Showing posts with label Hero Kids. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Hero Kids. Show all posts

Monday, 6 January 2014

Not Forgotten!

You would all be forgiven for thinking that I've abandoned Heroes Against Darkness and this blog, but that is not totally the case!

First, I've spent most of the year continuing to support Hero Kids, which has had success beyond my wildest hopes.   Hero Kids now has ten adventures and a bunch of expansions that add to the game.

Second, I've also been continuing to work on The Forge Engine.   I first mentioned this new system in my previous post almost a year ago, which seems crazy.   Suffice to say that the system has had a lot of testing since then, including a number of major revisions to the core mechanics to ensure they work in all of the situations and genres that the system targets (fantasy and modern, and even sci-fi).

I'm always on the lookout for playtesters, so drop me an email at justinhalliday(a)gmail[dot]com if you'd like me to include you in my list of playtesters.

No, I'm not dead.   I've just been working on Hero Kids and its adventures, which are available at DriveThruRPG:

Hero Forge Games at DriveThruRPG

Thursday, 1 November 2012

International Library Games Day Tomorrow

Looks like I'm running 8 hours of D&D at the State Library of Victoria for the International Game Day tomorrow (Saturday the 3rd of November).

Option B for the younger kids is some Hero Kids adventuring.

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Hero Kids Out Now!

Hero Kids, three normal adventures and one premium adventure are out NOW at DriveThruRPG!

Click to get it:

A New Home for Hero Kids!

There comes a time in a young game's life when they have to leave their home and strike out into a blog of their own. For Hero Kids, that day is today.

Hero Kids RPG Blog

This blog remains the home for the development and game design discussions for all of my games, but the Hero Kids blog will focus on that game and its supplements, including adventures and expansions.

So if Hero Kids is your bag, please please please head over there and click the Follow button so that you can stay informed about all the cool new stuff I release for Hero Kids.

As a super-special bonus, here's the cover for Hero Kids, once again by my buddy Eric Quigley:

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

New Hero Kids Logos

You may already have noticed the new Hero Kids logo in my previous Jennisodes post, but if you didn't then prepare to be amazed by the majesty that is the new Hero Kids logo:

And here's the black and white version too:

As you can see, Eric Quigley has transformed my original into a real piece of art!

Monday, 22 October 2012

HAD and Hero Kids on Jennisodes!

Jennifer Steen was kind enough to have me on Jennisodes to talk about Heroes Against Darkness and Hero Kids.

Check out the episode here:

Jennisodes Episode 127: Heroes Against Darkness

Why listen to me talking about Heroes Against Darkness when you can play it for free:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Monday, 15 October 2012

Presenting the HERO KIDS!

From left to right, they are; knight, rogue, brute, warlock (male), hunter (female), hunter (male), warlock (female), healer, warrior (female), and warrior (male).

Click to enbiggen:

The previous warlocks that I used were in poses much more like the healer and they weren't popular with the playtesters, so hopefully these kick-ass versions get the attention they deserve!

Kids would never fight monsters in Heroes Against Darkness, or would they?:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

What Lurks in the Mines of Martek?

What foul beast has taken residence in the Mines of Martek?

I reckon that whatever lives here can be found in the Heroes Against Darkness Bestiary:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Hero Kids Setting: The Brecken Vale

Last year my art buddy Josh Sacco and I spent some time developing a Photoshop map template that people like me (semi-artists) can use to put together decent maps without having to spend years and years actually learning how to art...

I've finally gotten around to using this beautiful piece of PSD action to put together this map of the setting for Hero Kids: The Brecken Vale, which is described thusly:

You live in a small village, Rivenshore, which is nestled in a tight valley beneath a range of towering mountains.
Rivenshore would be a beautiful place to live, if it weren’t beset by an endless series of calamities.
The village is on the eastern shore of the Camarva River. The river runs fast and crooked from the mountains, down through the valley, The Brecken Vale, and out into a small bay. To the east of the village are the dark and wild Darkenwold Woods, which have claimed many foolish travelers.
The Brecken Vale is bounded by the Druinhowe Mountains, their snow-covered peaks cloaked in cloud.
The vale should be a haven for its civilized inhabitants, but instead it keeps them in close proximity to no end of threats that offer boundless opportunities for adventure.

