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August 29, 2014

I tend to see the world not in black & white, but in scales of grey. So I can't give you a clear yes or no answer on the question whether I consider myself as a game journalist. Obviously my...
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I talked this week about the dual role of the dungeon master (DM) in a game of Dungeons & Dragons or similar tabletop role-playing game: Prepare and improvise. In this post I'm going to talk...
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August 28, 2014

I was reading this article on investigative adventures in D&D on Sly Flourish. Very interesting, especially to me right now, since in my campaign we will start an adventure like that next Monday....
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August 27, 2014

I totally get where this article on sexist video-gamers being terrorists is coming from. Nearly everything in that article is true. But I feel that there are two issues here, and mixing them up that...
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Telwyn is discussing his notion that most people in the MMO blogosphere have rose-tinted glasses and are "idolising the past". I'd like to point out that many of the "classic" MMORPGs like Ultima...
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I recently argued that pen & paper roleplaying had fallen out of favor because it is so much harder to organize a tabletop session than to organize some other game online. But the 5th edition...
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August 26, 2014

Strictly speaking a computer doesn't have any speed at all, as you measure speed in meters per second, and a desktop computer tends to be rather stationary. But of course you can measure the speed of...
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August 25, 2014

I spent most of this weekend playing Divinity: Original Sin, and I'm still only half way through. This is a really epic game, and that suits me just fine. In fact I find myself continually making...
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August 22, 2014

In the "real gamer" discussion the proponents of the term linked it to challenge. Quote: "A real gamer then would be someone who sees games in general or even only a specific game not as something to...
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August 21, 2014

In many ways a tabletop role-playing game is very social. You sit around a table with friends and interact a lot with each other during hours. In other ways however the hobby is somewhat insular:...
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August 20, 2014

Advance warning: If you consider yourself a "real gamer", you might not want to read this post. Apparently there has been a heated discussion on Twitter and the games blogosphere about what defines...
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August 19, 2014

Before the summer break, in the previous session we stopped with a cliffhanger: The middle of a fight with a red dragon. The fight had the group somewhat worried, because the dragon had breathed on...
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August 18, 2014

Whether it is tabletop RPGs or computer games, pregenerated characters have a bad reputation. A typical gamer, given the choice of using a pregenerated character or going through a complicated system...
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August 17, 2014

A MMORPG, compared to other games, requires a much bigger investment of time and money. Those two are related, because if you play a game for 100+ hours a month, the $15 price tag isn't going to stop...
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August 15, 2014

A standard version of Wildstar costs $60, the Deluxe version $75. As Wildstar released on June 3rd, by end of June every player of Wildstar had paid something between $60 and $75, because the first...
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August 14, 2014

This week I've been doing something weird: I played the same game in parallel on two platforms. The game is Godus, and while the Steam Early Access version has been available for months, the iOS...
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Dear Wizards of the Coast! Thank you very much for releasing the Dungeon Master's Basic Rules for 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons, after having already given us a Basic Rules version of the...
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August 13, 2014

Time flies! I used to buy a new computer every 2 years, and now I realized my last purchase is already 3 years in the past. Is it just me or are PCs not aging as fast as they used to? Anyway, here...
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J3w3l is discussing being invested in games, and how it relates to difficulty. Quote: "the amount of difficulty that is acceptable to me really relates to my level of investment. The more I’m...
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August 12, 2014

Azuriel hates Bioware for the pricing of their Mass Effect DLC. He calculates that there are $64 of DLC for a game that costs $14.99, and asks Bioware "to get their shit together". I'm afraid they...
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August 11, 2014

I received a free Steam key for Divinity: Original Sin from one of the Kickstarter backers, who asked me to review the game. After playing the game for a good number of hours, here are my...
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August 10, 2014

The so-called core gamers on the internet have always been a notoriously whiny bunch of entitlement kids. But their latest complaint surprised even me. They whine that the PC game Godus, which is a...
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August 8, 2014

Oh the joys of living in the European Community! The EU has 28 member states. In five of them has a national subsidiary: Germany, Spain, France, Italy, and the UK. Now for getting a book...
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There has been quite a lot of discussion on the quick hype-to-decline cycle of MMORPGs recently, here and elsewhere, after that cycle was again demonstrated for both The Elder Scrolls Online and...
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August 7, 2014

