Setting up your Playspace & the Practical Recording of Game generated Stuff.

  • 2 Replies


  • 777
G'day Again,
Sorry if it seems a mite obvious, but after reading through numerous APs and identifying a strong tendency for the MC principles to engender an extraordinary amount of details from the group as they play that needs must be recorded somewhere, somehow. In addition to the playbooks, Session Sheets, and Front Sheets, how does your group detail the story 'as it is written' for future reference in play? Which NPCs come from where? Who has died/broken/reborn? Setting detail for explored map areas and holds?

I know I know, just write it all down. The APs suggest a healthy memory on the part of all concerned, especially Judd and Arvid! My group traditionally nuts out all session generated story/NPCs/setting/colour & ephemera on the margins of the map in the centre of the table, or on a large piece of 'session paper' with various markers, colour pencils and pens. (strangely, the choice of medium often reflects the demeanour of the detail).

Due to Burning Wheel in particular, introduced NPCs are often the responsibility of the player who brings them into play - recording their name and three notable aspects of their character / appearance / disposition, and any future generated information sorrounding the NPC. We also have a gentle agreement that if you spout it, its up to you to write it down, though in the heat of the moment, players of characters not in the scene will take over 'scribe duties'.

At the end of the session, its generally me (as GM/MC) who edits all this brainstorming into suitable chunks of referable information into the game notebook. Phew.

My query, prior to running my first game is to 'throw it open to the forum' as it were. To get an appreciation of how other groups set up their AW playspace and what tools they have for play? Hopefully this will let me establish a grabbag of practical tricks and tools to help the game run smooth.


There are a couple of really fantastic examples of Apocalypse World notes over at this thread at story games. You should check it out!

I use a combination of the front sheets, which are a tattered mess when I'm done with them after a session, and maps I grab from google maps and then mark the hell out of.

There's a set of relationship maps I made using Cmap tools, and I write all over that as well, adding arrows and scratching out arrows as relationships change.

I also record the sessions to listen to bits and pieces of, mostly skimming it at work to get a rough overview of what happened for memory refreshing.  



  • 777
Thanks Glendower, that's exactly what I was after! Especially John Harper's ideas - I'd love to play a session or two with all you folks in order to glean some magic.
Please feel free to add more to this thread so we can all see 'how the other half lives'.