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So, I said I would talk about FFG’s new Star Wars Beginner Game awhile back. I’ve been out of the loop in the blogosphere for a few months, and I suspect this has already been done to death, but I wanted to give a bit of commentary on it from a player’s point of view.

I played through the Box Set adventure twice, once by myself and once with our old WFRP group. Since I’ve most recently been playing Vampire, my tactics were a bit different when by myself than when with the group; I ended up exploring quite a bit more and doing more RP than fighting. Still, the two experiences had some key similarities that reveal quite a bit about the system itself. I didn’t GM this, nor did I look extensively through the books. Star Wars is my husband’s specialty, and I’d never want to GM it for him because he’s the sort who knows that “they don’t have that kind of electronic lock on Tattooine” and so on. So fair warning: this isn’t a review from a GM’s point of view.

Production Value:
Like all FFG products, Star Wars has outstanding production value. Included are full-color premade character folios with a couple of levels of stats, a picture of the character, and the character’s history on the back. Lavish full-color maps of the city and starport also add quite a bit to the game, although the scale doesn’t accommodate minis well, if that’s the direction you want to head. I only gave a cursory flip-through to the books, but they seem just as lovely as everything else FFG creates, with lots of full-color images on every page. The colored, custom dice are high quality, as is the dice app, which we had to use because you can’t yet buy dice separately and we needed more than two sets to make a four-player game run smoothly. (To be fair, we’re quite a dice-greedy group; normal humans could probably just share.) The dice app includes some “fun” SW sound effects that are way too distracting for the gaming table, but it’s easy enough to turn down the sound on your phone.

dicephone

Adventure:
The included adventure cleverly introduces new players to the game. Each new encounter teaches you a bit more of the rules. By the end, you’ve mastered not only social and combat tactics, but you’ve also had a chance to try out space combat. Each section includes complete descriptions of the logic behind the rules so that the GM can explain to the players not only their options, but also how the game works from the GM’s side of the screen. It’s a neat idea that other games with unusual mechanics might consider.

Players have a clear goal with several obstacles that can be solved either through violence or wit, and there’s a section where the players can wander around the town and get into trouble they create if they wish. If you’ve spent your entire life under a rock and don’t know much about Star Wars, I fear for your sanity, but you’d get a pretty good introduction to the feel of the series from the adventure. The one thing that didn’t thrill me was the fact that the “wander about” section feels forced and mechanical since you’re supposedly running from a powerful enemy. Why would I take time to go window shopping with a crazy pursuer on my heels? Further, since there’s not a lot of ‘there’ to this adventure, so you’re unlikely to get into deep RP, but again, since this is an intro, that might not bother you.

Mechanics:
What can I say? It’s watered-down WFRP, but not necessarily in a bad way. FFG has removed the stance trackers, party sheet, cards, and the million fiddly tokens, which, in many ways, is a relief. (I know, I know. I defended those bits vehemently elsewhere on this blog and on the internet, but they annoyed even me after awhile.) You build dice pools in much the same way as in WFRP, adding ability dice and proficiency dice to represent your character’s core capabilities in an area, boost dice to show effects in the general area that would aid in his/her action, and difficulty, setback, and challenge dice to represent the NPCs and environmental factors that would oppose your action. Rolls then indicate successes and allow players and GMs to spend additional rolled points on other effects. As with WFRP, the system works well if you have a group that wants to narrate its own outcomes, because the dice give both players and GMs the flexibility to have a bit of wiggle room in their interpretation of events. The premade character sheets show you clearly what types of dice will make up your pool, so players can easily get everything ready before their GM adds difficulty/setback/challenge dice.

The Destiny Point tokens provide a nice mechanic for bonuses. Tokens begin either on the Light Side or Dark Side; players can use the tokens to give their abilities a boost when tokens are turned to the Light Side, but each time they use  a boost, they must flip the token to the Dark Side; then the GM has the ability to use the same boost for one of his rolls.

Overall, game play is pretty straightforward and streamlined. As I say, I think the system intends for players to narrate their successes and GMs to push back a little by narrative negatives, adding a dimension of gameplay around the negotiation of outcomes itself, although that’s not really how our group has played in the past, so it’s not how we played Star Wars.

