The Garden Room from B1 In Search of the Unknown

So it has taken a little longer than originally planned to get this done, some 7 years longer in truth, but finally I have finished the garden room.

I used a plywood base and then built up Hirst Arts blocks to make both floor and walls. Some of the fungi are on movable floor sections that could be used in other rooms and so that I can make this room less fungus laden if needed. It is a big room and exactly matches the dimensions on the original B1 map. There’s only 1 door on that map which makes it a dead end, great for the garden room but not so useful for a regular dungeon. I’ve added another doorway in the north wall that can be blocked up or left open.

The fungus growing on the walls and the floor was added with green stuff, vines, little mushrooms, weird sticky out of the wall fungus. All of the other mushrooms are bought in either in metal or resin from various manufacturers.

There’s a small party of adventurers in the pictures. Who knows what they’ll find?

Dwimmermount Session 3

Returning to Muntburg after last session’s visit to Dwimmermount the party are injured, shaken and in need of some rest. When they arrive in town they exchange their various gems and jewellery finds for cold hard cash and sell an entire mule load of scale mail to the local armourer. One of the party gives a large sum to the local town, anonymously, for new cloaks for the guard and the provision of a soup kitchen for the poor.

Erik and Ethil, the Northern Men who are contracted to Li have enough from their share to buy chain mail and seem extremely pleased by this. Li gives all of his share to the church and then avails himself of the soup kitchen that has sprung up.

The party sells the bones of a silver skeleton to a contact in the town, they first hear the word Azoth and are told that a sample of the silvery liquid would be worth a great deal to certain parties in nearby Adamas, along with any spoons they might find……

returning to the mountain they find that one of the Red Doors is wedged open by an iron spike and once they ener the statue room see that one of the great doors leading to the Nephelite central corridor is also wedged open. They decide that someone else must be in the mountain with them and choose to turn left instead. As they enter the next room they are beset upon by a small orc band who are quickly despatched and the party continues to the east. They enter a circular room with strange masks upon the walls and the skeletal body of a man on the floor. There is a further mask next to his body and an obvious space on the wall from where he appears to have taken it. There is some discussion about whether or not the masks are trapped and ultimately Therrim takes one from the wall. A cloud of gas jets forth and although he breathes deeply of it there is no effect on the doughty dwarf. Spears, poles and breath-holding are then employed to remove the remaining masks without incident. Further east they encounter a t junction, turn left and find a locked metal door. Li shoulder barges it a few times before deciding it is too strong to be easily forced. They take the other passage and enter a strange chapel with six columns and an altar to a Termaxian interpretation of Mavors. Six silver skeletons are hidden in niches on the far side of the columns and a short fight ensues, the only surprise being that Emilio’s power to turn these creatures still does not work, despite him being a worshipper of Mavors and this being holy ground. After the battle they discover that the altar can be swung away from the wall and behind it is concealed a treasure room. They recover a few items including a head from one of the statues in the entrance (they think). Therrim handles a scarab brooch and is somewhat surprised when it comes to life and burrows into the flesh of his palm, quickly working its way up his arm. He cuts it out and throws it to the floor where his brother crushes it with his war hammer.

Heading south they come to a strange shaped room where the stone corpses of two dwarves are lying. Balfar recognizes them and the party leaves them in peace. Through a moldy storeroom they once again come upon the wide Nephelite corridor and now seem convinced that it all joins up to make a large cross shape. On the lookout for skeletons they head north into a circular store room where Erik and Ethil are set to collecting coins from amongst the rubbish they find there. The remainder of the party investigate and old pantry room. As they re enter the corridor they notice a light ahead and then a small group of humanoid figures. After a cautious approach the group identify themselves as the five delvers and a tense conversation ends with the delvers backing off saying “Watch out for the ghosts”.

The party enter a nearby door and stumble on a group of ghostly figures engaged in conversation. It soon becomes apparent that the “ghosts” are not interested in the party and so they are disregarded, except that the party skirt the walls of the room in their onward journey. They enter another room where a series of pedestals each has a shiny brass like plate set into the floor in front of it. They seem very reluctant to investigate these and continue to the far end of the room where they find a set of stairs leading down. They proceed down the stairs without pause.

