Winter Is Coming: An RPG Blog Festival

The human mortals want their winter here;
No night is now with hymn or carol blest:
Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
Pale in her anger, washes all the air,
That rheumatic diseases do abound:
And thorough this distemperature we see
The seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts
Far in the fresh lap of the crimson rose,
And on old Hiems' thin and icy crown
An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds
Is, as in mockery, set: the spring, the summer,
The childing autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries, and the mazed world,
By their increase, now knows not which is which...
  - Titania, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Act II Scene 1


Welcome to the Winter Is Coming RPG Blog Festival. We're a group of bloggers and gamers inspired to produce and publish winter-themed RPG content for a week, either as guest bloggers here on Wombat's Gaming Den of Iniquity or on another site which we'll link to from this page. The point? To rally the RPG community around a topic; to share, to read and to comment on the ideas that your fellow gamers have developed when inspired by Winter. Everyone involved welcomes your attention and your feedback. Enjoy!

Sneak Preview! Thursday 22 September 2011
Article Claws of the Yeti - Sean Holland of the Sea Of Stars RPG Design Journal gives us these magic gloves for D&D 3E or Pathfinder. Don't hike the glacier without them.

Article Dark Winter (Adventure Aid) - Dennis N. Santana from The Spirits of Eden wrote a scenario for any game system about organized crime, smuggled contraband, and Ice Drakes in the frozen city of Oomash.

Friday 23 September 2011
Article Guest Blogger Winter Elves by Adam Page was the original article that kicked off the idea of the Winter Is Coming festival. Without this article none of this would have happened, so please enjoy this new elf race for D&D 4E.

Article Frost Giant's Sorrow is a simple system-independent encounter dealing with complex questions of morality and the nature of evil, written by Ben Gerber of Troll In The Corner.

Article The Golo-Golo comes from the mind of Chris Jackson of A Susurrus In Carcosa. Shadowrun GMs can use the stealthy yet compelling Golo-Golo to deadly effect, especially against characters walking alone in the snow.

Article Guest Blogger Our Town Is Dying by Brent Newhall of The New Haul
presents a Heroic Tier D&D 4E adventure in more of a narrative style. Please comment and let him know what you think of the fiction-as-adventure approach.

Saturday 24 September 2011
 

Article Guest Blogger The Nerathi Winterlands by Adam Page takes us on a tour of the beauty and hardships commonly found in the cold mountainous region north of the Nentir Vale.

Article Guest Blogger Snow Giant Illustration by Symatt of A Gentleman's Thoughts shows what may happen to unsuspecting travellers in The Giant Downs. Check out his CounterSketches for a collection of his work - great stuff!

Article An Alternate Finale For "Cairn of the Winter King" was written by Marc Allie on his blog The Learning DM. He adds an encounter for the D&D 4E adventure from Wizards where the PCs must fight off a dragon while escaping on an airship, using a method easily adaptable to any running battle involving the PCs controlling a vehicle escaping from a large monster.

Article Guest Blogger Iron Keep of the Barrow King is a system-independent adventure written by Kevin Reid-Rice which takes us on a dark journey into the frozen citadel of a vengeful undead dwarven smith. Save the children and recover priceless treasures before it all comes crashing down!

Sunday 25 September 2011
 

Article Guest Blogger Winter Festivals by Adam Page brings us back to the Nentir Vale and points north for a description of some winter traditions and celebrations, not all of them joyful.

Article Guest Blogger Winter Elf Illustration by Symatt of A Gentleman's Thoughts gives us a glimpse of a typical Winter Elf's summer outfit. I also retroactively added this image to the Winter Elf article.

Article Ice Walker Feat - Sean Holland of the Sea Of Stars RPG Design Journal wrote up a sure-footed feat for your winter-themed D&D 3E or Pathfinder game.

Article Frostbite by @bandofmisfits on the Roving Band of Misfits blog uses the D&D 4E disease rules to model this all-too-common cold weather affliction.

Article Guest Blogger Winter Is a Cruel Mistress by Chris Dundon of Realm Builders gives us D&D 4E mechanics for several winter hazards, including an Avalanche skill challenge, Deep Snow terrain, and Hypothermia as a disease.

