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Tales from the Sanctum

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Welcome

The Sanctum Secorum podcast plumbs the depths of Appendix N as it applies to DCC RPG. Each show reviews one piece of Appendix N media — be it literature or film — and then discusses how to bring aspects of it to the table for your DCC game. We explore how the selected piece might already easily fit into particular modules and DCC settings, and we highlight one specific DCC module that really ties into the Appendix N material.

Enter the Sanctum Secorum… and be inspired.

Sanctum Secorum #42 – Arena

Get the free Sanctum Secorum #42 Companion HERE!

Amid escalating conflict between Earth and mysterious alien Outsiders, massive armadas from both sides are set to meet in what looks to be an evenly matched battle. Bob Carson, the pilot of a small one-man scout ship blacks out while engaging with an Outsider counterpart. When he awakens, he finds himself naked in a small enclosed, circular area about 250 yards (230 m) across. In the distance is an Outsider, which Carson labels a “Roller” because its form is that of a red sphere about 1 yard in diameter with several dozen tentacles.

Carson hears a voice in his mind that identifies itself as an evolved intelligence that has decided to intervene because the upcoming war would utterly destroy one side and hurt the other so badly that it would not be able to one day advance into an evolved intelligence like itself. This Entity therefore chose one individual from each species to fight in single combat. The loser will doom its kind to instant extinction. Carson and his opponent discover through trial and error that there is an invisible barrier between them, and that only inanimate objects can cross it. Carson tries to communicate with the Roller, to see if a compromise is possible, but receives a mental message of unremitting hatred. The battle is joined.

Welcome to the Sanctum Secorum podcast. Tonight we look to the past while we discuss Fredric Brown’s classic story, Arena.

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Sanctum Secorum #41 – Gone with the Gods

Get the free Sanctum Secorum #41 Companion HERE!

The main character of “Gone with the Gods” would seem to be a thinly disguised Offutt, a writer who turns out a prodigious number of novels at the back and call of his editor, writing in whatever genre is hot at the moment to fulfill the needs of an insatiable audience. When his editor calls him to look into the possibility that a former fraternity brother of the editor’s has invented a time machine, and asks him to check out the possibility that the device is real so the editor can invest in it, the authors finds himself looking into the far-fetched claim. Of course the time machine, disguised as a VW microbus, eventually works and Harvey Moss, the author, Mark Ventnor, the publisher, and Ben Corrick, the inventor, all take their turns traveling in the bus, only to learn its limitations. It can only go one day into the future, but anywhen in the past. Although it remains tied to Earth, so they don’t have to worry about showing up in outer space, they do figure out how to take it to different places on Earth. Eventually, in order to make some money, Moss travels back in time to spur human development and plant evidence that he can use to write a best selling book that Ventnor can publish and sell.

Welcome to the Sanctum Secorum podcast. Tonight we look to the past while we discuss Andrew J. Offutt’s tongue in cheek time travel story, Gone with the Gods.

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News: Sanctum Secorum Companion Bundles

Just starting out with the Sanctum Secorum? Looking at that long list of downloadable ‘zines and thinking about how much you have missed? Well, catching up on your reading is easy now that the Sanctum Secorum has made annual bundles available via Drivethrurpg!

Grab them for free and bring some new life to your table!

2015 Bundle
2016 Bundle
2017 Bundle

Sanctum Secorum #40 – A Martian Odyssey

Get the free Sanctum Secorum #40 Companion HERE!

Early in the 21st century, nearly twenty years after the invention of atomic power and ten years after the first lunar landing, the four-man crew of the Ares has landed on Mars in the Mare Cimmerium. A week after the landing, Dick Jarvis, the ship’s American chemist, sets out south in an auxiliary rocket to photograph the landscape. Eight hundred miles out, the engine on Jarvis’ rocket gives out, and he crash-lands into one of the Thyle regions. Rather than sit and wait for rescue, Jarvis decides to walk back north to the Ares.

Welcome to the Sanctum Secorum podcast. Tonight we turn our gaze to the red planet, Mars, while we discuss Stanley A. Weinbaum’s, A Martian Odyssey.

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Sanctum Secorum #39b – Halloween 2018

Get the free Sanctum Secorum Appendix N(ightmares) HERE!

It has been far too long since the Sanctum Secorum unleashed a special, holiday episode. So, just in time for Halloween, the Keepers of Mysteries present a trio of sinister stories pulled from the pages of Tales from the Magician’s Skull. Each macabre story is paired with its own adventure, to help you cause even the boldest player to shudder.

