raging_swan (raging_swan) wrote,

Gaming Advice: 5 Ways To Speed Up Play

Game time is precious time. But all too often, we don't use it as effectively as we could...


(Art: William McAusland [Outland Arts])

I've previously blogged before about getting together a gaming kit and having good gaming habits. In this article I discuss other ways to speed up play. It makes sense, after all, to get as much done as possible in each gaming session (while having fun).

Some simple and easy tactics to speed up play include:

  • Have a Treasurer: It speeds up play if one player keeps a list of all found treasure. It also means, treasure doesn't get lost or misappropriated. Ideally, a player who likes bookkeeping and can work out treasure shares between sessions will take on this role.

  • Have a Marching Order: When exploring a sunken tomb, the trackless depths of a mountain range or a ruined castle it's a good idea to know everyone’s location. Setting a marching order enables the players and GM to quickly and easily note who might hear a certain sound, spot a skulking enemy or (inevitably) get injured by the exploding door trap. It's worth deciding on a order for a variety of situations. In a dungeon for example, having a marching order for 5 ft. and 10 ft. wide passageways covers most eventualities.

  • Have a Watch Rota: It seems adventurers are almost always sleeping somewhere they shouldn't. Whether it's in a camp site deep in the woods or in the depths of a dungeon, such locations are often rather dangerous. Sleeping without a watch is dangerous at best and suicidal at worst. That said, discussing the watch rota every day is both boring and pointless. Decide a watch rota once, write it down and stick to it.

  • Know Your Role: Irrespective of your character's race and class, your character should fulfil a certain role within the party. Know what that roles is – and crucially – fulfilling it not only speeds up combats and other challenging situations, but also improves the survivability of your character (and his companions).

  • Help the GM: The GM is a busy chap. He's drawing maps, answering questions and plotting against you. Helping him by keeping the play area clean and tidy is an easy win. This could include cleaning off the battle mats, putting away figures, keeping track of initiative and more.

Do you have any more tips to speed up play? Share them in the comments below and remember you can download this – and every other advice article – for free at ragingswan.com/articles.

Tags: advice articles, gaming advice, raging swan press

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