DriveThruCards.com
Narrow Results







Back
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck $9.99
Average Rating:4.9 / 5
Ratings Reviews Total
10 13
2 1
0 0
0 0
0 0
The GameMaster\'s Apprentice: Base Deck
Click to view
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Customer Name Withheld [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/11/2018 11:19:05

I love these cards. I don't use them as much as I could. I could use them to replace all my dice, for instance, but I still like rolling dice. I don't use them for randomly generating adventures, but I could. I use them for inspiration, NPC names, and creative prompts, and for that alone, I'm glad I bought them.

As time goes on, I'm using them more and more often. I started bringing them downstairs to use when I play online. I started considering using them to replace dice. I'm very happy with them.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Catalina G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/23/2018 15:05:45

I've just got my GameMaster's Apprentice deck collection, and even though it took the shipment a month or so to arrive due to my current geolocation, I must say it was worth the wait. The overall quality of the cards is fantastic, and the different designs are top notch! I definitely recommend them!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Thor S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/23/2018 22:39:08

I do not often use my time to write a review about a product, which is a praise for this product in itself. I have been GMing games for almost two decades and thus I am always looking for good aids, especially things like this product: something that cuts the prep time for games. I got this product for multiple reasons, but the greatest was the need for random scene/story seed creation. And this simple deck of 60 cards surely delivers.

I love the verb, noun, descriptor combo, the symbols, Catalyst and Location. Those are the things I wanted, and I got them. The sensory snippets are decent, though I find that some of them are harder to use than others. The dice result, difficulty scale and likely odds work well and are a welcome part of the cards especially while travelling, even if I personally like to rattle the dice whenever possible. The names, Virtue&Vice and belongings make it an easy and pleasant to whip up characters on the fly.

The only small thing that irritates me sometimes are the belongings. There are a great variety of things, but for some reason, for me, many of the things feel... only complementary. The reason is that I would like to use the belongings as one key factor when deciding what the created character actually does (class, occupation etc.). As is, I nowadays use them mostly as a way to give a character some surprising items, thus it is only complementary, adding to something I have already created. It should be noted, that despite the word count used, it is only a very minor thing.

All in all, this might just be the easiest to use complete GM-tool, which can be used without anything else, even without dice should it come to that. Great value for money!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Paul M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/24/2017 14:29:08

I'm ashamed to admit that I realized I had ordered these cards quite a while ago, and had never left a review. I have used these cards, along with the horror and scifi decks, in just about every game I have ran since I recieved them. Especially since I do a lot of solo gaming, these cards are invaluable. If I am stuck for inspiration, a yes/no answer, name, anything, I just pull a card from the deck. Like I said earlier, I also have the horror and scifi decks, but the base deck is the one I use all the time. These are definitely worth it, get a deck and try them out, you won't regret it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Mason R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/02/2017 14:41:38

These cards are AWESOME! Don't get the deckbox, though. it arrived at my house broken and beyond repair. it wasn't even ON right!



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Creator Reply:
I'm glad you like the cards! I'm sorry to hear your deck box broke; have you contacted DriveThru about a refund and/or a replacement box? I've ordered dozens of them, and while I've had 2-3 arrive broken, they are usually fine, and DriveThru's customer service is pretty solid about making the situation right, in my experience! If you have any trouble getting that taken care of, email me at LarcenousDesigns@gmail.com and we'll get you taken care of.
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by JP D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 11/08/2016 22:50:22

After using sites like rpgsolo and the Mythic gmemulator for GMless play with my brother I found myself stumbling onto these, with the hopes of using them on Roll20 via the deck system, thanks to Larcenous Designs Nathan Rockwood's very helpful support post-purchase, i've been able to do just that; It's worked great. The sheer amount of content each card can produce is huge, and I personally find it much easier and quicker to create an event or reaction using these than other systems. The runes are my favourite part, they really make it easy to come up with things quickly and avoid the game pace coming to a crawl (Something I found happened with gmemulator when you had an event or detail randomised and just drew a blank on how to interpret it) GMA gets around this problem with a number of additional ways of clarifying or adding detail to events. It is exceedingly easy to quickly piece together everything from a world ending threat, the motivations of a villain or even just the traits and attitude of that barrister at Starbucks!

