Dungeons & Dragon Age – Part 2

Alrighty, so I’m back with the second part on my conversion of the Dragon Age RPG from Green Ronin over to 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons. Some of the things that I discuss here refer to points I made in my previous article so if you haven’t read that I suggest checking it out firstA bit of a warning: this post really gets into the nuts and bolts of 5th Edition D&D monster creation. If you’re a new DM I’d recommend following along with the monster creation rules on page 274 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide.


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RPG: Preparing a Campaign

So last time I chatted about RPGs I spoke about how to prepare a session. This time I’m going to go even bigger and talk about preparing for a new campaign. Like my last post I’ll be framing this in the context of Dungeons & Dragons, but these tips go for pretty much all RPG campaigns.

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First Impressions: Hostage Negotiator

After my previous adventure in print and play solo games, I found the experience to be more rewarding that I expected. It showed me that games designed for solo play can be engaging and worth playing, even if it is me, in a room, on my own, cursing the dice rolls. So, I decided to explore a bit further. How? I bought a game that was exclusively a single player game, a game that is currently in it’s 3rd printing, with 4 expansions available and more on the way. If that doesn’t sound like a successful game, I’m not sure what does. A game with a theme I’ve not seen attempted anywhere else. That game is Hostage Negotiator. Continue reading

Playing with Oneself

I don’t play board games for the games themselves, I play them because they bring me together with people I want to spend time with, they facilitate friendships, catch ups and create good stories. For these reasons, I’ve never played a solo board game. It’s a whole genre of the hobby I have no knowledge about. There’s another whole area of the hobby which I know very little about: print and play games. There are games that haven’t been published in big shiny boxes, but are available online for download, that you print yourself. You can print the game on cardboard or paper, colour or black and white, and have a perfectly playable game at the end of it all.

I decided I would explore these two worlds at the same time. I’d look into some print and play, solo games, give a few a try, and report back on what happened. Just like a real journalist. Continue reading

RPG: Preparing a Session

As previously mentioned here on the blog and in the most recent podcast, we’ll be bringing you more content centred on tabletop role playing games here on The Crafty Players. To that end, this week I’ve got some Games Master (GM)/Dungeon Master (DM) tips on helping you prep for an upcoming session. I’ll be framing this as preparing to run a game of 5th Edition Dungeons & Dragons, but a lot of this advice can be used for any system you’re planning on running.

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Roll for the Galaxy



The Crafty Players Roll for the Galaxy Box Art

Box Art Source: BGG

You are a childhood dream come true, a maniacal space dictator, directing your citizens to build the biggest, best space empire ever to grace a tabletop! You do this by seeing what available workers you have (by rolling amazing, colourful, custom dice), and how best to use them. I like to think of the dice as students, graduating from University. You have an idea of their direction, but they might surprise you by going off on a tangent. This means that you’d expect the red, military dice to help you acquire new planets, but it actually ends up producing goods somewhere! Managing this and making the best of what you roll is a key part of the game.


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Introductory Games – Part 2

Gooooood afternoon everyone! After a slightly longer than expected hiatus (beautifully filled by Paddy’s interview with game designer Robin David) I’m back with the second half of my post on introductory games for new players. So let’s take a look at what I’ve plucked from the Crafty shelves…

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Rex: Final Days of an Empire

This is the second in what may become a regular feature on the site. We write about a game we played, maybe the narrative of the meta-game after one session, or how the game tied together over several plays and the story that came out of it. We’ll also talk about what kind of beer we think would match the game, either overall, or on this particular day.



The Crafty Players Rex The End of an Empire

Source: FantasyFlightGames.com

Rex is a game of game of negotiation, betrayal, and warfare set in the same universe as the legendary Twilight Imperium. Unlike Twilight Imperium, this game is based on a single planet, Mecatol Rex, the capital of the Empire. The humans of the Federation of Sol have led an attack directly on the capital, and this game is the story of the struggle for Mecatol Rex. The game has six unique races with unique powers and abilities. Like most games from Fantasy Flight Games, it’s oozes theme with high quality components and impressive art. It’s a long one though: this epic game will take at least 3 hours to play. Continue reading

Introductory Games – Part 1

In our first podcast (give it a listen here) myself and Paddy talked about how and why to start a board game meet up. I’ve no doubt that our charm and disarming Irish accents swayed you to do just that, so with that in mind this week I’m going to give you a few options for what games you should play at your first board game meet up. I’ve taken the liberty of assuming your game night is primarily to introduce new people to this wonderful hobby, and as such none of these games are overly complicated.

First up…

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The Crafty Podcast – Episode 01


In our first ever podcast we introduce ourselves to the world and begin sharing our love of board games and craft beer!

We chat about Rex, Bora Bora, and Steampunk Rally, and then we discuss new beers we tried including 200 Fathoms by Galway Bay and Children of the Revolution by Wicklow Wolf. Finally we talk about how and why to start your own monthly board game meet up.

Intro and outro music courtesy of Kevin McLeod of incompetech.com/wordpress/