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Everything posted by klecser

  1. Hey all, I'm looking for tips on how you play Alone Against the Dark. Here's my context: I just completed my first play through. It took me over a dozen hours and I feel like at best I accomplished absolutely nothing and at worst the author is laughing at deliberately trolling me. I did not enjoy it. Yes, I'm in charge of managing my own perspective on my enjoyment. I understand that, to an extent, CoC is about torturing yourself. My lack of enjoyment is not because I didn't win. My problems are with the design of the scenario. I have nagging concerns about how possible it is to win without unbelievable luck, multiple successful consecutive rolls in various points, and deliberate ignoring of rules. AATD is clearly a member of the old-school mentality of adventure design. It is rife with Gygaxian "Gotcha! You lose because you chose the wrong random decision! Ha, you fool!" moments. I also believe that there are at least three places where temporary insanity is almost assured, and if you follow the rules for temporary insanity, it is impossible to continue with the scenario from that point forward. Because few (none?) of the places that it would happen to you would be safe. I understand that part of the scenario is about struggling with what skills your characters need at any given point. At times I found myself realizing I needed a skill, an investigator perishing, coming back with that skill, only to find one moment later that there was ANOTHER needed skill, that investigator perishing, and having to repeat the whole process. Looking at the forest for the trees, I understand that designing a Choose Your Own Adventure-style for CoC comes with it a whole bunch of risks. Part of GMing is striking a balance between mechanics and story. I think AATD is an example of a scenario that suffers without some alteration of the rules or extreme metagaming. I think AATD, while richly designed, is too complex for this format. Because from a player psychological standpoint, there is nothing more demoralizing than having to take a new character through a whole travel experience just to have them get killed immediately, again. That's just bad story-telling. You may say: "Well, you figure out what skills are needed in each section and place a characters "spare" points in those skills." So, what we really have then is the illusion of choice with picking skills. You don't really have a choice in your skills. Your only real choice is to pay attention and then always choose the same skills. Sorry, but I hate "guess what I'm thinking" gaming. There was also a point where, if I extreme metagamed, the most logical option would have been for me to call in another character. The scenario doesn't specify that you can have a character "quit" to bring in a "fresh" one. But if this is really about metagamng, then that is what I should be able to do. So, my question for all of you is: In what ways have you successfully GMed yourself and the mechanics of this scenario? What balance have you struck between chance mechanics and ignoring temporary insanity? How much do you metagame this scenario on subsequent playthroughs? If you have played to the letter of the rules and have been successful, I'd really like some insight into how that transpired for you. Because I'm straining to believe that it is possible to win the scenario, even on multiple playthroughs, and even with fore-knowledge.
  2. Kinda like the idea of two titans of the gaming industry working together. Unless this is engineered by the God With A Thousand Forms to manipulate us. Well, it's working.
  3. I've enjoyed reading the suggestions in this thread. Just a consideration for everyone: "Native curses", shaman "magic" and other tropes like it ("evil" Voodoo, "Indian burial grounds") are potentially triggering experiences for players. We don't NEED to use them as GMs for a great story. No matter how good your intentions are, they potentially work more in support of early Pulp's/Lovecraft's racism than against it. Please consider this. I'm not trying to start anything here. I just want to point out things that people don't often consider. Or even think they are playing appropriately and really aren't. That's my concern with this setting, which I think is a spectacular product as a whole. I think the book itself does a pretty good job of handling it and I look forward to incorporating it into my games.
