December 29, 2019

How Do We Best Help New Players?

We talked a lot last week on #newbieTuesday about how important it is to help out new RPG players.

Today’s post is an extension of that discussion: how do we as experienced players best extend that olive branch to new players?

There’s a triumvirate of virtues I’d like to emphasize in this task:

  1. Patience
  2. Compassion
  3. Coaching

Having played for quite some time it’s at least plausible that you’re well-versed in how to play and, who does what/when/where and why. You’re familiar with the pace and intuitively know the order of operations, and where to interject yourself.

When a new player or players join the table, you quite simply cannot have those same expectations about them. You must be patient, and use your skills in kindness and compassion when thoughtfully delivering advice and guidance.

When the experienced players carry themselves in this manner, it significantly eases the perceived burden on the new players, freeing them up to better ingratiate themselves into the game & story, rather than worrying about people-pleasing or being embarrassed at “not doing the right thing.”

Role playing games need to carry the banner for how experiencing stories together is an incredibly positive, fun, community-driven experience that brings people together and adds a bright bit of happiness to our lives.

Just like you did once upon a time, the new players you bring in will learn and then be able to pay it forward themselves!