3 Silver Linings to a Bad Case of Dance Recital Stage Fright

Dance Recital

My daughter had her dance recital over the weekend. I’m  sure most parents were happy with the event, which featured lots of cuteness and little stage fright. When you’re dealing with 3- and 4-year-olds, you’re in it for the cuteness, not the precision.

Of course, not everybody is ready to go up on stage and dance in front of a crowd of strangers. While most of the girls did their dance, one child got a particularly bad case of stage fright. She didn’t just freeze up — she cried through the entire routine.

Read more at BabyCenter.com!

Super Mario Pathfinder

Super Mario Pathfinder

I have a son who is getting interested in role-playing games. He is also extremely interested in the Mario franchise, to the point where he refers to himself as Mario. His sister gets to be Princess Peach, his mother gets to be Princess Daisy, and I’m stuck as Luigi.

Recently, I decided to fuse these two interests together, resulting in a Super Mario Brothers edition of Pathfinder.

The process was actually pretty easy. Since combat and task resolution in Pathfinder are abstract, you can fill the flavor text in yourself. If you hit and do 1d6 bludgeoning damage, what difference does it make if you’re swinging a mace or jumping on bad guys’ heads?

Read more at the Screamsheet!

Arrival In Greystone Valley: A FATE Accelerated Adventure

Gorgon

Previously, I covered how you can create Greystone Valley characters using the FATE Accelerated RPG. But what good is a character without an adventure to play through? Here’s an RPG introduction to the world of Greystone Valley. It takes place after the events of Conquest of Greystone Valley, but doesn’t include any spoilers for that novel.

The adventure is a simple, straightforward way to introduce younger players to the concept of role-playing. They can fight their way through the obstacles if they want, but there are plenty of opportunities for nonviolent solutions as well.

Not familiar with the game? No problem! You can get FATE Accelerated and its related games in PDF format for free right here. Or, if you’d prefer to access the game through a web browser, you can find all the rules in the online system reference document.

Read on to get started with the adventure Arrival in Greystone Valley!

Continue reading

Remember when RPGs Equaled Satanism?

Satanic Panic

As a tabletop gamer from the early 1990s, it’s a little weird to me that the hobby is so mainstream these days. Most people know of Dungeons & Dragons or a similar game, and shows like Community celebrate the hobby. It wasn’t too long ago that playing D&D meant you were in league with Satan.

I’m serious – if you played a role-playing game in the 1980s or 1990s, your parents probably worried at some point or another that you were getting involved with Satanism. Just as heavy metal supposedly had satanic lyrics if you played the album backwards, D&D was believed by many to be a tool of the occult.

How did this get started? As with most cases of moral panic, it began with adults scrambling to explain senseless tragedies.

Read more at Panic in the Skies!

How (and why!) this 8-Year-Old Learned to Drive from a YouTube Tutorial

Drive Thru

Last week, an 8-year-old boy took his younger sister on a drive to McDonald’s. Their parents were asleep, and the kids wanted cheeseburgers. Supposedly, the brother learned to drive by watching training videos on YouTube. This story serves as a great commentary on the world we live in today. Let’s unpack it, piece by piece.

Read more at BabyCenter.com!

A Greystone Valley RPG: Character Creation

Fate Dice

Role-playing games are one of my favorite hobbies, and it’s always grand to introduce players to great new worlds. Although not designed with a role-playing experience in mind, the Greystone Valley series introduces a flexible fantasy setting where the players can pretend to be anything from wizards to astronauts.

I recently had the chance to design a new Greystone Valley adventure as a way of introducing some new people to role-playing. Because of its simplicity and flexibility, I chose FATE Accelerated as the system. For those interested in a preview as to how a Greystone Valley RPG might function and as to how easy it is to dive right into FATE Accelerated, here’s a look at the character creation process. Continue reading

Return to the Sidekickcast

Pathfinder Character Sheet

Once upon a time, I had a column called Beer and Pretzels on Sidekickcast.com, where I shared my thoughts on the wonderful weirdness of role-playing games. All was well for a good long time, but then some dastardly hackers ruined everybody’s fun.

Fortunately, the Sidekickcast has returned in a new form, this time with a broader focus as Panic in the Skies. And I’m happy to say that my contributions to that group has also returned. My first blog entry, detailing the wonderful surprises hiding in RPGs, is now online.

Head over the Panic in the Skies and check it out!