Tag Archives: fantasy

Open Play 53: RSGpdx’s Second Birthday!

11 Sep

6pm – 10pm

Tuesday, September 17th

Guardian Games

345 SE Taylor St

Wow, it’s been another year! So much has changed since our first Birthday Bonanza last September. We are fortunate enough to have lots of new faces and many familiar friends. It’s a growing family, that’s for sure.

Since Technicolor Color Dreams is just around the corner, these event will not be the over the top no holds barred that last year’s birthday party was. However, we have several critically acclaimed story games ready to go (see below) and we’ll be doing a potluck of snacks and sweets, so there will be plenty of merriment going around.

By now you know what to expect from RSG events, so here is what we have in store for you this time!

Archipelago

Archipelago:
Archipelago is a game styled after Ursula K. LeGuin’s «Earthsea» books. It is a game of grand destinies, that at the same time has time to dwell on the details of plants, words, everyday lives. It is a game that is about great conflicts, but at the same time treats its characters’ stories with respect. It is not a steel framework, but a spider web of thin threads creating subtler stories.

This game works best if you play it slow. Sometimes, the best thing to do is wait a little and see how things unfold. Ged stayed with Ogion for years, learning about the old language, the names of flower petals and bugs. There’s time to let the characters evolve.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Take your time.

http://norwegianstyle.wordpress.com/2009/07/04/archipelago-ii/
microscope
Microscope:
Humanity spreads to the stars and forges a galactic civilization…

Fledgling nations arise from the ruins of the empire…

An ancient line of dragon-kings dies out as magic fades from the realm…

These are all examples of Microscope games. Want to explore an epic history of your own creation, hundreds or thousands of years long, all in an afternoon? That’s Microscope.

You won’t play the game in chronological order. You can defy the limits of time and space, jumping backward or forward to explore the parts of the history that interest you. Want to leap a thousand years into the future and see how an institution shaped society? Want to jump back to the childhood of the king you just saw assassinated and find out what made him such a hated ruler? That’s normal in Microscope.

You have vast power to create… and to destroy. Build beautiful, tranquil jewels of civilization and then consume them with nuclear fire. Zoom out to watch the majestic tide of history wash across empires, then zoom in and explore the lives of the people who endured it.

Mock chronological order.
Defy time and space.
Build worlds and destroy them.

This weeks history… the dawn of man!

http://www.lamemage.com/
SKEWQR
SKEW:
In SKEW the players guide a single protagonist from the ordinary world to a bizarre alternate reality. Will the protagonist understand this new world? Will the players? Do we understand the ordinary world as it is? Perhaps you will answer these questions and more, perhaps not. Perhaps you will find answers to questions unasked along the way.

SKEW is a surreal science fiction role-playing game that gets right to the point.

http://www.tao-games.com/skew/

Ready, Set, Game PDX is brought to you by Play Out Loud. Play Out Loud serves Portland with spontaneous shared storytelling activities featuring non-mainstream games. Learn more athttp://www.facebook.com/playoutloudpdx.

Open Play 41: Steal Away Jordan, Under the Bed, Bhaloidam, In A Wicked Age

20 Mar

6pm – 10pm

Tuesday, March 12

Guardian Games

303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St

It’s time for another round of story gaming madness!
Here is how this works:
6:00pm – Chit chat, socialize, make merry.
6:10pm – Introduce the games and facilitators, sign up sheets go out.
6:15pm – Game on!
10:00pm – Any and and all who wish go out for drinks and/or banter, probably at the Green Dragon.

 

Steal Away Jordan:
Steal Away Jordan is a vehicle for players to tell a collective story of the lives of people who live in the shadow of slavery. The emphasis here is on the people, not the place or time. The institution affects everyone, from the child born into bondage to the man who owns him.

Steal Away Jordan is a role playing game written in the spirit of neo slave narratives like Margaret Walker’s Jubilee, Toni Morrison’s Beloved, and Octavia Butler’s Kindred.

In this game, players are unlikely but certain heroes.

Like these fictional accounts of slave life, players explore the social and psychological implications of life in a society where people can be property. Ultimately, players consider slavery’s long-term impact on a society and on the descendants of slaves and slave owners.

http://theunstore.com/unstore/game/53

under the bed
Under the Bed:
“The stuffed animals, toy trucks, and action figures of your childhood did more for you than you remember. They were your guardians, advocates and friends, putting their lives on the line for you.

“Do you have what it takes to be a toy?”

