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    by Published on 05-03-2013 05:00 PM
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    GURPS is a “universal” roleplaying system, which can be used for almost any setting or genre. It is a “toolbox” game from which the GM selects options to get the feel he/she wants. If you are thinking of trying it, I recommend you read this short explanation of what makes GURPS different from other RPGs. If you like the sound of this, GURPS may be right for you.

    The down side to GURPS is that it offers so many options it can be overwhelming for a new player or game master. I like to say it isn’t just one game – it’s like an RPG Lego kit, from which a GM can build many different games!

    But it doesn’t have to be complicated. The key to running a smooth GURPS campaign is to limit your options, using only the rules you need. What follows is a guide to running a very simple introductory campaign, to let an inexperienced GM ease into the system. After that, I will give you some tips on moving forward with GURPS, and learning to do more with it. You certainly don't need to get started this way; people often bite off more with their first campaign, and have good results. But if you are unsure of yourself, this plan will get you going with a minimum of headaches.
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    by Published on 12-16-2010 03:30 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Ask-a-GM

    A recent conversation over on Candlekeep prompted me to post some suggestions for running a sandbox game. Definitionally speaking, this is a campaign in which the players—not the DM—determine the course of the campaign, through their decisions. The DM’s role becomes mostly reactionary or anticipatory: adjusting the game to suit player’s needs and sometimes unexpected decisions.

    Some of us already do this to some extent in our games—basing things on PC decisions, motivations, and goals. In a full-on sandbox game, you take things to the next level: let the PCs rule, and just run with it.

    Here are some thoughts to keep in mind ...
    by Published on 07-25-2010 03:25 PM  Number of Views: 3837 
    1. Categories:
    2. One Geek to Another
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    Voting for the ENnie Awards closes today. One Geek To Another has been nominated for Best Blog, but--as in any competition--there can be only one ultimate winner. While I'd appreciate your vote, it seemed an appropriate time to tackle a difficult topic: being a good loser ...
    by Published on 07-23-2010 05:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Ask-a-GM
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    This week's Ask-a-GM comes from our mailbag. Cody asks,


    I'm currently GMing a game for a group of friends, and I'm having a big problem getting them to make decisions. I had decided from the start that I would simply decide where the bad guys were at any given moment, and let the players decide how to defeat them, so I didn't railroad, and it would be their game. I started the game, ran the first session, and then *smack.* The players looked at me expectantly for a plot hook. They knew that there were three big bads out there with a stolen jet engine and nuclear bomb plans, but they wanted me to essentially tell them where they were. I tried dropping small hints at what they could do, but I basically had to say "go here" before they would do anything! So how do you nudge players in the right direction without railroading them?

    Thank you,

    Cody


    ...
    by Published on 07-16-2010 01:00 PM  Number of Views: 2342 
    1. Categories:
    2. Ask-a-GM
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    At some point, despite your best laid plans, your players are going to come up with an idea that you completely didn't anticipate or prepare for. At that moment, you are going to be confronted with a choice. Do you stifle the players' ingenuity, arbitrarily shutting down what are legitimately good ideas? Or, do you roll with it, toss your plans to the wind and dive headfirst into full improv mode? Running a game on the fly isn't something that comes easily to every GM, and some systems can make off-the-cuff gaming particularly difficult. The temptation might be to throw down roadblocks and stay firmly on the tracks, but this is generally far from satisfying from a player point of view ...

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