December 30, 2019

Working With the Other Players

Today’s #newbieTuesday advice is all about how new players can best work with the other players at the table, regardless of their experience level.

Because they are so new, and don’t necessarily know what to expect, new players should look to the experienced players and try to get a handle on their goals, motivation, methods etc. The more examples you see of how other players go about managing their characters in different settings, conflicts, and exchanges will provide more and more insight into the ways you can go about doing the same. Of course, it’s one thing to see someone ride a bike but another thing entirely to observe what they do with that bike ride.

Once you get some of those observations under your belt you can better understand what makes the players and their characters tick. And you can react accordingly: you’ll find that there will come times where you’ll be able to help those various areas of importance to other players along. And that’s a simple but effective way to ingratiate yourself to the team, by showing that you’re an active, and engaged participant.

And that’s a great way to begin to define what you want to get out of the TTRPG experience – and not just for you, but your character as well. You begin to see what the possibilities are by observing those who know what they’re doing and can begin to use your imagination to do the same. And when you do, you’ll already have a solid foundation on what effect(s) those goals, motivations, and methods can have on both the story but other players as well.

And that’s where you can work even better with the other players: once you have a good handle on their characters, and begin to define your own, you can ideate ways to sync those sets of wants and needs at table. A lot of that interaction is fluid and in real time rather than something planned in advance. But it’s your comfort level as a new player that will begin to grow and evolve the more you’re able to participate and be present in those interactions.

So new TTRPG players: try to observe and learn from experienced players. Use that momentum to form your own character methodology and find ways to use that information to work well with the table.