And here's the end result, which should give the GM and kids something to get their imagination going:

Probably the most difficult part of this map was the research for the etymology of the place names:

Brecken Vale: Valley of the crooked river
Druinhowe Mountains: Ridged mountains
Darkenwold Woods: Holy woodland
Rivenshore: River-shore, but without any great etymological basis!

Considering I do most of my research late at night, don't sue me if my derivations are erroneous (or crazy).

People keep telling me that Heroes Against Darkness needs a setting, so this is a start:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Maze of the Minotaur Adventure Playtest

Playtester 0 (Violet, aged 4) and I spent an hour last night playing through the Hero Kids premium adventure Maze of the Minotaur.

I've mentioned Maze of the Minotaur briefly before, but this adventure deserves some attention because it's quite different from the game's normal adventures.   Maze of the Minotaur is different because it features a randomly generated maze and randomly generated encounters in the maze.

The maze is generated from a set of over 30 random cavern tiles, so each time the heroes move off the edge of a tile, the GM takes the top tile from the pile and (if it fits) puts it down to extend the maze.   If it doesn't fit, the GM puts it on the bottom of the tile and takes another (rinse, repeat).   The tiles include straight tunnels, t-intersections, crossroads, and corner pieces so there's a huge amount of variety on offer for junior adventurers.

The GM also rolls 3d6 to generate a random encounter for each new tile that the heroes enter.   For example, a roll of 3 (three 1s) gives a rock-fall trap, 11 is an encounter with giant rats, 12 is an encounter the titular minotaur, and any total of 15+ means the heroes discover the minotaur's lair, which is the actual goal of the adventure.

But enough this talk, here are some photos from the session.   Enjoy.

A maze with a minotaur, that's almost as original as Heroes Against Darkness:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Hero Kids Adventure Maps

While I'm waiting for some of the artwork to get done for Hero Kids I've been spending my time working on adventures for the game.   So far, I've made two 'normal' adventures (one of which will be included with the game), one premium adventure (which will be a stand-alone product), and I'm currently working on some more standard adventures to create a number of separate adventure packs.

One of the things I've had to do with the adventure maps is make myself a library of bits for caverns, caves, and mines.   The caverns and caves are used in the free adventure that comes with the game (Basement O Rats), and in the premium adventure (Maze of the Minotaur), but I also want to do an adventure in a mine so I spent tonight working on modular rail sections for the mine maps.

Here are a few example maps that I've thrown together from all the bits to make sure they fit together properly:

Anyway, back to the coal face (literally)!

A maze with a minotaur, that's almost as original as Heroes Against Darkness:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Hero Kids alpha playtest complete

After several weeks of thorough testing, the alpha playtest of Hero Kids is now complete.   I've gotten back a whole bunch of useful feedback from the various testers and their tiny helpers.   Thanks guys and girls!

I'm currently working to implement the changes and suggestions that have come up in the testing, I'm designing more adventures for our pint-sized heroes (including an randomly generated minotaur's maze), and finally I'm working with Eric Quigley to complete all of the artwork for the monsters and the heroes so that we can get Hero Kids finished early in October (what a perfect holiday activity it will be!).

Here's a quick look at some of nasty humanoid monsters in the game:

Eric Quigley Art

Lookin' good boys!

The monsters in Heroes Against Darkness are much less cute:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Sneak peek at a Hero Kids character

So while all of the helpful playtesters are putting Hero Kids through it's paces, I reckon it's a good time to show everyone else what a 'Hero Card' looks like for one of the heroes that's included in the game.  From the card you might be able to work out the basics of the system itself.

First, each of the heroes has four main attributes:
•   Melee (dice pool for melee attacks)
•   Ranged (dice pool for ranged attacks)
•  Magic (dice pool for magic attacks)
•  Armor (dice pool for defending against enemy attacks)

Plus a number of attacks and actions:
•   Normal Attack (melee, ranged, or magic)
•   Special Action (usually a special attack or other action)
•   Special Ability (a passive ability based on the hero's specialty)

Finally, heroes can also have these items and skills:
•   Healing Potions (these are used in combat to heal the hero)
•   Inventory Items (these can be used in adventuring)
•   Skills (these can be used in adventuring or role-playing)

Hero Kids works as a simple skirmish game or as a full RPG, and the characters themselves have layers of complexity so that they are usable by kids from 4 to 10.  Younger kids just have to use their dice pools and their Normal Attack, while older kids can use tactics and their heroes' Special Actions and Abilities to tackle hard combats and other adventuring and role-playing obstacles.

