Game Masters' Roundtable of Doom #5 - The Weakest Link in My GM Toolbox

Game Masters' Roundtable of Doom #5 - The Weakest Link in My GM Toolbox

There are many different skills that come together to make up a GM—the ability to think on the fly, knowledge of the rules, plotting, etc. What skill do you think is your weakest? What have you done to try and improve that skill? What advice do you have to offer others trying to improve that skill set?

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The Obsidian Monolith Campaign for Numenera 07 - Exploring the Obsidian Monolith

The Obsidian Monolith Campaign for Numenera 07 - Exploring the Obsidian Monolith

In the final chapter of the campaign, the PCs explore the Obsidian Monolith itself. This final chapter is designed such that it can either be the end of your campaign, or a launching off point for a whole new story. You can learn more about this adventure in episode 21 of the Game Master's Journey podcast.

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Game Masters' Roundtable of Doom #4 - How Lethal Are Your Campaigns?

Game Masters' Roundtable of Doom #4 - How Lethal Are Your Campaigns?

There is a wide spectrum of lethality in RPGs, and there are GMs who fall on every possible point within it. These range from GMs who run campaigns where PCs can never die to the other extreme—GMs who delight in killing PCs. Where do you fall on this spectrum? How lethal are your games and why? How do you handle PC death if and when it happens?

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The Obsidian Monolith Campaign for Numenera 01 - The Town of Bonespir

The Obsidian Monolith Campaign for Numenera 01 - The Town of Bonespir

In these series of articles I will give you the material to run my campaign for Numenera, The Obsidian Monolith. This is the same campaign I discuss in The Obsidian Monolith episodes of the Game Master's Journey podcast. This is an introduction to the campaign and the town of Bonespir, where the story will start.

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Game Masters’ Roundtable of Doom #3 - My Evolution as a GM and Gamer

Game Masters’ Roundtable of Doom #3 - My Evolution as a GM and Gamer

The Game Masters’ Roundtable of Doom is a meeting of the minds of tabletop RPG bloggers and GMs. We endeavor to transcend a particular system or game and discuss topics that are relevant to GMs and players of all roleplaying games. This month's topic comes to us courtesy of Scott Robinson, who asks, "How has your gaming and/or GMing changed over time?"

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D&D Tyranny of Dragons Campaign Review & Rebuttal

D&D Tyranny of Dragons Campaign Review & Rebuttal

I’ve been running the published campaign for D&D, Tyranny of Dragons. I am enjoying running the campaign immensely, however I almost didn’t buy this amazing campaign. There are a lot of very negative reviews of these books online. Luckily for me, I kept digging and did find some positive reviews that put the negative reviews into the proper context, and I found some amazing resources for the campaign, which I will share with you in this article. I’ll give you the gist of what I got from the majority of the negative reviews, and I’ll tell you why I decided to get the books anyway, and why I’m glad I did.

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The Cypher Conundrum

The Cypher Conundrum

I believe I may have found a solution I like for the Cypher Conundrum. In a nutshell, what I call the Cypher Conundrum is a convergence of two things in Numenera and The Strange. First, if a GM generates cyphers randomly on-the-fly, he's going to end up with some results that don't make sense. Second, players in the Cypher System are supposed to find (and use) cyphers all the time. If you run many of the published adventures, you'll usually find that PCs are finding cyphers faster than they can use them, for a variety of reasons. This often leads to cyphers being left behind, which can be a drag for the GM if he's creating and detailing cyphers ahead of time.

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Five Things I Love About D&D 5e

Five Things I Love About D&D 5e

I’ll admit it, I was quite reluctant to give D&D fifth edition a try. I got burned when 3.5 came out, because I’d just bought the 3.0 books a short time before. 3.5 came out way too soon on the heels of 3.0. To me it seemed to either be a money grab on the part of Wizards of the Coast, or an indication they’d put out 3.0 before they’d sufficiently play tested it. Basically, 3.0 was a playtest, one that we all paid top dollar to participate in. However, I finally decided the changes were worth it and did make the game significantly better, so I bought in.

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