capt_dogson: (Default)
2011-02-04 04:15 am
Entry tags:

Innocents + Changeling = Coraline

This is an idea for a game that I've toyed with on & off ever since I read the book, but it held little promise till I had this combination of books on my shelf. Now I've broken out a notebook & begun making notes for this, as a break from writing a series of linked Call of Cthulhu adventures that come together to form a larger chronicle.
I figured I'd try a new style of note taking for this, that will help me keep in the proper mindset to run this game, hopefully keeping the feel of Neil Gaiman's story without it turning into utter rubbish.

p.s. sorry for the super short post on this, but it's almost 5 a.m. & I've yet to go to bed due to a sick little one.
capt_dogson: (Default)
2011-02-02 01:13 am
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Gaming Clubs

I've given a lot of thought to starting up a gaming club, as opposed to reforming a home group. The reason I've decided to lean in the club direction is that people are more committed to some thing they have paid for, and it allows for mini-cons and spreading the hobby.
One I get past the crap I've got going on right now I'll put more effort into actually forming the club, and figuring out what to do with it when I move. I'll probably just have a vote for the new club president, and form a new club when I get settled in Indy.
I also want to offer the option to buy needed player supplies, like dice and player handbooks, to the noobs to the hobby to make it easier on them. Maybe like a 'starter kit' that has the handbook, dice dice bag, and a few character sheets. That way they can get everything they need at once.
I also like the idea of points. Players gain points for helping clean up, set up, GMing games, helping on snacks, ect. Collect enough points & you get rewards, like dice sets, free mini-con admission, books,or even a years membership.
Membership dues will be yearly, and as little as possible, maybe $20 or less if possible. I really want this to work out. I'll start with the club rules, parental consent forms for underage players, finding a location, and other details that will be needed to get started.
I know where some of the funds from the club dues will go, like pencils, sheets, and dice. I'm not sure if I'm going to use that money to buy game books. I'm not sure if I like the idea of people fighting over them if the club gets dissolved.
I think I'll go with a bi-weekly meeting, or possibly a monthly meeting of the club to make it easier for club members to be able to make the meetings. That's a big thing. It wont do any good to set the club up it no one can make the gatherings.
I want the club to be open to all ages (within reason) so the location must be public. I don't want the headaches that may arise otherwise. I also want the club to be known and thought well of by the parents of the children playing.
I know this is a lot to hope for and it's going to be a slow, but this is something I've given a lot of thought to this idea.
capt_dogson: (Default)
2011-01-28 10:43 am
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capt_dogson: (Default)
2011-01-25 11:25 pm

On Savage Worlds; a review

Ok, I'll be honest. I never thought much about Savage Worlds.
I liked that they had the Explorer's Edition for the insanely low price of $10 usd, but it just never caught my eye.
But then I was at this years Gencon, and I flipped through this little digest sized book. I was facinated, to say the least.
It was simple. It was cheap. The demo was fun.
And then the final nail in the coffin; I met Clint Black & Shane Hensley who developed the game.
Two of the coolist people I have met. And truth be told they may have swayed my opinion a bit.

So down to brass tacks.
Savage Worlds Explorer's Edition is a digest sized paperback weighing in at 160 pages and retailing for $10 usd.
This is a generic system only game (no setting provided), with numerous setting books available, such as Slipstream, Deadlands & Realms of Cthulhu. This may be a down side to some, but the system is easily adapted to any setting that you can invent.
This is due in part to the (some say too) generic skills used, like riding, shooting and piloting, that sacrifice detail for speed and ease of play. Not really a bad thing to me, but i can understand how a simulationist would feel disapionted.
Attributes and skill are ranked by a die code, a d6 being better than a d4 and so on. When attempting to use a skill or attribute you simply roll the correct die vs a target number of four. to increase the odds of success pcs and important npcs are classed as "wild cards", and roll an extra d6 taking the higher of the two dice as their result.
Dice are also open ended in Savage Worlds, meaning if you roll max on a die you get to reroll it and add the results together. you keep doing this for as long as you keep rolling max.

I can find a few minor downsides to this book, however, I think that these are not much to consider given all the good points.
But here they are:

* No character sheet in the book, though you can down load it from Pinnacle's website

* No base setting. not a negative for me, but maybe for some it would be

* Super generic skills. Again, to some this may be a negative

*Exploding dice. I know a few people who dislike this type of mechanic

All in all, I really like this game and now wish I had picked it up earlier. If you want an easy, fun fast playing RPG, that you can bend or twist as you need to, the look into Savage Worlds.

My rating: 5/5- fast, solid & fun
capt_dogson: (Default)
2011-01-24 01:20 am
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I wasn't a huge fan of D&D 4e. I'll admit that. I didn't think it was bad, or opposed it on principal, or judged it without playing it. It just wasn't right for me.

Granted, I never wanted to run a 3.5 game, mainly due to the fact that stat blocks, encounters, xp tracking, and the ungodly amount of obscure player options and splat books gave me headaches to think about. But I did play 3.5 for a while, and enjoyed it. Well, maybe not the grappling rules, but that was pretty much universal.

So when 4e came out I played it, and wasn't impressed. The books suffered from poor layout, with a little bit of unclear wording, and the system still needed to be polished in the mathematical aspects.

But the biggest thing was the culture shock from how different the game seemed. It was like D&D was being dragged kicking and screaming into the WoW generation, and I wasn't sure I liked it.

Now fast forward a few years and we get to the release of the D&D Essentials line.

And, dammit, I actually like this line. The books have good layouts, the system is polished, and they made the game easier to access for noobies.

The redbox is awesome, with plenty of tokens, a solo adventure, dice (+1 in my book), adventures for a group, power cards, four blank character sheets (again, +1), and the cool vintage art on the front of the box. The same art in fact, that was on the original redbox.

So i've plopped down cash on the redbox, Rules Compendium, and Heros of the Fallen Lands. But I'm only in $60. That's another thing I like is the low price point. The books only run $20. And it's no different than buying the regular books.

Now that said, excuse me while I go be geeky.