grandexperiment (grandexperiment) wrote,
grandexperiment
grandexperiment

[Far Away Land] First Impressions

I received my PDF copies of Far Away Land last week, and the books are on their way. Leaving aside how this was easily the best KS I have been involved in, the RPG is simply wonderful. I am betting that this will be my top RPG for 2014 :)

Far Away Land is an excellent light hearted fantasy RPG. It has its roots in old school D&D in terms of what the book covers (mass combat, crafting, kingdom management, travelling), but it has been completely rebuilt from the ground up. The result is an excellent Order of the Stick or Adventure Time style fantasy RPG. Its quirky but it takes the inspirations that make it quirky pretty seriously, adding a real depth to the comedy and fantasy.

The base system is robust yet easy to use (and imagine it would remain so even after a few beers). There is a lot of flexibility from PC creation through to world building and running the game itself. It relies on GM discretion and the group's social contract, but if you are playing Far Away Land, you should be ready for free form creation with the rest of the group. Its also a very complete RPG as it stands with rules, setting, creatures, magic items, world building, adventure building and much more.

Far Away Land is also an excellent RPG for young players. The system isn't dumbed down for a younger audience, but its pitched well at them. Its focus on fun and trying to roll with whatever your imagination creates will be appealing to that audience. I also suspect that the world building exercises may be an excellent activity for younger players as they can tell stories, create worlds and draw maps, that inspire the adventures that their PCs adventure in.

I plan to try Far Away Land in at least two events. The first will be at Not D&D Con, which will be mature and experienced RPGers in a relaxed setting. I am tempted to simply adapt on the fly the story of the Hobbit to the world created during the world building exercise.

The second will be at Adventure Squad. For the latter, I plan to add some structure to the free form aspects of world building by creating 6 geographical features and 6 architectural features to be placed on the map by the young players. I will then attempt to tease out stories and concepts about the world on the map, including identifying several denizens that inhabit it. With any luck, this exercise will be a game in and of itself and provide the backdrop for the adventures that PCs of the young players.
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