Avenka Thalma's page

260 posts. Alias of Avenka Thalma..

Hi !

I seem to have a problem when creating my games : I know the big picture, I handle very well all NPC and PC interactions, my characters are alive and rich, but when it's time to think about challenges the PC will face today, I don't have too much inspiration. I want to create my owns games, I don't want to do modules, and I'd like to add other elements than combats in the action parts of my games.

Do you have any suggestions ? Sure I could throw in some puzzles, riddles, or other classic elements, but I'd like it to be consistent with the rest of my game...

In fact, I'm wondering mostly HOW you think as a GM when it's time to put those things into your preparation, rather than WHAT those elements are.

Thanks !

Hi ! I am a beginner at this game (just played 3-4 times) so sorry if it has been asked before, but I was wondering if I was right in this : For all points below, of course it's "unless stated otherwise on your card" :
1-) You can play spells even if it's not your turn
2-) You can play spells anytime during a turn (before, while, or after exploring)
3-) Your spell can affect someone at your location but not at other locations
4-) You can play many spells in one turn but only one per check (but other characters can add other spells for that check)

Thanks in advance !

Hi !

I only have one PbP under my belt, and I am now able to know what I like and don't like. I would very like to join in a group that :

- Like to role play a lot ! Yes action and character progression are fine , but what I'm looking for is mostly character interactions with great role play.

- Post once or twice a day per player, no more, to be able to post quality instead of quantity.

- Can wait in combat for real init order to take place, because acting before your turn is messy in my opinion. It's no big deal IMO if a combat round takes 1 day. It also gives the GM time to prep more.

- Is willing to play for a long time, of course, we always want to go for the long run...

- Is composed of 3 or 4 players + 1 GM rather than 7-8 players like we see a lot... Like I said, I'm willing to be a part of a group that has fun together and a great chemistry, rather than to absolutely smash heads and be a power group...

I'm not proposing to GM because I'm still relatively new to pathfinder, but I'd really like to play in a game that has all of the above. I don't mind any game (AP or module), just know that I GM Rise of the runelords though, so if it's that, I'll have some meta knowledge but try to keep it ok in game...

Anyone interested with those criterias ? Are there other people that think like me ?

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Hi everyone !

First, let me introduce this thread concept : Yesterday, I talked GMing with a colleague, and gave him this solution to his problem (which I'll talk later in this post) and he was very happy with it and said it would help him a lot, because he never GMd like that and was always frustrated with that situation. I thought about it and saw no reason not to share it with others. I don't know about you, but I always feel like I've grown as a GM in the last 20 years or so, but I still have so much to learn and am still so far from my (unreachable?) goal of quality.

I didn't see any thread like this, so I'm sorry if something like this already exists. Usually, someone has a problem and asks a question and people answer, but I thought : what about just creating a thread where all GMs give general advices, tips, tools for other GMs, no theme, just ideas that made life easier in their games that others could use, you know, just sharing experiences and good results, something they didn't see in rules books, but just tried because they had an inspiration.

So I came up with two of my own (for now). It's nothing fancy or revolutionary, just little ideas that maybe could benefit other GMs. It's not a thread to ask questions about a problem (there are plenty of those), but rather to give general advices for others to use...

Idea # 1 : Perception checks and players that know something is coming because they have to roll :

This was my colleague's problem. He tried to bluff (make them roll when there was nothing around them, but he found it irritating in the end). My two cents : What I do in my games, I ask for players to roll 5 "passive" checks before the game and I note them in a spreadsheet. Every check that can be made without the character trying to do it is rolled and noted, with their bonuses of course if they have some... So for example, if the character wants to find something, I make him roll because he is actively trying to perceive something, but if it's for an ambush and he is not aware that his perception is sollicited, then I use their passive rolls and the players don't know about it. When those 5 rolls are expired (it can be 2 hours later of 6 sessions later), I ask them to do another 5... My colleague found it really interesting, not very long to do and 100% transparent for the players. It can be used to perception, but I found it rather useful for social interactions also (the check VS bluff)... Players don't have to know that the NPC is trying to bluff them...

