Sunday, October 25, 2009

Not my most...

...stellar performance as GM.

The most scathing criticism game from the noob-iest player in the group, "The monsters tonight have been kind of anticlimactic." Source: Me running the vampire's regeneration wrong. I forgot to have the vampire continue to regenerate after being reduce to zero hitpoints. The players ended up running away from the scene of the combat after dropping the vampire and I should have had vamp-bbeg get up and come at them again after a few rounds. *Sigh* I'm working on it, I thought that if I had the SRD, the MM, and the module open to vampire powers that I might for once run a monster correctly. There are some GM crutches that I can use that I have resisted on the principle that, "I'm not that bad at running mechanics." I'm past that now and am willing to admit that I am powerless to solve this problem and need help from a higher power (3x5 note cards for every important monster's powers).

Then I ran a tendriculos wrong later. Allowing not only a sleep effect but also a coup de grace against it. [sighs, hangs head, and shakes head]

I have never professed to be a crunch monkey. I'm not bad at the occasional min-maxing (not that I make a habit of it) but remembering all the the things a monster can and can't do and what can and can't effect it based on the type or its qualities is something that seems to get past me on a consistent basis. I'd consider hanging up my D&D-GM-screen if it wasn't for the fact that my group isn't exactly running over with volunteer GMs.

Anyway, I guess I'm not the first GM to have this problem.

I'm hoping that the way I construct this next game takes care of some of these problems.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Ending a Campaign

A post in three parts:

Okay. NOW, I'm ready to begin the campaign. Sort of.

The other GM in my group has been running his campaign for a few sessions and I haven't pressed to have the wheel again. Now, he has asked for break so I'm up. However, first I have to finish my Eberron campaign. I started running this campaign when we were in a pinch, no GM, an upcoming gaming day and no one to step in. I had GMed before but not for my regular group and not D&D. So I ran the beginning adventure out of the back of the Eberron campaign guide. The characters are now fifth level and have nearly completed the "Whispers of the Vampire's Blade" adventure. I have been running all of the adventure modules as is with one exception. That exception is that all of the adventures have had to do with the PCs trying to get a schema including this one. Now they're going to get this schema in the next session (on the 24th of Oct.) and defeat Lucan the Vampire. That's when they learn that what the schema are and why every one on the continent is after them. I expect it will take at least 3 sessions to finish the Eberron campaign.

In the meantime, I've been looking over everything for my Fudge campaign. I think it is really ready. I recently picked up the information outline for the different planetary alliances and began filling out the ones for the Merchant League, Religious Separatists, Free Colonies, and Pirate Coalition. That time away from the campaign creation process really helped to let me come back to the campaign and rule documents with fresh eyes. For one thing it only took me an hour to type up two of those information documents. The other reason that the time away from active creation helped is that I saw that the to-do list made several months ago are much more work than necessary. So, now I'm going to run a short one shot to play test the mechanics, then we'll have a rules learning initial adventure with no mortality possibilities. From there I've got several plots threads to weave depending on the player's interests.

I've been looking on and other gamer ad services looking for other more narrative gamers. It feels a little bit like surfing personals ads though in a committed relationship. I feel torn right now between loyalty to my friends with whom I've been gaming for 7 years and the possibility of gaming in a style I'd enjoy more. I don't really have time to just add a new group on the side so it feels like a dilemma. In reality, there's no way I'm walking away from my friends and the game with them. So, most likely I'll just keep going the way I am for another decade or so when my schedule is a little more relaxed and self directed.

Okay, I think that's all the gaming marbles rolling around in my head.