First plays in 2012

edited November 2012 in Story Games
I'm really enjoying this thread about people's top 5 unplayed games of 2012, but what games have you tried out for the first time in 2012 and how did they go? (in one sentence or less).

Here's mine in no particular order:

1. Apocalypse World - WOW, had to do my own hack
2. Archipelago II - mindblowing, a bit out of our comfort zone but worth it
3. Dungeon World - approx 75% hit rate of awesome
4. World of Dungeons - played several sessions but ultimately decided preferred DW
5. The Regiment - one attempt not great but mitigating circumstances (me!) and will try again
6. The Kingdom (playtest) - interested to play again
7. Ghost/Echo - excellent, can't wait to play again with a different group
8. Traveller World - needs more polish but having fun with it
9. 3:16 fell a bit flat as a one-shot, probably won't bother again
Edit:(I forgot) 10. Cthulhu Dark hmmm, not sure about this but CoC is a big favorite of ours, didn't like the inversion of the SAN death spiral


  • 1. Vulture City (my own skirmish-drafting card game) - Really fun, with some structural inelegance that I hate.
    2. Montsegur 1244 - I love the game, though my play session was dissatisfying in some ways.
    3. Loose Leaves - A beautiful, esoteric, minimal flash of wuxia fiction. I love this game that Brendan Adkins is designing.
    4. Dog Eat Dog - It makes me uncomfortable in good ways, and I think it's a really interesting game. Want to play more.
    5. Antarktica - Steampunk imperial adventure using Archipelago. The people I played with were awesome, the game isn't for me.
    6. Superhero - Another tiny flash of a game (like Loose Leaves), this one by Jackson Tegu makes me feel nostalgic for all those childhood memories I haven't had yet. Funny, raucous, and somehow cozy.
    7. Brave Sparrow (I wrote this) - playing it has helped me clarify a lot of what it means to be human and not-human.
    8. The Regiment - totally not the game for me, but I can see why others would love it.
    9. Silver & White - Is it my favourite game? Maybe. It is beautiful and teenage and real.
  • In order of when I first played them (thank goodness for blog-keeping to remember all this):

    1. Dogs in the Vineyard - right at the turn of 2012, enjoyed it but think I GM'd it wrong.
    2. Dungeon World - One session of my own GMing, one played at GPNW, one played at the Gamerati Game Day. Loved it when I was not running it, again ran it oddly (but now know how I would do it differently).
    3. Microscope - Played at GPNW, loved the hell out of it.
    4. G.I. Joe 1946 AW Hack - Played in its first playtest at GPNW. Very fun, despite knowing nothing about GI Joe or 1946.
    5. Geiger World (Gamma World AW Hack) - Also a playtest at GPNW. Crazy weirdness, would play it again.
    6. Metamorphosis: Omicron - Tony Dowler gave the World of Dungeons treatment to Metamorphosis Alpha at GPNW. The zaniest thing I played all year, but awesome.
    7. D&D Next - I like it better than the other D&Ds I've played!
    8. Fiasco - I love it. Have played at least 3 times. Can't wait til Durance goes on sale.
    9. Apocalypse World - Finally MC'd it in September, and am still MC'ing the same characters. Made of gold, and I'm now doing my own hack.
    10. Monsterhearts - Played at the Gamerati Game Day. Definitely interested in playing again, and our group is is whispering about doing it.
    11. 13th Age - Also played at the Gamerati Game Day. Does some interesting things, probably not campaign material for me, but worth it for some.

    For my first full year playing something that isn't D&D 3.5, I think it's a pretty great haul. Can't wait to play even more next year!
  • 1. Dungeon World - Holy crap this game is amazing and I love it -- never fails.
    2. Monsterhearts - Seems fantastic, but it doesn't seem suited for one GM / one player, can't wait to try w/ more.
    3. tremulus - Really fun, but mainly due to Stealing Cthulhu -- but I loved the framework system, really cool.
    4. Stealing Cthulhu - Remarkably helpful! (Sure, not a game per se, but whatever, it was more useful than most gaming books I've read.)
    5. Monster of the Week - Had some trouble w/ the game steering totally towards combat, but seemed promising.
    6. Traveller (2nd edition?) - Around the most boring eight hours of my life, likely the GM's fault.
    7. AW-hacked Vampire (mine) - Surprisingly entertaining, essentially just a super-anti-heroes game -- easy to jam AW stuff together in 30 minutes on the fly and still have a decent time, which was cool to see.
    8. AW-hacked Council of Wyrms (mine) - Really fun, but needs something different for the more steady player versus player bits.
    9. Annalise - Only did the first phase a couple days ago but it seems promising, although the freeform is a bit intimidating.

