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The Douchey DM » Adventure Design

PC Back Story Example

Tweet A little more on PC backstories. I like them short, concise and packed with ideas. To illustrate, I’ll give you an example backstory for a cosmic horror PC. The son of a respected professor father from a prestigious university and a renown physician mother, Dr. Arthur Stillman lived a comfortable life, attending the best schools and universities. After finishing his post graduate work, he struggled finding employment until he received a position at Rhinefall University in west Pennsylvania as a professor of parapsychology. While respected by most of his colleagues, his unconventional theories have drawn criticism and ridicule from several prominent academicians in his field, most notably,  the coldly skeptical Dr. Henry Turn from Carrow College in upstate New York. Within these two paragraphs and three sentences, we have plenty of plot hooks … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Advice

A look at my con-game prep.

Tweet Last weekend at Strategicon’s Gateway 2013, I ran a GURPS game called the Overwarlord’s Emissaries. The game is set in a setting I’m working on, called Blood, Blade and Tusk. It’s an alternate history where – just as the crusades are about to start – hordes of orcs show up in France, dramatically changing the course of history. In this game, two hundred years of war and a successful series of campaigns by the orcs’ Overwarlord Tu’ch Ra’tan has left the kingdoms of Christendom nearly bankrupt and ready to make peace. The party of player characters consists of the bitterly divided orc tribes’ peace emissaries. Some tribes sent their fiercest orc warriors. Other tribes, sincerely ready for peace, sent more learned orcs (a merchant, a poet, and a shaman). Christendom was also divided … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Advice

Drama Tension Conflict – Name Change and Con Playtests

Drama Tension Conflict – Name Change and Con Playtests

Tweet Note: This article is essentially some design notes about my table-top RPG system, Moment of Truth. Revision 1.3, which has not yet been playtested, is available for download at angryfolk.com/publishing/rev1-3, if you’d like to take a look. I’ve changed the name of Drama Tension Conflict to Moment of Truth. The original name came up quite literally as a brainstorming exercise and was nothing more than a working title. The Moment of Truth mechanic has become more central to … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Alternate Views, General Gaming, Misc

Upheaval in RPGs

Upheaval in RPGs

Tweet **Spoiler Alert** If you are listening to our Actual Play podcasts of the L5R game — Saga of the Inukai, you may want to skip this article until you hear Session 11, as it involves events that took place in that session. We had a pretty Earth-shattering event happen in our last L5R session. The party’s daimyo was forcibly removed by his older brother (who is daimyo of other lands a few day’s journey away. A commenter … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design

What I Leaned About Dungeons on My Summer Vacation

What I Leaned About Dungeons on My Summer Vacation

Tweet The family and I went to Sequoia National Park for a few days of camping. On our second day there, we took the Crystal Cave tour and for the first time, I got to actually creep through a dimly lit cave complex.  I’ve always wanted to go caving or spelunking. I love the idea of exploring places that have been locked away for a million years, the dark, creepy environment, the opportunity to see something unseen … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Alternate Views