Happy Veteran’s Day

Thank a veteran for their service today.



What Happens Next, The Sandbox

There is a fallacy among many roleplaying games, the idea of a sandbox game, one where the PCs have absolute and utter free will to go where they want and do what they want. Many games claim to encourage this style of play, but i would argue the fallacy is that many games are level based, and require a GM putting work in to prepare for encounters and the like. Therefore, if a party decides to do a 180, ignoring the carrots the GM has prepared, will the session be exciting and immersive. Games that are forward-facing and/ or PbtA can do this more easily, but are they designed for longer term play?

One of my design goals with Retrostar was to create a game mechanic that encouraged this off-the-plot-rails style of play, making obstacles easy to deal with, and giving the GM moments to regroup and gather their thoughts.

PCs get into trouble in a bar fight.

Next scene, we discover one of the characters has become engaged to of the “enemy” characters.

Why not?


Friday Refresh, Flashforward (TV)

Everyone on the planet loses consciousness for 137 seconds. While unconscious, characters witness events 6 months in the future.

Everyone except one person.

What is going on and why and how?

Following in the footsteps of Lost, Flashforward had several amazing moments. And then, the writer’s strike derailed it, and it never regained momentum. It was based on a novel, but these things often deviate in wonderful ways.

Wow or Woe, Release Date 11/7

STL096405.jpgDie Kitty Die: Cathouse of Horror

I wish this was a series that came out regularly. I wish 4 issues didn’t drop on the same day. I wish one of these artists (Parent, Ruiz, Legace) did a fun teen superhero book (ala Perez+Wolfman Titans, or Byrne+Claremont X-Men). This was a really one-shot, as they all are.



The Pull List, Release Date 11/7

SEP180812Marvel Knights 20th

I am not really sure what this will be, but I like the characters, and the paying homage to Marvel Knights.

It seems to be alternative tale, and of course, my worry is I will like it more than the current crop of titles, or it will make me long for a regular series featuring a character who has none currently.

What Happens Next, Climbing

Ok, you’ll need to make 5 climb checks….

Ugh. Seriously?

Not even getting into the wonkiness of d20 percentages, what this says to me is that your game is about climbing.

If, when running a supers game, you ask how everyone is getting to the fight, yours is a game about transportation and movement. We don’t ask questions in comicbooks when in the next scene, everyone, including Cap, are flying out of the air to engage in combat.

Do you really want your game to be about? Why?


RPG Saturday, Rememorex

243470Boy, was I excited for this. It oozed style. Then, when it arrived, I dug in. And, like some previous outings by the creators, it fell flat for me. There are rules, they are not exactly clear, or that interesting. During character creation, we are asked to define an archetype for our character, choosing from the Hughes tropes, but then adding some flair to it:

But, this has nothing to do with an actual character creation. And, what type of dice do we use?

So, in creating a character, I decided to do something fun. There is this idea that Michael Bluth and Marty Byrde are the same character. So, I decided to play with this, and go way back: Derek from Silver Spoons, Matthew Burton from It’s Your Move, and down the line. So, what if I made this character for this game. A conniving, charming, con-man, who always keeps his cool.

For his name, my research shows the initials MB appearing frequently. So, I flipped it, and made his name Burton Merrick, but his friends call him Merrick.

TYPE: Eddie Haskell A-2/ P-2

TRAINING: Clever Con-Man A-4/ P-4

TALENT: Always Scheming A-3/ P-3

LOOK: Sweaters, Polo shirts, khakis, Members Only Jacket