    (Discovered AW this summer, tried a ton of the variants that interested me without trying the original yet!)
  • Interesting idea for a thread. My likely incomplete list:

    1. Bulldogs! - My first FATE based game. I was delighted at how well it worked. Does exactly what it says it will.
    2. Monsterhearts - I like almost none of the source material, but I love playing the game. Probably my most played game of 2012.
    3. In a Wicked Age - Only just got to play it last weekend. Mechanically wonky, but creates such wonderful stories. Playing again tonight.
    4. Lady Blackbird - Ran this several times and played it once. Just super ridiculous fun.
    5. Danger Patrol - Not sure if we bollocksed this up or what, but it did not turn out the way I thought it would.
    6. Dungeon World (& Number Appearing) - I much prefered playing the monsters.
    7. ViewScream - I decided not to include playtests, but this was so damn fun (twice). Perpare yourselves for the VARP future!
    8. Within My Clutches - OK, two playtests. I'm not a superhero fan, but I really enjoyed playing a villain in David Berg's game.
    9. Kingdom of Nothing - Did not click with this AT ALL.
    10. Archipelago - Such a neat little system. Can plug in anything and just go.
    11. Apocalypse World: L5R hack - Deserves to be mentioned even if it's not its own game. Did L5R so much better than L5R does.
    12. Cthulhu Dark - Another sweet little system. Could be used to port almost anything.
    13. Night’s Black Agents - My first Gumshoe game and it was fantastic. Hard to tell if it was the system or the fact that its author was GMing it for us.
    14. Sagas of the Icelanders - Just so great themematically. Takes the AW ball and runs with it.
    15. Kagematsu - Not sure if I would play it again, but I enjoyed it way more than I thought I would.
    16. FU - Yet another rules lite do-it-all. Used it for my Dawn of the Dead / Evil Dead mashup.
    17. S/Lay W/ Me - Quirky, maybe a little broken, but fun and very interesting.
    18. Murderous Ghosts - We scared the crap out of ourselves with this one. So, that's a success.

    Sometimes it seems like I never get to game, so it's nice to see how much gaming I've actually gotten to do.
  • A year is a long time. Not sure when all of the campaigns happened.

    1. Fiasco I for sure got this year and really liked it. Played it a few times since and infected my gaming friends.
    2. A Dirty World also was ordered in the autumn and the one game I played really was great fun.
    3. Monsterhearts. Came in the same envelop as Dirty World. A good game but for the first time almost ever GMing felt like a chore for a while and did not come naturally. Still I got into the rythm and had fun. As a player over Skype with people from around here it rocked.
    4. Kobolds Are My Baby. Played at a Con. It was stupid fun, nothing I would buy or seek out to play again. Still not a waste.
    5. Eclipse Phase. Played at a con too with maybe not the best set up and GM. Still a system I generally like because of the way they publish it. Also some of the ideas appeal to me. A bit rules heavy though.
    6. Don't Rest your Head. With the translator at a Con too. It was nice and fun but did not convince me to get the game. Some great ideas though.
  • 1. Fiasco: My dirty secret is that I only find it kind of OK. It's just that everyone else likes it a lot so it's great to expose people to weird RPGs.
    2. My Daughter Queen of France: OH MY GOD THIS GAME IS AMAZING. The emotions, the personal drama, the way you keep revising the situations. It's fantastic.
    3. Montsegur 1244: I wish I could have played more than half a game of it, but it was a very good half of a game. I was surprised I liked it more than Fiasco.
    4. Freemarket: Not a complete game, but enough of a taste to convince me I want to play a complete game of it very badly.
    5. D&D 5e Playtest: Was very enjoyable, very freewheeling, and definitely has more spark that it's given credit for. I hope it doesn't get screwed up before it comes out.
    6. Keep it Sunny: Probably the best game I've played this year that will never receive the recognition of how fucking good it actually is. Is now my go to game for situations improving an episode of It's Always Sunny in Philidelphia is a good idea.
  • edited November 2012
    Hm.... Okay, not counting larps:

