advice


Railroad / Sandbox / Other - The Third Alternative

Image (cc) Dean PetersThere is an age old argument for and against the "Railroad" and the "Sandbox" when it comes to RPG campaigns.Railroads are pre-set linear story paths that the players can break by deviating from them; this is the main criticism that tends to be levelled at traditional published adventures.Sandboxes are environments that let the plots be driven by the players; the GM leaves hooks and clues for them to find but the story follows the players' choices.But these aren't the only options, these are just the options that are easy to publish.Some people love a sandbox.  The Welsh Piper blog has some amazing hex map creation tools perfect for sandbox campaigns and hex crawls are an old-school D&D staple.  The counterpoint is that sandboxes can lack focus - this is one of the many things I agree with The Angry GM about.  Popular opinion is that a railroad is bad, but a railroad is easy to run for new GMs.  Until the players break it and you end up having to write your own ma

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19 tips for running a great tabletop roleplaying game (specifically Rolemaster)

GMing a game can be a daunting task, especially if you haven’t done it much before or if you’re playing with a new group. That’s why we thought you might enjoy some helpful hints and tips on GMing from ICE fans and followers on how to make your game the best it could possibly be.   When I originally asked people to send in their hints and tips for running a great game, I specifically asked for tips on ‘running a great game of Rolemaster’. However, I’m pleased to say that the majority of the tips could just as easily be used when GMing HARP, Spacemaster, HARP-SF or any other tabletop roleplaying game.   So, hopefully you will enjoy these tips and find them useful. If you have any specific questions about running Rolemaster, Spacemaster, HARP, HARP-SF or any ICE game, visit the ICE forum where we have thousands of helpful GMs and fans who may have some advice.   So, without further ado, here are our 19 tips for running a great tabletop roleplaying game (specifically Rolemaster):   Always, a

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