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Tiny Post

Hey all

I am not feeling well and so this will be just a quick note to say hi and to say I will try to get a real post out next week. However there are a lot of things going on for me and the wife next week so it may not be possible. If not, there will at least be another tiny post.

Be well, play hard and gimme the dice, I gotta see if mixing meds will help.

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Game Review #35 Rifts 1st Edition (G)

Hey there everyone

So while I have reviewed multiple products from Palladium Books before, and I know that in the last year there have been a lot more blow outs regarding the company and its owner Kevin Siembieda. I am not going to rehash that at all though. This post is about the first edition of the most ambitious setting I have ever seen. Rifts.

So let me say I first found this game the year it came out. I was interested right off the bat because after Shadowrun came out the year before, and in my mind blew the doors off of putting Fantasy and Cyberpunk together into a single setting, I wanted to see what one of my favorite publishers, the folks who had brought me Heroes Unlimited, TMNT and other Strangeness and Robotech could do with a setting that essentially mixed… everything… together in one place.

I wanted to be tough on them, to really put the pressure on to make sure they kept up the quality of settings I had seen them do, and license. I gave up on that completely when I got to the RCC (Racial Character Class) section and found that you could start the game playing a dragon. And that while dragons generally preferred not to get cybered up, you could. And they had natural magic. And… well yeah… so…

Anyway they had a ton of other interesting classes. The original book had humans, dragons, psychics and ‘dog boys’ as the races you could play. And if you were human you could pick an OCC (Occupational Character Class) to go with your race.

Your initial setting is on a post apocalypse Earth. Where things had gone high tech. There was a lot of cool gear and toys. Humans got stupid and went WW3 on each other. Massive death toll on just the right time pulled all the psychic energy into the worlds ley lines and they went nuts. Magic returned to the world, the ley lines turned into Rifts bringing things from multiple different dimensions and worlds to Earth. Death toll rises. Things lock into place and humanity has been shattered. Three hundred years or so later a small human empire is up and running in the midwest using Nazi like tactics to get folks under their thumb. And in the setting at the moment the first book came out you could either be a part of the empire, our choose to be outside it.

Later books would expand things, a lot… no really… a lot. I wont go into detail but add in books about parts of Earth, other dimensions, lists of deities (yeah they are wandering around too), alien parts salesmen and all sorts of other stuff and the whole thing gets freakin’ huge. Unfortunately all that growth comes with an epidemic of power creep. However that is not the point of this review.

One of the things that really drew me in was that fact that this setting was in the same rules as every other Palladium Books game I had played. And they stated right in the book that they were going to put out a supplemental book that would tell you how to bring over every other type of character and make it work. So of course the first thing that I did with a game group was to put together a mission in which the TMNT stole the SDF-1 and tried to raid the capitol of that burgeoning new human empire with the assistance of a few super humans and more than a few cybernetic spies. Yeahhh. Thats the kinda stuff this setting lets you get away with.

Now the game itself is far from perfect. My current copy of the original rule book is eighth printing and it still has a ton of editorial errors. The art is the usual Palladium mixed batch where you may have one or two artists that are pretty good, but the cover is the only art really worth drooling over (save for licensed titles and some of the most recent books they have done when they finally got new art teams and the owner quit trying his hand at art from time to time).

My biggest issue with the game is that the leveling system calls back to original D&D, with that poor elf who does elf things. And the fact that you cannot change classes at any point other than to just clear everything you have learned and take on a new roll. So you start at ground level all over again despite how ever long you have been playing. This type of level system does have its benefits, and it can keep a player from over reaching and trying to become a dragon with a borg aspect who pilots giant robots and has made magical pacts to become… ohhhh you get it. If the rules wont let you do it it stops things from getting too far out of control unless you make exceptions and get into power creep (cough cough later books). Even though it would be ten years before we would see D&D 3rd edition and get a really solid look at what you can do slipping between classes ‘officially’, there have been examples for years of a controlled method of mixing rolls so that players can build what they can imagine without getting too far out of control.

