Throughout my youth, I played video games rather voraciously. I was, as a friend dubbed me, a Nintend-whore. If it was released by Nintendo between the years of 1985 and 1995, I either begged my parents for it, worked my butt off mowing lawns to afford it, or merely coveted it with every shred of my soul. To this day, there are over a dozen NES games I can defeat through sense memory alone. Despite that, however, I cannot describe myself as a "gamer." This is because, sometime around 1997 (about the time side-scrolling video games gave way to the more elaborate 3-D type), I checked out of video games altogether. To this day, I have been baffled and overwhelmed by newer video games, finding them far too elaborate, too involved, and too expensive to get into. I don't have 100 hours to devote to a Halo game. My patience wears thin if a game is more complicated than, say, Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past.More >>
White Wolf Publishing Not every RPG idea is a good one.
RPGs are marvelous things, with many strange twists and permutations, yet as different as they can be, nearly all of them have certain core concepts in common, and one of the most core concepts is character generation. Building a character is a rite of passage, and when done right it can be one of the best parts of playing a game. However, there's always some weird stuff that sneaks in on the periphery, and this list includes some of the strangest. It couldn't possibly be complete, so feel free to add your own favorite bits in the comments.More >>
It's been a rough few years for fans of the Final Fantasy series. Between the numerous poorly made cell phone titles, a new online game that was still in the alpha stage development when released, and a numbered entry that was announced in 2006 with a release date of "sometime this ice age," it should come as no surprise that Final Fantasy fans are still nostalgic for the days when the franchise was at its peak.
To this day, the old games in the series are still making money on services like the PlayStation Network and Steam. The reason Final Fantasy I has been re-released seventeen times, and why a port of the now eighteen year-old game Final Fantasy VII was part of last year's PlayStation Experience event is simple. Fans are filled with nostalgia because they just don't make Final Fantasy games like they used to. Which is why people are still exploring the data of these beloved titles, hoping to find more pieces of the games they love which have never been seen before.
The folks at Geekfuel sent me one of their monthly subscription boxes to review - due to my apartment flood making it hard to find things like my camera, it took a little longer than it ought to.
Now that things have settled, watch us unbox.More >>
Artwork by CitrusKing46
Hello, and welcome to another edition of Robotic Gaming Monthly, Topless Robot's monthly column devoted to the recent happenings, reviews of recent releases, and trailers in gaming! This time around we ask such questions as "Should the major players in the gaming industry think smaller?", "Does Life is Strange show any promise?" and "Do giant purple bunnies really make the best mayoral candidates?" Let's head in and see what the answers to those questions and many others are!More >>
Every Dungeon Master has experienced that dread moment when the players are about to arrive, but you haven't had sufficient prep time to put together the adventure they'll be playing. Sometimes this is due to writer's block. Most gaming groups have the same person DM the majority of adventures, and coming up with stories week after week can be difficult. This is often where professionally published adventures come in very handy, but most groups have a "completist" player who has purchased and read every adventure. What is a Dungeon Master to do?
Sorry, but it's hard not to be cynical, knowing full well that if the new all-female Ghostbusters takes off there will be merchandise galore, probably including a board game. And with that in mind, it's equally hard to ignore the fact that none of the proposed figurines for Cryptozoic's Kickstartering board game is a female character - no Dana, Janine, or Gozer in "prehistoric bitch" mode.
That said, it looks like it could be pretty fun - the crowdfunding aspect is apparently so that the game can come loaded with extras that a more corporate-mandated product would have to cut back on. It will apparently feature characters from the comics, movies and cartoons, and the designs are comic-based caricatures to avoid likeness issues.
For extra-realistic fun, declare the Spengler figure unplayable, hide the Venkman somewhere nobody can find him, and let whoever's playing Stantz hog the dice for about 20 years as he tells everyone else his various plans for winning, then fails to execute any of them.
2014 ended three weeks ago, but our wrap-ups of 2014's best and worst ended yesterday. It's fair to say we consumed a lot of entertainment, enjoyed many things and had almost as much fun vocally destroying the things we didn't like so much. And as I hope was evident, not every Topless Robot contributor had the same ideas about what those things were.
Which is why, as we look to the year ahead, I've gathered together as many of our regular contributors as possible for this list, in which they all describe what they're geeked out about for 2015. From board games to RPGs, action figures to adaptations - and in one case, even the rumors we long to hear - it's a varied, insightful and excitable sneak peek.More >>
Geek & Sundry Somehow, this show continues to not make this list. But Wil Wheaton's smug face does.
RPGs are a somewhat unique medium in that there is very little agreement about the good and the bad. For everyone that hates a setting or system, there are others who completely love it and lull their newborns to sleep by reading to them from the main rulebook. Every RPG system seems to appeal to someone, even if it's just a small group of people with very similar ideas on how fantasy swords should work. Also, RPG fans occasionally seem to hate buying things. Entire enclaves exist on the web of angry roleplayers that believe all RPG development stopped after their favorite edition, claiming everything that came afterward was nothing but a money grab.
Personally, I disagree. I like RPGs and find them inexpensive, good returns for value and don't mind getting new editions after 5 years or more. I am generally well-disposed to new releases and assume someone, somewhere, will like them. One only needs to go to a gaming convention and find that one guy in the corner running his favorite RPG from 1986 to confirm that there is some truth to this. However, this isn't to say that all is roses and honey in the RPG world. Every year there are things that are bad, and things that just aren't good. Read on for the 9 worst moments in RPGs this past year.More >>
It is a golden age for fans of the tabletop gaming hobby. The past couple of years have seen an explosion of wonderful games and game related products and 2014 is the best so far. When the "Years it was Great to be a Gamer" Hall of Fame voters chose the years they will honor, 2014 will go down in history as the Babe Ruth of hobby gaming offering. Okay...if you consider Kickstarter as the hobby gaming equivalent of PEDs, it's the Barry Bonds of years, but that's something truly impressive. Unless you won the lottery, there were more products that are worth your time and money released last year than you have either the time or the money to enjoy. Even then, you probably wouldn't have the time to enjoy them.
Putting together a list of the best hobby game, and game related, products of 2014 wasn't an easy task. In order to make the list manageable, I gave myself three rules. First, I was going to group related products. Second, I allowed myself to select 21 products instead of a more reasonable 10. Third, I didn't select any official Pathfinder gaming material. I created that third rule because if I didn't, the list could have easily been filled with nothing but Pathfinder stuff. Paizo put out some great products this year, but Topless Robot readers already know that.
Here are 21 products I think made 2014 the best year ever to be a tabletop gamer.