Reach Out Role-Playing Games is a forth coming product line of game products, supplements, and modules. Part of our mission is to focus on creating opportunities for inter-group dialogue through role-playing games. These are not designed to be edutainment games though. We are looking to create fun, dynamic gaming experiences that give players options that are in line with our goals and we want our fans and supporters to play the games that are fun for them, using our products and the products we support. More information will be available as development moves forward.
Executive Summary for Non-Gamers
Imagine 4-5 people sitting around the table. They are telling a story. However, this story is in some ways more akin to childhood games of make-believe or improvisational acting. Each person is playing a character in a joint story, where they each are crafting elements of what occurs. They are led by a storyteller, sometimes called a game master, who facilitates the rules and acts out the part of the various non-player characters (the background or villainous elements of a story). This is a role-playing game, or RPG. Some common games, like Dungeons and Dragons are somewhat well known, but there are 1000’s of different games, using various rules, settings, and experiences to tell different stories. Even within the same worlds and systems, the diversity of players allows for a vastly different story experience every time the game is played. Many of these games use dice, cards, or other methods to introduce a random element to help drive the story.
There is extensive academic literature supporting the benefits that role-playing games provide. From creativity, to empathy, to math skills, and social skills, RPG’s have a lot of therapeutic, educational, and artistic benefit. Role-playing games are also used extensively in multiple academic and business arenas already, but are often called simulations or simply role-plays. Reach-Out Roleplaying Games(RORPG) is a project designed to create fun, engaging, and valuable role-playing experiences that allow for people to learn and absorb creative problem solving tactics.
The creation of fun, engaging, and interesting story is the guiding principle of RORPG. We will be developing a handbook that teaches ways to integrate non-violent conflict resolution, inter-cultural dialogue, and other inter-personal creative problem solving techniques into play. At the same time, the handbook will also act as guidance for the creation of modules/adventures/stories that can be developed for the various game systems that exist. Many RPG companies have what is known as an Open Gaming License, which allows other game companies and fans to use the worlds and systems that are otherwise under copyright. This allows for a greater base of people to benefit from the creation of the RORPG product line. Alongside the Open Gaming License options, we expect that RORPG will be able to work with several companies to create stories and options for their games that take our principles into account.
The world of role-playing games is one that is currently undergoing a culture-shift, embracing diversity and actively trying to create a more inclusive space for anyone interested in the hobby. This is a process that has ebbed and flowed along with the hobby from the beginning, but the conversation is hot and important to the overall health of various gaming communities. RORPG doesn’t want to be the only voice out there, nor do we claim to be. There are other great organizations and companies embracing these ideals and making great games. We want to support that movement and we hope that our products can empower and sustain others working on similar or overlapping project ideas.