30
votes
4answers
1k views

How do I keep a long-range plot cohesive and coherent?

I enjoy GMing but I much prefer to to have some sort of long running plot (or meta-plot) rather than having a series of unconnected unfortunate events afflict my PCs. For example, I would love to ...
9
votes
2answers
506 views

Is GURPS Dungeon Fantasy compatible with Banestorm?

I am about to have my friends adventure in a "generic" dungeon, using GURPS Dungeon Fantasy supplements. I know but a little about Banestorm setting, the "default" fantasy setting for GURPS. In case ...
36
votes
8answers
2k views

How do I get better at narrating/storytelling as a GM?

Personally, I've always had difficulty telling coherent stories, even from my own experiences. My wife has even coined a term (jokingly) for the type of story I tell, one that either makes no sense, ...
6
votes
4answers
386 views

What are the steps that you as GM's and PC's take to develop a Level 1 character?

This is for the basic character creation at level 1. I know the PHB goes into some detail on character creation and the steps for doing so. What I want to know is how you as GMs or players create ...
5
votes
1answer
175 views

Do Laborers need tools to make tests, or do they get an extra die for having tools?

On p249 of the Mouse Guard rules PDF (build date 2008-11-28), the Laborer skill says "Laborers need tools from a smith". I can read this two ways: • Smiths can provide tools as supplies to Laborers, ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Flanking and swarms in 4e

Can swarms be flanked by two PCs? What if the swarm is occupying the same square as a PC? Does a PC grant combat advantage to a swarm if a regular mob is adjacent in a flank? Does it matter if the ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I run a single player 4e essentials game for a Drow Hunter?

I am trying to create a set of encounters for my wife. She will be playing a Drow Hunter (controller) from the Essentials line of DnD 4e. I'm looking for advice on how to make encounters (2 levels ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Plate armor question

I was playing around with the Character Builder and noticed an oddity with my level 7 half-orc Knight: My character with no armor has a net AC of 16 [10 +3 (half level) +2 (heavy shield) +1 (dex)]. ...
3
votes
3answers
7k views

How do you as GM's level/de-level monsters in adventures that are premade

I am getting ready to start a new campaign that was made for higher level characters. I want to use the campaign but want to lower the monster levels and may want to raise monster levels inthe future. ...
10
votes
6answers
418 views

Resources for a '30s Pulp Campaign set in the Caribbean

I am considering putting together a pulp campaign set in the '30s. It's sort of "Indiana Jones" in terms of world (i.e. with a chance of low-key paranormal, horror, and superscience elements, but ...
5
votes
3answers
141 views

Information about a solstice - what skill to challenge?

I'm adding a plot hook about some murders that take place on each winter and summer solstice. (It's up to the characters to find out that a mysterious wizard who lives south of town comes into town ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

How would an illusionist hide a castle?

I'm trying to devise a clever character that would be able to hide something quite large (say, a mountain, or a castle atop a tall tower) within the rules of the game. I am aware of spells such as ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

What prestige class combines monk abilities and sneak attack?

I thought I remembered there being a 3.5 prestige class that combines the abilities of monk (e.g. unarmed damage increase) and rogue (sneak attack). I can't seem to find it in the books, though. Can ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Does riding a mount ever require any special skills?

This is strictly in non-combat situations! Do all characters automatically know how to ride a horse? Would it be fair to have players roll a (nature?) check to determine whether it's a skill they ...
8
votes
2answers
878 views

Is water/beverage included in Trail Rations?

If it is, why does Standard Adventurer's Kit include a waterskin? If you need to keep track of Rations when adventuring, wouldn't you also need to keep track of how much water you've consumed from ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

Required set of books for Serenity RPG?

So we're thinking of playing the Serenity RPG. It seems that the main rulebook is Big Damn Heroes. Do we need any other books to get started? In particular, do we require something like the Cortex ...
5
votes
3answers
533 views

What are some good stats to use when a player is attacking without a weapon (using fists)?

Obviously just about any weapon would be better than fists for a character that's not trained in unarmed combat, but I'm curious as to what stats I should give PC's when forced to fight unarmed ...
12
votes
7answers
547 views

How to design an RP-balanced party?