  4. I have a ton of PDF missing links for you. The format below starts with the entry that has the missing link and then which link within that entry is not clickable. So 1 > 14 would mean that the link in Entry 1 that should go to 14 isn't clickable. I do not include links to entries on the same page, which are obviously not needed. In some cases, there are also formatting issues whereby links are not in bold. 32 > 53 34 >Athens Location 67 > 45 68 > 188 90 > 28 106 > 585 112 > Athens Location 118 > 176 130 > 204 133 > 61 133 > 126 167 > 8 182 > links not in Bold 213 > 278 213 > 277 213 > 269 275 > 289 275 > 265 304 > links not in bold 307 > 395 308 > 310 362 > 408 360 > 317 360 > 337 360 > 561 360 > 390 360 > 324 374 > 191 374 > 134 376 > 338 393 > 308 437 > 428 468 > 460 470 > Bremen Location 487 > 501 492 > 476 502 > 480 (also not Bold) 555 > links work, but not Bold 584 > 444 (also not Bold) 585 > Missing all Location links and also not Bold
  5. I have a general question about time for the campaign: The campaign establishes standard travel times between locations within a city location of one hour. Many location entries that have research specify a time for research so the entry tells you how much time to tick off. What about locations where no time is specified? For example, and without spoilers, let's say that I decide to visit someone at Miskatonic University. If no time is specified for the location description, does the travel time account for my time there, or is there always a standard one hour that happens at a location? One hour Travel to MU Talk to X person, no time listed in entry, so no additional time? or One hour Travel to MU Talk to X person (no time mentioned, but tick off an hour anyway) Not trying to nitpick, just trying to play in the spirit of the original author's vision. And then how does this extend to eating in the middle of the day? If the more conservative way is the expectation, eating lunch is an incredible waste of time: Travel to Bee's Diner (One hour), Eat at Bee's diner (one hour), leave Bee's Diner to go to another location (one hour) By the literal rules, you have to spend three hours eating lunch, not one, because of travel time. Or, is eating included in the travel time? I know I could probably just "house rule it" and decide what is reasonable. I just don't think three hours to eat lunch in a small town like Arkham is reasonable.
  6. Wow. Did not expect this. Immediate purchase for me, as someone who doesn't have a group to play with and who enjoyed Alone Against the Flames. So few companies produce solo works.
  7. It sounds like you are mocking my use of the term sale. I was not trying to take advantage of Chaosium by reporting on this. I didn't know any better. I simply noticed something and shared it with the fan base.
  8. Also Masks of Nyarlathotep 4th Ed. PDF 1.99 USD. Obviously about to get a new edition, but a great price for completionists!
  9. I don't know why (maybe because they're releasing a new one?), but Cthulhu by Gaslight (2012) is 2.49 USD on DriveThruRPG right now. If, like me, you are late to the party, that is an absolute steal for the PDF of a book that is nearly impossible to find without dropping a few Bens on eBay.
  10. Worth noting as well that he just got the books in hand and is preparing Kickstarter orders for shipment.
  11. Yeah, that's more my perspective. Given that CoC is more setting and story driven, the amount of conversion is always minimal in my mind.
  12. Harlem Unbound has both GUMSHOE and Basic rules. I'm not sure I agree with "no compatibility." Or are you referring to compatibility in a business-sense, rather than a game-sense?
  13. Well, rats. C7 produced some of my favorite CoC sourcebooks. Business is business and better to go out on a high note maybe.
  14. Didn't realize it was going to be that big, given that the 2010 release was 248. They're really doubling the page count?
  15. Thanks for the added info MOB. I don't want to be "that guy", but I'm sure you understand that a lot of people's gut reactions to splitting a product is "cash grab." If they are coming together in a slipcase, then the division is clearly more a practicality thing.
  16. I explain to my players that 1) Call of Cthulhu is a quasi-realistic game and so they need to consider seriously whether their player would actually carry a weapon. Most people don't. 2)Any weapon they do carry is probably pretty useless. It's your game, so you can do whatever you want. My favorite CoC weapon is my brain.
  17. Pleased to hear this is being released in hardcover. It sounds like it was the right choice for me to hold off on the PDF. I prefer physical media.
  18. MOB, please continue to post Kickstarters on these forums. I came back to CoC after many years away and missed a lot of recent Kickstarters. This is the place where I get information about new CoC Kickstarters.
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