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Microscope In Spanish

El Refugio de Ryhope is bringing Microscope to Spanish speakers world-wide! They did a great job with Follow, and it’s always exciting to see Microscope unleashed on a whole new community.

Ben Robbins | March 7th, 2023 | , | 1 comment

Two-Player Creativity Is Harder

Of course not every game of In This World has been magical, but when I hear about sessions that dragged, they often have one thing in common: Only two players. In a high creativity game, the difference between two and three players is bigger than it seems. When there’s only one other person in the […]

Ben Robbins | January 31st, 2023 | , , , , | 1 comment

“the stories it lets me tell with my dearest friends”

Sometimes it’s very nice to check your email: As we’ve gotten to the end of the year, folks are reflecting on the tabletop we’ve gotten to play over the last 12 months, and the standout for me was an incredible four-session run at Kingdom 2e that I’m going to be thinking about for ages. That […]

Ben Robbins | December 7th, 2022 | , , ,

Metal of the Gods

Humanity steals metal from the Gods… HEAVY METAL… In a classic case of someone suggesting an idea, then someone else taking that idea a little further, than someone else going even farther, we decided to do a quick Microscope game that was pure cosmic metal, and discovered in the process that my friends are stone […]

Ben Robbins | August 28th, 2022 | , , | 1 comment

“The rules are there to help you get the most out of your time”

A quick interview with the nice folks of Pizza Games in Milan: I would definitely double down on the idea that the purpose of game rules is to help us get the most out of our time. All the other stuff — having fun, getting on the same page, being clearly written — comes back […]

Ben Robbins | July 18th, 2022 | , , , , | 2 comments

It Never Ends

The most unrealistic thing about Microscope is that the history has an end. There’s a starting bookend and an ending bookend. Real history never ends. It just keeps going and going. Every victory sets the stage for the next battle, but so does every defeat. The next election will fix things! Or destroy things! Yes, […]

Ben Robbins | June 26th, 2022 | , | 2 comments

Microscope In the Classroom: Collaboration Is Not Easy

Along the way, the students learn and reinforce some valuable skills. Collaboration is not easy. Strong personalities have to tone it down to ensure everyone has a voice. Quieter personalities find themselves thrust into the spotlight, having to at least briefly take on a leadership role within the group. Attention must be paid to cause-effect […]

Ben Robbins | March 14th, 2022 | ,

Mercenaries vs Terraformers

On a lark we sat down (virtually) to play some Microscope, and wound up making a “Day of the Triffids meets the Black Company meets Starship Troopers (the movie)” kind of history. It was less about the aliens and more about the humans banding together to fight back… or not! Specifically the poor soldiers fighting […]

Ben Robbins | September 23rd, 2021 | ,

Which Kid Touches the Giant Robot?

Three kids are playing in the woods when they stumble upon a towering metal figure, sprawled in a crater. Who will touch it first? There are dares and double-dares, scuffles, poking sticks, and finally double-dog dares, until one kid reaches out a trembling hand to touch the shining metal figure… and disappears. Long before I […]

Ben Robbins | September 13th, 2021 | , , , , | 1 comment

Microscope Comes to Japan

Microscope has arrived in Japan! You can get the PDF right now. The print edition will follow later, thanks to Harrow Hill, my Japanese publishers!

Ben Robbins | February 13th, 2021 | , | 1 comment

What’s the Korean word for Microscope?

Want a Korean translation of Microscope? This is your lucky day, because it is crowdfunding right now. Both Microscope and Microscope Explorer, actually. The funding goal has already been reached, so congratulations to Yiyagi wa Nori (“Story and Game”), my Korean publishers!

Ben Robbins | September 26th, 2020 | , ,

Angels & Offspring

Me: Welcome to Microscope! What kind of history should we make? “Emergence of magic!” “Angels!” “The extinction of mankind!” Me: Cool. What if we combine all three? Birthrates in our modern world dwindle, which (we discover in play) is because angels have walked unseen among us and judged that humanity’s time should come to an […]

Ben Robbins | January 22nd, 2020 | , | 2 comments

Last Stand of the Murderfists

In the atomic wastelands of the future, the Murderfists are the undisputed champions of the brutal sport, Killball. But now they stand before the mutant overlord, awaiting judgment. Their crime? Stopping the execution of their comrade, condemned to slow-death in the sands for daring to love a houri of the tyrant’s harem. From his gilded […]

Ben Robbins | January 14th, 2020 | ,

A Scene Less Traveled

Science! Invention! Experimentation! It’s what separates us from the apes. The ones on The Planet of the Apes. Those guys were very frowny-faced about new ideas. While I was working on the new version of Union, I also used that opportunity to experiment with some components of Microscope. The original Union was a variant that […]

Ben Robbins | November 11th, 2018 | ,