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So you’re interested in Habits? Go ahead, I try to share something that’s hopefully of real interest – though the style of presentation is merely a list of things how I’m (or better – how we are) used to run a gaming round.
Let me give you a short idea how gaming works for me. In general rpg day looks very much like this:
- Sharing a car to our destination, usually I am picked up or pick up a few of the other gamers on my way to our gaming place. We do have a few places, so we can switch according to our needs. Especially with summer upcoming, we tend to play a lot at Roman’s place, favoring his garden for pure enjoyment as long as it’s warm enough to stay outside.
- When we start around noon, we usually have a shared lunch that gets us into sharing what happend in the last week(s) since we last met. We have excellent cooks in our gaming group and it’s always something to remember.
- In case we’ve players that missed one or a few sessions, a short update almost ever takes place before our actual preparation.
- Once we’re done with eating, the DM prepares his laptop and in case it’s me, I start with a memorable tune, a time ago I used (for years) Apocalyptice – Path, nowadays I use Read more
Share your favorites – Top25 vote
A nice idea has Zachary over at RPGBlog II – he’s collecting votes for the top 25 rankings of blogger’s favorites.
I’ll post you my personal ranking. It’s not including every rpg I’ve played or read, but lists those I liked in front and those I didn’t at the end of the list ;).
1. Pathfinder RPG
2. Shadowrun 3rd Edition
3. AD&D 2nd Edition
4. Palladium Fantasy
5. Werewolf the Apocalypse
10.Mage the Ascension
12.Vampire the Dark Ages
13.DSA 2nd Edition
15.PP&P (Pluesch, Power & Plunder)
16.Star Wars d6
17.Mage the Sorcerers Crusade
18.Call of Cthulu
19.Vampire the Masquerade
21.DSA 4th Edition
23.Changeling the Dreaming
24.Wraith the Oblivion
25.D&D 4th Edition
Start sharing folks ;).
Short Update on Blogs
That said, you might want to check out A Butterfly Dreaming and share your opinion on his postings and blog. I’m pretty sure most of you are familiar with his advice sections and might enjoy the contest he has started for…
Blizzards, Thunderstorms and long, dry nights
For the indecisive
In case you’re still searching for a reason why you should play rpg’s – check out madbrewlabs. It’s good for a smile and stating truth on a hobby you probably do like.
The evil guys..
And one of my preferred topics is currently dealt with at the Core Mechanic – Villains.
You’ll find a lot of blogs going wild on the latest WotC news – pdf’s cancelled – and the german blogs with the following story:
WotC the story goes on…
No enough to cancel the pdf products, WotC obviously has started a campaign against players worldwide. WotC has according to dndgate (a german website) given only a 2-sentence e-mail cancelling an arrangement agreed upon in the past – and left the publisher Feder & Schwert out in the cold rain. I’ve hardly anything I want to add on this, nothing to add that is not a rant. Read for yourself in case you’re interested. I can’t wait to get my pathfinderRPG as soon as it’s released and I wish with all my heart for Paizo that this will become a huge success in the future.
I have to admit, I hardly ever read newsletters I receive from rpgnow, drivethrurpg and paizo, wait – I do read a bit of the last… But I tend to have a little bit of this scan-through and filter for information when I have a minute or two…
WotC stops sale of PDF documents
Paizo, rpgnow and drivethrurpg aren’t the only ones but probably the largest ones. With Wizards stopping the pdf distribution of their products they probably try to harm a bit of the industry on one side, and will limit the former-canon products available to be used with PathfinderRPG. In my opinion this sounds very much like the Music industry to me and their everpresent fear of piracy. Hey guys, we’re your customers – have you ever – EVER – heard of Customer Relationships? You should try to inform people about measures you’re taking, you should try to make them understand.
Looks like I’m not the only one hoping sincerely that WotC sells the IP rights for the whole D&D products soon. Well, I’ve stopped buying original WotC products when 4e came out, my disappointment with the license that ended the revolutionary era, started by the whole d20 and the OGL, and ended with the rest of 4e – for which not a single player of my group could find a little motivation for – it was in short just a disappointment with a few ideas but intended obviously for a different audience. For now I’m still waiting for WotC to search for a legal action to be taken against PathfinderRPG – that would just seem to be the next step a giant like WotC – obviously blind to see the most loyal customers around… Hell if this happens I really hope we would find a way out.
and a lot more have already started discussion and spreading of the word. It’s really upsetting that many fabulous authors are still working for WotC – and I wish every single one of them manages the jump onto something solid if the large machinery ever starts stalling…
Another week was over and finally we met again to continue where we last stopped.
