Sporadic Saturday Sweetness: 2016-03-05 2

Time for the first SSS of 2016! I know. I know. It’s March already, but life got in the way. Check my previous posts for more details. I’m not going to rehash things here other than to thank all of you for sticking with me.

Time for some links!

Sunday Chin Scratcher: Player-Character Questionnaires, Yay Or Nay?

I don’t mind PC questionnaires, but I like them to be interactive. I don’t want to throw a sheet of paper at the player and ask them to answer questions about their character. Yes, that can be helpful, but I like to take it to the next level and turn it into an interview of sorts. I feel this works better for me understanding the personality and background of the character. I also feel it deepens the concepts of the character within the player’s mind.

Isometeric Mapping…Always Take Lots of Asprin Before Attempting

Like most people, the first isometric map I ever saw was in the original Ranveloft adventure. What a beautiful work of art! Also a real pain the ass to read/view/scan/etc. It took some intense study, a straight edge (or two), and a keen eye to really follow where things lined up. Even though the map gave me difficulty, I still love it. A well-done isometric map is a work of art to behold. A poorly done one is a migraine waiting to happen. I like the one done at the link by Tim, though. It’s pretty sweet.

Swords with Attitude aka Can a Sword Pout?

It’s rare for me to hand out an intelligent weapon. Very rare. I’ve been playing RPGs for almost 33 years now. As a player, I’ve seen 3 or 4 handed out, but never to me. As a GM, I’ve handed out another 3 or 4. They are a valuable treasure to behold and can be a severe game-changer, depending on the motivation and attitude of the weapon. I’ve randomly rolled some intelligent weapons in the past, and discarded the intelligent portion of the stats because it didn’t fit the story I wanted to collaborate on. Every intelligent sword I’ve handed out has been with intent and purpose, and it’s always come off great. Reading this article has inspired me to hand out another intelligent weapon, but it would really break my current games that I’m running. One is too low power (the weapon would take over) and the other is a large group (7 players in Pathfinder), so adding an intelligent weapon might upset the balance of things a bit. I’ll have to think on it. Great article, Laurence!

Support Your Local Hero

Mike’s article on heroism breaks down a variety of different ways someone can be (and should be) considered heroic. All the way from the “I gotta do this or else” hero to the “Let’s save the universe!” hero. As always, Mike’s article is great food for thought, and presents a great deal of information on the different types of heroes out there. Don’t be fooled going in. This is not purely about the superhero genre of RPGs. He touches on real life, and everything said here can be applied to pretty much any genre out there. Thanks for the great write-up, Mike!

The House of Seven Wines

This is a great map with just enough text detail to spark the imagination. This gives great seed for growth into adventure ideas or plot hooks. Well done, Dyson!

Character Capabilities: An often-forgotten source of plots

This is brilliant! In my current Pathfinder game, when times get tough (usually in combat or when dealing with dire traps or some such), the players will immediate focus in on their character sheets to see what powers/abilities/feats/skills/magic they have to scrape them out of the bottom of the barrel. It’s not my favorite reaction, but it happens. When I’m in a tough spot as a GM (i.e.: out of ideas, not sure where to go to next, etc.), I’ve never really considered going to the character sheets as a well for source material. Please go check out Mike’s article for a full explanation of what’s gotten me so excited!

Back To The Future For GM’s Day

The Gnome Stew Crew has put together some fantastic bits of advice to their past selves. Look through the plethora of tidbits and I bet you’ll find something in there applying to your current GMing (or even playing) situations. You might even see a familiar name in there: mine. That’s right. I’m part of the Gnome Stew Crew. This just fell into place over the course of the past week, and I haven’t taken the time to do an official announcement just yet. I guess, in a way, I just did. Right? 🙂

2 thoughts on “Sporadic Saturday Sweetness: 2016-03-05

  1. Mike Bourke Mar 6,2016 9:41 AM

    Welcome back, and thanks for the support, Hungry. Glad you enjoyed the character capabilities article so much since I’ve almost finished a sequel to appear this week 🙂

  2. Laurence Gillespie Mar 7,2016 11:13 AM

    Thanks for the kind words JT. Your blog looks fascinating. With deepest respect, I would submit that an attitude can often play balance an otherwise over powerful magic weapon. Or perhaps one could assign the attitude to a not-so-powerful weapon to start with, to see how that impacts the players. I agree that if the ineffable sword of doom only likes Republicans/dwarves/hobbits, etc. it may warp the course of the game, a plus 1 slingshot or rubber chicken not to so much. Alternatively if the attitude relates to something that doesn’t come up too often it can add colour without wrecking the game. Much as I would like to, I don’t encounter elven princesses very often (nor do my players) so having a sword that hates them is not necessarily going to change anyone’s life. I am a total fan of low level campaigns, so I’m totally on side with your concerns.

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