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The Definitive Tabletop RPG Thread

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posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 03:23 AM
Attention ATS!

This is the definitive TTRPG (tabletop role playing game, also known as PnP [pen and paper] games) thread. Here we can discuss any and all topics related to and concerning TTRPGs.

I myself am a fledgling GM (game master) currently running a steady group of at least 4 PCs through a player driven story using the new 13th age D20 system created by Rob Heinsoo and Jonathan Tweet and published by Fire Opal Media (pelgrane press).

The game is based in a homebrew world of my own design.

Basically an icon (more or less a very influential character in the world) called the Great Gold Wyrm travelled to medieval Earth where he plucked king Arthur, along with Myrlyn (my spelling) and brought them to another realm called Worldhome (deliberately generic) to help rule the kingdom of Dragonscale in his stead.

See, in another age an evil icon simply known as the Lich King magically ensnared one of Worldhome's several moons and sent it hurtling toward the planet and submerged it in the ocean causing a magical vortex called the maelstrom. The only icon willing and powerful enough to suppress the evils and depredations caused by the maelstrom was the Great Gold Wyrm. He now resides at the heart of the maelstrom meditating and focusing his power to keep the maelstrom from expanding and swallowing the entirety of Worldhome.

I have also run Pathfinder, D&D 3.5 & 4e along with one-shots of new World of Darkness. I have been wanting to run Shadowrun 4e (I don't have 5e yet), GURPS 4e, Fate Core, Numenera and several others.

I don't get out from behind the GM screen often but when I do I enjoy playing rogue and fighter type characters and occasionally play a ranger or even paladin.

I would like to hear from all my TTRPG nerds out there on the forum and look forward to hearing about your worlds and characters as well as discussing systems and tricks and tips along with the nuances of being a GM.


edit on Cam3Wednesday2820143231Wed, 19 Mar 2014 03:28:32 -05002014 by CagliostroTheGreat because: typo

posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 03:26 AM
reply to post by CagliostroTheGreat

Pity I can't find a group

Everyone got old and kids etc.
Used to play often, had campaigns and characters for years.
Loved it

posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 03:43 AM

reply to post by CagliostroTheGreat

Pity I can't find a group

Everyone got old and kids etc.
Used to play often, had campaigns and characters for years.
Loved it

Sorry to hear it Boymonkey, you're in the UK right? It might be possible to try as they might have a group in your area though I'm not certain that they are active across the pond.

Finding a competent, compatible and reliable group is probably the most difficult part of the hobby. For the first two years of my having moved back to Florida I couldn't even so much as find a group to play Magic: The Gathering with but eventually I came across a flyer at my local Wal-Mart when I serendipitously glanced at the bulletin board out front. From there I was able to meet others interested in the hobby but nothing cohesive.

It wasn't until I met another player on Meetup (a former US Marine) that I was able to join my first long term campaign which turned out to be D&D 4E running through the classic adventure module "A Night Below" we played up to level 14 but then the DM moved for work reasons and the group fell apart.

Later, I joined a 3.5 game but the DM turned out to be a bit of a tool so I dropped that game but not before I wedged my foot in the door of the player community. I decided to give Pathfinder a try and after getting a four player group together began running Paizo's excellent adventure path "Kingmaker" which solidified my current play group. The rest is ancient lore, as they say...

Good Luck finding a group Boymonkey. If worst comes to worst and you really want to play check out
edit on Cam3Wednesday4720141131Wed, 19 Mar 2014 03:47:11 -05002014 by CagliostroTheGreat because: typo...

posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 03:58 AM
Never played any, but my polyhedral dice set came today, and I was looking online earlier for some games to use them with. Not necessarily ttrpg style, but anything. Was actually thinking of making a game. Synchronicity. Might have to watch this thread.

