Episode 25: Descent 2e, The Acquisition Disorder and Designing Better PCs

In episode 25, the founders give you an overview and review of the new Fantasy Flight edition of Descent Journeys in the Dark. Tony collects and presents the most interesting gaming news and the gang gives their thoughts. The founders admit they have a problem and get some help with their Acquisition Disorder and then hold court on how they design Player Character in role-playing games.

Right-click to Download Episode Now!

Episode Timeline

  • Descent Journeys in the Dark Overview: 00:28
  • Descent Review: 00:35
  • Gaming News with Tony Topper: 01:02
  • The Acquisition Disorder: 01:26
  • Designing Better Player Characters: 01:54

Opening Banter Topics:

  • The founders discuss their sadness about missing out on Gen Con. Next year!
  • Jamie already planned the travel route to Gen Con next year. Google Maps says we should drive right by Barley's in Columbus, Ohio! Brian expresses that a limit should be imposed on how much we take so we can make room for all the growlers we plan on picking up.
  • Android: Netrunner sold out twice at Gen Con. New long term hotness or new fad? Only time will tell.
  • X-Wing Miniatures Game released at Gen Con. The founders debate about the dollar value.
  • Jamie picked up King of Tokyo even though he was bothered about the price point. He loves it and is very satisfied with his purchase.
  • Jamie and Brian regale the rest of the gang with their trip to a listeners and their awe at his collection. We played First Spark by , which has mechanics similar to Power Grid, and were very impressed overall. 7 Wonders with the Leaders expansion was our second game. Another player got an amazing 53 points just with green Science cards. Somehow Jamie scored 80 some points and won!
  • Elder Sign HD came out for the iPad. Priced at $7 it's a bit pricey. The graphics are amazing with a lot of updated art. If you own the iPhone version, the content does NOT transfer over. Chris says pick this up if you're a fan of Elder Sign and do not have the iPhone version.
  • Tabletop has had some great episodes lately. Gloom and Fiasco were excellent episodes. Elder Sign wasn't as entertaining, mostly because the players didn't seem to get into it.
  • Chris has been sucked in by My Kingdom for a Princess for iPad. His review, don't buy it just get the free version. Why it's in our banter? I have no idea =)
  • Chris took one for the team and payed the $8 for San Juan for iPad. He was really happy with his purchase. No one else wanted to pay that for an iPad game.
  • And yet another iOS purchase, Chris picked up Cafeteria Nipponica. He really enjoyed hiring employees and building up his restaurant to draw in patrons as well as creating the dishes. The rest of us thought this sounded like a snoozefest, but if you like Chris' picks you can check this out for $4.

Descent 2e, Journeys in the Dark

Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) is a board game in which one player takes on the role of the treacherous overlord, and up to four other players take on the roles of courageous heroes. During each game, the heroes embark on quests and venture into dangerous caves, ancient ruins, dark dungeons, and cursed forests to battle monsters, earn riches, and attempt to stop the overlord from carrying out his vile plot. With danger lurking in every shadow, combat is a necessity. For such times, Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) uses a unique dice-based system. Players build their dice pools according to their character's abilities and weapons, and each die in the pool contributes to an attack in different ways. Surges, special symbols that appear on most dice, also let you trigger special effects to make the most of your attacks. And with the horrors awaiting you beneath the surface, you'll need every advantage you can take...

Gaming News with Tony Topper

The Ennie Awards!
  • Savage Worlds Deluxe Edition took the gold for Best Game.
  • Role Playing Public Radio took home the gold for Best Podcast.
  • Pathfinder Wiki took the gold for Best Website. We thought they were talking about the Pathfinder SRD, but it's actually a large wiki.
  • Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Beginner Box took Best Product of the Year
  • Check out the rest of the Ennie Awards winners!

Crowd-Funded Features Donald X Vaccarino, the designer of Dominion, has a new project available on Kickstarter called Gauntlet of Fools. Players win by boasting about how easily it will be for them to defeat the monsters. Whoever survives the longest is the winner. It's a quick 30 minute fun game with fantastic artwork. The project currently has 7 days to go and will end on September 13. It's completely funded and is sitting at $26,627 out of the required pledge value of $15,000.

A new 28mm fantasy miniatures skirmish game called Fantacide has cropped up on Kickstarter. The big name here is Allecio Cavatore, known for his contributions to Games Workshop's Warhammer Fantasy, 40k, and the Lord of the Rings Strategy Battle Game. The project is at a rather low value to get started for a miniatures game, a small $10,000 of which it has met. The models themselves look to be priced at comparable values to other miniature games out there. There's a large diversity in the armies themselves with your typical fantasy style units as well as weird cyclops looking creatures, centaurs, and flying monkeys. If this peaks your fancy, check out their promotional video. But be quick about it. There's only 5 days to go yet on this project.

