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Friday, 18 August 2017

#RPGaDAY: Which RPG Have You Played The Most In Your Life?


I'd like to say Villains & Vigilantes, because that would be appropriate for my superhero-heavy blog and love of the genre, but if I'm being honest - and factoring in all the different editions, hacks, clones, reworkings etc - it has to be Dungeons & Dragons.

When I was first introduced to the hobby - although there were flirtations with Top Secret and Traveller - D&D was the backbone of my gaming experience.

And it's what I always end up coming back to. The publication of Third Edition reignited my eagerness to play again, but once I read the rulebook and was horrified by what I saw I found myself heading back to the Old School.

Then later, the publication of Fourth Edition spurred the formation of the Tuesday Knights. It was, however, Castles & Crusades, then Labyrinth Lord, that we actually ended up playing in the early days of our current gaming group.

I have high hopes for Fifth Edition though...

Fleamarket Friday: Liberate The Dragon Slayers From The Dungeons Of Doom...

At time of writing, this is what you get at the Dragon Slayer pledge level...


You've only a few days left if you want to get in on this Kickstarter for some incredible looking 28mm miniatures suitable for use roleplaying games and skirmish wargames.

Funding for Dungeons Of Doom III - Dragon Slayers, from New Zealand's Star Hat Miniatures, closes on Monday.

The campaign has already smashed through its initial target and numerous stretch goals, which have added new figures to the range.

For us Europeans, a canny service has been established where Scotia Grendel, in Scotland, will cast and distribute the miniatures - saving us a fortune on shipping.

Star Hat has a proven track record for delivering on its Kickstarters, and for the quality and diversity of its miniatures.

This latest collection - thanks to the stretch goals - includes a couple of good looking ducks which tipped my hand.

Pledge levels allow you to pick one miniature, four, or opt for the full package - the initial eight figures from the campaign, plus all the applicable stretch goals.

Just recently a NZ$49 add-on has been unlocked for a dragon, and other add-ons include the collections created from two earlier Kickstarter campaigns.

Check out the Dungeons Of Doom III - Dragon Slayers page for more information, pictures, details of backer rewards and add-ons etc 



The Defenders: The First Act (Episodes One, Two, And Three)


SPOILER ALERT: I've tried to be as vague as I can on story details, but there may be some details here that you might not want to know before you see the show, if you want to enjoy it as it was meant to be enjoyed.

Picking up from their own disparate storylines, The Defenders opens with Matt Murdock (Charlie Cox) retired from crimefighting and back to lawyering; Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) still ignoring phonecalls until a case comes to her door; Luke Cage (Mike Colter) returning to Harlem after his stint in prison and investigating the latest murderous goings-on in his 'hood; and Danny Rand (Finn Jones) and Colleen Wing (Jessica Henwick) chasing leads on The Hand.

We're introduced to Alexandra (Sigourney Weaver), who is clearly a senior figure in The Hand, who, because of her terminal illness, tells Madame Gao (Wai Ching Ho) to accelerate progress on their nefarious scheme (presumably connected with the big hole in the ground that was revealed in the second season Daredevil).

She's also using the zombie-Elektra (Elodie Yung) as her enforcer, cleaning up any loose ends, which eventually sees her briefly tangling with Jessica Jones.

While showing us what's changed and what's new in the setting, the narrative takes a deliberate, methodical approach to reminding us of these characters we grown to love from their solo outings, and gradually pulling the plot threads tighter so their paths cross.

Events are shaken up by a seismic event at the end of episode one, and by the end of the second episode each of the central quartet of heroes has met another hero, laying the groundwork for the eventual team-up.

The pacing is spot-on, letting the characters drive the story, reacting in-character to the unfolding weirdness that is starting to intrude on their lives and Hell's Kitchen and Harlem in particular (there's a strong undercurrent of the supernatural that I'm hoping the story delivers on).

The momentum continues into episode three, when our heroes are all drawn into the belly of the beast  (The Hand's corporate headquarters) for the requisite - and quite magnificent - fight scene that leads to their first meeting.

Some of the lucky breaks the heroes get in their investigations could be seen as rather fortuitous, but then the show is seeking to emulate superhero comic books, a genre not generally known for subtly.

This episode also fills in a bit more detail on Alexandra's backstory, her seeming long life and her connection to Elektra's return from the dead.

As someone who really enjoyed all the individual series, I was predisposed to liking The Defenders and the first act (episodes one to three) of this eight-part "movie" has delivered across the board, with some cracking action sequences, great character pieces, pithy dialogue, and rhythmic pacing that creates a sense of verisimilitude with the four main stars, the characters who orbit around them, and the world in which they move.

Fleamarket Friday: A New Faction Has Invaded The Savage Core...


A new faction has been introduced to Savage Core, Lucid Eye's pulp Hollow Earth skirmish game.

The Id are androgynous alien invaders suitable for use in multiple arenas outside of this game (I'm eyeing them to add to my alien contingent for a more outré Dungeons & Dragons scenario, for instance).

They are described as:
"...the keepers of the deeper secrets of the Savage Core and ... its true alien masters".
A free PDF rules supplement for adding The Id to your Savage Core games is available on the Lucid Eye website, where tou can, of course, also buy the miniatures and peruse Lucid Eye's varied range of Savage Core and other sci-fi miniatures.

Fleamarket Friday: Hail To The Chin...




The latest collection of light-hearted memoirs from genre icon and all-round legend Bruce Campbell, entitled Hail To The Chin: Further Confessions Of A B Movie Actor, are now available from all good bookstores.

Campbell is, of course, the star of the Evil Dead movies, as well as the Ash vs Evil Dead TV show, as well as being the central figure in Brisco County Jnr, Jack Of All Trades, and Burn Notice, and having major supporting roles in Xena: Warrior Princess and Hercules: The Legendary Journeys.

He's also starred in numerous films - including a lot of horror flicks as well as cameos in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man movies.

There's even a roleplaying game based on his exploits in the third Evil Dead movie: Eden Studio's brilliant Army Of Darkness game (using the Cinematic Unisystem, which is a perfect fit for the genre it's emulating).

Check out this review of Campbell's latest book at Broke Horror Fan before you decide whether to part with your hard-earned cash.

If This Is Anywhere Near As Freaky As Its Source Material, It Will Mess People Up!


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