Even with its built in imperfections this game has been an inspiration to me for a long time. I love the potential in crossing genres. And while there were other game engines like the Hero System and GURPS that set you up to be able to do EVERYTHING in one game engine. This is the first setting that I became aware of that actually put EVERYTHING in one place from the beginning.

Ok so lets look at the numbers…

Overall Fluff 4/5 – There is enough background info here and in both editorial and character voices that the setting really comes to life. The art helps a little when it can avoid being distracting. There are so many bread crumbs dropped that ties this setting into everything else that Palladium Books published that you cant help but feel things coming together are you read.

Overall Crunch 4/5 – Standard Palladium Books rules. It is a good system if you accept its limits and the things that it wont let you do. If you take it on its own the rules are comprehensive and cover just about anything you can imagine.

Overall Mod 3/5 – Adding things and subtracting things is about the best you can hope for. However that adding and subtracting allows for bringing in things from so many other settings it is kind of hard not to say you can mod it.

Overall Fun 4/5 – I enjoy it a lot. I occasionally have moments where I want to mix classes and it frustrates the crud out of me until I remember where I put my house rules to blend OCC and even RCC. But then I have to find it again and the realize I can do enough with the character I have and … then I am back to having fun 🙂

Total Score 15/20 – Not a bad score overall. If you can get past all the current hullabaloo about the company and the owner/author then you might want to consider this game if you like the mixing of genre. If you do I would recommend going first ed over the later versions due to the fact the book changed to try and compensate for the power creep in its other books and made some changes that hampered some of the choices you could make regarding the character types you could play.

Ok so thats it… my thoughts and opinions. Run with it or dont its up to you 🙂

Now gimme the dice, I gotta see how much more power creep we can work with… hmmm how did a 924 get on my d20…

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Game Review #33 CM4 Earthshaker (M)

Ok so this review has a bit of a twisted origin, but still flashes us back into the 80’s.

The first time I saw this module (CM4 Earthshaker), for a version of Basic D&D I never got into until the 2000’s called The Companion Rules,  sitting in a local book store I knew I had to have it. GIANT FREAKING ROBOT! It was the mid 80’s and I had only recently discovered anime. Voltron, Robotech, and so many others with giant robots. I had to know more.

What I learned did not really help me enjoy… much… when it came to giant robots. Less so for D&D. It also put the capstone on my long lived hatred of all things gnome. However it did cement for me the idea that cross genre stories, adventures and setting could be done. IF they were done right. Looking back at the module today it feels more like an attempt to get players to really feel what it is like to run a kingdom when there is a huge potential disaster coming your way. But this one has an element of the disaster that you can fight directly. It also feels a LOT more like steampunk than anything else. I still hate the gnomes though.

This module also started me asking the questions again regarding the limits on character levels that you see in D&D, the limits on roles per race, and how much better AD&D was because while you still had level limits based on race (which everyone I knew tossed right out the window) it was better than having to have a conversation like…

“So what are you?”

“An elf.”

“And what do you do?”

“Elf things.”

“No I mean what is your job?”

“I am an elf.”

“No I get that I can see the ears… I mean what do you do? I am a Cleric, I use holy magic.”

“No you dont get it… Elves, Dwarves, Halflings (because Hobbits are under another copyright) we dont get careers… I am an ELF, that is my race, my job, my fate… I can only do ELF things… and I cant advance like you do… dont you see!!!”

“I…ummmm… wow….unhhh”

(uncontrolled sobbing)

Yeah, so moving on lets see what the numbers look like before that elf gets back…

 

Overall Fluff 2/5 – Like most early modules for D&D of any version, the fluff is weak. Cool cover art by a D&D legend helps, but that can only take you so far.

