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The Douchey DM » Entries tagged with "GURPS"

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

Topic Preview: What Makes a Good Plot Hook

Topic Preview: What Makes a Good Plot Hook

Tweet Plot hook. It’s a term most GMs are familiar with. We often drop what we think is a plot hook , expecting the players to jump into action, yet we often get frustrated as they look at each other, befuddled, paralyzed with inaction. Two things go into a plot hook, and both are important for compelling action from the PCs. One: A Reason to Get Involved. Without a compelling reason to get involved in the story you’re trying … Read entire article »

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

Gateway 2012 Lessons Learned

Gateway 2012 Lessons Learned

Tweet The last Strategicon convention of 2012 is now history. As I often like to do, I’m now thinking about those games — what went right and what didn’t and what can I improve for the next con. Generally Speaking I ran two games this time around, and both were in GURPS. One was a 1920s cosmic horror game (a la Call of Cthulhu) and the other was a murder mystery in a fantasy setting (I used the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, Advice, Featured, General Gaming

A Study in Pre-Game Collaboration

Tweet So the first session of my Google+ GURPS Fantasy game just ended. We played for about two hours, had a couple of crashing and glitches, but all-in-all it was a fun session. My preparation for this game started long ago with some world building. Most of it was big picture stuff: What’s the religion like? How does magic fit in? What are the large-scale conflicts in the world? I also wrote up a few short adventure hooks. When I wrote them, I didn’t even have players, so they were very general, and mostly they were ways I could introduce prominent people and places within the world to the party. Well, I got players, four of them, and I got characters — and everything changed. That’s not quite accurate. Everything didn’t change, but my perspective on the world … Read entire article »

Filed under: Adventure Design, General Gaming

Thoughts on World Creation: Magic Part 2

Tweet Magic Part 2 – Meta Magic Meta magic is one of my favorite aspects of a magic-rich fantasy world. Imagine naval warfare without submarines and sonar. Imagine cyberpunk without netrunners. That’s how I see fantasy without meta-magic. I’m paraphrasing and borrowing the term from Steve Jackson Games’ GURPS. In there magic system is a college of magic called “meta-spells.” These are, simply put, spells about magic. The simplest example would be a dispel magic spell — a mage equivalent of disarming a trap. But meta magic can go much deeper than that, and it should. If magic is pervasive in your setting, and the stakes are high enough, it should be routine to make sure certain magical countermeasures are in place. Let’s take a look at a hypothetical scenario: a king is hiring the party to … Read entire article »

Filed under: Advice, Alternate Views, General Gaming