Idea # 2 : Knowledge of characters in the long term :

Sometimes, as a GM, I tend to forget details about previous sessions, and if you play for a long time, you forget a lot of details. One of them are knowledge rolls you made them do for XYZ situation. It happened in the past that a player asked me if he knew of that beast, that location, etc... I didn't remember if I told him or what roll he had on his dice, or even sometimes if he did indeed encounter that creature at all. My solution : A spreadsheet in which I note all the knowledge checks I made them do and the result they had, with the info I gave them about that roll at the time. So when 6 months later the same creature pops up in front of them, I just go to my spreadsheet and tell them that either "no, you don't know that because you rolled a 5 the first time you encountered it", or "yes, you know ABC", or "roll me a knowledge check because you never did before for that creature"...

So that's it for now about me, I hope I helped a little, and I would be very interested in knowing what you do in your games to make it easier, what you find works with your players...

Ok, so I know many threads treat this subject, but I need advice for something specific. We just had our 5th game of rise of the runelords yesterday (I won't spoil anything here), and since the beginning, I'm trying to figure out the best way to do "dungeon" or location exploration...

1- I tried on one game to just describe them the location they were in, kind of "you turn left, then walk some 50 feet and there is a closed door in front of you...". One of my players got frustrated because I wasn't drawing a plan for them, and after trying to do it himself, he just abandoned and rather made a logical plan with words rather than drawings, kind of left, left, right... The experience was not satisfying for anyone.

2- In another game, I did a lot of prep and cut tiles piece by piece and when they moved their minis on the map and opened a door, I added another piece to let them see further. It was not a good-looking result, just blank paper, but my players didn't seem to care and seemed to prefer that option, but honestly, I found doing that prep extremely long and boring, and I won't do it again (it's not just the players that need to love their experience, isn't it?).

3- In the game yesterday, I switched to maptools, and I had "players view" on on my TV for everyone to see, but the thing is, it's in a dark place, and many times, I had to move the screen just to my computer, add a monster or recheck the map with the GM view to be sure of where they were going, and then put it back on TV, and they found the experience too long for what it brought to the game.

It just seems there is not an optimal option both for my players and myself as a GM up to now... I think I'll go with maptool just for the encounters in broad daylight, when I will be able to let them see all the map and monsters, and for the dungeon parts, I'll go back to minis. The thing is now, do I let them "guess" the exploration part, or do I give them the answers ? Do I give them the map, do I just skip to the encounters and important stuff, or do I let them figure out everything ? Do I just tell them to roll survival/dungeoneering and tell them info regarding their scores ?

I really don't know how to handle this... They often argue with me when I tell them they are lost, and they say "if I were there, I would see the rooms and I would orientate myself, but just with words, I can't see that the corridor angles at 30 degrees east...".

SIGH !!! GM in desperate need for the ultimate way to do this, all advice will be appreciated. Thanks !

Hi !

I'm a noob at pathfinder and my players are too. We have played homebrew games for 20 some years, but we never played d&d or other published games. I decided to try pathfinder, and for 6 months, I've listened to podcasts and read a lot and bought a lot. Yesterday, I GMd the 2nd session of rise of the runelords (anniversary edition), and I'm afraid I messed it up. I'd like to have some tips or reactions please, as well as some answers, because I'm quite desperate.

1. When they are asked by Hemlock to go to the desecrated vault of father Tobyn, Hemlock and 2 soldiers went with them to guide them in the cemetery and to check them as they did their thing, but as a GM, I wonder if Hemlock should have gone alone, or did the job himself and opened the crypt himself. I let the PCs do it with Hemlock in the background, but it felt to me a little artificial. Not a big deal, maybe he wanted to test them...

2. With the discarded robe of bones in the vault, I described it to my players, but I thought that they should roll a knowledge arcana to know what this is, and nobody had a good score, so they went to father Zantus for an answer, and he said it was a necromancy robe that summonned skelettons. I know, in the core rules, there is no necromancer (I don't know if it exists at all in fact), but in role play, I thought at the moment that it was a good term to use. Should they have known what it was, or is it ok they didn't ? (Same thing with the potions of healing they found in the goblin bodies in the first session, I made them roll a knowledge nature to find out which potion it was, is it ok?).

