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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss $3.00
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
Publisher: Kort'thalis Publishing
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 08/21/2017 05:10:12

An Endzeitgeist.com review

This advice book clocks in at 15 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page Kort’thalis glyph inside of front cover, leaving us with 13 pages of content, two of which are taken up by nice pieces of b/w-artwork, so let’s take a look!

It’s interesting, really – while there are plenty of GM books around, there are almost no player advice books. Sure, more math-intense systems have a lot of optimization guides, but what many folks forget, is that a good game is as much reliant on having great players as on having a great GM. Anyone who has played in a a Living Campaign will probably nod knowingly right then and there – I know that it took some seriously horrendous experiences gaming with strangers to appreciate my main campaign and faithful cadre of players…and similarly, playing with strangers did highlight the strengths and weaknesses of my own players…but that as an aside.

This pdf, thus, is focused on player advice and as such can be considered to be a companion booklet to Venger’s massive GM-advice book. The introduction to the matter at hand will most certainly sound true for many of us: Being a socially awkward person most certainly applies o many folks I’ve seen gaming…but at the same time, as the pdf notes, actually playing sans fear can help mitigate this factor. The pdf also notes that roleplaying is not supposed to be “blowing off steam” – well, it can actually have beneficent effects, reduce aggression, etc. – but at the same time, while it can have the therapeutic and benevolent effects on one’s psyche, roleplaying is a collective experience and trying to resolve one’s own psychic baggage while playing can compromise the fun of the group. The analogue ultimately taken here would be that of the lion tamer and lions – the GM being the lion tamer, the PCs the lions. While the metaphor may not apply perfectly, it suffices to convey the intent.

The pdf does explain how the GM is reliant on the players and how the players can attempt to be awesome, to wow the GM: These pieces of advice are actually very helpful: Not hogging the spotlight and making it count; attempting to move the plot forward, adhering to genre, staying in character, thinking creatively, using humor (hint: Endless, mood-breaking Monty Python references are not using humor properly…) and being badass. Compelling attention via the character is covered by 3 tenets based on the writing of LaVey, namely sex, sentiment and wonder – while there is no disputing their efficiency, I’d argue that, cleanly defined though they be, not all groups will be comfortable with them…and frankly, it seems very reductionist as far as I’m concerned.

One the more generally applicable list of things that is really helpful would be a brief character background checklist: What’s the occupation? Family? Hobbies? Ideological leanings? Any affiliations? And, taking a cue from 13th Age, the One Unique Thing your character should have, a distinguishing characteristic, birthmark, whatever. From there, we move on to considering defining internally what kind of person the character is and then take a look at three character archetypes, from loud and cool to quiet strength, with the third man in the middle, examples from pop-culture to drive home the respective points. Personally, I wished that this section could do without them, if only for file longevity’s sake, but that as an aside. The pdf also makes a case strongly in favor of sandbox gaming, as a very much player-driven experience – which is something I generally like, though some advice for players on how to keep such a game moving in the long term could help – in my experience, the main issue with sandbox campaigns tend to be the lulls when players at one point either don’t have clear goals or no idea of how to reach them. While this can be offset by a good GM, the number of sandbox campaigns I’ve seen fizzle out does mean that the like would probably have merited closer inspection.

On the plus side, if the GM is using bad hooks, the pdf champions telling this, fostering communication…but at the same time, it is easy to forget that some players, alas, take this to the logical extreme, feeling entitled for a custom hook for “their” motivation…which can bury a campaign, so a bit more nuance here would have been nice. Though, on a plus-side,the importance of communicating likes and dislikes is emphasized. How to properly improvise as a player, the rules of courtesy and appreciation for the GM are also noted…as is the fact that no GM, no group, can always be non-stop amazing…things even out, and that is okay…and using this acceptance to also gauge one’s own spotlight makes sense.

