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New Grinning Skull Studios Releases for July: Part Three

26 Jul

Now for something different, a new title in the LARP LAB series of printable props for LARP & RPGs.

LARP LAB: Fantasy Beer, Wine & Spirits Bottle Labels.

This book is designed to help create props from your old bottles and add some gaming flavour to your sessions. We present a selection of fantasy beverages from the “Grim’s Amazing D100 Tables” title: 100 Fantasy beverages for all fantasy RPGs and allow you to print them out to stick on your own stuff! Sized in three sizes and in full colour, we hope that it’ll bring a smile to your player’s faces!!

Available here from our RPGnow storefront: http://www.rpgnow.com/product/216748/LARP-LAB-Fantasy-Beer-Wine–Spirits-Bottle-Labels?src=hottest_filtered

Also from our DriveThruRPG storefront too (link below)

  

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Crowdfunding Spotlight: Hammer Steam Custom Design Copper Coins on Indiegogo

9 Jun

I wanted to draw your attention to this crowd-funder, that doesn’t seem to be getting any love. Hammer Steam are offering 20 people the chance to get their very own hammered copper coins to their own design specs with this project. Personally, I think that they are quite nice, they have an authentic look and come in a custom box to keep them in.

They seem perfect for LARP and RPG props or counters. My only hesitation is that of the finished designs, if I wanted to design and get myself a set, I’d want it to be exactly how I’d designed it, and judging from the pics, they do seem a bit ropey (the designs that is!) hopefully that wouldn’t be the case.

It’s quite reminiscent of something I’m currently planning (more of that when I have something to show) but I had to show you lot these potentially cool prop coins for your game.

Anyway, check it out on Indiegogo if it looks like something you’d be up for getting for yourself. There are 5 days left and so far, it’s had no takers, but I reckon it’s a project that is worth some love, so show some support and tell them the Grinning Skull sent you!!

Source: Custom Design Copper Coins! | Indiegogo

5 reasons I F*%king love Hawk the Slayer!

3 Jun

I’m sure this movie needs no introductions. You can call this one of my guilty pleasure’s of the celluloid variety, as ever since I first saw it, I loved it ever since.

In an age growing up where fantasy media was limited to a handful of films on VHS, no one could ever understand why I liked this movie so much, no amount of me telling them would make them understand why. So with that in mind, I’m going to present five reasons I fucking love that film, even to this day!

1. THE SOUNDTRACK

The music and theme tune on the movie is brilliant, a weird mish mash of synth-pop, fantasy and nostalgia. It suits the film and themes perfectly (I think) A real curiosity of sorts, but cool none the less. Check it out:

2. THE CAST

What can I say about the cast ensemble for this low budget fantasy movie? Well, lets begin with the iconic stars in this film. Jack Palance as the older scarred and evil brother (and Hawk’s Nemesis) Voltan, The giant Gort played by “Carry on” mainstay Bernard Bresslaw, Shane Bryant as Drogo, Annette Crosby (Margret Meldrew from one foot in the grave), Patricia Quinn (Rocky Horror show)  as the witch, Harry Andrews, Roy Kinnear, Warren Clarke, and so many more decent well known British actors. There’s even Ferdy Mayne and the guy who was the original Jabba the Hutt in Star Wars IV (the cut out bit that was later CGI and put back in) Quite a decent cast for such a low budget.

3. THE ACTION

The frantic and sometimes comical nature of the action scenes is something I hold a soft spot for. Crow’s multiple cut and edited arrow shots were pure cinematic cheese,  as kids I remember my mates wanting to be him in games we played at school. Even though Crow the elf, was in my opinion the least developed of the party of heroes, he was bad ass due to this quick cheapo edit effect!

4. THE CHEESE

Hawk the Slayer is no masterpiece of cinema. I admit that it  was never going to win Oscars for any part of the movie, acting or script. What makes it good is that it is not good. Sure, it’s entertaining enough, but it’s no LOTR trilogy, but it has that feel of my childhood days playing red box D&D home brew adventures. This film is cheesy as hell, a little bit camp, and ropey SFX, but I still love it just for old times sake!

5. THE HERITAGE

When I speak of heritage, by that I refer back to the cheese,in which the plot and setup of the movie, is pretty much just that of probably many of our childhood D&D and RPG games. Beat for beat, these standard fantasy RPG tropes are in force. The party of heroes, the hero’s brother being the big bad, defend the Abbey mission, raid the enemy camp, the showdown etc. How many of us out there used this movie as direct inspiration for our own RPGs, wargames, and LARP (trust me, loads of LARPers has cited this movie as inspiration, it’s almost like one anyway!) Also this movie has a real Hammer films vibe too, now that’s real heritage!

If you haven’t seen it, go away and watch it NOW, if your into RPGs, fantasy or similar. If you have, go re watch it.

I now retreat to dig out my DVD copy of it from the vaults to become a starry eyed 80’s kid again and remember good old times….

Crowdfunding Spotlight: Metal Gaming Coins by Never Stop Tops & Coins Kickstarter

4 Sep

There have been lots of new and interesting Crowdfunders on the net in the time I’ve been distracted. Now I’m back in the groove I’ve got one for you LARPers and RPGers. This time is a great collection of  fantasy coins for your games by Never stop tops & coins.

Continue reading

Media hype wargaming connection with convicted murderer (here we go again…)

31 May

 

Well, the UK press are at it again, and I don’t just mean talking crap and hacking phones, this time us wargaming bods are under attack. It all concerns this fellow in the picture trying to dress like an assassin (which is exactly what he became as it happens…)

The story goes that Wayne Smith, a jilted husband, took revenge on his wife’s new boyfriend and killed him with a kitchen knife after travelling by train to the guys home, stabbing him at his front door. To try and make an alibi, he claimed to have spent the time in question at a friends house, playing (wait for it…) Necromunda!

DNA from his discarded mask and kit pretty much nailed him bang to rights, and now he’s doing bird for murder.

It seems as if the press has latched onto the Necromunda alibi and tried to turn it into another bashing of the hobby (Like the 80’s D&D satanic bullcrap and Fighting Fantasy calling to be banned etc, the list is quite long if you care to look it up. Even White wolf came underfire for the vampire RPG…) Just lets say that GWs old classic tabletop skirmish game has just been added to the ranks of demonised games.

If you take a look at the pictures of the guy, it looks as if he was a LARPer at some stage, but strangely, there is no mention of it, rather it has been lumped under the banner of wargaming.

Well done Daily mail, for spouting yet more crap and discrediting the UK press even further than was thought possible, what is even funnier, is that the article has an info box that gives you some data about the game (for the moral middleclass readers who probably don’t have a clue what the fuck Necromunda is!)

Truth is, a psycho could come from any walk of life. He could have any profession, any hobby or interest, be any race, gender or religion. Why not just focus on the real meat on the bone.

I know countless people who have played and enjoyed Necromunda, and as yet have not killed a person, yet I actually do know and have met “real” murderers, and none of them had the slightest interest in wargaming, RPGs or LARP.

The mind boggles.

CCTV of Wayne Smith en route to stab love rival Jon Britton | Mail Online.

 

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