Monday 26 September 2011
 

Article Guest Blogger The School of Cryomancy by Adam Page gives us somewhat colder options when choosing D&D 4E wizard powers, though it could be used with any Arcane spellcaster.

Article Channel Divinity: The Raven Queen - Joe Stroup of Extended Rest lets us tap into the wintry side of the Raven Queen with D&D 4E feats and a magic weapon for the faithful.

Article Frostburn by @bandofmisfits on the Roving Band of Misfits blog uses the D&D 4E alchemy rules to produce an ice grenade that causes vulnerability to cold.

Article The Linnorm Ice Throne - IronWolf of The Iron Tavern shows us a Pathfinder artifact tailor-made for a Winter King who enjoys privacy and creating ice prisons.

Article Guest Blogger Terrain Powers by Matthew Brenner of Blood, Sweat, and Dice provides three powers for your D&D 4E heroes to use when fighting in wintry terrain. And yes, he wrote up 4E snowball stats for the win.

Tuesday 27 September 2011
 

Article Guest Blogger Nights Watchman Theme by Adam Page is the first post directly inspired by George R. R. Martin's works that lets you build guards for your Wall in D&D 4E. I'm surprised it took this long, given the name of the festival.

Article Guest Blogger Snowy Guard Illustration by Symatt of A Gentleman's Thoughts shows us a shouted warning - the intro scene for many encounters.

Article Guest Blogger In the Cold of Winter by DMFumbl of the Dragonlance D&D Game Blog opens the armory for us with a collection of magic items and an alternate white dragon breath weapon for D&D 4E.

Wednesday 28 September 2011
 

Article Guest Blogger Threats of the Winterlands by Adam Page gives us a brief 
treatise on the perilous terrain found only in the Winterlands. Designed with D&D 4E in mind, these statistic-free feature descriptions can easily adapt to any system.

Article The Iceshard Skeleton from the mind of Chris Jackson of A Susurrus In Carcosa gives us stats for giant frozen skeletons in D&D 4E. They're Level 20 Brutes, so they'll leave a mark on your Paragon-tier heroes.

Article Snow Drift & Snowy Trees by @bandofmisfits on the Roving Band of Misfits blog provides stats for snow drifts and dumping snow from a tree for your D&D 4E game. Between this and the snowball stats, the Struggle in the Snow Cage Match is On.

Article Season Content Suite One: Winter by silentjudas of Dungeons and Imaginings gives us a wide range of winter goodies for your Swords and Wizardry game, including a random table detailing What's Under The Snow. You know you want to roll against that table.

Article The Architect DM: Winter Is Coming by Danny Rupp from 2011 Best Blog Gold Ennie winner Critical Hits gives some appropriately architectural thoughts on how the character of your environment will influence how you design castles and other buildings.

Article Guest Blogger The Fenoriad Campaign Wiki by Tim Emrick lets us browse the wiki he created for his arctic campaign under the BESM 2E rules. You can find all sorts of ideas to adapt for any winter-themed game in here.

Article Guest Blogger The Endless Winter -  David Flor of Walk in the Dark produced a huge detailed adventure for 4 to 6 12th level D&D 4E heroes. It's a 43 page PDF complete with maps, and the adventure was designed to get the heroes to level 13. I'm in awe of the amount of work that went into The Endless Winter, so grab your copy now.

Thursday 29 September 2011

Article Guest Blogger Storm Caller Theme - Adam Page wrote up this weather-controlling theme for D&D 4E arcane classes. If you've ever wanted to call down a storm to punish your enemies in Heroic tier, now you can.

Article Rime Wraith by roninkakuhito of 30 Pounds of Graph Paper tells us about a malevolent cloud of frozen fog. It's not much to look at, but steer clear if you don't want to freeze solid.

Article Magical Top Hat by @bandofmisfits on the Roving Band of Misfits blog gives us a magical hat that conjure a Simple Snow Golem in D&D 4E. Enchanted Coal and Enchanted Corncob Pipe sold separately.

