Questions tagged [gm-techniques]

For questions about the practical arts and methods applied to gamemastering (GMing).

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votes
3answers
193 views

Will save method for ambushes

Players run a kingdom... Tiny kingdom. Pimple on the axe of their huge empire enemy. Only hope of victory is guerrilla warfare and forest ambushes. An effective ambush doesnt result in a fight. It ...
2
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1answer
214 views

Is there any good way to introduce an adventure? [closed]

So recently I have found myself trying to write my own adventures. With little bits from other games and such I have found myself able to write the adventure, encounters, and everything else, but I ...
2
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2answers
1k views

Good RPG System/Game/style for just a single DM and single Player? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: 1 GM and 1 Player games and game systems? I am looking for a system or style of play (or even contained game/game module) which would be fun for just one player---myself as a ...
2
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2answers
5k views

Starting a D&D game with no experience as a DM or a player [duplicate]

So I'd like to start a D&D 5E game with my friends via discord and Roll20. The problem however is that altough I have watched a lot of D&D, I nor my players (except 1) actually have ever ...
2
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1answer
251 views

If the Wealth-By-Level is an indication of the value of Magic Items for Player Characters, does the WBL for NPCs have the same purpose?

If the Wealth-By-Level is an indication of the value of Magic Items for Player Characters to use in combat, does the WBL for NPCs have the same purpose, or is it there for some other purpose (to ...
2
votes
1answer
438 views

How do I get my PC's interested in the Hoard of the Dragon Queen? [closed]

I have Hoard of the Dragon Queen and I'm concerned my new PC's are going to be bored. What do you do as a GM to keep players interested? Real players Player charcters (Unfortunately we just rolled ...
2
votes
1answer
330 views

How should I handle Brash Assault?

Brash Assault is a 1st level Warlord at-will power, the Hit line is equivalent to a melee basic attack, but the Effect is more interesting: Effect: The target can make a melee basic attack against ...
2
votes
1answer
509 views

How do you deal with Overpowered PCs? [closed]

So i'v been running an Elder-Scrolls themed Dungeon-World game for around 20 ~7 hour sessions now. Over this time, the PCs have leveled up a LOT, and have been deciding to keep their characters and ...
2
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2answers
373 views

How can I provide a challenge for a powergamer? [duplicate]

One of the players in my game is the most fervent powergamer I've ever met. I know it's how he gets enjoyment from the game, and so far it doesn't intrude on the other players' enjoyment, so I've ...
2
votes
1answer
117 views

Storied ways to boost a character's ability scores (Pathfinder) [closed]

So this is my first time acting as a GM for a campaign (taking over for a friend). Improperly built characters at the start of their campaign has lead to 2/5 character having very high stats. Because ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How can I become more akin to my “Mary Sue” Player? [duplicate]

I've been playing for about 3 years with this guy on my group. He's a very nice and encouraging person and I actually appreciate him as an individual; however I just can't come to enjoy his presence ...
2
votes
1answer
116 views

Should you communicate the number of Doors required?

In World of Darkness 2.0, there is the Social Maneuvering system, it requires you to calculate a number of "Doors" (p192) that must be opened with a character to accomplish a task. Once you’ve ...
2
votes
1answer
248 views

Techniques for Different Length Game Sessions [closed]

I have been both a player and GM for a long time. Currently, life takes up most of my available gaming time. Thus when I do get a chance to game, I'd like to make it as close to optimal as possible. ...
2
votes
1answer
138 views

Is there a game system with good mechanics for a PvP murder mystery? [closed]

My players have expressed interest in a PvP murder mystery, where one of them is secretly the murderer. At first I was enthusiastic, but there are several problems I don't know how to get round, and I ...
2
votes
1answer
212 views

How should I implement a book of hidden lore? [closed]

I am DMing a game in which one of the main plot elements involves multiple different factions (several different groups of NPCs in addition to the PCs) searching for pages of a powerful book of lore ...
2
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2answers
347 views

How to increase difficulty on the fly?

