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Sunday, July 21, 2024

How One RPT GM Exploits The Flatulent Feline


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If you caught Monday’s announcement, I’ve written a new book with RPG AI expert Danny McKeever about how to use GPT for adventure building. It gives you detailed and specific prompts you can paste into ChatGPT (or Zorgon in Campaign Logger) to help you create adventures, worlds, NPCs, and treasure.

In French, it turns out that ChatGPT sounds a lot like “Cat, I have farted.” So that’s what we affectionately call it around here.

Well, Wizard of Adventure Eric G. responded with some additional ways he uses the smelly feline, and I thought you might be interested:

I enjoyed the talk about AI in the last meet-up.

1. I use the farty catty to describe scenes better. I describe what I’m seeing in my mind, then I ask it to emphasize a part of it and change the tone like “make it darker” or “add a tone of despair and lost glory” and translate it to French.

2. For generating nice-looking player handouts. “Give me a handout in the format of Vault-Tec corporate HR with a header. Give me a list of names for performance review and make sure to add a satisfactory one for Dr. Peter Roth and Dr. Cassandra Harper,” because I want to highlight these two NPCs’ achievements and mark them as important to the plot.

3. Instant D6 tables. “Give me 6 complications when using the wrong Fusion core in the Prototype Rad-scrubber.”

4. Factions. The best feature to kick start my creativity is to give it parameters for the theme, regional flavor, or culture I’m looking for. “Create a faction centered around X (e.g., Catholic values, a knightly order structure in a post-apocalyptic setting) and give me a mission statement, major objectives, typical outpost descriptions, and a few important NPCs.”

Then, in the same chat after outlining a few important factions, I ask, “Give me potential faction dynamics between these but keep in mind these 2 are allied for Y reason.”

5. Geopolitics. With the Farter’s assistance, I outlined a political and geographic web and can use it to gauge the wider impact of the party’s actions. “The party did this, for X faction, how does it change the power dynamic for the other factions?”

I also use this to plan in advance and prepare contingencies for player actions to have a path prepared in case. (I suck at improvising when caught off-guard, and my instant creation usually feels flat/dull).

I bought the book and look forward to reading it over the holidays.

Thanks for the great use cases, Eric! I’m going to play with the faction dynamics stuff, as I can see that being quite inspirational for my Loopy Planning technique.

On a personal note, a reader asked me if I use the smelly cat to write the newsletter. The answer is yes and no.

No. Every word you read is my own. I’m writing the tips and stories. And I’m inventing and optimizing my techniques, methods, models, and approaches – and have been doing that since 1999.

Yes. I ask the flatulent fur ball to restructure bad sentences or chunk down a long paragraph so it’s leaner and smoother (and then I’ll re-edit that manually). I give it a topic and see what it has to say, and might add a bullet point or two from it to fill gaps in my drafts. I’ll ask it to poke holes in my techniques or show me angles or edge cases I hadn’t thought of.

I worry that outsourcing my thinking and writing (and GMing) will make me rusty.

Further, I use writing to think and solve problems. For example, I often start by writing out a specific outcome. Then I brain dump onto the page all of my obstacles and reasons why I’m not getting that outcome. Then write out solutions and tips — thinking them through as I go. And then I share with you.

So I can’t use AI to do my writing and thinking for me, else I’ll eventually only be good for existing in a tube and being mined for my body heat.

But the bloviated bagheera is a fantastic GM’s familiar. It’s a great sounding board, critic, and ideator when I get tired or stuck. I think it’s a valuable tool in a GM’s — or writer’s — toolbox.

Cheers,Johnnroleplayingtips.comHave more fun at every game!

P.S. I mentioned this briefly at the start: I’ve released a new book for game masters!

It’s called: The Simple AI Guide to Adventure Building

This book will show you how to turn Cat I Farted into your GM’s familiar, a smart assistant with an infinite well of ideas. Copy and paste prompts directly into ChatGPT (or Zorgon) to help create 5 Room Dungeons, NPCs, Treasure, histories, and more.

Click here for details and to purchase.

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