Sunday Seven: 2009-09-06 2

For those few people out there following my blog, you’ll have noticed that I missed my Friday Five post. This is because I was at Tacticon running two sessions for our new D&D4e world/adventure, and just plain did not have time to take a break from the wonderful gaming to write a post. Instead, I decided to give you two bonus articles (this, the “Sunday Seven” title) today. Before I jump into them, I want to thank any Tacticon organizers, coordinators, volunteers, judges and players that may see this. You made Tacticon a special event for me this year, and I can’t wait for Genghis Con to roll around this spring. Now, on to the Sunday Seven.

Game Mastering at Convention Tips

This is a post similar to this one in that it contains links to other articles. The post came just in time for me running four sessions at Tacticon, and I learned quite a bit from them. I know that con season is winding down, but there’s still time to learn from these great posts for later this year and into the next!

TPK is only the beginning!

This article is a great twist on an old experience. Instead of ending a campaign with a TPK (total party kill) perhaps it’s time to start a game with a TPK. What a great twist that gave me several ideas for some adventure ideas, and maybe even a campaign.

GM Spotlight: What Pathfinder Brings to the Table

I ordered my copy of Pathfinder just a few days ago, so I’m still waiting for it to arrive. I can’t comment much on the system as I’ve only seen the beta, and I’m withholding all comments until I see the final product. This article goes into some decent detail about what they like and don’t like about the system. The only thing in the article that I vehemently disagree with is the size comparison of the books. They call the Pathfinder book a doorstop and want to know why they have to lug it around to game with it. They even have a photo of the D&D4e PHB on edge with the Pathfinder book to demonstrate its large size. In all fairness, they should have included the D&D4e DMG in the picture too since the Pathfinder book is for the GM and the players alike. It’s a poor comparison. Also, I just spent the entire weekend lugging my D&D 4e library around with me in order to effectively run my games. If anyone should be complaining about lugging too much paper goods, it should be me sending my chiropractor bill to WotC!

Old Advice Is The Best Advice

This is, indeed, very old advice, but it’s so great and precise that I had to share it as well. Any GM worth his salt not only knows his world, the adventure(s), the monsters and vital NPCs, but he also knows the characters in the players’ hands and the players sitting at the table.

Seven deadly sins that turn neutrals into foes

This article is a brief how-to guide on turning NPCs into enemies. It’s written from the slant of how to do it, but also how to avoid it in case you don’t want the friendly local baker to turn into a hated person by the party.

Improved Initiative

This is a great post by Newbie DM about how to track initiative. I generally do this with a small JavaScript application I wrote years ago, but I didn’t have time to prep the software on my netbook before Tacticon, so I had to resort to the old fashioned method of writing down a list of names with numbers next to them. It slowed the game just a slight bit (especially when lunch was arriving and I was beginning to fade.) Had I read this article before Taacticon instead of just a few minutes ago, I would have had an easier time with running my games. That’s ok. I’ll know this for next time around, and I may ditch my software for this method to see how it works.

Take a Number

I’ve done this for years and years, and I think it’s such a great idea, I wanted to share the “number your minis” idea that Key Our Cars posted about. Take their advice and write a number/letter on every chit, miniature or scrap of cardboard that is used to represent numbers.

TPK is only the beginning!

2 thoughts on “Sunday Seven: 2009-09-06

  1. Ben Sep 7,2009 8:22 PM

    Glad you enjoyed the TPK article…

    Ahhh, Ghengis Con, how I miss thee. 🙂 That area’s my old stomping grounds. Tell me, does IYM still honor my blue card? 😉 [And if you tell me there’s no more “It’s your Move” Stores, I’ll be a sad panda.


  2. Hungry Sep 7,2009 8:41 PM

    There are still a few IYM floating around, but I’m not sure about the blue card thing. I don’t get into them much as they are rare. I try to limit all of my local gaming shopping to a single FLGS (friendly local game store) in an effort to keep at least one of them still in business.

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