The next level of gamer...

There have been plenty of discussions, and more than a few flame wars, around means of categorizing tabletop gamers. I won't try to reopen those wounds, but I do wonder sometimes...

  • There are those who want to play a game to win, and when their characters are successful, that's the ultimate goal.
  • There are those who play a character role, and want to subsume themselves into it, getting their kicks from the acting out a part.
  • There are those who crave the creation of an accurate simulation of a world and the beings in it, and then watching the story emerge from the result of the role-play and the roll of the dice.
  • There are those for whom the story itself is king, and their characters merely props in the story, where the resulting tale is the ultimate goal of the play.

I nominally fall into the third category, but lately, I think I've fallen into a fifth group.

Those who love games for their underlying mechanics, who want to delve into the system and tear at it a bit, see where it breaks and fix those spots, and generally strive for the best possible system, even given that "best possible" is so totally subjective as to be impossible to achieve.

I'm afraid that fifth group might bear the unfortunately baggage-lade name of "meta-gamers."

All I can tell you is that I find myself in a place where I get much more enjoyment out of this sort of game analysis, rules creation and mechanical minutia than I do out of playing a character anymore.


  1. I, too, oscillate between groups three and five.

  2. Are there tee-shirts for the 3&5 club?

    1. Put me down for one in size "Gamer Medium" - that translates to 2XL in standard sizes...

  3. Hmm, I'm either in 2+3 or 5 - but usually I manage to keep the former during the game, and the latter outside it.


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