Player-Facing Rolls

There’s been some discussion on the web relating to using “player-facing rolls” (e.g., Gamer: The Blogging: Player-Facing Rolls.). In D&D, this is where you flip the mechanic over and have the players roll defense vs a static offense statistic (offensive rolls are made normally). Here’s a link that explains it more from the SRD. The DM essentially never needs to touch the dice (unless they’ve got some hidden roll they want to make).

I’ve considered them before and while I’ve never used them, the idea intrigues me. However, I’ve noted that there is a strong polarization around the idea. People either love the idea or hate the idea. Some of the “Love” may be the shininess or appreciation of its cleverness and some of the “Hate” may be related to “don’t mess with how I’ve always played my game!”. This thread on the Troll Lord Castles & Crusandes forum speaks to how old-school type games seem to perceive the idea (I know “Old-school” is a loaded term that may mean a lot of different things, but I think my point remains the same regardless of whether you view C&C as strictly Old-School or not).

I’ve been thinking of using it for my Atlantis/C&C/HAGIS mash-up, but am leaning against it. Not that I don’t like it, I do. I just want to remove any perceived bumps in the road. With the limits on all our time, all the logistics in setting up a game, and all the changes I’m making to rules that will require some explanation….I just don’t want another thing to explain. Perhaps another time I’ll use it….or swap it in later. We’ll have to see. I’d love to hear what others think about it….especially those who’ve used it.

~AoB

Cyclopedia + Forgotten Realms Original Set = Awesomeness

Doc Rotwang recently posted on his blog, I Waste The Buddha With My Crossbow: The Voices Are Whispering Their Strange Maths To Me, about using the most excellent D&D Rules Cyclopedia with the Forgotten Realms setting….from the original Boxed Set.

I loved that set….it was from a simpler time before the power escalation, Time of Troubles crap-fest. Don’t get me wrong, I liked playing Baldur’s Gate, but somehow the storyline that preceded it and all the canon material that’s been built up over the years is a bit much.

He goes on to flesh out some specifics  on what his game will be about.…Rotwang, always the master mixer, is bringin’ some Swashbuckling to Sembia. It sounds like a fun game. Thanks for the inspiration, good Doctor!

I’m setting up a game with my kids and grabbed those very materials….not so much for the rules really (my kids are 3 and 5), but more for inspiration (and pictures for the kids). We’ll be using some simpler, off-the-cuff rules in our game….and it looks like ours will feature pixies….I’ll be posting more on this later.

~AoB

Back and Boston Herald Anti-gamer

And we’re back! I’ve been MIA for a few months really (wow it goes fast).  Between work, family, and a general high-level of entropy in my corner of the Universe, gaming just hasn’t been able to fit into my life of late (other than reading on odd blog here or there). That being said, we’ve turned a corner and a little bit of space has opened up…so we’ll snatch it and add some gaming back into the mix.

One of the topics that I read of late (in blog posts by The Ogre Lair Times and  Purple Pawn) was the “revelation” by Boston Herald staff writer Laurel J. Sweet that the U of Alabama shooter was a gamer….It seems equally coincidental that she also studied biology, watched TV, and wiped her own ass (sources close to the aledged shooter indicated that her ass-wiping activities dated back to childhood, but declined to be quoted as the investigation is ongoing and they were not authorized to speak with regard to said ass wiping), and voted for Barack Obama……all, subversive activities that obviously led to her murderous rampage. All sarcasm aside, I declare:

Shame on you, Boston Herald! You’ve sunk to tabloid status in my book. Any journalistic organization worth its grit wouldn’t have posted such a sensationalist piece, especially since there have been studies that refute any link to violent crime/suicide and role-playing games….other than to reduce them.

~AoB