|Friday, August 29th, 2008|
OK, I've read the community rules and unless I'm completely mistaken this post is OK. :)
I've started a new, online, quarterly rpg magazine entitle RPG Review. Read this through and let me know if you think this is a disastrously bad idea or, conversely, you want to contribute or something crazy like that.
The first edition will be released on September 22. Further editions will be coming out in December, March, June.
I've been gaming for over 25 years, so I may as well admit that I'm not going to stop :) The 'zine is quarterly because I have a life outside of gaming (just), although I'm very pleased that several other people (including some people in this community) have also contributed to it. Every year I'll put out a compilation print version of the proceeding four issues.
Subscription information can be found at the extremely low-volume announce list:
Each issue will seek a balance between mainstream games, indie games, will include a 'retrospective' look at old classics, interviews with industry people, a bit on computer games and industry news.
The first issue of the 'zine will include reviews, articles and scenarios for:
D&D 4th edition Review... AD&D/D&D 3.5 Scenario... RuneQuest... Call of Cthulhu...Cannibal Contagion... Mythweaver...
A special retrospective on DragonQuest.. An interview with Steve Perrin (original author of RuneQuest, Stormbringer etc manual writer for the Star Trek: Starfleet Academy, SimCity 2000, and Flight of the Intruder computer games) who talks up developments in SPQR. A related movie review for The Dark Knight (plus mini-scenario), and a computer game review of Fatal Frame/Project Zero IV. As well as features on Bad Game Design and Gaming in Middle Earth, and our regular advice column from Orcus and Hot Gossip Industry News.
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12:14p - Old-School GM Evilness
Here's something that was pointed out on another gaming site, and which I figured I would share with this august body.
I've used similar endless trap/trick spaces before, though not technically a true one of these, I liek the idea, and it is most evil.
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Oh, come on. You know the dungeon-crawling, tomb-robbing brigand vermin (PCs) deserve it.
edit: the files appear to be gone now. Never mind.
current mood: amused
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2:03p - My GMing Style
Because it came up on TheRPGSite ...
I have an improvisational style of GMing.
- I don't like railroading players. I like to give the players plenty of room for creative solutions. I think that the players' characters determine the direction of the game, not a metaplot.
I prefer mechanics like bennies from Savage Worlds, Drama Points, spending XP as in D6, etc.
- I don't think that one bad die roll should spell the end of a beloved character. The above mechanics also encourage players to take chances they might not otherwise, and permit their characters to be a bit more badass, which is fun for all.
I work with the players to make a good game.
- Paradoxically, this can often mean making the characters' lives hell, as good drama spotlights the characters each in turn, and gives the players a greater emotional investment in the game.
I go out of my way to discover what my players enjoy in gaming, and try to incorporate the elements that are fun for them.
I prefer to avoid emotional monotones in games. I don't mind if elements of suspense, adventure, humor, and horror rear their heads. This varying emotional tone keeps things fresh.
I aim for genre emulation.
I tend to prefer adventurous genres, so cinematic / pulpy combat is common in the games I run.
I prefer that maps and minis aren't necessary.
- Overall, I'm not interested in roleplaying game combat becoming a rules tactical simulation on a map. If I were, I'd play a miniatures game rather than a roleplaying game. Sound tactics on the players' / characters' part can be a fantastic descriptive and narrative element, and I'll reward players for good planning with bonuses, bennies, etc. I do not want or need tactics written into the rules.
- One exception: Savage Worlds is the only RPG I've run and played where maps and minis enhance rather than detract from roleplaying and immersion, mostly because combat in SW is fast and simple.
I tend to blend genres, or at the least tropes from various genres.
- I read material that my players aren't reading and incorporate (i.e. steal) elements from those works to keep things fresh.
I tend to run in story arcs that eventually combine into a whole campaign.
- I run a lot of mini-campaigns, consisting of 6 to 10 sessions, just to try out and get a feel for a game.
- I run campaigns that will have a beginning, middle, and end. I don't tend to enjoy running the same campaign, endlessly, for years.
More to come as I think of it ...
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2:04p - Sell Me on RIfts. Please.
I LOVE multidimensional settings. Almost carnally.
I said almost. Get that image out of your mind right now.
Thus, naturally, I have always been fascinated by Rifts, one of the (perhaps THE?) longest-running, biggest, most-expanded, most successful multidimensional settings ever.
BUT ... I just cannot seem to get into the system, and to me system does matter.
I'm tempted, OH so tempted, to adapt the setting to something like Nexus: The Infinite City, BESM, or even PDQ / Truth and Justice.
Any Rifts fans out there? Talk to me, please. Do you like the system? Love it? Or are you simply used to it? Do you prefer it, or is it simply that you've been using it so long and are so familiar with it, why change?
I am NOT trying to start a flame war, but I am asking genuine questions and seeking information.
Talk to me.
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4:49p - Girl Gamers
I have the rare opportunity to GM a game with all girl gamers (except me). Again.
The first time this happened I lived out in the Canadian Prairies and despite having access to a great group of gamers, my wife and two of her friends wanted to play and I ended up being the only guy in an RPG session. I found that to be utterly rare.
Now, I haven't actually PLAYED a game in a long time and the itch set in. Now an old friend was talking to me about gaming and we realized that each other were really the only gamer friends with any potential to actually play.
So we started to put the feelers out and there might be a game happening. Me (guy) and 3 girls. I know that almost sounds like there is an innuendo in there, but its not what you are thinking.
We are going old school d6 Star Wars, but aside from that I don't know much else or if it will actually happen.
Do you find it rare to have an all girl group? (Me being the exception)
Do you find girls game differently then men?
If you were running a Star Wars era game, what era would you think is most fun?
(I am well versed in all eras)
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