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The Douchey DM » Entries tagged with "GMing"

People, Places (and later, Plans)

Tweet I’m currently running two games and have a convention coming up (where I’m also running two one-shots), so it’s no surprise that game prep has been at the forefront of my mind. The way I see it, my game preparation has three areas of concentration: people, places and plans. I’ll talk about about the first two this time around and the last one later. People (NPCs) This should be the primary concern of every GM. Your players have created characters with (hopefully) interesting backstories, motives, hopes and dreams. They deserve interesting people to interact with. I always try to start with motivations when it comes to NPCs. If I know what they want out of life (both short-term and long-term) I know how they’ll react in most situations. I also try to get an … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Inspiration

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

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

Creating a Scene in an RPG

Tweet Scenes are the building blocks of an adventure. They are those moments when the player characters interact with the setting, be it NPCs, searching a site for clues, etc. Organizing your adventure in scenes is, to my mind, the most flexible way to craft an adventure, but there are several questions the GM must ask himself in order to keep that flexibility and have a satisfying session. What Is the Purpose of the Scene? First and foremost, you need to know what your’e trying to accomplish with the scene. Does the scene exist to: Bring about combat or possibly bring it about? Provide the PCs with information? Allow the PCs to gather information? Give time to develop the PCs? Make time for PC-to-PC interaction? Introduce or develop an NPC? Introduce a MacGuffin? There are countess other possible reasons, I just listed … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Advice

Empowering Players

Tweet We all have seen players completely take their GM by surprise. Usually, the GM has planned one or two specific ways for the players to handle a challenge… and the players try something completely different. This creates a crossroad for the game. Is the GM willing to consider alternative solutions to the problem? The answer should be “yes.” I’m not saying that the GM should always give in to what the players want, but they SHOULD be open to considering logical solutions other than the ones they planned. When the players’ options are allowed, the game changes from the general mice in a maze scenario to a game where players are empowered. The players can stop looking for the “right answer” and really approach the problem from their character’s point of view. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Advice, General Gaming, Table Politics