An archive of all of the articles I’ve written for Gnome Stew.

Johnny’s Five - Five Weapons Shops - Part 2 Modern and Sci-fi

Inspired by Troy’s Fantasy Wagon Train article, it struck me the other day how much I loved walking into weapons shops in the video game RPGs. Having this small, free form area that was full of interesting visual tidbits, a couple of interactions…

Johnny’s Five - Five Weapons Shops - Part 1, Fantasy

Inspired by Troy’s Fantasy Wagon Train article, it struck me the other day how much I loved walking into weapons shops in the video game RPGs. Having this small, free form area that was full of interesting visual tidbits, a couple of interactions…
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Gnome Stew’s Video Guide To Gencon

If you’ve never been to Gencon, or another large gaming/geek convention, it’s really hard to get an idea for exactly what it feels like. When I went to my first Origins 7 or so years ago, I couldn’t even begin to conceive of what the experience…

Johnny’s Five – Five Realistic Things About Caves That You can Use In Your Game

A few weeks ago, I went on a weekend trip down to Mammoth Caves in Kentucky. The cave system at Mammoth Caves is the longest known cave system in the world, comprising ~400 mapped miles of intertwining caves. That is 400 miles that they know…

Running A No Character Advancement Game

A few days ago I was talking with my friend Alec about games we were running. He’s recently gotten into an old school superhero roleplaying game. One idea he had going into it was that there would be no character advancement in the form of…

Video Gnoment – 3D Mapping On The Fly

  I find that a great amount of immersion can be gained by introducing some kind of 3D mapping element to the game. In this video, I talk about a few cheap and simple 3D mapping options that you can use to build maps on the fly. Since…

Things You Can Learn From Pixar’s 22 Story Rules - Part 2

Recently, Emma Coats – a storyboard artist at Pixar – tweeted a bunch of tips for telling good narratives. They’ve gotten collected into a list of 22 story basics (she has more if you check out her twitter) and they’ve exploded all over…

Things You Can Learn From Pixar’s 22 Story Basics - Part 1

Recently, Emma Coats - a storyboard artist at Pixar - tweeted a bunch of tips for telling good narratives. They’ve gotten collected into a list of 22 story basics (she has more if you check out her twitter) and they’ve exploded all over…

Bucket Lists For Players and Characters

A while back I was asked by someone what was on my bucket list. It was weird. I didn’t really have one for myself. There are things I want to do in life, but none of them feel like they are on a bucket list. However, my mind immediately leapt…

Recapturing The Excitement

A lot of things have recently got me thinking about recapturing the excitement in my game. The game is coming to it’s preplanned end, but it has been plagued by a slew of minor issues recently. I’ve been rolling with them and delivering…

curse the darkness Review

At Marcon this year, aside from making $100 dollars for charity the hard way, I played in a playtest of a game called curse the darkness (lowercase, as if it were being whispered). It is being created by Matt McFarland and you can find more…