It’s been quite some time since I (or anyone) has posted anything here.
TFQ is still going. We had a period of little to no gaming, but we are back at it.
We recently included some new players and have been working through some Pathfinder adventures. Adam and Rocco, and my coworker Matt have joined us. Right now I am about half way running them through the classic RPGA adventure “A Night at Sharky’s Bar & Grill”.
My friend Troy has been playing Dungeon Crawl Classics for a while. The more I have read about it, the more I want to play it. After talking with him about it, I got some free material and ordered the Quick Start Guide and Intro Adventures. Totally worth the $5 if you want to try out the system. There are also some free adventures from Free RPGA Day available on their site. Based on D20 system, it really gives you an ‘old school’ feel to gaming. You have to roll up your characters. 3d6. That’s it. No point buy. No 4d6 and dropping the lowest. Just straight rolls for ability. In order. You start off with a 0 level character who doesn’t have a class and if you’re lucky 4 hit points (+Con bonus). Each player starts with 3-4 characters, because they are going to die. It is a good system to knock down those power gamer & min-maxers. You just can’t do it (without cheating). I am really looking forward to running a few sessions of this soon.
On a side note; you do need some funky dice that aren’t in the basic sets you’re prolly used too. But there are some rolls to get around this. 🙂
It’s vacation time again. And that means gaming at Vanderbilt.
So far we have:
1. Pathfinder mid-level game (10th level)
2. Star Wars: Age of Rebellion Beginner Box
3. Star Wars: X-Wing Miniatures
4. Other board/card games.
For the last 18 months or so, I have been working on a Mage game based in the Victorian era. Actually, I came up with the idea long before that while talking one night with Erik.
With the exception of some minor details, it’s done. I have a story that should last for a good number of sessions, with a pretty good flow. Having played in some games where the characters decided to ‘break the game’ (trip to Australia anyone?), I have tried to build in some flexibility while keeping the characters on a scripted course.
Now I just need to get my players to embrace another system and make some characters. And buy more d10s.
Tomorrow night I will be running a very special adventure for our group (at least starting it, as it will take a few sessions to finish). With the temporary loss of one of our main players, we decided to suspend our Kingmaker AP and have some different games to fill in until his return (sorta… via internet).
I am going to be running a BD&D module. The very first TSR module I ever played when I was a kid. B2: The Keep on the Borderlands. I remember playing it at my friend Rick’s house. Bill was our DM and I was playing a fighter. I think Rick was a magic-user. I know there were some other kids there, but I can’t recall their names. I do remember that Bill got parts of the module mixed up and the encounters we had in the Keep were supposed to be out in the caves.
Little did I know that this was going to open the door to a life-long hobby. My parents had bought me a D&D boxed set for my birthday and I loved making characters and designing maps and dungeons on graph paper. But this was my first real game with friends. Decades later and I’m still playing, making maps, making memories. I mostly DM at this point (although Erik will run a game occasionally to let me play), but I really do enjoy doing it.
My brother-in-law-in-law is going to teach/run us through a 5th edition game in the next few weeks. The game has evolved so much over the decades, but I love all the editions (even 4th) and all of the other RPGs I have played through the years. D&D (8 editions), Pathfinder, Mage/Werewolf/Vampire/Hunter/etc, All Flesh Must be Eaten, Starwars, Stargate, Lord of the Rings, and the list goes on.
I can’t wait for tomorrow night. I want to introduce them to what got me started. Time to read it through one more time.
I had bought the Beginner Box for Pathfinder a few years ago and really liked the content. It had a choose your own adventure style opening where you learned some of the basics of playing, the Hero’s Handbook that showed you how to make the four basic classes and how to play, and the Game Master’s Guide to teach you how to run games. It also included a set of dice, pawns (cardboard minis) and some pre-made characters if you just wanted to jump right in. It reminded me of the boxed sets that I had got as a kid when I was first getting into D&D. My wife, some friends, and I played through the small adventure that came with it, but then it went on the shelf as we went back to the regular Pathfinder RPG.