At the foot of the stairs they enter a wide room and waiting with limitless patience there are 8 silver skeletons. A further attempt at turning by Emilio has no effect and he become convinced that they are somehow immune. After a short fight where blunt weapons are rapidly employed the skeletons are shattered. Heading south they come to a large curved chamber with six columns each made of a different material. A weird abstract statue stands in an apse at the far end of the chamber. They show passing interest in the columns (“Why is it always 6?”) and then head east along a wide corridor, notably of different construction to the wide corridors on the first level.

Along the corridor some way they find a door, Durgar opens it and sees a room full of armoured, capable looking humanoids, not orcs this time. He says “Hello” and shuts the door. The party then, unusually for them, wait to see what will happen. They hear shouted commands from behind the door and after a short time a large force of these same humanoids in shield wall advance around a bend in the corridor. They scream a battle cry and at that moment the door opens and the ones from inside the room spill out into the corridor too. The fight goes badly at first as the creatures in shield wall are hard to hit. Therrim goes down and several others are injured before the fight is over. Therrim is only knocked out and soon recovers. Emilio passes round his healing potion and soon the party feel able to continue. The brothers (Durgar and Therrim) take a look around the corner but soon come back having thought better of it.

The party returns to the entrance chamber of this level and head west. They investigate some strange sounds, as if someone was gagged and trying to speak, eventually opening a door to find five large sacks tied at the top and the middle. The sacks are wriggling and making the gagged moans that were heard before. On opening the first Durgar finds a living corpse, eyeball hanging out, bound and gagged inside. He soon kills it and the remainder are slain once a check has been made on each to make sure it is the same. There is some discussion about who might have done this and why but the curiosity doesn’t last long.

They move on to a room with four glass pillars, each representing the four elements and containing rock, fire, water and nothing (air). These get a cursory glance an they move on. The next chamber contains six metal columns, each a different metal. Therrim taps one with his small hammer. Then they move on.

The corridor they follow leads to a door. They hear low voices from beyond and rush in. Therrim and Durgar slay the four humanoids within in a single round as they are still sitting and playing a game. The room contains some pillars of frosted glass like material. Each has a kind of door trimmed with metal and a metal panel studded with weird knobs and dials. They are all somewhat damaged. One of the dead humanoids (now thought to be Hobgoblins) is put into one of the chambers, the door is closed and all manner of dial permutations is tried. Nothing happens but the party are convinced this is how the silver skeletons are made. They head east into a chamber where the walls are lined with shelves. Each shelf has numerous bottles and jars of different colours and shapes. They look into one and find some small pills but no one wants to try them so each party member pockets a couple of jars and they press on. East again they come to another room filled with the frosted glass tubes.

A door to the east is magically locked and since the party have no means to open it Therrim begins to beat it down with his hammer. The door opens but as they are investigating the next room a group of hobgoblins alerted by the noise arrive and attack the party in the rear. After a short fight and with further serious injuries the party decide to leave and trace their way via a circuitous route back to the stairs and to the first level. They decide to test out the theory that the wide Nephelite corridor is a cross shape and use it to return to the statue chamber. As they approach the wedged door back into the statue chamber the Five Delvers hail them from behind. “You look a little beaten up”, “We’re fine”, “What, even the three invalids strapped to the mule?”. After a bit more banter the Delvers disappear into the darkness and the party leave for Muntburg.

Dwimmermount Session 2

After their first foray into the mysterious Dwimmermount the party had retired to the local town, Muntburg, to lick their wounds and re-equip. They have a little treasure and a fair amount of looted armour and weapons, not all of it in great condition. In the Flask and Scroll Tavern they meet up with a religious warrior and servant of Mavors, Emilio, who is known to Day Dak. He agrees to join their party for the time being (Emilio is another PC). Once re-supplied they return toward the mountain. On the way through the ruins of a settlement at the foot of Dwimmermount they are ambushed by a small group of bow-armed humans. Their attackers are in a ruined building higher up the slope than them and have good cover. Li attempts to flank the attackers but is discovered as he makes his cautious approach. He’s felled by two arrows while the rest of the party approach by the road. Two of the attackers are shot by the crossbow-armed dwarves of the party and the remaining one makes his getaway up the slope toward the Red Doors. Li is found to be lightly injured but has some deep wounds that will leave scarring to his body. The dead assailants are wearing robes with hoods over their armour and a strange medallion the device of which is a deep blue sunrise or sunset, made of a bronze like metal. the party wrap up these medallions and carry on.

