PDA

View Full Version : Sorta new DM, I mean GM need help GMing



Ace Bandit
12 July 2005, 09:03 PM
I used to DM (D&D) and every time we got together I'd find some way of screwing things up so about a year ago I just quit playing altogether but I just recently decided I want to start GMing SWRPG but I'm worried I'll screw that up to can anyone give me any advise on GMing Star Wars games? Is it different that AD&D? BTW my main problem was being unprepared for what my PC's did (ex. only having half an adventure or not creating all rooms in a dungeon) and constantly wanting to make minor adjustments to things (ex. killing NPC's off and tweaking the story... ok mabye not so minor) Any tips would be appreciated.

Uron Teff
12 July 2005, 09:17 PM
I haven't GMed AD&D or SWRPG but I've GMed many World of Darkness games like Mage and Hunter! I only got one advice:
Be flexible!
You don't have to have all rooms in a dungeon or corellian corvette mad up on paper. The most important thing is to have a guildline through everything like characters have to find out where to find a specific target. And the rest is done by the characters. The rest is madde up by your creactivity. Let the situation dicide if the bruised heros are meating a tropp of ST or if they met a nice and friendly grany!
For sure you're saying that this would be even worse but if you use your creactivity and your power as GM there will be no problems.

I've been playing like this since I started playing 6 years ago.[list=a]
[/list=a]

boccelounge
13 July 2005, 09:32 AM
Originally posted by Ace Bandit
I used to DM (D&D) and every time we got together I'd find some way of screwing things up so about a year ago I just quit playing altogether but I just recently decided I want to start GMing SWRPG but I'm worried I'll screw that up to can anyone give me any advise on GMing Star Wars games? Is it different that AD&D? BTW my main problem was being unprepared for what my PC's did (ex. only having half an adventure or not creating all rooms in a dungeon) and constantly wanting to make minor adjustments to things (ex. killing NPC's off and tweaking the story... ok mabye not so minor) Any tips would be appreciated.

There are many ways to approach the "storytelling" aspect of GMing, but I find it helpful to split story items into 3 levels: Small, Medium, and Large.

I think of "Small" as all the detail-stuff, like maps and character stats. I try to get as much of this done ahead of time as I can. That way I'm not scrambling for stats or looking up rules during the game session. It's the part of GMing that requires the most detail and preparation, so I try to get this all out of the way first.

"Large" is the big picture stuff-- why are the characters on this adventure, what happens if they succeed/fail to get through it, where they might want to go next, and how it all fits into the larger "Galactic" setting I have in mind. I try to think through this as much as I can too, so that when I'm running the adventure I always have the bigger picture in mind. It helps me keep all the "in-session" stuff the players do in the proper context.

That leaves "Medium," and I define that as "all the stuff that the characters actually do in-session." I find that little or no preparation is necessary for this-- indeed, it's often bad to prepare for this, because players will always surprise you. Generally, if I get all the "Small" and "Large" stuff planned out, the "Medium" takes care of itself.

I've heard this approach called "preparing to improvise." I hope it's of some help.

Also, I highly recommend you study Chapter 12 of the Revised Core Rulebook, Gamemastering. I suspect that most of us skip past this to get to all the cool ships, characters, etc., but it has some highly valuable advice for running SW rpg. Give it a good read.

Starlighter
14 July 2005, 04:49 AM
I GMed D&D since AD&D 2nd Edition, played since D&D 1st edition...and still going strong with 3rd edition and both SWRPG D6 and D20.

What you should do is NOT thinking of a story what you WANT to happen....but you should think of what your VILLIANS want to happen.

Make the storie happen arround the characters and involve the characters. If they don't react to anything, the villain will win.
And just any action they take has it's consequenses and effect on what is happening.

You could put some sub-hooks inthere that draw the player close to the plot line automatically.

Or maybe the villian is specifically targeting the players...so they will have to fight their way out of trouble.

