Man, this week has been out to get me. Started off with a weekend of traveling across state to care for/check on/help out hospitalized family members and ended with me being ill myself. In between work came fast and hard enough that when a player asked me if I was looking forward to game tomorrow (tonight, when you are reading this) I was honestly confused by what they meant. As in, I'd totally forgotten that game was even a thing. In my defense, the game is fairly new. We've only been at it for the past 3 years or so... (different campaigns, sadly.)
So, anyhow, a large part of tonight's game is going to be winging it. Luckily, the big thing one of my PCs wants to do I've had planned and written down for weeks. Also, my players are awesome enough that I could probably burn a straight month of sessions (like a session every day) just reacting to what they're doing and seeing the antics they get into. Still though, it does leave some room to be desired.
Still, that's neither here nor there. My question for you guys today is, what is your favorite technique to go to when you have to wing it? Do you just try to make the best of a bad situation? Do you pretend you had it all planned while hiding specifics in vagueries? Do you drop a big combat on the group to eat up a large amount of session time with the mechanics heavy portion of the game?
All of these are viable, and done right can make for a very entertaining night. I'm just curious what works for you?