Article A Winter Chase by IronWolf of The Iron Tavern uses the Pathfinder rules for chases to design obstacles for a chase through a snow-covered city. These are solid ideas for urban hazards that translate easily to other systems.

Article The Plane Of Ice by Jeremy Morgan of Stormin' Da Castle gives us a tour of the Paraelemental Plane of Ice in D&D 4E. A great update of the 2E inner plane, it contains the 4 best words that express an idea I love: Gems Of Frozen Thoughts.

Article Guest Blogger Druid of Winter - Matt Maranda of Monsters, Mazes, and Magic starts rounding out the D&D 4E "seasonal" druids with his Druid of Winter. With a raven companion to penalize enemy saves, this durable druid causes slow, fire and cold vulnerability, and eventually an immediate reaction attack that knocks enemies prone.

Article Guest Blogger Rock Fall Illustration by Symatt of A Gentleman's Thoughts shows us how much a high strength and high cold resistance boosts survival in a colder climate. Good rolls can't hurt when you're catching rocks.

Friday 30 September 2011

Article Guest Blogger Winter's Wrath - Grim Tree Games of the Grim Tree Games Blog created this adventure for D&D 4E, though it's easily adapted to other systems. It has a Lovecraftian feel, where someone steals a powerful artifact and tinkers with Things Man Was Not Meant To Know for their own gain.

Article Crown of the Winter King by Mark Perotti of Elf Steaks and Halfling Bacon shows us a D&D 4E magic crown created for fey royalty and discarded as an insult. Read the backstory if nothing else; it reads like a novel in less than a page.

Article Snow Golem by @bandofmisfits on the Roving Band of Misfits blog has the Snow Golem's stats for Paragon Tier D&D 4E. Beware when you bloody one of them as more snow critters rise up to attack.

Article Guest Blogger The Snow Queen - Jeff Dougan of A Man's Brain-Attic sings us out on an Epic note as he shows us his high Epic Tier D&D 4E version of Hans Christian Anderson's Snow Queen and the Magic Mirror from the Princess series of books by Jim C. Hines. Go download the PDF and put the screws to your heroes. Enjoy!

Saturday 01 October 2011

Article Guest Blogger Claus Acolyte - Kevin Campbell of the Organ House created a new base class for D&D 4E, inspired by the Dark Future of Warhammer 40K. All the powers for every level are available on the downloadable PDF. NOTE: This should have been published on Wednesday, but I misfiled the email. My bad!

Monday 03 October 2011

Article Winter's Reach Campaign Outline - Obsidian Crane of Daily Encounter wrote up his D&D 4E campaign through all of Heroic tier, from humble beginnings in Truevaile to the climactic final battle against the sorcerer Jargesh. He also includes notes for extending the campaign into Paragon and Epic tiers.

Tuesday 11 October 2011

Article The Night's Watch - Daniel M. Perez of Dragon Age Oracle gives us a version of Night's Watch Rangers for Dragon Age, based on the writeup of the Grey Warden in Set 2.

Wednesday 12 October 2011

Article Guest Blogger Rime Golem - Jerry LeNeave of the The Dread Gazebo gives us a fourthcore-ready deadly D&D 4E Heroic Tier construct made of ice, an ideal companion for any Cryomancer. Wish him luck in dealing with the script kiddies who hacked his blog over the past couple of weeks.

Article Guest Blogger Rime Golem Illustration - Tast gives us an image of a Rime Golem that looks like it was pulled from a Monster Vault supplement.

Other Links
To read the intro post, go to Winter Is Coming Is Coming.
For code to put a Winter Is Coming logo on your site, go to Logo Code.
To sign up as a participant, go to the Participant Sign-Up Page.
For submitting your article to the festival, go to the Submission Page.
To see Winter Is Coming mentions on other blogs, go to the Media Mentions Page.
For discussing the Festival as a whole, go to the Feedback and Discussion Page.
To submit wintry flash fiction in the after party, go to Ice in the Margins.

For a preliminary Festival Retrospective and Stats, go to the Retrospective Page.
To read behind-the-scenes notes, go Behind the Scenes of Winter Is Coming.
For a look at outreach with tips for next time, go to the Marketing Lessons Page.


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