Friday 30 December 2016

Gaming 2016, and into 2017

I don't care what happened to anyone else in 2016. What I know is that I didn't game enough.

I ran quite a bit of Advanced Fighting Fantasy 2e (AFF), a few sessions of Labyrinth Lord, and I think we also squeezed some OpenQuest 2e in at the start of the year. All fantasy - no other genres, despite constantly toying with the idea of running a sci-fi game, a historical fantasy game, or a pulpy horror game. Things for 2017 then?

We did a bit more boardgaming, playing Pandemic and its variant, Reign of Cthulhu, Ticket to Ride, a game or two of War on Terror, Munchkin Conan, X-Wing, Elder Sign, King of Tokyo, Sun Tzu, Jaipur, Commands and Colors: Ancients, Memoir 44, Antidote, and gods knows what else. Probably a few rounds of Settlers - which has become a bit of a standard for the wider family.

We even started a regular gaming night - playing every week on Wednesday nights for the last couple of months up until Christmas.

So, what for 2017?

1. Resurrect this blog, with at least a couple of posts a week. Shouldn't be so hard if we're actually playing regularly, should it?

2. Play some new RPGs. In particular, I would really like to see if I can run Fate, and if my group takes to it - which is more or less the same thing. I've been reading Fate books for a few years(!) now - I couldn't help but buy Starblazer Adventures way back when - and think that in some regards it might work for my group of players, who aren't really interested in learning crunch, or games of bean counting (which is why my preference for an OSR sandbox, with resource management being a key aspect of player decision making, isn't a goer for us). In conversations with people on G+, especially Paul Mitchener - author of Age of Arthur and Hunters of Alexandria, Fate has solidified a little in my mind as a pretty traditional game, all in all, which offers a system for giving mechanical weight to things that aren't contained in standardised skills or special abilities. We'll see.
2.2 Other systems I'd like to have a run at include Barbarians of Lemuria, as well as dusting off Traveller and keeping some AFF going.
2.3 Play (well, run) RPGs in some other genres. Whether I use Traveller, or Diaspora, or Stars Without Number, I'd like to get some sci-fi gaming going. I might even get the chance to use Stellar Adventures, the AFF2e sci-fi ruleset! I'd also like to run some historical fantasy, which is perhaps where I will be able to differentiate my experiments in Fate from my more fantastical AFF games. I doubt we'll be able to squeeze in any pulp horror, but as that is well suited to isolated one-off games (whereas fantasy and sci-fi games shine in campaign mode) it might be an effective 'filler'.

3. Actually get an Advanced Fighting Fantasy fanzine off the ground - this will depend heavily on the rhythm and intensity of my actual work. But as I'll be playing AFF, I should be creating content for AFF. Shouldn't I? 

4. Paint some miniatures, and play some miniature games. I could easily(?!) rattle off a couple more BloodBowl teams, which would be an accessible game for most of the players in my circle. And I have enough painted fantasy miniatures for some healthy games of Songs of Blades and Heroes. I doubt we'll be able to do much more than that, but that is something.    

5. Keep up with the boardgaming, basically. Play Small World - my 'Christmas game' - and find a couple more 'standards' from my cupboards that everyone enjoys and is familiar with, so we can get some gaming done whenever we have a quiet night with no deadlines the next day.

What does this leave out? Well, there is no mention (with the exception of Stars Without Number) of any OSR games! Gasp! Horror! I've juts bought the Frog God Swords & Wizardry bundle too! No doubt I'll rest my AFF games (and maybe other games too) on my hefty catalogue of OSR adventures. I might even run some, depending on what my players enjoy. But it is not my ambition for 2017. Ditto a d100/BRP game, though again I could see us breaking out the percentile dice if, for instance, my players don't take to Fate. The thing I'm most reluctant to leave off this list is WFRP, and if that reluctant grows to remorse, my 'gaming resolutions' for 2017 will end up being tossed in the bin!