Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Shadow of the Past

It's been a couple years since I did any real roleplaying. A couple of pick-up games for the teenagers, one Star Wars adventure that I'll remember to my grave, but other things needed to get done.

Now they're done.

I turn 40 this summer. What I really wanted for my birthday was a reunion of my old college roleplaying group. Long story short, it's happening. They're coming from hundreds and thousands of miles away to visit our old Fantasy Hero setting one more time, to see how 20 years have changed it. And changed us, of course, although that will probably just be "we're thicker and balder and have pictures of our kids."*

We played a lot of games in a lot of settings, but for three years this campaign was The Main Event. I ran it, so that's nice for my ego, but I can't take credit for its success. The world of Gorbadin is a pretty generic place. I literally threw it together one afternoon because a couple of my players said "We made these Fantasy Hero characters -- can we do something with them?" Sure, I developed the setting over time. I'm a world-builder. Not a world-innovator, though; my skills lie elsewhere. Gorbadin became the favorite because of the group's PCs. If you want to invent some critical jargon with me, think of the setting as an "OOTS world" -- like the background to Order Of The Stick, the world of Gorbadin is designed to be set dressing. The PCs were our focus. Joys, sorrows, goals, all that actor stuff (even though most of the players weren't actors). Gorbadin lasted for years because the guys wanted to keep being their characters, whether it was one PC the whole time or an improbable 37 of them.

So, having pulled this whole deal together, what do I do now?

*Typing that sentence reminded me that the college gang is one of only two all-male roleplaying groups I've been in. Huh.