Ravyn vs. Paranormal Romance: Concocting a Plan

My third assignment in the paranormal romance class (bet you thought I’d forgotten about it!) involved getting a big picture together—or more specifically, a plan for getting a book finished. This left me with a few issues, mostly based on the fact that I really didn’t want the first novel-length piece I finished since high [...]

Prepping for a Crowd

One of the toughest things I’ve ever found to do is writing scenes with lots and lots of characters (which can just mean “more than four or five who aren’t controlled by someone else”). I’ve talked about this before, mostly with characters all directly interacting with each other, but there always seems to be more [...]

Impractical Applications (An Assisted Plan)

I talked a bit earlier this week about helping players out with their plans. I’m not the only one—I’ve had GMs who’ve done the same for me.
The most recent came about as part of the hiatus game meant to give me time to catch up with my own ideas. There I was, with a pretty [...]

Aiding and Abetting the Players

I have a confession to make: one that’s probably an even greater sacrilege than my disinterest in the risk of death and one that would get me mocked to the ends of the earth by the really PCs vs. Players GMs. I could blame my environment, I could blame the fact that for the most [...]

Four Paths for Predicting Players

I found myself in a situation I was unaccustomed to recently: helping actually write an adventure module. It’s something I’ve mostly tended to leave to the people who’ve actually played the game in the last three years; my job is usually to flesh out character personalities and write overplots. But we were in a section [...]

Impractical Applications (She Has a Plan)

I thought about players and their plans because of one of my new players. Now, I’m used to people dealing with desperate situations with plans that require rather a lot of description, as often as not copy-pasted from something. I’m definitely accustomed to people taking a peculiar mix of symbolism and improbable but logical-for-a-smaller-version-of-the-problem ideas. [...]

Players and Plans

A lot of people talk about the importance of planning to GMs; heck, we have entire blogs about it. But there’s another “To plan or not to plan” question that comes into play in the average RPG: the one directed at the players.
In any game where Option B solutions are welcomed and encouraged (and sometimes [...]

Facilitating Gamebuzz

Yesterday, I talked about the creation of a feeling of intense achievement beyond expectation (or “gamebuzz”), and why and how its effect on the players in an RPG can be utilized. But what sorts of factors aid or hinder gamebuzz?
In my opinion, the most important factor is an apparent absence of pre-planning. That doesn’t mean [...]