[generic] What RPGs do you want to play at conventions?

#1
So there have been a couple of threads where people have said "I'd like to play that at a con" or "I don't want to play that at a con". What do you want to play at cons? Is there a specific genre (SF, supers, pulp action, horror etc) or game type (new hotness, crunchy, diceless, indy weird, just D&D dammit!)? Is there only one specific system that you will play (I told you already, D&D)?

(Note I said play, rather than run. That's a different topic).

For me, I have a set of priorities:
  1. New games that I haven't played yet that I know I want to, either because I've backed them on Kickstarter or people I trust are saying how great they are.
  2. Older games I haven't played and want to - mostly funky indy games in this category.
  3. Old favourites from my youth, like CoC or Feng Shui.
  4. Games I've played before and didn't hate, games I'm not wild about by GMs I like, games that have spaces and aren't on the "no way" list.
The "no way" list is a bundle of games I've played and don't want to play again (Vampire, Deadlands, HEX), games that have no interest for me (DCC, PF), stuff that I think is too crunchy for me to pick up in a con game (GURPS, D&D, games with funky dice), and almost anything that uses a bucket of dice...

Does anyone else have more straightforward criteria?

(Mods, if this sits better in Open RPG, feel free to move it.)
 
#2
I rarely get to play at conventions, preferring to run and GM games myself.

When I do play I usually go for something unusual, either a setting that sounds different from the standard, or a new game system that has intriguing ideas or processes behind it.
I go for the scenario blurb too, it has to excite me!
 
#3
Pretty much have the exactly same priorities as @MartinP it's a great opportunity to play those games that I haven't got the chance to play much or at all.

One additional priority I would add in as well is those games that I want to run but haven't been able to grok the rules or playstyle yet. It's a fantastic opportunity to watch another GM in action.
 
#4
I'm going to a Glorantha convention. My priorities were pretty much anything but heroquest, which I find very hit and miss. At cons generally I look at the DM as well because If I know the DM I get an idea if the game is good. I'm more likely to try a new game at longer cons and sometimes they are really great. At the moment I'm looking at savage worlds rules and am wondering how I have managed to not play this as the rules seem ok.
 
#5
If I’m at a loose end at a convention my priorities include:





Firefly! Preferably not the official system - something lighter. And deffo the canon characters.





IP generally trumps the system for. me.





Savage Worlds - preferably with a referee I know and an interesting/quirky sourcebook. Mainly because I’ve played it so much as emergency backup at conventions that I’m quite familiar with the rules. (Though I find the combat a tad too long for my tastes. And characters have too many specialties.)





A known IP vs Cthulhu with a ref who knows what they’re doing.





Something FATE based because I know it a bit.





I’m not averse to PbtA. Neither is it a draw.





Referees are a big thing and I’ll try something new with a ref I trust. But I don’t actively seek out new systems.
 
#6
I'll pretty much echo what other folks have said:
  • Try out new games which have an interesting setting. e.g. I played Darren's game of Tales from the Loop at a con last year.
  • Try out old games which I'be never had an opportunity to play, e.g. I still haven't managed to play anything which is Powered by The Apocalypse.
  • Always on the look out for science fiction games
  • Always on the look out for horror which is not Cthulhu (I don't like the 'go insane and achieve nothing' vibe of the CoC con games I've played)

Avoid D&D, Pathfinder, anything dungeon-crawly, anything 'comparable to Tolkien at his best'. Avoid superheroes. Avoid anything that sounds as if it is going to be slushy and romantic.
 

Guvnor

Administrator
Staff member
#7
I am happy to play absolutely anything if the premise sounds cool, I adopted this agnostic view to systems some years ago and it really helped my fun. I therefore am very open minded.

However.. I have an itching right now to play GURPS, CoC, Fate, 2d20, and Fria Liga's games, but seriously.. anything.. good premise and pitch will draw me in, or if I am in random mode, literally anything.

As for settings, need some good Tékumel, Glorantha, Conan, Infinity, and Talislanta, [I prob have to run that last one myself]

PS: DCC is great fun.
 
#8
I like to play things I haven't played before. Also, things I have played before, like HeroQuest, RuneQuest and D100 games. I don't mind which, though. I rarely play something that I have previously played at Conventions but isn't in my favourite games, so it's unlikely I'll play Monkey, for example.

As I am a glutton for punishment, I try playing Call of Cthulhu and sometimes sort-of enjoy it.
 
#9
I am happy to play absolutely anything if the premise sounds cool, I adopted this agnostic view to systems some years ago and it really helped my fun. I therefore am very open minded.

However.. I have an itching right now to play GURPS, CoC, Fate, 2d20, and Fria Liga's games, but seriously.. anything.. good premise and pitch will draw me in, or if I am in random mode, literally anything.

