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Artifacts and Artifice: Abhorrent Naginata

New RPG Product Reviews - 22 May 2017 - 10:06am
Publisher: Infinium Game Studios
Rating: 4
An Endzeitgeist.com review

This pdf clocks in at 19 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 14 pages of content. It should be noted that 5 of these pages are used to highlight the mission statements of Infinium Game Studios and the peculiarities of the massive adventure books and supplements the studio creates.


This pdf was moved up in my review-queue at the request of my patreons as a prioritized review.


All right, so the first thing you'll note would be that the weapon itself, the abhorrent naginata, is depicted in a quadded version - that is, the weapon comes in basically 4 different iterations - ranging from +1 to +4. The lavishly-illustrated weapon (amazing full-color artwork there) sports rings of color, and each is tied to a specific race - RAW, the GM retains control of whether the PCs automatically get to know which band corresponds to which race - which is relevant due to the dynamic bane special weapon quality the naginata offers. As a formal complaint: This special weapon ability is bolded/not-bolded here, when special weapon qualities usually are italicized in PFRPG.


As a swift action, such weapons may change their bane type. The general special weapon quality is depicted in two iterations - as a +2 and as a +3 equivalent. From the abhorrent naginata, I could extrapolate that the lesser version is supposed to grant a +2 bonus to attack and +1d6 damage versus the target, whereas the greater version provides a bonus of +3 to atk and +2d6 damage - the lesser quality has been applied to the two less costly weapons, whereas the greater version has been applied to the two more pricey, high-level iterations of the weapon.


I'm saying "extrapolate" here, since dynamic bane as a generalized effect, in its explanation reads "dynamic bane weapons inflict an additional 2d6 points of damage if wielded [...] they also receive an additional enhancement bonus of +2." - for the greater version, however, that should be +3, which may generate some confusion there, as there is just one explanation in the box summing up the effect, even though the box lists the two variants. Cool: The pdf does note the weapon's notoriety and potential quirks of ownership, which makes me expect more in that regard from the final book. A nice bit would be the table that allows for the random determination of preset enemies.


Another issue I have with the item would be that, in particularly the naginata's higher iterations are underpriced - while the pdf notes that this is by design, it really, really annoys me. The naginata is priced at 36K in its third (+3 enhancement bonus), 54K in its 4th (+4 enhancement bonus) iteration - to this, we'd add the +3 equivalent of the very powerful greater dynamic bane, which would place the weapon at 72 K for the +6 equivalent 3rd version and 98K, respectively, for the fourth incarnation. I'm generally good with specific weapons being less costly than general ones, but in one case LITERALLY half the price of the crafted item...is brutal. Particularly considering how dynamic bane makes having a regular bane weapon generally a dumb and obsolete proposition. Personally, I'd have placed the lesser version with its flexible, untyped damage boost at +3. UNLESS, and that would be an easy way to limit this item and bring it in line with the pricing suggested, it actually had a cap of how many different modes it has - if e.g. the second iteration had 3, the 3rd 5, etc., I'd consider the pricing well-done depending on the modes it has...but since RAW, we have free and unlimited selection of types, I think it could use a higher price.


Really cool and developed would be the lore-aspect: In a quadded rumor table, a whole page is devoted to unearthing rumors and information about this weapon and its origins. This attention to detail and commitment to placing the weapon in a proper context extends to class-based hooks and general hooks that may be employed to integrate the item within the context of the game - a brief, fully-depicted quest, included a quadded rogue statblock of a wielder of the weapon has been included. Now this wielder is rather squishy at the higher levels, but considering the assassin-y angle and serious damage output the NPC can pull off, I can see the idea behind the NPC.


Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are generally good on a formal level and, for the most part, on a rules-level as well. They need to extrapolate the lesser/greater distinction is a nasty glitch, though. Layout adheres to Infinium Game Studios' two-column full-color standard with color-coded blocks, etc. The pdf comes with a backgroundless, second version that is more printer-friendly. The pdf comes fully bookmarked with nested bookmarks -kudos! The artwork of the weapon is really cool.

