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Would you take a look at our article list this issue. What is it with these guys? Structure from Patrick, how to play and enjoy useless characters from Scott, and more structure from Antoine... and I'm not talking about dungeons with nice architraves either. Fortunately Alex comes to the rescue with a piece about Vampire Munchkins from Hell and then he spoils it with some reasonable advice about 'taking it seriously'.
Taking it seriously! Has all the spontaneous stupidity gone out of RPGs? Did we suddenly get old, throw away all our Zodiac Mindwarp and the Love Reaction albums and get the Simply Red back catalogue?
Where are the square corridors with pleasant indirect lighting, dragons in caverns with tiny exits and no room service and 10' square chambers, with the bravest orc in the world? He stands there, armed with a small spoon, against 6 homicidal maniacs armed with Vorpal Shields, Codpieces of Towering Strength and many Nouns of Verbing to defend a small tub of peanut butter for 2 copper pieces and only one beating a week. He will not flinch in his duty, nor turn from any punishment that the Player Character, for it is obviously them, will dish out.
This is more than can be said for the players who will whine at the slightest loss of hit points, having to make a saving throw or pay for the pizza.
To prove my educated (in a Reader's Digest kind of way) credentials I'd like to throw in a couple of quotes here. Everyone knows Aristotle 'the unexamined life is not worth living' and then there is Alex Trocchi, Scotland's only beat writer, who said, in relation to the modern worker, subjected to the pap of mainstream entertainment, 'he is the victim of leisure, not its master. Restless, passive with few vital inner resources and little creative doubt, he has to be amused [...] as a customer of amusement...'
Apparently Scotland is a land where only men work, the women knit shortbread or something, but back to my point.
And my point is, many of us who have been roleplaying for a while have opened our eyes and stopped being just 'customer(s) of amusement'. We don't want the rush for experience points, the blind accumulation of magical McGuffins, the domination of numbers over characterisation.
As Scott puts it, 'competence is overrated'. There is much worth in playing the gooner, the looser, the fall guy. There is more to be had in being an Avenger Penguin (Pingüinos Voladores for all you Spanish Speakers) than Quantum Mechanic and the Spanner of Justice, or the Tick rather than Superman, for all you American folks. These dudes have character. And that's the whole point of having a Player Character isn't it?
Still for those of you who enjoy the smell of napalm in the morning, I recommened Robin Law's new epic game of competitive role playing, Rune. It's a Man's world in Viking Scandinavia.
SCIENCE FICTION ARMY PACKS FOR BUDGET BATTLEFIELD
MicroTactix Games has released several new downloadable Science Fiction Army Packs for the Budget Battlefield tabletop miniatures system. These sets of downloadable cardstock standup figures come in PDF format, allowing purchasers to print as large an army as they want on any inkjet or laser printer. The sets include both infantry and vehicle packs for human Power Armor Troopers and their alien enemies, the hard-shelled Shee'Tok Legion! They are available in black and white and also, for the first time, in full color versions!
CHEAP FOLKS FANTASY HEROES #1 for any fantasy RPG
Create unlimited standup hero figures for use with any fantasy RPG with the new Cheap Folks Fantasy Heroes #1. Artist Rick Hershey has created 81 fantasy heroes in black-and-white, featuring fighters, mages, clerics, thieves, paladins and more. Humans, elves, dwarves, halflings and even half-orc characters are represented in the mix.
NEW BUDGET BATTLEFIELD SF and FANTASY ARMIES
MicroTactix Games announces the release of the second in a series of four Color SF Army Superpacks for use with their Budget Battlefield miniatures game. The Steel Dragons Mercenary Troop features army unit standups and unit cards for several types of power armor infantry plus a variety of 3D combat vehicle kits -- all in the Steel Dragons' distinctive metallic gray/blue livery. Pit this mercenary force against the Fighting 53rd battalion or the Shee'Tok Legion sets already available. Each set sells for only $14.00 US, and can be purchased in PDF format by immediate download.
D20 WORLD SETTING DINOSAUR PLANET: BRONCOSAURUS REX SCHEDULED FOR NOVEMBER RELEASE
San Francisco, CA - Goodman Games is pleased to announce that its new d20-compatible world setting, Dinosaur Planet: Broncosaurus Rex, will be released in November 2001. Featuring cover art by professional paleontological artist Walter Stuart, the 96-page core rulebook will retail for $20. Supplements will follow in 2002.