How do you build a party so that they all have social roles? In some games, I often find that one character ends up dominating the social part of the campaign. In our groups, we usually end up with ...
12
votes
5answers
797 views

Sources for officially published GURPS monsters

When I recently purchased the Dungeon Fantasy collection of monsters, I noticed that most of the listed monsters are not "every-game" monsters. It seems to be lacking simple goblins, harpies, etc. ...
7
votes
1answer
928 views

What is a good method for storing papercraft buildings and the like?

I've recently taken to creating papercraft buildings, castle walls and towers, bridges, crates, hay-bales, etc. for my tabletop RPG combat sessions: They are fragile and need to be stored upright ...
11
votes
9answers
7k views

What is the best way to play D&D via long distance? [closed]

I have a few friends in my party that will be heading out once summer break is over for them. One lives in Tucson and the other lives far enough away that he may not want to make the trek to my house ...
16
votes
5answers
5k views

What does Deep Speech look/sound like?

My character picked up the Deep Sage feat, so he can now speak, read and write Deep Speech. But I haven't been able to find any examples of what it may look like when written or sound like when ...
20
votes
2answers
2k views

Do Attack of Opportunity and Readied Action both apply?

Suppose I have a rogue facing an enemy spell-caster. My rogue drinks a potion of invisibility, stealths behind the caster, and readies an action to attack when the caster casts a spell. The caster ...
13
votes
2answers
234 views

Is there a searchable index for WotC images published in Dragon/Dungeon magazine?

Is there a master index of all the images available in the Wizards of the Coast Art Gallery files? When I want to find a specific image, I have to open the file for each individual issue of ...
7
votes
1answer
150 views

Does Invulnerable include Magic Weapons?

Some creatures in Savage Worlds are Invulnerable to wounds except for something they have a Weakness to. For example: a Vampire has a Weakness to Sunlight and other standard anti-Vampire attacks. ...
10
votes
5answers
313 views

How to Use Module Maps

I found a module I'd like to run. It includes some great maps. What's the best way to use them in a gaming session? They're too small to use as-is, so I'm wondering how other people use maps from ...
12
votes
4answers
843 views

System for Setting: Joe Abercrombie's The First Law

If you're a fan of gritty fantasy, you've probably already read (and re-read?) Joe Abercrombie's The First Law. If you haven't, you ought to. Now. Click on those links and drag out your wallet. Or ...
33
votes
7answers
2k views

Has anyone produced a drop-in well-reasoned economy for a fantasy game?

I've seen so many attempts to justify this or that crazy thing in various fantasy RPG economies, but they don't tend to hold water as far as I've seen. I realize that suspension of disbelief is ...
14
votes
3answers
4k views

Why use NPC classes for NPCs?

I am a fairly novice game master, but something I've never really understood NPC classes. As far as I understand them, they are noticeably weaker versions of PC classes (e.g. the NPC warrior in 3.5 ...
9
votes
2answers
281 views

What are good DM strategies for adjusting an Encounters session to handle various parties?

Our local store has been running the Encounters sessions, and one issue that the DMs have encountered is that the difficulty of the fight can vary drastically based on not only the number of players, ...
13
votes
7answers
6k views

What does a perception check really signify? Can they be repeated?

When a character makes a perception check, does fail indicate whether they permanently fail to see what is hidden, or just that they need to try again? So far our DM has let us repeat perception ...
7
votes
1answer
543 views

Taking into account line-of-sight & blast rules, how would a blast work with a wall between you and an enemy?

If you take into effect the blast rules and the line-of-sight rules, how should we play the blast? Would it wrap the nine squares in front of him, including the wall? Would it go the nine diagonal ...
34
votes
10answers
864 views

Helping new players learn a setting on the go

I started a new Eberron campaign last night, and I quickly ran into the problem of my players not knowing much of anything about the campaign setting. What is the Mournland? Where is the Eldeen ...
7
votes
2answers
140 views

Are there mass-combat rules in pre-Reloaded Deadlands?