    1. Monsterhearts (Dreamation): Awesome -- I feel that I could run it.
    2. Technoir (Dreamation): Mixed, mostly fun, my being exhausted may have gotten in the way
    3. Something that was being playtested at Dreamation: I barely remember it.
    4. The Dance and the Dawn RPG (as opposed to the larp): Fun, but as I was warned, it is rather arbitrary.
    5. Smallville: Still having bumps with the system.
    6. Critical Go Westerly (DexCon): A game focused on Being Funny that actually worked for me.
    7. Night's Black Agents (DexCon): I won the tournament and got to play with Ken Hite running it, so am biased.
    8. Cthulhu Dark (DexCon): A lot of fun, but I think one of the GM's rules interpretations was a bit off (important because I want to know how to run the game myself)
    9. Progenitor (GenCon): Awesome, but I played with Greg Stolze, so am biased.
    10. Fate of the Norns (First Exposure, at GenCon): I had a great time, but as with 7 and 9, I played with the game's creator.
    11. Bollywood playtest (Metatopia): Definitely in progress, but fun.
    12: Titans playtest (Metatopia): Either this will become one awesome game or it will become one of two or three potential games, all of which are awesome.
    13. 13th Age playtest (Metatopia): Not really my thing, but I loved the One Unique Thing.
    14. Atomic Robo playtest: I like the streamlining of the core Fate rules and am glad I read a volume of the comic before playing.
    14. FATE, the in progress version, if having playtested Atomic Robo doesn't count as the same thing (Metatopia): Fun playtest of dogfighting rules.

    This was... more games than I'd thought.
  • edited November 2012
    1. Grace was a wonderful little one-page game and the characters we created have stuck in my memory.

    2. Marvel Heroic Roleplaying is a bit more system-heavy than my group usually likes, so I created (and am refining) a cut-down version of the rules and am developing a process for introducing the game to people (I may post about that later, because I'm interested in how others approach this).

    3. Until We Sink was a series of melancholic and low-key conversations that my group really wants to try again.

    4. The Quiet Year. Great game with really interesting procedures that elicited a lot of different opinions from our group about how to survive and prosper, none of which helped us at all.

    5. Companions, Jeremy Tidwell’s hack of Apocalypse World to tell stories of what happens after the Doctor dies, has an amazing subtext in its setting and is rolicking good fun.

    6. Bad Family (revised) is my game of animated family sit-com hijinks, and my playtests impressed me about how the rules can help you generate both black comedy and sweet studio-audience 'awww' moments.

    7. In a Wicked Archipelago has produced reliably fun play both times I've played in and is now one of my go-to games.

    8. Kingdom. I'm playing this for the first time this weekend.
  • Mine include:

    1. In a Wicked Age
    2. Dread (Paranoia variant)
    3. Marvel Heroic Roleplaying
    4. Monsterhearts
    5. Persona
    6. Lamentations of the Flame Princess
    7. Fables of Camelot

    I'm probably forgetting stuff, though. Notably, I'm not including the larps and freeforms because they're almost always one-off systems. However, they included some great stuff.
  • edited November 2012
    Hrm, that'd include Pax East, Dreamation, Origins, a JiffyCon, GenCon, DexCon, and Metatopia. That's a lot, so in no particular order:

    Our Last Best Hope, when it was in final beta. A very fun one-shot!
    Project Ninja Panda Taco, also in late beta. Silly and fun, a great game for kids, I think.
    Will Hindmarch's fantasy stealth game (I can't remember the name) in Playtest. Loved it, and really looking forward to seeing it developed!
    Poisn'd. Harsh, and not necessarily my cup of tea, I think.
    Cthulhu Dark. The session I was in got cut in half unexpectedly so it didn't really get a chance to work, but I liked what I saw and want to try it again.
    School Daze. It was an online session and frustratingly short. I want to play a full-length game sometime.
    Death School. Ran it for an enthusiastic table at GenCon GoD and it was a blast.
    Ghost/Echo. I loved the anime-flavored world that emerged from our play-through, but I am still fuzzy on how Harm and lingering goals and threats work.
    Rock of Tahamat the Space Tyrant. Weird and fascinating; it took a while for us to figure out how to create 'middling' results that still moved the story, but the endgame really built to an epic collapse.
    All Flesh Must be Eaten. Helped Playtest a convention scenario. It's a system optimized for one kind of play, but it does it pretty well! The game had a strong Resident Evil feel to it, so I enjoyed it.
    Serial Homicide Unit. It was a beta of a Hunger Games hack and really fun.
    Annalise, using Kat Jones' Dracula Reloaded; an amazingly great session.
    Psi*Run. It was a less-than-optimal table and situation. It really fell flat for me, I want to try it again with friends on the same page.

    Wait, did Marvel Heroic just release this year? Holy crap! So, yeah, that's the one I payed the MOST that just came out in 2012.

    I probably missed one or two, but if I can't remember they either didn't make an impression or i am misremembering exactly the first time I played. There were certainly several systems I had GMed but got to play as a player for the first time and vice versa, too. (Matt, was our Ridde of Steel game this year or last?)

