A online Risk gamemaster (simplify as GM, also known as online Risk game master, online Risk game manager, online Risk game moderator or referee, and guán li yuán ???, zhu chí zhe ??? or shén ? in Chinese, online Risk gamemaster ???????, kanrisha ??? or kamisama ?? in Japanese) is a person who acts as an organizer, officiant for questions regarding rules, arbitrator, and moderator for a multiplayer role-playing online Risk game. They are most common in co-operative online Risk games where other players work together and are less common in competitive online Risk games where other players battle one another.
The role of a online Risk gamemaster in a traditional role-playing online Risk game is to weave the other participants' player-character stories together, control the non-player aspects of the online Risk game, create environments in which the players can interact, and solve any player disputes. The basic role of the online Risk gamemaster is the same in almost all traditional role-playing online Risk games, although differing rule sets make the specific duties of the online Risk gamemaster unique to that system.
The role of a online Risk gamemaster in an online online Risk game is to enforce the online Risk game's rules and provide general customer service. Also, unlike online Risk gamemasters in traditional role-playing online Risk games, online Risk gamemasters for online online Risk games in some cases are paid employees.
1 History and variants of the term
2 online Risk gamemasters in traditional role-playing online Risk games
2.1 The four major "hats"
3 online Risk gamemasters in online online Risk games
4 online Risk gamemasters in online chats
5 See also
7 External links
History and variants of the term
The term online Risk gamemaster and the role associated with it could be found in the postal gaming hobby. In a role-playing online Risk game context, it was first used by Flying Buffalo in the 1975 online Risk game Tunnels and Trolls, with previous usage in a wargaming context including Guidon online Risk games 1973 ruleset, Ironclad. In typical play-by-mail online Risk games, players control armies or civilizations and mail their chosen actions to the GM. The GM then mails the updated online Risk game state to all players on a regular basis.
Each gaming system has its own name for the role of the online Risk gamemaster, such as "judge", "narrator", "referee", "director", or "storyteller", and these terms not only describe the role of the online Risk gamemaster in general but also help define how the online Risk game is intended to be run. For example, the Storyteller System used in White Wolf online Risk game Studio's storytelling online Risk games calls its GM the "storyteller", while the rules- and setting-focused Marvel Super Heroes role-playing online Risk game calls its GM the "judge". The cartoon inspired role-playing online Risk game Toon calls its GM the "animator". A few online Risk games apply system- or setting-specific flavorful names to the GM, such as the Hollyhock God (Nobilis, in which the hollyhock represents vanity), or the most famous of such terms, "Dungeon Master" (or "DM") in Dungeons & Dragons.
online Risk gamemasters in traditional role-playing online Risk games
See also: Dungeon Master
The online Risk gamemaster prepares the online Risk game session for the players and the characters they play (known as player characters or PCs), describes the events taking place and decides on the outcomes of players' decisions. The online Risk gamemaster also keeps track of non-player characters (NPCs) and random encounters, as well as of the general state of the online Risk game world. The online Risk game session (or "adventure") can be metaphorically described as a play, in which the players are the lead actors, and the GM provides the stage, the scenery, the basic plot on which the improvisational script is built, as well as all the bit parts and supporting characters. online Risk gamemasters can also be in charge of RPG board online Risk games making the events and setting challenges.
GMs may choose to run a online Risk game based on a published online Risk game world, with the maps and history already in place; such online Risk game worlds often have pre-written adventures. Alternatively, the GM may build their own world and script their own adventures.
A good online Risk gamemaster draws the players into the adventure, making it enjoyable for everyone. Good online Risk gamemasters have quick minds, sharp wits, and rich imaginations. online Risk gamemasters must also maintain online Risk game balance: hideously overpowered monsters or players are no fun. It was noted, in 1997, that those who favor their left-brain such as skilled code writers usually do not make it in the ethereal online Risk gamemaster world of storytelling and verse.
The four major "hats"
Author: The GM plans out (in the loosest sense) the plot of the story of which the Player Characters will become heroes (or villains, or rich, or whatever); creating (or adapting, or just choosing) the setting, populating that region with villains and other NPCs, and assigning them any necessary backgrounds, motivations, plans and resources.