You will play as Toys: green army men, fire trucks, dolls, a sticks shapped like people, a favorite stone. They are each responsible for the well-being of the Child that owns them, but they are not responsible for the well-being of eachother; quite the contrary, in fact: they are in competition for the affections of the Child and will do anything to gain it.

http://glyphpress.com/UtB/

bhaloidam-logo-med
Bhaloidam:
Bhaloidam is an independently-published tabletop storytelling platform that is used for the spinning of collaborative and character-driven storyworlds. In some ways, it is similar to RPGs such as Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, Burning Wheel, and Fate. However, it differs from traditional RPGs in many significant ways as well.

The most obvious difference is that Bhaloidam uses individual gameboards called Lifewheels instead of character sheets. Spinners (players) place and move stacks of tokens on the Lifewheels to track their influence on the storyworld. Stacks never contain more than three tokens, meaning the comparative math needed to play is easily visualized and comprehended.

Using colorful iconography, the Lifewheel depicts every single rule you need in order to play Bhaloidam. It may seem daunting at first, but once you grasp the core gameplay, it will become one of the most fluid and adaptable storytelling platforms you’ll ever use.

This weeks scenario is The Conspiracy: A group of shadowy conspirators gather to finalize their plans to assassinate a person of great importance.

http://www.bhaloidam.com/

iawa-preview
In A Wicked Age:
In this wicked age…

…Gods, demons and mortals contend with one another for power…

…Law and civilization are new, and no one is their master…

…A simple midwife can set in motion the downfall of tyrants and great empires…

…Your birth is not yours to choose, but your fate is what you make it.

In a Wicked Age is a sword & sorcery roleplaying game of high drama and churning history.

http://www.lumpley.com/wicked.html

Ready, Set, Game PDX is brought to you by Play Out Loud. Play Out Loud serves Portland with spontaneous shared storytelling activities featuring non-mainstream games. Learn more at http://www.facebook.com/playoutloudpdx.

XP: Archipelago

4 Mar

Archipelago has become my favorite fantasy story game.

The primary reason for this is the sense of relaxation and expansiveness the game fosters. The world really feels wide open. I think it has a lot to do with the map making process and the implied dare to imagine what’s out there. Hot, hot, hot.

But it also has to to with the seeming lack of resolution mechanics. I hesitate to call the mechanics conflict resolution, because it has much more to do with the pace and direction of the narrative than it does the action at hand (this is not entirely true, but the way it relates to my experience as a player feels something like this). The net result is that there is a kind of permission the game gives you to act and express. That is so freeing.

Much of the mechanics have to do with the phrases used by the other players in response to your narration. This bears a great resemblance to Polaris, which is present on two levels. The ritual phrases thing is obvious. But more significantly, this is kind of an automatic social contract calibration tool. The tone of your fiction is determined by the way all players interact with each other through the use of these mechanics. I find this to be a brilliant feature of Polaris, and it is brilliant here, too.

The only bit of advice I might have is to use the “Try It Another Way” phrase a lot. I know it sounds like stepping on toes, and I was reluctant to use it for that reason, but seriously, your game will suffer for not using this. The first hour or so will require revisions, but you will find a stride for your fiction and then you will begin to really explore what the game has to offer. But seriously, the use of this phrase is the best way to get there. I promise.

The long and short of it is this: Archipelago will be a long term game at my table some time soon.

Session 36: Dog Eat Dog and Archipelago

8 Jan

6pm – 10pm
Tuesday, January 15
Guardian Games
303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St

Dog Eat Dog
Dog Eat Dog:
Dog Eat Dog is a roleplaying game where you play out the colonization of a Pacific island, with the players taking on the roles of the Natives, while one embodies the Occupation forces. It’s designed to be fun and thought-provoking for experienced roleplayers, but easily accessible for people new to the hobby. A token economy tracks your decisions and determines whether you’ll go out fighting, assimilate, keep hold of the island, or lose it forever.

Hear the news: http://rpgkickstarters.tumblr.com/post/20167485265/dog-eat-dog-a-game-of-imperialism-and-assimilation

Archipelago
Archipelago (third edition):
Archipelago is a game styled after Ursula K. LeGuin’s «Earthsea» books. It is a game of grand destinies, that at the same time has time to dwell on the details of plants, words, everyday lives. It is a game that is about great conflicts, but at the same time treats its characters’ stories with respect. It is not a steel framework, but a spider web of thin threads creating subtler stories.

