Friday, February 2, 2024

Mail Room: The Fantasy Trip "I Want it All Box"

The shipping box is 25" long by 14" wide by 8" deep. It weighs 15 pounds. It is like a miniature coffin being delivered to your door.

The game box is 14x11x5"sized. It took me 30 minutes to unpack, remove the plastic, and sort out all the pieces. You get two boxed games - Melee and Wizard - as the core games, plus the "RPG Rules" called In The Labyrinth that tie them together and give you the traditional RPG and campaign glue.

The above link and image better describe everything you get - including a hard and soft cover of the rules and two nice rubber playmats. Of particular note are the hex tiles you can use to assemble dungeons, caves, or any other location - these can also be used in GURPS and Dungeon Fantasy.

One downside is that the Melee and Wizard games are in small booklets, the size of a Car Wars pocket box rulebook. Get the PDF and print them out if you are visually impaired. Melee's PDF is still free as I write this. They are small for my eyes, so I print the PDFs and put them in a binder. I also would like these in 8.5x11" POD books and the Wizard spell reference booklet - please make them PoD!

The companion is fun; they reprinted the original designer's notes, and Steve goes through how he saw D&D combat as boring, walking up and rolling dice until one side dies. Forty-plus years later, it is still a valid criticism of D&D.

Many record sheets are here; all are printable if you get the PDF. Hex paper. Papers for labyrinths, room record sheets, all types of character sheets, and many other valuable forms. Get the Legacy Edition PDF if you like printing things out, especially if you do binders for rules.

The hexes are large and perfect for showing off figures.

Two of the interior boxes are intended to be reused as storage.

Excellent GM screen.

It has folios for character sheets and other papers, with charts and rules printed. Nice touch.

This is the sort of game that Mordhiem or Advanced Heroquest wanted to be. A complete game with dungeon tiles, markers, dice, and a continuing linked-adventure system with slightly more in-depth character rules for campaign play. Fast playing and tactical. Random treasures. Missions with goals. Random crawls through holes in the ground to explore and clear out baddies harassing the locals. Story missions and modules. Open character progression and advancement. Simple rules.

This isn't a "theater of the mind" game style where you can ship broken rules and character options and hope the referee works it all out. This is based on skirmish wargaming; the rules must work, and the options must all be sound. The game has been played for decades, and all the exploits worked out.

The game works.

There is a clear difference between a classic game that has been out since the late 1970s and today's flavor of the week Kickstarter game that ships broken and takes 2 to 3 versions to work out the problems.

Bring your figures to make the game flashy and look fantastic.

I am looking forward to playing this one.

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