Okay, here’s my issue:
This sounds fun, but how many RPGs am I actually going to convince my friends to play? As it stands I have an ST:A and a D&D campaign, and they only meet once a month or so.
Who has time to play multiple systems? Who has a group that finds a system and then moves on to a different one?
Is that just me?
That stated, $100CAD and no GM screens currently available. So definitely a no for me.
A really handy one for this is that the board game cafe I go to regularly have a “Not D&D” night every Thursday where people run one-shots of various other games. I’ve managed to have a chance to play/run a fair few different systems.
We’re pretty fortunate at Whartson Hall in that we like moving from system to system, and frequently rotate GMing duties - I’ve a feeling we’re a little atypical in that respect but we all seem to like it.
I think there’s been a shift over time - when I got started with RPGs in the 1980s there was generally a culture of “X’s game” which would go on basically forever or until X got bored with RPGing. They might decide to change system, but that would mean porting characters across.
But a lot of indie games aren’t designed for long campaigns (see for example The Mountain Witch which is designed for a single adventure), and the more rules-light games have become acceptable the more you can do this. In effect it’s reading a bunch of stand-alone books rather than a long series.
Even Pathfinder has gone somewhat this way - you can play a game that lasts forever, of course, but the “Adventure Path” format typically gives you about six linked adventures, and you’re expected to generate new characters when you start them and retire those characters at the end.
A long campaign can be very satisfying to run or to play in, but I find I enjoy campaign setup a great deal too…
I’m just happy to see Quinns writing more.
Love RPGs as a concept, hate the practicalities of amateur storytelling.
I just wonder how Quinns is going to find the time. You can play a board game a handful of times in an afternoon and get a good feel for it. Same for one-shot RPGs with light rules. Exploring a fully-fleshed RPG system feels like it would take weeks (unless you’re playing nightly).
Think you just have to accept that as one of the limitations of reviewing an RPG. If it’s aimed at newcomers to RPGs or to highlight interesting systems, rigorous repeat testing probably isn’t necessary.
A group I played with for a couple years would switch systems pretty frequently. I joined for a Star Wars game, stuck with them for a Eclipse Phase campaign, but then got too busy with my kids to stick with them, though they were moving on to something else afterwards. I think we met every other week.
For that matter, I was just with them for the one game, but they had other campaigns going in other games over the weekends. Some people just have more time on their hands than others.