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Tabletop RPG Tip For Players And DMs (Taking My Own Advice)

I have been into RPGs since 1997. When I first found my love for RPGs I didn't game very often and struggled for years to find a steady group. I tried play by post, play by chat, voice chat and webcam on Yahoo Messenger, and even in store games like D&D Encounters and Pathfinder Society. It was an endless struggle and one that made me appreciate what I have now. When I look back at the struggle it makes it even harder to say no to games today. Due to me having a hard time telling people no to games I think I get burnt out often.

Much like anything in life if you do something too much and stretch yourself too thin you can get burned out of it. It is important to take a break and recharge your batteries every now and then. This is something I am learning at this time in my life because I have never found it as easy to find a game as I do today. A year ago I was struggling to find people to game with even.

The debut of the Tabletop RPG One Shot Group led to a lot of online games happening. I've played in tons and tons of games. I believe as of January of this year I had played in about 30 online games in just a few months. The Provokers Campaign has led to a lot of people asking me to play in their games too. It is a lot to keep up with and I don't even play in a lot of online games compared to some of my friends.

In person I run two home campaigns (as I have said before), and I run D&D Encounters at GrandLan Gaming Center here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. On any given night I have something going on that is gaming related or work related and it can be taxing. I have friends like Matt Click and others who have said they take breaks from gaming altogether for a couple weeks every now and then. I never thought I would want to but lately it seems like I should.

I took some time off from Encounters for Christmas but not from my home games or online games. I took time off from my home games, and Encounters when my son was born in March but not from online games. So I haven't really taken a break from gaming as a whole for any period of time since August of 2014. Gaming is a true passion of mine and I want to continue doing it for a long time but I have found myself at times just going through the motions in some games and that isn't fair to other people.

What are you saying Juce? I'm say that if I have one tip for anyone out there it is to take a break from gaming every once in awhile to give you that spark of energy and enthusiasm again. I am still excited about running and playing games but I want to give it the proper attention it deserves when I sit down to play or run a game. Plus taking time off from your hobbies is a great chance for you to focus on your family or career too.

Do you find yourself needing to take a break from RPGs every once in awhile? Maybe it is some other hobby that you need to take a break from? I would love to hear about it below. Leave a comment and if you like what you read today please share this blog post.

Also check out that sweet Skeleton Dragon Tankard! That would be awesome to have at the gaming table.

Motivation For Prep, Painting Minis, and Crafting Terrain

My biggest struggle with gaming is motivating myself to do things like prep. This carries over to painting miniatures and crafting terrain as well which is something I love to do. Considering my preferred way to game is with miniatures, and terrain this makes things even more difficult for me. Coming up with inspiration is easy for me but motivating myself to sit down and unplug from the internet or television so I can prep, paint, or craft is the true struggle for me.

Realizing this is one of my biggest weaknesses I need to force myself to sit down and spend a night prepping for my various games. I think part of the reason I struggle to do these things is because I find that I need to be doing it so often for all of the games I run. D&D Encounters is run weekly, and I have two at home campaigns I am running. Then there are games I run online. Most of the time I can't prep while listening to Podcasts, or watching YouTube because I get distracted too easily. 

Prep can take me as short as 30 minutes or up to 3 hours depending on the adventure. 30 minutes if the players are possibly picking up where things left off and it wasn't finished. 3 hours if we wrapped things up in a previous session and I have no idea where things may go. I find that if I prep the introduction, and just the encounters the session runs a lot smoother than if I try to anticipate a bunch of potential directions the players may go.

Painting miniatures and crafting terrain is something I am not the best at. It is also a lengthy process for me to sit down and do it. My wife keeps the paint up stairs in her crafting desk. I keep my unpainted miniatures in a box in my basement. I don't have a designated area for painting miniatures at this time. The combination of these things makes it feel like I spend an hour just getting everything I need ready and in one place. Then cleaning up is just as taxing for me. 

Once I have my game space in the basement all set up I will be able to do my miniature painting, and terrain crafting much easier. Getting this stuff done I feel like may motivate me to prep a lot more too. So setting aside time once or twice a week to just sit down and prep, another night to paint or craft terrain should do the trick. The trick for me will be to set times in my schedule to do these things and force myself to see them through.

How do you motivate yourself to prep, paint miniatures, and craft terrain? Do you have a designated area for these things? If not do you think having a designated area would help you? If you do, does it help you to sit down and just jump right into things?

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My Own Game Room

Working on your own game room can be quite a daunting task. About a year ago my wife and I bought our house and of course I began planning out ways the basement could be made into my game room. It wasn't until a couple of months ago that my wife got on board with my ideas a little bit. I say a little bit because she thinks I am crazy to want to make the basement of our 1920's home into a gaming area.

So a couple weeks ago I found a table and 7 chairs through an online garage sale site for $50. It will make a fantastic gaming table. Now one of the players and I have talked about putting a raised part for the battle mat and miniatures on top of. I am also considering building a DM station or just adding about 14 inches off the one side of the table for my area. I've spent some time looking over a lot of different tables hoping one would stand out more than the rest to me.

One of the things that is important for my gaming space is shelving for my miniatures and books but preferably keeping them separate from each other. There is a do it yourself glass case I have seen which would be really cool for my miniatures. I am thinking something like that or a regular case with glass doors would be good for miniatures. I want to be able to display them so even when they aren't in use they can be seen by anyone hanging out in the game room for the evening. As for the book shelves I am going to build some simple book shelves. I haven't spent as much time looking at these as I have looking at tables.

The final thing is purely for show. I'd like to put up a wall for pictures, and posters gaming related. I have quite a few things I have been wanting to put up for a really long time but haven't had a place to put them. Behind this drywall we will be putting in a bathroom which is already partially done. Having this be only about 10 feet away from the table will be very convenient.

When my gaming area is finished I will be posting a before and after video of my game space. Having a designated area for me to play my games will be nice. Some of the other things I will be doing in this space is painting miniatures, and terrain. Filming YouTube videos will take place in this area. Also I will probably be doing most of my game prep here. Having a TV and a DVD player in the room will help.

Do you have a designated game room or area? How is yours set up? Can you share pictures? I would love to see and hear all about your current or dream gaming room set ups.

Please show your support by checking out my other social media sites. You can also support me by clicking on my Amazon links and purchasing something.