With all the love and lust going around last week, on account of it being Valentine’s Day on Tuesday, you might have missed a new Kickstarter from Christina Stiles of Misfit Studios, The Book of Passion. The project is seeking support to publish a book about love and sex for the OGL 3.75 ruleset.
Regular readers who’ve read some of my older posts will know I don’t shy away from adult themes in my games. I believe there is a time and place for these topics, with the right group, and of course if everybody is comfortable with them. I would never try to alienate or hurt the sensibilities of my players. At least I try not to! Perhaps I’m lucky in that I play with my close friends, and since most of us have known each other for so long, we know where and how far we can go.
A project such as this will of curse be compared to the Book of Erotic Fantasy. I own a copy of it, and remember the controversy and hoopla around it. Much ado about nothing if you ask me! As you can tell I am definitely the target market for this new project. Not to brag, but I was the 2nd backer of the project. Fully believing that there should be a place for a product that tackles these subjects responsibly and respectful, and in my desire to spread the word about the book, I contacted Christina Stiles, the editor and publisher; she told me how to contact the authors. Margherita Tramontano and Will Wells were kind enough to grant me an interview, and over FB Messenger we had a LONG discussion about the book they have written together and may other topics. I thank them both for their accessibility and time. Continue reading The Book of Passion: An interview with the authors
UPDATE: Kaigaku Premium Edition is now available in print from DriveThruRPG!
A while ago Jacob Ross contacted me and asked me if I was interested in reviewing his game Kaigaku. Kaigaku is a roleplaying game based on the Black Hack mechanics and set in a pseudo-Japan setting. From what I’ve seen so far, most Black Hack hacks are only a couple of pages long, but Kaigaku has actually 72 pages. What it sets apart from other games of this kind is the setting included in the book. If you want to experience adventures in a land inspired by feudal Japan and its myths, Kaigaku includes everything you need to delve right in.
Kaigaku, as the other Black Hack games, uses a very simplified version of the OD&D rules. If you’re familiar with any edition of D&D you should get into the rules pretty quickly, especially if you have played any other retroclone or D&D 5th Edition recently. Kaigaku (and I suppose other Black Hack games as well) even borrowed the IMHO ingenious Advantage & Disadvantage mechanics from D&D 5th Edition. Kaigaku also adds a Honor and Dishonor mechanic to the mix, which makes a lot of sense considering the setting. Continue reading First Look: Kaigaku by Jacob Ross
Contact is one of the few roleplaying games created in Germany who eventually were released in English language. I have to admit I totally missed the release of the English PDF on DriveThruRPG probably because I had owned a hardcopy of the German version for quite a while now. The PDF on which this first look post is based on, was provided by the publisher. Thanks again, Patric!
So, what is Contact about?
Contact is a roleplaying game set into a near future, where aliens have started invading Earth. The players are part of OMEGA – an organization tasked with fighting the alien threat. Yes, this sounds a lot like the premise of the XCOM computer game series, and no, it’s not a coincidence. The author of Contact, Robert Hamberger, is a huge fan of the XCOM games and an avid role-playing gamer, who worked for many years to bring his vision to life: an XCOM-inspired pen & paper RPG.
A beautiful book!
The result is a 290-paged PDF (or book – the Kickstarter to fund the printing of hardbound books is still running) with gorgeous artwork and a percentile dice-based rules system which feels a lot like the mechanics ripped straight from a computer game. These mechanics may very well be what makes or breaks the game depending on what you prefer. I have to admit that especially combat in CONTACT has way too many fiddly bits for my tastes, but I might not be among the game’s target audience. If you love complex tactical combat in your RPGs you might love Contact.
The first 33 pages of the book contain background information about the world in the 2040s, OMEGA, and what kind of characters you can play in the game. The next 70 pages or so are the rules needed to play the game (including normal and Advanced Combat rules, Vehicle Combat, Character Creation, etc.). The remaining pages contain the Gamemaster section, an extensive equipment list, a bestiary, and a Base Management Simulation. Yes, CONTACT even let’s you customize your OMEGA bases.
Continue reading First Look: CONTACT – Tactical Alien Defense RPG