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  • File :1243232883.jpg-(16 KB, 392x485, flash_paper.jpg)
    16 KB Using Magic Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:28 No.4654518  
    /tg/ - Has your GM ever used theatrics to make your game experience cooler?

    For instance, at the start of my recent campaign I wanted to give each player a memento that would prove prophetic to some aspect of their character's future fate.

    I bought a bunch of customized d6s (this is GURPS, so it's all d6) that had different symbols on them or where made of cool materials. Roman numerals, bone dice, chinese characters, pictures of a scarab and a bear and a wolf, etc.

    This campaign is quasi historical, set in Ancient Earth (50 BC Roman Empire) so these mementos can all be plot hooks.

    Instead of just handing the characters these special dice, their first adventure had them all together witnessing a scene from their future. They were in front of an oracle and she was reading their futures.

    I had them perform a ritual where they gave me objects they had collected (McGuffins) like a metal brazier, a papyrus scroll, wood from a sacred tree, fire from a certain temple, and waters from a certain spring.

    First they each took a piece of the papyrus and wrote out their names on it and then crumpled it up.

    I then had them lay out the brazier (metal bowl), and fill it with the sacred waters. They then lit a candle using the sacred fire, and next to the candle were cedar fire place matches that represented the wood from the sacred tree.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:28 No.4654519
    I then had each of them come up one at a time and hand me their crumpled papyrus which I palmed and swapped out for one of the special dice that was wrapped in flash paper.

    I held what they thought was their papyrus in the air as I instructed them to wash their hands in the water (to prevent them from the chance of getting burned if the trick didn't work right), grab a cedar branch, light it in the sacred fire, and light the papyrus that I was holding in the air.

    I had them hold out one hand flat in front of them as they lit the paper with their other hand. I dangled the flash paper encased dice over their now wet palm.

    As the flame hit the flash paper, it flared and disappeared and the custom dice were produced magically and fell into their palm.

    They all got a big kick out of this and a few of them were even scared to light the flash paper after seeing how cool the effect was.

    So /tg/ what other cool effects have you or your GM pulled to bring some excitement to your games?
    >> Hal_Turnip !B5waQe4qTs 05/25/09(Mon)02:31 No.4654540
    That is kick ass. Nothing in any campaign I've been in can compare.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:32 No.4654556
    You're the best gamemaster ever bro.
    >> Troll (Bad Dude) 05/25/09(Mon)02:34 No.4654570
    This reminds me of the people think d&d is satan worship
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:36 No.4654587
    Cool idea, I'll bet it was a lot of fine.

    The only vaguely theatrical thing I do is just to have a music track picked out for each and every location, scene, NPC, and battle. For three years of gaming, I never reused a song unless it was a particularly special theme, and even then I often used different versions.

    Lots of campaigns use background music - mine had a fucking soundtrack. My players always said that it added greatly to their enjoyment of the story.
    >> The Scribbler 05/25/09(Mon)02:39 No.4654612
    Oh god that was awesome. Did they get to keep the dice? if i did i would cherish it forever
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:41 No.4654622

    LOL, yeah, we're all adults in the group though, so we don't have our moms bitching at us about cultism and shit like we did in middle school.

    We had HBO in the house when I was a kid, but the only thing I couldn't watch was the Dungeons and Dragons cartoon for that reason.

    Overall the "ritual" was mostly tongue in cheek, this wasn't a "cut your palm and bleeeed into the sacred fire!!!!!" kind of shit the wiccan/goth kids do after they watch The Craft on TV.

    Flash paper is awesome up close, pretty much the safest fire effect you can pull off (no risk of a fuel tank going up, etc... it's gone almost instantaneously), and of course the "oooh, magic dice fell from thin air" thing.

    Plus free swag.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:45 No.4654649

    Yeah, the dice are theirs to keep. And once per session if they are using their special die and they miss a roll and the special symbol is face up, they can re-roll for having been "blessed" by the oracle.

    My local gaming stores actually let me down on the cool dice, but a store for teachers actually had an entire collection of special dice. I guess they are "teaching aides"... in addition to the die I mentioned they had blank dice, math dice, dice with words instead of pips, etc.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:49 No.4654675

    Soundtrack is a great idea. My only problem is that we game at another guy's place and he doesn't really have a sound system... and so far I haven't wanted to bring speakers to plug into my laptop in addition to all the other crap I bring on game night.

