Archive for the ‘Beginners’ Category

Rules Mastery For Dummies & Busy GMs Part 2: Getting Enthusiastic About Rules

This entry is part 2 in the series Rules Mastery

This entry is part 2 in the series Rules Mastery Last time around, Johnn described (via exerpted email) his difficulty in getting enthusiastic about reading rules. Johnn has been making a common mistake, and it’s one that I have been guilty of myself in the past. When reading rules becomes tiresome, we avoid reading and […]

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Rules Mastery For Dummies & Busy GMs Part 1: Introduction

This entry is part 1 in the series Rules Mastery

This entry is part 1 in the series Rules Mastery In October, my co-author and partner here at CM contacted me to ask, (Extensively Paraphrased:) Something that has slipped away from me this past decade is a solid knowledge of the rules I game with. This lack of foundation has a number of serious consequences. […]

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Interviewing Potential Players

You have a vacancy in your gaming group and decide to advertise for a new player. Because there are many places online and offline potential players might look for groups you put ads in several places, casting a wide net, hoping to get a response. To your surprise, you get a few responses. However, now […]

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How To Be A Confident GM, Part 2

Confidence is key to having fun long term as a game master. Last week we covered several tips on how to become a confident GM, and this week we deliver more. Collaborate Say yes whenever possible. Get into the habit of building on player input and ideas instead of overwriting them. Pass ideas around so […]

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How To Be A Confident GM, Part 1

Gnome Stew recently posted an article about running on minimal prep game. One of the points was to GM with confidence, and that got me wondering about how exactly do you be a confident GM? Following are a few ingredients to that recipe. I look forward to your comments about what you do to bolster […]

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Sophisticated Links: Degrees Of Seperation in RPGs

Introduction This is not the post I was originally going to write for today, but a paragraph in one of the books I am reading brought to mind the game that seemed to be everywhere just a few years ago, “Six Degrees From Kevin Bacon”, and social networking in general, and I suddenly saw applicability […]

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Ask The GMs: Essential Game Master Skills

What are the essential skills of a GM? Loz is a frequent contributor to the comments here at CM. So when he submitted a question to Ask The GMs, we were inclined to pay close attention. Here’s what he had to say. “Here’s a deceptively simple question: What are the essential Game Master skills? (Full […]

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Ask The GMs: Systematic Systems Choice

How do you choose the right game system? The Ask the GMs questions here at CM never seem to stop, which is great, because they never fail to inspire new discussion topics. This one’s been sitting on the backburner for a while because we had so many already cued up, so we’re pleased to finally […]

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Bringing on the next generation, Part Two: Gamemaster Mentors

In many respects, it’s easier being a player than a GM. Since the player determines the personality of the character, as well as what the character says and does, there is in fact no ‘right way’ or ‘wrong way’ to roleplay any given character – only ‘better’ or ‘worse’. It’s a bit like being able […]

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Bringing on the next generation, Part One: Player Peers

I’d like to start this blog with a shout-out to an old buddy of mine named Chris Mount, for reasons that will become obvious as it proceeds. When I first discovered roleplaying, Chris was the guy who taught me how to play. Without his guidance, I would never have amassed sufficient expertise and experience to […]

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Game Master Mistakes Carnival Roundup

This entry is part 7 in the series My Biggest Mistakes

This entry is part 7 in the series My Biggest Mistakes September’s blog carnival was about about GM errors: Mistakes – ones you’ve made in the past and how you got past them, one’s you’re making now and don’t know how to solve. Thanks to everyone who contributed to the carnival. The stories and lessons […]

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Ask The GMs: PC Choices and Consequences

How can you make the players feel like their actions have an impact on the world? Sometimes, the simplest questions have the most complicated or profound answers. So it was with some trepidation that we’ve approached this question, which was asked virtually exactly as it’s quoted at the head of this article. The short answer […]

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