The GWJ CRPG Club - Game 3 Voting Ends Soon!

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What's This?
Have you started Baldur's Gate II six times and never made it past Level 4? Do you stare at your Steam pile, see a half dozen great RPGs, and think, "One of these days I'm going to play those games."

Well, this is the group for you! We are a group of GWJers playing Computer RPGs together for the fun of a shared experience. The main thought is that we all have some great RPGs that have been sitting in our backlogs for quite a while and never seem to get cleared off the pile. By picking an RPG that's been out for a while and getting a number of people to play it at the same time, there is more motivation to finish and the conversation about the gameplay makes the experience all the better.

What's currently going on?
We are voting on Game 3 until June 25 at 5pm GMT.
We are playing Pillars of Eternity until September 30, 2018.
We are playing Shadowrun: Dragonfall DC until June 30, 2018.

What types of games do we play?
1. Role-Playing Games that are at least a year old.
2. Games that are good, relatively inexpensive, and available.
3. Non-Japanese RPGs (there is already a GWJ Club for Japanese RPGs)
4. Computer Role-Playing Games, but console RPGs are not necessarily excluded.

How do we decide on games to play?
We have five days of nominations and seconding. To be included in the voting games must be nominated by one member and seconded by a different member. Each member is allowed one nomination, and may second any number of nominations. Games nominated must have had their western release at least one year before the nomination month and may not be a game the club has already played.

Next, we have five days of voting. Each member is allowed three votes, but can only spend one vote per game. However, members do not have to use all three votes. Members can vote without having nominated anything! Vote for stuff you want to play. Highest vote getter wins.

If games are tied after the first round of voting, we hold a 48-hour tiebreaker among the games tied for first. Each member may vote for as many games in the tiebreaker pool as they like.

How long do we have to play each game?
6 months, but we start new games every 3 months, so months 4-6 will likely be quieter than months 1-3.

What are the guidelines on conversation spoilers?
For BIG spoilers, please use the spoiler tag. (No! I am your father!) Tactics, strategies, general story progression likely don't need them, but we're still working these things out. (Suggestions welcome!)

Can anyone join? How do I join?
All are most welcome! Post in this thread with "I'm interested" or something like that and BOOM, your lifetime membership is fully activated. In 3-6 weeks you will receive your secret handshake in the mail. Check for it daily.

How do I level up?
Start and finish a group game during the gameplay duration, go up a level! No penalties for not finishing. Highest level member gets to decide the year's secret handshake at the annual club convention that does not ever happen.

Game History
2018
Pillars of Eternity (April 1 - September 30)
Shadowrun: Dragonfall DC (January 20 - June 30)

Level 2 Members
steinkrug - Dragonfall, Pillars of Eternity
pyxistyx - Dragonfall, Pillars of Eternity
Clumber - Dragonfall, Pillars of Eternity
Redherring- Dragonfall, Pillars of Eternity

Level 1 Members
*Legion* - Dragonfall
Godzilla Blitz - Dragonfall
RnRClown - Dragonfall
Hardek - Dragonfall
beanman101283 - Dragonfall
JohnKillo - Dragonfall
WellAdjusted - Dragonfall
SillyRabbit - Dragonfall
Skraut - Dragonfall
tundra - Dragonfall
Feegle - Dragonfall
benign1 - Dragonfall
fuzzyslug - Dragonfall
SpaceDog - Dragonfall
merhple- Dragonfall
Sorbicol - Pillars of Eternity
Shadout - Pillars of Eternity
Cronox - Pillars of Eternity
imbiginjapan - Pillars of Eternity

Level 0 Members
Eleima
Warriorpoet897
AUs_TBirD
absurddoctor
Bubblefuzz
TheHarpoMarxist
misplacedbravado
Running Man
tboon
billt721
CptDomano
gravity
tanstaafl
kergguz
fuzzyslug
prodiginy
Sydhart
Lahndon
blackanchor
Paincakes
thejustinbot
JMnITup
mrlogical
jdzappa
imbiginjapan
merphle
WizKid
Sundown
ZenPusherGasoline
ubrakto
LastSurprise
Pinkerton
MoonDoggy

Good idea! i'd be interested.

Maybe I’m interested. I’m not sure. I’ve only got Torment waiting for me, and I’m still chin deep in Oblivion, so not sure just yet.

Would this be western RPGs then?

Eagerly anticipating the first batch of potential games.

steinkrug wrote:

Would this be western RPGs then?

CRPGs?

JohnKillo wrote:
steinkrug wrote:

Would this be western RPGs then?

CRPGs?

I was just making sure I understood “classic RPG” to mean the type of games that have seen a revival lately in games like Pillars of Eternity, Torment, etc. or if it was broader or different than that. Just curious.

Edit: for clarity.

steinkrug wrote:
JohnKillo wrote:
steinkrug wrote:

Would this be western RPGs then?

CRPGs?

I was just making sure I understood “classic RPG” to mean the type of games that have seen a revival lately like Pillars of Eternity, Torment, etc. or if it was broader or different than that. Just curious.

