5 Minute mini-games is an example of a well-conceived idea that is not necessarily important to the overall aspect of the RPG, but when given first star production and presentation, turns into an essential supplemental tool at any game table, regardless of the system.
5 Minute mini-games, by Chaotic Shiny Productions, is a brief 9-page collection of games designed to be played between players when the DM’s focus is elsewhere. At first glance, this product seems non-essential, but looking underneath, it’s a smart tool to keep the focus on the gaming sessions without having to nanny everyone all of the time.
When I first started gaming, it was customary for players to play Magic: The Gathering and shoot dice when the party was split or the DM needed to convey secret information. By the time the DM came back, it took an additional five or ten minutes for everyone to refocus themselves on the game. 5 Minute mini-games fix that, by providing in game entertainment in the middle of the RPG. These games are decided on the characters’ skills mixed with a few players’ decisions. All 13 games are distinct and makes sense in a traditional fantasy game world. They are not necessarily breaking the banks of creativity, many of the games are fantasy versions of familiar real world games like tag, jacks and paper-rock-scissors. The innovation comes in how well they were executed in a land of sword and sorcery. The games are broken up into three sections, simple, standard and Complex. Each game entry has the skills required to play, number of players allowed and any additional material required.
For the Player
Drunken God’s Honest Truth is a very fun Wisdom based game that incorporates role-playing strongly with skill checks. It bypasses complex drinking rules and focuses on the game.
For the Dungeon Master
Half of the games in the book I have made up at one tieme or another to introduce the idea of gambling to my group. Mini-games adds another way to challenge PCs and to distribute information and items. My favorite game for DMs to use is possession. It’s complex and requires all of the players to be involved. It also utilizes several different skills to increase the challenge level.
The Iron Word
5 Minute Mini-Games makes itself a must have supplement by filling a niche that few products have attempted. It aims to starve player boredom by always keeping the fantasy going.