Fate Core and choosing the right Skills for the job

One of the things I’ve picked up over the years has been that some new-to-Fate GMs aren’t really sure how to finagle all the dials—as in, just about every game mechanic is inherently designed to be scalable, and a GM can easily create a certain tone or style of game by setting the dials to whatever degree … More Fate Core and choosing the right Skills for the job

When Not To Roll

One of my friends had a story about a roleplaying game he was beta-testing at a convention, and that some feedback he received—from one of the playtesters, a professional game designer—was he called for too many perception-type checks. It got him thinking about their over-use. It got me thinking as well; back when I was running D&D/Pathfinder … More When Not To Roll

Pricings & Predicaments

Last week I heard a number of Pathfinder players talking about D&D Next’s organized play announcement, complaining that it lifts faction-based play from Pathfinder Society. The thing being, Society lifted the idea of organized play from the RPGA, established by TSR and inherited by Wizards of the Coast, who then toyed with faction/regional organization in their Living Greyhawk/Living … More Pricings & Predicaments

Ridin’ the Railroad

I have a love-hate relationship with adventure modules due to the often strict plotting—railroading, in gaming parlance. At its worst, it feels restrictive and takes away the benefits a pen-and-paper game has over other media like video games, film, and books: the ability to go wherever you want and (try to) do whatever you like. … More Ridin’ the Railroad

Divining A Plot

I’ve always liked In A Wicked Age for its Weird Tales sword-and-sorcery vibe, and its system would make for a really snazzy pick-up game. I’m more familiar with its rules for an “oracle draw,” generating various sets of descriptions and plot elements to build ideas from. And that’s an idea I’ve ripped off for all sorts … More Divining A Plot