Saturday, March 23, 2013

Recreating the Wheel

A few years ago, a small group met in Upper Sandusky, Ohio to play some games. At that time, my experience with T&T was still in its initial stages. Kopfy was the only person that ran a T&T event. I ran a 'Game of Thrones' adventure I was prepping for Gen Con that year. Robin ran a 'Doctor Who' game while Trevor ran a sci-fi game from his developing system.

I have been running AD&D games for well over 20 years now. Early in my GM days, I leaned heavily on published adventures. In many cases, I made some changes here and there to spice things up or make things more in line with what I wanted to do. Over time, I gained plenty of confidence and started writing longer and more complex adventures that were my own material.

Most of the material I have is in printed form, back from the 90's and those pre-home pc days. I actually kind of marvel at my neat handwriting and some of the attention to detail that I impress my future self with. Others works are printed versions of long lost electronic documents that are either archived on an almost unusable floppy disc, or lost on some erased or abandoned hard drive.

The underlining reality that I have come to accept is that some of my best work comes from these tomes of past glory. I draw upon them when running games for my kids and my current group. In some cases, I have rewritten and added to the existing text in hopes of both improving on the concept as well as get an updated electronic version saved away.

The first adventure I wrote for T&T was my 'Days and Nights in Baru-Kesh' which was featured in Peryton Publishing's Elder Tunnels. While primarily influenced by the Arabian Nights stories, there was a few encounters in the group of 6 that were influenced by my AD&D games. While mechanics are slightly different and certain things need to be changed to accommodate the system, it is still about the story and basically utilizing something that has been play tested and ripe for a new interpretation.

We prepare to meet once again with good friends and play some games. I am looking forward to finding another such example from my archive that can be given some new life in the world of T&T. While I would really love to have the time and the creativity to be able to come up with new stuff, it is always a good thing to remember that you do not always have to recreate that wheel.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Wild West Terrain

I am still looking to spend some money on the WWX miniatures game. I really like the theme and the game play appears to be fairly promising. There are some others out there that have been working some Wild West buildings, so I figured I would take a shot.

I really like the idea of buildings that can be used inside and out, so I am definitely trying to make the size that allows a 30mm base to be utilized. Also, I like the idea of having a walkway that can allow for two miniatures side by side instead of just one. My walkway below seems a bit wide, but again, it allows for some more dynamic use during the game.

This is my attempt...kind of learning and trying figure out what this building should be. Maybe a general store or a jail.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Homework Assignment #1 - What's in your trunk/boot?

Gathering some information for my 'Stay Alive!' scenarios. I am looking to create some scavenge tables and was just looking to get some input.

The first thing I would like to know - what is in your car trunk?

What is in mine?

  1. Emergency Roadside Kit which includes first aid kit, rope, and road flares
  2. 2 screwdrivers
  3. 2 Bowling Balls
  4. Blanket
  5. Pads of paper and numerous pencils, markers, and crayons
  6. Ice Scraper
  7. Spare Tire
  8. Tire Iron

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Tunnels and Trolls Review (2E) from 1975

From Mark's post earlier referring to a post on the 'Trollbridge' site, I was in a round about way directed to a PDF copy of the 'Space Gamer' Magazine from 1975. Issue #3 featured a review of the then new edition of T&T (2E) and featured some comparisons between T&T and D&D.

Here is the link to the site that is hosting the PDF version of this magazine:

Below is a screenshot I pulled from it on page 16. I am sure for many of you, this is nothing new. But, it was new to me and thought it would be cool to post.

©1975, Metagaming, Space Gamer #3, page 16-17
A few notable remarks from the review:
  1. A reference to D&D as being 'professionally done, with 3 booklets and a box, and it costs a small fortune. (I guess a fanzine/magazine costing $1 was probably not considered cheap either. I think comic books were still in the 25-35 cent range at that time.)
  2. A note regarding the artwork. The Danforth cover and some of Carver's work was good, but other portions of Carver's interior art was "ridiculous" and "droll". (It was a player in my T&T game back in December at a game day that mentioned he chose D&D over T&T way back when because of the artwork.)
  3. T&T was far less complex than D&D and its number crunching statistical game play, "drawing more on the imagination of the player rather than the genius of the DM. (The author was actually very positive in these remarks, almost lamenting.)
  4. The tone of the rule book where the author, referred to simply as 'St Andre', is actually conversing with the reader and trying to explain how this or that should/could work. (He also mentions that these explanations are 'not always perfectly clear'. Heck, that is still the case these days as well.)
Someone mentioned on one of the forums I visited today that is more than anything an interesting look at how the gaming world was 38 years ago. I agree with that. This was the beginning times of the RPG. T&T and D&D were the trailblazers for the systems and games that we play today. As much as I love D&D, I have been more and more enamored with T&T as I get more experience with it.

In the end, our goal is to tell a story. Learning which 'system' fits for what you are trying to do is the challenge.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Missile Ranges, Part Deux

The first 'Stay Alive!' online game is wrapping up. A few more paragraphs and we will be reaching a stopping point. One thing that became quite apparent for me during this process was to expand some rules on 'missile' attacks to make things a bit more workable for what I want to do.

MSPE does a decent job of it, but I wanted something as simple as the basic T&T, but with a few additional perks that make it a bit more 'realistic'. The biggest problem is that guns are deadly. When and if they hit, there is not going to be many still standing, especially when dealing with 'live' targets and not zombies.

At this point I have two charts that I have created. The first was already posted in which I added a new level (Moderate), adjusted the Saving Rolls for the ranges, and added a Zero Level SR.

The following table is my attempt to add some additional modifiers to the SR attempt for making a successful missile attack. Similar to how MSPE integrated movement into the target roll charts, these modifiers directly affect the SR target/roll.

This is by far not a comprehensive listing. I will be adding more to it as they come up.