Oct 212017
 

slasher filmsThe 70s and 80s saw a lot of slasher horror films. From The Texas Chainsaw Massacre to the more surreal and loved Nightmare in Elm Street or the legendary Evil Dead.

Although I (Paco) must admit it is not my favourite genre nowadays, I used to love slasher horror when I was a lot younger. From the perfectly well-known Friday 13th that brought the fear of Friday 13th to Spain (before that we didn’t even think about the 13th of the month being on a Friday…. It is the Tuesday 13th that does it for us) to the slightly more obscure film by Dario Argento. But somehow, I went off the gore and the blood and now only seldom watch them.

Still, I do like my blood and gore in some games and slasher horror movies have a lot to teach us about the use of blood and violence, villains, environments…

In this episode Rob Adams and I talk about how to take some of those elements and translate them into your game.

We think it was a good conversation!

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Oct 202017
 

SimurghSimurgh was published by NSKN just two years ago and, as a game all about dragons and since I am pretty Dragons nut, I had to try it.

A worker placement and resource management game for 2 to 5 people that plays in around 90 minutes, this game has a pretty original feature, and is that the board is built every time the game is played, thus making it unique.

And it has enough components to make that board interesting for months and months!

But is this game worth the amount of money you have to pay to get your hands on it?

Let’s find out!

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Oct 142017
 

207048This Everyman Minis clocks in at 7 pages,1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page advertisement, 1.5 pages of SRD, leaving us with 2.5 pages of content, so let’s take a look!

Okay, so we begin with a brief recap of the terms “rest”, “sleep” and “unconscious(ness)” in the context of the PFRPG-rules – handy to realize the distinctions when you’re not already an expert designer.

After this recap, we take a look at sleep required for characters – and then move on to concise rules for Sleep Deprivation, which tie in smoothly with Horror Adventure’s sanity system (or any other sanity system you choose to employ) – the rules are based on exhaustion-mechanics and concisely codify how proper sleep can end the weirdness of sleep deprivation, if it hasn’t gone on for too long – and as someone who has suffered from insomnia time and again, I am very much in love with this depiction.

Better yet, these tie in with the conditions of “Asleep” or “Drowsy”, concisely codifying both states and providing, basically, a ladder of sleep-related conditions that allows for a finer gradient. Why is this phenomenal? With just a bit of tweaking, you can balance some of the save-or-suck options at low levels, like the slumber hex, to just note one, without forbidding them or rendering them moot. I ADORE this section.

A total of 3 new spells complement this pdf: Curse of insomnia is pretty much self-explanatory. Sedative drone renders targets drowsy and stimulate can suppress sleep effects or fortify against them, akin to such options for fear.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no glitches. Layout adheres to Everyman gaming’s two-column standard with a printer-friendly, white background. The full-color artwork is neat. The pdf does not have bookmarks, but needs none.

Alexander Augunas and Matt Morris present a humble, little pdf that presents a significantly more rewarding take on sleep than the default: The rules for sleep deprivation are damn cool; but more than that, it’s what you can DO with these rules that makes this amazing.

Replacing save-or-suck insta-sleep with the new condition makes encountering creatures with sleep-inducing capabilities more rewarding for players and GMs alike, balancing some nasty save-or-suck tricks in the process. In short: Using this pdf makes your game better, with almost no work. While I would have loved to see an ability-by-ability-guideline for drowsiness via magic items and effects, what we do get is amazing and all you can ask of such a humble pdf. I adore this. There are very few such small pdfs that increase a game to this extent – and as such, I award this 5 stars + seal of approval. If it had this list, it’d also get a spot as a candidate of my Top Ten of 2017. This is really, really good – get it!

Endzeitgeist out.

Night’s Black Agents: Double Tap is available from DriveThruRPG

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Oct 142017
 

Site-Visibility.jpg

We don’t always think of visibility in games.

It happens very often we look at games and we see nothing wrong with them.

The plot is there and is engaging, challenging and original. The monsters are there and they are well placed, well balanced and dangerous. The locations make sense and they provide all the nooks and crannies for a great challenge.

But then the NPC are just generic and they are all straight, and, mosly, men.

It is hard to find diversity in those scenarios and, for someone like me, that means the adventure lacks verisimilitude. It loses congruence and falls flat.

For you, Dear Some Straight Gamers, it might not be an issue, but for people in the LGBTQI+ spectrum… well…. That is big deal.

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Oct 132017
 

horror movieThe 1950s and 1960s saw a ton of horror movies that featured monsters of sorts.

Partly because of the social and political climate, partly because of the standardization of colour and advances in technology, movies could create more spectacular special effects that, in some cases, have aged really, really well.

War of the Worlds and Forbidden Planet are two great examples of movies that, even today, look really amazing and, time considerations aside, still look incredible.

And yet, those movies tend to be the least scary of them all. At least for me. Perhaps because, despite how good they can look, I can only suspend my disbelief for so long.

In this episode, Rob and I talk about those movies, what make them scary and how they could be used to add a dash of horror to your adventures.

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Oct 052017
 

friki_gay.jpgThere are times when we need characters and considering LGBTQI+ characters simply scapes us. We just don’t think about it and we go on writing or otherwise designing what we like and know.

And, although this is something controversial, if you don’t consider LGBTQI+ characters for your game, you will never be able to provide the best experience you can possibly design.

In this podcast I go on about why leaving the wealth of experiences that LGBTQI+ people have behind and unexplored diminishes the potential richness of your setting, game, novel or adventure.

Because, believe it or not, like it or not, a world without LGBTQI+ people is a much impoverished world.

You can listen to this podcast in iTunes and Stitcher too. You can download the episode from here.

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