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TOPIC: What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing?

What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 16 Sep 2017 10:59 #254341

The last two weekends I've run the 5e adventure The Lost Mine of Phandelver. That's the one with the starter set, although all of my players have at least some experience with D&D, if not 5e.

We've had a great time. We haven't yet gone far off-book, and who knows if we will. I won't share details in case some aren't familiar with it, but suffice to say it's the sort of adventure that allows the players to see the kind of things D&D can do. Lots of fun opportunities for both combat and roleplaying, and it's a great training ground for a more inexperienced DM like myself.

We won't be able to play again until well into October. I am really looking forward to it though.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 10:56 #258400

Quick hit thread resurrect: my wife out of nowhere said she has always wanted to play dungeons and dragons and the dudes she hung out with in college never let her. I said I'd ask you wise sages what the best product to buy to start with was. I figured the newest starter box, but what would you buy that is reasonably priced?
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 11:16 #258401

Yeah, probably that because it's got preset characters and you can basically just start playing. It introduces the rules in a simple way with the beginning being almost a choose your own adventure book.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 11:48 #258402

The new Starter Set is the way to go. It's VERY affordable, and it's a good adventure too. If you get any of the books, the Player Handbook is the way to go. Not only is it the one book with the most mechanical heft to it, but it's also got some rudimentary stuff in the back, like monster stats and quick-and-dirty DM's info.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 12:16 #258406

Gary Sax wrote:
Quick hit thread resurrect: my wife out of nowhere said she has always wanted to play dungeons and dragons and the dudes she hung out with in college never let her. I said I'd ask you wise sages what the best product to buy to start with was. I figured the newest starter box, but what would you buy that is reasonably priced?

Labyrinth Lord is a free clone of early 80's D&D.

www.drivethrurpg.com/product/64331/Labyr...dition-noart-version

If its just you and your wife you may want to check out Scarlet Heroes too. Its designed for that but I haven't personally played.

www.drivethrurpg.com/product/127458/Scarlet-Heroes-Quickstart
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 13:49 #258412

I love reading about everyone's RPG experiences here!

I've been running a weekly Blades in the Dark campaign and we're up to session... 8 I think? The PCs are a cult whose ultimate goal is to summon the demon-lord Azarax through the tenet of "control through suffering." They have to identify and control ten "Points of Azarax" in the city, which range from rival gangs to physical sites to powerful nobles and politicians. It's been a lot of fun, and has already included some of the most memorable RPG sessions I've been a part of. One session saw them taking control of a sex cult by hilarious means, and in another they formed an avant-garde chamber music quartet to ply the minds of impressionable students at Charterhall Academy. So far they've done a great job of pulling off scores without too many mishaps, but tension is mounting as the Bluecoats (cops) and Inspectors (Scotland Yard) start to figure out what they're up to. When the shit finally hits the fan, it's going to be awesome.

Also occasionally running playtests of my Dungeon World hack Freebooters on the Frontier. There's an actual play video here and I'm going to post another one soon.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 14:46 #258415

Thanks for the recs guys! I told her to get the starter box to make it simple for her. It'll be kind of wild if we play an RPG. I've thought about doing a Star Trek or Game of Thrones campaign for the two of us for years but I always felt like the desire to RPG needs to come from the new person so I left it.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 30 Nov 2017 20:59 #258445

Jason I'm jealous about your Blades group. I bought the rules when I found out about them and poured over them finding them very evocative, different, and interesting. I would love to get a group... but its just not in the cards for the time being. Maybe someday!

My main RPGing still comes from the DCC group I run. Which meets up pretty irregularly but I'm trying to get it to at least once a month. We just finished a little side quest (rethemed Imperishable Sorceress adventure from Chaos Rising!) and we had the first characters hit lvl 2. They were able to portal back to the end of "The One Who Watches from Below" and will start next session by finishing off that adventure. Hopefully that will involve reuniting the elf with his disembodied eyes, which have dominated a hellhound-like creature and an owlbear and has been playing those creatures in separate dungeon's for the last two sessions.I have also introduced a mechanic where their adventuring guild lvl ups along with the characters which should add some fun little meta game elements. Additionally to help world building I put together a world map so they can link up all the places they've been and relate them together.





