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    OSR Interested in dipping my toe into OSR but don’t know where to start. Any recommendations?

    Thanks. That's great for tracking. But it still leaves the cleric being surprised much less than the Ranger, which in AD&D, "Rangers surprise (q.v.) opponents 50% of the time (d6, score 1 through 3) and are themselves surprised only 161/3% of the time (d6, score 1)". I wasn't even thinking of...
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    OSR Interested in dipping my toe into OSR but don’t know where to start. Any recommendations?

    There's a lot to like about C&C. I ran it for several years. A d20 mechanic and simple, stripped down classes. And the trolls do seem like good guys. I remember at one point when they got a printing press, they were discussing allowing DMs to send in their house rules and then the trolls would...
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    Gift Ideas for Game Masters

    If you have one of "those" dungeon masters: the Stamp of Death https://www.zazzle.com/stamp_of_death-256846415257211662
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    Paizo Paizo Recognizes Union!

    But to put it in context, MOST US companies spend the time between discovering the union effort and the NLRB election in discrediting the union, harassing pro-union employees (or even creating pretexts to fire them), making unenforceable promises that "we've heard you, we'll do better", or...
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    D&D General Experience Points & Leveling: A Brief Primer on XP in the 1e DMG, and Why It Still Matters

    Here's a blog post on the history and some variants of 'carousing' mechanics in D&D.
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    D&D General Experience Points & Leveling: A Brief Primer on XP in the 1e DMG, and Why It Still Matters

    Remember that D&D evolved from a miniature wargame, and some of the first characters were warlords leading armies into battles. How do you get armies? You pay them with gold. Even in the early middle ages, when much of the cash economy of Rome had collapsed, warlords still used wealth to...
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    D&D 1E Giving an AD&D feel to 5e

    So you didn't know what to say and decided to go with vaguely insulting and playing your grognard card? Ability checks against 1 of your 6 scores wasn't a mechanic until Moldvay, several years after AD&D, and skipped by many people who were already playing AD&D (as was the case with myself and...
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    D&D 1E Giving an AD&D feel to 5e

    It's not identical. Ability checks are in the rule book as a DM tool in 5e (not a player tool, btb they are called by the DM) but ability checks do not even exist as a mechanic in 1e. From 3rd edition onward, I've seen players demand to just roll a skill check instead of describing their...
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    D&D 1E Giving an AD&D feel to 5e

    Not AD&D, but there's a really good B/X-ification of 5e called "Into the Unknown". It keeps the chassis of 5e, and : Admittedly, some of those changes (no multi-classing and no trivial spell components) are B/X, not AD&D. But most of the other differences between 5e and AD&D mentioned in this...
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    D&D 5E Cantrip nerf (house rule brainstorm)

    A couple of years ago (was it that long? damn) I ran a campaign that limited cantrips. I'm restarting one soon (had a session zero this past week). It lasted 10 session before my work schedule killed it. While there were some players who decided that the campaign was not for them, all of the...
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    D&D General How strict are you with vision in your game?

    If I'm running a game with a VTT instead of theater of the mind, vision is the feature that makes the additional hassle worthwhile. I think it really changes the game and adds a lot of suspense. Making maps in DungeonDraft and exporting to Foundry has all the lighting and walls fixed, and then...
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    D&D 5E Do You Prefer Sandbox or Party Level Areas In Your Game World?

    There is a commercially available B/X-ification of 5e called "Into the Unknown". The author distinguishes between "travel pace" and "exploration pace", which is 1200/ft per 10 minute segment, allowing mapping, passive perception, no penalty on perception vs stealth checks for surprise, etc...
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    D&D 5E Do You Prefer Sandbox or Party Level Areas In Your Game World?

    Yeah, he posted that while I was writing. I'd forgotten about that passage. However, I think a) this is a rare occurrence only available to high level characters and b) is the exception that proves the rule. @S'mon's point about the lack of 'DM's Story' holds, though I think I disagree that the...
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    Games and Settings with the Best Online Gaming Tools

    Interesting. Like you, I was a Realmworks fan. Recognize you from their forums. I wish I liked the Powered by the Apocalypse style of resolution more. Fiction forward yes, plot points, nah. So not Cortex Prime as much as I like your description of their rules platform. Aand I wish I still...
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    D&D 5E Do You Prefer Sandbox or Party Level Areas In Your Game World?

    ... dominate the ideas of the players? what? They certainly aren't able to have narrative control over the world itself, beyond the powers of their characters. I don't understand your interpretation. In a way, one DM running a community of players in the same world (ie, how Gary ran bitd) is...
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    D&D 5E Do You Prefer Sandbox or Party Level Areas In Your Game World?

    As for the OP, I'm definitely in the Sandbox style as a DM, albeit there should be foreshadowing, or the opportunity for foreknowledge, so that the players get a general idea of what they are up against. There's a line of advice that I like in the somewhat hyperbolic "Quick Primer for Old School...
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    D&D General On PC Death

    As a DM, I have to say that with a continuing campaign world, every new character and new character background is just additional depth to my setting. All that stuff about the last character? That's still going on. All that stuff for the new character is just another layer to the onion.
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    D&D 5E Factions and Visibility

    I use factions in all my games. However, unless the players really all desire otherwise, at session zero the players pick a general "side" and don't pick factions that compete directly or otherwise oppose each other. As far as discovering covert contact methods, the opposition would have to...
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    D&D 5E Factions and Visibility

    Don't want to get political on this, but the science and data show that torture doesn't work. TL;DR the article: people will say anything to stop the torture, making things up as much as saying any truth...
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    Gift Ideas for Game Masters

    Your DM might enjoy using this gift more than you do: The self-inking stamp of death
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