Overall Crunch 5/5 – This is where this really shines. The added rules to help you solve problems for a large area/kingdom really can give you a grip on scale, even though they only take up about half a page. The rules for supersized constructs, they rock. hard to imagine it taking several hundred beings working together to make it work, but hey, that is the steampunk way.

Overall Mod 2/5 – Ok so here is a big challenge. You cannot really scale this to lower levels. You cannot really alter a lot of the material. You can however replicate it and make a giant steampunk robot setting with it. So I still have to give it some points.

Overall Fun 3/5 – I may not have learned much but it allowed me to destroy a full tribe of gnomes while taking a giant steam powered robot off their hands and foil some villains and use the robot to set up a new version of the Colossus of Rhodes.

Total Score 12/20 – Not the best module ever. However it does have some nifty little things that you can use to build up a campaign, or just toss a wrench into the day of any group of heroes you might know.

So there it is… look it up, toss it out, whatever works for you.

Now gimme the dice… I need to see if I can roll up a job for that elf so he will stop crying.

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Monster Rights Activism

Yeah ok so this one is a bit odd. But a conversation with my wife got me thinking about this the other day and I wanted to share.

In games, and fiction, we have this long history of establishing a race or species as being evil. And tons of authors and designers end up using the same races. Making them evil over and over again.

On some rare occasions someone will take a race and change things up a bit. Like when Privateer Press created Iron Kingdoms, goblins were a character race up front and had a part of the main-stream culture all their own. Other games have usually settled for adding a supplemental book that says something like ‘Yeah all these is usually monsters, but here is how you can play one. Just be ready to be killed as soon as you go into a city.’

My issue with all this comes from the question, are they really evil or do they just have a culture the writers don’t like?

I mean if you think about it really. If you are a goblin living in the forest with your clan, you and your people have never done anything to any other creature. Because you are all devout vegans and the forest gives you everything you could need. And along comes a group of non goblins. They cry out that goblins are evil and kill everyone in the clan.

Or what if you happen to be a Minotaur that spent forty years learning structural engineering and site planning. All the while working as a body guard and in general labor so you could afford to buy some land and build a labyrinth all to fulfill your personal dream of making something that people could enjoy. When you are doing your final walk through a group of beings comes marching through your pride and joy and as soon as they spot you, instead of letting you tell them about the way you made it and the intricacies of the patterns you created, they scream out that Minotaur are evil and kill you. (I think a realtor or property developer is actually behind this one, knew the Minotaur would never sell, and wanted to have an exclusive property to sell)

I mean after a few years of this sort of unfriendly behavior I would think that all of these other races would start banding together for self defense. Maybe even becoming the force for evil that others are calling them just so they can have a chance to have a life on their own.

You can roll it up under any context you like… but it still looks more like the “heroes” are the evil ones to me.

Lets try this example. The god that gave you your holy writ tells you and your people that while the ‘good’ gods created you and yours, the ‘evil’ gods created these other races and that makes them bad so you should go and kill them. I would have to ask someone in this instance do you really know what is going on between these gods? I mean they tell you their history and you take that on ‘faith’ and run with it and assume you are the good guy. How do you know the ‘evil’ god did not just say no to a night of Netflix and chill with the ‘good’ god, and this is how the ‘good’ god gets their revenge? Getting all of their little minions to destroy everything the ‘evil’ god created. I mean really, who is the evil one there?

I know, I know, shades of grey, the world is dark enough, fantasy lets us get past the weirdness and gives us black and white so we can feel good about slaughtering something evil and not having to worry about consequences.

I will be the first to admit that it is really nice to be able to just step back and say, ‘Yup, that’s an orc so we can kill it.’ It makes things so easy. You can pick something make it bad and everyone can point at it and say it is responsible for all your ills. But I am wondering if anyone really has the nerve to build something from the ground up that asks if we can be more than that.

