Storium Theory: Maintaining the Pace

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on January 26th, 2017. If you’ve narrated (or played, for that matter) on Storium before, you know there’s a pretty large tendency for games to slow down as they go on. If you haven’t narrated or played on Storium before, well…you’ve just been clued in. It’s simply a fact of playing on Storium, and it happens for a variety of reasons, from games just being more “exciting” for players and narrators when they’re new to life sometimes getting in the way. It’s important to accept the fact that your game will encounter slowdown at some point during its run. But there’s a difference between accepting that fact and encouraging the slowdown to happen in...

Storium Theory: The Spice of Life

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on January 5th, 2017. I hope everyone had a great holiday season – we’re back for 2017! Today, I’d like to take a little time to talk about variety in the context of a Storium tale – specifically, from the standpoint of the narrator. Variety is important. I’ve written before about avoiding repetitive writing as a player by making sure to read over your prior posts to ensure you aren’t repeating the same themes over and over again in too short a time span, but variety is important for a narrator as well…perhaps even more so than for a player. As a narrator, it is important to give your players varied situations to work with. Yes, you might be writing an action story, but...

Storium Starters: Village Assault

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on December 22nd, 2016. For today’s article, I’d like to try something a little different. Rather than my thoughts on Storium┬áconcepts or general roleplaying or narration, I’d like to give a bit of a gift (’tis the season, after all): a starting scene for a game, with challenges and outcomes, and with thoughts on where the story could go from there. Hopefully, this might be something you could find useful in narrating for Storium – either as something to use directly, or just as a means of seeing how you might start thinking about the game’s direction from the get-go. I’m going to call this (and any future articles of this type) a Storium Starter. As a formal statement:...

Storium Theory: Custom Card Settings, Here We Come!

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on October 13th, 2016. I don’t normally do news articles on this site, but this week, I wanted to write a bit about Storium‘s latest upgrade. I guess this still isn’t technically a news article so much as an opinion and dreaming about the news article, but hey, it’s closer than I usually get. For those who might not have seen the announcement, Storium was recently updated with a neat set of new features, which I’ll summarize here: On a Refresh, players will now be able to choose from every card they have played over the course of the game, rather than just from those since the last Refresh. On playing a Wild card, players will be able to create a new wild card as usual, or now choose...

Storium Theory: Let’s Make Some Trouble

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on October 6th, 2016. I’ve written a bit on this blog before about playing during a challenge–in particular, how players should leave things open for other players to play on and involve other players in the challenge to tell a complete story. Today, I’d like to write about playing during a challenge again–specifically about making trouble in a challenge. By “making trouble,” I don’t mean being disruptive to the game atmosphere, of course! This is about writing an interesting story, not getting yourself booted from games. When a narrator sets up a challenge, the narrator provides some details about what is going on–what threats currently exist, what the conditions...

Storium Theory: Player-Driven Outcomes

This post originally appeared on Gaming Creatively on September 29th, 2016. Way back when I was writing my initial coverage of creating Challenges, I mentioned that there were a few types of outcomes: Player-Driven, Narrator-Driven, and Mixed. Since then, I’ve written a fair bit about how to set up Narrator-Driven outcomes–how to clearly describe what will happen on a given outcome (while not completely stifling creativity, mind). And I’ve written about my personal version of “Mixed” outcomes, the “Choice” outcome. But I haven’t really written much about the Player-Driven sort of outcome. A Player-Driven outcome, to recap, is an outcome where the narrator leaves as much as possible open to the player’s...