Thursday, February 21, 2013

Inspiration At The End

RPG Inspiration Cards C. 2012
by Obsidian Serpent Games
One of my frequent experiences while GMing convention games is running out of time. Whether due to overpreparation resulting from my terror of "running out" of material for a 4-hour convention session, or just because players have taken the game and run with it (usually both!) I often have to close out a convention game through some kind of summative narration at the end of the session.

This time around, I introduced a more player-facing process in the last 15 minutes of each session. I asked each player to consider a question about what happens next for their character, the group, or the story. After each player stated their question, I asked them to draw an RPG Inspiration Card from the deck, and to answer their question using the card they drew as guidance. Where a player felt "stuck" interpreting the card, others could help - but only if asked. It worked, particularly in the Leagues of Adventure game.

As a GM, I have in the past used RPG Inspiration Cards as a GM to prognosticate a variety of things: including the weather, whether the moon was out at night,  proximate terrain in adjacent zones, direction of scatter, the disposition of NPCs, whether a character was being watched by an NPC, and much, much more. But normally these have been my own card draws.

I think the players got a kick out of using the RPG Inspiration Cards as a tool for thinking about what came next for their character. I'll be doing more of this!

FATE fans should also note that this was the first card deck published with a FUDGE die randomizer on each card. You can see the result of a 1DF roll right under the d20 result on the middle left hand side of the card. The result circle is empty, indicating that this result was a blank face.

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