Skip to main content


Showing posts from July, 2015

How to make a Big Bad Evil Guy (BBEG) - So You Think You Can GM? (GM Tips Part IV)

Bonus Week Day 5: GM Tip: Making an Adventure (Story-crafting continued...BBEG)

Phew! We made it to the last day of bonus week. Not another one of these until October. But before we start sipping some Mai Tais, let's continue our story-crafting lesson. Let us work on our Big Bad Evil Guy. GM Tips away! (Missed Part III?)

We left off yesterday outlining the climax of our story. I am sure you felt it was incomplete, and you would be correct. There is still much more to go, but just a bit to work on for our outline. We do need to get a little more into designing our villain (even though we have not decided on his level).
BBEG: Big Bad Evil Guy
We have decided that our BBEG the players will face in our climax is the mayor. Most non-player characters will have NPC classes. Because we want him to be mayor we will be keeping the aristocrat NPC class as part of his levels. If he was simply an aristocrat, that would be fairly weak, but still within context. Because I have never had a gunslin…

Where to Begin Making an Adventure- So You Think You Can GM? (GM Tips Part III)

Bonus Week Day 4: GM Tip: Making an Adventure (Story-crafting)
Today’s set of GM tips and advice is going to target more experienced gamemasters. (If you missed Part II, check it out here).No doubt many of you out there have ran pre-made adventures before. But how about designing and writing your own adventure from the ground up? There is a lot to think about. But let’s take it a step at a time. 
(This segment: Making an Adventure will take place over multiple posts. You have been Warned!)
Where to begin?
I could be a smart ‘a’ and say, “At the beginning”, but that isn’t entirely true. Did you know that many authors like to begin not with the first page of their story, but rather the climax? Crazy, huh? Where we begin isn’t the same place your player characters (PCs) will begin. First, we need to think of an adventure as a story, and like all good storytellers (authors), you can’t always just wing it. Because RPGs are basically active stories, we are going to take an author’s approach …

Don't Follow Your Heart!

Not every encounter need be life-threatening. Epic battles to fight, NPCs to influence, and traps to disarm are generally expected. But in the end, your fate is normally sealed with a roll of the die. Sometimes, a great puzzle can break up the norm and unshackle GMs and players alike from the tyranny of their dice.

Today, I bring you a puzzle with unlimited uses. The initial concept, 'Don't Follow Your Heart' takes a simple room with directional markings on the floor and turns it into a giant puzzle and wall-less maze.

Rules: In this variation, players must walk over every tile in a correct pattern to get ti the door on the other side. An alarm will sound if the players try to fly to the other side. The alarm will also sound and the door lock should the PCs take an incorrect path. To find the correct path, Players must follow the directional arrow that corresponds to the tile they are standing on, UNLESS that tile would have them make a left turn from their current directi…

Making Tough Calls - So You Think You Can GM? (GM Tips Part II)

Bonus Week Day 3: GM Tip: Making Tough Calls
Whether you are an experienced GM or fairly new, you are bound to have learned (or will eventually), that the toughest GM calls you ever make will not be one rule mechanics or how to fix a plot-line, they will be the out of game calls, the gaming experience, group management. These calls (or choosing to ignore the problem) can lead to player desertion and groups dissolving. Scary, huh?  Well, no need to worry, because I have your back!
“So You Think You Can GM?” is a new blog series I am running (vlogs to come in the future). I will be jumping in to help new and old GMs alike to bring out the best of each and every game. This is the main reason I started this blog. Though this series targets Dungeons and Dragons and The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, the advice will branch over to other systems.
Remember yesterday in Part I when I said that the most important duty of a GM is to ensure that everyone is having fun? Well, the players also must ta…

How to Choose an RPG System (and Prepare for Your First GM Session) - So You Think You Can GM? (GM Tips Part I)

Bonus Week, Day #2! (This post contains some affiliate links)

You have decided that you want to run your first game as a gamemaster (GM) or perhaps you have been trying, but things don’t seem to be going as smoothly as you thought. Maybe you struggle with how to choose a roleplaying game system for your next game. Or you just don't know which game system to start with in the first place. Well, no need to worry, because The DM Doctor will get things turned around!
“So You Think You Can GM?” is a new blog series I am running (vlogs to come in the future). I will be jumping in to help new and old GMs alike to bring out the best of each and every game. This is the main reason I started this blog. Though this series targets Dungeons and Dragons and The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, the advice will branch over to other systems.
First thing’s first: So you think you can GM? Really? You? Of course YOU! Well, frankly, yes you can. Anybody can. Being a GM isn’t about being the most knowledge…

Free Adventure: The Call of Adventure

The Call of AdventureAfter a strange earthquake opens a deep chasm in the eastern portion of the small nation of Kruzix, King Hilaf sends his heralds across the lands to call forth any able-body that seeks valor, glory, and/or riches.  What awaits those that enter into the depths of the earth is uncertain, but the beginnings of a great adventure are guaranteed.

The adventure is designed for 3-4 level 3 characters.  The adventure can be adjusted for more or less characters and some battles will be noted with recommended adjustments.  The characters will cross grasslands to explore a deep chasm.  The majority of the adventure will take place in a mountain-like chasm and an underground dungeon.

This free Level 3 Adventure is compatible with The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. It can serve as an introduction to almost any style of campaign. You will need very minimal prep for this adventure. 

(This page contains affiliate links)

One of the "encounters" presented in this adventure use…

King’s Dice: Gambling Game for RPGs

King’s Dice
King’s Dice is a gambling game designed for use in any D&D/Pathfinder/RPG. Feel free to use and adapt as you wish. The game and rules are as follows:
The King's dice is a mix of luck and strategy.
Set-up: Each Player uses 20 d6s (can be purchased as a brick). There is a "King's Die" which is a d20. Before the game begins, all Characters/players must agree on how much money to wager and the amount each die will be worth. The money is put up front and held until the end of the game. Ex: Players agree to 200gp, thus each die is worth 10gp.
Game-play: One player starts with the King's Die rolls the die. Based on the result of the King's die, all players (starting with the person left of who rolled the King's Die and ending with the person who rolled the King's Die) go around the table saying how many dice they will roll and pick up that number. After all players have stated how many dice they will roll, all players roll their dice. Whoever i…

d12: The Fat Kid of the Dice Pool

How often do you roll your d12s? No, mistaking it for a d20 does not count. But seriously, think about it? When you go for a 2-handed martial character, you are more likely to grab that greatsword for 2d6 19-20/x2 over a greataxe with a 1d12 x3. The greatsword even saves you a few pounds off your carrying capacity. Then you start looking into larger weapons and the d12 fades away to 3d6 and never shows its poor, pudgy self again.

The more I think about it, the more I realize that the d12 is just the fat kid of the dice pool with poor hygiene or something. No one wants to play with him. It is like, “why take that one when I can get those two?” Difference between 1d12 and 2d6: an average of 0.5. At higher levels, you have rogues and damage blasters rolling all these d6s. The only time the poor fat kid gets a chance to roll, is when he is mistaken for a d20, aka “Chris Farley”. I mean, admit it, you know Chris Farley was just plain awesome. Everyone would hang out with him if given the c…
Old School RPGs - Available Now @"