Friday, November 23, 2012

[FunFriday] The art of saying "Yes"

Over the course of the last week, I have had a good opportunity to try out a number of fun things. One of which was re-introducing Mutants and Masterminds to a number of my friends which revolved around the classic "Time of Crisis" pre-made adventure from Green Ronin.

It simply revolved around learning to just let go of what I had intended, railroading my characters, and instead turning it into a fun game for all. And all it had to do was learning how to say "Yes!"...

"Common Sense: A super power all of it's own" From http://favim.com/

"But what do you mean? Saying "Yes" leads to just problems when saying yes to EVERYONE!!!" One might say, when thinking about what I just said. Though, I have often found out, that there is a reason why people WANT to experience something in key games. There are key moments players look forward to in each game.

That epic moment can be as simple as allowing the players to drive around with pink motorcycles that can be driven acrobatically, or it can be as simple as allowing players to come up with characters that have the very force of nature at their command, and having a pirate ship boat to fly along with them.

Now, this may seem silly, but when I allowed my players to do things that they found fun, without stepping on the toes of other players, the characters had PERSONALITY. No level of similarities can make that character the same as another, and at the same time, it makes that player feel unique (with a HUGE potential to have more fun).

At the same time, if a player chooses to have key elements to their character, that typically means they want to use it in some way that makes them feel fun. Now, in this last game, one such player was capable of completely Vaporizing one of the bad guys. Considering the combat had just started, and the players were learning a bit about what they can and can-not do, I had to come up with some way to allow the Villains to survive the encounter.

The first option I had chosen, the players were not OK with, as it turned that very same attack against another player (Light and Sound illusions are great for this). This didn't jive, and many players seemed scared... that lightning blast attack from the very storm god could potentially vaporize them as well!

And then it hit me, the god player had the ability to see through the illusion using a unique sense. Why not give them the opportunity to land a hit, but instead just really really daze the bad guy? Instead of turning it against them, just let the villain last one more turn or two, and give other players a chance to shine. This way, I say "Yes" to what the player wanted to do, but not make it impossible for the other players to have their turn.

So I did just that. And you know what? The players had fun. I let them use their powers so that everyone had a hand in the encounter, and they all were unique. All the players got to be cool, and awesome, and scared at the same time. The Suspense, and the moments of fun, truly made it an enjoyable experience.

As a Game Master, it is my responsibility to host a game that is fun to all. And right now, the players are seemingly enjoying themselves, but still unfamiliar with how their character ideas are translating into the world. As the game progresses, they will be more familiar with them, and the referencing and question asking will subside to the point where the players can simply just have fun.

Now, for those out there following along, what have been some of your favorite "Yes" moments that turned into something hilariously fun? Have you had any "No" moments that have been horribly wrong? In the future, I do hope that having more "Yes" moments will lead to some very enjoyable stories that I hope to share with you all soon!

Till then, I hope you all had a pleasant Thanksgiving, and that you all had a chance to spend time with friends and family alike!