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Campaign Planning, Reusability, and Separation of Concern

Some important concepts from my work in computer software can definitely be applied to campaign planning. Let's talk about two of them.Image (cc) Tim ProbertSeparation of ConcernThink of any dungeon* you've seen - or have written - with a map of the layout, lists of encounters for each room, key items and notes on where they are hidden.  How many times have you, as GM, had to skip, rearrange, shuffle or rebuild parts in response to the party's actions? Exactly.Separating the elements means more flexibility.  Generally, the dungeon map doesn't care what monsters lie within and the monsters don't care what important treasures they guard. So if we plan loosely we can make it easier to change or add things on the fly.Let's say instead we have:a handful of dungeon* maps, with or without notes about key featuresa page of magical or plot related items and a list of - or means to generate - treasurea page for each faction/threat with a few common monsters, and some sketches of common encounters at various l

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Dungeon World + Trilemma Adventures

Last week I got to run a one shot of Dungeon World - for all my enthusiasm about it I had never actually played it - but I'd heard good things.  I'd also heard good things about Trilemma Adventures so I decided to grab one of their free dungeons to play in.  How did it go?  Read on, bold adventurer...We played The Sky Blind Spire by Michael PrescottCreating characters was fairly straightforward, the main problem being I had printed the playbooks out too small!  DW brings playbooks from Apocalypse World rather than using character sheets, it's a case of ticking boxes and filling in blanks so once we were all on the same page we were ready to roll.  All the standard fantasy classes and tropes I'd expect are there, and I liked that it's clear the characters are THE, not a, member of that class.Because Dungeon World also uses Apocalypse World's "Moves", play is quick - powered by the narrative - and I was impressed by how much freedom the rules give to describe cool actions that are no le

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