I'd given some thought to this playtesting group, including how it had inadvertently stress-tested the lower limit of player number. Difficult as that was, because I do not like stress-testing, it wasn't the main thing on my mind. I was worried that the actual editor of the game and its interiors artist were still not quite in tune with how the game itself was played.
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This is where we do what we do! We talk about playing table-top role-playing games. This is not a play-at or streaming site - it's for discussion of what you're already doing.
- Tell or show what happened in the game at the time and what you did to make that happen.
- It is totally all right - encouraged! - to post because you had fun.
- People often include video or audio recordings, but text-only is fine too. You can also attach documents, like maps or character sheets or brief sections of the rules you're using.
You can discuss decades of play or thirty seconds of play, or anything in between. Any table-top role-playing game is welcome: old, new, in print, out of print, published by you, published by whoever. You could have played it at any time, from back in the early 1970s to a second before you hit "post."
From there, I trust you to work out how you want to talk about your games. If you'd like, check out my best-practices manual for suggestions, but it's really flexible.
If you already do a podcast or other actual-play series, live or not, please consider yourself invited to discuss it here by embedding a link as a topic.
For games in design, i.e., playtesting - yes, go right ahead, that's welcome too. For consulting sessions with me, which is different, see the Consulting page.
I'm currently designing Champions Now, for Hero Games, in active alpha playtest. The dedicated page for that is here.
After setting up my little consulting table at the Palace Hotel during Lucca, I found myself tired of discourse and yearning for play. When a friend I hadn't seen for a while passed by, with a copy of Trollbabe (in Italian, published by Narrattiva) in hand, that seemed like the perfect plan.
This is always the toughest time for playtesters, because it's no longer about "cool, an idea," but about "oh crap, saying/teaching it this way is pure miscommunication." The poor players are like my hands which are trying to read Braille but are unfortunately picking up the waffle iron instead.
This post is a bit complicated: Daniele and Giulia brought Emanuele Galletto's Blood Red Blossoms to me to look at, and I roped them into playing a little. The next day, I asked Emanuele to talk with me about it. So it's not really a consult but more like Actual Play in one video with me in a semi-consult role in the next (the main one at the end).
I'd provide the two character-sheet diagrams I examined while preparing for play, but they are both the same: about 80% of the items on each one was now slammed into the center, including new ones that had been acquired from each other's sheet.
In other words, both sorcerers (Ahmet and Ingmar), their demons (Solomon and Odd John), the crucial designs of the tattoos and runes from the ruins, the murder victims (Mehmet and Julia)
Rod mentions at one point that it's the most self-indulgent role-playing he's done, either lately or maybe ever. That's why this time the lead image for this post is a link.
I call attention to a couple of things.
You play a game set in L.A., I tell you what, you’re going to be driving hither & yon a hell of a lot. This session brought us downtown, then to Corona, Venice Beach, the northeast burbs, and eventually to Antelope Valley, in the wilds of Palmdale. There was even a mention of La Fontana over the county border. Almost worthy of a local to sneer, “You ain’t from around here.”
My other Gauntlet game! Unlike the Cosmic Zap session, running Champions of any stripe in a convention setting is no picnic for prep. But the hardest part is not the character construction ... it's the fact that the players will not have the necessary buy-in and sense of "let's do this" per interesting item or opportunity that's inherent to each character. The net effect is that the GM/preparer must be constantly pointing out to them what they can do.
Here's the first of three games I led at Gauntlet Con 2018! A Cosmic Zap playtest. When I initially signed on for playing it months ago, I was unsure about how well-developed the game would be, or even how playable/failed at all. But it turned out to be a decisive validator of the project.