Good RPG Column – Walt Ciechanowski

I enjoy RPGs, but of late, I’ve been laboring with them. A lot.

The problem is that being the GM is just so bloody difficult, especially for me, the perfectionist. I want the module to have fascinating plot, good character development, a theme, riveting battles, interesting NPCs, and be more like Tolkien or Donaldson than George R R Martin or Kevin J Anderson. Plus, I want it to be a great game, given all my experience with German-style games.

As a consequence, after my first (recent) somewhat unsatisfactory outing as a GM, I’ve been laboring excessively over my next attempt. For, like, almost a year now, on and off (in fairness, mostly off, as the task has been somewhat irrationally daunting).

What I have been trying to find is the Mike Siggins of RPGs. Someone who can write and give me some good tips. Some sourcebooks have some good, practical GMing advice (like the Star Wars d20 Galactic Campaign Guide), but most systems give you too little to go on. The D&D tips in the Dungeon Master’s Guide are particularly unenlightening in the end. And the internet has not been yielding much.

Most of RPG.net’s columns are … well, not that great, and the ones that are good tend not to be from the perspective of a GM. But I recently discovered Walt’s column, which is absolutely awesome (links to previous installments are at the bottom of the page). This is great stuff, good, practical advice you can use, which I think has finally gotten me over the hump. Maybe I can finally finish this thing up.

If anyone else knows of good stuff like this, please forward it along. I’ll add a link to my blog.

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