In Praise of Human Artistry

A logo for all seasons

Why take the time and pay the money for an illustrator, when you could get a an AI-generated logo instantly at little or no cost? Here’s why.

You and Your Characters Need Status

The Reverend Jim Jones created an environment in which people gave everything for status.

Real people and fictional characters do seemingly inexplicable things all the time. Frequently they do so because they are seeking status, which is a broad and powerful force. As GMs and players, we can use status to inform the creation of NPCs and PCs.

The Once and Future Twilight: 2000

Yes, that Mk19 gunner is the largest human ever.

The original Twilight: 2000 was a product of its time. Decades later the world is in a different place, and so am I. Would a campaign using Free League’s new version of the game work for me?

In Praise of Informed Subjectivity

We seldom get everything we want.

Ours is a highly creative hobby. Yet for some reason we insist on evaluating tabletop RPGs as if they’re appliances and not works of art.

Gamemaster Goodies from UJ

I know this is random, but I always liked this shot from my time at JOTC in Panama.

Here are links to thirteen posts from Setting First’s older sibling. They cover worldbuilding, managing campaigns, running sessions, and thoughts on the hobby more broadly.

The Jumbo Shrimp Rule

They are small but big.

History is chock full of absurdity. Reality is stocked with bits that don’t make sense. Keep this in mind as you build out even the most serious campaign world.

Verisimilitude & Violence

It looks worse than it is.

My assumptions about believability in roleplaying games, particularly with regard to violence, have shifted over the years.

Eclipse Phase Remixes the Future

Do not judge a book by its cover in Eclipse Phase.

The Eclipse Phase setting can prompt thoughtful gamers to explore their assumptions about political, social, and economic structures in a context of wild adventure.