Archive | June, 2012

Monica Valentinelli

Squick Out Your Friends. Heebie Jeebies Kickstarter

Posted on June 14, 2012 by

Heebie Jeebies Sample CardHeebie Jeebies is a card game of “unsettling notions” designed by Dave Cook. Don’t be fooled by the smiley faces! The game, which I describe as a cross between a tell-all game like Truth or Dare with a Garbage Pail Kids flair, has been announced through crowd-funding source Kickstarter. The Heebie Jeebies Game Production Kickstarter has a few weeks to go yet for its goal.

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Monica Valentinelli

Three New Releases To Read (By Yours Truly)

Posted on June 14, 2012 by

You may have read about my 2011 new releases (which included games, fiction, and non-fiction) or seen the pictures where I showed The Queen of Crows in print.

Well, I’ve had two new releases so far (with a third on the way) and I haven’t really done a good job mentioning what those are. So let me rectify that RIGHT NOW and give you some clues about what’s available for you to either obtain, attain, read, ignore, obsess over or celebrate. (Hah, you get the picture.) There’s a ton more set to debut in third quarter, but until those hit the proverbial digital or physical shelves, can’t say just yet what those are.

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Teeth: Vampire Tales Review

Posted on June 13, 2012 by

Teeth is an anthology of the things that go bump in the night, the ones that have the teeth and the claws to rip your eyes out. It’s a YA anthology, true, but the stories can appeal to adults as well. There wasn’t a story in Teeth that I didn’t like. There were only a few that I felt could have ended better, but other than that personal preference, I would say that each story is well-written, suspenseful, and has excellent pacing. These aren’t all your typical vamps – vampire-like creatures from various cultures grace the pages of this anthology.

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Flames

Streets of Bedlam: A Savage World of Crime + Corruption Available Now!

Posted on June 13, 2012 by

Bedford and Lamrose. Two sides of the same river. Two sides of the same coin. One, an affluent metropolis teeming with industry and aspiration. The other, a cesspool of crime and vice. Both dirty, both begging for the match that will set this whole city on fire.

Bedford and Lamrose. Locals call this place Bedlam. It’s a fitting name.

Streets of Bedlam: A Savage World of Crime + Corruption is equal parts neo-noir, pulp detective fiction, and a bit of the ol’ ultraviolence thrown into a cement mixer and poured on top a heap of nameless bodies no one will ever miss.

Streets of Bedlam is available at the Flames Rising RPGNow Shop!

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L5R: Strongholds of the Empire Review

Posted on June 12, 2012 by

Strongholds of the Empire had a long, strange journey to publication. It was originally intended as a book for Legend of the Five Rings Third Edition. Then it was going to be a free web supplement. Then it was going to be a transitional PDf between Third and Fourth Edition. The book finally realized its destiny as AEG’s pilot into print on demand. It is now available as a fully realized PDF as well as a physical book. Was it worth the wait?

The physical book is 193 pages. It costs more than the other supplements for Fourth Edition. It also looks different. The outside is a solid glossy finish rather than the matte finish with gloss art highlights of the other books in the line.

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Flames

Pre Order Night’s Black Agents from Pelgrane Press

Posted on June 12, 2012 by

Night’s Black Agents is available as a pre-pre-order to early adopters and patrons from the Pelgrane store.

A new GUMSHOE Game from Kenneth Hite, author of Trail of Cthulhu.

The Cold War is over. Bush’s War is winding down.

You were a shadowy soldier in those fights, trained to move through the secret world: deniable and deadly.

Then you got out, or you got shut out, or you got burned out. You didn’t come in from the cold. Instead, you found your own entrances into Europe’s clandestine networks of power and crime. You did a few ops, and you asked even fewer questions. Who gave you that job in Prague? Who paid for your silence in that Swiss account? You told yourself it didn’t matter.

It turned out to matter a lot. Because it turned out you were working for vampires.

Find links to early Night’s Black Agents reviews, news and pre-order the game at PelgranePress.com!

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Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium Review

Posted on June 11, 2012 by

Mordenkainen’s Magnificent Emporium is the third magical item supplement for Dungeons and Dragons Fourth Edition and was written by Jeremy Crawford, Stephen Schubert and Matt Sernett. Much like its predecessors (Adventurer’s Vault and Adventurer’s Vault 2) the book is packed full of the kinds of adventuring gear that players love to collect for their characters but unlike the previous two tomes of lore this book has been injected with a healthy dose of flavor as well.

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Monica Valentinelli

Round Up of RPG Freelancing Articles

Posted on June 11, 2012 by

For about a year, I’ve been writing about freelancing for the hobby games industry on the Geek’s Dream Girl website. Here’s a round-up of the articles I’ve been writing for the site:

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The Dungeon Survival Handbook Review

Posted on June 8, 2012 by

Evil has always lurked deep underneath the ground and now Lolth’s children are clawing their way to the surface to consume the realms of Dungeons & Dragons. Few will survive the coming darkness. Into the Unknown: The Dungeon Survival Handbook is the first roleplaying game supplement released by Wizards of the Coast as part of The Rise of the Underdark ongoing event.

