PDA

View Full Version : Really want to play a game



Nintendogeek01
10-05-2014, 09:25 PM
I'm sorry if this isn't the right forum to post it in, and if it's not the right forum, kindly point me to which one I should post this in and I'll gladly do so.

I've been into Mutants and Masterminds 3E for a while now but I can never find a game to actually be a player in. Is there anyone out there running a game with open slots or willing to run a game? Skype? Play-by-post? Just tell me what kind of game you're running and if it clicks I'll gladly sign up because I really want to play this game.

Kyle
10-05-2014, 09:44 PM
There's an entire play by post forum, here (http://roninarmy.com/forums/25-M-amp-M-Game-Room). Just look for thread titles that say they're recruiting.

rwknoll
10-06-2014, 03:39 AM
There's only a handful recruiting right now that are 3e, though, and they've been recruiting for some time now...I haven't read through all of the threads but I'm a little discouraged that the game I'm interested in the most has had like 12 submissions. I don't want to audition or compete for the chance to play, I just want to play. :(

Kasseopea
10-06-2014, 03:51 AM
No offense, but an audition is mandatory in every group. You have to set the lines that no one may want to cross, define the power level, define what kind of heroes or villains you want to play and in the end its always a test-game where they look at the way you play and whether you fit into their group.

I understand you frustration though, took me a long while before i have found a group (im playing in german though, so it was a bit more difficult than finding an english-speaking group^^)

rwknoll
10-06-2014, 04:06 AM
I think the difference is that there is no shortage of players here to choose from, so it's easy and sensible to choose the best. But that's not how I've ever played a game with a group through Skype or in person; it was always based on interest with first come, first serve.

I just started running a game on Google Plus with some of my closest friends. However, I can only play every other week and last night only 2 of my 5 friends showed up. Apparently a bunch of them had last minute stuff come up. I was bummed because I'm so eager to play but it isn't working out like I had hoped. :(

Bladewind
10-06-2014, 04:44 AM
Problem with first come first on these boards is that you get out of whack submissions (characters that really don't fit the premise), fly by interest (person says they're interested and never get a character up - to be fair, this is sometimes simple writers block) and other similarly off-game submissions.

Are you the type to want to "show off" your characters? I've found one of the best ways to get accepted more readily is to have a roll call thread. Whether or not you get comments, you start building a portfolio and when you submit to the recruiting game a character pitch of energy controller, the GM has an idea of how you build...

Just my (unsolicited) two cents. Cheers !

* I've been guilty of fly by interest myself, and there's a game I'd love to play in but just can't get a decent concept/ build to come out on paper the way I want it to...

Nintendogeek01
10-06-2014, 08:19 AM
Thanks all, I'll look around. I may yet find a game.

digitalangel
10-06-2014, 09:30 AM
Roll20 is also another option, for M&M as well as other systems if you are having a hard time finding a game.

Ysariel
10-07-2014, 11:59 AM
There's only a handful recruiting right now that are 3e, though, and they've been recruiting for some time now...I haven't read through all of the threads but I'm a little discouraged that the game I'm interested in the most has had like 12 submissions. I don't want to audition or compete for the chance to play, I just want to play. :(

Not so long ago (May 2012) I was in your shoes as a new player desperate to play. I can understand how frustrating it can be, and I personally loathe the way most GMs run recruitment, which is stressful, wastes time and effort, and does not even pick the best players to begin with.

Sadly, there are far fewer people willing to run games than there are willing to play in them. Game Room games usually attract about 10 to 15 submissions for 5-6 slots. Additionally, even if you get picked, most games do not last beyond the first combat. You may also find that play-by-post is not for you -- in particular, it is very slow. I can run about 1 round of combat every week, and my games are fairly fast-paced by play-by-post standards.

All I can suggest is to keep applying for games. Eventually, you will find a like-minded group with whom you get along well and enjoy playing with, and that will last you years, and you will start getting invited to games instead of having to compete. Good luck!

saint_matthew
10-07-2014, 10:04 PM
Roll20 is also another option, for M&M as well as other systems if you are having a hard time finding a game.

Or if worst comes to worst, simply kidnap some people & lock them in to an intricate death trap in which the only escape is to run & participate in a M&M 3E games.... If you record it, you could make an entire movie out of it, kind of like Saw.... We could call it D20.

rwknoll
10-08-2014, 09:26 AM
Not so long ago (May 2012) I was in your shoes as a new player desperate to play. I can understand how frustrating it can be, and I personally loathe the way most GMs run recruitment, which is stressful, wastes time and effort, and does not even pick the best players to begin with.

