What do people reckon is the best value for buck in terms of preparation for GMing a session?
At the moment Im thinking its working on a cast of NPCs and their motivations and goals.
But Im interested in hearing otherwise, or ‘yes and…‘
And I was all like…I dunno:
It really depends on the game. This has become an impossible question to answer without knowing what game you’re playing, what the game is trying to accomplish and the tools it provides.
And he was all like, what:
How do you mean?
And I was all like, does this work:
I use the tools the game hands me. If the game doesn’t hand me tools, I probably won’t be playing it long.
Burning Wheel hands me the players’ beliefs, instincts, relationships, reputations, affiliations and traits all crossed up with the campaign’s situation. Those are the things I’m day-dreaming about as I think about the game, as I burn up monsters or NPC’s.
Sorcerer hands me kickers, demons and everything on the back of the character sheet.
Apocalypse World hands me MC moves, threats/fronts and all of the little descriptors in the playbooks.
Houses of the Blooded has aspects, family, domain/seasonal complications.
So, when you ask what the best practice is for doing prep as a GM, I say that best practice for me is to choose one’s system wisely so that the tools the game puts on the table helps us all have a solid game.