Dice-Rolling Lessons

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Mich
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Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Mich » Tue Oct 04, 2011 9:14 am

It has come to my attention, what with the "roll" command in the chatroom, that there are many here who are inexperienced in the fine art of rolling dice. Not for craps and such, but for a better goal: gaming. I also bet there's a fair number of us who are nerdy enough to, indeed, be involved in what is commonly considered the pinnacle of nerdy delights: tabletop RPGs.

Well, son, strap yourself in, because we seriously should have a thread for that.

And now we do.

First of all, check out this die:

Image

This baby is from the 2nd century, Roman-made, glass and paint. It's valued at US$18k. It has twenty sides. If looking at this thing doesn't make you want to roll a few d20s, I have no idea what will.

So: What boardgames does everyone play regularly? What tabletop RPGs? I know it's the nerdiest thing ever to share stories of your tabletop exploits, but does anyone want to share stories of their tabletop exploits?

For me, the only non-classical boardgame I've been playing with any regularity is Arkham Horror, the extremely complicated boardgame based on the Lovecraft Cthulhu mythos. All of my friends love it and we have had some truly awesome nights. In terms of classical ones, chess is the only one I really find engaging. Tabletops I've played a wide gamut, including Cyberpunk 2020, D&D (3.5 and a single disastrous game of 4e), Star Wars: Saga Edition, and a few games of Serenity (although we just tend to call it "Firefly" because come on). I've DMed about half of those games, probably, and I'm told that I'm a good DM, so if you have any questions about RPGs, I'm probably a decent source.
Last edited by Mich on Sun Nov 27, 2011 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Wind Swept » Tue Oct 04, 2011 10:13 am

Catan is the go to board game of my circle of friends. If we're Catan'ed out, our primary backups are Risk and Agricola. Perhaps once a year we work up the nerve to play a six-hour round of Civilization.

We've yet to really get into tabletop RPGs. We've been meaning to ease ourselves in via Munchkin, but we haven't gotten around to it yet.

I'd also like to try Warhammer 40K, etc., but it's looks to be too expensive a hobby for the time being.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Tue Oct 04, 2011 2:06 pm

My husband loves Risk but it's not my style. Among by brothers and I, the go to game is most versions of Trivial Pursuit.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 4:06 pm

I just got involved with my first RPG! I've wanted to since I was a child but never had any friends who were at all interested (probably because I was a homeschooled Southern Baptist kid who lived at a Baptist seminary surrounded by only Southern Baptists and Baptists tend to think RPGs are tools of Satan...). Like a month ago I went to a meeting for a freethought group I've gotten involved with and went to dinner with some folks afterwards and found out that one couple hosts an oWoD game on Friday nights and a couple of other folks in the group play.

So now I've been playing for three weeks and am enjoying my first foray into the game of RPGs. I'm a werewolf. Don't mess with me, I, like Chewbacca, will rip your freaking arms off. :)

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Mich » Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:47 pm

Catan is the go to board game of my circle of friends. If we're Catan'ed out, our primary backups are Risk and Agricola. Perhaps once a year we work up the nerve to play a six-hour round of Civilization.

We've yet to really get into tabletop RPGs. We've been meaning to ease ourselves in via Munchkin, but we haven't gotten around to it yet.

I'd also like to try Warhammer 40K, etc., but it's looks to be too expensive a hobby for the time being.
I got kind of Catan'd out back when it first hit it big. It's what we always played, everywhere, all of the time. I hope someday to go back (possibly with a drinking game of some sort), but for now I'm happy staying away. Munchkin is kind of fun in that you're playing the classic character archtype, and it pokes fun at a lot of classic D&D tropes, but I imagine the jokes don't often make a lot of sense. Really, if you want to get in, just download a manual for a game that sounds interesting, read it through with a bunch of friends (and they're generally fun to read), pick someone to be the DM/GM, and go! That's what we did.

And Warhammer is just too darn expensive. Like, seriously. I look into the game and it strikes me as something Zynga would have invented if they went with tabletops instead of video games.
My husband loves Risk but it's not my style.
And here we see why Nomi doesn't like the Shadow series as much. Then again, neither did I, but I love Risk.
So now I've been playing for three weeks and am enjoying my first foray into the game of RPGs. I'm a werewolf. Don't mess with me, I, like Chewbacca, will rip your freaking arms off. :)
Which game are you playing? Also, I totally hear you on the "tools of Satan" thing. It's the pretty much only reason I didn't play any RPGs until I was out of high school. It's super-awesome you happened upon a bunch of people that play, though. I'm doing my best to rope in a bunch of first-timers that I've met around Portland, in the hopes of establishing a regular group.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby VelvetElvis » Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:54 pm

I have no idea what any of those games are.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:55 pm

My husband loves Risk but it's not my style.
And here we see why Nomi doesn't like the Shadow series as much. Then again, neither did I, but I love Risk.
I never wondered why I didn't like the Shadow series. I am have no interest in politics, no knowledge of the military, and history is hit or miss for me. Speaking of Risk, my husband is having one of his (at least) biannual parties next weekend. I find something else to do because the house is full of a bunch of guys. :?
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:56 pm

I have no idea what any of those games are.
You know what Trivial Pursuit is, right? :)
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Jayelle » Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:58 pm

I've never played any RPGs (except Munchkin, but I'm not sure that counts), but I'd like to. I really want a group of friends who are interested in playing a D&D style game, but for beginners and without too much seriousness.

