Sunday, December 4, 2016
I arrived in Korea and in less than a month was a new father (my wife wanted to be close to her family when she gave birth, and she's a Busan native). So for that first year or so, I didn't get any gaming in. Soon, though, I met some guys named Josh, Alex, Pat and Steve who were interested in playing board games. We'd meet once a week or once every two weeks in Seomyeon to game. After a year or so, we started occasionally playing RPGs instead of board games. A few more people were interested, so we ended up with more players including a few Koreans, and running several short campaigns.
I ran Classic D&D. Josh ran 3E. Dave tried to get a d20 Conan game going, but it didn't gel. Alex tried the same with RIFTS. Eventually Pat got the 4E books, so we gave that a try. Josh picked up the 4E version of Gamma World, and we gave that a try.
During this time, I was working on my Dragon Fist retro-clone, which I titled Flying Swordsmen. Eventually I had it ready, so we played some Flying Swordsmen too. It's an odd feeling to run your own game at first. I felt this pressure to "get it right" since it was my own game. Presidents of the Apocalypse was just this little goofy game where everyone tried to be as silly as possible, but Flying Swordsmen tries to emulate Chinese wuxia fantasy martial arts using essentially D&D rules. I think I pulled it off well, but there were a few little things about it that bugged me (mostly because it was a retro-clone copying another game, so some design choices were out of my hands).
Then, as happens in ex-pat circles, people moved away. New people came in. I found myself next in a Pathfinder group run by a guy named Brian, along with one or two other people from the first group. Around the same time, Pat and Bill were putting together the Busan Bored Gamers group, so I feel like that group is a direct descendant of our Seomyeon group.
When the PF game finally finished, I ended up without a face-to-face group to play with, but through Google+ Hangouts (popular with gamers, especially the OSR), I ended up in a group run by Justin in Pohang. Thanks to the power of the internet, we've got members in other places besides Korea. A few Aussies played early on, and a Scottish guy has been a regular in our various G+ games ever since. Justin ran Labyrinth Lord (BX D&D clone) for a long time, then tried Stars Without Number (BX D&D rules for sci-fi gaming) for a while.
I ran a few Classic D&D games. Jeremy ran a wide variety of his home-brewed games he was trying out. Dean started a 4E game, which attracted a few different players, who aren't really into the OSR stuff. Now Dean's game is 5E, and still going strong. We've tried a few other things here and there over the years, too.
Because Flying Swordsmen got good reviews but I wasn't satisfied with it, I started working on my current project, Chanbara (fantasy feudal Japan set to basic D&D rules). I've been play-testing it now and then with this online group, and it seems to hold up pretty well. I'm hoping to release the game soon (real world concerns have delayed it, though).
As far as gaming supplies, I haven't really found much I need to buy anymore. I've got tons of dice and minis. Rulebooks can be downloaded in pdf form or ordered from Amazon (and sometimes Whatthebook). Since most of my gaming takes place online, there's not a lot of need for extra stuff. Also, I'm primarily a player instead of primarily a DM these days, which also reduces my need for stuff. All those minis I collected in Japan are locked in a cabinet where my baby can't get to them.
In a few years, though, I plan to be gaming with my boys, and putting all those gaming supplies I don't use now to good use!
Saturday, December 3, 2016
Gaming in Japan Addendum: Miniatures
I forgot to mention this part, which was one of the cool things about living in Japan. I mentioned that in my first location, there weren't a lot of places to get gaming material. In the second place I lived, Yamanashi, I was able to amass a sizeable miniature collection in interesting ways.
As I mentioned, Yellow Submarine in Tokyo had Reaper Minis, so I did buy a small number of minis there. But Japan has so many other ways to get fantasy/sci-fi minis that work for gaming.
First of all, there are random collectible miniatures that you can buy in many stores, including most convenience stores. In the years I was there, they had several series of mythological creatures, both Western and Eastern. So I have rubberized plastic minis of dragons, griffons, chimera, unicorns, pegasi, and Greek/Norse gods that work well for giants from the Western mythology series, and bakemono, tengu, oni, and so on from the Eastern series.