Play:
Play went relatively smoothly for us, but then again, it should have gone relatively smoothly for us, since we were already familiar with WFRP. Our group playthrough skewed towards the silly, with one of our players deciding to change the medical droid’s background so that he had once been a sex droid. The Wookiee PC character invites all kinds of hilarious language barrier problems, so if you’re not up for that kind of hilarity, you might want to take that character off of the table. On the other hand, the SW universe invites that kind of silliness to a certain extent, so that tendency isn’t as game-breaking as it might be in another genre.

Missing From the Box:
There are no chargen rules in the Box, and the Bestiary only includes a handful of enemies. Having adapted a bunch of 2e WFRP before to FFG’s system, I suspect that NPC creation isn’t too hard; you can take material from other systems and pretty easily scale it for this edition, which my husband did when he added in a handful of encounters to the middle of the adventure. Not having the bestiary isn’t a big deal, then, especially if you have the old d20 Star Wars books and can crib from them. Chargen is a bit more of a problem. You could easily work out characters similar to those in the Box, but obviously there’d be no way to branch out to new skills.

Looking Forward:
FFG’s SW seems like a solid system with many of WFRP’s strengths and fewer of its bits. FFG has already released a longer adventure arc for the premade PCs that a GM could follow until the complete set comes out in April, so if your group eagerly wants to keep this rolling, it certainly can. The opening adventure felt a bit canned, but then again, all opening adventures feel a bit canned, and FFG’s main goal was to teach the system, not come up with a stellar storytelling experience. I haven’t taken a look at the rest of the existing story arc to see how it plays out. Having worked with the premade material for WFRP, I do know that FFG has a tendency to release uneven adventure content; GMs will find a few moments of utterly brilliant writing mired under a whole bunch of junk meant to justify new mechanics. On the other hand, perhaps Star Wars will remain free of some of that nonsense since FFG doesn’t seem to want to follow its earlier “buy lots of bits” strategy and therefore won’t have to use adventures to justify a million new mechanics.

I can certainly say that I’d be up for playing this system again, although I must admit that after playing Vampire, it felt really mechanics-focused. On the other hand, it’s hard to tell if that’s because of the system itself or because the designers wrote the first adventure to highlight the mechanics…or because practically anything might feel really mechanics-focused to me at this point.

Generally speaking, our V:tM Storyteller is Not Screwing Around. He’s pretty serious about keeping us wholly engaged, minimizing PC downtime, and delivering the evening’s story. This is, of course, in direct contrast to my WFRP3e GMing style, which consisted of large stretches of screwing around momentarily interrupted by occasional tidbits of focus. Of course, part of that has to do with the games themselves; the dark atmosphere of Vampire is way more likely to get ruined by rampant silliness, while WFRP has some silly built in. Plus, I was always having to rearrange the WFRP components, which, unfortunately, gave my PCs plenty of time to wander off track. Heh.

Since our ST generally does stay so focused and serious, though, it’s even more amusing when he says something hilarious. Here are a few awesome tidbits:

Sh*t Our Storyteller Says

(Before rolling a major damage roll against a PC named Marcus): “If it makes any difference, I really liked Marcus.”
“Oh! This is the best thing that could have happened! You are currently on fire.”
(Before describing a building we were about to enter): “I just want you guys to know that I did NOT do this. This is NOT my fault.”
(With genuine regret): “Am I gonna do something really mean right now? Yeah. I am.”

In other news, I got two little boxes of Chessex ten-siders for Christmas. Inexplicably, I didn’t have any purple d10s, which is obviously a situation that couldn’t continue. I honestly can’t think of the last time I had a set of all ten-siders; it must have

Same dice box I had in college, too. The ST used to rattle it when he wanted the group's attention.

Same dice box I had in college, too. The ST used to rattle it when he wanted the group’s attention.

been back in Chicago in the 90s, at that comic book store on the North Side. Moon-something, maybe? Can’t remember the name of it for the life of me. Turns out I had a handful of those Chessex V:tM dice in my box, too, which must have come from the same store. Either that, or they belonged to someone from our 90s campaign and wandered their way into my set. Hard to say. I have to admit that after playing so many FFG RPGs of late, it does feel a little weird to have standard dice–identical standard dice–in one’s dice bag.

Speaking of FFG RPGs, we are set to try out Star Wars today with a full party. We’ll see how it goes. I’m excited to see the pared-down mechanics from WFRP put to use with a full group. I have to admit that as much as I loved WFRP, combat did slow things down a lot, and playing Vampire has made me appreciate simplicity and speed of game mechanics. Ultimately, I’d much rather investigate than fight, though, but I’m not sure that FFG tends in those directions, even when the source material might make that more appropriate. Anyway, I’ll have a review up of that sometime in the near future.

