5 thoughts on “Anyone GM’d for one player? How did you handle bonds, or did you replace them with something more appropriate?”

  1. I’d use Virtues and Vices from Freebooters on the Frontier or redefine them a bit, reduce the number, and allow the player to be Bonded to NPCs, including organisations, institutions and deities. That way you could shift focus a bit toward engaging the setting in an interesting and dynamic manner.

  2. When I GM’d for my son we made bonds with 2 other non-existent characters of his choice (Fighter and Thief), and my son’s character (Wizard) was the last survivor of that party. We used the bonds to create a history and he would some times act sullen over the loss of his friends, and it also gave his character a reason to insist on travelling alone (so he didn’t have to see any other friends die). We used frequent flashbacks to “see” his fallen comrads as he moved across the land visiting places where they’d adventured together. While the campaign started out as a “pokemon-style-fight-creatures-and-turn-them-into-playing-cards” story (which was pretty cool), after a really moving flashback scene (he was 14 at the time and actually made me feel some feels) he asked if he could go back in time and save his friends (which he ended up doing).

    So I used the bonds for background detail, and I awarded Bond XP when we went into a flashback. Definitely not the “right” thing to do, but it was still a fun single-player campaign. Lasted about 12 sessions.

  3. Bonds do this:

    – they create narrative hooks about the relationship between PCS

    (in a solo game, you will just need narrative hooks. Perhaps you can prepare a set of loaded questions, instead.)

    – they give experience when the character explore them fully

    (you can skip it, or replace it with statements about what the character believes about themselves, or about a character or some other aspect of the world)

    – they are rolled to help or hinder another pc

    (since there are no other pcs, this move will not be used.)

  4. I GM one on one for my son sometimes and I have always surrounded him with NPC partners. DMPCs really. In one campaign we ran it as an odd couple/buddy cop type and I let him decide the scenarios for the bard I was playing. Other campaigns have had him leading teams of adventures, or a as a team member. I have found solo missions where he has no one to speak to boring for both of us.

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