25 page sample of the CKG

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25 page sample of the CKG

Post by timburns »

You can get an expanded 25 page sample of the Castle Keepers Guide here: CKG

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Demiurge »

It looks fantastic!
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Relaxo »

yeah that large sample is a big treat!
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by LordSeurek »

Enjoyed the sample Tim. Looks good! I should point out that it seems odd that one would review a book based on a 25 sample as this guy on therpgsite decided to do. Think he is a fan of c&c? No matter. Here is his thoughts on the ToC for the CKG:

L.S.

jgants wrote:

For those who don't want to hunt the ToC down, I will summarize it along with my thoughts.

For those who don't want to read the whole thing, I'll summarize my summary as "Looks like the 2e DMG full of useless advice and nothing remotely like what the book was originally discussed as, but then the ToC is such a disaster it could be that cool stuff is just hidden".

The long version:
* It apparently takes 7 pages just to get through introductions and other useless stuff, apparently including a section about the siege engine itself (defending it? bragging about it?), and a section called "Tyranny of the Rules" which could only be described as preaching to the choir long after the choir stopped caring and went home.

* By page 8, we finally get to the Characters section. Or I guess a big splash page for it. The rules apparently start on page 9.

* 4 pages on expanding attributes and alternative attribute generation methods. Yawn.

* Half a page on epic adventures. Why even bother?

* The next 14 pages are discussing the classes. No clue if this is good or not. Apparently the ranger gets a lot more attention than anyone else, though, as his section takes 3 pages while pretty much everyone else gets only 1.

* The next few pages are on topics no one ever really bothers with - height, weight, and age, and a brief discussion about race variants. This would sound more promising if it wasn't limited to 2 pages, which reminds me of the 2e "design your own class" half-assed attempts.

* The next section is on magic for 15 pages. Judging by the ToC entries, it's pretty much focused completely on component use and sadly not on anything more interesting about magic.

* The section after is called Expanding Equipment. And yet, no new equipment seems to be offered. Instead, it's advice about role-playing equipment, room and board charges, maintenance, and apparently 7 entire pages on carrying capacities. Yep, encumbrance, the mechanic almost universally ignored by gamers for 40 years, gets 7 pages while interesting topics get 1-3.

* After that filler, we get 24 pages about NPCs. Here I see yet another entry for "Tyranny of Rules" as well as one for "NPCs Defined" and "How Not to use NPCs". There's also some pages on henchment, hirelings, and "adherents" (followers?). Sounds like a mix of boring advice and photocopies of rules I already have from 8 different editions of D&D.

* Next comes the "Worlds of Adventure" section. It gets its own splash page too.

* The first subsection is called "The World" and the only entry is for "The Geography of the World". It's 17 pages long, so I'm guessing includes some half-assed treatment of the Wilderness Survival Guide.

* Then we get 23 pages on "The City" which apparently discusses running city-based adventures. Or something. Because 22 pages of it falls under the entry "Culture". Perhaps it is a spirited debate about medieval gentrification of peasant communities by the merchant bourgeois?

* After that is "Dungeons". Clearly we're cribbing the Dungeoneer's Survival Guide here. There is a 5 page section on traps, though, so there might be something good there.

* Next up, a useless 7 page section on air and water adventure. Why do I say useless? Because "Keeping it Fun" takes up 4 of those pages. Absolutely nothing about naval travel or naval combat or anything appears to have even been considered, as the last 3 pages are "Adventures in the Air".

* For some bizarre reason, the next section is "Equipment Wastage", somethign that should have, I don't know, gone in the Equipment section we already had. Did Stevie Wonder edit this thing? Also, this takes up 10 pages. Ten pages on stuff breaking and wearing out? Really guys?? Really???

* "Lands as Treasure" is the section after that. It has 11 pages, but the only ToC entry is "New Horizons". I'm not sure WTF is going on there. Is this the way the author tells us he stopped giving a shit and watched that movie instead of breaking the section up into interesting topics? Could be good, could be bad, but one's things for sure - the ToC entry is incomprehensible.

* Then comes "Going to War", the mass combat rules that everyone has talked about already. For a big topic, it's only 13 pages.

* After that is "Monster Ecology". While I like ecology in my monster write-ups, I don't get why I need 14 pages of text about it. There's also four pages of encounter tables, which isn't bad some seems oddly placed here (instead of, say, the monster book where it would make more sense).

* The final subsection in this area discusses adding technology into your fantasy for 12 pages. Not sure what all would be included there.