    Intending/really wanting to try but never got to: Durance, Always/Never/Now, revised 1001 Nights, Atomic Robo, the Regiment, Mouse Guard.

    Wow, what a good year. Bring it, 2013!
  • Off the top of my head, I remember playing for the first time (in no particular order):

    Perfect Unrevised
    Dungeon World
    Apocalypse World
    The Shab Al-Hiri Roach
    Snapshot 1969
    Several games that I wrote.

    There's still time left, though, and at least one con and one playtest scheduled for the next month.
  • It's sad how little gaming I've been able to do this year. Skipping the Big Three cons and MACE moving to Charlotte pretty much put paid to my gaming hobby. BUT...

    Tenra Bansho Zero [run by and played with the English translators!]
    Dungeon World
    Marvel Heroic Roleplaying
  • I played a bunch of new games thanks to local friends, G+, PAX East and Burning Con.

    Burning Wheel - I'm still in love with Burning Wheel.
    Shadowrun - The game defeated me, and I should have known it would happen.
    13th Age - The playtest. My heart just isn't in tactical minis this year.
    Dungeon World - A gonzo con game that ran better than any AW one-offs I've played.
    InSpectres - Probably made a mistake in setting a very low limit on franchise dice. Interested in giving it another try, because I know my friend Lulu would turn this up to 11.
    Lady Blackbird - Played and GMed. Super impressive game, and it's delivered both times, but I can't get close enough to really love it.
    The Shab Al Hiri Roach - I badly want to play this again, the blackest black comedy.
    Ghost/Echo - Amazing con game, but I'm skeptical about being able to replicate it. That table was a perfect storm.
    Freemarket - Another great con game, and I'm blatantly stealing some of the GM's techniques in my BW game. Really want to play this one again.
    Agon - Also a con game. I wasn't feeling the scenario or the mechanics that much.

  • Shadowrun - The game defeated me, and I should have known it would happen.

  • edited November 2012
    The ones I remember, leaving out stuff I wrote and stuff I've forgotten.

    World of Dungeons. My new go-to game for quick fantasy awesomness.
    Dog Eat Dog. Shockingly smart and biting. Go play it!
    Serpent's Tooth. The demo was okay, but I don't think it really showcased the game super-well.
    Swords Without Master. Mixed feelings, wish there was more teeth to this one. Color is awesome.
    Princess Knights. We had a great time, but didn't get much help from the game.
    44. Super awesome except the mechanics seemed to create non-ideal spirals.
    Interrogation game. I think Jason wrote this? Not sure what it was called. Okay mini-larp.
    My Daughter, Queen of France. Amazing, one of the standouts of the year.
    The Trouble with Rose. A surprising solid throwback to mid-period Forge design. Nice.
    Bhiodalam. (sp?) Mixed feelings. Very fiddley for a generic diceless game.
    Shelter in Place. Mixed feelings. Wish it was more streamlined and simple. A bit confusing.
    Pocket Danger Patrol. Distilled awesomeness in a can. Delivers the experience it promises.
    Slammin'. Cool, but apparently I don't know enough about being a REAL hipster to fake it.
    Murderous Ghosts. Terrific, though I wish it rewarded replays a bit more. Where's the next one?
    D&D Next Alpha. It was pretty abysmal and disheartening when I played it. Better now?
    Paul Riddle's Vampire AW hack. Coming together pretty well. Maybe I played it last fall? Not sure.
    Marvel Heroic. I wanted to love this game but I think I just like it. Wish it was simpler and that player choices mattered more.

    Probably a bunch more.
  • Oh yeah, World of Dungeons.

    It was super fun. Harper let my two-handed weapon count as also being a shield (I paid the starting cost of both), meaning that I got to wield a giant wooden door as my weapon/shield.

    It was the last thing left standing when the raiders burnt down my father's castle. So I pulled it up, and have been carrying it as my burden/shield/two-handed great weapon ever since.
  • Oh?
    It was a rules and personal preference thing. I've spent a long time dreaming about what a Shadowrun game would be like, and then much of my read-through of the book being disappointed by the tools it provides for GMing the game.
  • edited November 2012
    Dead of Night
    Lady Blackbird
    Mountain Witch
    Monsters & Other Childish Things
    FU RPG
    Marvel Heroic
    Cthulhu Dark
    Animal Crime
    The Tribunal (LARP)
    13th Age (playtest)
    Sideload (playtest)
    Stalker-via-Serenity (homebrew)
  • edited November 2012
    I got shamefully little gaming done this year:
    Star Wars Lady Blackbird mash up - I feel more in tune with the system for playtesting hacks.
    The Quiet Year - I really like this game, it gets at the shared world building I love.
    Ghost/Echo - Afun game I'd like to explore in a bunch of little doses.

