Tag Archives: DM

Minion Motivation

As a Game Master you probably spend a fair amount of time creating a Big Bad for your adventures. Part of this creation involves coming up with a motivation for this Big Bad. By determining why they do the things they do it is easier for you to determine how they will act in different situations. Motivation is an important aspect in creating well-rounded characters in your game. But, have you ever stopped to think about the motivations for the minions that serve the Big Bad? These NPC’s are often just nameless cannon fodder. We trot them out for the PC’s to fight without a second thought as to why they are fighting.  However, a minion’s motivation defines their actions just as much as the Big Bad.  Continue reading Minion Motivation

Monks in Space: The Tsunami

A few weeks back I received a question from George Cameron. Take it away, George!

I actually have a request of you, if you do that sort of thing. Would you be willing to do a conversion of the Tsunami and/or Locust from the Realmspace book? I’m about to start using your material in our 5E Kara-Tur game, and I thought having a carrier battle with this monstrosity would be fun. I hope it isn’t rude of me to ask!

It’s not rude at all. I’m more than happy to help. First some background. Realmspace was the second Spelljammer Accessory product released for 2nd Edition Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. It was written by Dale “Slade” Henson.  Realmspace provided Dungeon Masters and players with the tools to bring Spelljammer rules into the Forgotten Realms, one of D&D’s most popular settings. This supplement introduced two new types of Spelljammer ships, the Locust and the Tsunami, that originated from Kara-Tur. Kara-Tur was originally its own D&D setting based off of medieval Asian culture. However, in 2nd Edition AD&D Kara-Tur was officially made part of the Forgotten Realms. If you’re interested, the Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide has information about Kara-Tur for 5E . Okay, enough of that. Let’s get to it! I will be covering the Tsunami in this post and will detail the Locust in a future post.
Continue reading Monks in Space: The Tsunami

5e Critical Misses Table

Apparently I rolled a natural 1 yesterday when I posted the 5e Critical Hits table as the Critical Misses table. Today I am posting the actual Critical Misses table. As with the Critical Hits table I am offering this up as an optional rule for your 5e Dungeons & Dragons game. Some of the results on this table are extreme. So make sure that your group is fully on board before introducing this into your game. Feel free to customize it in whatever way fits your game. Otherwise, happy gaming!

Continue reading 5e Critical Misses Table

Awarding Noncombat Experience

“Dragons! Shall we slay them for XP rewards?” “Nay, establishing trade routes is all the reward we seek.”

A few months back I wrote a post about why you should switch over from awarding experience points to milestone leveling.  One of the comments on that post was “I love math so I want to still use XP leveling, but I’m also building a campaign with little to no combat in it. How can I award non-combat XP?” The Dungeon Master’s Guide does cover this subject briefly under Creating Encounters (pg. 80) and Noncombat Challenges (pg. 261), but I am more than happy to provide my take on the subject. Continue reading Awarding Noncombat Experience

How Movies Taught Me How to Avoid a TPK

One of the worst sins that any Game Master can commit is the Total Party Kill. Sure, I make jokes about TPKs all the time. But, in my actual games I would never wipe an entire party. A TPK ruins a game and can even ruin friendships. Luckily, I found an excellent resource for learning how to avoid that TPK; movies! Movies are full of tropes and plot contrivances that allow characters to escape certain death. All I needed to do was spend hundreds of hours of my life watching them. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!! Continue reading How Movies Taught Me How to Avoid a TPK

Correcting Spelljammer Ship Stats

 

We are now two sessions past our disastrous first session of the Spelljammer campaign and the game has markedly improved. However, there are still some rules issues that need to be corrected before the conversion really works. One of these issues is how durable I originally made a Spelljammer ship. Continue reading Correcting Spelljammer Ship Stats

War of the Pirates: The History

MAINSPACE

The War of the Pirates campaign is set in a unique Crystal Sphere known as Mainspace. This single star system is made up of four planets, their moons and an asteroid belt called the God Smashed Cluster. All of the traditional fantasy races exist among the worlds of Mainspace along with other races such as the Minotaur, the Giff and the Githyanki. Here years of war between pirates and elves and war between pirates have finally reached an uneasy balance. Continue reading War of the Pirates: The History

War of the Pirates Campaign: Character Introductions

I thought it might be interesting to detail the events of our ongoing Spelljammer campaign here on the blog. So this is that then! Today I will be sharing the character backstories as written by the players, Brandon, Nicole, Cora, Dale, and Jack, along with some of my thoughts on each character. Enjoy! Continue reading War of the Pirates Campaign: Character Introductions

Alternative Spelljamming Rules

A few weeks ago we ran our first session for the new 5e Spelljammer campaign. This was the first field test of my converted rules and it honestly didn’t go that well. One of the biggest concerns was what many  of  you warned me about; the price for Spelljamming was just too high. The players immediately balked at the idea of losing all of their spells. I can admit when I’m wrong so I am offering an alternative rule for Spelljamming. Continue reading Alternative Spelljamming Rules