Uncaged: World Fighters Review [Pixelkin]

Read the full review on Pixelkin

Most fighting games boil down to one theme: mind games with your opponent. Uncaged: World Fighters is a two player duel card game designed to replicate the bouts and rounds of a Mixed Martial Arts tournament as players take turns attacking and defending using different fighting moves and styles.

Uncaged is even more about the mind games as you must prepare your cards into a single combo ahead of time, while anticipating your opponent’s cards in return. It’s far easier to jump in and play than other fighting games and uses its MMA theme well, though the actual gameplay often comes down to the luck of the draw more than intricate strategy.

Read the full review on Pixelkin

Crafting Annihilation 08/30

Crafting Annihilation is streamed live at 7pm Pacific/12pm Eastern every Thursday.

The very first ‘episode’ of Crafting Annihilation aired this morning on my YouTube Channel. It’s a brand new, live streamed series where I take a behind-the-scenes, DM-only tour through building and preparing for our weekly D&D Roll20 adventures.

I had an absolute blast answering questions and bouncing ideas with the live chat while revealing story ideas and maps for the campaign.

The series airs every Thursday morning. Give it a watch to see the ‘under construction’ side of crafting an ongoing D&D campaign – unless you’re my players in which case stay away until Friday night!

Crafting Annihilation is streamed live at 7pm Pacific/12pm Eastern every Thursday.

DMs Guild Review – The Executioner’s Daughter

A solo adventure that’s all about the story.

A review copy of “The Executioner’s Daughter” was provided by the publisher.

Designed by: Ashley Warren

DMs Guild ReviewI have heard of solo adventures – adventures designed for only a single player and a DM, but never actually sat down and flipped through one. I don’t have a basis of comparison but “The Executioner’s Daughter,” isn’t a standard adventure, but more of an interactive story. It’s a fairly linear one-shot with some great writing that puts the PC in a more secondary support role to the true titular star.

The adventure takes place in Soldra, a city ruled by a monarchy and religious devotion to Bahamut, the god of good dragons. The story hinges on a classic mythology trope: the young woman being sacrificed by the village to stave off an ancient evil. Continue reading “DMs Guild Review – The Executioner’s Daughter”

Monday Update Video (08/27) – Patreon Exclusive!

When I launched my Patreon page last Friday my goal was not to gate any of my current content behind a paywall. Instead I wanted to offer some nice extra perks for my awesome patrons, including credit acknowledgement on my videos, personal shout-outs, access to my DM Google Docs for D&D, and an exclusive weekly video every Monday.

These Monday Update videos will be recorded and uploaded every Monday morning. It’s a shorter, more personal vlog-style video in which I’ll talk about what I’m working on that week, what my plans are for video and written content, as well as what board games and video games I’m playing.

The first video just went up today. To gain access to these personal videos, and help support more video content on my channel, I encourage you to check out my Patreon.

Thank you!

Tomb of Annihilation Session 0 Recap

Meet our new cast of characters who will be entering the Tomb of Annihilation.

Streamed, recorded and uploaded every week. Subscribe for our weekly adventures. Join us live on Fridays at 7pm Pacific/10pm Eastern! Support my channel via Patreon!

It’s my first ever recap for our new Tomb of Annihilation campaign! But what is a Session 0 and how do I recap it?

A Session 0 serves two purposes. First it allows me, the DM, to introduce the campaign outside of the story. In other words, talk about new house rules, themes and setting, and what my players want out of it.

We’ve been playing together for enough years that I don’t really need to ask my players what they want from the campaign. I have a pretty good handle on the ratio of role-playing to combat to puzzles that each player is looking for.

The other purpose is it allows us to create our characters together. This is obviously a huge step in any adventure and it helps promote synergy between player characters, both mechanically and story-wise.

For Roll20, it also helps to get familiar with the new character sheets we’re using and how they work, making sure we don’t run into any technical difficulties when we kick off the campaign proper next week (which will also include character backstories and prologues).

