Tabletop RPG Catch All

misplacedbravado wrote:
TheHipGamer wrote:

So, in addition to a weekly 1st Edition AD&D run of Temple of Elemental Evil, I'm looking at kicking off a Traveller campaign in January.

Courtesy of eBay some years back, I own the entire original Classic Traveller set of rulebooks and most of the modules, Megatraveller, and the newest Mongoose edition (along with Pirates of Drinax). That said, I've never played or run Traveller -- so I'm excited to play. Man, though, there's some uncomfortable Gamer Dude stuff in the Pirates campaign setup.

How's the ToEE campaign going?

We slowed down to 1x/month or so last winter, due to real life, but starting this summer we picked things back up. The party is still alive (!), and the players have started to wrap their heads around the conventions of old-school AD&D roleplaying (describing actions rather than rolling for skill checks, combat is fast and all descriptive, dungeons are to be probed at and retreated from repeatedly, gold is XP, and you have to pay for leveling up).

They're about to encounter Lareth, and then it's on to Nulb and the Temple itself. We play via Skype for a couple of hours every Sunday, and in person once per month for a longer session. Being old is hard.

misplacedbravado wrote:

Pirates of Drinax strikes me as taking a lot of inspiration from computer games -- the basic structure of the thing mixes campaign missions with side missions, there's a Cool Ship that the PCs can sink a lot of money into upgrading... and it gives the players permission to cause whatever mayhem they feel like without putting too much thought into moral and ethical questions.

Yeah. I might adjust that; I've little interest in space murder hobos. I may also just discard it and home-brew something more nuanced.

hbi2k wrote:

So I just committed my first total-party-wipe as a DM. I was running a Monster of the Week one-shot

Haha! I don't think I've heard of a TPK in MotW before!

My Forbidden Lands kickstarter package from Fria Ligan arrived today. It looks pretty sweet!

Not sure when I'll get a chance to play it but the high quality of the books, custom dice, cards, and map will help push it up the queue.

In my on-going ToEE game, the party is (I think) about to experience their first brush with death. They are in the Moathouse, have just encountered Lareth, and badly wounded from fighting through his guards, tried to run away.

Without the guy with the map, because they split the party.

I described the corridors and had them decide "right or left?" as they came to intersections. Realizing how screwed they might be, they asked for a skill roll to "remember where they were". I reminded them that in old-school AD&D, there are no such rolls -- I would describe the dungeon, but they had to either remember or ask their in-game map holder for help, and since he wasn't there...

Half of the group (the thief and the magic user) are now isolated in a set of chambers with only a single exit, and Lareth (for whom I rolled percentile die at each intersection in order to determine direction when the players were out of sight) is now between them and the way out, along with a sergeant. I try to keep my thumb off the scales as much as possible, so I think it unlikely either will survive. Perhaps their next characters will be more wary...

Tried two new to me rpg's this weekend; Blades in the Dark, and Dungeon World. Man they were some good times. I am going to dump a bunch of text here mainly about the BitD because that for me was the thing I had more fun with.

Blades in the Dark:

Spoiler:

*From the website* Blades in the Dark is a tabletop role-playing game about a crew of daring scoundrels seeking their fortunes on the haunted streets of an industrial-fantasy city. There are heists, chases, occult mysteries, dangerous bargains, bloody skirmishes, and, above all, riches to be had — if you’re bold enough to seize them.

Essentially you and your group play the A-Team or Ocean's 11 group. You are a heist crew in a city protected by a demon blood powered lightning wall. The city is dark, gritty, early industrial. Magic and steam/early electric tech go hand in hand. In your group everyone has their role. There is a mastermind, grifter, heavy hitter, techy, ect. The world while small is dense. Each city has different sections and your crew has a headquarters in one of them and their preferred hunting ground probably is in another. These become important aspects in the campaign because the in between heists is as important or even more then the actual heist. Jobs will give you heat forcing you to lay low, or have other consequences in between. You WILL run afoul of other gangs/police/labor unions. Your gang has certain traits that focus them. Our group was "Ambition and Daring" which is a nice way of saying we were in over our head on some high risk high reward jobs. In the 4 hours we robbed a train, and stole an artifact for a rival nation back from a museum.

