Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Deja vu all over again

Two weeks ago I posted final prep for the game was in full swing. It was my turn to GM. I would be sending a group of adventurers to the Ruins of Castle Falcolnflight in search of treasure, fame and more treasure. Circumstances changed and we played a different game that night.

Now, once again I am beset with the "first night of a new campaign" jitters. This time my worries are all from a different source.  Two weeks ago it was the material of the game that was giving me butterflies. Thoughts of the party racing beyond the finished map, not having enough monsters, etc filled my head.

This time around I am more worried about the running of the game. Areas of concern include

  • Having a large group
  • having two new players
  • working from minimal notes
  • introducing new concepts to the players
Eight players is a lot. IT is a good problem to have.  I would rather have too many players than not enough. The challenge for me will be to establish control. Not of the characters or players, but of the room. I will need to establish leadership. Some of this leadership is already in place through out implied social contract. The rule being, the GM is in charge. However, with a group this large I will need to have a bit tighter control than usual. I don't want the night to be a shouting match of the players trying to get my attention. I do want all of the players to be involved and active. 

Two new players. Awesome! I don't know them, not as awesome. They are friends of friends, so I know they will be good guys. They have a long RPG history, that too is good. I don't need to spend time talking about the basics of  table top gaming. I don't know if they have any GURPS experience or not. Not an insurmountable problem, but it does take a while to get used to a new rule system. I am looking forward to them joining the group. New blood will bring new ideas, and hopefully some new jokes to the table.

With the scope of the megadungeon, I have kept my notes on each room pretty bare bones. I have all the stats for the doors etc and a one or two sentence description of the room. The plan is to expand the description at the table, making notes if I add things to the room. I need to spend some time re-reading my collection of GMing articles about describing locations and evoking responses from players.

Player mapping, a more adversarial GM, and open rolling are three things that will be different from my last campaign. None of these is a groundbreaking advancement in the world of gaming, but there are concepts that are a bit different than the group is used to. I am sure they are up to the tasks at hand. 

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