Role-Playing on Wave

Posted by on November 20, 2009

What makes Google Wave work for role-playing games?

I’ve been playing around with Google Wave for a few weeks now, primarily with role-playing Waves. These are Waves in which people pretend to be characters in a story.

There are tons of ways to role-play; sitting around a table, over live text chat, or on a forum. Wave appears to be well-suited to role-playing.

I’ve noticed a few things:

  • Players are less committed. That is, players leave for relatively long periods, then come back. This is partly due to Wave’s youth; checking Wave is not yet an ingrained habit for players.
  • Parties are less cohesive. Same thing here; Wave’s not yet a habit. But I can see parties as being much more malleable; people will come and go.
  • Systems must be simple. I’m observing a D&D 4E game on Wave, and one combat round took 2 days. I love D&D 4E, but I think it—and other relatively “heavy” systems—are less appropriate for Wave than their simpler cousins.
  • Everything’s visible and malleable. Anyone can jump in and fix a mistake or restructure content.

My Response

I’ve created an RPG experiment on Google Wave. It’s a floating fantasy city that anyone can interact with. It’s a sandbox role-playing game of exploration and intrigue. It has elements of:

  • Wikis
  • Choose-your-own-adventure books
  • Old school text adventures
  • Tabletop RPGs

Even better, I’ve created a website where you can see all of this. I think it will be visible even if you don’t have a Google Wave account. Go here:

Sorashi (broken now that Google Wave is dead)
There are already 10 locations you can explore and interact with, and a fairly robust (and original) system for creating your character. Hop on in!

What do you think? Does this interest you?

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