9.01.2010

What we've been up to

William here, with an update on we've been up to:

The wife and I have been playing Forbidden Island, from GameWright.  Its remarkably sophisticated, with enough strategy to keep the adults stressed out, yet not too complex for my 10-year old.  Its a cooperative game, like Pandemic, but its got an ingenious, ratcheting, game-accelerating mechanic that really keeps you on your toes.

One of the problems with cooperative games is that one strong personality could dominate gameplay.  You could easy play Forbidden Island by yourself, Solitaire style.  And just as easily, some Jerk or Douche could ruin the game experience by bossing people around and optimizing the game according to his strategy.  Best way to avoid that?  Discuss it beforehand, make sure leaders recognize that everyone needs to be far of the decision making in order to have fun.

The good thing about Forbidden Island is that there remains enough randomness to the floods that no strategy is obvious or foolproof.  Even the 10-year old helped out with an open-box idea when we played the first time on novice-level.

I posted a pic of our initial setup of this remarkably original board game here.

We also kicked off Chad and Ian's co-DM'd campaign on Sunday.  They showed off their map-artistry, calligraphy and world-aware dynamic effects with this poster board.  Check out that green box, Chad's super-cool wife made that.  How awesome is she?

We had a big fight to kick off the campaign after two split-party scenarios that brought all five PC's to one location in Round Town.  My new reaper mini dragonborn fighter/rogue savaged some guards while the wives of your podcast hosts escaped the hangman's gallows. 

We generated some lessons learned and ideas about campaign kickoffs and co-DMs for sure.
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