I have a group that is wanting to do a sea campaign and I am honestly not sure how to do it or if I want to even try.
I can't imagine how exciting a sea campaign would be. What's your thoughts?
Gamer Forge Response:
To get a good seafaring (yarrgh!) game, we say:
1. Get to the good parts. Real life on a sailing vessel is boring! Just ask Flagoon. Skip all the mundane tasks of ship upkeep and swabbing decks and repairing sails. Yawn fest. Get to the part where the crew has to stay alive during a typhoon or repel the invading pirates or resist the call of the Sirens. Now that's entertainment!
2. Authenticity. Not to be confused with the boring parts. Let players name key crew members and come up with duty rosters. So when it comes time to get to battle stations, they can yell for a specific person to man the cannons and for another specific person to batten down the hatches. Give them the sense of a real ship. Also, give them a little personal space on a cramped ship. Maybe some personal quarters to call their own, complete with all the decor and personal effects they've collected along the way. This will help them feel invested and "bought in" to the story.
3. Catchphrases*. Its corny, but giving each player some phrase that gives a little snippet of their character away. Just a simple one sentence phrase that sets a starting point for development. "I can see myself on that ship" or "I hope they've got rum on board" are some examples. Give some bonus experience or create a situational bonus for using these phrases in context.
*Special thanks to Paul Genesse for helping create a better seafaring game. This would not be possible without him.
Name: Randy the Bad Ass Gnome
Comments: Hey guys I have a bit of a sticky situation that maybe you can help me out with. I have set up this epic campaign where my players are searching the land for this Bad Ass Dragon.
I have been delaying and dragging the campaign on because I want the final battle against the dragon to be epic and well...BAD ASSED!!
So my question is how can I make the dragon just that? I know Dragons have tons of attacks and abilities. What is the best way to run this Bad Assed Mother %*)^$#!!
Gamer Forger Response:
1. Use everything! This dragon is the lord of his/her domain, and his/her domain is everything he/she lays eyes on. Think big. That mountainside? Dragon's. Razor-sharp rocks in the valley? Dragon's. Small army of willing servants? Dragon's. It has more at its disposal than just a few claw attacks and a breath weapon. This is your big boss fight, so make it big and boss.
2. Raise the stakes. Everything has culminated to this. Every relationship the heroes have built is at risk. Every loved one, every piece of merchandise, every joke, every grain of wheat in the field is up for grabs. Give players notice to bring their best equipment and to play for keeps, because you sure as hell are. "This dragon wants to end the heroes" is the atmosphere you're looking for.
3. Whatever happens, IT IS FINAL! No second chances here, kids. If the dragon eats you, you are eaten. If you get to find out what the dragon had for dinner last night, then you'd better grab an umbrella, because that thing is hurling on you, whether you want it or not. If the heroes defeat the dragon, then its party time. But if they don't, well...there's always a new campaign that can be formed from the mythos of the heroes missing the big one.
Name: Raz the Terror
Comments: So what is your guys thoughts on running a reverse D&D game where instead of playing the characters you play the monsters that live in the dungeon and your home is always plagued with heroes that wont leave you alone?
Gamer Forge Response:
To reverse roles and play as the monsters, we say:
1. Keep it light and short. This is comedy gold, just waiting to be mined. But it also will not last. This is your filler game in between campaign acts. Its just too good to make it long. By their nature, these monsters are there to be killed by heroes.
2. Tie it back into the big picture. Build a little context. Later down the road, your heroes from the campaign are traveling through this dungeon, or forest or whatever, and they come across a tribe of kobolds or troglidytes or hobgoblins that share something eerily familiar...Hilarity ensues.
3. As with all good adventures, give a reason. Why does this tribe worship the glowing stone? Why pay tithing to the bad ass dragon if its never around? Why pray to the stars? Why watch re-runs of House? So players can feel connected, even just a little. Then let them go and watch your players make the jokes and make like dumb monsters for a while. The jokes will write themselves.
Remember, these concepts can be applied to any and every setting, so don't be afraid to use these the next time your group buys a submarine or a starship.
