Friday, December 28, 2012

Serious Business, Character Business

The Monarch: " (sighing) Jollyrancher82, never get henchmen.''
Jollyrancher82: "You know, that's not my real name.''
The Monarch: "Well, how was I supposed to know? I used my real name.''
Jollyrancher82: "I just thought, you know... "The Monarch," I thought you were into cosplay...''
The Monarch: "Real name! And I am into costumed business, not costumed play."
 The above quote has very little to do with this post, but it does encapsulate how serious I am about Character Business.  Not business in the sense of Neckties and Profit-Margins, but business in the theatrical sense, that is:
9. An incidental action performed by an actor on the stage to fill a pause between lines or to provide interesting detail.
 14. (Performing Arts / Theatre) Also called stage business Theatre an incidental action, such as lighting a pipe, performed by an actor for dramatic effect (
Character Business is one of the things that can make or break a game for me.  PCs with good character business can rescue a dreary plot and if done well can make a good game great.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Why Aren't You Reading?: What Does the Protagonist Want?

A new feature for Antagonist Relations, "Why Aren't You Reading?", where I'll blab about some book, blog, comic or some other thing(s) that I think that you (yes, YOU!) should be reading.  First up is Todd Alcott's fantastic What Does the Protagonist Want?

Alcott is a screenwriter who puts up great posts where he dives deep into the screenplays of many movies and other media artifacts, like his great series on episodes of the Venture Bros.  Recently he started an incredibly detailed series diving deep into the Avengers, which as of my writing this post is already at Part 6 and only 30! minutes into the film.  Alcott's screenwriting observations on what works and what doesn't in a script are not only fantastic and interesting reading, they're also easily applicable to GM'ing.  Reading the series on the Avengers, where he discusses how the movie manages to juggle the various ensemble characters without letting the audience become disinterested, has already made me think about how I can juggle the PCs in my ensemble Reign game without the other players getting bored as each gets their moments.

So, what are you waiting for, go read his first post on the Avengers and then dive deep into his very excellent archives.

GM Commentary: Last Rest Episode 5:...And Through the Woods...

Same caveats as always... go read the summary of Last Rest Episode 5:...And Through the Woods...

Post-Apocalyptic Names

As I'm prepping to run a Godless mini-campaign, I wanted to have a good post-apocalyptic name table to draw from. The Apocalypse World...