Tag Archive: D&D

Aug 27 2014

DwD&D #4 – GenCon, Factions, and Magical Classes


GenCon, Factions, and Magical Classes
What is up. We’re back at the game table for another round of Down with D&D. This time we talk about D&D at GenCon, the factions that are used in Adventure’s League play, and the Wizard, Sorcerer, and Warlock. We’re sans the Unstoppable Force, Alex Swingle, due to the internet, pesky tubes and clouds but that’s ok because our very own Regional Admin for the Adventurers League, Cindy Moore, helps me in filling the hole as best as we can. Hope you enjoy.

Jul 16 2014

DwD&D #1 – Dragons, Tiers, and Diversity

Dragons, Tiers, and Diversity

Hey folks. Chris here with the newest show on Misdirected Mark Productions “Down with D&D” and no, we’re not down on D&D but down with it. My Co-host Cindy Moore is the newest addition to the Misdirected Mark family and together we talk about The Tyranny of Dragons, Tier’s of Play, and the Diversity section of the basic rules. Let us know what you think and we’ll talk to you in two weeks.

Show Notes

Tiamat Tuesdays Building Adventures : Mike Mearls Legends and Lore ArticleThe Basic Rules are only version 0.1
DnDadventurersleague.org
Breaking D&D is Bad on Critical hits.

Jul 10 2014

MMP #120 – The Improv Tool Kit and Creative Constraint

The Improv Toolkit

Hey Folks. This week Chris and Phil chat about The Improv Tool Kit and Creative Constraint while things are heating up with the yearly story as the villain makes their first appearance on the mics. Hope you enjoy and feel free to leave feedback. We always want to get better.

Bar

News

  1. L.U.G. Con (Let Us Game: All day and all night Convention!)
  2. Mechanical Bard: Ninth World Tales
  3. Evil Hat is looking for Playtesters for War of the Ashes
  4. D&D Basic Rules
  5. Dungeons & Dragons Starter Set: Fantasy Roleplaying Fundamentals (D&D Boxed Game)
  6. Blood Bowl coming soon on iOS and Android

Crowdfunding

  1. Zombiecide Season 3 
  2. Stray’s – Kid friendly Fate Accelerated
  3. Short Order Heroes – Locations:
  4. Ross & Sean’s Big Denver Adventure happening this week.

Local

  1. Pro Level Gaming’s D&D Starter Launch Party
  2. Collectors Inn

Sunday July 13th – UFS demo’s at 2pm.

Saturday July 19th – Golem Arcana Demo’s at 3pm.

Rapid Fires

Gameroom

Phil

  1. The Hood - slow start, but solid session, tensions building
  2. Airy Peaks - good god what a great session
  3. Shadowrun Returns – loving it, but had to rewind
  4. Minecraft – Diamonds Steve’s best friend.

Chris

  1. Airy Peaks,
  2. The Hood
  3. Shadowrun Returns
  4. Lords of Waterdeep: A Dungeons & Dragons Board Game

Workshop – Improv Tools and Constrained Creativity

Recent Gnome Stew article: http://www.gnomestew.com/gming-advice/improv-toolkit/

Geekery

Phil

    1. Drone films Fireworks

  1. Blame Sage event  (why others should do the same)
  2. Dice Shaming Lighting Hand dice shame

Chris

  1. Monster Hunter Nemesis (Monster Hunters International Book 5)

Jun 18 2014

MMP 117 – The Railroad with Garrett and Drew

 

The Railroad

Hey Folks. This week I hang out with Garrett Crowe from Threat Detected and the MMPs secret weapon Drew Smith. We get into the idea of what the railroad means to us and some ways to avoid and deal with it along with many of the regular segments and a visit from Friend Computer.

Sponsors for the Show: Level 99 Games

3:49 – Intro

9:28 – Bar

News

Chris

Garrett

Crowdfunding

Chris

Drew

Local

Drew

Rapid Fires

30:01 – Gameroom

Garrett

1) D&D Encounters

2) Deadlands Noir

3) Cthulhu Wars

Chris

1) Minion Games – The Manhattan Project

2) The Hood

3) Race to Adventure Board Game

4) Marvel Puzzle Quest

5) Bastion

6) Artemis

Drew

1) Eldritch Horror

2) Android Netrunner: The Card Game

3) Star Wars Edge of The Empire Campaign

4) Storium

46:47 – Workshop - The Railroad and what does it really mean?

