Role-playing game: Wikis

  
  
  
  

Note: Many of our articles have direct quotes from sources you can cite, within the Wikipedia article! This article doesn't yet, but we're working on it! See more info or our list of citable articles.

Did you know ...


More interesting facts on Role-playing game

Include this on your site/blog:

Encyclopedia

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Wuerfel5.jpg
Part of a series on:
Role-playing games

Role-playing game (RPG; often roleplaying game) is a term used to describe a broad family of games in which players assume the roles of characters, or take control of one or more avatars, in a fictional setting. Actions taken within the game succeed or fail according to a formal system of rules and guidelines.[1]

The original form, sometimes called the pen-and-paper RPG, is conducted through speech. In live action role-playing games (LARP), players perform their characters' physical actions.[2 ] In both of these forms, an arranger called a game master (GM) usually decides on the rules and setting to be used and acts as referee, while each other player plays the role of a single character.[3] At the heart of these formats is in-character participation in a collaborative narrative. Several varieties of RPG exist in electronic media, including text-based MUDs and their graphics-based successors, massively multiplayer online role-playing games.

The term is also used to describe offline role-playing video games in which players control a character or party of characters who undertake quests, and whose capabilities advance using statistical mechanics. These games often share settings and rules with pen-and-paper RPGs, but do not enable the same collaborative storytelling.[4 ][5]

While the term is broad and encompassing, some game forms such as trading card games and wargames that are related to role-playing games may not be included. Role-playing activity may sometimes be present in such games, but it is not the primary focus.[6] The term is also sometimes used to describe roleplay simulation games and exercises used in teaching, training, and academic research.

Contents

Purpose

Role playing games are fundamentally different from most other types of games in that they stress social interaction and collaboration, whereas board games, card games, and sports emphasize competition.[7]

Both authors and major publishers of role-playing games consider them to be a form of interactive and collaborative storytelling;[8][9][10] however, they are not considered true narratives like novels or films as there is no actual story within a role-playing game. Instead events, characters and narrative structure give a sense of a narrative experience.[11] Like stories, role-playing games appeal because they engage the imagination. Interactivity is the crucial difference between role-playing games and traditional fiction. Whereas a viewer of a television show is a passive observer, a player at a role-playing game makes choices that affect the story.[12] Such role-playing games extend an older tradition of storytelling games where a small party of friends collaborate to create a story.

While simple forms of role-playing exist in traditional children's games such as "cops and robbers" and "cowboys and Indians", role-playing games add a level of sophistication and persistence to this basic idea with the addition of numeric rule sets and the participation of a referee. Participants in a role-playing game will generate specific characters and an ongoing plot. A consistent system of rules and a more or less realistic campaign setting in games aids suspension of disbelief. The level of realism in games ranges from just enough internal consistency to set up a believable story or credible challenge up to full-blown simulations of real-world processes.

Varieties

Role-playing games are played in a wide variety of media ranging from the spoken pen-and-paper form, to physically acting out characters in LARP or playing characters virtually in digital media.[13] There is also a great variety of systems of rules and game settings. Games that emphasize plot and character interaction over game mechanics and combat sometimes prefer the name storytelling game. These types of games tend to minimize or altogether eliminate the use of dice or other randomizing elements. Some games are played with characters created before the game by the GM, rather than those created by the players. This type of game is typically played at gaming conventions, or in standalone games that do not form part of a campaign.

Pen and paper

A pen-and-paper RPG

The game is conducted through speech in a small social gathering. The GM describes the game world and its inhabitants. The other players describe the intended actions of their characters, and the GM describes the outcomes.[14] Some outcomes are determined by the game system, and some are chosen by the GM.[15]

This is the format in which role-playing games were first popularized. The first commercially available RPG, Dungeons & Dragons (D&D), was inspired by fantasy literature and the wargaming hobby and was published in 1974.[16] D&D inspired the birth of a new industry of pen-and-paper role-playing games, with a growing number of games being published with diverse themes, rules, and playstyles.