Hope you’re all having a good weekend and are getting some gaming in!

So, that whole thing where I was going to update last weekend didn’t happen, largely because I had a massive headache on Sunday. Whether or not that was because of stress or because I sat in front of Mass Effect 3  multiplayer for five straight hours is up for grabs. I’m going to go with stress. Following that weekend, my workweek included four 15+ hour days in a row, but luckily, a broken water main in my city has rendered my place of work unusable, so I have today off! Huzzah!

Since I’ve been so busy, I haven’t had a lot of time to read RPG stuff, but there are two things that I might as well mention on this glorious, work-free Friday.

FFG announced its new Warhammer-themed RPG, Only War, focused on the Imperial Guardsman in the 41st Millennium. It doesn’t look like my thing, so much, since I primarily like the religious and fantasy elements of 40K, and this seems to be focused more on helmets, chains of command, and jungles, if the artwork and descriptions are any indicators. I’m not super interested in the romance and adventure of the military, so I doubt I’ll run this. Can’t say if I’ll pick it up, either, honestly, but we’ll see what the reviews say. (We all know, though, that if they put out a CE, I’ll be tempted.)

I’m not sure I follow FFG’s business model. Why are they churning out so many parallel rules systems dealing with slightly different iterations of the 40K universe (Rogue Trader, Black Crusade, Dark Heresy, and Death Watch)? Why would you not dedicate yourself to building a stronger fanbase for one or two of these products by introducing materials for conventions, instituting scenario competitions, or creating product for Free RPG day, then bolstering the line with many different scenarios? Why not put all of the additional types of play in supplements? I know I sound like one of the grumbling oldtimers here, but seriously…this seems a little flawed. I don’t really need a whole new set of ways to roll dice in the grim futuristic world. I need a set of things to do with the dice I already know how to roll.

Of course, I’m sure that FFG has a market analyst who tells them that creating different systems is the most lucrative way to milk GW’s IP, and who am I to argue with a professional? I mean, after all, having the professional assistance of the suits at Hasbro definitely helped WotC and the D&D line. Oh, wait…

The real problem with my going to the FFG website to worry about their marketing strategy, though, is that I find out problematic information like the fact that there’s a CE of Deathwatch that I missed. An awesome CE with chains on it. I need a CE of Deathwatch like I need another hole in my head, but let’s face it: it has chains on it. Who can resist chains?! Plus, my Black Crusade CE looks rather lonely on the mantelpiece.

For all my griping about output, though, I have to say that Warhammer’s fan base continues to amaze me with its high-quality and thoughtful submissions for play. I’ll talk a bit about some fan-based offerings in my next post, but for now, I’m going to get to a place that has running water.

So, FFG now offers a POD Dreadfleet-themed NPC expansion for WFRP 3e, Legends of the Warhammer High Seas. As usual in the Warhammer FRP fandom, some people immediately experienced searing chest pains because this is a “shameless corporate tie-in” and, you know, Warhammer is the Bible and Jesus action figures are sacrilegious. Or something.

I’m being snarky, but I do get the criticism. Is this a rather gimmicky marketing attempt to get some crossover love between minis gamers and WFRP fans? Sure. Is it a necessary or even particularly useful item for most GMs? Not at all. Will it be awkward to stick these NPCs in the middle of most WFRP campaigns? Of course, especially since the Captains skew towards higher-fantasy content than a lot of the rest of the WFRP canon. Will the product make ridiculous completist fangirls like me rush out and buy it in a frenzy of “gotta catch ’em all” in a way that makes 1e/2e players cringe? Yep, although to tell the truth, I’m a bit behind on my WFRP-purchasing fanaticism at the moment.

All that being said, though, I think a good GM could use these cards for some excellent crossover gaming if his group plays both RPGs and board games. I’d arrange the sessions something like this:

Let your players pick boats via a lottery system or somesuch; I’d probably let a player who had contributed a lot of intangibles or gotten a lot of kudos for RP in my main campaign pick first. Give everyone a week to read the background for his captain and the rules of the game. Play the “one player per boat” variation of the Dreadfleet game. Document what happens to each boat over the course of the session.

