27. What are your essential tools for good gaming?
At the root, the only essential elements for me to have a good game are a few friends who want to play “pretend” together and for approximately the same types of stories, rules, or experiences.
Then again, we all love our toys, tricks, and hacks.
I have mentioned before some of the things I always bring with me to a game convention, particularly my beloved All Rolled Up filled with pens, index cards and dice, dry-erase media such as my Noteboard, and a variety of card decks as oracles and visual inspiration. I also carry a blank book to take game notes and sketch scenes, and lists of names to draw from for new characters.
And here is another one I keep mentioning, but there is always one new reader who may find it useful: Robin’s Laws of Good Game Mastering, by Robin D. Laws (Steve Jackson Games), an excellent, easily read, and inexpensive primer for new GMs.
Handwritten notes about grid movement
14. Favourite RPG accessory
Ah, by now you know that I have a terrible time trying to narrow down favourites. Let me share not one, but several of my favourite accessories:
- All Rolled Up, Fil and Paul Baldowki’s creation to carry your gaming kit in style. I have the Harker Adventurer and I love it.
- Backstory Cards, to help quickly create strong character and setting ties.
- Deck of Fate, which can serve not only to replace Fate dice, track initiative, or substitute for fate points, but also as an oracle or inspiration.
- The Noteboard, a folding dry-erase mat with grid on one side.
- Blank plastic cards, dry-erase/wet-erase
- Plastic card stands and other game parts from Spiel Pro.
- Dry-erase sheets
- Transparent acrylic table stands—a letter-size one for the game poster (used at conventions) and small ones for individual character pictures.
- Small standing dry-erase board as initiative/precedence tracker.
- Sticky notes of all colours and shapes!
- And online: Roll20, Google Drive, Vyew.