How to Use Comedy In Your Game

by Avalon Games

Avalon Games



Tags: gm tools

How to Use Comedy In Your Game

How to Use Comedy In Your Game

To many people the prospect of playing in a comedy-driven game can be intimidating. It's one of the few styles of gaming that people will refuse to play not because they don't think they'll enjoy it, but because they don't think they're capable enough or funny enough. Nothing could be further from the truth. You no more need to be a comedian to play in a comedy game than you need to be a professional writer to play in a more serious game. Comedy gaming is all about attitude. You don't need to try and be funny, what you need to do is not disallow yourself from being funny.

Think of your last game session and how many jokes the players made during the course of it. Now take the number of jokes you withheld in order to preserve the tone and multiply that by the number of players. Add this to the total and you have an idea of how many jokes come, completely unbidden, to the average game session. That's what you and your group are capable of without even trying; imagine what you can do with a little bit of knowledge and the right attitude.

The little bit of knowledge is contained in the chapters of this book. The right attitude is as stated above: don't disallow yourself from being funny. That means turn off the inner censor which rejects ideas for being too absurd, but otherwise not attempting to be deliberately funny. One of the biggest mistakes you can make when running a comedy game is trying too hard to be funny.

Nothing kills a joke like desperation. It's better to focus on the verisimilitude of the setting and the characters and allow the comedy to evolve naturally. If you merely stop rejecting ridiculous ideas you'll be amazed at how quickly the tone changes. Absurdity leads naturally to further absurdity and before you know it the game takes on a strange and humorous life of its own.

If you take away only one thing from this book it should be this: you don't need to be funny to play in a comedy game. Playing in a comedy game will make you funny.