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

X-Ray Down

IMG_8851Our gaming Guild apparently now has something of a regular random gaming night at the beginning of each month. This time it was my turn to be the GM (actually I just announced that I wanted to) and my weapon of choice was The Regiment by John Harper. As we had had some experience with the Apocalypse World hack I decided that this time I would tackle one of my RPG goals – running a game of X-COM.

For this particular session I decided to do a little something extra and went through the playbook templates for The Regiment – Colonial Marines (they were provided by Harper at the AWforum) changing most of the names to correspond the newest instalment of the X-COM franchise. While doing this I ended up into the deep end and found myself hacking the whole hack to suit my needs. 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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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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Wayward Sons: Love letters & Demonic possession


Disclaimer: This post includes bad language and attitudes that really aren’t a representation of what we actually think. It only goes to show out we have bad taste.

As we grow more and more accustomed to this hack and how it works we manage to extend the game and bring in more interesting elements to the game.

This week I send two of my players a love letter. Now I am not sure I actually used them the right way but since this is after all our game I think the point was that they were successful. Or at least one was.

Due the first letter and the roll that followed one of the PCs got a prison tattoo. That was not too interesting. That taught me to be more considering when making the letters. Dull outcomes bring a little to the game.

The second letter was much more interesting. It bring out demonic possession and end up nearly killing the whole group.

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Wayward Sons: Moving from tier 1 to tier 2

This post is a direct followup on Aki’s post from yesterday. It started out as a comment but quickly lengthened in a way to seemed like it should have its own post.

Advancement in this kind of a game is problematic. On the one hand many players want to see their characters gaining more skills and progressing towards something like a demigod status. You may advance your character according to the “spend experience” chart found in each playbook. It all changes when you advance to “tier 2”.

This is the threshold of problem. How to keep the character in the same mould but allow him to grow?

I think that something like the advancement of John McClane has always been my ideal of character development. They might get more and more things done but they loose a bit of themselves on the process.

One thing that occurred to me just while I read this post is adding a simple and elegant system for advancement.


In simplest for this might work out when you change your playbook. You develop from a dealer to the Avenger BUT. This might even be a Move. When “when you advance your character, choose 1” and then a list of shit that might hit the fan.

This idea is presented in some ways in various hacks and I just discussed about something similar with one of the players from the same group as Aki and myself. It should not be simple to do something or if it is there should be a cost for it. You could look it the way Aki said. McClane survives (ie. develops) BUT loses his wife.

The trick here is to build the conditionals in a way that would make sense for the narrative and for the character.