Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

The Off-Topic forum for anything non-LDS related, such as sports or politics. Rated PG through PG-13.
Molok
Nursery
Posts: 23
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 7:51 pm

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Molok »

Wow, not sure how I've missed this thread. Just putting my recommendation out there, if you're like me and don't like the way DND turns into a board game when combat starts, I'd recommend Call of Cthulhu. Nobody is a super hero, you're literally just a teacher, or detective, or other real world person. The general vibe of playing it is like being in an episode of X files. Something weird is going on, you investigate, find clues, and piece together the mystery and (usually) die a horrible screaming death at the hands of an eldritch creature. I've been running Masks of Nyarlathotep for a little over a year, it is easily the best premade campaign made for any TTRPG ever.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 3991
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Res Ipsa wrote:
Sun Jan 01, 2023 8:38 pm
Started a new RPG: Ironsworn: Starforged. Playing with a couple friends in Germany using Roll20. It’s the most extensive DMless game I’ve tried. We’ve created the setting and our characters, with play starting next session. The mechanics are based on “moves” like Dungeon World and its spin offs, except on steroids. It’s going to take some time playing to get used to seeing how the storytelling translates into the moves.
Hey Res, ironsworn came up in conversation and sounded familiar. Figured out it was because you mentioned it in this thread. Could you expand on your experience with it!
honorentheos
God
Posts: 3991
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Molok wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2024 5:53 pm
Wow, not sure how I've missed this thread. Just putting my recommendation out there, if you're like me and don't like the way DND turns into a board game when combat starts, I'd recommend Call of Cthulhu. Nobody is a super hero, you're literally just a teacher, or detective, or other real world person. The general vibe of playing it is like being in an episode of X files. Something weird is going on, you investigate, find clues, and piece together the mystery and (usually) die a horrible screaming death at the hands of an eldritch creature. I've been running Masks of Nyarlathotep for a little over a year, it is easily the best premade campaign made for any TTRPG ever.
Hi Molok,

I've been pretty Call of Cthulu curious for a long time but have yet to play let alone run it. I've checked out a few actual plays and loved what I've heard. How many folks including the person running it would you say are needed to run a reasonably good session?
Molok
Nursery
Posts: 23
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 7:51 pm

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Molok »

honorentheos wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 3:35 am
Molok wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2024 5:53 pm
Wow, not sure how I've missed this thread. Just putting my recommendation out there, if you're like me and don't like the way DND turns into a board game when combat starts, I'd recommend Call of Cthulhu. Nobody is a super hero, you're literally just a teacher, or detective, or other real world person. The general vibe of playing it is like being in an episode of X files. Something weird is going on, you investigate, find clues, and piece together the mystery and (usually) die a horrible screaming death at the hands of an eldritch creature. I've been running Masks of Nyarlathotep for a little over a year, it is easily the best premade campaign made for any TTRPG ever.
Hi Molok,

I've been pretty Call of Cthulu curious for a long time but have yet to play let alone run it. I've checked out a few actual plays and loved what I've heard. How many folks including the person running it would you say are needed to run a reasonably good session?
Hey Honorentheos!

My usual group is 5 people, but there is no minimum number required for a solid session. Some of the most fun sessions I have had in the game were with me and one or two other players. There are even a few campaigns that are designed to be played alone, no GM necessary. "alone against the dark" is an example of that if you were curious to try CoC but didn't have a group for it.
User avatar
Morley
God
Posts: 1765
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 6:17 pm
Location: Maggi Hambling paints Fancis Bacon

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Morley »

Molok wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2024 5:53 pm
Wow, not sure how I've missed this thread.
I'll never post here, but it's one of my favorite threads on the board.
User avatar
Bret Ripley
2nd Counselor
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 1:55 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Bret Ripley »

I haven't posted to this thread in some time, but always enjoy reading it. I always smile when it resurfaces. I don't have much of relevance to add, so I will take the liberty of sneaking up on the RPG content:

An item on my wife's bucket list was to visit a 'dude ranch'; she had a 'landmark' birthday this year, and to celebrate we booked 5 days in May at Bull Hill Guest Ranch which is perched in the foothills of the Rockies near the northeastern corner of Washington State. (Very highly recommended, by the way -- it was the best vacation we've ever had. In fact, it was one of the best weeks of our lives. I do not exaggerate.)

We used to own horses, and while I was never really into riding -- my horse and I were both happier when all our feet were on the ground -- my wife was once an avid rider and looked forward to spending many hours in the saddle. I'm still not interested in riding, so a few weeks before our vacation I finally stopped being stingy and bought an up-to-date gaming laptop so I could play Baldur's Gate 3 while she was chasing cattle and rattlesnakes (and a moose!) across the countryside.