Rifts came close. Humans, Dogboys, and Dragons right off the bat. Magic and psychic powers vs technology. Open minds against ‘the right way to do things’. However they did their best to say that Humans were the bad guys in that one and that any human that was not part of the problem had to prove themselves a lot. Which still really gave us a ‘bad guy’ it just turned the table on species more than anything.

I seriously think we can come up with something that does it better.

If anyone knows of one let me know I would love to check it out.

Until then I will continue to fight for monster rights.

Now gimme the dice, I need to see what two goblins and an octopus priest walking into a bar looks like.

 

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A Question of Taste

The image on this little rant is Kafka_Library by Gryphart on DeviantArt and is sort of my dream for a gaming library.

I was asked a couple weeks ago why I have so many positive reviews in my blog. Why do I not take shots at games I dont like? Why not get in and mix things up?

Well it all comes down really to a matter of taste. Do I want to waste my time being an @$$ online and just issuing nasty comments about stuff in an effort to drag in readers and get them to troll each other in the comments  to try and get my counters to spin? Or do I want to be someone who encourages people, appreciates the cool things and tries to give folks options for things they might find fun as well?

To be perfectly honest it is easy for me. I would rather put out things that I have positive comments on. I would rather get people psyched for gaming. I would really love to see everyone find the game for them and have them spread the good word to everyone they know so they can find a group to play that game and everyone can have a blast.

This is why you will see blog entries from me that are on games that I have mixed experience with, but you will never see one that I regret playing, or that I hate the rules for it.

There are a couple of people I know who cant seem to live without (as an old roommate said many times) crapping in others cornflakes, but given all the costs, challenges and issues that role playing games face in general, I would rather be a positive influence, even if it is only a small one. Better that then one of the @$$hats who only care about blog hits and getting others to talk about them, even if they are saying nothing good.

So short rant.

Sorry I have been absent but… life… I hope to be back soon, but no promises.

Now gimme the dice, I have to make a save vs work load. 🙂

 

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A Question of Desire

Having several things that I need to work on today for my work work stuff, I am not going to be able to do a long post. I am also going to skip my usual tossing in of wiki links because a lot of this stuff has been talked about before, or everyone should be able to Google.

I have mentioned a lot of licensed properties in my reviews and other rants. Star Wars, Star Trek, Dream Park, Street Fighter, Wheel of Time and so on. I have also mentioned that there are times when one publisher looses a license and so a new property is created by the new license holder. So we have multiple versions of the Star Wars RPG, and just recently the current publisher got the rights to do a reissue of the original version of the RPG… which is bloody cool as far as I am concerned.

But what I really want to post about at the moment is, well, are there any movies, books or comics that you would really love to see in an RPG format? Where you dont have to home brew everything and you can just take it easy and enjoy playing?

If so is the property something where you would want to play just your favorites from the original works? Or do you want to be able to insert your favorite original ideas in there and just run with that and have the chance to have your characters meet the ones that inspired you to love the setting in the first place?

To me this is actually a very serious question. Partly because of rumors that get started this time of year with the San Diego comic con being out and about. The raw number of possibilities that start coming to light from that alone are mind numbing. And then waiting until Gen Con or Origins for other announcements about potential new games.

Personally there is one property that I would love to have turned into an RPG. It will likely never happen and so I will be stuck with home brews. Transformers. I would love to see a G1 series game that allows you to create Autobots or Decepticons or even come up with unaligned Transformers so that you could explore alternate ideas. You would need to have good mecha design and vehicle combat rules. And a ‘humans are squishy’ table for when you just had enough from them. Until they do come out with that I can simulate them a bit with Heroes Unlimited using their robot character class, or go with Mekton and give the mech full AI instead of a human pilot.

But what about you? What would you love to see turned into an RPG?

Just something to think about I guess.

Now gimme the dice, I need to figure out what the odds are that I can get work work done on a sunburnt Sunday.

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Game Review #?? Amber Diceless (G)

Welcome readers…

So it took me a little bit to get this one out, but so be it.