Name: The person who will remain namel
Comments: Hey guys I am part of a gaming group that is driving me batty! We start at 5:00pm on Thursdays and honestly don't get started still 6:00pm for who knows why? Then the GM normally gets into an arguement that sidtracks the game and out of the 6 hours we are there we maybe get 1 or 2 hours of actual game play due to smoke breaks, bathroom breaks, dinner, and the never ending arguements.
Help me! I am going insane and we have been a gaming group since Junior High and I would really hate to leave and find a new group. But honestly I can't stand the fighting that goes on. I wish they would just leave that at home!! But unfortunetly it bleeds into the game and gaming experience.
I need your advise.
The nameless one.
Gamer Forge Response:
In regards to reaching the boiling point and getting ready to leave your gaming group, first try to lead by example. When others are drawing tangents and fan-boy arguing, be polite and remind them of the real reason they're attending the game session.
"Excuse me, gang. We're getting off topic. Can we please get back to the game?"
"Guys/Gals, please, we can discuss this after the game. Can we continue the story?"
Yeah, it may seem daunting to work up the nerve to leave your gaming group. But remember: It is your time. Get the most of it. Gaming is a pastime, by its very nature. You have every reason and right to leave a group if you aren't having fun. Yes, they are (ideally) your friends. There's no reason why you shouldn't be friends afterwards. A little politeness goes a long way. They deserve it just as much as you do. You're adults and young adults. Act like it. In a nutshell, it is your choice to leave or stay. Don't feel pressured one way or another. Make the choice and stick by it.
Name: Stanley the Tree Rider
Comments: What do you guys suggest for putting cursed items in your game?
Gamer Forge Response:
In regards to cursing your items...err, I mean using cursed items for your game, the big question is, "How much is too much?" We answered: "No more than one." At least have it do no more than one thing. A bag of devouring is ONLY a bag that devours whatever passes through its mouth. Don't make it end the world or shoot lasers from its newly-formed eyes. However, that one thing can cause additional complications. The bag may decide that it likes your character and try to eat other hands that try to remove it from his/her belt. On your back? It may just try to eat your head and take over your body. Whatever you decide, it just needs to make sense and have an explanation.
Also, cursed items make great adventure hooks. Taking a cursed ring across a valley of darkness through a horde of orcs and into a volcano, all while avoiding the lord of all evil? Sounds pretty exciting to me!
Name: Tim the Enchanter
Comments: My question is for Revan, Joe, and Flagoon. You can use this for the Gamer Forge if you want to. I need some major help!
I am running a game where I have gotten way to over my head. Basically I have been having to escalating my game play because I gave my character too powerful of magical items early in the game and they were slaying everything that I threw at them. The game isn't fun anymore. Its getting too stressful for me and my players are bored and want more!
So my question is how do I reset my game without pissing my players off and how can I balance out my game more?
By the way I love the addition of Flagoon to the show!
Gamer Forge Response:
In regards to reaching critical mass with magic items, we say its all about compromise. By critical mass, we mean accidentally(?) giving out too many magic items and the game becomes unbalanced. This gives rise to escalation because the GM needs to send more challenging encounters to the players. They respond by trying to obtain even more magic to rise above the suddenly harder enemies. You can probably see where this is going. Step one is to cop to it. GM should admit the mistake and move on, no need to make a big deal about it. Next step is to find a compromise. Try giving the players some say in what happens. Ask them to remove all but one of their magic items, then compensate them for the down-grade.
Maybe some additional experience or some kind of material reward, like a small keep or large house, or even a special mount. Something. Don't expect the players to just give up special items all willy-nilly. Any item you draw attention to will generate an attachment. Don't believe us? Next game, try making a big deal about a flashlight or candelabra in your description of the room. Make a big deal about the manacles they found in the dungeon. Draw attention to the silverware at the diner. Don't actually have these things be special, just put a lot of detail in describing them. See what happens.
Finally, step three, acknowledge that it happened and learn from it. You experimented with an idea, and it didn't pan out. Now you know what NOT to do. Time to move gracefully forward. Easy as:
2)Compromise and compensate
3)Learn and move forward
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The Gamer Forge
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