Right away my mind wandered to thoughts of bar games,, shake o' day, etc. Lol

Your game sounds interesting tho.

posted on Mar, 19 2014 @ 04:06 AM
reply to post by Force10Guy

Ah, syncronicity indeed.

If you do decide to get into TTRPGs I would highly recommended 13th age as it is very "rules lite" and easy to pick up.

If you are looking for a nice boardgame or the like give these a glance:


None of those will let you test drive your nifty new set of polyhedrals but I think you will have fun... if you got the credits to spend. Boardgaming can be an expensive hobby. Its no Warhammer but still...

Thanks for chiming in!

posted on Apr, 21 2014 @ 02:44 PM
These days, we've all got families, etc. Even when the wives play, it's tricky to schedule to actually have a campaign going. Getting together once a month just isn't going to work...we tried.

Instead, we went to Descent (like a board game) to scratch the itch. No real role playing, but it's heroes killing monsters with a goal, and there are rewards, and power ups. Expensive hobby, but it is a decent sub for the real thing.....

When I did game more, I tended to play Thief/Mage combos... I can munchkin a spell like nobody's business, hehe...

In the past, I've played D&D, Rifts, Palladium, Vampire, Shadowrun, Star Wars, Star Trek, and a ton of other ones, including ones we made.

posted on Apr, 21 2014 @ 03:08 PM
Let me tell you about this guy I knew. He showed me his pride and joy,
his Paladin Lord. He had been playing this D&D character for years. He had
so much treasure and equipment it took twelve sheets of paper to list it all.
He told me "This guy is so good, he can beat six balrogs single handedly." I
was interested so I examined the sheets a little closer and told him I could
beat this Paladin Lord with just six balrogs.

We arranged a time and place to have it out with paper and pencils. He
started getting nervous and saying things like...
    "I want all my equipment to act like it always has.
    I don't want any of the magic rules to suddenly change under my feet.
    I don't want to be anywhere strange; in fact, I want to start out in the bedroom of my own castle in my
    own world.
    I don't want..."

"Relax, it'll be a fair fight." I said. "You're fully armed and armored,
standing in the master bedroom of your castle when a portal opens up in one
wall. Through the portal you see a one hundred foot by one hundred foot stone
platform, floating in the middle of the abyss. It comes flush right up to
your wall. Standing on the opposite side are six balrogs, waiting. What do
you do?"
"I ready my holy avenger and close to attack."
"The six balrogs combine their telekinesis and toss you into the abyss
where your character is lost forever."
"What!?" he said.
"I added up the encumbrance total of all twelve sheets of loot you have
there, and the combined telekinesis of six balrogs can lift more than that.
See here... and the beginning of the section on Demons where it says abilities
all demons have? Telekinesis."

He checked the numbers and admitted defeat. It was a new experience for
him. He had never been beaten by encumbrance before. I have found that the
basics are usually the best way to beat the high and mighty.

posted on Apr, 23 2014 @ 02:21 AM
a reply to: Gazrok


That seems to be a fairly large complaint within the community. NOT ENOUGH TIME!

I can't help it though, I am so helplessly addicted to TTRPGs that I think its too late for me....

*shakes head sadly*

I could never quit. It doesn't help I don't want to either. One of the other big problems I have encountered is not having a suitable environment in which to game. Especially since the advent of the "techno-gamer" needing a half dozen outlets just to play. I'm guilty of this to a degree myself however, especially when behind the screen.

Have you given 13th age a look?

posted on Apr, 23 2014 @ 02:25 AM
a reply to: mikegrouchy

Power gamers.

Well, the bigger they are the harder they fall
... when six balrogs decide to telekinesis your sorry ass into the abyss!

