Archive for the ‘Writing & Authoring & The Games Industry’ Category

Lessons from the Literary Process

I’ve commented a number of times on the insights that can be achieved by looking at behind-the-scenes specials and DVD commentaries. There’s a documentary series that has just started a week or two ago on TVS, a public-service broadcaster here in Australia, called “The Art Of Story and the Narrative Game” and the interest in […]

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Yrisa’s Nightmare and other goodies

There are some projects that excite because of their content. There are others that entice because of the track record of the creators. And some projects simply ooze style and content. Today, I’m going to write about a project that ticks all three boxes. It’s another product from Embers Design Studios, and its called Yrisa’s […]

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Ask The GMs: The Great Handouts Question

GMs sometimes ask more than one question. Where these directly relate to each other, or the context is important to the answers, they are generally lumped together. When they aren’t, which is far less frequent an event, they get split up and answered separately. Which brings me to today’s topic: Writing characters out when players […]

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The Conundrum Of Coincidence

The concept of “coincidence” was a thorny problem for philosophers starting from the ancient Greeks. Plato, in Phaedo, defined “inquiry into nature” as a search for “the causes of each thing; why each thing comes into existence, why it goes out of existence, why it exists”. Aristotle went further, developing a theory of causality, commonly […]

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The Challenge Of Writing Adventures for RPGs

Since I only got back to work on CM late last week, I decided at the last minute that I might need an extra week to finish up the Tavern Generator. So I’ve brought this post forward from it’s originally-scheduled position later in the month. This is yet another of the articles I wrote while […]

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The Backstory Boxes – Directed Creativity

Chatting with a fellow GM on twitter recently, I was reminded of a technique that I use from time to time to generate backstories, that I thought I would share, in somewhat fuller and more developed form than I was able to convey in a handful of 140-character tweets! There are two ways to use […]

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An AcadeCon For Your Consideration

The Backstory Michael (aka @TheRPGAcademy on Twitter) has been a supporter of Campaign Mastery and an occasional conversationalist on the subject of gaming for several years now. He is also one of the people behind the RPG Academy podcasts. Several months ago, he flattered me outrageously with an offer to be interviewed for the show […]

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A target of inefficiency: from Dystopian trends to Utopia

Some background Before I can get to the main subject of today’s article, I need to tell a few short real-life stories to set the scene, putting the article into context. The Story Of Canterbury Road When I look out my front window, I am confronted by the somewhat depressing site of one of Sydney’s […]

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Imperfect Imbalance – Personal Injury Law in RPGs

To really get to grips with your RPG world, you have to understand how the invented environment affects the everyday life of the inhabitants. That’s more easily said than done. One technique is to answer a long series of questions, progressing from the simple to the profound, as shown in my first series here at […]

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Traditional Interpretations and Rituals Of Culture

From time to time, I post thoughts on various subjects to twitter using the hashtag “#Musing”. I did just that a little while back – and then thought some more about what I had written and realized there were game implications/applications. The tweet said, “Traditions become empty when the meaning behind them is forgotten. We […]

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A Helping Handout

Hungry, over at Ravenous Roleplaying, is a long-time supporter of Campaign Mastery through his regular “Friday Faves” column, in which he collects links to the articles that have most inspired or interested him from the past week. When he has time, he accompanies those links with some comments; these are always interesting, and sometimes genuinely […]

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Compound Interruptions: Manipulating Pauses

This entry is part 4 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing

This entry is part 4 in the series Further thoughts on Pacing Sorry for the delay in posting this – my ISP is conducting maintenance of some sort, and my connection kept dropping out, making it hard to upload and format the article in the usual manner. Combinations So far, I’ve been looking at the […]

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