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Imperial Settlers

Plays: 2Px2. The Game Imperial Settlers is a reimplementation of 51st State. 51st State had an improved version, called The New Era, not long ago. This time round Imperial Settlers is a major revamp giving it a different setting in the process. Imperial Settlers is a card tableau game, like Race For The Galaxy, San Juan, London and Gosu. Show More Summary

The Art Book Campaign

I recently picked up The Art of Ian Miller, a gorgeous book jam-packed with illustrations by one of my favorite fantasy artists. I picked it up not only because I love Ian’s artwork and I’ll enjoy having the book in my collection, but...Show More Summary

The Real Issues With Encounter Balance

This past week, I was listening to the new and excellent podcast, Gaming & BS. The episode was about Game Balance, and the hosts, Sean and Brett, had an interesting discussion about Encounter Balance in RPGs. Their discussion was solid, but as they were talking I realized that Encounter Balance is not the root issue. Show More Summary

revisiting 2012 eagerness ranking

Roughly once a year I force rank the games published in a particular year that I have played, which I find to be an interesting exercise. And roughly one more year after that I revisit the list to see whether my opinion has changed, and whether there are more games of that year which I have played. Show More Summary

Dungeon Crawl: Adding More Roleplaying

Dungeon crawls are a staple of roleplaying. For this article, let’s expand the definition of dungeon beyond traditional tombs and caves. Crashed spaceships, inner-city sewers, and post-apocalyptic abandoned malls are all really variations on the dungeon. Show More Summary


Plays: 4Px1. The Game Players are directors as well as shareholders of their respective shipping companies. During the course of the game, they need to run a profitable business signing contracts with customers from different regions, and shipping goods between the eastern and western ends of the Panama Canal. Show More Summary

Too Busy!

Last week I thought I was going to be busy, but in the end I was too busy and ended up getting very little done indeed. I managed to finish the boxes for the NaGa DeMon winners' copies, but sadly that was it. This week was supposed to be even busier. Show More Summary

Coincidental Complications; or, Side Quests Broadly Applied

Anyone who’s played any edition of Dungeons & Dragons or its derivatives are familiar with the concept of the side quest. Whether generated through a random encounter roll, the need for members of the group to kill some time becauseShow More Summary

The Staufer Dynasty

Plays: 4Px1. Disclaimer: I didn't read the rules myself, and we learned and played the game speaking Cantonese and Mandarin, so some of the game terms I use here may be completely off. The Game The Staufer Dynasty is an area majority game played over five rounds. Show More Summary

In Media Res

Today’s guest article is by Patrick Regan, a screenwriter living in Los Angeles, who learned how to write for TV by GMing after a college roommate made the mistake of showing him Dungeons and Dragons. He blogs at, podcasts at Cinema Excelsior, and can be generally found on Facebook and Twitter @underwoodfive. Show More Summary

The Villainous A.I. in Your Games

Today’s guest article is the second piece by reader Tony G., who previously contributed A Case for Multiple Game Masters to the Stew. Thanks, Tony! –Martin If you are like 99% of the comic and gamer world, You’ve seen the trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron. Show More Summary

El Gaucho

Plays: 4Px1. The Game What brought my attention to El Gaucho was the publisher - Argentum Verlag, which published Hansa Teutonica a few years ago. Different designer though. El Gaucho is a medium-weight Eurogame with set collection as your core activity. Show More Summary

GMing With Kids

A couple weekends ago, I ran a game for my friends’ three daughters, ranging in age between 9 and 14. This was something I’d been meaning to do for a while, but with hectic schedules, it ended up taking longer to coordinate than I had hoped. Show More Summary

Busy, Busy

With NaGa DeMon done you'd expect things to be calming down, but not so much - this week has been one of lots of little things that needed attending to. I've promised copies of Dragon Dance to the three most helpful TGWAG competitors, so I've started making those copies. Show More Summary

Troy’s Crock Pot: Home Is Where the Exit Is

On the map, those entrances to a dungeon level look so innocuous: Hash marks to indicate a stairwell, a stylized ‘H’ for a ladder, a curving arrow for a slide. But dungeon-delving adventurers should be wary. There’s no better place for a monster to call home than at the doorway to another dungeon level. Show More Summary

Back in the Saddle (I own dice older than you!)

Today’s guest article by Gnome Stew reader Nick M. is a reflection on returning to gaming, including some tips for lapsed gamers coming back into the fold. It’s a bit different from our usual fare, and hopefully you’ll enjoy the change of pace. Show More Summary

What’s He Building in There?

Today’s guest article is by Gnome Stew reader Craig Dedrick explores villains’ plans that stay in motion while the PCs are doing other things. Thanks, Craig! –Martin What’s He Building? He has no dog And he has no friends and His lawn is dying… and What about all those packages He sends. Show More Summary

My Review of the Flex Belt

The Flex Belt has been uncovered to get very fruitful in supporting individuals who need or need backing with stomach workout schedules. Regardless of whether you have some additional stomach undesirable fat or are have as of now got a great chasing midriff, this toning belt can help and perform for you by and by. […]

My 2014 top 100: 74–48

This is the second part of my Top 100 list. Here’s the first part with more explanations. Looks like here I’m starting to move to games rated 8+, the previous list was mostly games rated 7. 74–72 Timeline — Very simple idea; other games do the same thing, with more complications. This simple version works quite well, […]

When Deliberation Goes On (and On, and On)

Recently one of my players was complaining about his other game. That group is a bit poky, often taking over an hour to make a decision. While there is no set length for deliberation, an hour is probably too long. If I can make a McDonald’s run and back, well, you get the idea. Show More Summary

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