1:12:12 – Geekery

Garrett

1) Timey Wimey Puppet Show, From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series Season 1

Chris

1) The Apocalypse Codex (A Laundry Files Novel)

Drew

1) Apocalypse Codex

        - GOD GAME BLACK – Laundry Files RPG source book from Cube 7

2) Game of Thrones

Jun 12 2014

MMP #116 – D&D Cometh

D&D Cometh

Hey Folks. This week the Mad Wizard Merwin is back into the house and bringing some of his magical mayhem to talk about the newest version of Dungeons and Dragons. There also might be a troll sighting. Enjoy and feel free to leave feedback here and let us know how we’re doing.

2:29 – Intro

3:40 – Bar

News

Shawn

Heat kickstarter by Dave Chalker – It’s over but you might be able to get a copy if you contact Asmadi Games

Chris

Evil Hat Project Status

Phil
Ryan macklin’s Fateful Concepts
Rob D blogging about Dungeon World

Crowdfunding

Chris

Elven Papercraft Tower & Wall Set
Eloy Lasanta’s new Game Infestation

Phil

Urban Shadows
Primetime Adventures

Local

Gameday at Dark Forest on Saturday

Rapid Fires

Unframed Pre-orders still open
Recorded Lounge interview with Martin Ralya

25:16 – Gameroom

Phil
1) Manhattan Project
2) Airy Peaks
3) Minecraft

Chris
1) Manhattan Project
2) Airy Peaks
3) Marvel Puzzle Quest

Shawn
1) Love Letter
2) Lords of Waterdeep/Ascension for iOS
3) D&D 5e Playtests

40:49 – Workshop – D&D Cometh

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/tabletop/11554-Inside-the-Launch-of-the-New-Dungeons-Dragons-With-Designer-Mike-Mearls

http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Article.aspx?x=dnd/news/advleaguewelcome#93073

1:35:13 – Geekery

Phil
1) Finished Unframed

Phil & Chris
1) Xmen days of futures past

Shawn
1) Maleficent

 

Jun 04 2014

MMP 115 – Powered by the Apocalypse

115 - Powered by the Apocalypse

141x141MMlogoHey folks, this week we get down and dirty in the workshop first talking about a little about designing games with professor McGowan and then Phil and I go inside the apocalypse engine and how it is an awesome game for getting you to be an excellent GM faster. Hope you enjoy.

Sponsors for the Show – Level 99 Games

0:53 – Intro

1:55 – Bar

Chris

 

Phil

Crowdfunding

Chris

Phil

  • A!C Fate Keepers Guide has released to backers.  This completes the Fate Set making A!C able to be run in three systems.

Local

Chris

  • Dark Forest Games is having a board game day on Saturday, June 14th this month.
  • RonCon is the 19th at 168 Payne Avenue, North Tonawanda, NY 14120. $5 donation for the space

Phil

  • QCC Planning meeting this past Sunday

 22:39 – Gameroom

Phil

1) Savage Elhal – more swing ness at the table

2) The Hood – setup of the game

3) Minecraft – more exploration

Chris

1) The Hood

2) Disaster at Descent

3) Marvel Dice Masters

36:13 – Workshop one

Conversing about designing games with Professor McGowan

1:00:59 – Workshop two

Apocalypse World as a way to better GMing

Reference

1:48:24 – Geekery

Phil

1) Epic Rap Battle of History Season 3

Superman vs. Goku

Stephen King vs. Poe

2) A metal tribute of video games

3)  Another trip to Madness Games

Chris

1) Skin Game

May 29 2014

Episode #114 – War Room 101

War Room 101

141x141MMlogoHey Folks. This week we have Ron and Dan in the brand new War Room where we get to know them and talk about miniatures 101. Also Phil is sick with atomic poisoning and I’m looking around for my friend professor McGowan who’s supposed to fix the portal.

Sponsors for the Show – Level 99 Games

0:48 – Intro

1:22 – Bar

News

Crowdfunding

  • 3EG announces Infestation: a Game of Bugs and Heroes. Infestation is the third game to use the company’s Pip System, previously used for Mermaid Adventures and Camp Myth: The RPG.

Local

  • Dark Forest Games is having a Game Day on the second Saturday of the Month which is June 14th. It starts at noon. Mark is usually there all day playing board games.
  • Saturday May 31st is also a Warmachine/Hordes Tournament at Dark Forest Games.
  • QCC update: Mark and I are plugging away moving data from the Kickstarter to the QCC site getting everything updated and ready.

