New Year, New Campaign! – Hexes & Bows Podcast S2E1


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With new dice, new projects, and new cast members, the Hexes & Bows Podcast is ready to surprise attack 2018!

We’re beyond thrilled to be recording and sharing our geeky content with you and cannot thank you enough for your continued support. We sincerely hope the winter holiday season kept you in good spirits and, perhaps, introduced you to new games! We’ve got lots of updates to share in this episode including some details regarding our actual play podcast, a new podcast release schedule, and a brand new cast member!

After the announcements you’ll find an excellent discussion about the impact of playing board games as a child may have impacted our lives as adults, sharing the love of tabletop gaming by introducing the hobby to family, how gamers can be involved with local communities and promote gaming in a positive light, and of course, Overwatch. Because… Overwatch (GO DYNASTY!).

We end the episode with two questions for you, dearest adventurer:

  1. How do you think gaming (tabletop) has influenced your life, especially if you were introduced to the hobby at an early age?
  2. Do you run/host/create tabletop gaming events for your community (after school programs, nursing homes, charity…)? If so, share with us the details!

Thank you so much for helping us make Hexes & Bows in 2017. Your support, kindness, and love of gaming continue to motivate us in improving the show for you. We can’t wait to share all of our new projects with you and we hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoy creating them!


Keep the Conversation Going: Connect with us on social media for more tabletop talk!

Happy Holidays & Updates

We at Hexes & Bows want to take a moment to wish everyone the happiest and merriest of Holidays this winter season! No matter what you celebrate, we hope you find some time to play games and share the things you love with people you love as well!

There are lots of things bubbling in the H&B creative cauldrons! First, we’ll be resuming our standard tabletop discussion podcast and releasing these episodes biweekly. Don’t fret! We’ll still be publishing more content every week! The second pot-a-brewin’ is our reviews! There’s loads of items for Mr. and Mrs. Gnome to go over and many more in the works! If there’s something you’d like us to tweet us your suggestion at: @hexesnbows!

Finally, we’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who filled out an application to join the Hexes & Bows Actual Play Podcast! We’ve been working on building a new creative team, and although we’re still determining the setting, we are so excited to join the actual play podcast world!

Our next D&D live tabletop game will be this Saturday, December 30th at 6PM CST! Cersten, Billy, and Crash now join Tony, Tara, and Chrissy as they learn of their character’s destiny with the Feywild Queen! Join us for the last D&D game of 2017 on twitch.tv/gnomedic.

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for supporting the Hexes & Bows Podcast. 2017 was an incredible learning experience and 2018 promises new content, new cast members, and more tabletop love!

Merry Critmas to everyone, May your shelves be full of games and your table surrounded by friends and family!

See you in 2018!

-Gnome & the Hexes & Bows Podcast team

H&B Podcast: Episode 10 with Tales from the Fandom

Is this a podcast or an interview? Not really sure, but it was an absolute pleasure having Gnome chat tabletop gaming with the host of Tales from the Fandom podcast, David Ginsburg!

(Press play to listen, or subscribe on iTunes, GooglePlay, or Podbean!)

 

David interviews different guests from every fandom imaginable on his podcast, so Gnome flipped the table and turned the questions on him! Learn about David’s favorite fandoms, his passions and experience in tabletop gaming, upcoming actual-play podcasts, now-successful Kickstarters, old school role-playing, and much more!

tales-from-the-fandom-podcastFollow David and Tales from the Fandom on:

iTunes
Twitter
Facebook
Website

The Clickables

Action Cats!
Schleyscapes
Tales from the Five Nations Podcast

Topics Discussed

Firefly, Brooklyn 9-9, Eberron, Keith Baker, Inspectors, Fiasco, Numenera, Tales from the Loop, Savage Worlds, Action Cats, Schleyscapes, Dungeons and Dragons, Vampire the Masquerade, The Last Airbender, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, My Little Pony, Ikea, AOL Roleplay, InsaneJournal

Audience Question

Our question to you is: do you roleplay? Have you roleplayed? What got you into roleplay? Is it something that you discuss publicly? We’d love to hear your experience regarding this! Let us know in the comments or on Twitter!

Action Cats Kickstarter with Keith Baker

Action Cats is the latest project created by well known roleplaying game designer and author Keith Baker. Action Cats is currently being funded on Kickstarter until August 1st and it is all about the Internet’s most beloved animal – cats.

You can listen to Keith Baker talk about the project on Tales from the Fandom podcast below.

