Archive for the ‘Game Philosophy’ Category

Ask The GMs – Up Hill and Down Dale: RPG Travel Laid Bare

Once again I’m daring to tackle a topic without the counsel of my friends and fellow GMs, largely because I had a clear answer in mind. Today’s question comes courtesy of Jason B, who asked, “Hey, I was about to start up a campaign that would ultimately take characters to all ends of the world. […]

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Blog Carnival November 2016: Ordinary Life in an RPG

This is an article in two halves, but the two should segue together seamlessly. The first is partially a rebuttal, partially a sequel, and partially a reply, to Clark Timmins’ thought-provoking submission to the Carnival, The Real Life of Heroes. The second half looks at how the ordinary lives of the PCs are depicted in […]

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Essential Reference Library for Pulp GMs (and others): 8th Shelf

This entry is part 9 in the series The Essential Reference Library for Pulp GMs (and others) The Eighth Shelf – Life In The Pulp Era I: Civilian Life – Introduction by Mike This month’s blog carnival is about “Ordinary Life” and is being hosted by Campaign Mastery, so its’ fitting that the vagaries of […]

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Blog Carnival November 2016: Ordinary Lives In Paranormal Space and Time

This is the fourth of five articles scheduled to be part of the November 2016 Blog Carnival, which Campaign Mastery is hosting. The carnival subject is “ordinary life” – in this case, how I create and manage subplots based on the ordinary lives of the PCs in my Zenith-3 campaign, how they connect seamlessly to […]

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Blog Carnival November 2016: The Extraordinary Life of a Fantasy PC Pt 2

This is the second half of this article; the first dealt with character backstories during character generation, and this deals with making use of them once play has started. It is also the third of five articles scheduled to be part of the November 2016 Blog Carnival, which Campaign Mastery is hosting. The carnival subject […]

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ATGMs42: The Hollow Echo Part 2 – Musical Traps

This is (still) the fifth of these Ask-The-GMs that I’m tackling without recourse to my usual allies and fellow-GMs. Traps and puzzles are always a tricky problem for the GM. All too often they focus attention on one particular character and leave the rest sitting around doing nothing, possibly for what feels like an extraordinary […]

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Essential Reference Library for Pulp GMs (and others): 1st Shelf

This entry is part 2 in the series The Essential Reference Library for Pulp GMs (and others)The First Shelf: Heroes & PCs Heroes are at the heart of a Pulp campaign, as much if not more than any other genre (with the possible exception of Superheroes – but you could draw a continuous line running […]

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The Other Side Of The Camera: Depth in RPGs

I was watching an episode of “Who Do You Think You Are?” (a show that has inspired other articles here at Campaign Mastery) in which a number of photographs featuring the grandmother of the central focus* of the episode were presented, with the observation that his grandfather appeared in none of them (* I watched […]

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What Is Magic? Six Answers

Magic features in a lot of different RPGs, but very few of them answer this simple, fundamental question – what is it, and how can it be used to achieve the many and various effects that are attributed to it within whatever game you happen to be playing? Work on the ATGMs question on spell […]

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Three Coins In The Luck Machine: a different take on game control

A guest article by Boris R. If you think that slot machines and RPG games are complete opposites, you’re wrong. You can enhance your game world by taking a lesson from slots and increasing the unpredictability of your game. Pure Luck Let’s talk about Slot machines, also known as fruit machines and poker machines. These […]

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Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced) Part 9: Rewards With Intent

This 15-part series is an attempt to answer the question, “what advice do you have for a beginning GM?”, three articles at a time – while throwing in tips and reminders of the basics for more experienced GMs. This is the last article of the current trilogy. Rewards: Tabula Rasa To most beginning GMs, and […]

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All Wounds Are Not Alike IV – Accelerated Healing

This entry is part 5 in the series All Wounds Are Not Alike

This entry is part 5 in the series All Wounds Are Not Alike When I first started gaming, one of the hot topics of conversation was always Clerical Healing and how to stop Clerics being nothing more than “holy drip bottles”. Over the next 30-odd years, not much changed. At the heart of the problem […]

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