But bugger the moose -- BG 3 is amazing. I've now played for over 130 hours and still have several unfinished quests to tackle. The writing, the visuals, the voice acting, the music (the music!) are top-notch. For fans of CRPGs, I can't recommend it highly enough.

Our tabletop game hasn't convened in several months, but some interest in resuming was expressed at our July 4th family BBQ -- we shall see. Apparently, another family member with no TTRPG experience is interested in joining in -- I think his personality would be a great addition to the current crew. If we do pick up the game again, I will have to be prepared for it to be less sandbox-y and with more insistent plot hooks -- I bristled at that sort of thing as a player, but this group seems to need some pushing to avoid being mired in indecision. Again, we shall see.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 3991
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Bret Ripley wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 9:16 pm
...bugger the moose...
And an NPC is born. :)

Great to hear from you Bret. I don't know if I'd have thought of a dude ranch as a vacation idea but you've made it sound intriguing for sure.

And I could use a bit of your creativity - and anyone else's who has thoughts - for something I have planned for my work game this week.

Trying to keep this short and sweet, the PCs are attending a party hosted by an ancient hedonistic lamia who is a cross between Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra and Tilda Swinton's Eve in Only Lovers Left Alive. The set-up I have in mind is that a contingent of Orcs related to a few of the PC's backstories show up early in the evening that are looking for the same thing the party is seeking. The lady hosting the party, being fond of all things novel and seeking entertainment, will use any opportunity of conflict between the PCs and the Orcs to propose a lethal competition. Her estate includes a large, enclosed courtyard that surrounds the main residence which is a three story building with surrounding balconies where she would be able to invite the other guests to retire and watch the sport of the PCs and Orcs engaging in group therapy to the death.

Given the layout of the estate, she would have each party start on opposite sides of the exterior courtyard with the residence in the middle where they would be unable to see the other side when she commences with the therapy session. So both sides would be encouraged to strategize ways to cause one of the other side to find themselves outnumbered and possibly outmatched.

What I'm looking for are ideas for hazards/indiscriminate 3rd party combatants that could be encountered and lash out/become activated as the two groups circle one another. Two ideas I've come up with include:

- Assassin's vine in the garden that would attack anyone getting too close to it which is part of the Estate's existing preventative defenses already.

- Animated armor statue that serves to guard an area of the estate.

- A gate off of the main courtyard that enters a shrine area requires a saving throw or else it teleports a person into a cage suspended from the 2nd floor balcony if they were not escorted and fails the save. Again, this was part of the estate and the shrine area is where the lamia's statue of Graz'zt she worships is located.

Any thoughts?
User avatar
Bret Ripley
2nd Counselor
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Oct 28, 2020 1:55 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by Bret Ripley »

honorentheos wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2024 4:42 pm
Bret Ripley wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 9:16 pm
...bugger the moose...
And an NPC is born. :)
Ha! Bugger the Moose: "Hey, Rocky! Watch me pull a rabbit out of my ..."
Great to hear from you Bret. I don't know if I'd have thought of a dude ranch as a vacation idea but you've made it sound intriguing for sure.

And I could use a bit of your creativity - and anyone else's who has thoughts - for something I have planned for my work game this week.

Trying to keep this short and sweet, the PCs are attending a party hosted by an ancient hedonistic lamia who is a cross between Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra and Tilda Swinton's Eve in Only Lovers Left Alive. The set-up I have in mind is that a contingent of Orcs related to a few of the PC's backstories show up early in the evening that are looking for the same thing the party is seeking. The lady hosting the party, being fond of all things novel and seeking entertainment, will use any opportunity of conflict between the PCs and the Orcs to propose a lethal competition. Her estate includes a large, enclosed courtyard that surrounds the main residence which is a three story building with surrounding balconies where she would be able to invite the other guests to retire and watch the sport of the PCs and Orcs engaging in group therapy to the death.

Given the layout of the estate, she would have each party start on opposite sides of the exterior courtyard with the residence in the middle where they would be unable to see the other side when she commences with the therapy session. So both sides would be encouraged to strategize ways to cause one of the other side to find themselves outnumbered and possibly outmatched.

What I'm looking for are ideas for hazards/indiscriminate 3rd party combatants that could be encountered and lash out/become activated as the two groups circle one another. Two ideas I've come up with include:

- Assassin's vine in the garden that would attack anyone getting too close to it which is part of the Estate's existing preventative defenses already.