I love board games, though. Ticket to Ride, Carcassone and Puerto Rico are all pretty fun. I am also a fan of Trivial Pursuit, Scrabble, Boggle and other classics like that.


Luet, I'd love to play Trivial Pursuit with you someday.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Tue Oct 04, 2011 7:03 pm

That would be awesome, Jan! My husband and I make a pretty good team. He knows 95% of all of the sports questions. I know maybe 20% of the other categories (and he knows a few other answers too). My brother is very good. He is one of those people who might have no idea off the bat but can reason his way to the correct answer over the course of ten minutes. It's uncanny.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Tue Oct 04, 2011 7:04 pm

And Warhammer is just too darn expensive. Like, seriously. I look into the game and it strikes me as something Zynga would have invented if they went with tabletops instead of video games.
That is so true! I *do* have a friend who played Warhammer, but I could never afford to get involved.
So now I've been playing for three weeks and am enjoying my first foray into the game of RPGs. I'm a werewolf. Don't mess with me, I, like Chewbacca, will rip your freaking arms off. :)
Which game are you playing? Also, I totally hear you on the "tools of Satan" thing. It's the pretty much only reason I didn't play any RPGs until I was out of high school. It's super-awesome you happened upon a bunch of people that play, though. I'm doing my best to rope in a bunch of first-timers that I've met around Portland, in the hopes of establishing a regular group.
I'm not sure? We have two werewolves, a werefox, two, possibly three mages, a mummy, and possibly a kinfolk (the possibly characters are two other n00bs who joined the week after I did but weren't back last week). The story itself is werewolf-centric with a werewolf tribe, though I'm not even a member of their tribe so there is only one real tribe member wolf. (I jumped into a NPC the week I joined up and have taken on that character for the rest of this story.)

It's been a great experience so far. There are three RPG n00bs involved, including myself (though I understand the basics), one person who hasn't played by oWoD rules, and a person who is mostly familiar with D&D games. The GM and two of the other players are long-time RPG and oWoD players.

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby steph » Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:29 pm

I think I'm the only person in the world who HATES Ticket to Ride.

The game we play most is Days of Wonder's Pirate's Cove. This game is actually what caused Brian to be so heavily interested in pirates. We used to get together every sunday with my siblings and cousins and play. We called it "Sunday Night Pirates". We all had such a good time playing and being piratey, and then I mentioned TLAPD to Brian and that sealed the deal. He started his annual Pirate Party and the rest is history. :pirate:

We also really like to play Life: Twists and Turns. It's fun because a computer keeps track of all your money, interest, etc, AND because you get to choose which paths to go on and you can go on them as many times as you want. The paths are Education, Career, Family and Adventure. It's a lot of fun.

Besides those board games, we also have card games (5 Crowns, Wizard, Skip-bo, Loot) and party games (Most Likely, Loaded Questions, What If, Psychiatrist, Who/Where/How?, Curses, Mafia {or Werewolf}) that we love to play.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby mr_thebrain » Tue Oct 04, 2011 8:30 pm

my sister and i make a dynamite trivial pursuit team.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Wind Swept » Tue Oct 04, 2011 9:31 pm

Ticket to Ride, Carcassone
I've never played a physical copy of either of these games, but I bought them both on the iPad and love them. I downloaded Ticket to Ride on the Xbox the other night and played with a bunch of friends whilst we used the table we'd normally be gaming on for eating. Multitasking FTW.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Mich » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:13 pm

Carcassone is such a great game. I bought the travel edition for my mom for Christmas and she absolutely loves it. Plays it all the time. It's so simple, but every single game is different and makes such fun shapes and landscapes.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Wed Oct 05, 2011 3:44 pm

I've got a friend who has gotten into German-style board games and we played Agricola and some game about a coral reef the last time I was at his place. I liked those, don't know if I would be into them for any long-term kind of playing, though.

