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All Humble Games Staff Laid Off
All Humble Games Staff Laid OffParent company Ziff Davis has laid off the full team at publisher Humble Games. Although billed as a restructuring, no staff remain and operations are being handed over to a third-party. The post All Humble Games Staff Laid Off appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 24
Episode 360: Permission to Trails – Q&A Quest
Episode 360: Permission to Trails – Q&A QuestThis week in Q&A Quest we discuss The Legend of Heroes: Trails Through Daybreak. We also deep dive into the mechanics of the Kingdom Hearts series. The post Episode 360: Permission to Trails – Q&A Quest appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 24
Is Onyx Path’s Curseborne a worthy successor to Chronicles of Darkness?
Is Onyx Path’s Curseborne a worthy successor to Chronicles of Darkness? Onyx Path recently released the ashcan edition of the new urban fantasy TTRPG Curseborne to coincide with their virtual gaming convention, and the comparisons to their recently mothballed Chronicles of Darkness game are inevitable. Onyx Path supported Chronicles of Darkness , or CofD for short, for two decades through 11 different game lines. Each line had its own distinct identity and a deep setting filled with drama, such as the Gothic Vampire: The Requiem and the mind-bending Mage: The Awakening , but in recent months it has become clear that diehard fans will need to look somewhere else for new urban fantasy experiences. Enter Curseborne , which may wish to be considered on its own terms, but has a tough act to follow. Overall, I feel Curseborne has solid mechanics and a lot of potential, but it lacks the rich setting and nuanced character options I would like to see in an urban fantasy game. I hope that when this hits crowdfunding sites in October later this year, we see greater variety within each supernatural lineage and a more evocative setting. The monster within Aesthetically, Curseborne draws heavily on decaying urban environments, uncanny monsters, and modern gothic tropes. The characters are all Accursed: supernatural beings who all fight their own darkest natures and juggle the practicalities of survival with the need to camouflage themselves amongst the easily frightened herd of humanity. Curseborne sees supernaturals as part of an interlinked society, but so far the aschan gives us little indication of how they plan to mine such a rich vein of drama. The 'lineages' of Curseborne characters are themed broadly: the Dead, the Hungry, the Outcasts, the Primal, and the Sorcerers. Unfortunately, the Lineages feel one-dimensional, emphasized by mechanics that seem to pigeonhole them further. The official website for Curseborne advertises that the game will have "Thirty-plus different playable character options" but from the ashcan, I don't get any sense of that sort of variety. With the possibility of single-lineage groups mentioned on the site, I am left to wonder what a group of Hungry or Dead characters would have to distinguish themselves from one another. The ashcan mentions that more options for the darker side of the Lineages (called Torments) will be available in the full release, and Sorcerers are only teased here, but whether there is even scope within the Lineages for more intriguing character variety remains to be seen. Players wanting to recapture the depth of Chronicles of Darkness 's approach to supernaturals will undoubtedly end up frustrated by the somewhat lackluster options revealed here. Similarly, the rich supernatural societies and mythology of Chronicles of Darkness are nowhere to be seen. Under-explained elements like the families (sub-types of supernaturals) that all characters belong to could have done a lot of work in evoking the sorts of conflicts a character might run into. Image from Onyx Path Publishing Storypath Ultra The system is an adaptation of the Storypath system used by Trinity Continuum , They Came From and Scion , and many of the elements will be familiar to Onyx Path fans: it uses a pool of d10s made up of a skill rating and an attribute rating, with dice that come up 8, 9 or 10 counting as a success and 10's as two successes. Additional successes can be spent to buy off complications or add extra benefits to a roll, giving rolls narrative depth. Status effects and complications give flexibility to Storyguides in how to give rolls mechanical consequences while still keeping things moving and act as an evolution of the conditions and tilts system from Chronicles of Darkness , which was one of its most robust innovations. Curseborne clearly flags that its designers value investigation and social drama as much as combat, which is a high priority for urban fantasy games that thrive on mystery and angst, with dedicated sections on how to run each type of game scene. Meanwhile, curse dice, which add to a character's pool as they become more connected with their Accursed nature, are an intriguing representation of the dance between humanity and monstrousness that the second editions of the Chronicles of Darkness lines did so well. Untapped potential As a teaser, the ashcan of Curseborne does a lot, and yet I still feel that I don't understand what makes the setting and characters tick. In a hobby with competing systems that already present nuanced supernatural characters and societies, Curseborne might need to step it up to capture the popular imagination. I will certainly be following Curseborne 's development with interest, but I won't be retiring my Chronicles of Darkness collection just yet. https://youtu.be/QPXoXtjRvK0?feature=shared The post Is Onyx Path’s Curseborne a worthy successor to Chronicles of Darkness? appeared first on Destructoid .
