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Nerd Watching: Transmogrify Your Game!

Written by Nicholas - Published on July 31, 2009

Nicholas is the columnist in charge of Nerd Watching and part-time Expy wrangler. He also works as the community manager, so keep an eye out for him on RPG blogs and forums.

High Adventure, Low on the Body

The wardrobe of your average geek is a curious thing. For casual occasions, he or she will likely have far more shirts to choose from than pants or shoes. Your average geek may have shirts from a favorite webcomic or band, a hilarious internet meme, ones that puts a hobby on display and a shirt that loudly declares allegiance for the horde. Shirts make statements about the wearer’s personality and interests. The rest of the outfit is utilitarian.

Well that is changing. Your feet will soon be able to loudly proclaim your D&D love. Previously we mentioned the contest to gather designs for D&D themed shoes. Well now the designs are in and it is time to vote! Go here to see all the designs and vote! Now, I’m not telling you what to vote for but if the “Goblin Stompers” don’t bring you joy, then they is something wrong with your tastes.

Rocking the Airwaves

In some personal news, your resident Nerd Watcher was a guest on this week’s Nerd Report on the Small Plate Radio Network. The show is aimed at geeky-inclined and focuses on a different nerd pastime each week. I was fortunate to be accompanied by George “Loki” Williams, manager of the offical Planescape website. The show was made for those D&D curiousities but not much experience. If you’d like to hear Loki and I explain what D&D is, what it is to be a Dungeon Master and how we got into the hobby, check it out!

Expy’s Hot Link of the Week

Kobold’s Guide to Game Design, Vol. 1

A fantastic little book full of advice that no Dungeon Master who writes their own adventures should be without.  Available in print and PDF.

Lessons from a Hyperactive Child

There’s not much news to report this week, so I thought I would seize the opportunity to offer up some advice. I’m going to guess that many of you were fans of the “Calvin and Hobbes” comic strip when it ran. Calvin, using the power of his imagination, took a card board box and dubbed it his “transmogrifier”. This curious invention of his could turn anything in anything else.  He was not done there. Later in the series, he flipped over his cardboard box and changed it into a duplicator that could copy anything. These are just a sampling of the uses that creative little boy found for the same cardboard box.

The point is simple. We play so many games in a world of elves, warlocks and goblins. We can take all these same elements, the same box, and flip it. Instead of being masters of the forest, what is elves were masters of the desert? They use their inborn resistances and mastery of the natural ways to thrive where other races struggle. Perhaps instead of warlocks being a distrusted minority, they are an oppressive majority. The common people have signed away their souls for dark power. Only a few resist the temptation and must battle against society using abilities gained the hard way. Maybe instead of using goblins as fodder, the characters discover a lost civilization where the little guys are the dominant force.

Take the rules and flip them. You may find a whole different game buried under there without changing a word of rules.

Have you changed the way to view your game? What were the results?

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Written by Nicholas

Nick DiPetrillo is the original author behind the games Arete and Zombie Murder Mystery available at http://games.dungeonmastering.com

Nick is no longer active with DungeonMastering.com, however he is an accomplished writer and published his first game in 2009.

GD Star Rating

Nicholas is the columnist in charge of Nerd Watching and part-time Expy wrangler. He also works as the community manager, so keep an eye out for him on RPG blogs and forums.



3 Responses to “Nerd Watching: Transmogrify Your Game!”
  1. Nicholas says:

    This one got caught up in our review system for a while. Looks like it’s not so fresh anymore.

  2. Morivado says:

    I love the idea of flipping the way Warlocks work in society. Man, it would go great with a society all for a really hedonistic lifestyle (try being a Paladin of Bahamut in /that/!). Have to admit I’ve always wanted the chance to use Desert Elves. Especially since hearing about ‘Armageddon’.

  3. Tagrath says:

    Those shoes are amazing, I voted for them multiple times and if they win I will be buying a pair (as long as they make them big enough for my feet).

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