Category: Something for the Weekend

Nov 17

Nov ‘17 Carnival: Betrayal Revisited

  The travelling RPG Blog Carnival continues to jump from one blog to another. I try to contribute every month, although a topic can catch my imagination and lead to a long series, such as the 2017 February topic.   In November, the traditional Carnival host is Mike Bourke at Campaign Mastery. The chosen topic …

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Nov 10

GM Story Beats

  The genesis of this essay was an unexpected connection between two roleplaying podcasts I listened to in quick succession last week. Both discussed narrative rhythm and the way the GM can subtly influence the mood at the table. We all know how a good story is composed of a sequence of successes and failures. These …

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Nov 03

Top Five Abilities Sheet

  One aspect of being a GM is the need to manage the assorted paperwork surrounding the game. At times, I feel more like an administrator than a storyteller. Yet, easy access to the right information greatly helps the GM run the game. This is equally true for the low prep style of gaming I …

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Oct 27

Character Generation is Play

  For the Players, the first stage of a story arc is to generate the Heroes. When the rules are familiar, this process may occur alone. Character generation feels like an exam for the Players to pass before the fun of roleplaying can begin. At other times, the GM may schedule one-to-one meetings to walk …

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Oct 20

Eternal Heroes

  In a recent essay, I explored the story arc campaign structure. This narrative style was inspired by the SF novels of CJ Cherryh. This looping method of building a story also allows me to import another trope from one of my favourite fantasy writers. The concept of the eternal champion from the works of …

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