Tuesday 28 August 2018

#RPGaDay2018: Day 28 - Share whose inspiring gaming excellence you're grateful for

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This question feels like favouritism to me, which makes it really hard to answer. Maybe if I watched actual plays or something I'd be able to pick someone I've never interacted with, physically or digitally, beyond their media, but I don't so it needs to be someone I know, which makes it feel like favouritism which I don't like.

So I'm going to choose Tom.

Tom was another player in the Buffy game that was my intro to roleplay. He took me to one side after a session and asked if I wanted to join his ShadowRun game,because he thought I "got it" and would be a good fit. I was really enjoying Buffy, so quickly accepted.

He could be a tough GM - he'd been to the same university I ended up at, several years earlier, but was still known by reputation. "Star Wars Tom was your first GM and you didn't give up?!" He'd run Star Wars games to which people would bring 2, even 3 characters to each session, and still sometimes end up having to create a new character when the others all died. By the time he was running ShadowRun for me, he'd mellowed somewhat: there were still player deaths, but nothing quite on the scale of the stories I later heard.

There were several NPC's I suspect some people would term GMPC's, but they never bothered me: they never stole the show, but rather gave an extra edge of believability to the world, and he encouraged us to interact with them and befriend them in a way that helped some of the players more used to only thinking about the combat side of the game suddenly discover the roleplay aspect too, helping bring their characters to life. I guess it says a lot about the depth he gave them that of the characters I remember details about, at least half were NPC's.

I'm grateful to him because he's the one who nurtured me and encouraged me as a young player. When he introduced adult themes to the game, he made sure to give me (the youngest player) an out without interrupting the flow of the game. He (and several other players) made sure I knew they had my back when a newer player made inappropriate jokes. They didn't ostracise him, either, but made sure he knew his comments weren't ok while encouraging him to grow up (which he did). To be able to do that for him while keeping me feeling supported is an impressive skill.

The game contained an on-going plot, but focussed on characters getting through the here and now, and strongly influenced the way I like to play now (though maybe I loved it so much because it matched the way I didn't yet know I preferred).

So yeah, I'll pick Tom, because I think without that ShadowRun game I wouldn't still be gaming, or at least not as frequently and enthusiastically.

What about you? Share a link to your response below.

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