Jun 2, 2024


This week I read:

Roleplaying Games

I picked up a few new games this week:

I’ve not played any of them yet, but I have been reading Starforged, and will hopefully get to start a co-op game of that in the near future.

The Halls of Arden Vul

Another single-player session this week, with the other player away at EMF Camp for the weekend.

This week the party went to check out a room they found on a map taken from the body of a dead adventurer labelled “one of the mysteries?” and—very unluckily—had half the party killed by a magical effect. Oh well. On the bright side, the dead party members were all relatively new retainers, so we hadn’t developed any emotional bonds yet…

I may have permanently scared the players away from a cool room.

Then followed a period of impromptu downtime, to go back to town and recruit some new retainers. One neat thing Arden Vul has is that, for each faction, it says roughly how many members there are and how quickly they can replace losses. Maybe I need to start tracking that for the retainer population…

But then things did take a turn for the better. Thanks to a well-executed plan, a tough monster was dealt with at no risk to the party, and they made off like bandits with the contents of a magical laboratory and earned more gold than they had in weeks.

Previously, they’d found this laboratory guarded by a hostile slime monster: so what they did was buy a lot of ingested poison, and a fresh pig carcass, and then stuff the carcass with the poison; they then dumped it outside the room, made a loud noise to attract the slime, ran away, and waited for the noises to stop.

This is the sort of creative thinking that I like to see. They could have just fought the slime, but they knew it was a tough opponent which could dissolve armour. So they found a way around it instead. I don’t mind handing out an automatic victory in cases like that.


I joined a Pathfinder group about 6 months ago and, while it’s not really my preferred system it was still fun enough. Our campaign ended a few weeks ago so we’ve been getting ready for the next one: Kingmaker, one of the big campaigns. I was quite looking forward to it, I and one of the other players were going to be kobolds, it was going to be fun…

Then I submitted my character sheet and the GM and I had a big argument about stats.

Sure, my character wasn’t perfect. They could have been more optimal, but they weren’t incompetent. I wasn’t sabotaging the group. I’d made a character I thought would be fun—I even went to the effort of finding some character art, which I don’t normally do—so to have an hours long argument about specific choices of modifiers, culminating in the GM saying they simply wouldn’t accept the character, really took the fun out of it.

So I left the group.

What makes it particularly frustrating is that I bought the Pathfinder rulebook just a few days previously. I figured that since we were about to start something new, I should finally pick it up rather than making do with online reference material. But now I have this thing I’m never going to use, just a reminder of an argument.


Earlier today I picked up Against the Storm, a kind of roguelike city-builder where you need to build a succession of cities to complete objectives which get you experience points to spend on a variety of upgrades, and periodically all the cities get wiped out by the eponymous storm. The aim is to, through getting upgrades, build better and better cities and ultimately drive back the storm.

I’m only a few hours into it but I like it so far. I do tend to obsess over and then burn out on these sorts of games though; but so long as I get a decent amount of fun out of it, that’s not so bad I suppose.