Storyhour Authors Chat Log!


First Post
Storyhour Authors Chat, Moderated by Harlock. Enjoy!

Harlock - #dnd3e would like to welcome you all to the Story Hour chat. First of all, I want to let everyone know that this channel is always open, we'd love to see you here on "less formal" occasions as well. Now, if you have a question for the Story Hour Crew, please double click on Seri, thatdarncat, Kalanyr or Silvr_Dragon's name and ask your question. Your question will be passed to Harlock who will ask the questions on your behalf.
Piratecat - Is that Old One?
Old - yeah...brb...
WizarDru - Is Ryan not here yet?
WizarDru - Oh, there he is.
Piratecat - Hi, Dustan.
Zad - Greetings Destan
Destan - 'Hiya Senor Zad
WizarDru - Fashionably late, I see. :)
OldOne - Back...Hey Destan!
nemmerle - old one!
Destan - Sorry - putting the last of the demons to bed.
Destan - hi oo
Destan - Hiya nemm. :)
nemmerle - hey Destan
Harlock - I want to thank all the Authors for being here. We've never had a chat with so many guests
OldOne - Demons...hehe...
diaglo - Hiya joeblank
jonrog1 - my pleasure.
thatdarncat - hey guys :)
thatdarncat - and they keep on coming! Hi SpyScribe!
jonrog1 - better than talking to agents *shudder*
Piratecat - Hi, SpyScribe!
SpyScribe - hi!
nemmerle - I love that there are so many story hours; I remember when mine was one of like 6
C_Baize - No problem.
Harlock - So, I want to start with a basic question: Why did you folks decide to even start a Story Hour?
jonrog1 - Hey, spy, got your email, thanks. I too weep at the passing of angel
Destan - After reading Piratecat's.
nemmerle - how do we decide who answers?
Wulf_Ratbane - After reading Contacts
OldOne - Jealousy of Pkitty and Contact...:p!
Piratecat - For me, there wasn't a forum for it yet. I had a great game, and posted about it... and people wanted to know more.
jonrog1 - after reading Piratecat’s
DrMidnight - Yeah, who makes with the answering, yeah, yeah
WizarDru - A combination of Piratecat's and keeping an adventure log of our own.
Zad - When we started, 3e was new, and I had wanted to take notes to keep a record of the campaign. And people had started posting story hours so I took a shot at killing two birds with one stone.
SpyScribe - Reading everyone else's and needing a birthday present for my DM.
nemmerle - I read about how PC's characters put a tape worm in another PC and I was like "that is too cool"
Harlock - Everybody answer, it's a free for all for anyone with +
Piratecat - That one great session is now lost, but people badgered me into writing more. Turned out it was fun. :D
jonrog1 - also, I wanted to write something that was MINE, not for pay or assignment.
contact - I was inspired by Eric Noah's campaign logs on his D&D site, and thought that my group would appreciate seeing "what happened" 10 yrs. from now.
C_Baize - For me, it was simply to share the kinds of adventures that my group has and loves. This is a good high action, high cinema game, and when it hits the action sequences, it's just going to rock.
jonrog1 - kind of crucial to keep the juices flowing that way
nemmerle - but I used to keep a log of previous campaigns in my now defunct Aquerra newsletter, Thoth's Libram
diaglo - I’ve been keeping a player journal for the last 25 years
DrMidnight - I wanted to start writing after a DM wrote up a campaign I played in. I wanted to try that, and went through several thousand words of horrible writing before anyone started reading me.
SpyScribe - 25 years, pfew!
contact - Damn, Diaglo. That's old skewl.
C_Baize - Plus, I read OldDrewId's story hour, and was HOOKED.
OldOne - Wow...diaglo...
Piratecat - Interestingly enough, it was the story hour forum that made me an admin. Eric did it one day as a joke, and never changed it back.
diaglo - I have a lousy memory
nemmerle - and it was all down hill from there, PC
Piratecat - diaglo, that's just too cool.
WizarDru - I thought you came out of the womb as an admin.
Morrus - Yeah, I keep forgetting to change that back.
jonrog1 - 25 years? bloody..
Harlock - Heh, I suppose you've earned that Mod status in spades now, p-kitty
DrMidnight - I looooove the P-Kitty.
Wulf_Ratbane - man, 25 years, you must have started with 1st edition or something.
OldDrewId -’s a chain, I was inspired by jonrog
nemmerle - stop drooling, tom ;-)
Harlock - So, how DO you guys record everything? Notes? Tape recorders? Web Cams?
contact - I keep notes.
JollyDoc - I use hand written notes as I play
C_Baize - Notes.
SpyScribe - I take notes too.
Zad - I keep a laptop at the table - I need it to run my character plus I take brief notes. They're not overly detailed and mostly just to stimulate my memory when I go to write.
nemmerle - I have one player who keeps a "combat log" and one who keeps a "quote log" and I keep a calendar with major events
jonrog1 - Nicely enough, one of the things you pick up as a standup is almost perfect aural memory. you remember good lines form stage, and the skill carries over
diaglo - notes, in a pad with date of session
Piratecat - I used to rely on memory. For six months we've been using a tape recorder.
C_Baize - My wife takes notes as we play.
DrMidnight - I went by memory, and did a pooooooor job of it. Players would constantly correct me. "Dartan didn't kill the lich, I did!" etc...
jonrog1 - and my players make a point of reminding me when they did something cool. take a few notes when necessary
DrMidnight - I only jotted down great quotes.
OldDrewId - I started from memory. now we tape each session. pierceatwork transcribes them.
OldOne - I bribe my players to send me write-ups with XP...that and my increasingly bad memory...
Piratecat - I find the note-taking player spends more time writing than roleplaying, so we delegated the duty to a piece of machinery.
contact - I want the tape recorder-- but a hidden one a la LBJ or Nixon.
Wulf_Ratbane - notes and a good memory... plus sometimes "somebody" says or does something so stupid, you can't forget. No matter how hard you try...
OldOne - Like pecks, Wulf?
Piratecat - So true. I'm guilty of that, Wulf.
diaglo - yeah, memorable dialog is recorded
nemmerle - we have a standing rule - game before notes
Wulf_Ratbane - I'm not namin' names.
Piratecat - But tape recorders are great for capturing confusing battles.
nemmerle - if the notes are getting in the way, the yare put aside temporarily
Piratecat - (great)
Harlock - Here's our first submitted question: gfunk - Here's my question: Which character in your Story Hour is your favorite?
WizarDru - I use DM Genie to keep a log of a particularly important battle.
Zad - We rarely have a problem with game-before-notes - I just make WizarDru stop and repeat himself as needed ;)
Destan - The dead ones.
Harlock - Heh
WizarDru - hah!
nemmerle - well, I can't pick a PC
DrMidnight - Sir Vek Mormont, lich in Wee Jas' service. Just a great character that I loved (after hating for months)
JollyDoc - I like any that the players put the most effort in to roleplay
nemmerle - so I’ll pick and NPC
SpyScribe - Good rule nem. Although it means the talk-heavy session in our game get few notes taken, and those and the ones I need them for.
WizarDru - Quite honestly, since Zad writes most of the player material, my favorite viewpoint character is Meepo. Honest.
jonrog1 - gotta be Jo from Dark*Matter. She's so hard done by. Although our new player in Scarred Lands, playing Nod the Barbarian, is pretty spiffy
Piratecat - I find that I "know" the older characters better than the more recent ones. As a result, I find it easier to provide internal dialog for the older PCs. I'm getting better at it, though.
contact - I likeses Lucius.
Wulf_Ratbane - me too
contact - . . . the besteses
OldOne - Actually, one of my favorites, Garrick the Halfling, died early in the story...
Piratecat - Also, ever since Plane Sailing provided a personality, I love our depressed svirfneblin Priggle.
Zad - Hm. I can't answer that one easily since I'm one of the few PC authors rather than a DM author. They've all developed nicely over time and each quite deep in their own right.
contact - Wulf, he's taking over in the LoT. Runnin' thangs.
nemmerle - I would say Richard the Red, he is so much fun to write dialogue for and he always shows up when you least expect him
OldDrewId - my fav to write about is Joe Empire, but I don't like to write from his POV. much more entertaining if you do not know what is going on in his head
OldOne - Yeah for Lucius!
Harlock - EricNoah - do you ever just "make stuff up" instead of writing what actually happened? and a related question: how the heck do you remember all of the details? -- He submitted these a while ago; I suppose the last is already answered.
jonrog1 - I gotta say though, Wulf really grabbed me, and inspired me to play a dwarf in my campaign
SpyScribe - I'm partial to Lira since she's mine, but a character like Anvil writes himself.
C_Baize - Hmm... I think GSGT Jackson is probably my favorite, so far, but another is really coming up with great potential.
thatdarncat - Lucius rocks :) I just reread the section of LoT around where they got him back
Piratecat - Wulf grabbed me, too. Hard.
Wulf_Ratbane - har
nemmerle - though I do a lot with minor characters too
nemmerle - that I like
WizarDru - Baden from Destan's story just rawks.
Zad - Yes I occasionally take liberties with the truth. Sometimes it's to add flavor or play something we didn't deal with on camera. Other times I re-arrange things for dramatic effect.
* Seri pouncer tackles huggles Mark_CMG ,meow! :)
nemmerle - like Finn Fisher and Crew (another "small time" adventuring group)
Destan - I'm guilty of making quite a bit up - I'm recording sessions that took place about 2 1/2 years ago. The big stuff is all exact, but the quotes and flavor are sometimes fabricated. Sorry.
DrMidnight - I made stuff up all the time. I was kinda famous for adding gravity or details to situations that were pretty simple. If I felt the story could use it for drama's sake, I did it. I'm kinda a whore like that.
Piratecat - I seldom make stuff up. Usually no more than dialog lines here and there because I've forgotten the proginal wording.
Harlock - C_Baize, I like Jackson too, but I think the drown has mass potential
C_Baize - Sure... some of the stuff is made up, especially with the game background, that wasn't played.
jonrog1 - reply Eric - -- no, sometimes fill in an attitude or a double-take, but if the characters are well-established, no need to make stuff up. I'm lucky though, got writers for players
WizarDru - We call some of these things 'torch issues' in honor of Wulf's Story hour. Handwavers that aren't interesting to read or play out.
diaglo - I make stuff up. but try and get the others to fill in my gaps
OldOne - For Eric...I do take some creative liberties from time to time, but really try to stay true to the action...I mostly make up Interlude items....thing that happen outside of PC sight...
contact - Re: make stuff up? No, I'm interested in keeping a record of a game, more than a "story."
Harlock - Cool, contact
Zad - WizarDru also gives me some liberties with what happened ;) Some days it's like role-playing with yourself.
nemmerle - I make up the details of dialogue
DrMidnight - I wanted a story more than a game, myself
jonrog1 - I will edit occasionally, long conversations or interrogations
nemmerle - but always based on stuff that I *know* was said
JollyDoc - I will embellish the actual story, but never actually invent things
nemmerle - I make nothing up whole-cloth
C_Baize - Right... Jackson has a lot of good lines, and good shots... But Mitch took a recent turn in game that is really chock full of potential.
OldDrewId - I combine multiple scenes into one scene sometimes, stuff like that, but 98% is straight from the table
Wulf_Ratbane - We all want our games to be a story, don't we
Piratecat - I wanted more of a game that a story. It's evolved a bit, though.
Piratecat - (that = than)
Harlock - .Seri - can we do a quick intro for each one? which is there story hour, how long they've played, how long the story hours been going for etc? I'll go down the list.. C_Baize, you're up first
Destan - (strike two, PC)
WizarDru - My favorite quote is from Piratecat: "We're all just rolling dice, here."
jonrog1 - well I think Pkitty walks that line well.
contact - Wulf, sort of-- I want them to be fun. Sometimes more story = more fun, sometimes you just need more bad guys.
diaglo - it is easier to understand and remember in story form
Wulf_Ratbane - more dead bad guys
C_Baize - My story hour is Americanarchy. We've been gaming this one for about 3 months. And it's getting grittier, and grittier, in game...
C_Baize - Some of the characters are taking serious hits, that change them.
Harlock - contact?
nemmerle - my group always lets the bad guys go free ;-)
C_Baize - Done.
Harlock - Ah, remind me to ask about that later, Hildy.
C_Baize - Will do.
contact - Um. Yeah. I started with the ToEE2, about 6 mo. before 3e, Piratecat posted it in a serial format, what . . .early 2001-ish?
contact - The ToEE2 progressed to the Liberation of Tenh, and is still running.
nemmerle - I love me that game : piles of dead *good* guys
Destan - for Seri - My story hour is Sins of Our Fathers, played this campaign about three years, story hours been going 8 months.
contact - I also post the Risen Goddess, which is a little more heavy than the LoT, but also features more d*ck jokes, and lesbians.
contact - And more dead bad guys.
contact - Lots more dead bad guys.
Harlock - Heh
DrMidnight - d*ck? What is d*ck?
Wulf_Ratbane - quack
C_Baize - Cards...
contact - Ask your mama.
DrMidnight - ...oh, gross! grow up. I get it now.
C_Baize - A deck of cards.
Harlock - same rules apply in channel as on the boards
DrMidnight - I get your filthy little censorship game.
Harlock - ;)
thatdarncat - ToEE2 is a classic - one game I go to when I want justification to kill lots of PCs *grins evilly at seri*
contact - :)
