Posts Tagged ‘Running-Encounters’

Making a Great Villain Part 1 of 3 – The Mastermind

A hero is only as good as the villains they fight – but what makes a Villain great? It’s not exactly an easy question to answer, is it? I have three basic answers, for three different kinds of villain – the Mastermind, the Combat Monster, and the Character Villain. The first part of this article […]

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Ensemble or Star Vehicle – Which is Your RPG Campaign?

For some time now, I’ve been aware of a subtle difference between the advice being dispensed here at Campaign Mastery and what really happened in the games that I run. At first, I wasn’t entirely sure that my perception was accurate; I couldn’t put my finger on exactly what the differences were, indicating that it […]

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An Adventure Into Writing: The Co-GMing Difference

I thought that I’d talk a little today about the way Blair and I write adventures for the Adventurer’s Club campaign. Because we share the GMing responsibilities in that campaign – and I don’t mean alternating in the GM’s Chair, I mean we both GM at the same time – this process is necessarily somewhat […]

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Superhero combat on steroids – pt 2 of 2: Moving with a purpose

Hero Game’s Policy on publishing house rules is both enlightened and occasionally maddening. They have no problem with people posting their own characters, or discussing their rules, or publishing house rules – provided that you don’t quote directly from their rulebooks and your rules don’t exceed 5,000 words in length. You can’t publish variations on […]

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Superhero combat on steroids – pt 1 of 2: Taking the initiative with the Hero System

Hero Game’s Policy on publishing house rules is both enlightened and occasionally maddening. They have no problem with people posting their own characters, or discussing their rules, or publishing house rules – provided that you don’t quote directly from their rulebooks and your rules don’t exceed 5,000 words in length. You can’t publish variations on […]

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By the seat of your pants: the 3 minute (or less) NPC

Creating most NPCs is like boiling an egg. They should take three minutes or less and be ‘boiled’ at the game table, not in advance – though you may want garnishes at the ready. In fact, most should take no more than thirty or fourty seconds. Doesn’t sound possible? This article will show you how, […]

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All wounds are not alike, part 3b: The Healing Imperative (cont)

On Monday, I attempted to post the third part of the current series on alternate damage-handling systems for 3.x. Unfortunately, time ran out when I was only half-done… A quick refresher on where we stand. There are flaws in the system of progression for healing spells that result in an unacceptable degree of overlap, especially […]

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All wounds are not alike, part 3a: The Healing Imperative (Now Updated!)

In the first two parts of this series we examined alternative approaches to the simulation of injuries that were written cold, without the benefit of actual use in play. In this third and final part, I will describe a third – but this is an update on a variation that I have actually used (and […]

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All Wounds Are Not Alike Part 2: Bone-breaking damage for 3.x

The alternative damage-handling subsystem proposed in last week’s article suffers from one major flaw, as some of our commentators have pointed out – it involves additional processes and bookkeeping that can adversely impact the flow of combat. This flaw is present to a much smaller extent in this proposal. Once again, this is not a […]

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All Wounds Are Not Alike – Part 1: Alternative Damage rules for 3.x

What are hit points? The most obvious answer is that hit points are a numeric index between healthy and imminent death, but there are other interpretations of the significance of this ubiquitous character statistic, and some of them lead the GM down interesting paths. This article will examine the first of these options, while parts […]

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Look beyond the box: a looser concept for NPCs

Most game systems are great when it comes to a precise definition of what a character can or can’t do, but there are any number of occasions when the level of precision they impart and entail is overkill. The result is that character generation takes a lot longer than is really justified by the intended […]

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On The Edge: Implications of the D&DNext Advantage mechanic

Only a short article this week (at least in terms of word count) because there is easily five times as much work beneath the surface! A few weeks ago, I read a really interesting analysis of the mathematics of the D&DNext advantage mechanic by the Online DM. And yet, there was a disconnect between that […]

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