Tuesday, January 8, 2013

The Old Dog Yawns

I may have an answer for Noisms question, paraphrased of course, "Why don't we discuss how to be a good GM or what can we learn from other GMs on our gaming blogs?"

If I had to go by the number of views and comments I've gotten since doing so I'd say it's because not very many people are interested.

As such, I will probably stop doing this soon and discuss other things. In truth, I've always felt that since the majority of bloggers are GMs (as opposed to being Players only game bloggers), all the content on all the blogs help you be a better Gamemaster. No?

Take Jeff Rients most recent post, which is now a month old. Are you telling me you can't find something in that to improve your game in some way? This post wasn't helpful? Zak routinely spouts words of wisdom for the aspiring Gamemaster. As do many, many others.

None of my posts on Star Trek have been useful to the Star Trek GM? No Superhero RPG elements I dicussed were of any concern to the referee running into snags in his or her comic book campaigns?


I think of it the same way I think of the other type of RPG content. I don't really look to the blogs for new spells, new monsters, NPCs or the like unless someone does something a little unusual. I look to old books of folklore, video game and movie concept design, public domain pulp stories and comic books. I go where there are cool ideas and no stats and I add the game elements myself.

So what helps me run games better? When you guys and gals out there argue over some silly rule or another I look at how I handle it and improve it if needed. I take ideas on how to organize your campaign or draw maps and say, "Well this is how I do maps now. Does their way over any advantage? Can I incorporate that advantage into what I like about what I already do? Hmmm...sure, if I alter that and tweak this (various cartoon crash and spring popping noises)...Presto!"

Anyway, got to work on some stuff for the way too many game things I can doing in the next month or so. If you're a GM and you're wondering how to do something better and I can help I will. Just let me know.

Barking Alien


  1. Aw man, and I was just getting caught up! I've got something like 400 blogs in Google Reader (most of those are image blogs, but still). But this one's on my short list. Even so, it takes me a while to get back and read stuff. I'm still interested, if that means anything. :)

    1. Wow. I didn't know there were 400 blogs that could even interest me. 0.0

      Seriously, I think I follow maybe 20 (or less) game blogs as the vast majority of the blogs out there focus on D&D, which I tend not to play.

      I only follow blogs that discuss a variety of games, focus on Sci-Fi and/or Superheroes or are just so good I can't not read them.

  2. Don't stop now. I really liked the articles and it was just getting interesting.

  3. just realised you started this series of posts. reading will commence at once!

    i totally agree, you can find stuff to improve as gm (and player) online all the time.

  4. Relying on comments can be a tough mistress some times. I designed 24 NPC's for a supers game in December and didn't get a single comment-good, bad, or indifferent-the whole time. But I know people looked at them.

    I should just remember myself that comments really do feed bloggers.

    1. It isn't just the comments. I can tell how many views a post gets and these just don't get as many as others.

      I'll double check, as they may have increased, but generally speaking I have only two means of determining whether or not something I've written here interests people.

    2. One question I've often wondered is if a person just views the blog and reads the article rather than clicking on the specific article, does it show?

      Don't feel too bad--I composed 24 NPC's for a superhero game over the last month and got not a single comment.