Tag Archives: GMing Techniques

Expertimentation

failure

This last session of 7th Sea was marked by two experiments I wanted to try out.  I had no idea how well either of them would work.  Turns out neither of them worked out nearly as well as I’d hoped, but both provided a learning opportunity for me.  Post-game/post-morning shower reflections revealed a lot (as they are want to do).  So rather than share the usual episode recap with you this week, I thought I’d share the results of these experiments instead.

Run Riot!

The opening scene involved the Heroes at the heart of a massive riot in La Bucca.  But how do you create that sort of epic narrative in a way that doesn’t turn into just a big melee encounter?

I ran a few of the ideas past one of my co-conspirators, Kevin Krupp, how provided some excellent feedback – only some of which I could really grasp.  You see, Kevin is very well versed in narrative RPGs.  So when I told him what I was trying to do, he immediately took it to 11 where I was really only comfortable taking it to..seven, maybe.  In the end, it was only kinda successful.

Here’s how it played out:

The scene opened in the Yellow Fin Tavern with Captain Kenway sitting in Allende’s office.  Among the stacks of papers, scrolls, and charts on her desk was a local broadsheet, the Albatross, with a headline about grift and corruption in the Scale (one of the city’s government chapters).

I asked Chris, Kenway’s player, who was in the office with him.  Naturally, he named both of the two other players at the table.  Good.  We don’t have to split the party.

Behind the closed office door, they hear a door slam.  Heavy footsteps, followed by shouting in another room.  Two women.  The voices grow louder as they approach the office door.  Allende throws open the door, her fury evident even with her mask.  She throws a fresh copy of the Albatross at Captain Ed and demands, “Can you explain this?” The headline reads: Presidential reelection festivities spark riot!.

The scene then jumps back hours earlier, to mid morning, with Kenway and the other Heroes among a small crowd in front of the Betting Barnacle.  The new owner, an old rival of Kenway’s named Matthew Hague, is preparing a pre-election victory party for Allende and rechristening the place the Fancy Lad (much to the chagrin of its old patrons who no longer feel welcome).  Hague sees Kenway in the crowd and makes some mocking overtures to his “friend,” which immediately puts the Captain in a bad light among the other old patrons.  Couple that with a gang of bravos from a local duelist academy sizing up Carmena and Sebastian (both duelists) and a bunch of Allende supporters who know Kenway to be supporting the other team, and you have a powder keg primed and lit.

The scene snaps back to Allende’s office.

“So what happened then?” she asks.

So here’s where things get experimental.  I had each of the players state and roll an Approach for what they would be doing in the riot.  Beyond that, I gave them carte blanche with the only instruction being: make things awesome.  In my mind, my goal was to reach the heights of the riot scene in Police Academy.  We never quite hit that mark.

I had each of them go one at a time and allowed them to spend all their raises, which in hindsight was a mistake.  Each player did better than the one before, but the whole thing lacked any real cohesive skeleton.  At the end of each turn, I asked them to “stage a challenge” for the next Hero, but that never really happened.  And so, despite feeling cool and different, it didn’t quite reach the heights I was hoping it would.

Reflection

In hindsight, I should have treated the Riot as a Hazard (see 7th Sea: The New World sourcebook), along with a threat rating and raises to spend.  Then play it out more as a traditional action sequence.

Instead of asking each player to “stage a challenge” for the next Hero at the end of their turn, I believe I should have led with that, asking each to “stage a challenge” right off the bat with the reward being a Hero Point.  The challenged player could have turned down the challenge, at the risk of adding a Danger Point to the pool.

Meanwhile, the Hazard would have been able to push its own agenda with its own raises, allowing me a more participatory roll in the melee.  This would have allowed me to help create a more cohesive structure for the Heroes stunts, making the whole thing hang together better.

Schemes

Schemes, schemes, villainous schemes!  So simple and yet, when you start overthinking them they can cause problems.

At the beginning of the game session, I laid out three “schemes” that the players could discover and disrupt this game session.  I used the Captain Wheel method outlined by Rob Donoghue on his Walking Mind blog.  So the players could see the number of steps involved, but not the nature of the scheme.

And that, dear readers, is where I failed.

The biggest problem is I set up a “Door 1, Door 2, or Door 3” scenario where none of the choices had any real weight.  They were simply these detached curiosities the players could pick up and examine before putting them back down.  So while the schemes themselves were the active operations of villains the group knows about, there was no real urgency in the choice or any real tension even once the scheme was revealed.