Issue #0, “The Way of Serpents” by Howard Andrew Jones.
The story begins with the hero, Hanuvar, as a captive of a kingdom of islanders. A great raid is coming and Hanuvar is offered his freedom if he will travel to the lair of the great winged serpent and ask it to recall an ancient bargain to protect the kingdom.

Issue #1, “There Was an Old Fat Spider” by C. L. Werner.
Karl, a penniless trapper, comes across the ultimate trap. He befriends it to do his bidding, studying its feeding cycles and leading those who’ve bullied him the most straight into its lair. Losing livestock was bothersome, but when people start going missing, Rudolph, Beastcatcher Royal, is sent to the hamlet to investigate.

Issue #2, “Stolen Witness” by James Enge.
When a pair of thains of the sorcerous order of the Graith of Guardians are discovered dead and the powerful relic they were set watch over known as the Witness Stone goes missing, Morlock Ambrosius, a low ranking member with a blemished past, is tasked to help with the investigation into the very highest members of the order itself. The task is not an easy one – the stone can be used by powerful seers to compel those who have touched it into acting on their behalf, even wiping the memories of those under its sway. And little does Morlock suspect that the Defender brought in by the order to solve the crime, Naevros syr Tol, hopes to use him as bait to lure the various suspects into revealing the true thief…

In addition to a special show with a special format, the Sanctum Secorum’s library is pleased to unleash Appendix N(ightmares), a compilation PDF of every new monster presented within the pages of the Sanctum Secorum Companion ‘zine. This FREE PDF volume places more than 150 monsters at your fingertips, to terrify, befuddle, and perhaps even TPK your party.

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Sanctum Secorum #39 – Greyfax Grimwald

Get the free Sanctum Secorum #39 Companion HERE!

Drawn together by an enchanted summons, three loyal friends — Bear, Dwarf, and Otter — bid farewell to their fair home in the kingdom of Lorini and embark on a magical journey to the fabled World Beyond Time. A place where glows the ageless Circle of Light.

Along the way they meet many marvelous friends, including the mighty wizard Greyfax Grimwald. But little does the trio realize the dangers that await them: the gloomy border of the Northerland … the green fires of the Palace of Darkness…evil spells and dark enchantments … the dread city of Humans and — most fearsome of all — the evil Dark Queen.

Welcome to the Sanctum Secorum podcast. Tonight we take a walk on the wild side with a special-length episode where we discuss Greyfax Grimwald, the first of the Circle of Light series and pair it with Primal Tales.

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Sanctum Secorum #38 – Nine Princes in Amber

Get the free Sanctum Secorum #38 Companion HERE!

Carl Corey wakes in a medical clinic, with little to no knowledge of who he is or how he got there. He suspects he is being over-medicated, so he overpowers the nurse and doctor and escapes his room. He finds the manager of the clinic, and learns that he was recovering from a car accident in a private clinic, paid for by his sister, Evelyn Flaumel.

He flees and heads to her house. She addresses him as Corwin and calls herself Flora. Hiding his lack of memory, he convinces her to let him stay. In Flora’s library he locates a set of customized Tarot cards— the Trumps—whose Major Arcana are replaced with images which he recognizes as his family. As he looks over the cards he remembers all his brothers: sneaky Random, Julian the hunter, well-built Gérard, arrogant Eric, himself, Benedict the master tactician and swordsman, sinister Caine, scheming Bleys, and the mysterious Brand. He also views his four sisters: Flora who offered him sanctuary, Deirdre who was dear to him, reserved Llewella, and Fiona, whom Corwin hated. Carl Corey investigates, discovering the truth, piece by piece: he is really Prince Corwin, of Amber, the one true world of which our Earth is just a shadow. He is one of nine men who might rule Amber, if he can fight his way past the armies of his older brother Eric.

Welcome to the Sanctum Secorum podcast. Returning from our Gen Con Hiatus, tonight we discuss Nine Princes in Amber, the first book of Roger Zelazny’s Amber Chronicles and we match it up with the noir goodness that it Nowhere City Nights.

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News – Lankhmar Character Sheets

Ask and ye shall receive.

Since the PDF release, DCC fans have been clamoring for character sheets that reflect the changes found in DCC Lankhmar. Who are we at the Sanctum Secorum to refuse such a challenge. Based on the sheets used in the DCC Lankhmar playtest campaign (and then expanded and polished), these unofficial sheets are released with the blessings of the Dark Master for all you alley-bashers out there! Just click the link below and get them for your campaign!

Lankhmar Character Sheets