It's been a really great week of readings this week. There was a whole bunch of posts talking about adventure design and gaming history.
In the RPG Blogging scene, the backlash against last week's old school arguments haven't seem to settle down yet. While old school blogs are quite done with the subject (for now) but this seems to have inspired some blogs with posts claiming new schools and gamer status just to mix things up a little. Edition wars are also in trend right now with bloggers contributing their hate towards 5E on Twitter.
But if you're not interested in those then there is also a myriad of other interesting topics being discussed as well which makes this week's readings all the more fulfilling.
Advanced Gaming & Theory
Story vs. Theme
Theme as an Adventure Tool
Differentiating story and theme using the classical modules and how to create meaningful adventures and encounters out of them.
A Hero Twice A Month
Getting (and keeping) the party together
3 different ways used to bring the party together other than the old 'meet in a tavern'.
Say Yes, but Get There Quick
Very good thoughts and pointers and what DMs should be aware about saying yes to player's option of resolving a situation.
How To Survive A Combat Encounter
4 ways to improve your character's survival (and usefulness) in combat.
Cogito, ergo ludo
Edition and playstyle wars
A response to Donny's post (see below).
The 5x5 Method
An interesting matrix for creating adventures, major and side-quests.
d4, d6, d8, d10, d12 and d20s behind the skeleton in the closet
"Interested in Role-Playing Games? Your Questions Answered..."
A look at an old promotional leaflet of RPGs by Games Workshop (What? Games Workshop made RPGs?) back in 1984/5.
Big Bad Weapons
A mechanical look at axes, hammers and spear weapon groups of 4E.
The Purpose of the Meta Plot
How the metaplot can help to determine game design, player's decision making, in-game 'artefacts' and creating adventure hooks.
The Gamescience Dice Test
The GameScience Dice Test - take 2
Ever watch the Gamescience dice video from Gencon 2008? Now it's time to put them to the test (with nice statistical charts).
Jonathan Drain's D20 Source
If You're Going To Bash 4E, Do It Properly
Listing out the arguments that matter and don't matter in 4E.
DM's Guide to Converting 3E Adventures to 4E
Some general ideas on how to convert 3E adventures into 4E mechanics.
The Two Dollar Game Session
How asking for $2 from your players could help to supply your group's gaming needs from books to tables.
World Building Tools & Tips
7 tools, generators and articles to help your worldbuilding.
RPG Blog II
Setting Organic Boundaries
Creating boundaries for a sandbox environment
A host of good advice and ideas for would-be adventurers.
Cugel the clever or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Vancian Magic
Some explanations on how to love Vancian magic.
Sham's Grog 'n Blog
ORIGINS of a HOBBY
A very nice look at the timeline of wargames that eventually evolved into D&D.
Dave Arneson quotes on various issues in RPG from Blackmoor to TSR and rules.
Siskoid's Blog of Geekery
Role-Playing the Upper Echelons
Problems faced when playing as high-leveled characters and how to solve them. From motivational to power issues.
Four Ways To Get Your Imagination Back
How to revitalize your imagination for descriptions, problem solving and combat.
The Fine Art of the TPK
Sandboxes are for kids and cat-turds. Railroads are for hobbos and railcars
The light at the end of the sandbox is an oncoming train!
Donny strikes gold and hot iron on GNS, Old-Schoolism and its advocacy. Followed up by a response post.
The Gamer Dome
The 4e Sphinx: WotC's gift to armchair theorists
An interesting point about 4E powers that don't quite make sense.
The +1 Road to Happiness in RPGs
A link to an interesting blog post of reward frequency in RPGs.
Some Quick Thoughts on Skill Challenges
Some interesting general observations about skill challenges.
The 10 Greatest Dungeons & Dragons End Bosses
10 greatest villains from D&D modules. Who will be the greatest of them all?