The Amber Diceless RPG was written by Erick Wujcik (co founder of Palladium Books) based off of the Amber Chronicles by Roger Zelazny.

As a licensed product there are a lot of reasons for me to love this game. I was a fan of the novels, and Wujcik is responsible for some of my favorite content that came out of Palladium.

While the history of the game and the challenges of getting it published are a good story, check the wiki for that one. Also the history of Wujcik and Palladium are also good reading but I do not really want to recap that here. Try the wiki for those too. What I really want to go into is the game itself, and my experience with it.

Now then if I remember right I have played Amber seven times. And with each of those games it has been either one of the best RPG experiences I have ever had or it is one of the worst. There is a high challenge factor to this game. And it takes players and GMs that are up to the challenge to really make it work. And while the game engine could be easily used outside of the Amber setting, getting used to it in the Amber setting where you can establish some outside references makes it easier to get a handle on.

What is it that makes this game so challenging? The whole game engine. In most games you have stats that give you at the very least a general idea of what ‘specifically’ you can do. In Amber they just tell you who is the best, and where others rank. And that is all in relation to standard humans. Powers have some more specific limits on them, but they are written as guidelines to try and encourage creativity in GMs and players. Action resolution is based on who has the highest relevant stat, if they have any skills to back it up, and if they can out describe whatever challenge they are facing. This is why it is a diceless system. You have no mechanic for action resolution. And this is why it is a challenge. And why it can be great or just totally suck depending on who you play with.

See most of the time dice, cards, coins or even bidding chits act as a neutral third party that can side with the person taking the action or with the challenge they are facing. When you have a majority on one side then that side wins. In the Amber system you have to basically convince the person running the game that you have the best idea and that means you should succeed. Unless of course you are taking action against someone or some thing with a significantly higher stat. Then unless you get a lot of help you are just hosed.

The game time I have spent on this system is really just… well… mixed. My very first time playing Amber was at a Seattle Convention called Dragonflight. It was one of the most epic game sessions I have ever been in. It reinforced for me just how players and GMs adding description and flavor and ideas could put so much life in a game session that I quickly forgot my reservations about the game engine being diceless and really got into trying to figure out ways to get myself and others out of challenges. The next four sessions I spent all of my time wondering why the players and or GMs sucked so bad at playing and wondering why they were so dependent on a mechanic to make decisions for them. The sixth session was almost back to what the first was like but not quite. All of this made me think about how the game is played, and who it is played with. And while I would love to play it again, I never will unless I can find a group of players that would be just as thrilled as I am to put roleplay over mechanics and who want to do so with all the flavor they can muster.

There are a lot of elements that I can have fun with in the limited game mechanics that are present in the system, but my personal favorite is the Good Stuff, Bad Stuff, and Neutral Stuff mechanic.

The game engine is point based for character builds. And when you get to the end of building your character you may need a few points to balance things out. If you do you can take on roles for the game, do journaling, artwork, all sorts of things to help the GM run the game and track stuff… or you can take on Bad Stuff (well you can do both but why get into that now). Bad stuff acts like a combination of bad luck, bad reputation, and crap magnet. The more Bad Stuff you have the more bad stuff the GM can feel free and gleeful about tossing your way. If you have points left over you can buy up Good Stuff. It is the opposite of Bad Stuff, really. And Neutral Stuff just means you are balanced. Not so good, not so bad. Sadly the game mechanic does not allow you to have both Good and Bad Stuff, unless someone has house rules. Another way this comes into play is when characters are cashing in XP. The GM does not tell the players how much XP they have, each player submits a list of what they would like to grow, and how much if any Bad Stuff they are willing to take on to get it. So at the end of the story the GM spends all of their points for them based on the lists the players have provided. Points left over become Good Stuff. I know a lot of players that freak out about this part of the game system because it takes a lot out of their hands. But it can also make the role play more interesting by keeping the players in the dark about just how much they have developed. Again, more chance to roleplay and experience discovery with your characters.

