Tag Archives: Gaming

So You Want to Have a Gaming Marathon

I met our own Level One Wonk via a gaming group that actually spends most of its time playing games online; although the core of original members were all playing together in college, these days they (now we) primarily play over Skype/Twiddla/Google+/etc. However, starting six years ago, we have all gathered together in Delaware once a year to trade stories, raise a few glasses, and play a bunch of games over the course of a long weekend. I’m writing this in Delaware, most of our way through Beach Weekend VI (which I suppose could also, given that the pair of us did most of the GMing, be thought of as Cannibal Halfling Con I), and I’ve definitely learned a few things over the years about turning tabletop roleplaying into a marathon affair.

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Meet the Party: Star Wars Uprising

A Rebel Commander, cut off from the rest of the Alliance after the Battle of Hoth and forced to lead the local rebellion on her own. A ‘merchant’ in good standing with the Trade Spine League, facing the end of his livelihood because of an Imperial blockade. A member of the deposed nobles of the Anoat Sector, trying to regain influence and power however she can. A solitary student of the Force, come out of hiding to turn the tide against evil. Meet the Party is returning to Fantasy Flight Games’ Star Wars RPGs, but by no means are these starter characters. They’re going to need a lot of experience points, skills, and talents if they’re going to take on the Empire and lead an Uprising!

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Adventure Log: Living on Borrowed Time Pt. 17

On the far side of Zalxuc City from a certain bacta tank warehouse Verjylla, accompanied by The Wookiee and Bas, were meeting with Lieutenant Blaine Averre and his four-being Alliance SpecOps team to organize their journey to the port so that they could join the Borrowed Time when it left Thyferra. It was late at night, and Averre’s team had been laying low for a few days, so they simply planned to drive an acquired landspeeder to the port. No sooner had they settled on the route, however, than a small but respectable fireball and accompanying mushroom cloud blossomed on the other side of the city with a window-shattering roar. Near or at a certain bacta tank warehouse, in fact. With the sigh typical of long-suffering Bothans surrounded by maniacs, Verjylla opened a channel on her personal comlink. Sure enough, Nak was already yelling over it.

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Level One Wonk: One-Shots

Are you a Butt-Kicker, a Specialist, or a Story-Teller? There is a huge world of games out there to satisfy every player’s and group’s style. And while there are academic discussions in every corner of the internet, sometimes it’s best to start at level one. Join the Level One Wonk in exploring the possibilities that RPGs have to offer, from Aberrant to Zorcerer of Zo. Today we look at one-shots: whether you need a break from a long campaign or just want to try something new, one-shots are an important way to mix it up and experiment. Check it out!

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The Independents: Quill

Renowned art dealer Christina Bowbridge is selling a portrait of His Royal Highness Prince Edward IV, and you want to purchase it. You’ve heard rumors, however, that the painting is not genuine. You want to inquire about inspecting the work of art before buying it, but Bowbridge is both enthusiastic about her work and adores the monarchy; it would be quite easy to offend her and lose the chance to buy the painting entirely. You’ll have to write a letter, and it’ll take good penmanship, the right words, a few flourishes, and . . . at least 3d6? That’s because you’re not just writing a letter, you’re playing Quill: A Letter-Writing Roleplaying Game for a Single Player!

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Meet the Party: Unearthed Arcana Revised #2

With the announcement of Xanathar’s Guide to Everything coming out this November the speculation is finally over: Unearthed Arcana materials are being published in their final forms for Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition! That doesn’t mean that Unearthed Arcana is done, however, and June’s release features more revised subclasses and player options for us to peruse. A druid from the Circle of the Shepherd, a Cavalier fighter, a paladin under the Oath of Conquest, and a warlock tied to a Celestial are all ready to playtest, so let’s Meet the Party!

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Level One Wonk: Crunch

Are you a Butt-Kicker, a Specialist, or a Story-Teller? There is a huge world of games out there to satisfy every player’s and group’s style. And while there are academic discussions in every corner of the internet, sometimes it’s best to start at level one. Join the Level One Wonk in exploring the possibilities that RPGs have to offer, from Aberrant to Zorcerer of Zo. Today we talk about games with big rules and games with small rules: how much crunch do you like in your gaming?

Crunch is probably a term you’ve heard if you’ve wandered around RPG discussion groups for more than five minutes. “This game is very crunchy”, “I’m looking for a low-crunch experience”, and other similar phrases help gamers boil down their gaming desires into a reductive but understandable scale. Crunch, in game terms, is the amount of complexity in the rules, and it’s one of the strongest drivers of preference in the RPG market.

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Meet the Party: Eclipse Phase Second Edition

An Uplifted Scientist who dreams of reclaiming Earth for Transhumanity and securing equal rights for all his kind. A baseline human who crashes through Pandora gates to leave the solar system behind, and believes transhumanity needs to limit its excesses. A soldier of fortune who lives for her own wealth and independence, but still realizes that x-threats could take it all away. A smiling socialite who is really a covert operative for Firewall, determined to fight the anarchy consuming transhumanity. Eclipse Phase is a game of transhuman science fiction horror where death is usually temporary but there are far worse things besides. The Kickstarter for Second Edition just successfully funded, which means new ways to make characters, so get ready to sleeve into a new Morph and let’s Meet the Party!

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Meet the Party: Unearthed Arcana Revised

A barbarian who brings the spirits of her ancestors wherever she goes, leading them to protect her allies. A bard who almost seems to prefer a sword to a song, a consummate swashbuckling duelist. A fighter whose arrows are steeped in magic, with every shot visiting a different sort of arcane assault upon his foes. A monk who has studied the martial arts of weaponry, and is one with her blades. A sorcerer who taps into the divine blood within her to heal her allies and strike down her foes. The flurry of weekly Unearthed Arcana for Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition has come to an end, but that doesn’t mean Mearls and Crawford are done giving us material to chew on. Five different builds have returned from their original UA foray, so let’s Meet the Party and see what changed!

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Adventure Log: Living on Borrowed Time Pt. 16

As the small task force led by the Borrowed Time and now going by the name of the Rabblerousers hurtled through hyperspace to put some distance between itself and Sullust, the various leaders were meeting aboard the CEC L-2783 Rabblerouser One. Definitively out of touch with High Command the mixed group of Special Operations agents, Sullustan Resistance recruits, and Bolthole Station refugees were facing down the prospect of carrying on the Rebellion by themselves. It was a daunting proposition. While they were relatively well-stocked and had essentially been growing the task force ever since leaving Dahvil, they were operating on their own initiative and with no supply line. Thankfully the Intelligence agents assigned to report to Patience had a few leads . . .

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