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38

Summary I don't think 'fun' is essential, but I think that 'worthwhile' is. Detail I don't want to waste two to eight hours of my life doing something which is worthless - like watching a movie that was at the mid-point between "ok, I guess" and "so bad it's good", I never want to think "well, that's two hours of my life I'll never get back". Sure, most ...


19

I think depends on what the questioner means by "fun." Fun is an interesting concept. There are some meanings of "fun" that are particularly American (IMHO) in nature. We (Americans) have a concept of fun that apparently doesn't exist in many cultures. For example, I have read that there is no word for "fun" in a Scandinavian language...My memory is foggy, ...


15

Play a session or two of Roll For Shoes. Like an improv exercise, it will shake out your narrative muscles and make you stretch them a bit in a gaming context where it's ok to do the "wrong" thing or take the game in absurd directions. This is the game that did the most to transition my old group from a D&D context to a more player-driven context. We ...


12

Fun is very subjective. Replace "fun" with "enjoyable" and I think you have your answer. If you aren't enjoying yourself, it's not a sustainable activity. In the long run, if you feel like you haven't wasted your 4-5 hours, I think that's a good thing. Certain RP games (Dogs in the Vineyard, Call of Cthulhu, World of Darkness) might have less enjoyable and ...


12

I remember reading somewhere that one GM created a power card of sorts for one of his players having the analysis paralysis issue. He wrote out a few things the character could do (attack, block, etc.). After the first couple of sessions the player started asking questions, and he'd have her write out a new power card. After a while the player caught on ...


9

I've been in several live freeforms which worked like this; one-shots have more room to experiment, of course. (Also one in which the intrigue was based on a diplomacy-board-game-within-a-roleplay.) It happened unplanned in a Cybergeneration game I ran once: the players (mostly as a prank on me) had one of the characters running a VR D&D game... which ...


7

Well, personal response. If the game isn't fun to play, regardless of dark themes, etc. What's the point in playing it? Now, that being said. There's been a great many games that aren't 'fun' so much as they are experiments in experiencing certain things. Hikikomori comes to mind. It's a singleplayer roleplaying game where you experience the 'life' of ...


6

I have started people in a couple of fiction-driven "story games" and the greatest issue they have is being unable to choose an action. To help them with this I generally start the game in medias res which means that they have to respond to an imminent threat of some kind. With my last group I started by saying "OK, you are pelting down the steep hillside ...


6

There are definitely some studies out there, although not many. Wayne D. Blackmon wrote an article called "Dungeons & Dragons: The Use of a Fantasy Game in the Psychotherapeutic Treatment of a Young Adult" in 1994 (American Journal of Psychotherapy 48:4, pp.624-634). You can use Google Scholar to track forward and see some articles that have cited it. ...


6

No, roleplaying in the psych/business sense doesn't have a "game" component - there's no dice rolling or event resolution besides what the participants talk out. So I've never seen traditional RPGs be used. I have done plenty of the management/business kind and my stepmother is a therapist who owns a multi-person therapy practice that does plenty of ...


6

I think its like any other group activity. If its not enjoyable overall and doesn't serve any other real purpose ( like training, monetary reward, civic duty, etc. ), you won't keep working at it. You'll quit or leave or just let it atrophy ambiguously. That said, there are many ways that it can be not fun at a small scope and immensely enjoyable in at the ...


5

"Fun" is one of those squishy words that is hard to define. I've enjoyed a D&D game set on an unknown continent. I played the Royal Cartographer. Another character, was a very city-centric character and did not pick up on the fact that there are no cities on this continent. I had a blast. The other character was miserable. Was the group having fun ...


5

Yes, it has to be fun. What about getting to know your fellows better? What about exploring social restrictions and phenomena? What about dealing with your past? With your future possibilities? Most of these things are exactly what makes it fun for for so many people who do it. If any of those things aren't fun for you and anyone you play with, don't ...


5

Going with the movie analogy, because as a recreational/free time activity, I think it fits. Do I think American History X was a good movie? Yes. Do I think it was worth watching? Yes. Was it fun? Certainly not. I think this carries over to other leisure-time activities as well. It's possible to be glad you had the experience, despite it not being "fun." ...


