However, as my mind wandered I remembered something that I love to do - I love organizing things. I love processes, systems, rules and all things structure - not necessarily in that order. So, i thought of a project that (perhaps others could still do ten times better than I could, but something that) I would love to work on. I want to create a social network for table top role-playing gamers.
Now, before you start commenting below (all three of you) that "hey, dumb-@@@! That has been done a thousand times before. Check out [insert site here]." Let me explain what I mean. I am not talking about THE social network for table top role-playing gamers. I'm not trying to create the next facebook, or google+, or Enworld, or Wizards of the Coast community, or [insert your favorite here]. I want to create a website, which for the lack of a better term, I will refer to as a social network. I think the reason I call it that will become apparent as I elaborate. (so far so good, managed to write two paragraphs while giving zero useful information... back in the day when writers got paid by the word... I would have been rich!)
The working title is "League of Legendary Adventurers (LoLA)". The idea is to take the leader board concept from video games and add it to role-playing games. The site's primary feature and purpose would be to provide a leader board ranking for table top role-playing characters. Now, my initial concept focuses on the character level, because, while it is the player that is really responsible for these attributes, it is while playing a specific character. To best capture that player-character dynamic, I believe it is important to specify it at the character level. Now, I am not married to this idea - and perhaps, as this idea develops, people will convince me it really should be player based.
I envision beginning with five scores that would be tracked:
Legendary Points - points given for legendary, campaign altering style game plays (this is likely to be a group effort when characters over throw large and powerful boss monsters, make earth-shattering moves/decisions, etc.)
Hero Points - these points are given more for individual heroic actions that go above and beyond mere adventuring style moves (vaulting over five orcs to land in the middle of 10 and proceeding to
cleave them in a whirlwind of blows, felling in one round a high level undead witch with a series of well placed rolls (and crits), saving a child npc at great risk and little reward, etc.)
Jester Points - these points are given for hilarious actions (the character turns invisible, waits for the party to dispatch most of the monsters, and appears right at the end to finish the last monster off
with a well placed shot with his bow, then looks over the other characters and notes matter of factly "well glad I was here to safe your butts", etc.)
Thespian Points - these points are given for really excellent role-playing, staying in character, etc. (these would be the points most likely given out)
Alignment Points - these points wouldn't be tracked as the others, but any time a decision that has obvious alignment leanings (i.e. what do you do with the cult leader prisoner you just took hostage - kil him there, try and drag him to the authorities, or leave him to die... but don't kill him yourself, or let him go). These points would go towards one of the various normal alignments (chaotic good, evil, neutral, neutral evil, good, true neutral, lawful evil, neutral, good). The characters alignment would be shown, but might be adjusted if points built up in a particular different alignment. (more on this later)
person, ranks are merely a measure of success with the character and the reward is the thrill the person gets in seeing his or her character climb up the leader boards. The second could be extremely
interesting. I envision that information will be submitted by the player's game master, and when the player's character receives a new rank, a certain award is provided to the character (.e.g., perhaps a
setof experience, or a magic weapon, or both, or something entirely different is awarded at each rank).
In addition, with respect to alignment - I envision an algorithm that takes the alignment point distributions and "adjusts" the characters alignment based on his or her point distributions. Thus providing for alignment shift - and all the wonderful penalties (or bonuses) that go along with such a thing.
Now, I also envision the site having things like a match-making (i.e. game wanted) type system, forums, private group forums, and status update pages for each profile. After all, what good are leader boards and points and all that good stuff if you can't brag to the world about it.
Some thoughts for down the road... if I get to the stage where the above is implemented, I have many more ideas - making an online gaming league where characters can be saved, and used in any "league game" such as online and offline tournaments or others' campaigns, perhaps an offline "meetup" type functionality, where people can advertise in person get-togethers to share a drink and swap stories, and I'm sure this strange brain of mine will percolate plenty of other interesting (or weird... or possibly both) ideas.
Anyway, that is my idea. This blog will be focusing on the ongoing struggles in developing this idea. Also, if anyone knows of a site that already does this... please let me know. I'm definitely not out
to reinvent the wheel.