In our chase, Kenway’s player choice to examine scheme #3 (or the Embassy Row Riots as I was calling it behind the scene).  I set it up as a Dramatic Sequence, but since he was acting alone, it played out more like a Risk (which it should have just been dammit!).  A gang of thugs discussing plans to stage a riot on Embassy Row within a few days – paid under the table by the Magnus Skaar for President campaign – led to a quick scene where Kenway appealed to their better angels.  Decent, but not great.  And that still left 2 schemes on the table untouched and untended.

Reflections

Again, I feel the problem here is that none of these choices were ever properly grounded or created any real sense of urgency.  It occurs to me in hindsight that I may well have approached them entirely backwards.

The next time I do this, I’m going to instead lead with single detail: either the target or the tool.  This sort of follows the philosophy that Robin Law’s espouses in Gumshoe RPG: the first clue is free.  The first clue in this case is THE HOOK.  Who cares about the number of steps at this stage anyway.

So in the case of the Embassy Row Riots, a card reading Embassy Row (the target), Embassy Row Riots (target+tool), or simply Riots (tool) should have been presented.  At least that creates a sense of curiosity and urgency that “Scheme 3” decidedly does not.  Once the players have investigated the scheme and decided to do something about it, THEN reveal the clock to them.

As for whether it is a Risk or a Dramatic Sequence, that’s a numbers game.  For one player, a Risk seems to be the way to go.  It keeps the pacing fast and lets you play things out without worrying about structure.  If the investigation involves 3 or more players though, the scene will probably benefit from structure (kinda like the riots earlier) and so a Dramatic Sequence should be used.

And there you have it!

I hope you’ll forgive this article of naval gazing, experimentation, and failing forward.  I polled my players afterwards, and they all enjoyed the session.  So maybe it was just me who felt it was lacking.  But I try to learn from these things and put those new ideas into practice and make the next game closer to that special experience every GM chases.

Have you failed at some grand experiment as a GM only to realize on reflection why things didn’t work and what you should have done differently?  If so, please share your experience in the comments so we can all learn from your mistakes.

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Even Game Masters Get the Blues

So confessional time. Last two game sessions have been something of a bust. Why? Because I made the rookie mistake of crafting a solid hook behind a notoriously absentee player without a good back up plan.

head_meets_desk_by_cloudrivenIt seemed like a good idea at the time; the player has been begging for this since the game began, and I got multiple confirmations that yes, he would be present and had a good idea that he would be a focal character. Of course, those assurances amounted to pretty much nothing, leaving me with a cool scenario that the rest of the group doesn’t care a wit about. To top that off, I hear this same player will be absent for the next game session too (not from him, naturally, but from the other player who he will be traveling with).

Now, don’t get me wrong here. I don’t hold the fault with the player. He’s a good friend who I’ve known for a long time. More importantly, this is not unexpected behavior from him. Oh, we have plenty of contingencies to help prompt his attendance. (GM Tip: one of the best ways to assure player attendance is to include their husbands and wives on schedule announcements.) This is simply who he is.

No, I’m frustrated with myself. Because I know this about him. Like I said, rookie mistake.

So now I find myself having to jettison the whole thing in a dramatic way that will be satisfactory to the rest of the group. No problem there. I have a plan. Maybe I’ll salvage the whole thing and submit it to PCI for a Revelations round, or turn it into a hip pocket con event.

And before the chorus of “drop him from the game” begins, I don’t subscribe to that logic.  This isn’t a handful of people who showed up to a Craig’s List ad or some flier in my FLGS.  These are my friends.  If you know your friend is a flake and you invite him or her to play in your game anyway, you gotta take them for what they are.  You can’t get pissed off after the fact.  You just need to remember who you are dealing with and not let your muse convince you otherwise.  Remember, you are friends first.

Anyhow, a couple of very important GMing lessons to come out of this:

  1. Never introduce a plot you aren’t 100% ready to jettison immediately after your players taste it.  Always have 2 or 3 subplots you can pivot to at a moment’s notice, even if they are nothing more than one line hooks/ideas.  In other words, don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
  2. Never built a major plot or scenario around your flakey player(s).  Even if money changes hands, blood is shed, contracts are signed.
  3. You’re never too good to make a rookie mistake.  Wash your hands and move along.

