Stat It: Dominion Rules

The newest season of Me, Myself, and Die (or Season 3 if you’re reading this sometime after this is posted) had been a pretty good rollercoaster of mystery as both Trevor and the audience piece together what happened to Edbert that landed him on a deserted island with pirates chasing him. It recently concluded on an amazing note that gave Egbert the closure to his character arc that began all the way back in Season 1 and is a testament to just how high a quality campaign people can make their solo games.

Running the mechanics for the third season is a rather obscure RPG. Whereas Savage Worlds had some popularity and Ironsworn is the quintessential soloist RPG, Dominion Rules is obscure to say the least. Without specifying the RPG, you might end up finding rules to the Deck Building Game Dominion. In fact, googling Roll20 Dominion gets me results for exactly how one were to make assets for said card game.

This essentially means that Roll20 and Foundry don’t have the sheet programmed in. Foundry has improved quite a bit to the point where there’s a few systems that allow you to make your own system, but you still need to figure out how to maneuver the programming, which is doable, though I simply want to create a character for Dominion and not an entire system for it.

While Astral would be able to patch this problem up, it unfortunately died at the end of August, so that brought me back to square one (not that I really enjoyed playing it since I found it to be resource intensive compared to Roll20 or Foundry). This means this will be one of the few times I’ll have to make the sheet by hand, something I will show at the end of the Stat It.

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The Fabletop Campaign Reboot, Session 1

A long time ago, I decided to get serious in doing a campaign for a game called Fabletop, a virtual tabletop that uses its own built-in universal RPG system. However, the site I published it on no longer has any sort of functionality. So, I decided to reboot the Fabletop Campaign for this blog.

We’ll start in a tavern where we’re introduced to our protagonist, Red the Rogue. Character creation is rather easy since you just select what sort of class and feel of the character you want to make.

Anyways, the tavern has four different people. Two guards, a drunk, and a bartender.

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Spotlight Mini: The Auger

This is going to be a brief post, namely because I have not purchased the Auger and so I can’t put it through an in-depth look like I did with Foundry.

Though that is a good segue into this post. One of the downsides to Foundry was its asking price of $50 USD plus tax. While it now has a plethora of RPG systems and tools to help facilitate a solo gaming experience, you are paying a hefty amount of money which can be a deal breaker for some people.

Which is why I’m happy to talk about the Auger, a program that costs $20 USD. Practically half the price of Foundry. From the screenshots alone, it has the feeling of an old-school computer RPG where you have a character status screen, an over world map to explore, and even a scene where you can fight monster.

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Mortzes and Ricksters: Post Mortym

So, having finished playing the Rick and Morty dungeon module, I have quite a lot of thoughts on both playing the module and playing it solo. Of course, minor spoilers for the module ahead:

As a stand-alone dungeon, this is one of the more unique dungeons I have ever played in. Not every room is a straight forward “kill all the bad guys” scenario and in fact some of the rooms actively discourage you from killing or otherwise have a heavy emphasis on roleplaying being the solution. The writing is also rather humorous (it helps that meta humor is my favorite type) and, in the hands of the right DM, has the potential to be the funniest officially published D&D Adventure for the Fifth Edition. Maybe even just D&D in general.

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Mortzes And Ricksters Part 2: It’s A Far Out Game

Alright, in this post, we’ll try to finish the dungeon featured in the Rick and Morty D&D Game: The Lost Dungeon of Rickedness. When we last left off our heroes, they had just resolved a conflict between people with asses and people without asses. Like that Dr. Seuss book on crack. And now, we continue onwards.

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The Most Common Complaint On Solo Roleplaying and Why It Ultimately Doesn’t Matter

A common complaint seen with solo roleplaying is how the process is so isolated that there’s no true back and forth like a usual RPG. That, even with using randomized numbers with a fixed yes-to-no ratio based on either odds or situational context or even creating randomized events that your character has to overcome, you’re still just wearing the hat of a GM before switching it out for a player’s. This often leads to a question I think a lot of people will hear when talking about solo roleplaying:

“Isn’t it a lot like writing then?”

And that’s… honestly a good question. It’s definitely one that you’ll have different answers to depending on who you ask. Obviously, if you’re playing a solo game for the sake of the game, such as playing the Micro RPG chapbooks, then no. It’s not like writing at all. Same if you just play the game to get a feel for how your character or the world reacts and responds. These two aspects rely more on the crunch of a game rather than its fluff.

However, there is a serious question here if you care more for the story. You have the final say of what happens, after all, so, wouldn’t it just be the same as writing a book?

This article is here to debunk that question, and it will do so with one simple explanation: No, you don’t have a final say.

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Witchy Superheroes

Gonna preface this now, we’re dealing with witch trials and a cult preforming human sacrifices. Yeah, it’s one of those sessions.

So, unfortunately, I was unable to complete The Lost Dungeon of Rickedness for Solo Gaming Appreciation Month. Rather than release part 2 and then make part 3, however, I decided to take a look at another journaling game, as its premise had grabbed my interest: No Witches, Just Superheroes.

The setting’s premise speaks for itself: superheroes, but they’ve been time warped to the era of Witch Trials. Basically, if anything went wrong, people would just point to someone, call them a witch, burn them at the stake, then let God sort it out. There’s a lot of nice narrative potential with this and the game was pretty cheap, so I bought it and dedicated these last days of November to playing it.