    That would be cool though, since everyone does enjoy when someone makes a joke or something happens in game that fits a certain song and someone plays it on their laptop. "another one bites the dust" is a popular choice.

    It'd be cooler if laptops didn't have sucky speakers. You really need volume for the full effect.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:53 No.4654709

    I got some USB speakers for that exact reason. It's really not a problem to tote them around if you have a good laptop bag or a box to carry your stuff around. I find that iTunes is the best for this sort of thing, since you can easily create separate playlists for different adventures.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)02:54 No.4654716
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)03:04 No.4654788
    Ok, since you guys seem interested, I'll spill my next big effect. It's not as flashy, but should still be memorable.

    Since the main plot of the campaign is all about being blessed/cursed and fate and prophecy and all that, and in game terms getting to re-roll dice isn't the same level of coolness as having them magically roll critical hits or critical failures at the GM's (secret) will... I wanted to figure out a way to have a cool dice effect.

    I looked into trick dice, but almost all of them work on a principle that wouldn't work for an RPG. Like the trick dice for Craps ... "Guaranteed 7 or 11 every time!" work like this:

    Die 1: 5s on all sides
    Die 2: 2s or 6s on all sides

    Well, I think my players would spot 1s or 6s on all sides very easily. So this kind of trick is out.

    Other trick dice work on percentages. I.e. they will over time roll more of one side than the other. I am not out to long con my players...if I want to fudge dice rolls to tell a story, I can roll behind my screen and say whatever I want.

    I want the players to SEE that they've been blessed or cursed. Or maybe even have the dice magically re-roll themselves on the table.

    The only way I can think of doing this is magnetic dice.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)03:15 No.4654841
         File :1243235703.jpg-(78 KB, 230x360, white_magnet.jpg)
    78 KB

    So no one really sells anything like this... although I have found references for loaded magnetic dice that were used in the old west/victorian era to cheat people. The table had a powerful electromagnet in it that could be switched on and off by the table operator.

    Well hell, way too much work.

    My current best solution is this...

    It's a plastic coated super magnet that I can paint pips on myself to look like a regular die. But, since it's a polarized magnet, if I put the 1 and the 6 pups along the pole, I can use another strong magnet under the table to actually FLIP the magnet.

    If it is rolled by itself, it can land on any number. Then with another magnet under the table, I can make it actually re-roll itself to 1 or 6... or even one of the sides.... but there's no real way to control which side ( 2, 3, 4, 5).

    Not that it matters, since rolling 1-1-1 is a critical success and 6-6-6 is a critical failure.

    This works really well with one "dice" .... the problem is that it doesn't work with multiple dice because the magnets are SO strong that if you hold 3 in your palm they will slam together and the trick is ruined before it starts.

    Soooo.... If this is my final solution, I think I'll have 3 characters each roll the die once. And manipulate only one die at a time for the effect.

    The fluff to go along with this would obviously be something like.... "the will of the gods is all powerful, they can take you imperfect mortals (what ever they rolled, most likely not a 1 or 6... but easy to switch up if so) and make you FAIL (make the die roll a 6) or SUCCEED! (make the die roll a 1).

    My only problem with this solution is (1) Only 1 magic die at a time. and (2) powerful magnets and computers do NOT mix.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)03:40 No.4655004
    OP, if real, is awesome.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)04:11 No.4655220

    So 3 of the block magnets are out of the question, but I tried to use their smallest magnets from that site, like 1/32" across and glue them into the pip divots and paint over them.

    If I put like six of them attracting on the 6 side, and the fill all the 2-3-4-5 sides with repelling side up, I can sort of get the die to roll a 1 when I want... but the effect isn't super pronounced, and it's not going to work to get the 1 to flip to the 6, since just one small magnet in the 1 pip just isn't strong enough.

    I could probably drill the pips deeper and use more magnets, but I'm thinking that if I get the magnets powerful enough to move the die, they'll be strong enough to stick together if you hold 3 die in your hands at the same time to roll.

    So I haven't worked this one out fully yet.
    >> Anonymous 05/25/09(Mon)05:02 No.4655516
    This idea is made of win! And fire.

    Sadly, my DMs are way too cheap to try something like this.

    The most "theatrical" my games ever get is when the DM makes an artifact (usually just a print out) for us to have or decipher or something. Props are cool, but never any fire. :c(

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