Years later I would get it out and dust it off to introduce a new generation of gamers to RPGs. Since it came out Paizo has added more content that is free to download from their site. My daughter is still a little to young to play, but one of players has a son that the Core Pathfinder rules are a bit complex for. It gave me an idea to start a bi-weekly kids game. So he and his father made Beginner Box characters. Then I got a cousin and his son interested and they had their first game yesterday and loved it. Hopefully next week we can get both groups together to play and make one unified team. It really made my day as a GM to have the guys come up with really good ideas on how to do things.
I remember as a kid that a lot of people looked at D&D like it was a gateway to Satan worship. My grandmother would buy me the books because she wanted to encourage me to read and use my imagination, but after news shows like 60 Minutes said I would kill people she wasn’t so sure. My mother, however, new better and continued to buy me books, dice, miniatures, and everything I wanted to play. I would play with kids from school and when they weren’t available, I would coerce my brother and dad to play too. Side note: I found my old characters from when I was a kid the other day and in there were my brother and father’s characters. It hit me hard, but then I had an overwhelming sense of how much they loved me because they were willing to play this game with me as a kid.
Through the decades, I have made many good friends playing D&D, Pathfinder, Mage, and many other table top games. I used to joke that D&D brought my wife and I together (and it sorta did). We used to host a weekly game night where it might be Pathfinder, Munchkin, Zombie Dice, or some other game where we could just hang out as friends and enjoy the adventure and just have fun together. I am glad that we are doing that again.
Enough of my rambling and reminiscing. If you want to introduce your kids to RPGs, the Beginner Box is a good way to do it. Wizards has also come out with D&D 5th edition which also has a starter set (although the BB comes with a lot more in the box).
For those of you who say “why would I let my kids get into this?”, I would just have you read below what cartoonist/comic writer Scott Kurtz posted years ago about it:
5 Reasons Your Kids Should Play Dungeons and Dragons.
Encouraging your children to imagine.
After writing a week of strips about the classic pen and paper roleplaying game Dungeons and Dragons, I’ve received many emails. Some of you are my age, and also have nostalgic memories of sitting at a kitchen table and walking a party of brave adventurers through countless dangers. Many of you have been inspired to start up new campaigns with old friends. A lot of you are finding out about Dungeons and Dragons for the first time.
TSR, the company that has produced Dungeons and Dragons for the last 25 years is still going strong and making new D&D products as we speak. I want to encourage all the kids out there who read PvP to at least give pencil and paper RPG’s a shot. There’s something about them that can’t be replicated by watching a movie or playing a computer game, I don’t care how good your 3D card is. You can go to a local game or comic shop and pick up a Dungeons and Dragons basic set for much cheaper than a new PC game will cost you.
In the past, Dungeons and Dragons has taken a beating from fanatical parental and church groups who’s insecurities and inability to provide a balanced environment of responsibility and entertainment for their child required them to find a suitable scapegoat. Currently these nimrods can be found placing the blame for their non involvement in their children’s lives on television, movies and computer games.
Five Reasons Your Kid Should Play D&D.
1. It Encourages Teamwork.
In Dungeons and Dragons, players take on the roles of adventures with their own special strengths and weaknesses. To complete their tasks, your kids are going to have to figure out how to combine their character’s unique abilities with that of their teammates to solve puzzles, defeat villains and complete quests.
2. It Encourages Reading.
D&D is a pen and paper game. It doesn’t install on a computer or play on a VCR. Your children are actually going to sit down and crack open a book. And they’re going to enjoy it because the history, stories and game mechanics are interesting and engaging. Don’t be surprised if after playing D&D for a while, they suddenly find an interest in reading fantasy novels. TSR offers a wide range of incredible fantasy novels based off many of their campaign sets. I recommend the Dragonlance series myself.
