Saturday, December 5, 2015

Quick solutions for an RPG "fix"

All right, I realize I haven't updated this blog in a while. I'd love to say that it's because of school winding towards finals, but the real reason is that I haven't had as many ideas, nor the motivation to post them. I'll be working to remedy the latter, so any readers should bear with me.

As always, the ever-present struggle of the Dungeon Master is getting enough people together for a game. After a rather nice session a few weeks ago involving a party of four (only one of whom was a member of the original group of three... and the two totally new players did fairly well, to be honest), I scheduled another session for two weeks later. I invited about five people, and eventually three dropped out. With this, I decided to instead pull out my copy of the Temple of Elemental Evil board game (up to this point, only used once). It was pretty fun with three players - since I didn't have to DM - although we got our asses kicked. This is also what happened when I set it up in the lounge at my university about a week later.

This highlights the only major issue with this game, which seems to be shared by the other D&D Adventure System board games: it's pretty difficult. That being said, I love it so much, and am beginning to see where D&D 4th Edition might be usable purely as a skirmish wargame (although even so, I'd probably use 3.5e or Pathfinder for that purpose... and maybe I'd get to set up my set of HeroScape tiles!); the reason I got this one instead of Wrath of Ashardalon is because of the added campaign rules, which remind me a little bit of the old Dragon Strike game by TSR. Considering that the earlier three games in this series are mostly compatible rules-wise - if not entirely visually, since ToEE uses the 5th Edition graphic layout - and each comes with its own selection of plastic miniatures (which are all listed here) which I might use in my D&D campaign, I'm tempted to buy another one of these games.

Of course, carrying around a box full of cards, Dungeon Tiles, and fairly high-quality minis is a bit cumbersome. I always carry my Cthulu Dice set in my backpack (in a smart-looking dice bag that also holds the rule sheet), in case I run into some people up for a simple dice game. At under $8, and available a lot of places (even some chain bookstores, which is where I got mine), it's certainly worth it. Now I'm debating whether I want to get the Metäl version...
This is the one I carry my dice in; the Elder Sign glows under blacklight!
(Also, my FLGS sells this series of bags for $5)

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