Selling in RPGs
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Here’s an idea that will level up any game you’re running or playing in: improve roleplay and engagement by selling.
As a game master, we’re often focused on moving the story and game forward while adjudicating rules at the table. But there’s an easy tool to get players more invested and create more fun for everyone. We need to sell what our players give us. In professional wrestling, selling is the term given to the act of trying to make something believable, usually in an effort to preserve the suspension of disbelief. It’s the next evolution of “yes, and.” What does that mean for a game master? Take what your players give you and amp it up.
- If a character swings from a chandelier, a witness asks for their autograph.
- The barbarian doesn’t just kick down the door—it shatters into a hundred pieces.
- The paladin’s motivational speech not only convinces the locals to help—they’ll now devote their lives to his god.
- The party kills a boss? Her minions are terrified.
Sell it. Make the players believe that their actions mattered and impacted the world around them.
As a player, we’re often focused on what we want our character to do. But selling opens up two new opportunities: selling for other players and for the game master.
- If a character threatens a minion, your character could step in and add the “you don’t want to make him mad” vibe.
- If a character creates a wall of fire, start pushing enemies into it.
- If the GM describes a terrifying foe, act terrified.
- If the GM describes a beautiful environment, describe how it makes your character feel.
Selling the choices and actions of those around you in the game improves everyone’s experience. It creates a game where people are encouraged and rewarded for trying more. That little bit of extra help from each other will take our games to new heights.