Rapid Fires

10:15 – Gameroom

Chris
1) Krossmaster Arena
2) Bang the Dice Game
3) Dungeon World
4) Fate of Elhal
5) Marvel Puzzle Quest
6) Johann Sebastian Joust

19:52 – The War Room - Introductions

1:01:31 – Geekery

  • Godzilla and $5 movies at Regal.

Mar 27 2014

Episode #106 – Multidimensional Dice and Making Story Happen on the Grid

Multidimentional Dice and Making Story Happen on the Grid

Hey Folks. This week I learn we have a garage and it needs an access card or a portal gun. In there we pull apart Multidimensional Dice as a mechanic and then we chat about Making Story Happen on the Grid and ways you can keep the narrative strong when the mini’s and the maps come out.

1:06 – Intro

2:23 – Watercooler

The One Page Dungeon Contest
All Rolled Up is turning 1 year old. - Phil’s Gnome Stew article on All Rolled Up
Dungeon Elementary -
Icons Assembled Edition
Shop Till You Drop by Mike Merals
Night Witches

Coming to DnDClassics this week:
Eberron Campaign Setting (3E Eberron)
Mind Lords of the Last Sea (2E Dark Sun)
Circle of Darkness (2E Ravenloft)
FRA3 Blood Charge (2E Forgotten Realms)
SJA1 Wildspace (2E Spelljammer)

and looking ahead to next week:
Thri-Kreen of Athas (2E Dark Sun)
RM1 Roots of Evil (2E Ravenloft)
The Gothic Earth Gazetteer (2E Ravenloft)
WGR5 Iuz the Evil (2E Greyhawk)
SJQ1 Heart of the Enemy (2E Spelljammer)

Crowdfunding
Combat description cards from Conflict Roleplaying
Sean Patrick Fannon’s GoFundMe

Local News
The Buffalo GenCon Party Bus Mark@misdirectedmark.com
Painted Ogre Games is Looking for Minion’s 
UBCon
The Queen City Conquest Kickstarter
Around the Table – Remind about this new segment

22:34 – The Garage — Multidimensional Dice

39:58 – Gameroom

Chris
Marvel Puzzle Quest
League of Legends
D&D Encounters

Phil
More Minecraft! On the iPad a well as PC
Scattagories (parents house)
Ticket to Ride (parents house)
Gloom

52:03 – Workshop – Making story happen on the battle map.

1:09:26 – Geekery

Chris
Letters of Note: Make Your Soul Grow

Phil
Star Wars Ep 7 30 years after Jedi
X-Men Days of Future Past Second Trailer:
Gauntlet Trailer
Breach & Clear coming to Steam 
Incredibles 2 is a go.

Mar 13 2014

Episode #104 – The Two Year Extravaganza Audio Drama Show

The Two Year Exstravaganza

Hey Folks. Chris here and I’d just like to say thanks to everyone for listening these past two years. Going forward there will be some changes but this last year and the story we’ve been telling with all the gaming, game mastering, and entertaining we’ve been doing has been great, and fear not, there will be an episode 105 and a year 3. So I hope you enjoy and feel free to let us know what you thought of this episode.

Show Notes

Batman Arkahm Knight
State of the Hat
Katana’s and Trench coats
Mutant Chronicles
Bruce Cordell on Ordering Art
Wield Kickstarter
Everyone is John
D&D Classics
Nathan Poletta’s Wrestling Game
International Boardgame Day
The Queen City Conquest Kicksarter

Dec 01 2013

Patreon #5 – Organized Play Round Table

Organized Play Round Table

141x141MMlogo

Hey Folks. For this special Patreon episode I’ve managed to coerce Teos Abadia and The Mad Wizard Merwin to join myself and the informant Rob Dorgan to lay the skinny on Organized Play on you. The conversation was quite good…hey, what the heck. I didn’t authorize thi… Pay no head to those words. They’re just a little interference in the signal. Anyways, enjoy the show.

Show Notes

Vault of the Dracolich

Shadowrun missions

Tales of the age 13th age

Ashes of Athas

D&D Encounters

 

Nov 20 2013

Episode #89 – The Long Game with Garrett Crowe

The Long Game with Garrett Crowe

Threat detected

Hey Folks. This week we have Garrett Crowe on to talk about Threat Detected and his campaign he finally finished, after three years. All that’s left is to roll out the rest of the audio. So we’re gonna talk about really long games. Garrett is also here to hone Marks skill with the force so Mark can finally catch that Evil Hat.

