Sunday Six: 2009-11-01

Life and work caught up with me Friday, and I never did have a chance to post the Friday Five. Instead, I’m doing a Sunday Six and giving you a bonus link as an apology for making you wait.

Using Fear: Scare the Player, Not the Character

I’m a hard working fiction writer (unpublished as to date) and I’ve learned that in order to scare the reader, you can’t just describe a character as being scared. You have to describe the scary thing in such wonderful detail that it evokes a visceral reaction in the reader, not the characters in the story. This translates well into role playing as well. You can always tell the player that their character is “shaken” (or whatever mechanic) due to the fright they are feeling and see if they can role play it out. However, it’s much better to describe something in a way that the player will be wary and scared and this will cause them to more easily have their character react in a fearful manner. Check out what Ameron has to say on the topic.

Legendary Achievements: Colouring Your Campaign with Anecdote and Legend

I’ve recorded heroic feats that some of my characters have achieved, but that’s as a player. I wish I had done what Mike over at Campaign Mastery suggests and done it with the people in the games that I’ve run as well. It would make it so much easier to recall some of the great and heroic feats my players have pulled off in the past. Then I could use those moments to inspire my current players.

What makes a memorable RPG Villain

This is not from a blog, but from an article that a friend of mine wrote. If you want your players to talk about and remember the Bad Guys for years and decades to come, then head over and see what BSquared has to say on the topic.

Five ways to recycle an old D&D campaign

The tales of legend and lore… We all have them. If you follow the link above, you’ll find some great advice on how to roll past Tales of the Table into the current games you’re running.

D&D Burgoo: A Dragon on the Doorstep

Are your players only nervous and jumpy during the big combat scenes? Well, then you need to head over to Gnome Stew and see what Troy has to say about making them feel in over their heads off the battle grid.

Running Horror Games

This was a timely post for Halloween, and if I had been more on the ball you would have received the link from me the day before Halloween instead of the day after. Brandan over at d20 Source has some great advice and words on how to handle a horror game. The best set of horror games I ever played in what run by a fella named Jim. He ran a short-lived Ravenloft campaign (2nd edition AD&D at this point) and I was playing an elven thief/wizard that had a guilty conscience a mile wide when it came to killing humanoids. He hated taking the life of anything that could possibly resemble his lost family or friends. The combination of my character’s quirks and Jim’s excellent story telling always left me looking over my shoulder on the walk home late at night after the Ravenloft games were over. I still get a slight chill thinking about the little girl my character had to slay to save a town. Thanks for the games, Jim, and I hope you’re out there in the world doing well.