I’m staying with this topic for the second day because I wanted to focus on it more. I feel like learning a new game isn’t just about fleshing out the character sheets. Its a time committment, and understanding how the game is made possible.

At the moment, I’m learning how to play Savage Worlds, the core edition for the generic game. I’ll be playing a private investigator named Sal Malo. The purpose of the game is simply to throw dice.

Still, I can’t help but try to flesh out how the character should fit the game. There’s no actual story yet, and I’m trying to hash out, “OK, is this like a crime noir story? Is my character going to have to be some kind of tough guy, or what?”

The actual numbers from the dice haven’t really factored in, but that’s not because I’m all that concerned about them. Truth be told, in any game, the numbers on the character sheet shouldn’t be the primary concern.

Frankly, its weird to walk around thinking, “character has a strength of …, so therefore I can…,” to a certain extent, I get this. In a TTRPG, its normal. You almost have to do it, but the character is more than those numbers. In D&D, alignment is an underutilized aspect of character creation. When moral dilemmas arise in the game, how would that individual respond? Often it’s the player that takes up the call, but it shouldn’t be.

Ultimately, as the game unfolds these kinds of issues should resolve themselves, but initially there are things that need to be considered that people may overlook. Learning how to play a new game isn’t just about learning a new mechanical system. It is very much about learning how to use that mechanical system to bring your character to life.

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