Just make up you mind about the world/gallaxy the player-characters live in and how the world responds to their actions. Actually GMing is VERY easy as long you just prepare your world and characters and have a set of random 'commoners' with names ready.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I once had a GREAT adventure because my players just wanted to explore my game world (in D&D) and hang arround in villages and cities that were on the map but they never visited before.

I think it was a lot of fun. Especially when you see your players getting to "know" your world, or atleast part of it. It's allso cool when your players start saying to eachother: "Hey we may want to go to that tavern, these are nice people there, maybe we can have a night rest for free!"

anyway in these sessions they just walked arround in the cities talked to NPC's and simply by this talking they ended up helping the local guards finding a wizard who illigally used his magic powers within a government building. B)

Cha_man
10 August 2005, 01:33 AM
Finding out what the players want to do before you start might help. I had a questionaire that I gave everyone during another game and I asked about what they would like to do in very general terms and what types of characters they wanted to play. This allowed me to prepare to bring the characters together before character creation started. Yes, some players changed their minds, but most didn't stray too far. It also enabled me to assist the player in preparing a character with a suitable background and abilities before the game started.

LordSei
14 August 2005, 12:17 PM
I try and plan as much of the mission as i can and keep it flexibl so if something changes you can change the mission.
I also keep tabs on rules so if something comes up i fid the rules quickly which helps smooth things also the Galactic Campaign giude helps

Fingon
14 August 2005, 04:21 PM
I'm kind of lazy, but I basically follow boccelounge's outline; I'll have a big picture of what I want to happen, have any specifics of encounters that will happen, and besides that let the players interact with the little universe I created.

Almaster
16 August 2005, 03:47 PM
One way to always be ready is to preplan stuff that you can use anytime. For example, if you are playing and you don't have anything to do, just whip out some thing that you created before hand and do it. One good tool for this is the Galactic Campagin Guide. It has loads of adventure hooks and premade maps, so if you need fast action to keep everyone occupied, you have it.

Remember to always go where the PC's want, but don't go like an idiot. if the PC's go evil, let them, but then make it as challanging as it was when THEY were good so they get a taste of reality. This doesn't mean you shoud slaugher PC's when they go were you don't want them: it just means to not make it some picnic where they get a star destroyer and blow everything up.

Fingon
16 August 2005, 05:59 PM
It's actually pretty hard to be bad if you are in a civilized area... I've had PC's try, note try, to attack the imperials on an imperial planet. It didn't work very well, considering there was an Imperial garrison in the city, imperials in the govenment, and a small defence fleet in orbit. They didn't last very long.

If your PCs' are going to go against the government/the local athority, they should at least be smart about it, ie go where that athority has little or no influence.

Sigma 008
18 August 2005, 08:02 PM
What I like to do is keep an outline of the story I want to tell then I put it out there I try keeping it flexible enough that the players will eventually tie it all together even though they totally went off track. I always do something to remind that this baddie is still lurking about or that if they don't do something about those pirates their trading business is gonna be hit hard. But as I was saying just keep a nice short outline of what you want to do. I personally like to wing it with a little bit prepared. I don't recommend it but if that is what floats your boat then go for it.

Cha_man
20 August 2005, 09:23 PM
Something else, take notes about things that the characters do; it doesn't have to be specific or very detailed (actually depends on your memory and how long you wait to review your notes), or record the session. Little things can have far reaching effects, it's up to the gm to decide what it could be. Sometimes it takes a couple of decissions or acts by the pcs to have an effect or maybe a particular set of actions.

Transporting slaves is a blackmark from the rebels, whitemark from slave traders & some black market groups

refusing to tranport something could be as bad as agreeing; you might not see work for some time, or you could end up strong armed or blackmailed into transporting the goods (drugs, spice, slaves, whatever)

the initial effects should be local; as they continue to grow and develop the characters their actions should become further reaching (not neccessarily galaxy shattering, just be noted by more groups or people)