Welcome back to the Friday Five posts! I hated to take the hiatus, but it was a necessity of a (mostly) sane life. I’m back now, and hope to catch up on what’s going on the RPG blogosphere. On to the links!
I’ve always struggled with making my dungeon maps. They’re always symmetrical. It’s how my brain works when I see graph paper. I kick into “logic mode.” I suppose I could freehand some maps and then overlay a grid later, but that’s such a pain. This method of “laying out” a dungeon using dice has the right feel to me. I think I could actually put this to use since I have a large (11×17) pad of graph paper that would work wonderfully for some tossing of dice.
Fitz has some great words of wisdom on what makes the story within a game setting more compelling. He doesn’t come right out and give instructions on how to do it, per se, but if you read between the lines on what he finds compelling, you just might find some tidbits in there on how to improve the game for your players. Hey players! Read the post as well. You’re part of the story and can help your fellow players and the GM improve the story in the game. Go check it out!
My son is about to turn 5 in a month or so. He already has his own dice. He stumbled into my office while I was rolling up a character and was naturally fascinated by the little odd-shaped pieces of plastic I was tossing around. He was so enthralled he wouldn’t leave my dice alone, and I was afraid he would lose some. I’m like a dragon with a hoard when it comes to my dice. I instinctually know when one goes missing. Instead of fighting with him over the dice, I snagged an unused dice bag, pulled out some older dice of mine that I’ll probably never use again and gave them to him. He loves them. However, he’s not quite to the age where he can grok D&D or Pathfinder or GURPS or Hero or Cyberpunk or Top Secret S/I or any of my other favorite systems. Here in about a year, I’ll probably create my own system very much like the one described in the link and see if he wants to game with me in a cooperative storytelling venture. I think he’ll get a kick out it. I know I will.
This post brought back fond memories for me. I once got so upset at a d12 while playing a game that I snagged my bottle of lighter fluid from my bedroom tossed the die out on the cement front port, doused the plastic and lit it on fire with my Zippo. I still have the meteor-looking chunk of pitted plastic in my dice bag. It’s a reminder to all the rest of my dice of what lengths I will go to when handing out punishment for poor performance. Does it help? Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, I get a smile on my face when I see the lump of bright yellow plastic.
I’ve made the mistake of bringing every GURPS book I own to the table. I’ve seen it done with Hero/Champions and Rifts as well. The games never lasted long, and the character creation always took forever because the players wanted to pore over every last choice they had for their character before committing the points. The method listing in the link is a great idea. Show up with the core books (duh) and maybe 2-3 “expansion” books to allow the players to choose from. As an addition suggestion of my own, have a brief (really brief) campaign overview written. Describe the genre, points allowed, style, disallowed abilities, suggested abilities and a teaser about the start of the campaign that will give the players a “creative compass” with which to use as a guide during the character creation process. This is very helpful.
That’s it for this week! I’m really looking forward to see what happens next week with RPG blogs!