* The final big section is called "The Siege Engine", presumably because these subsections expand on it. I thought that was supposed to be the whole purpose for this book in the first place, but TLG thought we needed to wait 212 pages first.

* The first section is called "Beginning the Game" and takes 14 pages. No clue what is discussed there, but I can't imagine it being useful.

* Next up is apparently a 22 page section trying to convince us the Siege Engine isn't a counter-intuitive, vague mess.

* The section after that is called "Treasure". It includes some vague ideas of expanding treasure, crafting magic (magic items?), and destroying magic (items?). Not sure why these weren't placed in more relevent sections earlier in the book.

* The chapter after that is about combat. It might be additional optional rules for combat (like everyone wanted), or it might be a 15 page treatise on the old chesnut about "more than hack and slash". From the ToC, one cannot know.

* Then comes skill packages. It took 263 pages, but we finally get to the one thing everyone wanted more info on. Sadly, the chapter is pretty short (11 pages) and the "Advantages" entry appears to be most of the page count (feats?)

* The final part of the book is 5 pages on death and how to use divine intervention, luck points, and hero points to avoid it. I thought they were originally planning to do something cooler here, but apparently not.

* The book ends with an index (yay!) that is either 6 pages or 10 (the ToC isn't sure).

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Omote »

Wow, even with the crap the reviewer is trying to spew, his review makes that book sound interesting! Fans and non-haters will probably read that review and say to themselves that the sample and TOC sound interesting. Wait... I actually think I LIKE this review. Haha.

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Dead Horse »

It was funny years ago when comedians would rant like this.
Why do people think its edgy to do reviews like that.

Kind of a shame the rpg community is so fragmented.
I dont need to bad mouth a game to make my choice look better.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

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You're not playing right.

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Go0gleplex »

To quote Bugs Bunny; "What a maroon!"
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

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Let me address this jgants fellow. Even when he could show the slightest bit of attention to a section that would be construed as interesting by a segment of his readership, he tends to say "Im guessing they did X here, which sucks." instead of actually bothering to find out what's in the section and reviewing (in his case, ridiculing) the treatment. I hope that most people will take the time to actually review a product before they come to any solid conclusions about that product instead of cribbing and synopsizing tidbits from an incomplete preview document and spinning them in the most negative light possible in a dismissive manner. Most gamers are too smart to fall for a vitriolic rant thinly disguised as a review, but it saddens me that some folks might actually hold a negative view of a company based on such nonsensical rantings by an obviously biased individual. My dim view of this type of "review" is not limited to the CKG or Troll Lord Games. Anyone who does this sort of hack job on any product is more appropriately labelled an instigator than an impartial reviewer.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

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I quit reading reviews done by reviewers for two reasons, they never fully read a product, at best they speed read, because they have something they need to put up on their blog. Second, they rarely, if ever, really play the game they are reviewing. They pretty much all think they are such a genius they can determine how good a game is just by reading it, a little.

So that is why I don't read blogs that talk about products or read reviews put up by reviewers, because 90% of the time they are full of crap, or at the very least, poorly understood what they read. There would be a lot of games I have played that "sucked" according to reviewers, and all I can say is I have had a lot of fun playing these "sucky" games.

Best way to find out if something is any good? Find out for yourself. If its a supplement, read it for yourself. I assure you, that "riddled with errors/mistakes" comment they make when trying to tear a product apart? At most their are 18 errors throughout, most of which you probably won't even notice.

If its a game, play it yourself. I recommend at least three full play sessions to have time to learn just how the rules are meant to come together.

If you had fun, its a good game. If you had a blast, its a great game.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Relaxo »

Good points all: I'll just add this thought: the energy some people put into hating things seems exhausting. BTW: How many RPG books has this guy written?
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Go0gleplex »

It's not just the one idiot. It seems that this whole pdf issue has simply given the mutts an excuse, not cause, to rag on TLG as a whole. Not just the one product issue. It's >expletive deleted<'s that help give our hobby a bad rep with those just passin by to see what the water is like on our side of the puddle.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by CKDad »

The bile on RPG.net is pretty excessive as well, complete with uninformed ranting and ad hominem attacks.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Treebore »

Yeah, I was given a link to the PDF preview thread, and the very first guy to criticize the writing? Can't write.