This game works best if you play it slow. Sometimes, the best thing to do is wait a little and see how things unfold. Ged stayed with Ogion for years, learning about the old language, the names of flower petals and bugs. There’s time to let the characters evolve.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Take your time.

Turn the page: http://norwegianstyle.wordpress.com/2009/07/04/archipelago-ii/

Ready, Set, Game PDX is brought to you by Play Out Loud. Play Out Loud serves Portland with spontaneous shared storytelling activities featuring non-mainstream games. Learn more at http://www.facebook.com/playoutloudpdx.

Session 29: Remember Tomorrow, World of Dungeons

3 Oct

6pm – 10pm
Tuesday, October 9
Guardian Games
303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St


Remember Tomorrow:
Remember Tomorrow by Gregor Hutton is a role-playing game set in the near future. Look at the world today, now flash it forward twenty minutes into the future. Sky Cars: Check. Memory Couriers: Check. Everything Else: Slightly Changed, huh, how about that?

Remember Tomorrow is set in a place called Somewhere. Maybe it was once Glasgow, Milan, Reno, Auckland or Hong Kong. Everywhere in the world is Somewhere. Are you Ready, Willing and Able?

It’s a quick and dirty near-future “cyberpunk” game that features: easy character generation; an ensemble cast of PCs and Factions; goal-oriented stories built in play; GMless, scene-based resolution.

Find the truth at: http://gregorhutton.com/boxninja/remember/index.html.


World of Dungeons:
World of Dungeons, by John Harper, is a complete short roleplaying game that answers the question “If Dungeon World was the latest version of a classic roleplaying game, what would the original look like?”

Looking for that classic high-fantasy adventure role playing experience but with a streamlined, fast paced modern design? This is it.

Adventure awaits at: http://mightyatom.blogspot.com/2012/06/world-of-dungeons.html.

Session 26: Kobolds Ate My Baby, The Shab-al-Hiri Roach

19 Aug

5pm – 9pm
Tuesday, August 28
Guardian Games
303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St

 

Kobolds Ate My Baby:
It’s not your fault that Kobolds are gourmets. It’s not your fault that King Torg (All Hail King Torg!) is hungry. It’s not your fault that the tastiest thing a Kobold has ever eaten is sweet baby! And it’s definitely, not your fault that Kobolds are the most incompetent, reckless, and accident prone race to ever crawl out of a cave.

But it IS your problem…

King Torg (All Hail King Torg!) needs you – yes, you – to go out to the nearby human town and bring back the freshest, tastiest, plumpest human babies you can find – or, the King will be eating you (and Kobold’s pretty darn tasty.)

In Kobolds Ate My Baby! Super Deluxx Edition you and your friends take on the roles of Kobolds (short, furry cannon fodder with a penchant for gluttony and mayhem). Your mission is to raid towns and villages in search of the most delectable of Kobold treats – Babies! Along the way, you will learn forbidden magicks, face fearsome chickens, worship the Big Red God, die Random Horrible Deaths, and cook your friends for dinner!

Check it out at http://www.koboldsatemybaby.com/.

The Shab-al-Hiri Roach:
The Shab-al-Hiri Roach by Jason Morningstar is a dark comedy of manners, lampooning academia and asking players to answer a difficult question – are you willing to swallow a soul-eating telepathic insect bent on destroying human civilization?

No?

Even if it will get you tenure?

Satisfy your curiosity at http://www.bullypulpitgames.com/.

Session 23: A Thousand and One Nights

9 Jul

5pm – 9pm
Tuesday, July 17
Guardian Games
303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St

Mysterious strangers. Beautiful women. Enchanted swords. Talking camels. You play members of the Sultan’s Court, whiling away the sultry nights by telling pointed stories to advance your own ambitions. Navigate the social maze and you could win your heart’s desire; offend the wrong person and you suffer the Sultan’s wrath.

A Thousand and One Nights: A Game of Enticing Stories is by Meguey Baker. Text taken from http://nightskygames.com/welcome/game/1001Nights.

Session 18: On the Ecology of the Mud Dragon

30 Apr

5pm
Tuesday, May 8
Guardian Games
303 SE 3rd Ave at Pine St

On the Ecology of the Mud Dragon is a game about stupid little dragons and their stupid little adventures, in the spirit of the old Dragon Magazine backup features and other fantasy-comedy comix. It’s easy to learn, takes only about an hour to play, and is totally hilarious.

Text taken from http://www.tao-games.com