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Kevin Klemme
March 09, 2020
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Mycelia Board Game Review

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December 07, 2023
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River Wild Board Game Review

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Outback Crossing Review

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What game are you FANTASIZING over?

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10 Apr 2013 21:50 - 10 Apr 2013 21:51 #150099 by mikecl

bfkiller wrote: That and Android. (Despite what the box says, a 2-player game works fine, no?)


A two player game is probably the best way to play it because it's so time consuming. It's a great game to play with your other half if you take your time and savor the story moments as the characters work through their personal life struggles while trying to solve the crime.

It's one of the best parts of the game and provides a lot of the tension between the players.

You'll have to make one change though to keep it from being predictable. Increase the number of suspects (it's normally equal to the number of players) by one or two. Otherwise it becomes too easy to figure out who your opponent is gunning for.

Beware though. The first time my practical wife completely ignored the conspiracy puzzle and mainly focused on putting evidence tokens down with a nod to the plots and stole the game.

Many moons ago I wrote an impassioned review on the Geek to counter the slagging the game was getting.

There's some game tips in there somewhere.
Last edit: 10 Apr 2013 21:51 by mikecl.
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10 Apr 2013 23:15 #150100 by Jason Lutes
Can we talk about RPGs here? Because DCC RPG. Loter linked to it in the thread about which D&D Player's Handbook was the best (Trampier, duh), and I haven't looked back. Got the core book, two modules, and four sets of focching zocchi dice. Ran one module, which ended in a glorious TPK that left the players asking when we can play again. I haven't played a video game in weeks, and I haven't really thought about board games in as much time. I spend all of my free time fantasizing about the game, even though we're gonna play tomorrow night. Part of the obsession derives from the fact that once our fifth player finishes his thesis, we have to return to our Pathfinder campaign. Which I now hate.

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11 Apr 2013 01:02 #150102 by wadenels
I picked up Dungeon World based on that thread. Haven't read it yet though.


New fascination: derrickec's (sp?) redesign of Civilization + Advanced Civ. I figured out how much it would cost me to build it myself with nice wooden pieces, figured the time involved, and figured I'd rather order it from PnP Productions, which I did.

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11 Apr 2013 01:25 #150103 by Sevej
Three players game is the best for Android. 2 works, but the board will be "barren". Not enough hints density and interaction.

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11 Apr 2013 03:20 #150107 by Gary Sax
Lutes, can you describe specifically what it is about the system that has taken ahold of you and your group?

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11 Apr 2013 05:02 - 11 Apr 2013 05:04 #150109 by Jason Lutes

Gary Sax wrote: Lutes, can you describe specifically what it is about the system that has taken ahold of you and your group?


There's a certain gusto with which the rules are written, combined with an approach that is simultaneously straightforward (2 pages total devoted to skill use), baroque (a different results table for every single spell), and silly (mandatory use of Zocchi dice). Goodman went back not to OD&D, but beyond, to the source material that informed OD&D -- specifically the fantasy and science fiction novels that inspired Gygax and Arneson -- and built from there. The emphasis is squarely on early swords & sorcery before fantasy as a genre got codified, focus grouped, and mass marketed into oblivion.

Magic is rare, unpredictable and dangerous. There's an entire chapter devoted to magic swords. It is suggested that you never identify monsters by name, but to describe them suggestively and let the players decide what to call them. There's just this prevailing attitude about the whole endeavor that I find infectious and inspiring.

One of my favorite aspects, though, is that each player starts out with four 0-level characters -- village folk who find themselves in over their heads -- and anyone who survives the first adventure gets to level up and choose a class. Level-0 characters are created out of raw, unmodified 3d6 rolls right down the line, no point buys, no roll 4 and remove the lowest. DMs are encouraged to roll all attack and damage dice in front of the players, and to not fudge, which creates a delicious climate of terror at the table. Did I mention that 0-level characters start with 1d4 hit points?

The end result of this 0-level "funnel" is that whoever survives the first adventure really feels like a survivor, with terrible memories, hard-won treasure, and scars to show for it. It's a sort of "iron man" approach that ups the stakes and gets the players thinking really hard really quickly about how to negotiate deadly situations. It's horribly imbalanced, and a ton of fun.

The nostalgia factor is certainly part of the draw for me, but my students are all in their 20s, and haven't the slightest clue about OD&D. After investing 10 hours over two sessions, only to die horrible, ignominious deaths, they are clamoring for more. So the game is doing its job.
Last edit: 11 Apr 2013 05:04 by Jason Lutes.
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11 Apr 2013 14:52 #150132 by metalface13
Of course you can talk about RPGs, Jason, you can fantasize about whatever game you want, even checkers. We won't judge you.