So yeah, this game is different. It never was really unique in its mechanics, but it is something that you can really have a lot of fun with IF and only IF you are really up to the challenge.

So how do the points lay out?

Overall Fluff 3/5 – There is so much material in here that comes from the books and so many colorful examples that reading though this is almost like Cliff Notes of the novels. I cannot go to a 4 though because at least half of the art sucks, to the point that it is distracting. I do think though that if there was better, consistent art, I could go to a five easy.

Overall Crunch 2/5 – The rules are light. They are actually pretty easy to use too. And examples are plentiful. Why is that number so low you ask then? Because it is hard to get players to grasp the concept. I dont think that is really a reflection of the game but more on gaming culture. But with the mechanics as they stand it is hard to get players to know what the heck is going on.

Overall Mod 3/5 – This gets a little tricky. I have modded the engine to suit other settings, but without the Cliff Notes factor it gets a little hard to work with. I have also created new powers and abilities, but with the lack of solid standards set in the mechanics it is a challenge to know if you are over powering, under powering, or even if you happen to be totally redundant.

Overall Fun 3/5 – With the right group of players this game is mind blowingly good. And that makes it OHHH so fun. With the wrong group of players… just shoot me. So lets score it in the middle for fun.

Total Score 11/20 – Not a very high score. But a meaningful one. If you love the Amber setting, and can play with a like minded group that can really carry things off without needing a mechanic to determine success, rock this game. Otherwise I would leave it be for the time being and maybe try and recreate the Amber setting in another engine. Would not be the first time someone has pulled that move.

Sooo now you know my thoughts. Get out there and form your own opinion. Thats the one that is worth it.

Now gimme the dice… I need to see if I need the dice…

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Flashbacks and memories

Hi there readers.

I know I had mentioned in my last post that I was going to talk about Amber Diceless this week. But while I was running around with my wife yesterday we passed by the now closed Toys R Us location in Southcenter (Tukwilla)WA. And just driving past, seeing the closed sign on the doors and being able to see a whole lot of… nothing… inside the store took me back down memory lane and I wanted to share.

The image that tops this post is from their original location and was part of an article in one of the local news papers.

The flash that hit me was not all the toys that I had picked up there over the decades of knowing the chain of stores. But that Toys R Us what what gave me the chance to get into gaming fully.

1979 – 81 my family lived … well a fair ways away from the Seattle area. But being back here to visit family we went to Toys R Us… I don’t remember why… but we went. Wandering through the store I went into their books section, yeah for those who only know the more modern Toys R Us in the Seattle area… they used to have really big books and media sections all dedicated to titles for the young at heart, and I had been Jones-ing for a new Hardy Boys or something else by CS Lewis or a follow up to Charlotte’s Web. But I saw a small section with D&D books and games in it. I could not believe my luck. I had wanted more of the D&D stuff since I had played my Kryptonian Dwarf and here it was… in a place that was so cool that it had toys, and books, and now D&D too!!!

D&D_Basic_Rules_1981

And low and behold I found myself in possession of the first Basic Rules set. This pic does it no justice as mine had three hole punches in it so it could be put in a binder… oh damn so easy to carry… And dice that I had to take a crayon to so that the numbers would stand out… and it even came with an adventure module. So COOL! Next holiday I was teaching some of my cousins how to play. We really did not get all that deep into the rules. Made up a lot of crap as we went. But for me at least it was a lot of fun. I hope they enjoyed it as much. But that also got me back to Toys R Us and this time I found another box… even cooler than the first…

D&D_1981_Expert_Set_cover

And the rule book was also three hole punched… and now I had a binder so I asked my dad to three hole punch both of the adventure modules with some of his industrial tools at work. AND EVEN MORE DICE!!! Now my cousins and I could take things even further… and this adventure had DINOSAURS!!! even cooler than Dragons at the time… but not by much.