  • Ghost/Echo - Amazing con game, but I'm skeptical about being able to replicate it. That table was a perfect storm.
    Heh, part of ME is reluctant to run it again for that very reason.
  • Oh?
    It was a rules and personal preference thing. I've spent a long time dreaming about what a Shadowrun game would be like, and then much of my read-through of the book being disappointed by the tools it provides for GMing the game.
    Makes sense! Thanks!

    1. tech noir - players loved it, and I had a blast. One of the few games my players requested to play more of.
    2. apocalypse world - played beautifully, love the fronts and the moves.
    3. archipelago - not enough of a game for me, but it got the wife playing and it's fun.
    4. don't rest your head - it became our standard go to game. Always a blast, my players loved the meta game.
    Also played FATE, solar system, and risus, but not for the first time this year. We just made characters for a Sorcerer game, and I hope to get in a session of hill folk before the year ends.
  • edited November 2012

    It was the last thing left standing when the raiders burnt down my father's castle. So I pulled it up, and have been carrying it as my burden/shield/two-handed great weapon ever since.
    It's true. Last time I saw Joe he had it.

    Me, leaving out my stuff:

    1. Monsterhearts: Meh until I played it, then Hot For It. Playing a multiple-session game of this is on the upper-middle-class of my list.

    2. Sorcerer: Yeah, baby. The game was really great, but playing it on Hangouts hampered it a bit, for me. Running a Sorcerer & Sword game soon, and I have never been more excited to run anything.

    3. Maid: Ran this for six people. Not an ideal setup, but it worked, and was all the hilarity you'd expect from a Maid game. Brought in a rando who came with like 15 pre-made characters and utterly did not know how to play a game with other human beings, but that's not the game's fault. Would love to play 3-4 sessions with 3-4 Maids.

    4. Lamentations of the Flame Princess: Played in a one-shot with 8 people, which is kind of my nightmare when it comes to games, unless there's lots of care taken in the design with that particularly high number. I got nearly killed in the first encounter and was out of the game for most of it. I want to play it again, with the right group that is focused laser-like on the particular kind of challenge-laden play it supports. Basically this is me wanting to taste what old-school D&D is like, but with better color and a better character sheet.

    5. Montsegur 1244: We didn't finish, but real good all the same. Need to play this again in a langorous setting, where we know it will take five hours.

    6. 44: pretty much the same thing Jonathan said (we played in the same game). Cool, creepy fiction until the mechanics kind of broke on us.

    7. Hot Guys Making Out: Played this twice, with two very different outcomes. Once it was all hot burning romance set against the sketchy backdrop of the Spanish Civil War, and once the war broke into our game, with an in-check romance taking place in the basement with all characters present, while soldiers looted the manse above us. Great stuff.

    8. Polaris: I've wanted to play this forever, and hadn't even read my book until a week before play! What to say except: it delivered, and then some. Extremely evocative, extremely colorful.

    9. Serpent's Tooth: Liked it a great deal, and now that I have the box I think this will be a go-to with many great sessions ahead. When I played it it was in playtest.

    10. The Wilding Tales: Joel Shempert's pick up and play(test) game of round-robin storytelling in a post-apocalypse. Quick and grabby. I hope he finishes it.

    11. Fedora Noir: Morgan Stinson's playtest noir-mystery game. It really feels like you're solving a mystery! There's a detective, a hat (who speaks the detective's thoughts and can solve the mystery), a partner, and a femme fatale (in the version I played). Lots of fun props, like cigarettes, shot glasses, a fedora, a toy gun. You can pull the gun out to have two guys enter the room with guns! Doesn't the name have the best assonance ever? Morgan is a really sweet guy with some very thoughtful concerns about the genre tropes he is playing with, and I hope he can make it work for himself and for us, because you'll like this game.

    10: Letting Go: A playtest of a game by Orion Canning and Robert Bruce about letting go of a dead loved one. Some really amazing stuff in there. You start the game by making relationships between characters based on a wedding they were all at, fleshing out the characters from there. Once you're all bought-in to the characters and their deal, and they feel like real people, everyone draws a card. High card: You're dead! Who was closest to the person who died? You're the Bereaved. You're the main character and we play out the Stages of Grief, which also come with magical realism powers. Fuck. Some of the best play I've had all year. I am really loving some of the different styles of play that Oly folks are introducing me to, such as really fucking long scenes.

