ConGregate Schedule has started!

The ConGregate preliminary schedule is up!  Still waiting on Organized Play (D&D AL and PFS) but those will be in soon.

http://ogre.justusproductions.com/

For those that want to sign up for games, (once it is open May 18), scet ConGregate registration system is not directly tied into the OGRe system, we will have to manually activate your account. Email the to have your account activated manually once you have registered for the con. Otherwise, we will have on-site registration.

Thanks and hope to see you at ConGregate!

 

 

Con Killer, The Game of Assassination

mace.logo.killerThis special versions of Killer, the game of Assassination (Steve Jackson version) – Conkiller – will be hosted at select Justus Productions events (MACE and MACE West, when possible).  Traditionally, this event is run all day Saturday or until the last assassin is standing. Players can go about enjoying the rest of the Con while knowing that they are a target now. Specific rules apply to this game. Each player will be supplied a set of rules, basic supply package, a Killer Badge and a target.

MACE 2014 WinnerMACE West 2015
David KennyDan Smith
FullSizeRender_22015-03-21 09.33.56

ConGregate 2015 GM call!

This is the official GM call for ConGregate 2015, a sci-fi con in High Point, NC being held at the old MACE location, now renamed the Radisson.

ConGregate 2015 is….
July 10-12, 2015
Radisson Hotel
High Point, North Carolina
http://www.con-gregate.com/

For Organized Play RPG games (PFS and D&D Adventurers League) will have their own coordinators . Mike Welham is the PFS coordinators and Tim McCrary is the D&D AL Coordinator.

If you want to run non-organized-play games (board games, card games, RPGs aqnd minis) at ConGregate 2015, you can make your proposals now on the OGRe site.

http://ogre.justusproductions.com/

If you have any questions, feel free to email me or message me on FB.

Ron McClung
JustUs Productions

ConGregate 2015 room block is now full

The ConGregate room block is now full. The hotel has stated they will continue to honor our rate until the hotel sells out, or until the block’s cut-off date of 6/9/15, whichever comes first.

NOTE – If you plan to stay at the hotel, but have not made a reservation, you need to do so as soon as possible.

Dawn Adventures 1: The Subterranean Oceans of Argos Prime

Dawn Adventures 1: The Subterranean Oceans of Argos Prime
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

Dawn Adventures 1: The Subterranean Oceans of Argos Prime is a new RPG Adventure from Gypsy Knights Games .

The Dawn Subsector is the frontier of the frontier; the fringe of the Clement Sector which has had only a few hundred years to develop.  There is a lot of mystery that surrounds what lies in the Tranquility Sector and any adventure based in it needs to have that feel.  Dawn Adventures 1, as the name implies, is the first adventure based in the new subsector from Gypsy Knights Games.  If adventuring in the politically charged worlds of the Clement Sector is not enough, this is where players go to escape all that and find new ways to adventure.

The adventure starts out with a general overview of the Dawn Subsector and the planet Argos Prime.  Much of this is reprinted from the Dawn Subsector book, containing a lot of scientific data as well as general notes on the culture and politics of the planet.  The more I read into these types of books, the more I wonder how much of it is meaningful to a GM and a role-playing group.  I would imagine that one of the things that turns people off from Traveller in general is the level of detail put into the science of a planet.  Gypsy Knights Games is no different in this.  I can understand why it’s done, but I can also see ways to improve on it.  I would prefer a little about what this data means to me as a GM and how it affects they way I portray the world to the characters.  With a little research, a GM can find out the values of Earth to compare and I highly recommend that.  Comparing those numbers does help, but I think it would also help if more meaning was put into those numbers in the given material.

Argos Prime is an interesting world.  It’s very cold on the surface but has an interesting lower surface beneath the ice in places that humans have exploited and colonized.  These ice “windows” have a very epic feel and gives you an alien sense. There is one city and various small settlements, and a handful of mining corporations that are competing for the resources of Argos Prime.  The players are sent by the Cascadia Colonization Authority (CCA) to help with a new colony survey.  There is a saucer-shaped ship supplied in the material, nicely mapped and stat’ed out.  There are also a good number of pregenerated characters with connections and background at the end of the adventure, perfect for a convention game.

From the website:
“On the fringes of colonized space, settlers struggle on recently discovered worlds for land to call their own.  One such planet is Argos Prime, where the dangers of a new world are in contrast to the world’s unique natural beauty.”

The players set out on behalf of CCA’s ally, L-Limited, to survey several sites on the planet.  A variety of random encounters can happen and these are laid out nicely in encounters tables.  However, these encounters are nothing compared to the epic one that is at the heart of the adventure.  How it is presented is very interesting, making this adventure very re-playable.