Our site has the latest release schedule and text descriptions for Troll Lord Games. Some key products include a D20 adventure by Gary Gygax, in addition to a D20 adventure by his two sons Ernie & Luke!
LAND OF OG (WNT2200, $9.95, ISBN# 1-929474-50-4)(second printing) is now available. Land of Og was just recently listed out of stock, and should now be changed to available in all retailer systems and consumer's minds!
LAND OF OG (second printing) is now a 64 page, digest-sized, perfect bound book that continues prehistoric role playing in a world of limited words and unlimited fun!
GAMEPLAY DEMO CD SET TO LAUNCH A FREE HOBBY GAME DEMO DISC
July 18, 2001 - Impressions Advertising & Marketing and Lone Wolf Development announced today a joint partnership to produce the GamePlay Demo CD, a free hobby game demo disc for consumers.
Demos have become required for the success of any software title in the computer game industry. GamePlay parallels this model by putting hobby game demos into the hands of thousands of consumers through distributor and retailer partners.
GamePlay will contain a variety of free playable demo game materials; quickstart rules, card games, tabletop games, mini-modules and much more. GamePlay is not a magazine on disc, it is purely a game demo CD where consumers can grab fully playable game demos from the hobby game marketplace --- all for free!
Contact Aldo Ghiozzi at mailto:email@example.com for additional information.
Earth's mightiest heroes have vanished but the nastiest, foulest villains to ever walk the planet remain. Now only you stand between Earth and total destruction and all you can do is...TARGET VOMIT?!? STUPERPOWERS DELUXE! is the all-new, fully-revised, second-edition version of the RPG in which you play a superhero endowed with silly,useless, and downright gross superpowers, sent into battle with the only slightly less ridiculous forces of evil. SPD is jam-packed with 100 fully playable powers, the all-new character advancement rules, a full-length, four-adventure campaign, Live-Action rules, and the kid-tested, mother-approved INSTAVENTURES! Random Scenario Generation system! Full color cover, 112 page comic book sized, perfect bound book that does not require the original StuperPowers to play.
WILD WEST ADVENTURE
The Wild West is coming alive pardner...in d20 style even. So strap on your six-guns and get ready for some hair-raisin' adventure.
Mosey along to www.citizengames.com for some preview materials; including character sheets, character classes, feats, skills and equipment --- everything you need to take a d20 campaign into the wild west!
Sabertooth Games is a new company that will be producing the Warhammer 40,000 Collectible Card Game. We have frequent updates, artwork, an FAQ, and a downloadable version of the basic rules, along with some "dummy" cards.
SACK ARMIES AVAILABLE NOW; DOWNLOAD BATTLEMAT; FULL RULES!
Tyranny Games and Precedence Studios are pleased to announce that their new hexagonal tabletop battle game, Sack Armies: Expeditionary Force, is now available from all major distributors. On the heels of its extremely successful debut at Origins (four tournaments and hundreds of successful demos) and its recent in-store demo tour, Sack Armies: Expeditionary Force leaps into stores this week. Do not miss this exciting new fantasy game where you customize not only your army, but the actual field of battle. No Dice, No Board, No Mercy.
Sack Armies is a game for 2-6 players ages 8 and up. Players become Generals and choose their armies from diverse races including the haughty Fey Court, the resilient human Empire, the brutal Scourge Orcs, the dark Nether Sisters, and the reptilian Shazari. Sack Armies: Expeditionary Force consists of 120 individual collectible game tokens and will be sold in Army Packs (containing 42 tokens and a Sack) and Reinforcement Packs (containing 18 tokens).
Available (free!) in Adobe Acrobat format are the Sack Armies Downloadable Battlemat Trainer and the Full Sack Armies Rules. The Battlemat Trainer is a simple hex gridwhich should provide an excellent tool for in store demonstrations and new players alike. The Full Rules are also now available and can be downloaded along with the Trainer Set to get a cleaner feel for play.
Due to overwhelming worldwide customer demand Grinning Goblin Adventures Inc., has announced today that all their materials will be available in printed and bound copy through mail order as of July 30th 2001.All of our products will be available at the same price as our electronic versions.
Akrasia, Thief of Time by David Chart (Privilege and Power: The Rosicrucian Sourcebook) and Wonders Out of Time by Kevin Wilson (7th Sea) shipped to distributors last month. You should be seeing copies on your retailers shelves as we speak. Our initial sales were very promising, and the expansion plans for Eden Odyssey continue in full force.
