Wednesday, May 4, 2016

More from Table-Top Day's: Let's Play THE BARON OF BLOOD


The excitement from Saturday's attempted one-shot (that failed and will have to be continued because we, frankly, had too much fun) has led to some heated discussions among my group. Our group's Anakin, Eris the Inquisitor of Athena, has took to defending her honor and decisions. And the tensions rise. But still, the Baron's threat continues...

While planning for our next session in a month of busy weekends and responsibilities, creativity has struck us here at PG GAMES. We decided to make a quick sketch (and ink!) of our game day characters.

The Noble Inquisitive Fire-Beast Scouts; from left to right: Lt. Hildy the Scout, Lord Noh Bael the Noble, Brant the Firebrand, Eris the Inquisitor of Athena, Bear the Beastmaster and Sunflower the Wolf Cub
Additionally, here are the unique pre-gens we used during the game, as well as the leading character questions for the start of the session.

As always, you can find The Baron of Blood at both DriveThruRPG and Lulu, as well as the rest of our products as well.

Lastly, we're working on setting up a PG GAMES Red Bubble store front, with things like stickers and other pieces of PG GAMES artwork. It's still a work in progress, so please be patient as we upload and tweak the shop. It's a learning experience!

Happy Gaming!

PG GAMES

Sunday, May 1, 2016

International Table-Top Day: Let's Play THE BARON OF BLOOD


For this year's International Table-Top Day, we at PG GAMES decided to run our first ever published work, THE BARON OF BLOOD for a group of friends who have had a gaming drought recently.

The idea was to spend a few hours, tromping through the Borderlands, but boy, were we wrong. Three hours of planned game-play grew and grew and players were added and something close to nine hours later we called it a night, nowhere near completion. Though, we did leave off on something of a cliffhanger.


The game began, in medias res, with the player characters arriving on the border of the Borderlands, at the King's Gate. They all had their reasons for travelling from the safety of the Imperial City, and these differing goals led to some great teamwork and unity, as well as conflict. These characters were:
  • BEAR the Beastmaster and Sunflower the Wolf Cub
    • Bear sought to discover the source of the taint in the Borderlands. Something was twisting nature and he was determined to discover it. He was accompanied by a young wolf cub whom he rescued from certain death at the hands of a hungry bear. 
    • Mechanically, Bear was a combination of some of the moves and ideals of the Druid and the Ranger.
  • ERIS the Inquisitor of the Cult of Athena
    • Eris sought to teach, by force if necessary, the edicts of Athena to the Borderlands. She would convert the heathans in the lands and keep them on the path of the righteous. Eris, as Inquistor of Athena, did not believe in mercy to heretics or criminals.
    • Mechanically, Eris was a combination of the Paladin and Cleric.
  • BRANT the Firebrand
    • Brant, in its alchemical and sorcerous tower in the Imperial City, felt great power residing in the Borderlands. It did some research and discovered myth and legend about an ancient amulet, said to originate from the region, The Talisman of Arubis, which would allow Brant to better attune itself with the fire that resides in all of us. (And summon meteors.)
    • Mechanically, Brant is a very fire focused Wizard.
We made use of the character portraits created by Brennan Reece for Dungeon World to great effect. Each player chose one for themselves and we propped them up with some binder clips. It gave everyone a face to associate to the other character's names, which each player wore on a temporary name tag. It helped everyone stay in character and use character names instead of player names.

As another tool, we used our very own PG GAMES Deck of Many Things, which we've previously discussed and previewed at this very blog before. Whenever a player rolled a 6 or less (a Miss in DW terms) they had an option, they could take the wrath of the DM or the chance of the Deck. Those familiar with the Deck know that it holds both good and bad things within. So as not to break the game, we used the Deck and it's traditional card interpretations only as influence and let both the card and the context leading to the draw better inform our actions.


If we're being honest here, almost everyone chose the Deck. And rightfully so. It led to some hilarious interactions. One of which was the Firebrand attempting to cause a distraction by performing charismatic street magic. The PC attempted to cast the spell "Prestidigitation" but it went horribly awry, they rolled a Miss and drew from the Deck, getting Flames. Given the character, this was incredibly appropriate and we ruled that the PC did indeed gain the enmity of his foes, now the town guard, as the spell instead was miscast and turned into a fiery blast, destroying a member of the audience.

