Monday, August 24, 2020

#RPGaDAY 2020: Day 24 Humor

I have always believed that humor is essential in most games.
Yes, it can be a serious game, but humor; sometimes even gallows humor, is needed.



Like anything, it can be overdone.  In high school during our AD&D games, we had to put a moratorium on stupid puns in our games.  It got so bad that it led to our DM creating the "Wandering Damage table" or just damage your character took from the universe reacting to your pun.  It, in of itself, was a humorous solution to the problem.

For Ghosts of Albion, I wrote a section on horror role-playing. I got into some detail that is appropriate for that game but I also included a section called "See A Little Light" (yes, I am a Bob Mould fan). The point was that constant horrors will wear your characters, and players, down. That every so often you need to lighten the mood.  Even the Ghosts of Albion web-episodes and books had a good mix of humor to them. I mean you can't have the ghost of Lord Byron and not have fun with that.

The topic of RPGs and humor is vast really. So there is no way I am going even cover 1% of it in a blog post.  But I figure I will cover one other thing.

I don't want to make it look like that all my games are Toon or Paranoia, I do like a serious game.  BUT just like too much humor is a bad thing, taking yourself too seriously is also bad.

A while back I was at a game at Gen Con. This was before my family started going with me and I was in a Mutants and Masterminds game. The GM was a real dick. There were a couple of younger kids in the game and like kids do, they joked and had fun, and the GM was just a real bastard to them.  Yes you can have a serious game, but don't be an asshole about it.  It was this dudes game, so I was not going to tell him how to run it, so I did the "dad thing" I just inserted myself between the kids and the GM.  I turned the three of us into this little mini-team of the eight sitting there so he didn't have to talk to them directly.  I don't think he knew how to deal with kids really.

So be like Bob Mould and see a little light.

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