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby VelvetElvis » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:04 pm

I have no idea what any of those games are.
You know what Trivial Pursuit is, right? :)
I know what it is, but have never played it.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:10 pm

Wow. I am trying to comprehend this.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby VelvetElvis » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:19 pm

Do you county the Disney edition? Because I have played the Disney edition.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Wed Oct 05, 2011 4:32 pm

Of course that counts! The Disney edition is fun. I've played probably a dozen different versions, including a book edition that I got on clearance for $5. My brother was the only one who would play it with me and it turned out to be too hard even for us.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Dr. Mobius » Fri Oct 07, 2011 4:30 pm

Settlers of Catan is about the only board game we play. We also play Liar's Dice sometimes and use a pair of d10s to keep track of health while playing Magic: The Gathering. Some of the guys used to play D&D and we have a lot of various sided dice left over from that. We've been trying to get one going again off an on for the past year or so, but it's been slow while the DM works on ideas for what we should do.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Wind Swept » Fri Oct 07, 2011 6:22 pm

Really, if you want to get in, just download a manual for a game that sounds interesting, read it through with a bunch of friends (and they're generally fun to read), pick someone to be the DM/GM, and go! That's what we did.
When Google Wave was still alive, I tried this tact remotely with a group of friends from high school. Turns out it's really hard to teach people how to play remotely. Plus, the plugin we wanted to use for encounters was absolute rubbish. It refused to show people in the same location on more than one screen.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Dr. Mobius » Mon Oct 24, 2011 10:32 am

Playing Yahtzee by myself using Phoebe's dice...
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Mich » Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:28 pm

I totally forgot this thread existed, and I might as well tell you a short tale about my group's Firefly adventure:

It ended up being four players and myself playing, with one player existing purely in a webcam and voice-chat form as he lives in Okinawa. I've played a few games entirely on the internet, but it's really best if most of the people are in-person: people are a lot more lively if they're in-person or if people are being lively in general, so you have the people who are in the same room together interacting normally which encourages the internet person to do so, as well.

Of our four players, one had never played anything tabletop RPG-y before, and his girlfriend had only played one game with a few other people who were complete twats and rule lawyers, supposedly spending hours arguing over a single combat roll and spending the rest trying to get the female players to have their female characters do stupid, naked things. Basically the epitome of annoying RPG-players. I got those two outfitted with what characters they wanted to play: since the pilot of the crew wasn't playing with us, and the crew had absolutely no one with any skills in medicine, he went with a pilot and driving specialist while she went with a doctor. Since the other two players were an official, established part of "the crew" and had played a game or two as part of it before, they had already established the crew as seedy, low-life types who will do most mercenary jobs: illegal transportation, kidnappings, etc., with no unfamiliarity with getting their hands dirty. Basically the Firefly crew with less morals.

The Serenity system (I generally refuse to call it that, and we always call it Firefly RPG, but the game was created to build on the "success" of the film) uses a Complications and Assets system that a lot of the third-party games use, and I like it a lot. Basically, you choose how many attribute points each player gets, at a standard amount (in this case 48). These get applied to the usual attributes like Strength, Intelligence, etc. Then you can choose Complications, which are detrimental to your character but give you extra attribute points, or Assets, which help your character but cost additional attribute points. C&As generally are additional characterizations ("Lies Like a Rug", "Leaky in the Brainpan", "Friends in Low Places") that give your character some flavor, and thus additional roleplaying opportunities, as well as affecting your die-rolls. For instance, if you take the Complication "It Never Goes Smooth", the game master (in this scenario, me) gets to choose at least one die-roll per game that you have to re-roll, and you take the lower of the two values. Our pilot chose a few like "Overconfident", "Crude", and "Born Behind the Wheel", while the medic took "Educated", "Deadly Enemies", and "Gut Instincts".

One final interesting mechanic that is also popular with a lot of systems nowadays is the idea of a Plot Point. Players earn PP for completing quests, acting in-character, and doing generally cool things. They can later spend them to do extraordinary things with no roll, to add numbers to their die-rolls, or to gain Experience Points and thus improve their characters. I use poker chips to designate PP and it's pretty fun to toss them around or bribe a player to act in a detrimental but in-character manner with real, physical chips.

Some run-downs of fun things that happened:
  • I sent the players to a new location, a space station casino/hotel/resort/seedy underbelly, on the premise they were there for a job, as well as delivering some illegal goods. The job they got was a classic train job with a twist: don't steal the goods on the train, but just the super-fancy high-tech engine core itself. They also encountered a private investigator who I was sending after them for botching the last job so badly and came up with a general plan of how to get the core.
  • The captain's player normally is the kind to come up with ridiculous strategies that don't really work but are really fun in the first place, but the captain's character is not the type to come up with them, and it was really fun hearing the player hold back as hard as he could. He got a few PP just for being restrained and in-character.
  • The four player, the mechanic, is also a compulsive liar, completely untrusting and paranoid, and has a Complication (Flat Broke) where he's not allowed to leave a port with more than half of the money he went in with. After the detective showed up, he invested in many different and lame disguises.
  • These idiots took forever dealing with the PI. Their strategies to deal with him included: murdering him; throwing out five different false signals as they left port to throw him off their trail; murdering him and throwing the body into space; pretending to take on a few passengers to pretend they were a legitimate transportation ship; murdering him and leaving him at the scene of the train-theft to frame him.
  • They completely ignored the NPCs that I had set up to both act as passengers and possibly help with the heist. They even spoke about the idea of looking for passengers before revealing they were just going to charge absurdly high rates so that noone would want to travel with them.
  • Most importantly, the guy who had never played before had an amazing amount of fun and was awesome at roleplaying. He realized that it was pretty much like playing the best video game ever, and with more friends than normal.
Also, their plan to steal the engine came down to this: a really, really powerful winch, attached to the bottom of the ship.

