Monday, April 30, 2012

Cthulhu or Burst

Friday night my friends Dan and Jess joined Mel and I for some Arkham Horror.  The Elder one pulled was Nyarlthotep which uses the Mask minions and has cultists with the Endless ability.  As dark fate would have it we mostly ended up fighting Bloated Women, Fire Vampires and cultists. I also got to use my new Arkham Horror boardgame miniatures that come prepainted specifically for the game.  We didn't do to bad and although we never found an elder sign we did manage to seal off four of the  six portals before he woke up and ate the world. The Terrible Experiment card and the clean up cards were against us though and we lost to the great old one in the end. Still I wouldn't mind a rematch.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A New Card Game In the Works

We have a new card game (not collectible) in the works.  All I can say that at this time it promises to be a riot. It is in the same level of humor as Hillbillies vs Aliens but is a completely different Genre.  There will be multiple ways to win the game and a very special title. As I am working on this project with a partner I cannot get into the details as of yet but be sure that the game is a fast moving game of exploration and hilarious combat that can result in some very interesting situations!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Monty Cook Leaves Wotc

Monty Cook announced today that he is leaving wotc and will only be working on 5e as a consultant. While it is sad for wotc and their franchise maybe Piazo or another company will gobble him up! He announced today on his blog that  he is working on something new and different! We can only imagine what it might be! So it is bitter sweet that he moves on for some and for others it is good news either way though this will affect wotc.
Full story here

Video Interview of ICFBTS

Monday, April 23, 2012

Gnomecon Icfbts

We had four full games of It Came From Beyond the Still at Gnomecon this weekend.

The first was a modified Somethings in the.Cornfield. The Hillbillies were in a fued and trying to steal each others shine while the grays and blobs were collecting samples. The Blobs player won that game.

The second game was Running for Freedom and the hillbilies were able to stop the aliens from escaping.

The third game featured the Green Menace From Uranus factions from the upcoming book as well as the Mibs. In that oneI actually played the last hillbilly standing.

Finally we broke out the blue moon saucers and I ran everyone playing aliens each with a ufo. I made up a bunch of new alien factions on the fly including Mantids, Robots and a faction of grays that enjoy being as.mean as the Greens. I will post that scenario later but it was a combination of collect samples and ufo demolition derby.

I had the pleasure of hosting a game design panel with the creator of Arkham Horror. The con had about
350 in attendance and everyone really enjoyed themselves. We will be adding it to our con circuit!

Check out Mikes review on Bring Your A Game.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Game Designers Panel

I hosted a game designers panel with Richard the creator of Arkham Horror. We took turns answering questions about game design and the industry as a whole. Interestingly our answers were almost always the same or at least very similar.  The bottom line is if you want to be considered serious have a serious franchise. I learned some good tips and work progresses on several games I have in the development cycle right now.

As for Gnomecon I  think this first year they are off to a smashing start with somewhere of over three.hundred guests. This will be one to watch!

Demos of Hillbillies vs Aliens were always full! We did well and Mike from Bring Your A Game had a blast helping us keep things rolling!

More to come as I am going to go play Elder Sign with Richard.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Space Cavemen Pulp Noir

Porky over at Porkys Revenge (hehe) decided to go ahead and do this really cool idea of blogging various brand new game genres.  I came up with one - Space Caveman Pulp Noir.  I think now's a good time to share some of the silliness that this type of game would entail.  I am thinking Tales from the Floating Vagabond would be a good game to do this kind of thing with.  TftFV is a older game that featured a bar at the end of the universe wherein adventurers would come from anywhere and anywhen.  My buddy Sean liked doing things like Cleopatria's Panty Raid or Change out the Head of the Dinosaurs at the Museum with aliens for opening day and that kind of thing.  Without further adieu here's Mr. Caveman PI.

"It was late on the third moon of Neptune when she walked in my rock office.  At first I thought that a tall drink of ale like her would be easy to knock out with one blow of my club but then I knew better than to tamper with dames.  This one was all granite too and had legs chiseled so tight that Urg my cousin on Io would probably be admiring though his space telescope if he ever figured which end to watch out.  It wasn't just her legs either, I am a sensitive caveman and that dame had help me written all over her ivory features.  I knew it was up to me to listen to her plight so I said. 'Hey take a seat doll and tell me what I can do to you.'  I knew I had her because she looked up and saw my ray gun sticking from under the desk.  I smiled. 'That's just my trusty sidekick.' I paused and chuckled grunting in our way as I slammed on the desk and beat my chest. 'So what is it Grug can do for you doll?'

