Stories You Play

Home of RPGs by Matt Snyder, including Dust Devils, Nine Worlds, 44: A Game of Automatic Fear, and The Ladykillers

Archive for the tag “game system”

A partial road map to RPG structure

When I decided to create an open game design (see the previous two posts here), I started sketching out a basic framework for the concept. I’ve been working on it in greater detail this week, and I offer it up here for review and discussion.

Click the image to download a 11×17″ PDF of this chart.

This chart outlines a “roadmap” of how characters and conflicts interact in games. It is not a comprehensive structure of an entire game, nor an attempt to model all RPGs. Rather, it’s just a model to show one common shape I’ve observed in games, especially the kinds of games that I think inform this project I have planned.

I intend the chart to be a reference point for design. It outlines “components” shown as boxes and arrow flows here. Each box could be swapped out with alternative mechanics, allowing individual designers to tailor their creations while still staying “on the map.”

Speaking of designers, I’m still eagerly looking for a small design team to design the core system using this chart as one of our guides.

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