This week James takes on a new listener question: When my players come up with what seems like a reasonable bargain or deal, my antagonists accept, as long as they’re not giving up more than they originally intended to. The greatest *play* experiences I’ve had came from GMs who created hardline antagonists who would accept nothing less than total acceptance of their demands. Overcoming them gave me a thrill that I want to give my players, but whenever I try to run these guys, my senses of fairness and logic kick in and I accept a reasonable solution.
James discusses the outstanding Metatopia and talks game design with fellow rookie designers Jason Pitre and Mark Richardson
Plenty of OD&D concepts have fallen out of favor. Most of them died out because they put limitations on play. These days swords and sorcery systems are way less restrictive and f20 games are focused on customization. However, 5th edition D&D opted to keep alignment- which has some gamers scratching their heads.
James answers three listener questions in one episode! Gain insights on stronger performance and portraying ambivalence, co-GMing, and intrigue based role play systems.
John Harper is responsible for some of the most fun and influential micro systems on the internet. With games like Lasers and Feelings, Lady Blackbird, and Ghost Echo in his portfolio Harper is the king of micro games. In this discussion James and John discuss Johns approach to gaming, his design philosophy, loosen the definition of “game designer,” and fix everything.
What do you do when your party doesn’t follow your plot?
James discusses the art of voicing characters. This episode has improv techniques for developing character voices, advice on how to fudge certain voices you can’t do, and the secret to good voice work.
This week live from CODcon James invites Kat Murphy and Jim Hepplewhite on the show to discuss customizing monsters thanks to a question from Jeff Chaffe @infocorn on twitter.
What separates basic play from role-playing art? For game masters it is almost always a question of atmosphere. In this episode James teaches aspiring DMs how to create and maintain atmosphere. He also gives some tips for hardened grognards looking for ways to better describe their locations.
Parting with the usual format, James sits down with Senior Editor of Forbes Magazine and author of “Of Dice and Men” David M. Ewalt to discuss David experience running his very first campaign. Their conversations spans world building, session prep, improvisation, and how to incorporate lessons learned in other systems into your main campaign.