They enter the mountain once again and descend the stairs to the Statue room, turning right they pass through the guard room and enter a strange chamber dominated by a curtain along one wall. They decide it must have been an auditorium and note the military mosaics along one wall. Moving the curtain Li discovers a strange semicircular recess and in his search finds a secret door. Therrim leads the way into the passage beyond and they find another door at the far end that is obvious from their side but is secret from the other. Durgar and Therrim listen at the door and hear gruff voices and muffled curse in the Dwarven tongue. The immediately burst into the room beyond and find more orcs torturing a bound dwarf. As the rest of the party try to get into the room Durgar and Therrim attack the orcs who seem surprised and are soon in trouble. One of the orcs shouts a warning or a summons as he defends himself and soon the room is filled with a mass of orcs and party members in a desperate melee as the 7 further orcs rush in from another door. The party is soon victorious and they free the captive dwarf, Balfar, who swears to serve Therrim and explains how he came to be a captive. He and his compatriots had entered the mountain by a secret path looking for a dwarf cemetery and suffered greatly as they explored. Balfar believes he is the last to survive of his group and confirms that the bodies our heroes discovered last week were indeed some of his party.

Moving on through the adjoining room the party reach a wide corridor made of seamless Nephelite just like the one they had discovered in their last foray. There was some discussion about whether the two were in fact the same corridor but the mapper was heard to mention that his map was ‘not to scale’ and that no definitive answer could be found.

A pair of double doors to their left drew the party’s interest and they opened them to find a circular room filled with broken furniture and rubbish. Both dwarves were bitten by huge centipedes that crawled out from the rubbish pile but neither suffered any ill effect. While the party was dispatching the centipedes a group of skeletons approached noiselessly and attacked them from the rear. The skeletons were silver in colour and moved with a speed and grace that seemed strange. The ensuing fight is deadly and the already injured party barely manage to deal with the skeletons who strangely cannot be turned by the power of Emilio’s faith. Emilio, Ethil and Therrim all fall under the staggering attack. Once calm returns their wounds are found to be less than fatal but serious enough that rest is needed. Emilio has lost two fingers. They decide to retreat to the secret corridor and rest up.

With trained healers, magic and a nights rest the party feel able to continue and go back to the Nephelite corridor. They head straight across into a side passage, somewhat fearful of the wide corridor and its unlimited hordes of silver skeletons! They are soon in what was once a meeting room with a huge table in the centre, noises are heard coming form the adjoining room and soon they are battling more orcs. These seem much easier to dispatch than the skeletons and soon the party are looting their bodies finding a number of gems. The room they were in turns out to have some kind of map inlaid into the floor. It shows the mountain and the surrounding area. Therrim is unimpressed “I already know where we are” and they press on.

They enter a room with shattered furniture and as Therrim opens a door on the far side to leave he is hit by a dart, thinks nothing of it and carries on. Beyond they find a room with stairs leading down to another level but they seem to be covered in a strange mold. The party talk about setting fire to the mold but instead retrace their steps and find a storeroom infested with rats. They make short work of these and find some interesting jewellery in their lair. The next room they enter has a door that leads in to a series of rough hewn and natural caverns. They walk a little way, discussing their plan for what to do next and come to a t junction where they are set upon by small, naked but heavily bearded creatures with short bows and several spiders leaping down form the ceiling. Things quickly become desperate as Thissalon uses his Sleep spell but only manages to affect three of the dozen or so creatures and their leader charges into the fray. He is a dwarf with magical armour and hammer. Eventually Durgar kills the mad dwarf, his minions are one by one defeated leaving several of the party in a bad way. The dwarfs armour is taken by Durgar and his hammer goes to Therrim. They all decide to leave before more spiders come and make their way back out of the caverns and using the same route they took to get there retrace their steps to the Red Doors and to freedom.

The Green Dragon Gaming Room part the second

Wargame room, rpg room

Nearly finished

So here’s what it looks like now! Pretty good huh? The table is complete and some extra furniture in. Just need to paint the chairs, highlight the stone wall and rig up the fireplace.

How did we get here? well last time I wrote the walls were complete. Since then:
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I did a little work on painting the floor and the ceiling. I went for a smooth, dark grey for the floor. Ii figured that by the time the table was in the floor would be mostly obscured. If it ever bothers me I might go back and paint fake flagstones…….