It was a much shorter session, and thus will be a shorter recap! I will introduce our new player characters below, and we’ll see everyone next week when we officially start the campaign with session 1!

Note: For character creation I required everyone come up with Five Personality Traits to summarize their character, as well a single Quirk from a d100 list of Quirks I wrote. For stats we used the Roll Method, with the option to take the Standard Array if you were dissatisfied with the results.

tomb of annihilationMannix (played by Chris)
Human Rogue
True Neutral
Private Investigator (Urban Bounty Hunter)
STR: 10
DEX: 12
CON: 11
INT: 16
WIS: 14
CHA: 13
Traits: Disillusioned, Curious, Confident, Judgmental, Suspicious
Quirk: Trust issues; suspicious of everyone.
Concept: A noir detective who uses his wits and investigative skills to track people and solve problems.

DM Notes: I was impressed that Chris stuck to his guns with creating a character who was pretty bad at combat but really good at lots of skills, creating a more cerebral rogue with the highest INT score of the group. Have a feeling he’ll be getting a lot of use out the rogue Cunning Action to disengage from fights!

tomb of annihilationKhaless (played by Heather)
Half-drow Rogue
Chaotic Neutral
Criminal (Hired Killer)
STR: 12
DEX: 19
CON: 17
INT: 5
WIS: 12
CHA: 10
Traits: Invisible, Proud, Predatory, Obedient, Discrete
Quirk: Mispronounces words in trying to seem smart.
Concept: Enslaved by Red Wizards as a killer-on-a-leash, she escaped bondage and now swears vengeance on her handlers.

DM Notes: We’ve never had such a crazy roll on ability stats: as high as an 18 and as low as a 5! Heather rolled with it, creating a glaring dump stat (though INT is kinda crap in D&D 5E, but still, a -3!) but creating a rogue with a damn 19 in DEX at level 1. Despite both being rogues at level 1, Khaless and Mannix couldn’t be more different.

tomb of annihilationGillian Flounderson (played by Rachelle)
Triton Bard
Lawful Good
STR: 12
DEX: 14
CON: 14
INT: 8
WIS: 10
CHA: 16
Spells: Friends, Light, Thunderwave, Healing Word, Fog Cloud
Traits: Pompous, Kind-hearted, Philosophical, Tenacious, Socialite
Quirk: Dramatically swears vengeance on every foe.
Concept: A pampered debutante from a noble house expects everyone to treat her like a queen, and with her social skills and grace, most do.

DM Notes: A socialite triton in Chult will be a real fish out of water! With no Sorcerers or Warlocks in this party, Gillian is the only PC with a focus on CHA. I can see her doing much of the talking in the party, and given her personality and background should make for some interesting results.

tomb of annihilationGiorgiano “George” (played by Raymond)
Tortle Fighter
Lawful Good
Outlander (Bounty Hunter)
STR: 16
DEX: 14
CON: 14
INT: 13
WIS: 15
CHA: 8
Traits: Clumsy, C0nfident, Naive, Kind-hearted, Loyal
Quirk: Clean freak, hates being dirty or gross.
Concept: A warrior in training who was sent from his homeland to expand his worldview (and find monsters to slay).

DM Notes: Raymond tends to play jokey characters, so it should come as no surprise that we have a ninja tortle in the party! He’s the only STR-focused PC of the whole bunch, and his natural tortle AC will helps make him the tank. While he didn’t roll more than 14 on any stat, he still rolled really well with above average stats in almost everything, making one of of the more well-rounded PCs.

tomb of annihilationTherin Bristlebeard (played by Reese)
Hill Dwarf Druid
Neutral Good
STR: 10
DEX: 16
CON: 18
INT: 11
WIS: 18
CHA: 10
Spells: Druidcraft, Poison Spray, Animal Friendship, Cure Wounds, Detect Magic, Entangle, Speak with Animals
Traits: Diligent, Even-tempered, Gruff, Stubborn, Miserly
Quirk: Obsessed with destroying the undead.
Concept: A grumpy but kind druid who helps those who are lost, but harbors a blood-thirsty side (hello wildshape!).