contact - ToEE2 was *brutal*-- I played 8 characters in that game.
contact - . . . one at a time.
Harlock - diaglo, same question
diaglo - I bounced around...another story...and then Olgar took over. we were at it for 16 months
diaglo - I started writing from session 1
diaglo - I like the computer much better than my old hand scrawled notes.
Harlock - DrMidnight, yourself?
DrMidnight - I've lost track of the question. This page scrolls so quickly. Please forgive my errant attention span.
Harlock - .Seri - can we do a quick intro for each one? which is there story hour, how long they've played, how long the story hours been going for etc? I'll go down the list.
contact - Break down your SH Doc.
Harlock - that's the question
nemmerle - I think tom is spliffed ;-)
contact - Is he awake? ;)
DrMidnight - my story hour is (was) the adventures of the knights of the silver quill/ spellforge keep.
DrMidnight - (not tonight Nemm)
Piratecat - Next?
Harlock - JollyDoc?
DrMidnight - It ended in spring of last year. I ran it for about a year and a half, from 1st to 20th level.
JollyDoc - I write JollyDoc's Shackled City. This started as an offshoot of Gfunk's City of the Spider Queen/Bastion of Broken Souls SH
Harlock - Cool
JollyDoc - I've been running this particular game since about mid summer
JollyDoc - Gfunk was my inspiration
Harlock - Shackled City, is that the Dungeon Adventure Path?
JollyDoc - Yes, it is
Harlock - Cool
Harlock - jonrog1?
jonrog1 - for Seri - story hours Dark*Matter: Drunk Southern Girls..., Pulp Spycraft, and SL: None dare call them heroes, scarred lands been going for close to a year, been gaming for three or so again. DarkMatter's been running off and on for that amount of time.
Harlock - Cool
Harlock - KidCharlemagne?
jonrog1 - The Scarred Lands campaign is actually the only regular current game we maintain
Harlock - cool, jonrog1, I dm sl too.
OldOne - Seri - Against the Shadows - A Faded Glory Story Hour (SH #10 or so), game started in May 2001 and posting started shortly thereafter...I am up to Faded Glory VII on the current EN Boards has been mostly PG-13 up to this point, but is about to take a swerve into R-rated for extreme (and icky) violence - PCs are mostly 6th/7th level now...
nemmerle - Did I get skipped?
Harlock - .Seri - can we do a quick intro for each one? which is there story hour, how long they've played, how long the story hours been going for etc? KidCharlemagne?
Harlock - not yet, nemmerle
OldOne - No...I butted in line ;)!
thatdarncat - You're up next Nemm :)
nemmerle - Old one confused me
KidCharlemagne - Hey, I got added to the guest list!
Harlock - yes, you did
KidCharlemagne - For length of game, and story hour, the game started in 1994, and the story hour many years later, in 2000
DrMidnight - I had no idea I was on a guest list until ten minutes into this thing. I'm starting to think Nemm's right, and somehow, I AM spliffed.
Piratecat - (To minimize the wait, make sure you have your answer ready to go. :) )
KidCharlemagne - For the first half of my story hour, I was doing lots of rehashing of things with my players to remember the sequence of events
Harlock - .Seri - OldOne: are those 6-7 lvl PCs the same you started with at lvl1 3 years ago?
KidCharlemagne - And I've been playing since 1979, so almost as long as Diaglo'
C_Baize - There's a guest list?
Piratecat - While Nemm is typing, I'll jump in.
Piratecat - Mine is Piratecat's Story Hour. The campaign is 12 years old (same characters), and the story hour was one of the first ones posted... maybe three years ago when I started writing. The SH has gone through two major adventuring locations (city and Underdark), and will soon move on to a third (planar.) High lvl PCs, fun players, and no immediate end in sight.
nemmerle - My SH is "Out of the Frying Pan" - this Saturday's session is our 3 year anniversary. I’ve been writing the SH since the first session and it is set in my own setting, Aquerra
Harlock - .Seri - can we do a quick intro for each one? which is there storyhour, how long they've played, how long the storyhours been going for etc? nemmerle, you're up.
nemmerle - no one said my name!
DrMidnight - Apparently all those other poor people on the list aren't on the GUEST list! Ha, foosh on you! Foosh on you all!
nemmerle - I was waiting and ready and wondering what the heck was goin' on :)
nemmerle - I already went
Harlock - SpyScribe?
SpyScribe - I write "Welcome to the Halmae" (with ample input from Fajitas). The game has been going for about two and half years and the story hour turns one year old next week.
OldDrewId - Seri - My storyhour is Medallions d20 Modern. We've been doing that one since last spring. My crew has been gaming together weekly for just under 4 years now.
Harlock - Ah, happy anniversary
Piratecat - Fajitas is an expatriate player of mine. I want him back!
WizarDru - I'll let Zad describe our Story Hour. I write intermissions and lots of reference material for our story hour, while Zad is the chief author. It takes place in real time, that is game on Friday, Story on Monday, most weeks.
SpyScribe - Sorry, you can't have him!
Harlock - Wulf_Ratbane?
Wulf_Ratbane - I started my SH after joining a group of complete strangers, looking for my first 3e experience. We did the adventure path, took about a year to do it, and advanced at precisely the WOTC indicated rate. We finished at 20th level with Bastion of Broken Souls-- though many (including myself) would say the Story Hour hit its peak at The Standing Stone. If you've read the SH, you know why...
WizarDru - peck!
Piratecat - Heward's Handy Body bag....
Harlock - Heh
nemmerle - I still have never read it
Piratecat - It's great.
OldOne - Seri - For the most part...five originals PCs...two died in Session PC got possessed around level 5 (player left)and two new players have joined the game. Two of the original PCs are seems like very slow advancement, but we are only on Session 29 or 30...since we only play 1x per month...
KidCharlemagne - I was rather fond of Wulf whacking the girl in the beret
Harlock - and finally, Zad
Zad - I write WizarDru's story hour (at the time, all the story hours were named for the DM so I followed suit) We've been playing since the start of 3e when we all got back into D&D to give 3e a try. The characters began at first level and are now around 23rd into epic levels. Like the characters, the story has evolved a lot over the past years and I just try to do justice to the great story arcs of the DM and the depth of the characters
Wulf_Ratbane - I’m whacking the girl in the beret right now, iykwimaityd
Piratecat - Is that everyone?
nemmerle - Wulf is a bad bad boy
WizarDru - what, are you channeling Hong?
Harlock - it is
thatdarncat - I think that is :)
Harlock - SiderealKnight - Question: Has the existence of a written version had an effect on the course of your game? free for all
nemmerle - speaking of slow progression: my game 3 years = 8th level
WizarDru - It’s kept my plots honest, especially 3 years down the line.
contact - Yes-- my players can freaking remember plot points when they care to now.
Zad - There is the odd occasion where someone says "Well we can't do *that* - it won't look good in the story hour. Otherwise not really I don't think.
diaglo - yeah, many of the players are regulars here on ENW
Wulf_Ratbane - On the contrary, I think many DMs might be tempted to fudge for a character that is a fan favorite
Piratecat - Hmm. Good question. It's made us more organized about what goes on, and thinking about the story hour has probably made me a sneakier DM.
SpyScribe - Hah! We'll be lucky to make 6th by our 3 year mark.
jonrog1 - No, not at all. Heck. MORALITY doesn't affect their play
DrMidnight - Yes. My players often chided me or outright complained that I was holding the story in higher regard than the actual game, which was a fair assessment. I'm a jerk.
KidCharlemagne - There was some concern amongst my players that it would once I caught up to real time, but as it turned out, we pretty much ignore the story hour implications
nemmerle - No it has not
thatdarncat - And we do take questions about plot! :)
Piratecat - Contact is right; it's easier to look up major plot points!
nemmerle - except that sometimes after something "cool" happens afterwards we'll say - that's gonna be so great in the story hour
Wulf_Ratbane - pogre's story hour is a great exception-- two TPKs and counting!
KidCharlemagne - Although they always knew they were gonna see a quote in the SH when I started furiously scribbling notes in my notebook
nemmerle - but don't think any choices are altered b/c of it
OldDrewId - SiderealKnight -yes. I think it sometimes keeps the players in character more, for good or bad.
C_Baize - Yes. Some of the players are finding out things retroactively... I'm much more in detail in the story hour background than I was for them.. they got the basics, and are enjoying the details quite a lot.
Wulf_Ratbane - continuity be damned!
SpyScribe - Direct quote, "Given that this game will someday be recorded on the internet, we will say that nothing untoward happens between the satyr and the 14-year-old!"
thatdarncat - Do people find that having a storyhour gets them lots of advice?
OldOne - SK - It has enhanced the forces me to be consistent with plot and also helps remind PCs about plot points they tend to overlook or forget
C_Baize - tdc not me...
Destan - Sid - Yes, very much so. I've had to introduce backgrounds to characters in the SH and their respective players have grabbed them and ran with them. I'm also able to make my "bad guys" seem more deadly than they did during the game. Sometimes encounters end rather quick (one bad save, for example), and my whole crescendo just pitters out. Not so in the SH, when I can control the flow better.
C_Baize - I feel left out... :)
nemmerle - advice?
JollyDoc - We have actually had some lively rules discussions on my SH based on game outcomes
nemmerle - what kind of advice?
contact - My readers are better DMs than I am . . . no question. They have *tormented* my players.
jonrog1 - My gang loves deep background stuff anyway, there's probably more in-0game than in the story hour
thatdarncat - nem - RatBastard tactics, plot ideas etc
KidCharlemagne - I haven't gotten a whole lot of advice from the SH, I'm afraid
contact - Rising from your SH thread, I assume.
WizarDru - I have actively solicited many suggestions for the game, which has improved the game several times, in my opinion. It's nice to have someone to offer suggestions or guess at plots behind my players’ backs.
nemmerle - no
Zad - Yeah Piratecat has had a bad influence on WizarDru, that's for sure
Piratecat - I've gotten some fantastic advice: on prestige classes, on setups, but mostly for monsters and locations in our current Underdark adventure.
WizarDru - hey!
nemmerle - my readership seems very "rules light"
diaglo - I drop as many RatBastard ideas as I can...but my DM has his own
jonrog1 - well, Pkitty and I have traded tactics -- although I'm afraid my group would be a fine red mist in his game in about three seconds
WizarDru - Use a template once in a while.... :)
contact - Mmm. Red mist.
Piratecat - I've sooo stolen from JonRog.
nemmerle - and they rarely seem to offer suggestions, but will occasionally chide players for choices they've made
nemmerle - like resurrecting Jeremy ;-)
WizarDru - Well, I've sooo stolen from you, so there you are.
contact - I steal bad guys from Piratecat's game, too.
jonrog1 - I mostly get a lot of "Poor Jo, why do you do that to her?"
contact - I mean to return them, but . . .
nemmerle - I steal stuff from everyone
DrMidnight - I prefer red paste, mixed with coarse red chunks.
nemmerle - esp. Sagiro
WizarDru - We took a lot of flak for our opinions on at least one module.
thatdarncat - I'm sure the defenders don't mind Contact!
nemmerle - Sagiro is the man
Harlock - So, here's one that I figure is on a lot of folks minds: I am afraid to write a Story Hour... it seems daunting and all those people will read it and critique it... Why should I write a Story Hour?
Piratecat - Heh. We're inbred. Actually, that's why I started posting my story hour - to share ideas with other folks. If people steal from it, I'm doing something right.
nemmerle - no offense to anyone else here ;-)
JollyDoc - A few of our more notorious PC's have been used by readers in their campaigns...i.e. Entropy the Damned
C_Baize - Because if you don't, we'll hunt you down, and give you atomic wedgies?
diaglo - write it for fun. not readership
contact - You should write a story hour because ten years from now, you will be fired up to re-read it when you are cleaning out the attic.
OldDrewId - ditto what P-kitty said. I've sooo stolen from JonRog too :) There is one episode in particular that I started based on the idea, "Well if jonrog can do *that*, then I take it as a personal challenge to see if I can pull off *this*"
nemmerle - word up, contact
nemmerle - what he said, except twice and more emphatically
Zad - Write one because you *want* to. Nothing else will motivate you over the long term. Don't do it for praise, or for feedback or any of that. Delight in it for it's own sake.
jonrog1 - reply Harlock - The only way to become a writer is write. period. try it. you will suck, and then, after a few months, stop sucking somewhat as much.
KidCharlemagne - Write a Story Hour to see if you can write consistently over time. Write a SH for a record of your game. DON'T write expecting mass adulation, certainly not right away
C_Baize - I like the story hour for watching the way the game progresses and evolves.
OldOne - I get great ideas from reading other SHs...not necessarily to steal things...but just to get the brain juices pumping...
Destan - Harlock - The daunting part is not if readers read it, but if they don't.
SpyScribe - Although, feedback is also nice... :)
Zad - amen Jon
