Monday, June 6, 2011
Character death = Fun!
I'm not sure if the difference between old and new rpgs can ever be rammed home (if you'll forgive the pun) as effectively as when characters die.
Last Friday's game saw a new bunch of 1st level characters spend about 3 hours of a five hour session rambling around the frontier town of Hullford trying to find rumors about, and directions to, the Tomb of the Iron God. Once they finally got there, exploration began.
Which was fun, but really only moderately so. They investigated a couple of rooms, kicked a talking goblin head around, started mapping the place. Then the thief fell in a pit and died.
Suddenly everyone was laughing, cheering, nervous, engaged. While they were greedily divvying up the thief's possessions, a small group of goblins came to see what the fuss was, and attacked. One of them ripped the dwarf from neck to groin with a rusty shortsword, killing him instantly.
We played an hour longer than we planned on.
The players of the dead characters? Well, they had new characters rolled up in five minutes (this helps character creation time stay short, btw) and were back in game shortly, as the adventure was a site-based dungeon in a sandbox setting, another old-school icon, which means there can be lots of adventurers wandering around at any given time.
I still haven't forgotten what a miserable thing it was to have a PC die in a linear, "story based", 3.x game. Spending half the session building a new PC; waiting for time the story allows a new character appear.
So thank you, you poor crushed, mangled, looted, old-school thief.