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You’ll never forget your first one…

 

I’m spending Christmas at my parent’s place, and since my gaming computer is not so easy to carry around, I’m stuck with my laptop here. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t visit my family so I can game twenty-four-seven, but it’s nice to have something with you to keep in touch with the world.

My lack of hardware made me find games that I could play on my laptop, and so I discovered that the PC version of the RPG classic Final Fantasy VII is on sale on the Square Enix Store. Since I’m more than willing to pay just €6,50 for such an epic game, I opened my PayPal wallet and just minutes later, I returned to Midgar and the adventures of Cloud and his allies.

It’s a crazy experience, revisiting the game that started my love for the genre. It’s like travelling back in time, knowing what the future of RPG’s will look like. Playing a game with an old-school ATB combat system (and a still awesome magic system) makes you forget about the emphasis modern RPG’s put on action-rich combat and dynamic experiences. The quite linear progression of both the story and your characters is something that would be the death of any new title, but in the time this jewel was released, it was praised and loved. Oh, how I remember the days when I put the first of three discs in my PSX, and how my brother, my friends and I enjoyed the marvelous world Square had created. Dressed in our pyjamas and armed with endless reservoirs of patience, we became one with the epic story and grand world of Final Fantasy VII.

Maybe it’s nostalgia combined with the holiday spirit, but as I equipped my heroes with Materia and started chasing Sephiroth, there were several occasions that brought tears to my eyes and a kind of sadness. I know that this generation of gamers will never experience a game like this again, and that my children will ask me what “my” generation found so great about this game, but just like my first kiss, I will never forget my first RPG love. I’ve already placed a box of tissues next to my laptop, knowing well what moments of tearjerkery await me.

Now excuse me, while I trod down memory lane, slaying monsters and breeding Chocobos…

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Riverlands Saga – My Song of Ice and Fire

“The Iron Throne, GRR Martin” by MarcSimonetti. Click the picture to go to his awesome gallery

 

Judging by all the TSW posts you’ve been seeing so far, you might think that all I do is playing one MMO when I’m not working. Fortunately, I was lucky enough to start a monthly SIFRP game with two of my long-time players. Next to this campaign being my first time using the SIFRP rules and Westeros setting, it is also my first time playing via Skype. Yep, the times where my friends and I could just meet to game are gone, as we decided to spread all over Europe. I raise my mug of Dornish wine in honour of modern technology, allowing us to play through the world-wide web.

Anyway, the campaign, which is titled the Riverlands Saga, focuses on the minor House Yannor, bannerhouse to the Tullys in the Riverlands. Taking place just a few months after Robert’s Rebellion, the player characters have been tasked by Edmure Tully to investigate rumours of trouble in House Dulver. It seems that the lord of the House is preparing for war, and the last thing the recovering Riverlands need is another vendetta between rival Houses.

The main characters are Jonas Yannor and his twin brother Gavin, along with the bastard and ward from House Bolton, Dana Snow. Jonas, as heir of the House, is being groomed against his will to rule the Yannor lands one day, while his twin brother shows far more interest in such a function. Dana, a talented huntress and reluctant noble lady, dreams of a stranger from the North and longs for roaming the wild lands one day. This unique combination of characters is an interesting mix, which has already shown to offer some great stories.

Next Sunday, we’ll play our next session, and I will post recaps of all the previous sessions on this blog as soon as possible. In the mean time, I’m curious to hear about your experiences with roleplaying in Westeros. What stories can you share from any corner of the Seven Kingdoms?