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Old 01-06-2013, 03:50 PM   #2
ErhnamDJ
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: OK
Default Re: High GM burden - Time saving tricks?

The biggest time saver I've found is understanding when it's dramatically appropriate to leave out, or skip over, certain bits that would take up a lot of time for no benefit.

Like the example of the NPCs. Once you know your setting, and you have the major players statted up (which you should have before the game begins), you shouldn't need to do more than write down three or four game statistics for new introductions.

Say the characters meet a mysterious old man. It could be as simple as writing down:

Old Man
Farming-11
Ugly
Mysterious in manner [-1]
Likes telling tall tales [-1]


That right there can be a very interesting encounter. You write down something like that in your notes and you can write down any other important details you come up with as you go along. You don't need to fill out all of his skills. You don't need to put down that he has his son-in-law as an ally or that he's worried about his mare. Those are the kinds of details you'll want to let yourself fill in on the fly as the characters converse with the old man.

Point total and all that doesn't matter for NPCs. Not unless you decide to allow one of the players to take them as an Ally, and even then I wouldn't do any more than guesstimate at what value they are. The Ally rules are too rigid, I think. Point total doesn't give you any idea at all of how useful the Ally will be.

Even for enemies they'll be fighting in combat, you only need to put in the important part.

Random Swordsman
Broadsword-12
Shield-10
ST 11
Has a longsword and medium shield

Done! That's all you need right there.
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Last edited by ErhnamDJ; 01-06-2013 at 03:54 PM.
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