I fully agree with Jeromai that you don't need a million players in a MMORPG for it to feel populated. Having said that, I think we need to look at the problem a bit closer to explain why people are...
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Imagine somebody hacks your bank account, emptying it. When you go to the police they tell you that sorry, they are only interested in physical theft, they don't occupy themselves with theft of bits...
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August 6, 2014

It is always tempting to make a "survey of one" and extrapolate one's own opinion to everybody. So in spite of reading lots of "I quit Wildstar" blog posts and having quit myself, I was at first...
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A surprisingly large variety of very different games of the general role-playing genre use the same basic approach to combat: The combatants exchange blows, each blow has a certain chance to hit, and...
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August 5, 2014

The new 5th edition of Dungeons & Dragons is a weird beast. On the one side it profits from lots of "lessons learned" by the developers, making some things better than in previous editions. On...
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August 4, 2014

Different types of games are suitable for different platforms, and then often proliferate on the platform they are most suitable for. Mobile platforms like tablets favor games that do not require...
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August 3, 2014

I was reading a negative review of Magic 2015 where the author complained that he had to "grind" or pay to get all the cards. I found that a curious remark. For me the game of Magic 2015 consists of...
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August 1, 2014

Although they have been around for much longer, tabletop role-playing games are far more difficult to discuss on the internet than computer role-playing games. The fundamental reason for that is that...
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July 30, 2014

Blizzard sent me a mail telling me that I'm about to miss the free Arachnid wing of the Naxxramas expansion for Hearthstone. I don't mind, I'm not a big fan of Hearthstone. Although Hearthstone has...
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July 29, 2014

For another 9 hours the Landmark founder's sets are on sale on Steam with a 66% reduction. I decided the game has enough potential for me to spend €6.79 on it. Not sure I will play it much before...
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July 25, 2014

A lot of the posts on this blog are about game design: What makes a game fun? What motivates players to act in certain ways? How can good game design make a game better? Of course if we talk about...
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July 24, 2014

In the second part of RPGMP3 video playthrough of the Lost Mine of Phandelver, the fighter in view of rather bad odds is resorting to a tactic which is probably optimal for a 5E level 1 fighter: He...
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July 23, 2014

As I want to buy it at my local gaming store and not online, I still haven't got the 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons Starter Set. But I did find that several people, Wizards of the Coast included,...
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July 21, 2014

I now had time to study the basic rules of 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons in more detail. And I discovered something which surprised me: By combining rules from unbalanced earlier editions with...
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July 20, 2014

I have a very simple model of games in general: They usually have one core activity that is frequently repeated, and then some shell around it that gives structure to the sequence of core activities....
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July 17, 2014

Recently neowolf2 commented here in a discussion about how much money Wildstar is making, saying "I'm wondering how the CREDD system is affecting this. I'm seeing reports that people can just farm...
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July 15, 2014

I've been playing Magic 2015 on my iPad for a few days, and it will be released on Steam later this week. At first one wonders why the game is 10€ on Steam and "free" on the iPad, but obviously the...
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July 12, 2014

I have played EQ Landmark for 7 hours and don't plan to play any more at this point. I've claimed a patch of land, built a house (including a slanted roof), explored islands and mines, and crafted...
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I received a suspicious e-mail with a Landmark beta invite. The mail looked perfectly real, but was sent from, instead of from or And the beta client...
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July 11, 2014

Dungeons & Dragons started its life as squad-based tactical wargame, made by people who called their company TSR for "Tactical Study Rules". The idea of acting in character was a later addition,...
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July 10, 2014

In the previous thread a number of people were in favor of a DM of a pen & paper RPG cheating to avoid unwanted results like random character death. The argument was that a RPG is role-playing,...
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July 9, 2014

I have frequently joked that if you want to know what edition of Dungeons & Dragons you are playing, you only need to ask "How many arrows does it take to kill a first level mage?". I watched...
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July 8, 2014

Previously known as D&D Next, 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons is now officially a thing. You can buy the starter set in selected shops now, and everywhere else soon. Plus the basic rules are...
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In the previous session the Favorites of Selune cleansed the main temple of Gardmore Abbey, and learned how the Deck of Many Things had caused the downfall of the abbey 150 years ago. They had killed...
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July 7, 2014

With over a hundred unplayed Steam games in my library, one might think that I would be playing those to reduce the backlog. But as I considered that notion, I realized that all week long I hadn't...
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July 4, 2014

I don't have any. Do you? Every week I look at the Nosy Gamer's Digital Dozen MMORPG XFire activity chart. Which is getting less and less statistically significant every week, due to XFire not...
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