I cannot remember which one of these two it was, or if it was both… but I know that I did not have enough money for at least one of them, and offered to do more chores and work around the house to get an advance on my allowance (25 cents per week) sufficient enough to buy them. Yeah that’s right I went into debt and took on extra work just to get these.

Then more followed…

Now there was an ADVANCED version… I no longer had to have an elf who did elf things!!! I could be an elf who was a thief or a priest… or what the hell is a half elf? And why is there no half dwarf? Of half halfling… ahhh hell I can figure out how to make those myself…

And all that came from a little kid wandering into Toys R Us and choosing game books over regular books, or action figures, or other toys or balls or Hot Wheels or anything else really.

In 1982 when we were moved back into the Seattle area I found out about Walden Books and B Dalton and sure they had a few little shelves for RPG books. Eventually they became my go too source for them before I found a local book store that had even more… oh so many more… But for as long as the local Toys R Us had a books section they were the place I wanted to hit first to see if I could find anything to feed the gaming hunger.

They have not stocked things like that locally for a long… long time. I cannot speak to any other part of the US or the world where they operated, or in some cases still might… not really sure how all the international business stuff works for something like this… but once upon a time they did. And things have not been so epic since.

And now with the stores passing… with the end of that era… the memories kick up and I get that sad feeling that I will never see its like again.

Ok so flashback shared… memories passed… and so we can move on.

Thanks for understanding the need to remember something publicly and I will get that Amber posting up soon.

Now gimme the dice… I gotta scrape the paint off the numbers and find a crayon….

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Missing the review

Hi there readers…

The wife and I are working on a project in the house this weekend and it is going to be a very cool add. Much like our home made steampunk library and the desk she made me, my wife has awesome ideas that come out so bloody cool. So since this was one of those rare weeks when our mundane life jobs both got us paid at the same time we had to pickup the parts and get to work. That unfortunately is leaving me without enough time to really do a good post this week… and a few other things. And that may happen next week too, we shall see.

Hope everyone is having a blast out there in the world and I am sorry that this is not a better post.

Gimme the dice, I have to see if I can avoid wiring the puppy into the new outlets in the living room.

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Die Fighter, no, we are not backstabing the fighter… sheesh

Ok so last week I asked about posting other things that I have done. I got a couple of replies and have decided to dive in with Die Fighter.

If you are wondering about the pic, well that is the type of customizable dice that I originally created the game with. Not really required but it makes it a little easier in my opinion.

Let me jump straight into a copy of the rules so you can see more about what I mean.

Welcome to Die Fighter first edition

Die Fighter is (C) Copyright Tony Johnson 2013 2014

Permission is given to distribute freely person to person but not to be posted on the internet.

This is a game that is trying to pay tribute to the classic two d fighting games of yore. Classic Street Fighter, Street Fighter II, Fatal Fury, and so many others that many of us spent a lot of time and money on in the arcades back when such things were common.

 Tools :

To play this game you need a ball point pen and at least one of these little packets of blank dice.

dice

I would suggest picking these things up at a local gaming or hobby store as you can see if you pick them up at one of the Uncles Games stores they are only 3.99 for a package, but at Amazon online they are 7.19 plus shipping or more.

The game idea is simple really. You use the rules below to design a fighter by marking the stickers and applying them to the dice. And then you and another player (or if you make two sets up then you can play on your own), roll dice to fight and take down the health bar of the other fighter.

Designing a fighter can take a few minutes, running a fight can take seconds to a couple of minutes. Number of rounds and so on will be up to the players involved.

Rules :

Ok so the first bit of the rules is to explain why you need the multicolored dice.

Each color of die represents an area of attack and defense.

Red – Head and upper body

Yellow – Mid body

Green – Lower body

White – Ranged and charge attacks

Initially you select three dice of different colors. This will define your fighters fighting style. Samples of fighting styles would be like…

Grapplers – Red, Yellow, Green

Fire Ballers – Red, Yellow, White

Chargers – Yellow, Green, White

These are just quick ideas. You can some up with your own way to define just what you have come up with.