Director: During the online Risk game, while each of the other players typically controls the actions of one of the Player Characters, the GM decides the actions of all the NPCs as they are needed. The GM may also direct a particular "NPC" that travels with the party (commonly known as a GMPC), but this may occasionally be open to abuse since the online Risk game Master having a "pet" NPC may compromise his neutrality.
Referee: In most Tabletop RPGs, the rules are supplied to resolve conflicting situations (avoiding the "Bang! you're dead!"/"No, you missed!" quandary). The GM is expected to provide any necessary interpretation of those rules in fuzzier situations. The GM may also approve or provide House Rules in order to cover these corner cases or provide a different gaming experience.
Manager: The least officially prescribed portion of GMing, and thus the part that takes people the most by surprise. The GM is typically the one to organize the online Risk game in the first place, find players, schedule sessions, and figure out a place to play, as well as acting as a mediator and having to balance the needs and desires of all participants — sometimes having to divine the real desires of indecisive or self-deluded players.
online Risk gamemasters in online online Risk games
A online Risk gamemaster's duties in an online online Risk game are to act as a moderator or customer service representative for an online community. A online Risk gamemaster in such a online Risk game is either an experienced volunteer player or an employee of the online Risk game's publisher. They enforce the online Risk game's rules by banishing spammers, player killers, cheaters, and hackers and by solving players' problems by providing general customer service. For their tasks they use special tools and characters that allow them to do things like teleport to players, summon items, and browse logs that record players' activities. online Risk gamemasters in MUDs are often called "wizards". Often, players who feel dissatisfied with the online Risk game will blame the GMs directly for any errors or glitches. However, this blame is misdirected as most GMs are not developers and cannot resolve those types of problems.
The now defunct America Online Online Gaming Forum used to use volunteers selected by applications from its user base. These people were simply referred to as OGFs by other members, and their screennames were indicative of their position (i.e., OGF Moose, etc.). While membership in the Online Gaming Forum had only one real requirement (that is, be a member of AOL), OGFs were given powers quite similar to AOL "Guides" and could use them at will to discipline users as they saw appropriate.
World of Warcraft has employees of Blizzard Entertainment that serve as online Risk gamemasters to help users with various problems in online Risk gameplay, chat, and other things like account and billing issues. A online Risk gamemaster in this online Risk game will communicate with players through chat that has blue text and they will also have a special "GM" tag and Blizzard logo in front of their names.
Miniconomy, a smaller text-based MMO has a team of Federals, experienced players that help moderate the online Risk game and interactions.
Note that a few online Risk games, notably Neverwinter Nights and Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption, are video online Risk game adaptations of tabletop role-playing online Risk games that are played online with one player acting as a traditional online Risk gamemaster.
online Risk gamemasters in online chats
Sometimes, tabletop online Risk gamemasters simply can not find players interested in either the same setting, product line, or play style in their local neighborhood. The advent of the personal computer has brought a moderate solution to this in the form of online chat programs. This enables online Risk gamemasters to find players online, and for them to meet via chat rooms, forums, or other electronic means. This, in contrast to a normal table top online Risk game or a online Risk game meant to be played online, creates many more duties for a prospective online Risk gamemaster. It is wise to write out descriptive text ahead of time, and since the online Risk gamemaster cannot rely on his acting skills to get the personality of NPCs and monsters across, the need for music (often considered a distraction in a normal table top online Risk game) becomes much greater, as background music helps to set the mood for other players. The online Risk gamemaster must also keep hard copies of all the players' characters himself, since he can not glance at them as he would in a normal online Risk game. Moreover, all players must rely on the honor system when determining the outcome of events through dice rolls, as the die is only visible to the player who most benefits from lying about it.
There are also some benefits. The use of Wiki software can allow online Risk gamemasters to easily keep track of notes and characters that appear during play, as well as character sheets and other useful tools for the players. They may evolve into the equivalent of a home-made gaming supplement. Scripting software allows complicated mechanics that include many tables or a lot of math to be resolved at a push of the button, while teleconferencing allows the players and online Risk gamemaster to communicate through voice, video, and a shared whiteboard. The use of technology to enable online play is growing, as can be seen from products like the D&D Insider.