Here you will
find a collection of tips, tricks, hints, and advice on gamemastering
an adventure game for young people, keeping the game fun and involving,
and finding inspiration for future adventures. Some of these tools are
located right here on the Young Person's Adventure League
website, while others are located on other websites, or even printed
onto sheets of paper and bound into a cover. (Do they
still do that in your day and age?)
Here are tips
and advice that you can find right here on the site:
Golden Rules of Adventure Games - The very
core rules of good gamemastering for any role-playing game. You may
wish to reference this list frequently.
to Role-Play with Young People - A collection
of the best advice on the subject. Soon to also be available as a PDF
document, so that you may print a copy to keep with you when your electronic
computational device is not handy.
an Early Start - When it comes to roleplaying
with young people, you don't have to wait until your polyhedral dice
are no longer a choking hazard. Here are a list of ways to roleplay
kids of almost any age, to help inspire their interest for more complex
games later on.
PRINT AND PDF TOOLS
printed (and electro-printed) publications filled
with tips and advice for roleplaying gamemasters:
with Kids - An extraordinary guide
to fostering a new generation of gamers, this book by Sandy Atunes,
Mike Holmes, Sam Chupp and Zak Arnston includes sections on kids at
conventions, playing with mixed groups of adults & children,
non-combat gaming, rewards, violence in gaming, and much, much more.
On top of it
all, it also includes two simple gaming systems to run for children -
Sam Chupp's "Six Stones" live-action system, and Zak Arnston's
"Shadows." You can purchase your copy directly from Technomancer
Games for the mere pittance of $12.99
Gamemastering - Brian
Jamison's book is an extensive guide on the fine art of gamemastering,
with a particular focus on creating engaging stories that are tailored
to the interests of the players. This guidebook is available for free
in its electronic format, or in a printed edition for a very reasonable
Get your free PDF of this excellent guide, or order a printed copy, at gamemastering.info!
Laws of Good Gamemastering - This slim little volume is
packed to overflowing with exceptional gamemastering advice from one of
the biggest names in game design, Robin Laws.
the print edition is a little hard to find, as the book went out of
print in 2002. When you can find it, the going price can exceed $150 -
quite a steep fee to pay for a 38 page book!
PDF edition is available at sjgames.com
for the much more reasonable price of $7.95. If you happen to possess
one of those electronic computational devices,
along with an electronic page scribing console,
you should be able to produce a printed copy in practically no time at
all. Amazing, the things we can do nowadays, isn't it?
Secrets - An excellent hardcover volume with
contributions by a crew of excellent game authors, including none other
than Sam Chupp (of Changeling,
and Square One
fame!). You can find a copy at your local game shop (always check there
first!) or, oddly enough, on the shores of the Amazon River...
...what's that, Anna?
Oh? Really? How silly of me...
me that should be on Amazon.com,
and not the Amazon River. My mistake. However, if you've already
managed to travel to the Amazon due to my err, be certain to look for Fabiano's
Gaming Shop and Adventure Gear Emporium. You'll be glad you
Fantasy Roleplaying Gamer's Bible - This softcover
volume authored by Sean Patrick Fannon not only includes tips on
organizing a gaming group, handling troublesome players, and more - it
also includes a history of the roleplaying hobby, as well as a brief
index of RPGs in different genres. The second (and latest) edition of
this book was released in 2000, and as such, the index is a bit dated -
but it could still inspire ideas for future adventures.
local gaming store for a copy, or visit Amazon.com.
tools that are located on other sites that you can visit right
this very minute to sate your hunger for roleplaying advice.
Ah, instant gratification...
Group - The most obvious source of information
on playing role-playing games with young people, it is listed here only
in the event that you have somehow managed to avoid visiting it by now.
- A weekly electronic digest of roleplaying tips of all possible sorts,
from how to improve your speaking voice to how to deal with unruly
players. Be certain to pay special attention to issue
188 - 5 Tips for Roleplaying with Younger Children and Role-Playing
Games and Kids by Katrina Middelburg-Creswell.
Secrets - The website for the hardcover book Gamemastering
Secrets (see below) has a great collection of links and
resources in the Bookshelf
- An online periodical for the FUDGE
roleplaying game, filled with excellent
support material from FUDGE devotees. You won't
want to miss the FUDGE
For Young Kids article - the tips given here can really be
applied to any RPG at all.
2.0 - A fantastic web-based tool for creating
superhero illustrations - perfect for most any superhero RPG. Many
options are available to help make each creation unique.
- Links to hundreds of character sheets for popular RPGs. Includes
official sheets as well as user-created sheets.
characters can be time-consuming work. These programs aim to reduce the
time and effort involved in creating characters.
Redblade - A feature-rich character generator
for d20 based RPGs that
can be customized to work with other systems.
- Another excellent character generator for d20
games, with the potential to be used for other roleplaying rule systems.
character names, descriptions, locations, and more can really wear out
a person's creativity after a while. That may have been the same line
of thinking that prompted the crafting of these random generators.
Simply enter in a small amount of data, and the artificial
intellect will serve up some inspiration post-haste. (Where
do they hide all of the springs and gears?)
- Generate names and descriptions for characters of several different
cultures, places, objects, and even stories.
Everchanging Book of Names - A shareware
program that generates random names in a very sophisticated manner.
Proppian Fairy Tale Generator - Generate your
own fairy tale, then send your adventurers through it, or use it as the
Premise Generator - Generates a simple premise
and genre, which could be the springboard for your next big campaign,
or something completely silly. In some cases, it could even be both.
Generator - will generate a black and white
dungeon map that you can print out and populate, based on your own
custom settings. By Jamis Buck, master of D&D generators.
3.5 NPC Generator - Another creation by Jamis
Buck, this tool generates random non-player characters for your Dungeons & Dragons
collections of typefaces that can be installed into your electronic
page scribing console. Use them for map legends, special
documents, letters, or any other sort of handout for your adventurers.
Some of the non-English characters could even be used for coded
messages that the party's cryptographer must decipher! The
possibilities are without limit!
Nifty fonts by S. John Ross, the creative mind behind the Risus RPG and
the Big List of RPG Plots. Included are fonts for making hex
grid paper, and even a font called Flagstone that lets you create
Lord Kyl's Fonts
- A humble collection of fonts. Many good choices here, including lots
of strange and cryptic characters.
Fantasy Fonts - A modest collection, but be
sure not to miss his Celtic Knotwork fonts, which will allow you to
create knotwork borders.
The Thieves Guild
- Another good collection, including a Moon Phase font.
What is an
adventure without a good map to plan and plot over?
& Dragons Map-A-Week - The official Dungeons & Dragons
website has a large collection of free maps that can be used with most
any adventure game - not just D&D.
The Thieves Guild
- These rogues come through again with a nice collection of ready-made
& STORY IDEAS
The Big List of
RPG Plots - Compiled
by S. John Ross, this list is indispensable for any gamemaster
attempting to create a story for an adventure game. The Big List
contains summaries for over 30 common story plots to mix, match, twist, and
otherwise manipulate into an adventure scenario. A PDF version for
printing is available here - I personally have a copy
tucked inside my satchel and in the inside cover of every adventuring
notebook that I own.
Roleplay - A wiki of short plot ideas for
those times when you have an adventuring party, but nowhere to
Person's Adventure League - Main
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