DM Notes: Reese won the stat lottery! Raymond did it in our previous campaign, but this time Reese rolled an incredible array of stats that added up to 80 total points! With the Hill Dwarf bonuses he was able to get two 18’s at level 1, which is nuts. With that CON bonus, Hill Dwarf HP bonus, and a shield Therin can easily be an off-tank, even before he gets wildshape at level 2.

Streamed, recorded and uploaded every week. Subscribe for our weekly adventures. Join us live on Fridays at 7pm Pacific/10pm Eastern! Support my channel via Patreon!

RogueWatson Reviews – Argent: The Consortium

My longest RogueWatson Review yet covers the complex but excellent worker placement game Argent: the Consortium, designed by Trey Chambers and published by Level 99 Games. It originally launched in 2015, but an improved 2nd edition just released earlier this year.

Watch my review below!

Slime Rancher [Review]

Read the full review at Pixelkin

I made the mistake of passing on Slime Rancher when it launched last year, dismissing it as overly cutesy and simplistic. I’m pleased to report that after spending some quality time on the Far Far Range, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Newly arrived on PlayStation 4 this week, Slime Rancher boasts a perfect blend of ranch management with open world exploration, using little more than a portable vacuum.

Read the full review at Pixelkin

Patreon is live, Tomb of Annihilation begins tonight!

My Patreon page is live! This page will act as a community hub for both our ongoing live play D&D campaign as well as my many video review series on board games and tabletop RPGs.

There you’ll find discussions, polls, anecdotes, and updates. My goal is to never go more than two days without an update post or video!

Every week on Monday (starting Aug. 26) I’ll upload a video for Silver and higher-level patrons discussing what I’m working on.

Tonight will kick off our new D&D 5e campaign, Tomb of Annihilation! This will be our Session 0 where we introduce and create all of our player characters and prepare for Session 1 next week. Start times remain the same: Fridays at 7pm Pacific/10pm Eastern, and my goal is to start the stream on time every week!

Next Thursday will kick off my new behind-the-scenes live series, Crafting Annihilation, which will start around 9am pacific/12pm eastern and run for 30-60 minutes.

Revisiting No Man’s Sky Two Years Later [Pixelkin]

Read the full article on Pixelkin

Even if you never played the game, chances are you’ve heard of No Man’s Sky. The universe-spanning indie game proved incredibly ambitious coming from tiny studio Hello Games, who helped steer the hype train all the way to its release in Fall 2016.

The shoe dropped rather spectacularly, creating one of the bigger video game dramas in recent history. It launched with loads of technical bugs and problems, and even on launch day consumers weren’t sure if the game supported actual multiplayer (it didn’t).

The result was a massive drop-off in players and a huge round of refunds. Hello Games went quiet, for better or for worse, but kept plugging away at the game.

Read the full article on Pixelkin


Gaming Backlog Final Thoughts – Uncharted: The Lost Legacy

Can you make an Uncharted game without Nathan Drake? Hell yes.

Adventuring through my backlog of games, one game at a time. 

Developer: Naughty Dog
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Release Date: August 22, 2017
Played On: PlayStation 4

final thoughtsMost Uncharted games have represented a big step forward in both gameplay and story-telling from Naughty Dog. Uncharted: The Lost Legacy is only a step sideways. But when you’re still on the same level as Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, that’s not at all a complaint.

The Lost Legacy stars Chloe Frazer, Drake’s once partner-in-thief who was conspicuously absent from the otherwise all-encompassing finale that was Uncharted 4. Her absence is never really explained, as The Lost Legacy takes place after Uncharted 4 along with her new partner, Nadine Ross. Continue reading “Gaming Backlog Final Thoughts – Uncharted: The Lost Legacy”