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New player frustration

   
If you want to stick with 5e (although the points noted here about other systems being less competitive to get into are solid, and it’s often not too expensive to buy a new system if you’re OK with PDFs), then it helps to approach applications with a couple of things in mind.

1) It’s a numbers game: there are a lot of 5e applicants, but also a lot of 5e games to which one can apply. So it becomes a question of volume, to a certain extent. Two applications is not a lot, frankly, given how competitive getting into 5e games is, and how many there are that one can apply to. It’s not personal - GMs have to make really arbitrary decisions and pick based on little things, because of how many applications there are. So there’s an element of luck, and you overcome that by applying many times, until you get lucky.

2) But obviously, you can put a lot of work into an application, and it can seem disheartening when that doesn’t pay off. It helps to think of character creation as fun, and so an end in itself. (I’ll admit that in 5e this breaks down for me if it’s “roll for gold and buy equipment.” Try as I might, I can’t find Adventures in Fantasy Shopping an absorbing exercise.) Pregames can help here. I know some people hate them, and there are good arguments against them, but they can cut down on that sense of time being wasted if you get to write in the character’s voice for a little while. So you might perhaps find it useful to make a special point of applying to games with pregames, to keep morale up, quite separately from the possibility of impressing the GM and improving your chances.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magrus View Post
... do geometry just to tell how many times your lightning bolt would bounce of walls and hit your own party, or the curving flow of outward pressure of a fireball to fill halls and rooms that could lead to friendly fire ...
This sounds awesome! Where do I sign up?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mnbrightblade View Post
I can't get into a game. I keep getting denied. Are there any games specifically for new players so we get some posting experience built up?
If you want to play in zombie apocalypse, we are looking for more players. It uses the savage world rules. None of the other players have massive experience with the rule set. So don't worry if don't have experience with them.

Game Link: Savage Z

I don't have any experience with DM duties yet. I am going to be running Storm King's Thunder locally for a group of friends in my home town. I could practice it here.

From what I understand gm'ing in person and on play by post are two very different things, and many gm's got their first experience right here on the forums. Of course you do what you're comfortable with but if you do want to try your hands at it there's nothing saying you can't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NikitaDarkstar View Post
From what I understand gm'ing in person and on play by post are two very different things, and many gm's got their first experience right here on the forums. Of course you do what you're comfortable with but if you do want to try your hands at it there's nothing saying you can't.
They're very different. GMing via PbP has the advantage that even if your PCs do something utterly unexpected, you can spend as much time as you need thinking about what effect that will have on things going forward and then react appropriately. Live games... won't give you that luxury!



More generally: Yes, it takes time to 'break into' the games on Mythweavers, but once you are in one, its typically an easier time to get into subsequent ones as you are more of a known entity. Just keep trying, and remember that your ultimate goal is to convince the DM that your character is interesting and will be valuable to them!

I recently started a new 5e game and had some people asking me what my selection process looked like and how to create a memorable character. I'm copying some (anonymized) posts from that process as I think it might help a little bit.





Hope those help!

So I'm new to MW and have met with some success to game admittance. I'm two for three. The third was disappointing. I put more work into the application than the other two combined. On the bright side it encouraged me to plunge in and start my own game, since I couldn't quite find the game I was looking for.

As a GM I am at about 1/2 or 1/3 of my capacity for running games. I'm really enjoying the PbP aspect. It makes it possible to multitask so I can run a few games and play in a few. I started with the expectation that I would only accept four maybe five players. The applications were so good I wound up taking six. I wanted to take on as many players as I could due to the quality. The selection process for my game ended up like this.


This was really difficult. I'm new to the board myself and have not had the pleasure of gaming with anyone here. So I approached this logically. Not that it helped narrow things down much as there were so many great applications. I scored on the following.

1) Member is currently running a game: There are more players than GMs. So I gave a point if you are currently running a game. Hopefully this will encourage more people to run a game. I do want to add that if I am in another person's game and they ever apply for one of mine it will be quid pro quo.

2) Character Concept: Solid background / history

3) Writing: I'm here to tell a story. I want other story writers to collaborate with.

4a) Posting rate more than 1 per day average: This is a frequency issue. If you're in the game, I want to feel assured that you will post. You are taking a spot with limited seats and there was a lot of stiff competition. If posting 2-3 times a week is an issue please step down.

OR

4b) No more than three days between posts for at least one month (for new or returning players after a hiatus): This is a frequency issue. If you're in the game, I want to feel assured that you will post. You are taking a spot with limited seats and there was a lot of stiff competition. If posting 2-3 times a week is an issue please step down.