WizarDru - Because if you don't, we'd never get folks like Destan writing. Further, a good story is a good story. It's not a contest. You can never have too many good stories.
Piratecat - Write a story hour because it's fun, for your players. There's no point in being nervous about it, though; JonRog excepted, we're all kind of feeling our way in the dark.
JollyDoc - I began writing for my own interest, and to help me keep track of my game...not for readership, but my game and my SH has benefited from the readers
jonrog1 - Harlock cont'd - and if you keep at it, then the few humans you have reading will please you
DrMidnight - It is daunting. It's really daunting. People criticized my rules knowledge all the time, which is perfectly just, because my rules knowledge isn't worth d*ck. Otherwise, I feel people respond nicely to writing, no matter how bad you may be. Readers respect consistency and fun. All else is frosting.
C_Baize - I'll tell you... I was kind of dreading the first few comments on my story hour... I figured people would just THRASH it...
nemmerle - you know what's nice?
contact - No, what?
C_Baize - Then I got comments by some of OldDrewId's players, and thought that was just really cool.
nemmerle - meeting someone in real life for the first time and having them ask *you* about your campaign b/c they are familiar with it
Piratecat - I've seen very little ugly criticism. I think that's really cool.
Destan - That's cusp you write a good yarn.
Zad - Well if nobody has trashed *my* writing then I think we're fairly safe from that P-cat ;)
WizarDru - Different story hours work in different ways. contacts is a good 'discuss over beer' story, as is PCs, while Sepulchrave's and Destan’s are like reading novels. Wulf's is something you print out and read on the train...or the toilet. :)
Piratecat - Here's one reason to write:
diaglo - I’ve had players contact me to join cusp they read our story hour
OldDrewId - C_Baize - we comment because we are impressed :)
KidCharlemagne - I've had that too, Diaglo
DrMidnight - I had that! I had someone I'd never met come up to me at GenCon and ask if I was Doc Midnight. I was then asked about the story and group. That was nice.
Piratecat - One of my players was in California for a con, and the guys at the next table were discussing his character in my game. How cool is that?
Zad - That's pretty cool
OldDrewId - hehe
Destan - That is.
Harlock - that rocks, actually
SpyScribe - Fajitas loves to tell that story.
Harlock - New Question Olgar - Best single moment/episode from a story hour?
Zad - I'd be blown away if that happened to me.
SpyScribe - (although it wasn't him)
OldOne - My biggest charge came when Rel asked if he could borrow my homebrew for his own campaign...truly an honor...and I have been fascinated with how he has used it (plus, I got to meet him in person...great gaming group)
jonrog1 - that is fun
thatdarncat - Piratecat - which character?
Piratecat - raevynn, tdc.
thatdarncat - coo :)
C_Baize - Olgar - From my own storyhour, I think it was when GSGT Jackson shot that Hook Horror through the eye...
diaglo - for our story was my character, Bartol's near death at the hands of an Ogre
Piratecat - For me, it might be the trillith fight, early on. It was where I finally found my rhythm as a writer.
contact - Best single moment is the aside in the ToEE2 when Zinvellon asks, "Why are you doing this," and the whole back-plot becomes clear.
WizarDru - Tough call...but I'd say the rescue of The Gilden was one of the greatest moments.
OldDrewId - Olgar -When Taylor got shot in Episode I
jonrog1 - Olgar - either the zombie slime pit, Andy vs. ET ...
C_Baize - It was sort of a tense moment, I think.
JollyDoc - Best single moment? When the 'lowly' characters, i.e. Wathros the druid, Tilly the thief, and Rusty the cleric saved the heavy hitters, and the campaign, from a glabrezu
contact - Or, when the elf gets reincarnated as a Halfling, and comes to understand the *full* implications.
nemmerle - I try to leave off my installments as cliff-hangers - so there are a lot of moments that come to mind
jonrog1 - or ALL of the pulp Spycraft. god, that was fun.
WizarDru - It certainly was one of the greatest gaming moments, that's for sure.
C_Baize - Yeah, OldDrewId, I actually felt bad for Taylor...
DrMidnight - My favorite moment from the campaign would PROBABLY be when Sir Vek Mormont went to Wee Jas as a god and defied her, and learned he was tricked by her, then kissed, then killed. reads better than that.
SpyScribe - For us, definitely the fire at the Mage's academy.
Zad - One moment I liked lately was when I was actually writing a sidebar previewing an upcoming story and in that moment when the party was about to arrive and destroy an entire githyanki invasion force, everything just came together and it painted a great picture.
nemmerle - I think when the half-demon gnome ripped off the party's good friend and companions' head off, scooped out his brain and ate it
DrMidnight - Still, t'was gooood.
Wulf_Ratbane - I honestly don't have a favorite moment... I am ashamed to admit, but my whole story hour keeps me laughing... at my own stupid writing... almost the whole way through.
Harlock - Heh
Piratecat - Wulf, definitely the peck or the sap against the beret.
WizarDru - Wulf, the commentary is what makes your story our so great.
Wulf_Ratbane - I just loved writing as "Wulf," fun to be in character (cause I am never in character like that in game)
OldOne - Olgar - Probably early on when the PCs got chased into an abandoned legion hill fort by a howling barbarian horde and had the fight of their young PC lives (around level 3/4 IIRC) of my players is lurking...what is your fav, Tortoise?
KidCharlemagne - Olgar - tough question - I really like the ending of Part I of my SH, it had a big finish (a big battle with several Drow Vampires and a Shadow Dragon), a totally appropriate PC death, and a nice, emotional epilogue...
diaglo - Olgar - there are other memorable moments too... when angelsboi left the group... and biorph's character screwed him
nemmerle - Or a crazy five way fight that included 2/3rds of the party chained to the back of a wagon
Harlock - Do you find that your players get too much background information from your Story Hours?
contact - No such thing.
diaglo - no such thing
Zad - Since I'm a player-author, that's rarely a problem ;)
C_Baize - Harlock . No. I like them to know everything that has gone before
Piratecat - no such thing
JollyDoc - In Gfunk's SH, the whole arc with Entropy corrupting Noir, a paladin of the Red Knight, and turning her into a Blackguard was cool
C_Baize - .
jonrog1 - Harlock - no, because I write the SH like a screenplay -- the audience gets the information at the same rate as the characters.
nemmerle - nope
OldOne - The SH is so far behind the actual action that it isn't really a problem...
contact - They kill my NPCs to quickly--if it wasn't for the SH they'd never know how lovingly crafted the speed-bumps were!
DrMidnight - No... only one of my players read my story hour, I think. The others popped in periodically.
SpyScribe - I am a player, so obviously, I can't write what I don't know.
nemmerle - I wish the read it closely and got even more
Piratecat - Background information helps them buy into the world. They can keep non-player info separate.
KidCharlemagne - Harlock -I never wrote anything that the players wouldn't or couldn't know - unlike Speulchrave, for example
WizarDru - I try to use the story hour for teasers to the players. And lately I seem to have taken a turn into always writing horror-style previews.
JollyDoc - Followed by Entropy destroying Irae Tsarren, and assuming her position as Kiaransalee's Chosen
DrMidnight - Yeah, teasing the players is a great way to use the story hour as a game tool.
contact - I like that aspect of Sep's SH, but like KidC, I *rarely* write "away" from the PCs.
jonrog1 - I'm nowhere near caught-up enough to use my SH to tease them
contact - Write more, Jon.
jonrog1 - yeah. thanks :p\
WizarDru - Hah.
Harlock - jonrog1, tdc keeps asking what you wrote for. I know Jackie Chan adventures was your thing, and you're doing the Catwoman movie, right? He's asking what comic you wrote for...
contact - Write faster, Cody wants a pony!
* thatdarncat blinks
* thatdarncat falls over
* thatdarncat worships
thatdarncat - Jackie Chan Adventures?!?!
Wulf_Ratbane - the core
jonrog1 - started writing for Cosby on CBS, created Jackie Chan adventures, was one of 75 guys on Catwoman, about 14 other films including Rush Hour 2 and Count of Monte Cristo
Seri - tdc is broken
Harlock - Heh
* thatdarncat twitches
jonrog1 - the core, just adapted killing floor for new line, and now doing a pilot for global frequency for the WB network
Harlock - Here's one for everyone - +Silvr_Dragon - Do you ever think the story hour might be more trouble than it's worth?
Piratecat - You need to update your imdb history.
WizarDru - Oh great, you've broken tdc.
Destan - Silvr - Yes, I do.
thatdarncat - Global Frequency?
* thatdarncat twitches again
contact - More trouble? No way.
OldDrewId - PCat - so I’m not the only one that immediately hit IMDB on that note...
WizarDru - Never. It's a great archive for my players and I, as well as a fun story to share.
jonrog1 - Warrw nEllis' comic. it rocks. I'm such a geek
diaglo - trouble? never. I need it to remember
Destan - jonrog - Count o' Monte Cristo? Really liked that. Never knew. Cool.
Piratecat - For me, no. Not a chance. It takes quite a while to write - I spend as much time writing as I do gaming - but I have a lot of fun with it, and writing it gives me lots of really good ideas for future adventures.
nemmerle - when I feel that way it is b/c I just don't feel like writing so I don't - and then after a break it always comes back
DrMidnight - I sometimes thought that. That's why I don't do the story hour thing that often anymore. My recent tries have ended in HORRIBLE FAIL-YAH.
KidCharlemagne - Only trouble in terms of time - I burned out a bit about a year ago, and haven't gotten back on the horse yet
Zad - Silvr_Dragon - Not really. It's a lot of work, and in some ways I doubt anyone who hasn't written it realizes how much work goes into it. But it's always a great review in my mind, and I love having a written record I can go back to. Especially when it means I remember plot elements better than the DM ;)
jonrog1 - trouble? no, just a mild guilt when I don't update. But seeing as I'm late turning in writing they PAY me for, I'm okay with it
OldOne - Silvr Dragon - I have gone through several dry spells where RL or mini-burnout have made updates few and far between...but then I am a very busy boy ;)!
C_Baize - I don't really believe it's more trouble... I like doing it, though I wish I could write faster. :)
SpyScribe - What else would I do while underemployed? And I'd hate to forget this stuff if it didn't get written down.
Destan - Silvr - Looks like I'm in the minority. :)
WizarDru - Zad, don't you often struggle with perspective? As a player-author, you've got a greater challenge, in some ways, especially with perspective.
Piratecat - I write in surges; a lot one week, nothing the next.
nemmerle - word
Harlock - ascendance - Question for jonrog1: Robin Laws once told me that you need to be in a completely different headspaces for writing gaming stuff compared to writing comic stuff. Do you find that to be the case? Writing gaming stuff compared to writing fiction, basically.
Zad - I constantly struggle with perspective
contact - Seriously, for me it is a lot of fun. Different than the game, but equally as enjoyable.
jonrog1 - well, yes, because in gaming you're creating a situation enabling others to create the text...
jonrog1 - in fiction, you’re creating situation AND reaction.
jonrog1 - have to do my best not to force the PG's toward the story path I find satisfying as a writer
jonrog1 - luckily, my group perversely breaks every plan and narrative.
DrMidnight - I always did that. Ahem.
Harlock - I think a lot of DMs deal with that
Harlock - +Silvr_Dragon - Do you ever steal from other story hours? Be honest now.
nemmerle - Yes.
Piratecat - God, yes. That's why I read them.
nemmerle - I have taken stuff from Sagiro
jonrog1 - Oh heck yeah
contact - How many of us find that the PCs come up with better story paths than the ones we dreamt up? I know mine do.
Destan - amen, contact
Piratecat - Mine too.
WizarDru - Hell, yes. My players still have a grudge against PC for introducing me to the excessive and foul use of templates.
diaglo - don't know. maybe the DM does. but I’m not sure
OldOne - Steal? Me? Um...err...oh hell yeah!
Zad - Silvr_Dragon - I'm a PC so no. My DM does though, hell yes. As a defense mechanism, I read them to be prepared ;)
Piratecat - Hee hee.
SpyScribe - I know Fajitas has stolen from Sagiro. Thank you _so much_ btw.
nemmerle - and to some extent P.Kitty - except I can't remember what is Rat Bastard forum stuff he suggested or stuff I grabbed from SH
DrMidnight - I never stole from another story hour. I stole from comics and movies now and then, sometimes from George Martin, but never other story hours.
jonrog1 - I don't steal templates, as I’m a very rules-lite DM. Do take narrative ideas though, and characters
C_Baize - I haven't stolen from any story hours, I was inspired to write one, by reading another...
jonrog1 - Although he's just been introduced in my SH, Meepo is a very major character in my campaign thanks to the Savage Sword of Meepo SH
nemmerle - I mean, you always flavor things your own way
Piratecat - Everyone loves Meepo!
Harlock - Cool. I think all DMs steal from various sources at times: Here's another question - Jarval - Question for the SH authors: If you could go back and change an event in your SH, which one would it be, and how would you change it?
Zad - I don't
Zad - I hate him
WizarDru - I occasionally find myself rejecting game ideas for the opposite reason, though....i.e. so as not to appear to have copied a story hour element that's appeared.
