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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Solo RPG and "Just Writing": A thought experiment

Edit: I added more clarifications so as to make my intent a bit clearer (hopefully)

From the Lone Wolf Roleplaying group

I wonder if some of you would indulge me and carry out this thought experiment for me:

Imagine you have an RPG group, and that you play regularly. You actually gather physically in one place to game on an actual table. It can be any RPG you like.

Here's the twist: there are a couple of restrictions on how you can communicate.

1. You have all agreed that you will only roleplay and communicate by writing stuff down in one notebook (or electronic device) you all share at the table.

2. You can only write things in character or in an authorial voice.

3. The only OOC communication allowed are written questions to the GM. Only questions about the world and NPCs that can be answered with a 'yes' or a 'no'.

4. The GM is an actual human but wish only contribution will be to answer yes or no questions. This is the only way in which you get to know what happens in the GM controlled world. (Basically, if an idea embedded in your question matches what the GM has in mind or appeals to her, you get a 'yes' and that means the idea is true in the fictional world)

Does this still feel like role playing? Has it crossed into the realm of a collaborative writing exercise? Is that in itself not roleplaying?

Tell me what you think.


  1. We once played a creative writing game where each person would write a paragraph following on from the para written by another player. This game seems like what you describe except free-form. Having played in a Play-by-Email Traveller game (via a Yahoo Group), that experience is closer to what you describe as each player was acting and reacting to what the GM posted as well as what other players posted.

  2. Exactly how I play Edge of the Empire on BGG


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