    Maybe more? I've played a ton of games this year that I've played before, but only once or so. This year I got to dig deeper with a lot of stuff.
  • Three campaigns of Monsterhearts.
    Six games I ran at Fastaval.

    Hmmmm, seems that was it...
  • edited November 2012
    Monsterhearts - wonderful game, very well suited to my go-to character: overwrought and sex-obsessed
    Monster of the Week - another great game; I would like to play a long-form game of this one day
    The Play's the Thing - just a short con game. Looking forward to playing it "for reals".
    My Life with Master - in the middle of it now. So fucked-up. I'm channeling my co-dependent 20-something self. Why won't he love me???
    Shadow of Yesterday - had a lot of fun playing, would like to run it one day.
    Murderous Ghosts - such a nifty little game, so atmospheric
    The Drifter's Escape - I don't think I had a really good handle on this one; might come back to it, but it's not urgent
    Vesna Thaw - fun little game; I need to play it again
    Be Ashamed, Young Prince - didn't enjoy this as much as Thesna; need to try it again
    Swords Without Masters - great fun; looking forward to seeing the full game
    Mist-Robed Gate - I enjoyed it, but the whole blood opera thing is not my favorite thing; not sure I'd come back to it
    The Final Girl - I will be playing this year in, year out forever
    Annalise - very heady, intense game; I need to play again
    How We Came to Live Here - just getting off the ground, but so far, so good
    The Mountain Witch - same sort of reaction as Mist-Robed Gate: good game, but not necessarily my thing thematically and setting-wise.

    I may be missing one or two. Goodness, that's a lot of gaming, especially since there were a coiuple sessions of Dungeon World and two AW cmapaigns pn top of that.

    Dog Eat Dog - really enjoye dit, but want to pay it straighter/tighter. More discomfort, less twirling moustache imperialists and suicide bombers.
    Freemarket - neat setting, dubious chargen, horrible mechanics
    Remember Tomorrow - played a low-energy, short game tyat made me want to come back and do a lot more, which surprised me since I don't like cyberpunk
  • Monsterhearts - great game, can't get enough. Would love to do a campaign instead of just oneshots.
    Monster of the Week - fun but lacking the relationship drama that I love in other AW style games.
    The Play's the Thing - wasn't really into this.
    Durance - really enjoyed it but took some getting use to.
    Silver and White - this game was great. However, I have a problem being read to which affected this game and Plays the Thing.
    Hellgirls and Hockeysticks - Had trouble understanding the concept and tone but once I got it this was fun.
    School Daze - only got to do a 2 hour preview but it was great.
    Marvel - love this game.
    Atomic Robo (playtest) - it has been interesting watching this game improve with each phase
    Ashen Stars - second time playing Gumshoe and no matter how it is spinned I just can't get into it.
    Skullduggary - interesting mechanic but a little slow. Don't feel a need to engage it again.
    D&D5 - shaping up to be a lot of fun.
    Iron Kingdoms - so far I have enjoyed this game though most of the mechanics a for combat and we had 1 fight out of 3 sessions.
  • This is a great thread!

    That I can remember this year:

    Swords Without Master (technically I played it a couple of Gen Cons ago, but its changed enough that I'm comfortable saying it was a first, and def a first running it) - I wanted to like it, had a hard time warming up to it, and then suddenly got it. Absolutely cutting-edge brilliant in a pure design sense, and great fun besides.

    The Final Girl - great low-key game to play with strangers and/or die-hard horror people. I'm a big fan!

    Vesna Thaw - worked better than I thought it would! I'm biased, but I managed to charm myself with it, which is nice (also, don't worry Joe, I feel the same way vis. Be Ashamed Young Prince)

    Drifters Escape - had a little trouble getting into the mindset for it, but enjoyed it enough to want to play again. I just bought a copy at Metatopia!

    Playtesting an unnamed epic fantasy game that Tim Kleinart is working on, and I'm super pumped for it, tho it clearly needs a lot of development.

    Playtesting my own stuff, doesn't count.

    Playtested a wacky time-travel-hi jinks game by the Jankcast folks. Had a good time, and hopefully gave some productive feedback, but its aiming for a play experience that isn't really my thing.

    Dungeon World - large convention game (7 players, I think). My Paladin got to be totally badass, but its not really my thing (along with the whole world of D&D clones/homages/remixes/etc)

    Hero's Banner - finally! Great game, sadly cut short by the one-session format. It's a little more hard edged that most contemporary designs, but I really enjoy the stark clarity of the hard-choices paradigm that it inhabits. Want to play a long term / generational game.