Now go back and pick a boat that played a particularly dramatic role in the battle. A GM might choose the winning ship, or he might choose the ship that got destroyed near a rock, leaving its passengers adrift in the ocean. Did the crew make it to that rock, or did they get devoured by sea creatures? With your play-by-play of the “big picture” from the Dreadfleet session, set up a one-off or a couple of one-off sessions in which your players roleplay through what happened on one or two of the ships. What was it like for that captain and his crew during the sea battle? What occurred before the ship sailed? If the ship and crew survived, what happened afterwards? Perhaps they experienced something even more horrifying than the ferocious sea battle itself!

Now, here’s the thing: your players will already know the outcome of this particular scenario, since they ‘lived’ it the session before. If you have a group that loves to enact character drama, the chance to act out what happened behind-the-scenes might make for enough fun to keep them busy. If you’ve got a more tactical or puzzle-oriented group, give them a secondary objective. Sure, they “know” (on a meta-game level) that their ship will eventually sink, but they’ve got to save MacGuffin X before it does. Alternately, you might have the chosen captain experience the Dreadfleet session as a dream, and the players must work hard to keep the tide of battle moving in the right direction. Players react differently when they think they know the outcome of a story, and a skilful GM can use that to his advantage as he plans the session. Surprise excites players even more when they don’t expect it. You’ll also get to delight some players by allowing them to play high-level NPCs as PCs; in fact, I would envision breaking up the retelling of the story into short “chapters,” letting a different player take the role of the captain in each chapter so that everyone gets a chance to play a badass.

Either way, I see this expansion as a way for players to experience a different aspect of the WFRP universe in their storytelling. It won’t present quite the same level of oppressive misery as the majority of traditional WFRP scenarios in which PCs have to slog through knee-deep manure in the freezing rain while being chased by orcs and carrying a small child who might turn into a chaos beast at any moment, but let’s face it…any Warhammer GM worth his salt can find a way to make the PCs miserable on a boat.

GM hall of fame, by the way, goes to anyone who can work a Chaos-tainted nautical-themed pashmina afghan into his scenario.

I generally stick to covering RPG games and accessories, but I’m going to make a tiny exception this once to cover something that doesn’t really fit into any other category. Still, it’s kind of an RPG, so I figure I can get away with covering it. (I also figure I can get away with covering it because I’m not going to fire myself as a writer, especially since I work for no pay.)

I want to talk for a second about the awesome Zombies, Run! app for the iPhone. As you’ve probably guessed, I buy a lot of apps. About 70% of them are versions of other apps, and another 25% are copies of something that existed before the iPhone. This falls into that last 5%–something truly unique; an RPG for runners, where you “level up” by completing mileage.

As you run, this app tells you the story of a world beset by zombies; people in a “safe city” radio instructions and information to you about the world and its inhabitants. When they’re not speaking, the app returns you to your playlist, neatly set into the story world as a radio station playing the few motley tracks still left over after everything collapsed. During the radio running sections, you pick up items that flash up on your screen or that you can check out at the end of your run. When you’ve finished your run (or your “mission,” for each run sends you out to do something for the city,) you can give the items you’ve found to the various institutions in the city to strengthen them against the zombie hordes.

If you’re feeling particularly good about your running prowess, you have the option of adding a speed training element with zombie rushes. The game will then make you speed up when you get close to a swarm of the undead in the story. if you’re in traffic or just don’t want to do the speed training, though, you can turn that option off and run at a steady pace.

The game tracks pace and distance via GPS, or it can use an accelerometer if you’re on a treadmill. The treadmill seemed fairly accurate; the GPS was a bit generous compared to my Nike GPS. The company that’s created the app promises eventual support for RunKeeper for those of us who obsessively track runs. (Personally, I’d like to see Nike+ support, but I know how stingy Nike is about its platform, so I’m not going to hold my breath.)

One of the neatest things about this app is that it tries to remain polite at all times; if you’re playing your own music as you run, it attempts to wait until a track is done before breaking in with more story. If a track is particularly long, it does pause it to speak, but for your average-length song, the app tries hard to let you finish before it kicks back into the narrative. Further, unlike apps like Nike+, the voices don’t play over the music; the program stops the music altogether so that you can concentrate on what’s going on.

