First impressions of the Glide RPG
This isn't really a review, because I don't consider myself a reviewer - I think reviewing is a particular skill that a lot of people in the TTRPG community don't do as good a job as I'd like and I don't want to contribute to this problem. This is more my impressions from playing it once. It was going to be a post on Mastodon and then it got too big. I overall really liked it, but it was a bit different from what I expected, so maybe this will help other people decide if it's a game they'd like.
It was a bit different than I expected - not in a bad way though. It feels a lot like an Anna Blackwell game. If you liked Apothecaria you'd probably like this. If you are looking for something more strictly OSR in style, which is what I was expecting because of the source material, you might be disappointed. In particular, you can't really die. It's largely a game about managing resources, using the resources to explore and get more resources, and leveling up by improving your equipment, hiring companions, etc. It's also like those games in that there are a bunch of mechanics to keep track of - nothing like e.g. D&D 5E, but a lot more than say Cairn, and the mechanics are pretty core to the game.
As a game, it's quite well designed - there's a definite gameplay loop, various types of resources that can be exchanged for each other, with different tradeoffs. You could make a very good video game version of this game. The daily weather affects your plans from day to day in a way that forces some spontaneity. There are a lot of things like that which at first seem a bit fiddly and then when you start playing, you realize were pretty carefully thought out. The whole exploring desert vs non-desert squares makes quite a bit of sense, and I really like the mechanic that ensures a good balance between desert squares and other squares. You're probably always working towards a particular goal - doing quests for a faction, getting the credits to level up the next thing, even just trying to make your way behind the giant cliffs to see what's on the other side. I'm a big fan of exploration in games, and this game is all about exploration and does it quite well.
Also, I would definitely recommend getting a bunch of different small objects to use as tokens for the resources, otherwise you will be doing a lot of writing and erasing. It's also just more satisfying.
Thematically, it tones down the grittiness of Dune quite a bit, but also gets rid of the more questionable bits. I liked the guilds quite a bit (friendly factions). There are progressive series of quests for each which have a little storyline behind them. I didn't get incredibly far with any of them, but they generally seem to have goals that you as a player might also want to have. The Great Houses are good antagonists but don't immediately seem to play a major role.
This is maybe a me problem, but I found myself not roleplaying quite as much. If I were to play it more I might come up with some mechanics around having more meaningful NPCs, or random prompts to urge me to get out of thinking of it quite as much as a game. I haven't tried adding in the Scum and Villainy expansion yet, but that might do some of that. I'm definitely finding myself thinking of how I might want to expand it though, which seems like a good sign - what is there is a . This would also make the book super long, but I feel like I'd like to flesh out some of the locations a bit more. Maybe tying that together, having there be encounters with rivals - maybe failed rolls mean that an agent of a Great House got there first, for instance, but also have opportunities to undermine them as a separate set of quests - actually, I think this might make a cool expansion, a bit of extra complexity once you've gotten the hang of the core game. Maybe I'll make it.
Created November 2022