AI Rights, Bodies and Mortality: a Game of Shock:

To my tastes, science fiction in RPGs and television is too often about adventure and excitement. The scifi that grabs me, though, is about ideas and their impact on life and society and thought. Joshua A. C. Newman‘s RPG Shock: Social Science Fiction is built on this very premise. I tried it out with a couple of people I’d never played with, and who hadn’t had any experience with games as Forge-y as this. The experience was two-sided: fun and cerebral on the one hand, heavy and somewhat disconnected on the other. Continue reading

From 13th Age to Fate Core: Same World, Different Systems

13thfate2

I started a 13th Age game late this summer. I like the world and I admire the design, so I wanted to try it out. The sessions, however, were quite far apart, which was a clear signal that something wasn’t quite right. I wanted to continue the story of the characters and talked the players into converting them to Fate Core; now, I want to share my observations on how system matters. Continue reading

Sylvan World #2

use-with-dw-OnLightLast week we had our second session of the Dungeon World campaign. Since the first session was a Funnel adventure I decided to treat this as our “first session”.

To prepare for this I came up with two different adventures. I did not even call them Threats, yet, since neither had that much going on. I presented them to the players at our forum. They chose to defeat lizard centipede first and deal with the lost elven ruins later.

I’ll try to use this post to discuss the First Session of DW by thinking about what happened in our game.

Continue reading

Sylvan World #1

use-with-dw-OnLightTwo years ago I ran my first Dungeon World-campaign and it was fun. But thinking back to it I might have not been familiar enough with the AWengine to make it the most memorable. I liked the basic idea in it though – it was a world entirely covered in forest.

This idea did not come up that too often in the few games we played. So when I started thinking about running a new campaign I realised I wasn’t done with that world. So last Saturday I got a new group together and started a new campaign with my favourite fantasy system. And this time we tried out it with Funnel World. Continue reading

Trying Out: Uncharted Worlds

spiliaprime1Short version: Uncharted Worlds is an Apocalypse World hack by Sean Gomes. It is a game for a space opera in the style of Firefly (amongst other things). It’s a complete game not requiring the understanding or ownership of the Apocalypse World by Vincent Baker. And it is a good hack with a lot going on.

Long version: After a number of times failing to get the group together we finally managed to sit down for a game of Uncharted Worlds. Sami (our GM) has been talking about this and has prepared for it by running the Out of the Abyss-campaign. He has even vowed to write about running it at one point. With 20+ sessions I would imagine he has quite a bit to say about it. Once he actually does it…
Continue reading

Ropecon 2016: The Scenario Contest

A game of Yövuoro (The Night Shift).

A game of Yövuoro (The Night Shift).

Again, there was a short-form scenario contest at Ropecon. I managed to play in six of them, including all three that received a prize. I gave some feedback to the designers on individual games, but now that I can see the bigger picture, I’d like to point on some commonalities and offer critique that I hope will lead to more fun for everyone in the future. Continue reading

Assassination in Three Hours — Blades in the Dark

blades3

In mere three hours, we created our group of scoundrels and planned and executed an assassination. John Harper’s roleplaying game Blades in the Dark, dear readers, is awesome. This is my experience of our first session. Note that this is not a review nor an analysis of the design, just a description of a subjective experience. Continue reading

Season of the Witch, End

Playtesting sheets

Playtesting sheets

Last week we played the long anticipated tenth session of our last “season” of Eldritch Sigils called The Season of the Witch. Rather than being (all) about the last session I try once again debate about ending a campaign.

At the start of this campaign we established that the characters were chosen by George Washington to uncover a diabolic cult of witches that had been plaguing the New World since its founding. As with most campaigns it all went to hell but this time with an intended bang.

Continue reading

The Psychopomp, or My Take on Fall of Magic

We finally managed to play Fall of Magic with the Blog crew. We did have an outside ringer to play this with four players.

What is Fall of Magic? Its actually an interesting concept. The main draw is the scroll, which depicts a map, or more like an itinerary. The idea is that you start from a certain point and you unroll the scroll as you move forwards, thus revealing new places and more information. The plot hook is that there’s a magus, who is on his way to the well of magic, because magic is failing (as per the name). The players represent the maguses entourage. Its a journey, and in fiction journey’s represent personal growth, so in my mind that should be represented in some way, although I chose to take a different route.

Continue reading

Season of the Witch, Part 5

It is quite remarkable how a few random words can make a big difference. I though I was having great time yesterday while playing Eldritch Sigils but once we were leaving Mikko‘s place after the game one of the players said something that not only made my day but also made me think (again) about how and why we play. It wasn’t a big thing at all – he just said: “I didn’t remember to mark down my exp.”

Continue reading