Plus I have the distinct impression the people who complain about the "faux Gygaxian prose" do so because words are used they do not understand. Judging by my time as a High School teacher I am sure that it is at least a strong factor. The farther you get beyond "and", "the", "but" and the more confused they become.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Go0gleplex »

There are three threads on RPGNet now...and each one seems to have at least one butthead all but calling the trolls thieves for their pricing of not only the CkG but their initial pricing on the graph paper as well. From the way these guys are carrying on, you'd think that one of the trolls came up and personally sacked them in the danglies. The sickening part of it is that calling them out on it would only fuel the flames rather then put them in their place.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Treebore »

Go0gleplex wrote:There are three threads on RPGNet now...and each one seems to have at least one butthead all but calling the trolls thieves for their pricing of not only the CkG but their initial pricing on the graph paper as well. From the way these guys are carrying on, you'd think that one of the trolls came up and personally sacked them in the danglies. The sickening part of it is that calling them out on it would only fuel the flames rather then put them in their place.
Well, thats why I got banned from there. I got sick and tired of crap like that, and the fact that it is allowed. So I did some cross board posting that pointed out how predictable this behavior is, and I got perma banned for proving how predictable their behavior is. They called it "for cross board trolling", but I was cool with that. I certainly do not miss being able to post there.

To be fair, I have been provided links where they were very helpful, but they still have jerks like this allowed to post.

Also, to see the positive, or at least much more positive side of rpg.net, go to the other RPG forum in the thread where they ask if they would recommend C&C. Lots of very positive comments in there, and even those who do not like C&C, mostly, give a fair opinion about it. There are a couple I highly suspect never even tried to play C&C, but by and large I was surprised by the thread, in a good way.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Sir Ironside »

Go0gleplex wrote:There are three threads on RPGNet now...and each one seems to have at least one butthead all but calling the trolls thieves for their pricing of not only the CkG but their initial pricing on the graph paper as well. From the way these guys are carrying on, you'd think that one of the trolls came up and personally sacked them in the danglies. The sickening part of it is that calling them out on it would only fuel the flames rather then put them in their place.
Though the piling on is pretty much a staple of RPG.net this example even made me shake my head. It wasn't a complaint about the graph paper, it was the fact it was being sold as a pdf. I'm sure this was a over-sight by TLG (One that needs to be fixed) but of all the complaints this one was legitimate.

I to hardly ever read blogs by some mysterious online person who thinks their blog is everything, for the reasons posted above. I put as much stock in those reviews as I do in the TSN hockey power rankings, which are usually downright foolish and seems disconnected from what is really going on in hockey. And, these are professionals.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Treebore »

The graph paper complaints is pure nonsense. It was provided because people asked for it. Plus, it s a product, you don't ant it, DON'T BUY IT! So to even complain about it is beyond inane.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Go0gleplex »

Treebore wrote:Plus, it s a product, you don't ant it, DON'T BUY IT! So to even complain about it is beyond inane.
That seems to be the point left at the door with common sense. They aren't looking to complain about the products. They are seeking an excuse to piss and moan at the expense of some decent folk.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

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Treebore wrote:The graph paper complaints is pure nonsense. It was provided because people asked for it. Plus, it s a product, you don't ant it, DON'T BUY IT! So to even complain about it is beyond inane.
Did you miss the part where it is being sold as a pdf? It apparently comes to you digitally shrink wrapped with a number of pages that are all identical for around $5.00.

Like I said I'm sure it was just a oversight, but it did turn into fodder for the hate machine.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Treebore »

Sir Ironside wrote:
Treebore wrote:The graph paper complaints is pure nonsense. It was provided because people asked for it. Plus, it s a product, you don't ant it, DON'T BUY IT! So to even complain about it is beyond inane.
Did you miss the part where it is being sold as a pdf? It apparently comes to you digitally shrink wrapped with a number of pages that are all identical for around $5.00.

Like I said I'm sure it was just a oversight, but it did turn into fodder for the hate machine.
I'm well aware of the product. My point was that people asked for it to be offered, so the Trolls offered it. I wasn't interested in it because long ago I was made aware of websites where you can make up your own papers, graph, hex, square, etc...

So it was an asked for product, it was offered up. To complain about it being made available is beyond inane. I don't see why people want it, I can only assume its because they don't know how to google "graph paper" and how to print it out. For whatever reasons, its a product because it was asked for, and the Trolls went ahead and made it for them. Thats good customer service, just because people are too narrow minded or short sighted to see beyond their immediate surroundings doesn't change that fact.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by zarathustra »

Wow, I don't think anyone will take a review seriously where they reviewer dismisses sections he hasn't even read as "can't imagine it being useful", as if his imagination is a limiting factor for the book.

Or says he was looking forward to one section "but it's only 13 pages". :shock: :shock:

Just someone still steamed up from a thread argument I suppose.


