Blog number two for Speak Out With Your Geek Out week will talk about one of my favorite hobbies: roleplaying games. I have other posts about roleplaying on the site (like this one) but I’d like to ask the question what do you think about when someone says roleplaying?
Like most people, you probably think about the venerable Dungeons and Dragons games that have lived for so long. Of course, that’s the entry point for most people, as it was for me. I started with the Red Box, moved to Second Edition, then Advanced D&D (my favorite I think), and from there a host of different systems.
Didn’t know there were other games out there? Oh yes, there are many and most of them are boatloads of fun. Let me talk about two of them.
I loved playing the first Star Wars role playing game. Loved it. With a good game master, you could really capture the feel of a space opera, doing daring rescues and facing off against the evil Empire. The system was pretty easy as well. Instead of a d20 system, it was all six sided dice and your actions were determined with a simple skill determination. For each skill, you can roll a certain number of six sided dice and the GM determines what number you need to roll to succeed. It keeps the game moving quickly and not bogged down with too many rules. The current iteration is close to this system.
Another game I loved playing was Paranoia. The rules are bit more complicated and you are instructed not to get too attached to your character or your clones as they will die. It’s a dark comedy game and you are encouraged to screw your other players who are trying to screw you. You have to be a bit underhanded about it and you have to basically mistrust anyone else playing including the GM. A successful game completes when pretty much everyone’s characters (and their clones) have perished in amusing ways and everyone at the table is laughing. There’s not a lot of characterization, but it’s not needed.
Those are just two game systems out there. There’s a lot more, something for everyone and every taste. Role playing is making something of a resurgence and finding a good game is easier than ever.
The best thing about role playing is the memories it creates. Not only of some really amazing game moments, the kind of things you quote with your friends years later and laugh about those game situations, but the friends you create and creative people who are drawn to it.
What do you think about role playing games?