Sunday, October 23, 2011

Setting up your own Tabletop RPG: Special edition report from the front lines

I've been sick, again, and thus missed my lesson at the suicide hotline yesterday. Fortunately it was an overview day that was only a couple hours, as opposed to 7 hours cram and practice. I suspect I did not miss much. I asked  the people in charge to contact me with the online component if anything important was missed, but they have not yet, so I'm hopeful that's the case.

Instead, large parts of yesterday that weren't wasted were spent trying to sort things out for my upcoming game. It's been quite a mess, as such a project tends to be, and given my recent posting on the subject, a few thoughts about it might be interesting.

The best place to start would be the state of the game a few days ago, with my three planned players. Thinking that was too few, I tried some internet advertising for the game on a traditional games board I regular. It met with limited response, but three prospective players eventually came foreward from it. Two initially, who were allowed in by default, and a third I've got should something happen. It's always wise to have a backup plan, after all.

  • Two of these players have never used the system before. So the first thing's first. We had the familiarize them with the system. Although there were minor mistakes, it's a complex system, I think the strangest part was that despite having a small storm trying to educate current players on every little house rule I'm using, they had no problem adapting to it.
  • The other new player's put together their sheet and character quite quickly, though they're somewhat less inspired then some of the other character's, we'll have to see how it works out.
  • Meanwhile, among my friend-players, I've had another that's had constant trouble trying to come up with creative ideas for their character. It's been a long frustrating time trying to aid them but on finally getting them to try and piece things together they're realizing the actual limits they have to work in and are hopefully having some luck now.
  • Another player after an initial nightmare to get them to be sure of the exact  nature of some rules, has been peacefully working their character away.
  • The last of them, being far more experienced with me, has barely spoken on the subject. They seem to understand everything and responsibly ask for clarification. They tend to also be the working away in silence types so I have confidence they'll be done on time.

There are still elements of annoyance, I'm going to have to work with them all establishing any firneds or family for them to use. That and introductions are my next topics I have planned for them. Nowdays I've got the group meeting regularly in a central location over IRC where I can use things to discuss ideas, I still have several smaller tasks like working out the exacts of how people know each other, and the exact nature for how the game will actually start. (pretty much determining between, the classic they meet in a tavern (or classroom, as the case may be), or are all caught up in events leading to them together. I don't know which will fit better given the possibility for violent hostility quickly coming up.

My own side, I've had a hellish time trying to develop the Monsters they'll fight. Constantly managing the players has eaten into my time, as has being sick, but largely I've just been lazy. I'm finally starting to run up against writers block concepting new enemies that'll be varied, but I have a fairly large pool I'm hoping the time I spend detailing them will provide at least enough of a buffer to work around this.

I've still got the next two weeks, I'm just going to have to try and avoid being lazy to sort things out, and begin to stat up a buffer. I plan to continue both these parts the moment I'm finished with this.

Its been tough and irritating in parts but pushing through it enough, it's finally about come together.


  1. i just got over 2 weeks of sick......yawn

  2. Keep up the good stuff man!
    Keep yourself healthy man! lol

  3. Sounds like it takes a lot of work! You must have the patience of a saint.

  4. mad respect for doing that. i didn't know you had to take a test.

  5. Wow, you seem really devoted to this.

  6. I never really got to play any of these table top RPGs because I never had anybody to play with. :(