Month: September 2017

The Known, Hollow World – Mystara

Mystara is one of the oldest D&D settings. It appeared first in the module Isle of Dread, which probably many players remember and was published in 1981. Originally Mystara was called The Known World and is probably of all the D&D settings out there that has most things in common with Middle-Earth.  Mystara, developed by Lawrence Schick and Tom Moldvay, was a diverse and interesting setting. There were three different continents, Brun, Skothar and Davania, and a large archipelago called Alphatia. You had all the standard D&D races; elves lived in Alfheim, dwarves in Rockhome and halflings in the...

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Part II: Tales from the Loop – System

Swedish Roleplaying Games are getting much attention these days and no wonder, many of these games are great. Tales from the Loop, published by Fria Ligan, is one of these games. It has received a lot of credit and many awards, among them 5 ENnie awards.  Tales from the Loop is a great roleplaying game, based on the setting in Simon Stalenhag’s art and vision. The game takes place in an alternate version of our world, in the 80’s that never was, where technology is more advanced. Still, the PCs, which are all children, face the same problems as...

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Part IV: Trudvang Chronicles – Exploration, equipment and monsters

Trudvang Chronicles is a Swedish roleplaying game, one that is highly anticipated. We have been digging through the rulebooks and now it’s time to dive into campaign play, environment, exploration and monsters.  One of the key elements to fantasy roleplaying, and perhaps the most overlooked one, is the journey. If you look to older fantasy novels like Lord of the Rings, Narnia, Dragonlance Chronicles etc. you see that a huge part of the narrative evolves around a journey or a quest that the main characters have to undertake. Even modern fantasies stay fairly true to this theme, e.g. Daenerys’...

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Roleplaying Games in the Classroom

As a teacher you’re constantly seeking new methods to grab your students’ attention. And in the fast moving world of smartphones, streaming and high-speed internet that is a constant struggle. Using roleplaying games can be both fun and informative, not to mention a great way to empower students.  I’ve been a tabletop roleplayer longer than I care to say. I like to think that by taking part in my weekly game I’m simply meeting some friends, but my wife says that I do it so I can feel 15 again. And since she’s usually right about everything, I see...

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GURPS – the Fallout of missed opportunities

Us old timers ‘member how in the early to mid 90’s, good ol’ D&D really fell out of fashion amongst the hardcore gamers. In fact, some downright looked down on D&D players for a while. I remember going to a con, signing up to DM a D&D table and getting all kinds of remarks, ranging from good natured ribbing to some downright mean comments about taking care of the kids table. But that’s a subject for a later time… While this was going on, there were a lot of other games and systems out there. In a lot of...

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Deadly dungeons

The dungeon is for many D&D fan the epitome or the centerpiece of that particular roleplaying game. Exploring lost tombs or labyrinths is search of hidden treasures, fighting monsters and villains and, finally, returning victorious with troves of magical items and gold. The deadlier the dungeon, the bigger the bragging rights. Crawling through some sort of dungeon has always been a huge part of playing D&D. No matter if it was a vile and disgusting tomb of an undead lich, the alien lair of a beholder, a gothic and dusty castle of a vampire or even the Underdark itself....

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Recycle – Reincarnate – Restore

With a new and applauded version of Dungeons and Dragons Wizards of the Coast seem to be following a different publishing policy than before, and say that they are listening to the player community. Many campaigns have been published, where old, tried and tested story lines and antagonists appear, meanwhile there have been fewer books with player options.  Many D&D fans have applauded the 5th edition of Dungeons and Dragons, especially old dogs like myself. And I admit, this new version is quite good and I believe it is more in line with the older versions of D&D, than...

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Campaign Post Mortem: Sleep of Innocence Part II

Welcome back to the adventures of the Phillips siblings. I hope the first part shed some light on my campaign creation philosophy and maybe inspired some ideas of your own. In this part we get to the meat of the story and most of my mistakes during the running of this campaign. When we last left the children they had followed the strange animal, given to them by Cornelius the mute groundskeeper, down into the Enchanted Woods through the Cavern of Flame. They had passed the tests of the ancient priests guarding the gateway to the Dreamlands and were...

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Be the best player version of yourself!

Do you need to score some points with the Game Master? Do you want to make sure that every person around the gaming table will never forget playing with you? Do you want to make a great and lasting impression with your group? Roleplaying is a great hobby but what makes it even greater is to have the chance to play with fun people and friends. Here are a few tips and tricks to make sure that you make an everlasting impression where every session is a dream-come-true for the other players. Show up late Nothing shows better how...

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Part I: Tales from the Loop – Setting

Tales from the Loop is a new roleplaying game from the Swedish publisher Fria Ligan. It’s a game where players take on the roles of kids in an alternative 80’s, based on the artist’s Simon Stålenhag visionary artwork. If you liked Stranger Things, E.T. and Goonies, you should take a look at Tales from the Loop. Lately I’ve been quite interested in why Sweden is emerging as a super-power in the roleplaying games industry. There seems to be an endless supply of great and original games from Sweden, e.g. Trudvang Chronicles and Coriolis, and it seems to me that there...

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