27 January 2018

PinkFae Archive #8: Transgender Changeling

It's time once again for another entry in the PinkFae archives. This week, we cover an interesting advanced technique for use with Changeling: The Dreaming. This article was originally published on 21 February, 2016.

The Title Logo for Changeling: The Dreaming—the title rendered as a slightly whimsical stained glass panel

As a gamer who is a fan of stories and storytelling, I tend to be drawn towards games that allow and encourage the telling of stories. This is why I became a fan of roleplaying games; they are the single best framework for telling stories as a game. Of all the RPGs I've tried (and I have tried many), my favourite is, without question, Changeling: the Dreaming. It emphasises creativity, and is set in a world which includes a vast realm made entirely of dreams. This allows you to play in any setting you can imagine. The important thing right now is that the characters in this story are faeries inhabiting human bodies. Normally, players assume that the human body in which a fae spirit is housed matches the demographics of the fae spirit itself. But as I find myself thinking more about Changeling as a result of the recent 20th Anniversary Kickstarter, I realise that nowhere in the rules does it say that this is necessarily the case. In fact, there are places where it hints that it isn't always the case; specifically, it mentions that the Eshu, an African kith, are not always born into host bodies of African descent. Thus, I begin to wonder if there are other ways in which this disconnect can be expanded. And my first thought is: what if the human body is of a different gender than the fae spirit born into it? And thus I find myself contemplating the possibility of Transgender Changeling.

20 January 2018

A Legitimate Complaint Concerning GURPS

I recently encountered an article about GURPS. In the article, the author outlines some of the problems he has with GURPS (and, in particular, with the 4th edition of GURPS). Many of the things he has to say on the issue are valid, and as I've recently done a bit of dabbling in GURPS again and had a number of thoughts on the topic, it helped me to crystallise what I was thinking. So today, I'm going to discuss my reactions to the article.

A quick summary of the article, for those who don't want to click on the link above (and it is a lengthy read, so I don't blame you if you don't):
GURPS 3rd Edition was great, but in translating the system into a 4th edition, they made the game incomprehensible for new players, and their ancient, arcane, and inflexible policies on intellectual properties only exacerbate the problem.
So, in order for my attitudes towards GURPS to make sense, I'm going to provide a little bit of context in the form of my personal history with the system.

13 January 2018

PinkFae Archive #7: Board Game Review: Alchemists

Time for another entry in the PinkFae Archive. This post was originally published on 13 February 2016.

The Alchemists box, showing the cover art of a man in wizard's robes holding a frog in one hand as he adds drops of a strange liquid to a brew from which small hands can be seen reaching, as an apprentice climbs out a window in the background to escape the insanity of his master.

Greetings, fellow gamers, and welcome to another entry in the Board Game Review series of Game On posts! This week, I shall describe a game that I learned to play at my local board game cafe's Kickstarter Backer Party! The game in question is Alchemists. Remember the system I devised for reviewing these games? Here it is again:

06 January 2018

Inclusive NPCs Volume 2: Quahtli

It's time again for another Inclusive NPC. As you may remember from the last entry, these NPCs are presented here for you to use as you see fit in any campaign you run. The idea is that you can contribute to a more accepting world by exposing your players, even in games, to a more diverse cast of characters. And since I am aware that not everyone finds it easy to come up with interesting supporting characters, I will provide you with some that you may use as-is, or that may inspire you to develop your own character from marginalised groups.

As I did last time with Cedar, I will provide you with the character's stats in four different systems: D&D, GURPS, the original World of Darkness, and FATE Core.

So let's meet Quahtli.

Quahtli is of Quechua ethnic heritage, originally living in Peru, but having travelled the world to see many different places, and having many new experiences. A few years ago, she met and fell in love with a woman named Cecilia. Quahtli's natural wanderlust and sense of adventure subsided enough for her to settle down with Cecilia. At first, they would travel together, seeing new places, but Cecilia suffered chronic depression, and after a short time, their adventures together grew less frequent. Now, Quahtli stays with Cecilia full time to help care for her and treat her depression.