Embracing the Terror in Aliens & Asteroids

One of the things that has come up time and again is the “horror” or “terror” aspect of Aliens & Asteroids, and yet it’s something we’ve really just glossed over in those discussions. Well, I want to chat about that a bit. Though I am not a military person, I’ve seen glimpses of the lasting…

Diving into the Numbers

Though in my day job, I’m a software engineer, the math associated with most types of engineering has never been my strong suit. I use computers to do a lot of the number crunching for me, and that always ends up with interesting results. Because of that, it becomes more about algorithms than results most…

Send in the Drones, Part 3

So far we’ve talked about methods of locomotion and different functional approaches to creating drones in Aliens & Asteroids, but what about the pointy end? Weapons are probably going to be one of those crazy areas that really keep players thinking creatively and trying different things as bigger and badder villains emerge on the scene.…

Aliens & Asteroids: The First Public Playtest, Pt 5

Over the last few posts, I’ve discussed how one two hour session went at Petrie’s Family Games as the first public playtest of Aliens & Asteroids. And honestly, I think it went really well. It went so well in fact, we’ve had three more playtest sessions with a variety of players (and John was in…

Aliens & Asteroids: The First Public Playtest, Pt 4

Last time, our technician managed to dislodge the green goo he wanted from the device attached to the alien habitat. But apparently that was a bit like disturbing a hornet’s nest because a Grey Man stepped out of the habitat airlock with a gun pointed at the party! (Read more about getting the goo off…

Aliens & Asteroids: The First Public Playtest, Pt 3

In the last post, John’s technician “Sean Samsonite” and his drone (the “S.S. Prototype 1”) valiantly headed down into the crater with the alien bits and pieces. And when he spotted the jar of green alien goo on a device with blinking lights, he got very excited. So excited in fact that he jumped on…

Aliens & Asteroids: The First Public Playtest, Pt 2

In the last post, I covered a bit of the terror I felt when trying the whole “public playtest” thing again at Petries’ Family Games. Sure, Cameron was helping out by offering a space and telling folks about it on the website as well as on Facebook, but would it be enough? Well, apparently it…

Aliens & Asteroids: The First Public Playtest, Pt 1

When beginning a brand new effort for a completely new rules system and setting, there’s always a bit of terror. Is it good enough? What will people think? Will folks have fun? Will anybody show up? Wait? What do you mean “will anybody show up?” Well, several weeks ago I started something completely terrifying for…

The Trick is to Keep Breathing

The title of this post comes from a great song done by the group Garbage back in the 1990s, but definitely applies to dealing with certain conditions in a science fiction setting. Breathable atmosphere is one of those things most creatures require to survive. In the human case, we tend to like a good mix…

The Gravity of the Situation

Dealing once again with a science fiction setting after so many years of being focused in the realms of fantasy, I’ve been forced to deal with several things I’ve not really pondered before as a game designer. One is the application of gravity. One of the many alien races we’ve come up with so far…

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