In additional to the Deck, and character portraits, we also made use of the Swords & Wizardry White Box, while it has some great roll-able charts in the back for both spells and magical gear found in the wilds. All told, S&W and DW work almost flawlessly together, with no real need for conversion. We rolled up and the PCs discovered an Amulet of Diminuation which activated with the word "Huzzah!", a Scroll of Read Languages, a vial of Dust of Disappearance, and lastly a Magical Healing Potion

The party of three was eventually joined by two other PCs, and they are as follows:
  • LORD NOH BAEL the Noble, who clearly has originally named.
    • Lord Bael the lesser was sent by his father to the Borderlands to secure a fishing settlement, as the Imperial City Bael's are known for their fisheries and transportation businesses and endeavors. Once he heard of the plight of the other areas of the Borderlands, Noh agreed to help the other adventurers who came to his fishing village.
    • Mechanically he was a Fighter with a bit of Paladin thrown in for good measure.
  • LIEUTENANT "Hildy" HILDEBRAND the military Scout
    • Hildy was a former scout in the Imperial Armies who had ventured into the Borderlands to find her missing half-sister. She met the party, now including Noh, as they ventured into the Forgotten Forest and warned them of the dangers within. Hildy immediately recognized Noh, whom she had served under in one of the Border Wars. She had saved his life in one such conflict.
    • Mechanically Hildy was a combination of Ranger and Thief.
Throughout these nine (ten?) hours, the party met the titular Baron, ran afoul of him, ventured into the Forgotten Forests and claimed lost relics and treasures, made enemies of the people of Weston, attempted to assassinate the Baron before he fled and reduced Weston to rubble, fought a troll, became lost in the Atlas Mountains, and invaded the brigands of Brigands Keep.

All of this insanity culminated in a show down on Troll Bridge between Lord Noh Bael and Inquisitor Eris, as a former-bandit agreed to guide the party and a group of roughly 25 kidnapped people through the maze-like tunnels under the Atlas Mountains in exchange for mercy and freedom. Eris tolerated this up to the moment that the 25 villagers were free of the mountains and slay him before everyone. "Athena does not grant mercy to criminals," she spat.

Hildy was in shock, as Fergy had sworn his loyalty to her for sparing his life. Lord Noh struggled with his desire to do the right thing and defend those in his care. He challenged Eris on the bridge and the two clashed. The entire room was still and we were all in shock. Eris' player only played good characters, and we watched her descent to pure evil. The best evil. The evil that things that it is doing the right thing. We watched our very own Anakin Skywalker be born.

It. Was. Amazing.

Needless to say, we had a blast with International Table-Top Day, and hope each and every one of you did as well. Our group from Saturday night is planning to get together again, as there is still the Baron to contend to.

Happy Gaming,

PG GAMES


Thursday, February 25, 2016

Radio Silence and Exciting News

We've been quiet here at PG GAMES for awhile now. Life has a way of intruding in both hobbys and hobby publishing alike!

While we've been awhile, busy with work and other obligations and responsibilities, we've been doing a lot of thinking about our games and how we make them. Often, we've discovered, we rely too heavily on the fantasy genre and its tropes. Sometimes this works well, namely with our product The Baron of Blood. Other times? Not so much.

As a way to challenge ourselves, 'we've been stepping outside our beloved genre and reading other things. Deadlands and Owl Hoot Trail, Shadowrun, and more, have been our source of inspiration.

Looking beyond that, we've come up with an exciting new, self-contained game with a heavy influence from the games Powered by the Apocalypse and many others. While we can't really say much more beyond that, we will say that this is an adventure that has been eons in the making. It's utterly prehistoric!

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We've also had some friends in the indie and hobby publishing circuit come out with some awesomely fun games recently. 
  • From DDE Adventures comes CRUSH the REBELLION. (Think agents of the Empire in Star Wars meets Warhammer 40k, literally crushing the rebellion in the name of the Emperor!)
  • From SVD Press comes Fortress of the Ur-Mage. (Get it before it's well and truly gone! SVD Press is closing shop and it's currently on sale for $5!)
As for PG GAMES, you can always find links to our stuff in the sidebar on the right.

Until next time!

Friday, November 6, 2015

THE DECK OF MANY THINGS... Design Preview

One of the downsides to using DriveThru Cards is that it's really hard to display the design ethos of your cards without also selling a pdf Print & Play version as well.


We attempted to include a pdf that had not only the various legalese of our Deck of Many Things, but also a brief design preview. This lead to some confusion.

To alleviate that, we're hosting a Deck Of Many Things Preview.

PG GAMES presents.... THE DECK OF MANY THINGS Preview
And additionally, here is our legalese.

You can buy our DECK OF MANY THINGS through DriveThru Cards.

Enjoy!

PG GAMES

Thursday, October 29, 2015

PG GAMES presents... THE DECK OF MANY THINGS!