Playing it there were some really fun mechanics. Your pre-heist prep is really low key. You set the objective, and how your going to get in, its just a quick simple description. Then roll for how easily it goes with a yes/no question system to see how many dice you roll for the check. you get a six its a success, 4-5 partial success, 1-3 well your desperate and lets see how if you can pull it off. Then your in the middle of the heist. Depending on your check the GM throws more resistance or less. It is more fun to have things go pear shaped then easy. The heist is then played with a a combination of descriptive actions/dice checks and retroactive flash backs that said how you obviously prepared for this already. I am really thinking of picking up the book and maybe running a couple one shots. The book/game is billed as minimal prep.

I am thinking of picking up a copy and maybe running a one shot online if there is interest.

Dungeon World:

Spoiler:

Classic fantasy tropes, wrapped in a more collaborative story telling system then PF or D&D. Everyone shares in the world building. Character creation is pretty simple. Actions are done being describing them, then the GM designates what type of action that falls under in the mechanics: Hack and Slash, Defy Danger, Volley, Defend, Spout Lore.

Our game ended early as we lost the tables we were at do to them being used for some tournament.It was fun, but there are a bunch of systems for this and there is not anything stand out in my mind.

played some Dishonored themed BiTD on our little Euro Slap n' Tickle weekend in Edinburgh back in October. Was definitely a fun experience.

pyxistyx wrote:

played some Dishonored themed BiTD on our little Euro Slap n' Tickle weekend in Edinburgh back in October. Was definitely a fun experience.

Yeah that's a good matching theme.

One mechanic I for some reason skipped over for BitD is the Devil's Bargain. So for any check you need to do there are ways to increase your dice so that you are more likely to roll well. You can be assisted by 1 team member which will give you a die and/or you can be given a Devil's Bargain. For the DB you are told before you decide what the general consequence will be. So for example as a Whisper (Occult/mystic specialist) I had the use of Spirit Bottles. Pretty much what they sound like a bottle containing a spirit. Using it while not increasing my odds of using my create a storm ability, it made it so the storm had greater effect. To increase my odds the DB was that the spirits contained in the bottle would be angry at being stored and used to the whims of the mortals, and I would deal with the effect. I accepted the bargain, as a result while i was successful in Obscuring the whole train yard in a dense fog, I had to fight a possession from the spirits contained.

I liked this mechanic in that knowing I still may fail, and no matter what the Devil will get his due so to speak.

TheHipGamer wrote:

In my on-going ToEE game, the party is (I think) about to experience their first brush with death. They are in the Moathouse, have just encountered Lareth, and badly wounded from fighting through his guards, tried to run away.

Without the guy with the map, because they split the party.

I described the corridors and had them decide "right or left?" as they came to intersections. Realizing how screwed they might be, they asked for a skill roll to "remember where they were". I reminded them that in old-school AD&D, there are no such rolls -- I would describe the dungeon, but they had to either remember or ask their in-game map holder for help, and since he wasn't there...

Half of the group (the thief and the magic user) are now isolated in a set of chambers with only a single exit, and Lareth (for whom I rolled percentile die at each intersection in order to determine direction when the players were out of sight) is now between them and the way out, along with a sergeant. I try to keep my thumb off the scales as much as possible, so I think it unlikely either will survive. Perhaps their next characters will be more wary...

Nearly a TPK last night from this; only the Cleric survived, and he ran away.

The Magic User, panicked and cornered, threw his backpack full of burning oil and improvised explosives at Lareth and his minion. He missed. Using the grenade-like weapons rules, the MU triggered a 6d6 damage explosion, with a 2d6 burst the next round as the rest of his burning oil was set off.

It didn't quite kill Lareth, but it did do a fine job of ending the MU's life. The rogue, who was with him, fell to a blow from the Staff of Striking that Lareth carries. The rest of the party, drawn by the explosion, charged in -- surprising Lareth, but the Fighter wasn't able to take the hits from the Staff, and only managed to connect once before succumbing. At this point, the Cleric wisely fled.

3 new characters being rolled for our next game!

At some point I really want to try running a straight up mega-dungeon crawl with no huge overarching plot beyond exploring, traps and monsters :D)

I picked up a PDF of Barrowmaze 5e for that very purpose, just in case

But that'll be much later, as I'm still running Phandelver and I've already got a reasonably solid plan for where I want to expand and take it beyond what's in the published campaign.

pyxistyx wrote:

At some point I really want to try running a straight up mega-dungeon crawl with no huge overarching plot beyond exploring, traps and monsters :D)

Running in 1E is interesting. I'm not convinced my players love it, but it's an experience, and there is an irreplaceable feeling and flavor to mid-1970s tabletop roleplaying systems and adventures. In a sense, it's the same feeling that PC gaming had prior to the early 2000s commercialization trend.

