Holy Crap Game Books (re: the Ptolus book)

I recently purchased a used copy of Ptolus: City by the Spire mega-manual and...holy crap. This is a game book. There is really nothing else like it. There are some great game products out there, chock-full of stuff, but this...wow. I know, I know - I'm about a decade late on this, but let me share the moment. I'll never run it, but it provides a ton of inspiration and endless bathroom reading.

(Best of all, I only spent 55 $heckles on it!)

Any other Holy Crap Books out there? Anything comparable? The new Glorantha books seem to perhaps out-do Ptolus.
 
Possibly "Castle Whiterock"? A boxed megadungeon, ranging from 1st to 15th level; it's a big one. I particularly like the way it's split into four colour-coded books, with Red, Blue, Green, and Black covers - very old school. :)
 

blueznl

Villager
At the time I considered buying it (probably should have done) but didn't.

Life got in the way, and this thing was expensive... Even getting it printed today, with one of the online printing services, it still ain't cheap.

But... I did buy the .PDF versions, and enjoyed them immensely. So much that I decided to print a copy and get it properly bound. A couple of years ago I printed (most of) the pages, only to stack them in a box and put them in the attack, busy with other things.

One more project to accumulated dust.

Until today...

191118 - ptolus 4 - hardcovers.jpg

191118 - ptolus 5 - sample.jpg

Hardcover, rubber glued linen spines. Sorry, no leather on the outside 😅 This hobby is already expensive enough :whistle:

There are a few differences with the original Ptolus book:

  • I used the .PDF versions which sometimes have 'double' page numbers
  • I've added relevant information (read: pages) from Secret of the Delvers Guild and some other online resources, then sorted / inserted them in appropriate places
  • Parts of the Ptolus Sketchbooks were added, again as close as possible to the references in the original Ptolus book
  • I added some colored paper to separate sections (normally I wouldn't do that because it would all look better on the same kind of paper, but as these were printed over time, on different printers, on different paper, it doesn't bother me too much)
  • I used and rebuild the 'extended index', used the 'extended table of conents', and added some custom backpages
  • As it's pretty strong, but not as strong as the original Ptolus book I split the contents over three books
  • I combined Night of Dissolution and Secrets of the Delvers' Guild into a fourth volume

It's just fun to just leave through these pages... I guess, deep down in my heart, I'm still a tourist...

191118 - ptolus 6 - mix and match.jpg

191118 - ptolus 7 - additional back pages with contents.jpg

191118 - ptolus 8 - custom index.jpg

Happiness is just a hardcover, I guess...
 

Mistwell

Hero
I recently purchased a used copy of Ptolus: City by the Spire mega-manual and...holy crap. This is a game book. There is really nothing else like it. There are some great game products out there, chock-full of stuff, but this...wow. I know, I know - I'm about a decade late on this, but let me share the moment. I'll never run it, but it provides a ton of inspiration and endless bathroom reading.

(Best of all, I only spent 55 $heckles on it!)

Any other Holy Crap Books out there? Anything comparable? The new Glorantha books seem to perhaps out-do Ptolus.
I liked Ptolus too. Is it for Pathfinder though? I thought it was 3e?
 

darjr

I crit!
It started as the playtest campaign for 3e. It was released for one of the 3s. 3.5 I think. It came from him after he left wizards
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
I bought the Ptolus book too years back. It's quite a tome, chock full of some really interesting stuff, but I never used it and never would most likely. I think I wanted it just for the sake of having it on my shelf. It's a damn good looking game book.
 

Mistwell

Hero
It started as the playtest campaign for 3e. It was released for one of the 3s. 3.5 I think. It came from him after he left wizards
My point is, why is it in this forum as it's not Pathfinder or Starfinder, as far as I know?
 

Celebrim

Legend
I recently purchased a used copy of Ptolus: City by the Spire mega-manual and...holy crap
Ptolus in my opinion is what an average homebrew campaign sourcebook would look like, if the average homebrew DM actually took careful notes and took the time to work them into a publishable state and had the writing chops to manage that.

My guess is that collectively we are turning out 100's or 1000's of Ptolus books a year that no one will ever read, and will get lost on 3.5 floppies, or thrown into rubbish bins when in the process of moving.

I'm sure that there is a whole wing of Morpheus library devoted to homebrew settings.
 
I liked Ptolus too. Is it for Pathfinder though? I thought it was 3e?
My point is, why is it in this forum as it's not Pathfinder or Starfinder, as far as I know?
Well, notice the date of the post of mine you replied to: late 2014. My guess is that whatever forum this thread originated from (presumably a now defunct 3.x forum) was merged into Pathfinder/Starfinder.

It certainly is odd to find a post I made five years ago replied to! ;)
 

CapnZapp

Hero
If you look at older posts in this forum you'll see this was once the general forum. It dates back to 2002 when neither Pathfinder nor Starfinder existed.
 

blueznl

Villager
Well, notice the date of the post of mine you replied to: late 2014. My guess is that whatever forum this thread originated from (presumably a now defunct 3.x forum) was merged into Pathfinder/Starfinder.

It certainly is odd to find a post I made five years ago replied to! ;)
Well, it was me who dug up that old post :whistle: if only to show of my Ptolus hardcovers :cool:
 

Imaculata

Adventurer
I welcome the necromancy as well.

I recently bought the Conan 2nd edition book, and it is an amazingly comprehensive volume. I am very eager to run a campaign in this universe some time.
 

Fanaelialae

Adventurer
The Stars Without Number Universal Omnibus. It contains everything published for SWN 1e, at over 1,000 pages. It's filled with all sorts of great inspiration for running sci-fi games, particularly sandboxes.
 

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