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Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Thoughts Of A Gamer 

I am a game player. I look like everyone else, and I move amongst you unseen, but hold within me a globe of characters itching to emerge. The characters are conglomerates of actual individuals, or caricatures of features, but all are cautiously created and have a mission. To have a great time. I prefer table top RPG, although I've played video games RPGs, SIMS, and the Play by e-mail games. With the Table top selection, I can see the players' tendencies, numerous conversations flying back and forth. And the jokes. The jokes. Nights of raucous hilarity until all of us cried and were breathless. This doesn't happen much having a video game. As for the comparable camaraderie in a Sim group or a PBEMRPG, it depends on the group. I and some buddies of mine have spent many a rainy evening tossing dice about the table ( even retrieving stated lost dice from the feline swatting it down the hallway.) with our old fashioned table top role-play games, like Dungeons and Dragons, the Star Wars Saga or the myriad GURPS game scenarios. These covered fantasy, science fiction, James Bond type espionage, super heroes, even steam punk and cyber punk styled worlds. I've even ran games, that in itself is its own challenge..More on that later.

Before a game can be portrayed, the persona needs to be created. The globe and level to start in is usually up to the game master. As for character creation, it can be challenging to balance abilities and talents that actually work well for the individual as the player has no advance notice of what the character will go through much like it can be in actual life. Some players are very attached to their characters, and some aren't. Myself, when I create a character, I try to make a balanced individual. Character development can happen in a table top RPG, however it depends on the player, and possibly length of adventure. Occasionally the adventure is a "One shot" a very short one spanning one, two or four gaming sessions. Very little if any character development happen in those sessions unless they are treated as a serial adventure.

Now on running a table top RPG is difficult, in that I can't predict always how the players will react to a given situation, or what obstacles of their own they throw at me. I find this to be very mentally stimulating. Each gaming formats are equally fun, difficult and stimulating in their own manner.

In the character creation exactly the same balance of traits for a table top RPG, is highly crucial in the PBEMRPG format like the Star Trek RPG UFoP's where characters are made.

In a Play by E-mail Function Play Game, the challenges are brought about by the character's inventor not a "GM"/"DM" or Games, Organizational Director "GOD", but by the character's own inventor. She or he decides how the persona will reply to a given situation. Does the author want the character to get harmed, exactly how badly. Or an illness that seems to plague the individual and what frequency. Does the character have mental problems, physical, emotional, outdoors issues with family. A lot of scenarios are available for a PBEMRPG writer to use to make the character more like a actual individual. In fact, things like quirks, hobbies, 'pet peeves' makes the character have more dimension. I suppose if you believe about it, it's why I enjoy gaming. It’s that challenge of creating someone that in a way becomes 'alive'.

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