Rowyn (rowyn) wrote,

Obligatory 2013 RPG

I've been thinking of running a new online RP game in 2013. I have two different ideas that I'm interested in running:

* A Little Fears game: characters would be children age 4-12, in an apparently modern-world setting, dealing with the kinds of monsters of which young children are generally frightened (bullies, sarcastic teachers, monsters under the bed and in the closet, etc.) All monsters are real, but adults will nonetheless be of limited value in helping children with these problems. I'd buy the Little Fears rule book for this game and use the rules from it.

* The Slave Gods: Players would portray powerful beings (think gods/demons/djinnis) enslaved to the service of mortal masters. Player goals would be things like "free yourself", "get revenge on your masters" or even as modest as "get into the hands of a master who doesn't suck". PCs would generally have incredible powers that they cannot exercise at their own discretion. My main inspiration is works like N. K. Jemisin's The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms and Bard Bloom's The Wrath of Trees, but I want to discuss character ideas with the players before deciding on specifics of setting, as well as details like "what kind of being are you?" and "how/why did you end up enslaved?" This would likely be a rules-light game using some simple homebrew system.

I also have a few medium/timing methods I'm willing to try. Some of the mediums are obvious -- "play by email" means players send emails to the group to say what their characters are doing and the GM emails back with responses and actions by the NPCs/setting. "MUCK" means "all participants log in to FurryMUCK and the story is told through poses." (I use Furry's holodeck room, which has freespoof enabled so that poses don't need to start with character names, which is nice for everyone in making the log more readable, but especially useful for the GM.)

Using a Google Doc for a game is less time-tested. I have not used Google Docs for gaming before, but lady_peregrine and I used it in writing a story together, and I was pleased with how well that worked. (And it had something of a game-like feel to the process, because we generally alternated, each of us writing a paragraph or two and then waiting for the other to add more.) The advantage to a Google doc is that it's more story-like: any participant can edit any part of the Google doc to add in replies where appropriate or to change things that no longer make sense in light of new information. This is one of those things that's always kind of irritated me about PBEM and MUCK play alike -- editing is burdensome. Since editing can't be easily done on the fly, it often doesn't happen at all, so you never have a clean record of the IC events. The big disadvantages of using Google Doc are (a) I can see it getting hard to notice important changes when new material is added somewhere other than the bottom, (b) you don't get notifications of new updates the way you do in PBEM, and (c) there's no automatic way to tell who added what to the document. (True, you could have participants change the color of their text or add name/timestamps, but this is like saying "you can edit a MUCK log". Yes, you can, but there is a world of difference between "this requires no extra effort on my part" and "I can do this but it's annoying".)

Apache Wave (based on Google Wave, which shut down a while ago) is a hybrid between Google Docs and multi-threaded chat. The "wave" is made up of all the various things people have typed into it; the default is to add your new material as a comment at the bottom of the wave. But you can also edit other people's responses and respond to anyone in the wave, in order to stick new text higher in the wave. The main advantage over Google Docs is that new material gets a time and user stamp, so it would be easier to scan to see what's been added and by whom. The time/name stamps do give the wave more of an email-conversation or chat log look than a story one, however. I have not used waves myself but they're pretty straightforward, and I know of groups that used them for RP.

Last question is asynchronous vs synchronous RP. A PBEM is going to be asynchronous and a MUCK game is going to be synchronous by the nature of the medium, but it struck me that using a doc or a wave works fine either way, so I put this as its own question.

So -- the poll! If you are interested in playing but do not have a preference on a given topic, just click all the boxes. If you have a strong preference but are willing to play under the other options, please check the box for your preference and add a comment at the bottom noting that you're open to the others.

Poll #1881520 2013 Game?

Which would you like to play in if I ran it?

Little Fears
The Slave Gods

What medium would you like to play in?

Play by Email
Google Word Document
Apache Wave ( )

Asynchronous and unscheduled (eg, PBEM) or synchronous and on a weekly or bi-weekly schedule (eg, a MUCK game)?

Asynchronous: participants post as often or as infrequently as they like
Asynchronous: players post no more than twice and no less than once per weekday, GM responds within 24 hours
Synchronous, for a few hours weekly
Synchronous, for a few hours every other week

I would be more interested in playing if the game (included furries, had shapeshifters, was sf, etc.):

I will not be starting the game until January regardless of response, because December is kind of a horrible month to launch new projects.

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