As a DM I am still learning a ton every session I run. I found I hate when a battle ends up being just a clump of guys running and surrounding the bad guys and taking turns throwing dice over and over till one side ends. Making each battle dynamic and interesting as possible has been on my mind recently. Including terrain challenges, mid-battle surprises, etc. are all things I'm toying with to help not make any fight a slog. My players are awesome and give really positive feedback when I do stuff and it motivates me to get better.

Also I'm trying to get a 2nd session of Tales from the Loop played. If I can peel one of the players away from his med school studies for a night we'll definitely revisit that system.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 01 Dec 2017 00:10 #258452

And I am jealous of you! That map is great and your campaign sounds like a good time. I love DCC but we haven't played it in a few years now. And yeah, I too hate that surround-the-monster-and-roll-until-it-dies thing. Some games are worse with that than others. I remember our first serious multi-session DCC funnel game ended with 8 or 9 villagers surrounding the boss monster at the end of Halls of the Minotaur and killing it before it could even get single hit in.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 01 Dec 2017 12:46 #258482

Da Bid Dabid wrote:
I have also introduced a mechanic where their adventuring guild lvl ups along with the characters which should add some fun little meta game elements.

If you'd like to share this mechanic, I'd love to look at it.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 02 Dec 2017 06:04 #258531

quozl wrote:
Da Bid Dabid wrote:
I have also introduced a mechanic where their adventuring guild lvl ups along with the characters which should add some fun little meta game elements.

If you'd like to share this mechanic, I'd love to look at it.

Sure. It's a pretty basic way of doing things. My players (who are mostly relatively new at RPGs) joked a few times about the economics of how the guild worked, going into crazy depths about percentages of pay and such. A similar discussion surfaced about installing a government into the town their headquarters currently resides.The interest of actually doing these sort of things was there, but I felt they needed a push to follow though with actually completing them. After recently reading the aforementioned Blades in the Dark rules, and seeing how in that system the "Crew" levels with the players, I took inspiration (and straight up jacked) a few of those ideas to make a simpler version for DCC. I'm not an artist, so I hacked up some hand drawn character sheets others had made for DCC stuff and organized a guild sheet. It is seen above but here is a link for a blank pdf.

www.dropbox.com/s/boareweq0te4mej/blankguildsheet.pdf?dl=0

So the guild once formed has a name, logo/icon, and headquarters location to fill if needed. The reputation starts with nothing (unless the guild has a built in rep for some reason... perhaps the organization is not brand new), the Renown acts as the lvl so starts at 0. Bank is just like the guild treasury, Payout represents how much money - at least now its money only, that could change - each guild member gains when the guild "levels up" (moves up one Renown level). Current proceedings is any rumors about the Guild, World, or possible leads for new jobs or ongoing adventure notes. Assets are just that or things that produce money or value, my current adventurers own an Inn in the town of their HQ, access to the Halfling Information Network, and a trade mark brand of cheese dips.

Finally what makes the system tick is the Faction Status section. Every time they do things that affects the world around them I try to link it to faction status, which like Blades in the Dark, can range from +3 to -3. A favor for a wizard would likely add +1 under that NPC's name or possibly a group he is affiliated with. +3 view you as great heroes or allies and -3 is basically kill on sight or at war with you. After each session when the statuses change, the players will mark off one of the skulls under the Renown banner, it takes 10 rep changes (either up or down) to level the Renown up. When this happens the payout triggers and I will advance things they have been doing - perhaps building an alchemy lab OR solidify the reputation they were trying to gain or lose. I planned on linking the Renown level to how advanced they can bring on new/replacement characters and retainers as well as other things that come with being more well known. Basically this helps organize and simplify the both the time outside of the dungeon and the political intrigue aspects that my players want to explore.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 08 Jan 2018 18:14 #260542

I have not been doing any role-playing since July of 2016, when I wrapped up my four-year Ptolus campaign. Well, except for Amber Central, a tiny annual convention for live-action role-playing. But recent games of Silver Tower have re-kindled my interest in running another campaign after some significant prep, maybe starting in 2019. I feel like I have limited time yet to run rpgs, as my social circle and the health of my friends (and myself) will decline in the next decade.