Easily tailored to any game system or theme with massive amount of variation and detail available for anything you could possibly need for a smooth and exciting gm-less game!

(Currently using my sets for a Mutans and Mastermind's game and a Pathfinder game)



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Neil P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 07/10/2016 21:55:43

I sriously love these cards. I love having a way to spur me into new ideas. For a revew, I have one on my blog. http://broccolifest.blogspot.com/2016/07/review-gamemasters-apprentice-base-deck.html



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Wayne R. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/03/2016 12:51:45

A thoroughly useful and versatile tool for expanding GMs' storylines, creating characters and storylines on the fly, and serving as a surrogate GM for either solo or group sessions. System agnostic, and mostly genre agnostic. So many items on each card that one or some combination will suggest a story, event, or character appropiate to any situation. Well worth the money. Every GM, and every gamer who ever thouhht they might like to try a solo adventure, should have a deck.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Rob H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 04/17/2016 04:24:01

I have just run a GM less solo game with this set , it generated a nice story and even created some dead ends for the character to backtrack on . The game was an investigation type set in a lovecraftian setting , the cards produced a good number of clues , red herrings and surprises for me so i cannot see that this product is worth less than 5 stars

i used a piece of free mindmaping software to record the adventure everything else was done with the cards

i would like to propose that you create a more fantasy biased set

Rob



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Jonathan H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 01/23/2016 18:22:41

I purchased the GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck to replace several other tools that I had been previously using to simulate a GM in both my solitaire games as well as games run with my wife. For full disclosure purposes I was primarily running games with Mythic's Game Master Emulator paired with Mythic Variations as well as leveraging Rory's Story Cubes for generating scenes and ideas, an extension from the noun/verb pair generated from Mythic. My wife and I ran a session last night with the deck and were thoroughly impressed!

Function:

We used the 'Tension' based method for generating random events, starting at '1' at the beginning of the scene and would add +1 to that number for every "Likely Odds" question that we asked the deck. To expand upon this, the deck offers three different ratings for possibilities; bad (25% chance of a 'Yes'), even (50%), and good (75%). It also features exceptional answers of 'YES!' and 'NO!' which further extend the options. I was initially concerned with the apparent step down from Mythic which has a much greater variety of odds and was concerned that it might feel lackluster operating at just 25%/50%/75% however am happy to say that it didn't feel that way during play. Back to the 'Tension' method - if the difficulty number in the top left hand corner of the card is lower or equal to your current tension number a random event is generated -- play it out and then reset your tension number. It was very easy and didn't feel like a lot of book keeping. The nice thing is, each session starts off at '1' instead of tracking a Chaos Rank (Mythic's system) that alters the odds and also impacts scene random events while in-house random events are based on rolling doubles when consulting the Fate Chart.

The other features that we used were the Norse Runes, of which there are 24, however I'll admit that the big appeal of the deck (the lack of looking up tables), really doesn't come into play when you're getting started with the Norse Runes unless you have previous knowledge of what they represent. My wife and I were not aware and so had to look up the definitions as we played, so that did tie us up with some table referencing though am sure that once we get more fluent with the deck we'll nail down the Runes.

The Elemental signs (Water, Earth, Fire, and Air) are incredibly helpful as well as the four senses (sight, sound, feeling, and taste/smell) also lends quick answers to common questions such as, "Do we see anything? Do we hear anything?" as the card itself already has a pre-loaded answer should that question turn up in the positive.

We have yet to explore the name generator, tag symbols, dice, scatter die, vice/virtue, catalyst and we only used the location once.

The True Benefit:

Immersion. The deck allows for a greater sense of immersion -- my wife and I are playing a Heroquest: Glorantha game and played in our fourth session when we first used the deck and my wife commented after, "Wow - I really had a sense of tension and was excited to continue moving on." I would have to agree with her sentiments and will explain why I think it happened. Our GMless game prior to the deck was run by Mythic and at times my wife would become confused with what die rolls really meant... were we using the our character's abilities or were we emulating the GM? All of those actions were dice... granted some were D20s vs. D100s however everything was operated with rolling dice. With the deck, all dice rolls were simply character abilities and the running the GM was left to drawing cards. It really clarified what we were doing and at what stage we were at.

