Character Design: Loner, Schemer, Resource

CHARACTER DESIGN LONERA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Loner, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Schemer, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Resource, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

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Story Structure for Writers and Roleplayers

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Tell better stories using your favorite tabletop roleplaying game!

We all know that stories need a beginning, a middle, and an end. Hero goes on quest, hero faces obstacles, hero completes quest. Lovers fall in love, antagonist keeps lovers apart, lovers end up together. Things beyond the protagonist’s control change, the protagonist faces adversity, the protagonist learns to adapt and achieves greatness. On that basic structure writers and storytellers throughout the ages have woven variations and created masterpieces. We keep coming back to the same foundations today for one very good reason: those structures are versatile and continue to work.

This book will help you to leverage basic story structure and use it to your advantage. You’ll be able to say what you want while keeping your audience engaged. The three-act structure and its variations will be discussed in detail, along ways this structure can be expanded beyond a single story and into a series or campaign. In the end, you’ll have new tools in your storytelling toolbox, along with the knowledge of how and when to use them in your own creative works.

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Character Design: Sage, Judge, Skeptic

CHARACTER DESIGN SAGEA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Sage, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Judge, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Skeptic, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

Download your FREE copy now!

Character Design: Leader, Mastermind, Mentor

CHARACTER DESIGN LEADERA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Leader, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Mastermind, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Mentor, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

Download your FREE copy now!

 

Story Design: The Search

STORY DESIGN SEARCHHave you ever wanted more story in your roleplaying game stories?

What you’re about to read isn’t a story unto itself. It’s not a finely polished tabletop roleplaying game adventure. It’s a template for a particular kind of story. It goes over the three-act structure for that plot type, and covers what has to happen in the beginning, the middle, and the end. It explains the sorts of things that you need to prepare before you start developing the story, and the things that you need to craft and develop after you’ve got the blueprint for your specific story put together. This book is designed to help you plan how to tell a search story effectively, with the least amount of work possible. Because it’s all about story, it is system-agnostic and useable with any genre or setting.

While this is a complete book unto itself, it’s also an excerpt from Story Structure for Writers and Roleplayers, also published by Dancing Light Press.  It’s a big book that goes into greater detail on how to get the most out of the three-act structure, as well as developing a three-phase series (campaign, if you prefer) with a clear beginning, middle, and end. This is only one type of story that’s included in that book. There are a total of 20: the breakout, the change, the chase, the coming of age, the curse, the dark horse, the decline and fall, the duel, the journey, the mystery, the obsession, the payback, the rags-to-riches, the rescue, the revelation, the romance, the sacrifice, the search, the seduction, and the taboo. If you want to use your favorite roleplaying game system to tell stories with more depth than kill monster, get treasure, repeat (not that there’s anything wrong with that), it is worth looking into.

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Character Design: Innocent, Drifter, Hindrance

CHARACTER DESIGN INNOCENTA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Innocent, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Drifter, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Hindrance, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

Download your FREE copy now!

 

Character Design: Caregiver, Aggressor, Voice of Reason

CHARACTER DESIGN CAREGIVERA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Caregiver, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Aggressor, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Voice of Emotion, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

Download your copy for FREE now!

 

Character Design: Warrior, Destroyer, Cavalry

CHARACTER DESIGN WARRIORA RESOURCE FOR BETTER ROLEPLAYING

There are scores of sourcebooks providing classes, templates, and models for characters based on the categories of powers and abilities they possess. But what about personalities? This booklet provides archetypes for three common sets of character motivations, values, and interactions. They are broad and adaptable, and intended to help guide you in determining how your own character might behave. Each archetype is intended to provide you with ideas on how to better roleplay your character.

Within this supplement you’ll find a Protagonist archetype, the Warrior, meant for player characters; an Antagonist archetype, the Destroyer, designed for villains; and a Supporting Character archetype, the Cavalry, for use with other types of non-player characters.

This is an excerpt from Building Characters for Writers and Roleplayers, usable with any game system or any sort of fiction. The full book contains additional information on creating detailed character back stories, determining character goals, and crafting a well-rounded character personality that’s entertaining and fun to play.

If you find this booklet useful, at the end you’ll find a link to download the full version of Building Characters for 20% off!

Download your FREE copy now!

 

NOW AVAILABLE: Understanding Alignment

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Alignment is possibly the most hotly debated element in traditional roleplaying games. Many people find it to be a useful way to get a handle on character motivation. Others find it far too vague to be an effective tool. It is literally two-dimensional and absolute; a person is either good or evil, lawful or chaotic, or a perfect balance. There is no room for subtlety or nuance in the rules as written.

Even different editions of games using alignment offer varying explanations of what combinations are possible, and what those mixtures mean.  In systems that otherwise provide numeric representations and statistical models for success and failure, alignment is open to interpretation. Aside from some restrictions on and prerequisites for character abilities, it’s left for players and gamemasters to sort out.

Yet alignment remains virtually unchanged where other elements of classic fantasy roleplaying have either evolved or fallen away. The reason is because arguing about alignment can be fun. We want alignment to make sense. People like to discuss whether a celebrity, historical, or fictional character is one alignment or another. Memes are shared, online quizzes are generated, and motivational posters are created. All of which goes toward developing some meaning and practical utility.

This is not the definitive resource on alignment. The topic is so subjective that nothing could be. What this book presents is one possible interpretation of alignment, and a system for using it to enrich your game. It presents an alternate way to describe alignment, as a means of customizing your character’s personality, goals, and beliefs. There are simple mechanics to reward characters who embody the tenets of their alignment, and penalize those who stray. If it doesn’t answer all of your questions about a character’s stance toward morality, you should at least find enough fodder to continue the never-ending conversation.

*Portions of this book were previously published as The Forager’s Guild Guide to the Nine Alignments by Asparagus Jumpsuit.

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NOW AVAILABLE: Group Dynamics

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You have a game. You have people willing to play that game. Now what? There are several good resources on how to plan and run an adventure. Finding other players is as easy as conducting an internet search or dropping in at your friendly local game store. What’s missing is a comprehensive guide to organizing a group, dealing with disparate personalities, and handling the various issues that are likely to arise.

Over the years I have run and played in dozens of games with all sorts of people. I’ve played with groups with as many as 17 players, in a weekly group that held together for years. Every group that succeeded had certain things in common; all that failed shared the same set of flaws. What if we put the same level of rigor around group dynamics that we put into learning the mechanics and balancing adventures? What if our expectation that other players behave courteously and responsibly were as high as our requirement that they know their character’s abilities and understand the system — or are at least willing to learn?

Most of you don’t need to be told how to play well with others. Unfortunately, you’ll run into people who do. For whatever reason, they never learned this particular set of social skills. Sitting down to play a game with them can be like herding cats — occasionally entertaining, but mostly frustrating. You’ll wonder if you’re wasting your time, and begin to think about other things you could be doing that involve less hassle. I have seen people leave groups, and quit the hobby entirely not because they didn’t enjoy roleplaying or love the campaign they were in, but because no one knew how to coordinate a group or deal with difficult players.

Rather than hoping that your group comes together organically, with people magically self-organizing and good things happening by accident, you can plan. Prepping for the success of your group is as essential as knowing the rules of the game and having everything you need ready to run an adventure. With a little bit of forethought you can build a game group that runs smoothly. Then you can focus on the serious business of having fun, week after week, for months and years to come.

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