Purpose-Based Location Design

(Yet another for RPG Blog Carnival.)
Locations don’t come naturally to a lot of people. Sure, they might have one feature they want to play with, or a very vague idea of outline, but the rest is the geographical equivalent of a probabilistic haze. Honestly, that’s normal. We don’t have to know everything. But we can [...]

Wednesday Night Writing Exercise: Iceberg

Another location revisited in honor of RPG Blog Carnival. I can’t even remember how long ago I used this place—just that I designed it as a clearly magical location, that the iceberg is itself an internally complex building, and that the group had been almost beaten there by a crowd of old rivals. And that [...]

Can, Can’t, and Shouldn’t: Three Ways Location Shapes Behavior

This is another post for RPG Blog Carnival. Thinking about locations seems to bring out the best in my inspiration.
Locations have many different effects on the characters who occupy them: physical, metaphysical, emotional, you name it. But one of the biggest effects a well-designed tactical environment creates is a change to behavior. Particularly, it creates [...]

Battlemap? What Battlemap?

When I looked over the prompts for this month’s RPG Blog Carnival (Location, Location, Location, hosted at Campaign Mastery), one of the first that stood out to me was “How do you represent a location if you don’t have a matching battlemap?” It’s not that I’ve never had that problem, just that I’ve never seen [...]

Campaigns I Want To…. Errrr….

When I saw this month’s RPG Blog Carnival topic, Campaigns I’d Like To Run, the first thing I thought of wasn’t of campaigns I’d like to run. At least, not entirely. For one thing, I’m already running some undefined number between one and three, and I’m not even sure I want to think about adding [...]

Game Review: Legends of the Wulin

Another one for RPG Blog Carnival. This got a little wordy.
I wasn’t expecting to like Legends of the Wulin as much as I did. It’s a wuxia-inspired game, and a less-spirits-and-supernatural spiritual successor to Weapons of the Gods, to which the closest I got was a discussion of one of their key mechanics that ended [...]

RPG Blog Carnival Rerun: Hoard Review

For RPG Blog Carnival. Let’s face it, one of the reasons why this blog is system-neutral is that in the beginning, I didn’t play what most of the bloggers played, and over the last year, I’ve played a lot of what most of the bloggers don’t play. So an entire month of squealing about games [...]

Why Create It Fantastic?

One of the things I realized, as I was writing my first post for May’s RPG Blog Carnival on Fantastic Creations, was that I was taking the basic premise of the carnival for granted. Given: that it’s better for the creation to be fantastic–more than just a simple tool or a packet of numbers, but [...]

Simple Tips for Wondrous Items and Magic

This month’s RPG Blog Carnival, over at Keith Davies’ blog, is on fantastic creations. Davies bases the carnival around one basic premise: that it’s harder and harder to find the wonder in magic items—and let’s face it, it’s been happening, both with items and with magic, in several systems.
So the first question is, how can [...]

RPG Blog Carnival Roundup: Combat Avoidance

It’s been a long month, but we’ve reached the end of April’s RPG Blog Carnival. I guess we don’t have as many people trying to avoid combat, or trying to work around people avoiding combat, as I thought we did; we only have five external entries, from four people. That, or my advertising needs a [...]