There are also series of figures based on games like Dragon Warrior and Final Fantasy and Pokemon, comics like Devilman, and things like that that I picked up over the years. You can find them here in Busan, in limited numbers, at places like Art Box.
Then, there are the cola promotion figures. Every now and then, there are promotions to sell Coke or Pepsi, where they have a randomized figure in an opaque cellophane package around the neck of 500ml bottles of soda. Back when the Star Wars prequels were coming out, I collected lots of Star Wars bottle toppers. The ones in the stores were from the Prequels, of course, but if you collected enough of the inserts and payed a small fee, you could send away for sets from the original trilogy (which I did, although I wasn't able to get all of those sets). In other years, there were Final Fantasy VII and VIII figures, Lupin the Third figures, Dragonball characters, and even Lego minifigs. I collected many.
If that weren't enough, in my town there was this resale shop. They'd buy just about anything for pennies and then sell it for dollars. Clothes, books, CDs, sports equipment, toys, games, and of course they had a section devoted to all of these sorts of little collectible minis I've been describing. I'd go there fairly often and add to my gaming collection.
I also got into HeroClix, and would buy lots when I was home on vacations, so if I ever want to run a Marvel or DC supers game, I've got the figures for it!
Oh, and one more thing! Daiso (those of you in Busan are familiar with the chain, it's from Japan) in Japan sells (or sold, at least) little green army men, and also similar sets of pirates, knights, cowboys & Indians, ninja, construction workers, police/fire/rescue figures. Have sets of all of them, as well. They work great as NPC figures.
So while I don't feel like minis are a necessity for RPGs, I do enjoy using them, and Japan was a great place for collecting a variety of minis for gaming.
Thursday, December 1, 2016
Oh, and there was this little bric-a-brac shop that sold airsoft equipment and collectible figures and stuff. I found a pack of vintage Grenadier "Knights of the Round Table" minis there and snatched them up. Still have them. For the most part, we were limited in what we had to game with to what we ordered from overseas or could access via the internet. One of those internet goodies was a free pdf game WotC released called Dragon Fist (fantasy martial arts RPG using the 2E rules). We played that a few times in addition to 3E.
In 2001 I moved to Yamanashi prefecture, just an hour and a half outside of Tokyo. Again, it took me a little time to get into the local gaming scene, because I wasn't sure who gamed and who didn't, and people were still kinda reluctant to bring up gaming in casual conversation. But gamed online with some of the Yamanashi guys about once a month. We tried d20 Modern and the d20 Star Wars rules, along with D&D 3.5.
Then, I got invited to a group playing White Wolf's Trinity around 2003 or 2004. After the Trinity game ran its course, some of the same gamers ended up playing D&D with me. We played a 3E OA game that I ran for a while.
Through the WotC message boards, I came in contact with a couple of guys in Tokyo and we formed a group. One of the Yamanashi guys was now living in Chiba (also near Tokyo) so we invited him, too. A few other players came and went. We'd meet once a month for marathon 6-10 hour sessions, mostly of 3.5, although I ran a successful d20 Future game set in the Aliens/Predator universe.
Gaming in Tokyo was great, because there's a chain of hobby shops called Yellow Submarine. They had minis, dice, rule books, modules, Dragon and Dungeon magazine, plus board games and other related stuff. Whenever I had time before or after the sessions, I'd usually stop by because the bus or train from Yamanashi pulled into Shinjuku station, and a Yellow Submarine was just around the corner.
One of the Tokyo guys was trying to develop his own Story Game RPG, so we play-tested many versions of it. And from the Forge message boards (once the home of story gamers online), he got interested in playing Classic D&D again, which got me interested. And so I discovered the OSR (Old School Renaissance) just as it was kicking off.
Before Steve got transferred back to the States, we played a few games of old school D&D. And I got my Yamanashi group to play it, too. And it was pretty fun. I also tried a bit of Star Frontiers with them.
Oh, and my buddy Paul and I developed our own "story game" type rules light system, Presidents of the Apocalypse. This became our "someone in the group is leaving, let's go out with a fun game" game. We're still not 100% happy with the rules, but eventually we plan to publish it in some form or other.
