This post is another addition spawned from the phone conversation between myself and Mark. There was a lot of good material discussed on that call, and here’s another of what I think was a gem of a realization. – KO
Want to be the center of the story?
Want the GM to cater to your desires and goals by crafting the story to meet the desires and goals of your character?
Want to be “The Hero” of the game?
Want to mold and shape the story with as much power as the guy behind the screen?
You want the reins of the game to drive the story?
Then step up.
In the past I’ve looked around at everyone around my gaming table and tried to ascertain just what desires they held for their characters. I considered the personalities of each player and made a small game plan on how to hook them and get them involved on a deeper level.
Not surprising, I didn’t do this in the Top Secret game we all remember. And yet this absence of planned hook never was an issue with The Greatest Game Ever Played. Perhaps I should have paid more attention to my Top Secret GM style back then. But at least I’m coming around to it now. – KO
Those days are over. I now realize that I’ve been doing this all wrong. I’m done catering to your whims. I’m done selling you on the game. You sell me on your character.
If you want the spotlight, then demand it.
You want to be the center of the story? Then engage me as a GM.
Want me to cater to your desires and those of your character? Compel me to do so.
You want to be the hero? Well bub, there’s a room full of games who are just slightly removed from the frustrated authors and directors and artists they might all be, sitting around the table with you. And so do they. Make your case within the game and I’ll be happy to accommodate you.
I’m no advocating not having a storyline idea to fall back on, but I’m advocating making the players identify the hooks and attack them with fervor… at least the ones they find interesting. I’m going to start expecting players to find their “in” and run with it with all their role-play might!
Fail to sell me on what you want to do? Then take a back seat to the guy who markets his ideas better. Either you make me care enough to make the world interesting for your character, or I’m going to have to assume you don’t care enough about your character to find the world interesting. End result? Welcome to the background.
Sell me well and I’ll run the game you’ve always wanted to play. Do so well enough and the Rules of Cool will apply to nearly everything you attempt. I won’t change reality to your every whim, but as the hero, the world will be your oyster and I’ll cater to nearly every desire within reason… until someone at the table catches my eye with a better up-sell.
Maybe this is how it should be done. Where am I wrong?