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One-on-One Roleplaying: How to Craft a Single-PC Campaign Arc

One of the biggest shifts you’ll need to make for your one-on-one game is from campaign arcs built to include many PCs to arcs crafted for a single PC. This is actually one of the changes that many people wind up preferring to group games, but it can feel strange or intimidating at first. It’s important to keep in mind that the GM is not alone in changing their story approach. The player needs to take ownership of being the story protagonist as...

One-on-One Roleplaying: How to Scale Combat

Effectively running combat for one-on-one 5E is a major area of concern for many GMs. After all, the monster challenge ratings, player options, and adventure and encounter design guidelines all assume parties of at least four adventurers. When you play one-on-one, those assumptions don’t necessarily work. So how can GMs build encounters that are challenging for the party without being more deadly than planned? How do we adapt and balance...

One-on-One Roleplaying: Creating Your GMPC

In our last post, we talked about how one-on-one play works best when the PC is flexible in both melee and ranged combat. Today we are going to round out the party by talking about how you can provide the PC with a worthy and supportive adventuring companion. In this post, you’ll find three primary considerations as you build a GMPC for your duet game: complementary class, roleplay, and character motivation. In some circles, the phrase “GMPC”...

One-on-One Roleplaying: Adapting PCs

After you’ve covered the basics of running 5e one-on-one, you’re ready to move on to step number two, adapting your game’s PC for this smaller-party play style! In terms of mechanics, one-on-one works best when you make sure the PC is flexible in both melee and ranged combat. This post covers a few different options for making these adjustments to the core classes. Even with a more flexible PC, we still suggest adjusting the number of...

How to Play a One-on-One Game

To play 5th Edition one-on-one, all you need is another person and a free block of time. And it’s an amazing way to introduce a partner, friend, or family member to the game! Before Play Advice for GMs. Before you play, talk to your game partner about their favorite parts of a 5E session. Do they gravitate toward roleplay (or RP), or do they prefer dangerous puzzles, creative combat, political intrigue, or dungeon crawls? As much as possible,...


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