J. Evans Payne's abhorrent naginata is a cool and promising magic item: In particularly the commitment to detail, lore and instant usability with a pre-made mini-quest should make this a feasible addition to the game. That being said, we do have a couple of hiccups in the mechanics that detract a bit from this item - both pricing and formatting could be tighter as far as I'm concerned - while I applaud the hyperlinks of e.g. the bane quality, seeing it bolded just rubs me the wrong way, big time - there is a reason we have formatting conventions in PFRPG and this is particularly baffling since the pdf gets it right most of the time.


That being said, I am a total prick here - I am, after all, complaining about a WIP-teaser for a massive compendium of magic weapons - and the teaser is FREE, ladies and gentlemen. FREE is hard to beat and while I disagree vehemently regarding the pricing, there is still time to play with the balance-screws there. The contextualization within the world that the item presentation format showcased here most certainly has serious potential and the lore aspect's emphasis is similarly a significant strength that makes me interested to see the final book. In the end, taking the FREE-bonus into account, my final verdict for this FREE teaser will be 3.5 stars, rounded up - worth checking out and you have literally nothing to lose...and as a nice benefit, after this review, you'll be well-equipped to deal with the one aspect where the rules may have you stumble for a second.

Endzeitgeist out.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

New Halo and Dystopian Wars Releases Available To Order From Spartan Games

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 10:00am
The folks at Spartan Games have a whole bunch of new releases available to pre-order for a trio of their games. Both Halo Wars: Fleet Battles and Ground Command are getting some new ships (a couple of them huge, relatively), and there’s a new edition of Dystopian Wars you can pick up the rulebook for, […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Drupal Modules: The One Percent: Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Footermap (video tutorial)

Planet Drupal - 22 May 2017 - 9:54am
Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Footermap (video tutorial) NonProfit Mon, 05/22/2017 - 11:54 Episode 28

Here is where we bring awareness to Drupal modules running on less than 1% of reporting sites. Today we'll investigate Footermap, a module which renders the results expanded menus in a block.

Categories: Drupal

Valuebound: How to set the right expectations for project delivery?

Planet Drupal - 22 May 2017 - 9:46am

Setting a clear list of expectation to the client for a project delivery goes a long way to great client relationships. A mismatched and misunderstood project goal and target always leads to dissatisfaction among team members, account head, and all other stakeholders.

I manage a team of a few developers who build web applications in Drupal. While working on projects with my team, I have had the chance to practice a few of the points that I have mentioned in the article. It has not only kept us on track but also kept people happy and motivated.

What should you do? Be involved from the beginning

When you begin a project makes sure that you and your team members are involved in the project from the beginning. There are times when the team would expand…

Categories: Drupal

MD Systems blog: Using Commerce for a newspaper subscription shop

Planet Drupal - 22 May 2017 - 9:09am
Commerce 2.x has a lot of changes in comparison to Commerce 1x. In this blogpost, we write about how those changes affected us in our project and what we did to resolve certain problems that showed up as we used Commerce 2.x for a newspaper subscription shop.
Categories: Drupal

Appnovation Technologies: The Future of Drupal

Planet Drupal - 22 May 2017 - 9:04am
The Future of Drupal *Cross-posted from Millwood Online.  Over the past month there has been a lot of focus on Drupal, the community. More recently it seems people are back to thinking about the software. Dave Hall and David Hernandez both posted eye opening posts with thoughts and ideas of what needs doing and how we can more forward. A one line summary of those posts would be "...
Categories: Drupal

Ogre Football Team Available From Scibor

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 9:00am
From one sports-themed game to another (we seem to be doing two-fers today). This time, it’s from Baseball to Football. Scibor has a whole new Ogre football team available over in their webshop. You can pick them up individually or as a team set. From the release: Ogres and goblins , coach and rescue ambulance […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Permissions By Entity

New Drupal Modules - 22 May 2017 - 8:07am

Description will follow soon...

