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Author: John Arcadian

About The Author

John Arcadian

John Arcadian is a freelance writer and art director, a website developer, a builder of sonic screwdrivers, and a purveyor of kilted mayhem. When he isn’t out causing trouble in his kilt… Well, no, that is pretty much what he does when he isn’t running RPGs or or trying to take over the world.

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A Structure For Convention Adventures

I was at Con On The Cob this weekend and I got the chance to play in a lot of adventures. I also got to hear friends tell stories, good and bad, about the games they played in. Those stories tended to focus on the extreme moments when they...

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Mundane Magics

Ever since my long-ago teenage years, when I wasn’t allowed to play D&D – just look at the books, I’ve played a kind of mental game with the spell lists from the various editions of D&D – What spells would I want to be able to cast if I...

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Dragons In The Stacks

At Gencon 2015, a serendipitous meeting led me to spending some time talking to Steven Torres-Roman and talking about a book he worked on called Dragons in the Stacks – A teen Librarian’s Guide to Tabletop Role-playing. Steven gave me a copy to look over and I decided to...

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Never Look A Gift Orc In The Mouth

The name of the dashing green fellow in the picture to the right is South. He and a bunch of his friends showed up at a game of The One Ring that I ran at Origins this year. South showed up just like this, in full Orc makeup from...

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Hands On With Hero Forge

Quite some time back, I did an interview with some of the people behind Hero Forge, a very successful kickstarter that funded the creation of a website and printing solution for creating custom miniatures. Playing many games that have characters that don’t fit standard molds, the concept intrigued me...

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Tabletop Simulator Review

Recently, I came across an interesting program on Steam called Tabletop Simulator. It’s no secret that I’m a sucker for really cool terrain and visual flair at the table. I’ve also moved around multiple times in the last few years, and online sessions have sometimes been the only way...

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Pacing, Ala Moebius

Recently, I’ve been reading through the collected works of french comic artist Jean “Moebius” Giraud. Moebius’s works are sci-fi/fantasy epics that are fast paced, with the story holding a consistent but somewhat disjointed thread throughout the piece. I’m on page 127 of the 300 some page work L’Incal, and...

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There Is No Do, Only Try

We’re all probably familiar with the famous Empire Strikes Back line delivered with incredible gravitas from the wizened old green muppet Yoda: “Do or do not, there is no try”. While the meaning is fairly clear – you have to tackle challenges with the attitude that you will succeed...

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Johnny’s Five – Mixed Messages

One of the biggest problems I’ve ever seen plague any game is miscommunication between the Game Master and the players. The game master will say: “You throw the door open and see the footprints in the ever-deepening snow. The flakes continue to fall from the sky and begin to...

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Hot Button – Brief or Eloquent

The shopkeeper’s green tunic clashes oddly with his blue alien skin. The 6 strange nostrils on the top of his head are flaring wildly, a gesture of greeting for his people. As you eye over his wares, he moves his large bulky body over to you, causing some of...

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My Litmus Test For Crazy Player Ideas

“ So, if you two can balance the ladders just right for about 45 seconds, I can get high enough to get a good angle from this garden beyond the castle walls. I can throw my dart the distance to the chandelier from there and with a good enough...

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Announcing Gamer Romance Novels

We here at Gnome Stew are excited to announce our newest Engine Publishing project, and a bit of a departure from our regular fare – Gamer Romance Novels! Realizing, at a recent strategy meeting held over G+ hangouts, the untapped crossover market between romance novels and gamer supplements, Engine...

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