Sadly, there are far fewer people willing to run games than there are willing to play in them. Game Room games usually attract about 10 to 15 submissions for 5-6 slots. Additionally, even if you get picked, most games do not last beyond the first combat. You may also find that play-by-post is not for you -- in particular, it is very slow. I can run about 1 round of combat every week, and my games are fairly fast-paced by play-by-post standards.

All I can suggest is to keep applying for games. Eventually, you will find a like-minded group with whom you get along well and enjoy playing with, and that will last you years, and you will start getting invited to games instead of having to compete. Good luck!
Thank you for the pointers and for understanding. I don't know if PbP is good for me; all I know is that my schedule currently allows for one ongoing, in-person (or Skype) game and lots of random time throughout the week to reply to forum posts. I've played a number of roleplay-heavy text-based games (MUDs, etc.) in the past few years and thoroughly loved them, so I assume PbP would be a good format for me.

Once I've tried my hand at PbP and get a better sense of whether it works well with my playstyle and availability, I would definitely be open to running a game. I would love to run a game based on an alternate timeline in the X-Men universe (similar to a game I just started with my friends in person), or based on Avatar: the Last Airbender.

JDRook
10-15-2014, 10:54 PM
Not so long ago (May 2012) I was in your shoes as a new player desperate to play. I can understand how frustrating it can be, and I personally loathe the way most GMs run recruitment, which is stressful, wastes time and effort, and does not even pick the best players to begin with.

Sadly, there are far fewer people willing to run games than there are willing to play in them. Game Room games usually attract about 10 to 15 submissions for 5-6 slots. Additionally, even if you get picked, most games do not last beyond the first combat.

To be fair, this is exactly how auditioning for practically anything works out, and there's no reason RPGs should be exempt. Unless you've already developed a network of people you work/play well with, there's going to be a process of fumbling around like a bad job interview/first date until something clicks . . . or doesn't click . . . or sort of clicks if you squint right and then you've got to decide whether it's worth squinting. And since almost everyone involved is in roughly the same position of figuring out compatibility, the odds against making a solid group go up exponentially with the size of the group necessary.

Ysariel
10-18-2014, 11:08 AM
If Game Masters choose players who were compatible with each other and had great chemistry, who were fair and considerate and thoughtful, who shared the same playstyles and told the sort of stories that each other liked, that would be great. It's how I pick my own players. But that's not how recruitment in the Game Room is run. :) The way recruitment is run in the Game Room 1) does not pick players that click well with each other and 2) is stressful and wasteful.

On the Game Room a GM will post information about their upcoming game and invite applications. Instead of choosing players, most Game Masters look for the best or most suitable characters for their game, putting the cart before the horse; a well-made character is no guarantee of a decent human being at the controls. People who are thoroughly unpleasant to play with can turn in outstanding applications. Because play has not started, the GM has only the character sheet to base impressions off, which does not give an accurate picture of how a character will turn out in actual play. Often, players themselves are not sure how their character's personality and traits will play out, and need some time to explore the character before settling on a characterization.

As most games attract between 2 and 3 times the submissions for the number of slots available, competition for slots is intense. Instead of a group of friends sitting together making characters and working out what their campaign will be, a free-for-all ensues as all comers attempt to outdo each other by creating the most intricate backstory and concept. Some people call dibs on particular archetypes to stop other players from submitting a character of the same archetype and increasing competition; some try to submit multiple characters for the same game and increase their odds of success. The focus on the character's background leads players to fetishize the backstory and it is common to see huge, multi-page essays for character histories. The competitive mentality is utterly at odds with the spirit of cooperation and trust needed for a successful game.

At the end of a tense waiting period a few players are chosen, with no guarantee that they can work well with each other, like each other or are even there to play the same game. The rest will have wasted their effort in assembling a character. Rejection rates are so high that most players have a stable of characters that they peddle from game to game, instead of creating a character specifically tailored to each GM's setting. Typically, throughout the selection process little attention is paid to things that actually affect how fun the game will be, such as: Will the players get along? Are their schedules compatible? Are their playstyles compatible? Do they play fairly? Are they responsible enough to not vanish after a week? Do they work well together and enjoy playing with each other? Can they share the spotlight? As a result of the way recruitment is run, among other factors, most games do not last long beyond the first combat and those that do suffer heavy attrition where new players must periodically be recruited to replace those who drop out.