The OSR back then was all about making "retro clones" that were rewritten versions of the classic games, released under the d20 OGL. So OSRIC is basically AD&D 1E, Labyrinth Lord and Basic Fantasy Role-Playing Game are Classic D&D, and Swords & Wizardry is original D&D. I remembered having fun with Dragon Fist in Toyama, and started thinking about how I might make a retro-clone of it. But then my wife got pregnant, and we decided to move to Korea to be near her family...
Wednesday, November 30, 2016
Glaiza's question that set this off:
Out of curiosity, are any of my friends in Korea playing or have played in tabletop roleplaying games (like D&D or games like it) while living in Korea?
Like is their a dedicated group that you know of that meet on a regular basis? What was your experience in that? Did you DM or where you a dedicated player?
I decided to break my responses into three parts:
1) my gaming experiences in the U.S. which also had some issues with gaming not so different from those I've experienced overseas
2) my experiences gaming in Japan (which actually I ended up writing two posts, because I forgot to write about how great living in Japan was for collecting gaming minis, but I'll combine them here on the blog)
3) my experiences gaming in Korea (which at the time of writing this blog post, I still need to write...)
Here's my gaming background in the U.S. I know I've covered a lot of this before on the blog, but it's been years since I did so, and I don't expect all of you to have kept notes, so I don't mind reposting.
We mostly played Classic (box set) D&D. Some friends had AD&D, and we'd mix stuff in from there if the books were available. When we weren't playing D&D, we mostly played Star Frontiers (also a box set with its own dice). My best friend got the TMNT game (not sure where), so we played that a bit, too. And WEG Star Wars a few times. But mostly D&D.
When I got to college, I had access to a great comics shop that had plenty of RPG stuff (and Magic: The Gathering), and I ended up getting involved with a group of AD&D (mixed 1E and 2E) players through my part-time job. I picked up the 2E books at a discount because I worked at Waldenbooks. Also, back home, a hobby shop had opened up, and I could get dice cheap there. Cheaper than the comics shop in my uni town, anyway. I started playing Gamma World and tried a few other games in those years. At home or at school, though, my groups were limited to friends of members already in the group. Not a lot of cross-pollination of gamers going on then.
Sunday, November 20, 2016
Having rested following our battle with the pair of fierce dinosaurs that dwell in this strange, hidden world, we set out towards the confluence of the great river and the forests, where our divinations had suggested the City of the Titans might be found. As we traversed the plains, we saw more of these giant reptiles, only these ones seemed different. Having prepared myself with an ancient druidic incantation that allows converse with nature's beasts, I approached, along with Yuv the Dragonborn Cleric of Radiance and Thia Moonbrook, Elven Tempest Cleric. While the beasts were able to converse like natural creatures, they were actually some sort of blend of prehistoric beast and dessert. They indicated that there were some ruins connected with the Giants in the hills before the Great River. They also, when asked about the "hats" which had been fused to the skulls of the two great saurian beasts that beset us previously, suggested that we look to the river, or possibly to the south. Also, they wanted the "hats" destroyed. I promised, on my honor as a Paladin, that the "hats" would be put to no evil use while in our possession. They seemed to sense the truth of my words, and were satisfied.
We traveled onward, and came to a series of burial mounds. Rhea the Witch detected faint magic in the largest of them and Yuv's augury suggested danger in opening the mound, so we set about examining the door, and found it trapped. Odraynne the Human Bard, Thia, Flagan the Halfling Pugilist, and Jade the Elf Ranger attempted several methods to disarm the trap mechanism, which resulted in blasts of rocks and dirt with each failed attempt. Finally, they succeeded, but a secondary trap was sprung when the door was opened. The ground fell away, and in an instant sand began to fill the pit, trapping several of our group completely engulfed. Not only that, but giant scarab beetles infested the sands, biting at us as those of us who were not trapped tried to free our companions. Eventually, Thia's gust of wind dispersed the sands and beetles.