It also played much faster, allowing for less downtime trying to figure out the context of the answer when consulting the deck to emulate the GM, because of a significantly decreased amount of time spent looking up tables as well as the faster mechanic of drawing cards vs. rolling multiple sets of dice. For instance, when asking a question such as, "Do we see anything happen as we crest the hill?" Here's the breakdown:

  • Agree on likely odds (no different from Mythic)
  • Draw card - immediately can see YES!/Yes/No/NO!
  • That same card that informs you can provide a Sight/Sound/Touch/Taste to jump start your idea (compared to having to roll for a noun/verb)
  • Draw for a verb
  • Draw for a noun
  • If needed, you can draw for an adjective

The entire process takes a lot less time compared to rolling on tables and the added benefit is that the cards are all lined up next to each other, allowing you to see the results that you got instead of having to remember or write them down! I didn't realize how much handier it would be until we started playing with it. With Mythic it took me several sessions to really get a feel for the system and with GameMaster's Apprentice it immediately resonated with me. Additionally, I'd say that it is easier to re-interpret the context of the answers you're provided as the cards remain in front of you -- in a very tactile sense it feels easier to re-interpret compared to re-rolling dice in Mythic, or at least that was my impression.

Continued Options/Room for Growth:

As mentioned there are features that my wife and I didn't delve into but the cards just seem to continue to offer more. My wife and I generated a random event and she asked, "So do we have to follow-up on that immediately?" Nathan Rockwood, in the instructions, suggested a method of determining how impactful random events are and so we drew another card and looked at the difficulty rating, which for us was '3', which we ruled as being less significant to the story. My wife instantly said, "Oh, ok. So we could look into it but it isn't hugely impactful to the story." We also used a similar method when we were investigating a certain item, trying to discern what it meant. We got some information and wanted to see how confident the person was of what he'd given us... again we drew a card and looked at the difficulty rating, which was a '6', and ruled that he knew 60% of what was written down, but that there was more that could be learned.

Verdict:

The deck is awesome. One of the best GM Emulator tools that I've used. It won't replace everything -- we still use Rory's Story Cubes, some directional dice (compass; e, n, w, s/true directional; up, down, left, right), UNE (for generating NPCs), though with that said we still haven't tapped into the full potential of the deck. We could easily replace the directional dice we use with the scatter die found on the cards, NPCs can be generated using the Vice/Virtue and other characteristics on the cards. For names, we could use the name generator though with online tools so handy on devices we opt for using setting specific generators though could use the deck in a pinch or on the road if no devices are around.

The benefits are; less table consulting, greater immersion due to clarified dice rolls only for system abilities (if using a stand-alone rule set -- the only way we've used the deck vs. using the deck as the system), and speed of drawing cards vs. rolling D100s. It's incredible. I highly recommend it and likely will be picking up the other genre decks.

I purchased the DTRPG printed decks and sleeved mine with FFG Standard Card sleeves. It isn't cheap, at $25 or so shipped, but highly recommended and already one of the best purchases I've made when it comes to Tabletop RPGs.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Daniel L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 12/21/2015 21:52:13

You've probably seen randomized decks of cards for RPG seeds before. But I doubt you'll find the competition half as useful as the Gamemaster's Apprentice.

Most randomize decks have one or two things on offer in a single draw. A name? Or perhaps a picture? The GMA stores a whopping 14 (!) random elements. Drawing a few of these cards is like reading part of an awesome story all on it's own. In fact, this is how I most often use my deck; as prompts for new directions in short fiction. Plot flagging? Draw a card. Need a name? Draw a card. Did the hero make the jump? Draw a card. How credulous is that guard? Draw. A. Card

Different randomizers have different levels of usefulness, depending on your situation. The Names randomizer alone is worth the price (never run out of NPC or supporting character names again!). As other reviewers have said, I generally prefer to roll dice myself. However, it's nice to know the cards can stand in if you've left your dicebag at home. I haven't made a lot of use of the event generator, the elements, or the Norse runes (yet), but I'm very glad they're there. The Odds and Difficulty randomizers can be great for determining the outcomes of unpredictable events, I use them to throw curveballs at characters all the time.

