*****Live from Origins 2001:***** Journeyman Stops Suckin’ The Collectibility Bong

Journeyman Press, publishers of last year’s Scooby Doo and Age of Empires CCGs, is showing three standalone games here at Origins, and at least two of them look funny and compelling. The first, Zombies!, looks like a cross between Space Hulk and Wiz-War, in which players compete to kill the most zombies in a Hollywood-action-movie-esque downtown, or just get to the helipad and get the hell out. And then, there is the fabled eBay card game. It’s real, it looks pretty simple and amusing, and it has art from the Nodwick guy. Another, more family-market-oriented game, titled Peasantry and apparently loosely based on Canasta, I didn’t get a look at. It’s great to see more companies moving back to self-contained games that are fast and fun for multiple players.

New Avalon Hill Titles Have Eerie Unpresence
I’ve spotted two boxes, both with little blue Hasbro stamps on the sides and big AH insignia on the covers. One said History of the World on it, and looks to be a straight redesign of the old AH standby. The other, Risk 2101 A.D., is in fact an update of good old Risk, that’s playable either as straight Risk or as a futuristic world with underwater cities, multiple unit types, and even resource management(!). At least, that’s how the WotC guy described it, and he said he wasn’t fully sure. Both games seem to have sold out from all dealers at the show before I got here…

Troll Lord Is Doggin’ You
Felsentheim, Dogs of War! Sure sounds exciting; can’t say I’ve gotten a close look yet. But they have it here at the show, and it’s a D20 adventure that apparently concludes a trilogy that began back before D20 even existed. The whole trilogy will be D20 soon, they told me. Also on deck from Troll Lord are more of their controversial modules on CD-ROM, but they’ll be in nice boxes now, which may mollify reluctant retailers. Finally, they have a thirty-dollar hardback sourcebook coming out in December called Codex Germania that’s all about… yes… the Norse (we told you about it a while back). If you haven’t got enough Viking roleplaying now, then by Valhalla-or-whatever, you will soon.

Quick D20 Bits

  • Mongoose Publishing has their Slayer’s Guides out at the Wizard’s Attic booth, for Hobgoblins and for Gnolls. Both are slim and affordable, and have considerable details about the cultures of these species, which your players can ignore as they move in for the senseless kill.
  • Vengeance Games has two of their Friday Night Six-Pack packs out now, for a grand total of 36 premade characters, if you count each of the three levels they come in. I have no idea if these are new. Also, they have some neat color map-mats called Paper Passages. Yay.
  • Green Ronin is showing the first of their Legions of Hell creature books, which has something in it called a Knocker. Nobody have a pair of these in an encounter, please; too obvious. Hell in Freeport should be out for Gen Con, with the Monster Slayer’s Handbook classbook thingy possibly as early as October, then the Secrets of Freeport sourcebook in November.

The Origins Awards ceremony is in a couple hours, I’ll try to make it in. Do you need a ticket? Damn I hate tickets.