Merevel
 member, 1167 posts
 The Unlucky Gamer
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 14:57
Anxiety.
So, I am working up the nerve to GM again, though this time it's friends only to help with some issues. If this goes well I might try running games on rpol!

I just hope I can keep them entertained and do well. I told them it might be a month or so till I am ready, Idk about rl but my rpol games tend to collapse.  Does anyone have tips for handling anxiety? Last time it kicked me in the teeth and I chocked so badly after session 1 we closed the game.
ShadoPrism
 member, 1093 posts
 OCGD-Obsessive-Compulsive
 Gamer-Disorder
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:00
Anxiety.
Take it slow. Try to keep the pace even and let things work out. I suffer anxiety to , as well as many health issues. Granted it does not always work but outside of meds it's the best advise I can offer.
Merevel
 member, 1168 posts
 The Unlucky Gamer
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:04
Anxiety.
The last game I tried to do via voice, since my friends are scattered over the world but voice might as well be rl frankly. Was a vampire game. I hate vamps and I felt rushed... which frankly feels like an excuse to say.

It did not help that 3 people had characters ready before I even had the book.
willvr
 member, 1055 posts
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:10
Anxiety.
Just remember - they're your friends. RPoL games collapse for many reasons, and very few of them have anything to do with your GMing ability. Friends will generally go out of their way to help out a game; as it's really just a reason to get together and socialise. RPoL at best are usually acquaintances. Maybe you might have a few actual friends; but I would wager most of the games that collapse you don't really have any friends.
Merevel
 member, 1170 posts
 The Unlucky Gamer
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:19
Anxiety.
It helps that two of them were there when it happened and one is willing to help handle things for a few minutes while I recollect myself. :-)

None of my friends like play by post lol.
willvr
 member, 1056 posts
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:25
Anxiety.
If you have anxiety issues; let your friends know. If they're really your friends, they'll try to mitigate it.

I have made some friends online. But it is definite that it's a different style of playing than tabletop. I run games in both. Tabletop games usually get close to an end.
swordchucks
 member, 1400 posts
Tue 20 Jun 2017
at 15:29
Anxiety.
I've had a lot of trouble with RPOL for the last year or so due to a slew of RL issues, and I find the thing that helps the most is communication.  If you're having a hard time posting, tell your players that, and tell them why.  You're going to get people that aren't okay with that, and they'll walk.  However, over time, you'll accumulate some players that are okay with that.

As a rule, if the GM is talking in the OOC and keeping the players posted, that goes a lot better than if you just ghost out while you deal with your stuff.

It also helps a lot to set firm expectations and boundaries in an RPOL game.  If you expect one post a week, be up front about it and do your best to stick to it.  You're also well within your rights to suggest limits on how much players post as long as you're up front about it.  It's usually a minimum, but sometimes it can be a maximum.
LonePaladin
 member, 604 posts
 Creator of HeroForge
Wed 21 Jun 2017
at 03:24
Anxiety.
It might help if you stick to a pre-published scenario, and ask your players to resist the urge to go too far off the rails. Having to suddenly improvise to deal with an unexpected action -- that'll make anyone anxious. So will the need to create interesting material on short notice.

Whatever you're running, go with something where 90% of the work has been done. Let your players know you're doing so, and why. If your players are any good, they'll respect the decision and stay (mostly) within the boundaries you set. Then you can relax, lean back, and enjoy the game.
Fyrerain
 member, 67 posts
Wed 21 Jun 2017
at 03:33
Anxiety.
I understand where you're coming from... I'm working up the nerve to try GMing again myself, although probably online (I live on the backside of nowhere!). I'm torn between doing a solo game to start (as I did it way back when), or going ahead with a small group.

Either way, I intend to make it clear that I'm way out of practice and there may be glitches. Suggestions on handling a situation may be solicited from the player(s), as long as it's understood I'm free to ignore those suggestions if I opt to handle it a different way.

Since you're doing it live, I'd say let the players know up front you're nervous. If they're good people, they'll work with you to make it easier. :)
willvr
 member, 1057 posts
Wed 21 Jun 2017
at 03:34
Anxiety.
In reply to LonePaladin (msg # 8):

Just make sure the pre-published scenario does have most of the work done. I had a bit of an issue this year with a couple of 5E modules; where you really had to do almost as much work as writing your own.
Telsij
 member, 7 posts
 Star Wars: WEG / D6 !
Wed 21 Jun 2017
at 18:29
Anxiety.
I second the suggestion on taking it slow. As one of my constant worries in RL, as well as RPGs, is concern about clear communication and conveying things as intended, taking it as slow as is reasonable has helped me considerably.

Doing so helped a lot with improvisation, as sometimes having to wing it is obviously among a GM's chief tasks / challenges.