As an aside, ½ a page is used extolling the virtues of the OSR and how the author feels about aspects, splicing some advertisement in the section as well. Personally, I’m not the biggest fan of such entries – while I get that an advice-book like this is bound to be opinionated aspects, I do not like the notion of bad fun/doing it wrong and this bleeds in some aspects here. Not too jarringly, mind you, but it does take up about half a page, which could imho have been filled better, considering the brevity of the file.

On the plus-side, the etiquette championed for playing (no mobile device check-ups, etc.) is something I dearly wished all players took to heart.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no serious issues. Layout adheres to a nice 2-column full-color standard with icky veins (neat!) and the pdf comes with a printer-friendly, second version – kudos! The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience (again: Kudos!), in spite of its brevity. The b/w-artworks of interior art are amazing.

Venger As’Nas Satanis’ advice-booklet for players is nice; it is a helpful file to consider, it spells out many of the things that make players better and roleplaying with them more rewarding. At the same time, I do believe that the brevity of this booklet hurts its mission, namely because it fails to address the elephant in the room regarding player advice: You are not alone. While the booklet addresses a LOT of the dynamics between GM and players, it does not so much as begin to elaborate upon interaction between players and PCs. From this in my opinion crucial oversight stem potential issues: If every PC is “a fucking boss”, simply not hogging the spotlight alone doesn’t cut it – while player personality discrepancies help, ultimately, we have the issue that e.g. demanding proper tailored hooks can lead to conflicting notions of entitlement between players. Similarly, having too many iterations of one archetype is not necessarily conductive to a fulfilling experience. In short: The dynamics of the group and how to be a better player within the confines of that group, are not touched upon to a sufficient extent.

Now, don’t get me wrong – this is not a bad advice-pdf by any definition of the word and its content can prove to be rather helpful. It is generally well-presented etc. – but it does fall short of providing the level of coverage and insight I expected after the rather neat GM-book. As a whole, this can be considered to be a nice advice pdf for the player as a singular entity interacting with the GM, but not for the player as part of a social entity interacting with the GM. For me as a person, this represents a serious drawback. As a person, this was a 3 star-file for me; however, as a reviewer, I have an in dubio pro reo policy, and hence, I will round up from my final verdict of 3.5 stars.

Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
Publisher: Kort'thalis Publishing
by Timothy B. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 07/21/2017 12:43:36

Originally posted here: http://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2017/07/adventures-with-venger-asnas-satanis.html

I picked this up based 100% on my reading of Adventure Writing Like A Fucking Boss. In fact I did not even own this book when I started this review. This book is great. Plenty of advice on how to play your character to get the most enjoyment out of it. A lot of this I already do and have done for years. In fact, I think playing in horror games made me a better player as well as a GM. I see a lot of that advice here too, but with a different focus.
I stand by my idea of the "Be A Fucking Boss Bundle". Using all this advice will make you a better player and a better GM.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
Publisher: Kort'thalis Publishing
by Eric T H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/04/2017 02:52:55

Based upon the content of How_to_Game_Master_like_a_Fucking_Boss, this has a lot of information for the potential player. I just don't think the current pricing reflects the page count when compared to How_to_Game_Master_like_a_Fucking_Boss. As reviewed previously, there are four pages with art (three and a half actually), so the content page count is quite low for the price. This is truly my only gripe and why I gave it a three. I suppose I was expecting more. Play on.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
Publisher: Kort'thalis Publishing
by Eric F. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/27/2017 21:00:24