A long pause and I could hear Tars tossing Tyrannosaur eggs at Jupiter again.  'What's that?' she asked in a manner cocking her head like  a half starved mastodon.  'It's my idiot neighbor, he's eventually going to get himself killed.'  'Sounds fun' she said 'Mind if we go watch it?'  'Later' I said and handed her a used tissue.  'Tell me why you are here in my office.'

'Well' she started oh this was going to be good. 'I think I just figured out my name.'  Oh that's no good. A dame with a name is a problem where I come from.  We cavemen have to keep appearances though so I just nodded and let her spray on. 'Now several of my husbands are trying to track me down and lock me in a cage.'  A cage? I thought. I doubt a cage can be good enough to keep her. 'What is his name?' I laughed 'Their names?'  'That's just it' she said. 'I don't know.'  'Well' I said. 'Draw me a picture.' I handed her a pencil and she tried to scribble using the erasing end, dames... 

Once she got it right though she had drawn several unscrupulous characters. 'The green one will cost extra. I can take smiley and rocky there and I'll do playboy with the feathers for free.' Her eyes lit up and that's when I knew I had to have her.  'What's your fee?' she asked. 'I threw down a copy of Clan of the Cavebear and made a motion.  She knew what I had in mind.  She thought she did. I grabbed my club and thwacked her.  This was turning to be a nice night as I deposited her next to the rock bench.  'Hey wake up!'

She did and rubbed her head.

'Sorry I had to knock you out but us guys can't be seen walking with you dames' 'I understand' she said and somehow looked more happy to see me. Some chicks just like it rough. 'Where are we?'  I laughed again and pointed down at feather brains as I took my lazer gun and after incorrectly pointing it the wrong way and blasting poor Urg into bits I turned it around and did the same to featherboy. 'I knew he was going to get it eventually.'  I laughed and her eyes looked at me like piece of raw steak. 'I know someone else who's going to get it too.' Then she hit me with her club... Dames.

Caveman image property of Computer and used with permission.

Facelift & Conventions

I did a little bit of a facelift to the page.  You can now purchase our WTNW products right off this page!  In addition I created another blog specifically for It Came From Beyond the Still.  I hope to see many of you at Gnomecon in Savannah and at Recon in Coca Beach these next two weeks!  Also, Mike from Bring Your A Game is going to be running official demos at some of the larger conventions so if you haven't already gotten a chance to play it I highly suggest you check out one of our demos!  Thanks again Mike!

DM Advice - Changing the Rules to Fit the Setting

A buddy of mine and I have an interesting discussion the other day regarding how a game master could take the rules of a game and tailor the game in such a way that adds to the story by giving benefits to players who play within the roles of the story arc and some penalties to those that play outside. Specifically, we discussed the pros and cons of applying this idea to character creation in a Shadowrun game he ran years ago featuring an Orc/Troll ran biker gang in Seattle.  I admit that I have reservations about some of the ideas in that to some degree the game master is pigeon holing players into playing a specific theme but in other ways I like the idea because it does give the party a sense of unity and a reason or existing as a shadowrunner group.  I will break down what was done in basic terms and then feel free to weigh in with your thoughts to the ideas presented. 

First off, let me say that I have tried this in the past to limited success and in some situations it completely backfired when players decided that they did not want to play at all because they did like the sandbox I was creating.  Then again there are some games that I have tried to get the characters to play within a theme and it ended up working perfectly fine but I digress a bit as the subject of today’s DM Advice column is more about my buddy’s shadowrun game and how he specifically tailored it to fit the theme of his game world.

Due to the fact that the core group was a biker gang and all players were members of this biker gang controlled by orcs and trolls the players were given benefits.  Specifically he swapped the cost for orcs and humans and dwarfs and trolls.  This made it more costly to play human and kind of pushed players into wanting to go ahead and play orcs and trolls instead of the humans and dwarves.  For the most part everyone ended up playing either an orc or a troll but there was at least one player who decided to play human but it cost him points whereas ‘by the rules’ the points are different.  Now I can see how some players would be offended by this.  Of course there is always the ‘it’s my game’ argument but that really never got any DM very far in my opinion.  I have used that one too to various successes and failures. 

In a way it is brilliant because it really gives the game mechanics the flavor for players going for the setting and adds in the benefits of extra points to spend on character creation.  The converse side of this is of course if someone just really wanted to play a human or dwarf character he would be out points.  Is this really a big deal?  Some say yes and some say no.  It works in games like Drow underdark games as there are not very many humans around but Seattle is a big city and one could argue that the orc/troll gang did have humans and why should it cost additional to play the human? Why not just let people play orcs or humans at no point cost?  In the end it’s up to the DM but I would like to hear from my readers about what they think in regard to this type of change to the rules for the benefit of the setting.

