Friday 25 August 2023

Review: Four Against Darkness

Disclaimer: Note that some of the links below are affiliate links (meaning I get a small percentage of the sale without extra cost to you or the publisher).

In 2023, we are truly spoiled when it comes to dungeon crawling. A plethora of games focus on or have a robust system dedicated to delving the deeps, from computer games to board games and RPGs. There have been many solo options, but the pandemic really helped developers new and old to find a market starved for the strange alchemy of killing monsters, avoiding traps, and finding treasure — like the subject of today's review, Four Against Darkness.

Friday 11 August 2023

Review: The Drifter

Disclaimer: Note that some of the links below are affiliate links (meaning I get a small percentage of the sale without extra cost to you or the publisher).

Last year I only played a handful of RPG sessions overall (about 10, according to my notes). However, in addition to picking up solo wargames and painting miniatures as a new hobby, I also played a fair amount of solitaire board games. Some of these were rules-light thematic games (mostly of the roll-and-write variety), while others were of the more involved, almost RPG-lite kind. I slowly intend to write about a few of these games, starting with The Drifter, an interesting paragraph-based hexcrawling game in the vein of Barbarian Prince.

Friday 10 March 2023

Benighted Betrothal on Kickstarter

I swear I'm not doing any more KS news for a while (although I do decided to be more conscious about promoting projects I'm involved in). However, this one's really close to my heart.

Not long after I started blogging in 2013, I started a new campaign — one that turned out to be one of my most significant campaigns. It was great fun, and it led to long-lasting friendships around and away from the gaming table. To this day, that particular campaign is one my favourites, so it was only natural for me to try and write up the quintessential parts and massage them into a coherent module for others to enjoy and pull apart for their own use. The manuscript was largely finished in 2017, I believe, and it already went through some editing in 2018, but every turn it was delayed more and more. I can hardly believe it's this close to release...

In short, Benighted Betrothal is a viking soap opera. It has romance, tragedy, and (in most likelihood) lots of violence. It's statted for B/X D&D as a sort of lingua franca, but it could easily be used with OpenQuest or Vikingr (personally, I really want to try it with The Fantasy Trip once).

Enough rambling, though. Check out the Kickstarter if you're intrigued.

Sunday 26 February 2023

I'm Back and Kickstarter: Sinless

Disclaimer: Note that some of the links below are affiliate links (meaning I get a small percentage of the sale without extra cost to you or the publisher).

Wow, it's been a hot minute since I last posted here. I didn't run or play that many RPGs last year, to be honest. I played a lot of boardgames (simple stuff with my family, like Catan, Codenames, and Mysterium, and a few interesting solo games, like Voyages, D100 Dungeon, and The Drifter) and a handful of miniature games (Five Parsecs from Home, a little bit of Lion Rampant, and even a fairly long session of Cursed City).

RPG-wise we moved our Masks of Nyarlathotep campaign to Discord voice chat. Before this, we only played about twice a year when all eight of us could get together for some marathon sessions. With this move we might be able to finish the campaign before Christmas! We also started another Werewolf: the Forsaken campaign with a new player joining our group, so that's been fun (even though I'm not as happy with the "new" World of Darkness (now Chronicles of Darkness 1st edition) system as I used to be). We also made characters for Warhammer Fantasy 4th edition, but with all the other things going on, we have yet to begin the campaign.

I kept one eye on all some things OSR, but truth be told, I have mostly been interested in tactical combat games (whether gamey or simulationist), historical games, and military games. I've mostly scratched that itch through collecting and painting miniatures and playing solo wargames, but I'm sure it'll bleed into my next few RPG campaigns as well.

Which neatly brings me to the other thing I wanted to say a few words about. Courtney Campbell (of Hack & Slash fame) is Kickstarting his new game, a heavily Shadowrun-inspired fantasy-cyberpunk game called Sinless. It's crunchy and tactical and has all sorts of guns and weapon upgrades and GM advice and procedures... I was contemplating running Shadowrun 3rd edition a few months ago (after reminiscing about old times with my brother), so this is weirdly providential to me. I need to confess that I have a working relationship with Courtney — on this project, too — but the game's already funded, my rate is a set number regardless of the project's performance, and you can check out an early version if you pledge at least a buck (which you can then cancel if you really don't like what you see).

I'll be back shortly with further good news, and hopefully some new reviews and whatnot.