Dwarven forge, 3d dungeon, gaming table, wargame table

Made to fit the Dwarven Forge stuff

Work begins on the table. The secret storage and extra playing surface has to be deep enough for the Dwarven Forge terrain that I use for my D&D games. I made up some edge pieces that were just a little taller. The basic table is supported on a large single leg and frame. This was another amazing eBay bargain, it cost me £8 as it had originally had a glass top that had broken and was sold as spares or repair Рmind you I did have to drive to Doncaster to collect (sorry Doncaster but uuuggh). I hope that the lack of legs on the corners will make it easier to get round it when there are a few players.

I then set about making the top, there is the surround and inside that a batten that will support the top playing surface. The difference in height is the same as the thickness of my table top, that way the surround will be level with the table top when finished.

D&D table

D&D table

D&D table with edges

D&D table with edges

D&D table with top

D&D table with top

D&D table complete

D&D table complete

Next up the table top is stained and you can see the recessed gaming area.

D&D table

Finished staining the top! MDF looks like mahogany….

D&D table storage

Hidden storage and gaming area.

Fist game in the new room was Saturday night and went pretty well. The table is 8 feet by 4 and so with 6 people around it and all the character sheets, drinks, snacks and dice it still seemed pretty spacious. It is a long way from the seat at the end to the middle though – I might have to consider sitting at one side.

Hope you like it!

Dwimmermount Begins

Since the publication of the excellent mega dungeon Dwimmermount by Autarch games I have been looking forward to running it for a regular group in the Green Dragon. That started on Saturday night and here’s how it went.

We are using the Adventurer, Conqueror, King system. 


The party assembled and headed south through the ruins of winterburg. Two dwarves, Durgar and Therim Stonebreaker, strange for their race as they are brothers and shunned by those who know their secret. Thissalon, an elf from Elphame, Li, a mystic from a far eastern land and Day Dak Vatar a shaman from the North. 
They made camp in the mountains and were beset by a a band of berserking Northmen. Day Dak the shaman was injured while his compatriots dispatched the would be bandits. He recovered but his wounds are stiff and his movements are now slowed.
The party made their way to Muntburg where they equipped themselves for the trials ahead and Li secured the services of Erik and Ethil, two brothers from the North. Doughty fighters but ill equipped the brothers highest aim is to own chainmail!
To Dwimmermount they go, passing the alchemist’s door with little interest they open the red doors and proceed within. They are mildly intrigued by the strange statues with mismatched heads but head immediately onto the long wide corridor of pure nephelite. They soon find the stone corpses of three dwarves and after a little discussion about the rights and wrongs of looting the bodies of their brethren the party takes all that they had including a strange wineskin  that receives only passing interest. 
The room beyond has strange mechanical devices in it and they decide that this is too dangerous and bears little chance of reward so they turn around and retrace their steps. Heading west they approach another chamber but before they can open the door they are attacked by a party of 

orcs. The dwarves block the corridor and take the attack head on, suffering no damage as they dispatch the six pig faces. The orcs are strangely clean and carrying a thousand gold pieces between them.
The party then enter a room with a huge face on the wall of rusted metal. Thissalon greases the mouth and it begins to speak. It says it will answer a question for each of them. They ask how to open the door they passed on the way up the mountain and it says that there must be a triple conjunction of the three celestial bodies and that the right ritual words must be spoken. They then ask what are those words and the face replies that they are known to sages and learned mystics. 
They carry on and spend some time in a room with a black basalt pillar in the centre. The two dwarves both kick it but neither feels any effect!
As they are moving a little further Erik and Ethil who were watching the rear of the party are attacked by four more orcs coming from the west. Ethil is wounded but manages to withdraw while his brother enters the fray. Erik is knocked out and receives a fine scar with which to impress the ladies of the town. His loyalty to Li is somewhat lower than before though and he is heard to grumble about the lack of chain mail. The remaining orcs are slain when the party arrive. 
The party then decide that they have enough treasure to make it worthwhile retreating back to Muntburg as Erik needs a night of bed rest to recover his strength. 

The Green Dragon Begins

So I saw this games room at KitaQ Wargamers of Japan and was way too green with envy.

The thing all wargamers want is a room that can hold all their stuff, display it to best advantage and make it so that all that wargame stuff can be found easily.

I have always had storage boxes, Gamers Workshop cases, cardboard boxes, tins, shelves and all manner of other ways to hold stuff. My buildings were on a top shelf in our living room for a while, casual visitors thought it was Lilliput Lane, albeit a bombed out version, gamers thought it was cool.

Now I want to put it all together.

I started by clearing out everything I could from the garage, and building a stud wall.

