Wednesday, May 20, 2015

BEST READS OF THE WEEK! April 18 - 24, 2015

Welcome back to the Best Reads of the Week! Every week I read through more than 370 blogs looking for the best rpg related articles to bring them directly to you. This week we've got new magic spells; the old school roots of 5e; an interview with Shanna Germain; inspiring art; a lexicon for aspiring war gamers; and so much more! If you see a post that you like be sure and tell the author how much you enjoyed it!

If you've got any questions about this month's lists be sure and check out the FAQ. And as always, thank you for your comments, shares, plus 1s, and for taking the time to read this list. See you on the next set!

APRIL 18 - 24, 2015!

The Compleat Spell Book of The Blue Album by +Jensan Thuresson, from the blog The Acorn Afloat: One of the things that I can never get enough of is creative spells that make instantly make me think of how they would be used in my games, and this post from Jensan that's exactly what you get. Honestly, if you aren't watching for Jensan's updates you're missing out.

The Dragonwrack Series Part 1, by J.D. Jarvis, from the blog Aeons & Augauries: Have you ever hesitated to drop a dragon into your Old School Dungeons & Dragons style game? Well if you have then this series by J.D. is perfect for you.

Every Adventure is a Dungeon by The Angry Game Master, from The Angry Game Master: Sometimes one of the hardest things about creating an adventure is understanding how to build one with a solid foundation which is why this article is so good.

The Old School Roots of D&D 5e by Al, from the blog Beyond the Black Gate: One of the things that I love about 5e is how easy it is to really get into, and this article from Billy examines those roots directly from the man who had one of the biggest hands in it's development, Mike Mearls.

Interview with Shanna Germain, Co-owner of Monte Cook Games by Liz, from the blog Contessa: Shanna Germain is a fascinating person. Her interests are varied and she often offers a refreshing take on every issue she touches. Naturally this interview with her is fantastic.

Castles in the Sky Part 1: History, Mechanics, and Trade by +Emily Dresner-Thornber, from the blog Critical Hits: It is arguable that there is no more astute mind in rpg blogging right now than Emily "multiplexer" Dresner-Thornber. Everything she touches is graced with an economy of words and a brilliant intellect. Castles in the Sky, Emily's exploration of a setting filled with floating castles, is just the latest in a long line of excellent posts.

The Rules are Not the Game by +Jens D., from the blog The Disoriented Ranger: There is a question that occasionally surfaces in our hobby: what constitutes the game? What is its essence? Is it the rules? Or is it something more abstract? Jens works on this issue and his thoughts on the subject are provoking.

The Livid Fens - Color Maps by +Gus L, from the blog Dungeon of Signs: If you're looking for a great place to launch a campaign than this evocative map is a perfect place to start. Plenty of adventuring possibilities, and not to much civilization to mess it all up. Just the way I like it.

Defeat and Running Away by Archon Shiva, from the blog Further Up the Spire: I always find it interesting how little we run away in modern role-playing games. I'm not alone in that I don't think. So this post by Archon Shiva really hit my sweet spot as it explores the topic in a way that few others have. Well worth checking out.

Violent Resolutions - Never Tell Me the Odds Part 1 by +Douglas Cole, from the blog Gaming Ballistic: In this first of a two parter Douglas takes a look at the math of crunchy systems, like D&D, and how to properly gage your chances of success. I'm always amazed when someone can take something that can quickly become dull, like math, and make it an interesting read that gets your mind working for hours afterwards.

Henrique Alvim Correa - War Of The Worlds Illustrations, 1906 by Aeron Alfrey, from the blog Monster Brains: My games tend to be a bit more along the lines of a pre-WWI time period so this collection of War of the World illustrations really hit in my sweet spot.

Taking 5e to the Con Circuit by +Baz Stevens, from the blog Treehouse: One of the great stress tests for any system is to put it into a pressure situation; and playing in a convention game is a perfect place to find the weaknesses of any game. What's better? Having a professional game designer look into it.

MOAR GREYHAWK! by +Charles Akins, from the blog Dyvers: a series of eight covers created to help spread the good word about one of the oldest settings in the history of RPGs.

Of Strategy in RPGs (Also: Simplify) by John, from the blog The Wandering Gamist: Let's say that complexity in role-playing games is there biggest barrier. How then do we fix it?

The Art of War Gaming: A Lexicon by +Stelios V. Perdios, from the blog The Word of Stelios: If you're new to war gaming, or are just contemplating getting into the hobby, then this short post by Stelios is an invaluable aid.


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