When I started DMing I've had a problem that combat was too difficult for the players. This was a while ago and was mostly connected with D&D 4e. I asked a question and received a lot of great ...
2
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0answers
238 views

How can I get my players interested in my campaign again? [closed]

I am an experienced DM, having run a number of campaigns with the same group of players. We're all in middle school. I'm currently running a campaign that I made myself for D&D5e. Recently, my ...
2
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0answers
170 views

Room and floor numbering conventions for large to midsized dungeons: most popular, advantages and disadvantages? [closed]

Introduction I have been creating some multi-floor dungeons. It took awhile, but with time I found software, a notation format, and fidelity level that suited my needs. The one thing I'm still not ...
2
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0answers
174 views

Is the rule “One Remote Player Per Session” Fair/Reasonable? [closed]

As a DM, I am not very fond of having some players "remote in" through my laptop/webcam, but due to everyone's busy schedule, I've recently made a rule to allow one person per session, first person to ...
2
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0answers
133 views

Temporarily retiring character [closed]

One of the players in a game I GM is going to be leaving the country for a while. What options do I have (story-wise) for having his character leave the party in a way that still leaves the door open ...
2
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0answers
53 views

Finding Play Testers [duplicate]

Any advice on communities or forums where I can find play testers for a new tabletop role play game? It's designed for casual players to game together virtually. So imagine pen & pen style RPG ...
2
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0answers
121 views

How to introduce my setup to the players? [closed]

For quite a while, I've been GM-ing some Pathfinder games for me and a bunch of friends. Usually I try to prepare as much as I can, making my NPCs, major plot-point, the list goes on. But even ...
2
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0answers
2k views

My guy syndrome - DM edition [closed]

I've currently read this question about the so-called My Guy syndrome, and since I recently started DM-ing myself, I couldn't help but wonder - is there an equivalent of this for a DM? A short summary ...
2
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0answers
65 views

What is a good Fate Accelerated Benchmark Ladder [duplicate]

In a game of fate where each player has +3, +2, +2, +1, +1, +0. What is a Cheat sheet ladder to have. I.E. There is a large Iron door in the way, the brute says he's gonna force his way through it. ...
2
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0answers
63 views

What's the limit of GM forcing things for the players' enjoyment? [duplicate]

We all know the dice's outcomes may be unpleasant, expecially in the case of story events, when players may feel that they had no control on something except rolling the dice higher. Should the ...
2
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0answers
1k views

Fight Club 5 to printable Character Sheet [closed]

I'm wondering if there is an app or website that would enable me to convert a fight club 5 character into a printable character sheet? I've done a quick google search but I wasn't able to find ...
2
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0answers
92 views

Situations that limit equipment use [closed]

How often should a DM remove or restrict a character's ability to use their equipment? Is it considered bad game design, overly punishing, or otherwise frowned upon to do so regularly? There are a ...
2
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0answers
196 views

Enemy attacks-Who gets hit? [closed]

How do you guys decide which player gets hit when an enemy attacks? Do you just assign each character a die number and roll it?
2
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0answers
84 views

What options do I have if I want to play a premade adventure, but don't have enough players? [closed]

I have a fixed group of players that isn't going to change. Better to say, several "groups" of 1 to 3 mostly socially awkward friends who don't want to have people they don't know behind the table, ...
2
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0answers
251 views

Engaging players away from the table [closed]

So I'm running a D&D 3.5 game right now with 4 friends, soon to be 5. I was talking with one of them after a session asking what they thought I could do to improve the campaign and they ...
2
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0answers
359 views

How can I use really big creatures against low-level PCs? [closed]

I want the PCs to fight giant, humongous, colossal, really big creatures during a quest, but the PCs are only level 1 through 3. How can a DM pit low-level PCs against such creatures without the PCs ...
2
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0answers
169 views

How to handle multiple main villains in your campaign [closed]

I was hoping to pick your collective brains in preparation for my new 5e Eberron campaign starting in a few months. Most of the blogs/books etc I've looked through look at campaign design with one ...
2
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0answers
115 views

What is a good way to introduce new players to Pathfinder without making things too linear? [closed]

I wanted to create a dungeon to get a new group of players together and teach them pathfinder, but I felt I wanted something more than 'go to the goblin cave and get the macguffin' for this first ...
2
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0answers
680 views

