Tuesday, June 22, 2010

What kind of gamer are you?

We run into a lot of different kinds of gamers. Some love the types of things we talk about: cultures, cuisine, trade goods. Others have no idea why anyone would care what happened outside of an actual battle. Let’s give you a little insight into the Board Enterprises way of looking at RPGs: We think they are role-playing games! We think that when you make a decision you shouldn’t rely on your overly mathematical sense of the rules, but in what makes sense for your character. Honestly, we’re not into doing voices and acting out everything that happens, though we know people who go for that kind of thing.
By the way - here’s how you know you’re role-playing and not acting like yourself: Imagine you’re walking into a biker bar where everyone is wearing red bandannas, and you put a blue bandanna around your head. Can you imagine doing that? If you can, you’re likely dead, so I guess you’re not reading this. OK - Different. You and your friends have entered an old abandoned house on a dare. They all say, “You go first”, and you do, without thinking, without trying to convince someone else to, you just go. Your characters do this kind of stuff all the time. No sane person does this. That’s how you know that the actions you choose for your characters are different than the actions you choose for yourself, thus, you are role-playing.
So - Why does this matter? Going back to the famous discussion I had with a magazine editor - I submitted an article in which I described the use of magical healing outside of combat - how would it affect the culture and the urban environment? There was also a thing in there about the use of age altering (youth) magic and other magic used simply for the purposes of beauty. The article even had stats on the modern health care and beauty industries. The editor was convinced that this was some sort of April Fools article. No one could possibly care what happened with magical healing outside of combat he insisted. Well, those of us who role-play - we care. The magazine didn’t last a year, but we’re still here. Maybe that proves something.

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