We have a generally great community in the Game Room and I am grateful to GR for the chance to play here. But nothing's perfect and the way most Game Masters run recruitment is a sour spot in the experience for me. I haven't submitted a new application in half a year. :)

rwknoll
10-18-2014, 11:49 AM
Yes! That precisely summarizes my frustrations so far. The process for becoming involved in a game in the Game Room forum is very backwards to me.

Arthur Eld
10-18-2014, 12:26 PM
Except that process is at least fair to new players, in its way.

For example, The Crinoverse games (which are, for the most part, amazing) tend to be a little niche. Now I'm not complaining, cause I'm more or less in that niche. But players who might want to play in the setting but are not part of the traditional group of players (there's usually at least one of Yeoman, Kreuzritter, or me in any Crinoverse games) get overlooked because the GMs know the group works well (for the most part) together. There were also problems with some earlier games being first come first serve. With my own Crinoverse game, I made an attempt to try and not have it stocked with the same old familiar places and give other players a chance, to mixed results.

Also, and this is kind of a due diligence thing more for GMs than players, but if you want to check out the stuff Ysariel mentioned, you can do a search through the prospective players or GMs past posts. Find out if they're the kind of person who makes negative OOC comments about other people's characters, or worse, other players. Find out what kinds of characters GMs have accepted in past games. In short, do your homework. I haven't been played in a game with a new GM in quite some time, and the last time I was, the game didn't last long. Find the one whose style you like the most-I'm in games with four different GMs currently, they all have different strengths and weaknesses.

FuzzyBoots
10-18-2014, 08:06 PM
I have not had much experience GMing, but Ysariel speaks a lot of truth although I'd probably add a grain of salt in that the ideal involves people you know are reputable, but the fact is, you take chances, even with veteran players. I flaked out last year, just stopped posting, barely even queries as to whether I was alright. And the necessary due diligence takes a ton of time, going through posts and trying to figure out what's representative and what's noise.

Everyone does their best, and the favor does tend to go to players we're familiar with, not just the ones we've played with, but also the one we see post. I'd love to say the Role Call threads help, but honestly, my eyes tend to skip over them. So I tend to more rely on what I see in other threads.

mrdent12
10-18-2014, 10:36 PM
I can't speak for other GM's, but my biggest issue with recruitment is the nature of PbP games. During the recruitment phase, they might be great posting every other day, bantering through posts, helping other submissions, etc. To add to it, they might have good submissions that fit the game to a T. This all a GM has to go on, other than reputation and spending time researching each player on the boards. Reputation is easy enough, but tends to hurt new players on the boards if weighted too heavily. Likewise, doing due diligence hurts people who haven't posted enough for the GM to get an idea of the player or just takes too much time the GM might not have for unforeseen reasons. There have been a few games I have ran where the players just didn't jell or fit my GMing style of having players drive the action with minimal prodding even though it looked like they would in recruitment. A table top in person game has the advantage of handling this quickly, but PbP is slow due to differing timezones and having to post or PM.


As most games attract between 2 and 3 times the submissions for the number of slots available, competition for slots is intense. Instead of a group of friends sitting together making characters and working out what their campaign will be, a free-for-all ensues as all comers attempt to outdo each other by creating the most intricate backstory and concept. Some people call dibs on particular archetypes to stop other players from submitting a character of the same archetype and increasing competition; some try to submit multiple characters for the same game and increase their odds of success. The focus on the character's background leads players to fetishize the backstory and it is common to see huge, multi-page essays for character histories. The competitive mentality is utterly at odds with the spirit of cooperation and trust needed for a successful game.

Unfortunately, detailed character histories/concepts used to be a big factor with how I cast and was affected by casting the more competitive players who didn't work well with the others. For more established players, it is easier to not weigh the level of detail so heavily, but newer players lack the reputation so its easier to fall in to the trap.



At the end of a tense waiting period a few players are chosen, with no guarantee that they can work well with each other, like each other or are even there to play the same game. The rest will have wasted their effort in assembling a character. Rejection rates are so high that most players have a stable of characters that they peddle from game to game, instead of creating a character specifically tailored to each GM's setting. Typically, throughout the selection process little attention is paid to things that actually affect how fun the game will be, such as: Will the players get along? Are their schedules compatible? Are their playstyles compatible? Do they play fairly? Are they responsible enough to not vanish after a week? Do they work well together and enjoy playing with each other? Can they share the spotlight? As a result of the way recruitment is run, among other factors, most games do not last long beyond the first combat and those that do suffer heavy attrition where new players must periodically be recruited to replace those who drop out.