What tabletop system should I use? (specific details inside) [closed]

I'm starting a tabletop game with my group and I'm not sure which system to use. I am looking for a system that: Allows for personalized character creations and flexibility- like the Fate system and ...
2
votes
0answers
233 views

How can I effectively connect ingame and real life experience [closed]

I would like to understand how to effectively implement physical techniques in my game where I can blur the lines between what the players and characters are feeling. I'm focused more on physical ...
2
votes
0answers
484 views

How to master a game where the player group is not a group IG [closed]

So, I've had this crazy idea of making a new type of pen and paper RPG, the goal is to enforce two principles : The players are important in their own, not as a group There is no prerequisite for the ...
2
votes
0answers
175 views

How to get players to accept DM rulings? [duplicate]

Some time ago I stopped running/playing modern RPGs like Pathfinder and 4e in favor of White Box S&W. I like S&W because of the bare-bones nature that leaves many things up to my discretion as ...
2
votes
0answers
747 views

Running a Game for a 2-man Party [closed]

I'm a fairly veteran DM, cut my teeth on 2nd edition DnD and have spent the bulk of my time with d20 and its derivatives. I have generally run campaigns for groups of 4-8 players and usually there are ...
2
votes
0answers
124 views

Essential Reading for New GM/DM [duplicate]

I'm preparing to take the plunge into GM'ing. What would you be consider essential reading for a new gm? Books, websites, etc.? I really want to focus in on being a good story teller.
1
vote
4answers
491 views

How can I encourage my players to use unlimited freedom? [closed]

I'm trying to make rules/game so that players have as much freedom possible. My intention is to concentrate on role-playing, where stats are not that important and the new system I'm building will ...
1
vote
2answers
228 views

How to turn an ex-PC into a narrative device? [closed]

One of the players recently left the game and agreed to have me control her former character. I would really like to use that character and have permission to do so from the original creator. What I ...
1
vote
2answers
288 views

What are the implications and complications of adding new players?

The game I've been playing started with 4 players. One of them had to take a hiatus for schoolwork, but they'll be coming back very soon. We recently filled that player's spot with a new player, which ...
1
vote
4answers
355 views

How do I prevent players following a dead end for too long? [closed]

I could use some suggestions on how to deal with in game events when I specifically don't want players to waste time pursuing an objective, either because it is: A) a dead end or B) they aren't ...
1
vote
2answers
94 views

Making Games Seem Late Middle Ages/Early Renissance [closed]

What things can I do or resources can I tap to make my fantasy games (system-independent) seem more late middle ages/early renaissance? e.g., the world as envisioned in Lamentations of the Flame ...
1
vote
1answer
256 views

Creating an artifact that the heroes must destroy? [closed]

I'm on a Lord of the Rings kick, so I'm curious how you'd create a major plot device that is both the main antagonist and the strongest weapon they have without killing the party with Ring Wraiths (or ...
1
vote
3answers
171 views

Regaining lost limbs as a catalyst for the story?

I'm currently playing a Swedish-developed RPG called Götterdämmerung, a d100 based game, set in the 18th-century. Currently my players are fleeing by carriage from ...
1
vote
3answers
282 views

How would you communicate with a player attacking his own teammates while disguised without the other players finding out it's him?

I've heard of players killing their comrades while asleep or stuff like that, which can be handled by the master with some planning with the player. But how would you handle a situation in which a ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

How to handle a player who tries to actively use the Insight skill [duplicate]

I have a cleric player. Every time the party has an NPC dialog, he announces something like "I looked at him carefully, trying to understand if he is telling the truth", implying using Insight. ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

How do I make my fights more interesting? [closed]

Sometimes my combats are too boring, just a bunch of dice rolls. I want my fightings to be fast and various. Often is all about "you See the enemy, roll the dice a few Times, go on". This takes too ...
1
vote
2answers
211 views

When Should Disadvantages be Inflicted on (N)PC's?

I was tempted to add the System Agnostic tag to this, but for today there is a specific game in mind to receive an answer. Regardless of the source of the disad, (Physical, Mental, etc.) there are ...