This format is often referred to simply as a role-playing game. To distinguish this form of RPG from other formats, the retronyms pen and paper role-playing game or tabletop role-playing game are sometimes used, though neither pen and paper nor a table are strictly necessary.[3]

Live action

A fantasy LARP group

A LARP is played more like improvisational theatre.[17] Instead of describing their characters' actions, participants act out their characters' actions, often in costume. Further, the players' environment is used to represent the imaginary environment of the game world.[2 ][18 ][19] Some live action role-playing games use rock-paper-scissors or comparison of attributes to resolve conflicts symbolically, while other LARPs use physical combat with simulated arms such as airsoft guns or foam weapons.[20]

LARPs vary in size from a handful of players to several thousand, and in duration from a couple of hours to several days.[21][22] Because the number of players in a LARP is usually larger than in a tabletop role-playing game, and the players may be interacting in separate physical spaces, there is typically less of an emphasis on tightly maintaining a narrative or directly entertaining the players, and game sessions are often managed in a more distributed manner.[23]

Electronic media

Pen-and-paper role-playing games have been translated into a variety of electronic formats.[24] Some authors divide digital role-playing games into two intertwined groups: single player games using RPG-style mechanics, and multiplayer games incorporating social interaction.[25][26][27]

Single-player

Dragon Warrior, a single-player role-playing game.

Single player role-playing video games form a loosely defined genre of computer and console games with origins in role-playing games such as Dungeons & Dragons, on which they base much of their terminology, settings and game mechanics.[25] This translation changes the experience of the game, providing a visual representation of the world and losing the feature of collaborative, interactive storytelling.[4 ][5]

Multi-player

Online text-based role-playing games involve many players using some type of text-based interface and an Internet connection to play an RPG. Games played in a real-time way include MUDs (multi-user dungeons), MUSHes, and other varieties of MU*. Games played in a turn-based fashion include play-by-mail games and play-by-post games.

Massively multi-player online role-playing games (MMORPGs) combine the large-scale social interaction and persistent world of MUDs with graphic interfaces. As of 2004, most MMORPGs did not actively support role-playing. Where this is the case, experienced role-players can take advantage of the game's communication functions to do so. However, this method requires the active participation of other players to be successful.[28]

Virtual tabletop software or Internet chat clients can be used for online play of what would otherwise be a traditional pen and paper RPG. Computer-assisted gaming can be used to add elements of computer gaming to in-person pen and paper role-playing, where computers are used for record-keeping and sometimes to resolve combat, while the participants generally make decisions concerning character interaction.