IMAGE(http://frpnet.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Pool_of_radiance_panels.png)

I'd be down if we are talking Ultima 6 era or thereabouts. Probably in the minority here though.

It would certainly give me some motivation for playing some of these. I've got a lot but usually burn out before I get very far. Some lively discussion would help.

Caveat: I have grad school starting in about a week and am not sure what sort of free time I will have!

I'm excited to see that there are others who might be interested in this! Thanks to all who have expressed some interest.

steinkrug wrote:

Would this be western RPGs then?

Sorry, I don't think my original post was all that clear. To answer this, though, mainly... yes.

I added "classic" to the post title to try to get at the idea of "non-Japanese RPGs published more than a year ago." I avoided "western" because I thought it might make people think of cowboys and the US frontier. But "classic" was probably misleading in its own right. My thought would be to intentionally keep things broad so that we could go in any direction we wanted within the RPG genre.

So sure, Ultima 6 if enough people wanted to play it, or Baldur's Gate, or Fallout 3, or a game from the Might & Magic series, or Pillars of Eternity, or Torment, or Wizardry 8, or Oblivion, or Drakensang, or Wasteland 1 or 2, or Fable, or lesser known indie RPGs like Avernum and Geneforge, or Realms of Arkania, or Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic, etc. Heck, if the desire were there we could dip into an action RPG like Diablo or Torchlight. As long as the heart of the game is an RPG, it could be in.

I hadn't really thought much about platform, or restricting platforms, but thinking about this now I'd imagine that most of them would exist more as CRPGs than on other platforms.

The main thought was that there might be other people like me who have a number of older RPGs sitting in their backlog unplayed, and playing them together with other people might make the experience more fun, and help us to stay focused on the game until the end.

It was probably plenty clear, I was just making sure I understood. I don't blame you for not using "western," that's probably not really a helpful term. Thanks for the further detail. "Classic" seems like a good choice, all things considered, and I have seen it used before.

I always considered CRPG to stand for Computer RPG...a.k.a. "Western"-style.

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

I avoided "western" because I thought it might make people think of cowboys and the US frontier. But "classic" was probably misleading in its own right. My thought would be to intentionally keep things broad so that we could go in any direction we wanted within the RPG genre.

So Wild Arms isn't off the table entirely (not that I have it anyway

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

So sure, Ultima 6 if enough people wanted to play it, or Baldur's Gate, or Fallout 3, or a game from the Might & Magic series, or Pillars of Eternity, or Torment, or Wizardry 8, or Oblivion, or Drakensang, or Wasteland 1 or 2, or Fable, or lesser known indie RPGs like Avernum and Geneforge, or Realms of Arkania, or Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic, etc. Heck, if the desire were there we could dip into an action RPG like Diablo or Torchlight.

Depending on the game, I'd be willing to give it a try. I own the majority of those you listed, and have rarely gotten more than 3 hours into any of them. Realms of Arkania: Star Trail is one of the first games I bought for my first IBM-compatible PC in 1996. I liked it, but then something more action heavy lured me away.

I'd be interested in giving this a try, I have no shortage of qualifying RPG's in my pile and on my wishlist.

When you said Classic, I'll admit I was thinking back to the Amiga days and...

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/N62X4ZX.jpg)

Missed out on the jprg game for this quarter, so yeah, if you pick something that's on the pile will try and play along. Maybe a little more modern than the above

I'm interested, schedule permitting!

Bubblefuzz wrote:

When you said Classic, I'll admit I was thinking back to the Amiga days and...

(snipped for brevity)

Missed out on the jprg game for this quarter, so yeah, if you pick something that's on the pile will try and play along. Maybe a little more modern than the above :)

Lol, yes, that's why I was thinking the term "classic" was a bit off target. Not that we couldn't play something that old, but it's probably not the main area of interest.

AUs_TBirD wrote:

I always considered CRPG to stand for Computer RPG...a.k.a. "Western"-style.

Right! Yes, that's probably more in line with what I was imagining, except that we wouldn't necessarily rule out a non-computer game if there were interest in a particular game.

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Thinking on this some more, I wouldn't imagine we'd go down the route of an MMORPG, or a cruddy game. That we'd aim for good, non-Japanese CRPGs (mostly) older than one year with clear endings.

And maybe that's our name?
"The GWJ Good, Non-Japanese CRPGs (Mostly) Older than One Year With Clear Endings Club"

So catchy!

We could always go with "The GWJ CRPG Club" for short.
___

Realistically, with these sorts of things, if we had 20 or so people following along, I imagine we'd have 5-10 people express interest in playing a particular game, and that maybe 1/4 to 1/2 of those who start would finish?
But that would be a handful of people having fun playing and checking games off their backlogs every few months, and that'd be good enough for me. If I got three or four older RPGs off my backlog by the end of the year, I'd be happy with that side accomplishment. I for sure know I enjoy playing these more if others are playing at the same time, and the added accountability, however loose that might be, doesn't hurt either.

____

Given that there seems to be enough interest, maybe I'll toss together some rough ideas for discussion on how we could select a game. If things go smoothly, we could probably start our first game, say February 1, which would have a nice stagger between the JRPG Club's start.