After our last session, we ended right in front of an iron golem, Enelya (the as stubborn as impatient barbarian woman) applied the Oil of War to the huge construct who slowly rose to even larger size and asked in the slow and grumbling language of earth elementals for their concern in this part of the world. Having Whurynia, theÂ cleric of Moradin taken care of this, the golem soon stepped aside and gave way to the stairway down, leading to a larger hall with a distinctive black-slowly bubbling pool on one side and an old, red carpet on the floor leading to a double-throne on the other side. Only a few moments later the whole room was transformed when the scarred warrioress Enelya stepped onto the carpet, the whole area was lightened by a good dozen of torches, lit by a mage’s hand or (more likely) by and ancient spell that still was lasting in the old halls down here. The atmosphere turned creepy for but a moment when a translucent, white/grey shade of a dwarf appeared to reveal a most ancient dialect of sorts, that was only thanks to Daec’s and Whurynia’s expertise in the dwarven tongue and ancients dialects of it to be understood (ok, admitted Daec had some magical help, but the ghost was really hard to understand…) Read more
Yesterday I just found my way back onto the Dungeonmaster’s seat at our gaming table. In short words, it was great. In longer ones I’ll give you a brief but still depth review of yesterday’s happenings…
Our gaming group consists of 6 players + 1 dungeon master, mostly 1-2 players are missing, so we had a party of four characters yesterday afternoon and evening, of which 2 were newly introduced. The initial meetup was in a tavern without me steering or adding more than a bit of atmosphere (food and drink served by the tavern owner himself), the tavern is located in the capital Immilmar (of Rashemen – Forgotten Realms – Toril – D&D setting…) and called A Stormy Night’s Tavern (Sturmnachttaverne). The initial meetup was disturbed by a young fellow carrying an informal and friendly invitation for Daec (one of the characters) to join the local (lonely) Oghma cleric who’s attending a library inmidst a land of barbarians, he received two gifts (handmade copies of writings he was more or less asking for) and parted in best spirits with the librarian. Currently we’re closing in on winter in the campaign, therefore light snow and freezing wind was adding to a tense atmosphere whenever someone entered or left the tavern. The young, 12-yearish nephew of the librarian seemingly caught the sympathy of several characters (and their players) when he mentioned that he was not very happy with reading all day long. (Even Daec understood his point, being more than an bookworm himself)… It was a busy day on the streets of Immilmar, one of the market celebration’s that take place only a few times a year, traders from far away places (even Halruaa) were participating and enjoying. So was Enelya (another character), herself a barbarian from the north and already enjoying Jhuild (rashemi firewine) for quite a while, when she first came to taste the real stuff, Jhuild from Urling. Seemingly happy with the content and good price she could achieve on the market she headed back to the tavern to meet with the others later that evening. Lysalis (the half elven warrior) and Wuhrynia (herself a dwarven cleric of Moradin) were back in the tavern as well… With growing hours the tavern was filling up to approximately 30 people, most of them traders from the vincinity of Rashemen and beyond, a handful of immilmar berserkers from the giant stag’s lodge and two warriors, who were probably swords for hire and accompanying a few of the traders. This is when Lysalis and Daec both recognized a feeling they had already had earlier that day, someone was watching them – and then – hell broke loose. Read more
Short newsupdate since i haven’t had the time to continueÂ on my Underdark sequence.
Pathfinder beta-testing has ended yesterday,Â found the information on pathfinder newsletter and over at Questing DM.
Besides that I’ve seen a very interesting posting (a real recommendation) when you’re facing some disharmonies in your gaming group. I’ve had that problems at least once in the past and had problems dealing with it. Mike and Johnn describe different approaches to facing disharmonies by lack of trust and problems with character concepts.
Since alchemy is present in most fantasy systems, but I haven’t found a rewarding – easy to use – nice looking, working basic ruleset or the like, I think I’ll give Bard of Valiant’s system a try, and will introduce a little bit (really only a little bit of it) to characters that are likely to have uses for this. I might come up with a few rules for a downside (explosions, failure without noticing) but right now would like to try her alchemy rules that she has laid out in a straight-forward and easy to use blogging series.
A few words on our campaigns over here. We’re currently running Pathfinder RPG in two campaigns, one is located in the underdark and run by Thomas, the other one is currently located in Rashemen and run by Roman, I will take charge of the later group at the next opportunity. Very motivated to sit in the DM chair for once again, I made sure to read Johnn’s freemind feature once again and while I used the mindmapping tool so far only with single-mindmaps I found the interlinking of different mindmaps to be very comfortable, this makes the use of the maps a lot easier and even on larger-single trees you can link within one mindmap. Currently I’ve prepared an overview mindmap crosslinking to “Allies, Items, Timeline, Brainstorming, Opponents and Traps”, I will add at least characters as another mindmap to it. It’s very helpful in the planning procedure and I’ll post the mindmaps once the whole adventure campaign is over here. If you’re curious, let me know and I’ll send it to you via email (the main reason why I can’t post it here is – some of my gaming group might read it and I hate to spoil their fun). To get the planning mindmaps in mm (Freemind format) write me an email to admin (insert an AT here) lemmi (insert a DOT here) at and you’ll have them in no time.
As a teaser I’ll give you my intro-mindmap with no specific information on it.
So here we got – part two of The Underdark is online, in case you missed the first one:
Not too long ago I had one a discussion on player perception and your hardest job (at least for us in our gaming group) is to deliver the same perception of the situation to everyone, no matter if (s)he played for years and is a dungeon master himself or if (s)he played only for a few hours and actually does not care a lot about rules, story and the lot. This if course is true for UNDERDARK adventures, your job as a dungeon master will be to create an environment for your players to call home, for the time of their stay. But this “home” will be a lot different from what most of us are used to, that mentioned I hope most avoid having various mushrooms growing in their homes ;).
Hardly two forest look alike and that’s the same for the underdark. You will have to come up with a few ideas on your own and there will be distinctive differences to various regions down below. Still a basic question you might want to consider: What can survive underground without light? Fungus, worms, earth-elemental and related creatures and plants, everything related to negative energy (undead) will not have a lot of problems either, as well as shadow-related stuff, after all there’s shadows everywhere down there.Â Read more
I’m working for a few days on a writeup of our latest adventures, then again I think our current campaign is a classic introduction to the Underdark. You might have the (official) Underdark Book (D&D 3.5) and find it quite useful if you’re running a forgotten realms based campaign. Then again, there are a few flavour factors you can hardly get from the book, something you should hear over and over again before you even consider running an underdark campaign. I’ll try myself on a series to prepare any motivated dungeon master to lead a party of adventurers into the down-below, feedback is (as always) very appreciated.
To introduce your players to the underdark, make sure you and they understand where they are going. It isn’t some dungeon-dwelling when you’re travelling into the homes of duergar, drow and illithids. All of you should be scared, where you’re headed there is more darkness than light and your chances for death are higher than for survival. Read more