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Today’s guest post marks the return of Douglas Cole to the Castalia House blog. Douglas wrote the series Violent Resolution which appeared here as well as his own blog Gaming Ballistic. His most recent project is Dragon Heresy, a Norse-inspired fantasy RPG now in its final hours on Kickstarter. The lessons discovered in this guest post on adapting the […]

For the better part of the year I’ve been playing in a Mutant: Year Zero game. And, now, since I recently started playing a new game of Gamma World (run by and covered by Jeffro Johnson here) I reckon it makes some sense to do a short bit of compare and contrast. Thematically both games […]

Jeffro has been covering the Call of Cthulhu game he’s been participating in and using it as an opportunity to discuss railroading and his various frustrations with the extent of player agency in the game as played. This has gotten me thinking about the topic since I have started running a Classic Traveller game but, […]

The cry has gone out across the land: “So, Daddy Warpig, is all you know how to do is aggravate other geeks over the fact that the Pulps were, hands down no questions asked or needed, The Golden Age of Fantasy & Science Fiction?” I wish to reassure my millions of screaming fans that that […]

“The Third Reich has fallen, but one of its chief scientists, a Dr. Karl von Mark, has been on the run. He was tracked down to somewhere in Africa where he left Earth on a rocket ship. A crack team (you guys) has been sent to pursue him in its own craft. The team followed […]

It’s like a moth to flame with me. First there was GURPS Martial Arts: Technical Grappling. That one  was my first full-length book for anyone: 35,000 words of fairly detailed subsystem that was my first attempt at taking grappling rules and put them on the same scale and mechanical basis as striking with fists or […]

When the question of “what are your hopes and dreams” came up for a school assignment, my son’s response was, “I want to a make a million dollars designing video games and then I want to retire and play the video games I designed.” I was not pleased. “Son,” I demanded. “You do know what […]

When I dashed off a few notes about the fantasy battle game my son and I were playing to death, I was really taken aback by the response: a good half dozen people reached for their wallets…! In order to help people get the most value from their brand new copy of Wizard Kings, I’m […]

The design notes for the classic TSR game Divine Right contain yet another data point regarding the literary inspirations of game designers during the late seventies: In the interim, we discovered the Chaosium game of White Bear, Red Moon. This game was something new in our experience – a game of heroic fantasy…. There was […]

The most critical element of role-playing game design is the reduction of friction. If it is not addressed sufficiently, the game will not be played. Now, this is not an issue quite so much for people that treat rpg’s as a new form of literature or for whom the primary design goal is to sell […]

Dark Conspiracy (published by the Games Designer’s Workshop, or GDW, in 1991, by Lester W. Smith) was a grim action/horror RPG set in a dystopian future where evils of all kinds plague the globe. This one came out when I was in college. The Gulf War had kicked off, if I recall correctly, and GDW had (or […]

This marks the end of the Violent Resolution blog series here on Castalia House. I’d like to thank Jeffro for recommending me, and Castalia House for giving me a shot at publishing this series on the different facets of combat mechanics in my chosen systems. What did I take away from it all?