Haha! Thanks man, nothing I love more than hearing other people's crazy D&D stories.

posted on Jun, 9 2014 @ 11:21 PM
Ahh a fellow gamer nice dude! I played D&D 1st-3rd edition, Pathfinder, Palladium, World of Darkness, Toon, and the old Marvel super hero game. How is Numenera? I have read the rules but haven't tried the game yet.

posted on Jun, 10 2014 @ 08:04 AM
a reply to: hangedman13

I'm on the same boat as you Numenera-wise, lol, I've only read the rules but the game seems fully legit and the CRS is downright beautiful. The XP and leveling system is pretty strange though. The game is made by Monte Cook though so it can't be that bad.

D&D 5e (next) should be rolling out anytime right? I'm looking forward to seeing how things escalate between WotC and Paizo, should be interesting. Pathfinder is so much better than 3.5 IMO, way more balanced and less frustrating. D&D 4e is kind of a joke though, lol. Hopefully next will be fully legit, wish I had gotten a playtest packet.

Oh, and WoD is excellent! I haven't heard if white wolf are going to be updating anytime soon but that would be cool, honestly though, the d10 dot system is practically flawless.
edit on Cam8Tuesday0820143530Tue, 10 Jun 2014 08:08:35 -05002014 by CagliostroTheGreat because: eta

posted on Jul, 7 2014 @ 01:37 PM
a reply to: boymonkey74
Try rpol or roll20. both are really great pbp sites. not the same as tabletop, I know, but better than nothing, imho.

posted on Oct, 22 2014 @ 09:41 PM
for any one still subscribed to this thread, I'm kinda kicking around the idea of trying to get an ATS pbp going, now, I have never personally done pbp before but I am willing to give it a shot as a seasoned GM for several different systems, I'll begin discussing a system if I can manage to get a player base rustled up and decide on a time when we could all meet on ATS to roll some dice. This sort of thing would require any and all players involved to swear a Knights Oath to be 100% fair and impartial on all rolls.

So, anyone interested?

posted on Oct, 22 2014 @ 10:11 PM
I miss the good ol' days of playing. Pulling an all night session with my friends. Still have all my original set of AD&D books too. DM Guide, Players Manual, Monster Manuals 1 and 2, Unearthed Arcana, a stack of modules and random characters too.

It's been close to 20 years since I've played though. Even if I could gather the players I'm not sure I could find a good DM and that is always the most important part. A DM who has the talent to bring a story to life without bogging it down with too many mechanics of game play.

I've played my share of Computer games and I do enjoy them, but there is still nothing that can compare to the limitless play and variety found when you tap the imagination like we did back then. Something that many of the new generation of gamers have never had the pleasure of experiencing. One of these days I'm going to have to break it all out again and see if I still have what it takes to pull another 2 day, nonstop session.

posted on Oct, 23 2014 @ 01:36 PM
a reply to: mOjOm

I've been tabletop gaming for quite a few years now and you're right, video games just can't provide the same experience that tabletop gaming provides. Because in video games there is always that one invisible wall, that one stupid restriction. In TTRPGs you don't have to worry about that stuff because you and your friends are creating the game together! And really, the GM isn't as important as you think, as long as your players a creating dynamic stories and connections, half the GMs job is already done. After all the game should be about the PCs, not the GM. It is THEIR world, not yours! I think that is a mistake a lot of GMs make, they think that they have to create the entire world but don't realize that it is actually better to leave blank spots where you can encourage your players to fill them in with ideas of their own. That gives the player a truly vested interest in the world and further serves to stitch their character into the fabric of the world you are creating together.

posted on Oct, 23 2014 @ 02:09 PM
a reply to: CagliostroTheGreat

That's true. The most fun comes from the creative freedom from everyone involved, players and GM together. I single out the GM more I suppose being that players tend to naturally use creative methods anyway. Usually if for no other reason than simply to survive a situation they've somehow found themselves to be stuck in where just hacking their way out seems unlikely. While the GM on the other hand has to balance smoothly on their own ability between the actual parameters that make up the game at hand and the unplanned for events that can spring up that may be far outside what anyone planned for. I've known some GM's who easily would be considered far more knowledgeable than myself as far as knowing the rules and modifiers for any given situation. But sometimes rely too much on getting every detail accounted for rather than focusing on the pace of the game.

