Miscellaneous
  • Miscellaneous


    Welcome aboard our latest Journey To... a distant culture in Earth's past to examine how we might incorporate that culture into a broader gaming experience. Today we journey to the Hopi, a sovereign nation in the southwest United States. Today, the Hopi live on the Hopi Reservation lands in northern Arizona, though once, their lands stretched throughout the area known today as the Four Corners. Let's discover more about the Hopi.  ...READ MORE

    The Dragon Issue 5 was published in March 1977. It is 32 pages long, with a cover price of $1.50. In this issue they start their move to be more than just a "house organ" for TSR games.

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    Monte Cook Games has built a very successful publishing company out a a regular series of very successful, smoothly run Kickstarter campaigns. Right on cue, their next one has just been announced... but this time it's not a game. It's a book giving you advice on how to game!  ...READ MORE

    Last weekend, I spent some time hanging out with a friend from my D&D group. We had other things on the agenda, but we also realized that it was a perfect opportunity to have an in-character conversation we had been trying to have in-game for nearly two months. Our sessions have been eventful, and there wasnít a good time to pause for it. We thought it might be a longish discussion, and wouldn't include the other characters, so we kept putting it off.

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    Do your D&D games ever contain romantic elements? Iím not talking about stereotypical antics involving trying to hook up with NPC barmaids or seduce a guard as a distraction. Realistic relationships are unlikely to develop that much in a one-shot, or in a style of play which de-emphasizes role play in favor of action. But in longer-running games with ample time for RP, Iím curious how often it actually becomes a plot element.

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    The Dragon Issue #3 was published in October 1976, with a cover price of $1.50. The issue contained the usual mix of fiction (a bit too heavy on the fiction for some readers) and gaming material. One of the more controversial articles of the early years of The Dragon appeared in this issue.

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    Mike Carr played the first cleric in the history of fantasy tabletop role playing games. Like, the very first. Ever. In the decades since, the character class has earned a spot at the core of the hobby, so when Carr casually mentioned in an email that he played the first one in a now-legendary campaign, it seemed like a follow-up question was necessary. But for Carr, it's just another interesting footnote in a life in gaming.

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    I run a weekly D&D game for children ages 8-14 at my shop. When I took over our Young Heroes League program last fall, I had very little experience as a DM. I started running an Adventurerís League table for adult players a few months later, which is easy by comparison. There isnít much the grownups can throw at me that I havenít already dealt with on some level while wrangling the kids.

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    This past Saturday, I ran a game of Fate Accelerated (like last year) at a local gaming store for Free RPG Day. A couple of the players were unfamiliar with the game, but this isn't unusual since a lot of people use events like this to play games that they wouldn't normally get to play. But running sessions like this point out the importance of Session Zeroes in gaming, even if the session is a mini one.

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    Today I want to talk about a subject that is near and dear to adventurers. Yes, weíre talking about money. Money is a medium for exchanges. It is accepted in payment for goods, services and debts. Different cultures handle money and currency differently, however, and what is accepted as currency can change with time, so letís do a little digging and see what we turn up.

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    Obviously, the best way to reward your D&D players for participating is to have a good game ready. But when youíve found a good group and want to dig deeper to enhance the experience, here are a few methods for rewarding your players. Some are DM-specific, but others can apply to any player or the whole group.

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    So, you're playing a tabletop RPG for the first time. Congratulations! You're in for an adventure. However, you're probably also feeling a little overwhelmed. Even if you're familiar with other kinds of gaming, tabletop RPGs come with their own specific sets of challenges. With that in mind, let's talk about a few things that will make your gaming experience a critical success.

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    Coming soon to your favourite audio device is a new podcast all about the latest tabletop roleplaying game news! It won't necessarily be accurate, or informative, or even competent, but we will try to have fun! Join Morrus and Peter Coffey each week. You might learn something. But you probably won't.
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    In the late 70s and early 80s there were a large number of magazines running around that talked about gaming in general and role playing games in particular. Of course most people are familiar with Dragon Magazine or the early White Dwarf, but I wonder how many remember the gem from Task Force Games that did as much to broaden my RPG horizons as either of those. That gem was Nexus Magazine and it began in 1982 talking about of all things, what is a role playing game.

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    When the GM puts in the effort to create a game session for your party, and everyone makes time in their busy lives to show up, you might as well make the most of the occasion. Setting the scene for your game and creating a space where you can relax can help immerse you in the experience. Whether you prefer to create an atmosphere that suggests the setting of your game, or choose to focus on the fact that you are hanging out with your friends for a few hours, you can find little ways to make it special.

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    A large subset of board games is Eurostyle games. These games are almost exactly the opposite of RPGs in many ways. Keep in mind, board (including some card) games are a vastly larger segment of tabletop gaming than RPGs in monetary terms, and Eurostyle games are a large part of that segment. So even if you have no interest in non-RPGs, a comparison may help you understand what you do (and could do) with your own campaign or RPG design.


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    I think that, outside of comic books, the one media that I've glommed onto for the longest part of my life has been horror. But, the longer that I role-play the less interested I become in horror role-playing. Most of the 90s were taken up with Call of Cthulhu and horror-themed GURPS games that I ran. Both of these systems were great for horror for me, but something changed over time.

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    Technically, all you need to play Dungeons & Dragons is a set of dice, a pencil, and a character sheet. Sure, itís very helpful to have least one copy of the Players Handbook on the table, of course, but many optional tools are available for players and DMs that can make game play easier, or just more fun.

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    As a dungeon master and co-owner of a tabletop game and comic book shop, I meet brand-new players virtually every time I'm behind the counter or the DM screen. D&Dís recent popularity explosion has brought in countless new players. They usually are feeling both excited and intimidated, and it's my job to maintain that excitement and add confidence too.


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    I am typically a game master when I game. It is the role that I enjoy the most, and I think that the world building part of the GM's "job" is a big part of what I enjoy. But I do sit on the opposite side of the GM's screen from time to time* and being a player. So, does "world building" apply to character creation?

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