What I'm Playing

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This is a blog about role-playing games, especially games beyond the current edition of whatever Hasbro makes: Retro games, indie games, and weirdness.

When I started this blog, I was playing Tunnels & Trolls almost exclusively, supplemented by a weekly game of D&D at the local game store, where I was refereeing a season of the “D&D Encounters” program. Some years later, I’m not so exclusive, and I’ve had the chance to enjoy a lot more games. I’m sure I’ve left stuff out, but here’s a sample:

December: Schedule upheavals gave us another opportunity to play Sorcerer, this time in the Silent Land setting developed by our esteemed colleague Ranuth.
November: On Hallowe’en week, we began a three-session run of Death Frost Doom which ended in catastrophe. :) After that, another player took the GM mantle for a D&D 5th edition one-shot, then I ran our first session in Reliquary Space, a sci-fi scenario for MSPE.
October: Taking a break from Planets Collide after Session 40, I ran a one-shot of LotFP Weird Fantasy RPG that turned into a mini-series. The scenario was improvised based on character creation and inkblots, following my Dungeon BINGO method, and gave us some survival horror flavor for the Hallowe’en season.
July: We are now starting the epic conclusion of the Planets Collide campaign that started with Dungeon BINGO in 2016. Including our previous adventures in Planets Collide proper with the Dark World and Light World prequel campaigns, we already have 104 sessions of play in this setting fueling the finale.
March–July: A fifteen-session mini-campaign of Sorcerer & Sword, taking place in the “Light World” of Planets Collide. I love Sorcerer.
February: Five sessions of The Grinding Gear, powered by MÖRK BORG.
Late January: We wrapped up our Dark World campaign after 58 sessions! Here’s an overview with some discussion.
In September, I convened a workshop for the first (annual?) #DungeonWorldDay, hosted by the Dungeon World Discord server. My session was called “GM Moves Boot Camp”, going over how GM moves work in Dungeon World, with an improvised World of Dungeons scenario to illustrate.
The Dark World game continued, picking up pace after the pandemic nudged us to play online, using Discord for voice and video chat. The year included over 33 sessions of Freebooters on the Frontier, including a 5-session side adventure using Usagi Yojimbo, 2nd Edition.
In March, I started an online, text-based game of An Echo, Resounding by Kevin Crawford, to supplement the Dark World setting with political intrigue, statecraft, and war.
In February we started the Dark World campaign, taking place in the Planets Collide setting we developed in our last game of Dungeon World. The initial adventure used the LotFP Weird Fantasy RPG, with a few house rules. After 6 sessions, we switched to Freebooters on the Frontier, a Dungeon World variant by Jason Lutes.
In October, I ran a special Halloween session of Twisted Tunnels, which turned into a string of rip-roaring sessions that spanned into January 2019.
Our Planets Collide campaign continued, going on hiatus in October after 30 sessions.
In September 2016, we started an open table game of Dungeon World at out local game shop, which attracted a critical mass of players for what became the Planets Collide campaign. In October, we moved to Wegmans, where we continued playing on a bi-weekly basis, more or less.

Flashback to Early 2013

The game I get the most mileage out of these days is the 1978 edition of Tunnels & Trolls, the classic sword and sorcery game by Ken St. Andre, edited by Liz Danforth. It’s super easy to run at the drop of a hat. The print editions of T&T are currently sold out! Flying Buffalo, the game’s original publisher, is planning a “Deluxe Edition” of the game, authored by Ken St. Andre himself.

Until that appears, you can download the free starter rules here, or read the abridged game rules online. If you yearn for ink on paper, Flying Buffalo sells pocket-sized two-in-one solo adventures that include the core rules: Look for the heading “Pocket-book sized double solo adventures”.

I play Risus: The Anything RPG, Marvel Heroic, and Old School Hack any chance I get, and I also enjoy Trollbabe and Sorcerer by Ron Edwards. There is a deluge of other games I sometimes play, and even more that I’d like to try, but that’s a snapshot of what I usually write about here.



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