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Category Archives for "Roleplaying Tips Newsletter"

RPT#686: Wrangling Unruly Campaign Outlines: How To Keep Track of Plot Threads

At the end of a long campaign, I want my players and I to feel totally satisfied. I mean the sort of satisfaction one gets when a story wraps up with no question unanswered. The kind of story that ends with every major character’s arc finished and accounted.

This is a challenge when there’s only a single person telling a story – just think of all the novels that have left you hanging in one way or another over the years. But when a group of friends gets into collaborative tale-spinning one chapter at a time with long breaks between, it is almost impossible to wrap up everything with a tidy bow.

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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.

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RPT#684: Kingdom Building Part II: Who Rules the Kingdom?

Knowing who is in power is important in any game where you want locations to serve as more than a simple backdrop, because the character of those in positions of power often reflects that of the kingdom itself. Having your ruler emphasize the themes of your kingdom will hammer those details home to your players. It is also useful information to have in the back of your mind when anything that affects kingdom law or policy occurs in-game.

This article takes you through the process of choosing an appropriate government type for your kingdom and then discusses how you can use this in play to give your campaign world more depth.

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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.

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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.

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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….

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RPT#663: Choosing the Right Virtual Table Top for Your Game

A virtual table top (or VTT) allows people to play RPGs that would traditionally take place face-to-face around a table. Using a computer, and usually video and audio, players and GM connect to the VTT and get their game on. The experience is rich enough these days to be a viable option for remote players, gamers without local groups, or even standard gaming. However, given the amount of VTTs available, it can be challenging to find one that suits you and your group.

In today’s article I’ll summarise five popular VTTs to help you narrow down your choices so you can get online and start gaming.

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RPT#662: Combat Parley

Do you struggle to make it clear the party doesn’t have to fight to win? As GM, it’s all in your delivery. The right words said the right way get your party thinking about their non-combat options rather than just mindlessly rolling initiative every time the bad guys show up.

So how do you narrate the party’s options with clarity and drama? How do you delight players with meaningful choices in the tension-filled earliest moments of conflict? You’re about to learn how with today’s tips.

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