And though this latter bit has more to do with being a player than GM, I hear ya about the anxiety crossing over to gameplay and vice-versa: my PC was made our mission's commanding officer at the outset of a current game. Yikes, did I ever feel the pressure! I was genuinely nervous about my crew's safety being entrusted to my PC, haha, and have only in my last few posts felt more like a genuine "commander."
engine
 member, 347 posts
Wed 21 Jun 2017
at 18:50
Re: Anxiety.
Telsij:
Yikes, did I ever feel the pressure! I was genuinely nervous about my crew's safety being entrusted to my PC, haha, and have only in my last few posts felt more like a genuine "commander."
I'd like to understand this a bit, in the context of this post.

My main question is: What do you think might happen if you make a mistake, either as a GM or a player? It seems like knowing this is key to forging a solution.
OceanLake
 member, 1001 posts
Thu 22 Jun 2017
at 03:04
Re: Anxiety.
Maybe this will help: Remember that players are grateful to those who are willing to GM.
Merevel
 member, 1172 posts
 The Unlucky Gamer
Thu 22 Jun 2017
at 03:18
Re: Anxiety.
I appreciate the advice guys, for now I am just restricting my players to fairly close friends, and starting on rpol. I will be planning, no worries, I will make my players wait till I am ready. It helps that they understand. ^.^
horus
 member, 160 posts
 Wayfarer of the
 Western Wastes
Thu 22 Jun 2017
at 05:40
Re: Anxiety.
Merevel:
I appreciate the advice guys, for now I am just restricting my players to fairly close friends, and starting on rpol. I will be planning, no worries, I will make my players wait till I am ready. It helps that they understand. ^.^


I did exactly that with my first game here.  If they truly are friends, they will reach out and support what you are trying to do.

That said, everyone has a life (we're all issued at least one), and lives are high maintenance sometimes.  Encourage all your players to communicate when this happens, and to pull together to create an enjoyable remote gaming experience.

Relax, take it easy, and, above all, have fun!
facemaker329
 member, 6940 posts
 Gaming for over 30
 years, and counting!
Thu 22 Jun 2017
at 05:41
Re: Anxiety.
One thing I'd also recommend...stick to games that you enjoy.  I've never really enjoyed being a GM...but when it was a game system or scenario that I didn't enjoy, it went from being an effort to being a dreaded burden, and that kills your enthusiasm very quickly.  Starting out, at least, if it's a system you enjoy and are comfortable with, you're minimizing the number of objectionable aspects to running the game.
Telsij
 member, 8 posts
 Star Wars: WEG / D6 !
Fri 23 Jun 2017
at 02:35
Re: Anxiety.
engine:
Telsij:
Yikes, did I ever feel the pressure! I was genuinely nervous about my crew's safety being entrusted to my PC, haha, and have only in my last few posts felt more like a genuine "commander."
I'd like to understand this a bit, in the context of this post.

My main question is: What do you think might happen if you make a mistake, either as a GM or a player? It seems like knowing this is key to forging a solution.


Oh, it was a desire not to disappoint. And though the recent example I cited was for me as a player, that same worry certainly crept up when I was GMing more frequently in the past. In my current game example, I was worried that I and my PC might make some ruinous decision that would bring harm to the party, worried that my own RL strategic abilities and leadership skills would not come through with the right choice or game-plan for my character and for the party when the time came.

Though ideally one should be able to play a character with different strengths and weaknesses from oneself without such metagame worries, the notion of potentially having to fall back on generous GM fiat after some IC miscue was also concerning. And the nervousness and/or preoccupation about all this sometimes bothered me outside of the game, at work, etc. That and, being super into my character, I didn't want to do my PC an injustice either.

Fortunately, I've since managed to allay many of these fears, and as per my previous post, I feel as though I and my character have now both risen to the occasion, etc. That said, the game born anxiety, while minor compared to, say, the opposite direction where bouts brought on by events in RL affect the game, still had an effect.
mickey65
 member, 4 posts
 Long-time PbP player
 Love several systems
Sun 25 Jun 2017
at 19:44
Re: Anxiety.
In reply to Telsij (msg # 17):

Is there a formal name for the type of anxiety you're experiencing? This is the first I've heard of this specific potential health issue being related to immersion in RPGs.

One think I'd look at in your situation is the place that RPGs have in my life and the role they play in it. There's never a wrong way to relate to RPGs, and never a wrong place for them in your life, if the totality of your life has room for that relationship and that place.
engine
 member, 348 posts
Mon 26 Jun 2017
at 13:46
Re: Anxiety.
In reply to Telsij (msg # 17):

Thanks for the reply.
stream26
 member, 1 post
Fri 7 Jul 2017
at 16:01
Re: Anxiety.

This message was deleted by a moderator, as it was against the ToU, at 17:46, Fri 07 July.