• Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part VI)

    What? I still have unposted “review” notes on the Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (DFRPG)? Let’s make this the last installment. Sure, there’ll be more to say about the game – thoughts, content (monster and character ideas, etc.), play reports, lots of stuff. But it’s well past time to close up this World’s Slowest Unboxing™. What’s left to talk about? Not details of spell lists or combat options, but meta-stuff. And comments on artwork. Wrapped up with thoughts on the game’s future. Before the big stuff, a few more random observations:  Miscellaneous stuff Huh? The weapon tables don’t offer a thrown rock? I hereby register my permanent vote for rocks on…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part V)

    It’s time for more notes on Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (DFRPG), Steve Jackson Games’ condensation of the GURPS roleplaying system and its Dungeon Fantasy (DF) product line into an all-included, standalone game. The first four articles looked at specific books and components; this installment will add a few observations on the product as a whole. And even then, I believe I have another installment in store for later. (Just think of this as the slowest unboxing ever.) The dire elephant in the room We can’t jump in without mentioning this big piece of DFRPG news, announced in the Steve Jackson Games (SJG) Report to the Stakeholders for 2017 just a few…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part IV)

    After a bit of a recess, it’s time to report more impressions of Steve Jackson Games’ boxed Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game (DFRPG). (“After a bit of a recess”? All my posts are bookended by recesses longer than the lives of small animals.)  This installment comments on goodies outside the core five books: the maps and Cardboard Heroes included in the DFRPG box, and the separately sold DFRPG GM Screen and its included booklets. I think I have enough notes for one more installment after this, covering meta-level observations about the game. For now, let’s gaze upon those stand-up heroes as they adventure across those lovely maps. (Recap: Part I offered miscellaneous…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part III)

    On to Part III of thoughts upon exploring Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game, the latest “powered by GURPS” wonder from Steve Jackson Games. Part I offered miscellaneous notes on the Adventurers book. Part II focused on Adventurers‘ catalog of skills. Here in Part III, I look briefly at the remaining four books found in the game box. Exploits Unless I’m missing it, DFRPG doesn’t offer Optional Rule: Extra Effort in Combat from GURPS (BS357). That’s a bit too bad, as the rule is useful for letting fighter-types burn off FP for nifty minor combat boosts, which in turn means more tactical options and more resource management fun. Well, like a lot of rules bits, it’s an easy thing to fold…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part II)

    It’s Part II of a scattershot passel of notes on Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game, the GURPS-based all-in-one game that everyone’s talking about. (They are. You just can’t hear them all the time.) Part I offered miscellaneous notes on the Adventurers book. This installment focuses on Adventurers‘ catalog of skills, a key component of a DFRPG character. Part III and later will look at additional books and other facets of the game. (Abbreviations: “DFRPG” is Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game; “DF” is Dungeon Fantasy, SJG’s “full” line of dungeoneering books for use with the regular GURPS Basic Set.) Skills in Adventurers A farewell to skills DFRPG pares down the GURPS skill list…

  • Dungeon Fantasy RPG: The Notes (Part I)

    ME the other day: “Good morning! Imma do so much today!” SJG: “O Hai! I haz DFRPG in the mailz!” [later…] Everyone around me: “…Hello?… Are you alive?…” Dungeon Fantasy Roleplaying Game is real, and it’s pretty spectacular. There are plenty of reviews of this GURPS-based, back-to-hack-n-slash offering from Steve Jackson Games; you’ll find a list of reviews here. I’m offering the lazy man’s variant of the review: an unwashed handful of disjointed observations. Part I is small: thoughts on part of DFRPG’s Adventurers book. Part II will wrap up that book with a lot of notes on skills, one of the key components of any GURPS/DFRPG adventurer. Part III…

  • Books we want: An updated GURPS LITE

    Edit 2017-08-03: Added the sad discovery that LITE’s weapon list lacks a rock. Also added a substantial section on the many more goodies that the older LITE for 3e, a veritable worker of miracles in 32-page format, used to offer players. (Including that rock.) Do we really need a new GURPS LITE? No. There’s nothing about GURPS LITE that demands a new version. It has always been, and still is, a well-made and perfectly playable introduction to GURPS. A read through the work, though, suggests a number of ideas for small improvements, additions, and, yes, subtractions. Even if none of those are pressing, LITE has been out there for a…

  • Get Religion with Dungeon Fantasy 7: Clerics

    Who’s your sky daddy? If you’ve got dungeons and you’ve got clerics, then you want GURPS Dungeon Fantasy 7: Clerics by Phil Masters. At just 37 pages, this supplement lets you trade in your bland and no-brand McPriest for a uniquely devoted servant of… Wait a second, why do clerics get their own special book? I mean, sure, there are dedicated books for Barbarians and Swashbucklers, but those are part of the offshoot Dungeon Fantasy Denizens series that will (I presume) eventually showcase all of the adventurer archetypes. But of the PC types in the main Dungeon Fantasy series’ Adventurers book, why do clerics alone get the splatbook spotlight within…

  • Illuminati: New World Order: An unearthed review

    Hey, look what I found on an external drive! It’s an old review of Steve Jackson Games’ Illuminati: New World Order trading card game. I don’t even know when this dates back to; I picked up the game some years after it was released in ’94. I wrote the review for a site or ‘zine, but it wasn’t published.  While my memory of this article is hazy, I recall some great games with a good handful of mutually-backstabbing players. Ah, INWO. Good times…  Illuminati: New World Order: An unearthed review “Betray your friends. Crush your enemies. Control the world. Drink some coffee.” That pretty much says it for me, folks.…

  • GURPS Banestorm: A Reading

    Banestorm for GURPS 4e, by Phil Masters and Jonathan Woodward How do you milk a fish? A milkfish, that is, the semi-aquatic Yrth mammal that offers meat, oil, and milk to its medieval domesticators. The brief description in GURPS Banestorm suggests a cross between a seal and a manatee. Plausible enough… but how do you get under a walrus-like beast? I get ahead of myself. Let’s dip into the Banestorm book itself first. (I’ve got the PDF version from e23; sorry, I can’t comment on the build of the hardback book. No pages have come loose in my digital version. : ) Involuntary relocation Banestorm is the “default” fantasy setting…