... now with 35% more arrogance!


I’m John Laviolette, also known as “Talysman the Ur-Beatle”. The Nine and Thirty Kingdoms has been a brainstorming, testing, and feedback point for my old school fantasy role-playing game ideas, as well as an occasional stage for my rants.

My primary interest is Original Dungeons & Dragons, in particular the first three booklets. That’s right: I play with the original d6 hit dice for everyone, all weapons do 1d6 damage, low or no bonuses for ability scores, no spells higher than 6th level except as scrolls. I focus on the original three classes + a modified version of the thief, but I’m lenient with additional classes as long as they are mostly just mods of the original classes, with about the same number of abilities.

If any of those statements enrages you, you should probably move along…

I have some material for download here, and will be adding more. See the Maps page for downloadable maps, for example, or the LMGM page for Last-Minute Game Master materials.

Creative Commons licenseMany of the works I post are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0
(CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) license. Not all of them, but I’ll include the CC graphic on posts or in PDFs where they are. If you really want to use my material in a commercial product, contact me and we’ll see what we can work out.

Email is not a good way to contact me, for a couple reasons, but I’m on several social media outlets, usually as “urbeatle” or sometimes “talysman”, where I can get it.
  • Best Place to Reach Me: Twitter (@Urbeatle). although I post more about Star Trek or MST3k/RiffTrax than RPGs. While you’re there, also follow the @OSRBlogosphere to get notified of every blog post by OSR bloggers.
  • Two Other Good Places to Reach Me: I’m on Reddit as urbeatle and on the OD&D forums as talysman . I check both places at least once a day.
  • Another Place to Reach Me: I’m on the OSR Discord server that Chris McDowall of Bastionland set up. Just check for Talysman there. I really should check it more often, though.
  • Also on Facebook in the Original D&D group, but I mostly use FB to keep in contact with close friends and family.
I will notify people on Twitter, Reddit, and the OD&D FB group when I post major blog posts (usually twice a week,) My planned posting schedule is Mondays and Thursdays, with miscellaneous unplanned extras when I feel the need or want to comment on a current blogosphere topic. At least one Monday every month will be Map Monday. Things like useful tables will usually be released on Thursdays.

For one more way to contact me, I’ve opened this page for comments, . I have comment moderation turned on for posts older than a few days to control spamming, so you won’t see your post at first, but I will see it.


  1. Hey, I've been away for years, but I wanted to say I'm happy you are still blogging. I always appreciated your relentless pursuit of new gaming approaches. I hope you are doing well.

    1. Thanks! I can't remember if I've seen a post one the Receding Rules blog recently. Are you still blogging? Planning to return?

    2. Yeah, I was feeling pretty isolated because of the lockdown and so I started posting again.

  2. Hello John. I wanted to know if you Legion of Super Science mod of InSpectres was under Creative Commons. I know a lot of your products are, but I wanted to create something that would equally be Creative Commons and use your materials with it. You can send me an e-mail or respond to this post if you have any questions.

    1. LoSS isn't under Creative Commons, one reason being because it's a mod of InSpectres. I believe I asked Jared for permission.

      If you contact Jared and get permission, or if you just want to risk it, you can use some of my materials, but I'd prefer if you not link to the file. It's kind of crappy and I'm not maintaining it. Instead, maybe just a credit like "some material taken with permission from a game draft by John Laviolette" and maybe a link to this blog.