Role-Playing Games Archives – DestructoidJul 23
Stray Gods: Orpheus DLC Deep Look
Stray Gods: Orpheus DLC Deep LookOrpheus and Natasha Bedingfield have a lot in common. Both want to release their inhibitions and feel the rain on their skin. They also know that their stories are "unwritten." Stray Gods fans should drench themselves in words previously unspoken and experience this DLC featuring the lord of rock himself, Orpheus. The post Stray Gods: Orpheus DLC Deep Look appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 23
The Lightless World Receives Official Trailer
The Lightless World Receives Official TrailerThe3rd.OneGames has released the debut gameplay trailer for the roguelike horror-action RPG, The Lightless World. The trailer shows off the player clearing invasions of large crowds of demonic forces and different leveling up abilities and augments. The post The Lightless World Receives Official Trailer appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 22
Koriko: A Magical Year is a bewitching introduction to solo TTRPGs
Koriko: A Magical Year is a bewitching introduction to solo TTRPGs Solo tabletop role-playing games might seem intimidating to some, but Koriko: A Magical Year from Mousehole Press makes it easy and fun to dive into its bewitching world — as long as you can slow down enough to make it through the opening chapters. Blending elegant mechanics with a gentle story focus, Koriko confidently guides new players and experienced solo role-players alike in writing their own witchy tale. An excellent introduction Koriko fits very naturally into the genre of cozy solo TTRPGs, telling the story of a teenage witch leaving home for the first time to live in the exciting city of Koriko. It takes its name from the city in Kiki's Delivery Service , inspired heavily by both the Studio Ghibli animated film and the original book by Eiko Kadono. Koriko is steeped in cozy culture, from its sepia-edged pages to its gentle tale of a young witch making their way in the world, and would make an excellent game for parents or teachers to play with kids. Like many solo TTRPGs, Koriko is focused around the process of journaling the player character's experiences, but it also takes the time to eases player into solo creativity. First, it teaches you how to set up your journal step-by-step as you introduce your character, with paragraphs to copy out and customize. Koriko guides the player as they grow in confidence and slowly learn to structure their own journal entries, letters and stories. The opening is reminiscent of Princess With a Cursed Sword by anna anthropy, another great introduction to solo journaling RPGs. Magical mechanics Gameplay is divided into 'volumes' structured around the seasons of the year, with each year providing different opportunities, prompts and dilemmas. At the end of each volume, the player writes a letter home to their witchy mentor. At its heart, the gameplay loop is simple. Each season, you follow the instructions in the book to form a deck of tarot cards that you shuffle and draw in a random order. Each card you draw represents an experience your character has while in Koriko : either a moment, represented by a card from the minor arcana, or a confidante prompt indicated by a card from the major arcana. If you aren't very familiar with tarot cards, there's a handy explanation early on, and you can use the electronic version of the tarot deck if you don't have access to a physical one. You do not initially include certain cards like the Tower and Death, only adding them when certain circumstances bring them into your character's life. The cards all have a linked prompt in the tables at the back of the book and in addition, each volume has a table of additional prompts called 'twists', some of which are labelled as risky. If you choose a risky twist, you add more dice to your ongoing stack of dice. When that dice stack falls, you check the most frequent number showing among the fallen dice against a table of consequences. I was nervous the first time my dice tower fell, as I'd become quite invested in my little witch, but the consequences table is pleasingly nuanced. The consequences always provoke some sort of change going forward: you might add a lesson to your journal, which means you might need to stack fewer dice in the future, or add one of the special confidantes into your circle so you have the chance to interact with them. A magical year in progress. Image by Destructoid The circle is also an inspired idea: as you draw major arcana cards, you encounter confidantes around the city with their own dilemmas and problems, and you slowly build a 'circle' of characters as a separate deck. The confidante has a set of prompts to use on each occasion you draw them, with a final crossroads story after you have met them four times, in which you choose whether to help them (which carries a degree of risk) or refuse them. The mechanics are introduced slowly but even so, a fairly significant chunk of the book is dedicated to explaining them. I found it easiest to briefly look through this and get an overview of the sections so I could refer back to them later rather than trying to understand it all at once. A cheat sheet that had the main mechanics and the very helpful flow diagram might be a useful download to support gameplay. Given the number of