Categories: Drupal

Clutch Baseball Card Game Releasing This Month

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 8:00am
Many of you are not just gaming fans, but you’re also sports fans. I know the cliche is that us nerds don’t know anything about sports, but that’s really not the case. There are many sports games out there that have come and gone, some sadly so. Well, one’s getting a rebirth in a new […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Commerce Exit Bee

New Drupal Modules - 22 May 2017 - 7:51am
Description

This is a contribution to Drupal Commerce. This module adds the possibility to send the order data to the Exit Bee service.
This helps you determine the generated revenue from all your website users that have converted on your Exit Bee campaigns.

Features

Rules implementation which let you control when to send the tracking code to Exit Bee. This is useful if you redirect the user to a different page than the default checkout complete page.

Categories: Drupal

Fantasy Flight Games Announces Death Knights Expansion for Runewars

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 7:00am
From one fantasy game to another. Fantasy Flight Games continues to expand their Runewars line for the two armies currently available. In this case, the undead are getting a mounted knights unit, the Death Knights. From the preview: Called the Dread Horsemen by some and Doomriders by others, the Death Knights are ever at the […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

CMON Limited and Ankama Products End Distribution Deal

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 6:44am
Sometimes we post stories about companies teaming up. This is the opposite. CMON Limited and Ankama Products are no longer going to be working together for game distribution. From the announcement: CMON Limited and Ankama Products announced their USA distribution partnership has come to an end. The final product to be released under the current […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Rock & Rails UNET Networking Adaptation - by Ariel Marcelo Madril

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:19am
A short view on how we implemented our networking solution using the tools available from UNET while maintaining a rather transparent architecture for designers to work with network components.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

How big games use Appointment Mechanics to get gamers keep coming back - by Tejas Jasani

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:18am
The main objective of this post is to understand Appointment Mechanics and how it can be used effectively to make a game sticky.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

9 things I learned making N.O.V.A. 01 - by stefan zamfir

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:18am
I believe in order to gain the clarity and perspective necessary to evolve, each of us needs to reexamine his work every few years. This article is the first in this effort, and treats one of my first big success.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Why changing your company name might benefit your company - by James Fuller

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:18am
James Fuller(Lead Developer at Pink Scaled Dragon) goes over why they think changing you company name can benefit your company.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Wrangling Words And Taking On Bugs: A Podcast Detailing My Game Development Experience - by Michel Sabbagh

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:18am
A blog post that talks about a podcast session I partook in last month with Matthew Squaire. In it, I talked about my gaming career, game development experience, and the sundry lessons I learned through my writing and approach to narrative design.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Investing in UA made Cashman Casino #1 - Here’s how we did it - by Patrick Witham

Gamasutra.com Blogs - 22 May 2017 - 6:17am
There were 90 billion app downloads in 2016, so how do you ensure a good amount of those downloads are for you? By sweating the details on your UA strategy before launch. Product Madness director of UA talks about how they did it with Cashman Casino.
Categories: Game Theory & Design

Games Workshop Taking Pre-Orders For Age Of Sigmar: Skirmish

Tabletop Gaming News - 22 May 2017 - 6:00am
You know, as I’ve gone on in my gaming career, I’ve more-and-more found myself drawn to skirmish games. Not that I think there’s anything inherently bad or wrong with large-army games. They’re just not really for me, anymore. So when I see that Games Workshop has started taking orders for a new skirmish form of […]
Categories: Game Theory & Design

PayPal Donation Integration

New Drupal Modules - 22 May 2017 - 5:39am

Module allows you to easily integrate PayPal Donations in to Drupal website. Module creates a route which is accessible under /donate. This is a page where donations happen. It is a simple form which allows user to select the donating amount or input his own amount (both settings are configurable). Welcome text, thank you text and cancel text are customizable under the settings page of the module.

Categories: Drupal

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