Our game group meets for our weekly game on Tuesday nights, the night the diaries are released. Tonight we read through the 'Adventure on the move' diary and discussed it as a group. We wanted to know how this would affect our weekly games.
We have a 600+ square foot game room. We have a specially designed 4x8 table, with shelves under it for books, and a large card table on the side. We have around 10k miniatures and 100s of pieces of terrain and buildings.
Each week I lay out the scenario and build a table. Tables can range from dungeons to towns to forest clearings, but each encounter is designed from a tactical standpoint. Our table and miniature collection has its roots in tabletop wargaming and so our RPG games generally have a heavy tactical element.
When I first read the diary I was a bit nervous. I was afraid the use of my miniature collection would be restricted at best. It seems that this new 'Abstract Measurement' system is designed for people with limited space and few or no miniatures. This game could easily be played on a kitchen table, covered with books, and still have plenty of room for elbows.
After discussing it for a while we found the benefits for people with large collections like us.
Initially I was a little reluctant to give up my beloved grid and measuring tape. Range, hard corners, and obstacles have become a staple in our games. We sat down and talked about how the new rules might affect our play style.
Our final conclusion was that we could use this new system to add some versatility to our game table.
For example, an encounter that takes place on an acre of land, a small village in a clearing. Now, I could build this on my table if wanted to. Clear away the books (banished to the shelf under the table) and lay out the terrain, trees, buildings and obstacles. With the new system all I would need to add would be some range bands. Place some markers on the table then count the number of markers between you and your target.
For closer environments, like a dungeon, same thing. Factors like light, atmosphere (dust, smoke, etc), ceiling height, and such would make this a much closer environment. Again, simply laying down counters for range bands would handle the situation fine without resorting to counting squares or measuring distances.
Alternately, we could resolve quick encounters on a small section of the table just by using the range counters as intended.
- Engaged: Base to Base
- Close: Occupying adjacent range bands (1 marker between you)
- Medium: One range band (2 markers) between you
...and so on
It's taking me time to warm up to 'Abstract Measurement'. I need to do it myself, lay it out and get minis in my hand, but it looks workable and may even turn out to be a better way to do it. My game group, whom I thought would resist it, seems optimistic.