5) Active in more than five games (this is a negative): I want to be sure you have time for this game. Again, If posting 2-3 times a week is an issue please step down.

6) DM bonus (Really like the character/Character fits a niche/Player is helpful to others): This is self explanatory.



Turns out number five was not as good of an indicator as I thought it would be. The thought was to spread the wealth and let players with more time to dedicate to the game in. Browsing through the posting history of various members showed that some of the games weren't even active in a month or more, or the posting was very slow. So this will most likely still get looked at but will not necessarily be a negative for me in the future.


I was impressed with the turn out for the application process alone. Toughest part was choosing the players. The game is running beautifully. I will wait a month or two to make sure things are still running well then launch a second game. Then hold out for October to bring on a hero / monster themed game using Kids on Bikes, a PbA game (City of Mists / Legends of the Elements / Masks / Monster of the Week / MonsterHearts / Urban Shadows) or Werewolf the Apocalypse 20th ed. A role play heavy game dripping with drama, angst, horror or all three.

Something that I find rather unfair though: More than often, there is people who are applying that are currently playing/running up to 6-8 games (i saw people in more 10 games - i even saw someone who is in 26 games for godsake), and are still applying to almost all games popping up on MW and getting seats that could be given to those people who have trouble of sliding into one. I mean... can you let others play? Do you really need another game? And common phenomenon: Some of those players even complains when they can't keep up with the post rate of the others who have more ''time'' to post, basically ruining the pace of the game and the fun of the other players. Ironic, isn't?

I announced a game in the past and I putted a restriction in my game advertisement so it would let place for those who are new: ''If you are currently into 6 or more game, please don't apply''. It didn't take long that people (who were impaired by the restriction) to strongly complain in the announcement thread how unjust it was... Feel like entitlement, isn't?

That was just my 2 cents.

There's probably something in giving a chance to play to someone who's not in any games at all, but raw numbers of games is a poor indicator for what you're trying to measure - as you say, not all games are equally active, and furthermore not all people are equally busy. If I have oodles of free time, no day job, and spend all my time on MW, I can probably run and play in rather more games than if I just have the odd hour each week. If you want to measure how much time a person has to devote to your game, perhaps it should be post rate divided by games?

The "spreading the love"/selfishness thing is another matter. On the one hand, why the hell should you care what other games I'm playing in? I had this discussion with a DM who imposed such a restriction once before, too. I also do other things in my spare time, not on MW. For all you know, I could be playing a dozen other PbP games on another sight. It's largely irrelevant, and none of a DM's business. However it can certainly be hard for new people especially to find games and I have seen people reserve a slot so that at least one new person can have a go if they want to, which I think is a good way to keep things inclusive without doing anything drastic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
There's probably something in giving a chance to play to someone who's not in any games at all, but raw numbers of games is a poor indicator for what you're trying to measure - as you say, not all games are equally active, and furthermore not all people are equally busy. If I have oodles of free time, no day job, and spend all my time on MW, I can probably run and play in rather more games than if I just have the odd hour each week. If you want to measure how much time a person has to devote to your game, perhaps it should be post rate divided by games?
The point is a question of monopolizing the place that could be the one of someone that is in less games and that really wanna play.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
The "spreading the love"/selfishness thing is another matter. On the one hand, why the hell should you care what other games I'm playing in? I had this discussion with a DM who imposed such a restriction once before, too. I also do other things in my spare time, not on MW. For all you know, I could be playing a dozen other PbP games on another sight. It's largely irrelevant, and none of a DM's business. However it can certainly be hard for new people especially to find games and I have seen people reserve a slot so that at least one new person can have a go if they want to, which I think is a good way to keep things inclusive without doing anything drastic.
Exactly what I was talking about, the entitlement. You can do the hell you want with your free time, but it shouldn't be stepping on other people opportunity and liberty to play, since you are already privileged to be in games in the first place. Reserving one slot is cute and all, but there is many more new player that are waiting and struggling to get in a game while elitists spread their applications and get all the spot.

Also, the DM is actually the one inviting the people at his table and can ask what he want. It's his gig. He can put ANY restriction he want - it's his game and if people are not happy with the rule are not fitting into, well, it's his business. If he don't want people that have, i don't know, 13 games actives like you, it's not just a question of post rate but to let the chance to people who are into fewer games, to let them play and participate on this site. In either case, people will call it unfair, but not more unfair than someone announcing a game and saying ''this is for new players'' or ''I want people with a post rate is 5 post per week'', or ''making a game into a language that you don't speak''.







 

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