What’s the key to making NPCs who are memorable, interesting, and possibly even beloved by the players? Chris, Andy, and John discuss. And as a bonus, Andy breaks out a brand-new GM challenge for his co-hosts. Listen and judge their on-the-spot GMing decisions!
Special guest (and former host) Chris joins Andy and John to talk about what you can do when you’re just not feeling very excited about your game.
Do you like running games set in established, well-defined settings? Do you prefer coming up with setting details on the fly? Something in between? John and Andy talk through the big topic of finding or building the right setting for your game.
Episode 40 appendix (show notes):
What does fear look like when it crops up in your games, horror or otherwise? How can you use fear to motivate player characters and make for a fun, tense game? John and Andy discuss.
What role do maps play in the games that you run? While Chris is taking a few weeks of parental leave, Andy is joined by guest co-host John Corey to discuss the wonderful topic of maps.
Note: the audio quality on this episode is a bit lower than our usual standard, for which we apologize; we’ll do better for the next episode. There’s a noticeable echo effect. If it helps, imagine that we’re recording the podcast from deep within a gloomy dungeon!
What do you do when a character in your game bites the dust? If character death happens, how do you work it into your campaign, and how do you address the topic with your players? Andy and Chris discuss this notoriously tricky subject.
Are the dungeons in your game mysterious, exciting experiences, or dull, slow-moving grinds? Andy and Chris are joined by John Corey to discuss ways you can inject a little bit of that “Indiana Jones” vibe into your dungeons.
Do you wince at the thought of roleplaying through a long journey? You’re not alone. Chris and Andy chat about what makes the difference between a travel sequence that is tedious, and one that adds something compelling to your campaign.
If you’re a GM stuck at home during this time of social distancing, you’re almost certainly giving some thought to running your favorite RPG online. What should you know going in? Andy and Chris are wondering the same thing, so they’ve convened a special panel discussion with returning guests Kyle and Murph to talk through a wide assortment of issues related to running good games online.
We’ve all been there. It’s game night and over the course of the day everyone is cancelling until you only have 1 or 2 players. Do you cancel? Do you play a board game instead?! Or do you embrace the smallness and see what happens?
Shel Kahn joined us this week to roll on the table and talk about running games for small groups! This was a fun conversation and we hope it brings you some inspiration during these times of social distancing:
- The Yellow King – Shel did some AMAZING artwork for this book in the Paris book. Check this out and tell me you don’t want to visit spooky Paris
- Portable City – where you can see everything Shel is up to.
- The Sorcerer’s Catalogue – Shel’s shop.
- Ryuutama – and the kickstarter.
- Dames Making Games – An organization that Shel works with. It’s “a space for queer and gender-marginalized people to create games freely.”