Tabletop RPGs 2021

Can I ask what is stopping you? You seem to really want to! Do it! I realize my situation is probably vastly different from so many others, but due to being sent home from work due to the whole Corona situation, with full pay, I have all the time in the world to indulge in this crazy hobby :-)

edit: Sorry, its really none of my business, and I only meant the above as a sort of “go for it” support type of cheering. Apologies if it came off as prying!

No problem at all. Mostly just the usual reasons- time/scheduling with friends/interest from said friends. My tastes for RPGs are fairly different from most- I have zero interest in any variety of DnD/Pathfinder/etc, for example, so even the friends who are into this stuff, it’s not really what they’d be into.

Yeah, getting people to play non D20 games is a often unclearable hurdle.

Oh - As for Foundry…well, it seems they have an official partnership now with Free League games, and have JUST announced that the ruleset for the Alien RPG and Forbidden Lands are there now, with accompanying rulebooks and adventures. The system itself is free, but the rulebooks and adventures aren’t, obviously.

That is pretty great news - I’ve been hesitant about suggesting foundry to people, since it lacked official partnerships with creators, but this is pretty great, and an awesome start.

I REALLY dig Free League and the reprentation of their games, so this is pretty cool news to me.

Ah, that makes sense.

I am currently very curious about the Blade in the Dark rpg ruleset - I am kinda curious on all those that differ from how DnD makes use of Gamemasters and how the adventures are created and Blade in the Dark seems to be doing something rather unique here.

I forgot to ask earlier, what exactly is Forge and how much did you spend have them set up a server for you?

Forge is just a hosting service, that caters specifically to Foundry. Its 5 dollars a month, then you have a server that is always online, with room for a few Gigabytes of Assets, and 0,5 GB of game itself.

This means your players could log on without you having to turn on your computer - basically, its just a server service for ease of use.

Its VERY good though and has tons of uses for someone like me, who has zero interest in trying to setup my own server with all the added issues. I just want it to work - and it does!

The owner is active on Discord pretty much all the time, so if someone has a problem, he can and will fix it immediately.

Thanks! I think we have at least a plan moving forward, but no plan survives contact with the enemy (friction in this case). So have a backup plan is my motto.

Nice! If you would, please let us know how it went! I am kinda interested in Traveller myself, but find the sheer amount of material rather overwhelming. My only exposure to it, were the old PC games, where characters could die during character creation, which was always pretty damn fun!

Traveller, or Stars Without Number I think are my next games :-)

PM sent.

Growing up and getting into RPGs in the late 70s and early 80s I always saw Traveller as the ‘adult’ in the gaming room. It seemed big and scary. I eventually got a basic set I think but that was well into the 80s before that they tried to bring people into the game with a Basic set of some sort. Prior to that it was just a bunch of intimidating black books with a small splash of color.

I love watching Seth Skorkowsky’s overviews of RPG systems and he has a 10 video overview series on Traveller.

Might be a fun watch if you want to know more.

Hehe, yeah - I’ve seen the first one I think, where he says emphatically, that NO, you can’t die during character creation anymore.

Amusingly, our local group is almost the opposite. The SOP program we run has, over the years, run Call of Cthulhu variants (8? seasons), Chronicles/World of Darkness (7 seasons), Mutants & Masterminds 3E (5 seasons), Fate Core (4 seasons), Mouse Guard 2E (3 seasons), and a handful of one-season offerings including Star Wars: Edge of the Empire, Exalted 3E, The One Ring RPG, and a trio of PbtA titles (The Sprawl, Monster of the Week, and Urban Shadows).

Of those, only M&M was a d20 game, and then, barely so. There’s definitely been an undercurrent of demand for a D&D SOP, but we’ve been content to let the local D&D Adventurer’s League (and previously D&D Encounters in the 4E days) group take care of that, alongside the local Pathfinder Society people. We’d usually have 1-2 GMs running a d20 game during our daylong minicons, especially the fantasy focused summer quarterly con, Tales of the Crimson Boar, and obviously a lot of us are in home games using d20 systems not officially run by the Meetup group organization, but. . . yeah. We’re an eclectic group with unusual tastes, but I’ve really enjoyed getting to experience such a broad variety of unusual/indie games over the last several years.

That said, we did finally cave and got a group of GMs together to spin up a D&D SOP in a homebrew setting they’ve been developing over the last year. They’ve only got enough manpower to offer two tables a week, so I suspect demand is gonna vastly outstrip supply as our “forgotten” D&D fans come roaring in now that the void has been filled. Best of luck to our “A Dream, Awakened” team :)

As usual for him its pretty fantastic. I like his XP suggestions in the wrap-up video.

Outside of the biweekly 5e Curse of Strahd game I’m playing, I was also invited to join a two-shot “Scum and Villainy” game, both over Foundry. We did the first of two sessions last weekend. Scum and Villainy is the Firefly/Cowboy Bebop/Mandalorian/Guardians of the Galaxy-themed take on Blades in the Dark. I wasn’t too familiar with the system. I have the Blades in the Dark book but haven’t played it. The aim is to take out a lot of the rivet counting of character building and heist planning, and get to the good bits.

We were moderately successful at our session One Half. We picked out pretty fun characters. The spaceship you pick out determines the general array of missions you might run, like the kind of gang you join in Blades in the Dark determines what kind of jobs you undertake. The GM was a fan of the system. He hadn’t run it before but knew enough to answer our questions. Despite the system’s efforts, we started getting bogged down in the minutia of caper planning at the end of the session. I look forward into lithobraking our ship at least once next session.

Like our Strahd games, we talked to each other with a Google Meet link. For Strahd, my buddy who DMs has a subscription to Forge for hosting the Foundry game. For S&V, the GM did some port forwarding on his router and ran the game using his PC as a server. (I had tried hosting this way too in January for my own 5e game.) Unlike 5e, there aren’t too many moving pieces that need to be tracked in Scum and Villainy. That also means there aren’t the overwhelming number of quality-boosting modules, either. We mostly played with fillable PDFs that the GM figured out how to include as handouts. Once we closed and reopened them, we could see updates that other players used. It was a little clunky but definitely workable. We’ll see how clocks are implemented next weekend.

This video comparing all 3 VTTs makes me want to try Foundry.

In fairness, Roll20 has been doing the trick fine for us for both D&D and CoC. But Alien might be an opportunity to play around with Foundry.

I set up my daughter’s Minecraft server. I write APIs for a living, I should hopefully be able to figure it out… Maybe? :)

That man seems very unhappy. Roll20 hurt him, badly.

He did give off that vibe a bit yeah. :)

As I said, I think Roll20 does the trick. But it’s the only one I’ve tried. And hey, Foundry sounds interesting to check out at least.

Can’t remember if I said but I played a Spire one-shot recently via Foundry and it seemed really cool, although the host/co-GM for our game is also a tech person (works for Wikipedia) and had done some preliminary setup stuff to make it smooth for us.