3. It Encourages Positive Social Interaction.
D&D encourages your kids to interact face to face in your home with their friends, rather than anonymously with strangers over the internet. I understand that if you place two or more teenagers in a room and leave them there for an hour there’s bound to be a conflict. But working through those conflicts and learning to interact with their peers is going to teach them communication skills they’re going to use later on as adults.
4. It Stimulates Imaginations and Encourages Creative Expression.
After living out the stories created by the Dungeon Master, kids want to write their own stories and adventures. The beautiful illustrations in the D&D books and modules inspire many budding artists to do their own illustrations and paintings (and cartoons). I know one budding artist who used to spend too much time drawing his character portrait and not enough time paying attention to the game.
5. It’s Something You Can Do With Your Kids
You heard me. You can play Dungeons and Dragons with your kids and have a good time with them. It’s a great opportunity for you to communicate and roleplay with them. I guarantee that if you play Dungeons and Dragons with your child, you’ll learn something about them that you didn’t know before. It also gives you an opportunity to get to know their friends and social circles. Plus it makes you the cool parent in the neighborhood. Trust me on that one.
Sunday night we played through the PFS scenario “The Confirmation” by Kyle Baird. Thanks to Billy’s healing, the party made it through with no deaths (other than the wine glass that The Dash decided to toss into the kitchen wall). Much fun was had by all.
After a few of the players left, we cracked open Munchkin: Legends. It was a good game with Kristen defeating us all. 🙂
For those who played, here is info on the Wayfinder you received.
After an awesome PFS session last weekend we continue this Sunday evening with a new adventure and hopefully, some new players.
Update (1/19/15): We didn’t get to play the scenario that we had originally planned on, but got to run through a Quest; Ambush in Absalom. And we got two new players to join PFS. 🙂
A great gaming store in Fort Myers is closing down at the end of the month. I am very sad to have read that on facebook this morning. I have met some great gamers there (and a few crazies), and played some awesome games with them. When I found out that Kristen and I were having a girl, I went there to get her first set of dice. 🙁
I wish the guys there the best of luck in whatever they do.
I have changed out the site to WordPress. I am hoping this will allow us to add thing on a more regular basis. The message board/forum hasn’t changed. I am ditching some of the things that were never used (the chat thing, etc), and the members section is going away and being replaced by a resource/file repository. If you need any of your forum login information, comment below. If you need access to the resource section, let me know and I will make you a login.
I stopped into a local game shop with my friend Erik on Saturday. He was looking for some minis and I was thinking about picking up a module or maybe a new guide book. After looking around for a bit, I saw a red box on a shelf. It was the new D&D Essentials Starter Set. I didn’t think it had been released yet (and according to Wizards website, it’s not out til 9-7-10). I quickly looked it over. I had heard a lot of rumors about the new Essentials line of products. Everything from it being D&D 4.5e, to a whole new game, to a throwback to old style D&D. I bought it and took it home to give it a once over.
It comes with 2 books, some maps, a sheet of tokens for players, monsters, etc, and a set of dice. The first book is for players. It is basically a ‘choose your own adventure’ book to help you decide what type of character you want to be. I choose the wizard class and the book takes you through a battle with some goblins. You continue to make choices and it instructs you to fill out your character sheet as you go according to the choices you make. The second book is the DM’s book and has basic rules, a selection of monsters, and some encounters. It presents the rules in a way that you could read them over with your friends and have a game going in a short amount of time. The boxed set only takes you up to level 2, but they are releasing more supplements over the next few months that will take characters up to level 30. It really reminds me of the boxed sets my mom got me when I was a kid (pictured above along with the new set).
I was skeptical at first when I read the rumors about what this would be doing to the game. Every time something new is released, there is always a group that cries “you’re ruining my game” (I was one of these when 4e came out). I have changed my opinion of it. I think it is a great way to get new players into the game. With all of the books out now (3 player’s handbooks, 3 monster manuals, etc) I think it can get very confusing trying to build a character for new players. There are just too many choices. I think its a great way to introduce new players to D&D. It could also be used to veteran players who want things to be a little simpler.