Shitloada shit been going on. A very stressful period at work and many games I've not written about. So where to begin?
Let's go with Rogue Trader. And massed battles and on how Rogue Trader seems not to support them. But, umm... I was really tired that day so the not-so-grand success might be due to it. But then again, was I tired because there was nothing to grab at the session?
I had somehow developed a preconceived notion that my Explorator would not be allowed to do anything useful save for shooting shit. I do not know why I had this notion as I've had my Explorator do some other shit earlier. Maybe it is just disappointment on the difference between the power level I had thought the PC's would be having before the game begun and what it actually was in games sessions.
Anyway I had gotten so passive that the GM had to push the investigation and opening of the Farming Pods down my throat before I got down to it. So there's certainly some adjusting of the attitude to be done on my part before the new session. Must try more stuff out even if it means getting denied to do stuff more.
Be it as may, the mass battle part was not conducted well. What should have been epic and cinematic showdown and a major point of exposition on the plot, became an exercise in boring, punctuated by occasional single die roll.
So what I would have done differently if it was my game? Dunno man, I have a pretty shit history on mass battles myself. The one exception being some WFRP stuff, that was not a load of suck, but not memorable either. There I made the PCs a crack team having a special mission inside the battle and then simply narrated the rest of the battle based on the success of the PCs. Don't know if that approach would have worked here, though. We were supposed to lead the battle you see. We'll we did not.
So maybe the problem was on the players' side too. We should have organized to each lead a front ourselves instead of fighting as foot soldiers. Then we could have taken a front at a time and rolled for both our own and our subordinates rolls. Yeah-yeah, our PCs do not have the necessary skills, but I think there would have been more fun -- or at least shit to do -- when done in that way. So in the end, the responsibility of that evenings boretude was ours too. Bot yeah, maybe the battle could have had more narration anyway.
What else? What else? Oh yeah, I've now played some more indie games. 3:16 and Fiasco were huge successes while Dogs in the Vineyard sucked ass. OTOH I think that DitV was presented in unfavorable conditions as the structure of the game does not allow well for time-boxed games. DitV is more of a traditional campaign game and should be played leisurely and without time constraints, otherwise the story becomes constipated and unnatural.
There was also some minor structural shit going down as the order we did things was not dramatically optimal. And I was also too tired to be able to create a whole, interesting alter ego for that one. Plus some of the rules were not interpreted unambiguously. So there was too much baggage on the poor game to say if it suits me or if it does not.
Then there's Descent and Munchkin and Chaos in the Old World. Descent has been good fun for the off-game banter and imagining the subterranean violence. Otherwise the game has big problems. There's too much grinding and a severe disconnect between the grand campaign and hitting shit with a stick in a cave. And the cave chess bores me, as I mostly do what others have calculated. Our team does not do the 'teamplaying' bit well in the sense that everyone would get to contribute and communicate and plan shit together. So there's not much to lean on once the off-game jokes get old and hitting shit with a stick becomes routine. My recipe would be shorter dungeons more closely connected to the main plot. Or maybe no campaign gaming, can't know.
I have trouble with playing well both the Munchkin and the Chaos in the Old World. In fact, I suck ass in them. But Munchkin I hate and CitOW I kinda like. Why? Dunno, Munchkin just does not have the humor value for me and I am not able to enjoy the social back-stabbery aspect of the game. There's also the "host gets to cheat" part, which destroys the game immediately for me. CitOW has the same ingredients in a board game format in principle, but somehow there seems to be more that stirs my imagination and there always is something to try to advance. Not one of my favorites, but I'll play it without grimaces and it passes the time well enough.
So there you have it, extra-whiney to compensate for unfrequent updates.