Monday, 22 July 2013

Introverts and Extroverts in Gaming

Well, this is going to be something of a first for me: a post relating to a sociological / psychological aspect of gaming. Not a topic which I normally have much insight into, or even much interest in generally, but this just occurred to me and I realised that it's something I've actually never seen explicitly discussed before, so would be very interested to hear other people's input.

For the sake of discussion, let's say there are three (very broad) types of people: introverts, extroverts, and people who are either somewhere in the middle or who can switch / go both ways.

I am the classic introvert. Quietly spoken, often blending into the background in groups unless specifically involved, preferring small intimate situations to big open ones, and so forth. (This is a personality trait for which I've inwardly criticised myself for much of my life, and have only in recent years come to accept as both normal and ok, but that's another topic...)

My gaming group also tends (I would say) towards the introverted end of the spectrum. My regular group has a mix of introverted and "in the middle" people, but no one whom I would immediately and unreservedly describe as an extrovert.

Thinking about other people I've played RPGs with over the years, I can see a strong pattern: I favour other players who are on the introverted end of the spectrum. Indeed, the fellow gamers whom I've gotten on least well with over the years were all strong extroverts.

Of course, as I am almost always on the DM's side of the screen, the fact that my group is on my preferred end of the intro/extroversion spectrum is likely no coincidence -- I've probably selected such players in order to form a group to my tastes.

Noticing this pattern and preference is the first interesting thing.

The second thing, however, is the (to me) somewhat radical idea that there must almost certainly be gaming groups out there which are composed of people on the extroverted end of the spectrum! It's really something I've never given any thought to.

So what I'm now really interested to hear is what other people think about this. To me the typical role-player is the quiet / nerdy type, but I know there are extrovert role-players out there -- I've met them! To what proportion and in which combinations they exist is something I find quite fascinating.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Spell Layout 2

Following on from the discussion around yesterday's post, and the very helpful feedback people here and on Google+ gave, I've been playing around with possible page layouts again.

Here's what I've come up with. An A5 single-column layout, but with a kind of side-bar sort of thing. I like it a lot.

Any further thoughts or feedback?

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Spell Layout -- Thoughts?

As part of a new super secret (not any more ;) project I'm working on, I've been fiddling around with possible page layouts for spell listings. (See... though my posting here has dropped off a bit lately, I am far from idle.)

I've come down to two fundamental possibilities, and I'm not sure which is best. So I thought I'd post examples up here to see if anyone has any thoughts.

Note that both these example layouts are rough. You need to ignore things like paragraphs wrapping over columns -- that stuff will be sorted out when I get to the layout stage of the document for real. For now it's just playing.

The first possible layout for a spell list is the traditional 2-column layout on an A4 / letter size page.

The alternative layout which I've had in mind is a single column, A5 / digest size page. I like digest size books a lot, so wanted to experiment with this format.

As you can see, the 2-column layout actually fits more text in the same amount of space, due to more efficient paragraph wrapping and less margins overall, I presume. You may also notice that I've gone for the traditional spell listing by level here. One advantage of this, in terms of layout and page usage, is that I don't need to specify what level every single spell is -- a nice side-effect.

Another small point of interest is the way I've put the Duration and Range on a single line. I'm not totally sold on this, but thought I'd give it a go.

So, what do you think? Any feedback / advice would be most welcome!

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Brave the Labyrinth -- Issue 1 Out Now!

Just a heads up that the first issue of Pete Spahn's Labyrinth Lord fanzine Brave the Labyrinth is out now! It's available in print or pay-what-you-want PDF at RPGNow.

Contained within is a submission from myself including 6 new vivimancer spells. If you liked what you saw in Theorems & Thaumaturgy, get on over to RPGNow for a refresher dose of flesh warping!

ps. Actually, I'd recommend that players in my Labyrinth Lord campaign who happen to read this don't look at the article with the new spells, as it might spoil some surprises down the line.