If you want to poach any ideas on game selection from the JRPG Club, go for it. Basically arrived at via community discussion.

I'm interested.

I'd be up for Ultima VI or one of the Eye(s?) of the Beholder(s), with a little DOSBox effort they can look fairly decent nowadays. I don't really liked pixelation in my old school games, so I use a couple of scalers like Supereagle and 2xsai to smooth them out.

If we're throwing in nominations, Eye of the Beholder I would be my pick.

steinkrug wrote:

If you want to poach any ideas on game selection from the JRPG Club, go for it. Basically arrived at via community discussion.

Cool, thanks! I've been reading along with that thread, but will take a closer look at how you do it.

Game Selection/Voting Thoughts

So here's what the JRPG Club does for selecting games:

- First, we have one week of nominations. Each member is allowed one nomination. Games nominated must have had their original (so a recent remake can be voted for) western release at least one year ago and not be a game the club has already played.

- Next, we have one week of voting. Each member is allowed three votes, but can only spend one vote per game. However, they do not have to use all three votes. You can vote without having nominated anything!

The only thing I'd be inclined to add would be that each game that is nominated during week one needs to have someone else "second" the nomination in order to make it to the second week. That way we could narrow down the outliers a little bit. You can second as many games as you like.

Also maybe a little rewording of games that can be nominated to just: "Games nominated must have had their western release at least one year before the nomination month."

I was originally thinking that we'd have one nomination round then two rounds of voting. The first round would narrow things down to three finalists, then we'd make a final vote. But as I think about how the JRPG Club does it, by giving each member three votes, it already kind of gets at the idea of covering a range of games that a majority of people would like to play, and it makes things much simpler. That's a good idea, makes things go faster, and helps pick games that a good number of people would be fine with playing.

Ideas, thoughts, recommendations, random CRPG jokes?

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Also, I've added names to the first post of people who have expressed some interest. Let me know if I missed you!

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Lastly, I've tweaked the thread title to reflect the progress made.

I'm interested.

I'm definitely in if/when a game on backlog comes up, as I'm also doing the 'no buying games in 2018' thing so that I can get through a bunch of my backlog.

tboon wrote:

I'm interested.

billt721 wrote:

I'm definitely in if/when a game on backlog comes up, as I'm also doing the 'no buying games in 2018' thing so that I can get through a bunch of my backlog.

Welcome welcome! I've added you to the list.

When do we start with nominations?

I actually see a lot of potential with this - it'll be cool to see how different people tackle different CRPG situations, and what their characters are like!

Just as an FYI, GOG has many of the older PC games available (that link is filtered for "RPGs" released pre-2000) for between $5 - $10. Many are already pre-configured with DOSBox out of the gate so you don't have to mess with any configurations on your own. So, even if a game you don't currently own gets nominated it's still possible to get in on the action.

EDIT: Oh, and this is definitely something I'm interested in as well.

Nice ideas Godzilla!

Baldur's Gate II absorbed my attention in college to an extent that became a little troublesome.

I will definitely be keeping an eye on the club. Since I am already on a computer all day for work, I've noticed that gaming on a PC has become really difficult, sometimes painful. Hence, my Pillars of Eternity game sitting at 2/3 finished. But if something is playable on console or perhaps is short enough to keep up via short sessions, I may be in to participate.

Speaking of the GOG sale, and despite what I said above, I picked up Divine Divinity and Beyond Divinity for something like 55 cents each.

ClockworkHouse wrote:

When do we start with nominations?

I'll take the lack of questions/discussion on how to run the nominations as a blessing to move forward on it (thanks JRPG Club for breaking ground for us there!), so how about this? If we did this, we could start February 1.

Rough Plan
Friday, January 12: Nominations & Seconding Opens
Friday, January 19: Nominations & Seconding Closes/Voting Begins (I'll pick some GMT time at some point too)
Friday, January 26: Voting Closes
Thursday, February 1: Gameplay Starts!

We can work out the remaining details as we go through the nomination/voting process.

____

I'd like to get people's thoughts on a few other things and will post questions about them in about 8 hours or so. I'll also update the main post, add new people, and reply to any other stuff by then too. (I'm a bit swamped at work for the next few hours.)

Okie dokie, I've updated the first post with more information. All is open for discussion, of course, so let me know if something strikes you as off or needing adjustment.

I was wondering, how long do people think we should take to play a game?
I was thinking two months, but in the Gaming Goals thread people seemed to like 3 months, which is perfectly fine with me too. (Probably better, actually, given that people are busy and playing lots of other games too.) Another thought would be to determine the number of months by the average length of the game, so maybe less than 15 hours is one month, 15-30 hours is two months, anything longer would be three months. Ideas, thoughts, wishes?

CptDomano wrote:

Just as an FYI, GOG has many of the older PC games available (that link is filtered for "RPGs" released pre-2000) for between $5 - $10. Many are already pre-configured with DOSBox out of the gate so you don't have to mess with any configurations on your own. So, even if a game you don't currently own gets nominated it's still possible to get in on the action.

EDIT: Oh, and this is definitely something I'm interested in as well.

Thanks for the info! I've added you to the list!

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