Harlock - Meepo kicks ass
Zad - I should have killed him day one.
nemmerle - A lot of P.Kitty stuff is way out there for me level-wise, but the core idea is what matters, you then drape it in what you need for the moment
* Zad loves to hate Meepo
Piratecat - Jarval, interesting question. I don't think I'd change anything.
WizarDru - You mean, Meepo Kobold Chief of Kobold Country?
C_Baize - I don't think I'd change anything.
jonrog1 - Jarval - nothing. One thing in my game itself, but even that turned out to have insanely cool ramifications later on down the line
WizarDru - God, how I love that little bastard. :)
DrMidnight - I would change the character name "Tenchi", which I still seethe about now and then. Just my bad blood with otaku, there.
thatdarncat - yay Meepo!
OldOne - Jarval - Not really...I try to stay pretty close to the flow of the game...I did change an IG mistake I made...but that is about it.
Piratecat - Dr. Midnight - "I hate you so much, I spit on your dog!" :D
Destan - Jarval - I have a tendency to get pretty damned long-winded, and extend dialogue much further than what it needs to be. As such, I can have 3 updates where nothing "happens". If I could change something, I'd try to rein myself in a bit and focus on the action a bit more.
nemmerle - I would re-write the first few installments to fit more the style the narrative eventually fell into
Piratecat - Actually, I'd probably fix a rules flub or two, but nothing major.
diaglo - the last 3 sessions...the DM was getting ready to leave and the others were more focused on what campaign to play next
KidCharlemagne - Jarval -I don't think I'd change anything, either... I'm lucky to have great players, so nothing too out and out weird happens in my games
contact - Jarval, I would have killed all the Liberators of Tenh when I had the chance, instead of fudging in their favor.
OldOne - Destan - Bah...exposit away!
Piratecat - Oh, cancel that. My first few posts were *terrible.* I'll rewrite them some day.
contact - And brought them back as bad guys.
Wulf_Ratbane - Jarval - Hell yeah. I should have stopped writing after The Standing Stone.
Harlock - Heh
Harlock - Valanthe - HI, I'm a PC in WizarDru/Zad's game. It's happened to our group once, but has anything ever gone wrong or badly and disrupted the PCs in or out of the story. Or has anyone ever had to go back and re-write part of the SH, like it never happened?
jonrog1 - I'm actually avoiding that module because of Wulf's disdain for it.
Piratecat - Valanthe, not for me.
nemmerle - what do mean by "gone wrong"?
Wulf_Ratbane - (Hey, I loved TSS... but not for the module...)
KidCharlemagne - Valanthe - I haven't had to do anything like that, thankfully
diaglo - does a TPK count?
C_Baize - No... I don't care for RetCon...
Harlock - diaglo, I'd say a TPK counts
jonrog1 - Valanthe - again, no, because the readers get info at the same speed the PC's do. Not a lot of backstory in the SH that needs to be retro'd
Zad - I can explain - we had a session that just went down the wrong road. It wasn't a tpk - it lead to bad plot elements and character friction.
SpyScribe - Being a year and a half behind the game, not an issue.
DrMidnight - There was a horrible almost-TPK with that white dragon, that one time... I then posted about it in the General Discussion forum and got everyone pissed at me. Blech.
nemmerle - but I go back and make tweaks to my installments for a day or two after I post them when I catch errors or mis-attributions in dialogue
contact - Valanthe, we've changed game-mechanic info for PCs and grandfathered it in.
Zad - And the plot arc just didn't work for us so WizarDru decided to junk it
nemmerle - but no major changes
* thatdarncat prods SpyScribe to update more :D
jonrog1 - well, I did add in Jo's sister Dawn. but reactions were mixed...
WizarDru - Oi. Fans of our story hour may can relate how I 'retconned' a whole session. Bastion of Broken Souls described what it was doing to my game, IMHO. So we turned back time.
OldOne - Valanthe - Not to this point...
nemmerle - I love character fiction
nemmerle - makes for great dialogue!
nemmerle - friction
nemmerle - not ficnhshwewr
WizarDru - It looked a tad awkward in the story hour, but it worked well for the game. And the game ALWAYS takes precedence.
Zad - We'd had plenty
Zad - oops
SpyScribe - tdc - I update weekly! What do you want?
thatdarncat - SpyScribe - post a day!
thatdarncat - :d
Harlock - Here's an interesting one - ascendance - General question: What kind of software assistance do you folks use to prepare stat blocks and things? Also, any tips on making the game flow more smoothly while keeping it rules lite?
SpyScribe - *bangs head on desk*
nemmerle - pen and paper
nemmerle - I am mad old skool
C_Baize - I use a worksheet I created, myself... No software.
WizarDru - DM Genie, all the way. With a party of 6 23rd level characters, I need help. The SRD on laptop and excel are biggies, too.
diaglo - Olgar has a bunch of downloaded stuff....I use pen and paper
nemmerle - I may do a word doc occasionally
jonrog1 - ascendance - a round by round combat tracker sheet, with a space on the bottom to scrawl monster stats and tactics.
contact - 3.5 SRD on PDF. Find a stat-block shorthand that works for you, and don't sweat the small stuff.
Piratecat - I use the new version of etools for boosting monster hit dice. Other than that, just Excel and Word.
DrMidnight - I used some utility I've lost track of to generate stat blocks. I used that online utility I've lost track of for dragons. I lose track of a lot.
nemmerle - but I am a scribbler
Zad - ascendance - I use, no *need* an excel spreadsheet to play my character.
WizarDru - Not to mention the shadow companions, animal companions, familiars and all the other mounts, followers, etc.
OldOne - ascendance - Stat block? What's that? Actually, I use 4 x 6 cards for everything...makes combat a bit easier...
KidCharlemagne - ascendance - I make great use of Word. I have a bunch of templates that I use, and I do a lot of copy-n-paste with the SRD. In 3.0 I used E-Tools a lot, and will again as soon as they get the 3.5 data set out
jonrog1 - Same as OldOne -- don't really use software.
DrMidnight - I used a lot of Photoshop to scratch together images for the SH, but otherwise, I'm low-tech
Piratecat - To make a game flow smoothly, *make combat speedy.* slow combat is a nightmare.
jonrog1 - yeah, was doing cut and paste form SRD, but then found not all monsters were OGL, kinda screwed me
KidCharlemagne - I also do some Photo shopping for handouts or maps
DrMidnight - Good stuff, that
nemmerle - try to figure out how to adjust the rhythm of play using verbal clues in your descriptions of things
contact - Piratecat, that's like saying "to get to the roof, go up there." How do you make combat speedy? :)
C_Baize - I use Hero Machine to give the players NPC pics...
Piratecat - I actually do my maps on Excel; it's sort of embarrassing, but works really well.
nemmerle - it is different for every group, but I tend to find it
Harlock - I detest slow combat myself. We have another here - Umbran - Question for all: Do you find yourself occasionally misrepresenting a PC's internal motivations in the Storyhour? Have the player come up to you and say, "but that's not what I was thinking at all!"?
Destan - I wanted to mention that - PC's excel maps are amazing. Never knew Excel could do that.
jonrog1 - yeah, Pkitty, how do you run those massive things? My group started really bogging down once they hit 10th level and all those options opened up.
C_Baize - Umbran. No... I always confer with the players.
nemmerle - I do almost no inward dialogue in my SH
Piratecat - Contact, lots of ways: index cards for it. Call out who is next and on deck, so people are ready. Roll attacks and damage at once.
Piratecat - And minimize table talk.
Destan - Umbran - Yep, I've blown that a couple times. I had one of my characters "find his faith" in the story hour much sooner than he found it in the real campaign.
nemmerle - they either show it or say it and it up to the context to explain it or the reader to figure it out
thatdarncat - Piratecat - I'll see if I can dig up a link to the rules for the pig
KidCharlemagne - Umbran -Not so much, but I did misspell a PC's name for like a hundred pages...
Zad - Umbran - no by definition. I'm a PC, I know my motivations. If I say another player did something for a given reason, then it's an in-character perception, and it adds flavor to the story. It may be wrong, but then the resolution also makes great story.
diaglo - Umbran - Yes. I put thoughts into others heads. or at least the way my character interprets them
DrMidnight - Yes. Or, rather, I was accused of "slanting" a PC's actions/dialogue to make a more favorable story hour. Again, my drama queen thing... futzing the actual game in favor of more exciting writing.
SpyScribe - Actually, in fear of that I was very cautious about getting inside other characters heads for a long time.
jonrog1 - Umbran - again, tend to avoid internals, do it all with looks and nods that actually happened at the table.
jonrog1 - -- and, they're not exactly the deepest bunch
contact - Umbran-- occasionally I mis-represent an emotional state or motivation. But I blame society.
OldOne - Umbran - I tend to write things as I interpret the PCs perspective, but all my players are welcome to chime in when I fail to get it right...
Piratecat - Umbran, I've made occasional mistakes. when my players call me on it, I edit the story hour.
Harlock - I am wondering this myself, Piratecat - Vaxalon - How does Excel do maps?
WizarDru - jonrog1 - Yeah, but they drink a lot.
OldOne - ...I edit it when necessary...
contact - When my players call me on it, I also edit Piratecat's Story Hour.
Wulf_Ratbane - Umbran - I swear to God, every word out in the SH actually came out of that peck's mouth.
jonrog1 - WizarDru - and that’s why I love them
nemmerle - Vaxalon, now that is a name I have not heard in a long time, a long time
OldOne - Wulf - hah!
Piratecat - How to do Excel maps is a thread in itself. Start one, I'll explain it!
Harlock - okay
Harlock - Lela - Question: What makes you keep your SH going?
contact - I'm in it for the money.
Destan - Lela - Readers.
OldOne - Lela - My two fans...Lela and Darklone ;)!
Harlock - Hot chicks too, right contact?
Wulf_Ratbane - Readers.
DrMidnight - Readers.
C_Baize - Lela... mostly the readers throwing popcorn at the screen and yelling "FOCUS!!!"
Zad - Lela - We keep playing each week. Honestly after three-four years and so many open story arcs, I need to keep track of what's going on and I think there are people out there who want to see how it ends.
diaglo - what else would I do with my notes?
contact - Hell yes, the groupies, the cash and the perks.
nemmerle - Horacio
contact - . . . like getting reservations at La Folie on an hours notice.
Piratecat - I'm in it for Contact's money.
nemmerle - Lela - I do it for Horacio
SpyScribe - I'm with diaglo on this one.
jonrog1 - Lela - probably a different motivation form most -- no notes form execs, no deadlines -- anything I see fit goes in. Like a little vacation from the job
WizarDru - The game. Although it sometimes amazes me when someone points to our story hour and says "lookitthat!"
Wulf_Ratbane - I would like to remind all these authors, not an hour ago they swore not to write for the readers.
DrMidnight - Tsunami, in most cases
KidCharlemagne - Contact, I read that "the groupies, the cash, and the pecks."
Piratecat - Seriously? I get a tremendous amount of energy from knowing people are enjoying it, and knowing that it's fun to write. Can't beat that.
DrMidnight - I swore no such thing. I was in it for the glory.
contact - Well, yeah, the pecks!
contact - Do I have to spell it out!
contact - :d
KidCharlemagne - True, Wulf, but its a big kick when they like it.
contact - Seriously-- it would be fun if nobody read it but me.
C_Baize - That's what KEEPS me writing...
Zad - Lela - I think another part is challenging myself. I think of myself as a lot of things, but "Writer" is not one of them, so it's a way of challenging myself to do something I don't think I do well.
contact - And that's pretty much how it goes.
nemmerle - I read "kick" as another word that ends in "ick", KidC
OldOne - Lela - Actually, it is a much needed creative outlet, writing helps me relax and its fun knowing some people dig it...
C_Baize - If it weren't for the readers, I'd just write it all down, and keep it on my home PC.
jonrog1 - I have to admit, one time I was on the phone talking about my first producing gig, and I was secretly checking my SH views, so yeah, the readers fit in there somewhere... :)
KidCharlemagne - Yeah, but we all know how your mind works, nemm...
WizarDru - Hey, I wont lie and say we don't notice when our view count jumps. Not for nothing are we 'the lurker's choice." :)
Harlock - This one should be interesting - ascendance - How do you guys hand out XP for story-oriented stuff?
thatdarncat - For anyone who's interested, the "Paying the Pig" suggestions are here:
diaglo - my SH views are due to me visiting the site
SpyScribe - Posting in a vacuum is no fun. Of course feedback is a factor.
nemmerle - I pull numbers out of my butt
Piratecat - I hire my neighbor's kids to hit "refresh."
C_Baize - ascendance - Depends on the situation, and what came of it.
nemmerle - it really isn't pretty
Destan - Ascendance - I give them "cookies" - with 1 cookie = 100 XP * Character Level. Few and far between.
contact - I give the PCs 1/5 to 1/4 of a level per session, regardless of what they kill, but have no system for story awards beyond that.
Zad - ascendance - passing to WizarDru. I get no exp bonus for just writing the story hour though, if that's what you mean
jonrog1 - 100 xp * character level for major story points or innovations
Piratecat - For story-related xp? Hmmm... like Nemm, I pull numbers out of his butt. Err. My butt.
