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

Definitions and the Quest For Meaning in Structure

Back in Campaign Mastery’s special 750th post, I included some correspondence between myself and Tracey Snow which I reformatted into an interview format. Part of that “interview” went like this: Do you have a glossary for terms that you use in your articles? Your recent article where you try to define an adventure talks a […]

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Basics For Beginners (and the over-experienced) Part 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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Ask The GMs: Iceberg Plotlines: Massive Plot Arcs in RPGs

This is the second of these Ask-The-GMs that I’m tackling without recourse to my usual allies and fellow-GMs. Today’s question is asks about something I’ve described using a number of different terms over the years. My current euphemism is “Iceberg Plots”, because 9/10ths (or more) of the plot doesn’t show in any given adventure. The […]

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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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Creating A Building: A Metaphor and Illustration

This article started as an example and additional content for last week’s discussion of Visualization, but that article evolved in a different direction, and this material no longer seemed to fit. So I pulled it to give both the room they needed. Six Questions To Create A Building Everything happens somewhere. In order for any […]

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A Campaign Mastery 750th-post Celebration

Welcome! It’s time for a really big party! This is officially the 750th post here at Campaign Mastery! But it’s more than that: It’s also, as close as makes confusion, our 7th birthday – you see, Johnn and I started pre-loading the Blog with content and getting into the necessary habits to keep things rolling […]

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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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