Saturday, April 19, 2014

Warhammer FRPG: Thousand Thrones

Yesterday I managed to get in another game of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay 2nd edition. I even remember to bring my own dice this time. Since I didn't go out with my work amigos yesterday, I brought some sake, Ty-Ku, with me. I like Ty-Ku because it's one of the few sake I've had that can be drunk cold. For whatever reason, I like my sake cold and a lot of them cannot be drunk in that fashion.

Anyone have a favorite when gaming in terms of the old alcohol? I'm fond of beer and stuff like Ty-Ku in part because it's not a high alcohol content. When the hard liquor comes out I'm afraid it's time for someone else to drive so I can truly enjoy it.

While playing WFRPG, I was struck by how different it is than the standard Dungeons and Dragons game. For instance, no dice were rolled in combat. Sure, there were a few opportunities for combat which my character, a troll slayers, sought to instigate, but cooler heads prevailed.

While I've heard some criticisms on Thousand Thrones, and I've never read it myself, the GM +Tom Wright did a nice job of letting us wander around and pick up various bits of information after giving us a 'patron' that provided us a quick reason to do so.

My character, Orzad Gottri, doesn't have a lot of non-combat skills. His main contribution to the group that night was being very mean looking. I came up with two habits for my character. One, running his thumb along a very sharp two handed axe when asking questions. The second, running his hand along his bright orange mohawk. Similar habits that reinforce one another. Makes it easier to get into character and have a 'catch' so to speak.

It also helps that the TV show Viking's has been on. While dwarves aren't necessarily Norsemen in and of themselves, there are a lot of nods in that direction so it gets my mind into the proper state for it.

The one skill I do have that is useful in gathering information? Intimidate. Well, that and Consume Alcohol although the GM didn't call for any tests on that one.

For once, I also got to use Street Fighter. It's a skill that provides a bonus on your Weapon Skill when fighting unarmed as well as a bonus to damage. My elf comrade decided to move a body atop a hallucination inducing mushroom that exploded in his face and he then decided to attack us and almost cut the arm off the new play before we subdued him. And he failed some test and got another insanity point. So far that's two for him.

During the investigations, we got to meet and interact with a lot of NPC's. One part involved finding out some information on an orphanage. Ironically enough our 'adventurer', a hedge wizard we don't know is a hedge wizard, was going to try and pass off the halfling as a child in order to get into the orphanage when her plan to hire some local children to go in failed to pan out.

One of the things that I found funny, is that I haven't played 2nd edition in a long time. So long in fact, that I forgot about Fortune Points. See, in 1st edition, you didn't have any of those. On the other hand, I believe you also bought up your advancements at 10% increments, not 5% so there are some trade offs. One of the players was a little upset at the GM for not telling him about these things.

I'm of mixed feelings on it. On one hand, is it the GM's job to provide all the rules and nooks and crannies to the players or are the players responsible for at least reading the core rule book and having a good understanding of the game?

I think some games have gotten to the point of player-GM information separation so much that the GM is expected to handle X, Y, and Z, and the players A, B, and C as opposed to having the players and GM's working off of the same set of rules. Some could argue that even 1st edition was like that, but most of the stuff in the Dungeon Master's Guide wasn't player oriented, as opposed to stuff that could happen around, to, or around the players.

For games you haven't played in a while or you're new to, what do you do? Do you go back and fully read the rule book? Do you rely on the GM to point out things you should know?