Posts Tagged by index cards
|June 7, 2013||Posted by Phil Vecchione|
Somewhere between a fetish and a compulsion lies my love of gaming accessories, especially dice bags. Ever since I put my basic set, crumbly, orange polyhedrons into a black felt pouch, I have been been drawn to things that help me to pack up and organize my gaming components. I am always on the lookout for new and novel ways to pack up my gaming gear, and this week I have found just that…All Rolled Up. Quick Disclaimer – While I purchased my All Rolled…
|July 30, 2012||Posted by Guest Author|
Today’s guest article was written by reader Ryan Latta, who took Phil Vecchione’s Prep-Lite articles — and other articles about keeping prep light — to heart, put them to use, and wrote about the results. Thanks, Ryan! I hate prepping for a game. In fact, the more prep work I find myself doing, the less excited I am to GM whatever it is I’m prepping. Naturally, I was captivated by many of the articles here on “Prep-Lite” and began to apply as many of those…
|February 17, 2012||Posted by Phil Vecchione|
Connecting the dots. Mysteries are always about connecting the dots. In novels and books, the author is in complete control of the pacing of the clues (read: information) and how they are presented to the reader. In an RPG, disseminating information to the players can be a bit more haphazard which can often foil the unveiling of a mystery in a graceful manner. I started to think about how I could control the flow of information to make the mystery more enjoyable. A few weeks…
|February 1, 2012||Posted by John Arcadian|
“Is professor Yell doing this now, or wait, when did I plan to have him introduce that plot point. Oh crap, I was supposed to have the spider queen attack the group after they got the idol, not beforehand. Shoot! Who was it that sent the quicklings after the grey ladies!” My latest game is NPC heavy, and almost all of the NPCs are politically motivated in some way or another. This puts an extra bit of importance on NPC actions and when they occur.…
|September 5, 2011||Posted by Matthew J. Neagley|
A card game that’s played by creating the cards with which it is played, 1000 Blank White Cards is a perfect game for those times when your group is between games or unable to play your regular game for whatever reason. According to lore, 1000 Blank White Cards was created by Nathan McQuillen of Madison, Wisconsin. During a coffee run, he spied a box labeled, “1000 blank white cards” and was inspired to create the game of the same name. More history can be dug…
|July 12, 2011||Posted by Kurt "Telas" Schneider|
This is part two of a two-part series on index cards. The first part dealt with using index cards during game prep, and included a brief overview of what kinds of cards are available, and how to store them. While no single approach is ideal for everyone, this article will focus on how I’ve been using index cards, along with some ideas that I’ve seen in use, so please excuse the ‘in my campaign’ tone of it. As usual, feel free to take what’s shiny…
|June 30, 2011||Posted by Kurt "Telas" Schneider|
This is part one of a two-part series on index cards. The second part will deal with using index cards at the gaming table. Unless you’re new to gaming, or live and die by the laptop, you’re probably familiar with index cards at the gaming table. A stack fits in your hand, and they can be used for any number of things, from notes to character sheets. Overview Before you run off and buy a thousand cards, know that they come in many different sizes…
Note that you don’t have to do all of this at once. Write up only the cards you need at any given time. As your game progresses, you’ll have dozens of cards, and can pull out an old enemy at any time.
Now that everything’s in place, grab a location card, a few NPC cards, and a treasure card or two. Write up a scene card in the front of them, and you have an encounter in your hand. Repeat for the rest of tonight’s encounters.
Care for a challenge? Grab random NPC, location, and treasure cards, and come up with a good reason why Colonel Mustard was in the conservatory with the candlestick. Convey that reason to your players.
Want a more free-form approach for tonight’s raid on the thieves guild? Grab the appropriate organization, NPC, treasure, and location cards, and let the guild respond rationally to the PC’s actions.
In addition to encounter or location-specific prep, index cards are handy for longer-range planning and visualizing your world. Using a battlemap and colored pens, arrange the organization and NPC cards to represent the relationships between them. Do the relationships make sense, or do you need to make some changes?
With your organizations still arrayed, imagine advancing your game’s timeline. How will the relationships change over time? Are you communicating those changes to your players?
Sort your lower-level NPC cards into organizations. Do they accurately reflect the membership of the organization, or has it drifted as you’ve developed the group?
After building a few encounters, grab an NPC or organization card you haven’t used in a while. Find a way to involve him/her/it.
There are certainly many more ways to prep with index cards; I’ve only covered what I’ve done in the past couple of years. Do you have any techniques or advice that you’d like to share? Sound off in the comments and let us know!