For the first time in several years, last night saw Paul and me rolling dice as we took part in a session of The One Ring. With James as our DM, his lovely partner (and my boss) Fiona as a dwarf scholar, Matt as a woodman spider hunter, Paul as a beorning warden and me as a hobbit explorer – the group set off from Lake Town, five years after the events of The Hobbit.
The only fantasy style table top role playing game I have previously played is Dungeons and Dragons 3-3.5 edition. I’d always found it overly complicated and every move by my characters in those games was always far too complex for me to work out without help.
The One Ring, on the other hand, was simple and elegant in comparison and quick to pick-up. It also didn’t seem as restrictive as DnD 4th ed. supposedly is. Rolling dice according to the number of points you had in related stats was a clear and obvious process. Players can always roll one dice to see if they can meet the requirement of a check, even if they’re not trained in that skill, and just boost with points of Hope if they don’t quite get there.
Whenever I played DnD it always felt like I was really restricted in what I was allowed to do that there was no logical precedent for my characters having chance knowledge or skill in different fields. So yeah, The One Ring gets a big thumbs up.
Now I look forward to next week. When the session ended last night, some great big stone thing was rising out of the river we were travelling by…