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Wednesday, August 20

Tiny Adventures: Dungeons and Dragons on Facebook

I'm TOTALLY addicted to this adventure game, which is a lot like the old ProgressQuest (http://www.progressquest.com), in which the basic conceit of D&D -- that characters kill monsters and take their stuff -- is taken to an extreme wherein the player does absolutely nothing and lets the computer do all the work. This is still strangely satisfying, which is why ProgressQuest has like a bazillion downloads even though it's a joke. Us gamers LOVE the notion of the increasing value of something we own even when that thing we own is a concept that basically grows by itself.

Finally, WOTC got something right before anyone else thought of it. Using a comprehensive but relatively basic version of D&D 4.0, they created Tiny Adventures. Tiny Adventures is basically ProgressQuest for Facebook. And it's a blast.

There's a bit more interactivity of course. You pick the character type you want to play, choose equipment, and then sit back and watch the chapters of your character's adventures unfold. You have the option of using items during your quest which can influence the outcome, but the player is largely a bystander. There's some limited interactivity amongst other players (you can heal each other and "buff" each other), but there's oddly no means of creating an adventuring party. I assume that will be added later.

At heart, Tiny Adventures is like one of those Which-Way Adventure books, without the decision-making. Your character plods along from chapter to chapter in the quest until he either runs home, too wounded to continue, or triumphs. Monsters are slain, levels are gained, and treasure is bought and sold. The genius of Tiny Adventures is the countdown. The game is intentionally slow-paced and provides updates intermittently. The counter in the top right corner clicks away while you wait.

This is the perfect game for someone doing something else (like work). It's MADE for playing in the background. And it's so freaking addicting I can't even tell you...other than that the whole server crashed due to too many users. And now I'm going through withdrawal! Blast is second level and he was just about to kill that bandit...

Heck, I'm so addicted I'm not sure I want more people on the server. But what the heck, the more the merrier: http://apps.new.facebook.com/tinyadventures


posted by Michael Tresca at 3:40 PM

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