For example, it can really cause the mood to shift from a thrill to a stand still if the over complication of a simple turn or two takes too many rolls with too many dice leaving the other players too much down time and they return to the reality that they are actually just sitting in their kitchen back in the normal every day world.

posted on Oct, 23 2014 @ 02:34 PM

originally posted by: mOjOm
a reply to: CagliostroTheGreat

I've known some GM's who easily would be considered far more knowledgeable than myself as far as knowing the rules and modifiers for any given situation. But sometimes rely too much on getting every detail accounted for rather than focusing on the pace of the game.

I am the exact opposite of that when running a game. If someone is taking up to much time on a rule, I'll just call it and move on using the "one session rule" meaning, we will use my ruling for that session only and after the session I'll look up how the rule actually functions and use the actual mechanic in every other session thereafter.

For example, it can really cause the mood to shift from a thrill to a stand still if the over complication of a simple turn or two takes too many rolls with too many dice leaving the other players too much down time and they return to the reality that they are actually just sitting in their kitchen back in the normal every day world.


Absolutely, as a GM that is the LAST thing you want. If your players are losing interest or focus you need to ask yourself, "why is this person losing interest?" and fix it. This is one of the reasons I have really come to love 13th Age, it is so loose on the rules that they barely even matter. Its all about telling dynamic stories and creating interesting characters.

posted on Oct, 23 2014 @ 02:50 PM
I used to play loads as a kid and teen, first played D&D with a friend's older brother at 8 and was in full geek out mode by my teens and had a weekly group then playing RuneQuest, Paranoia, MERP/RM, Judge Dread and a gazillion others that came and went..

I still think that RuneQuest is one of the greatest games ever, and adore how ideas from Joseph Campbell and the idea of mythic/religious progression got in there. Plus you could be a troll and worship some seriously mental deities.

Last time i really played though was about 7-10 years ago when i press ganged some chums into a Middle Earth Role Playing campaign using some old Rolemaster rules. That's a game i love too, the first edition MERP books were just so beautifully produced with incredible maps and i now have a full e-collection them. I really wanted to play, not GM but sadly i had to be the driving force (there are never enough GM's), still good fun though.

I do miss pnp rpgs though, they are a rich vein of often unexpected hilarity. Especially when you can drink and smoke

posted on Oct, 23 2014 @ 03:09 PM
a reply to: skalla

Unfortunately I think I am too young to have played any of those games. Maybe I'll hunt down some PDFs and check them out. But yeah, "No GM" is pretty much the most common complaint in the hobby followed closely by "No players" but thanks to shows like the Big Bang theory and King of the Nerds, I think more and more people are coming back to the hobby, which is cool by me. I haven't been playing that long but I find that GMing comes naturally to me, that and reading The Lazy Dungeon Master by Mike Shea.

lol, I always encourage my players to take up habits like smoking and drinking, even using drugs. I have always found that it adds depth to the character.

posted on Jan, 9 2015 @ 10:32 PM
D&D 5th Edition is finally complete! All 3 core books are on shelves but better yet, Wizards of the Coast are giving the Basic Rules for FREE!

That's right, everything you and your friends need to run your players from level 1 to 20, it includes the rules for the races, Elf, Dwarf, Human and Halfling as well as the rules for the classes fighter, cleric, rogue and wizard! This PDF includes 120 spells and five backgrounds that help flesh out your character.

So get on over and download your copy now, its totally free and all you need to start playing is a group of friends some character sheets, polyhedral dice and a little free time.

Enjoy adventurers!

link to d&d site (download at bottom of page)
Here is a link to the official WotC 5e character sheets

edit on Cpm10Friday4520150831Fri, 09 Jan 2015 22:45:08 -06002015 by CagliostroTheGreat because: add link

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