contact - The idea is just to keep them from feeling like not killing stuff creates a leveling ennui.
DrMidnight - I offered a few hundred xp for clever or dramatic roleplaying. Nothing special. "Nice game tonight, punching that old lady in the face. 100 xp."
Piratecat - Although I like JonRog's formula.
WizarDru - Huh? What?
contact - You get 100 xp for punching old ladies? I should be second level!
OldOne - ascendance - Just like Pkitty and Nemm...:p...actually, I usually build about 30% of the session reward in story-type xp...
KidCharlemagne - I go by the XP for the foes they face, and I give XP for dealing with foes in non-fatal ways
Piratecat - I definitely give more xp for story accomplishments than specific monsters.
Harlock - Do any of you make level progression slower in 3rd Ed?
nemmerle - the truth is
nemmerle - I used to tally XP
diaglo - just do it for fun. if it involved xp I wouldn't. we advance too fast as it is
Piratecat - We go up levels about every ten games. I plan it on that.
Wulf_Ratbane - That's good, cause those two kuo toa I got under my belt aren't getting me anywhere fast.
DrMidnight - I do. I hate D&D leveling. I think it should be half that fast, if not a third.
nemmerle - but as the number for "killing" got smaller and smaller - I figured "what is the point?'
nemmerle - now I just make up a number
KidCharlemagne - I cut back on the XP a bit, sometimes as much as by half
jonrog1 - Harlock - I just make a point of emphasizing downtime. I hate the "10levels in a game-year" vibe
SpyScribe - As recently came out in the thread, we level about twice a year. I don't *think* that's standard. ;)
WizarDru - I do give out XP for role-playing material...but XP for writing the story hour or contributing to it doesn't happen. All the hot chicks Zad scores are reward enough. In game, I give RP/story XP as the mood strikes me.
Piratecat - I peg advancement to twice a year also. It works well for us.
SpyScribe - Gee, what a coincidence.
nemmerle - 8 levels in 3 years seems right to me
nemmerle - almost 9
KidCharlemagne - I also try to emphasize downtime
Piratecat - Heh. I have Fajitas brainwashed.
Destan - Dru - hahahah
jonrog1 - I tend to average 1 every three months, but we do play a full 4 times a month
thatdarncat - My PCs'd kill me if I only let them level twice a year, right Seri?
nemmerle - I make no distinction between up and down time
nemmerle - all time is time
WizarDru - Heh. We've gone from 1 to 23 in slightly over 3 years, playing 3 times a month on average.
contact - Harlock , my PCs level approx. every third or fourth session.
Harlock - Cool
OldOne - My advancement averages out to 1 level per 4 sessions or so...
SpyScribe - *shakes head* Poor Fajitas
nemmerle - the party has been "in town" between adventures for like 4 sessions and having a grand old time
WizarDru - *hopes that Zad's wife isn't reading.
jonrog1 - I have people who are in love with character design, so they need the buzz. It's not a power thing, though -- I swear they'd play nothing but 1st level and play a different campaign a week just for the fun of character building
Wulf_Ratbane - with ya on that jonrog
nemmerle - we play 2 a month
contact - Me three-- char building = teh fun.
Piratecat - Us, too.
contact - As DM, I get to build lots of expendable characters.
Harlock - I've slowed down leveling a ton in my Scarred Lands game myself.
nemmerle - naw
diaglo - character building doesn't have to mean fast leveling though
C_Baize - That's a lot of the fun, contact.
Harlock - Here's another one from the peanut gallery - SiderealKnight - Question: What (if any) story hours do you read regularly?
nemmerle - I hate making stat block
jonrog1 - One of my players just started running a once a month campaign, and now that I got to play again, I was al aquiver with character-building excitement
diaglo - all of them
Piratecat - As a DM, I get all of my PC design jollies out of making NPCs who inevitably die quickly.
contact - Until they slaughter your wiz 5/ rog 3/ asn 4 in one round
C_Baize - SiderealKnight - I only read (other than mine) Medallions, honestly.
nemmerle - Sidereal Knight - Sagiro's is the only one. . I pop into P.Kitty's, Old One's and Contact's on occasion - but I am not with the regular
DrMidnight - None... sorry. Tried once, couldn't get into it. Reading in a computer chair doesn't work for me.
WizarDru - Destan (well, until he KILLED THEM ALL), Piratecat's, JonRog’s and a few others.
Piratecat - I read about a half-dozen regularly, and drop in on another half dozen about once a month. Lately, I've been glued to Capellan's Q-Ship story hour. Sheer comedy gold.
Zad - SiderealKnight - Easy one: Destan, Speulchrave, Piratecat, Sagiro, Wulf's (formerly). I'd read more but time can be rough.
Wulf_Ratbane - Piratecat and pogre. I would say I read jonrog regularly, but that would be predicated on him UPDATING regularly
SpyScribe - Not enough? Anything by jonrog1 and Piratecat. Recently picked up Company of the Random Encounter.
diaglo - I only left the story hour side 'cuz the Jester came to stay at my house
AltReality - what’s up all :)
KidCharlemagne - SiderealKnight - I read PC's, Sagiro's, Contacts Liberators thread, and Wulf.
WizarDru - As often as not, I pick up a new story hour every few weeks and run through it. Makes for good lunchroom reading.
contact - I read PCs, Sagrios, Sepulchrave’s, JonRog’s, Capellan's got a couple I like. JRandall, there's more that I can't remember. many many. Of course, Wulf's back in the day.
jonrog1 - whoops
Harlock - Heh
Harlock - , no problem
Harlock - +Silvr_Dragon - ohhh I got a question! Can I make a guest appearance in your story hour?
OldOne - SK - I used to be a SH whore...but just don't have the time anymore...I regularly read PCs, Sagiro’s, contacts, Destan's, Seps, Wulf, Pogre and Rel's...drop in on Nemm, Jonrog1...damn...I still am an SH whore...
contact - I've already written you in, Harlock . But I changed your name to "Heydricus."
C_Baize - So, how about you, jonrog1? Which SHs do you read?
Piratecat - I actually have EN Worlders sit in a fair amount; heck, Old One is here tomorrow!
Zad - Silvr_Dragon - If you want to come for a night you can play Thorkeld! Just be ready to fail a save and die or something.
jonrog1 - Pkitty, SpyScribe, all the modern ones
WizarDru - Sure. You can play the Silvering. And sleep for the next decade. :)
nemmerle - I would love to have some ENWorlders I know come down and sit in
jonrog1 - got to admit, it takes a heckuva lot to hook me in the straight fantasy campaigns
WizarDru - It's always the paladins.
OldOne - Piratecat - Wahoo...yes I am!
nemmerle - of course, no one ever trusts the guest player
nemmerle - ;-)
Piratecat - nor should they.
C_Baize - That's an interesting concept.... I may have to use all the ENWorlders as a bunch of Zombies, and Raiders... :)
contact - Unless they have an honest face like Old One.
KidCharlemagne - I gotta make it out to Boston for a Sox game and PC's game sometime
nemmerle - last 2 times my friend Sean has "guested" PCs have died
Piratecat - but this is how I first met Wulf, for instance.
nemmerle - and not b/c of anything he did!
OldOne - *rubs hands together in secret delight*
Harlock - ascendance - General comment: its frustrating that software support's fallen behind for 3.5e
OldOne - contact - Awwww....
Piratecat - Yup. Agreed.
C_Baize - Okay.
Zad - ascendance - I'm a fan of simple things I can maintain myself like spreadsheets.
Harlock - Err, hey, that's not a question.
jonrog1 - ascendance - I guess, but again, I don't use it much. But maybe that's because its fallen behind, chicken/egg thing
WizarDru - DM Genie is 3.5 compatible...with templates, even. So no, it isn't.
diaglo - don't get me started. ;)
OldOne - ascend - don't really use much either...
nemmerle - I am old skool
KidCharlemagne - 3.5 E-Tools is due out the next month or so last I heard
nemmerle - pen and paper baby
Harlock - diaglo, just once could you say... your trademark?
jonrog1 - multi-colored pens. old school
nemmerle - I have a note book with Out of the Frying Pan scratched on the front in ball point pen!
KidCharlemagne - Its not a real software support unless its written in Cobol?
nemmerle - I have the same support for that than there has ever has been, the Mead Corp is good that way ;-)
* WizarDru claws his own eyes out at the mention of COBOL.
diaglo - OD&D(1974) is the only true game. All the other editions are just poor imitations of the real thing. :D
WizarDru - How about FORTRAN? The language of innovation?
nemmerle - oh diaglo
Harlock - nemmerle, you sound like me. Starting DMing when I was a kid and my quicker clicker and graph paper bring me a special chill just to pick up
jonrog1 - of course. AD&D 2nd Edition -- the Buzzkill Edition.
Harlock - Heh
WizarDru - Hey, he made it 1:16 into the chat. That's admirable.
Harlock - Well, I DID ask him for it.
Piratecat - Next question?
Harlock - Here's a general one for all of you - Wee_Jas - Q: Where is your game based out of? (To everyone)
jonrog1 - "you do something cool. Roll on table 5-3 to see how you die because of it..."
Piratecat - Physically? Boston.
contact - San Francisco.
diaglo - Forgotten Realms...Dalelands
nemmerle - The Planet of Brooklyn, baby!
KidCharlemagne - I'm in the Chicago suburbs
jonrog1 - Los Angeles
C_Baize - Physically? Central California...
KidCharlemagne - Oh... Hoebre world :)
WizarDru - version, anyhow. Physically? Malvern, PA.
SpyScribe - L.A.
KidCharlemagne - Home brew. Sheesh
DrMidnight - Rhode Island, Providence area. Reppin' the four-oh-one, baby.
Zad - Wee_Jas - suburban Philly/Greyhawk
C_Baize - In the game, it's America, and sort of all over...
Destan - Between DC and Baltimore.
OldOne - Faded Glory H'brew...played in the Baltimore suburbs...
jonrog1 - Huh, I'd stayed back east, I coulda played with Pkitty and Wulf. Damn
diaglo - play in Hotlanta
Piratecat - My World is home brew, with Planescape.
jonrog1 - stupid career ...
OldOne - Destan - When we drinking that beer together?
nemmerle -
contact - Piratecat needs more modrons.
SpyScribe - jonrog1 -but then we wouldn't have had Jo and Ross guest starring.
Piratecat - Damn straight.
nemmerle - Look at me, I’m a shill!
Harlock - Interesting side note, this just in - Olgar - Of course, diaglo recently admitted to considering DMing 3.5 ... ;)
jonrog1 - Scarred Lands -- Elminster can bite my pink behind
* Zad wonders what the modrons are doing. Oh well couldn't be anything important
Destan - OO - I'm not 21.
OldOne - Destan - Liar!
thatdarncat - Zad - someone else will figure it out, right?
Destan - oo - :)
* contact watches modrons roll by, and goes home.
OldOne - hah!
jonrog1 - SpyScribe - and horrifying you with the habits they picked up form my campaign...
nemmerle - the climax of my campaign involves Modrons
Piratecat - I want my damn modrons.
Destan - Harlock - Gotta run, thanks for having me.
nemmerle - shhh! don't tell anyone ;-)
Harlock - thanks Destan
OldOne - Too late..
Harlock - So, how long does it take, usually to compile notes from a session, then write it up and post it?
WizarDru - See ya, Destan. Valanthe just pinched me. Hope you're happy. :)
Wulf_Ratbane - I also gotta run... Later all!
DrMidnight - I've gotta run as well. Gonna ride Destan's coattails on outta here.
Piratecat - Nemm, can I sit in? Please?
SpyScribe - jonrog1 - So come horrify us yourself next time!
OldOne - Gotta run soon too...any other questions?
nemmerle - of course!
Harlock - seeya DrMidnight
C_Baize - When Destan's gotta run... Destan's gotta run.
Harlock - and thanks
nemmerle - P.Kitty that was for you
nemmerle - as for how long?
jonrog1 - Harlock - only a day, just never get around to the fine tuning and posting. but I'm a speedy little writer. makes up for my shocking lack of talent
WizarDru - Gotta go, gotta go, gotta go right now.
Zad - Harlock - Usually I go into work Monday morning, and work on the story. Depending how busy I am, I could have it up as soon as noon if I'm relatively free
DrMidnight - Bye all, love yers.
C_Baize - Harl... I think you wanted me to remind you of something... But I forget what it was...
DrMidnight - for justice!!
nemmerle - it usually takes 2 to 3 installments (6 to 14 pages each) to do one session
Harlock - Characters?
diaglo - the whole two weeks in between sessions
Piratecat - It takes me about four hours to write up a game. Longer if I'm using a tape.
C_Baize - Oh.. What about them?
Harlock - don’t remember. =)
WizarDru - I write teasers in about 1-2 hours, depending.
OldOne - Harlock - About 2 hours of writing per Session installment...but I usually write 2-5 installments per figure 4-10 hours per Session...
nemmerle - so that is about 2 to 4 hours of writing each x 3 = 6 to 12 hours per session
contact - Harlock , it usually takes two to four hours. Longer if I am brain-dead.
nemmerle - longer than the actual sessions!
jonrog1 - I've got so many sourcebooks, I steal characters like mad
nemmerle - oh my god!
nemmerle - I never realized that before!
KidCharlemagne - I'd say about 4 hours, spread into (typically) 3-4 installments
WizarDru - The Avonshar story hour can take about 4 hours for me to write.
Harlock - Cool
Piratecat - Nemm, we could game twice as often if we didn't write. Damn.
C_Baize - Usually, it takes me a couple of hours to write... but I've been trying to get this latest update for over 2 weeks...
Piratecat - It isn't unusual to run into writer's block. It happens.
Harlock - So, are there any exciting things about to happen in anyone’s game? Stuff not written up? Teasers, character deaths, changes in party mix, etc?
SpyScribe - Don't know per-update. Writing is quick, revising is longer.
nemmerle - I am so glad I don't write up the Promised Land game
nemmerle - which I want to plug!
nemmerle - my homeboy Sean writes it
contact - Lucius is taking over the Liberators, but no one other than Lucius realizes it.
WizarDru - you mean, other than the rapture? :-d
nemmerle - and it is relatively new so you can catch up right away and I play in it!
