Eow Links 34
2021-08-22

Eow Links 34

"Eow" for End Of Week. TTRPG Links I gathered during the week. This is iteration 34.

For more weekly links, head to The Seed of Worlds Shiny TTRPG link collection or Alex's Blogosphere posts. There is also Ruprecht's Best of the Web.

Most of the links below are found via the RPG Planet that Alex Schroeder built and maintains. If you have a RPG blog, please consider joining the conversation.

← last week links

A solid week. My favourite post is the necessary reminder Your Story Sucks.


Official German Translation of Brave

So recently a fellow by the name of Calvin Brandt reached out to me and said that he's translated my RPG, Brave, into German. And I said, "So this is the coolest thing anyone's ever done for me."

Brave is a Knave child, and it's lucky enough to get a german translation.


TLB Podcast #11 - Ava Islam - Errant

Ava Islam is the designer of Errant a med fan rpg she has successfully kickstarted during Zinequest 3 - The system totally rethinks and rebuilds the D&D game engine in a fascinating and innovative way. In this episode, we talk about power, race, game design, bets and wagers, Neapolitan pizza and much more.

Another great conversation at the Lost Bay podcast. Now I want to try Roman pizza.


Your Story Sucks

You, a game master who took an “introduction to the craft of fiction” as a freshman in college are likely to create a story that a fanzine editor wouldn’t read for more than two paragraphs before tossing it in the bin.

An excellent reminder. And there are players between you and your story.


Advanced Designers & Dragons #54: Giants of the Industry: Steve Perrin - RPGnet

The biggest innovation of Perrin's RuneQuest was that it eliminated classes entirely and instead transformed class abilities into skills. The concept of skills had appeared previously in a sprinkling of other early RPGs, but Perrin's decision to separate them from classes was what created a new school of RPG design, breaking from the tropes laid out by D&D for class-based play. It also helped to move RuneQuest away from the D&D trope of experience points; RuneQuest instead adopted new ideas of paid training, in part derived from a "sage" character class that Perrin had published in Alarums & Excursions, with help from yet another local gamer, Jerry Jacks.

My character is a list of skills...


Ideas on using Notice in Worlds Without Number

However, one of the skills is Notice, which is something that is usually considered one of the big things that make newer D&D editions unsuitable for classic dungeon crawling, which in the defense of Worlds Without Number, it never claims to do.

The skill of Notice in Stars Without Numbers and friends, how to use it in well-balanced ways.


Publication Dates of All D&D Editions

The second event that prompted me to update the edition timeline was the emergent D&D 5.5. This new edition hasn’t officially been announced as of this post’s publication; however, we can see signs that it is developing. We’re seeing a fundamental changing of the nomenclature used for the game. We’re also seeing a new style of play emerging in recent supplements such as Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything.


Little Free Libraries

Over the past month I have been “seeding” Little Free Libraries all over town with RPGs, character sheets, dice and adventures. I’ve been giving out both Cairn and Rogueland (the same versions you’d get from a store).

Yochai Gal seeding his games in free libraries. I love those seed bombs concepts.


Dragons are murderhobos

Dragons see the world as players do.

And you have to demonstrate to them that you are not a philosophical zombie.


Campaign spin up II: applying the OSR

The first lesson for me is that once you have a core concept set for a world (empire on the down-swing, very old lizard folk civilization, hot climate, dragon cults) you can rapidly generate anything by consulting spark-lists and random tables.

In the beginning was the random table.


FR L'Arthur de Keltia

On ne peut pas parler d'un Arthur "historique", la part de fantastique ou de féerie des Mabinogion est très importante mais la part chrétienne et médiévale y a été plus atténuée. Certains critiques du GROG exagèrent en disant que le jeu se moque ouvertement des goûts plus "maloryens" de Greg Stafford dans Pendragon mais Keltia se positionne simplement sur des choix différents.

A presentation of the historical context of the setting of Keltia. I found this other article, which is not kind with the game and its interpretation of post-roman, pre-saxon Britain.


HUDLESS Adventure Gaming

Over the past 12 months it has been interesting to observe the rapid growth of the FKR: the reinterpretation of Free Kriegsspiel wargaming conventions in the indie RPG/NSR/OSR roleplaying spaces. Free Kriegsspiel is a mode of wargaming whereby players are encouraged to immerse themselves more thoroughly in the "game world" by detaching themselves from the games' mechanics. Instead, an umpire or referee decides the outcome of the players' actions, cleaving as closely as possible to what they believe would be the "real world" outcome of such an action.

I also like this quote about story:

The attraction of sandbox and old-school play (to me at least) is the notion of emergent storytelling: the purpose of the game is not to create stories, but stories emerge as other game objectives are fulfilled.


Repeat after me

Rules do not protect you from the arbitrariness of the game master. That’s a fact.

Which I read as

Repeat after me: rules do not protect you from the arbitrariness of the arbiter. Submit to my dogma.

A theory is not a fact.

 

Play worlds, not rules: understand literature and fuck the rules

Referees have to understand their literature. And ‘literature’ includes movies, comic books and audio plays.

Rule lawyers, bow to canon lawyers!


The Emergent Game

Then, when a situation comes up and you realize that referee adjudication and table consensus truly aren't enough, OR you get a fun idea about how to resolve it WITH a mechanic, use that mechanic. Don't write it down, just make use of it now and either forget about it, or realize later on that it sticks and works well with the setting of play and style of your table. Or change it if it doesn't. After the first session you may want to commit it to paper, or not.

That's a hard OR and there is no mechanic on its left side.