Inside the mound, there were three passageways. We chose the one to the left, which descended into the darkness (or ascended, I should say, as we are in the upside down world of Pellucidar!). We came to a chamber with, as Thia and I noticed, had a soft, rubbery floor. We tested it in several ways, and finding it suspicious, found a way to bypass it. Flagan used his gymnastics ability to cross the room on the solid walls while holding a rope. We secured it, and the party was able to cross safely.
At the bottom of the tomb, we found a room long ago looted by treasure hunters or vandals. One of these long ago looters' skeletons lay beneath the ruins of a golem or similar guardian, and seemed to be a human, but with a tail. There were also tracks of some sort of serpentine creature. The sarcophagus had been cracked, and most of the grave-goods despoiled. It was then that we sensed a chill presence, and found the ghost of the Giant Priest that we assume was buried in this mound blocking our escape, and angry at our presence.
We set to attacking it, although some of our party, such as Makarak the Orc Barbarian, had mundane weaponry which seemed to be less than full effect on the undead horror. Additionally, it let out a fearsome moaning which caused Rhea and both of our Clerics to freeze in fear for some moments. It also had a chill aura, but by focusing my mind on the goodness of the Greensong, my own aura was able to partially mitigate this chill glammer. With a combination of Makarak's and my axes, Flagan's fists, Jade's arrows, and spells from Odraynne, Rhea, Thia and Yuv, we finally put paid to the haunt. And now, we know, thanks to the carvings on the walls, that the missing rod of this great priest of the ancient Giants may be necessary if we are to awaken the Mountain above, so that it may rid itself of the Ghoul Kingdom.
Friday, November 18, 2016
My mother is a retired librarian so books have always been a big part of my life. And just this morning, I came across this article describing some actual Medieval curses used to protect books from theft or disfigurement.
Of course, in the game, there is all sorts of potential for fun with this, since the curses can actually have an effect.
Monday, November 7, 2016
It mentions what to do with treasure, including better gear, hiring retainers, and buying spellcasting or other services from NPCs. Interesting that it leaves out the end-game goal of eventually building a stronghold. Maybe Frank is including that in "better equipment" (p. 40)?
Magic items (contrary to AD&D), are explicitly stated as not being worth XP. The value of magic items is in what they can do for you.
Payment for services rendered, or rewards for service, are counted as treasure (and hence worth XP).
"The DM should always determine the contents of a large treasure hoard before play, to decide how best to hide and protect the treasure from theft" (p. 40, emphasis in original). I'm not sure how much time Gygax spent in the AD&D DMG discussing how to hide/conceal treasure, but Frank gives us just a few lines like this (and one or two more later). While these days I can appreciate the concise nature of the advice, it pretty much passed me by early on. Treasure was sometimes in a chest, but often just piled on the floor in dungeons in my early (and even many later) games. Again, I think this was some video game influence, where treasure just appears after defeating the enemy, and you can just pick it up. I think a bit more about concealing treasure would have benefited my games more when I was young.
And finally, we get another note that monsters that can use magic items probably should! This of course, means that potions and scrolls may become rarer finds, as monsters are more likely to use them on the PCs!
This section gives us a four-step process to determine treasures randomly. First, find the monster's treasure type in the monster list. Second, roll percentage dice for each type listed on that line of the table. Third, find the amount of each type present. Finally, roll for any magic items on the magic item tables, if any are present.
Fairly simple, and easy to understand. The section has another note about how to convert the number ranges to dice notation, to see which dice to roll. I think this is a good place for that reminder, as fledgling DMs are more likely to need reminders right here, when rolling for treasure, than in other places, and who wants to flip way back to the front of the book, or consult the Players Guide for this info when rolling up treasure?
Of course, rolling dice is fun, so I like to roll randomly first and see what I get, but I do often revert to simply deciding on the treasure present for many encounters or lairs (or at least partially so, I'm more likely to overrule the percent chances of treasure being present or not, and accept the amounts I roll).
Frank warns us here that it's OK to adjust the values up or down as needed, and to keep in mind that 3/4 or more of all XP is from treasure, not monsters defeated.
