Guest Post: Effective Preparation for a One-Shot

22334399426_7fd635708e_zThis is the third post in a guest series on One-Shot RPG adventures. Today, we check in with Jarin Dnd. Jarin is a frequent contributor/game master to the Facebook One-Shot Group, which has been mentioned previously in the series. – jw


In my 30 years involved with Dungeons & Dragons, Spelljammer, Shadowrun, and a few other tabletop roleplaying games, I have been both a player and a Game Master (Dungeon Master) on numerous campaigns, one-shot spin-off sessions of longer campaigns and adventures that lasted only two or three sessions. After moving and taking almost a year off, I found myself missing the storytelling and friends I had made over the years. As this yearning to return grew, I found several YouTube channels focused on the Tabletop RPGs that I grew up loving and quickly started watching them daily. As I listened to live game plays and discussions by such people as Esper the Bard, DawnforgedCast, Fistful of Dice, Tabletop Terrors, and BeABetterGamemaster, I remembered the 30 years of good times and the awesome stories I had helped tell, including a campaign that I ran several times with no single group lasting long enough together to complete it. Continue reading

Guest Post: One-Shots v. The Long Game

This is the second post in a guest series on One-Shot RPG adventures. This week’s post comes to you from Justin Helmer. Let’s go! – jw

I guess I’ll start with a little background. The first time I had ever played was in 1978 (I know to some of you that was before time began!), my 1st game was a one-shot adventure and I was hooked. Anyway, I digress. Personally, I don’t run a lot of one shots.  Most of my games feature very long, very dark storylines. So my setup can take months to even a year or more.  Lately I’ve run a few one shots (Thinking they may require less setup, less writing, less fuss);  I was wrong in some ways and correct in others. Continue reading

Guest Post: The Anatomy Of A One-Shot

353px-Da_Vinci_Vitruve_Luc_ViatourThis is the first post in a guest series on One-Shot RPG adventures. This week’s post comes to you from Ian F. White. Ian can be found online at his site. Without further ado, I turn you over to him! – jw


In my time as both a Player and a GM, I have probably spent the same amount of game time in one-shots as in campaigns; until fairly recently campaigns had outnumbered one-shots.

I joined the Facebook group “Tabletop RPG One Shot Group” about a year ago and have – I hope – improved my preparation and presentation of my one-shot skill-set since then. The reason for me concentrating on One-shots are varied but in the main concern availability for regular campaigns and also the fact that I can try out so many different RPG systems, Players (and GMs).

However, in this article, I am simply concerned with sharing with you a little advice – including an overview my process for planning a one-shot scenario. Continue reading

RPG One-Shot Guest Post Series

In the run-up to the release of Short Story RPG, I wanted insights from a few experienced game masters on what’s important to consider when running single-sitting adventures. So I put out a call for guest posts. There was a pretty great response, so over the next few weeks, we’ll have a short series of posts to get a variety of perspectives.

  1. Ian F White: Anatomy of a One-Shot
  2. Justin Helmer: One-Shots v. The Long Game
  3. Jarin Dnd: Effective Preparation for a One-Shot
  4. Stay tuned…!