- Animated armor statue that serves to guard an area of the estate.

- A gate off of the main courtyard that enters a shrine area requires a saving throw or else it teleports a person into a cage suspended from the 2nd floor balcony if they were not escorted and fails the save. Again, this was part of the estate and the shrine area is where the lamia's statue of Graz'zt she worships is located.

Any thoughts?
That sounds like a fun set up, and I like the ideas you've listed. I'm picturing the grounds as containing visual barriers such as garden hedges, statuary, and perhaps some smaller outbuildings (maybe a gazebo, greenhouse, dovecote, small guest cottage, etc.)? Am I catching the right sort of vibe?

Spit-balling --

I don't know what time of day/night you had in mind, but if this happens around twilight (light enough for the audience to see, dark enough that a light source would give away a location) would it make sense for any of the guests/audience in the balconies to participate by yelling hints, or perhaps by sending lamps (or objects with 'light' cast on them) via ziplines to illuminate parts of the grounds at inopportune times?

Include 'traps' that set off light spells and/or sounds that could betray someone's location.

A shadow mastiff (or even ordinary mastiffs) prowling the grounds could be fun.

Magic trap: turf to quicksand.

Maybe over-the-top, but one of the outbuildings could turn out to be something like Baba Yaga's hut.

Water weird in the koi pond.

Only fun if someone is trying to be stealthy: a parrot (or other mimicking bird) attempts to follow the party and very loudly repeats any sound or conversation it overhears.

Is any of this on the right sort of track?
honorentheos
God
Posts: 3991
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Hey Bret,

Nailed it. You've picked up on the vibe right away, and the way you are picturing it is perfect. There are a few areas where the distance between the residence and an outdoor feature turns into a pinch point and areas where the grounds open up but always with something like a fountain in one such space, a gazebo in the garden area, etc. The garden is the largest at 55 ft x 55 ft. The majority of spaces are 15 ft or so wide, and the longest unobstructed view is a 125-ft run along the north side of the residence. I'm planning on the groups starting with one in the garden to the east and the other in the patio area with the fountain on the opposing west side. Attempting to go around the residence on the south will be more of an urban combat nightmare where the residence and the courtyard jog around one another at three points and make it more possible members of either group could find themselves fact-to-face after coming around a corner with only 5-10 ft to maneuver around.

I love the ideas, especially the thoughts about light affecting the events.

The orcs aren't intending to start beef with the party right away and only one of the PC's may possibly be recognizable to them. That same PC will be the only one who immediately recognize the orcs as belonging to the same marauding orc band that decimated her nomadic tribe. So she controls the fuse and how fast and how hot it burns. So the other guests could have time to get to know members of either group and become favorable or hostile to them depending on the interactions. I want the social interactions to affect the combat based on that, but the idea that it could be more than verbal warnings or interference hadn't occurred to me.

There is a gazebo in the garden area and the idea of it being enchanted and possibly acting like Baba Yaga's cottage is very cool. But given the set up and needing to have one group start there I may need it to only "awaken" if provoked such as if someone hits it with a wayward shot or, you know, casts fireball with it in the middle of the area of effect.

Love it!

ETA: This is also a huge ass map. I taped two pieces of poster board together that are each 36x48 inches, so the map itself is 48x72 inches.
honorentheos
God
Posts: 3991
Joined: Mon Nov 23, 2020 2:15 am

Re: Way Off-Topic: Question for RPGamers

Post by honorentheos »

Morley wrote:
Fri Jul 05, 2024 5:05 pm
Molok wrote:
Wed Jul 03, 2024 5:53 pm
Wow, not sure how I've missed this thread.
I'll never post here, but it's one of my favorite threads on the board.
"I'll never post here."
"I'll never post here."
"I'll never post here."
"I'll never post here."
"I'll never post here."
"I'll never post here."

The words echoed down, down through the structures of the spaces between space, time outside of time, seeming to amplify with each repetition.

"I'll never post here."

The final utterance boomed, cavitating into the blackness of the void where any concept of time and space had fully dissolved away.

And an eye opened...or what could be called an eye in concept only that first existed again having been closed so long it had not beheld multiple cycles of birth and collapse. An eye that began to focus again upon the many strands of substance at the edge of the chaos before the void, to focus from where the words had came...words uttered that could not be taken back.

It considered, and as it did the eye began to become, the void around it dividing, consolidating, defining...


Sometime in the mid-1940s in New York, a soon-to-be mother felt something move for the first time...
Post Reply