Wargame Room 1

Stud wall in place

The far side of that wall will become the “shed” to store bikes and other paraphenalia not connected with wargaming.

Wargame room ceiling in place

Ceiling put up to make a loft area

Above the ceiling is the “loft” void of the garage roof. I’ll use this for additional storage and have put up a loft ladder in the shed part to access it. As yet there is no insulation above the ceiling as I think it might get too hot in the room in summer, we can always add it later.

Wargame room fake fireplace

fake Fireplace 99p eBay bargain

Next I added a fake chimney breast complete with a fireplace. This was bought from eBay for 99p and it was almost embarassing to collect it and pay cash! There is cabling into the fireplace for a socket. I might add a stove or fake fire when things are a little further along.

Wargame room insulation

Let’s stay nice and toasty

Next I added insulation to all of the walls and built a stud wall to enclose it. The garage is a single brick structure and gets chilly in the winter. The insulation¬†makes a massive difference and should let me use the room all year. It’s cold up here in Yorkshire!

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Wargame room fake fireplace

The process of building a stone wall in 1:1 scale

Adding the fake stones was fiddly but quite fun. I tried to buy the foam in 1″ thick sheets but found that it was cheaper to buy 2″. This meant that I had to cut the sheets into layers with a bread knife before I could use them meaning that the “stones” are different thicknesses – quite a nice effect in the end. I managed to cut a few that go around the corner to make the whole look more realistic. Stuck them to the wall with PVA. Easy.

Ultimately the mirror will be a picture…..

Wargame room storage shelf

I need space to store terrain. This is 16′ long and 12″ deep.

Storage is one of the main functions of the room and so I have put up a shelf along one wall that runs the entire length of the room, 16′ long. Should be great for buildings, trees, really big dragons that kind of thing.

Wargame room painting

First coat of paint

A few of the guys came round one evening and helped to splash the first coat of paint on the walls. I need to seal the OSB board that I’ve used so it has to have a gloss undercoat. The liquid nature of the paint and the textured surface of the board made it very fiddly and messy. The stone wall gets a coat of filler to make it rougher and is then covered in battleship grey.

After 2 undercoats the walls get 2 further coats of Devon Cream textured masonry paint, it serves to disguise their original texture and make a great base for the stain. This is a wood stain, watered down and applied with a brush to age the wall (like a wash to a miniature figure). One of my friends calls this Mank Wash, a technical term I’m sure.

Wargame room timber frame

The timber frame effect

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Next up I added timber framing to the room and stained it to look like old mahogany (or fence posts, you decide). Would have been very sensible to paint these before attaching them to the wall. Now I have to carefully paint about 200′ of wood strip without getting it on the wall. Aaaaagggghh!

I need a tavern, who doesn’t need a tavern?

So, I have a garage. I, like most people these days, don’t put my car in the garage therefore I don’t need a garage. I like playing games, I like drinking beer. I do need a a tavern.

I’m going to swap my garage for a tavern.

All this came about after a trip to the excellent basement wargames room of Shaun McLaughlin in Newark, it is called The Bunker Wargames Holiday Centre and is VERY well worth a weekend trip. Me and a group of friends played some great games over a weekend with Shaun including this one, the Raid on Entebbe, with 4 Hercules and an Airliner. But what was better was the dedicated room. A space where wargame stuff is stored, displayed and used, not a space shared with homework, crafts, family dinners or boardgames.

A proper wargaming room.

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I’ve had a table in the garage for a long time, one that was too high for most players because it had to fit a car trailer underneath it (it was fine for me, I’m 6’4″) .

The Eagle Has Landed, in my garage....

The Eagle Has Landed, in my garage….

The problem with this was that it doubled up as a storage space, there wasn’t anywhere organised to keep the wargame stuff and the whole thing was unusable in the winter as the metal door and the gaps around it meant it got very cold.

The trailer has now gone. The space it took up is free. Time to get going with changing the garage into the tavern.

The Garden Room beckons

So with the Christmas Holidays coming up I’m planning to start work on the garden room.
This is the chunk of the original map from B1 In Search of the Unknown.

Should make for an interesting room given the shape and its overgrown nature. I have been collecting fungus creatures of one kind and another for a while now so it’ll be great to have somewhere to use them. I plan to add a couple of modular features to the room, a door in the north wall and the raised areas will be made removable. I think I’ll make the walls higher than usual too so that I can have fungus growing out over the heads of the party. Should be fun.