Four games I am pondering, in order of my current preference:

1. The Million Spheres (BRP). Players will generate one character each for the Elric, Hawkmoon, and Corum rpgs, plus one additional character from another Chaosium setting, like Call of Cthulhu or Ringworld. I will run three intro adventures (Elric, Hawkmoon, and Corum) like a funnel, with surviving characters going into a cross-dimensional campaign based on the Rogue Mistress, then moving into the Young Kingdoms for a campaign leading up to the Conjunction of the Million Spheres and the end of the world. The majority of the adventures written for these games are good or even excellent. The game system is clean and easy to run, except that highly-skilled warriors (making 3+ attacks per round) will make initiative a bit of a hassle to track.

2. Ptolus II (D&D 3.5). I did a ton of prep work for Ptolus, and it seems like a shame to not run it again for a different group. However, I will probably end the campaign at around 11th level, because there is a good stopping point there, and high level 3.5 is a headache for the DM and a slog for everybody.

3. Orpheus (old World of Darkness). Players will work as a team for a shady corporation, doing a mixture of ghostbusting and corporate espionage. Then things will get extreme, following the general outline of the Orpheus meta-plot. The big catch is that this campaign will take years and be tedious to run in combat, so I would want to significantly streamline the game system for faster and more entertaining gameplay. I have some general ideas, but no specifics yet. If I could dumb this game down to the complexity level of a co-op board game, it would be worth running. A streamlined rule set will make it much easier to improvise instead of doing a vast amount of prep for contingencies. I always liked the World of Darkness setting, but the combat sucks. Initiative with lots of ties, then too many steps for each attack. Attacker rolls to hit, defender rolls defense, attacker rolls for damage, defender rolls to "soak" damage, then damage gets applied in various flavors: bashing, lethal, or aggravated. Repeat ad tedium.

4. Orcslayer/Harkwood (GURPS Fantasy). GURPS is the original crunchy tactical rpg that inspired D&D 3.x. Players really love their GURPS characters because they can customize them so well, but the tendency to select social and mental disadvantages can derail adventures. This isn't much of an issue for Orcslayer, because the characters are mostly alone in a very hostile environment. But Harkwood involves intrigue at a medieval tourney, so weirdo characters will have difficult interactions wit NPCs. I have run both adventures twice in the past, so I know they are good adventures.

I would also like to run a little Dying Earth and Cyberpunk at some point. Dying Earth may or may not actually work well with players, but should be worth at least one interesting session. Cyberpunk suffers from many flaws, but offers a pure cyberpunk setting devoid of elves and fairies.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 10 Apr 2018 00:54 #267201

One of my gaming buddies got in touch with me about playing in a first edition AD&D game set in Greyhawk and we got together tonight to get started. Five players running a variety of characters; gnome thief, human ranger, human monk, dwarf fighter, and human cleric (me). After getting everybody rolled up Bob started us through "Against the Cult of the Reptile God". We had just got into the village we are set to investigate and did a little talking around before we had to wrap up for the night. Really brought back some great memories and I'm looking forward to next week.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 17 Apr 2018 06:32 #267660

Had our second session last night. More investigation and some combat. My character nearly died when he got knocked down to 1 hit point but our party prevailed.
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What ROLE-PLAYING have you been doing? 17 Apr 2018 18:07 #267704

I still have not been doing any role-playing lately, just reading up on some game systems and thinking about what kind of campaign I want to run next and which of my friends would be interested.

In the meantime, I stumbled across a site with some excellent reviews and analysis of a variety of rpg products. The quality of the writing is very good, not in a show-offy way but just crisp and logical. The reviews tend to offer a good mixture of industry awareness with practical concerns for gamemasters and players. Here is an article speculating about what sort of rpg we might expect from FFG for their Legend of the Five Rings license.

refereeingandreflection.wordpress.com/ca...d-of-the-five-rings/
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