Wednesday, March 13, 2013

This Year's Haul

As is my usual tradition, I'll be sharing my DunDraCon haul with you in this post. I do this for a couple of reasons. First of all, it gives me an opportunity to geek out (and who doesn't love an opportunity to geek out?). Also, since not all of my fans are gamers, I like to show them some of the options out there.

Starting from the top of the pile, we have:

Dungeon World:  This game uses the rules of another game (in this case Apocalypse World) and rebuilds them into a D&D style game. It's a pretty thick book that I haven't gotten entirely through, but the system works on the basis of "moves." Some moves are unique to a character, like a skill or power, but other moves can be made by anyone, and the GM even has moves. While it looks like a potentially fun fantasy game, I have a hard time seeing it handle the good ol' player vs. environment, dungeon crawling playstyle of old-school D&D.

Monsterhearts (not pictured): This game also uses the Apocalypse World engine. Since it's a smaller game with fewer moves, it's somewhat easier to grok. It aims to model the supernatural horror/teen drama genre made popular by shows like Buffy: The Vampire Slayer and True Blood. As it encompasses sex and violence as well as angst, you might want to be careful who you play this with.

Marvel Heroic Roleplaying: The latest licensed game from Margaret Weis Productions. It uses a modified version of the Cortex+ system originally developed for their Smallville game, then modified even further for more action-oriented drama. Like most Marvel RPGs I've seen, they presume that you will be playing an existing Marvel character. This book provides a modest set of these, as well as tips for assigning stats and powers for existing characters. There is also a free download of random tables for creating original characters. (There are currently no rules for "point-based" or designed characters, but there's nothing stopping you from simply choosing on the random tables rather than rolling.)

Arduin Eternal: This one was actually something my wife bought. Many years ago, we found the two-volume Compleat Arduin set at a used bookstore. I thought it was a neat, if slightly kludgy system, but my wife fell in love with the plethora of exotic races. When she saw that there was a new, updated edition of the system, she did an impressive impersonation of Igor from the Dork Tower comic strip (catchphrase "IT MUST BE MINE!"). It looks much cleaner than the Compleat Arduin, though I have not yet looked to see if the critical hit charts still include the possibility of losing a buttock. (Yes, I just typed "losing a buttock." Meaning the character will sit lopsided for the rest of their days.)

Five Nations: A setting sourcebook for D&D's Eberron setting.

Stormwrack: A D&D environment sourcebook giving campaign options and adventure tips when sailing the seven seas (or however many seas there are in any given fantasy world).

Pathfinder Core Rulebook: Actually, we already have one of these. And all the other hardcover books that Paizo has published. But having an extra copy is always nice. That way, it takes two people looking up rules for all of the books to be taken up rather than just one.

Amazing Adventures: This is a pulp-style RPG using the SIEGE Engine, the same rules that power the Castles & Crusades fantasy RPG. Although it is a fun read and looks like it would be fun to play, I have a a hard time grasping the idea of a "level 1 pulp hero." When I think of pulp heroes, I think of people who are already at the top of their game.

Rifter #10: Due to a number of issues with Palladium's business practices, I prefer to buy their books on the secondary market. That is, used. In previous years, the Buyer's Bazaar has offered a decent selection, but this year, I only found one Palladium product. On the up side, the GM advice from Hugh King is worth its weight in gold for any Rifts GM.

Don't Rest Your Head (not pictured): A very surreal game about insomniacs who find themselves in the Mad City, a place of Neil Gaiman-esque nightmares.

Munchkin Deluxe: I already had Munchkin, but this was just too cool to pass up. The set includes not just the cards and die (just one die) from the original game, but a playboard with a very cool dungeon-style level tracker and Munchkin shaped pawns, more cards, color illustrations on all the cards, and two-sided cards for tracking a player's gender (which can change at the drop of a hat in this game).


librarian said...

Nice Haul.
Who doesn't remember Arduin, where you could have the skin tone of plaid.

Why did you buy Eberron 5 nations?

I'm about halfway through Dungeon World now. I'm looking forward to trying it out. I think it will work great with the right group. Best to play a session of Fiasco the week before, to get them ready for story=gamey-ness

F. Douglas Wall said...

Five Nations was mostly because I thought the Eberron setting was pretty cool, so I try to pick up stuff that I find for it.

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