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Bibbles

The Cards Rant?? Sorry

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Sorry all. I'm not trying to be a troll...?

The cards are neat, but I have no idea why Fantasy Flight would start with cards and not provide a starter adventure?? I stare at my genesys books (X2) and dice sets (X2) collecting dust not because it didn't have enough cards but because there was no way to ease myself the GM or players in. There is one high level convention adventure but nothing else? I've been GM'ing for 27 years. Always start with an adventure instead of a gimmick. I really hope something is coming soon cuz I'm losing interest fast.

 After the first adventure most teams can find their way on their own. I still own the EVERWAY RPG. Its a dead game now. It had tons and tons of cards and no adventures. HOL dead now had no adventures but was awesome even without cards.  Even Tunnels and Trolls came with Buffalo Castle. Sorry guys I think you are missing the boat on this one. It doesn't have to be great, just have one scene for each basic mechanic and a few plot hooks that people can take off on. Its about learning how to play before trying to use it to create on the fly. Murphy's world also had no adventures, neat game and neat idea. I've got tons of em. They sit on shelves in my cabinet with the others, while not as cool better supported games have the spines worn out of them by excited players. My friends were going to order their books. I told them to hold off and wait. We are waiting and hoping. It looks neat.  

Ive got a heck of a big *** collection and the longest lasting ones all have adventures. The weird fringe stuff that dies off and sits in this nerd's tickle trunk all have the lack of adventures in common. This is not the only thing they have in common but it is a major one. SJ's Bunnies and Burrows was a gas. Some great ones like Ghostbusters RPG die even with adventures so its not a for sure deal but it sure helps. 

GMs are what make an RPG popular not players and not gimmicks. We do the work and we hold the events and we plan late in the night. Give us the tools we need and ask for. Please release a decent starter.

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I have found that modules are, at best, a crutch. The greater issue is that Genesys is that it is a universal rule system, not a predefined setting like Forgotten Realms, HoL, Shadowrun, or even Realms of Terrinoth (for genesys). In order to have an adventure, you first have to define the setting that strikes the fancy of you and your players. If you or your players dont like fantasy, then that one shot fantasy adventure you refer to wouldnt be of much regardless of power level. Genesys has suggestions on how to go about doing this but doesnt do it for you. An adventure doesnt need to have 300 pages of defined world to set it up nor does it even need to have 30+ pages of defined adventure path. It only needs some scribbled notes that indicate what the goal of the adventure is, a few adversaries, and maybe some important points about their environment. The only real question to ask for that first starting adventure is are you bringing the characters together for the first time or are they starting as an established group (like in the first Dragonlance novel). Then give the players a few crumbs and let them lead the adventure. If the reward (or penalty) is sufficient they will meander (or bee-line) in the right direction with just a little coxing. Be spontaneous. If you cant decide how to start things, then start in the middle of the action like how a James Bond movie begins.

IF you need help with coming up with plots and the like, there is plenty of web sites that deal with plot creation or generating plot points. DriveThruRPG is also a good source of cheap or free plot or adventure material.

If you are not the "wing it" type, consider listening to the excellent DICE POOL PODCASTS. They talk extensively about how a GM that is new to Genesys can make the most of everything from creating characters to designing worlds to just winging it.

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If you would have NPC/Monster cards for every occasion (usable or compatible with many systems), you could run any adventure from any game.

I guess that would make Genesys very strong; e.g., if I would be able to run any of the gazillion D&D/Pathfinder adventures floating around (even in their setting) by simply replacing the NPCs and monsters in those books by (more or less) matching Genesys cards, Genesys would be an absolute winner. At least, for me.

