Tag Archives: role playing

4 popular beliefs Dungeons & Dragons defied in the 70s

The media keeps telling us how we, the geeks, have won popular culture. Golfers chat about Game of Thrones at the country club. A minister I know boasted that she was a member of her high school Dungeons & Dragons … Continue reading

Posted in Role-playing game history | Tagged , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

My first impression of inspiration proved wrong

In an earlier post, I leveled criticism toward the inspiration mechanic based on Mike Mearls’s preview in “Roleplaying in D&D Next.” I listed two gripes: Awarding inspiration seemed to put the dungeon master in an uncomfortable role. Mearls wrote about … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fifth edition | Tagged , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

The D&D fifth edition Basic Rules Introduction

The toughest part of writing the core rules for a role-playing game comes on page one, when duty and tradition force the author to describe how to play a role-playing game. When you sit at a table and see a … Continue reading

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Actions players always take and choices players never make, part 2

This post continues a list I started in part 1. Players will not mix and mingle. Adventure authors come from a secret coterie of role players who enter a tavern or a royal ball and then spend the evening mixing and … Continue reading

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What Murder In Balur’s gate taught me about engaging players in role playing

As a dungeon master, I’m still learning. When I ran the Murder in Baldur’s Gate launch adventure at Gen Con, I had an ah-ha moment (more of a well-duh moment) and a lesson. At the convention, Wizards of the Coast … Continue reading

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Two reasons D&D Next’s inspiration mechanic fails to inspire me (and why the designers don’t mind)

From what we have seem so far, the Dungeons & Dragons Next design sticks close the game’s tradition. This makes the inspiration mechanic the design’s biggest surprise so far. D&D’s top dog, Mike Mearls, revealed the mechanic in “Roleplaying in … Continue reading

Posted in D&D fourth edition, Role-playing game design | Tagged , , , , , | 11 Comments

A priest, a warlock, and a dwarf walk into a bar and…nothing happens

Some rare number of groups can stroll into a tavern populated with lovingly crafted and colorful characters, and then spontaneously mingle for a night of role playing. I personally have never seen this happen, but I know it’s possible, because … Continue reading

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Group scenes and mass confusion

In Dungeons & Dragons, the dungeon master assumes the role of every non-player character. As a DM, when I must portray two NPCs at once, I often see the players grow confused about who is talking. Certainly if I were … Continue reading

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