We at PG GAMES have loved the Deck of Many Things for quite some time. There is nothing that would better ruin an adventuring party (or make them epic) than The Deck.

Recently, our good friends SVD PRESS released a supplement The Fortune Teller's Guide to Deathtrap Dungeon Design. Seriously, pick this up. It's a guide to create amazing dungeons using The Deck and also includes a set of awesome print-n-play cards to do so by @Zeframsee. (Also be sure to check out SVD PRESS' Fortress of the Ur-Mage for deathtrap dungeon goodness in Dungeon World.)

Needless to say, we wanted a deck of our own. We have the deck that came with Wizard's Madness at Gardmore Abbey, but required more. We've been really into minimalistic design lately, and decided to give it a go using icons from Game-Icons. We also discovered that The Deck is part of the WotC SRD (and thus OGL) and set to selling it after we got our print in.

You can check out PG GAMES presents... The Deck of Many Things and maybe snag a print copy yourself. (Please note that the PDF option exists only to showcase the minimal design of some of the cards and also to collect information about the SRD, OGL, and CC-BY 3.0 license that the icons use.)

Things on our docket include: reworking THE DARK LANDS into something more substantial. In retrospect some of the design didn't work as intended, and needs to be fixed. You can currently check it out for FREE as it is Pay What You Want.

We've also updated our logo to be cleaner and follow our new minimal design principles.


Friday, June 26, 2015

In With The Old: The Baron of Blood

Here at PG GAMES we like to keep tabs on our creations because we take pride in them. That includes the occasional Google search to see if they pop up in discussions anywhere, to see if they are being played, to see if people have reviews, or even feedback

We just recently discovered that our first publication, The Baron of Blood, being played out in the wilds. Now, we're sure it's been played before, but this was our first confirmation of it. And it was a damn fine feeling and quite reassuring at that.

In fact, in that past, The Baron of Blood has gotten some good reviews over at DriveThru RPG as well. Check them out:

"In shorts: it's well worth a couple of bucks!

Nice mini-campaign front, ready to use. Well written, it stays with the Dungeon World canon. Places have their tags, main NPCs have good stats and moves, and you get some custom moves to correctly play the final boss battle and eventually to keep the big danger WITH you.
It correctly follows the "Play to find out" philosophy.
Final note, I don't like cheap pictures, and sadly this module has plenty of them. I'd prefer a clean, pictureless version instead. Also, it's not difficult to find some good free font: I think the author should work on it, 'cause good looking titles and main names in cool fonts can make the difference from a so-so product and a freaking good one. Almost the whole text is in a plain, anonymous, arial like font." 4/5 Stars

"This really exceeded my expectations! Great, interesting, original storyline with lots of flexibility to allow for players to adapt. This adventure fits in well with any campaign and can serve as a solid starting point. Excellent old-school cover, very useful maps, helpful illustrations. Plenty of depth of material with biographies of key NPCs, special moves, weapons, and monsters to fully support play without requiring massive prep. Whether a seasoned GM or nervously new to GM role, this adventure is fantastic! Includes very helpful GM advice to keep action going. I look forward to more adventures from this author!" 5/5 Stars

But don't just take our word for it! The Baron of Blood has been Pay What You Want at DriveThru RPG for quite some time. So go and check it out!

As always, you can find copies from our game library for sale in PDF at DriveThru RPG:
Or in PRINT at Lulu:

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Post-Contest Lessons and Revisions

It's been a couple weeks since we ran our first contest here at PG GAMES. We considered it to be a rousing success and it's a great feeling to get your work in the hands of others. 

In the meantime, we've gotten some great constructive feedback about our latest product, THE DARK LANDS, which led to some revisions for the Alchem Adept micro-playbook. In short, we scrapped the initial design concept which had a lot of legacy typos and design errors. Lesson learned: proof better! Starting from the ground up, we completely re-hashed the Alchem Adept and are proud with how it stands now. It's clearer how it is intended to work, and all in all it just is better design. The files for THE DARK LANDS have been updated both at DriveThru RPG and Lulu to reflect this.

The biggest takeaway is that here at PG GAMES, we love feedback. Seriously. We know that a lot of folks don't really enjoy receiving criticism, even when constructive, but we thrive on it. How can we be the best we can possibly be if we don't know what we're doing wrong? So, if you have feedback or suggestions for us, please do not hesitate to contact us on Twitter or via email and just let us know. (sorcerer DOT blob AT gmail DOT com)

Thanks again to everyone who has shared a link to our games, participated in our latest contest, given us feedback, or whatever. We truly thank you! 

As always, you can find copies from our game library for sale in PDF at DriveThru RPG:
Or in PRINT at Lulu: