Eow Links 50
2021-12-12

Eow Links 50

"Eow" for End Of Week. TTRPG Links I gathered during the week. This is iteration 50.

For more weekly links, head to The Seed of Worlds Shiny TTRPG link collection. There's also The Indie RPG Newsletter, and The Glatizant with its monthly links.

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

← last week links

My favourite post for the week isn't a TTRPG post but it's close. "Workshop through sparring: if it's not being free-play tested, it isn't thinking" as seen in Thinking in OODA Loops


Damage Rolls with the Main Roll

To sum up, when designing a TTRPG, think of ways of integrating damage with the attack roll. When GMing a TTRPG, think about ways to turn low damage rolls into fictional changes to position. When playing a TTRPG, roll high on damage rolls!


Game Review: Index Card RPG Master Edition

I am currently running a Warp Shell campaign for Index Card RPG Master Edition. This game runs fast. Combat encounters, even complex ones, tend to resolve themselves in just a few minutes. You can get a lot of gaming done in a very compact space of time.

The Open Engine Elephant

Which is why increasingly we are seeing OSR compatible games that step a little bit farther away from the Dungeons & Dragons systems from which they are derived and set their own license using Creative Commons or their own independent and unique license


In Praise of the 6 Mile Middle-earth Hex

Frodo and Sam traveled 1,800 miles over 185 days. However, they spent: 28 days in Lothlorien, 64 days in Rivendell, 1 day at Bombadil's house. That's almost half the time resting. So they only had 92 days of travel, for an average of 19.5 miles/day.


Dead of Winter (1998) is essentially a Harnic riff on Name of the Rose

There is a monastery, there are murders. There is a prophecy. There is maybe a secret library. There is no grand religious doctrine debate, but there is a diplomatic meeting between envoys of two local political factions. As the title states, it is winter, and the snows have essentially trapped everyone at the monastery.


What Do I Want?

What do I want as a player? Interesting situations that I find emotionally engaging and mentally challenging. A positive social experience that creates, maintains, or strengthens the relationship between the people I am playing with.


Release The Trolls – How to Run Vaesen One-Shots (or Campaigns)

Firstly, Vaesen has a whole chapter dedicated to Mystery design. This is absolute gold, and I’d recommend reading – or even following along – with this to create your first mystery.


A sandbox of mysteries

But please, no Gumshoe, the antithesis of sandbox mystery solving gameplay.


Rambling Thoughts on Lancer

In Lancer though, you will go through many mecha frames. You will change out their loadouts, retrain your personal tactics and change your strategies. In D&D terms, it would be like being able to pick your class and so on again every time you levelled up. Your ability to do violence in various flavors is just tools you pick up and discard, and your pilot's identity is more separate from their frame's identity, which is further exemplified by how the pilot has a name, a Callsign used on the battlefield, and a name for their mechs.


Actual Test: World, Climate and Globe Mapping Tools

To me the most interesting view is biomes - here the standard. You can twiddle the biomes by adjusting Water level, Equatorial rotation speed and Solar irradiance. Water level adjustment is direct up/down along your height map. Equatorial rotation speed is fairly insensitive and adjusts the shape of the biomes inland. Solar irradiance is extremely sensitive - a small adjustment and you have an ice or desert planet so tweak gently.

Review: Worlds Without Number

The historical generators alone - why did the society that built this ruin come to its end - are fantastic, I spent a cheerful afternoon using this to find out the fates of the old kingdoms that had ruled in the region my home campaign was set in.


Attack of the (Fake) Grownups...

Fortunately, the mainstreaming of the pastime is eroding such notions, making us all better adults...


Mail Call: Chris Perkins' "Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 3rd Edition"

It might be neat to play this "what if" version.


Occult NPCs from Aubrey’s Lives

He had the ambition to write a collection of biographies of the great Britons of his era: roughly the 1600s, though he included many men who died old in the early 1600s, and so we think of as being more Elizabethan in character. Aubrey compiled a great collection of salacious gossip – mostly obtained at drinking parties – but he never actually wrote his book.


Thinking in OODA Loops

Operate inside another agent's decision-cycle, collapsing it from within

and

1) Operate in real-time: if you need time to think, you must create it
2) See in functionally unfixed ways: things are not their functions
3) Mind the matrix: perceptions are not realities
4) Workshop through sparring: if it's not being free-play tested, it isn't thinking
5) Develop deep memory: historical amnesia equals bad strategy


Feels good thief skills

Any class can try skullduggery, but thieves do it better.


When Wizards Die

Over a given number of years or centuries, wizards will die. That means there is potential for a lot of items to be in the world, like spellbooks, potions, scrolls, ingredients, inks, quills, parchment, lab equipment, ...


A Thorough Look at Skill Challenges (Part 1: the Rules)

There. That's every last variation on Skill Challenges I could find that I believe was worth mentioning. Just in case anyone needed them all in one place and didn't feel like buying the books, watching the videos, and rummaging around the internet on their own, I did it for you.