Sponsors for the Show – Level 99 Games, Seeley and Kane’s Comics, Evil Beagle Games

0:41 – Intro
Jedi Master Garrett Crowe from Threat Detected

2:11 – Watercooler
Evil Beagle games Typhoon Relief Charity Bundle
Joan “The Game” Nobile is our New AOA&E (Audio Operations Advisors & Engineer.
Cthulhu Britanica kickstarter
Omega Zone
Amanda Valentines Daughter writes about gender discrimination.
Evil Hat Street Team Bump
The Corporia Kickstarter
Breaking down the Fate Core kickstarter financially
Eathbound Time Lords
Level 99’s newest game. Argent the Consortium

16:33 – Gameroom

Chris
Zombicide
Resistance
Smash up
Blood Bowl

Mark
Tomb of Horrors

Garrett
Doctor Who
Indiana Jones
Star Wars
Toon

25:56 – Workshop The Long Game – Chatting about long campaigns.

1:04:30 – Geekery

Chris – Constantine and the Flash coming on WB. Luke Cage, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, Daredevil, and the Defenders coming on Netflix.

Garrett – Turkey Day is back

Mark –  Arkahm Nights is a thing and in Toronto

 

Nov 13 2013

Episode #88 – Gaming & Relationships and Knapik is Deranged

 

Gaming & Relationships and Knapik is Deranged

141x141MMlogo

Hey Folks. Chris here and we’ve got another installment of the show for you. This time we have a panel of folks who tell us all about their experiences as gamers with significant others and give some advice for being gamers and having healthy relationships. Mark also might be suffering from the effects of being beaten by the Evil Hat. There are a few audio glitches but that’s because Mark was wearing his aluminum foil hat.

Sponsors for the Show – Level 99 Games and Seeley and Kane’s Comics

0:53 – Intro
3:14 – Watercooler

The Actual Play Festival by Ginger Goat
We are all Strange Video
World Wide D&D Gameday is November 16th. Buffalo D&D Encounters Facebook Group
Father and Sun Galaxy
Garrett Crowe and Threat Detected
Prismatic Tsunami Quarterly
Eon Altar
Brimstone
Artimis Night at UB on the 3rd Monday of November

Level 99 games spot

17:05 – Gameroom

Gaming With Baby

Chris
Smash up
Ghosts
Ascension
King of Tokyo
La Strada
Elhal
SPI
Numenera
Blood Bowl

Mark
Shaintar
Dresden Files
Encounters

42:26 – Workshop: Gaming and Relationships at MiniCon

1:24:27 – Geekery

Thanksgiving Vampire Larp at the Buffalo Screening Room
The Age of Genre TV. Arrow and Dracula

Feb 07 2013

Episode #48 – Ashes of Teos

Ashes of Teos

Hello Friends. This week we have Teos Abadia who is an upcoming frelancer for WotC and one of the prime movers behind the Ashes of Athas Organized Play Campaign so settle in and enjoy an excellent conversation.

1:12 Watercooler – Longest Watercooler to date

Who is Teos
Ashes of Athas Living Campaign
Organized Play discussion
The Ashes of Athas Battle Interactive
Convention Talk

36:48 Gameroom

Winter Fantasy – Shawn and Chris’s Mod
Pathfinder Special – Beneath the Bone Keep
Sirai LARP
Tecmo Superbowl
League of Legends
Super Mario Bros
Star Wars Edge of the Empire
Elder Sign

1:04:02 Workshop

Week 3 of Advice from the Underground – All Players are Created Equal.

1:16:49 Geekery

Teos and the Flumphs
Winter Fantasy Swag
Tag for 23 year

Nov 29 2012

Episode #38 – Mmmmm Pie

mmmmm pie

This week we talk about playtesting, porting idea’s from games and other sources to another game system, movies, and pie. Hope you enjoy and feel free to let us know if you do or you don’t.

Timer Notes

0:57 – Watercooler

QCC
Winter Fantasy Judge Sign up
Emalyn finishes NanoWrimo
D&D livestream and AP podcasts to come
Playtesting D&D stuff

ITunes Review

14:45 – The Gameroom

Artimis
Summoner Wars
Lords of Waterdeep
D&D Encounters
Chrono Trigger for Android
Star Wars Angry Birds
Orcs Must Die
League of Legends

22:06 – The Workshop

Porting idea’s from one game or source to your current game.

