Welcome to 2021! This week I’m joined by Mark Meredith and we start out 2021 by going in the “sorta-way-back machine” to discuss 4th Edition Dungeons & Dragons with Mark Meredith. He has been writing for Dice Monkey for over 10 years and recently started to rediscover 4e with his family. He talks about surprising aspects of the edition after years away from it. He speaks to the forward-facing design and energy from the tactile nature of combat. We highlight some of our memories of the edition and focus on positive elements of the 4e experience. It was great fun to talk about the edition and it makes me want to play it again!
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Teos Abadia joins me to present his thoughts on visual aids in D&D adventures and how they may not accomplish their intended goals. He offers examples of graphics and flowcharts that do not seem to add helpful information to the DM as they attempt to run an adventure. We discuss player choice and the utility of the *illusion of player choice and how to incorporate both in a campaign. Teos address some common pitfalls in published D&D content and how that might be remedied in the future.
In recent weeks, I have been asked for input from others in the online community about certain topics. It has been fun to communicate with other bloggers on their ideas and contribute in any way possible. I wanted to direct readers to two recent articles, which feature some commentary by yours truly.
The first is a post at Dice Monkey, which discusses how children learn to assume roles in games such as Cops And Robbers. The author, Mark Meredith, asked me how I thought a specific theory, The Generalized Other, applies to roleplaying games. I provided my perspective, which he incorporated into the article.
The second is a post at Sly Flourish, which details how functioning as a DM can grow frustrating over time. Mike Shea asked me several questions related to how DMs can cope with the frustration of running a roleplaying game. I responded to his questions with specific strategies to first identify and then manage stress caused (or exaggerated) by running games. I believe the information can be helpful to any DM (or player) who may wish to increase their level of patience.
A common theme in many of my articles is understanding behavior and communication patterns before, during and after roleplaying game sessions. Readers who have enjoyed those articles should find the two posts above interesting. And outside of the specific articles I contributed to, both sites feature a plethora of wonderful content to delve into and consume. Thanks to Mark Meredith from Dice Monkey and Mike Shea from Sly Flourish for reaching out to me for their articles!