The sense snippets and belongings sometimes take a few draws before you find the "right" one for the situation, but they're still worth their weight in gold. They can confer instant verisimilitude to a scene, or point you in a new direction to focus the attention of your players.

There's a lot of depth and care here. Too often, a randomizer deck is little more than an excel spreadsheet in card form. Each just an individual selection from a long list. These cards contain world's worth of useful data by comparison.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Tim S. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 09/19/2015 13:49:12

I'm a sucker for any product that claims to make a GM's life easier at the gaming table. Adventure creators, GM emulators, story prompts -- I really enjoy having something at-hand to help me through those unexpected "curves" your players toss at you.

"Oh, so you want to enter that room I never wrote up to follow that NPC I never fleshed out? Ohhhhh-kay...."

So I'm very pleased to have discovered The Gamemaster's Apprentice by Nathan Rockwood. This incredibly useful deck of 60 double-backed cards (120 card faces) gives the GM a TON of useful prompts, randomizers, seeds, and details for nearly any gaming occasion I can think of. It can also be used as a GM emulator for solo gaming. The deck is also system and genre-neutral, so you can use it with pretty much any game I can imagine.

Each card offers the GM 14 different "tools" at the table, with each card providing a randomly created element or prompt. If the GM is stuck, he pulls a card and runs with the result on the card. Just LOOK at the sheer number of tools found in the GM's Apprentice:

  1. Difficulty Generator: Here, the numbers 1 through 10 randomly appear. Distributed through a bell curve with 5-7 appearing most often as an "average", you can randomly determine how easy (1-4), average (5-7), or difficult (8-10) a given task is.
  2. Likely Odds: Need a yes/no answer to a situation? First determine the likelihood of a positive outcome, then pull a card to see if they succeeded or not.
  3. Dice: Each polyhedral dice is here, with an even distribution of outcomes across the 120 faces. (d4, d6, d8, d10, d12, d20, d%). Don't have your dice on hand? Grab a card and find the result instead.
  4. Norse Runes: The runes correspond to a handy chart provided in the deck's instructions (provided as a free download). These symbolic prompts are meant to fuel your imagination as needed.
  5. Elemental Symbols: The symbols for air, earth, fire, and water can be literal prompts or suggestive for the situation.
  6. Random Event Generator: Each line here has a verb-adjective-noun layout. Pull three cards (one for each word) or just read the prompts as written for a random situation prompt!
  7. Sensory Prompts: Need to give the players something they can see, hear, smell, or feel in a scene? A random card draw give you some sensory clues for the players to act upon.
  8. Tag Symbol: The tags are used for another set of randomizers that correspond to a previously designed list of possible events or encounters, or just for symbolic interpretation.
  9. Scatter Die: Need to quickly determine a random direction? Check out the scatter die icon to see which way the path goes, the wind is blowing, or where that grenade landed!
  10. Possessions: What's in the NPC's pockets? The handy list gives the GM a way to determine a list of random objects.
  11. Names: What is the name of this random NPC? Pull a card an give him/her a quick moniker on the spot.
  12. Catalysts: These story prompts push the situation in unexpected directions when needed.
  13. Location: Where are they? Where do they need to go? Where is the Macguffin to be found? Each card has a unique location to explore.
  14. Virtue and Vice: What's so good/bad about a certain person? What habits do they have. Pull a card and give them some quick quirks.

As you can see, the many uses of these cards is staggering. You can create an NPC on the spot. You can use the deck as a game engine. You can flesh out a random scene or event. Story ideas and seeds can be created with just a few draws of the deck. I'm just beginning to discover the uses this deck has, and it has gone into my travelling game kit. I got the print version of the cards, and they're very good, high-quality. Sniderman says check it out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by Sophia B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/16/2015 00:19:09
http://dieheart.net/gma/

The GameMaster’s Apprentice? A funny name for a little card-based tool. I playtested this yesterday had a lot of fun. It is a set of 60 poker-sized double printed cards with tons of random generators. At the same time, it’s a “GM-emulator” which you can use for solo role-playing. Each card contains 14 different randomizers. That’s a lot. Thus, you get a lot of material to choose from.

