Monday, November 19, 2012

Attack of the Scrivener!

I was recently turned on to Scrivener, the writer's utility, as a tool for organizing game content. Intrigued by the possibilities, I downloaded a 30-day free trial version and started putting it to the test.

It's been a few months and a few games now, and I'm hooked. I upgraded to the full version and downloaded the updates and I've been busy pecking away at the next five to ten games in my campaign. 


First of all, Scrivener is packed with features. More than you will ever likely use... unless you plan to publish your material, I suppose! That is what Scrivener is designed for, after all.I won't catalog all the features Scrivener carries but I will say it goes far above and beyond whatever your gaming needs may be.

It is an EXCELLENT tool for the GM or worldbuilder. It's incredibly convenient to able to spontaneously organize data for a game or campaign, and even if you only use the linking features it's well worth the $40 to put everything together.

Community Support

There is a huge Scrivener community, including a number of ebooks, online classes and regular print material supporting the product. Finding an answer to your questions about Scrivener should never be more than a quick Google search away.

Scrivener in your game. 

The combination of Obsidian Portal and Scrivener seems like the be-all, end-all of DMing utilities. Scrivener allows you to organize your material and work at it piecemeal in much the same way as a wiki, except that you can actually move the material around without requiring you to re-invent your  hyperlinks along the way.

One way that I use the linking is as a local rules wiki. When I create monsters, usually cut and paste from a local or internet copy of the Pathfinder SRD, I can actually use or insert hyperlinks to get to a file or website, which saves me a fair amount of time if I need to look up one of thirty or so special abilities that might be on the table at one time. The only real weakness of the linking feature is that it doesn't seem to support hash-tagging, so if I want to link directly to a feat, it instead takes me to the Feats.html document, from which I have to search to find the pertinent entry. Other than that, it's a win! 

Friday, April 20, 2012

Good vs. Good; a Follow-Up (Continued)

In my last post I detailed the main action points of our last high-level game. The whole party is around 14th level now and loaded for bear. Finally, I can start letting my imagination run away with me - er them. MWAHAHAHAAHA!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

The Struggle of Good versus... Good?

My current player group is a (mostly) good-aligned (professed alignment anyway) group of PCs fighting off hordes of cackling, evil Outsiders. This makes the conflict pretty cut and dried; you know who the bad guys are, you know there is almost no chance of a diplomatic solution, you know they just want to kill you, take your stuff, and swallow your soul. Simple!

A much more interesting level of conflict can be found when two good-aligned parties (or the party and an NPC group or faction) are at loggerheads.

Monday, March 12, 2012

My Homebrew Adventures

I recently posted that I'd found some old homebrew gems during our move. I'm considering trying my hand at e-publishing, so I was thinking I'd post some taglines here and see what generated interest.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

High-Level Solutions to First-Level Problems

I am alarmed and disturbed by the disdain many players exhibit towards starting characters at 1st level. A few years ago I was shocked to learn that many DMs start their players off at 3rd level or higher for campaign play. Really?

Monday, February 27, 2012

Introducing New Players to D&D

I've been asked to run a D&D game for some kids I know. At first I was planning to run a game using the Pathfinder rules, but then it occurred to me that these kids knew nothing about pen and paper RPG games. I also considered using old-school AD&D, which is even less user-friendly and I don't have enough books to go around.

The dilemma I now face is this: How to give new players a good intro to the world of RPGs without inundating them with a bunch of complex rules?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Pathfinder Beginners Box (PDF version)

If you're a Pathfinder nut, then you already know about the Pathfinder Beginners Box (hereafter called "the PBB"). This begs the question, however, of whether you actually need the PBB if you are already aware of Pathfinder. Does this have value for existing customers? Or is this an entry-level product only?


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Friday, January 27, 2012

A Response to Zak Sabbath

 A while back Zak over at PD&DWPS posted this questionnaire. I decided it would be fun to fill out. If you were hoping for a flame war, too bad!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I Hit It With My Axe

NOTE: Mature content. Deal with it.

How have I not heard about this? Combining D&D with adult film actors should have caused the internet to implode, at the very least. Instead here I am stumbling across this by accident a year after the fact.

With the tag line and eponymous blog "Playing D&D with Porn Stars", one's mind starts to summon up images, but
don't get too excited, folks. It's not quite what you think... and that's one of the things I like about it!

Monday, January 9, 2012

2011: The Year of No Gaming

The holidays are done, the gift-wrap has been shoveled into the garbage, and a new year has begun. Taking a look back on the previous year, it struck me how little I accomplished when it came to my nerdly career. My players logged a record low number of games this year; five.