidback

Game on!

Steve 🙂​

LaidbackDM AD DrivethruRPG

Green. A poem.

The green envelops me
And I float
And rise
And sink
On this green tide

The green consumes me
As I taste
And toil
And vomit
This green inside

The green greets me
And seduces me
And I

As with all

Welcome it
In return

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.n

Upstart Photographer – Path.

My photography. My poetry. A nice mix, I think.

Cheers

Steve 🙂

Steve Still Standing - upstart photographer

Path. A poem.

Surrounded, enclosed,
cut off from all and sundry.
You opened the way,
you cleared a path.
I walked to you,
and the sun shone anew.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Shake. A poem.

What slumber is this?
How far deep in waking dreams
Did this course of action
Decide progress beyond
Frank anticipation?

Shudder under a veil
Of night as black as pitch
That sinks thought
As dark as tar and deep
Into this vale we’ll toil,
Until the morning sun
Casts glimmers of wistful
Hope on towers pert and bold.

Then shake this sermon
From me with a kiss
.

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Righteous. A Haiku.

You are so righteous,
So much ‘holier than thou’—
Get in line, baby

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

I Tried. A poem.

I tried to make you happy
And not to bring you down
But again I failed so inevitably
Thorny crown upon my brow

I tried to make you happy
But perhaps the stage was set
For another lonely scene of remonstrance
A monologue of regret

I tried to make you happy
But it seems to be my fate
To swim against a surly tide
And to drown in history’s wake

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Sh&t Show. A poem.

This sh&t show never ends
I would change the channel
But the remote’s on the fritz
And there’s nothing else
Worthwhile on anyway
And even if there was
I’m too apathetic to care
And too down to get up today
Too spent to make some change

And too

Too

This sh&t show never ends
Until I
Finally

Tell it to

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

Currents and Whirlpools. A poem.

Somewhere along the way
I lost sight of yesterday

Drifting on currents and whirlpools

Threatening to take me
Down to places I’d rather not be

And so I fell as deeply as one could
As far down as one never ever should
A stone and leaden weight
Sinking deeper into fate

Violent currents and whirlpools

Threatening to spin me right around
To run my hard fought world aground
Like a ship without a helm
Like a lifetime overwhelmed

And after all that, I survived
Left somewhat ragged and indecisive
Yet I struggled, rose to my feet
An embittered revolutionary

Fighting currents and whirlpools

(That won’t take me there again
Won’t spin me down the drain)

Although I live with constant hurt
The culmination of this work
I will walk with head held high
Still standing and not crying

And to all those currents and whirlpools

I am not afraid of you

For more Poetry, click here.

poetry books - stevestillstanding

For more of my poetry, check out Poetry for the Sad, Lonely and Hopelessly Endangered and The All or the Nothing, available in print or e-book formats.

Click here to find out how to get your copy.

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