The writers have created a compelling story (at least from the bits I’ve heard,) and the voice acting seems quite solid, so it’s easy to be immersed in the world they’ve created. Most importantly, while you do feel a firm sense of urgency about the world that pushes you to go on, there’s no “jump out and scare you” element to the presentation that might cause you to trip or smash into a tree. (Okay, maybe YOU wouldn’t smash into a tree, but I might.)

If you’re prepping for a zombies campaign or for a marathon, this might just do the trick to get you in the mood. It’s an odd little creation, but I hope it will get copied by other companies. Personally, I’d love to see GW or FFG put out a Space Marine version. Nothing’s more inspirational than imagining that Nurgle is on your heels, really.

Well, my Black Crusade Collector’s Edition showed up today in the mail. I was tempted to take pictures of it during my lunch hour, but I decided to hold off until the end of the day. That was a good call, since I got some irritating news at the end of the day, but this awesome little trinket turned my bad mood around.

Typical unboxing pics:

The case is a lightweight yet substantive resin. It’s not at all flimsy or poorly made, but it doesn’t make the book hard to lift, either. Quite nicely done.

The detailing on the case is awesome! Just check out this chipper little worm crawling his way out of the filth on the cover:

The book itself is heavy, bound in a sturdy red leatherette with gilt edges and a big ribbon bookmark.

The interior of the book includes FFG’s trademark full-color and wonderful art direction. Here’s the inside cover:

I’m actually pleased that the Writ of Execution is firmly attached to the inside of the book. Now I don’t have to figure out what to do with it. Was I supposed to frame it? Give it to my mom to hang at her house? Put it on the wall at work? I’ll just leave it in the book, then.

All in all, it’s a delightful purchase. (Am I allowed to call something about the forces of Chaos “delightful”?) As I said before, I’m not sure we’ll play this system with the RAW, but I am interested in the fluff included in the book. They’ve done a great job with the detail on the slipcase, and the book itself is a step above FFG’s already high production value. This probably won’t go down in history as my most useful RPG purchase, but it looks pretty cool on our mantlepiece.

Between my illness and the work-related demands of this time of year, I find myself stuck with a gigantic stack of paper to review this weekend. In great detail. So I’m a bit too swamped to blog much at the moment.

Nevertheless, I have two quick things:

1) The FFG store tells me that my Black Crusade Collector’s Edition shipped yesterday! Hooray! I’ll post pics as soon as I get it. (I have plans for that fluff; I certainly do. I have almost no plans for the ruleset itself, which I plan on dumping ASAP.)

2) I assume most of you are aware of the sheer awesomeness of Radio Rivendell, but just in case you aren’t, there it is. I tend to listen to it while I’m working–it’s going to get a lot of listen from me this weekend, in fact. But I also tend to keep a paper and pen handy so I can jot down musical titles that I think will be useful for my games. Among other songs, the station plays quite a bit of soundtrack music from TV shows, movies, and video games, so it’s a good way to get your hands on tracks that might work for you without having to sift through a list of iTunes previews which might not give the flavor of the whole track. The station also hosts some surprising music that’s off the beaten path, so you’ll hear all sorts of interesting pieces you won’t find on iTunes/Amazon or at your local store, but you can often order those albums directly from their creators. I tend to listen on my iPad with Tunemark because the app allows you to save a list of the music you want to remember, although I’m sure many other apps do the same. Listening to Rivendell gives me the chance to stop and prep for my game while doing respectable, rent-paying work! Score!

At any rate, I hope to see you midweek when my BCCE arrives. Until then, have a good weekend! I’ll be trying to shove aside thoughts of my Skaven game so that I can get some “real” work done. (And incidentally, if you have other thoughts about how to sneak in RPG prep during work time, I’d love to hear them.)

I’ve been too swamped at work this week to have thought about RPGs much, unfortunately. Here’s the news from my end of the earth:

#1: Like everyone in the whole world, I want one of these. The ePawn is just awesome, and I’m glad they’re keeping the price down so that it’s within reach of many gamers. If you haven’t seen the ePawn in action, do go look at the videos on their website; it’s definitely an interesting product.

I’m also hoping that the fact that they use Mansions of Madness in some of the promo materials means that they’re working out some deals with FFG.