The Resistance is back! Don Eskridge's The Resistance: Avalon is now available on Kickstarter. Avalon is set in Arthurian legend and puts some interesting tweaks on the classical Resistance game. One player plays Merlin who knows of the evil that's afoot. He mustn't directly divulge his knowledge though for fear that the forces of evil will ascertain his identity and assassinate him. Each player now has unique powers. While it's a standalone game, the plot cards from The Resistance can be used with the ones from Avalon. The founders have played and enjoyed The Resistance, courtesy of a local listener that we game with occassionally. This looks to be an exciting addition to the line of products from Indie Boards and Cards. They've well exceeded their funding at this point and are sitting at $48,367 out of a required $15,000 with another 6 days to go yet. For a cheap buy in of $20 you can get your hands on a copy of this, or for $40 you can get a copy of The Resistance 2nd Edition and promo items as well as a copy of The Resistance: Avalon.

Product Announcements / Releases
Mantic games has copied another (we say that jokingly, please don't sue us) Games Workshop product. DreadBall has been announced, a futuristic sports game. It's based on the old Amiga game Speedball. They product seems like a cheaper quality version of Blood Bowl but for a lower price point for the consumers. It looks like a good game, but it sits a tad to close to an existing GW product to sit well with us.
Games Workshop has announced Warhammer Quest for iOS, to be produced by Rodeo Games. It's a Hero Quest style game, exclusive to iOS, where you control a party of 4 adventurers seeking fame and fortune. We missed out on the original Warhammer Quest game but it plays like a dungeon crawl board game. This is slated for Spring of 2013.
Warhammer 40,000: Dark Vengeance is available! It is Chaos and Dark Angels, which upset Jamie as he plays neither. Tony, however, is happy about the inclusion of those armies in the new box set. Two price points are listed, a regular edition for $99 and a Limited Edition for $107.
Reiner Knizia's Lost Cities is now available on iOS for $4.
Fantasy Flight has released Star Wars Dice for $4.99, for their X-Wing Miniature Game. We were not impressed. But if you're a Star Wars junky and you have to have it, here it is! It does save common rolls specific to the mini game so that's one plus. It's available on both iOS and Android.
The unofficial Dominion app has been pulled off the App Store and will be replaced with the official one! A private Beta is currently ongoing. Apply at Goko.com. The base set is free to play with pay DLC available for expansion content.

The Acquisition Disorder

This episode is all about sharing, and here we share with you our trials and tribulations in dealing with a serious health concern we've dubbed the Acquisition Disorder (well, our health after our wives find out how much we spent on yet another game or just the health of our wallets in general). We each take turns sharing what sparks our acquisition disorder, the recent struggles not to buy games we've experienced, and Brian shares that he doesn't suffer from this particular addiction. For Jamie it seems to be miniatures, for Chris it's weird games...the weirder the better, for Tony it is the all consuming Magic the Gathering, and Brian...well...his issues are more PC based. He just spends excessive amounts of time and money playing MMO's and other computer games, though he justifies his time by explaining that he made money on Diablo 3. Come listen in on our discussion and then share with us how you're fared in fighting off this pandemic.

Designing Better PC's

This weeks RPG discussion tackles how to make a great PC, from character creation through actual game play. Each of us discuss our processes on creating a character. Jamie tackles the personality first, specifically the story elements he wants to play. Chris picks the class, as it inspires him in the rest of his character creation process. He wants to understand the "job" the character does. Stats and skills come much later. Tony looks at the setting and lets that shape his character. He looks at the basics, such as in Vampire he says to himself, "okay, I need to feed on humans to survive, how does that impact my character?" From there he looks at economics. He uses those things to inspire his characters role in the world. Brian picks his archtype first. He looks at the tactical aspect of the game and what role he wants to play there. Afterwards he looks at the fluff of the world or the fluff of the mechanics and finds something he likes at the moment. Then he defines a personality afterwards based on how all of those things would shape a person. This conversation carries on to how we progress from there, whether it be character sheets, writing up backgrounds, and then through the first several games. We give you a look at how each of us handles this process. Universally we tend to let the first several games solidify our views, whether the character plays out like we expected, if the character fits into the group, whether it's fun or not, etc. After trying the character on for a bit, we make whatever adjustments we feel needs be made to improve our enjoyment of the character. We digress and talk about our current Pathfinder campaign set in the Conan the Barbarian setting of Arboria and share how we're getting into the roleplay. From there, Jamie expresses his interest in putting players on the spot by allowing them to explain or define things in the world, in the hope that it improves role play in the game. He encourages players to think about things like cinema. If you're upset, be over the top. Embellish and glorify your own characters in tales. Tony adds in that he picks 3 outrageous things that he wants to do with his characters. From there, we tackle stats and how they impact our characters in d20 style systems, whether it's things that we don't enjoy playing or things that enhance our role play.

Support The Show!

If you're thinking of purchasing any of the games that we talked about today and you don't have a local game store with these products available, we encourage you to purchase the games via the links in our show notes. This is an easy way for you to contribute to our show and get some fantastic games for your collection!
Previous Article Episode 24: Le Havre, World Board Game Championships and Living & Collectible Card Games
Next Article Episode 26: Milestones, Our One Year Retrospective and Building Better PCs Part 2