    Hero Wars - guys, this game has so much good stuff that's kind of worked its way into modern game design DNA. I'm in a long-term game of it now, and I'm learning a lot (though I'm not sold on the usefulness of some of the subsystems). Also, I love how all the characters are total badasses in their own ways.

    Fiasco - I get why it's a great game, but its not for me. Played twice, and don't see myself playing again outside of exceptional circumstances.

    Dirty Secrets - just played this over the weekend at Metatopia and daaaaamn. The central resolution mechanic was confusing for me (and needlessly fiddly overall, I think), but the structural and procedural elements are ahead of their time and extremely productive and fun. The group I played with was great, and it was just a standout session despite my issues with the dice.

    How We Came To Live Here - just started. So excited. Been wanting to play this forever.

    And there's still time for more!
  • ndpndp
    edited November 2012
    Whoops double post
  • edited November 2012
    Hero Wars - guys, this game has so much good stuff that's kind of worked its way into modern game design DNA. I'm in a long-term game of it now, and I'm learning a lot (though I'm not sold on the usefulness of some of the subsystems). Also, I love how all the characters are total badasses in their own ways.
    Robin Laws is a total boss, yes. HW was also my intro to Glorantha, which is probably my favorite fantasy setting (that I've yet to run more than a one-shot in).

    My list:

    13th Age: Played one session during the playtest and was faintly disappointed (I was hoping Heinsoo and Tweet would let their pre-D20 freak flags fly a little more), but this is probably the version of D&D I would play if I was in the market for that.

    Ars Magica: Been wanting to play this for a long time. Some things surprised me during play (starting magi aren't nearly as omnicompetent as their descendents in Mage: the Ascension led me to believe), but usually in a good way. Sadly, it is a fairly demanding game as far as interfacing with the rules goes and right now I'm just not comfortable with that level of homework. I definitely want to play again sometime when/if I am in the mood for that level of character maintenance.

    Black Seven: Metal Gear Solid the RPG is a pretty great idea. Not quite as limited a genre as you may think (this game actually models Raiders of the Lost Ark almost exactly on a scene-by-scene basis), but still something I'd run the occasional one-shot of as opposed to a steady diet.

    Changeling the Lost: This started last fall and ended in January so I'm going to count it. I like the high concept a lot more than CtDreaming, but the book's flat-out awful editing and mechanical proofreading (seeing "" listed as editor was a giant WTF), along with crazily over- and under-powered powers were major contributing factors to probably the most disappointing campaign I've played in the last five years-- all the moreso because we were all really looking forward to it. We managed to salvage it in the end with the help of Microscope.

    Love in the Time of Seid: Archipelago games are pretty cool, and this one's no exception. I feel like I should have more to say about it than "enjoyed, would play again" but somehow I don't.

    Monsterhearts: I've been sating my World of Darkness nostalgia with this instead of V20, and I think it's probably for the best. Apocalypse games are really good for just getting so much stuff done during a session.

    Psi-Run: I had some good gonzo fun, would play again but not a priority.

    Risk Legacy: Token board game. I'm not a big board gamer, and this is a pretty big commitment (we had to basically assemble a group and schedule this like an RPG campaign), but I'm quite enjoying the long-term stuff and seeing how opening new packets changes the table dynamic and optimal strategies.

    Tenra Bansho Zero: It's the kitchen-sink gamer's holy grail: an internally consistent version of Rifts with rules that work! Crazy gonzo action with a Japanophile sheen and story-gamey "character arc" mechanics and fan mail (fifteen years ahead of their time, even) is apparently exactly what I want out of gaming right now. It's not quite "Asura's Wrath: the RPG" but it's pretty close.
  • Oh yeah ... I played The Sprawl, too (Hamish Cameron's Apocalypse World hack for the cyberpunk genre). It was great at creating a team-on-a-mission vibe, and I'm looking forward to seeing rules for hacking and mission creations and running it. It also feels like it's missing another level dealing with why these characters go on these missions: the closest comparison I can draw is that The Sprawl feels a little bit like playing Poison'd without the scenes on-shore.
  • I am a newb but here's my modest list:

