Skip to main content

#RPGaDay 2017 -- Day 27

What are your essential tools for good gaming?

Trust, consistency, and consent. If the people at the table trust you, and you trust the people at your table, then the stories you tell and the directions you can take your stories are going to be many and varied and extremely interesting in all sorts of ways. If you are consistent in how you resolve things, then your table will trust you and know that you are keeping their wellbeing in mind (and yes, wellbeing is an important part of 'fun', which is why we all do this RPG thing anyway). And if you have the consent of your players, and they know that you won't do something they don't want to do without asking, then they know your consistent message is one of trust and common good. With those three things, you can tell any story, in any setting, and have a good time doing it.

Oh, wait, did you mean stuff like dice and shit? Oh. Well, I have some poker chips I use as x-cards, and 3x5 index cards for basically anything that needs or wants to be written down, and some mechanical pencils to do the writing. That's about it. Anything else is window dresssing -- I like my iPad as a GM screen / lookup tool, and sometimes I'll use my laptop -- because anything outside of the people you're playing is just there to act as props, really.

Popular posts from this blog

So Here's The Thing: Far Cry 5

I have never really been a big player of the Far Cry series. First-person shooters aren't really my bag, unless they're the wrapper for a really cool story or RPG-alike game that I really want to play. The closest I came to really getting into FPS are games like the new Fallout series, or some parts of Mass Effect, but given that those are mostly over-the-shoulder games, I was never really the audience for the FC franchise.

This was especially true given the troublesome politics of the FC series games: the protagonist was some rando silent white dude avatar with a gun fetish and a remit to kill as many brown people as possible. This is also, btw, why I don't play games like Call of Duty or SpecOps or those other sorts of FPS games. So when Far Cry 5 was first announced and it was going to be set in rural Montana and the big bad was going to be a religious cult figure, and more than that the player would have the option to play as a woman of colour, suddenly they had my inte…

#RPGaDay2018 - Day 2: What do you look for in an RPG?

I think the single most important thing I look for in an RPG is 'will the people at my table (including me) enjoy the experience of using this system?' A lot of times in the past, I've defaulted to one system or another, one game or another, because it was simple and ubiquitous and easy for me, as opposed to easy or interesting for everyone including me. So I ended up running a lot of D&D games in situations where I wasn't actually particularly interested in D&D or even in something in the D&D milieu, but because it was a familiar and easy touchstone, that's what I reached for.

These days, I'm much more about finding a good balance for my table. I'm partial to Fate Accelerated Edition, but my players prefer something a bit crunchier, so we compromise and use Savage Worlds for our RIFTS game. I would love it if I could talk my group into something a little bit more out there, like Monsterhearts or even Dogs in the Vineyard, but given the audience…

A Discouraging Word

The last time I was unemployed, I used to really dread Wednesdays. Wednesdays were, at least as far as I could tell, the day that the HR / Recruiter Person decided to let everyone who didn't get the gig that they didn't get the gig, and it wasn't unusual for me to get four or even five rejection letters on a Wednesday.

The good news is that this time, Wednesdays aren't like that any longer.

The bad news is that the rejections still come, just more spread out. And sometimes they pile up a little.

Today wasn't a good day: I got rejection letters (and a nice phone call from a recruiter) all letting me know that the positions I had applied for were no longer interested in me. A couple had already been filled, but at least two were continuing their search for other candidates and that I was not being considered for the next round.

This was especially hard this week, as I had worked really hard to nail the in-person interview I went to last week, and I was relatively sur…