Secret Doors? Check, Deadly Traps? Check, Hidden Treasures? Check, Terrifying Monsters? Check, Slim Chance of Survival? Check.
Where Do I Sign Up?
(p.s. Don't forget your 10 foot pole.)
(p.p.s Ummm, yeah. Forget the pole, it won't really help you against THAT.)
This indiegogo campaign is designed to support the creation of Barrowmaze II (BMII) and, while doing so, provide supporters with exclusive extras and cool bonus perks.
Barrowmaze II is the second part of a two-part exploration-style megadungeon for Labyrinth Lord and other classic fantasy role-playing games. BMII is a continuation of the initial "dungeon sprawl" concept presented in Barrowmaze I (BMI) and is intended for mid-and-high level characters.
BMI was a self-funded project published in early February for introductory to mid-level play. You can find it at rpgnow.
Barrowmaze I and II combine into one large megadungeon. However, they can also be played independently and are self-contained. You can find links, updates, fan-creations, and freebies at the Barrowmaze website.
“I’m hard pressed to find any real faults with Barrowmaze. Nearly everything about the product is well done, from the layout to the artwork to the content and cartography. Indeed, Barrowmaze is nearly a textbook example of how to make a compelling, well-presented dungeon module.” Grognardia
“I had never heard the acronym OSR stand for “Oh S!@t! Run!” before reading Barrowmaze, but it certainly fits.” Tenkar's Tavern
“Barrowmaze is the dungeon I wish I had written, and I can’t offer any higher praise than that.” Tales From the Flaming Faggot
“The author has used some interesting techniques to reinforce the theme of plundering long sealed tombs. There are frequent calls for excavation, or smashing through bricked up walls, to reach the hidden room beyond; much of the treasure is interred in burial catacombs (niches) carved into the walls, which require careful searching. Time is always a factor.” Dreams in the Lich House
Despite the success of Barrowmaze I it was a self-funded project with limited resources. There were things I wanted to add to the dungeon - including maps (print and digital) and additional art - but couldn't given the budget. Your support in this campaign will help me to address both issues and make Barrowmaze II bigger and better.
In terms of the dungeon itself, BMII includes the following new sections:
The Secret Shrine of Set: This section details the Necromancers of Set, a powerful faction in Barrowmaze. They continue their exploration of the dungeon in the hope of claiming the Tablet of Chaos as their own.
The Forbidden Crypts: A collapsed burial mound has given entry to a new power group that has aligned with the Acolytes of Orcus.
The Temple of Orcus: Militant, well-armed, and devoted - each of these describes the Acolytes of Orcus. They recently added some muscle to their ranks and hope to destroy the Necromancers and their "false" god Set. They must obtain the Tablet or face the wrath of The-One-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
The Vault of the Unholy Relic: The followers of Nergal entombed the Tablet of Chaos deep in Barrowmaze - in a set of crypts covered in traps, illusions, and death. Nergal's most powerful followers remain to guard the relic, including the reclusive Keeper of the Tablet.
The Lair of Ossithrax Pejorative: Long after the flight of Nergal's followers from Barrowmaze, but centuries before the arrival of tomb-robbers intent on plundering the tombs for gold, an ancient black dragon lived and died on his hoard beneath a great burial mound he carved out as his lair. This great evil has heard the call of the Tablet of Chaos...
In addition to these dark and fascinating areas to explore, Barrowmaze II is loaded with new, interesting treasure types, traps, and monsters.
Art that celebrates classic fantasy gaming and dungeon-exploration is very important to me, and is central to the Barrowmaze project.
For Barrowmaze II artist Stefan Poag returns as does the talented Zhu Bajie. The wonderful Trevor Hammond illustrates a number of the undead for BMII. Trevor's style is so dark, macabre, and strange that it just would not be Barrowmaze without him.
In addition, several new artists are contributing illustrations including Scott LeMien, Alexander Cook, Stephan Thompson, and Cory Hamel. Cory, a reader of my blog Discourse and Dragons, commented on one of my posts and since that time we have been working together on BMII. He is Canadian, insanely talented, and a big TSR geek like me - all good.
Also, Cory will draw the digital map for BMII from my notes in both classic blue and black and white.
Alongside a bunch of new full and half page illustrations, I'm thrilled to report that every entry in the monster section will have a corresponding illustration - and I mean all of them. It will be a sight to behold.
WAIT! There's more!
I was always very interested in having one of the ex-TSR artists I grew up with contribute to BMI, but as I mentioned funding did not allow it. Undeterred, I recently contacted ex-TSR artist Jim Holloway to see if he would be interested in contributing to Barrowmaze II. Jim worked on First and Second Edition, as well as both Dungeon and Dragon magazines, and illustrated one of my favorite classic modules of all-time - B4 The Lost City, by Tom Moldvay. Much to my surprise, he was very keen and interested in the project. We worked out the details and I am thrilled to announce that Jim has signed-on to contribute several illustrations for Barrowmaze II - including a colour cover illustration. Woot!
I will start posting some of Jim's illustrations as soon as they are available.
Although you saw it at the top of the page, I would like to take a moment to talk about Stefan Poag's painting. This was a lot of fun to do and highlights the terrible Ossithrax Pejorative!
We started with the characters from the cover of Barrowmaze I. We decided that several were eaten by ravenous monsters. With the exception of the magic-user, we pulled the other characters from the interior art of BMI. It includes my personal Poag favorite - a paladin from the Holy Order of the Field Goal. He also gets channel 6 with that snappy headgear.
The second illustration depicts the tragic-character Dhekeon - the Skeleton Warrior. He plays an important role in the dungeon (I'll say no more) and is illustrated by Cory Hamel.