Piratecat - I have a few character deaths coming up, as I approach the climax of my 2 year long adventure.
C_Baize - Well... in several sessions, the Sniper will have a serious crisis, as he LOSES HIS EYE!
Zad - Harlock - No the only things I drop are tiny details that are unimportant in greater story.
diaglo - started a new campaign and new SH
nemmerle - writing about PC death is always a big deal b/c in a game where there is little or no resurrection, that means they will never appear in the story again, and that can be disappointing
jonrog1 - Harlock - a few roster changes, a few character deaths, the big epic end of the first "season".
contact - In the Risen Goddess, the upcoming plotline is based on the principle that the adventurers failed in the Modron march/ Dead Gods plotline.
nemmerle - disappointing for the readers, that is
Harlock - So, do you have any specific rules based on your Story Hours?
nemmerle - but I have roster changes coming up too
jonrog1 - started structuring lot arcs like TV seasons, 5 levels/season -- get to kill a big bad fairly often, don't bog down, but long enough for investigations and side adventures
C_Baize - Not based on the story hours...
nemmerle - including an old rival who joins the group!
Piratecat - What do you mean, Harlock ?
OldOne - Harlock - I am about 7 sessions behind now...VERY big happenings and some very bad things in the next couple of sessions...
diaglo - no infinite rule
contact - No, just that Dodge gives a consistent bonus. :)
KidCharlemagne - Specific rules in what sense?
C_Baize - But I do have called shots, and a target system...
Zad - Harlock - No but we have some very specific rules on Bolo running all new spells past the approval committee before using them in game - it's for everyone's good.
Piratecat - I try to figure out the players' expectations, and then keep them on their toes. I dunno, Wulf; any surprises coming up in the story hour?
Piratecat - :d
Harlock - Well, for instance, do you try and limit player stupidity, that sort of thing? Allowing Int. checks to preserve plot?
nemmerle - no, but I love describing my bloody crits when they happen
Harlock - anything as heavy handed as that?
nemmerle - har - no way!
Zad - Nope - we're allowed to be as dumb as our natural talent permits
WizarDru - All new Bolo spells must pass....The Committee. I also appear to have a house rule concerning Bolo getting eaten every session.
C_Baize - For a sniper, I really had to have a called shot system, so it was actually fairly simple to come up with one.
OldOne - Harlock , et al - Gotta run, gang...thanks for the opportunity...see you tomorrow, Pkitty and Wulf (will Wulf be there?)
KidCharlemagne - Nope! Like I said earlier, I'm blessed with great players
Piratecat - Nope. If my players want to be stupid, more power to them - although it doesn't happen very often.
jonrog1 - no, she follows plot idiocy -- again, part of the challenge is to not turn your game into your narrative, but adapt your narrative as the game shifts.
Harlock - thanks OldOne!
contact - We allow the player of Prisantha to ask the whole group for advice when she makes snap decisions, to reflect her 28 Int.
nemmerle - later oo
Piratecat - See you tomorrow, Old One!
SpyScribe - Ack, I've got to run. Thanks for having me.
diaglo - we stumble around until we run into something. ;)
nemmerle - like rats from a ship!
Piratecat - By, SS! I can hang around for a while.
OldOne - cya!
Piratecat - Contact, that's a cool mechanic.
WizarDru - My players are quite clever, so it's never been a problem. Trying to outwit them has always been the problem.
nemmerle - nice
jonrog1 - 28 int. ? broken! I call broken!
Harlock - .thatdarncat - Piratecat: spoil us, please! We want to know! Contact: Your last LoT update ended on kind of a spoiler. Who won! Who died?
nemmerle - I allow "18 int" moments
Harlock - Piratecat is like a kid in the candy store tonight
WizarDru - I guess I shouldn't point out that the wizard in our story hour has a 32 INT, huh?
nemmerle - so we have players asking "can I take an 18 Int moment?" to stop play to discuss something
Harlock - err, thatdarncat
nemmerle - I am greedy with them
nemmerle - ;-)
Piratecat - Nope, I'm *so* not spoiling this one little surprise. It's a good one.
* thatdarncat is in full on fanboy mode :)
contact - The Liberators won, and three of them sort of died, with two of them really dying. Later, only one really died, and was then expunged from the group.
jonrog1 - I give a Wis check or Int. check for remembering plot details they may not have remembered.
diaglo - 25 pt buy. how in the world?
WizarDru - Of course, there was the time a player summoned a water elemental...on the elemental plane of fire. :)
contact - Oh, and then the Liberators lost.
Piratecat - Steam.
KidCharlemagne - I know who dies in PC's game.... at least one of them.... :)
nemmerle - I don’t like the randomness of checks
jonrog1 - My investigation arcs tend to be pretty complex -- those checks are like Spycraft inspiration checks.
KidCharlemagne - Might be more than one, that I don't know
nemmerle - I’d rather the *player* make a decision
contact - Jonrog-- it's not really. She's 20th level, has a +6 item she made herself, and has wished a couple of times.
contact - The baddies still make their saves.
Piratecat - I tend to agree. Int or Wis checks don't take into account the hero's experience.
Harlock - This is a great question - Umbran - Question for all - what's the best character quote in your SH?
jonrog1 - *grumbling* woulda dropped a rock on her a long time ago -- none shall rival the DM's power!
nemmerle - that's a hard one
C_Baize - Mitch: "Yeah... well... If I were you, I'd shave that weasel off my lip."
diaglo - that's too hard. my memory is a mess.
Zad - Umbran - I know the one for Piratecat - "So what do you think those Modrons are doing?"
WizarDru - that's tough.
Piratecat - Sigh. Probably.
thatdarncat - blah, sure, tease me :p
nemmerle - We have a lot of "Run! Run! Run! don't look back! Run!"
jonrog1 - Umbran - Andy as he drew his gun on the carnivorous, anal-probing ET: "You are SO not phoning home..."
nemmerle - lol
Harlock - nemmerle, that sounds like the game I am a player in
Piratecat - I like when Malachite told off his superior Aleax, and turned his back on his church in order to stand up for what he believed in.
contact - "Don't touch anything that is glowing, take it one level at a time, kill everything, and move on."
Zad - Umbran - With so many years (and about 600 pages in MSWord) I'd need to go back and look.
Piratecat - Of course, turning him into a tapeworm was also pretty funny.
diaglo - "timmmmmmaaaaayyyy"
jonrog1 - Again, I have a roomful of writers, they do all the hard work for me
KidCharlemagne - Umbran - That's really tough. This one is from that game but before the actual SH... "It'll be a quick in-an-out". This was followed by the Party getting waylaid, and enslaved, and teleported halfway across the continent, not getting back for six months of game time
nemmerle - oh and a lot of "I willing to sacrifice my life!"
thatdarncat - contact - my PCs need to learn from that
nemmerle - everyone always in a hurry to die
contact - TDC-- So do mine, they just say it all the time. :)
Piratecat - They need a new advisor.
Harlock - Jackie Chan Adventures is coming on Cartoon Network, for the jonrog1 fans.
diaglo - Olgar reminded me..."..went down like Bernedette in an elven village"
thatdarncat - I wanna know when I can buy jca on DVD
WizarDru - My current favorite from PCs hour: "You know how. You just aren't very good at it."
nemmerle - "run! run! run! don't look back! run!"
jonrog1 - they JUSTG started releasing them in a truly idiotic pattern
jonrog1 - sadly, Sony Kids not really on the ball there
WizarDru - Jon, are you still involved with the show?
Piratecat - So, let me ask a question: writers, how do you create memorable villains?
jonrog1 - not much anymore, two good guys running it.
jonrog1 - Pkitty - actually, my PC's create my villains
contact - I try to keep them rules-obscured-- that helps.
WizarDru - Well, it's been consistently great. You should be proud.
diaglo - I let Olgar do is my job to find them.
contact - And, of course, I steal all the villains from PCs SH.
nemmerle - for me it is all about dialogue and description -
Piratecat - how, jonrog?
WizarDru - I like to link them emotionally to the makes them resonate more when they have an investment in the villain. Oh, and Black Dirge helps. :)
Zad - Piratecat - Well I do what I can, but it comes down to character perceptions and how I think my character would see it
nemmerle - I will sometimes make notes of things I want a villain to say and then craft their speech pattern around it to be consistent
KidCharlemagne - I look for an interesting hook, and make sure the PC's have ways to interact with them enough to breed the familiarity that leads to enmity
jonrog1 - at the beginning of every season, I have a choice of three or four main plots, run them through the intro adventures, and whoever they hate the most, I make the main villain, advance him along with them
nemmerle - like when he describes his evil plan in great detail ;-)
C_Baize - PC - I dunno... the one they are facing, in game, now, is a former teammate of the Military PCs...
nemmerle - also
nemmerle - always keep them on their toes
Harlock - Do you Story Hour Authors ever bring back supposedly dead villains? True Ress go both ways in your games?
WizarDru - The toughest villain was the LG one. He took some effort.
nemmerle - make them have real motives that the PCs might consider reasonable and thus fill them with loathing and self-doubt
Piratecat - I agree that a hated villain is a good villain. I need to do a better job at making them emotionally tied to the PCs.
diaglo - old PCs make surprise appearances.
KidCharlemagne - I've never Rezz'd a villain. I believe strongly that a good DM needs to be able to let his beloved bad guys go
nemmerle - not much res in my game
nemmerle - though people come back as undead a lot ;-)
Harlock - heh
WizarDru - No. No. NO. Well...OK, Yes. I just did the most recent session featuring the return of a Blackguard from 2+ years ago, now a fiend.
Zad - Harlock - We just had a supposedly dead villain come back to assassinate us last week. He's dead now
Piratecat - I've used an undead version of true ress to bring back powerful ghouls that the group had trouble killing one at a time. Now they're banded together and hunting the group.
C_Baize - hehe... They faced the Hook Horror again. Only this time it was a cybernetic Hook Horror with nasty pointy spiky things installed on him.
contact - I had a villain recently that they kind of *liked*. It made it interesting for them to oppose him.
Harlock - JRandall - story hour ? for (contact): How many years ago (real life) did what is now the Risen Goddess campaign start?
Piratecat - That's always fun. In Sagiro's game, we can tell the villains because we like them and they're nice to us. If someone is rude and nasty, they're probably a good guy.
nemmerle - my last session ended w/ the party getting back to the inn to find an old villain waiting for them
WizarDru - Well, wasn't that one wizard nice? But then, he died.
contact - Joshua knows that the Risen Goddess game originally started around 1986 when my core player and I spent our misanthropic high-school years playing these two characters who reincarnated into a homebrew world called Isk . . .
contact - The recent incarnation (the one chronicled in the SH) started at the same time that 3e was released.
nemmerle - he has not spoken a word yet and they are considering attacking him right away b/c they are afraid he is going to point out some nebulous gray moral thing and they won’t be able to kill him with clear consciences
Piratecat - Nemm, that's funny.
WizarDru - It's always the paladins.
Piratecat - New question?
Harlock - Do you find yourself ever writing up a hook or arc and thinking, "Yeah, this'll look great in my thread!"
jonrog1 - my villains are always scrupulously reasonable. they have agendas, and if the PC's would just GO AWAY there wouldn't be a problem.
Zad - Harlock - I'm a PC - I'm reactive ;)
contact - Nemm: "Hush! Hush! Don't speak. I'm going to stab you now."
nemmerle - naw, I write it up for the game and when it plays out then I think "this will rock the story hour"
jonrog1 - Harlock - god no, because I never know what it's going to look like once my players are done with it.
diaglo - I’m with Zad... but i feed my DM plot hooks.
C_Baize - Actually... I've done the opposite... Get the arc going, and I'm like, "Oh man... this is going to look cheesy.... Oh well! ROLL THE DICE!"
Piratecat - Hmm. I more think, "That'll work wonderfully in the game." I tend to design based on cool cinematic moments. I know when I get an idea right; it snaps into place with almost an audible "click."
WizarDru - Not as I'm writing it...but later, when reviewing it, I do. I generally think in terms of cinematic approach, even if that approach doesn't always survive contact with the players.
jonrog1 - most of their "rescue attempts" end up with things on fire and corpses.
Harlock - jonrog1, yeah that's how most of my plots go. =) Makes being DM fun.
KidCharlemagne - I'm with Nemm, the games make me excited for the story hour more than the session preparation
contact - Harlock , absolutely. Some bits you just know you're going to hit it out of the park.
contact - Other bits, you hope that *they* will do something fun with.
contact - They usually do.
Harlock - Here's an interesting question - JRandall - follow up question for other authors - is the length of a campaign tied to your satisfaction with running/playing in it? or can short campaign also be fun?
jonrog1 - for example, I never anticipated what EITHER group I ran through the small town zombie DM game would do with the zombie toddler...
Harlock - Anyone thought of a one shot Story Hour?
