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 Fantastic Factions => 4 Tricks To Get The Most Out Of Your Villain Factions
Posted: Mon, 18 Jan 04:59:15
Category: NPCs & Roleplaying, Factions, Mysteries

Why do I use factions so much in my campaigns? You know I love my NPCs. They are our avatars and “Agent Smiths” in the game to influence players and direct the characters. Therefore, we get even more value out of groups of NPCs. But random clusters do not make great storytelling. We need each […]

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 Ripping Up Adventure Drama With A Saw Blade
Posted: Tue, 12 Jan 03:42:27
Category: Campaigns & Adventures, Adventure & Campaign Building, Plots

Make your adventures wondrous with terrific drama. We want tension in our plots and gameplay that escalates as players get close to the climactic ending. To increase drama we raise the Stakes (what’s in it for the characters) and toughen the Conflicts (foes, hazards, obstacles, challenges). However, we shouldn’t make every encounter even more tense […]

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 Players “Checked Out” When Campaign Switched To Virtual Online
Posted: Mon, 11 Jan 02:49:34
Category: Players & Characters, Online Gaming

RPT GM Hornick switched his game to virtual and now has trouble getting his players to roleplay: My players have started to outgame-play the sessions with little ingame interactions. Maybe this is due to the medium of Roll20 and Discord. Do you have any ideas on this besides talking to them about this? They lately […]

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 Outsmart Your Players With 3-Step Villain Plans
Posted: Fri, 08 Jan 02:39:53
Category: NPCs & Roleplaying, Preparation, villains

How do we outsmart our players? It’s all their brains against ours. Surely the odds are against us. However, here’s a neat trick we can perform to make our villains smarter and our adventures more cunning. We look at the possible plots and actions our poor villain might take and group them into three buckets. […]

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 How To Create Roleplay Encounters
Posted: Mon, 04 Jan 02:00:05
Category: NPCs & Roleplaying, Encounters

I received this great request from RPT GM Carter: I have a problem I’m trying to solve: my players tell me they’re more interested in roleplaying than combat, but I’m most comfortable with making interesting combat encounters than interesting roleplaying encounters. With combat I create interesting terrain, interesting enemy mechanics, cool boss fights, etc. But […]

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 5 Rules For GMing Awesome NPCs
Posted: Thu, 17 Dec 2020 02:15:00
Category: NPCs & Roleplaying

From Johnn Four I was asked how to spruce up NPCs. Paraphrasing the question received, “I focus too much on the mechanics. How do I bring my NPCs to life?” My answer? Follow these 5 rules and you’ll have killer non-player characters in your campaign in no-time! Rule 1: Treat Them Like George R.R. Martin […]

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 What Are Three Round Combat Plans?
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 03:16:26
Category: Combat & Action

RPT GM Iron-D&D asks what 3 Round Combat Plans are, which I mentioned in a recent email titled My Secret For Effectively Building Epic Adventures. 3 Round Combat Plans were introduced in my course Faster Combat. It’s been mentioned by others online, and I do not think I invented it. But I haven’t found a […]

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 The Unification Event — How To Get The Party Together
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 03:14:33
Category: Players & Characters, Adventure & Campaign Building

Character backgrounds are key tools in your GM Toolbox. Mine them for plots, NPCs, and character motivation. However, it’s a struggle to get useful and game-full backgrounds from players. Often, you just get a couple paragraphs explaining how the PC became an orphan. Or, you might get the inverse. Pages of narcissistic background explaining why […]

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 Story Sparks — A Way To Improv Better
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 03:08:35
Category: Adventure Building & Campaigns, Adventure & Campaign Building, Improvising

Ever make a fire from scratch, without matches or gasoline? Every material has an ignition temperature where a spark lights it up. The shirt you’re wearing probably ignites around 267°C or 513°F. Wood is about 300°C / 572°F. And what about our encounters? What ignites them? More on that in a sec. To start a […]

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 Need A Last-Minute Halloween One-Shot Adventure Idea?
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 03:03:31
Category: Adventure Building & Campaigns, Adventure & Campaign Building

I was chatting with new subscriber Ric Miller this week, and he inspired today’s tip that’ll help you prep and run an awesome Halloween adventure this weekend if you have not found one yet. The tip is simple, yet full of amazing potential: Just add Cthulhu. Flash Sale Alert Before I jump into today’s tip, […]

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 My Monsters Sucked Until I Discovered This Special Approach
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 02:45:03
Category: Adventure Building & Campaigns, Adventure & Campaign Building, Improvising

I realized last month I’ve been in a rut slinging boring monsters. This troubled me because boring foes = boring games (h/t to Slapchop). In my Terror in the Badlands campaign, for example, we had a crazy battle in a ruined underground city against a white dragon. It was tricksy with its moves, actions, and […]

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 Making Monsters Marvelous – Monstrous RPT Gems For You
Posted: Wed, 16 Dec 2020 02:31:58
Category: NPCs & Roleplaying, Monsters

A Charter Member of the Adventure Building Master Game Plan asked me about monsters. Great topic. One might say there are three kinds of monsters: Constructs Tricksters Mirrors Constructs fulfill our System needs. Stats, abilities, xp/treasure. Tricksters serve our Story needs. Clue bearers, agents, plot twisters. Mirrors serve our Setting needs by reflecting darker aspects […]

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