Thursday, March 21, 2013

TMBH Returns!

Erik here, and I just wanted to make an announcement! We're back! We told you we would be!

I know there were those, even among our cast, who doubted it. Things ended poorly last season, and I personally will take responsibility for a lot of that. However, we're starting fresh and kicking things in to gear. We have our first session scheduled for April 13th, and are hoping to play bi-monthly. We've changed around when we're sitting down to play, so we won't be inflicting our tired exhausted selves upon our listeners.

Also, we've decided to branch out game wise. Last season, They Might Be Heroes had a subtitle of A Dungeons and Dragons podcast. Well, no longer! We're stepping outside the box. I personally own a number of different game systems that I've been itching to try, and we've all been wanting to step outside of the fantasy genre and in to something new. So for the near future we'll be playing short mini-campaigns of each system. We'll put some effort in to explaining the rules as we go, our goal is to put together an episode explaining the rules, and then after the story has played itself out we'll have a review of the system. We'll sit down and get everyone's thoughts on the mini-campaign, and the system as a whole.

First up on the chopping block is the Cortex Roleplaying Game, by Margaret Weis Productions. The Cortex system has the beauty of being a universal system. It's been incorporated by its parent company into games such as Serenity (which is no longer in print), Smallville, Leverage and others. It's received a fair amount of praise, and we're excited to give it a try. We'll be headed into a space opera setting, in an adventure that I've entitled "Recovering the Nefertiti."

Since each of these systems is going to be a new experience for us there will likely be some hiccups. We'll probably screw up some of the rules, but that's all part of the fun in learning a new game! We've also decided to throw another couple twists in this season. First off, Brandon is going to be taking a turn behind the GM's screen in a future game. This means I'll get a chance to sit down and assume the role of a player character. (Brandon can exact revenge for all those hard encounters!)

Our biggest twist, however, is how we're doing characters. At least for the first mini campaign (using the Cortex system) I'll be creating the characters. This will give them a chance to be instantly incorporated into the story. For Cortex I made them all gender neutral, and then we pulled names out of a hat. So each of the players got a random character to play. This will provide a fun and exciting challenge for them as role-players, and will likely bring about hilarity for our audience!

As we begin the campaign I'll post a link to our Obsidian Portal page so that you can take a look at character sheets and the like.

I think I speak for us all when I say that we're excited to be returning to gaming, and to the podcast. We hope that you as listeners will enjoy our adventures. As mentioned above, our first play session is scheduled for April 13, 2013. The first episode should be available not too long afterwards. We invite you to subscribe on iTunes, subscribe to the blog page, and follow us on Twitter (@tmbhpodcast)!

We plan to post a few more blogs between now and the first episode of the new season. Until then, stay safe, and be well, and remember you've always got a seat at our table.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Letting Go: Words from the Dungeon Master

As a Dungeon Master one gets the opportunity to take your friends on an adventure. With every session you place the shades of a story in their minds, and they in turn use their imaginations to bring those shades to life. Dungeons and Dragons is a partnership, a DM with bad players cannot bring a world to life any more than a group of players who've been cursed with a unskilled Dungeon Master.

I've been given the opportunity to play with a very talented group of players. They've brought a varied level of experience, but each and every one of them has created a character that has come to life for me. Before I go on I want to thank them for the contributions they have made to my story.

As some of you know, the land of Miraval has played host to our story thus far. The Kezra’kai, Southgate and all the rest of it has been something that has been growing in my imagination for nearly a decade now. It’s a “universe” that is very dear to my heart, and it has been a pleasure to share it with my friends, and likewise with you.

However, life is made up of meetings and partings, and the time has come to say goodbye to Miraval. Not forever, there are several stories that need to be told. However, currently there are a great deal of things going on in the life of me, the storyteller, that makes Miraval a painful place to be. As you have all joined us in this adventure, I feel you deserve to know why.

During the early days of Miraval I had a fair bit of help creating it. Fleshing out details, drawing maps, creating histories etc. At the time I had a friend and roommate who was helping me to create the world. The idea of the Southgate prison arena was his. He and I spent a great deal of time working on this world, and I have many fond memories of this. In the early weeks of November this friend was vacationing in Miami with his girlfriend who was raised there, and while on this vacation was gunned down in the street.

We have recorded a few more episodes which took place after the event. We aren’t sure we’re going to release them because my storytelling suffered greatly. My heart wasn’t in it, because to be blunt, being in Miraval was agonizing. I would end the sessions and spend a great deal of time in sorrowful reflection and sometimes tears. I was no longer having fun, and it showed. I was not providing my players with the gaming experience they deserved, and by extent the content is not what we feel is up to par with what we want to provide for our listeners.

