There are countless barriers that prevent people from wanting to start out with a tabletop game. I’m going to briefly cover some of the most common and recommend ways to get past them, whether for you or for someone you want to join your groups.
- “I don’t want to be a nerd” – This one seems to be one of the biggest issues people face with tabletop rpgs. Nobody wants to be the nerdy 40 year old wearing robes and fighting orcs in their mother’s basement. My advice to you is to experience the game before you jump to conclusions. The youtube channel geekandsundry has a series called critical role which is a good way to experience the game prior to playing. I’ve come to find that any stigma regarding the game flies out the window once the dice start rolling.
- “Set-up is too monotonous” – This one is a little tricky. If your goal is to get other people involved in the game, then you can take the burden of set-up on yourself entirely. Preroll characters, preplan a short one shot, provide all necessary tools and snacks, then invite the players. This is a tactic I’m employing for one of the first videos I will be posting on BeginnerRPGs’ official youtube channel, in which I will be introducing a few family members to D&D 5E. If you are trying to get into tabletops yourself, this barrier is all about which game you play. That is my partner Rozial’s area of expertise, and I’m sure he will be providing plenty of information on which systems are easiest to set up.
- “I don’t want to be stuck playing all day” – I touch on this a little in the prior two barriers, but the fact of the matter is that it takes as long to play as you want it to. You CAN do a long drawn out campaign like the one on Critical Role, but you can also do a short one shot that takes all of three hours in and out. I recommend starting with a one shot and transitioning to a campaign if/when the group sees fit.
- “I don’t know how to roleplay” – While some people are more talented with roleplaying than others, everybody has the capacity for it. If you have ever lied, acted, written a story, or made a funny voice, you can definitely roleplay. If you’re having trouble grasping the concept, then I recommend trying the card game, Superfight. This game will force you into understanding roleplay, at least on a combat level. As for noncombat, sit down with the people you aim to play with and try to write a story together taking turns with one sentence or paragraph at a time. I can guarantee you’ll learn the basics in no time. Buy Superfight Here.
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