Trying out: Heroica

heroica01As a fortunate accident my father bought an older Lego set from a closing sale and brought it to my son. He believed to have bought a regular castle with some minifigs but instead he had bought Heroica – Castle Fortaan. In essence it is a dungeon bashing “board” game that follows the style of other Lego game (only a few rules and encouraging words to come up with your own). So naturally I had to try it.

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Trying Out: Fall of Magic & Archipelago

During last weekend I was lucky enough to get into two games ran by Jason Morningstar at Ropecon; one of which I was not even thinking to get into but managed to get a seat when a player did not turn up. Too bad for him. It was an excellent game and pretty much shook up my whole view of roleplaying (in a similar way that AWengine did a few years ago). In essence this post is about testing Fall of Magic and Archipelago.

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Trying out: Hearthstone

artwork5-fullHearthstone: The Heroes of Warcraft is a collectible “card game” played on computer or tablet. I just installed it on my iPad and tried it out. And by saying “tried it out” I started fours hours ago and are still playing. As advertised it is insanely addictive. At least for someone who has been playing Magic: the Gathering for several years.

I started just to get the feeling for it and quite possibly try it out against fellow Guild members. Weirdly it didn’t let me search for familiar opponents from the beginning but guided me through the simple enough tutorials. The tutorials while informing took quite long to finish and even after that I had to challenge all possible “heroes” to get the whole thing open. But once I did that I got the hang of the game and opened all the options for the game. Continue reading

Thoughts on The Regiment: Ville’s views on X-Ray Down

This is my view on John Harper and Paul Riddle’s The Regiment, run by Lauri. There’s nothing much I can add to Lauri’s description of the session, so I’ll talk a bit about my impressions of the system. Do keep in mind that even though the version number is 2.5, The Regiment is still a work in progress; beautiful and promising, but flawed. I hope these notes will a) help the designers hone the game, b) make you interested in testing in it, and c) give you a couple of hints while playing it. Continue reading

Trying out: Dread

dread2This post is almost two months late. I rely on the notes I made and the vague memories that still haunt me of the one of the most successful horror scenarios I have ever participated.

For during Saturday of this year’s Ropecon I was lucky enough to get a seat in a game I have been itching for ages to try out – Dread.

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Escaping the Slave-Pits of Drazhu

slavepitsofdrazhuSummer in Finland is unstable at best. This tends to lead into a gambling event with the mother nature with your holidays. Usually it rains or at least is unnaturally cold when you have a few days of to visit a cabin. Not this time! It was as hot as it gets here and what did we do with this kind of a marvel on our hands? Covered away from direct sunlight, dug up our bags of d6s and try out the demo adventure for Dungeon World (download the adventure from the downloads section).

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Hello Vietnam! or trying out the Regiment

hellovietnamLast Wednesday we went to a family cabin of mine with the plan for alcohol, sauna and games. Good times!

I had originally thought of hosting something of a Kaiju-themed evening with King of Tokio and an AWhack called Monster Force Terra by James Mullen. As I was feeling a bit sick at the morning I decided to take The Regiment hack by John Harper instead as I knew it would more or less run itself with the guys I was going to the cabin anyway.

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Playing a Cybernetic Space Gorilla Scientist

Last Wednesday a random group of players from our forum gathered to try out the new version of FATE. We knew it was going to be a tryout session and hoped it was going to be fun.

FATE01

As a player I am not that much into rules-heavy games (and as GM even less). So what I had heard from FATE was actually quite promising. A simple system that allowed the players to contribute to the story and events of the game by creating defining terms.

I read through the first half of the rules (for a “rules light game” it has quite a number of pages) and got quite a good grasp of them. The GM had done the same so luckily we had the combined forces of two players who had almost read the entire rules.

Our GM had prepared an adventure and characters for us beforehand. The basis for the adventure was “Forbidden planet” type of space slipstream. I got to play a gorilla scientist enhanced with cybernetic implants. And damn it was fun.

As MustaJumala said in his earlier post I too like oneshot because the offer you a chance to get crazy. My Aspects (the defining phrases that are the core of your character) were easy to play. Krakatou was deeply concerned about his appearance as an intelligent being while on the other hand he still had his animal side. So I made sure we had a proper tea time after going all Gorilla Berserk against a hideous space monster.

Our group consisted of the crew of Attila’s Court – a spaceship owned by MustaJumala’s character Captain Attila Moon. In addition to our characters there was a fungi that was living inside a dead crew member and the first mate who was actually a killing machine robot. Your basic crew all in all.

We followed the notorious space terrorist Gorgon (“GORGON!”) to a forbidden planet in hopes of rescuing the princess he had taken captive. Naturally we crashed and had to walk through all kinds of perils to reach the ancient temple of the artificial intelligence that was the reason this planet was off-limits. We fought snailmen and a lovecraftian horror and competed for the affections of the fungi infested colleague.

Just at the brink of epic showdown we got derailed into “conversation” about gaming mechanics.

I’m first to admit that it was mainly my fault. The challenges we had faced had been so demanding and the Fate points we had gained so few that we argued for awhile of what should my character do to get some points. It almost ended up destroying the game but luckily we got it under control. GM gave us some fate points just to keep the game going and to see how much difference they did (this was a try-out session after all).

As my gorilla had an aspect telling me that I had “saving the entire crew almost cost me my life” (or something along those lines) I ended up in a mortal combat with the A.I. Entering the matrix of the planet I wrestled it long enough for my friends to escape the perilous planet.

And just as they exited the atmosphere and thought they were safe a door opened behind them. “Captain Attila MOON!” cried out the space terrorist Gorgon.

Even if we do not get back to these characters it was a marvellous adventure topped with an excellent ending.

Though hopefully next time we are more experienced with the rules…