So what about you?  What’s your most reason forehead slapping moment of your GMing career?  (Players, feel free to dish on your GMs.)

 

The Monster that Ate…my Month!

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I’ve been pretty quiet for the last few weeks.  I suppose I could blame it on the kids.  Or Spring Break.  Or family drama.  Or even laundry.  But, I’m sorry.  No.

It was 7th Sea.

7th Sea was the kickstarter that ate my month.

It started out innocently enough.  After AEG sold L5R off to FFG (acronyms!), lots of us old fans expected something might happen.  It wasn’t like it was a high priority of mine – I haven’t actively played 7th Sea since maybe 2004.  Not that I don’t love it!  The books have been regularly referenced since then whether I was playing Savage Worlds, Lejendary Adventure, or Witch Hunter.  So when the news broke that John Wick bought back the rights to the game, yeah that was cool news but nothing earth shattering.  I may have flipped through the old GMG once after that for old time sake.

The the mailing list got started.  Ok, I’m on board for that.  Then the countdown to the kickstarter.  Art looks nice.  What’s that?  A Quickstart adventure?  Ok, I’ll give it a look.

Next thing I knew, it was March.  The house needed cleaning.  The kids needed a bath.  The fridge was empty.  My wife was giving me that look.  And I was left to crawl out of the stupor that remained from a month long bing of kickstarter updates, commentary, stretch goals, and impossible, record-breaking pledge totals.  It was one of those moments where your players called six raises on a TN 25 skill check and damn, if he didn’t deliver.

$1,316,813

11,483 backers

Yeah, I know.  You’ve seen the news.

So now it’s time to throw open the curtains, shake out the cobwebs and dustbunnies, and come out of hermit mode.

Count Rugen: As you know, the concept of the suction pump is centuries old. Really that’s all this is except that instead of sucking water, I’m sucking life. I’ve just sucked one year of your life away. I might one day go as high as five, but I really don’t know what that would do to you. So, let’s just start with what we have. What did this do to you? Tell me. And remember, this is for posterity so be honest. How do you feel?

[Wesley cries and moans in pain]

Count Rugen: Interesting.

The good news is that since 7th Sea ate my kickstarter budget for the year, you aren’t going to have to suffer a lot of talk about Conan 2d20 or Kult.  Well okay, maybe Kult – but only after I get a better look at the AW-inspired rules system.  Assuming they preview it to non-backers.

So is 7th Sea 2nd edition going to be worth the loss of nearly a month to such a vapid endeavor as checking the constantly updating river rapids of kickstarter commentary.  Jury is still out on that one.  Don’t get me wrong, I like some of the concepts, and I REALLY want to give it the benefit of the doubt.  I’m not a John Wick fanboy.  As much as I love 7th Sea, that’s the only one of his games that I’ve played and enjoyed.  My group tried L5R for a few months, and it just never stuck with me.  Guess I’m just not a Seven Samurai guy.  I’ve never played Houses of the Blooded or anything else in his post-AEG catalog.  So I’m not hard wired to love it, probably not the way I immediately bought into Dangerous Journeys or Lejendary Adventure (the only thing that keeps me from being a Gygax fanboy is I’m not a huge D&D fan, regardless of what my bookshelf suggests).

A lot of what’s cooked into 7th Sea v2 is just outside my comfort zone.  I’ve never played FATE, Dungeon World, Dogs in the Vineyard, or any of the host of contemporary “Narrativist” games (or Story Games).  Sure, Savage Worlds and Witch Hunter have borrowed liberally from those types of games, but they remain firmly in the traditional “roll to succeed” mode.  Yes, I’ve read Wick’s No Dice article.  I get what he’s trying to do.  And I think it’s really ballsy to stake those concepts to a million dollar franchise.  Yes, you really do need to read that article to understand what 7th Sea v2 is trying to do.  Will it succeed?  The proof will be in the play.

One thing that troubles me is that the people who don’t like it are very explicit about the reasons why.  The people who love it…not so much.  Maybe that’s just the nature of the internet.  “We played it and had a great time,” tells me absolutely nothing.  I play Hoot Owl Hoot and Count Your Chickens with my kids and have a great time too.  That doesn’t tell you anything about what the hell it is I like about those games, over even what they are (though seriously, if you have young kids, get them!  Loads of fun and easy to grasp and play!). There is one “positive” review circulating around, and its very informative.  It pretty much sums up what I’ve come to understand about the game:

It handles everything you have already been doing the same way you’ve been doing it for years.  It just slaps fancy jargon on the simple to make it complicated.

