On developing your character

This is not an uncommon question online: How do I fully develop a Dungeons and Dragons character so their actions are in character? And the answers aren't necessarily bad. Choose a personality. Give your character a quirk. Know your character's motivation. Try to pick things that are distinct from yourself. Write a backstory. Answer a... Continue Reading →

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On how to write a good RPG

In no particular order . . . Know your audience. The RPG industry is so diverse that it's critical you understand who you're writing your game for. If you assume your audience has never played an RPG before, you need an introduction. If your game does something that no other RPG has done before, you also... Continue Reading →

The Problem with Role-Playing

Maybe this is the tide turning: It's taken as a given that in most hobbies you do the hobby to enjoy it, and that you'll try your best to enjoy the process. Upon the foundation of that given, the hobbyists then talk about technique and finesse. ... in tabletop RPGs, I feel like there's a certain pushback (especially when... Continue Reading →

What the McGuffin?

What is the reason for this trope? In stories, it's a thing that moves the plot along. It's a tool that helps the reader get his characters motivated, leading to action, leading to an engaging story for the audience. This is all fine and good for a story, but we're not in the business of... Continue Reading →

The Cost of the Game

Francois offers a thought, tangentially related to this discussion, that piqued my interest: If you think it preferable for your players to start calculating individual percentage variations, or refer to a table that needs an Excel spreadsheet containing 150 entries (or more), in order to know what happens when their characters do not eat, that's... Continue Reading →

Rumors

A summary from the latest Master Class post: the DM is not responsible for giving the players an adventure. She is responsible for making the world within which the players act and seek adventure. What counts as being active? That's the distinction here and Alexis offers an example from his online game, helping to clarify... Continue Reading →

Deliberation

de·lib·er·a·tion noun 1. long and careful consideration or discussion. 2. slow and careful movement or thought. When and how do you apply this to your game? When you pick up the dice for a roll that could alter the course of everything, do you pause to look the players in the eyes? Do you speak... Continue Reading →

How Will You Die?

Contrary to what a certain commenter would (probably) have you believe, I'm not that much of an asshole. I'm opinionated. I'm generally right (until proven otherwise). These traits are overblown on the internet because there's no good way to present a strong opinion about something and come across as understanding of opposing views without appearing... Continue Reading →

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