Mixed Signals

Straight-forward gaming

Upon activation, the floor, walls, and ceiling of a particular stretch of dungeon, or a particular room, begin seeping an impossibly sticky glue. The characters are trapped, unless hovering or flying.

Characters must make Strength or Saving Throws to move, and will require 1d4 of them to clear...

In 2014, probably not on April Fool's day, Frog God Games released the Book of Dirty Tricks, a sort of DMG (Dungeon Master's Guide) addendum containing advice for dungeon masters on how to make a game more challenging.

It's a fairly small book, being only about 78 pages, but it's packed...

Many people think D&D just cannot be played in under 8 or even 4 hours. Yet I've been running one-shot campaigns with friends and at local conventions for the past two years, in about 4 to 2 hours per game. Look, D&D can be laborious if it's always only an epic. Sometimes D&D needs to be episodic,...

The party comes upon a yawning chasm. On either side are rows of very wide and tall pillars reaching up to the shadows of the cavern roof. One of the pillars appears to have fallen over from one side of the cataract to the other, and can now act as a bridge. The pillar is wide enough that crossing...

Less a cursed magic item than an poorly-made one, this appears as a high-backed wooden chair of ornate design. Upon sitting in the chair and speaking a command word (subtly carved into one of the chair's arms; careful investigation will reveal it), this item rises from the floor.

A seated indi...

Icicles hang tenuously from the ceiling. A failed Dexterity save knocks 1d20 icicles loose. They fall to the ground and shatter, creating a frosty mist that refreezes in the nasal passages and lungs, causing 1d6 damage for 1d4 rounds until melted.

The ice particles melt in 3 minutes.

A su...

Often used to protect something, this trap appears as the bust of a large person or god, made entirely of stone. It will radiate magic, if looked for. The bust only shows this figure from the waist up, but it is nonetheless gigantic. Its head is raised to the ceiling or sky, while its hands clenche...

This is either a tool of assassination, or a horrid curse, depending upon how it is used. This item appears as a somewhat battered copper drinking cup. It will radiate magic if tested for. This cup looks somewhat old, but in reality, it is quite ancient, hailing from a time when political intrigu...

A lavish cloak, embroidered with runes and patterns of great, old, and forgotten households of the frozen North.

It is unnaturally comfortable and protective, providing +1 to saves against environmental effects.

However, while in possession of this cloak, a player cannot recall their own na...

The walls and ceiling here are covered in metal plates, with intricate carvings and reliefs depicting terrible rites by some lunatic cult. At the GM's discretion, there might be clues in the reliefs, or there might be bodies here, burned into a charcoal state.

Either way, upon triggering, the...

It's Pi day today in the USA and any nation that expresses dates in the backwards format of day/month. In honour of over-thinking numbers, I present to you my efforts to map human ages to RPG levels.

I'd always meant to generate myself as a character in a game, but since I often play fantasy...

This appears to be a medium shield made of high quality wood, steel, and leather, which will will radiate magic. If tested, it will prove to give its wearer a +2 bonus to both AC and all Saving Throws. It will seem light and unencumbering at this point.

Upon first being used in actual combat,...

Created for the merchant Ghaskari the Greedy, who sought to make a gift of it to his rival, this elaborately-embroidered and bejeweled coin purse imbues coins withdrawn from it with a deficiency in satisfaction. When a player spends money taken from this purse, a payee who would normally be satis...

The floor here is not paved, but covered in dirt, gravel, and sand. As characters walk, 1d4 of them must make a Dex or Saving Throw, or be caught in fast-moving dry quicksand. Characters have just 1-2 minutes (50-50% chance) to find some way out.

Magic might help. A long pole which extends beyo...

This is an item for clerics and thieves. It appears as a ring with a stone of shiny black onyx. It will radiate powerful magic if tested for.

The Shade Ring gives the wearer influence over ghosts and ghost-like entities. Such beings will see the wearer as a person to be trusted and followed, a...

Trigger warning: Food,starvation

Game masters: Be sensitive to your players before using this cursed item.

This cursed item has to do with food, and may upset anyone with a history of eating disorders or who knows someone with a eating disorder, or anyone who experiences discomfort over...