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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Scrap Notes: Some interesting links on solo gaming (update 7/13/2011)

Various links that I think have interesting insights that might be applicable to solo gaming.

Making The Most of Mythic Structure
Making the most of Monomyth Structure
Little Ideas: Solo RPGs and Play

How to Host a Dungeon: "How to Host a Dungeon is a solo game of dungeon creation where you build a dungeon through its history from the dawn of time."

The Plant: "It's called The Plant and it was an entry in a contest where "solo RPG" was the restriction applied to me. It borrows elements of Jackson Tegu's The Smoke Dream, Choose Your Own Adventure, and structured freeform play."

Found the original link here:

The Smoke Dream:

Bellaluna: Uses D&D 4e

Various rpg-boardgame suggestions that look interesting (perhaps could be plumbed for ideas):

Torchlight - Quest for the Orncryst"

Random dungeon cards that can be downloaded at This came to the Yahoo Mythic Group's attention courtesy of pdwmcdonald on 7/13/2009 (if you haven't joined, btw, you're missing out!).

Solo Mock Troupe idea

Another interesting thread on where a player uses random rolls to map the relationships of fake players. He then uses that as a guide of how each player interacts in a game of Universalis. Reminds me of some of the play reports from Doc Poke in the Yahoo Mythic Group.

Lonely Fun

Thread on where some users comment on how certain aspects of RPGs can be fun solo. I get this feeling that there's something significant hidden somewhere in there that might be applicable...Like, in all systems there are rules and resources used to create characters, and it's fun, right? Could something like this be applied to creating stories in a structured manner?

"The Limits of Roleplaying: Solitaire"

(Note: I'm not on-board with the notion that roleplaying is exclusively a social activity. The very existence of people like me, and products that support what I do, flies in the face of that idea.)
Leading Questions at Crucial Junctures

This thread had some people sharing some ideas on how it could work.

This immediately caught my attention:

...learning from Jason Morningstar's The Plant (and possibly The Smoke Dream, haven't read it), you can also use leading questions at crucial junctures to give the player emotional connections to game-provided content, then give him game-provided hard choices tied to that content. The emotional investment from the player's side will drive those choices

Hypothetical example:

1. On a random card draw, the player's character finds a photo of a person.

2. The game asks the player what the person in the photo means to her character. The question(s) is leading, so to develop a strong connection.

3. At a later juncture the game tells the player that as a result of a conflict, her character must leave one of her objects behind.

4. Whether the photo is discarded or not (instead of a, say, practically much more useful object, like a swiss army knife) can be a purely fiction-driven decision. It is the player's judgement, and it depends on how strongly the player respects the fiction of course, but it can still instil a "I would never part with the photo of my dead wife." reaction.

Technoir Playtest Using Mythic (Added to this blog on 7/14/2011)


  1. I have just stumbling across a great book

    "Beyond Role and Play :
    Tools, Toys and Theory for Harnessing the Imagination"

    free to download at

    the content includes theory & design
    of role playing games and story telling.

    I have just sat down to read it this moment - looks very interesting.



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