Gamemaster

A common feature of many RPGs is the role of gamemaster, a participant who has special duties to present the fictional setting, arbitrate the results of character actions, and maintain the narrative flow.[29] In pen-and-paper and live action RPGs the GM performs these duties in person. In video RPGs many of the functions of a GM are fulfilled by the game engine, however some multi-player video RPGs also allow for a participant to take on a GM role through a visual interface called a GM toolkit, albeit with abilities limited by the available technology.[30]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ (Tychsen 2006:76) "The variety of role playing games makes it inherently challenging to provide a common definition. However, all forms of role playing games – be they PnP RPGs, CRPGs, MMORPGs or LARPS - share a group of characteristics, which makes them identifiable from other types of games: storytelling with rules, control of fictional characters, a fictitious reality, usually the presence of a game master (or game engine), and at least one player."
  2. ^ a b (Tychsen et al. 2006:255) "LARPs can be viewed as forming a distinct category of RPG because of two unique features: (a) The players physically embody their characters, and (b) the game takes place in a physical frame. Embodiment means that the physical actions of the player are regarded as those of the character. Whereas in a RPG played by a group sitting around a table, players describe the actions of their characters (e.g., “I run to stand beside my friend”)"
  3. ^ a b Kim, John. ""Narrative" or "Tabletop" RPGs". http://www.darkshire.net/~jhkim/rpg/whatis/tabletop.html. Retrieved 2008-09-09.  
  4. ^ a b (Tychsen 2006:75) "PnP RPGs are an example of interactive narratives. The rules and fictional worlds that form the basis for these games function as a vessel for collaborative, interactive storytelling. This is possibly the most important feature of PnP RPGs, and one that CRPGs have yet to reproduce."
  5. ^ a b (Copier 2005:5) "From a commercial perspective, digital offline games like Baldur’s Gate (Bioware, 1998 onwards) are also considered RPGs. I would argue that these games don’t necessarily encourage role-play because players cannot add their own information or discussion over the rules as in table-top, live-action and online role-playing. Therefore I would consider offline RPGs being adventure games (always having fixed rules and quantifiable outcomes) rather than role-playing games."
  6. ^ (Heliö 2004) "In the family of role-playing games there are also a whole bunch of other game types and game-like activities that can be included or excluded, like the collectible card games (such as Magic: The Gathering) and board and strategy games (like Warhammer 40.000), or different forms of theatrical and larp-like combinations, such as fate-play. The action of role-playing is usually somehow present in these game forms, but the focus can be more either in the competitive nature of the game (MtG, Warhammer), or in the immersive performance (as in fate-play), than in role-playing itself."
  7. ^ Rilstone, Andrew (1994). "Role-Playing Games: An Overview". RPGnet. http://www.rpg.net/oracle/essays/rpgoverview.html. Retrieved 2006-09-01.  
  8. ^ Werewolf: The Apocalypse (2nd Edition). White Wolf. 1994. pp. Chapter 1. ISBN 1-56504-112-7. "Although Werewolf is a game, it is more concerned with storytelling than it is with winning. Werewolf is a tool enabling you to become involved in tales of passion and glory, and to help tell those stories yourself."  
  9. ^ GURPS (4th Edition). Steve Jackson Games. 2004. pp. Chapter 1. "But roleplaying is not purely educational. It's also one of the most creative possible entertainments. Most entertainment is passive: the audience just sits and watches, without taking part in the creative process. In roleplaying, the "audience" joins in the creation. The GM is the chief storyteller, but the players are responsible for portraying their characters. If they want something to happen in the story, they make it happen, because they're in the story."  
  10. ^ Dungeons & Dragons Player's Handbook (4th Edition). Wizards of the Coast. June 6, 2008. pp. Chapter 1. ISBN 0-7869-4867-1. "A roleplaying game is a storytelling game that has elements of the games of make-believe that many of us played as children."  
  11. ^ (Heliö 2004) "Still, we must note that there is no actual story in the game of the role-playing game, though there are events, characters and structures of narrativity giving the players the basis for interpreting it as a narrative. We have many partially open structures that we may fulfil with our imagination during the course of the game – within its limitations. We also have the ability to follow different kinds of narrative premises and structures as well as imitate them for ourselves to create more authentic and suitable narrative experiences. We have the ‘narrative desire’ to make pieces we interpret to relate to each other fit in, to construct the plot from recurring and parallel elements."
  12. ^ Waskul, Dennis; Lust, Matt (2004). "Role-Playing and Playing Roles: The Person, Player, and Persona in Fantasy Role-Playing". Caliber 27 (3): 333–356. doi:10.1525/si.2004.27.3.333. http://www.colorado.edu/ibs/pb/thornberry/socy5031/pdfs/waskul_lust_role_playing.pdf. Retrieved 2008-12-23.  
  13. ^ Tychsen, Anders; Newman, Ken;Brolund, Thea; Hitchens, Michael (2007). "Cross-format analysis of the gaming experience in multi-player role-playing games" (PDF). Proceedings of DiGRA 2007 Conference: Situated Play. Digital Games Research Association (DiGRA). http://www.digra.org:8080/Plone/dl/db/07311.39029.pdf. Retrieved 2010-01-01. "The Role-Playing Game (RPG) is one of the major genres of games, and has proven an extremely portable concept - from the physically embodied live action and tabletop formats to the various digital, mobile and even enhanced and augmented reality formats."  
  14. ^ (Tychsen 2006:77) "In PnP RPGs, the general game process consists of information-feedback cycles between the players and the GM, or internally within the group."
  15. ^ (Tychsen 2006:78–79) "The GM assumes a variety of responsibilities in PnP RPGs, depending on the playing style used, however, these normally include facilitation of game flow and game story, providing environmental content of the fictional reality, as well as administrating rules and arbitrating conflicts. ... In RPGs, the rules specify a great deal more than how pieces are moved on a game board. Because these games are focused on player characters, the rules are designed to govern the nature of these story protagonists and the fictional reality they act in. ... Note that the rules systems in PnP RPGs can be modified or ignored on the fly by the GM or players if so desired."
