Tell your friends! Tell your neighbors!*
As some know, we — the Adventure Co. Brand Adventure Company — play Dungeons & Dragons 5E on Thursday nights via Roll20.net. We’re having a marvelous time, but I know that there had been a bit more interest in playing than we could accommodate initially, so I wanted to do something in addition to the Thursday night dungeon fight.
Scheduling is always a bear. Unless you’re single, have a spouse or S.O. who is OK with you yelling “Fireball! Fireball!” at Internet strangers during their DVR catch-up time, or simply consider vTabletop RPGing to eclipse all other concerns in life, making a commitment to be online for a few hours at least once a week is something you need to find a work-around for. That’s why I wanted to try play by post for this secondary adventure.
Play by post is what it sounds like: the GM posts an intro scene to one or more players explaining the setting, what you see, who’s there, and what’s going down at the time. As a player, you respond to that. The GM responds to you, someone rolls some dice, and the outcome is discussed.
I’m attracted to PbP this time around for a few reasons:
- We can have more people playing. While I’d like to cap the initial game at 5 players (we have three already, and are looking for two), there’s really no reason why we couldn’t have more because…
- Players don’t have to stick together. At the table, it’s difficult to cut out the “meta”. If I tell player A that she’s alone in a room and finds a powerful magical item, player B who is back at the tavern will instantly know this because he’s sitting three feet to the left. In a PbP setting, each player can have his own thread where it’s just him and the GM. Players can merge or divide at will, making it more of a personal story than a story focusing on a moving blob of adventurers.
- It’s a slower pace. While there needs to be some momentum to the game to keep people interested, there’s no immediacy to posting. There might be an agreed-upon time frame (check at least twice a week, for example), you have time to consider your moves and digest your environment like a gelatinous cube digests your chara…I mean…you know what I mean!
- It’s more descriptive and immersive. PbP allows for everyone to actually get into character, to RP as their character, and to present themselves without worrying that the funny voice they would affect in a live session would be more embarrassing than immersive. There’s also the opportunity to set the tone in each scene, to give NPCs and environments more flavor, and to really take the game out of the realm of just killing things and put it into the realm of interactive story.
And Now, the Fine Print
- We’ll be using a site called Tavern-Keeper.com. I know we could do this on a dumb-forum. I know about rpol and some other sites, but TK.com speaks to me. It’s nice and clean and attractive, works well for what we need, and is designed around my personal philosophy on how a PbP site should operate.
- We’re strongly leaning towards Monte Cook’s Numenera as the setting and system. It’s an interesting setting — Earth, a billion years from now, digging through long lost technology and dealing with eons of mind-blowing advances in science that makes absolutely no sense. It also lends itself very well to a narrative-driven game, focusing on the story over mechanics. Check out http://www.numenera.com.
- It’s my first PbP game. Insert dog “I have no idea what I’m doing” meme here, though not entirely: it’s not rocket science, just asynchronous. We will make it our own. But I’m not promising Shakespeare here, but I’ll try not to let it devolve to Stephanie Meyer, either.
Who Am I Looking For
As mentioned, we have three people who are already on-board. I’m looking for at least two more at this time. I’m not going to preclude anyone who’s got a genuine interest, and standard “don’t be a dick” rules apply (we’re here to have fun, no rules lawyering, discussion not argument, etc).
I’m going to create a space at Tavern-keeper.com where players can gather to discuss the setup, character creation, expectations, house rules, ask and answer questions, and so on.
The cost of the Numenera Player’s Handbook is $8 for the PDF, more of the physical hardcover from MonteCookGames.com, Amazon, or your FLGS. If you’re OK with that, then OK!
If you’re interested, ping me on Twitter @Scopique, on G+ if you know where to find me, on Anook.com by the same, or leave a comment here!