Role-playing Mechanics: The Third Way

Recently Chris Youngs at Wizards of the Coast wrote an editorial pointing out that people can role-play in D&D 4th Edition just fine without any rules actually governing said role-playing:

Fourth edition doesn’t include some of the mundane mechanical elements of character building that 3rd Edition did. For example, certain skills (I’m looking at you Craft and Profession) enabled a player to feel like his character had some sort of grounding in the “real world” of the campaign. Odds were good that you never made a Craft or Profession check in your game, but having ranks in that skill made you feel connected to your character’s background. In 4th Edition, those skills are gone. Why? Because we feel like a character’s statistics don’t represent the absolute truth of a character’s story. That’s right — one of the reasons those skills (and other such elements from other editions) are gone is that we felt they hindered roleplaying.

This elicited some “Hear! Hear!”-style posts from gaming blogs:

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Getting Ready to Storm MEPACon in Fall 2009

MepaCon LogoMy gaming group’s making a concerted effort to attend MEPACon this fall. The northeastern Pennsylvania game convention is being held November 13-15 in Scranton, PA (exactly where hasn’t been determined yet).

You can find out more about the con by visiting MEPACon’s home page, Facebook page or by joining the MEPACon Yahoo Group. If you’d like to RSVP, you can sign up at on the Facebook event page

We decided to attend in force while we were at Origins, and it occured to us (well, first Bob, then the rest of us) that MepaCon was an awesome opportunity to run the games we always want to play, but never get a chance. Possible events being kicked around the group right now include a Justice Society of America superheroes game, Stargate SG-1 and G.I. Joe (all powered by Mutants & Masterminds). On the board and card game front, we’re looking at Space Hulk, Race for the Galaxy, and Risk 2210.

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