How do you know whether to jump into a setting you have never used before? What can you do to help you figure out if it is right for you?
Know what settings you do like – it is easiest to know what you won’t like if you know what you do like or what it is you are looking for. If you are in the mood for high fantasy, a game with a cyborg on the cover isn’t the best option for you. Similarly, a role playing heavy focus may want to steer clear of a cover full of explosions. Trust the game to market itself to you for what it really is.
Look to a Licensed Property You Adore – If you love a part of the setting, it is easy to slip into it. If you are a fiend for superheroes, and a game comes out in your favorite universe, take the plunge and grab it!
Friend’s Review/Recommendation – If you have friends that you trust, listen to their recommendations? Ask your compatriots online (like the Seize the GM Facebook group) if they have heard of this game or this setting.
Know Your Tone – Remember how we talked about knowing what tone or theme you are setting so you can adapt to the your players?
He is known as The Wanderer. You would miss him as he passes near you. Who is he, he is that houseless man you just passed on the street. He didn’t ask for anything unlike the rest of the homeless in the area. His cloths are worn and patched but clean. His backpack is old worn and more patched then his clothes. He is hard to pinpoint as for his age. As he turns away like a stalking cat you thought you caught the glint of a knife strapped to his lower back.
The man was just a normal kid that wanted to be a teacher after he finished college. He had a turn that put him out on the street for a few days. During that time he was just outside of the area that a killer was running amok. He dodged the killer and has spent the last two decades hunting killers down.Be they normal mortals or things that go bump in the night. The Wanderer bumps back.
Nothing this week.
A Plain Worn Warhammer
Sometimes you don’t know what you are getting into, but other times it is plain as day. This warhammer has no other uses but as a weapon. It’s balance and heft are most certainly intended to be deployed on the field of battle. What may be striking, though, is that the hammer is plain and unadorned. No extra designs worked into the head, no fancy carving on the haft. No intricate leatherwork on the straps worked around it’s handholds.
The only hint to its history comes weeks later. A small band of raiders, or so you thought, beset you and it became clear they were after the hammer. This simple hammer has their attention. They share a tattoo or brand that you don’t recognize. One with a hammer motif worked into it.
This isn’t the last time someone comes after you for the hammer nor the last time a merchant offers a truly impressive price for such a basic tool. Maybe, your mind begins to think, there is something more to this hammer. How do you find out if this is anything more than mere coincidence? How can you put at rest the slowly growing doubts in the back of your mind? Where do you even start?
Zealot noun zeal·ot \ ˈze-lət \
Definition of zealot
1 :a zealous person; especially a fanatical partisan a religious zealot
2 capitalized :a member of a fanatical sect arising in Judea during the first century a.d. and militantly opposing the Roman domination of Palestine
Origin and Etymology of zealot
Late Latin zelotes, from Greek zēlōtēs, from zēlos
First Known Use: 1537
Popularity: Top 10% of words
Did You Know?
In the 1st century A.D., a fanatical sect arose in Judaea to oppose the Roman domination of Palestine. Known as the Zealots, they fought their most famous battle at the great fortress of Masada, where 1,000 defenders took their own lives just as the Romans were about to storm the fort. Over the years, zealot came to mean anyone who is passionately devoted to a cause. The adjective zealous may describe someone who’s merely dedicated and energetic (“a zealous investigator”, “zealous about combating inflation”, etc.). But zealot (like its synonym fanatic) and zealotry (like its synonym fanaticism) are used disapprovingly—even while Jews everywhere still honor the memory of those who died at Masada.
Zendead- TMNT and other Strangeness
Guard-a-Manger- Go see live music and art exhibits
And Thanks to Merriam-Webster for our Lexicon segment