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Tuesday, August 24th, 2004
12:35p - Reviews: World of Darkness v2.0
The World of Darkness Core Book

I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised reading this one. Sure, it's hardly anything particularly novel in regards to the "You're a normal human in a scary ass world" genre, but the sheer vacancy in the main book in regards to what else is out there is extremely liberating for a Storyteller. The stories in the prologue demonstrate such a wide range of possibilities that could happen to a group of characters, that I couldn't help but be flooded with ideas for involving chronicles.

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Final Thought: An excellent gothic mystery/horror game system on par with systems like Unknown Armies. My only real qualm regarding the system is the fact that it will be tied inexorably to the Vampire, Werewolf, and Mage (and likely others as well) games from White Wolf, none of which, in my mind, can effectively capitalize on the supernatural horror genre emphasized in the core WOD book. So long as the game isn't overrun with extra "campaign options" in the coming years, this new WOD makes an excellent game for a classic "Us against Them" supernatural thriller.
Score: 9.0 out of 10.


Vampire: The Requiem

Some mighty big shoes to fill, this one has. And it, quite expectedly, ends up falling short. If you're looking for the "I'm an immortal puppetmaster who manipulates the masses to achieve power and prestige" sort of game, you'd be far better off with previous editions. But if you want to be a rebellious neonate with no real aim but to increase your blood potency as quickly as you can by diablerizing unsuspecting elders, I'd say this one works very much better.

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Final Thought: A rather flagrant departure from the old V:tM. This game makes vampiric society far less of a supernatural social club, and much more a mishmash gathering of xenophobic monsters with very little reason not to kill one another. It doesn't even remotely lend itself to cooperation between Kindred, which will make coterie formation difficult, and the lack of a definitive and stable power structure, like the Camarilla of old, will make its adaptation to a LARP environment difficult at best.
Score: 2.5 out of 10.


current mood: complacent

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5:10p - Well, hoody-hoo!
NCsoft announced today that the upcoming City of Villains -- an evil-doing expansion to the popular City of Heroes MMORPG -- will now benefit from two RPG veterans as part of the Cryptic Studios development team.

Dave "Zeb" Cook will join as senior designer for the project. Cook brings 25 years of game design experience, including 15 years working for TSR, Inc. of Dungeons & Dragons fame. Cook is known for designing the Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition Dungeon Master's Handbook as well as the creation of the pen-and-paper Planescape game.

Shane Hensley, creator of the Deadlands RPG, has signed on as a senior writer for City of Villains. Hensley has contributed to various computer and board games, game guides, and novels, and has worked for companies like TSR, West End Games, SSI, and FASA. His novels have been published by Harper Collins and White Wolf Studios.

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7:55p - Missing a Munchkin
In White Wolf games, they usually have a section somewhere that details the munchkins and miscreants of the gaming world. I get a pretty big kick out of reading it, and I think the writers missed an important munchkin that is particularly virulent in V:tM.

It's the "noble" roleplayer. It's present in any genre, really, but I believe V:tM put it on the map. It's the kind of person who will spend an hour explaining the subleties of their social maneuverings, the type of person who finds it exciting when an entire session of play passes without combat. The type of person who will study Chaucer- not out of any real interest, mind you- but only in order to quote it from time to time in game.

They're as absurd as any other extremist type of roleplayer, but the critical difference is the level of esteem to which they hold themselves and the amount of criticism they level at absolutely everything.

"I don't really know what's up with the sky today. It's so BLUE.... how passe."

This type of munchkin is much worse to deal with than most, mainly because they're a pain most of the time, and get only worse when you're playing.


current mood: creative

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