The questions raised aren't easy to figure out by the submissions or posting history alone. In one game I ran a while ago, there was a player who seemed like the perfect team player and was responsible to boot. He dropped off the boards after his first post. In another game, the player was helping the others with their characters and was quite active in the recruitment thread. He ended up being a factor in causing me to not work as hard as I should have to keep the game alive because of the drama.Still in another game, someone posted their character and was fairly quiet in the recruitment thread, but ended up being one of the core players and extremely reliable. As FuzzyBoots mentioned, even the players who might answer all the questions based on their history don't always for sometimes personal reasons. Life has a way of getting in the way of posting.

FuzzyBoots
10-19-2014, 03:50 PM
I will say, also, that the resubmitted characters very seldom are exactly the same character from time to time. The archetype remains the same, but generally, powers get rearranged and the background gets rewritten to fit the actual game description.

Ysariel
10-22-2014, 10:37 PM
Except that process is at least fair to new players, in its way.

I disagree. I think veterans have more experience with the recruitment process and know better how to game the system. For example, most will know that they should write very detailed backgrounds, since most GMs rate that very highly, even though detail is completely unrelated to quality. They also know what sort of characters the GM likes, which powers tend to trigger warning flags in GM's minds and how to play abusively without being detected.

I don't recommend first-come-first-serve -- although it may not be as bad as choosing characters, which is stressful, wasteful, promotes an attitude unsuitable for a cooperative storytelling game, and never achieves its stated objective. I recommend that GMs choose players based mainly on the characteristics of the player.


Characters are ultimately under the control of the player. So if you want a character who makes a good contribution to the story, you start by choosing a player who makes a good addition to the game.
All problems that arise in games originate with players: abusive and unfair behavior, player conflict, randomly disappearing, etc. The only way to avoid these problems is to choose players wisely.
Choosing players on the basis of their character sheet means, in practice, that you get players who are good at writing character sheets, which is irrelevant once the game starts.
Game Masters sometimes choose characters based on which characters they think will "work best together". This does not work because if the players have no chemistry with each other, neither will their characters. On the other hand, players who have great chemistry can roleplay excellent interactions even if their characters are hostile to each other.
It is very easy to replace a character that turns out to be unsuitable. Just write out the character, and have the player make a new one. It is much harder to replace a player who turns out to be a bad fit. There is always the risk of drama and hurt feelings when asking a player to leave, and then you have to go through the entire recruitment process again to find a replacement.


The disadvantage of choosing players based on the characteristics of the player himself/herself is that new players are disadvantaged -- not because being new is a detriment, or being a veteran makes you good, but because they have less of a post history for you to judge if they are suitable for your group and your game. But then new players are already disadvantaged under the current method, so this is at worst a draw.

I feel there are no benefits to running recruitment the way people do so now. I think the only reason people continue to choose players on the basis of their character sheet is because this is the way it's always been done.

roguescribner
10-25-2014, 10:25 AM
I've run a few games on the ATT (and hope to again soon). The very nature of pbp is a limiter in many ways. Sure, GMs and players have time to consider their actions and let their creativity fly, but that comes at the expense of instant feedback and camaraderie. A round of combat in RL could take minutes to resolve whereas in pbp it could take a week or more.

When I recruit, I look at character concepts / builds first because I have an idea for a game and if the fundamental requirements aren't met by a submission, nothing else matters. I've not picked veteran players who I know are reliable and creative players because their concept just wasn't quite a good fit for the campaign I had in mind. That being said, I always weigh what I know about a player with their submission and how the player and their character will balance against others in the game. I'm not opposed to picking new players and believe I have had at least one n00b in each of my games. The trick is to have such a strong submission that you inspire me to take a chance on you. Because n00bs are more likely to flake on a game, which burdens everyone. Veterans can flake too, but it's less likely.

When recruiting I always check post histories of players I'm not too familiar with. I check for frequency, stability, and how they interact with others. This is less important for people I know and, again, for n00bs, I just use my gut and decide if it's worth taking a chance on them based upon the strength of their submission and how they present themselves in the recruitment thread. They can have the best submission in the world, but if they aren't interacting with the other posters and seeking feedback, I'll probably ignore them. But if they seem like they are eager to join and happy to interact with other people, it increases their chances.

Some people are better suited to real-time games. Pbp takes patience and consistency. RL can knock us all for a loop sometimes, but the trick is to take your commitment seriously and try to act in the best interest of the game (which may mean dropping out permanently so you're not stringing people along).

