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Today I rolled another three, still pretty high but I’m not at the top of my game today.

 

The Advanced Dungeons and Dragons Handbook

I bought a used copy of this book for the first time at a friendly local gaming store two days ago, I’ve been thinking about doing it for some time now but I kept questioning whether or not it was something I really needed. There’s something about owning a version of Dungeons and Dragons that was actually written about Gary Gygax while the original TSR was alive and well that I find very satisfying. Plus I love picking up used copies of books and giving them a good home.

So far I’ve only given the book a cursory glance, but once fact did jump out at me. Reading the entry on bards painted a very different picture compared to the one I’ve always had in my head when I pictured a bard. The entry begins by stating that since bards take on some of the characteristics of fighters and thieves, and add magical abilities to the mix they aren’t allowed by many dungeon masters. A character also has to take at least five levels of experience as a fighter before they can take on any other class attributes, then they gain thief levels, then druid abilities but at that point they are in fact bards under druid tutelage.

It’s a fascinating piece of history that I’m really proud to have in my collection.

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Zombies!

In all honesty I’ve never played Zombies!, in fact I’ve walked past it every time I’ve seen it on a shelf. However someone described it to me recently and the premise fascinated me. There are a ton of cooperative zombie themed games but in this incarnation the players race against one another to be the first to reach a helicopter that will carry them to safety. Sadly there’s only room for one passenger and everyone else will be devoured by zombies. It’s a horrible fate and it lends a desperation to the game that I think would make it much more compelling.

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Heroclix

My roommate in college introduced me to Heroclix, in fact he gave me a couple of his figures and taught me how to play. We spent many evenings playing against one another on our kitchen table before we both lost interest in it and moved onto other games. In Hercolix players compete against one another or a scenario using teams of characters assembled from their collection of figures. There’s a wide variety of figures including Marvel, DC, Pacific Rim, Lord of the Rings, and many many more.

If you’ve never played the game they’ve made a few changes to it recently that I think improve it a great deal. First off the bases have been redesigned into what I’m told is called an Oreo bases. How can you not love something named after an Oreo? They’re much easier to use as you’re required to turn the dial of your figure’s bases to track their damage and abilities. When I started playing this was made even more difficult thanks in part to the recessed bases that tended to get stuck a lot of the time.

All of the figures now include individual cards that explain their abilities, while customizing the text to suite each character. It adds a nice bit of fluff to the mechanics that I deeply appreciate.

The addition of team bases is a brilliant innovation that I think this game was sorely lacking until now. Team bases allow you to link all of your heroic figures on a single dynamic base pooling their powers and making them even more effective. Captain America, Thor, and Iron Man might be enough to tackle most threats but when their joined with the rest of the Avengers I wouldn’t want to find myself in their way.

Lastly the quality of the figures has greatly improved and the prices have dropped considerably from what I’ve seen.

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