Tuesday, October 13, 2009

AFMBE scenario, BBQ from hell

I am currently totally into All Flesh Must Be Eaten. I haven't yet read full book but am already halfway done. Game is neat. Rules are easy and neat.

I know, you can play zombie-games in almost any rpg you got. There is zombies in D&D, and in Call of Cthulhu, World of Darkness, even Fading Suns has sort of zombies. But whole game about zombies is fantastic.

As in other games zombies are just one template in AFMBE you can create unlimited amount of your own zombies and customize them to be different in every campaing. There is no two similar zombies.

Also rules are quite lite. Basically add attribute + skill and throw D10. Add them and see did you get over target number 9. Easy. Ofcourse there is a bit more, but basics are simple. There is also rules to use regular playing cards or diceless system.

So, what is BBQ from hell all about? It is based on a dream I had one night. Neighbours (player characters) have gathered in saturday evening for a nice barbequing when husband asks his wife to go fetch some cigs from their home. Wife notices drunken and wobbling person on their frontyard but ignores him. When she peeks from their window, is that drunken dude still around he is. Drunken dude rises his head, his eyes are grey and mouth filled with blood.

And the zombie-survival starts.

There will be involved controlled goverment test. There will be zombies to avoid and army that will keep you inside the city at any cost. You cannot get out or be shot and it is only a matter of a time will you either be eaten by zombies or be zombified yourself. And you don't have much time to survive, as army is going to burn the whole town down...

I will write this as pdf-file ready to play zombie scenario. Just need to write idea down, get some hotspots characters to possibly to visit, create some other npc survivors and ofcourse, create the zombies! I need to read rulebook to get those npc's and zombies going, but otherwise it is just writing. A bit railroading? Could be at the beginning atleast to get things working properly as intended. This will be first AFMBE scenario I write and will be first fan-based bublish I have ever done to share with others. And I am waiting for it like zombie is waiting for his brain-porridge meal.

So, when I know rules and get the writing done, be prepared for...

BBQ from Hell!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Many names for GM

Game Master, the term what defines who will run the game, atmosphere, scenes and non-player characters in game. I think Game Master or GM is the common term for that person around the gaming table involving the rpg session. Still, many games use their own terms to determine the "leader" of the game.

I was wondering, does people usually use the term "game master" involving all games regardless what game suggest the term for gm in that particular game is, or does Dungeon & Dragons players use Dungeon Master also in other games, as they are used to that term?

As I said Game Master is the common term for that particular player, but there is also similar terms used, like in D&D Dungeon Master and some funny adaptations in game's mood, like All Flesh Must Be Eaten's Zombie Master what suits the game well. White Wolf's World of Darkness game line uses term "storyteller", as game's are so called "storytelling" games where mood, characters and story are focused over killing and looting. I like that term the most and prefer to use it in most games I play.

A bit harder term is found in Call of Cthulhu, where Game Master is "keeper". Keeper is quite clever but I am not sure is it wildly used or functional enough term.

In the end it doesn't matter are you Game Master, Dungeon Master, Zombie Master, Storyteller or Keeper, in every games regardless of term your role in game is similar. Still I would say, when talking about rpg's generally the term "Game Master" or GM is well known, so it is used the most.

Spooky: The definitive guide to horror gaming

This is last game I got. It was a really positive surprise, as I thought it is just a general guide for horror roleplaying, but soon I found out it also includes simple horror rpg rules, what is cool. Not just a info packet here, but an actually game.

What I look at the book, I like alot the cover art. It somehow reminds me of comic books. It has few details and is very lively. Also black and white print suits the cover really great.

Illustration generally varies a lot. Best of the pictures in this book are good enough, but worst suck alot. Worst pictures must be either really amateur or stupid cartoonish would-be-funny-but-fail-miserabely-in-horror-game-book styled. Good part is, that there is also those nice pictures around. Somehow illustration reminds me a bit of old finnish rpg's.

