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The Douchey DM » Advice

GenCon 2014: What I learned.

Tweet Here I am at home, recovering from another trip to the Best Four Days in Gaming. That’s right, I was able to attend my fourth GenCon in Indianapolis this year. It was an amazing experience to say the least, and probably my favorite con attendance ever to say the most. Let me tell you a little bit about why, and maybe I can make you even more jealous than you already are. First off, as I said, this is my fourth time attending this amazing gaming Mecca. My first year happened in 2010 when I was unemployed and had spent lots of my time helping a local game store owner open his first shop. As a thank you, he gave me a badge to the con … Read entire article »

Filed under: Advice, General Gaming, Misc

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

The Perfect Backstory

Tweet Tomorrow night on Happy Jacks RPG Podcast, sponsored by Crone, the RPG, by the way, we’re going to talk player character backstories. Specifically, we’re going to talk about the sorts of item in backstories that GMs love to see. So in preparation of that discussion, I’d like to detail a few things that I love to see in PC backstories. One: Generates NPCs When gearing up a game, one of the most time-consuming tasks is developing a cast of non-player characters. Crowd sourcing this to your players is a great way to lighten the work load. It doesn’t just have to be parents and other family members, though those can be fun too. And it doesn’t have to be mortal enemies either. It might be a local fence that a thief knows and trusts. Perhaps … Read entire article »

Filed under: 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

JiB on GM’ing : An Option to Black and White Resolutions

Tweet     Valen’s eyes narrowed, matching his movements with his opponent. Circling left as the dark cloaked highwayman moved to his left. With every step of the dance they moved warily closer together until one or the other would decide they would move. The glittering rapier in his opponent’s hand dipped a bit weaving out to the side, a small mistake but a mistake none the less and with the speed of a striking viper Valen’s own rapier darted forward propelled by the powerful lunge that began with the ground upon which he stood. Too late Valen realized his own error in allowing himself to be baited by his enemy. Now though he stood at a forking in a road, either he would take the inevitable hit or he would roll … Read entire article »

Filed under: Advice, Alternate Views, General Gaming, Inspiration