Table Secrets! Or how to play (old, maybe newer) D&D in a world where RAW is a lie.

So around 15 years ago I started sitting in on RPG sessions as a third party to directly observe how people interact with the rules, primarily with 3.5, since that was a game with a very strident RAW community, but also with other games. The results were very interesting, though it was a totally unscientific […]

Lazy Declaration

Here’s an option you can add to most conventional RPGs that have a core mechanic. It’s called Lazy Declaration, and it’s inspired by my work on Storypath (multiple actions) and Modern AGE (finalizing/adding detail to an action after resolving it through stunts). In Lazy Declaration you don’t say what you’re going to do before you […]

What an RPG Developer Does

I’m an RPG writer and developer. Sometimes the term “lead designer” gets used with slightly different responsibilities, and sometimes it gets used to no difference in responsibilities. In different companies, the exact responsibilities, and whether it’s a contract or staff position, vary. For instance, I don’t do any layout, and strictly work with word count, […]

Zero Draft

So, elaborating on yesterday, I’m going to talk about your zero draft. If you’re writing for someone else, you may think that once you get out the  length and message you need, you’re good–you should just hit send. Maybe a spellcheck is in order, but after that? Go. You shouldn’t. You have not produced a […]

2K a Day

I don’t know who needs to hear this for their career development, but apparently this is not well known: In long form tabletop RPG writing it is generally expected that you can produce an average of 2000 near-first draft standard words per day. This doesn’t mean every day is a 2000 word day. I have […]