Saturday, October 9, 2010

Role Playing Games

Hal-Con is coming back! Oct. 29 - 31.

This year marks the return of Halifax’s own sci-fi and fantasy convention. Celebrities will speak to drooling fans while vendors and exhibitors vie for attention. Cos-Players will wow us with their costumes. And somewhere hidden in back there will be roleplaying games.

Roleplaying games hit the geek scene some 30+ years ago when Wizards of the Coast first published Dungeons and Dragons. The game, its system and countless source books appeal to a variety of players: rule-lawyers, war-mongers, soft players, storytellers, costumers, escapists, fanboys and collectors.

Today, RPGs have carved out their niche in geek entertainment. They have merged semi-seamlessly with other media. Video games, like Final Fantasy, rely heavily on character interactions. Television shows, movies and comic books find new life as games. Of course, RPGs focus on specific genres and explore them to their utmost; horror, sci-fi, fantasy, superhero and western games are most common.

These are some of the more interesting RPG titles we have in our collection.

The World of Darkness, Vampire: the requiem, Werewolf: the forsaken

White Wolf publishing spent the last two decades dominating the horror-fantasy genre. In 2004 they began a revamp of their ‘world of darkness’, and these three titles opened the system. Players portray humans, or more likely the monsters who prey on them.

Star Wars Roleplaying Game, et al

Based on the films and novels, this is a new system for an old Wizards-of-the-Coast game. All races and roles mentioned are available for play. Yes, this does mean you can play a Wookie Jedi. Or an Ewok Sith.

Mouse Guard.

Based on the children’s graphic novel series, players enjoy stories of both animals and medieval history. What’s not to love about swashbuckling rodentia? Also, this game could easily be adapted as an introduction for young, new players.

D20 Modern.

This game, also by Wizards of the Coast, offers a modern day setting but uses the rules of D&D. Instead of fantasy creatures and magic, players wield technology and thwart corrupt organizations.

Dungeons and Dragons, 3rd edition.

Third Edition D&D was an attempt to simplify decades of rule-changes, to update this world’s history, and to offer new gaming opportunities.

For help understanding D&D, try Confessions of a Part-Time Sorceress : a girl's guide to Dungeons & Dragons game by Shelly Mazzanoble. Her perspective is comedic, embracing, and experienced.

And to better understanding gamers and their communities, check out:

Monster Camp, Lifesize Entertainment, 2008.

Darkon, PorchLight Entertainment, 2007.

Wild Hunt, Universal Home Video, 2010.

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