Then he tells us that as DMs get more experienced, they may just decide how much XP they want to give out, and decide on the treasure in that way. Of course, this is assuming the players will discover all the treasure (but if it's just scattered across the floor rather than well hidden...). What's most interesting about this is that it's in a way predicting the "XP Budgets" and "treasure parcels" of 4E, two areas where old schoolers tend to reject in that edition. While it's just a suggestion here, it was the standard rule there, which may be why many rejected it. Anyway, Frank ends this section by reminding the DM to "force the characters to earn their treasure!" (p. 40).
Of course, treasure found should be matched by the size of the lair. A hand-full of orcs shouldn't have a massive treasure, while a village of several hundred (plus maybe an ogre or troll) should definitely have a good sized treasure.
Interestingly, there's a note that if the number appearing is specifically 1-4, don't adjust treasure even if there's only one creature in the lair. This is obviously a reference to dragons, who all have an NA of 1-4 for both dungeons and wilderness encounters. But that would also apply to some bears, great cats, carrion crawlers (if you remember my analysis of that monster, though, this makes sense), some giant lizards, some lycanthropes, medusa, owl bears, giant rattlesnakes (two attacks plus poison and low treasure justifies this one), and some of the slime/ooze types (if they have treasure). It might have been better to just say, hey, single dragons are tough, and worth their full lair treasure.
While it doesn't inform the DM to divide the treasure by the percentages of the maximum number appearing present, it does tell us that in general, smaller lair numbers means smaller treasures. Which makes sense.
Other Treasure Types
This is something that the introductory adventure at the beginning of the book did well - show the DM that treasure doesn't need to only be coins (or gems and jewelry). In it, there are hat pins, plates and silverware, and a few other non-standard treasures. I never paid much attention to this section, though, until I got the Companion Set years later. It had much more detailed lists for making interesting treasures. These days, I love to add in tapestries, books, kegs of spices, letters of credit or deeds, and other valuables besides just coins. It's more fun that way.
Average Treasure Values
This is really handy - a table with the average amount of money each treasure type can produce. As the book says, after random rolling, or if deciding to place treasure, it gives you a good idea of how much the treasure may need adjusting. I've tried replicating the math (for Chanbara), and maybe I'm doing the calculations wrong, but I get some odd numbers when I try to multiply the average amounts by the percentages of treasure being present and adding the values together. I suspect it's the gems that mess up my calculations, but it's not a big enough deal for me to have to worry about finding the discrepancies between my method and however Frank calculated them.
Treasure Type H (dragon treasure) is of course the largest, with an average value of 60k. Treasure Type M, however, is similar with an average of 50k. There aren't any creatures in Basic with TT M, however. I'll have to go through my books sometime (or the RC, it's got them all together) to see what creature has TT M (if any).
Anyway, the lowest average value for a lair treasure is TT J at a whopping 25 gp. And who gets that? Kobolds. Yeah, they're really not worth the effort. Orcs or goblins have similar numbers in their lairs, and aren't THAT much harder to beat than kobolds. Orcs get TT D, average 4k, while goblins get TT C, average 750gp. You know what, take on the orcs. The risk/reward is best.
OK, here's the thing lots of people get hung up on. Coins in D&D weigh 1/10 of a pound. No, it's not realistic, but then D&D isn't a simulation, it's a game of risk/reward, and managing your encumbrance to maximize rewards and minimize risks is part of the game. Making treasure hard to carry makes players more likely to take risks rather than just spend every adventure trying to clear out weak monsters for piddly (but safe) treasures.
Anyway, we get an explanation that electrum is an alloy of gold and silver, and the coin exchange rates.
We've got a chart to roll for gems, with a percentage roll to determine the value, with a few examples of gems of each value. If only giving the players the names of the gems, they should be able to get them appraised in town. Frank suggests a fee of between 1-5% of the value of the gem for the appraisal.
Next, we get an optional rule, about combining or splitting the value rolled into different types/values of gems. I'm not sure why this is listed as an optional rule, instead of just a suggestion, since doing so has no effect on the value of the gems, and really only affects players as they try to divvy up treasures found.