Next as the game was set around the biker gang he limited the tech that was available as the players did not work for large corporations.  The tech wasn’t limited to no tech but some of the more costly benefits and perks were eliminated or completely restricted from the game.  Again, I have done something similar in my Dragonlance game whereas because it is a steampunk environment the anachronistic  weaponry of the dark ages such as particularly large swords must be purchased at a premium due to the advent of gun powder and the time and effort it takes to make such a weapon. 

Conclusion and Final Thoughts
Let me leave you with this one question, does it really hurt the game to manipulate the rules in such a way as to provide this level of theme setting or is it just something that is expected of creative game masters?  What have you done in the past that is similar in regards to manipulating the rules to suit the environment?  Is this fair to the players who want to play a specific character type but feel limited in their choice?  What if anything could be done to modify this to make it better?

I want to thank my buddy for the discussion as it proved lively and lead to the creation of this post at 7:00am in my hotel room in Durham North Carolina.  I am looking out the window and I can imagine the next game adventure forming in my head as I take in the majestic scene and natural beauty of this state.  I think that the next Dragonalance game will take place on a floating island covered in trees.  Who knows, they might even encounter an orc biker gang.  Until next time.


Friday, April 13, 2012

The Titanians

I painted up some of Black Cat Bases Titanians using a variety of yellows and oranges. The paint scheme was base Apricot Orange followed by drybrushing of lighter oranges for two shades and then a heavy dose of crimson followed by lining with yellow.  I did the TMP look using metallic paints from GW and various reds and blues to give the guns an alien look. I think these guys look really good with their cat eyes in green and multicolored weaponry.  These guys should give the hillbillies a run for their money.  I really like the look of these little guys and their walker is also really cool. What do you think?

Gamers in NC

I will be up in Durham, NC on business next week and would love to get a game or two in during the time I am there.  If you are in that area and want to get some gaming in please let me know. My compatriot also is a gamer so if you have room for two that would be grand!

Sorry I have been away. I will be resuming the DM Advice article and other columns soon and am just about done with the final touches of book two of the zany It Came From Beyond the Still.

What would you like to see on this blog? More reviews? Interviews with people? Advice columns? Game updates? I would love to get feedback from my readers.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Green Menace from Uranus

Today Mike Williams of Bring-Your-A-Game has submitted the first fan factions for It Came From Beyond the Still.  I particularly enjoy the nude ray that the evil Greens have.  These guys are meaner than the Grays and seem to like to pick on the Hatfields especially.  This FREE supplement is available now from Wargamevault and features wonderful figures sculpted by Mike Broadbent.  So what are you waiting for?  Go get it!

The Green Menace from Uranus

Monday, April 9, 2012

Bring Your A Game - ACG Interviewed

Mike over at Bring Your A Game asked me a few questions about the company and the direction that I am wanting to go with the company. The interview includes a few bonuses as well as a sneak peek into some upcoming titles that we will be offering!

We are only waiting on the artwork for It Came From Beyond the Still: Something's in the Sauce and it will be available for sale! This is a stand-alone book that is completely compatible with ICFBTS. This game features two new hillbillies - The Grangers, and the O'Dairys as well as new Men in Plaid, Men in Black together they face off against Outhouse Zombies, Cultists and Meddling Kids. You thought the aliens were bad. Imagine what happens when Yothsoghpikachuhu hammers home his Engulfing Maw and feats upon the goats of the Grangers? The hounds of the corn bay in the dark as only they enter betwixt angled fields as the man in the rubber suit scared the bejohndeer outta Cindy in the hot tub and Daryl and Darrell face off against a rotting smelly outhouse zombie. What could be more fun?

Friday, April 6, 2012

Easter Shannagins

Tonight's our Dragonlance Steampunk game using Pathfinder rules. What do you think? Do you think I should use an incredibly evil were critter for this game? Maybe one that is eating all of the carrot tops in the town?

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

ICFBTS Aliens vs Hillbillies Kickstarter!

We are now at day 24 and have almost hit the 1000 mark. We still have a long way to go but thank you to the backers that have already signed up! Folks this is a really fun and fast game. Brad is currently working on the greens for the hillbillies and I anticipate that we will have something to show everyone very soon. Here are some concept sketches of what we are going for with this line. Also, there may be a surprise coming up in this line from an unnamed backer with some very specific interests in this project that will benefit all gamers with more miniatures. So stay tuned and if you like aliens and hillbillies, zombies, mutant atomic fire breathing chickens and things that go slish in the night come on down and back our project!

Updated Website

I've taken a stab at updating the website for WTNW. I have added purchase buttons for Airships and Skypirates as well as It Came From Beyond the Still. Please let me know what you think.