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Aug
14

5 Things I Learned from Running D&D for Kids, Teens, and Tweens

5 Things I Learned from Running D&D for Kids, Teens, and Tweens Are you considering running a roleplaying game for kids? You can create a more supportive environment for the kids, reduce your own anxiety, and foster the kids’ creativity and love of the hobby by learning from my past mistakes. In my previous post, How Not to Run D&D for Kids, Teens, and Tweens, I wrote about some of the major pitfalls that adults can face when trying to DM for a younger audience. This time, you can discover my missed opportunities and things I would do differently the next time I run D&D or any roleplaying game for kids. Create a...
Aug
7

How to Create RPG Campaign Subplots

How to Create RPG Campaign Subplots “I like to call [subplots] supporting plots. They are there to support the main plot.” – McDonald, Brian. Invisible Ink (p. 100). Libertary. Kindle Edition. Subplots in roleplaying games are the side quests you go on to help accomplish one of your goals. When the NPC you need to talk to has gone missing, or when the NPCs asks you to travel to do some task or collect some item for him before he’s willing to help you, that’s a subplot. They’re the bread and butter of video games and roleplaying games alike. The conflict added to the story by subplots both provides...
Apr
10

5 Tips for Writing Social Drama RPG Campaigns

5 Tips for Writing Social Drama RPG Campaigns For my next roleplaying game campaign, I’m writing the foundation for a social drama campaign that I’ll then pass off to a co-GM who does a much better job at portraying Non-Player Characters and figuring out the logical (not just conventional) implications of choices. I lamented on social media that writing up the campaign so that someone else can take it and run with it is much more challenging than writing up a traditional, linear story adventure. This post deals with my approach to tackling those difficulties and provides tips for prepping social drama campaigns...
Dec
2

The 3-Act Formula as a Mini RPG Campaign Template

The 3-Act Formula as a Mini RPG Campaign Template Type in “novel structure” to the nearest search engine and you’ll find a smorgasbord of templates and spreadsheets to help you plot your novel, and the three-act structure is one of the most popular there is. With a couple of tweaks (and borrowing slightly from the Universal Hero Cycle), you can adapt the three-act formula into a mini RPG campaign template. The end result is nine sessions with one for character creation and prep, two for the first act, four sessions for the middle/rising action, and two for the finale/climax. This template works...
Oct
31

Use a Player Survey to Gauge RPG Players’ Preferences

Use a Player Survey to Gauge RPG Players’ Preferences I’ve talked before about how I believe the main job of the GM—besides having fun, of course—is to elicit or evoke emotion (e.g. fun) in the players. Before we talk about techniques to elicit those emotions in the pursuit of fun, however, you’ll want to use a player survey or otherwise determine what kind of players are in your group and the kinds of things they find fun in tabletop roleplaying games. That way, you can focus your efforts on cultivating certain roleplaying games elements and techniques, saving you time while maximizing the return at your...

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