52:33 – The Geekery

Rise of the Guardians
Wreck It Ralph
Pie

Nov 14 2012

Episode #36 – D&D Encounters and Shawn Merwin

036 – Shawn Merwin & D&D Encounters

Hey folks. This week we have Shawn Merwin to chat about the current season of D&D encounters. Shawn was one of the writers for the current season and we’re chatting about the things which are different, the things people like so far, some stories from the table, and tips to deal with the changes. Also I think the phone joke is dead. Sorry Phil.

Timer Notes

1:07 – The Watercooler and Gameroom are merged

Shawn Merwin is in the House
The Queen City Conquest
D&D Encounters
Edge of the Empire

10:52 – The Workshop – D&D Encounters

Mark’s embarrassment concerning James Wyatt
The changes to the rules for this season
Stories from the table
Tip in dealing on dealing with rules this season – Link to Community page on WotC.com
More Stories from the table
GMing Tips and design tips

45:44 – The Geekery without sound

A Song of Ice and Fire
An Arrow chat that is destroyed by Mark and his tom foolery.

Oct 08 2012

My 4e Dungeons & Dragons Playbook

I usually don’t do this because I try to keep my advice general but my friend Drew is running a 4e D&D campaign for some of his friends as his last hurrah for 4e Dungeons and Dragons before putting that game away for just about good. I told him I’d share some of the things I’ve done over the years with him so I thought I’d share them with you too.

Rolling Encounters

What I mean by rolling encounters is encounters that roll from one into the next. I’ve run plenty of sessions where the game felt like one huge encounter. I do this using primarily these three methods:

  • Reinforcements showing up.
  • Changing the objective.
  • Changing the terrain.

I consider each of these three things an event or something that happens to change the situation. For example I had a battle on a bridge as the PCs were trying to move from one tower to another. All around them battle was raging in the skies as dragons and their allies battled with the occupants of the towers of Darkenspire. On the partially enclosed bridge the PCs had run up against the Followers of the Sacred Lady, a holy order who worshiped one known as the Sacred Lady. As the battle progressed more and more members of the Sacred Lady came from the far tower to help their allies. The idea of reinforcements changed the nature of the battle. Players didn’t want to unleash their most powerful abilities or press to far forward because they weren’t sure what was coming out of the door next and how many were left.

The next thing I had going on during this encounter was a dragon was hit by a lightning bolt and was going to crash into the bridge. This was going to change the terrain. I had the passive perception set higher than anyone’s passive since they were in the middle of a fight when the dragon was hit by a lightning bolt and crashing into the bridge. The thing I did to give the players hints to the event was by throwing specific flavor text into the fight about things happening around them. I use a lot of flavor text in my combat sequences so this wasn’t unusual. During the second round of the fight I mentioned a dragon was struck by a lightning bolt. All anyone needed to do over the next three rounds was say they look to the right or mention they check on the dragon. Someone did the initiative count right before the dragon hit the bridge so they were the only one who got a chance to move before the dragon hit the bridge. I had a flip mat with the bridge drawn on it. I had it folded over so when the dragon hit I marked where everyone was, flipped the mat, and had a drawn crashed into bridge with the dragon on it. Some people were crushed by the dragon, some buried beneath it, and the crashing into the bridge almost knocked a couple of people off who were on top of the bridge.

I always enjoy changing the objective or at least adding something to the objective of an encounter or an adventure. During the last part of the Drakenspire arc I ran (It was something like 8 to 10 sessions) they were in a tower where energy was being gathered and focused for some nefarious purpose through several crystals in the tower. Up to this point the PC’s were just trying to get to the last tower to kill a mind flayer named Quat Lilarack. They hated it for various reasons. In any case once they got to the last tower they learned of this energy, found one of the focusing crystals, and figured out how much time they had left before the energy needed to do whatever was happening was gathered. This wasn’t at the speed of plot. I had an actual doom track, taken from Arkham Horror. The track went from 1 to 7 and every five minutes it would gain a tick. Basically every short rest was a tick and after any 3 encounters I threw a tick up there to take into account exploration and fighting time. I also threw a tick up there if I felt they had used up 5 minutes worth of time. The thing was they could gain ticks back if they messed up the focusing crystals, which they did. It also made them conserve powers so they could skip short rests here and there to cut down on their time. It changed the objective from just killing Quat to stopping Quat from doing whatever it was he was doing. If anyone is curious he was gathering the energy from a pair of “gods” trapped beneath the mountains Darkenspire was built on to open a portal large and stable enough to allow the King in Yellow to come through from Carcosa, one part of my version of the Far Realm.

