One comment on “. . . Playing Pendragon

  1. Cool write up. Pendragon is a game about which I’ve always been fascinated. Burning Wheel is another. I think both of those games have some unique perspectives about what an RPG should be, and I applaud both their ambition.

    I found myself teaching Sir Gawain and the Green Knight this week (and Lanval last week), and in doing so, I was impressed at how well the game models the genre. I imagine that the game is much more impressive and enjoyable to a player who loves Arthurian romance and knows the genre well. When Lanval reveals his lady’s existence to Guinevere, I could just see him failing that Reckless roll.

    That said, while I’m finding some aspects of gameplay very simple, I’m finding that other parts are too detached from the core system of the game. For example, combat is very elegant and easy to grasp, and it operates very similarly to skill and trait checks. The Battle rules, however, seem needlessly complex in comparison. Indeed, I messed those up badly.

    I’m also unsure of how much to invest in the various sourcebooks as they seem to add levels of details and complexity that frighten me. However, the flowchart in the expanded rules seems better organized than the description in the main book, so I may have to invest in that book in order to make the battle more appealing. Likewise, the detail that the Book of Manors seems to provide is daunting; however, in a game about building family lines and expanding one’s holding, such detail might improve the experience. I’m thinking that I might try to get us through the current period before introducing any more complexity.

    Anyway, I’m looking forward to seeing Balduf, Lucears, and Guiles face off against the Specter King next time. He is a dangerous opponent. Prepare well.

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