resources the digital edition provides (including access to an online tarot deck, an alternative starting experience, and a guide to playing Koriko with other people), it's clear that Mousehole Press has already put a great deal of thought into removing obstacles to play, and this would be a nice addition. You end up playing a sort of narrative bingo by drawing your card and then choosing which twist to use and every decision you make inspires some sort of narrative change, which flows surprisingly well after the first few draws. The act of drawing cards and checking against the book entries (helped enormously by the two ribbon bookmarks in the printed book), crossing out boxes on your twist table and stacking dice adds a level of physicality to an experience that can otherwise feel a bit ephemeral. The downside to this is that Koriko has more setup and upkeep requirements than many solo games, with a perilous stack of dice and carefully-assembled card decks that need to be maintained throughout. The book contains guidance on ways you can put these away without losing your place or use an alternative to dice stacking, but for many people, the effort of setup each time when they might only have time to write one entry could make this less appealing than more self-contained games. Pacing challenges Fair warning: Koriko ’s pacing may not suit everyone. Solo RPGs by their nature require slowing down, writing things out, and creating a space in which to immerse yourself in a story. Initially, the pacing is perhaps a little too slow. I found myself eager to reach Koriko and start to engage with the more complex game mechanics, but each page I turned was another set of prompts about my journey to and arrival in the city, often with characters and locations I might never be able to interact with again. This is almost certainly going to vary by player, and the intention is clearly for a meditative experience, but for the impatient, the initial immersion into the world can feel achingly slow. Perhaps if you could use these initial pages to set up a couple of your later Circle of NPCs, the opening section might feel a little less weighed down, but Koriko's mechanics are so delicately set up that any change would probably throw a lot of other elements out. You may just have to bear with those opening pages, but Koriko is also very permissive about changing or even ignoring prompts that don't fit well, so it isn't much of a stretch to say that you could do one of each departure and travel day rather than two. It is well worth sticking with it, as once you reach the city, things begin to get more exciting. If you have even a passing interest in cozy solo RPGs with engaging mechanics and creative prompts, Koriko is a great choice. As long as you are able to make time and space for it in your life, it provides a rewarding narrative of community, connection and self-discovery. Pick up Koriko: A Magical Year from Mousehole Press to begin your adventure. This piece is based on a retail copy of the game purchased by the reviewer. The post Koriko: A Magical Year is a bewitching introduction to solo TTRPGs appeared first on Destructoid .
Role-Playing Games Archives – DestructoidJul 22
Top 10 DnD magic items to cause chaos in any campaign
Top 10 DnD magic items to cause chaos in any campaign Some of the best Dungeons & Dragons moments come out of solutions that nobody saw coming. Here's a list of the top ten magic items that turn one problem into a different, bigger problem. 10. Gambler's Blade ( Lost Laboratory of Kwalish ) Gamblers like to push their luck, and none more so than the adventurer wielding the Gambler's Blade. This sword gives a bonus between +1 and +3 to attack and damage rolls, which can be changed every dawn, but it also applies the same bonus to the wielder's death saving throws. On top of that, it has a curse on it that means a character won't want to part with it. The idea of throwing in an item that just sits there, quietly tempting a player without the GM having to say a word, is particularly delightful. 9. Nolzur's Marvelous Pigments ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) This is low on the list because it's very controllable, but nobody can deny that being able to create objects of up to 10,000 cubic feet in size is a dangerous power to put in the hands of excitable adventurers. Even with the restriction that the item cannot cost more than 25 gold pieces, that still leaves a lot of scope. 8. Bag of Devouring ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) What if there was a Bag of Holding, but it was actually the maw of an extradimensional monstrosity that will try to eat you if you stick your hand in? The most intriguing part of the Bag of Devouring's description is that any item placed inside that is not animal or vegetable matter is spat out on a random plane of existence. Suddenly, the campaign becomes a jaunt across the planes to recover that vital magic item you accidentally put inside an extradimensional monster. 7. Alchemy Jug ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) A staple of low-level treasure parcels for the chaotic GM, the Alchemy Jug produces a set amount of a liquid defined by the user. This might seem innocent enough, and acid or poison are doled out only in ounces, but the list of liquids is quite extensive and the amounts generous, including oil, vinegar, honey and beer. The orange and blue jugs from Candlekeep Mysteries add hot tea and soy sauce into the mix. Personally, I don't like to imagine what most of my adventuring parties would do with two gallons of mayonnaise. 