Quick DM Tip: Defining Character

konncolor2

Here’s a little something cooked up from a couple of discarded pencil sketches by my pal Joe Strunk. With a little lightbox action, some pencil and ink embellishes, and a wee bit o’ Photoshop for good measure from yours truly, we have a Frazetta-homage, of sorts.

Konn and Sion hail from the midlands of Norfrost on the Island of Drakkarsys. Thought of as Fire-tressed Barbarians by the more “civilized” folk to the south, these cunning warriors are born survivors… but more than that, they live for adventure as surely as they’d die for each other.

Quick DM Tip Time:

There are two types of players in my book — roleplayers and dice rollers. I prefer the former. I want the people sitting at my table to immerse themselves in their characters, to become method actors for the time they’re there.

For that to work, the DM has to be comfortable doing the same, breathing life into NPCs for the players to intact with. This isn’t always easy… especially in a sandbox campaign.

My advice? Keep a list of ‘character’ names at the ready, a hundred should do. Then make a list of movie and tv characters you’re familiar with. These don’t have to be ‘fantasy’ characters. Hell, write Tony Soprano’s name down if you like. Next time your players throw you a curveball and you have to improv a scene in a bar or wand shop or whatever, you have an arsenal of NPCs to choose from.

You keep your players in the game by adapting to the moment.

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