How I’m Using ChatGP For My Campaign Today


Have you ever heard a cat fart?

Wizard of Adventure and loooooong-time Roleplaying Tips reader and contributor, Loz Newman, told me a funny story. He’s in France, probably preparing for another season of teaching kids and adults all about medieval archery. And he explained that, when you say ChatGPT in French, it sounds like you’re saying, cat I have farted.

What a gas! Ba dum bum.

When Cat I Have Farted first came out around this time last year, I immediately started using it to help my Basilica campaign. And people kept asking me why I thought it was a game-changer, another pun intended.

My answer: memory and conversation.

Even though the input/output token count was very small compared to ChatGPT-4 today, it remembers everything it’s been trained on. Just like Google or Bing.

I don’t know about you, but after awhile I start to forget campaign details. When prepping a session, for example, if I could keep my entire setting and campaign logs in my mental RAM, I could create better and deeper connections to plot with. I could drag in that little detail from session #4 a year ago, connect it with the middle name of that ancient king, and connect that with the magic dagger inscription a witness saw at yesterday’s crime scene.

Cat I Farted in 2022 had no chance of remembering my campaign details. It forgot who I was every time I started a new conversation. And it’s not quite there yet in 2023 either. But we’re getting close.

In addition, the flatulent feline also understands what I’m asking. Literally and semantically. Most of the time. This has taught me to ask better questions in life, as well.

So when you get a tool that remembers everything, and (predictably) understands what I want, it’s an instant add to my GM Toolbox.

Today, I use Zorgon in Campaign Logger, which is a free ChatGPT integration for all Logger users (get your free Campaign Logger account here and try it out yourself). And I use Cat I Farted in Chrome.

I treat it like having a conversation. I start with an idea or something I’ve made, and then explore it in a conversational way.

For example, I’ll ask Zorgon to give me better ideas for Room III in a 5 Room Dungeon. Or I’ll feed it an encounter I’ve designed and ask for three twist suggestions.

Danny McKeever, who co-authored The AI Guide to Adventure Building with me, uses the gassy kitty for creating entire NPC dialogues to help prep great roleplay at the table.

The tool also gives me different points of view, because sometimes I’m trapped in my own head or am in linear-thought mode. So I get exposed to a bunch of ideas I’d not have thought of in that moment.

And one of the most common uses for our cheese-cutting cheetah is criticism. The thing has no emotions. It gives it to me straight. I ask it to beat up my ideas, plans, and designs. I don’t have to agree with it, or even use the feedback. But I appreciate the instant alternative point of view.

Now, it’s not all sweet smelling fluff. My biggest worry is that we GMs will use the bottom burping bobcat to replace our imagination and thinking. Our brains operate on a use it or lose it basis. I won’t let this tool turn me into a rusty old fart who outsources his ideas and thoughts.

Instead, I do the task myself first. I create the 5 Room Dungeon, encounter, NPC, magic item, kingdom profile. If I get stuck, want more ideas, or need feedback, I then ask the windy wildcat for feedback. This keeps the saw sharp.

There’s lots of concern, controversy, and politics around this technology right now. Fair enough. I share many of those worries.

However, for my GMing, I’m taking advantage of this cool new tool and using the tooting tabby as a kind of GM’s familiar. I won’t let it replace my thinking or dull my saw. But I’ll leverage it to help me improve my designs, plots, and ideas. That in itself is teaching me things. And if I can learn something new and be a better GM for it, I’ll never pass up that chance.

Cheers,
Johnn
roleplayingtips.com
Have more fun at every game!

P.S. I mentioned this briefly above: today I released a new book for GMs! It’s called:

The Simple AI Guide to Adventure Building

This book will show you how to turn Cat I Farted into your GM’s familiar, a smart assistant with an infinite well of ideas.

Click here for details and to purchase.

Cover image of The Simple AI Guide to Adventure-Building
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