Friday, November 6, 2020

Discussion: Do You Alter Game Plans Based On Players Real World Situation?

For those of us living in the United States this has been....a hell of a week. At the time of writing this it is showing no signs of slowing down either. From what I've seen online, the whole world may be watching the U.S. elections with held breath. I am not going to go into that, but I am curious about something tangentially related to it.

When anxieties are high in real life, do you modify your game plans? I don't mean canceling vs. having game. I mean as the GM do you change the tone of a session? Lower the strain/stress? Up the mechanical crunch? Shift it up to hopefully be a more palatable experience for your players?

I've found myself doing that this week. With the time I can spend focusing on prep. The session had the potential to be fairly grim, but with time to review plans and consider how the session would go over I've found ways to shift and adjust things to still hit the story beats I want, but keep things from getting as dark and depressing. A more obvious road to a 'heroic' path so to speak.

I've only - that I can think of - done this once before. And that is back in February I specifically dropped a plague related arc in one of my games. With the Corona Virus starting to go rampant and people getting worried about it, it just felt a little "too close to home" to have in game at the time. The game didn't miss a beat, and any of my players who read the blog are only finding out now it was ever on the table.

How about you? Do you adjust and shift to fit the mental and emotional reality of yourself and your players? Or do you find enjoyment in keeping it the same and just digging into it through the game?

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