Seriously, let’s break down the whole Intent/Consequences/Opportunities anatomy of a Risk business.

Statement of Intent: have we seriously done this since the halcyon days of D&D?  Where you were supposed to go around the table, make clear what everyone is doing, and then lock them into those actions when the dice started rolling?  No, of course not.  “What do you do?  I want to do X.  Ok, roll this.”  I blame Apocalypse World and its stupid Move jargon.

Consequences: Yes, this is the big WTF moment in the rules.  “What?  You only need one raise to succeed?  Inconceivable!”  But it’s not.  When you think about it, the number of consequences is essentially your Difficulty now.  One raise is, at best, a partial success.  An easy task might be 1 consequence tops.  Standard difficulty appears to be 2-4 consequences.  Really dangerous stuff is 5+ consequences.  The big stinker here is dice predictability.  A player is almost assured to get 1 raise for every 2 dice rolled.  Assuming dice pools still top out at 10 dice (a big assumption at this point), you (the GM) should always prepare to offer 1, 2, or 3 more consequences than the player can possibly pay off on average.  This makes lucky rolls meaningful, and choices more interesting.  But really, its the same thing just presented in a different way.

Opportunities: Yes, the QS suggests they are front loaded into the presentation of the scene.  But that doesn’t have to be the case.  For the GM, Opportunities are macguffins to tempt the player into taking more consequences than he otherwise would.  You might even compare it to activating a Hubris (in 7th Sea v1) or a Sin (in Witch Hunter).  You get this cool benefit that will help you in the scene, but it comes at a price.  You don’t have to front load it.  In fact, they may well be better to introduce when the player is either too sure of himself or when they can’t make up his mind.

“Ok, so you have 3 Raises, enough to race through the burning room without stumbling or taking a lick of fire damage.  Did I mention the letter on the desk?  No?  Well…”

I expect, despite the amount of space devoted to it, Opportunities are going to be more for players to help other players.

Player A: “Ok, I spend a raise to disarm the villain’s henchman.  Can I catch his sword in my off-hand?”

GM: “No, but if you spend a raise, Player B can grab it off the floor.”

Player A: “But then I’ll take an extra point of damage from the fight?”

GM: “Yes.”

Player B: “Do it!”

Player A: “Ok, I’ll spend the Raise…”

See most of use would already do that.  I do it all the time.  Except it usually comes in the form of spending a hero point, or a benny, or allowing Player B to make a difficult roll on the fly.  7th Sea v2 just now puts an economy to it: a raise.

Now, I suspect it will be the dice probabilities that will cause 7th Sea to sink or swim.  Because if things are too predictable then the game loses that fantastic quality.  I don’t like being killed by lame, but the real memories from the gaming table that last were when you made that incredible lucky roll.  The sharp bell curve that results from 7th Sea v2’s mechanic really minimizes the chances of those sorts of moments.  And if it feels that way at the table, that players are just going through the motions, it’ll have an impact.

But there is a big difference between what you see on the page and how it plays at the table.  Just ask any Savage Worlds player with a d4 in a skill.

 

 

 

Winter gives way to Spring

Last Friday, with the death of the dreaded Fire Wyrm of Polch (a caterwaul actually; not really a dragon as Petrov was quick to point out), our cadre of players put the wraps on the Winter of Discontent storyline of our Witch Hunter game.  All seven players were on hand for it, which is probably why the fight only lasted three rounds (and why I never really got the chance to retreat).  So monster dead, human sacrifice averted, all in a good day for a group of witch hunters.

Now they head west for England and a whole new hot mess of trouble.

Funny though that when all your players show up, they find things to do that reveal problems in the rulebook.

Eldritch Blast

I’ve heard that during one tournament round, it became popular to use the Eldritch Blast rite over a ship’s cannons in ship to ship combat.  So it really doesn’t surprise me that there are big differences between 1st and 2nd edition when it comes to this Hermetic rite.  The thing is, our resident hermeticist player (who is a pretty smart guy in his own right) and your’s truly (no comment) had a devil of a time working out some of the details of the rite. Don’t get me wrong, the rite isn’t broken.  The description is just…lacking.  Usually I find that blending the text of the two editions gives me satisfying results.  So here are my revisions.  Revised text is in red.