    1. Technoir. I loved it. My intro to story games. The transmission concept is great.
    2. Dead of Night. I struggled with the Tension mechanic but otherwise it did exactly what it said on the tin.
    3. Ghost/Echo. A revelation. How can an entire, cohesive world spring from 2 pieces of paper?
    4. Fiasco. Like plunging naked into the ocean. Terrifying and liberating. Great once you learn how to swim.
    5. On Mighty Thews. Fun for one-shots. My players got over excited and created an epic lord of rings plot we could never hope to complete.
    6. The Quiet Year. 'Tokens of Contempt' such a great mechanic. My wife says we should use them round the house.
    7. Lady Blackbird. Another microcosmic masterpiece. The joy of watching my trad friends eyes light up as they realised they could take the story anywhere.
    8. Dungeon World. I am 12 again and dungeons are once again dark terrifying places. I can't stop thinking about it. It demands a campaign.
  • edited November 2012
    'Tokens of Contempt': such a great mechanic. My wife says we should use them round the house.
  • Fiasco - The one that's been sitting on my shelf the longest finally hit the table. So good, we convinced the owners of the local shop to make it a regular monthly event. Even my sweetheart digs this one.
    3:16 - Didn't like the pitch, but loved the game. Big, dumb fun. Curious about how it plays out as a campaign.
    Project: Dark - Playtested a weird, wonderful game, "The Italian Job" set in a magical Renaissance. Want to see the final version.
    Kagematsu - The best game session I played this year, hands down. The final 15 minutes of gameplay were straight out of a Kurosawa film.
    Durance - November 23rd can get here soon enough.
    Apocalpyse World - I want to try this one again, and possibly see it in a campaign-ish setting. I couldn't get a good read on the game in one session.
    Microscope - Great for what it is. I'm not certain I'd call it a game, but fun.
    The One Ring - The closest thing to an old-school RPG I played this year. A good system built for longer-term play and a troupe mentality.
  • I am a newb but here's my modest list:

    4. Fiasco. Like plunging naked into the ocean. Terrifying and liberating. Great once you learn how to swim.
    Wow, great reviews @dopplegangdave ! You should consider submitting at least this Fiasco one to We Are Lost in Play
  • edited November 2012
    Did the creation and playtest of what became Anarktica: Fate of Heroes

    February, March & April
    I was getting married. Thought of idea for new My Life with Master scenario "Groom-ing the Bridezilla"

    Microscope - the game I had of it was solid though unexceptional. The game mechanics though were a revelation. I got into story gaming in order to find out about collaborative storytelling methods that would give me a new angle on devising theatre. I tried it with a mix of systems before and it didn't work out when I put it in front of actors. Microscope, I realised, is the game I came to story gaming for. I haven't done a complete production with the new approach yet, but the pilot workshop was promising. With the addition of elements from Forsooth!, Durance and some basic story gaming concepts, I have every hope that we'll be able to put together better play settings quicker.

    Monsterhearts - my first one-shot was totally awesome. My others couldn't come up to the same level. I don't tend to replay games that much, but MH is definitely one that keeps drawing me back in.

    Cthulhu Dark Bank Heist hack - solid and completely memorable for the following: the GM left us for 30 mins to devise a plan on how to rob the bank. When he came back, the first thing we told him was "Okay, we're going to make a bomb and pretend to blow up a shopping mall across town."

    Fiasco (Elizabethan spy playset) - this was my first actual game of this story game standard-bearer. It lived up to it's name.

    Narrative Pursuits (playtest) - this surprised me by how well it worked. I think a key moment was when the group decided to play with a serious tone and we ended up as Jews in fear of our lives in Nazi-occupied Poland.

    Dread Jenga - I'm not sure if it was the tower or the players or the GM or the combination, but powerful, powerful stuff. And, as every new Dread Jenga player, I came away from it wondering how I could incorporate Buckaroo, Operation, Hungry, Hungry Hippos and other childhood games as a resolution mechanic.

    I ran a few games at the Cow, the only first one was the one I called the Scream (which I'll probably call the Silent Game from now on). Super players who didn't blink at what was demanded of them and got straight into the spirit of it and a surprisingly fulfilling off-the-cuff adventure.

    Witch - With all the bigging up in the UK, I was wary about this one and even warier as the author talked us through the set-up, but I was happily surprised with it. A nice, simple game where you get out of it as much as you put in.

    Forsooth! - We ended up creating a play called Love Lies Bleeding. This game ends up with madder, more convoluted stories than Fiasco and a 6 man game of Monsterhearts combined! I'm really glad it exists, it's a big help. I want to play it some more, but I want to put a bit more structure in it to contain the madness. I also want to do a Commedia version.

    Kingdom (playtest) - Note my gushing about Microscope above. I really wanted to see what this game had. Maybe it was our setting choice, but it felt like a lot of effort to get going. Microscope doesn't give you a lot of help, but then the whole game is really creating the setting. For Kingdom, I needed more help. There's a good mechanic in there, but I'm not sure if there was enough around it. Probably need a saner game of it to give a proper opinion.

    Who knows? I'm hoping I might get a chance with Hillfolk though.
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