As for settings, need some good Tékumel, Glorantha, Conan, Infinity, and Talislanta, [I prob have to run that last one myself]

PS: DCC is great fun.
Running things yourself may be the way to Kickstart the Fandom. I had to do that in the early days of 2d20 scarcity at Conventions.

Nowadays, you can usually find a Conan or Star Trek 2d20 game, so I enjoy Conventions much more just playing instead of running.
 
#10
Personally, beyond the slew of Modiphus 2d20 games and Fria Ligan D6 games that I try to run and play, I also enjoy the FFG Narrative Dice RPGs, from Star Wars to Genesys and most recently, I am investing heavily in 5th edition Legend of the Five Rings.

I do try out some new systems but avoid those that are less tabletop games and more narrative acting, since I never liked acting class. PbTA is a mixed bag for me, since I prefer the relative group cohesion of Forged in the Dark to most PbTA hidden agenda plots.

Of course, D&D and Savage Worlds are the default if all else fails.
 
#11
I am starting to see the appeal of rules light systems for uniquely new games though I prefer heavier games built upon rules engines I know.

Shared game engines let you run and play new thematic genres with less new rules investment so I can edit spin up some D&D (including a new Cyberpunk 2185 game), Savage Worlds (too many to list), obviously 2d20 (Conan, Star Trek, Dune, Fallout), FFG Genesys (Star Wars, Android, expecting Twilight Imperium), Fria Ligan's MYZ (Tales from Loop most popular here), Cypher, D100 (Warhammer FRP and 40,000), and even classic Chaosium BRP.
 

First Age

D&D h@ck3r and Hopepunk
Staff member
#12
I'll try just about anything that catches my fancy at a convention, especially if it is a taster 3-4 hour single slot game. Mood varies on fancy:

  • Games that I have on my shelves, especially ones that I haven't yet had opportunity to play
  • New games to me
  • Fancy dipping my toe into the depths of Pathfinder so would like to taste 2e
  • I'd like to have another 13th Age blast and have some Gloranthan flavoured at Expo thanks to Guy
  • I have a bit of a blank spot with Cthulhu
 
#13
Good question! I've been on rather a long dry spell con-wise, finally breaking a ten-year fast at Expo last year. What do I like to play? It's a bit of a mix, really. Sometimes it's just nice to get out of the GM's seat, let my hair down and play. I also appreciate a chance to have a go at a game that has interested me, but I havent had a chance to play myself.
 
#15
I'm drawn towards pitch and setting rather than system, though a few systems do put me off. I'm especially drawn to historical games and science fiction. There's a few things which put me off- basically "straight down the line" fantasy and usually cyberpunk. For Call of Cthulhu I need a GM who runs it in a way compatible with my tastes, or a pitch which really grabs me- if I'm uncertain there, I'll avoid it.

There are a couple of systems I'll avoid. There are other systems where I know I'll have reliable fun. Sometimes there's a particular game I'm itching to try. Sometimes I fancy reconnecting with a GM I haven't played with for a bit where I know I like their games. Sometimes there's a GM I know will deliver. Though on a converse note, I think I should play more with GMs I've not played with before- I've not done that enough in recent years.
 
#16
I held off from posting in this thread because I'm usually GMing at cons. I was reading with interest in the name of "hey up don't get complacent". However, I'm fresh off the 7 Hills boat, where I actually played more than run! 3 played vs 1 ran. And what a good spectrum it was from the one truly awful game, which is completely down to my tastes and sensitivities, which I'm drawing a line under and walking away from, to a truly awesome game which ticked all my boxes.

So focusing on the positives.

In short: Games that are Maximum Gaming Fun and leave a big shit-eating grin on my face, that I'd be happy to recount for years.

Bullet pointed breakdown
  • Don't care what the system is, as long as the ref has a half decent grasp of the rules and their implication in play. I'm more than willing to forgive them if they fess up and ask the players their opinion. This also may be inevitable, some players get their fun out of knowing the rules inside out.
  • That every player gets a decent opportunity to shine. This means that the gm doesn't play favourites and gives the players the opportunity of equal time in the spotlight.
  • That the game is firmly centred on the actions of the players and their characters. Not some expert NPC who outshines the pcs in one or all areas.
  • That group plays together and has fun together, with no player left behind :)
 
#17
When at Cons I prefer playing. I look for the following in order

1) The Pitch. If your Game perks my interest. It must seem to me that it would be fun to play. I like anything serious to fun, all it has to do is catch my attention.
2) GM. This is a big thing for me. If I have not played in any of your games before, I will sign up if 1 and 2 peak my interest. If I like your Game I will gladly sign up for any Game you run in the future. Then my Gaming criteria does change as the GM goes to the top of the list. I will seek out Games by those people. (There are a few on these boards which I have played in their Games and will do again without hesitation).
3) The System. I am quite fluid on system be they Traditional or Indie (if you want to put labels on systems). I will try any system and will make my own mind up if it suits me and would I be willing to return to a game.
 
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