Sunday, June 15, 2014

[Interview #1] Tim Shorts, Gothridge Manor blog

My first interview is with Tim Shorts.

He's the writer of the Gothridge Manor blog. Gothridge Manor has been kicking around for 5 years now (Congrats!) and was made famous for it's Sleestak Sunday posts (who doesn't love Sleestaks?).

Tim is also the author of two gaming supplements: Knowledge Illuminates, a Swords & Wizardry adventure, and Starter Adventures.

And, as a longtime fan of gaming 'zines, I'm very impressed with his ongoing The Manor 'zine. Six issues of this 'zine have been published and you can get them on his site.

Now, on to the interview!

Otyugh Talk: What's your criteria for making a new magic item?

Tim Shorts: My criteria for a magic item is, not let it be generic. I don't want a world filled with +1 swords that were discarded because there is a glut of +2 swords. I like magic items that are simple, but useful. And the more powerful they are the more dangerous they become. Magic has no true master. 

[Ed. Check out Tim's post on the Wand of Horrible Death, truly a unique magic item.]

OT: As a player, how do you help the GM?

TS: As a player I always try to see where the GM is going and play along, but within my character's motivation. This way it moves the adventure along and we get to explore the world more. Also if my character plans on doing something I'll let the GM know at the end of the session what I plan to do. Out of game ways I help, is I am the initiative keeper for combat to lessen some of his duties. Our group has these kind of duties divided up. Someone is the treasurer that writes down all our loot so we can divvy it up later. Another guy sets up the Google Hangout. 

OT: Otyugh (obviously) beats Owl Bear. Then what happens?

TS: Obviously. And it has enough monster xp to raise to the next level of existence to becomes a dire otyugh. It is now a 9+1 hit dice creature, its putrescent skin becomes more durable and increases its AC to 1[18], and it grows another pair of tentacles and gets to attack 4 times with them doing 2d6 each and its horrible mouth wides into a gaping maw that can bites for 1d10 damage. And still maintains the generous feature of distributing fatal diseases. 

Tim also said "Otyugh Talk sounds fun and cool. And I love that it's an Otyugh. They don't get enough love. I had a dead one make an appearance in issue #3." [Ed. The Manor, issue 3, pg 12-13]

Thanks, Tim, for kindly answering my three questions and getting this blog off to an excellent start.

And you're right: Otyughs do deserve much more love and "screen-time" in games.

Stay tuned for the next exciting interview......


  1. Thanks for choosing me to be the first. Now I need to make my save vs. fatal diseases.

  2. Good job snagging Tim and a very nice interview. Looking forward to seeing more.

  3. Nice. Tim is a great GM helper. He often gets a gold star on his character sheet.


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