Dice Tower

Dice Towers – Useful Tool or Gaming Gadget?

A big part of the Thirdwalling gaming philosophy is breaking down the game into its component pieces, enhancing the key elements of play and discarding the frivolous components.  Some upcoming entries will detail the contents of our pack, highlighting how this philosophy has led to a streamlining of the game experience without a lot of extraneous clutter.  But for now, our philosophy has had very little need for something as bulky and single-purposed as a dice tower.  Now we’ll decide if we were right in casting off this gaming gadget, or is it an indispensable piece of tabletop technology?

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Crafting Series – Custom Screens

In a previous entry, the Thirdwalling crew examined the role of the Game Master Screen and the barrier it can pose to effective communication at the game table.  This week, we’ll take a look at the basic construction methods of building a custom screen for use in your game.  This screen is fairly basic, but we will discuss some options that the Thirdwalling staff has explored on other custom screens that could benefit you at the table as well!  Fair warning:  This is a picture-heavy article as it contains a picture-tutorial of construction.

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Player Tip #5 – On Absentia

The past few weeks have been a hectic time for the Thirdwalling staff.  The turmoil has reminded us of one unequivocal fact:  Life happens.  Whether it’s schoolwork piling up, vacations, family obligations or stress from the day job; players will occasionally miss a game session.  The way you handle that absence as a player can mean the difference between a seamless night of play without you or a polite invitation for you never to come back!  This week’s player tip explores the steps you should take as a player to minimize the impact of a missed session for a long-running game.

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Pathfinder Society Play

As any of my players will tell you, I am not a big fan of the d20 system – whether it’s old school D&D, Star Wars d20 or the newer Pathfinder and World of Darkness I just never really cared for the system.

Recently, I have been attending an OGREs Pathfinder Beginner Box event at my local game shop. Tonight we graduate from the Beginner Box into Pathfinder Society play and I’m actually pretty excited about it. I explored the Wizard class a bit in the Beginner box and really liked it – so tonight we shall try Barbarian!

While I still am not a big fan of the complexities of the system, I will say that I greatly enjoy the social aspect of the game!

Map Example

Map software!

In a recent GM Quick Tip we talked about websites for gaming maps.  We got a lot of great feedback on the Tip as well as some good comments from a lot of map makers.  However, one cannot build a gaming empire on randomly generated maps and Google Image searches! So what software do you use when you want to make your own maps?

Below are a few of the resources that I employ at the Thirdwalling table when I’m building maps for my current Trials of Everrun game for map and dungeon building!

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Game Master Tip #7 – Keeping Players’ Attention

Our lives are full of distractions and the game table is no exception.  Whether the group meets in a game shop or the game master’s living room, they’re constantly bombarded with everything from cell phones to children, significant others and work emails.  A big challenge to the modern game master is keeping their players’ attention over the din of this constant bombardment to the senses.  By applying some of the same principals used in public speaking in business, game masters can capture the table’s attention and keep it despite the worst distractions their players can dream up.

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