Archive for the ‘SciFi & Space Opera Games’ Category

The Final Advantage

While playing Edge Of The Empire last week, a topic of conversation briefly arose: should advantage mechanics grow more extreme in effect in the big finish to an adventure or campaign? Musing on Advantage Mechanics Advantage mechanics of various forms have become a popular game mechanic in recent years. You have something of the general […]

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Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced) Pt 8: Depth In Plotting

This entry is part 8 in the series Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced)

This entry is part 8 in the series Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced) I’ve been asked a number of times what advice I have for a beginning GM. This 15-part series is an attempt to answer that question, three articles at a time – while throwing in some tips and reminders of the basics […]

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Ask The GMs: Many Hands, Mild Insanity: Large Groups Revisited

As I explained the last time I looked at large groups, I have only limited experience in the area, so this was one topic for which I definitely wanted to source a broader opinion base. The question at hand: If you are “fortunate” enough to have a large group of players, which games could you […]

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Ask The GMs: A Target With Warp Drive: Maps and Minis for Sci-Fi

This is the third of these Ask-The-GMs that I’m tackling without recourse to my usual allies and fellow-GMs. Battlemats, maps, and tiles all have a valuable role to play in creating game atmosphere and letting people get on with play. The old adage states that a picture is worth a thousand words; an appropriate terrain […]

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When Genres Collide: Using Non-Genre Sources

Some of the most fun that I’ve ever had as a GM was creating that down-elevator sensation in the stomach-pits of my players by taking an idea derived from one genre and importing it into another. It’s not easy to do well, but I’ve figured out at least some of the ground rules to success, […]

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Not Like My Tribe – Sophisticated Primitives, Part 2

In Part 1 (make sure you have read it before continuing) I made reference to a map of Australian Aboriginal Languages which contrasted so strongly with the media stereotyping of these peoples as a single collective population that it was revelatory and inspirational. I meant to provide a link to that map, but ran out […]

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Not Like My Tribe – Sophisticated Primitives, Part 1

A lot of people seem to have the opinion that Primitive is the same thing as Simple. While I would hope that most GMs are better educated than this, that knowledge doesn’t seem to translate into their depictions of primitive societies within their games. Most Orcs, for example, are treated as being cookie-cutter representatives of […]

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Support Your Local Hero

Heroism is part and parcel of most fantasy campaigns and certainly central to Pulp and Superheroic Campaigns. In fact, most campaigns, driven by the need for drama, will incorporate heroism in some fashion, whether that be from greed/opportunity, enlightened self-interest, or the real deal. How can heroism stem from greed/opportunity? Heroism is doing the right […]

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Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced) Pt 5: Characters

This entry is part 5 in the series Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced)

This entry is part 5 in the series Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced)I’ve been asked a number of times what advice I have for a beginning GM. This 15-part series is an attempt to answer that question – while throwing in some tips and reminders of the basics for more experienced GMs. This is […]

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A New ERA and other products to empty your wallet

Today I have two Kickstarters and some related and unrelated products to tell readers about, all well worth your hard-won cash. ERA: The Consortium The first of the products I’m featuring is “The Secret War”, which is part of The Consortium setting for the RPG engine, ERA. Shades of Vengeance were kind enough to send […]

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Pieces of Creation: Mictlan-tecuhtli

The last installment of The Great Character Giveaway features another villain from my Zenith-3 campaign, who could easily be adapted for Science Fiction or Cyberpunk use. It would take a bit more work to convert to a D&D/Pathfinder application, but the results – a living flesh Golem held together with healing potions – would be […]

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The Rolling Retcon: how much campaign history is fixed?

When people talk about campaign continuity, they usually adopt one of two positions. There’s the strict continuity model, in which everything that has ever happened is fixed – but not as permanently as most people think – or there is the loose, episodic continuity in which there is a static condition defined as ‘normal’ to […]

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