RPG a Day: ‘Til Death Do Us Part

14. What is an awesome RPG for open-ended campaign play?

This is sort of the opposite of the Day 9 question. Most RPGs work for this, unless they are specifically designed for short play. What really matters is how engaged everyone at the table is, and whether you’re tracking what has gone on from episode to episode so dangling plot threads and interesting NPCs can be reincorporated in play, making the GM’s life easier (the adventures write themselves) and the players’ actions more important (they impact the game world.)

That said, some games make it particularly easy for me, because the mechanics are light enough that statting more NPCs and creating new locations and plots does not create a burden on the GM. I particularly like games based on Fate Accelerated (like War of Ashes or Dresden Files Accelerated), PDQ (like Truth & Justice, Jaws of the Six Serpents, or The Zorcerer of Zo), or Heroquest (like Mythic Russia or of course Glorantha.) Some (not all) games Powered by the Apocalypse work well for this style of play, like Dungeon World or Monster of the Week.


RPG a Day: Two Hours!

8. What is a good RPG to play for sessions of 2 hours or less?

[Wherein I give up on picking a single option.]

If you’re going to plan on a 2-hour game, you had better use a streamlined system with rapid character creation. Systems that are well-suited include Fate Accelerated, The Shadow of Yesterday, PDQ, Wushu, Over The Edge, etc.

Continue reading “RPG a Day: Two Hours!”

RPG a Day: Successful campaigns

13. What makes a successful campaign?

Our heroes from “The Playful Watch”, a Zorcerer of Zo campaign.

Once again, people. They have to click together; it’s no reflection on anyone but just because two people are friends with you, they won’t necessarily be friends with each other. We’ve had good luck in this respect, but sometimes you hit on incompatibilities even between people you all dearly love.

And of course they have to share enough interest, hopefully enthusiastic, in the setting, genre, characters, and plots.

In terms of logistics, availability and reliability. Classic gamer problem: every one wants to play but no one is available at the same times! Gaming is also a different priority for different people; for some, they really enjoy it but if they get an offer for some activity they enjoy they will cancel right at the last minute. Others expect the GM to call and remind them every game, no matter how firm the schedule arrangements were.