Play Your Character like a Fucking Boss is the latest title from Venger Satanis and is his book end to his other work How To Game Master like a Fucking Boss. Clocking in at about fifteen pages this book is really geared towards OSR style players, well mostly. What this book is actually is a primer or manifesto for Venger's wit and wisdom when it comes to his style of gaming for the player. So what your getting is a primer for the player's side of the screen. The cover is pretty awesome with a Venger style wizard taming his three headed dragon and yeah the cover is boss. The advice inside is as well for players up to a point, the break down here is the finer points of this book is the fact that at certain levels its not really a primer for players. But a set of guidelines for smoother play & more cooperation between dungeon masters & the players. It has more between its pages then a simple review of it can kinda of encompass. There are some ideas for PC guidelines, quick idea backgrounds, how to approach both both play at the table, and how to deal with the dungeon master at your table. All of this is done with Venger's usual unique take. It kinda boils down like this. Without the players you don't have a game & its really not about being a complete jerk. Talking & having complete communication across the table is key here. Which basically makes this book something a look into a set of opinions, PC guidelines, & some solid advice. This isn't so much a book of incredibly awesome ideas but simple on the ground common sense. That right there makes this book far more valuable to me as a player. Do I agree with everything in this book, umm no but then I'm not meant to and neither are you as a player. Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss is a box of chocolates in this regard. Pick and choose the pieces of advise that are in there for you.

The part about the OSR I agree with mostly but then again I don't; "Players, you have a lot more power than you realize.Banding together with common goals is the equivalent of forming a union. If I was part of this player union, my first order of business would be to find an easy, fun, rules-lite system that the majority will enjoy. I'm sure you can think of several off the top of your head, but indulge my blatant pimping… Crimson Dragon Slayer, The Outer Presence, and Alpha Blue are prime examples of simplistic yet awesome roleplaying games. On the flip-side, strong unions - when thoroughly corrupted by power - deserve to be broken. By the way, I feel the same way about strong, corrupt corporations. That's all part of the fascinating pushpull dynamic between the Game Master and players. Neither side has absolute power, and thank the gods for that, as the game would lose its fun. The second old school element I dislike is that player characters were occasionally… what's the opposite of putting something on a pedestal? Don't get me wrong, I'm all for initiation - the risk of a quick, unceremonious death comes with the old school territory. However, when you beat the odds, make the right decisions, and lady luck smiles upon your character, succeeding despite all the nasty shit the GM throws at you… I expect a fucking parade!" Which I mostly agree with but many OSR games find their own level and quite quickly. This is one of the reasons why its been easier to get players to play Dungeons and Dragons rather then Alpha Blue. This product is part manifesto and part advise primer by someone whose been in the hobby a long while. The artwork is very well done and the layout is top notch. The advise is right on target & for what it does 'Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss' By Venger Satanis gets five out of five.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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Play Your Character Like A Fucking Boss
Publisher: Kort'thalis Publishing
by K. S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/27/2017 15:18:45

Another great fucking resource by Venger. This time, with direct advertising to sell hardcore awesomeness straight to the player.

This is a brief guide, only 15 pages in length, with 4 1/2 pages of truly gorgeous artwork that you won't find in the usual Politically Correct publications we get today. Checking the credits, some of the same artists reappear from prior publications (such as HTGMLaFB, AB, GGR, etc) which have similarly been great. Both a color version of the PDF as well as a B&W printer friendly is released. In the color version, the artwork extends to provide some pleasing color effects on the text pages which creates a high shelf professional appearance.

Of the remaining pages, you are immediately dropped into a densely packed and marvelously well written educational experience for players. Full of instant take home points, yet amazingly interwoven with interesting supporting facts and tidbits to support each individual section that make the entire document a fun read. Included, are enticing titles like "Mastering the Puppet Master", "What Kind of Man are You?", and "The Coolest Bitch in Town". Look no further than the "7 Ways to Awesome" if you only have a minute to absorb the core fundamentals. There are the common sense (which somehow isn't always 'common'?) topics of "Be Appreciative" and "Be Courteous" that similarly are presented in the most directly important manner without losing an ounce of necessity. Lastly, I really liked the last section which is a pithy two paragraphs with some advice for the Dungeon Masters (sorry, I prefer DM to GM ;).

You should pick up this concise manifesto. It is well worth the low cost of entry for a ticket into the mind of a master.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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