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.
Guest GM Jess Snyder joins Andy and Chris to address the timeless question: do you run published adventures or exclusively homemade ones? And how do you address the challenges that arise with each approach?
How do you go about bringing a new RPG to the table? Andy and Chris discuss—and do a little reflecting on the first year of Roll for Topic.
Happy holidays everyone! We’re back with an episode in which we play through the dungeon that we made during the last episode. Andy is your esteemed GM for this one and we were pleased to have Aaron, Matt, and Brandon join in as players!
If you liked this two-part experiment of building and playing a dungeon, please reach out to let us know! We’re thinking about doing more in the future!
This episode is going live a few days early just in case you have upcoming holiday travel and want something to listen to. We’ll be back in early January with a “normal” episode.
Also, for the parents out there: all Roll For Topic episodes strive to be PG. No swearing, but there are discussions of violence.
As a change of pace for the holidays, Andy and Chris team up with previous guest Kyle to design a dungeon one-shot on the fly! Will the end result be a masterpiece of adventure design or a hilarious trainwreck that features psychic whales, post-apocalyptic shopping malls, and something called a “hyperskeleton”? Tune in to find out.
We’re joined by Aaron this week to talk about reading the written block text from adventures. When there’s block text in the adventure module you’re running, do you read it out loud? Verbatim, do you paraphrase, do you throw it all away because you know best?! Join us as we talk all about narrating at the table!
- D&D 5e, of course
- Blades in the Dark, of course
- Tomb of Annihilation
- TSR Audio CD Adventures!
This week it’s just Andy and Chris jabbering about how to introduce non-gamers to your game. We talk about such things as: character creation, whether players should have to read the rules cover to cover, and when and how to introduce mechanics into the game.
- The Adventure Zone’s MaxFunCon East Live show where they run through the “Trial of Teamwork”. Chris ripped off the core idea for a recent session and recommends you do the same.
- Alexa’s Dungeon Adventure – AI is coming for GM’s too.
- Star Wars Roleplaying game.
- Chris did a bad job remembering the raddest board game of the 90s: The Omega Virus.
- Scum and Villainy, which is a space opera Forged in the Dark game.
Guest GM Al McWilliams joins Andy and Chris to talk about his Damage Dice Kickstarter, and to talk about the question that’s on every GM’s mind: How do you handle doors in dungeons?
Episode 22 appendix: