Is anyone here interested in a free journeyman account at, paid up for the next 11mo?

I bought a year subscription when I was comparing campaign mgmt software and realized it wasn't for me after a few days. I asked for a (pro-rated) refund but they declined 🤷

It's easy though to change the username and email, so I can give it to someone else who might use it. This wouldn't work for someone with an existing account, but maybe someone out there wants it but didn't want to pay?

I love this idea of "probabalistic advancement" for ttrpg mercenaries/sidekicks:

"At the end of a session where a mercenary unit earned XP... compare that XP to the XP needed to level. If the XP earned is greater than the total required, great, the unit levels. If not, convert it into a fraction of the XP required to level... and then into a die roll. If the roll is failed, the XP is lost."

No need to track XP b/w sessions, and the extra randomness is extra flavor.

You know I don't think I gave myself a chance to celebrate a special milestone: this past weekend I ran a session of a game *I wrote* 🤗

I was limited to less time than I'd have liked, and thus the session had somewhat less conflict/adventure that was ideal, but I got real-player feedback on stuff I definitely didn't consider when writing it.

Not sure if this game will ever become A Thing but who cares? It got played by real people and that's pretty special! 😁

Also might be obvious, but the Jamboard built into Google Meet can do a passable collaborative dungeon map:

This works just as well as either a drawing in a notebook or a Google Drawing as shown here.

Might be obvious to everyone, but I made this example to show a friend and figured I'd share here too.

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When a location in my game contains several people and places, I'll often use a bipartite graph to track them. This is useful to me because:

1) People aren't necessarily tied to a single place, and if a PC wants to find a person I can tell at a glance where they might be
2) If PCs visit a place, I can immediately tell who might be there
3) If two people share a place, they should have a relationship/opinion of each other
4) It is trivial to add people and locations as I evolve the location

If you're playing D&D 5e with theater of the mind combat, how do you simulate weapons with reach?

I would perhaps consider allowing a character wielding a polearm to use a reaction to attack a creature *entering* their melee range, kinda like a reverse opportunity attack. This could be mitigated by the target using the disengage action.

I don't usually sweat the small stuff like this, but last night we were discussing movement speeds in context of TotM combat and it made me think.

A Dungeon World game I'm running has taken on an East Asian flavor, so I've been reading Wuxia-flavored RPGs for inspiration and stuff to steal. Here's my reading list so far in rough order of how much I've gotten out of them, from most to least.

* Flying Swordsmen (free!):

* Art of Wuxia (currently 50% off):

* Legend of the Elements:

* 7th Sea: Khitai Quickstart (free!):

An ex-coworker told me that she thinks I may not be "living up to my potential" at my current job. Technically she's correct, but just because my "full potential" wouldn't involve a job at all...

(cont.) Further, I'm not even really afraid of contradicting myself when I do eventually answer how and why questions, provided that the conflicting answers/interpretations at least make sense in the setting.

Information about the world is imperfect, contradictions are invitations to investigate further, we play to find out the real story.

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(cont.) ...It didn't actually come up.

This is an example of "draw maps, leave blanks" in that I don't feel like I need to rationalize every detail I put out there, instead we can "play to find out" the answers. This increases the amount of detail and atmosphere I can add because I don't have to spend all my time writing detailed backstory that the players likely will never hear.

I haven't mentioned the system, though you can probably guess, because I think this approach is system-neutral.

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So the castle of last night's crawl had an unusual configuration: a new castle built around an old one in the center. Natch the old castle is haunted and its occupants hostile to outsiders.This set up some faction play and glimpses of the deep history of the inner castle.

But why was the outer castle built around the inner one instead of knocking it down and replacing it? And whence the animosity? I didn't really know when putting it together, but trusted I could answer it when/if it came up.

Fun thing from a castle-crawl I ran last night: set up a slightly contrived situation where after 2 hours -- in game time *and* real time -- the castle guards would come looking for the party.

This was a soft time limit: they weren't cut off after two hours, but going over would change the situation and make escape more difficult.

Ofc they went over but it really sped up the end of the adventure, made the escape super exciting, and we were able to do the whole thing in <3h total, incl. setup.

Now I'm not saying that all modules should also release the source text, and I recognize the gray ethics of using this unauthorized reproduction of the module text. But it was striking to me how different this experience felt and I wanted to share.

I acknowledge that there is something to preserving and presenting the authoritative version of a module so that players from different games, even different eras, can have a shared experience.

But there's no denying the thrill I found here. (fin)

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But it was totally game-changing to just... change the text of the module. No longer was there a separation between the "authoritative" text and my annotations, as soon as I saved my changes they were indistinguishable, on equal footing.

As I prepped and ran the module, the document grew in some sections and shrank in others as I added notes, changed encounters, even deleted whole chunks that didn't fit what I was doing.

Dear readers, it was exhilarating. (cont.)

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As such it was pretty simple to convert it back to a Word document. A bunch of the formatting was off so it took a little while to fix the styles and formatting, but when I was done, I had a 95%-complete, *editable* version of this module.

And let me tell you, it was a revelation. I always make tweaks to modules, my hard-copies have post-its and notes in the margins and pages stuck in; my pdfs have lots of annotations and highlighting. (cont.)

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5e is close enough to 1e/2e that conversion is generally straightforward so I wasn't really looking specifically for a 5e *conversion*, but more like some additional clarification and fan-suggested tweaks, etc.

However I did find a 5e conversion of the module from before CoS was published. This isn't that big of a deal by itself, the text was mostly copied from the module, but I could tell this pdf was exported from MS Word (cont.)

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So as I'm reacquainting myself with the old module via pdf and doing some work to insert it into our campaign, I look around to see what kinds of updated resources I can find for this classic module.

BTW I know Curse of Strahd exists, but I didn't need a whole campaign setting, just a creepy town with a gothic castle and the classic pdf is $5!


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Recently I had what felt like a revelation in one of the games I run. Let me share.

I've been running a 5e Forgotten Realms game for almost 3 years. It's fun and experimental, the players were all new to RPGs when we started so there aren't a lot of sacred cows. I wanted to experiment with running classic modules in a 5e game and circumstances converged such that it would be appropriate to run classic 1e Ravenloft. Very exciting for me! (cont.)

So in your game, bringing the "bad guy" to the authorities might be totally moot. Are the PCs prepared to dispense justice and deal with the consequences?

Ibid.: " For most of Republican history there was no formal law criminalising homicide: the Roman government was so deliberately decentralised that it did not see itself as a state which was harmed by private homicide. The murder of a private person did not affect the various magistrates’ power, and therefore the state need not interfere."

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