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I’m definitely disappointed that there hasn’t been more Genesys material released since its launch. The community created stuff is awesome, but it’s not developed anywhere near as much as a first party release. I really hope they underestimated how popular it would be, perhaps the original plan was two large supplements a year. Theoretically they could now be working on more books, their production cycle seems to be about 12 months long so it could definitely take them time to catch up and release 4 books a year which would be much more appropriate (imho)

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@Bibbles If you had a module for a system you were trying learn (ie Genesys), what would it have it in that you are lacking now? It would say "start here, go a bunch a places, do a bunch of things, and then save the day." You and the players would say asking "how do I do fly/fireball/teleport with my character/npc" and much page flipping would occur and the first session or two would be slow as people who read the rules in prior weeks were refreshing their memories on how things worked. If you scribbled your own notes (however detailed) for an adventure, the same thing would be happening. If you need the structure of a module, you could always adapt one for the genre you are interested in as there are lots of free modules online or adapt an existing module you already possess.

You could also the ask the community for suggestions. Things like this have been asked before and the community has been quite helpful.

What types of issues are you encountering in putting together your opening adventure for your new campaign?

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Im not meaning to rain on anyone's parade. Im glad for anyone that has a campaign going. Any of the standard you enter a tavern/town/castle and a guy/gal/princess/town drunk gives you a lead are fine quest is fine.  I want something that has about 5-7 scenes that are well written to showcase the genesys systems with notes on how to run each one, one challenge for each part of the genesys system getting incrementally more difficult. I don't want to be building a story on the fly, riffing off the players while I have my nose in a rule book checking over and over again to make sure we are doing it right. One example adventure is great and from there all of us will have good grounds to stand on. Please tell me I'm not the only GM that feels this way. WARNING SPOILERS!!! I've run the Call of Cthulthu haunted house with the guy in the wall with a magic knife like 10 times because it gives players and GMs a way to start off not cuz its great but because it showcases the system. (Skill checks, investigation, clue interpreting, horror checks, combat and magic.) It's perfect and leaves people wanting more.

Scene one: How to do a skill check and roll dice

Scene two: small combat with some element of the Terrinoth world showcased

Scene three: Social combat 

Scen four: magic usage

And so on......Many will suggest I should write my own. Im a 41 year old man with two kids and a psychology practice. I'm lucky to get enough time to think my own thoughts. The lack time for RPGS in peoples lives is where stuff like Time Stories , Mythos tales and 7th continent have run to the rescue, RPGs with easy setup, startup and ready to go story. If they want something to take off they need a "crutch" adventure to give people the grounding they need. We all learn to crawl before we walk and then run, rpgs are the same. When I buy a new system the first thing I do is look at what support is there and for this game its amazingly sparse. Ive waited and waited and what we got is a very very short monster manual in card form. Neat but not the hole that needs filling. A nice starting adventure for newb GMs and players gets the ball rolling and from there as with all RPGs the sky is the limit. 

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Maybe im reading the thread wrong but have you checked out the terrinoth intro adventure under Player support on the genesys product page https://images-cdn.fantasyflightgames.com/filer_public/56/75/5675bba2-a5a2-4161-b4c0-eaed85a3d0b7/genesys_gencon_adventure_lowres.pdf

 

Has pre gen characters and you dont really ned the terrinoth setting as such. But the adventure has All you ask for combat, investigation, social and magic. 

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The Terrinoth intro adventure is great, and gives new GM's and players a sense of direction.  But since it was published there haven't been any other official adventures for any setting.  I'm told the Terrinoth cards add absolutely zero new content not found in the books.  Do they at least add a few more images of the beasties and NPC's?  I suppose it's nice they're literally collected into a deck and not scattered over chapters.

I don't always play modules as written, but it's nice sometimes having the a core idea laid out along with a rough plot.  Home grown adventures are always great for showcasing PC backstories and specific interests, but they take more time to create than many of us have, and for me the starting idea and a sense of direction take the most time. 

They're also great for showing how to apply mechanics to specific situations, and it then becomes much easier to extrapolate from that.

So yeah, I would have much rather seen an "adventure path" or a "module" than a few decks of cards, however much convenience the latter adds.

Edited by Dragonshadow

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43 minutes ago, Archellus said:

Maybe im reading the thread wrong but have you checked out the terrinoth intro adventure under Player support on the genesys product page https://images-cdn.fantasyflightgames.com/filer_public/56/75/5675bba2-a5a2-4161-b4c0-eaed85a3d0b7/genesys_gencon_adventure_lowres.pdf

 

Has pre gen characters and you dont really ned the terrinoth setting as such. But the adventure has All you ask for combat, investigation, social and magic. 

