Articles from January 2010



Organizations: Ranks and Files

Organizations don’t generally just come as a bunch of people all with their own ideas and no system to direct them. Instead, there’s usually at least lip service paid to the idea of ranks, titles, and other means of figuring out who does what and who needs to obey whom. Knowing how the ranks work [...]

Organizations: Meet the Peons

Yesterday, I talked about the power centers of an organization. But where there are concentrations of power, there are also absences. In the lower ranks, everyone has two things in common: being in the organization, and having someone to answer to. The rest, there’s plenty of room for variation on.
A lot of people tend not [...]

Organizations: Where’s the Power?

Yesterday, I talked about creating the general backbone of an organization. That much is usually good when the organization is just there as a backdrop, but it’s not going to be enough if people just want to influence it, let alone if they’re going to actually be involved in it. The next level of detail [...]

Creating an Organization: The Basics

Into every worldbuilder’s life, at some point an organization is going to fall. Sure, they technically don’t have to—with enough contrivance, someone could probably create a world in which everybody is doing their own thing. But who would? Many together can do what one alone can’t, and a group without some sort of agreement on [...]

The Generic Villain on Time

Many of our ventures tend to be quite time-sensitive in nature, or at least sensitive to timing; if they don’t need to be done at precisely a certain moment, then they generally don’t do too well if interrupted. So you’d think we’d find a way to make sure that there’s no chance of an interruption [...]

Impractical Applications (Bribery)

It’s something of a running joke in my game that I practically feed off of speculation, opinions, and anything else that can be treated as feedback. My group, on the other hand—well, getting them to ask questions or really do anything outside of session can be frustrating. So for a while, I’d been trying to [...]

Six Sources of Gamer Stage Fright

Yeah, we’ve all seen this one, particularly in the heavy-RP sorts of groups. There’s always that one person who just seems too twitched out to really get into it. Apparently when someone mentioned that it was a game and they should relax, they were already too busy focusing on something else. Usually it’s associated with [...]

Image Exercise Follow-Up Tips

Looking over yesterday’s characterization exercise on the images people translate their world into (and getting into a few discussions over it), I realized that I had talked about a lot of what and not too much how, particularly when it comes to figuring out what sort of medium or variety of image any given character [...]

Characterization Exercise: What Image Does This Create?

One of the fun things about the idiosyncratic nature of people is that you can expect them all to have different visualizations for different events. Sometimes, getting into the main image language of a character can result in better understanding her.
In many cases, this image is going to be visual. One way or another, the [...]

The Generic Villain vs. the Anniversary

Well, it’s been a year since I stopped being an occasional visitor and went on into full-fledged recurring territory. All right, technically a little more than that, but Ozymandias’ Axiom states that carrying out a plan should always trump finishing an announcement. (What was the plan, you ask? Heh heh heh….)
I could go on and [...]