Target Mapping your Monsters: Worldbuilding via the “Monster Manual”

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While I read the newest Monster Manual, I could feel the monsters coming together in and around dungeons and world events. There is easily digested lore for every monster in the main part of the book, and each of the 2-3 pieces of lore has something a GM can sink their teeth into and turn into a piece of an adventure.

Adventure Creation Hacks: Two Methods

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I had to adapt my approach to prepping. I needed a way to do a little amount of prep whenever I had a short break: during lunch breaks, long meetings or at home. I got the original idea, of all places, in a task management book called From Zen to Done.

Stealing From Games (And A Game About Stealing)

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I see this a lot among game designers of all kinds, both new and experienced: “I really want to use [game mechanism X] but I worry it’ll be too much like [popular game].” I am here to set you free and tell you not to worry about that.

Chatty’s 13th Age: The Lich King’s Curse and Reactive Bosses

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What if a character granted the curse of the Lich King could no longer die? And what if a monster had powers that triggered on the players’ rolls or special attacks?

Project Paradigm: Making Magic

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In a game where everyone uses magic, magic becomes the cornerstone of design. This is one of the big areas that makes Mage: the Ascension different from Sorcerer from a Harry Potter RPG.

Samurai Swan Song: A “Seven Samurai”-Inspired “Fiasco”

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This playset is meant to create a Fiasco inspired by, or at least paying homage to, the classic story of the Seven Samurai. The players depict Samurai protecting a village from a bandit attack, though they may be little better than thieves themselves. A few more supernatural options have been included towards the ‘6’ roles, though they can easily be avoided if the playgroup decides they want to eschew such influences.

Project Paradigm: Some Thoughts on a Mage-Inspired Fate Game

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I’ve written before about my love of Mage: the Ascension. I even went and hacked another game system to play it in a way I really enjoyed, and have run it that way multiple times now. I’m not the only one who wanted to bring Mage back with a modern system. Ryan Macklin also wrote up the hack he was playing with. Now we’re joining forces on it.

“13th Age” Musings: Running Non-Combat PC vs. NPC Scenes

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Specifically for my needs, 13th Age does not have an obvious way to emulate “duel of wits.” I’m aware I could just “roleplay” them or make use of the generic difficulty ratings and “failing forward” concepts. In spite of that, I still felt like something’s missing from my 13th Age GMing toolbox.

13th Age Musings: Of Templates, Uniqueness and Adventure Hooks

LichKing

On one hand, I’m excited about creating stories, plots, and themes needed to establish the best possible campaign. I know the game provides me with some solid tools to do just that. On the other hand, I want to fiddle with the very same tools to make them even more useful.

“Neverwinter Campaign Setting” Icons for “13th Age”

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I’ve played (and run) a few more sessions of 13th Age since I wrote my first preview, as the rules became more solid and filled out from those first playtests. I was initially more guarded, but since then, my opinion of 13th Age has only gone up. The actual books are making their way into […]

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