Sunday, June 24, 2012

Dice. Bag.

My current go-to set:

I change out dice according to whims of mood or bad luck.  These are some Gamescience polys I bought a few years ago.  The inking on them stank, so I took a yellow crayon to them.

They go in here:

It's nothing special, but it's the same bag I've used since I got it as a present on Xmas day, 1980.  Just simple black suede leather.  It's probably as close to a personal totem or fetish that I have, as I've pretty much carried it constantly in whatever book bag I've had for the past 30+ years.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Finding The Path To Adventure

Back in December, I bought my son the Pathfinder Beginner Box as a Xmas present.  Unfortunately, he received a couple of video games as presents, so it got relegated to the "Interesting, but not a video game" pile.  I, on the other hand, read it and found it pretty nifty.

Fast forward a few months and the boy asked me out of the blue when we were going to game again.  I told him I didn't know (because my last few attempts at getting a group together to play at the house haven't met with much success) but I'd see what I could do.

The more I thought about it, the more I was convinced we could just do something one-on-one with the PBB.  After looking over the character sheets, I really couldn't see a reason why he couldn't just run all of the PCs and I'd do the GMing duties.  With my wife out of town for the weekend, we sat down this morning and played through the module that came in the box.

(And yes, I said "played through."  We completed the entire thing in about three hours.  Four combat encounters and a couple of roleplay/diplomacy/problem-solving encounters.  It played pretty fast.)

The heroes of Sandpoint braved the dark depths, slew goblins, a spider, a fell water beast, dispatched undead, and drove off Blackfang, a most vicious and vile black dragon.  Along the way, they befriended a tribe of squabbling goblins by returning a treasured toy to them, and completely misunderstood the purpose of a magic fountain.

I've been impressed with the physical quality of the PBB from the beginning, but this was my first chance to put it through its paces.  Of course, I've been playing Pathfinder for a couple of years now, but it was my first time GMing it.  The adventure provides an excellent mix of combat and non-combat encounters, the challenges were appropriately threatening without being overwhelming (Blackfang got off one acid blast: it dropped the fighter to 3 HP and the cleric to 0, which created a rather tense moment).  Even though the boy was playing all the PCs, each one had multiple opportunities to shine (or fail).

He wants to play some more. I guess I need to see about scaring up some more players (his age or otherwise).

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Bree Yark, Bree Yark! It's A Helluva Town!

So, I playtested 5th Ed/DNDNext this evening.  I had a jolly good time playing Feredir the Blatant, an orange-haired, orange-robed Elven Wizard (on the spur of the moment, I decided The Blatant are an order of Elven Wizards who believe magic should be anything but subtle.  Thus, the orange robes, which stand out in their sylvan glades).

We killed the goblin leadership and the rest of their mangy bunch declared us their new chiefs.  We tried taking on the hobgoblins, but had to turn tail and run before clearing out the kobold nest.

Overall, this felt more like D&D than anything I've played in the past decade, with the exception of Castles & Crusades. With four players, we got through multiple fights, and covered quite a bit of real estate over the course of four or so adventuring days.

About the only thing I didn't like was that for most of the forays into the caves, I didn't feel like my character was in much danger.  In two expeditions into the goblin complex, including the ogre fight, I only lost four hit points total, and with the ability to heal back overnight, I didn't feel particularly inconvenienced.

Other than that, I can't really complain.  Also, I came up with a "terrific" song to commemorate the event.

Bree-Yark, Bree-Yark!
It's a helluva town,
The catacomb's up,
And the dungeon is down!
It's deep dank foetid
Hole in the ground!
Bree-Yark, Bree-Yark!
It's a helluva town!