Many articles on this site and others, and the gaming groups I am a part of, only view gaming as a hobby or at most a dramatic art. I would like to present a new perspective because for me, gaming is a much different type of activity. For me gaming is an exercise for self improvement. What I am advocating is a meta-approach to your gaming that includes a self reflective process.

To complete the Joey Z. experience I now bring to you all of his wonders and custom rotes. The rotes he knows and uses include many of the basic rotes included in the Mage The Ascension core rulebook as well as the ones he created himself. I hope you enjoy.

Ever since the host of my regular gaming group put in wireless Internet access (802.11b, affectionately known as "wi-fi"), I've really started thinking about having my gaming notes and various campaign tools stored on the web. My personal laptop is a TiBook with wi-fi card, so it clicked with me at a recent session that there was a wide variety of resources available to a GM so-equipped. From on-line NPC generators through web based forums acting as virtual help lines, access to the web from the gaming table presents a powerful addition to the the GM's arsenal. The capabilities presented by a laptop alone can be of great assistance to overworked GMs. Coupled with a wireless or wired Internet connection, the toolkit is wide and capable.

I stepped up to the lip of the concrete embankment and looked down on my new student. Spread below me was a concrete skate park filled with ramps, rails and one lone skater. He looked just like they described, small frame, spiky, blonde hair and the kind of face that made women melt. He was dressed as his kind commonly dressed, sneakers, baggy short pants and a loose fitting, red, button-up shirt with short sleeves. He zipped back and forth across the park performing stunts that were normally reserved for only the most elite of athletes and with every one I could feel the telekinetic manipulations he performed.

When I first began playing Dungeons & Dragons at the tender age of eight, I was fascinated by the alignment chart in the blue Basic Set rulebook. I did not understand it. I asked my father to explain it to me, but not being a gamer, he was unable to shed much illumination on the subject. Now, a little over twenty-four years later, I find I still have not received an explanation of the D&D alignment system to entirely satisfy my curiosity.

Running a business is hard work. This is doubly so if you are moonlighting as a dragon killer for the local duchy on the side. How are you to make sure the horseshoes and armorare mended when you're sitting on the side of a mountain, waiting for the red dragon to leave? While running a campaign, it will become inevitable that one of your players will want to start a business or own some property. As they grow in power, prestige and wealth, they're going to want to have an impact on the world. Becoming a member of the local chamber of commerce is a good way to do that.

Everyone who has run a game has had them, and most of you have read about them. Yes, I refer to the problem players. Those people who make you wonder why you're doing it. There are plenty of articles about them, but we've read about those player types so much that we have it memorized. I've got three new types, and some of you at least have dealt with one or more of them.

Despite the Declaration of Independence, not all people are created equal. Some people are smart, some are dumb; some are strong, some are weak; some are charming, and some are just plain annoying. Under most systems of character creation, though, characters really are created equal. Everyone gets the same number of character points, or at least pretty close to it. Stupid characters can be correspondingly stronger, while charming characters may be correspondingly less tough. It all evens out.

tri*age n.: sorting and allocating need on the basis of need for or likely benefit from medical treatment.Welcome to GURPS Triage, a game of high stress and drama in a medical environment. You may be asking yourself: "Why a medical drama as an RPG?" Well, my only response to that is, because I thought it might be neat, that's why.

Could you do me a favor? Take a moment and think about a person you probably know very well: your Gamemaster. Consider the hours and the effort he's put into learning the system, world-building, mapping, plot, character development, and just plain running the game itself. Now ask yourself, what could I do to thank my wonderful GM for all the work she's done to ensure that I have a fun evening once a week? Sure, you could take him out for a few drinks, send her a thank-you card, or just offer to pay for pizza the next time around, but I think there's a better way - or at least one that's more in keeping with what you received from him in the first place. Best of all, the alternative doesn't cost you a dime. That gift, of course, is an interesting, well-crafted background for the next character you decide to run.

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