Monday, September 26, 2016

Blades in the Dark - Third Session Discussion

So I think we're hitting our stride with this third game in the series. We're doing a solid four scores a game, even with a dinner break and delays with me being late or leaving early because of rude kids. I'm having a blast, even if we aren't playing the game all gritty-like. It amuses me that our characters' "vices" include barbecue, ancestor worship, and ... ancestor worship. Dave's "mother fixation" cracks me up, and it is just as annoying as if his vice were drink, drugs, or whores. If not more so.

I've been trying to kick-start these sessions by dropping you guys right in a "free" score that I've already chosen for your characters. I balance that with making the score always yield coin, while giving me a bit of leeway to develop the campaign. I'm still looking forward to you seeing Lord Scurlock (the gentleman undead gambler) or the demon now clad in shopkeeper form that the Forgotten Gods created. Hopefully that is okay. The starting caper this time was not my best, but it turned out to be funny just because everything went pretty much your way for a change. If you aren't cool with the In Medias Res start, let me know and I'll do something different. I've just found that starting with the action gets us all focused that much faster.

My other favorite moment was the fact that you created an NPC contact (Simpkin the Incontinent) by pulling him right from your gang. Now they have more than just a faceless identity, they have an actual name to go with it.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Fistful of Lead Reloaded: Reading Review

I've read through the rules for Fistful of Lead--Reloaded in preparation for the Wild West Miniatures session I want to do. (See Recent Dr. Skull's Workshop Entries).   Here are my impressions:

Just like Savage Worlds, except no Joker, Aces are wild.   Special Bonuses for certain cards (e.g., if you get a Queen of Heats you can heal one wound).    Should be smooth.

Each figure can do 2 things, e.g.  Move and Move,  Move and Shoot, Shoot and Shoot, Aim and Shoot,  get off Horse and Shoot.     Also smooth.

Roll d10,  5 or better to hit, close range, 8 or better to hit, long range.   A handful of modifiers nothing hard.   Roll a "1" when shooting means you ran out of bullets.

Hits can result in PIN, WOUND, or DEAD:   Pin works similar to SHAKEN in Savage Worlds.   Wound gives -1 penalty and knocks you down.  3 wounds or a  dead result means dead.   If roll a "1" when trying to get up from PIN or WOUND means you run off in terror.

There are some extra rules for TNT and Gatling Guns and for some minor unit customization and campaign play.    It is free of in-game record keeping and should be fast and fun.   It was a good choice I think

Monday, September 12, 2016

Blades in the Dark - Second Session Discussion

Last night's BitD game went well. I'm still experimenting with combat, and last night's episode ended on a huge one. Specifically what I'm unsure about is how the "spotlight" travels. I came up with the "thingus" that everyone could pass around to take their action, but there is no actual set "initiative order" in the ruleset of BitD. As a matter of fact, the bad guys specifically don't get to do *anything*. Instead, the rules say that they just do stuff and that the PCs are then welcome to come up with ways to either mitigate the damage or create narrative to counter it.

On the plus side, I believe that the group combat went well. The River Rats vs. the Red Sash cadre fight seemed "right" to me now that I'm getting more of a hang with the "effect" rules. Essentially the factors for effect include "quality/tier", "potency", and "scale", and the fact that there were more Red Sashes than PCs allowed them to gain effect because of scale. By adding the River Rats and basically commanding them as a turn you were more easily able to match their scale.

BTW, the River Rats were pretty cut up by the end. They will need a score rest, and another score before they are at full strength. Luckily, you have the cole slaw gang to "rely" on.

One last comment on HEAT. I believe I'm playing it wrong. If you get 8 heat as a group, you guys get a WANTED level, and your HEAT goes down, not unlike losing all your STRESS after taking TRAUMA. Speaking of which, I am also going to tweak some of the ENTANGLEMENTS to reflect the fact that the FSA is at war with the Red Sashes next game.

What were your favorite moments? Is this game fun? Does it make sense? What do you think about doing more "downtime scenes" where you indulge in your vice and deal with the fallout of the gang war you are a part of?