Following one quite painful session, I discussed taking a brief hiatus with the players. We decided that we’d take some time off and see if things would mellow out. At this point I had not divulged any of this information to my players. To be honest, I’m not sure what they thought was happening. However, I did eventually bring these facts to the attention of my players and made a request. The request was a simple one. That we leave Miraval and start over with a new story, in a new place.
I know it wasn't an easy thing for me to ask of my players. They have grown attached to their characters, as many role players often do. They were invested in the story line, and in the fate of this world we were playing in. I was asking them to let go of several months of gaming sessions because of my personal pain, and to their credit they agreed. For this I am grateful. I have said it before, and I will echo those comments again now, my players are high caliber people. I’m proud to know them, and to call them my friends.

We have begun preparations for a new story, and have created new characters that I’m very excited about. We are bringing in a new player, and are likewise excited to have her along. However, we are still saddened by the departure from a story we had invested a great deal of time and personal energy. On behalf of all of my friends, I apologize for the change. We look forward to bringing you with us into this new and exciting story. We hope you enjoy it.

Someday in the future we do hope to return to Miraval. Someday the pain will fade, and the urge to tell the stories that swirl around in my brain will overwhelm me. Someday I’ll be able to let go.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Episode 2: Cue the Battle Music!

Here it comes! Its our first ever battle encounter on the podcast! The sounds of battle are in the air, literally! We'll be fighting for our lives aboard the Whippoorwill! Who lives? Who dies? What sort of antics do our would be heroes get in to when the chips are down? Find out in this episode!

Download Episode

You'll find the battle maps by clicking the read more link!

Episode 1: Let it begin! Let it begin!

Our would be heroes find themselves aboard the airship "Whippoorwill."  Captain Whicket shows them around, and then they find themselves under attack! How will they react?

Episode 0: Where it really began!

Here it is folks! Its our recap episode where Brigham, Erik, Brandon, Karen and Holly all sat down to recall and retell the most crucial parts of the genesis of our campaign! Listen! Hey listen!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Meet the players! pt.3 (Machee Crickmore)

Machee Crickmore

Hello! My name is Machee, and I hail from good old Salt Lake Valley, Utah. I have been playing Dungeons & Dragons from the tender age of 10 when my father introduced it to me and my siblings. I learned how to play from an original First Edition Players Handbook, complete with actually rolling for characters and their abilities. We would have bi-monthly dungeons created by my father that we would try to survive, but as we got older, we began to DM for ourselves. I originally played a monk with a ranger as a second, but have branched out since starting to play with 4th Edition rules and characters.

I have been playing RPG games for most of my life, and have recently branched out to computer games by way of Starcraft 2 and Guild Wars 2 because of the influence of my husband and friends. I enjoy playing them quite a bit, but my heart will always belong to D&D because the interaction and stories that are created while playing.

You can follow Machee on Twitter: @strikanywhere

Meet Our Players pt 2 - (The Larsen Family)

Hello, all! 

My name is Holly Larsen, the beautiful amazing wonderful and extremely humble wife of Brigham. I am 25 years old and quite boring really. I work full time for an insurance company and am enrolled part time at the local university. I've been a casual gamer most of my life enjoying everything from Monopoly to Sims to World of Warcraft and so on. I enjoy board games, card games, video games, and I will play most anything once (within reason). I have very little experience with table top gaming. I was introduced to D&D back in 2007. I was a member of a large group of players who were all experienced and frankly quite obnoxious. The one who introduced me to the group chose my race, class and even rolled my character for me, so I didn't really get the full experience. I used my being a rogue as an excuse not to speak during role-play and only really participated during combat. I only attended two sessions and assumed I would never play again. But... Here I am! I'm still pretty new to the game, so I ask a lot of questions, but I'm feeling more comfortable every session. Playing with this group has really changed my mind about D&D, and I'm having a blast! I have really enjoyed the social aspect of the game and storytelling. Working together with my friends to write and experience this adventure is my main drive to continue. I also enjoy combat and the way it influences our experience. The last few sessions, I've doodled stick figure versions of our adventures and posted them to twitter. It's been a fun way for me to use the post game creative surge to sarcastically chronicle our adventures. You can follow me @thehollystar, by the way. ;)

That's about it! I hope everyone enjoys our story!

You can follow Holly on Twitter: @thehollystar


Brigham Larsen

My name is Brigham Larsen, and I am a Dungeons and Dragons virgin. Yes, you read that right! I'm a first time player, but that's ok. As the host of our new podcast this gives me an opportunity to help bring up questions that a veteran player wouldn't bother with. Anyway, enough about that, here's more about me.

Even though I am a first time D&D player, I've been playing games since I was 4 or 5 years old. From the time I first touched a computer or game controller I was hooked on the things! It was an awesome way for me to escape from the boring reality that was rural Idaho.

Since this is my first time playing, my interests for this campaign are just learning the ropes of the game. I want to really understand the game and be able to play effectively. Also, hopefully I can improve my roleplaying skills and help hisssssssing where I should.

You can follow Brigham on Twitter: @scather