So, who is our superhero? Well, I think a Time-based superhero would be cool since that can explain why he was able to time travel. While the game says that he’s unable to, my idea could be that his powers went out of control.

He’ll need a name… Hm… [roll] Royal Timeless Cosmic. … Okay, let me shuffle this around. Timeless Cosmic Royale. There we go. His backstory could be that he is a cosmic entity representing time itself but had the trouble of adjusting to the physical plane and, as a result, his powers are considerably nerfed.

Now, the game offers a physical feature to the game in that the three Witch Trials require real world items. Fire trials require burnable material, water trials require a bowl of water, and the scratching trials require paper. Though, this is flavor-wise. As this is mostly done through writing a computer with the deck drawing done through Tabletop Simulator, I won’t really be doing these activities, but I can see these adding a sort of investmental vibe to the game.

Without any further to do, let’s begin play.

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How To Play The Quiet Year Solo

The Quiet Year is a very interesting game about creating a map with a society that lives in it. However, playing solo can be rather tricky, especially given some mechanics require other people to play. This guide will teach you how to play the Quiet Year solo, or at the very least, show you how I played it solo in last year’s SGAM.

First, I’ll assume you know how to play the game already, that way I can cut right to the points where solo play comes in. Second, get yourself an NPC or Conversation Emulator. There’s quite a selection to choose from, so don’t feel too worried about picking a specific one. So long as the emulator in question does something to create a conversation, you’re fine. If you want me to specifically pick out a Conversation Emulator for you, I used the Universal NPC Emulator. However, I would also recommend Play Every Role if you want NPC responses.

When setting up your map, determine four details about the surrounding area. You may either think of this yourself or allow a Driver like Mythic Variations 2’s Detail Check or the Tangent Zero dice to generate ideas. Once you’re done arranging the map, determine its Abundance and Scarcity. After that, play begins like normal.

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The War Theme for Mythic GM Emulator

So, I didn’t have time to do a war game RPG for this year, but I decided to make up for it with a theme pack for Mythic GM Emulator.

In Mythic Variations, it explored the idea of using different themes and changing the Focus Chart and how Chaos Factor is done to fit the tone of the theme in question.

For this, I will be making a theme pack based around War.

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Mortzes and Ricksters

Stranger Things wasn’t the only franchise to get the D&D crossover treatment. In the exact same year, we would get a second crossover starter box, this time focusing on the Rick and Morty series. The difference between the two boxed sets are night and day, and that’s going beyond the obvious fact that the two shows are of different tones.

Stranger Things’ Boxed Set gives you a rather cut and paste recreation of the Player’s Handbook from the previous starter box. It’s mini-adventure did a little better at tying to the source material beyond just including the Upside Down and the Demogorgon by including plot elements from the in-universe campaign and piecing together what they think the adventure was.

Rick and Morty, however, has its signature, cynical humor written throughout the entire box as Rick riffs on the normal Player’s Handbook. Obviously, whoever made this knows that there’s already three starter boxes that have a player’s handbook (The first one with the Lost Mine, Stranger Things, and Essentials Kit) and decided “Okay, I doubt anyone’s gonna buy this as their first product in D&D so I might as well have some fun!”

Hell, the writing is so authentically Rick that I’d be surprised if it was one of the writers of the actual show behind the pen. This is made all the more hilarious because instead of just screenshots from the show, the images are drawn comic panels with jokes relevant to the topic they’re attached to. Honestly, it’s worth hunting down a copy just for this alone if you’re a big fan of either Rick and Morty or comedy in general.

Another major difference is that whereas Stranger Things was primarily a short, one-shot adventure not unlike the ones you’d see for D&D Encounters, the Rick and Morty spin-off has an entire dungeon, filled with 40 rooms for the party to explore, making it more akin to something like Dungeon of the Mad Mage than, say, Dragon Heist.

But you want me to get to the part where I play a game and make up a story with the assistance of dice tables that determine yes or no questions and occasionally create plot twists. Well, before we do so, allow me to establish some backstory for these characters since the game, still being written in the humor of Rick and Morty, throws us into a dungeon with nary any detail in contrast to the Stranger Things crossover where we have a bit of backstory as to why we’re hunting the Thessalhydra.

  • Ari Strongbow lost her brother to a raid by Orcs and wants revenge. Her mentor and father figure, Kiir Bravan, sticks with her because he believes she might go down a dark path.
  • Keth Silverson was an orphan who steals everything from everyone. Lyan Amaranthia, instead of arresting him for a bounty, chooses to instead take him in and teach him how to live his best life.
  • Matthias Fabian was a prince of the Fabian Family before a curse placed on him by the Colonel turned his family into mindless barbarians. Matthias survived the bloodbath, but escaped with his mind scathed, now being only known as Meatface.
  • Kiir met up with Lyan and the two pairs became one as Lyan put her faith in the wizard father figure. Ari, while the appearance of Keth reminded her of the raid, also reminded him of her brother and decided to treat him as though he were her brother. Meatface just joined because they were gonna smash heads in.

And now, we can begin. Now, the module gives us a rather elaborate dungeon done in the classic blue and white color scheme commonly associated with old D&D maps. Fun fact: the reason they were blue is to prevent photocopying back then. However, it’s more of a layout. Most of the rooms are vacant appearance wise save for a few that have evocative designs.

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