2011-08-20 Building a Better GM

I just read about the Building a Better GM challenge over on the Hill Cantons blog:

  1. Name three “best practices” you possess as a GM. What techniques do you think you excel at?
  2. What makes those techniques work? Why do they “pop”?
  3. How do you do it? What are the tricks you use? What replicable, nuts-and-bolts tips can you share?

Hm, thinking back on how other games are being run in the area, I think that first and foremost I am a good host.

When I was a teenager, a player told me that he loved my scenarios. There was always great scenery. These days, reading about Planet Algol or Vornheim, I feel humbled and don’t feel like I can claim great creativity. But I can claim something else: I improvise well.

And lastly, I am very tolerant.

So, there you have it. I am a lousy encounter builder. I don’t use terrain a lot. In fact I like my combat to be very short. I don’t like thieves, I don’t like traps. I spent a lot of time learning the D&D 3.5 rules and know them well, and yet I can’t make character builds that rock in a min-max kind of way. I rarely do funny voices, my setting is vanilla fantasy of the Wilderlands of High Fantasy sort. But the three practices that keep my games running are the following:

1. I am a good host.

1. I improvise well.

1. I am very tolerant.

(The collection of all the advice given by the various participating GMs has been collected over at the Hill Cantons as a free download.)



I think this is well-put, timely advice. You sound like my kind of player (Gms are players, too!)

Thanks for writing

Runeslinger 2011-08-24 07:01 UTC

Thanks. :)

AlexSchroeder 2011-08-24 08:03 UTC

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