Saturday, February 8, 2014

PseudoCon 2014

So somehow I managed to get caught up in a few RPGs near the tail end of the week.
I ran a game and played two I'd never tried before.

Wednesday offered up a chance to play FATE at my FLGS. I've always heard good thing about it and wanted to give it a try. I ended up buying the fudge dice required to play between character creation and before we started playing. I had such a good time that I ended up purchasing the core rules at the end of the session.

I'm a big fan of what I like to refer to as "modern" or "contemporary" RPG styles. That might seem odd since most of what I write here is about older games and the games that are influenced by them.

The classic games I like most are rules light (usually fitting into a 64 page book), random (tables and wandering  monsters), and have a good deal of GM adjudication. The three things I consider to define a contemporary RPG are simple rules, group story telling, and character connections. They might not be the same as each other but they feel related.

 I can't help shake that something terrible happened in the 90s and 00s when many of the current OSR gamers were absent. Since many of us have come back to gaming, tabletop games are thriving again. When we were not paying attention the gamers that remained  helped prop up bloated jalopy games like d20. It's easy to see now that rules systems of that nature are broken and more work to run than they are fun to play. It's as if d20 and it's ilk are the Prince John of RPG games and the OSR is like King Richard returned with perhaps the proliferation of new modern RPGs being like Robin Hood and his Merry Men. Not that I won't play these games, they're just not very flexible as written and are a bit of a chore.

Thursday brought me to another newer game, but this one was specifically designed to feel old-school – Dungeon World.

I'm running a regular game and it's lots of fun. The prep is specifically intended to be bare in order to "play to see what happens". I like this a lot since it mimics exactly how I DMed my very first and most fun games of basic D&D. I'm often just as surprised as the players and the excitement of seeing the story unfold without prior knowledge of anything but the main plot points is amazing.

Friday presented the opportunity to play Runequest (Chaosium 1980) with people from the miniatures gaming group I meet with monthly. I'd never played Runequest before although I've played Basic Roleplaying and other BRP style games like Stormbringer, Hawkwind and Elfquest.

I'd also never played an RPG with anyone in this group before as all our past gaming together has been focused on miniatures gaming. This was very fun as all the players were clearly very experienced and the world setting itself was super fun with all of its background, religions, tribes, cults, guilds etc.

Lot of games played and it almost seemed like it could have been a Con. PseudoCon 2014?