Estimated Delivery Date: October 2012.
All Supporters: Everyone who supports the campaign will be listed in an appendix at their level of support.
Devil Horns: You will have my thanks for helping out. All support, regardless of the level, is greatly appreciated.
Ravenous Dead: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF of Barrowmaze II
Son of Gaxx: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF and hardcover of Barrowmaze II. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.
Crypt Knight: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF and numbered hardcover of Barrowmaze II. You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and black and white). This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom. EDIT (April 26): In addition, all those who contribute at the level of Crypt Knight or higher will automatically receive the custom Barrowmaze Dice!
*Numbered hardcovers will include a certificate that indicates the publication number of your book (__ of __) in the first print run. Numbered hardcovers will only be available to those who participate in the Indiegogo campaign (at this level or higher).
*The printed poster map, crafted by artist Cory Hamel, will be approximately 17x21 and printed in classic blue only. The map will be neatly folded and placed inside your hardcover for shipping to your location. Print maps will only be available to those who participate in the Indiegogo campaign (at this level or higher).
*The digital map will be handy for those of you who want to use your tablets or laptops at the table. You receive the digitial map in both 1) classic blue and 2) black and white.
*Barrowmaze Custom Dice (see Updates for more information)
Barrow Wight: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF and numbered hardcover of Barrowmaze II. You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and black and white). Your hardcopy will be signed and inscribed by the author. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.
*If your book is signed/inscribed, I will sign, date, and provide an inscription, dedication, or epigraph (or epitaph!). If you have something specific you would like written on the inside, or intend it as a gift, just let me know.
The Barrowmazening: This Perk includes everything at the Barrow Wight level plus a hardcopy of Barrowmaze I signed and inscribed by the author.
Keeper of the Tablet: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF and two numbered hardcovers of Barrowmaze II (EDIT: or a copy of Barrowmaze I and II). You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and black and white). Your hardcopies will be signed and inscribed by the author. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.
*In addition, and in the spirit of old school lethality, I will place the name (or remains) of one of your favorite deceased PCs in Barrowmaze II. A number of Barrowmaze game reports are available online. I've linked to many of these at the Barrowmaze website and Discourse and Dragons. If you already had a character meet their fate in Barrowmaze I (or elsewhere), and want their name placed in a crypt or their bones reanimated for BMII, be sure to select The Keeper of the Tablet perk. I'll work with you to create something cool that reflects your former PC's untimely demise. If you would prefer to have an anagram of your name, that would fine too.
Ossithrax Pejorative: At this level you will receive the bookmarked PDF and two numbered hardcovers of Barrowmaze II (EDIT: or a copy of Barrowmaze I and II). You will also receive a printed poster map (17x21) and the digital maps (classic blue and black and white). Your hardcopies will be signed and inscribed by the author. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States, or the United Kingdom.
*If you want to take part in the creative process, and have an interesting monster idea, select Ossithrax Pejoritive. I'll work with you to include the new monster in Barrowmaze II. You can choose the artist of your preference (Stefan Poag, Zhu Bajie, Trevor Hammond, or Cory Hamel) to illustrate your custom creature.
He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named: At this level you will receive two bookmarked PDFs and two numbered hardcovers of Barrowmaze II (EDIT: or a copy of Barrowmaze I and II). You wil also receive two printed poster maps (17x21) and two copies of the digital maps (classic blue and black and white) your hardcopies will be signed and inscribed by the author. This includes shipping to your location in Canada, the United States or the United Kingdom and five sets of the custom dice.
*In addition, I will work with you on the following projects:
1) to insert the name of one of your deceased PCs (or an anagram of your name) into BMII.
2) to create a monster employing an artist of your choice (Poag, Hamel, Hammond, or Zhu).
3) to create a full page B/W illustration employing an artist of your choice (Poag, Hamel, Hammond, or Zhu)
I have a Bonus Perk currently on double-secret probation. I will reveal the perk if we reach the first goal of $4,000.
If we pass the $7,000 mark all those who pledged at the level of Crypt Knight or higher will receive a Tomb of Horrors-style printed illustration-booklet depicting special keyed dungeon rooms.
If we pass the $10,000 mark all those who pledged at the level of Crypt Knight or higher will receive a map-as-art print illustrated by Cory Hamel. This map will be done from the perspective of the dungeon-explorers and will make a great wall-print. These maps will only be available to those who participate in the Indiegogo campaign at the stated level or higher. EDIT -- extended to 12k to accomodate Barrowmaze I illustration booklet.
Additional Perks are ready in the event we exceed these goals.
If you are located outside the above three countries please get in touch and I will do my best to find a shipping rate that works for you. Please keep in mind that postal rates are higher in Canada than the US.
Greg Gillespie has been playing role-playing games since the early 1980s. I am a university professor and PhD graduate from The University of Western Ontario in the fields of cultural history and cultural studies. I recently supervised a Master of Arts student who examined aesthetics and the OSR, and in 2011 taught a course on the history and culture of role-playing games. I also maintain the OSR blog Discourse and Dragons and am co-creator of Meatshields! The Classic Fantasy Hireling and Henchman Generator. I live in the Niagara Region of Ontario, Canada with my wife, daughter, son, and our dog Max.
Thank you for taking the time to read this campaign. Those of you who purchased BMI know that it was a labour of love and can expect the same level of creativity in Barrowmaze II. If you have any questions be sure to leave a comment or get in touch. Please be sure to spread the word via your social networking outlets - blogs, forums, facebook, twitter, etc. The grapevine is the best way to spread the word to the OSR community.
Thank you, Greg \m/