Now that you have your three dice, you get 50 Build Points, and 10 Health Levels

Ok so what do you do with three blank dice and some points. Well you build a full on fighting style to flesh out your fighter.

Build points can be spent on the following –

(S) Strike – 2 Build Points – 1 Health Level of damage (this can be called a kick, a punch, flashing someone topless, whatever you want)

(B) Block – 2 Build Points – Stops one Health Level of damage against that location

(P) Power Blow – 5 Build points – Does 2 Health Levels of damage +1 Health Level for each other die you have doing damage (so if you have rolled a P, a B, and an S, your S does one damage, and your P does 3)

Strike, Block and Power Blow affect the other fighter on the same color. So you compare Red dice, Yellow dice, Green, and White.

(D) Dodge – 7 Build Points – Dodge avoids ALL damage your opponent has rolled that round.

(  ) Flub – If you have only one blank space on a die this is worth zero Build Points, however if you have two or more on a single die then you get +1 Build Point. This only counts once per die. This is like messing up your joystick command and not getting a strike or a block in.

So you can fill in the stickers that come with the dice with those letters and there you go.

Now you can also do the following items to make more advanced fighters.

Add an additional die of a color you do not have yet – 6 Build Points

Add an additional die of a color you already have – 10 Build Points

Add additional Health Levels – 3 Build Points per Health Level

 

A basic die might look like this

(S) on three sides, (B) on three sides – 12 Build Points

(P) on one side, (B) on two sides, (S) on two sides, (  ) on one side – 13 Build Points

(D) on one side, (P) on one side, (S) on two sides, (B) on two sides – 20 Build Points

 

If I use those three samples to create a fighter I have used 45 build points, with the five left I could add an additional heath level, and put another (B) or (S) on the 13 point die, and push it right up to 50 points. Do not worry if you have a couple of points left over at the end. At least not at first. Get the flow down and have fun with making a fighter or three, and seeing how their style and your luck at tossing the dice go. There are a lot of other combinations past the samples above, and the dice you choose may not be the same as the ones your opponent is using, so you may want to think about the style of fighter you want to create.

Last rules – Roll dice at the same time as your opponent. Compare the dice. Subtract unblocked, or un-dodged damage from Health Levels. If needed roll again until one fighter is out of Health Levels, or both are (and that means a draw).

Closing :

Now then some folks will ask about things like Tag Matches, Taunts, or from Street Fighter Alpha the infamous two on one match, or super boss fights. These things will be brought up in the second edition of the rules. This first edition is just the basics to get things started. There is more coming. 🙂

Addendum :

Dice sets for classic fighting game characters, at least in my opinion.

Guile – (Y) (G) (W)

Ken / Ryu – (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Zangief – (R) (Y) (G) – maybe an additional (Y)

Terry Bogard – (Y) (G) (W) early on then became (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Andy Bogard – (R) (Y) (G) (W)

Mai Shirinui – (R) (Y) (W)

Joe Higashi – (R) (G) (W)

 

So that is the first edition rules of Die Fighter. I have made add ons for Boss Fights, Tag Matches, and Two on One fights. While also adding things like Throw and Taunt moves. It makes for a quick playable game and it allows players to build what they want. During play-test I have had two players set up exactly the same dice, but describe their fighters completely differently. I thought it was completely awesome and could not wait to see more from them. Oh and yes I do have a couple of fighters sitting around here in my dice box. So if you know me in person please feel free to drop a challenge.

So any way, give it some play and see what you think.

Next week I will likely do a review if I can keep the puppy distracted long enough. I have a few I have been waiting to do.

So gimme the dice… I need to see if I can deliver a power move to the puppy for bath time or can pull off a dodge. (actually I did that last night and just wanted to tie this post into a Facebook post I made HAH!)

Play hard, and peace out.

 

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