No, not a comment on the death of consoles or the rise of the planet of the apes. What I’m talking about is something much less central to all lives except 8 or 9 adventurers and a DM. That’s right! I’ve DMed a hundreds-of-hours long campaign this summer, and it’s over. I also got my eagle scout rank, so that’s over too! So now I look to the internets to give me things to do. Soooooo I thought I’d post some things about DMing!
A) I like names. I like recurring characters, and interesting deaths, and cultural naming schemes, and naming tropes and made-up shticks and all that jazz. So before the adventurers encountered a new race/subrace I came up with a massive list of names (Ususally picking an obscure country and looking at ancient names works). The top ones up there are egyptian, and the lower ones are norse. The city is called Akh’manir, and the population was divided between an oppressed dwarvish lower class and a wealthy aristocratic elvish/human elite. (There was a revolution).
A2) I like naming themes. Demons have names that are palindromes. Elves have a Color and then and Animal (like Blue Hawk). Anzhian humans have a number, a clan name, a house name, and a personal name. All in Mongolian. Dragons have their color in their name. Orcs have a name for each pillar of their motto. They add flavor to a culture (aside – also, food, recreational activities, political system, architecture, sports all add too) and they’re not that hard to work up.
B) I like mucking with people. Backstabbing, treachery, implied backstabbing, concurrent multiple storylines, PvP, all that is fun. AND BLOODY TAXING. If you want to do interesting things (Like have the party split up into 3 groups of 2, one group of 4 evil characters, and all all of that span a year while various plot lines intersect via different adventuring groups and time warping) be prepared for the impossible task of coordination – and like everything else, you’ll have to change the story on the fly. If people are all around always, well, it’ll be a lot easier. But that was definitely not the case for me.
C) I like maps. Really like em. SO much so that I have the cartographer who makes in game maps all worked up and the entire continent the adventurers were on mapped out, as well as 4 or 5 cities in as much detail as Akh’manir above. Maps are GREAT tools, not just for you, but for hiding/revealing information, puzzles, maps being faulty, or maps having personality as they were written by a drunk orc or a demon king. Also, you can use them for reference or planning or just as memories where things once happened.
D) I like/hate DND 3.5. This was my first major campaign with it, I don’t own any of the books, and it makes anything I’d run in The Fantasy Trip take twice as long, no joke. Combat is slooooowwww. But, it’s robust and useful and has a bunch of flat RPing help in the books and it’s fairly “realistic”, players don’t cheat too much and I don’t have to make up too many rules. Still made up a prestige class, a modified professional sport and some interesting combat rules involving minecarts, but hey, it’s not DND without that!
I think that’s good for now. I might post some more on this later. Loki knows I’ve got more to talk about – I think next I’ll hit story.
Oh, and a thing! I want to add music to animation. So if anyone wants to do music for them (non-lyrical) hit up them comments below and we’ll rock our way to animation kingdom. I’m doing 1 a week currently.