At some point in their career, every GM will inevitably run a mass combat. Maybe it’s all part of the campaign’s grand design – ‘the war to end all wars’; Maybe the battling hordes were supposed to be merely background description for the PCs’ mission and a few bad dice rolls put them in the middle of the jackpot; Maybe the Party kicked the proverbial hornet’s nest and was forced to “call the banners”. Whatever the case, refereeing both the Party’s combat, and the overall battle as a whole can be quite difficult to pull off smoothly.
Hello everyone, and welcome to our first “What’s So Great About” article. This series will highlight the good, the bad and the unique about various roleplaying game systems – and then wrap things up with a recommendation from the author. Got a system you’d like to explore? Drop us a line via PM or the forums and we’ll add it to the queue.
Game Concept Synopsis
King Arthur Pendragon (KAP) is a granddaddy of RPGs. Greg Stafford (Chaosium founder) describes it as his masterpiece . The latest version (5.1) maintains the core concept of Arthurian literature, mythology and medieval history merged. Add to that one of the best campaign supplements ever written (The Great Pendragon Campaign) and it’s no surprise the game is still here. The system is loosely similar to the Basic Roleplaying System used in Chaosium games, but is d20 based.
In our last episode, we discussed the bare basics to creating our Merged Campaign World/Universe, and set up the beginnings of an Obsidian Portal site for said campaign setting. We’re basing our Campaign on the Superpowered Beatdown Video which pitted Darth Vader against Gandalf the Grey. I recommend viewing the video for a better picture of where we will be starting. Skip ahead to 3:48 in the video for just the battle.
The characters of your game have lives outside of the actual playing time, but showing proof of it is a trick. It is always difficult to get players to take more time out of their busy schedules to help the game master create and detail their world. They might help with game logs, but few will write up their family’s home, nor detail family members and other characters associated with their PC. So how do you create a family, strengthen bonds of friendship or animosity, and introduce new plot possibilities?
Gather ’round children, and I’ll tell you a story of death and rebirth, of legend and doom. I am (of course) speaking of Adoraith: Echoes of Epirus – April’s Campaign of the Month! And since we’re on the subject, who better to give us some much needed insight than the mind behind this fantastic campaign, Adoraith. Now, don’t interupt…
One of the most difficult challenges to designing dungeons, traps, and problems for players to overcome is in creating puzzles that are both interesting, stimulating, and solvable. Players won’t appreciate the puzzles that are too simple or too difficult. Unfortunately due to their time consuming and difficult-to-design nature, many problem solving traps might begin to feel repetitive as DMs fall back on the classics time and again. Fortunately it’s easier than ever to spice things up by drawing inspiration from a variety of sources such as video games, books, and websites.