Unlike gems, which have a flat distribution of values, jewelry values are on a curve, found by rolling 3d6 and multiplying the value by 100gp. This gives us an average value of about 1000gp per piece of jewelry. There's a table with some examples of different types of jewelry for different value ranges (and again, the Companion Set has much more detailed tables, but for early games, this was definitely sufficient).
There's also the rule about damaging jewelry. Fire, lightning, crushing, etc. can damage jewelry, reducing its value by half. I rarely remember this rule. If the PCs get hit by a fireball, or fall 20' or whatever, I should have them check to see if any jewelry they are carrying is damaged, but usually forget. Since jewelry is one of the best values for the encumbrance, I should really track this more often.
And again, we've got a section (not listed as an optional rule) about combining types of jewelry, and even combining gems and jewelry if they're found together.
Group Treasure Types Table
Type A: Bandits and Troglodytes have this type (and I think most human groups in Expert, like pirates, dervishes, etc. also get A). It's a nice sized hoard, the fourth largest with an average 17k gold, and with chances for all coin types, plus 50% chance of both gems and jewelry (6d6 worth of either!), and a 30% chance for any three magic items.
Type B: A fairly common type, the value isn't so high because it doesn't have much gold, lacks platinum, and there's only a 25% chance of 1d6 gems or 1d6 jewelry to be present. There's a mere 10% chance of a magic item, but it will always be a sword, weapon, or armor. It's likely there will be copper coins in this treasure hoard (50%), but the average value of 2000gp isn't bad, if you can lug out all the small denomination coinage.
One thing I noticed when I was looking through these just now is that Halflings and Green Slimes (next to each other in the monster listings) have the exact same Morale, Treasure Type: (P+S) B, Alignment (yes, green slime is Lawful - take that, Flumpf!), and XP value (5, which is obviously wrong for the 2HD** slime). Yes, there was apparently a copy/paste error here.
Type C: Another fairly common type (Lycanthropes, Minotaurs, Ogres and Neanderthals, for example, have it), which is limited to copper, silver and electrum coins, and 25% chance of 1d4 gems and 1d4 jewelry, and a 10% chance of any 2 magic items. It averages only 750 gp value, most of which will come from silver coins.
Type D: This is the treasure type for tougher humanoids (orcs, gnolls, hobgoblins, lizard men). It averages 4000gp, much of it gold (60%), and never has electrum or platinum. There's a 30% chance each for 1d8 gems or 1d8 jewelry, which is not bad. And for magic, there's a 15% chance of any 2 plus one potion. Not bad, if you can defeat or outwit some of the stronger humanoid types.
Type E: Doppelgangers and elves get this type (maybe a few more). It averages 2500gp, slightly better than B, and is unlikely to have coppers (only 5%), although again no platinum. It has only a 10% chance for 1d10 gems or jewelry, but a 25% chance to get any 3 magic items, plus one scroll. Not too shabby.
Type F: The medusa and shadow are the only creatures that get this type. It's fairly sizable, with an average 7600gp. It never has copper, with low chances for silver and electrum, and decent (45%) for gold and (30%) platinum. It's likely to have more gems than jewelry, 20% chance for 2d12 gems but only 10% chance for 1d12 jewelry...this is the first type to give different percents/amounts for the two. It's also got a 30% chance of magic items, consisting of any 3 non-weapons, plus 1 potion and 1 scroll. Medusas and shadows can be tough opponents, but they provide pretty nice treasures.
Type G: Only dwarves get this type, and I've seen it noted recently that dwarves are maybe the best treasure haul for the risk involved based on their numbers and hit dice. The treasure averages 25k, with only gold and platinum coins (lots of gold), and 25% chances to have 3d6 gems and 1d10 jewelry. Plus, there's a 35% chance to get any 4 magic items plus one scroll.
Type H: Dragon treasure. Need I say more? This is the most valuable type with an average of 60k gp value. Copper and platinum coins are only 25% likely to appear, with 50% for the other coin types, and with large amounts for each type present. 50% chance of 1d100 gems and 10 to 40 jewelry. The only down side is there's only a 15% chance of magic items, but when they appear it will be any 4 plus a potion and scroll. I think probably more than 15% of the dragon lairs I've placed have had magic in them, though. It just seems to me that dragons should have magic items. But really, with such a high monetary value, maybe the magic items are overkill. Let the PCs battle dwarves or medusa if they want magic.