Sadly the Haunted city is for character that have quite a few advancements already. I was gong to start there but would have to ask players to prematurely advance their characters or use the pre gens making it a lousy starting point. Whats wrong with a nice starter adventure. No xp. Something like N4 the 0-1 level ADND"Treasure Hunt" adventure. What a great jumping off point. I've run it 4 times and its lead to crazy adventures that were all totally different. One time we got from there to Freeport because of the free viking longship... ?

 

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49 minutes ago, Dragonshadow said:

So yeah, I would have much rather seen an "adventure path" or a "module" than a few decks of cards, however much convenience the latter adds.

Adventure path sounds great. Terrinoth is still poorly developed. I would love one based around the haunted house from descent.

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@Bibbles, I get where you are coming from and I agree that an adventure path or an introductory one-shot would be great.

Have you played FFG's Star Wars? Each of the three core books include a short adventure that is continued with a free downloadable PDF. Something similar for Genesys or more specifically Realms of Terrinoth makes a lot of sense.

That said, I would bet that the developers are thinking of Genesys as more of a toolset for GM's that love FFG's narrative dice and want to port it into their own games. Through that lense, there may be an inherant assumption that GM's purchasing the game are already familiar with the system. Perhaps the barrier to entry was missed in their planning for Genesys' rollout.

I do hope that you will give Genesys a try. I have run a number of adventures for my group, from one-shots on up through an ongoing campaign, and the system is supremely flexible and a lot of fun.

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Well i get where your comming from has also been gaming nearly 30 years now with 2 kids and a job time gets valuable. So for the past many years have been running adventure paths and other pregens. But since switching to genesys i actually find my prep time 100 times reduced. Besides from making the actual setting though :)

 

I went back a step simple just made up some hooks maybe a small combat and just see where my players take it. So far been a blast since i got no clue where the story ends. I try not to plan to far ahead but have just enough story for it to keep rolling. 

 

I have never played the "treasure hunt" just looked it up looks cool for a starting adventure :) in the end of the adventure. That old adnd style brings back memories :). There was a npc summery in the back basicly had a orc rival, orc minion, goblin minion a ghoul, some giant rats and 2 zombies. Those could be easy converted to genesys. That wont cover the how to play each scene but could work. 

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I'm also one of the people that really wish the Terrinoth book came with a premade adventure. I think all systems should come with one, and Terrinoth will always have a bit of a black mark for me. It's one of the reasons I opted for just the PDF version and not the full hard back version (I normally buy both). Nothing helps me as a GM (or a player in some cases) more then a framework to start in. 

 

The Genesys Core book I give a little pass on because it's advertised as a tool kit (and cost less). Terrinoth should be all inclusive for demanding a higher price and trying to specialize more. It also makes Terrinoth seem like a lesser product if future setting books release with an adventure. So it also sets a really bad precadant. 

 

While I'm a veteran of tabletop roleplaying and the Star Wars books i feel awful for new players that want to get into the hobby. While I have a shelf of Star Wars books I can lean on, new players don't have that luxury. While it's nice to have the option, I can understand why some players would feel pushed away when the response to some of their concerns is "just go buy some Star Wars books." 

 

I love these dice and how they work. The lack of official resources has forced me to be creative and lean on the community when creating my own setting. But that's coming from a veteran. I could pick almost any system and make it work given enough time and inspiration or drive. But newer players just don't have those same experiences.

 

 

With that said I would love a small book that is jammed with modular encounters. The modular encounters from Star Wars are some of my favorite purchasable content from the Star Wars line. I think following a similar model with the Genesys setting books would be great. Just include one in the setting books if you don't want to to do one large adventure. 

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On 9/7/2018 at 6:24 PM, Richardbuxton said:

Hey, @Bibbles, I ran a group of 4 brand new pc’s through the Haunted City  adventure and it went fine.

