Continuing with the review of Lamentations of the Flame Princess (Grindhouse Edition) by James Raggi, with the first part in this link, today I will talk about the Referee’s book, dedicated to various questions that referees must consider to handle their task in a satisfactory manner, a fact that will be really helpful to beginning game masters but also useful to anyone with a long time mastering (in fact it’s always positive to remember all that is required to be a referee in role-playing games).
First of all the author presents the role of the referee in role-playing games in a clear and concise manner that can be resumed with the following points:
- The referee is in charge of making alive the world where adventures are developed
- It’s recommended that referees use the rules of the game in a fair, equilibrate and logical manner
- The referee must accomplish players to have a good time and wanting to repeat, this will redundate in his own satisfaction, because as he learns and refines his capacities he will also improve his style and his imagination could grow with more care (a rewarding fact in itself)
The next two chapters treat adventure and campaign design, both offer the referee an extended range of advises and ideas to create his own adventures and adapt the real world (because not necessarily must be based in Western European myth and traditions, there are many more cultures in our planet worth to be known), use previously published campaign worlds or invent them completely (the game don’t have his own setting so we are free to use our own imaginations or get inspired by fiction works we like).
As for Non Playing Characters, Monsters and Magical Objects there aren’t extensive lists with its game stats (don’t forget that it’s recommended to surprise players with our own creations so they will be expectant). Instead we will find some advice to create them and a few samples, like the classical gothic vampire and the ouija.
It’s also interesting to remark the chapter with notes for converting previously existent material (suited for converting characters and monsters between different games based in Dungeons & Dragons or similar crafted games) that also includes a conversion table for Armor Class that can be really interesting and useful, and a list of publishers of games and supplements that can be compatible with Lamentations of the Flame Princess.
Ending the book of the referee there’s the introductory adventure A Stranger Storm and useful tables for NPC reactions, its characteristics, experience points based in Monster’s Hit Dice and a table for determining the characteristics of settlements that characters will find in their travels.
Next chapter will be about the third book, which comes with an extended game tutorial.
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