Reckless Dice #25: Noob GMs & Motivation

The RDP crew, in their quartet form discusses the new Print on Demand products by FFG, what makes an RPG story tick and how to keep your players motivated! We jump back into listener Q&A and have a pair of fantastic links to share:

Daarken’s blog (he does a lot of the cover art for WFRP3, fantastic)
http://daarken.com/blog/2011/08/18/lure-of-power/

A fantastic example of a character back story
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Ixr_Vc6l6k&feature=channel_video_title

11 thoughts on “Reckless Dice #25: Noob GMs & Motivation”

  1. Thanks for the episode, i did order some POD Packs from germany, cannot wait to have them in my hand.
    “Sohn Sigmars” translates into “Son of Sigmar”. We have setup a podcast in german, which is called “Söhne Sigmars” translated “Sons of Sigmar”, and the FB Comment came from one of the moderators.

      1. Hey Gitzman, keep it up, Sound quality in this episode was back and better. Perhaps we could do a Crossover Episode 🙂

        POD is ordered, but i donnot know when it will arrive in Germany, it is USPS Frist Class Mail.

        1. I’d love to, though our uncultured butts don’t speak German =)

          If we can coordinate times and languages, i think it would be fantastic.

  2. I was formerly SomeoneSomeoneson. Hashemite is my name on the FFG boards so I figured I’d use it here too.

    Anyway, I really like the answer to “What makes for a good game, for players?”, which went something like “the players are motivated to interact with the fictional environment.” That really is the crux of having fun as a player. This makes room for games that are both super-complex and needing of close attention, and just a zombie romp, as you all mentioned in the podcast. I enjoy games I can goof around in, where the GM is almost totally transparent and carefree, and games where the GM is wily and challenges the players on every level. Everything can work if the group shares an objective.

    Also, Lester, are you sure you’d want item cards beyond what they already produce? I like that they restrict item cards for 1. Powerful items 2. Story-based items.

    These two types of items have value because they advance the theme.

    If they produced a pack of 100 item cards (a lot) it’d be hard to stop. It would be hard to satisfy everyone with what they want. You’d end up with many things left out, and it would make the game feel scattered with some items having cards and some not.

    Just to illustrate my point, think about 5-15 (a reasonable number in my opinion for the kinds of items I’ll list) different kinds of one-handed blades, two-handed blades, bows, crossbows, guns, clubs/maces, scrolls, luxury items (jewelry etc.), armor, magic items, axes, food supplies, alcohol, adventuring supplies (lantern, chests, rope), clothes, medicinal supplies. You’re probably running into 200+ cards without even getting too creative.

    My point is that maybe we could leave it to the GM or the player to make their inventory come alive, themselves. It’d be great if there were limitless resources and a way to store and manage all of them but I like the limitation of cards to special items.

    1. I agree with you regarding the item cards, especially because there are other companies who already do a really good job making a variety of cards to the level of detail you mention. No sense doubling up here.

      I say, concentrate on warhammer specific stuff, monsters, locations, magic items, spells, abilities, etc.

  3. Thanks for all the amazingly good podcasts! I’ve recently discovered Reckless Dice when my group and I started getting into 3’d edition. It has been great to listen to the episodes from the beginning and getting the game introduced that way.

    Very interesting to hear that Jordan is GM’ing “The Enemy Within” campaign. As I’m just about to start my own campaign I have been reading up on that one as well as the “Paths of the damned” campaign for 2’nd edition. I plan on incorporating space for both campaigns as well as freedom to totally ignore both. You could say i’m taking a very open-ended approach to GM’ing this time around as I’m introducing hooks for both campaigns at the same time.
    Anyways, It would be great to hear Jordan talk more about his experiences with the old first edition campaign as he plays it.

    As a long suffering GM I’d like to add something to your NOOB GM tips:
    1. Make sure that the player characters are in focus – not the NPC’s or their plots. The players can decide where to go and what to do all the time – let them!
    2. Make sure they suffer the consequences of their choices. Role-playing is all about making tough choices. Especially in Warhammer where the moral scale is grey most of the time.
    3. Keep them interested by engaging them personally. All the gold rewards in the world pales as motivation when you face that annoying villain who cased you harm before.
    For example: let the Witchhunter Leila’s character was chasing burn down the inn and all their gear with it in the first session – there’s motivation plenty for the whole group!

    On a final note. I do miss Paul and his “as written” approach to the rules I have to say. I hope he is ok wherever he is. Thanks Paul!

    1. Excellent comments!

      We are really looking forward to Jordan’s experiences with “The Enemy Within” as well. I ran “Paths of the Damned” about a year and a half ago using the 3rd edition and that was a blast as well (pre-podcast).

      Funny you should mention your open-ended approach to your new game, that is exactly how our newest (soon to air) campaign is formatted. It will be a follow-up series to the “Underworld Rising” sessions called “Buried but not Forgotten”.

      We all miss Paul and wish him the best. We talk now and again and he is doing well =)

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