Tag Archives: gm’ing

Treating In-Game Relationships with Respect

I was reading through my RSS feed today when I came across this post over at More Than Dice. Go ahead, give it a read. … Done? Great. Let’s talk about why I found it interesting. If you’ve been keeping up with my posts about the campaign I’m running with my home group ( The Winds of Change ), then you’ll know that…

Plotting a Better NPC with the Rule of Three

In a previous post , I discussed the “Rule of Three.” That’s all well and good for descriptions, but how can that be used to build better plots and stories? Simple, give each major NPC three plot ideas. These can be secrets, things the NPC wants to accomplish or things the NPC wants to stop. Everyone has goals and secrets, right? And …

Adventurer’s Toolbox – Bags of Holding

Image by: SoulRider.222 I have written a couple of article in this series already covering Immovable Rods and Feather Tokens . The next item up for bid is the Bag of Holding. Now, before I’m downed out in the chorus of “Yeah, that’s obvious,” let’s take a look at the stat block from the Pathfinder SRD: Bag…

Monster Vault: Fixing Solos

As I said in my review of Monster Vault , many of the older and classic monsters have been updated and brought into line with the design philosophy of the later Monster Manuals.  Additionally, the book fixes a problem that has been plaguing solo monsters since the first Monster Manual for 4th Edition:  stunlocking. In case you’re unaware, stunlocking refers to the…

The Rule of Three

Making an interesting, evocative  scene that invokes the senses of your players is the holy grail of GMing, and it can be made a bit more achievable by following what I call the “Rule of Three.” Simply put, the Rule of Three involves picking at least three things to describe to give a bit more realism to a…

Review: DM’s Kit for D&D 4th Edition Essentials

The DM’s Kit for 4th Edition D&D’s Essentials line is out, and there’s something strange about it.  But I’m ahead of myself…I’ll get to that in a moment. First, the product itself.   This is more than just a book for the DM, it’s a boxed set for the DM.  Let’s take things one at a time, …

Gaming: The Social Contract

Gaming is a social endeavor, we all know that, but sometimes we lose sight of what it means to respect one another.    It may help to hash out a “social contract” between members of the group, be it something that’s written down or something that’s just understood by everyone in the group.  This can serve to ease…

“You Seem Trustworthy!” – Bringing the Party Together

Image by chinogypsie This is one of those topics that every GM has run into at one point in time or another. You’re stating a new campaign, your players have their characters all drawn up, you’ve got the opening adventure planned, and this phrase comes blithely tumbling out of your mouth: “You all find yourselves in a Tavern called…

Getting Your Ducks In a Row – Making Sure Expectations are Met

Image by: John Linwood I’m getting into the deep planning stages for my next campaign, and I’m finding myself running into a potential problem: it’s very possible that I want for this game is different from what my players want. I’ve had this issue rolling around in my head for the last few days, and I feel like it’s one that is…

Walking the Line

Image by: alborzshawn No, this isn’t some reference to Johnny Cash. What I’m talking about is the line between planning your session and improvising. Both sides of GMing are vital to the long-term success of a campaign, but if you go too far one way or the other, then you’re likely going to end up with unhappy players and a derailed campaign. There …

The Communist Sandbox: Role Playing with too few Players & Not Enough GM’s

This is an incredibly late entry intended originally for the May 2010 RPG Blog Carnival: Surviving the Gaming Drought A few moths ago I posted and article on 2 different ways of circumventing the problem many of us encounter, limited people to play…