Author: Dru

I read, write, roleplay, travel, teach, and occasionally do research. I am a lizard, a warrior, a minimalist, and a scholar.

You Win Some, You Lose Some

“Ninety percent of everything is crud.” —Sturgeon’s Law The last guest is out the door, the gaming paraphernalia has been swept away, the trash bin is overflowing, the sink is piled high with dishes, and the clock is showing 2 a.m. Another gaming session over. And, invariably, the GM will wonder, “Did the game go […]


Ask Not for Whom the Die Rolls…

When the gamemaster sits across from the players and starts a game, s/he becomes, simultaneously, cooperative storyteller, impartial judge, and ruthless opponent. The GM must tell an entertaining story, make fair decisions about the characters’ actions, and present the characters with challenge and danger. These three duties often conflict, and never more so than when […]


Divvying Up the Loot

The villain’s dead, the dungeon’s sacked, and it’s time for the characters to start divvying up the treasure. The DM sits back and pops open a soda, knowing that this is going to take a while…. There are several ways to split treasure. Some are irrational, some are rational; some favor the sneaky and some […]


How to Run a Good Bad Guy

Sometimes we GMs get so busy counting turns, rolling dice, and keeping track of our monsters’ hit points and spells that we forget to act, which is a pity, because acting’s a big part of the fun of being GM. Some of my favorite times as a DM are when I get to play the […]


The Adventurer’s Contract

“So,” the merchant said, rubbing his hands together and looking over the desk at the adventurers gathered there. “Will you take the mission?” “It sounds very interesting,” the mage said thoughtfully. “Here’s our contract.” He leaned forward and laid a sheaf of parchment on the desk. The merchant eyeballed it as though it were a […]

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