So I’ve decided to run a Dungeon World game at my FLGS. And after watching Muppet Treasure Island in short succession after Deadwood, I decided to do something that would be both nautical “yarr we be sailing” and pioneer “find gold in hostile land.” Tonight was just character creation. Since the game is “play to find out what happens” I figured, okay lets use the bonds and character creation to determine our direction. And for the most part it turned out well. We got a good showing, plenty of players.
But the players were a little heavy on each one being a badass who plays by their own rules. Like if I asked them what they wanted to wear, everyone’s first choice would be “duster.” It was weird to have everyone want to be a lone wolf badass. There are certain fantasy tropes that I feel like we grow out of. My first LARP character was a complete Darth Maul ripoff and I don’t think I grew out of that kind of crap until I was in my 20s. That kind of Grimdark Mary Sue character is really something you keep for single player RPGs where it doesn’t matter how hard you push to rack up darkside points. I don’t want to offend anyone who might find this blog. But when you’re creating a character for a tabletop RPG with a group, why would you make a character who other people wouldn’t want to be around? One guy said, I want to be an evil knight who wants to be a tyrant and carry a bloodstained sword. And I lack the balls to tell someone, “please rethink your character, I think you’re going to cause a problem.”
So in light of this party displaying characters that seem like they wouldn’t be completely opposed to burning down orphanages, I need to tighten up this sandbox a little bit. If I give them opportunities to be bastards, someone’s going to take that hook and make someone else in the group uncomfortable. And I don’t want that. What I need to do is make a more Conan like story where the players have a definite goal and a bigger bad to take down. A couple players expressed interest in bizarre monsters, Pokémon, and becoming King by their own hand. I think that’s enough to work with to develop a fun adventure that doesn’t let anyone go too crazy. Develop a GM’s finger of god juuust in case.