PLAY SORCERER 60: III. The Game Master Pitches the Brushstrokes of Setting to Players (1)


1. The number of players

When I am the Game Master for Sorcerer play, I don’t like having more than three Players at the table with me. As a Player, I like a cap of three players as well.

This might seem somewhat limiting, but the truth is it isn’t that easy to gather people up for the weekly or bi-weekly play sessions that will take place over several months. So, first of all, by keeping the number of players limited to four or less (the Game Master and three or less Players) means that scheduling conflicts are minimized.

I see people gathering to play Sorcerer much like people gathering up to watch a terrific television series every week. You do it because you love the show and because you want to watch the show with these people.

That’s the way it works with Sorcerer as well: Everyone gathered has to want to do this thing (play Sorcerer), with these people (everyone gathered), with the setting elements the Game Master first proposes.

The other reason I’ve found to keep the number of Players to three or less is because in Sorcerer stories the lead characters (those Characters created and play by the Players) sometimes are in scenes together and sometimes aren’t.

Thus, we “cut” back and forth between them from one scene to the next in the same way we move back and forth between characters in a multi-character long-form drama like Battlestar Galactica, The Shield, Lost, Rome, Deadwood and so on.

Since Sorcerer works best with the flexibility of this kind of storytelling structure, keeping the number of Players to three or less means we can cycle from Player to Player, scene after scene, and build the best Sorcerer story we can.



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