Apr 152014
Kaplen Applewood, the Urban Barbarian - Steal this Background

“For five years I followed orders, raged, and killed. I guess they thought I had enough, or were tired of trying to control me in their secret camps. I was “discharged” last year. I reported to some fancy officer in robes. He was supposed to erase my memories, I think. Didn’t work though. He was too drunk to do the job proper.”

Apr 022014
Diss Organized Play

When I review the event listings at the conventions, there are always games that catch my attention, sometimes by the title, sometimes by the blurb, and sometimes by the level (when I foolishly decide I’d really like to play in a 27th level game). Then I realize this game that caused a lovely tingle in my lobes is all kinds of RPGA (Living Forgotten Realms, Living Divine, Ashes of Athas), and I do my best impression of Eeyore: “Looks like a good game. Guess I can’t play in it…”

Mar 272014
Review: Wreck Age RPG

Wreck Age, released in 2013 by Hyacinth games, is a surprisingly effective hybrid of tabletop RPGs and miniature war games. Although it isn’t perfect, it should satisfy those who are fans of both, and have longed for a more story-driven wargaming experience…

Mar 242014
Dontcha Just Hate Us Bad Guys?

In any roleplaying game, what defines an enemy? The defense numbers? The damage numbers? The extensive and daunting power list? No, I say, and say again, no. The only characteristic that defines an enemy is the one thing that’s impossible to quantify: the personality…

Mar 192014
23 Ranks of Use Rope

I’ve not made a secret my disdain for skills in d20-based games. They always feel tacked on, a sop offered to players who need more numbers to truly realize the character they want to play. Rather than just say, “My dude spent a lot of time in the king’s court” and let the GM interpret what this means, most players feel it’s important to have mechanics that represent capabilities beyond the core task resolution system. Today, I want to talk about why I feel this approach is bad for d20 games and probably make you super upset as a result. But I have a solution and it comes at the end…

Mar 172014
Review... Cursed Treasure: Don't Touch My Gems

Cursed Treasure: Don’t Touch My Gems is a tower defense game where you place towers with varying capabilities on the map to try and stop waves of enemies from stealing your gems. The atmospheric twist here is that you’re the evil Overlord using Orcs, Undead, and Demons to stop the heroes…