IN SHORT: Fantasy Flight Games has just released the Core Set for their new table top game – Star Wars: Armada. Here are my first impressions and thoughts on the core units. GENERAL: The game itself focuses on the big picture, namely two fleets of capital ships battling it out while the fighters and bombers […]
Dead Space: Scary Space
SPOILER WARNING! This article contains SPOILERS for the Dead Space trilogy. You have been warned! The ability to evoke an emotional response is one powerful one, and fear is a very potent emotion. I remember being intimidated by the original Dead Space’s main menu alone. I didn’t even want to start that first game. So […]
Holo Writing at DragonCon!
CONVENTION TIP: When visiting a convention, even one you’re only going to as a fan, bring business cards. If you have bookmarks or flyers, bring those too. Seriously, you never know who you might strike up a conversation with. Yeah, about that. At DragonCon, I had to give someone my engineering business card instead of […]
Iron Kingdoms – SPLAT!
Jacob Holo: The gobber retrieves four circlets from his bag and places them on the ground in front of you. He handles them with thick leather gloves and uses extreme care. At no time does he touch them directly. The wide rings of twisted black metal radiate an aura of palpable evil. Even standing several […]
Dark Souls II Collector’s Edition Guide – Book Review
IN SHORT: A lavishly produced 460-page hardcover tome with everything a Dark Souls II fan could want. WHAT IT IS: Massive and beautifully bound, this collector’s edition guide for Dark Souls II not only includes a great deal of information about the game, but also sheds light on its sometimes nebulous background story. Many sections […]
Iron Kingdoms – Substitute Teacher, Menoth Style
With an established party of adventurers, substitutions can be tricky. As Dungeon Master, how do you eject a missing player from the narrative on a temporary basis? How do you maintain the balance of challenges versus the party when 25% of their resources are missing? How do you revise a planned session to account for […]
Iron Kingdoms – Undead Pirate Facepalm
In RPGs, players play the campaigns. The campaigns should not play the players. There’s a fine line between guiding players and super-gluing them to the plot. Players want to affect the world around them, shape its events, and defeat its obstacles. They do not want to sit passively by while plot happens or be led […]
Iron Kingdoms – Kraken Smash!
NPCs are tricky to get right. You can pour hours into crafting what you think is an entertaining and engaging character, complete with intricate backstory, only to have the players not like him. Or ignore him. Or rob him blind. Never mind that NPCs can have very short lifespans around players. And there’s the problem: […]
Iron Kingdoms – Epic Ghost Ship versus Shopping
There are many ways to introduce new characters into a campaign. A memorable introduction can really set the tone for how the other players will interact with the new guy or gal. And sometimes, it’s just fun to have a really ridiculous and flashy entrance to help get things rolling. I had one such entrance […]
Iron Kingdoms – Release the Blood Witches!
Sometimes, you get those players. You know. Those players. The ones that really get into their cold, brooding, greedy assassin character’s skin and just aren’t in the mood to party up. And that’s okay, I guess. That goes along with the whole roleplay experience. But the thing is we’ve got a campaign to get going, […]
Dungeon Master Brings the Pain
When I’m running a campaign, I have a script in mind. I think most dungeon masters do. For me, everything is moving towards an epic final confrontation. Throughout the encounters, the villain is established and shown to be a powerful, formidable threat. The motivations are laid out. The stakes are revealed. The encounters are set […]
Dungeon Master Writes Novel that Writes Campaign that Writes Novel
Last year, I played Dungeons and Dragons for the first time. My wife got me started on the hobby. I played a character I affectionately remember as the “Burninator”, a wizard whose first response to any problem was to set it on fire. It was loads of fun, but I wanted more. I wanted to […]