Friday, October 8, 2010

Quick hits: wots all this then?

Since I have yet to construct a light box despite owning tracing paper, I haven't taken pictures of the stuff I've been diligently working on. So, its time for another bunch of (extremely) quick hits as a lead in into some RPG discussion.

1) Tyranid FAQ Blues - I'm really tired of hearing about how the FAQ nerfed everything to hell.  Yes, we all get it the Mycetic Spore stuff rulings are complete ass.  As for the hive commander issue, I don't see why people are so upset - the writing was on the wall when the IG FAQ came out.  So, do yourself a favor next time and just go ahead and automatically assume that reserve bonuses wont stack unless explicitly stated.

pictured: Tyranid players
2) Plague Bearer Progress - I've got 15 done (in three color schemes, no less) all the way to varnishing.  I've got another 5 on the table that should be done this weekend.  Progress has been good for the most part with the exception that one of my color scheme gradients had too much distance between shades and ended up needing a lot more work than anticipated.

3)  New Fire Prism Kit - I broke one of these out of the back-log to start getting it ready for painting.  It should prove to be a good change of pace from the daemons and ensure that the Eldar project stays alive.  Mostly, I just wanted to mention how cool the new kit is.  The turret is pretty ingenious in its construction and kick-ass looking.  Function + form.  Truly, a well designed upgrade.

4)  RPG Content - As stated, I'm pretty excited about this.  I haven't quite figured out what to do with the re-telling of the various sessions in order to avoid them being the droning boredom that RPG accounts can devolve into.  I also plan on notifying UglyRaincoat and VanMetal so I can get them in on the comments section.

With that...
------[Bonus RPG Content]------

So beyond knowing that my buddies and I started a campaign, you don't know much.  I think a big part of getting to know a campaign and the characters in it is getting to know a little about the group of people playing.  If you actually want to get a sense of how the game 'feels' and where the energy is coming from, you need to know more than what you get out of a boring re-telling of a story that you're audience has no context for outside of game mechanics and source books.

I think I'll start that process off by first talking about the real-life relationships of the players involved - without going into excruciating detail.  First up, and this is key, the four of us (Lauby, Dethtron, UglyRaincoat and VanMetal) are all very good friends.  Have been for years - over a decade in many cases.  That tends to weigh pretty heavily on the whole group dynamic.  Many of the social boundries and expectations have already been established well in advance.  Its nice and easy to slip back into our gaming patterns since no new relationships are forming. This is the kind of thing that allows for some really great moments of character interaction as we're aren't also trying to learn how to interact with each other as real people.  It also means that parts of the game move very fast as we have a kind of shared RPG language that streamlines the game.  On the other hand, it means we shoot the shit a lot before we actually role some dice and that the occasional disastrous things is taken for granted - usually to hilarious consequences.

Good luck getting this reference.
That bit about expectations is super-duper important.  An campaign can quickly be destroyed if the group doesn't mesh.  And its not just expectations about the game itself - combat frequency, difficulty, open-endedness, setting and the like.  It extends to the environment you play in as well... how much table talk is accepted (a lot, for us), how much beer is it OK to consume in a session (more than is healthy) and how much of an intrusion of real-life is acceptable (also a lot).

I've seen a ton of groups disintegrate because there was too much of a disconnect between two parts of the group.  Usually, between the game master and the players.  But I've also seen issues between veteran-players and new players as well as the amazing capacity one stranger in the group has to derail things.  The bummer is, that no matter how much of this can be avoided with good communication, sometimes you just can't fix these things.  Especially if its a personality problem.

Luckily for us, we had most of this nailed down.  I think next time I'll hit you all up with what we were aiming for in this campaign.  Til next time!


  1. the rpg content stuff sounds much like some groups I play with- we know each other well enough to get away with killing, but not murder (it makes sense to us).

    Looking forward to hearing more!

  2. I'm in your comments!

    RPGing across the nets has its pros and cons. I'd definitely rather play face to face (especially for all the player character interactions) but the value of good company more than balances the equation.

  3. Played DH a couple times, but that's the extent of my RPG career. Looks like fine, just need a group that fits my schedule.

    I had a Spod army and I'm sad about the FAQ. No +2 to reserves combined with no Primes joining squads just killed it for me.

  4. Elitist bastards, I wanna play!

    Chrome, chrome, chrome, moar chrome!

    went from playing with the same "core" group for 8+ years around the same table to now doing it from 300 miles away.

    Totally know what your saying laubs. We picked up a "new" player to the group who we had known for a couple years, but had never played D&D with, and it just didn't work out. He couldn't adapt to our massive amount of OOC blabber and table-tactics.

    Then again, I've been in a few games where there was no OOC talking and barely any dice being rolled.

  5. Then again, I've been in a few games where there was no OOC talking and barely any dice being rolled.

    I've run my fair share of those, and then some, and I've been that One Damn Player who just doesn't click with other groups (out-of-character blather doesn't bother me enormously, but drawn-out every-option-considered combat encounters are not my bag at all). I'm resolved to make the next game less about the intense drama studentry and more about the encounters and tactics; it's not good to be locked into one style of play to the exclusion of others.

    Right with you on the RPG blogs as well. I could talk about roleplaying a lot on GAME OVER (one for the new readers), but I don't know if anyone bar me would be interested...