ELDRITCH BLAST (Basic; Hermeticism)
Mastery: 2
Time: 2 rounds/1 round
Defense: Avoidance
Roll Required: Yes
Duration: Instantaneous
Strain: 4
Description: For those with a meager understanding and control of the arts, this rite is by far the most dangerous and difficult to control. The magus opens herself to the mystical energies swirling around her and begins to absorb as much as her body can contain. This usually manifests as a bright nimbus of light surrounding her being. When she has as much she can possibly hold, she releases this power in a crude, unfocused blast into a shared or adjacent Area, aimed in the general direction of her target.

Make a Hermeticism (Education) roll against your target’s Avoidance.  The blast has a DM of 2, plus any bonus successes rolled.  Armor reduces damage from the blast as normal.  All other beings within the same Area as the target (friend or foe alike) are also struck by the volatile energy and suffer 2 dice of damage as well.

Boost:

  • Increase the Mastery by 1 to ignore the target’s armor value.
  • Increase the Mastery by 2 to increase the DM by 2.
  • Increase the Mastery by 2 to focus the blast so as to target only 1 creature with this rite.
  • Increase the Mastery by 2 to extend the Range of the blast from 1 area to a number equal to your Hermeticism skill rank (max. 5).

Intimdation

Can you intimidate a monster?  The rules for this are…confusing at best.  A target with Malice against you (you think?!) is actually damn hard (-6 dice penalty!) to intimidate.  I get why it would be that difficult to charm someone, or command troops in battle who loathe you and everything you stand for.  But intimidate?  Yeah, that just doesn’t sit right with me.  So…revised text is in red.

INTIMIDATE (PERSONALITY OR STRENGTH) (Command Foci; pg.110-111)

Where Charm and Command produce a desired action through reasonable words, Intimidate does so by instilling fear in the subject. Intimidate may simply be based on appearance or a certain mannerism, but it can also be a direct assault against a target, such as torture, physical abuse, or threats of either or death.

Intimidate rolls are made against your opponent’s Discipline Defense.  Each bonus success rolled has the effect indicated on the Intimidate Success Table (Table 2-8, pg 111). If you do not roll enough successes to beat your target’s defense, the roll fails and complications may apply as indicated.  If the target is a minion, or otherwise undefined, his defense is equal to his Threat Rating.

You may use Intimidate to affect multiple targets. To do so, roll as normal, but you need one additional success for every two members in the group.

More for Minions

Minion Talents

In addition to the minion talents from the core book and the Grand Tome of Adversaries, these are some homebrewed minion talents I’ve been using in my game to give minions a bit more bite.  They are designed with the idea that no minion will possess more than one such Talent, so use a light hand with them.

Disciplined: In the company of a skilled Lieutenant or Villain, these minions receive +1d to all dice pools.  If the leader is slain, this bonus is lost.

Formidable: Formidable minions get +1d to all attack rolls.

Merciless: Merciless minions double all damage dealt.

Opportunistic: Whenever an opponent attacks and misses, or fails to kill at least one minion in this band, these minions may make an immediate counter-attack at –1d as a Trivial Attack Action.

Overbearing: This band of minions specialize in overwhelming their foe with numbers and wrestling them to the ground.  When attempting to bring down a lone target, these minions roll an opposed Attack roll with a +2d bonus. If successful, the target is considered grappled and pinned.  This tactic is opposed normally, but may not be reversed. Minion bands may not be overborne, though a single minion can.

Resilient: Resilient minions are treated as one threat rating higher (max 4) against attack rolls directed against them.

Swordsmen: These highly trained minions are skilled in at least one Fighting Tradition. An opponent who is not trained in a Fighting Tradition (ie. lacks the Basic Talent) suffers –1d to all attack and damage rolls against this band.

Treacherous: Treacherous minions always roll at least 4 dice, regardless of how few are banded together.

Unruly: This band of minions add +2d to all attack and damage rolls, but immediately flee after the first casualty suffered.

 

Wild Talents

Wild Talents are meant for animal minions (or lieutenants).

Poison: This creature is venomous. The potency of the venom depends on the creature. Usually, the target must suffer damage from the animal’s primary attack to be poisoned (a snake’s bite, a scorpion’s sting). When exposed to a poison, you roll Endurance against the poison’s potency. If you fail the Endurance roll, the GM adds the difference between your roll and the poison’s potency to its DM, and then rolls damage as usual.

