Join the BoLS Crew as we discover the Magic of Friendship.
Hey there BoLS fans. Got a treat for you today–Ninja Division sent over a copy of My Little Pony, Tails of Equestria, and today, Stable Abe and I are flipping through it for your delight and entertainment. From the get go, I jst want to point out what a well-thought-out game this is. It’s the perfect way to introduce new players into the world of roleplaying, and it’s got a ton of appeal for people who are fans of the show. So why not dive in with us as we make our way through the main book for My Little Pony: Tails of Equestria.
Now as we mentioned earlier, this is a fantastic game for newer players. As you’ll see, the rules are fairly streamlined–there are three stats, a system of stamina and special powers derived from the type of pony you pick–but there’s enough complexity in there to have something for people to grab onto. What Tails of Equestria does best, though, is nail the theme of the game. Most games have a particular ethos to them, one reflected in everything from the choice of mechanics to the interactions between classes/npcs/characters, etc. And in ToE, the very first chapter of “rules” right after character creation is not combat or skills or feats or equipment–it’s friendship.
It’s the message of the game–friendship helps you deal with your problems, whether they are external, like a magic unicorn running amok and turning people into statues, or internal, like the constant need to make a moment all about yourself. It’s reflected in every layer of the mechanics. One of the big awards for doing things is Friendship Tokens, which you can use to pass checks or influence die rolls, and you’re awarded them for helping your friends deal with their problems–or–for being stymied by your own “flaws” and needing the help of your friends. It takes everyone chipping in to get through an adventure, and has this wonderful way of reframing conflicts with an eye towards cooperation.
But in spite of our proclamation that the game is clearly targeted at newer players, it doesn’t pull any punches in the execution. There’s a lot of humor present that can help connect just about anyone to the material–check out some of the creatures you’ll encounter.
Anyway, with its combination of humor, cooperation, and friendship, Tails of Equestria is a fantastic way to get players excited about gaming. And I’m gonna go ahead and say life in general. But your mileage may vary. At any rate, Tails of Equestria chock full of references to its source material and is sure to appeal to any fan of the cartoon. There’s lots of art and little inside jokes to try and connect with fans. And the first adventure has your characters interacting with the core cast of the show–they know their audience, and how to appeal to them.
As well there’s a handy guide for new GMs (younger GMs, perhaps, but new ones just the same) to talk about handling the story and guiding players through an adventure. There’s no dumbing down of RPG mechanics–nor is there a lack of consequences for actions, this is a real, and a very solid, roleplaying game. But it’s one that knows what exactly it wants to say. It has a very clear message, and that’s one of the things I love about this game…it goes after its target with the broadest appeal and paves the way for all kinds of magic moments around the table. So, if you’re interested, feel free to check out My Little Pony, Tails of Equestria, now available in stores.
Alright that’s enough horsin’ around, just go read the book already!