Tuesday, January 27, 2015

More HeroQuest Stuff

Wow, my last post was pretty popular.  Apparently a lot of people still like HeroQuest.  Neat!

My son demanded another game the very next night.  So, after some housework, I indulged.  This second session went much smoother.  I think he's addicted, since we are already planning to make this a regular thing on Wednesdays when it's just me and him in the house for the evening.

After I started looking around for replacement Barbarian and Elf figures, I realized that all of the characters included in the game are male.  Being the progressively-minded gamer I am, I decided that just wasn’t fair!  What if my 12-year old daughter decided she wanted to play with her brother?  Well, I would need female variations, of course. 

So, just under $30 later, I will be receiving six new figs from Reaper Miniatures in the mail next week.  Then it’s off to Michael’s for some cheap acrylic paints and assorted brushes (because these will be handled by children, then tossed back in the box, for the most part).  I plan to enlist my wife in painting these.

I also found a website, Ye Olde Inn, that has a lot of fan-made resources, as well as official stuff from outside the US.  Including a manual on creating your own maps and adventure.  Man, what a rabbit-hole!

Thankfully, I also have the two expansions that came out here in the states, so I will have enough adventures to last for a good, long time.

Thursday, January 22, 2015


The other night my son was grounded from electronics for being…well, for being a typical 6-year old.  Honestly, we have become too reliant on stuff like that, and this was an opportunity to maybe become a better parent.  It should have been, anyways, but TV took us over (Thanks, Obama!), so my son was a little bored.  But, he did manage to entertain himself with coloring, and <GASP!> actually playing with his toys!

Anyways, one of the things I had told him was that maybe I would introduce him to a new game if we had time.  We ended up not being able to, but he had latched onto that idea.  He was inquiring about it as soon as I picked him up after work yesterday.  So, we went home, had some dinner (mommy was working late at the salon), and then broke out my old copy of the Milton/Bradley version of HeroQuest.

It had literally been over a decade since I last played this game.  The last time I recall was when my eldest daughter (who is 19) was about Connor’s age.  So, it seemed fitting.  I opened the box, began organizing the pieces and books, all while trying to recall the rules.  To my chagrin I had lost the Barbarian and Elf figures (probably pilfered for some RPG at some point).  So, I told Connor he would just have to be the Dwarf.  And he was cool with that.

Over all it was a fun experience.  He wanted to just jump in with the game, but had to sit through me re-learning the rules.  I flubbed a few things, but we made it through.  He was also playing solo at first, so when he invariably died, I brought in the Wizard to help him.  In hindsight, I probably could have just given him some armor and better weapon.  But, he seemed to the like the idea of the Wizard casting spells with him.  So, we went with it.

I also instituted some little rules like healing surges, and had him roll his Defense dice, and for each skull he rolled he got back a hit point.  Funny thing was, every time he did that, he rolled two skulls on two dice.  I also figured out a way to have the Wizard regain a few spells to help with the rest of the monsters.

It was kind of funny because he kept bypassing doors.  But, after he had defeated the Gargoyle, and “won” the game, he wanted to go back and explore those bypassed rooms.  I think I may have a gamer on my hands.

I’m going to replace my missing figs, and see if there are some options I can institute to make the game more fun, and more survivable for a solo character, or even just a pair.  He wants to play again, so we’ll probably play on Saturday.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Gary Con 2015

Finally got around to buying our passes and getting the hotel room for Gary Con 2015.  So, we are now committed.  For three days (March 27-29, can't make the 26th for work reasons), we will be in Lake Geneva, WI, playing games, meeting Geek Stars (not to be confused with Rock Stars), and generally having a great time.

This year I am going to aim for some non-fantasy gaming.  Last year I got into a Star Frontiers game, and it was a hoot!  The guy runs the same excellent game every year, so I probably won’t go for that again, but something similar would be cool.  I am definitely going to aim for a Supers game of some kind.  And if I can get into a Marvel Super Heroes game, that would be aces.  Other than that, I’m pretty open.

I had thought about running a game this time, but decided against it.  First of all, I just don’t have the time to prepare anything.  Plus, I’m more of a player than GM, and frankly running a game for strangers makes me nervous.  I’m actually kind of introverted, and I get stage fright easily.  So, I’ll just stick to being a player.

My wife is still thinking of running a Dragon Age game.  She was intending to run something she came up with on her own, but now that time is short, she’s thinking she might run a published module.  She has a few options there.  Her game at Gamehole Con last year was a hit, so I know she will do well either way she goes with it.

We bought regular badges, so there won’t be any special events on our schedule.  And that’s fine.  While it’s very cool to be able to say that I have gamed with Dave Cook and Mike Mentzer, I’m more than happy to just pass some time with friends among my peers that I haven’t met yet.  So, if you are headed to Gary Con, maybe we’ll run into each other.

In other gaming news, an old friend of mine from City of Heroes bought a print copy of Mutants & Marvels, and has now gathered a few others from the CoH group on Facebook to do an online game, possibly once a month, and probably through Roll20.  I’ve never played in that format, so that should be interesting.  But more than that, I am eager to see what people think of my take on the classic MSH game.  So far, feedback has been pretty positive.

Speaking of the feedback, some of it has given me ideas for my special M&M issue of Zine-O-Morph.  Not sure when that will become a reality, but it’s still on the to-do list.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Mutants & Marvels - Continued

So, I finally got around to ordering a print copy of Mutants & Marvels from Lulu.  It arrived about a week ago, and it looks really good.  It's not perfect, though.  I went for a smaller, TPB size (6" x 9"), and I forgot that the aspect ratio for that size isn't the same as it is for standard 8.5" x 11".  Subsequently, the side margins are a bit narrow, making it harder to read the print closest to the spine, and the top margin is over-large.  But the print quality is excellent.  I opted for color interior, and it looks great.

In other M&M news, today I got a very nice, and humbling review on Mutants & Marvels at RPGNow. And, like any good reviewer, he pointed out the shortcomings, and listed some improvements he would like to see. I am very glad that others find the game useful and fun. Thank you very much, Brian!

Brian's comments, as well as some from others who have downloaded the game, have inspired me to move forward with an idea I had.  I've kind of now decided that issue #3 of Zine-O-Morph will be dedicated to Supers Roleplaying, and M&M in specific.  My initial idea includes an article that details some options based on what feedback I have gotten, some detailed locations, maybe some new characters, and most likely another adventure.

This will all be coming in the future.  Right now ZOM #2 is still sitting in limbo, basically waiting for me to get off my duff and put some Military Sci Fi artwork together.  Once I get that done, I'll get it PDFed and uploaded ASAP.

I'm hoping to get in a lot more writing this year.  I have a lot of fiction I would like to do, and a list of RPG-related projects I'd like to work on.  However, until I finish school in a few months, all of that will be slow-going.