I was amused to see how many people responded to yesterday’s post about a family RPG campaign with suggestions of games I had designed or published. Believe me, I am well-familiar with them! Here’s the thing though. When I play a game I worked on professionally, I find it difficult to detach myself from the job and just enjoy it. WFRP2, Mutants & Masterminds, Blue Rose, Faery’s Tale, and Dragon Fist are all great games I am proud of, but playing them makes me think about work and that’s not what I want on my mind on family game night. That’s why when I’m going to run a game for fun, I usually pick something from another publisher. Plus I just like trying out new games.
I know some designers are the same way, but others are the exact opposite. I’ve met folks who love their games so much they will play them anytime and anywhere. That’s never been me though. There’s work time and fun time and I’ve found it helps my sanity to keep them separate. This isn’t to say I don’t get some enjoyment out of running playtests or convention games, but such situations require me to be in an analytical frame of mind. It’s different than just relaxing and having fun with your friends and/or family.
Thanks for all the suggestions though. It was interesting reading. If we get the campaign going, I’ll blog about it.