Things to make your next RPG successful
When I first saw this new forum I had some interest. I had been a part of some DoD rpgs in the old days and with the atmosphere of Natural Selection I thought that an rpg for NS would be even more interesting. While I am no D&D vet, I just wanted to pass on some experience points (ok bad joke) I have gained.Avoid complex rules or numbers
. On a disorganized forum you will never have the time or ability to enforce any such system of game play. Instead the RPG should form more of a narrative, like the Six Days in Sanjii
. Each person takes on a character and posts an emotional account of their experience. As the thread goes on people build off one another and the ending can often surprise everyone.
With a system like this there is no need for stats, race, ideology or dice rolls. People can pop in, read, start a new character, die, start a new character, as often as they want. If they game is made more accessible than more people will become a part of it.
An important part of any RPG is that people try to keep the the atmosphere of reality as much as possible. With historical based games, like DoD, this was easy, however with a science fiction game like NS it is much more difficult to say what is real and what is not. In general people should stick within the set of the game, but not imply that that is all there is. What I mean by this is that people should not go off creating new kinds of aliens, or guns, but they should not identify all big powerful aliens as oni and all wall climbers as skulks. It if very important that people try to avoid playing the RPG as though it was the game itself. In the "real" world there is no score bord, there could be more than 3 hives, there is no teamchat or mute key.
I hope that I have been clear enough so that may of you are able to understand what I mean. Now, it is important that there are some rules for this style, so here they are.-Be emotional
. No one wants to read "I climbed up the ladder. I saw an alien. I fired at it." Something along the lines of "I tensely pulled myself up the ladder, my gun holstered across my back. I was afraid, we were close to major infestation, but I heard my trainer's voice in my mind "you must move without fear, kill or be killed! They will show no mercy!" etc etc, you get the idea.-You only care about living
. In the "real" world death is permanent. It is not some black space that you sit in for 5 seconds while your screen fades in and you respawn back at base. If you die, you die. As such you will most likely care only about saving your own hide. Things that people normally care about in game like kill count, score, finishing an ip are secondary to saving your own life.-Be open ended and imply as much as you can
. Since other people will be building off of what you say happened it is important to give them a little bit of choice in the matter. The RPG is a sort of shared story, its yours for a bit, than someone Else's. If you want people to join, let them have a say in what happens.-Killing and death
. In general you can say you killed as many NPC (non player characters) as you want, but don't be absured. Playing an RPG where everyone is superman gets old fast. Try to use death and murder as little as possible, just like in a good war novel. Look at All Quite on the Western Front for example, very little of it is about battle itself. As for killing player characters, it should be left up to them. For example you can say you fired at the skulk who is being played by bob, but it is bob who decides (in his post) if he dies or not.-You can always start again
. People shouldn't fear letting their character die. It is very easy to start a new one. Just start posting again from a different point of view. This is also helpful for people to join the RPG after it has started.-The end.
Due to the need for everyone to be opened ended about their stories, the end will more likely be marked by the loss of interest in the thread (or the locking of it). As such don't expect to get to find out which team "wins". If ending the RPG is allowed by anyone, than people will be likely to end an interesting one just so they can make all the fuss about how glorious this day has been for the humans/aliens.
"Necessities can be many, but the one that is strongest is that which constrains you to win or to die." -Machiavelli