On the first episode of the Bard’s Corner I’m going to talk about whether or not tabletop RPGs suits you or not. Because, to be completely honest, it’s not a game for everyone. Considering the time and effort it takes to play even a single game (which generally takes a few hours), it’s important to make sure that you’re not wasting your time; because time is a precious commodity for anyone, let alone adult hobbyists with a full time job.
Luckily, tabletop gaming does accommodate many different type of gamers: from the casual group of friends who gets together for a good laugh, to those who enjoys a deep and interactive form of storytelling, to hardcore boardgamers. Tabletop RPG can be enjoyable to all of the archetypes above because it is such a flexible system that you can adapt to suit your taste.
‘Purists’ will tell you that there is a ‘right’ way to play tabletop games, but let’s not worry about them. Remember: The golden rule in Tabletop RPG is: If everyone’s having fun, that’s all that matters. If you fall within the categories below, there’s a good chance you might enjoy Tabletop RPGs:
1. You enjoy creating a character
The core of any tabletop RPG experience is playing a character that you built from scratch. In some of the more advanced systems, this means everything from how they look, their personalities, their classes, even details like how good are they at yodeling! This is a process that can be very intensive and enjoyable for some people (While others don’t even bother naming their characters).
2.You enjoy Problem Solving
Tabletop RPG is a game where you will be faced with many different kinds of problems, but unlike a regular RPG where you have a set of options on how to deal with them, a tabletop rpg is limited only by your imagination. This allows you to be as creative as possible. This appeals to many and often leads to interesting situations, do keep in mind that in tabletop rpgs, the game master is the final arbiter of what is possible and what is not.
3.You enjoy telling a story
Tabletop RPG is a joint storytelling effort by multiple people. If you like crafting story, there is a good chance you can enjoy a tabletop roleplaying games. One thing to keep in mind is that you will be telling the story of your own character while the game master will tell the story of the world.
4.You enjoy tactical combat
Combat in most tabletop RPGs can be likened to turn based strategy RPGs. If you enjoy games such as Final Fantasy Tactics or Fire Emblem, you may enjoy tabletop RPGs. Of course, combat isn’t the only aspect of tabletop RPGs and some Game Masters prefer to run games that are heavier on stories than on combat, so your mileage may vary.
Those are the four types of people who can find tabletop RPG fun. However, most tabletop RPG is a combination of four; so if you enjoy only one of the above you may not enjoy this complex hobby. Unless you find the right kind of Game Master because each may focus on different aspects of the game. If you like all four of the points above, by all means give the game a shot.
If you have any questions about Tabletop RPGs, give me a holler and I’ll help you in any way I can. Until then, safe travels adventurer!
– Kai –