Wednesday, March 27, 2013

White Dwarf Wednesday #58

White Dwarf #58 takes us to October 1984.  Right away we notice the Chris Achilleos cover.  I have always associated his work with White Dwarf and visa versa.  It's funny that some of his best work happened later than I remember.  This horde of evil is a theme he comes back too and I think he does well.  I seem to recall he has a few more coming up.

Ian Livingstone talks about how RuneQuest once again beat out AD&D for Best RPG at Games Day.  Under the new deal with Avon Hill RuneQuest will now cost £40 up from £30! Which is today's money is about $15 extra ($45 to $60), no idea what the value of that was in 1984 England, but I am sure it was a lot.

A couple of pages on traps.  After a DM with a couple of volumes of Grimtooth's traps I got used to checking for traps as I walked more or less. So today traps don't interest me much.

Open Box has some interesting games.  Lands of Adventure is first. I have never heard of it and Richard Clyne only gives it a 5/10.  Though up next is the classic Middle Earth Roleplaying from ICE.  They were such attractive books and I really lament not getting the game when it was new.  MERP gets 9/10 and Bree and the Barrow Downs (which I wanted FOREVER) gets a 7/10 from Jon Sutherland.  One day I need to spend some quality time with MERP.  The Q Manual for James Bond gets a 9/10.  Also an old favorite is the FASA Star Trek. Russel Clark loves it and gives it a 9/10.

Part 3 of the Ninja article is next. It deals with martial arts and the quasi-mystical ninja powers.  I have seen better treatments but I have seen worse too.

Graeme Davis is next with an article I remember well when I got a copy of this back in college. Beyond the Final Frontier deals with death in the games and how it might not be the last go.  The death myths of different cultures are presented it is a cool read.

Some significant typing is needed for the next article if you want to use the BASIC program to Grow Your Own Planets. This is the first time I have seen program designed specifically for the IBM PC using MS Basic (as opposed to Z80 Basic) in WD.

Some ads.  We come up next to a supers adventure for Golden Heroes and Champions.  Looks fun and simple enough.  I bet it would work fine for Icons, BASH! or M&M.
Not to be forgotten we have an AD&D mini adventure too with a couple of new monsters to boot.

Credit is detailed in Traveller.
"Colour" is the theme in Tabletop Heroes for mini painting.

RuneRites has a couple of really short scenarios. should work with about any game.
Treasure Chest details some old spells and gives them new twists.

Letters concerns itself with questions on what purpose does Tabletop Heroes serve.  Oh just you wait!
News details the new games coming up and licenses seem to rule the day; Indiana Jones, Star Trek, 2010, Conan, Star Fleet Battles and so on.

At this point White Dwarf is up to 56 pages and still 85p.  Most of the new space is used by ads though.
Serviceable issue, made better by the use of the fine cover art.


faoladh said...

Lands of Adventure was Lee Gold's attempt at a more generic fantasy game than her Land of the Rising Sun. Unfortunately, it is basically a collection of some good and some less good ideas presented in note form, with very little development and, apparently, no playtesting. It could possibly be very good for a Referee who is willing to do the necessary development - in this way, it is similar to White Box edition D&D.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

Yeah. I never heard of it but maybe I should look for it at the next RPG auction I am at.

Unknown said...

A friend of mine had MERP and we gave it a go once, but it's a horrible over-complicated system (based on Rolemaster), also doesn't really capture the feeling of Middle Earth because it adds in too many things to make it more like D&D. The supplements are worth a look, though, if you want more maps and so on for Middle Earth.

I really like the article on life after death, very indicative of the kind of ideas being floated around in White Dwarf at this time (like the psionics article last month). Something I want to try in a campaign one day.