Category: Approaches and Techniques

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How to Do Bad Things and Get Away with It: Advice for the Contrary Game Master and Player

Put away the ski mask, you absolute sociopath. This is about doing bad things in gaming, and what you do on your own time is between you and your defense attorney. If you’ve been gaming for any amount of time, you’re familiar with most of the old adages about how to make a good game: “show, don’t...

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The Power of Cliché: Why Being Original Isn’t as Important as Being Interesting

I’m currently running not one, but two experimental campaigns on weekends in Roll20; the experimental question is “how little worldbuilding can I get away with?” And the answer, it turns out, is very little. I started with this map from DeviantArt, made four gods, one quest-giver NPC, an evil...

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Actually, It’s Gamenstein’s Monster: Ideas to Stitch Together Into Your Own Monstrosity

Any given game that you pick up off a shelf (or grab from itch.io) is an experience, geared toward creating a specific type of story: a fantasy skirmish simulator, a Jane-Austenesque adventure in manners, or living life as a cozy lesbian snake to name just a few. But sometimes you want to mix and...

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Exploring Encounter Theory: How to Craft RPG Adventures

Want to write better adventures? Want to prep more efficiently? Sick of players skipping all of your best content? Prep Smarter, Not Harder, with Encounter Theory Encounter Theory: The Adventure Design Workbook is a fresh way to look at adventure design by Ben Riggs, the voice of the...

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Getting Players to GM

As a GM, do you really get to play like everyone else at the table? Do you get to enjoy the setting and the rules of a game in the same way? Do you experience the unexpected as deeply as you would from the perspective of a single character? Do you get to feel like you’re one of the party, standing...

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