Setting this up changed the encounters and scenario from getting through to the top of the tower where Quat and the energy being gathered was to a timed situation where making stops to mess with the crystals and resource management became very important.

Enemies

So I’m not a huge fan of solos, I’ll talk about them in a bit, in D&D but I do like elites and I like encounters where some NPC’s are dependent on other NPC’s. Linking them up together or giving them abilities which make them work together in synergy. Two examples:

In one encounter I had a knight who had two men next to him at all times. As long as those men were next to him it increased his defenses so it was easier to take out the side guys first then go after the knight. The second example is a two-headed dragon with a caster who used primarily ice attacks. One of the dragons was a white dragon who could frost up the battle field. This was in an open field but the ice mage and the dragon were creating terrain with icy spots which the ice mage could teleport to and from as a move action while also being able to teleport back on top of the dragons back. This goes back to changing terrain but also shows how two different adversaries can work together to create an interesting situation for PC’s to deal with.

Sly Flourish

Mike Shea has an invaluable tool on his website Sly Flourish. It is a chart with every level of damage expression, hit points for monster type, and DC’s for skill checks. I have one of those screens where you can slide in paper inserts. It’s a great tool to have if your players go off the cuff. You can ad lib encounters from it. It’s like having wire frames for any possible thing you can think of.

Staying with Mike Shea I stole an idea he started applying to solo monsters. I always give any solo an ability where they can shake off any single effect at the beginning of their turn but they take 10, 20, or 30 points of damage depending on the tier of monster. Now there are a couple of variations you can put on this idea. Instead of shaking off an effect you can have them ignore it for a round so it has the potential to happen again the next round. You can apply some penalties to the monster along with the damage. Instead of Stunned the monster is dazed. Instead of immobilized its slowed and takes a -2 to its attack rolls. You have some options but my preference was always the monster shakes off the effect but takes damage for doing so. Now I only ever did this for things like stun, daze, and immobilized because the action economy in 4e is a very important part of the game. Having an extra action, extra attack, extra turn or even an extra move is very powerful and taking away those actions is just as powerful, especially when you’re a solo and only have a few actions each round. Having the choice to shake off a status for damage fits in with the mechanics of D&D pretty well. You’re not getting everything you want but solos should be scary things that can pound through your abilities and status effects. Making it cost the monster hp gives the mechanic some “balance”.

If you’re looking for more 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons tricks I would suggest reading Sly Flourish. It’s quite good.

The Healing Surge

The healing surge is a resource which is very plentiful in my opinion. Players have a lot of them and I have implemented a few house rules which make them a little more interesting and useable:

  • If you miss by one you can spend a healing surge to put forth that little extra effort in order to succeed on what you’re doing. I always ask for a little descriptive flavor to go along with it.
  • I implemented the use of second wind three times. Once as a minor, once as a move, and once as normal each encounter. This rule is excellent when you have situations where there isn’t a leader.
  • Sometimes I’ll tie healing surges into player’s special abilities. For instance one of the characters in a game could wreath themselves in a blue magical fire which made them more powerful when using magic (+2 to hit, +5 to damage) but it cost a healing surge every round it was activated and it required a saving throw to turn it off. Of course when it ran out of healing surges it would start dealing healing surges of damage.

The Choice

This is the last one and isn’t really a D&D 4e trick but one that can be used in any game. You have the players come up against a situation where they have to make a choice and the choice isn’t good or bad but will push the story one way or another or give them a difficult decision. For example one of the PC’s had just ripped an abnormally large amount of aberrant energy out of an angel of death. They decided to help this angel of death instead of killing her. The problem was the energy didn’t dissipate due to not rolling quite well enough so instead the PC had a choice. Absorb the energy or let it randomly fly about which might get one of his allies, possibly the angel again, and maybe it would just disperse. He chose to take it into himself. He made the choice which drove the game forward. Now he has to deal with this energy which basically makes him the incredible hulk. Giant aberrant rage monster once he is bloodied twice in a fight or knocked out once.

The thing with the choice is whatever the decision is it needs to have a consequence that is visible to the person who made the choice eventually, otherwise the choice becomes meaningless.

Please feel free to throw out some more interesting tricks and hacks you’ve thrown on your 4e game to make it play better.

Good Night and Good Gaming,

Chris “The Light” Sniezak