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I am going to be running with nearly 10 players. We had 10 for a test run last night. It seems to me that 10 players makes it very difficult to do much role playing because most everyone would have to shut up and wait for long periods of time. Are there some setting that work better with large groups? Maybe some sort of military campaign with lots of battles? I am at a total loss about what could work best, but I don't want to throw in the towel without at least giving it a real shot.

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closed as unclear what you're asking by mxyzplk Feb 21 at 12:27

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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In my experience, it's more about system than setting. Generally, rules-light systems lend themselves to faster play and less waiting-your-turn; Many other games permit simultaneous turn taking in combat (E.g.: Paranoia 2nd edition) or don't have a traditional turn structure at all (E.g.: Apocalypse world). During what kind of activity did you notice the "slow down and wait" problem was worst? –  GMJoe Feb 21 at 4:33
    
Do you have a specific system you will be running in eg. D&D 3.5, Numenera, Shadowrun? As it stands we can throw you all manner of ideas and recommendations, but if you already have a system and we don't know it those ideas may be useless. –  winterblood Feb 21 at 6:00
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I will be keeping an eye on this question for sure, I just had a boom in players in my game (went from 4 to 9 players not including me as DM) and while I have a few ideas in mind that will hopefully cut down on some of the waiting for players, I have not had many sessions yet to fully test my theories... but one quick tip would be to tell players that during combat they should be thinking ahead to their turn and know what they want to do. Delay their turn if they arent ready when you call their name. This may cut down combat time. –  MC_Hambone Feb 21 at 8:51
    
Please clarify what game system you are using because it matters... If the answer is 4e then there's an existing Q&A that's a duplicate, rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/124/… –  mxyzplk Feb 21 at 12:28
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1 Answer 1

If you're OK with not having everyone around for every session (and especially if you feel a desire to place limits on how many players can be in a given session), then a West Marches-style campaign is designed in a way which specifically addresses this issue::

2) There was no regular party: each game had different players drawn from a pool of around 10-14 people.

The basic idea is to have a single "home base" location (in the case of the original West Marches, it was the last outpost of civilization prior to reaching the frontier that the PCs spent their time exploring) and arrange things so that the PCs return to their home base by the end of each session. This allows the freedom for the group of characters present to change completely from one session to the next, since they're all in the same place between sessions. This would also work well with an urban campaign in which the PCs never leave the campaign city.

This style of game seems to work best for sandbox-style exploration, since that avoids problems with ongoing (GM-prepared) storylines that can be broken (or at least complicated) by characters disappearing in the middle of them.

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I've tried this a couple times, and always had trouble with the "PCs return to their home base by the end of each session" bit. Also, although this cuts down on prep for each session it usually requires a lot of up-front worldbuilding prep before the campaign starts. –  BESW Feb 21 at 12:18
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