4

There are a lot of things to take out of a game, fun as in "yay, I'm having fun!" is just one of them: enjoying the moment learning something (about history, society, psychology, emotions, …) anticipation of what is going to happen (this may point towards more fun or other entries on this list) getting to know your fellow players better doing someone a ...


3

Have you ever had the PCs take on a disguise or assume an alternate identity? It happens in games I run from time to time. so in that way they have to not just RP themselves, but RP another character as interpreted by the first character. That's the thing- character number 1 is interpreting the surface character. My favorite scene in the movie Inglorious ...


3

I've never seen this explicitly, although my groups bring up the idea on occasion. What is a regular occurrence is for our characters to get really into making up their names and backstories whenever the players have to create false identities. When this happens the players are more likely to play flawed, goofy characters. They also tend towards humor ...


3

There are several uses for "Role-playing" besides that used in the LARP, table-top and computer games. In Social Work, Psychology and Psychology, it's done as a guided theraputic technique, with almost no use of props nor of randomization, rulesets, nor even written characters. Usually in the mode of, "Fred, pretend you are Joe. Tell me what you think of ...


2

I think this depends on the player type. If you're a gamer type, which is to say you'll keep doing something until you succeed, because you have that kind of persistent drive, then yes you could get satisfaction from surviving Tomb of Horrors. I guess you could argue that's fun, but it's a rather unique kind, rather like the boxer or MMA fighter who says ...


2

My main job is a professional roleplayer: that is, I'm an actor, who does the roleplay exercises you talk about for job interviews and training courses. What happens is: you get a brief, giving you an imaginary business situation. For example, you might be meeting a customer or underperforming employee. I get a brief, telling me how to act in response to ...


2

I think it depends on what you expect from the RPG session, in general case they have to be fun or as it was said, everybody involved has to enjoy it. But I can think on several cases where the fun is not the main aim of the session, for example if you use it to teach something, in that case the main aim would be the players learning whatever they were ...


2

No they don't have to be fun. A game can be good if it is valued or appreciated in any number of ways. Players might find a game satisfying, worthwhile, productive, interesting, challenging, educational, or other things. I have seen players get other things such as new real-life friendships, too. I have often played games more for the purpose of learning ...


1

I'd try to abstract the game system, even if it means losing the advantage of the FATE system. Tell your players to just imagine they are the protagonist of a book or a film. What to do? What would do? Always try that they forget that they are playing a game, and focus them on the story. Try describing the scene in a way so immersive they have a clear ...


1

I can explain to you our experiences in something like this approach. We have a really dynamic game because of our group's experiments in this area. We play King Arthur Pendragon right now. Its a long campaign, about 100 sessions in total. We're 20 sessions into it, nearing the end of the first generation in the families. Each player takes on the role of a ...


1

I am not sure this is some weird esoteric syndrome. In many RPGs, the characters are at some point or another pretending to be someone else. In the recent Paizo Adventure Path Second Darkness, the PCs masquerade as drow in a drow city for an entire adventure. Not "playing," but "assuming." There is the (meta) game "Power Kill" by John Tynes, where you ...


1

I'vu found it generally unsatisfying, save when using well established characters, to have the PC's in character of someone else. Players generally don't like it, and further, it's seldom done for any purpose that advances plots, unless the character are trying to bypass security protocols. I much prefer to simple resolve it as a die-roll and move on.


1

Closest thing i can think of is 1001nights from Meguey Baker in which you play characters telling stories. So, what about the story-in-a-story thing, does it do that? A: Well, the basic game has our characters telling Stories, so it's already a story-in-a-story, so the simple answer is yes. To make deeper levels, all it would take would be for ...


1

I've spent a lot of time playing character-driven games in which a lot of dialogue occurs and not a hell of a lot of combat. A lot of situations that occur aren't easily classified as fun, but the group enjoys the sessions very much. I'm not sure whether your question is a linguistic or a philosophical query, but - to answer as directly as I can - no, I ...


1

Anecdotal evidence: With the right group role playing sessions have been quite cathartic. Later analysis of the story elements helped illuminate some of my own hang-ups. So I believe it can be a useful and sometimes therapeutic tool. I know of no rigorous studies.



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