Did you change anything? I was reading it and getting ready to run it. Then I saw the character level and was pretty choked :(

 

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8 hours ago, Bibbles said:

Did you change anything? I was reading it and getting ready to run it. Then I saw the character level and was pretty choked :(

 

Only the number of minions in encounters, but I do that on the fly during any session to ensure encounters are the right level of challenge. It’s really just a case of remove a group here, then add it back (or even add more than suggested) with a Story Point if things are too easy.

Depending on how the group plays out the investigation there’s plenty of opportunities for you to add in off the cuff scenes too, particularly once they get to the city. It ended up taking us 2 full 4 hour sessions with about two of those used to make the characters. None of the players had actually read RoT or even made a Genesys/Star Wars character before, and two players hadn’t even role played, so I think 2 hours was actually pretty quick.

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Something to also note, which might not be immediately evident to new players, is the XP totals for the RoT premade characters *include starting racial experience* in their totals. Each of the characters only has about 100 extra XP over starting characters. This translates to a couple extra skill ranks or talents, but not an exceptionally large power difference as compared to starting PCs.

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4 hours ago, Ralzar said:

If FFG is printing cards for Genesys, I really wish they would print generic cards to reference rules. Particularly Talents would be great to have on cards you could give players.

While not an official solution I use the amazing Genesys Talents Expanded to do exactly this. I just print the pages I need to on card stock, cut them into squares,  and hand them out. If I'm feeling really fancy I'll even bring them to Staples to be laminated. 

Edited by Noahjam325

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Hm, I've been planning to print my own cards. The problem with just printing the pages and cutting them up is that they'll all be different sizes. It'll be really messy for the players to search through. Not a big problem, but I would so love for FFG to just print these on some proper cards.

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7 hours ago, Ralzar said:

Hm, I've been planning to print my own cards. The problem with just printing the pages and cutting them up is that they'll all be different sizes. It'll be really messy for the players to search through. Not a big problem, but I would so love for FFG to just print these on some proper cards.

Have you ever played around with GIMP, the free image editing program? It would be relatively easy to create a card template and then just insert the text for each talent.

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On 9/12/2018 at 4:25 PM, O the Owl said:

Have you ever played around with GIMP, the free image editing program? It would be relatively easy to create a card template and then just insert the text for each talent.

I actually used PhotoShop to make a bunch of Talents and Item cards for WFRP. I could do that again, but it's a bit much of a hassle. Part of the problem is that quite a few Talents have WAY more text than would fit on a small card. So I'd have to edit the text of quite a few cards.

Genesys is, on the surface, such an easy game to just pick up and play I was hoping to not have to do all that work. Particularly since FFG is apparently producing cards for the game. Just not cards that are useful. Which is what they did a lot of for WFRP as well. Stuff like location got a bunch of cards, while race abilities and items generally did not.

The annoying part is that if the rule book had just formatted the Talent information a little better I could have just printed the pages and cut them up into cards and been fine with that. Oh well, I'll see what I have time to fix myself later.

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16 hours ago, Ralzar said:

I actually used PhotoShop to make a bunch of Talents and Item cards for WFRP. I could do that again, but it's a bit much of a hassle. Part of the problem is that quite a few Talents have WAY more text than would fit on a small card. So I'd have to edit the text of quite a few cards.

I actually ended up buying the PDF, so I can copy/paste when I want to transcribe portions of the text. But, I feel you. The quality and convenience of official cards would be superior.

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This is actually one of the main reasons I am very close to switching to FATE Core. I don't need endless pages of lore that I'm never actually going to use. FATE's World of Adventure series is perfect for my needs: a dozen or so pages on the world and the genre's tropes, a dozen or so pages on any mechanical changes or special rules for the setting, and the rest for an adventure which gives hooks into extending the story into other spinoff adventures if the group really takes to the setting.

Now, this isn't the only reason I'm seriously considering the switch, as the two systems are vastly different and I think FATE is closer to what I'm looking for in an RPG overall. And in terms of adventures Genesys may get there eventually, as I gather they did over time with the Star Wars series. But unfortunately the opacity and speed (or lack thereof) of what's coming in Genesys vs. what FATE already has and is doing is pushing me away from Genesys.

Edited by Scirel

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