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Experiencing the Role Playing Game

Aug 17, 2007
I have been an avid fan of role playing games since I was very young. I can remember getting my hands on the original Dungeons & Dragons rpg very long ago. This opened a world of fantasy, imagination and creativity for me. I can remember the hours upon hours I spent engulfed in this game.

Role playing games appeal to a creative person with an active imagination. These games give you the ability to live in the stories that you are accustomed to reading. You are granted the ability to take the protagonist of the story wherever you would like him or her to go.

To truly experience the role playing game, you have to learn to become the hero, your character, within the story. Stop using your mind to make decisions and become the character. How would the character handle a situation?

Maybe your character has a low intelligence trait. Make this reflect in your gaming. That is what role playing is. You are not playing yourself. You are playing a fantasy character within a fantasy world. So, enact this low intelligence. Make it a story.

Within all of us is the desire to succeed and win. We also desire to see the "good guy" or hero win the battle or complete the mission successfully. That is natural. Within an rpg, this is also common; however, we must learn to play this a bit differently.

An rpg is much like a script. You are acting out a part, however, you are also writing the story as you go. This is much more challenging and calls on the imagination so much more. It is this challenge that fills the role player full of energy and excitement.

Remember, play the character. Become this character. Learn to act like you think this character would act. A good game master will reward you more for playing in character than he/ she would if you were playing the character as a carbon copy of yourself.

You will also learn to enjoy a more dynamic and exciting game once you learn to truly experience the rpg by becoming this character. It is much more rewarding to adventure within an rpg by enacting a character that is not who you are, rather a fantasy persona that thinks and reacts differently than you do.

Make it a point to make decisions in the game differently than you would have made them had you been there. This will be challenging and extremely fulfilling.

Flesh out your character. Some systems do a more extensive job of character creation than others. Fill in the gaps. Create a personality. I enjoy fleshing out my character as I go. I will begin the game with a basic concept of who my hero is. I begin the adventure and initiate my character's reactions to the environment. I take notes on the developing personality of my character so that I may be consistent.

I do this as a game master as well. I will take notes behind my secretive screen about the players' characters. I will insist that they play their characters as their characters truly are. If I feel that their character is beginning to venture off of the unique personality, I will warn them. "Are you sure this is how Boris Frostberry would react to a widow lady needing assistance? I mean, in the past he has been so compassionate to those in need. Tell me, what is going through Boris' mind. Why has he decided to so coldly ignore this desperate lady?"

Now, the player's response would play a key part in how his or her character would be rewarded in the form of points. Most rpg systems utilize a form of experience points. If I felt the player was not playing the part of personality effectively, I would continue to advise of this. It would also reflect in point rewards.

Look around you and take note of the way people are. What are their expressions like? If you know this person, are their expressions always consistent with the way they are feeling. Have you ever seen someone who seems to always frown, even when happy? I do. Think of the stereotypical dwarf. He always scowls, even when content. That is the dwarf. Maybe your dwarf falls outside of the norm. Maybe those of the dwarven race are leery of your dwarf character because he seems to always be smiling, even when not appropriate. This is what adds character to your character.

As the title says, learn to experience role playing.
About the Author
William Doggett is an RPG / role playing game addict and will not deny it. He has more years of experience in gaming, writing and creating than he will admit. Visit the RPG Empire for tons of information. www.RPG-Empire.com
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