Friday Already?

If you’re like me, on occasion Friday sneaks up on you. I completely forgot to get a post ready for today but you know what, I’m okay with that. There’s a time honored tradition among GMs called “It’s the weekend already and I forgot to think of a game.” or something similar. Sometimes, we think that all of our games have to be these great masterpieces when, you know what? A lot of times the players just wanna roll some dice and get some XP. Last week we sat down to game, we didn’t know if we wanted to play The Artifact or Steampunkfitters. We settled on an Artifact game, the gang rolled up some characters and just for fun, the players asked me to decide what their characters classes should be. I picked a few characters type that I thought the players would enjoy but I tried to give them something a little different than their usual fare.

Then came making a game with those slightly unusual characters. I actually used an idea I wrote about here on the blog, so I guess I was pulling out one from the archives and not just coming up with something on the fly. I had to make the quest significantly simpler than I had at first intended because we spent some time making characters. In the end, I threw a little combat in there, at first just a warm up of a few E-Suits and then gave the players a real challenge of going up against a Demolisher. The starting characters were quite competent (really good rolls this time round) so I wasn’t too worried about them being able to handle the challenge. The “Treasure” ended up a fun reward too (see the earlier post for more).

What Went Right?

It was in general a fun game because the players know the setting and they were able to succeed in a bunch of tasks that they know are not easy. This gave them a feeling of accomplishment. The game was fast, I didn’t get bogged down in details which is my Achilles heel. The science stuff was all technobabble anyway and so I handled it all with character skill rolls which they were equipped for (One of the characters was a Field Scientist).

If There Was To Be a Point

The point I think I’m going for here is, other than an interesting treasure, there wasn’t any kind of twist in the game. There were no tricks and that was fine. I’m not going to win any award for the game writing but the players still had fun. Two of the characters are now insane but the players are fine with that. So the formula if there was one, would be a quick game with a little bit of challenge.

It’s been said before but it’s worth repeating. Simplicity and a little head thumping can be very satisfying.


Filed under GM Advice

2 Responses to Friday Already?

  1. Yeah, simplicity is often king. In fact if you make things too complicated and it bogs down the gameplay, it’ll frustrate your players. And an easy plot lets you improvise easier, in my opinion – and when improvisation happens and works out it tends to be more fun for GM and players.

    • Loc

      I do like a good puzzle for the players to figure out, in a science fiction setting giving the players a situation that they can reason out is what I feel gives the game a full science fiction feeling. This can get fiddly though if the players don’t pick up on clues that you’ve laid out for them and lead to the game feeling like a struggle.

      A simple straightforward game is important to throw the setting into sharp relief every few games. Variety is the spice of life, and the game.

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