First impressions count
My first impression upon seeing the front cover was utter amazement. I always thought Kobold magazine is a fanzine. It’s not. What immediately strikes you is the art; it’s a very pretty front cover by a Nicole Cardiff called the “Winter Druid”, according to the credits.
My initial intention was to skip through the magazine, speed read to get an overview. I kept stopping to read articles and letters. The Style is good and the content is excellent. I’m glad to see plenty of Pathfinder specific stuff too. I guess that’s not really a surprise considering it’s the current pet favourite. It’s also the only d20 rule set I own, I love it.
A couple of my favourite articles
The Elves: the fallen ones.
The idea seems to be to reinvent the core races over several issues. This particular issue was focused on the Elves. The Article provides three pages of fluff and crunch. They seemed heavily influenced by Dragonage, but that’s not a bad thing. It’s nice to see the races redone. You could use one of these articles to add unique flavour to your setting, instantly. No conversion required.
The Ecology of the Froghemoth.
This little piece introduces a cool new monster. A Froghemoth complete with fluff, life cycle, stats and really top quality art. What’s cool for me is the stats are provided for every stage of the life cycle. There’s even a rare variant included “the Electric Froghemoth”.
Lessons from the shadows: History’s greatest assassins.
This article is about ninjas, seriously. Need I say more? There is never enough ninja.
Spice up your Combat Encounters: the Combat Skill Challenge
The Chatty DM’s first ever published article. It’s full of good advice for a GM fed up with “You kick down the door and are faced with two Orcs, Roll initiative”. All in chatty’s familiar friendly, fatherly tone.
Feel the love? I’m going to subscribe to a print copy.
Kobold has some amazing art and great content. I would wholeheartedly recommend it. If you play another fantasy system which is not d20, you could mine it for ideas. However it is a d20 mag. It’s just nice to see a RPG exclusive magazine. The last one I seen was a friend’s old (1983) copy of white dwarf.
Oh how times change.
I’m getting ready to run my first pathfinder game with my two players. As I’ve been preparing for the game I realise how unfamiliar I am with the whole system. Pathfinder/D&D 3.5 is NOT “rules-lite”. As an inexperienced role-player a 500-odd page rule book like pathfinder is intimidating, especially considering I only have until Sunday to learn it and get an adventure ready.
Ok, time to admit defeat. It’s freaking impossible, the game will be piss-poor and I’ll embarrass myself.
Until I hit a realisation. You don’t need to build an entire world, with cultures, factions, intrigue, political tensions and allegiances. Not yet anyway. If I can get a vague familiarity with the combat mechanic and the skill check resolution system I can run a dungeon crawl. Reference obscure or unfamiliar rules as I go.
100% old school hack and slash
Ok that’s not going to be fun long term. For me anyway. I can add complexity as my knowledge and understanding of the rules gets better. The setting and world can just evolve through play. Don’t get me wrong I love the creative challenge a cohesive setting will present. I just can’t take it on right now.
Perhaps little baby steps, just to start off with.