When I was in high school I discovered and fell in love with the excellent Star Wars RPG by West End Games. I had just moved and was looking for new friends and to my surprise I found it with a bunch of guys that loved Star Wars and liked to play the RPG.
Playing the game was intoxicating and I found myself gaining new friends and using my imagination in delightful ways. I must have written 20 games, which in many ways helped my writing for school (and definitely my own personal creative writing).
Fantasy Flight Games acquired the rights to Star Wars and published and released their first rule books in their RPG series in 2012-2013. Playing an RPG* is so much fun and I want to share with you why I think you should give it a try (if you haven’t already).
One of the best things about playing the Star Wars RPG is the opportunity to create and make. As people get older there seems to be more and more opportunities to miss out on creating and making things. We tend to consume more than create and playing a RPG can give you an opportunity to create. You can create your character for the game which covers everything from how that character looks to their background/history. You can also, if you are the game master, make up and create cultures or unique social situations. There is fertile ground for you to imagine the Star Wars Galaxy in new ways.
Playing the game itself gives you something that is disappearing in our technologically dependent culture and that is a social experience that is not just through our own social media. While technology is not bad**, it has reduced some social interactions that are good and healthy. Sitting down at a table with friends, food, and the Star Wars RPG can be very gratifying. It is communal and provides a sense of fun that we rarely experience in today’s world. It is quite exciting to collaboratively tell a story with others and I think if you give it a try you will be pleasantly surprised.
Unfortunately, one element that I think keeps people away from playing RPG’s, and specifically the newest iteration of the Star Wars RPG by Fantasy Flight Games, is the perceived complexity of the game. While the game does have some complexities to it, Fantasy Flight Games has created Beginner Games that helps introduce new players to the rules and environment of the Star Wars game. These “starter” games are lots of fun and relatively easy to play.
Role-playing through the Star Wars universe is also a great way to learn about it. At one point the old West End Games version of the Star Wars RPG was considered must read material for some Star Wars novelists doing research for their stories***. Fantasy Flight’s version of the Star Wars RPG has a delightful wealth of information about Star Wars and if you are a new fan it can really accelerate building the knowledge base of a Star Wars fan.
When you play the game there is a true sense that you have taken your first step into a larger world and there is no going back. In other words, it is time for you to take your first step.
What about you? Do you like playing the Star Wars RPG? Why or Why not?
*What is a RPG? Click here.
**Roll20 is an excellent example of technology bringing people together over great distances and time zones to play.
***Several Websites report this fact as it relates to Timothy Zahn and his prep for writing his Thrawn trilogy of books. While they said this took place they did not cite where they got this info.