A third book, Secret of the Ancients by CJ Carella (WitchCraft, Armageddon, etc.), has nearly completed playtesting. Look for an October release.
Liber Bestarius now has 47 creatures and continues to grow. From the Dactyl (one of many new PC races), to the Syft (one of the new familiars), to the Razor Fiends (among the nastier demons), to the doll-like, but deadly Poppot, this book has it all. We should start final edit and layout shortly. Also slated for October release.
The buzz has started on the two new d20 books. Waysides: The Book of Taverns will present over 30 detailed inns and taverns ready to drop into your campaign world. Everything from the smallest hostel, to massive hotels with over 100 rooms! Fields of Blood: The Book of War provides everything you need to rule a nation, raise an army, and assault your enemies on the battlefield. With rules governing anything from small keeps to vast nations, your character can now be a hero both in the dungeon and on the battlefield. Several folks have contacted us specially to work on the Book of War, and even more exciting, a couple of manufacturers are interested in working on follow-up material. Not bad for a book still in the concept stages . . .
HACK! is at press. The one hold-up is a change in the deck displays. At the recommendation of our printer, we have expanded the display from 5 decks (one of each) to 10 decks (two of each). The new ordering information may be found at www.edenstudios.net/retailersupport.html . This change does not affect those interested in purchasing individual decks. Given the change in the displays, we are looking at a late August/early September release of this kick-butt game.
If you like, check out the rule book for HACK! online at www.edenstudios.net/HACK/hackrulebook.pdf .
Eden is proud to announce the Book of All Flesh, an AFMBE anthology, for release October 2001. The Book of All Flesh is edited by James Lowder and will be 320 pages, trade paperback original for $15.95 US (ISBN: 1-891153-87-0). The flesh-eating stories include "Dust Bowl" by C. Dean Andersson, "Susan" by Robin D. Laws, "Prometheus Unwound" by Matt Forbeck, "One Last, Little Revenge" by Ed Greenwood, "Scenes from a Foreign Horror Video, With Zombies and Tasteful Nudity" by Mark McLaughlin, "Electric Jesus and the Living Dead" by Jeremy Zoss, and many more.
The buzz has also started on the upcoming AFMBE Spanish translation. Brought to you by the great game makers at Edge Entertainment, the game has really started affecting folks over on the Iberian Peninsula. Jose Rey sent over a nice collection of pictures showing how serious it has gotten. Check them out at fansite. It all happened at CLN Tierra de Sueños, in Ponferrada (Leon), from 21 to 24 in June. Another Zombie presentation (attack) will take place on the 1st of November in a convention called Ecares 2001 in Santander. Beware!
Eden has worked up some new AFMBE merchandise. Check out the new AFMBE logo hats and tote bags. We even have "Got Flesh?" boxer shorts. That's just rude... See it all at cafepress.
The AFMBE demo pack is now available at www.edenstudios.net/retailersupport.html . Look it up, print it out, gather some friends and give this flesh-crawling gaming sensation a shot. You won't regret it (well, maybe not much . . . ).
Fistful o' Zombies by Shane Hensley (of Deadlands RPG fame) is in final edit. The book is scheduled for release toward the end of the year.
Check out more at www.allflesh.com.
CJ CARELLA'S WITCHCRAFT
The Chronicler's Screen has made it to the printer. Given that the screen and the booklet are being printed at separate facilities, it will take at least 6 weeks to get this baby done. Expect it to arrive at your retailer in late August/early September. More information on this book, as well as images of the screen can be found at Eden Studio's website.
CJ Carella and I have finished the edit and revisions for Armageddon. Now the game moves on to layout and art. As the game covers many levels, from a struggle for survival of regular folks to cataclysmic battles between ancient powers, the rules stretch across a great deal of ground. This is shaping up as the definitive Unisystem publication. Whether you plan to play a True Immortal, an Inheritor, a Nephelim, a Kerubim, an Avatar, one of the Seraphim, a god-like Incarnate or just a plain old magically Gifted human, as they say in the commercial "it's in there." Further, the book will be huge and hardcover.
LOOKING FOR HELP
If you are running a con somewhere on Earth, or are just looking for someone to demo Eden's products, let us know (firstname.lastname@example.org). We will pass on your info and also announce the demo opportunity here! Also, we will provide prize support for your events. As always, we will keep you posted on Eden events at www.edenstudios.net/conventions.
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