Storygames Storybook

edited July 2007 in Story Games
I had an idea based on a comment penned by Chris Peterson in this thread:
I think the biggest pool of potential buyers are the Buffy/Firefly/Lost/Heroes TV fans. They are inspired by their TV shows' setting, but are passive participants. Position story games as a fun, social way to create their "living fanfic". Considering the sheer numbers of TV viewers and the fanfic many already write (without having been tainted by bad D&D experiences), this is a ripe opportunity. Another Ries and Trout positioning tactic is to sell your product where your potential customers shop, not where your existing competitors sell! Imagine if PTA was sold on bookshelves besides Buffy/Firefly/Lost/Heroes books or DVDs, instead of on the bottom shelf of the bookstore's D&D corner.

Someone could put together the Story Games Storybook, an anthology of 'genre' fiction to bring readers into roleplaying. How would that work? Well, include an appendix at the end of the book that introduces the reader to the basic 'primer' system, using excerpts from the fiction as examples. The examples would serve dual purposes: one, to better explain the mechanics and two, to illustrate to the reader/player how they might use the setting material at hand to create their own story-games, whether its horror, sci-fi, fantasy, or modern-day magical.

Now you have a product that appeals to two markets, the genre fiction reader and the gamer, possibly turning the reader into a gamer. Especially if a page listing other games more suited for 'playing the fiction' is included.

It's just an idea, but I think it would be a cool thing to do. Although, I also realize that putting together an anthology is a whole other beast to contend with.


  • I think that approach would be great, and that this kind of fan would discover something very fun and rewarding. But they would need the games to be written in very clear newcomer-friendly style, without becoming condescending. Something very approachable and flexible.
  • You could even structure it like a stealth tutorial. So read the first piece of fiction, and then emulate a portion of that - how to resolve a simple conflict, say. Next piece, then invoking Keys. Next piece, and a tight little scenario where you showcase Bringing Down the Pain. Finish the book and you've read six entertaining stories and learned how to play a game that lets you make your own.
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