28 February 2013

Goblinquest ready for playtesting!

EDIT 12/12/2015 - This game has developed into Knights' Quest.
Click here for more info.

With a young king intoxicated by the ideals of chivalry, brave knights undertake daring adventures throughout the darker places of the kingdom. Knights seek to bring glory to their king and their lady. Sharp swords and well-forged armour protect them, and solemn vows keep them dedicated to their goal. Dare you take up the challenge of such a quest?

Goblinquest is intended for 2-6 players (one of whom runs the quest which the others must attempt to complete). A bright eight-year old can probably run a quest, but an interested five year old can easily play as an adventurer. Play takes place on standard 'dungeon tiles' split into evenly sized spaces which can be occupied by one character at a time.

I did it! The draft version of Goblinquest that I've been banging on about for the last however long is now available for all you lovely people to download and play. I hope you all enjoy it. Either way, please please please give me some feedback about it, good or bad, fundamental or petty, typo or gameplay. Oh, and share it with your friends.

Download links:
Draft rulebook
Draft quest
Character cards

I hope to get a sample quest uploaded over the weekend. Until then, happy geeking (and play my game!)


EDIT - download links updated 06/05/2014

23 February 2013

Painty fun time

With apologies to Carmen for borrowing his blog's name as the title for this post, I took the next step in indoctrinating my boys into the Way of the Geek this afternoon while Mrs Rab was at the cinema with one of her friends. I rootled out the box of prepped plastic LotR miniatures I'd put by for just such a moment, dragged out my toolbox of paints and gave him a basic rundown of what to do along with some cheap no.3-size synthetic brushes I'd bought yesterday.

#2 son lost concentration pretty quickly, but as for #1 son, well, to say he got into it would be an understatement...

Don't distract me Daddy, I'm just putting the "top lights" on the flesh.

And, while it wouldn't exactly win a Golden Demon, he sat and finished his first miniature in one sitting, proudly refusing any help. He didn't wreck the brush, and he did a three-step base-main-highlight on the purple, the wood and the flesh, as well as black-inking the armour. His first thought had been to use 'some different types of grey to make the armour look real', but as I can't NMM to save my life I gave him metallics. Anyway, about an hour later,here you go - a bowman to support his knight in their next quest:

Do forgive my excessive parental pride - normal, self-centred, shoddy service will be resumed shortly!

Thanks for reading,

22 February 2013

Goblinquest - first proper playtest

With Mrs Rab and both Rablings away for the night I took the chance to head over to roll some dice and chew the fat with my mate Chris (antipixi, for any Blood Bowl types reading this). He was happy to give Goblinquest a go; great news because (in his own words) he's an "awkward, devious bastard" when it come to exploiting loopholes in rules. If he couldn't 'break' Goblinquest, I was going to be pretty satisfied... and he didn't, so I was :)

First, a few snapshots of the quest to rescue the damsel from the necromancer and his goblinoid allies. Check out the Hello Kitty cloth on Chris' table; it is even pinker in real life! Oh, and I'd misplaced the joining pieces between sections so you'll have to imagine entrances rather than the solid walls between rooms.

After carefully keeping the welcome party of goblins at bay, filling them full of crossbow bolts... "They have a troll"

Cunning use of a spear around a doorframe allows the good guys to pigstick the troll
... but round the corner are the first hints of the necromancer's foul deeds
... and there's the rest of the bony beggars...

"Stand fast, men, we hold the corner"

The princess is safe, the necromancer slain and his minions dispelled. Time for tea and cake!

So, game-wise, what was learnt? Well, movement, missile combat, and single combat work just as I want them to and provide a fun game. We tried a couple of different ways of organising multiple combats when each side has more than one combatant and picked the one that worked best (thanks, Chris!) although wording it is going to be pesky - three or four illustrations and a couple of sentences should see to it, though. Magic works well, with the right balance between risk to magician, and damage it can inflict.

It really was a great relief that Chris enjoyed the game as I was starting to worry that, having spent such a long amount of time, calendar-wise, squeezed into twenty minute chunks here and there, that it wasn't ever going to appeal to anyone else. Phew!

