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TTRPGs - With or Without Reality?

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  • TTRPGs - With or Without Reality?

    When designing Suzerain we try to make sure that players have a true feeling of hope and that they can each make a difference. Obviously with 2020 going the way it has/is, I’ve been wondering - Do you play TTRPGs to escape reality or to address issues within it? Or both?

    With our upcoming Kickstarter for our new book (more info here) and just being TTRPG fans, this is a big thing for us to understand. After all, how can you design something for players if you never ask them what they want!

    Click image for larger version

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    (Picture is Baron Wolfhaven left and his player Howard right, as part of the Legends Awaken initiative!)

    Infomancer_Ciaran, Savage Mojo
    C-Moon#4331 at Discord

    Kickstarter coming October 4th 2020
    Join our mailing list and get a FREE
    Shane Hensley adventure

  • #2
    As both a player and a setting designer, I draw from my real-world experiences (and those of others!) to breathe life into a character or world, respectively. But I avoid attempts at making a statement about the real world. There are certainly things that influence my designs, particularly when it comes to political and social structures, but I'm not saying, "Oh, this group here... they represent XYZ, and this is what you should think about them." I prefer nuance, and I seek to subvert expectations. Stark "good v. evil" concepts often bore me, and when I run a campaign I like to be surprised by the players' choices as much as I enjoy surprising them. In that regard, it is a form of escapism. Although I like to just think of it as telling a good story.

    Whether I succeed at that goal is another matter. I'm something of a crap GM.