The book is not that long, only slightly over 100 pages. But what I have shuffled it quickly it seems to be full of useful fluff for horror gaming and hints to gm's for a good horror session. Cannot say more though, as haven't read it. What I have read online about it, it seems to be good book.

Can't wait to have time to start reading it, as it seems to be really nice rpg book for a horror fan like myself. Not sure will I use rules or only advices presented there for other games, but I think I will give the rules their change also. Also after reading and testing it I am planning to review it completely.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

All Flesh Must Be Excel

Today, as I noticed that I don't have a single AFMBE character sheet printed. Usually the game you currently are most interested in doesn't have ready character sheets in hand. I flapped the rule book, checked out character sheet and decided that it is not too complicated to do with Excel. And Excel is good in that way, you can easily use it also with computer. Really handy, as I don't own currenlty a printer, so only option if would like to record character is handwrite it, or use computer.

I share it also here, as I did in roolipelit.net. You can find character sheet here (site in finnish).
It is also hosted here (klick to download), @ http://www.fileshost.com/.

It is not suppose to be different, artistic or anything, but just a simple character sheet for zombie crisis, when there is no printer available.

Ninjas, vampires, vampire ninjas... failure

At some point I was thinking after sawing the movie Chanbara Beauty, that I would mix assamites, katanas and ninja-action together. But quess what, not everything is ment to be mixed with Vampire: the Masquerade. At first the idea sounded fun, but when playing it few times I suddenly realized that even if katana is cool, ninja is cool and vampire is cool, together they are ridiculous.

I don't say, that ninja katana game wouldn't be fun, but there is some limits for it. There is lots of games and systems you can play that type of action packed slicing and sneaking, but I think Vampire is for different kind of gaming after all.

Looking at my game shelf and thinking what games would have been better for that kind of action than choosing V:tM.

For Chanbara Beauty like zombie katana action, All Flesh Must Be Eaten would have done it well, I suppose. I only have read the Introductory pack but the rules are quite lite what means quick play. I am not sure what kind of martial arts or hand-to-hand manouvers basic rules have to offer.

Code/X could work, it is also simple system, but it is more like military operations spec ops game than ninja-action.

Cyberpunk v.3 not sure at all, it is too intimidating and damn ugly to even open anymore. I tried to read it but couldn't. Though if I had CP2020 I would check it out if it could handle the ninja stuff.

Kult has martial arts skills and manouvers, but for me the system is a bit too clumsy. Great setting, but rules could be better. And for that ninja stuff all supernatural and occult stuff presented in book are not necessary at all. So only rules would be used, and that would be failure for me.

New World of Darkness core rules. They are simple and easy to apply, but somehow too simple for me. Or I don't just get them right. There is Armory Reloaded what introduces more combat rules, but I don't own it. As how nWoD rules are presented in core book, they are easy and fast, but a bit too simple for my purpose.

Old World of Darkness/Vampire: the Masquerade rules are great, and work in the purpose, but as I said in the beginning, mixing vampires into ninjas and katanas is a bit too much for me.

Unknown Armies could work, what I have read it I like the rules. They are also quite simple. Not sure though, how does it handle the martial arts and melee fighting and acrobatics and other special and neat manouvers. And there is also that supernatural background what would not be useful in my action game.

Problem is, there is some setting I own could handle the ninja-stuff, but any of them doesn't sound cool or useful, let's say "agile" enough to handle it properly. And many of those games are horror, what is not needed for that scene. I am not sure what game would do it for me, maybe Feng Shui? Haven't actually played nor read it ever, but it might be that hong kong action game what could handle it well what I tried and failed with V:tM.

If I find a cheap copy of Feng Shui somewhere, I might try it out.

Oh, and I have downloaded pdf of Violence roleplaying game. Not sure though, is it for more brutal action. Like not sneaking behind your enemy and slitting his throat open, but hitting your opponent with a log and spitting on him. Could check that out soon enough though.