That's my two cents.

Ysariel
10-26-2014, 09:05 AM
When I recruit, I look at character concepts / builds first because I have an idea for a game and if the fundamental requirements aren't met by a submission, nothing else matters. I've not picked veteran players who I know are reliable and creative players because their concept just wasn't quite a good fit for the campaign I had in mind.

I think it makes more sense to tell the player "Look, this character won't work," and work with them to brainstorm a more suitable submission. Throwing out the player because of the character, which is easy to change or replace, sounds odd to me. I contend that the reverse is true: if a player does not have the right qualities, nothing else matters, because characters are easy to change but people are not.

FuzzyBoots
10-26-2014, 10:02 AM
{nods} Although, sometimes, part of that person's qualities involves insistence on playing a particular character. Every game. Whether it fits the genre or not. :D

roguescribner
10-26-2014, 02:48 PM
I'm fairly clear on the types of characters I'm looking for and I provide feedback on submissions before recruitment closes. That said, if the character still isn't a good fit, it's not going to work. As Fuzzy said, some people want to push their preference on the game instead of trying to build something that will enhance it. Others just never get a clear grasp of what the game is or what they want to play. Not everyone is a good fit for every game, experienced or not.

And if you go by experience only, how is anyone new ever supposed to play?

Ysariel
10-26-2014, 11:25 PM
Anyone who tries to force their preferences on the game is not being cooperative, and shouldn't be chosen in the first place, so that seems like a non-issue to me. As I mentioned in my first post, I think one should choose players who tell the sort of stories one wants to see in their game.

This is why I choose players, not characters. All problems with the character (a concept that can't be modified to fit the game) ultimately originate with the player (someone not willing to work with the GM's theme), so it makes more sense to focus on picking the most suitable players. Attack the root of the problem, not the symptoms.

Conversely, I feel that when you look at submissions you are not choosing characters: you are choosing character sheets. A strong submission just means that the player is good at writing character sheets and marketing them in a way that GMs find attractive. It does not mean that the character or the player are suitable for a game.

I didn't say that one should choose players based on experience. What I said earlier was that being a veteran does not make one suitable for a game. Experience has little value and is even harmful sometimes, if it prevents people from seeing that a new way is better. :)

Bladewind
10-27-2014, 04:43 AM
Except that the non-cooperative player is often the one that is a prolific poster and chew up the GMs time as they try to be nice or get distracted...

This thread has been quite the interesting read...

roguescribner
10-27-2014, 09:58 AM
I guess I'm not getting your point. In a pbp environment, unless you personally know someone on the boards, how are we not supposed to recruit based upon character sheets and experience?

rwknoll
10-27-2014, 03:12 PM
I guess I'm not getting your point. In a pbp environment, unless you personally know someone on the boards, how are we not supposed to recruit based upon character sheets and experience?

I see where you're coming from; you can learn a lot about the quality of someone's writing ability and potential to contribute to a game based on their submission. However, even without knowing someone personally, someone's forum behavior can speak volumes about them as well, including:


Their general language towards other posters, including politeness, attitudes, and interpersonal writing style
How frequently they view or post on the forums (an indicator of how active they might be in the game)
If they are in other games, you can see how many they are already active in, how regularly they post, and what you can expect from them as a player in your own game
If relevant, quality of other builds posted on the Roll Call forum

For brand new players who have only a handful of posts, you might not have access to as much information, so it still doesn't wholly address the problem of the deck being stacked against new players. But for users who have been around the forums for a while and simply have never played a PbP game, you probably have a lot of useful information available to you outside of their actual submission.

roguescribner
10-27-2014, 05:28 PM
Right, and I've stated that I do look at that stuff when considering newer players, so I guess we agree. :)

dream
10-27-2014, 06:13 PM
Hey Forum, new only in name (didn't get that invite; Elohim).

Give rookies a chance seems the gist of this & a lot of Game Room GMs do just that.

The issue, at least when I tried to run games here, was cheese & over-the-top builds that may have fit what a GM was looking for, but turned into DRAMA. OOC & IC. The sad reality is some gamers carry anti-social traits that can destroy a game. Even some GMs. I admit to being so 'railroady' it irked my players.

I grew & you, as players & GMs hope those people will - you just don't want to experience that dramatic evolution in your game. It's difficult, but let the n00bs try. And grow. Be that group that lent its patience to see a 'young gamer' evolve.

They might become that next great game designer - given our collective wisdom.