Johnn Four

Author Archives: Johnn Four

RPT#690: How To Fill In The Blanks – Drawing Maps Dungeon World Style

The first Dungeon World principle is to draw maps but leave blank spaces. Maps are a fundamental part of world building, so leaving blanks suggests an unfinished world. However, the idea is to fill them in later. Blank areas on a map allow all manner of cool things to happen in your game. They prevent you from painting yourself into a corner at campaign outset. They let you be flexible and roll with the dice.

Here are some tips on using blanks on a map to increase the fun at your table. The tips are divided up according to the style of map being used…

Continue reading

RPT#688: The Card Grid – The Fastest Way To Map Your Kingdom With Adventure Sites

A kingdom map helps you and your players see how your kingdom fits together. Players will use it to decide where they want to travel and what challenges to tackle next.

However, a map too detailed and complex harms gameplay. It blocks cool campaign ideas that come up after campaign kickoff. It puts players off, so its hooks fail. And prep becomes harder because you end up with too much detail to connect ideas with and GM for.

Continue reading

RPT#685: Space Opera Part 2: Building The Setting Core Elements

In my last article I talked a little about how people get around as part of a Far Future Spacefaring Civilization and putting limitations on those methods. Now I want to talk a little more in depth about those methods and how you can put some limitations on them to make them more gameable.

There are three kinds of FTL travel methods employed in various sci-fi settings: hyper drives, jump drives, and warp drives.

Continue reading

RPT#677: How To Twist Your Plots

I love plot twists. Those gaming moments where shocked players fall off their chairs (well, mine stand up and yell and shake their fists at me). Game surprises make memories we relish as GMs and become legendary stories your players tell others. In today’s article I talk about two new plot twist approaches and a few other ways to twist your games.

Continue reading

RPT#672: Prevent Player Disagreements With This Quick RPG Campaign Survey

Players and GMs bring their own ideas, desires, and personalities to the table. This causes game friction when we have different expectations of each other and the game. To prevent intra-party conflict, use a short survey to understand what type of game your players want you to run. This survey also helps identify potential player vs. player conflicts ahead of time so you can deal with them proactively.

Continue reading

RPT#669: How To Design Cunning Cursed Items

Most cursed items range from lame to frustrating. They’re a hindrance difficult to remove and they make a character less enjoyable to play. When I’ve encountered cursed items that worked the GM had a plan for the item. It wasn’t a one-off joke or something they just dropped into the game. You can follow these simple steps to get great results out of cursed items in your game….

Continue reading

Curses! Cursed Items and Calamities in Your Campaigns – September RPG Blog Carnival

This month’s RPG Blog Carnival is all about cursing. Whether it’s your favourite ways to use the Curse spell, ideas you have about cursed magic items, or stories you have about the predicaments of cursed PCs in your campaign, any blog post about curses is welcome.

I’ll join the carnival later this month with some tips on making cursed magic items for your adventures. Meantime, let me tell you a quick story of how a simple cursed resulted in the entire party rejecting the first magic sword treasure of my Murder Hobos campaign earlier this year.

Continue reading
1 3 4 5 6 7 22