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Conversation Guide for Role Playing Characters 3.0
by Jim B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/19/2019 15:56:27

Frankly, if you don't need much help running a petitioner/granter conversation, these templates probably aren't for you. If you sometimes struggle to decide how an NPC reacts in a petitioner/granter conversation, these templates could help.

The title "conversation guide" is a little misleading. First, the document doesn't cover conversations in general. Instead, it specifically covers a petitioner/granter conversation: the petitioner wants something that the granter is potentially ready, willing, or able to do, say, or offer. The granter might or might not grant the request, and there might be enthusiasm, strings attached, or counter-offers.

Second, I'd expect something called a "guide" to have more guidance. This document offers two printable templates with a few examples filled in. That's it. There's no explanatory text beyond that. There's no guidance on persuasion techniques, personality differences, or whatever else you might expect from something called a conversation guide. Also, why are all the sample action verbs marked "X" in the examples but not in the template? It doesn't say. Why does the Capability/Interest/Control Map have three columns, when the middle column isn't labeled, and isn't used in the examples? The bottom row of the middle column is grayed out, implying a use for the middle column, but there's no explanation.

The templates are system-neutral. You might use the templates to come up with your own mechanics for handling these conversations, such as what drives a petitoner to go with an offer vs a threat, or what it takes to get a granter to respond with one answer or another.

If you're planning ahead, you could use the templates to anticipate some potential conversations between the PCs and particular NPCs. If needed, use the Capability/Interest/Control Map to identify what the NPC is ready, willing, and able to offer or threaten and what the NPC wants or needs. Or at least I suppose that's what that template is for. Review the conversation template as a checklist for different levels of response the NPC might have. You could make templates for whole categories of NPCs, such as city guards, a faction, or an organization.

The templates make no distinction between which side is a PC or an NPC. In general (I assume), you'd fill in only the NPC side of the conversation, according to whether the NPC is the petitioner or the granter.

During play, if you've prepared templates ahead of time, you could hold petitioner/granter conversations without having to think through it all on the fly. If you have to make it up on the fly anyway, the templates might serve as a quick checklist for thinking through the possibilities.

The blank templates aren't fillable PDF forms. Either you print them and fill them out by hand, or you make your own documents using the templates as inspiration.

The version 3.1 document is, as the product description says, more printer-friendly. Where the 3.0 dialog template had filled-in silhouettes for the two characters (needlessly using up more toner), the 3.1 version has facial outlines instead. As of the time I'm writing this, the preview shows the 3.1 version. The content is identical otherwise, including the example comment in which one character offers a bribe by saying "My pursue is not light."



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Conversation Guide for Role Playing Characters 3.0
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Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
by Petteri T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/12/2018 13:42:21

The method presented here seem really robust and powerful, but it is not really presented clearly in this book.

The guide lack overall example that would show how to pick Theme, then derive Keywords from it, use those to inspire Character creation, add those characters to Plot snippets and Preparing a session. Now the guide has separate examples for each step accompanied by quite arrogant "Now- I just wrote those too in 60 seconds by looking at my keywords" description. The text explicitly asks not to look at the keywords at the appendix, since those have nothing to do with the rest of guide.

Almost all examples have this same problem: they demonstrate the end results of the method and not the steps required to reproduce them. It is nice that author can create a five part plotline in 10 minutes, but I certainly can't, and the end result of the method as example does not help me to achieve that.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
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Creator Reply:
There were shortcomings on this title for sure in terms of depth of clarity and explanation. The method is relatively subjective and requires some practice that is hard to put in writing in full. I would recommend checking out a few of my other titles namely Adventure Design in Practice and Preparing Scenes - they are extensions to this publication - and should be more concrete for one part. Build your keyword library whenever you come across cool hooks and aspects that you don't have immediate use for. This way you can remind yourself of that single idea in a different context. The mind constructs logical narrative, far better than pure random generation.
Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
by Nicolas L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/14/2018 09:42:45

I really wanted to write a review about this product.

WHAT I LIKED
  • The article is always "to the point".
  • The method's chapters unfolds in a logical chronological practical order.
  • It is versatile : you can apply it to many different genres and mechanics where there is room for characterization : adventuring, investigations, narrative, simulationism ...
  • It can help you to quickly unstuck your campaign between two sessions.
  • It is a convienent way to bring twits and deepening narrative to your player.
  • It gives you some hints about pitfalls to avoid (like how to go from GM-story-centricity to player-driven-narrative).
  • It does what it says : it uses associations techniques to build plots for roleplaying games.
ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT
  • Reading this article is good, but when you want to apply the method, you are forced to reread everything to take notes of what to do before being able to put it into practice. This is not very user friendly. @ThinkDifferent : Can you add a step by step checklist sheet at the end ?
  • I am not a native english reader, and there was two chapters (alas, I do not remember which one and can't reread the document right now) that were very hard to follow. Because of language and convoluted writting. @ThinkDifferent : Can you try to untangle some things in the chapter so that a 5 year old human who is not experimented with idioms can understand ?

Many thanks !



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
Thank you so much for your feedback! Indeed my writing and editing is not on par on expressing some of my ideas and concepts and methods in general and that is something I really hope to improve over time.
Universal Character Template
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 16:07:55

Generally a good template but I think all RPG players have their own preference. Mostly got me interested in learning more from Ackerman and Puglisi.



Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Universal Character Template
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Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 16:05:27

There's plenty of good guidance on writing adventure plots but the title is slightly overlapping with other publications by the same author. Nevertheless, it's a short and valuable read.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
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Elegant Encounter Design
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 16:04:00

This is truly something unique .. while there is plenty, I hope there would be more of it. New GM's in particular are in for a treat.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elegant Encounter Design
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Advanced Fast Initiative
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 16:01:57

Author is not trying to hide this is a very complex and detailed system. Looks interesting but equally intimidating.