What’s the deal?

First off, I’m very happy with these cards. The generators are useful and each card contains a lot of information for you to use. While I like online generators like Abulafia, they’re a) internet-based and b) you need to dig around sometimes for the “right” randomizers. Other tools only have one or two kinds of generator (for example the Short Order Heroes cards: d6 results + an adjective). While the GMA of course doesn’t have everything, the 14 randomizers will get you pretty far.

Personally, I’m missing an image generator (like Rory’s Story Cubes or Tangent Zero Dice). I like them because they are very open to interpretation. However, the GMA offsets that with the Tag Symbols, the Elemental Symbols and the Norse Runes. I have to look up their meaning in the instruction PDF, but that’s ok. They provide a similar result. If you like, you can give the symbols their own meaning or customize them for your campaign.

The GMA is one of the few “complete” tools for solo role-playing that I’ve seen. It has a difficulty generator, dice results and an “oracle” (the Likely Odds which tell you the answer to a Yes-No-question) and it comes with several more randomizers to use. Normally, I use at least three tools for solo role-playing: a solo system/GM emulator, dice/a dice app AND a seed/event generator (in my case an image randomizer). But with the GMA you can have everything rolled up into one tool. That’s pretty nifty. (That’s also a great way to play while traveling as you would only need the cards and a way to write down things – no need for rolling dice.)

As for ideas on how to use the cards: the instruction booklet has some more bells and whistles you can try, but I only used the “basic” version which already works fine for most situations. Furthermore, there are so-called Adventure Guides for different settings in the works (i.e. Fantasy, Horror) which even give you even more utility.

Look & Feel

The design of the cards is pretty crowded albeit still usable. I would have liked to see a sleeker layout with more contrast/colors to distinguish the different randomizers. But all in all, it works though I don’t find it particularly pretty.

I ordered the print-on-demand cards. The quality is acceptable but not superb. The thickness of the cards is ok, but I had several misprints in my order and many cards are slightly worn out at the edges. It’s not too bad, but I’m very picky about things like that. Luckily, Drivethrucards will send me at least a replacement for the misprinted cards. Normally, the card quality tends to be a bit better, perhaps I got a low-quality batch.

The instruction PDF is barebones. It looks like it’s written in a word processor. There is nothing fancy here. It’s not bookmarked but, the index is hyperlinked. The instructions are easy to understand and there are some good tips for using the randomizers as a GM tool or a solitaire tool.

Summary

If you want to buy the print-on-demand-cards it’s not a cheap investment (USD $19.99 + shipping) but one that delivers a lot of value if you like randomizers. The print-and-play-version is considerably cheaper (USD $9.99) and you can choose if you want to print out the cards in color (brownish) or black and white.

As a solo role-playing tool, this simply rocks because there are so many generators rolled into one card. I’d guess that the GMA is also handy for Game Masters who want to use the cards as a help in running or prepping games. For instance, you could use the Story Seeds or Plot Hooks to come up with an adventure idea. Especially the randomizers for NPC creation are pretty nifty: it’s easy to come up with a name, some basic personality (Virtues/Vices) and other information (using the Belongings section or the Sensory Snippets). Furthermore, if you’re stuck on how to proceed in your running game, you could use the cards to come to a decision or introduce a twist. I can’t say anything about how well randomized the cards are. In my playtest I didn’t find obvious errors, so for me that’s not a concern.

The GameMaster’s Apprentice is exactly what I have hoped it to be when I backed the Kickstarter: a wonderful cars-based randomizer aid. It is especially handy for solitaire role-playing but surely also useful for running and prepping games.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The GameMaster's Apprentice: Base Deck
Publisher: Larcenous Designs, LLC
by James D. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 05/14/2015 09:56:28

A truly impactful tool for getting your creative juices flowing or responding to quick course changes in mid-game. I found myself just reading them for fun. Well worth the price for how much you'll use it.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Displaying 1 to 14 (of 14 reviews) Result Pages:  1 
Back
0 items