Running pre-Reloaded Deadlands and my party may be encountering a large combat. I was looking, but cannot find anything that deals with 25-40 opponents. Anyone?
21
votes
8answers
3k views

Do desert heat hazards actually pose a threat to a Pathfinder party?

I am about to bring my characters into the desert in my campaign, so I decided to read up on desert rules. From the Pathfinder SRD: Heat deals nonlethal damage that cannot be recovered from until ...
10
votes
1answer
485 views

Penalty for failing Aid Another? Does it change per circumstance?

We were having a diplomacy-off yesterday between the party and a higher level bard where we needed a succession of successes to beat the encounter. The issue was that it was basically a 50/50 shot for ...
11
votes
2answers
4k views

Does the half-level modifier contribute to damage?

Taking a random spell, I find Flames of Phlegethos. Its hit is 3d10 + Constitution modifier fire damage. Let's say the caster has a constitution score of 16, and he is level 2. This means his ...
11
votes
3answers
5k views

Is D&D Insider worth subscribing to?

As a new DM I am wondering if it would be worth it to me to subscribe to D&D Insider? What are some of the pros? What are some of the cons? Specs: MacBook Pro 13" Thanks!
69
votes
15answers
16k views

Why does everyone carry a 10' pole?

Based on this comment over on CRPG Addict: No adventuring party is complete without a ten foot pole. ... Jason, but WHY? In God's name, WHAT IS IT FOR?! What is a 10 foot pole used for ...
7
votes
2answers
219 views

What do I use for the Wizards nature skill modifier?

In the PHB on page 156 the Wizard says that it's nature skill modifier is INT. But on the actual Character sheet itself the nature skill modifier is WIS. Just wondering which one I am supposed to ...
16
votes
3answers
456 views

What would the life of a child be like in a medieval setting?

The basis for an adventure I'm writing is a child. He is extremely intelligent and had a knack for magic at a very young age, but he has a mental disorder (something similar to Asperger's syndrome). ...
4
votes
1answer
148 views

Doing something sneaky in combat

Let's say I'm a Goliath Barbarian. I want to use my Stone's Endurance racial ability as a minor action, which grants me +5 resist all damage until end of next turn. But, I don't want my opponent to ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

What fixes are there for Keep on the Shadowfell?

This question is slightly inspired by this one, in that it brings up the 4E module, Keep on the Shadowfell. It is common knowledge at this point that KOTSF is broken in many ways, the first combat (an ...
6
votes
1answer
135 views

Passing out from damage in Cortex

The Cortex rules (generic rules) say: When your character's damage… is greater than his Life Points, he risks falling unconscious. Roll Endurance against an Average Difficulty…. Every turn ...
10
votes
1answer
6k views

What is the best first adventure to run in D&D 4e?

I am very new to Dungeons and Dragons 4e. I recently picked all the necessary books and surprisingly low priced pound of dice from eBay. I have also coaxed my friends into giving it a shot while I ...
4
votes
1answer
79 views

Cortex rules: formatting on action rolls

If you are writing down a roll, what is the accepted format for action rolls? For example, if your Agility is d12+d4 and your Pistol is d12+d2, and you spend 3 plot points, it's Agility+Pistol. But ...
20
votes
6answers
842 views

Adventuring within Cthulhu Mythos without realizing it?

I intend to start a "Trail of Cthulhu" adventure or campaign, but I would like for the players not to initially know what they are going to be up against. So I would like to present it as a normal ...
8
votes
1answer
266 views

What if two mages use the “beast friend” spell on the same creature?

What happens if a second mage attempts to "Beast Friend" a creature that has already been "Beast Friend"-ed by another mage?
2
votes
1answer
842 views

Do class and race abilities count against your at-will/encounter powers?

At first level, you know 2 at wills, 1 encounter, and 1 daily power. Let's say I'm a Tiefling Wizard. I have an racial power of "Infernal Wrath" which is an encounter power. Wizards can also learn ...
5
votes
2answers
317 views

How does a fighter get his 4th attack per round in Labyrinth Lord?

The Labyrinth Lord rules, p11, say: Beginning at 15th level, a fighter gains one additional attack per round. One further attack is gained every 5 levels to a maximum of 4 attacks per round. So, ...

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