Double-decker Bologna Sandwich!

This entry is part 26 of 42 in San Check

Robin Hood PC Game SS1

When it comes to PC games, my favorite stealth games are the Thief series, followed by Robin Hood and Desperados. The first focuses on an individual, Garrett, and the second two involve managing a group of individuals, Robin Hood and his Merry Men and John Cooper and his pals respectively.

Robin Hood PC Game SS2

All three focus on resource management, limited abilities, observational skills, learning the game’s AI that can alter on the fly (i.e. patrol routes changing, noticing something is stolen, finding someone tied up, hearing a noise, catching the glimpse of a shadow, etc). This gameplay ultimately encourages your creativity to solve the problems presented.

Desperados PC Game SS1

There is more than one solution to the problems presented and failure is typically imminent if your tactic is “Just kill the goblins!” For instance, while Desperados does have its shootouts, in Hang’m High! going in guns blazing trying to save Doc will end in failure.

Cigarette Break

When Tess finished editing the Temple of Nilbog, she pointed out that not only did I rob them of discovery, I also took away their game tactic fun. This followed a conversation of how I disagreed with the often false comparison that using miniatures somehow equates to using tactics.

Barrowmaze 2 Cover Stefan Poag

Greg’s Barrowmaze podcast addressed several good points about miniature use, covered some good advice to prevent them from slowing down play and some other good bits.  For those interested in listening to it on the go, I converted the podcast to an mp3.

Miniature Use Points
  • I love miniatures.
  • I own a plethora of Warhammer Miniatures.
  • We use them for establishing party order.
  • Our miniature games are separate affairs; not part of our RPGs.

When we played 4E Encounters it was jarring to see the girls suddenly treat Dungeons & Dragons like a board game. And, seeing WotC’s method of introducing Dungeons & Dragons to new people upset me.

It was not just the miniatures. Things like “healing surges” and “power cards” and “perception checks” just did not make any sense. I understand how the mechanics work, but there is a disconnect with the imagined game world. Every time someone used a healing surge, all that came to mind was the strained face of that character taking a crap. Suddenly that character is relieved?

Creative Solutions

The Delvers have planned out assaults, circumvented obstacles and creatively use their surroundings with great success, and all without the use of miniatures or a game board to “help” them “do tactics.”

Their “perception check” is their own brains. This is the implied method of play by the original creators. One of The Delvers is diagnosed with ADD. She does not require a dice roll to make a lazy man’s perception check.

This is not gospel, but it comes more naturally than trying to explain what a healing surge is and what that actually means.

Gary made me laugh when he all capped in Tomb of Horrors, “THIS IS A THINKING PERSON’S MODULE, AND IF YOUR GROUP IS A HACK AND SLAY GATHERING, THEY WILL BE UNHAPPY!” Even when it is spelled out the message is misunderstood.

The Delvers are not always successful and sometimes the only option is to kill the goblins, but pulling out the double-decker bologna sandwich is much more rewarding for any enthusiastic player and DM.

Delve - San Check - TOC
[«««] PreviousNext [»»»]

  1. You know, for kids!
  2. Digger, Please!
  3. Semantic Railroads
  4. Mapping Progress
  5. Honeymoon Adventure
  6. No One Games in a Vacuum
  7. House Rules, You’re Doing It Wrong!
  8. WotC’s Poisoned Apple
  9. Oh Shit Run – An Outside Perspective
  10. Greyhawk Campaigns
  11. Nostalgia Vomit
  12. Dicing with Dinosaurs
  13. The Eye of the Dragon
  14. What Did You Do Over the Summer?
  15. It’s Like Cops and Robbers, but with Dice!
  16. Emergent Death or Why Losing Is Fun!
  17. How to Train Your Delvers (More WotC Snark)
  18. WotC’s Babel Fish
  19. More Nostalgia Vomit
  20. Fantasy Fighting
  21. Fighting Fantasy
  22. The Delvers 1985
  23. From Weird WotC to the creator of Giant Space Hamsters
  24. The Daedalus Complex
  25. There Is No Cow Level
  26. Double-decker Bologna Sandwich!
  27. It is Not a Secret Door if You Tell Me
  28. All Apologies
  29. Be the First to Solve the Mystery and Claim the Dungeon Treasure!
  30. Dungeon Treasure & Hidden Treasure
  31. You Unlock this Door with the Key of Imagination
  32. The Answer to the Mystery at The Delvers
  33. The First Keeper
  34. Sandbox Apophenia
  35. Nearly Enough Dice – Interview
  36. The State of The Delvers
  37. Vicariously Join Two Girls and Their Mom Around the Gaming Table
  38. Cassette Cover Art
  39. Bastion of the Boglings
  40. WotC Piss and the Last Boy Scout
  41. Campaign Timeline
  42. B4: The Lost City

The Delvers Podcast B-side