6. Bag of Tricks ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) This innocuous-looking bag has only one thing in it: a small fuzzy object. As soon as a character throws the fuzzy object, it transforms into a random animal from a selection of animals. This creature is friendly, as long as you command it to do things, but as soon as you stop, it reverts to its nature and while it might like you, you might also end up with up to three giant elks or dire wolves trampling through the environment and chasing down local wildlife until the next dawn. 5. Dodecahedron of Doom ( Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage ) Anyone who starts throwing the Dodecahedron of Doom around is asking for trouble, but that's part of the fun! A great little item for those characters who like to chuck a magical grenade into a room and hope that everything will be fine, the Dodecahedron of Doom is a twelve-sided mechanical object that can heal, harm, or just glow. The Dodecahedron does not discriminate between friend and foe. Like the die the player rolls for the effect, the magic item cares not. 4. Ring of Three Wishes/Luck Blade ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) These items both give player characters access to the notoriously tricky spell, Wish. The Wish spell is a 9th level conjuration that gives very powerful options to player characters. They can negotiate for a larger Wish too, with greater negative consequences if it goes dramatically wrong. These items have the power to reshape reality and propel people through time, and any adventuring party worth their salt is going to use them for all they are worth. 3. Bag of Beans ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) This isn't your gran's Jack and the Beanstalk . This bag of 3d4 dried beans might look humble, but even one bean could reshape the entire landscape. Dumping the entire bag on the ground makes everything in a 10 foot radius explode with fire. The d100 table of random effects from planting any one bean includes a beer geyser, a massive pyramid containing a mummy lord and, of course, the classic beanstalk to the clouds with a cloud giant's castle at the top. It begs the question: what happens if you eat them? 2. Eye and Hand of Vecna ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) Artefacts of one of the most famous villains in all DnD , the Eye and Hand of the lich Vecna were all that were left after his climactic battle with his former ally Kas. Anyone who wishes to attune to these artefacts must replace their own hand and eye with Vecna's. Attuning to both body parts allows the bearer access to an impressive range of spells, plus fun extra benefits like access to the Wish spell every 30 days and the ability to turn people's skeletons to jelly. Such terrible power comes with a terrible price, however, as the hand and eye attempt to take control of the bearer every time they are used to cast a spell. 1. Deck of Many Things ( Dungeon Master's Guide ) Infamous as one of the most chaotic items in DnD , the Deck of Many Things is a deck of magical cards with the power to completely change a campaign's direction. The majority of these decks only have 13 cards, but some very special decks have 22. The most common decks of 13 cards still hold the power to change a character's destiny, from tangible rewards like experience points, unusual magic items and a single use of the Wish spell to terrible doom, like your soul being trapped in a soul jar in the possession of a powerful being. The storied 22-card decks can cause alignment shifts, additional levels, and even the ability to change one event in history so it never happened. The Deck of Many Things is a perfect way to shake things up in a stale campaign. The post Top 10 DnD magic items to cause chaos in any campaign appeared first on Destructoid .
Role-Playing Games Archives – DestructoidJul 22
Shadow of the Erdtree Is a Microcosm of Elden Ring’s Strengths and Weaknesses
Shadow of the Erdtree Is a Microcosm of Elden Ring’s Strengths and WeaknessesElden Ring is an incredible game that is not without its issues. Does Shadow of the Erdtree respond to these, or is it simply more Elden Ring? The post Shadow of the Erdtree Is a Microcosm of Elden Ring’s Strengths and Weaknesses appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 22
Dragon Age: The Veilguard’s Main Cast Revealed
Dragon Age: The Veilguard’s Main Cast RevealedEA and BioWare revealed the main cast for Dragon Age: The Veilguard. RPGamers will have four voice options for protagonist Rook, who will be joined by seven companions. The post Dragon Age: The Veilguard’s Main Cast Revealed appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 22
Wild West Dynasty’s Full Release Date Revealed
Wild West Dynasty’s Full Release Date RevealedMoon Punch Studio and Toplitz Productions announced the full release date for Wild West Dynasty. The title combining town-building simulation, adventure, and RPG is set to leave Early Access in August. The post Wild West Dynasty’s Full Release Date Revealed appeared first on RPGamer .
RPGamerJul 22