C_Baize - One offs can be a blast!
nemmerle - in my experience short campaign means either TPK or loss of interest, so I guess no
diaglo - I enjoy long term play...but I’m not opposed to one shots
jonrog1 - Harlock - Pulp Spycraft was a one-off
Piratecat - I also tend to design like "Raiders of the Lost Arc"... interesting and varied action every so often, with some pauses between them. different challenges, but ones that involve everyone and make them try new tactics.
Zad - JRandall - Well we definitely wouldn't be at it if we weren't enjoying it so I'd have to say yes.
WizarDru - Short campaigns, to me, are one-offs, usually. I like long games, with developing characters.
jonrog1 - and as I mentioned, my campaign is broken into "seasons" so I have a mix of long and short-term goals
contact - Raiders of the Lost Ark is my bible for good pacing. I think it's paced *perfectly*.
jonrog1 - the characters carry over from season to season, but the "big bads" change
Piratecat - We do lots of one-shots, but I’ve never written them up. Dr Midnight has done so quite often, especially with Feng Shui games.
nemmerle - Jon, that's the way to do it - except my players keep making short term goals into long ones
KidCharlemagne - JRandall - Length of campaign is key for some games, but I've had big fun with short games too. My SH group tend to break up long stretches of my campaigns with two or three short 6-10 session games
WizarDru - I try to keep things to major storylines, but often the plot gets too involved for that to be more than a recommendation of the story.
jonrog1 - well, my PC's try, but if the NPC has a time-dependent agenda, it can control how long the PC's drag out a storyline
WizarDru - Question: Do you sometimes find the pressure of updating to be a serious chore, with regards to keeping a regular schedule?
nemmerle - right
contact - We also will play the NPCs within a storyline as "one-shots" that tie back into the larger arc.
Harlock - Here's one from a Story Hour reader - Lela - Question: How do you prefer to handle Religion? From divine intervention/interaction to the more secular acts of the church.
jonrog1 - at the beginning of each season, I figure out the timeline for each villain plot if the PC's didn’t exist...
Harlock - (contact), that's a cool idea.
Piratecat - Absolutely. I hate the feeling of knowing that I'm behind on my updates.
jonrog1 - and if they bugger off, then the bad guys advance.
KidCharlemagne - Well folks, I gotta run now... See y'all later! and thanks for having me!
Zad - WizarDru - Not really. I find doing it on schedule makes it easier for me
contact - WizarDru-- I don't feel the pressure. When it's a chore, I ignore it. :)
Harlock - seeya KidCharlemagne and thanks
jonrog1 - Lela - I use the Scarred Lands pantheon, and its a great mix of physical worship and divine intervention
Piratecat - bye, rob!
nemmerle - Lela - does it serve the plot? but I doubt I’d ever do direct divine intervention as a storyline
nemmerle - just not my kind of fantasy
Piratecat - Lela, religion plays a major role in my campaign.
KidCharlemagne - buhbye!
contact - Lela, the gods are the biggest bad guys in my game(s).
Piratecat - It drives politics, motivations, and quite a few plots.
Zad - Lela - We have a number of religious issues in the game, and some characters are primarily driven by it. But the divine never seems to interfere with player choice or overshadow them
diaglo - WizarDru - never really had trouble with pacing
jonrog1 - divine intervention, no. but divine commentary, yes. My pc's sometimes have dreams that let them know just how bad they're screwing up ...
WizarDru - Lela - Religion is central to our game, what with divine politics taking up so much of the game.
C_Baize - Well.... time to fix dinner. It's been great, all.
contact - Religion and religious conflict are at the heart of both of my current SHs.
Harlock - thanks Hildulf!
jonrog1 - take care
WizarDru - Of course, some characters just want to kick the deities in the junk, but there you are.
diaglo - Lela - religion is a part of the game
Piratecat - One of the reasons that religion is so much fun is that it's tailor-made for nasty politics, and it produces zealots beautifully.
WizarDru - bye!
contact - Pantheonistic religion just lends itself to political plotlines.
nemmerle - the group's paladin has been dealing with a schism of monks of his order - and he is not sure which side is "right" yet
contact - That's the best, Nemm.
jonrog1 - yes, religion can give you cool shades of grey for your PCs to deal with
Harlock - This one could be fun - Pierce - how about: Have there been happenings in your games that you considered inappropriate for your SH?
Piratecat - Contact's Liberators of Tenh are currently going up against Pholtus; it's beautiful.
diaglo - and places for them to spend their loot
contact - Pholtus is kicking their collective butts.
nemmerle - there was a ceremonial coupling in a druid grove. . .
nemmerle - in front of scores of bugbears
WizarDru - My deities tend to be aloof and distant, which makes them more than a little unpopular amongst the non-devout. In Destan's game, Destan would tell you how the Risen Gods are basically not very nice people.
nemmerle - with a captive woman
nemmerle - a-hem
Harlock - Pierce - Follow-up: How did you get around it?
Zad - Pierce - nope not really. Romantic encounters are handled off camera but that's more of an artistic choice.
WizarDru - iykwimaityd
Piratecat - Pierce, we usually hand wave over sex in the game. We've had both straight and gay/lesbian relationships between PCs and NPCs, but that can usually be summed up in a sentence or so. Graphic violence has never been a problem.
jonrog1 - pierce - recently. my gender-switched bard seduced a mad druid and poisoned him. roleplaying that, me as the druid flirting with my friend Denis .. errrg.
diaglo - Pierce - yes. but we did a fade to black
nemmerle - I just used suggestion
contact - omg pix? thx!
nemmerle - oh we also had a male rape
nemmerle - early on
jonrog1 - most romantic stuff, just a suggestion, nothing more.
Harlock - Pulp Fiction fun.
Harlock - JRandall - on religion - do the players ever get uncomfortable because of in-character religious issues?
nemmerle - I was actually pretty graphic about that. . . but still did not violate the grandma rule
Piratecat - That happened in a game I was once in, and it caused a layer to quit. You have to be careful with those things.
Zad - JRandall - No it's really a central part of our game and we embrace it.
contact - JER-- I've never had that trouble.
WizarDru - Not in our game, no. I try to be mindful of my players’ beliefs, and it's usually handled as enough of an abstraction that I don't think it's ever been an issue.
nemmerle - PC - I warn my players there will be adult themes and it is never made into a joke
jonrog1 - JRandall - once, the player had a hard time reconciling his PC's religion with the group's overall tone. but I think that was more a player dynamic thing
diaglo - JRandall - I don't think so...but we don't talk RL religion if we can help it
nemmerle - I love my players for stuff like that
nemmerle - for being able to deal with it, that is
Harlock - Here's a spiffy question - Lela - Follow up: Good and Evil are easy to turn against each other. How do you handle turning good against good?
Piratecat - I have a player who doesn't usually play a cleric because they have real-life religious concerns. It's never been a problem.
jonrog1 - my group's a mix of southern Baptists, lapsed Catholics, etc, and we manage to get along fine. Working with a pantheon definitely steps it away form real life issues
Piratecat - Good vs. good is really interesting to do. I model a lot of that on real life.
Zad - Lela - Good folks don't always agree on the best course of action - all they need is different ideas on how to respond to the same problem.
nemmerle - I have more than one player WHO LOVES playing priests b/c in real life has no religious conviction and it is a neat thing to RP for him
jonrog1 - Lela - well, if I had a good party, I'd tackle that. :p
diaglo - Lela - read my story hour in the last 3 pages...2 good churches with separate agendas.
contact - Good vs. good is . . . well you know.
Piratecat - Again, two good churches clashing is understandable; so is good monarchs struggling over succession.
nemmerle - it has to do with agendas and do the ends justify the means?
WizarDru - Like I said, having splinter factions among LG characters was an interesting dilemma. The Gilden, head of the gold dragons and mentor to the players had been kidnapped. And the replacement chose inaction over open war and rescue...much to the players’ consternation.
jonrog1 - I just did evil vs. evil, and THAT's fun. Who do you ally with when your enemies split up? To take on the greater evil, do you make your deal with the devil?
contact - Jonrog, did you put them in a position to have to?
Piratecat - Mine did, Jonrog. they chose to team up with the lesser evil and ran with it.
nemmerle - one of the villains in my game released some uber-powerful evil Drow witches from captivity b/c he knew the shockwave through Drow culture would retard their progress in war
nemmerle - the PCs disagreed with his tactics
jonrog1 - Well, they never HAVE to do anything. But it was one of those things, like real life "If we don't deal with this, this WILL come bite us in the butt later, because the really evil guys got too powerful..."
contact - So, you did. :)
Piratecat - We've tried to set one enemy against another in Sagiro's game, with mixed results.
diaglo - we ventured into the bane you let the stuff out or keep it there?
jonrog1 - no, not at all. They could have moved easily out of the region where it would have affected them
contact - Heh.
Harlock - If you could sum up your Story Hour/campaign in one word; what would it be?
jonrog1 - and there were other plot options to handle the uber-problem of the approaching war.
diaglo - Funtastical
Zad - Evolving
nemmerle - Har - worth reading
nemmerle - I cheated.
Harlock - heh
contact - Cute.
Harlock - yes, I see that
jonrog1 - har - "Pulptastico."
WizarDru - ha!
Piratecat - Originally? Political.
WizarDru - Sounds like a Mexican wrestler.
WizarDru - Hey, is 'ass-kickin' one word or two? :)
Piratecat - I am Pulptastico the Magnificent! Fear me!
nemmerle - Jon - yes and no, the war he was talking about was a long term thing - the party thought it could wait to be dealt with later by unforeseen means
jonrog1 - "you will never remove my mask! NEVER!"
Harlock - We have a few traditions in this channel regarding interviews, certain questions I am required to ask... So, do you like egg rolls?
contact - no.
Piratecat - Ehh. Not really.
jonrog1 - spring rolls
WizarDru - Hell Yeah. Joe's Peking Duck House, baby.
Zad - yup
nemmerle - if I’m famished
diaglo - with hot mustard
Harlock - right on diaglo!
nemmerle - I prefer pot-stickers
Piratecat - Me too.
contact - Mmm. Pot stickers.
nemmerle - speaking of which time for dinner
nemmerle - later all!
Piratecat - Now I'm hungry!
WizarDru - Mmm. Dim sum would be nice, right about now. :D
Piratecat - Thanks, everyone. This was fun!
jonrog1 - it certainly was. good luck all
diaglo - thanks gang
WizarDru - Yes, thanks a lot!
thatdarncat - Chicken balls and honey garlic chicken
thatdarncat - yum!
thatdarncat - thanks for coming guys :)
Harlock - heh, another channel tradition: Can each of you write a haiku about, player death?
jonrog1 - that’s 5 7 5 right?
Harlock - yip
Harlock - Even Chris Pramas had to do this
Harlock - heh, I love this gig.
diaglo - players die a lot / so they need to come prepared/ next time they know
WizarDru - My Silly Bolo. Tastes good in Barbecue Sauce. Don't do that Again.
Piratecat - Purple tentacles -- grab a hold of empty eyes -- opens like an egg.
Piratecat - Not a spoiler, honest.
Zad - In Gulthias lair, an evil mummy slew me, I bled a whole lot
jonrog1 - I curse the red die / fate has kick'd me in the junk / a one on my d20
thatdarncat - o_o
jonrog1 - darn - I think that last one was off
Piratecat - JonRog, make "d20" into "die"
WizarDru - Shhh! Quiet, you fool. They're listening!
Harlock - heh
Piratecat - or "save"
jonrog1 - I curse the red die / fate has kick'd me in the junk/ I fail my save throw
jonrog1 - hmmm
jonrog1 - I may be at this all night
Harlock - Let's see, one more tradition, the Psionics question ... Do you guys use Psionics in your campaign?
Piratecat - "I just failed my save"?
WizarDru - Harlock ....I assume a transcript will be made available later?
contact - A spray of red life / Bursting from your plate armor / Lost initiative
Harlock - WizarDru, it sure will!
jonrog1 - nice!
Piratecat - Psionics is a major part of my campaign.
contact - Psionics where it does
diaglo - No...never have...never will
WizarDru - Yes, yes we do. But not often. It's good for confusing the players.
contact - . . 't break the flavor of the game, yes.
Zad - Harlock - the bad guys have yes. No PC's but that's just by happenstance
jonrog1 - I may try the new Green Ronin feats skills Psi system. much yummy
Zad - I'm looking forward to April and the new system
Piratecat - Me too, Zad.
contact - Pimpin'! If you haven't read any of my SH's, but would like to, start here:
contact - Thanks to everyone-- been fun.
Zad - Bye contact
Harlock - Yes, thank you all for coming, and remember this channel is always open! drop in any time!
Piratecat - One last thought: go read a story hour you've never looked at before! And when you do, comment. The author will love you for it.
diaglo - ciao
thatdarncat - later contact :)
Zad - What P-cat said!
WizarDru - what pc said.
jonrog1 - it has been, I need to go too -- talk to the grownups about the show. take care all
Harlock - seeya jonrog1
Piratecat - thanks. bye!
Zad - Thanks very much - was an honor to be invited - good night all
Harlock - thanks again
diaglo - and I’m off also
Harlock - So, we're about done question wise.