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It’s a family friendly storytelling game where it is up to you to craft the best story. You’re given the beginning and the end of the story, but you fill in the story. The judge determines who has the best story!

You can find Action Cats by clicking on the links below:

Action Cats! Kickstarter

Video on how to play Action Cats!

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You can find Keith Baker at:
Keith Baker’s website
Twitter

Let’s Review: Manicdotes!

Gnome and Tara get their hands on Manicdotes!. This social, storytelling card game is a fun way to kick-start your game night!

Manicdotes!, created by Michael Hanson, “is a fun, fast-paced, challenging, social, storytelling card game. As the Storyteller, you are given an opening line (Story Starter) and a list of keywords (Words Card) that must be entwined into your tall-tale. Players must listen carefully to your fast-paced fable to identify which words were pulled from your Words Card. Manicdotes! is designed to be a fast-action experience that can be played time and time again.”

Gnome and Tara invited a few friends over to play this social, storytelling game! After several rounds, Tara was the victor and both she and Gnome had a solid understanding of the overall purpose of the game!

As with all of the Hexes & Bows reviews, Manicdotes! was scored on five categories: packaging, components, rules, replay value, and cost. Each score is the best out of 5 with 5 being the highest, most desirable score to achieve.

Packaging

File_004Both co-hosts strongly agreed that the packaging for Manicdotes! is the best overall selling point of the game. It’s bright and bold color choices along with a fun and unique font left both Tara and Gnome feeling nostalgic. The game looks like it was transplanted from the 1950s into the modern era!

Components

File_003The components were a bit of a hit and miss. Included in the game are 150 Words cards, 30 Story Starter Cards, 6 pads of paper, 8 pencils, and a 90-second sand timer.

While the colors of the cards match the external look of box and remain bright and colorful, the card stock quality was poor. After unraveling the card decks from their original plastic revealed many edges of the cards already suffered from damage. The corners of the cards were either bent, frayed, ripped, or splitting prior to shuffling. Trying to shuffle the decks was a surgical process requiring gentle hands and alternative methods of shuffling in order to prevent additional bending and folding of the cards.

The 90-second sand timer was timed 10 times and each time came out at 92 seconds, which, isn’t that big of a deal since that is more than enough time to generate a tall tale with the words card!

Tara was not a fan of the pencils and paper, while Gnome saw them as neither an advantage or disadvantage to the game. They’re nice to have in the game, but, according to the components list, their box was shorted 2 pads of paper.

Rules

Perhaps the most important element of game is its rules. Overall, the rules and general jist of the game is relatively easy to comprehend. Players draw one Starter Story and one Words card, create a story in 20 seconds, then convey that story in 90 seconds to the File_006other players at the table who try and guess which words in the story generated from the Words card! First player to 25 points wins! It’s that simple.

Unfortunately, this level of vagueness left some questions being asked, particularly involving wording regarding the Story Cards, “topics,” and “categories,” which are not described fully in the rules, if at all.

It is easy to create your own set of rules for the game and the official rules offer alternative ways to play the game or make it more challenging!

Replay Value

As with most investments, at least between Gnome and Tara, the ability to replay a game over and over and over is exceedingly valuable. Manicdotes! can quickly become a predictable game. After a few play-throughs, a player may associate particular words with a card and simply “guess” the rest of the words in the story without having to listen properly.File_005

One way to combat this, as suggested in the rules, is by drawing multiple Words cards and then selecting the first word on each card! This method deals with the repetitive association of words that would otherwise decrease the replayability far too soon.

Cost

Manicdotes! retails for $19.95 on Amazon, which is the only store to currently purchase the game from that Hexes & Bows could find. While Amazon includes 2-day shipping in the overall cost for “free shipping,” both Tara and Gnome felt the cost was relatively fair for a game “Made in America.”

Ultimately, Gnome and Tara collected their scores and Manicdotes! earned itself an average overall score of 3.34/5.00. Listen to the podcast for the complete breakdown of the score!

You can try out Manicdotes! for yourself at www.manicdotesthegame.com!

mancidotesthegame


Leave a comment below if you’ve played the game! We’d love to know your thoughts on it!

 

H&B Podcast Episode 009: Star Wars with Special Guest Darryl Vincent

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Mandalorian Merc Costume Club member and Star Wars expert, Darryl Vincent, joins the Hexes & Bows cast in today’s episode!

Due to technical difficulties (blame it on the Jawas) much of the footage was lost. However, thanks to a diligent gnome and some digital duct tape, we’re still able to enjoy the conversation with Darryl about his experiences with Star Wars: X-Wing, Clone Wars, and some old-fashioned AOL roleplaying!

