Well, I’ve done it: I’ve made it through 2016. Hoofta, am I glad that’s over with. With a new year comes a world full of new possibilities and promise. To motivate myself to achieve all that bright, glowy potential, I’ve got to make some New Year’s resolutions to get the year started off right. While I have many things I need to achieve in real life (e.g. getting in shape, spending more time with family, etc.), they are way too hard right now, so I’m going to focus instead on how I can improve my fictional life (I’ll get to my actual New Year’s resolutions later). I’ve created a list of things I’d like to accomplish to improve myself as a role-player in 2017 and they are as follows:
1. Create a Character in a Class I’ve Never Played Before-
I’m not a decades-long veteran of RPGs, so I have yet to play all the classes, even in my most frequented gaming systems (i.e. DnD, at least on tabletop. I’ve played all the classes many times over during my time in Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Nights). If given the opportunity to start a DnD campaign this year, a distinct possibility, I will be creating either a barbarian, bard, or monk. If my group ends up playing in a different system, I’ll have to make sure I’ve never played the character class I end up making (though that would be the cheap way of achieving this resolution, like resolving to go to the gym every week but just stopping to raid the vending machine).
2. GM My First Campaign-
I have yet to be the master of my own campaign. I’ve always used the excuse of being too new to table-top gaming, but I’ve been role-playing for almost five years now, so that excuse is wearing thin. The truth is that such a task is daunting for one who has never sat behind the screen. I will conquer that fear this year and run my own game. Now, on to planning and making sure the experience isn’t crap for my players (there’s a few handy references for new GMs here on High Level Games I will be checking out, that’s for sure).
3. Play a Campaign in a Novel System-
I have only played in about half a dozen different tabletop RPG systems since starting to role-play (Marvel, D&D 3.5, Rifts, Shadowrun, DnD 5e, and 13th Age, to be precise). This year I resolve to play in a campaign set in a new rules system (note: this will not happen at the same time as my second resolution). There’s talk of Star Wars 3rd Edition for the next campaign with my group, which would definitely fulfill this resolution, but I’m hoping for something a little less familiar, perhaps Numenera or Baker Street: Roleplaying in the World of Sherlock Holmes. We’ll see what the year brings, and what I can afford.
4. Lose a Character in a Memorable Way-
Death isn’t something I usually include on my list of New Year’s Resolutions, but 2016 wasn’t exactly the greatest of years, so I’ll make an exception. This year I resolve to kill off one of my characters in a manner so epic, it will be sung about by the bards for ages to come. Maybe I can combine this with my first resolution and make a bard to sing my own praises. I’ve had many characters die in my time, but none of them have been that truly awe-inspiring, self-sacrificial, heroic demonstration of badass-ery that is really memorable. 2017’s going to be my year (to die), I can just feel it.
5. Play a Character Who Pushes me Outside of My Comfort Zone-
This one will be the biggest challenge for me. This year I resolve to create a character who has a personality, flaw, proclivity, addiction, etc. which forces me to embody an individual with whom I would otherwise have little or no exposure. Being a sheltered, middle class, shy, white American male, my comfort zone isn’t exactly the most expansive of regions, so finding something that falls outside of it shouldn’t prove too challenging. Perhaps I’ll create someone who is the life of the party, a social butterfly. Maybe someone struggling with addiction and depression. Possibly a cold-hearted and abusive womanizer. Whoever this character turns out to be, I want them to challenge me to see the world from a different perspective.
Well, there you have it folks, my list of goals for 2017. I’ve no clue how I’m going to accomplish all these things, but I’ll give it the old college try. I think it just means I’ve got to role-play more. Maybe I’ll add that to my list of real life New Year’s resolutions…
- Jake is High Level Games most handsome contributor and has probably given up on at least half of his real life New Year’s resolutions by now (they were dumb anyways).
I am become death, destroyer of worlds.