The name 'Troll Hammer Press' was inspired by, and is an homage to, the three magic Trollhammers of Trollhalla, and was additionally inspired by the song Trollhammaren by Finntroll.

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Tunnels & Trolls written by Ken St. Andre, copyright © Flying Buffalo Inc. All hail the Trollgod and his Champions of Trollhalla!

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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

~ the game as it is played ~

In Eald Scōl #s 2 and 3, I discussed Ken St. Andre's Monsters! Monsters! and Tunnels & Trolls 1st Edition respectively. After my recent explorations of T&T1E, I picked up M!M! again and started playing a few solos to compare the two.

I started with Goblin Lake (also by Ken St. Andre). I decided to use the slightly different character attribute modifiers included in the solo to create my goblins, it seemed to give them a better edge. After losing several goblins to Ken's wicked designs, one finally survived, sucked down and spewed out of the dungeon by a whirlpool:

Ogroth, The Lost King of the Fishsquish Goblins
Warrior/Goblin
Level: 1
EP: 385
4'7", 113 lbs.
Lang: Goblin

ST: 13
IQ: 11
LK: 22
CN: 10
DX: 26
CH: ? (7)
SP: N

Adds: +25
Missile Adds: +39

Weapons/Possessions
Flint Dagger (2 dice)
lizard skin loincloth
small net
sack with 100 GP

Obviously, he didn't make it out with much more than his life! Ogroth's survival starts my 'stable' of M!M! monster characters. I've always had a soft spot for goblins, so this was a fun series of adventures, even if most of my scaly little fellows ended up toast.

Next, I sent the following chap to The Blue Frog Tavern (by James Wilson):

Varmun Glorg
Rogue/Half-Orc
Level: 1
EP: 410
9'6", 338 lbs.
Lang: Common, Orc, +1 more

ST: 20
IQ: 15
LK: 13
CN: 15
DX: 13
CH: 11
SP: F

Adds: +10
Missile Adds: +11

Weapons/Possessions
Pole Ax (6 dice)
2 Francesca (2+2)
Sax (1+5)
Scale Armor (4 hits)
clothes, boots
backpack
50' rope

He started without any spells. The game is still in progress, but so far he is doing well, having already accumulated a Death Vortex Blade, a Silver Shield, and a magic 30' green rope. Unfortunately, he also contracted Elephant Foot Curse, not very helpful for sneaking about! I will be returning to the adventure soon to see if Varmun survives. At first, I created another goblin for this one, but it died almost immediately, so I figured the half-orc was a bit tougher and had a better chance for survival.

After Varmun finishes his foray beneath BFT, I plan on running the following roughneck through The Toughest Dungeon In The World (again, by that oh-so-sadistic-solo-writer, Ken St. Andre):

Thonngarrd
Rogue/Troll
Level: 1
EP: 0
12'8", 1400 lbs.
Lang: Troll, Common

ST: 36
IQ: 13
LK: 13
CN: 42
DX: 10
CH: ! (17)
SP: N

Adds: +25
Missile Adds: +25

He will start naked and unarmed, as per the directions to TTDITW, and again, no spells to start with. I look forward to see what is in store for him, as I've heard this is one TOUGH solo. Perhaps I will include a future update of his adventure, as well as the final fate of Varmun the Half-Orc

After having now played both T&T1E and M!M!, I can very much say they are two sides of the same coin, perfect companions to one another. Crossing-over from game to game should work effortlessly, and the M!M! booklet makes an excellent Monster Tome for the early rules. A melding of the two could provide a framework for a very satisfying campaign, solo or GM, Old School style. I've thought of playing through the Arena of Khazan (also by KSA), one of my all-time favorite solos, using the M!M! rules. I also have thoughts towards a T&T1E crossover with Arena of Khazan, further supplemented by a set of gladiator rules I picked up from Ken a while back. That is one of the BEST parts of being a T&T fan, EVERYTHING is cross-compatible from edition to edition, with just a small amount of tweaking, if any. How many RPGs can boast that?

Maybe one day Ogroth, The Lost King of the Fishsquish Goblins, will make the acquaintance of my only survivng T&T1E solo character to date, who made it through Buffalo Castle (Rick Loomis) and Labyrinth (Lee Russell):

Bott Wizer
Warrior/Human
Level: 2
EP: 1876

ST: 16
IQ: 14
LK: 28
CN: 17 (+6 armor hits)
DX: 23
CH: 10


Adds: +36
Missile Adds: +47

Weapons/Possessions
Doric Silencer Sword (3)
Francisca (2+2)
Dirk (1+2)
Self Bow w/ 23 arrows (1+5)
Ringmail (6 hits)
clothes, boots
backpack
compass
131 gold coins
golden apple (5gp)
vial - restores 1 CN
poultice - absorbs 25 hp for 1 fight

Notes
the god Ares has granted Bott 5 permanent combat adds

Unfortunately, there are no legitimate sources of T&T1E, but you can get your own copy of Monsters! Monsters!, and many of the solos I've mentioned, by swinging by Flying Buffalo's website.

~~~

Copyright 2012 Paul Ingrassia

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