We appreciate your patience with this episode and hope you enjoy it!

About Darryl

If there is anyone that knows anything about Star Wars it’s Darryl! An Army veteran and (as Gnome proclaims) Star Wars expert, Darryl joins the Hexes & Bows Podcast to share his experiences and adventures into the exciting world of costume building with the Mandalorian Mercenary Costume Club. Darryl also talks about playing Fantasy Flight’s X-Wing miniatures game and drops some insight on the Clone Wars cartoon.

To learn more about Darryl and the awesome things he does, check out these links!

Follow us on Social Media

Stay up-to-date with the latest happenings involving Hexes & Bows! Everything from awesome photos to game schedules, there’s plenty going on within the H&B community!

Facebook| Instagram | Twitter | Twitch

H&B Reviews: Adventure Scents

Ever wonder what a barnacle-laden, booty hauling pirate ship really smells like? Then check out our podcast review of Adventure Scents by Jennifer Howlett!

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If you’d like to buy some Adventure Scents for your next tabletop session, head to their website here!

AdventureScentsLogo

Scents Reviewed:

Final Review Score:

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H&B PODCAST EPISODE 007: Extra Life United!

This episode of Hexes & Bows Podcast steps away from the world of tabletop gaming to discuss the extraordinary charity event known as Extra Life United! Join Gnome and Hansard as they recall their experiences at Coronado Springs Resort in Disney, Orlando, Florida! *Be advised, there is some adult language used after 00:49:00 as the conversation moves away from Extra Life.*

Gnome and Hansard happily share their experiences at Extra Life United 2017. Gnome, a volunteer, and Hansard, a competitor, offer two different viewpoints of this wonderful event that allowed many gamers to take home a chunk of $150,000 for their local children’s hospital through Extra Life!

We also talk about International TableTop Day which is coming up on April 29th, 2017! Let us know in the comments what games you’re playing for this epic day of gaming!

As the conversation continues, special guest Chris from Car Bomb Podcast returns to talk about Squarriors: The Card Game‘s current Kickstarter campaign with Gnome! Get more insight on the campaign, reasons to back, and how to play. STCG is over 200% funded, so definitely support their Kickstarter!

Join us next week as we return to our usual discussions about tabletop and roleplaying games! Thanks for listening!

#fuckyourtea (you’ll get it if you listen to this podcast :P)

The Clickables:

Games Discussed:

Duck Game, Brawlhalla, Nidhogg, Ticket to Ride, Squarriors: TCG, Gangbeasts

Want to help sick and injured kids through Extra Life? Sign up here! Or, support Gnome, Hansard, or Chris‘s Extra Life efforts!

H&B Podcast Episode 006: Ambience and NPCs

Jumping back into the swing of things, Joe, Tim, and Hansard spearhead this week’s episode of the podcast!  The cast discusses a rather satirical Kickstarter called, Satanic Panicsetting the mood at the gaming table, and the creative thought processes behind making NPCs.

Kickstarter

Sounds and Scents

H&B Podcast Episode 005: When is a Quest Not a Quest?

Did someone say roleplaying? Yes! Hexes & Bows Podcast finally starts roleplaying with special guest Chris from Car Bomb Podcast!

We’re joined today by variety podcaster Chris from Car Bomb Podcast (check out their show here!).  Us Americans are taught a thing or two about Tim Hortons and the paranoia and curse of playing “roll up the rim.” We also get a little serious and inquire about making roleplaying games more accessible by using American Sign Language.  While we don’t have any real answers, please inform us if you or someone you know plays any sort of TRPG while using ASL, we’d love to learn more!

This week Kickstarter recommendations include Companion’s Tale, Innocents, and Shore of Anaverde Card Set. Be sure to listen to learn more about these interesting games!

Now, we know we’ve been talking about roleplaying on the show, but tonight we finally begin! Sit back and listen to the stories of a group of NPC townsfolk kibitzing and kvelling in the Scroll and Bottle tavern hidden above a bookstore.  What happens when the city of Galter’s Mayor decides to squander away all of their taxes on a giant, singular diamond?


 

If your adventuring party does something silly, crazy, ridiculous, or just obscene to local NPCs, let us know! We’d love to share your experience as if your party traversed through the city of Galter!

Thanks for listening!

Be sure to follow us here on WordPress, Instagramand Twitter: we love hearing your comments and seeing what you’re playing!

Don’t forget to give a listen to Car Bomb Podcast for a variety of topics from geek to gaming to movies to music and so much more!