Mixed Signals

Straight-forward gaming

I grew up around games, but since I didn't use an OS that got many games, I didn't play many. But ever since it came out, I've heard about Baldur's Gate. It's a much-loved game that adhered firmly to the D&D rulebook, and now it's often referred to as an important step in the develop...

The world of Golarion is the default setting for the wildly popular Pathfinder game, a fork of D&D 3.5 edition. While former Dragon Magazine publisher, Paizo, was able to inherit all D&D rules, the OGL didn't enable them to inherit all of the lore, as laid out in decades of novels, magazine art...

Arguments of quality and quantity aside, I'm of the opinion that you can never have too many RPG modules. And short "one-shot" adventures are, for me, priceless. If D&D is both a game and a hobby, then it's the one-shot modules that make it possible for it to be "just" a game. After all, people do...

In my 3 Pillar XP and Ultimate Intrigue posts, I explained the D&D 5e and Pathfinder (largely compatible with Starfinder) implementations of noncombat-based XP. Such systems are useful when you find that your gaming group isn't playing for constant non-stop combat.

I don't think of myself a...

In my previous blog post, I explained the D&D 5e implementation of noncombat-based XP, because sometimes your gaming group isn't playing for constant non-stop combat. Now, that doesn't mean your gaming group shouldn't play only to fight; treating D&D as a series of skirmishes with some looting...

Not everybody wants to fight. I learned this through "subtle" clues given to me by one specific group of players, including blank stares in reaction to combat encounters, and persistent attempts to negotiate with villains so vile that even Dr. Who wouldn't bother parlaying with.

Yes, it turns...

Do you or your players get overwhelmed by the Pathfinder character sheet? For some people, the Pathfinder character sheet holds nostalgia for the D&D 3rd Edition days gone by. For others, it's a logical and structured view of a character build. But for some, it's a spreadsheet, and nobody ever accu...

Many people think D&D just cannot be played in under 8 or even 4 hours. Yet I've been running one-shot campaigns with friends and at local conventions for the past two years, in about 4 to 2 hours per game. Look, D&D can be laborious if it's always only an epic. Sometimes D&D needs to be episodic,...

If you're in the mood for some classic RPG adventuring, look no further!

Brent P. Newhall is an astonishingly prolific creator of games, game materials, blogs, and more, who has, among many other clever things, produced a charming little high fantasy role-playing game called Dungeon Raid...

Few game systems match the apathy and brutality of Dead Earth. If you're a fan of Fallout, Rage, Mad Max, and all things post-apocalyptic, this game is one you must try.

And I do mean try, because surviving Dead Earth is by no means guaranteed. Dead Earth is just that cruel. As the game int...

I was first introduced to role-playing games in Spring of 1978. At the time, I was spending most of my free hours at a local comic shop, hanging out with friends. One of these was a guy named Crash. That was the only name anyone knew him by for a long time. It turned out, he had some gangster/Mafio...

INTRODUCTION
Right off the bat, it's important to understand that every GM is different. No two styles of running a game match completely, nor should they. And while there is no one correct way to run a game, there are plenty of ways to do it poorly. The GM wears many hats, but in my opinion, th...