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.”
Donn Stroud joins us to talk about two things that are a major part of life that sometimes get missed in tabletop games: romance and shopping! Unsurprisingly, we had more to say about one of these things than the other.
Joking around with your friends around the game table is great, but sometimes you want to steer away from that default “adventure slapstick” vibe. How do you establish the appropriate mood for the game you’re running? Andy and Chris discuss this, along other diverse topics including Games You Should Play in Art Museums and Chris’ dream of running a Final Fantasy tabletop game.
Chris and Andy chit-chat about some recent games they ran. Then we dive into our topic about the most fun part about games: referring to the rules!
Rules are arguably what makes a game a game; however, pausing the session to flip through a book can kill the narrative momentum at the table. So, dear listener, when do you look up rules at the table? What are rules even for? Why not just play make-believe instead?
Also, listen to the end to hear a confession. We just ask that you don’t think less of us.