Personally I didn't think the pdf price was great, I shrugged and opted not to buy it. I thought that was how capitalism worked. I am not sure where vitriol and umbrage come from in this instance. Graph paper ditto.

I don't think the trolls did it to screw anyone, I assume they list their prices to whatever they need to to make a profit or protect whatever they see as their main focus (getting hardcopies out there perhaps).

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Treebore »

The Trolls main focus has always been print over PDF. There was a period of time where they offered no PDF's of C&C products. Again, the Trolls heard their customers say they wanted PDF's, so again, the Trolls gave their customers what they wanted.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Sir Ironside »

Treebore wrote:I'm well aware of the product. My point was that people asked for it to be offered, so the Trolls offered it. I wasn't interested in it because long ago I was made aware of websites where you can make up your own papers, graph, hex, square, etc...

So it was an asked for product, it was offered up. To complain about it being made available is beyond inane. I don't see why people want it, I can only assume its because they don't know how to google "graph paper" and how to print it out. For whatever reasons, its a product because it was asked for, and the Trolls went ahead and made it for them. Thats good customer service, just because people are too narrow minded or short sighted to see beyond their immediate surroundings doesn't change that fact.
If you can't see why this offering was ridiculous I can't help you. Calling people inane (which I assume I'm included) in this particular case shows the other side, where you would be called a cheerleader and TLG does nothing wrong.

Your logic, in this case, is puzzling indeed.

For the record I think TLG, for the most part, is a good company with fantastic owners. But, even great companies can make mistakes from time to time. I have no horse in this race, I don't really buy pdf's, I prefer books so I am not the target customer.

The 25 page sampler was great. I liked what I saw and can see why the CKG would look good by my other books.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by gideon_thorne »

Eh. Some folks are determined to hate things even in the face of illogic. The CKG wasn't intended for the experienced CK, its intended for the neophyte for whom all the gaming terminology is new.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Troll Lord »

Treebore wrote:
Sir Ironside wrote:
Treebore wrote:The graph paper complaints is pure nonsense. It was provided because people asked for it. Plus, it s a product, you don't ant it, DON'T BUY IT! So to even complain about it is beyond inane.
Did you miss the part where it is being sold as a pdf? It apparently comes to you digitally shrink wrapped with a number of pages that are all identical for around $5.00.

Like I said I'm sure it was just a oversight, but it did turn into fodder for the hate machine.
I'm well aware of the product. My point was that people asked for it to be offered, so the Trolls offered it. I wasn't interested in it because long ago I was made aware of websites where you can make up your own papers, graph, hex, square, etc...

So it was an asked for product, it was offered up. To complain about it being made available is beyond inane. I don't see why people want it, I can only assume its because they don't know how to google "graph paper" and how to print it out. For whatever reasons, its a product because it was asked for, and the Trolls went ahead and made it for them. Thats good customer service, just because people are too narrow minded or short sighted to see beyond their immediate surroundings doesn't change that fact.
That *#@&*) graph paper. Treebore was rigth and actually that product was set at a dollar price tag. I asked Tim to go in a establish a uniform price for all the products it slipped through and was bumped up.

It is priced for a dollar as the graph paper comes with symbols on it for dungeon development.

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by LordSeurek »

Troll Lord wrote:
It is priced for a dollar as the graph paper comes with symbols on it for dungeon development.

Steve
I figured there had to be more to it than just, er, graph paper. Maybe stick the symbols in the preview. I'm a math teacher and have more graph paper than you have Dr. Pepper, but if yours come with whatever symbols, I may be interested in throwing a buck at it.....

L.S.

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Relaxo »

LordSeurek wrote: I figured there had to be more to it than just, er, graph paper. Maybe stick the symbols in the preview... but if yours come with whatever symbols, I may be interested in throwing a buck at it.....

L.S.
+1

Never had anything bad to say about it, but I wasn't going to spend money on TLG graph paper.
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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Piperdog »

Graph Paper Madness aside, I took a look-see at the 25 page sample and really dig what I see. Very tempted to get the pdf, but it is a tad too high for my budget this month. If the wait isn't all that long, I will order a perfectbound from my favorite gamestore and hold out for the awesomeness of the slip-case set.

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Re: 25 page sample of the CKG

Post by Eisenmann »

I just think it's funny when the graph paper is called a money grab. I just imagine Steve sitting on a throne like Conan atop a mountain of gold pieces. A platinum piece rolling across the knuckles of one hand and fist full of graph paper sales receipts in the other.

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