  16. ^ (Copier 2005:3) "...fantasy role-playing as a commercial product was developed in the 1970s as Dungeons and Dragons (D&D, 1974) by Gary Gygax and Dave Anderson. The game was based on a combination of their interests in table-top wargaming and literary fantasy."
  17. ^ Kilgallon, John; Sandy Antunes, Mike Young (2001). Rules to Live by: A Live Action Roleplaying Conflict Resolution System. Interactivities Ink. p. 1. ISBN 0-9708356-04. "A live action roleplaying game is a cross between a traditional 'tabletop' roleplaying game and improvisational theatre."  
  18. ^ Falk, Jennica; Davenport, Glorianna (2004). "Live Role-Playing Games: Implications for Pervasive Gaming" (PDF). Entertainment Computing – ICEC 2004. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. 3166. Springer Berlin / Heidelberg. pp. 131. ISBN 978-3-540-22947-6. http://springerlink.com/content/up8k3p2xywdf49ag/?p=c2914626bfa243b299327f78722deb90&pi=1. Retrieved 2008-10-28. "The LRP player, like a stage actor, is a person who under-goes a transformation into a character. The character’s costume and accessories, or kit, aids this transformation ... Physical structures may be used as game locations, and sometimes even purposely constructed to enhance the game world ... Players frequently use physical artifacts as props and tools in their role-play, primarily to back up their character roles."  
  19. ^ (Heliö 2004) "Naturally, an off-game object does not actually transform into the object it is imagined as being in-game: for instance, if an airplane in the sky becomes a dragon in some larpers’ imaginations, it does not actually turn into a dragon – and even the players do not actually think so. The group of players have a common contract stating how to behave in the situation, because they willingly share the game’s make-believe world. In order to sustain the agreed immersion, the ‘dragon’s’ airplaneness’ should not in any case be directly voiced aloud."
  20. ^ Young, Mike (Editor) (2003). The Book of LARP. Interactivities Ink. p. 7-8. ISBN 0-9708356-8-X. ""Live combat... requires the players' abilities to perform an action. You want to hit someone with a sword? You have to actually hit the player with a prop representing a sword, usually a padded weapon. ... Simulated combat is more abstract. It uses an external method that does not rely on player ability. For example, if you want to hit the other person with a sword, you may have to make a rock-paper-scissors challenge."  
  21. ^ Widing, Gabriel (2008). "We Lost Our World and Made New Ones: Live Role-Playing in Modern Times". in Markus Montola, Jaakko Stenros. Playground Worlds. Ropecon ry. ISBN 978-952-92-3579-7. "...the participants sustain these temporary worlds for a few hours or several days"  
  22. ^ (Tychsen et al. 2006:258) "Games range in size from a handful to more than 4,000 players"
  23. ^ (Tychsen et al. 2005:218) "[The LARP GM is] forced to let go of the game and let it take on a life of its own outside his or her control. While based on similar principles, the requirements [are] therefore very different in practice from GMs in PnP RPGs... The GM is generally, unless the LARP is small in terms of number of participants, not responsible for keeping the narrative flow. The GM can however oversee the progress of the game and help or influence where needed... Establishing a hierarchy of GMs and NPCs to monitor the game and ensure everyone is entertained and activated within the shared game space is a typical way of controlling large fantasy LARPS. This structure is usually established before the game commences."
  24. ^ (Tychsen 2006:75) "A major source of inspiration of computer games of all genres is role playing games. Being of a somewhat similar age as computer games, Pen and Paper Role Playing Games (PnP RPGs), a specialized form of table-top games (TTGs) involving multiple participants interacting in a fictional world, have influenced not only the Computer Role Playing Game (CRPG) genre [6], but virtually all types of computer games..."
  25. ^ a b Dungeons and desktops: the history of computer role-playing games By Matt Barton
  26. ^ Yee, N. (2006). The Demographics, Motivations and Derived Experiences of Users of Massively-Multiuser Online Graphical Environments. PRESENCE: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments, 15, 309-329.
  27. ^ (Tychsen 2005:218) "CRPGs can be separated into single- and multiplayer categories..."
  28. ^ (Heliö 2004) "Even if a game does not support active role-playing, as most of the massive multi-player online role-playing games fail to do (Dark Age of Camelot and others), experienced role-players may adopt the mindset and take advantage of the game’s communication functionalities, and start to role-play. This, however, requires the willing support or at least acceptance of the other players – any one of us can act like a prince, but if the others won’t play along, it does not constitute role-playing."
  29. ^ (Tychsen et al. 2005:215-216) "The areas for which a GM can be responsible, regardless of the game platform (PnP RPG, LARP, CRPG or MMOG), vary not only internally in games from each platform but also across platforms. A GM in a MMOG generally has different responsibilities than a GM in a PnP RPG. These differences can be related to a limited number of variables, such as the media of expression. The full range of possible responsibilities of GMs can be subdivided into the following five categories, which also cover the functions of automated storytelling engines: [Narrative flow, Rules, Engagement, Environment, Virtual world:]"
  30. ^ (Tychsen et al. 2005:218) "CRPGs can be separated into ... those few who have incorporated a GM toolkit instead of a fully automated storytelling engine. ... In PnP RPGs and LARPs all lines of normal human communication are available: Speech, Emotion and Body Language (Figure 3). In CRPGs and MMOGs, they become narrowed down due to technical limitations, albeit with the added feature of Scripting as a means of communications. Additionally, contemporary game engines do not allow for on-the-fly updating of the game world and generation of new content in reaction to the actions of the player-controlled avatars (or characters in PnP RPG terminology)."

