Using The Doom Pool For Opposition

I’ve seen some discussion regarding the doom pool regarding using it for all contests and tests, and figured it would be useful to share different ways it can be done. Using the doom pool this way can streamline running Cortex quite a bit, but it’s not quite as simple as, “Just roll the doom pool […]

The Seven Ways That Roll20 Wooed Me

It looks like my last post didn’t come across the way I planned – such is the way with the written word and attempts at humor. My irony meter was definitely off, because several things I thought were good attempts at irony didn’t work. For example, “I am really in IT” isn’t some kind of […]

Five Ways Roll20 Is a PITA

Roll20, and virtual tabletops in general, to me are the best thing ever to happen to tabletop gaming. It makes gaming more flexible and less dependent on time, location, and having to clean the house before everyone shows up (not that that stopped some people I’ve gamed with, but still). For people with busy schedules, […]

My GM "Binder"

Since I’ve moved over completely to using Roll20 for running my planned weekly game, I’ve likewise started to use a completely digital solution for tracking and planning my games. In the past, I had the literal GM Binder, typically a three ring binder with colored tabs something like these: I’d fiddled around previously with a […]

Oh, Hai There!

I’ve been kind of quiet lately. I was a little burned out, a lot of it having to do with my old job that was sucking a lot of motivation out of me. So I got a new, better paying, database engineer position. But the end result is that I’m not blogging from work – […]

Set Inputs, Turn Crank, Receive Bacon

A recent thread on RPG.Net spawned a rather meandering discussion about how – basically – all RPGs are pretty much the same and don’t offer meaningful choices because it’s always “Add these numbers up, roll for whatever” no matter what, and the GM has to use a lot of judgement in the rules, and maybe […]

Ludonarrative Dissonance

So I’ve found a new term that describes a problem that pretty much every gamer has ever encountered, anywhere: ludonarrative dissonance. It satisfies my logophile tendencies (I mean, my blog’s name is Aggregate Cognizance) and it pretty much hits the phenomenon on the head. In short, as you can see from the TV Tropes entry, […]

I Don’t Fudge Die Rolls

And it’s not likely for exactly the reason you might think. I’m not part of the “let the dice fall where they may” crowd. I have not seen roleplaying games as physics simulators for quite a long time. I’m actually one of those GMs who always rolled behind the screen, explicitly so I could fudge […]

Starting In Media Res

Currently I’m planning for a Fate Core Tribe 8 game. As usual, all of the players are new to Tribe 8. On top of that, Fate Core is a little bit different than what they are used to system-wise. After some pondering, I’ve decided to fall back on a tried and true technique for getting […]

Software for RPGs

I’ve been looking around at various Windows applications or web services to help out with organizing or running rpgs. Once I sit back and look at all of the options available it’s mind-boggling. We’re in a virtual golden age (no pun intended). Here are some of the tools I’ve used or have found that help […]