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I am looking to play an RPG in my forum with some friends of mine. The forum is mine, and I came up with the idea of playing an RPG. I want it to follow the following conditions so that it works on my forum:

  1. It can be played through text, with a bare minimum of images.
  2. No minimum or maximum number of players. We can be as many as 10 and as few as 3. We want the game to be enjoyable no matter who is available to play.
  3. Players should be able to miss sessions without breaking the game. Only players present should earn advancement or improvement for their characters.
  4. Easy to learn. There are people in my forum who have never played and RPG before.
  5. Casual. I would like a fun game rather than a highly complex one.
  6. Free. The rulebook and the needed stuff (maps, names of characters, etc.) are free online.
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As this is a game-recommendation question, please adhere to the FAQ, the rules for subjective questions as outlined in Good Subjective, Bad Subjective and our rules for game recommendations. All responses must cite actual experience or reference others' experiences!

closed as too broad by GMJoe, Joshua Aslan Smith, RS Conley, KRyan, mxyzplk Aug 14 '14 at 14:13

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. 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.

  • \$\begingroup\$ @irased Please don't go answering in comments. It discourages people from actually improving their question, leaving us with crap questions and them with a potentially crap answer. \$\endgroup\$ – doppelgreener Aug 11 '14 at 14:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ I've reopened this, but I must amplify the post notice. Discussing your subjective experience with the game while playing on a forum is required. Given that there are entire forums dedicated to this, make sure that you speak to every point of the question. Bad answers will be deleted without notice as this question can trivially turn into "present your favourite system" game-req. \$\endgroup\$ – Brian Ballsun-Stanton Aug 12 '14 at 22:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Related: What table-top games are best-suited for online play? \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Aug 12 '14 at 23:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ Hey man, a bunch of games can possibly fulfill these requirements, they're still quite broad (as you can see from the one answer). You may want to look at the play-by-post and online-roleplaying tags for general investigation; much of what you're asking for is more technique and not an attribute of a system per se. People forum-RP with just about every game system. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Aug 14 '14 at 14:16
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The truth is, most RPGs are suitable for playing on a forum. I've been playing D&D 5e over at Myth-weavers and rpol.net for a few months now. If you visit that site, you will find many RPGs being played, with free rules, few or no pictures etc.

However, I've only really been playing dnd 4th and 5th edition on forums. 4th edition requires lots of maps and images and isn't free at all, so I can only give advice for 5th edition. But I strongly recommend that you look at other games on those websites as well.

It can be played through text, with a bare minimum of images.

5th edition works well with theatre of the mind. Images are an option if you want them, but they aren't required. Most battles we have had at myth-weavers

No minimum or maximum number of players. We can be as many as 10 and as few as 3. We want the game to be enjoyable no matter who is available to play.

With the new DM rules out, you have what you need to play with as few as 1 character and as many as you can handle.

Players should be able to miss sessions without breaking the game. Only players present should earn advancement or improvement for their characters.

When you play by forum, there is no real "session" that you can miss. There is a running record of all actions in the forum posts, and by it's nature it's played slowly. I have seen some games were xp is rewarded based on post length and frequency.

Easy to learn. There are people in my forum who have never played and RPG before.

5th edition is made for new players, and there are many resources online to help you in any other that you might get stuck on.

Casual. I would like a fun game rather than a highly complex one.

5th edition can be as simple or complex as you want it to be. I even played one game where none of us took classes, but only used backgrounds and Racial choice. It was a lot of fun.

Free. The rulebook and the needed stuff (maps, names of characters, etc.) are free online.

The Basic rules are free and can be downloaded here

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