We spent five hours coming up with "a winch".
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:32 pm

I bought Trivial Pursuit Beatles Edition, brand new and sealed, at a yard sale for $2!
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 5:16 pm

These idiots took forever dealing with the PI. Their strategies to deal with him included: murdering him; throwing out five different false signals as they left port to throw him off their trail; murdering him and throwing the body into space; pretending to take on a few passengers to pretend they were a legitimate transportation ship; murdering him and leaving him at the scene of the train-theft to frame him.
OK, first, I want to play this game, it sounds totally awesome (and of course it does, since it is based on such an awesome series).

Second: I'm sure our GM feels the same way about us and our recent escapades with... semen... (Bane tainted semen started it all.)

I'm now something like five sessions in to my first experience with this stuff and I'm enjoying it. I do look forward to creating my own character (since the one I've been playing was an NPC before I joined up). Also I'd really like to play a D&D game.

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby zeroguy » Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:37 pm

I've wondered about table-top gaming before, but I'm a little afraid that everyone would get annoyed at me saying "I cast magic missile at the darkness" at every opportunity. Because... I would probably try to do that.
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Wed Oct 26, 2011 9:42 pm

Our life mage does "sense bane" on everything he comes across, and he also does things like casting to see if anyone in the group has become pregnant, including the men. (Though, to be fair, we have had random people become pregnant recently. No men, though.) Of course he also lets his paradox build up and explodes at inopportune times...

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Borommakot_15 » Mon Oct 31, 2011 5:21 pm

My oWoD life mage (been playing for 6-7 months) is into poisons, diseases, genetic modification, etc.. Though the group I am playing with has been going on for so long that most of the NPCs are characters of the past.. some from 10+ years in the past..

He has a thing for saying "Ooh, I've never been (painful thing) that way, before!"
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Gravity Defier » Tue Nov 01, 2011 1:43 pm

I have nothing to contribute to this thread.


Dan! *tacklehug* It's great to see you on the board. :)
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Borommakot_15 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:39 am

I have nothing to contribute to this thread.


Dan! *tacklehug* It's great to see you on the board. :)
Hahaha.. I didn't think it would take long for you to come after me.. =)
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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Platypi007 » Thu Nov 03, 2011 6:57 pm

Oh yeah, and I do, now, know what the game is. :D oWoD Werewolf the Apocalypse. (Though we only have two werewolves.)

Also, our mummy quit that character and started a new creature, a were ogre or something, he made it up using Werewolf rules but it isn't a werewolf. Also our kitsune and the matter mage haven't been around in a while.

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Gravity Defier » Thu Nov 03, 2011 8:38 pm

Hahaha.. I didn't think it would take long for you to come after me.. =)
Well...yeah. Don't take my lack of phone or other off the board social interaction skills/habits to mean I don't miss you.
Se paciente y duro; algún día este dolor te será útil.

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby megxers » Sat Nov 12, 2011 4:55 pm

Semi-recently I had a job interview where the logic problem involved dice.

There was a lot of explanation involved. So every time I see this thread title, I remember myself sitting in a conference room of a major video game development company responding to "like in craps" with "how do you play that?"

(Its been long enough that all of this makes me laugh)
So don't go worrying about me
It's not like I think about you constantly
So maybe I do, but that shouldn't affect
Your life anymore

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Re: Dice-Rolling Lessons

Postby Luet » Fri Nov 25, 2011 8:53 am

So, instead of celebrating Thanksgiving yesterday, my family got together and played 9 hours of board games. Most of which was a 6 hour game of super-Trivial Pursuit, my brother against the rest of the family. My brother took the card sets from Genus 1-6, two Disney editions, Silver Screen, RPM, 60s, 80s, 90s, and several other versions that I can't remember. The game entailed rolling two dice. I still don't know exactly how the system worked, I just did what my brother told me. But one die determined which version you had to answer questions from. We were pretty evenly matched and it came down to both of us in the middle trying to win. And we're doing it all over again today! Aren't you jealous? :P
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