Whatever else happens, I'm setting myself the target of sending the draft rules out to anyone interested in doing some playtesting by the 1st of March. Definitely.


20 February 2013

Sir Christopher

 Renowned far and wide for his courtesy, his good-natured companionship and his stoic determination to complete his quest even when all seems lost and defeat is imminent, Sir Christopher can be recognised by his arms of two lions passant, or, and three fleur de lys, or, on a field gules, with a bordure, or.

I'd had such a good time gaming with the boy (as related in my previous post) that I broke my painting dry-spell and knocked up this little fellow for him to be His Very Own and First Miniature. He was suitably chuffed, resulting in a warm glow of satisfaction for both of us. I found an image of the wooden sword and shield set he has online (shown below, although without the sword across it), scaled the shield down in photoshop and printed it off on normal paper to stick on the miniature. Worked pretty well, if I say so myself. I fairly enthusiastically gloss-varnished the whole miniature afterwards to provide protection from the slight stickiness and clumsiness inherent in younger children. The matt top layer (windsor and newton spray matt general purpose) has got rid of most, but not all, of the shininess. Anyway, the little blighter is chuffed with it, so any perfectionist gripes I have about it are completely irrelevant.
Every child should have a wooden sword and shield to hit their brother with, don't you think?

Poor quality phone photo of the finished knight (nice figure, from Black Tree Design)

2013 Lead hoarders vow update:
Unpainted miniatures acquired (net): 0
Miniatures painted: 1
Current score = +1

Happy geeking, and welcome aboard to Erny,

16 February 2013

A close run thing!

After a dreadfully busy half term of teaching, I finally made it to the holidays - and that wasn't the only close run thing today! Mini-Rab #1 asked if we could play with "knights on an adventure in a dungeon". But of course, my little man; grab your dice and let's have at it!

So, out came the ready-to-share-as-soon-as-I've-got-the-multiple-combat-rules-properly-explained version of Goblinquest and we were off. This time, our gallant heroes (one knight, one spear-armed retainer and one retainer with a crossbow) had tracked down to their fortress the goblins who had kidnapped the king's youngest daughter. Time for some chivalric deeds of arms...

Heading in to the fortress, our heroes were instantly ambushed by four goblins. Sadly, the keenness of the crossbow fellow to push to the front for a clear shot (which he stuffed up badly) left him exposed to the wicked blades of the gobbos and unprotected by the knight [marching order does matter!]. His death was swiftly avenged by his more melee-oriented fellows. Tears were very nearly shed by Mini-Rab #1, but he stiffened his sinews; after all, there was still a princess to rescue!

A short encounter with a troll (who was brutally double-teamed by our still-grieving duo) later and the discovery of a strangely glowing key, and the princess was found and released from her shackles upon which the key melted away. Now for escape, but the way was blocked by a further gang of gobbos...

Can you spot the revised character sheet, top-middle? Worked really well.
 Two of the goblins promptly cut down, the other two ran off into a side room (where the key had been found earlier, for those of you who need absolute completeness). Keeping the princess behind them [marching order lessons learned], the fighters hemmed them in.. but what's this? They're behind us!

The knight slammed the door shut on the two they'd been chasing, while the spearman stepped round the princess to deal with the new threat. Unfortunately, the knight wasn't able to hold the door closed and had to get his blade bloody once more. The spearman was not faring so well, being wounded greivously and near unto death...

 Not to fear, though, the knight rescued his valiant retainer just in time [the spearman managed to hold off the combined score of a pair of d8s with only a single d6 for three rounds of combat, and actually slew one of them - definitely man of the match], and guarded the rear as he and the princess made it out of the fort and back to safety, pursued by the fortunately slow-moving brother of the slain troll.

All in all, a grand outing with ultimate triumph tempered by sorrow and loss - gloriously chivalric. I was impressed that the lad held his obvious upset at the death of his crossbowman in check and played though the rest of the hour-long session. He was pretty inventive, too, with some of his tactical planning after the initial error and I'll be encouraging that for future OSR-type roleplaying in a few years time. He is only five, after all.

I hope your geeking is proving as pleasurable and sociable,

EDIT - I forgot to welcome my latest 'followers', Dreamfish and The Convenient Skill: welcome aboard, chaps.