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What is Roleplaying?

What is Roleplaying?

As a child, have you ever played make-believe?

As an adult have you imagined what it would be like to be a knight, a king, or a fighter pilot after you’ve just watched a particular exciting movie, or read a good book? Do you wonder what you would do in those situations?

We all have. Roleplaying is just that. It is like a child’s game of make-believe. It is imagining yourself to be someone else in a different time, and place and carrying out these actions as a noble-born knight, or a back alley thief.

It is acting. Taking on the mannerisms, the attitude, and ideals you imagine your character would have. It is acting as your favorite fictional character would act. (What would ‘he’ do in this situation?)

It is problem-solving. Tackling a problem head-on, even in the face of insurmountable odds. Your character facing adventure, struggle, conflict and death itself only to succeed and perhaps gain fame, fortune, glory and honor.

Roleplaying is about these things and much much more. Roleplaying is not only fun, and social, but it can be educational, creative, and teach teamwork.

There are dozens and dozens of roleplaying games, and literally hundreds, if not thousands of themes and settings in which these games can be based on. You could be a knight in the service of a king in a medieval fantasy setting, slaying dragons. Or to be a superhero fighting arch-enemies. Or being a crew member on a Starship exploring new and strange worlds. Or even being a normal newspaper reporter in today’s modern times finding out the truth about conspiracies the government is conducting against it’s citizens.

This is what roleplaying is about. It is a structured game of make-believe that has rules and guidelines and a setting that the players explore together to solve problems and conflicts. It is a series of on-going stories that the players experience, being the protagonists. Think of a roleplaying campaign like a soap-opera. Your character grows and changes due to all the experiences and adventures he goes through.

Roleplaying is never about winning or losing. It is good when a group of players finally face their arch-nemesis and defeat him. As well, it is equally bad when they aren’t successful at some task. But just in life, a character’s life in a roleplaying game has no ultimate goal in mind. As such, there is no end to the game. After you defeat the villain who has hounded and baited you, and this one particular story has come to an end, it means that there is just another adventure around the corner; another villain to face.

Perhaps your character may die. But is this an end? No. Is there life after death? Do characters in soap operas really stay dead? Or maybe, you your tired of your old character and want to play a new character now. After all, there is much more to explore out there.


  • RPGnet If your really into roleplaying, this is the site for you. It’s a little daunting for the beginner, but very informative.
  • RPG Host Network Also. an equally fantastic site about Roleplaying Games, the industry and everything to do with them can be found here.