Escapist > Projects > Young Person's Adventure League > The Golden Rules of Adventure Games

An Escapist project of introducing young people
to the exciting world of adventure games

Site Guide

Factually Answered Queries - questions and answers

The Adventurer's Atlas - a list of suggested games for young people

The Dromedary's Dispatch - News and updates on the YPAL and adventure games

The Navigator's Notebook - play reports and reviews of adventure games

The Tinkerer's Toolbox - tips, tricks, and helpful hints


Running a roleplaying game for anyone - young person or otherwise - can be a daunting and intimidating task. To help keep your adventure stress-free and fun for everyone involved, always remember these Golden Rules of adventure games:

I : If you don't like a rule, change it. If you don't like ALL of the rules, find or make new ones!
Most everyone who plays a role-playing game tweaks and tinkers with the rules to get them just the way they like them. It's not only common, it's expected - you'll find that many RPG books mention and even encourage changing the rules to suit your playing style. If you find the entire rule system to your dislike, consider scrapping the rules and using a different system. There are a few suggestions in the Adventurer's Atlas, and some of them are even available for free.

II : If you want to add something, add it. If you want to take something away, take it away.
This is the same rule as number one, except it applies to the game setting instead of the rules. If you feel that a game is lacking something, and you CAN put your finger on it, then put it into your game. If there is some element of a game that you really don't care for, you are perfectly free to take it out. Not enough ninjas? Too many dragons? No way to get off of the planet and explore some others? Do whatever you need to that will make the game more fun for you and your players.

III : If it's not fun, you're not doing it right.
That's not a criticism, it's a bit of advice. Observe your players and communicate with them. If they're not having fun playing in the game, if they feel the rules are confusing or too restrictive, work with them to make the game fun for them. After all, a game that's no fun isn't worth playing.

...back to the Tinkerer's Toolbox


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