Sightings of dark elves on the surface have grown steadily—turning from dismissible rumors into disturbing reports. Brave heroes are needed to discover what plot or purpose is driving the children of Lolth to so boldly intrude upon our realm. Drow-laden encounters and challenges await you in stores everywhere—along with an array of products that will help you in your attempt to survive The Rise of the Underdark.

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Matt-M-McElroy

No Grand Masquerade in 2012

Posted on June 8, 2012 by

So, this is something a number of us have suspected for a few months, but now there is “official” confirmation. Chris McDonough has sent Open Letter From CCP to the membership of the Mind’s Eye Society (aka the Camarilla fan club).

In the letter there is some information about the transition of the club formerly known as The Camarilla out of White Wolf/CCP hands and back to the fans themselves. This has been an ongoing process and I’m on the outside looking in (i.e. a friend, but not an active member of the club), however, I think it is a good thing. Fan clubs should be run by fans and while it might be nice to have a company handle all of the funding and management tasks, it really should fall to the fans to manage those details.

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Flames

Spell-Less Ranger (Pathfinder) Review

Posted on June 7, 2012 by

There has always been a bit of controversy surrounding the ranger class in Dungeons & Dragons. The archetype of the “ranger” has a solid foundation in literature as an expert woodsman (or woods-woman) that is skilled with sword or bow, who knows the land better than anyone else and fights for an important cause. The Dungeons & Dragons’ ranger is all of these things but there is one feature which has nagged at gamers since AD&D; the ability to cast spells.

“Aragorn Didn’t Cast Spells”

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Flames

Victorian Lost: A Maze of Smoke and Hedge Available Now!

Posted on June 5, 2012 by

Victorian Lost: A Maze of Smoke and Hedge is a historical setting for Changeling: The Lost. This book contains information on the late Victorian Era, including both actual history and fanciful imaginings of this time. You’ll find discussions of the occasionally violent tensions between the rich and the masses of the poor who worked in their factories and homes. This book also examines the competing visions of rural and urban life. Some saw the countryside as pure and cities as corrupt, while others viewed rural areas as ignorant and backwards, and cities as centers of progress and invention.

Victorian Lost: A Maze of Smoke and Hedge is available now at the Flames Rising RPGNow Shop!

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Flames

R.A. Salvatore’s 2012 Tour to Celebrate New Neverwinter Book

Posted on June 5, 2012 by

To celebrate the upcoming release of R.A. Salvatore’s Charon’s Claw on August 7th, Wizards of the Coast is thrilled to announce that Salvatore, a 24-time New York Times-bestselling author, will head out on a multi-city book tour this summer to meet fans and autograph copies of his newest novel.

Additional details about Charon’s Claw and the D&D® suite of products can be found at DungeonsandDragons.com.

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Haunted Temples Map Pack Review

Posted on June 4, 2012 by

Wizards of the Coast has released more support product for the tactical play style of Dungeons & Dragons 4E. The Haunted Temples Map Pack is a collection of three full-color, double-sided maps which come in packaging which converts into a convenient envelope to protect the maps in transportation and storage.

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Cathedral of Chaos Review

Posted on June 1, 2012 by

Wizards of the Coast’s latest dungeon tile set, Cathedral of Chaos, arrived in the mail today. I am an avid collector of dungeon tiles and I use them quite often at my game table so please keep that in mind when I say Cathedral of Chaos is both the best dungeon tile set I have seen in quite a while as well as the worst.

The set provides quite a few interesting architectural pieces as well as several inspired tiles which made me cheer as I popped them out. Smoke filled tiles, demolished areas, raised daises and ice/fire tiles add a lot of interesting terrain options to a DM’s arsenal.

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Megan

Fangs from the Past (Pathfinder) Review

Posted on June 1, 2012 by

The brief introduction lays out this product’s purpose: it is not just an introductory adventure for four new characters beginning their adventuring careers, it is also designed with the novice GM in mind, replete with hints and tips to aid good gamemastering from the start – the sort of things a more experienced friend might whisper in your ear the first time you try to run a game. It’s an admirable intention…

OK, so roll up some characters and let’s get going. The introduction to the adventure contains a story commonly told in the village of Galfolweed, the characters being either locals or youngsters who have set out from a nearby town in search of adventure and ended up here in the village tavern. It is a nicely-written tale, suitable to be recounted in the bardic storytelling style – indeed the GM notes suggest that whilst you can mine the story for hints for the characters to pick up in conversation, one of the village elders is renowned for his dramatic recitation of this tale and can easily be persuaded to perform!

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