Lots of plot and adventure to be had in ToEE, in addition to a massive dungeon.

I find BitD such a gift to run as a GM. It's one of those games where you can stretch even the smallest amount of player input a long way. Players aren't suffering wounds, they're suffering consequences. So every time you "hit" a PC you're piling on more story.

TheHipGamer wrote:

So, in addition to a weekly 1st Edition AD&D run of Temple of Elemental Evil, I'm looking at kicking off a Traveller campaign in January.

Courtesy of eBay some years back, I own the entire original Classic Traveller set of rulebooks and most of the modules, Megatraveller, and the newest Mongoose edition (along with Pirates of Drinax). That said, I've never played or run Traveller -- so I'm excited to play. Man, though, there's some uncomfortable Gamer Dude stuff in the Pirates campaign setup.

Ugh... I recall getting wiped at the skull because our paladin, who went first, walked the dang thing twice before anyone had a chance to react. Poof. I (the wizard) and the cleric were gone in a flash.

If you play traveler, just try not to get caught up in accounting, which can happen if you have your players run their own ship. It can get tedious if you’re not careful.

pyxistyx wrote:

played some Dishonored themed BiTD on our little Euro Slap n' Tickle weekend in Edinburgh back in October. Was definitely a fun experience.

What an understatement. It was aaamaaziiiiiiing.

Eleima wrote:
pyxistyx wrote:

played some Dishonored themed BiTD on our little Euro Slap n' Tickle weekend in Edinburgh back in October. Was definitely a fun experience.

What an understatement. It was aaamaaziiiiiiing.

*takes a blushing bow*

pyxistyx wrote:

At some point I really want to try running a straight up mega-dungeon crawl with no huge overarching plot beyond exploring, traps and monsters :D)

I picked up a PDF of Barrowmaze 5e for that very purpose, just in case

But that'll be much later, as I'm still running Phandelver and I've already got a reasonably solid plan for where I want to expand and take it beyond what's in the published campaign.

If you think you might be more comfortable sticking with 5e, Dungeon of the Mad Mage is exactly this, you get like 20 floors and the story is more or less what you make it. They barely set up any story hooks in the adventure.

b12n11w00t wrote:

If you think you might be more comfortable sticking with 5e, Dungeon of the Mad Mage is exactly this, you get like 20 floors and the story is more or less what you make it. They barely set up any story hooks in the adventure.

Tales from the Yawning Portal is also very similar - 7 classic adventures (including Tomb of Horrors) that have been updated to 5e. Each one is pretty much a discrete dungeon crawl. They do include some adventure hooks to link them into an existing campaign but so far the two we've played (Sunless Citadel and currently running Forge of Fury) are pretty straightforward dungeon crawls. Maybe not "mega" dungeons.

I'm running my 3 boys (and one of their friends) through a loose campaign using this book and I'm really trying to engage each of their characters somehow to elevate it just a bit beyond a plain dungeon crawl. I'm starting to wonder if I'm trying to be too ambitious though, as I've introduced a few elements that I don't know how to resolve yet.

- We have a tiefling warlock who has a pact with Great Cthulhu, so I can kind of just throw whatever weirdness at him to keep things interesting. At some point I want to give him a task that will end up being unsettling somehow, or cause him to second-guess his pact. His character is good, and I want to suggest that Cthulhu is not.

- A gnome rogue who has the "exiled criminal" background, which seems kind of unusual for a gnome. I'd like to work this into the campaign somehow, but I'm not sure how yet.

- A human ranger who hates dragons. The bottom of the Forge of Fury houses a young black dragon, so that's an easy if somewhat cliche motivation for him.

- A half-elf fighter who is played by my 9-year-old son. All he wants to do is roll dice and hit things, so he's not too hard to satisfy. But he also gets bored easily, so I'd like to do something to interest him.

One of the background hooks I threw in was that the Forge was also the site of a cataclysmic battle between a wizard and an ancient black dragon (progenitor of the current younger black dragon inhabitant). During that battle, the wizard cast a spell that turned an enslaved band of elves, halflings, and gnomes into orc warriors to go into battle against the dragon. Everyone - dragon, wizard, and transfigured orcs - was killed in the ensuing fight. There is enough lingering magic from that transfiguration spell that the half-elf and gnome party members are going to slowly turn into orcs, probably experiencing this transformation as they fight and kill things. I want to give them something to strive for (a cure), but I still have no idea what that cure will be. At the rate we're going I should still have a few months to figure it out. Although they've narrowly avoided death enough times that they may not survive and it might be moot.

