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  1. Radiating Gnome

    Kickstarter Kickstarter Roundup: 3 Projects You Might Have Missed

    This week I thought I'd take a walk through some of the darker corners of Kickstarter projects to see what might be good fun. There are some winners, so check these out while there's still time. These are kick starters for items that may have missed your notice -- they're not actual games, but...
  2. Radiating Gnome

    Best FLGS in London, UK

    Okay, guys. Here's the deal. I'm going to be in London the week of the 4th of July (mostly visiting family, but also some sightseeing and goofing off). So, if I wanted to visit cool game shops in town, where would I go? My wife's going to be dragging me to a bunch of shops for her...
  3. Radiating Gnome

    5E Building a Hot Rod: What I miss most in D&D Next

    We've been playtesting in our home game for a little while now -- rebuilding with each new packet and giving Next as fair a shake as we can give it. And we're having a good time playing -- there's a lot to like about the new system, and a lot of the things we miss we can expect in future...
  4. Radiating Gnome

    Test Page

    I want to see what this can do.
  5. Radiating Gnome

    Article: Gamehackery: Convention Gear

    Today, while I write this, I'm preparing myself for Winter Fantasy (Jan 23-26, Fort Wayne Indiana). I'll be flying out there, playing and DMing for three full days, and hoping not to catch the damn flu that has been stalking me all season. The way we play at home is changing -- at least for...
  6. Radiating Gnome

    Article: Gamehackery: Dungeonmaster to the Stars - On Tour with Harmontown

    It might not look exactly like the dream you had of becoming famous as a dungeon master. But Spencer Crittenden is on tour all this month as "Dungeon Master to the Stars." And you're not. Chew on that while you're drawing up maps for your next session…. Beginnings Last July, Dan Harmon (Sarah...
  7. Radiating Gnome

    Article: Gamehackery: How Long Can PDF Last?

    Let's face it -- in the publishing world, RPG products are a bit of an anomaly -- they're both text and graphic rich. The better ones have the same sort of attention to graphic detail as a coffee table photo book, and yet have to have the same sort of text density and tools (like a table of...
  8. Radiating Gnome

    Article: Gamehackery: Looking Ahead (RPGs as a Service)

    The Tabletop RPG industry is in flux. Tectonic plates are moving. We've seen the announcement of D&D Next; we've been playtesting for months. Paizo is going strong with Pathfinder, while Wizards has scaled back 4e publishing to DDI content. Meanwhile, other games are springing up, fueled by the...
  9. Radiating Gnome

    Article: Gamehackery: EN World: Community of Ideas

    EN World is bouncing back from a devastating hacking. The databases are still there, and we still have our decade+ of history -- but the custom code that has accrued over the years has been compromised, and Morrus and his team are faced with the necessity to try to put it all back together...
  10. Radiating Gnome

    Gamehackery:My Game Session Notes are Useless. So I use Livescribe Echo.

    Years ago, I decided that an audio recording of a game session might be a cool thing to have. Game sessions are incredibly ephemeral events -- 6 hours pass with a lot of action, role playing, and laughter, and at the end of the day it's hard to remember everything that happened. And trying to...
  11. Radiating Gnome

    Technology and Winging it: Story (Part 4 of 4)

    Previous entries in this series: (part 1 | part 2|part 3) It happens like this: You prepare a whole session of adventuring on the island of lost souls, and when you start playing, the first thing your PCs do is decide to get the hell out of that scary haunted island and go back to town. All...
  12. Radiating Gnome

    D&D with Dan Harmon (creator of Community) in his Harmontown Podcast

    Hey -- Not sure if anyone has mentioned/noticed this yet. Dan Harmon, the writer and comic who created Community (and got canned last season) has a comedy podcast called Harmontown (link below) in which he's playing D&D. They only give it about 5-10 minutes per show, but they have guest...
  13. Radiating Gnome

    Gamehackery: Technology and Winging it: Monsters and NPCS (part 3 of 4)

    Previous entries in this series: (part 1 | part 2) Last time we talked about quick tech map solutions; today, we'll talk about dealing with monsters and NPCs. In a lot of ways, the challenges are the same. A prepared encounter can have nuanced challenges, teams of complimentary monsters that...
  14. Radiating Gnome

    Gamehackery: Technology and Winging It: Encounter Maps (part 2 of 4)

    I've been playing long enough to remember playing before we used minis at all. I remember the advent of minis and when our group first started using a battlemat. I remember the first poster maps. I giggled with excitement when I saw map tiles at GenCon for the first time. Now I have a storage...
  15. Radiating Gnome

    Gamehackery: Technology and Winging It: Intro (part 1 of 4)

    A new column on Technology and Gadgets in Tabletop Roleplaying. Think of it as Lifehacker for RPGs. The proliferation of gadgets, game aids, software, and so on, is all great fun and can add a lot to your game. But it comes at a cost: an escalation of tech gadgetry puts DMs in a position...
  16. Radiating Gnome

    Iron DM 2012 Rules (draft)

    Iron DM 2012
  17. Radiating Gnome

    Quick Playtest Report

    Just some quick notes from our 3-hour playtest session over the weekend.... We played, as you might guess, Caves of Chaos with the pregens. No need to explain a lot there. The PCs were a little slow to learn the advantage of actually using your scout as ... you know, a scout ... after having...
  18. Radiating Gnome

    Iron DM 2012

    Okay, I grabbed the rules from the 2011 thread and I figured I'd edit them here so we can agree then move them into the public thread. Rules Contestants are to write an adventure synopsis using all of the 6 ingredients listed for the match-up. Time-Limit Contestants will be given 48 hours...
  19. Radiating Gnome

    Fast, Abstracted Combat for Minor Encounters

    The conversation around Mearls' L&L column today on the 1-hour adventure got me thinking about a stunt I tried a while back to create a system that we could use to quickly play through combat encounters that were less important than the main, tactical encounters of the adventure. When the PCs...
  20. Radiating Gnome

    An Alternative to Random Encounters: Draw Poker (it sounds dumb, but it's working)

    The idea: using draw poker to create a specific type of random encounter that puts the PCs in control over the level of challenge they face, allowing them to balance the risk-vs-reward involved. This is a relatively specific game situation. We're playing Paizo's Second Darkness AP, converted...