Brave New World 8 – Gleaning Other Tidbits

Guild Hall

Welcome, gentle readers. I am back from Australia, and, yes, it was the trip of a lifetime. What an experience! Fear not, though, I’ve kept our D&D Next campaign, Beyond the Borderlands in the back of my head. As I was flying for hours, I would take our my iPad with the D&D Next Playtest rules on it, pondering other details that could be discovered from the sections we haven’t explored yet. Sure enough, little gems surfaced as I worked. Here, then, is an article summing up the … [Read more...]

Game-Changers – GGG Looks at Alternate Ways to End Combat in an RPG

Battle

Combat is an integral part of many RPGs. In some, it’s a necessary evil. In others, like D&D, it’s an exciting part of the game. Sometimes, the PCs are facing truly evil and villainous foes that need to be wiped from the face of your campaign world. Sometimes, however, you want to have a battle end in something other than a complete massacre of one side or another. What if the PCs are facing honorable foes who’ve been duped into fighting them? Or what if they’re facing foes who vastly … [Read more...]

D&D The Next Generation – GGG Gives Tips for Gaming with Kids

Kids

Hullo, Gentle Readers. Something you may not know about me is that, although I have no kids of my own, I have a long history of running D&D games for kids. I’ve run for my nephew, for Steve’s 14 year old cousin, for my high school friend’s son and his friends, for a group of kids at a local gaming store, and so on. Although many of those games have been one-shots, I’ve also gamemastered some campaigns that ran for a few years. It was fascinating to watch those kids grow up as the game … [Read more...]

PAX 2012: Fighting, Funny and Five-Point-Oh: The D&D Live Show of Acquisitions Incorporated

Acquisitions, Inc.

There’s so much I love about PAX. The giant, overwhelming, hubbub of the Expo Hall, with fifty thousand games jostling for your attention along with fifty million nerds. The great selection of panels on everything from women in games to game writing to RPG creation to religion in games. The warm, relaxed ambiance of the Handheld Lounges where you can curl up in a bean bag chair and drift away to Kirby and Pokemon surrounded by fellow gamers. The fantastic people you meet in line, the friendships … [Read more...]

D&D Blasé – GGG Ponders Why He’s Not More Excited About the D&D Next Playtest

Bored

Hullo, Gentle Readers. As I’m sure you’re all aware, the good folks at Wizards of the Coast have entered the public playtest phase of gearing up for what everyone’s calling D&D Next. I got to participate a bit in the D&D Next playtest by running 2 games of it at PAX East (as previously related), so I already had a pretty strong idea of what I would see when I downloaded the updated playtest packet. Now, as I said before, I enjoyed the playtest. I feel like the new version of the game … [Read more...]

Siege the Day! – GGG’s Advice on Running a Castle Siege Scenario in a Tabletop RPG

Battle

Hello, gentle readers! Well, my “Sandbox with Benefits” 4E campaign has been going rather well. Recently, my players have gotten themselves involved in a war between the kingdom they favor, Summerlund, and the Orcish Hordes of the Steppes. After a number of adventures and missions that comprised level 6 (scouting missions, take out the siege engines, etc.), the players went to the aid of the affectionately nicknamed Brokenwall Keep. This strategically important castle is under the command of … [Read more...]

The Gamer Agenda – Bringing Non-Gamers to the Gaming Table

welcome

My good friend Sam (short for Samantha) doesn’t game. We’ve tried to get her to game for years, but she’s always been very resistant to the idea. Her husband games with us, and we met her through my husband, who certainly games. She teases us a little about being geeks, and we tease her a little about her inevitable slide into geekdom with us. Recently, something funny has happened. Sam has finally agreed to try gaming with us. She bought her own dice, and we’ve been discussing what she … [Read more...]

Beyond the Cheetos and the Mountain Dew – A Different Take on Gaming Food

snacks_w725_h544

There’s a bit of a stereotype about us RPG players. Well, okay, there’s a lot of them, but, specifically, I’m talking about the ones about us and food. We tend to be overweight. We love Doritos, Cheetos, and Mountain Dew. We live on Coke & M&Ms. Well, actually, that one is true about my friend Doc, but otherwise… This stereotype is so prevalent that it even finds its way into humor about gaming, like the song D&D by Stephen Lynch and the Dead Alewives audio sketches about the … [Read more...]

Speaking the Cant – Terms and Concepts from D&D’s Past that You Might Not Know

ac-muppets

I had a fun conversation with one of my players last night. To him, D&D begins and ends with 4E; he never played an earlier version of it. I don’t remember how the conversation started, but I mentioned something about my hopes for D&D Next…specifically that “Speed Factors”, if they came back at all, would be part of some crazy alternate module that I could ignore. He kind of blinked at me. “What’s a Speed Factor?” In no time, we were pulling out old D&D books, showing off … [Read more...]

18 Intelligence and 20 Charisma: Dungeon Bastard Bill Cavalier

Dungeon Bastard Bill Cavalier (Image provided by Dungeon Bastard)

Here at Geek’s Dream Girl, we’ve quoted some of the insights of the Dungeon Bastard before. But there comes a time when one should not only quote a humorous, intriguing figure in your community; you should interview them. Bill Cavalier, the Dungeon Bastard, was able to provide us with some of his time to tell us about life as a video using advice guru for the brave adventurers across the land.  GDG: Why were you inspired to bring your gaming wisdom to the community in video form? BC: … [Read more...]