3. I felt that my players were a bit "bored" with this section of non-action, with all the NPC encounters (Foxglove wanting to hunt, Shayliss that was rejected by the fighter, their own personal stuff...), so I skipped the hunt with Foxglove (he wanted to go at dawn and sleptover finally), and I felt that they wanted to go elsewhere, so I made Hemlock go to Magnimar sooner than expected (3 days before Shalelu arrived) and ask the PCs if they wanted to stay in town while he is away. Now, with 2 days before the end of the week (for which they have been paid 50 gp each (is it enough, too much?...), because they don't stop saying they are mercenaries, not heroes), I wonder if I messed it up. They are now with mayer Deverin and Shalelu, and I don't know what to do. They wanted to go with Shalelu "hunting" the gobelins and checking the region, but she said she worked alone. Next morning, I think I'll have the halfling barmaid give them the Tsuto note to make them think of other things than leaving...

4. Overall, I wanted to add my grain of salt to this adventure, to role play it the way we did with our home games, mixing it up, but I think for now I'll just go with the book and try to respect the order of things to come, because as well as I have experience GMing and making my own stuff, yesterday I lost control of the situation and at one point, I didn't know if my mistakes were too severe or not. Of course, my players don't know that Sherif Hemlock should still be there, but I know that when they'll be in the catacombs of wrath, he'll be back from Magnimar with help, so when they will go to thisletop later, why would Hemlock and his help not go with them ? Aaahhh! I don't know what to do ! How can I let the NPCs behind logically ? And if they are still not back from Magnimar, will my players say "we'll go find out what they are doing, maybe they are in trouble?"...

Any help will be very appreciated.

Bonjour à toutes et à tous !

Hier soir, nous avons brisé la glace et joué pour la première fois à Pathfinder (c'était pour nous tous notre première expérience à Pathfinder, bien que nous ayons plusieurs années de jeux de rôles derrière la cravate, des jeux home-made surtout). Je suis le GM et trois joueurs ont pris part à cette séance.

J'ai choisi L'éveil du Seigneur des Runes (Rise of the Runelords) pour le fait qu'il s'agit d'un classique qui couvre la base du jeu, et qui aussi je crois est une bonne approche pour tout nouveau joueur, plutôt que d'aller dans une thématique plus pointue comme des pirates ou encore une aventure qui nécessite plusieurs règlements et options complémentaires...

Bref, tout ça pour dire que j'ai trippé, et les joueurs en ont eu l'air aussi !

Concernant le Journal d'Alana Delty : Je me suis dit qu'une PNJ qui aspire à être une "pathfinder" serait l'idéal comme prétexte pour écrire un journal de la quête. Elle écrira les événements qui se sont produits selon son point de vue, mais j'inclurai également d'autres POV d'autres PNJ lorsqu'elle est absente de l'action, et même certaines fois des notes du GM (comme mes commentaires hors-game sur un fameux fumble qui a eu lieu hier et qui a été le clou de la soirée), afin de capturer le portrait global de l'aventure à l'aide de plusieurs perspectives différentes. C'est un peu comme un "behind the scene" si on veut, dans le but de partager cette expérience et de l'immortaliser par écrit, en plus de pouvoir en discuter avec d'autres gens qui ont pris part à cette aventure et qui ont vécu des situations similaires ou différentes...

Je sais qu'il y a des tonnes de threads et de journaux sur cette quête en anglais (svp mes joueurs, n'allez pas les voir!), mais justement, je me suis dit, pourquoi ne pas en créer un en français, il y a si peu de sources dans cette langue je trouve, du moins comparativement à l'anglais...

Bref, tous ceux qui voudront commenter seront les bienvenus (sans donner de spoilers svp, je vais envoyer ce lien à mes joueurs). Dans les prochains jours, je vais poster régulièrement pour commencer ce journal proprement dit, et souvent, ce ne seront que quelques paragraphes à la fois, car je préfère faire plusieurs petits posts qui se lisent vite plutôt qu'un gros chunk d'un coup.

À plus tard !