Monday, January 14, 2013

2012 - a great year of just plain gaming

With the Temple of Demogorgon 4 year anniversary just this last week, I thought it might a good time to talk about some of my gaming from the last year (as seems to be the tradition). Mostly the last year was about focusing on actually running games over blogging or kerfuffling in the OSR, and I found it both peaceful and fulfilling.

In 2012 I didn’t do much in the way of gaming outside the regular group. After a couple of shitty experiences in the previous and other years both at tabletops and online (there were some good ones too), I dedicated myself to the regular group and to new campaigns with gusto, and kept my posts here to an average of 2 or 3 a month.

Pretty much started the year jumping right into my long-daydreamed about classic Runequest game. I did a lot of research, and dreaming up of my own stuff in relation to existing data for this campaign. It was a lot of work, but I love Glorantha and could not wait to portray my version of it. Though I used a lot of the Celtic imagery and some clarifications on locations from later editions, I did my best to keep my Glorantha very basic, they way I experienced it as a kid. There was a bit of work to be done with the crunch, as I almost immediately threw out some of the Strike Rank stuff and started houseruling to make the game and all it’s combat focus go smoother. I think that went well, as I’m pretty sure I captured the groups imagination with strong tribal-clan setting, a nice break from generic medieval Europe setting of D&D. I finally got to do the classic Gringles Pawnshop and Rainbow Mounds scenario’s, and it was all good. I think I left the campaign off later in the year with the players wanting more, and that is the feather in the GM cap as far as I’m concerned. I will for sure revisit the characters later this year.

In January regular player Paul brought a copy of Arkham Horror boardgame when we were low on players, and though lengthy (as most boardgames seem to be) it was fun, and got my juices flowing to do some Call of Cthulhu. We did eventually get a few sessions in, and it was good times. I called this part of the campaign “Fangs of New York,” with a classic New York setting. Byakhees and Chinese Gangsters over Times Square on New Years Eve, Cho Cho People and Chaugner Faugh in the Jersey Pine Barrens. Really great sessions, and as in the past some players hemmed and hawed about the genre, but loved it once we played. Quite honestly, I think I do my best GMing with Cthulhu. I’m really “on” when I run it. Looking forward to getting in some more of this soon. It is a good game for when you are low on players.

Just a quick video gaming mention as an aside. Around the earlier part of last year my video game of choice ended up being Fallout 3. I hadn’t played a video game with this much enthusiasm since Resident Evil 4. Just a great and immersive game, and a big time waster in 2012. Right now, into 2013, I’m putting a bit of effort into Borderlands 1 and Bioshock (I might have mentioned in the past that I am always 2-4 years behind on my video games).

My Knights of The Old Republic campaign continued. Despite the crunch, or maybe even because of it, the group on a whole seemed to really enjoy it. I cannot compare it to AD&D as I hadn’t run that for the group in over two years, but out of everything else I have done; Mutant Future, Champions, and Call of Cthulhu, this seemed to be what the gang liked best. I ran it right up to the holidays, but have set it aside since I want to do D&D so bad. We’ll hopefully get back to it later this year, maybe summer.

In addition to this new D&D campaign we are just getting underway, I also still want to do a mini-campaign with the high level dudes left over from the Night Below campaign I ended two years ago. The players seem very attached to these characters, and it seems a shame to not do the occasional outing with them, despite my mild dislike for high level play.

So we in the group have started my new AD&D 1st edition campaign, and the characters seem like a lot of fun so far. So my gaming wish list for lucky number 2013 is to do a bunch of this AD&D campaign, a smattering of the high level AD&D, More Call of Cthulhu here and there, a continuance of KOTOR later in the year, and…heaven forbid…maybe sneak a little Champions in? That would be a damn good gaming year for me.