Archive for the ‘Players’ Category

The Scariest Villain

Something got me thinking the other day about the villains trilogy that I wrote last year – Part 1 – The Mastermind, Part 2 – The Combat Monster, and Part 3 – the Character Villain and about something that wasn’t included. What makes the scariest villain? Beginning at the Beginning: What is Fear? Wikipedia has […]

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Fire Fighting, Systems Analysis, and RPG Problem Solving Part 3 of 3: Complexity and Nuance

This entry is part 3 in the series Problem-Solving

This entry is part 3 in the series Problem-Solving This is the third, final, and largest part of this series, which examines the lessons in problem-solving that I learned through training as a fire warden and as a systems analyst back in the early 90s, as applied to an RPG context. The goal is offer […]

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Fire Fighting, Systems Analysis, and RPG Problem Solving Part 2 of 3: Prioritization

This entry is part 2 in the series Problem-Solving

The second of three articles looking at lessons learned in the art of problem solving focuses on Prioritization, which is an essential skill for long-term success. Knowing which problem to tackle first can make the difference between achievement and disaster. The article considers a theoretical analysis and then uses it to offer two practical approaches to the problem.

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Fire Fighting, Systems Analysis, and RPG Problem Solving Part 1 of 3: General Advice

This entry is part 1 in the series Problem-Solving

This entry is part 1 in the series Problem-Solving In 1990 I was trained as a Safety Warden / OHAS representative for my then-employer. At the time, I was employed as a Computer Programmer and acting as a Systems Analyst for the commercial software systems for which my former department were responsible. Both aspects of […]

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Lessons From The West Wing IV: Victory At Any Price

This entry is part 8 in the series Lessons From The West Wing

This entry is part 8 in the series Lessons From The West Wing “Lessons From The West Wing” is a series of occasional articles inspired by the Television Series. I’ve had this article sitting around in partially completed form for a couple of years now, waiting for the right example with which to illustrate the […]

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Refloating The Shipwreck: When Players Make A Mistake

Preamble This Month’s Blog Carnival was proposed more or less as follows: People love it when player characters do great heroic deeds and win fame and fortune in a campaign. But how about when things horribly wrong go… and it’s all the fault of some foolhardy decision by some Player Character? Those can be either […]

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Two Emails and a ‘summon collective wisdom’ request

In the course of the last week, two different emails have been sent to Campaign Mastery that are going to form the core of today’s article. Since they are about as different as chalk and squid ink, the results might be more than usually schizophrenic, but I think it will all come together in the […]

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Inventing and Reinventing Races in DnD: An Introduction to the Orcs and Elves series part 5

This entry is part 5 in the series Orcs & Elves

This entry is part 5 in the series Orcs & Elves I’ve got a lot of campaign prep to get done. In fact, I’ve got so much to do that if I don’t do it here, I’ll either never get it done in time. But first, I have to paint a picture of the background […]

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The Tactical Masterclass – Preparing a player to lead on the battlefield

In any modern-day team environment, there is usually one member of the team who focuses on the tactical situation. Characters that each go their own way tend, sooner or later to get in each other’s way, or make the mistake of two going for the same target while another target is left uncovered; the team […]

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The Arcane Implications of Seating at the Game Table

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by Benoit, a regular reader and occasional commentator here at CM, who has translated a couple of my articles into French for a wider audience. He had noticed an unusual phenomenon during a recent game and was wondering if… well, why don’t I simply quote his email? Hi […]

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The Acceptable Favoritism: 34 ‘Rules’ to make your players’ PCs their favorites

With contributions from Ian Mackinder, Ian Gray, Steven Beekon, Saxon Brenton, & Blair Ramage This article has been sitting around in my to-do stack for a little over three years. I simply never got around to finishing it – until now. I do find myself wondering if the additional experience has given the contributors any […]

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Been There, Done That, Doing It Again – The Sequel Campaign Part Two of Two: Sprouts and Saplings

If you’ve followed the advice that I proffered in the first part of this article, your proposed sequel campaign is now brimming with ideas but they are scattered and incomplete. Some of these campaign seeds will flower and bloom, others will wither and lie dormant and unused. They are not yet part of a campaign. […]

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