Here’s the thing about tabletop roleplaying games: You get to revisit your lost opportunities. Any plot element that didn’t land can be reworked and tried again in another adventure. The encounter you planned that the characters somehow managed to avoid can be recycled. Even tactics that you attempted that failed because the dice weren’t with you can be tried again another time.
There are pros and cons to this. The upside is that no idea goes to waste. Even if it was a bad idea in the present context, it might work in another situation. Sometimes trying again can enhance the story. A callback to an awkward encounter can leverage the mood it generated, redeeming it and making it useful. Success at a task a character previously botched can feel like a much bigger victory. It becomes less about recycling material, and more about creating emotional beats.
Revisit Your Lost Opportunities
Over the years I have run the same set of adventures multiple times. Each time it’s been with a different group, of course. The players didn’t know, because I always tweak the encounters and story lines to suit the player characters. It does allow me to revisit lost opportunities, though. I can play a villain or supporting character differently. Things can be described better, in more detail. I can foreshadow things.
When you’re conscientious about those missed opportunities, it gives you a path to becoming better. You can be a better gamemaster because you learn what works and what doesn’t. You can be a better player because you see how and why certain things went wrong, and you can fix it or just not do it again. We gain some insight into the rules, the setting, and the character that we can use. First, we need to recognize that those opportunities were there.
About Dancing Lights Press
Dancing Lights Press publishes story games that embrace a minimalist aesthetic in design and presentation. Our print books are affordable, at $10 or less. The 6×9 digest format makes them convenient to carry around. The spotlight belongs on the creativity of the players as they converse and collaborate on plot, worldbuilding, and character development. Roleplaying is an activity, not a book. Our titles are merely part of the delivery system.