Type I: No creatures in Basic have this type. The only coins it might have are platinum (30% chance), and it's got a high percent chance to have gems and jewelry, 50% for 2d6 of either, but only a 15% chance to have one magic item. The average value is 7500gp, which is pretty good, but you're never gonna find it until the upper levels.
Type J: As I mentioned above, this is Kobold treasure, and the average value is only 25gp. It will only ever be copper or silver coins, but on the up side, it will never be more than 7000 coins total... Do you really want to face a bunch of kobolds just to have to lug out a few thousand copper coins?
Type K: Again, no monster in Basic has this type of treasure. It's made up of only silver and electrum coins, mostly silver (30% to electrum's 10%). The average value is 250gp. Again, not great.
Type L: This is the treasure type for normal rats, of all creatures. The average value is 225gp, and it consists of a 50% chance to get 1d4 gems. That's it. So while facing rat disease may not sound so good, you're likely going to come out ahead of taking on the kobolds...
Type M: Like I mentioned above, this is the second largest type, with an average value of 50k gp, but no creatures in Basic have it. For coins, only gold or platinum appear, with a better chance and more platinum (50% for 5~30k coins compared to 40% chance for 2~8k gold), plus high chances for gems (55% for 5d4) and jewelry (45% chance for 2d6), but sadly no magic at all. If there are creatures in the later sets with this type (I'm too lazy to pull up my RC pdf right now and check), they're likely worth the fight for the loot you're likely to get.
Type N: This type consists of a 40% chance to find 2d4 potions, and that's it. No listed creatures have this type.
Type O: This type consists of a 50% chance to find 1d4 scrolls, and that's it. Again, no creatures in Basic have this type of treasure.
Individual Treasure Tables
The first five have no percentages, so creatures (usually human, demi-human or humanoid) with these types always have some coins in their pockets. The last two seem to are often used for either wealthier individual types, or for lair treasure of animal/unintelligent monsters, and to me seem to represent stuff you might find on the carcasses of things they were eating.
Type P: You get 3d8 coppers. Kobolds, gnolls, gnomes and normal men are likely to have coppers in their pockets.
Type Q: You get 3d6 silvers. Bugbears will have P and Q, dwarves get Q and S. Hobgoblins have only type Q.
Type R: You get 2d6 electrums. Goblins carry electrum. I wonder why? Someone should do a Gygaxian Naturalism post about why goblins always carry electrum coins.
Type S: You get 2d4 golds. Demi-humans always have some gold on them (and green slimes, if you don't realize the error like I just did).
Type T: You get 1d6 platinums. Elves (who get S and T) are the only creatures in Basic to commonly carry platinum. So elf lair treasure isn't amazing, but picking off random groups of elves is more profitable than picking off random groups of other humanoid types. Interesting, no?
Type U: Now, we get a "proper" treasure type entry again, with percentage chances of various types of loot being present. As I mentioned, lots of creatures (bears, great cats, giant lizards, oil beetles, some snakes) get this as their lair treasure. Bandits get this as their individual treasure...so forget elf hunting, go hunt bandits! There's a 10% chance of 1d100 coppers and similarly silvers, and a 5% chance of 1d100 golds. No electrum or platinum (the goblins and elves must have taken them all...). No gems, either, but a 5% chance for 1d4 jewelry, and a 2% chance for any 1 magic item. I rarely check each bandit I place for the 2% chance magic item, but I should from now on..."One of the bandits has a staff of wizardry in his breeches, another has a potion of invisibility."
Type V: The biggest normal animals (cave bears, sabertooth tigers, etc.) of groups that get type U for lair treasure instead get this. It doesn't have coppers, and instead has a 10% chance for 1d100 of both silver and gold coins, and a 5% chance for 1d100 of both electrum and platinum coins. Again no gems, but a 10% chance for 1d4 pieces of jewelry, and a 5% chance for any one magic item. Prehistoric animals seem to eat only the higher class sorts...