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Topics - ArtemisAlpha

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Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Descent into Avernus
« on: October 15, 2019, 01:04:15 pm »
Has anybody picked up Descent into Avernus? If so, how good is it - I've grabbed some, but not all, of the 5e adventures, and have been happier with some than I have been with others. I've liked how Storm King's Thunder gave a ton of information about the Savage Frontier and similarly how much information that Out of the Abyss gave on the underdark beneath the Savage Frontier.

I wasn't as happy with Dragon Heist - its 25 pages on the City of Spendors spends more time on the city's ample law enforcement and how they might keep characters from being naughty than it does on how Waterdeep might be actually a good spot for characters to adventure within a city. It compares unfavorably with 3.0's City of Splendors sourcebook. Granted, that book had more pages for just the city, but most notably it has 28 pages on urban dangers. "Many monsters live in and among the people of Waterdeep--aboleth and skum lurk in the sewers, illithids and vampires prey on the populace, and beholders with legions of charmed servitors, shape-shifting dragons, and all manner of undead each pursue their own schemes. Player characters can fi nd more than enough monsters to battle simply by exploring Waterdeep's seamy underside." This seems to be suggested by parts of the Dragon Heist adventure, but contradicted in the city's descriptions.

So! Where does Descent into Avernus fall on this scale?

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Other Games / City of Heroes
« on: April 29, 2019, 01:03:24 pm »
As an old City of Heroes player, I'm doing my bit to spread the word. So here's the least drama version of what's up: A group of fans have brought City of Heroes back on a private server that is open to logins. If you're interested in playing, check out the document link below for instructions on how to get the game client, get an account set up, and get in and start playing:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OQ68rHr_BbA9QoHEEx9atG-xZiMFKCiXZVDPQ1JvrKc/preview

Being a fan project, there's plenty of drama to be had, and almost certainly this drama is going to lead to what's left of the player base splitting up and going to servers run by the fans of their choice. But, for now, and for the first time in seven years, there's a place open for play.

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I'm not associated with any of these companies, but I'm still not sure whether I should post this in this forum or in news/adverts - but I'll go with here and welcome the mods moving it if I was mistaken.

I'm just writing to let folks know that Humble Bundle has a good collection of 5e products available for the next two weeks or so.

https://www.humblebundle.com/books/5e-fantasy-dragons-dungeons-maps

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I'm looking for a good sword and sandals RPG. theRPGSite gave me some great recommendations a couple of months ago when I was looking for a swashbuckling game, but this time rather than being a player in an upcoming campaign and wanting to give some system ideas to a GM, I'm going to be running this game.

So here's some of my thoughts:
1. I don't want to have to rewrite a game system to do it. A couple of houserules is fine, making major changes is less so. This unfortunately means that D&D 5e is out - too many classes are using too much magic. In my mind, while magic has a place in a sword and sandals game, it's not a rangers, paladins, wizards, warlocks, sorcerers, bards, druids, et al kind of place.
2. I could be cool with an OSR game, but I don't know how enthusiastic my players would be about me just doing a reskinning of weapons and armor and otherwise running something like Labrynth Lord - but I do wonder how ACKs is? By name, it's describing the broad stroke arcs that I think I'm wanting to cover.
3. I have a personal bias against games with open ended die rolls, especially open ended damage. Over the course of a campaign, the players going to have many, many more attacks thrown at their characters than any one bad guy has thrown at them. On a long enough campaign, if there is open ended damage, one or more characters will be killed by a single, random shot. While this may be true to life, I find it more rewarding when players get to read and react to tactical situations, and consider withdrawals when the tide of battle turns against them, and take measures to foul pursuit, and so forth. If they get in over their heads, and decide to damn the odds, they're going to take their opponent down, and a character dies in the fray, that's cool. If they blunder into a deadly situation because they weren't being cautious, that's cool. But just getting dropped by a single bizarre die roll isn't cool.

So hit me with what you've got!

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Pen and Paper Roleplaying Games (RPGs) Discussion / Swashbucking RPGs?
« on: April 09, 2015, 10:36:45 am »
A friend of mine is looking to start a swashbucking RPG campaign, and I am doing my best to convince him to not use 7th Sea. What he really likes about 7th Sea is the wide variety of maneuvers for the different schools of swashbuckling. Specifically, he likes that in a group of a half dozen players, each playing a swordsman, there will often be different actions being taken in a round, and these different actions are each supported by their own game mechanics. He likes that these different mechanics make each of the schools of swordsmanship feel different in play.

I don't like 7th Sea's roll and keep system (I feel it far too strongly emphasizes stats over skills), I'm not real fond of its damage system (flesh wounds vs dramatic injuries), and I'm not fond of its action economy (a PC group's worth of panache ranks of attacks means enemies likewise have to be groups. A single large enemy often far too quickly withers under the number of attacks a PC group can bring to bear).

With his preferences and my issues in mind, can any of you suggest a game that might suit our swashbuckling interests?

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So, I've had to finally admit that I don't have the time to make a campaign from scratch anymore. For the last couple of years, I've been drawing from a ton of different sources for the games that I run - and I'm right now looking strongly at Tsar: The Slumbering City for Pathfinder. I was wondering if any/many here have gotten it, and if so, what your thoughts on it were? Thanks!

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