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Game Mastering an MBX


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There are several huge topics for MBXing, and one of them is certainly the art and science of GMing. I am probably a newcomer to MBXs compared to others, having played in two (Global Thunder, with Rikki Tikki GMing, and War in 2010, with Bill Jennings GMing). What I've come away with, however, is a profound recognition for such a game's demands on a GM. Not only is there combat to model... in fact, that's the easy part. The GM needs to master several things. Perhaps we'll be able to get Rikki and Bill to join HarpGamer to share their wisdom. But in the meantime, here are several of what seem to be the key topics:


- website design and maintenance

- good picture-making application, for making maps

- knowledge of underlying game systems (usually H4.1 and TacOps, and others, perhaps including TOAW)

- excellent communication skills, especially for dealing with:

( a ) players with sometimes abrasive communication styles (not pointing fingers here)

( b ) players with a first language other than English

( c ) other GMs (lieutenant GMs), especially when RL takes them away from the game at the worst possible time

- well thought-out processes for game mechanics (e.g., sitrep and order processing)

- with air operations, decent working knowledge of spreadsheet software

- the ability to CPX with the underlying game systems

- excellent organizational skills

- others, I'm sure


So, are there key "to do" items to be a successful GM? Are there techniques and technologies that can be shared, to help prospective GMs avoid having to reinvent the wheel? Are there key tools and/or formats for orders, unit descriptions, etc., that can be shared or standardized?

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