References

External links


Strategy wiki

Up to date as of January 23, 2010
(Redirected to Category:RPG article)

From StrategyWiki, the free strategy guide and walkthrough wiki

An entry about RPG games can be found at Wikipedia.


(previous 200) (next 200)

Subcategories

This category has the following subcategory, out of 2 total.

D

Pages in category "RPG"

The following 199 pages are in this category, out of 429 total.

.

7

9

A

B

C

D

D cont.

E

F

F cont.

G

(previous 200) (next 200)

Gaming

Up to date as of February 01, 2010
(Redirected to Role playing game article)

From Wikia Gaming, your source for walkthroughs, games, guides, and more!

A role-playing game is a game in which one or more players take on an imagined persona.

Tabletop Role Playing Games

These are traditional RPGs like Dungeons & Dragons and includes storytelling games like Vampire: The Requiem where you take on the role of a character. They are played face-to-face using pen, paper, dice, and sometimes miniature figures.

Video Role Playing Games

A genre of gaming that generally puts you in direct control of a character, or party of characters, abilities, items, skills, and other attributes. The RPG is notorious for stories of epic proportions and long length.

As internet connections proved more popular in the home, and the speed of connections grew to a point where playing games over the internet was possible, a new brand of role-playing-games sprung up: the MMORPG, or Massively Multiplayer Online RPG. In an MMORPG, each player has a customized avatar that shares the same game world with other characters and work together to accomplish goals and strengthen their characters, much like in a single-player RPG.

RPG Wikis



Stub
This article is a stub. You can help by adding to it.

Stubs are articles that writers have begun work on, but are not yet complete enough to be considered finished articles.


This article uses material from the "Role playing game" article on the Gaming wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

Simple English

A role-playing game (also called RPG) is a game in which one plays the role of one or several characters (people), either verbally (traditional RPGs), in a computer or video game, or alone. Often the characters gain experience (EXP) during the game, which makes them stronger.

Contents

Traditional RPGs

Role-Playing Game used to be the name for pre-computer games (the most well-known of which is Dungeons & Dragons). In this type of RPG, players assume the role of a fantasy character, and play in a made-up world that, most of the time, is controlled by a Dungeon Master (DM). The DM is a person that tells the game's story to the players, tells them where they are in the game world and plays the part of all the Non-Player Characters (NPCs) and monsters that the players meet.

The DM will also give quests or tasks for the characters to complete. Characters usually have special skills that limit their actions, such as strength or speed, and as the character completes the quests, he or she is awarded experience with which he or she can go up to higher levels.

Most RPGs use dice rolls when a player tries to do something hard in the game (Like attacking a monster, or jumping over a gap). This means that there is luck in the game, as well as skill.

A short example:

DM: "You enter a small room. It is wet and mouldy. You hear water dripping from somewhere. You see a small, shaking pile of gray jelly in the middle of the room."
Player: "I touch the pile with the tip of my sword."
DM: "Roll a 20-sided die."
(Player rolls a 1.)
DM: "Critical miss. The jelly moves up your sword and chokes you. You are dead."

Good DMs balance challenges and rewards, giving the players the chance to recover from mistakes, but at the same time providing consequences for the player's actions.

Computer and video game RPGs

Graphical

There are also computer and videogame RPGs, where the player controls one or more characters. A good example is the Final Fantasy series of games. Just like the pre-computer RPGs, the characters in the games level up when they get EXP. They also usually contain a main quest which cannot be completed without completing smaller side quests. These computer RPGs are easier to play because they only need one person, but they also lack the freedom of the older games, where new quests can be made up whenever you want. MMORPGs (Massively-Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game), are computer games where many players meet online in one large game world, and go on quests together. Some examples of these games are World of Warcraft, Everquest, or Runescape.

Text-Based

Text Based RPGs are not too different from Traditional RPGs, generally based on the Dungeons and Dragons game. However some Text Based RPGs are not for combat, but are for socializing and meeting others. With many Text Based RPGs you need a client, a program to send what you say to the server, which can be located in another country. Many clients are basic and display text in one colour, but there are others that use colours, enhancing the readability of the content. See MU* for more details.

Live action role-playing game (LARP)

In LARP, the people play their characters themselves, much like a play. They act out the things their character does, dress like their character, and often talk in the way their character would.








Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address
Message