Monthly Archives: August 2012

Nigh-Weekly Assembly: Of GenCon and Classic Settings

Here we are once again, sharing two weeks of obsessively gathering gaming links from across the internet. For those of you just waking up from a month-long nap, GenCon happened a week ago. As you may imagine we have a few links in here about that particular event.

If you have something you want announced, by all means pass it on in the comments or in the chat. But for now, enjoy the links!

At Home

Articles posted here on The Gamer Assembly.

Away

Content from people involved with The Gamer Assembly posted elsewhere across the Internet.

Product Announcements

New products and special events announced this week.

  • Operation Jared Tech by Tracy Hurley at Indiegogo: Jared von Hindman writes the Wizards of the Coast column “D&D Outsider” and illustrates games of all stripes by creating unique pieces of art. He’s currently in the hospital and in need of a new laptop and other supplies to let him continue to create his visual art while recuperating.

Notes From Abroad

Other interesting articles and cool links.

  • Another Approach to Races at Untimately: Let’s leave the standard interpretation of elves and dwarves behind and consider them in a new light for OSR games. Bonus: you can play a Beastling if you don’t mind low Int, Wis, and Cha scores.
  • Coordinating a Game Day at Take On Rules: Jeremy searches for horror stories and other advice about running a game day. His list of questions makes me think about running something similar. Can’t wait to read more feedback on this one.
  • Giff Return at Daily Encounter: Rich Green updates the Spelljammer hippo-like race for D&D 4e. Part of the Classics Return Blogfest.
  • Use the PCs’ Actions to Tell a Great Story at Gnome Stew: An elven ranger kills the evil sorceress with an arrow imbued with the power of a child’s tear. That’s an awesome story that never would have happened if the GM didn’t run with the player’s decision to comfort a distraught child.
  • What Is A Game Designer? at Dinofarm Games: Written for computer games, the ideas are applicable to tabletop game designers as well. A designer isn’t just someone with an idea that coerces others to develop products.
  • Shakespeare & Dragons Podcast at Enderra: If you haven’t heard Shakespeare & Dragons, the story-centric world-building podcast by Paul Stark, go devour the archives. Great stuff.
  • Grand Experiments: West Marches at ars ludi: Ben set up a campaign with a stable of 14 players and put all the scheduling and creative control in the hands of those players. Here’s a series of articles on how he did it.
  • Record-breaking Gen Con at ICv2: The attendance figures are still being counted, but Gen Con 2012 was the largest on record for space used and retailers in attendance.
  • Moving Pieces at Some Space to Think: Rob noodles on static vs. dynamic GMing and reactive vs. proactive players and what each combination means for your table’s play style.
  • On How Clerics Really Work at Hack & Slash: What if clerics ONLY get spells while adventuring in service to their god? The healing dynamic in this style of game would look very different than a “standard” high fantasy game.
  • Why Pathfinder Will Remain #1 at Quest For Fun!: A look at the dynamics between D&D and Pathfinder from a marketing standpoint. Unless Wizards redefines the game, D&D Next might not surpass Pathfinder’s sales when it comes out.
  • Improving Player Choices at Gamasutra: Making player choices important and relevant is a game designer’s job. Here’s a treatise that analyzes choices in terms of game design.
  • Level Drain at Untimately: Modifying level drain effects for OD&D, so that 1st level party doesn’t instantly die when confronted with a Wight.

MetaRoundup

A roundup of roundups featuring links of interest to the tabletop RPG community.
Please let us know about other weekly roundups in the comments!

  • Gaming As Women gathers links in their This Week in Gaming and This Week in Feminism series of articles on Sundays. Both series are collected under the News category. This Week in Gaming features a five-minute survey on character design in games. For science!
  • Keith Davies maintains In My Campaign and on Mondays he publishes a collection of Links of the Week including recommended Kickstarter projects and interesting YouTube videos. As mentioned above, the Links of the Week series is on semi-permanent hiatus, so we’ll be dropping this entry from our MetaRoundup section. Do yourself the favor of checking out the archives – each post is packed with wonderful links and insightful commentary.

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Nigh-Weekly Assembly: Classics and Freebies

It’s Monday, and I just don’t feel right without publishing a Weekly Assembly. Odd, that. I think the cancellation of the regular series gave me permission to miss a week or two at a time and not feel badly about it. I’ve changed the name to the Nigh-Weekly Assembly to reflect the new not-every-week status.

This week is filled with GenCon prep, or CONCurrent prep if you can’t make it to Indianapolis. And to help you prepare, have some free downloads and other inspirational links. Enjoy!

