Band of Blades and Recompiling Code

My current favorite metaphor for learning game rules: it’s compiling code in my brain. We started a Band of Blades campaign this week, right? It’s a Forged in the Dark game, so it’s based on the same set of ideas as ­Blades in the Dark and Scum and Villainy. Since it’s my third FitD game… Continue reading Band of Blades and Recompiling Code

Certain Values of Fun

My current Godbound game has gotten me thinking about games that have taken measures to ensure they’re fun to facilitate. I mean…running games is its own reward, of course. I could speculate as to why: my frustrated creative impulses as a failed novelist are high on my own list, as is the pleasure of hosting… Continue reading Certain Values of Fun

Urban Shadows: Unkept Promises and Promises Never Made

I’ve been running Urban Shadows for a while now, seven sessions to be exact, and our session last night was so aggravating that I’m having trouble writing about it. I’ve run a campaign of it in the past, I’ve run several one-shots of it at various conventions, but I’m left wondering if maybe I’m just… Continue reading Urban Shadows: Unkept Promises and Promises Never Made

Pattern Completion and Intermittent Rewards

The greatest gaming lab ever created is the Las Vegas casino industry. That lab's most significant finding is that humans crave two things in games: pattern completion and intermittent rewards. I've been thinking lately about how my favorite games leverage both of those monkey-level impulses. In particular, I've been thinking about how the very best… Continue reading Pattern Completion and Intermittent Rewards