Archive for the ‘Comment’ Category

A Personal Schism!

Posted: 29 November, 2017 in Comment, Role-Playing

At the moment I am at a turning point with my Role-Playing in so much I want to move forward towards more story telling based games away from the more traditional heavily rule based role-playing as I after month of playing them have started to find them frankly boring and uninspiring to play.

The major issue I am having with rule heavy traditional role-playing games, especially likes of Dungeon & Dragons, is they are far too restrictive putting too much emphasis on combat and tactics rather giving both players and game masters latitude for role-playing. The games using these type of rules always end up much like computer role-playing games centred around a series of quests and combats with little real stories. This is regardless how hard a game master tries to push role-playing as very nature of the rules make this very difficult, if anything almost impossible to do effectively.

I have nothing against such traditional rule heavy role-playing and it players as they have their place in the hobby and such games are extremely good introduction to the hobby especially for those coming from computer gaming background. But other than this they are not conducive to long and more more in-depth games as their emphasis on rules makes real character and story development very difficult.

Myself I have now moved on to story telling games in which the rules become an ends to a means to give a role-playing a consistent base but do not get in the way of story and character development, if anything the rules make such things easier. In addition with rule light role-playing games the background becomes more important than the rules rather than the other way round with a more traditional rule-based role-playing games.

I now find running and playing more story telling based role-playing games far more rewarding as I do not feel like I am being restricted by rules and more freer to explore character and the game’s background. I find the whole experience of such story telling role-playing games a more personal and entertaining than the rule-based role-playing games.

As I said at the moment I am at a turning point with my role-playing either continue going to a local group in the hope I can find others within the group who think the same as myself, which is turning out to be difficult task to a point I am at the point of giving up. Or I leave the group and forge my own path as a Role-Player and a Story Teller and find like minded people locally something which is very temping at the moment.

It is sad I have to think like this but much as the rest of my life I am starting to feel trapped by the people around me who rather not move on and try new things which make me really feel like they are holding me back when I so want to fly at the moment!

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal miscellany of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to The Abode of The Steam Powered Story Teller.

Since starting again role-playing with local group at home I have got the bug for playing and running role-playing games. But I have found there is still that age old issue with games like Dungeons & Dragons, Role Master and Chivalry & Sorcery which are centred about their rules rather than their backgrounds. This has become very apparent with lasted editions of Dungeons & Dragons which almost glorifies its rule system over background and I have always felt it is far too centred on combat rather role-playing.

Do not get me wrong such games to have a place in the hobby as they are very good introduction for new players and game masters especially those coming from computer game background. As it is easier to set up and run such games, especially Dungeons & Dragons, which makes a good starting point for role-playing hobby for the novice players and game masters.

But for experience players like myself who have moved onto more sophisticated games especially those of story teller ilk that is role-playing games in which the story comes first rather than the rules and gives both the players and storyteller for more opportunity role-play such games like Dungeons & Dragons seam very limited in comparison.

What I find by comparison playing such games like Dungeon & Dragons are not as satisfying to play as strangely they actually do not encourage role-playing and far too centred on combat even with an excellent games master. Though such games do not help themselves currently by centring a large majority of source books on rule extensions rather than giving the games masters and players wonderful background.

There is one major issue with current editions of Dungeon & Dragons unlike the earlier editions and Advanced Dungeon & Dragons the range of backgrounds provided are very small range of backgrounds which currently only includes Forgotten Realms and Ravenloft. This is unlike Advanced Dungeon & Dragons which a whole range of published backgrounds from Forgotten Realms, Dark Sun, Dragon Lance to name a few which game the games master a lot of choice of the game they wanted to play and to role-ply.

Added to the range of alternative games tend to be more heavily rule based with few actually put the story and background first so new players and games masters get little real opportunity to move on from more combat orientated games to more storyteller based games. This really does not encourage new players and game masters encouragement to develop their role-playing skills and widen their experience of role-playing games.

I do have the advantage of being a very experienced role-player and storyteller but I currently miss the fun of real role-playing which the likes of classic White Wolf World of Darkness. I have learnt that creating an interactive story with the players is far more rewarding for both the players and storytellers as both have put a lot into the game.

Yes, I know it is very satisfying completing quests and winning a hard won combat in Role-Playing game but this pales into insignificance for myself when I get to the end of a storyteller game as the fruit of my and my players comes to fruition.

Basically saying rules do not maketh the character but the players themselves.

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal miscellany of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

I remember once when Role-Playing Companies produced real and self-contained rule books and source books and not as they do now splitting the rule books and source material across a number of books along with current trend to even selling you special dice!

Personally this is dirty trick as it costs people more to get all the required material to play a role-playing game and fools them into buying unnecessary dice.

But this tend reflects the way we do business nowadays in so much why sell someone one book when two or more books will do and our profits go up.

At a time when Role-Playing is not as popular as it once once and need to encourage new players, the whole industry seams more intent on making more expensive to start the hobby.

My personal view is that this trend should be stopped by the companies and they treat players more fairly after with a workable core rule/source book people will still buy more books and not like myself feel we are being taken a ride by the Role-Playing Companies.

It also highlight a common malaise with some modern Role-Players in so much they have not figured out it takes imagination and creativity to run a game not a whole lot of rules and source books which the said companies are exploiting.

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal miscellany of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.

Since returning back to role-playing after a 5 year break it has become very apparent that I have moved on from the older and more traditional rule heavy role-playing rules which included such games as Advanced Dungeon & Dragons which were one first systems I played and ran.

I have moved since my early days towards the more story telling based games which are more rule light and background heavy which allow both myself and players to create more rounded games based more on role-playing than combat.

All this reflects a change what I want out of my role-playing since I started which is now a more creative environment in which I can weave a story using my own and player’s imaginations and creative sides. It makes role-playing a very enjoyable and satisfying experience for myself which feeds my own imagination and creativity something I need to do to keep my mind active as I grow older.

I still play a variant of Advanced Dungeon and Dragons and similar games and enjoy them though more as a traditional role-playing experience which is more centred around combat which reflects it origins within the war gaming community. Though I am finding personally this war gaming background detracts from the role-playing opportunities for both the players and games masters as it does not easily encourage players to get involved in the games themselves.

Do not get me wrong such role-playing systems still have their place as there are role-players out there who love this form of role-playing and they make a good introduction to role-playing especially those who have come from computer games backgrounds.

But I have moved on as most experienced game masters/storytellers and players do in search of a better role-playing experience which fires up their imaginations and creativity, all part of the journey of role-players like myself.

Though the biggest irony of all role-playing, especially story based role-playing games, are adult versions of lets pretend games of all our childhoods.

Please Note: If you are interested in a more personal miscellany of mine just follow the link to Patterns in the Static!.

Please Note: If you are interested in my home page just follow the link to Experiment No. 3.