That RPG sounds pretty awesome. The greatest part of RPGs for me has always been in character creation. I especially love the old TMNT RPG's character creation. Finding out what kind of animal you were mutating from was the best part.

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11 Apr 2013 14:53 #150133 by metalface13

Jason Lutes wrote:

Gary Sax wrote: Lutes, can you describe specifically what it is about the system that has taken ahold of you and your group?


There's a certain gusto with which the rules are written, combined with an approach that is simultaneously straightforward (2 pages total devoted to skill use), baroque (a different results table for every single spell), and silly (mandatory use of Zocchi dice). Goodman went back not to OD&D, but beyond, to the source material that informed OD&D -- specifically the fantasy and science fiction novels that inspired Gygax and Arneson -- and built from there. The emphasis is squarely on early swords & sorcery before fantasy as a genre got codified, focus grouped, and mass marketed into oblivion.

Magic is rare, unpredictable and dangerous. There's an entire chapter devoted to magic swords. It is suggested that you never identify monsters by name, but to describe them suggestively and let the players decide what to call them. There's just this prevailing attitude about the whole endeavor that I find infectious and inspiring.

One of my favorite aspects, though, is that each player starts out with four 0-level characters -- village folk who find themselves in over their heads -- and anyone who survives the first adventure gets to level up and choose a class. Level-0 characters are created out of raw, unmodified 3d6 rolls right down the line, no point buys, no roll 4 and remove the lowest. DMs are encouraged to roll all attack and damage dice in front of the players, and to not fudge, which creates a delicious climate of terror at the table. Did I mention that 0-level characters start with 1d4 hit points?

The end result of this 0-level "funnel" is that whoever survives the first adventure really feels like a survivor, with terrible memories, hard-won treasure, and scars to show for it. It's a sort of "iron man" approach that ups the stakes and gets the players thinking really hard really quickly about how to negotiate deadly situations. It's horribly imbalanced, and a ton of fun.

The nostalgia factor is certainly part of the draw for me, but my students are all in their 20s, and haven't the slightest clue about OD&D. After investing 10 hours over two sessions, only to die horrible, ignominious deaths, they are clamoring for more. So the game is doing its job.


Kind of sounds like Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 2nd edition, no?
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11 Apr 2013 14:54 #150134 by metalface13

Jason Lutes wrote: Can we talk about RPGs here? Because DCC RPG. Loter linked to it in the thread about which D&D Player's Handbook was the best (Trampier, duh), and I haven't looked back. Got the core book, two modules, and four sets of focching zocchi dice. Ran one module, which ended in a glorious TPK that left the players asking when we can play again. I haven't played a video game in weeks, and I haven't really thought about board games in as much time. I spend all of my free time fantasizing about the game, even though we're gonna play tomorrow night. Part of the obsession derives from the fact that once our fifth player finishes his thesis, we have to return to our Pathfinder campaign. Which I now hate.


That dragon is shooting fire from his hands, not mouth! Awesome!
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11 Apr 2013 15:15 #150138 by Gary Sax
Just read up on the system, very cool. No old monsters is a BRILLIANT rule.

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11 Apr 2013 15:29 #150139 by Dr. Mabuse
Wow, I have never been interested in RPGs and tend to ignore those threads but holy crap Jason, colour me interested.

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11 Apr 2013 16:38 #150140 by Bull Nakano

Dr. Mabuse wrote: Wow, I have never been interested in RPGs and tend to ignore those threads but holy crap Jason, colour me interested.

Ditto.

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11 Apr 2013 18:56 #150149 by Jason Lutes

metalface13 wrote: Kind of sounds like Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 2nd edition, no?


There is definitely a WHFRP influence. I loved me some WHFRP as well!

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11 Apr 2013 18:59 #150150 by Jason Lutes

Dr. Mabuse wrote: Wow, I have never been interested in RPGs and tend to ignore those threads but holy crap Jason, colour me interested.

There's a fun campaign journal here , if you're curious about how a 0-level adventure plays out. The guy sometimes transcribes his session notes a little hurriedly, and to some degree he expects you to be familiar with the adventure he's writing about, but it's a fun read that gives a good impression of the gameplay.
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11 Apr 2013 19:09 #150151 by Almalik
The Funnel is awesome!

The one time (so far) I played it, it felt a bit like Survive (with different pawns being worth different points). We were all really trying to protect our 1 or 2 guys that had potential based on the initial stats - "okay, I rolled up a potential fighter, a potential magic user, meat shield 1, and meat shield 2". It seems that a meat shield is always the one who survives, but at least he's got a back story now and you're attached to him.

Jason, have you played any of the higher level (4th or 5th) DCC modules? I'm curious to see how the system holds up, as our game world is getting littered with the bodies of our 1st and 2nd level guys.

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