Poison Potency DM
Scorpion 2 +3
Rattlesnake 3 +4
Cobra 4 +6

 

Morale for Minions

Sometimes the GM knows when a group of minions will break and run.  Sometimes it’s more fun to let the dice decide.

After the first casualty suffered, the band must make a D1 Morale roll. Roll dice equal to the bands Threat Rating x the number of remaining minions.  If they succeed, they stay in the fight.  Otherwise they flee.  The GM can raise the difficulty of the roll as he or she sees fit, though keeping it at D1 will reduce the amount of time spent counting successes and thus keep the combat flowing quickly (these are minions, after all).

When reduced to 2 or 1 members, mortal minions will automatically break and flee.

Bands with a Threat Rating of 2 or greater, or who possess the Disciplined Talent (above) will  defensibly disengage and withdraw in the most tactically sound manner.  Others will simply break and run.

New Years Resolutions for 2016

 

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For 2016, here are things I’m aspiring to do as a Game Master, to improve my craft, my game, and my players’ experience:

  1. Front load fights in play!  Let’s get the blood pumping at the beginning of the game session, not when everyone is ready to sign off and go to bed.
  2. Use more tactics. Why should the players be the only ones taking Stances and making Wild Assaults.  The bad guys need to be using more of those tactics, too.
  3. More Sorcery!  I’ve never been good at using magic with adversaries.  This is the year we work on that.
  4. Pick up the Pacing! I’m going to try to include more quickly resolved encounters and hooks.  
  5. Punch up the Roleplaying with Intra-Factional Conflict.  None of these Witch Hunter Orders are supposed to get a long that well.  So let’s spice things up a bit with more roleplaying conflict.
  6. Watch Actual Play Videos from Roll20.  I have a lot to learn about making the Roll20 experience as good as it can be.
  7. Play an unrelated game on Roll20.  Same reason as above.
  8. Do more with handouts and rollable tables.  Quit worrying about Roll Templates and focus on the stuff that can really punch up the player experience.

There.  Eight things to focus on in 2016.  That shouldn’t be to hard.  And maybe I’ll get a blog article or two out of the effort.

Failed Save: Gamer ADHD

Please excuse the radio silence folks.  Some of my favorite blogs have gone on hiatus for the holidays, but I’m not done quite yet.  But between Thanksgiving, dueling cases of bronchitis, the third circle of Hell that is Sears Appliance delivery, and the regular list of honey-dos, it can be hard to collect your thoughts, let alone put them down in semi-legible format.  Hell, this simple paragraph has been interrupted three times as the little one struggles with his spiralgraph.

i-dont-have-adhd

Anyway, gamer ADHD.  Lots of people struggle with it.  Lately, I’ve been battling an acute case of it.  Now, I have no interest in ditching my Witch Hunter game.  But it doesn’t help that most of the stuff they’ve been doing over the past two years, I scribbled notes on in 2013 when we started playing.

In September/October, we went a month and a half (that’s three game sessions for us) where we just didn’t play.  Either I was traveling or we couldn’t make a quorum.  That didn’t help matters any.  During that time, a steady procession of older games got a second look (and sometimes more from me): Dangerous Journeys, Lejendary Adventure, Elric!, Atlantis and Omni, multiple flavors of D&D.  Even my old Darkurthe Legends books came out of deep carbon freeze!  Yes folks, it’s that bad.  Geez, you’d think I had a good idea for a fantasy campaign but…not really.

bullwinkleAnother problem is there just isn’t much going on in Witch Hunter circles.  It’s just…damn quite.  I’m no stranger to games with small player bases (Lejendary Adventure and TSR’s SAGA come to mind), but never this quiet.  Hell, even the creators and publisher are nearly silent on the game.  A lot of times, I worry that I’ve either become the loud mouthed know it all (who really doesn’t know much at all) or else that guy who sucks up all the oxygen in the room.  Either way, I do more harm with my contributions than by shutting up.  It can be hard to maintain a certain creative pace when your only encouragement is a “+1” in the Google+ group.

I know, first world problems, right?

I wish I had easy answers for how to beat this dire affliction.  It really does kick time management in the scrotum.  But here’s the thing: as long as my players are willing and motivated, I EASILY have another year of Witch Hunter in me.  Yes, some of the elements date back to my old 7th Sea game nearly 12 years distant, but a lot of it is fresh, new and cool.  Stuff that I’ve been wanting to do in a game for a looong time.