KantCon 2018, Pt. 5 (Dread)

My last session was discussed here.

Horror is a very tricky thing at the game table. I’ve been wrestling with that mood since 2nd Edition Ravenloft. The players aren’t in the same situation as their characters. They have knowledge the PCs don’t and player characters by definition are better prepared to handle these situations than your usual horror protagonists. Plus, control over the environment to reinforce the unease, or descriptions that put you there, can too easily veer off into cheesy gimmicks that pull you out and insulate you from what’s happening. Horror, in my opinion, is best reinforced by a rules system that puts you there, ratchets up that tension and helplessness, and keeps things unpredictable. more “KantCon 2018, Pt. 5 (Dread)”

KantCon 2018, Pt. 1 (Red Markets)

KantCon, in Overland Park, KS, is my hometown convention. It was my first tabletop con four years ago, and is the only nerd event in town that I will absolutely plan around. This was its 10th year and had a big jump in attendance. The major effect of such high attendance was multiple games filling up, waitlists, and my playtests getting more attention than usual. Given that I was pretty excited to share Heist at this con (and had new buttons!), this was great news for me.

I’ll discuss the playtests in detail soon, but will briefly say I got great feedback and plenty of information for the next printing. Also had a lot of questions about my other projects, so that’s great, too.

My first session as a player was Red Markets, a zombie post-apocalypse game built around hustling for resources. The dice mechanic is clean and fits the theme: A red d10 subtracted from a black d10, plus skill modifiers, is the core mechanic. Any positive result is a success (or “stays in the black”), and any even doubles are critical success. Any odd doubles are a critical failure. A stat called Will allows you to spend a point and flip the two dice. That’s all we got in the session for mechanics.

more “KantCon 2018, Pt. 1 (Red Markets)”