Just finished the big local con, where I organised our games on demand event.

Very strangely, I didn't end up actually GMing any games! (Usually I end up doing five or more).

Played:
- Night Witches (a one shot in which we had no major failures, disasters, or deaths).
- Fall of Magic (great as always).
- Dusk City Outlaws (really neat fantasy heist game... similar to Blades in the Dark in a lot of superficial ways, but in play had a really different focus. worth checking out.)
- Late night Saturday I wanted something exercising "different brain muscles" as one person described it. Played a game of Root, which was fun (although we ran out of time before we finished). Five players, including the otters and lizards which I hadn't seen in play yet. Good fun.
- On Sunday I played three sessions of a "living world" style Forbidden Lands game from one GM. Great fun, and I'm just got more and more impressed with the game. Nice to know my scoundrel has left some marks on that GM's world, too, for subsequent players to deal with!

So humble has a pretty good set of Numenera books. I highly recommend it.

MikeSands wrote:

- Night Witches (a one shot in which we had no major failures, disasters, or deaths).

What? How did that happen?

Last time I ran it, my players accidentally bombed a general's car...a Russian general who was there to observe their training.

Gremlin wrote:
MikeSands wrote:

- Night Witches (a one shot in which we had no major failures, disasters, or deaths).

What? How did that happen?

We had a fairly successful day, with a decent mission pool gathered, then on the mission we rolled mostly well and used the pool for everything else. Perhaps the GM was going a little too easy on us? Also sometimes things just don't all go horribly wrong I suppose...

February was a good month for my new 5e campaign. I got to run three times in one month, which was the first time that has happened in a very long time. I mentioned to one of players being happy I had two weeks until the next game, so I can do some deeper retooling of my notes, and he commented thinking that it sucks he has to wait two more weeks. That was awesome, especially coming from the new guy. Everyone seems to be taking well to the new setting and totally custom races too.

I'd like to share a kickstarter run by a friend of mine: Soth

It's a game where you play the evil cultists trying to balance regular day to day life and the need to summon your dark god Soth. So, the villains from a Call of Cthulhu game.

It's pretty dark, as you might expect, but great fun.

Recently based on recommendations here I picked up No Thank You Evil. I cannot wait to start this with my kids. The book/rules/atmosphere are fantastic. Really easy to pick up and go. My kids have been seeing me read the rule book and are excited to play as well. It is based on the Monte Cook's Cypher system which is also what Numenera is based on. Being already familiar with that has helped for sure. So whoever it was that mentioned it, Thank You.

Every time I read the name "No Thank you Evil" i read it in Minsc's voice

MikeSands wrote:

I'd like to share a kickstarter run by a friend of mine: Soth

It's a game where you play the evil cultists trying to balance regular day to day life and the need to summon your dark god Soth. So, the villains from a Call of Cthulhu game.

It's pretty dark, as you might expect, but great fun.

Saw that the other day and almost backed it on impulse but figured it probably wasn't something i would get around to playing myself. However, since the PDF version is pretty cheap and there's a GWJ connection then sure, why not!

Seriously though, no more zines or zine-sized projects! I've backed a ridiculous number of them this month because of their February RPG zine event :O

pyxistyx wrote:

Seriously though, no more zines or zine-sized projects! I've backed a ridiculous number of them this month because of their February RPG zine event :O

Me too, it's too easy to back things at such prices.

So my oldest had a sickday yesterday. Was able to stay home with all of my munchkins and ran No Thank You Evil! with them.

Spoiler:

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/i2aPSWZ.jpg)

My oldest (6) was a Cool Superhero named NoName who had a ghost companion that could shoot sparks. My 4yr old daughter was a Smart Princess named Smart that had a bird companion named Flappy. My 3yr old had a Powerful Supehero that named Slappy, she had a pretty pony companion that was also named Slappy.

All together they rescued a friend of the bee queen who was trapped by witches in the Dragonsnot Falls. They have been asking non stop to do it again. I think it was a success. Really looking forward to the stories we can create together.

Self-promotion Warning!

If any of you are interested, the Tome of Mysteries for Monster of the Week is now available to pre-order.

I think there was some interest here in naval adventure RPGs, along the lines of C S Forester and Patrick O'Brian.

If that's right, and you're still interested, I have a playtest draft of my game Devil & the Deep, which is intended to hit that genre. Details and links here. Would appreciate any feedback.