If I've designed the Hero Cards it right, this example card should pretty much tell you about the underlying mechanics of the game and the possible and probable variations in the heroes that come with the game.

Looking for something more complicated, look no further:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Hero Kids alpha playtest begins

Okay, the playtest docs for Hero Kids are out to testers.

If I somehow missed you in sending out the docs, drop me an email at justinhalliday(@)gmail(dot)com.

In the mean-time, here's a real-life RPG for grown-ups:
Heroes Against Darkness: Downloads.

Friday, 4 May 2012

D&D for Kids (Rules Included)!

I've developed the ideas here into a full RPG for kids called Hero Kids. Check it out here:
Hero Kids fantasy RPG for kids

My daughter Violet has been nagging me for ages to play D&D (referred to as 'nerd games' in our house), so when my Pathfinder Beginner Box arrived in the mail (I don't plan on playing it, but I'm an obsessive completist and I love the monster stand-ups), I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to run a game for her.

Obviously a 4-year old can't play actual D&D , so I set up a super-simple RPG for Violet. Keep in mind, this all happened in the 15 minutes before Violet had pinkie-promised to go to bed, so the game is simple and the materials were whatever I could grab quickly, which should explain the HP tokens we ended up using!


The game uses these materials:

• 1 dungeon map
• 1 hero
• 4 monsters
• 1 d10
• 1 d6
• 6 health tokens for the hero

The flipmat that comes in the Pathfinder Beginner Box is very nice, and I used the cavern side for the game:

Violet chose one of the characters from the various hero pawns in the Pathfinder Beginner Box:

I used just four goblins from the Pathfinder Beginner Box as baddies for the game:

And the d10 is for the hero's attacks:

The d6 is for the monsters' attacks:

Finally, this was the first thing that came to hand to use for the hero's HP tokens:


• Hero has 6 HP and rolls a d10 for movement and attacks.
• Monsters have 2 HP and roll a d6 for movement and attacks.
• Set up the hero at the entrance of the dungeon, and the four monsters along the route to the treasure (in this case the golden fountain in the middle of the flipmat)

• Hero rolls d10 and moves that many squares.
• If a monster can see the character, it rolls d6 and moves that many squares.

• If the hero and a monster are adjacent, they both roll their dice (d10 vs. d6) the highest roll wins and their opponent takes 1 HP damage.

Win/lose conditions:
• The hero wins the game when they reach the treasure.
• The monsters win when the hero is defeated.

Playing the Game

I started Violet's hero at the top middle of the map, and then scattered the goblins along the route to the treasure (the golden fountain in the middle of the map). The first goblin was at the top of the stairs, the second in the room at the top left, the third in the big room on the left side and then the last goblin was in the corridor near the treasure.

Each turn, she rolled her d10 and then moved her character that many squares (with some help). If a monster was nearby, I rolled a d6 for the monster and moved it towards her hero.

When the monster and the hero were adjacent, we both rolled our dice and the highest roll 'won', with the loser taking 1 HP damage. When Violet's hero took damage, I ate one of the six BBQ Shapes tokens that I had lined up for her health (bwahahaha!). When the monsters took damage, we just remembered it and then killed them the next time they took another hit.

The combination of the 2 HP for the monsters, 6 HP for the hero, and the d6 and d10 all worked pretty well, because Violet's hero reached the treasure with just 2 HP left!

What Did We Learn

• Counting (for movement)
• Comparing (for the opposed attack rolls)
• Remembering (for the monsters having 2 HP)

Possible Advanced Rules

• There's no difference if the hero reaches the monster first or the monster reaches the hero first, so maybe whoever moves adjacent gets either a free opposed attack or a bonus to their first opposed attack.
• This is balanced for only a small number of 'encounters', so there could be healing potions in side rooms, or the hero could regain 1 HP after each combat.