The GM has to decide a couple of things before running this adventure.  First off, the epic event is a disaster and without giving too much away, the GM basically has to decide how bad of a disaster is going to happen. A calamity of events occur that causes serious problems on the surface and it is up to the GM to decide how bad things are.  However, many believe this was no accident and the players are hired to investigate.

From the website:
“The crew of CCA-336 have been asked by their superiors in the Cascadia Colonization Authority to go to Argos Prime to survey the world for a possible expansion of the colony.  Can they survive the natural dangers, angry locals, and maneuver through local politics as well?”

Many suspects are available for the players to choose from and there is no single path that the GM has to railroad the players down.  Motivations and alibis are given, but it is up to the GM to formulate what exactly happened.  The GM has a lot of creative motives to choose from and it can make for a very interesting adventure in so many different ways.

In conclusion, this is one of the more well-written adventures Gypsy Knights Games has put out and I admire the innovativeness.  It does have that frontier feel to it that I was hoping for and it also has a certain level of epic-ness that is sometimes lacking in Traveller adventures.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG AdventureDawn Adventures 1: The Subterranean Oceans of Argos Prime” check them out at their website http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/.

Codex Rating: 16

Product Summary

Dawn Adventures 1: The Subterranean Oceans of Argos Prime
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Adventure
Written by: George Ebersole
Editted by: Curtis Rickman
Art by: Ian Stead, John Watts
Number of Pages: 53
Game Components Included: One PDF
Game Components Not Included: Core Traveller book, Core Clement Sector setting books
Retail Price: $5.99 (US)
Website: http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/

Reviewed by: Ron McClung

 

Diamonds

Diamonds
From: Stronghold Games
Reviewed by: Tony McRee

Diamonds by Mike Fitzgerald, who also designed Hooyah, which I reviewed for this site earlier, brings a new trick-taking game to us in 2014. To be honest, if you like trick-taking games, you don’t need to read this review; just go buy this game. The object of the game is simple, score the most points by collecting plastic diamonds as you play cards over a series of rounds. These plastic diamonds are either in your vault, which are worth 2 points at the end of the game, or in your showroom in front of your vault, worth 1 point.

Diamonds can be played with 2 to 6 players and uses a deck of 60 cards with 15 cards in each of the standard suits found in a normal playing deck of cards. There are no face cards in Diamonds, just 1 through 15. During each round, players are dealt 10 cards, so if there are less than 6 players, some cards and not in play which adds to the strategy of the game. The game ends when the number of rounds played equal the number or players or when everyone has had a chance to deal. Dealer determines how many cards, 1-3, get passed to the left and the player to the dealer’s left starts the play.

“What makes the game of Diamonds different from other trick-taking games is that when you cannot follow suit you will get a “Suit Action.”

So, how do you get plastic diamonds? By playing the suits in the deck. If you take a trick, then you get the suit action. If you can’t follow suit, then the card you play, you immediately take that action of the suit. When all the cards are played, the player that collects the most cards in each suit gets to do those actions as well. If you were unfortunate not to take any tricks at all during that round, no worries, put two diamonds in your vault. What are the actions? If you win a trick in diamonds or play a diamond card as the off suit, then you may place a diamond from the stockpile into your vault. Hearts let you take a diamond from the stockpile and place it in your showroom. Spades let you move a diamond from your showroom to your vault. Clubs let you steal a diamond from another player’s showroom to yours. That is the game.

This game is fast and fun to play. There is strategy in this game on every card being played. You need to maximize your off suit plays and not just try and win a trick. You have to think ahead of when you want to bleed a certain suit if you are strong in it. There is always something to do and think about when playing in this game even if your hand isn’t a winning hand. And since this is not a bidding game, those that don’t like card games because of bidding should really try this one out. Diamonds can also be played in variants such as playing with partners which adds another twist to the game.

Diamonds is a great game to add to your collection and I highly recommend it.

Codex Rating: 18
Product Summary
Diamonds
Type of Game: Card Game
Game Design by: Mike Fitzgerald
Game Components Included: 60 Playing Cards, numbered 1-15 in the four standard suits, 6 Player Aid cards, 6 Vaults, 110 small clear (1-point) Diamond Crystals, 25 large red (5-point) Diamond Crystals
Retail Price: $ 24.95 (US)
Number of Players: up to 6
Player Ages: 8 and up
Play Time: 30 minutes
Website: http://strongholdgames.com