Monthly Archives: November 2015

Roll Player on Kickstarter

Ladies and Gentlemen. Yesterday marked the launch of a game on Kickstarter called Roll Player. Designed and published by Keith Matejka of Thunderworks games this one is definitely one to check out!


Disclaimer: I don’t usually promote Kickstarter projects. When I do it’s because I have personally played the game and I enjoy it enough to endorse it. In nearly all cases I also endorse it because I know the designer or publisher. I never accept payment for my endorsements. 

Introducing Roll Player

To learn more instead of reading the rest of this article please follow any of these links:

And if you’re still reading, then let me offer up a brief preview/review of the game to give you a feel for what you can expect.

Let’s Get Rollin’!

In a game of Roll Player each player chooses a race (Elf, Halfling, Dwarf, and Human). Each player is also given a class card, backstory card, and alignment card. Each of these cards allows you to play differently than the other players.

The objective of the game is to turn your character into the greatest fantasy adventurer. To do that they will seek to improve their characters by drafting dice, purchasing weapons and armor, learning skills and gaining traits.

Players win the game by having the most reputation, which is achieved by creating the perfect character. This includes utilizing the right dice in the right locations, having the correct alignment on your alignment card, earning bonus points with your traits, skills, armor, and weapons, and generally being an awesome adventurer.

How to Play

At the start of each round a player will draw dice from the bag and roll them. This is the ROLL PHASE. After rolling the dice they will be put in order from lowest to highest on the initiative cards. Then that player will choose one of the dice and take the associated initiative card, which determines their player order during the market phase to come. That player will place the die into one of the character attributes on their player mat. This is the DICE PHASE. These attributes include strength, dexterity, constitution, intelligence, wisdom, and charisma. They can then perform the ability of the attribute they chose.

Each attribute has a different ability. Strength allows you to flip one of your dice to the opposite side. Dexterity allows you to swap any two dice. Constitution allows you to bump the value of a die up or down by 1. Intelligence allows you to re-roll any one die. Wisdom allows you to modify your alignment on your alignment card. Charisma allows you to use a Charisma token and get money.

Elf character player board.

Elf character player board.

Then in turn order players will purchase a card from the Market. These cards include skills, traits, weapons, and armor. This is the MARKET PHASE. Players will then apply their new card to their characters. Some cards serve as points to be counted at the end of the game. Some cards provide abilities for their character. But all serve to improve their overall character.

Once all players have equipped these new cards then you move on to the CLEANUP PHASE. This is where the initiative cards are returned, the dice bag passes to the next player, and new equipment cards are drawn.

What makes Roll Player special?

A lot of people are familiar with fantasy and with role playing. What this game brings is a great way of building a fantasy character within a Euro game style. The dice drafting and allocation onto your character combined with each of the characteristics to manipulate previously placed dice makes this a unique, low luck strategy game worth checking out.

Roll Player components on display at Gamehole Con in Madison.

Roll Player prototype components on display at Gamehole Con in Madison.

I really enjoyed the aspect of choosing the right dice to help me accomplish what I wanted for my character. There is a nice balance of trying to choose turn order for the Market Phase versus choosing the die you want/need.

Also, the artwork is bold and beautiful and really drew me in. I think the artist and graphic designer really did a great job and created a product that will look amazing on your gaming table.

Keith Matejka and Thunderworks Games really have a winner here. Go back it today!


GameHole Con 2015 in Madison

Ladies and gentlemen. It is time for the 3rd Gamehole Con! Taking place this weekend in Madison, WI, Gamehole Con is in it’s third year and has moved to a larger venue. It is located at the Exhibition Hall of the Alliant Energy Center. Here’s some info from their website that I’ve copied and pasted here:

Gamehole Con is the largest tabletop gaming convention in the upper Midwest.

Tabletop gamers from around the country gather each November in Madison, WI for this carnival of gaming. Gamehole Con is all about tabletop gaming and all the fun that goes with it. The convention features role-playing games, board games, fantasy and historical miniature gaming, and collectible card games. Gamehole Con is for the fantasy and adventure tabletop gaming enthusiast. Gamehole Con features the best guests in the industry, an unbelievable Dealer Hall and of course, lots and lots of gaming! If you are a tabletop gaming fan, do not miss Gamehole Con!

What is a Gamehole?

I’ll leave it to the Gamehole Con team to explain. Visit this link or read their explanation:

Now, you may find yourself asking, “What is a Gamehole?” or saying to yourself, “Ew. A Gamehole sounds yucky.” Well ladies and gentlemen; a Gamehole is simply a hole for gaming. It is a nod to the author that single-handedly created the genre of modern fantasy literature and thereby fantasy gaming – J.R.R. Tolkien.

As Tolkien so beautifully wrote at the very start of the transcendent Hobbit: “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit. Not a nasty, dirty, wet hole, filled with the ends of worms and an oozy smell, nor yet a dry, bare, sandy hole with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat: it was a hobbit-hole, and that means comfort.”

A Gamehole is a hole for gaming. Instead of Hobbits, it is filled with gamers, gaming, food, fellowship and fun. More specifically, the Gamehole is a longstanding group of Madison area gamers. We have been getting together for years playing our favorite games. We love virtually all tabletop games.

Why I’m Attending

I will be attending as a Game Master (GM). This year I have the great privilege to be running demos of my game, Scoville. I have seven demo sessions between Friday and Saturday. I’m really looking forward to meeting some great gamers and introducing them to Scoville.

If you are attending, come find my table and introduce yourself! It would be great to meet a bunch of you.

What does Gamehole Con Offer?

Gamehole Con offers an exhibitor hall with booths of game companies selling their games, fantasy RPG companies selling their wares, and more geeky goodness. The con also has a large gaming area with many GMs running games. Games are available the entire weekend! You can see what’s available on this listing.

The Con also has another embedded con called Crafter Con. This is hosted by The Game Crafter,  print-on-demand service for gamers and game designers. They are a local business who have a great product. If you are a game designer, stop by the Crafter Con stuff and enjoy a good time.

There is also a great lineup of guests and artists being featured at Gamehole Con.

Overall it will be a great weekend of gaming and I recommend you stop by and check it out!

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