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[4 of 5 Stars!]
Advanced Fast Initiative
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Modern Day Theme Inspired RPG Plots & Hooks Expanded
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 15:58:45

The idea is great and I get the author's encouragement to innovate more. Could be a bit longer and more varied in theme but for this price I cannot complain.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Modern Day Theme Inspired RPG Plots & Hooks Expanded
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Elegant Initiative Design
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 12:37:44

Maybe more for game designers but makes me think that perhaps a few tweaks to basic initiative could be in order... need to try it out first, my group is not too open for sudden house rule changes.



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[4 of 5 Stars!]
Elegant Initiative Design
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Conversation Guide for Role Playing Characters 3.0
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 12:36:35

Nice simple template. Not sure if I'll print it but it has given me ideas on how to structure a conversation better.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Conversation Guide for Role Playing Characters 3.0
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Adventure Design in Practice
by Hans D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/06/2017 12:32:35

A solid title by the author! I enjoyed reading his personal experience of adventure designed turned into a guide. I'm looking forward to see how the story ends!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Adventure Design in Practice
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All Think Different [BUNDLE]
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/04/2017 17:29:06

I'd value the bundle at about $5.

I assume Mr Saari isn't a native English speaker. His products contain many odd sentences, grammar mistakes, spelling errors, etc.

The page count of the documents aren't a good benchmark; many pages appear to be presentation slides with text. Some products are much more informative and interesting than others.

That all said, much of what he writes about is interesting from a game master/referee perspective. His illustrations are mostly good and reinforce his ideas well.

If I could suggest only one thing to the author, it would be to reorganize and consolidate all his work in a single document. Target that document to GM's for about $5.

I think the author has a strong interest in Modiphius' Conan RPG using a 2d20 system. Perhaps he could expand his existing content to include a more generous description of his play-style and techniques using that system as well.

There is potential here, but it requires better organization and editing.

(I provided a very similar--almost verbatim--review on each product to both inform and direct a potential buyer here)



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
All Think Different [BUNDLE]
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Creator Reply:
Thanks, for bundle view this is ok but I'm kindly requesting to have more focused feedback on the titles themselves.
I've removed page count on titles that are not in traditional book format.
On Conan 2d20, I have house ruled the system for my taste quite a bit, in particular combat. I'm happy to share my house rule documents upon request, drop me an email (contact publisher) to request a copy.
Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/04/2017 17:23:12

First, I would simply recommend getting Mr. Arto Saari's "All Think Different BUNDLE". I'd value the bundle at about $5.

I assume Mr Saari isn't a native English speaker. His products contain many odd sentences, grammar mistakes, spelling errors, etc.

The page count of the documents aren't a good benchmark; many pages appear to be presentation slides with text.

That all said, much of what he writes about is interesting from a game master/referee perspective. His illustrations are mostly good and reinforce his ideas well.

If I could suggest anything to the author, it would be to reorganize and consolidate all his work in a single document. Target that document to GM's for about $5.

I think the author has a strong interest in Modiphius' Conan RPG using a 2d20 system. Perhaps he could expand his existing content to include a more generous description of his play-style and techniques using that system as well.

There is potential here, but it requires better organization and editing.



Rating:
[2 of 5 Stars!]
Structured Free Association Story Plot Method 2.0
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Creator Reply:
Please provide a more focused review feedback on the title.
Universal Character Template
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/04/2017 17:22:07

First, I would simply recommend getting Mr. Arto Saari's "All Think Different BUNDLE". I'd value the bundle at about $5.

I assume Mr Saari isn't a native English speaker. His products contain many odd sentences, grammar mistakes, spelling errors, etc.

The page count of the documents aren't a good benchmark; many pages appear to be presentation slides with text.

That all said, much of what he writes about is interesting from a game master/referee perspective. His illustrations are mostly good and reinforce his ideas well.

If I could suggest anything to the author, it would be to reorganize and consolidate all his work in a single document. Target that document to GM's for about $5.

I think the author has a strong interest in Modiphius' Conan RPG using a 2d20 system. Perhaps he could expand his existing content to include a more generous description of his play-style and techniques using that system as well.

There is potential here, but it requires better organization and editing.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Universal Character Template
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Creator Reply:
May I request you provide the feedback and review more focused on the title itself?
Modern Day Theme Inspired RPG Plots & Hooks Expanded
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/04/2017 17:15:11

First, I would simply recommend getting Mr. Arto Saari's "All Think Different BUNDLE". I'd value the bundle at about $5.

As of early-November 2017, this is really the weakest of all the author's current products. Cut and paste headlines from today's news and you reproduced the content here. The idea of using news and current events as inspiration is good advice. Perhaps instead, he should have provided a short article explaining and illustrating his techniques for selecting and re-purposing such events in RPGs scenarios and settings.

I assume Mr Saari isn't a native English speaker. His products contain many odd sentences, grammar mistakes, spelling errors, etc.

The page count of the documents aren't a good benchmark; many pages appear to be presentation slides with text.

That all said, much of what he writes about is interesting from a game master/referee perspective. His illustrations are mostly good and reinforce his ideas well.

If I could suggest only one thing to the author, it would be to reorganize and consolidate all his work in a single document. Target that document to GM's for about $5.

I think the author has a strong interest in Modiphius' Conan RPG using a 2d20 system. Perhaps he could expand his existing content to include a more generous description of his play-style and techniques using that system as well.

There is potential here, but it requires better organization and editing.



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
Modern Day Theme Inspired RPG Plots & Hooks Expanded
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Creator Reply:
Thanks, but actually none of the plot lines here were actual news headlines, I just wrote about things I've thought I've seen in media for last decade or so.
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