#2: Speaking of FFG, I’m a little miffed that we haven’t heard anything about the release date for the Black Crusade Collector’s Edition. I ordered that thing, oh, I don’t know, about a bazillion years ago, and there’s been no word for months about its release date. I guess it turns out that it’s going to be “sometime in February,” but for such a pricey item, it’d be nice if they were a bit more forthcoming about how they’re calculating release date schedule. Oh, well. It’s FFG. I can stay mad at them until I go to their website, then I see their great art direction and end up forgetting what was making me mad in the first place.


 
 

NOTE: Recently, people have been asking how WFRP3e looks to people now that the game has been around for a couple of years. This is the first part of my response to that question.

Anyone who’s ever looked at third edition Warhammer FRP knows it’s a game with a lot of stuff. Piles of cards in multiple sizes track abilities, wounds, corruptions and party skills. Larger placard cards describe your character class, track the party tension, serve as maps, and sometimes contain pregen player handouts. Cardboard standees accompany the boxed sets to take the place of miniatures. Cardboard puzzle pieces snap together to represent your PC’s emotional control during battle. Small triangle-shaped tokens adorned with a cheerful little skull icon track…well, a bunch of junk, really. Top it all off with little paper character sheets and a bazillion colored dice for good measure.

Many of 3e’s angriest critics go completely insane over the sheer mass of stuff. They accuse 3e of being a board game. They have meltdowns about the fact that you can’t play while camping in a remote, rustic location in the mountains during a rainstorm. They claim that their friends will spill beer on a crucial component and ruin the whole expensive set. One or two even hysterically claim that no table exists that can hold all of FFG’s ephemera.

More reasonable critics point out that tracking so much stuff takes up too much time and distracts players from immersing themselves fully in the story; after all, if you’re busy moving your fortune tokens around and checking the Party Tension sheet to see whether your characters have moved from “Aggravated” to “Terribly Irritated By the Sound of Each Other’s Voices,” you might actually miss the excellent nuance as the GM sets the scene. It can get even worse if you are the GM and miss the scene altogether because you were busy moving the token one more space on the Party Tension track to “Passive Aggressively Making Jokes about Each Other’s Clothing.”

Despite the fact that WFRP boxes take up an inordinate amount of space in our tiny apartment, I can say that I really don’t think I’d like WFRP3e nearly as much without all of its bits. That’s not because I use all that junk–I’m far too scatterbrained to keep up with the basic necessities of a campaign, much less hundreds of additional data points. Generally, I pick and choose what I’ll use for each session, and then I promptly forget to track half of the things I so thoughtfully chose. Each time I open a supplement, though, and I see the new tracking stuff–because there’s always new tracking stuff–I find myself drawn into deeply considering elements of game design. I take out the items, look at them carefully, read all the details, turn all the bits over in my hands, and shuffle them about on the table for a bit. Many of them go back into their boxes and never get used. Some of them come out for one or two sessions in which they seem particularly useful, then go back again until they’re needed. A few become a constant part of our play.

Ultimately, though, I’d say that all of the stuff ends up making me a better GM. I may not choose to use the additional rules and details, but they give me options and remind me of new ways to challenge my players. I tend to learn better when I see and can manipulate a visual representation of an abstract idea, so the physical objects mean that I understand the supplementary rules far better than I would if they were thrown into charts or exhaustively detailed lists like in so many d20 books. I come away feeling that I fully comprehend the new rules’ implications for my campaign, and I’m also more likely to be able to tweak, change, shape, and rewrite those rules for my own stories–or make a solid choice to ignore them because I know that they won’t help my party’s particular play style or in-game goals.

If I have to look at something nitpicky and unattractive like this, I @#$%ed well want to be getting paid to do it.

Many people wring their hands about the advent of these “hybrid” RPGs because they claim they’ve dumbed down systems that they’ve loved for years. I think not. They’re just delivering the same material in a different way. Fortunately or un-, it may mean that people whose modes of learning were already privileged by the hobby are suddenly finding these rulesets frustrating to use, which can seem particularly alienating when the franchise is an old standard like WPRP. I’d argue, though, that such changes keep the hobby alive and well. They bring in new types of players and GMs who add perspectives to our habits of collective storytelling. Since our hobby is about experiencing narratives from new viewpoints, the more viewpoints we can include, the better. There probably won’t be room for all types of players at your gaming table (especially if it’s already crammed with 3e stuff!), but if new types of players out write supplements, contribute to forums, and give their feedback on game design, we’ll end up with a richer tapestry of both fluff and crunch to inform our own storytelling.

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