Rocco Privetera on Ninja Dice

photo-mainGame designer Rocco Privetera joins me in the reaction chamber to talk about his game, Ninja Dice. This Japanese ninja-thief-push-your-luck game is published by Greenbrier Press, and currently funding on Kickstarter. Rocco talks a bit about the print-and-play origins of the game and the importance of story and theme in game design. Check out this neat little game at any one of the various links below and let’s get it funded!

Dark Sun Apocalypse

Curtis and I continue our Doomsday Prepping, focusing this time on how to get ready for the advent of the Dark Sun, when a rogue asteroid spins our planet into a closer orbit, turning the world into a desert planet. Curtis got some new toys, and we do a bit about using the new Dwarven Forge miniature dungeon. The pieces are really spectacular, and there will be pictures posted into the blog later in the week. Other topics include updates on our plans to attend Fear the Con 5, Free Comic Book Day, and the premiere of The Avengers this weekend. Check out the artwork from Atomic Earth, and send us some feedback to mindspike@criticalpressmedia.com!

Elements of Setting

Some quick reviews on the Horseclans stories by Robert Adams, How to Train Your Dragon follows. After that, the guys and I sit down and discuss elements of rpg settings and what makes a good one.

Those Horseclan books are hard to find, check the Amazon store to make the job a bit easier!

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Bards Redux

The October/November Bard contest is over, and we have some clear results.  The Podcasting for Water Benefit book is done, and John Wilkerson speaks a bit about his perspective on the past year.  Some cool music from The Get, and the final few days to take advantage of a huge offer from Spirit Blade Productions.  Merry Christmas to all!

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November Contest: Create a Bard



Hi, this is Winston from the Critical Mass Podcast over at Critical Press Media.com.  The guys and I are really juiced about the new release of the Pathfinder core rules from Paizo Publishing.  There’s only one problem

Bards still suck.

This is our mission to you: using the Pathfinder core rules, make a Bardic character that can reasonably substitute for one or more of the four basic dungeon crawl classes: fighter, thief, cleric, or mage.  You have 16, that’s 2d8 maxed out, levels with which to build.  At least 8 levels must be in the Bard core class; multiple core classes are not allowed.  You may use any Prestige class or ability substitution from any published fantasy d20 book, provided you can tell us which book you used.  Links to the Pathfinder System Reference document may be found at criticalpressmedia.com.

Entries must consist of a completed character sheet, generated using any of the ordinary methods in the core book.  Complete characters include pre-calculated attribute bonuses, saving throws, skill bonus, spell selections, and feats, as well as a description of the character’s role in the party.  Extra points will be given for explaining how skills, spells, feats, and classes work together.  Double bonus points will be given for magic items that uniquely enhance your bard’s abilities – and you have a whopping 315K gold to spend on gear.  Points will be subtracted for detailed history and backstory; this is a dungeon crawl, characters don’t even need a name.

The contest runs from November 1 to November 30, ending promptly at midnight.  The winner will be selected by dungeon crawl survival ratio, and will have his character published in an upcoming Critical Press Media publication.  Because the only bardic character we’ve ever been impressed with is Merrik Scythe from Paeter Frandsen’s “Spirit Blade”, the winner will also receive a CD set of the Spirit Blade audio drama.  Submit your entry by email to mindspike@criticalpressmedia.com, with the entry contained in the body of the email.  Emails with attachments will be deleted unread. All entries will become the property of Critical Press Media.

Good luck, and hot dice.

Pathfinder System Reference Document

Critical Press Media is not associated with Paizo Publishing, or with Dead Gentlemen Productions, whose excellent movie “The Gamers: Dorkness Rising” inspired this contest.

Pathfinder is DnD 3.75

The guys and I are well-pleased with the new offering from Paizo.  Pathfinder is the next evolution of the d20 fantasy system, and they’ve done it up right.  Join us for an enthusiastic review of the new product, and help us decide whether or not Bards truly suck….

The Bard Contest:

Create a Bardic character using the Pathfinder ruleset; the system reference document may be found online in the links below.  Characters must take at least 8 levels of the Bard core class and no more than 16 levels total. Characters may not use any other core class.  The deadline for submission is Dec 1, 2009.  A single winner will be chosen by the committee to receive a CD copy of “Sprit Blade” from Spirit Blade Productions.  (‘Cuz I like giving away their stuff.)

This is a rules contest.  We are not interested in elements of the character that are not expressed on the character sheet.  Explanations of how feats, skills, spells, and class features should be used together will likely garner bonus points.  Email submissions to mindspike@criticalpressmedia.com. Good luck!

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