At Home

Articles posted here on The Gamer Assembly.

Away

Content from people involved with The Gamer Assembly posted elsewhere across the Internet.

Product Announcements

New products and special events announced this week.

Notes From Abroad

Other interesting articles and cool links.

  • Composite Skill Bonuses in the d20 System at Loremaster: If your PCs are using several skills at once, why not collapse them into a single roll? This method also handles cases of “missing” skills, like having the Paladin sneak past a group of Ogres using a distraction. An excellent idea from FASA’s Star Trek ported to D&D’s skill system.
  • DragonQuest: Remember the old RPG from SPI/TSR called DragonQuest? Someone managed to get several versions of the rules online.
  • In Praise of Modules at Untimately: Why use a pre-fab adventure? “…to charge my own creative batteries by basking in someone else’s creative light.”
  • Make-A-Geas at Critical Hits: Make Vanir dance like a monkey on a string as he completes your quest at GenCon this year.

MetaRoundup

A roundup of roundups featuring links of interest to the tabletop RPG community.
Please let us know about other weekly roundups in the comments!

  • Keith Davies maintains In My Campaign and on Mondays he publishes a collection of Links of the Week including recommended Kickstarter projects and interesting YouTube videos. I don’t see a post for this week as of the time of publication.
  • Gaming As Women gathers links in their This Week in Gaming and This Week in Feminism series of articles on Sundays. Both series are collected under the News category. This Week in Gaming features the Backup Ribbon Project, and Not In The Kitchen Anymore’s latest sample of online harassment.

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Weekly Assembly: The End Is Nigh

Here we are, 8 months into what was originally conceived as a 90-day experiment to gather RPG-related links into a weekly digest. This is the 35th Weekly Assembly post, and the last one we’re scheduling for the foreseeable future. We’ll publish a retrospective on what we learned from the Weekly Assembly at some point fairly soon, so stay tuned.

If you’ve gotten anything out of the Weekly Assembly or will miss it when it’s gone, please let us know about it. Sure, there are many ways to get your RPG news – what works best for you?

We tried to go out the same way we came in – with a bang. So without further ado, have some gaming links.

At Home

Articles posted here on The Gamer Assembly.

Away

Content from people involved with The Gamer Assembly posted elsewhere across the Internet.

Product Announcements

New products and special events announced this week.

Notes From Abroad

Other interesting articles and cool links.

  • Save vs. Player vs. Player at TheSheDM: Never allowing character vs. character conflict in your campaign prevents incredibly cool sessions and plotlines, as this anecdote illustrates. It’s not for everyone, but it can motivate your group to roleplay with abandon.
  • Bulk Quantities at Kickstarter: Kickstarter clarifies the “No bulk rewards” rules in this blog entry. Turns out it’s not as bad as the initial reaction to the news.
  • The Bloodstone Pillars at Iron Canyons: Take a look at this rough map of a campaign set in and around the pillars rising out of a huge canyon. The overview text really sparks some adventure ideas. Nicely done!
  • Bonded to the World at Swords of Minaria: Experience rewards are one incentive to get your players to act in a certain way when they play in your game. Pay attention to what actions you reward and what you use as rewards, and try out one of these alternate ideas to change the feel of your game.
  • Calling All Minds at FATE SF: The folks over at FATE SF are compiling their list of General SF Links, and they need your help. If you have a link to an online SF resource that inspires you, pass it on.
  • Fun Magic at Project Perko: On using magic to change the world in a meaningful and colorful way. Focused on electronic RPGs, these ideas are applicable in tabletop RPGs as well.
  • Graffiti from Pompeii: It’s nice to know that scribbling on bathroom walls hasn’t changed significantly in 2,000 years.
  • Why I Love Saving Throws at Untimately: Saving throws can do many things, including fix the drawbacks of hit points, especially with high-level characters who can’t die from a fall at terminal velocity.

MetaRoundup

A roundup of roundups featuring links of interest to the tabletop RPG community.
Please let us know about other weekly roundups in the comments!

  • Keith Davies maintains In My Campaign and on Mondays he publishes a collection of Links of the Week including recommended Kickstarter projects and interesting YouTube videos. Take a look at this week's collection which includes researching spells using grimoires and other books of magic, barely-understood tech as the basis for Vancian casting, and a culture centered entirely around various oozes.
  • Gaming As Women gathers links in their This Week in Gaming and This Week in Feminism series of articles on Sundays. Both series are collected under the News category. This Week in Gaming features fundraising for the Micro Games Mega Project, harassment in video games on the cover of the New York Times, and a definition of accessibility in games.

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