I'd just like to thank all the story hour authors who graced us with their presence.
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Thanks for posting this. I game on Wednesday nights and so missed the chat. Great stuff to read - looked like it was fun.


Thanks a whole effing lot, guys. I'm up til 3:30 at the computer because when I laugh my ass off at teh funney, it shakes the bed and wakes my wife.

Seriously, rocking chat. If IRC didn't irritate me, it would have been cool to lob a couple of questions.

And (contact)? Dude. Indianichus SIEMPRE tiene la bola.


dpdx said:
Seriously, rocking chat. If IRC didn't irritate me, it would have been cool to lob a couple of questions.

Post them here.

dpdx said:
And (contact)? Dude. Indianichus SIEMPRE tiene la bola.

Si mon, la bola delusional. Heh. I miss playing Indy. :( But I'm glad he didn't cling on after the adventures got over his head, like Jespo Crim did, the poor bastard.


Moderator Emeritus
Well, for me I never do behind the scenes narrative at all, so that one is eliminated.

However, I like wriitng dialogue that takes place during combat as it is often amusing and does a lot to show character state of mind while fighting for their lives, and helps reinforce the chaos of battle. :D
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First Post
dpdx said:
Cool, then.

What's most fun to write up, from the following:

Behind-the-scenes narrative
Non-combat party narrative

I particularly enjoy behind-the-scenes narrative. It really advances the plot and can be used for other literary devices like foreshadowing and such.

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