I have personally never been introduced to the hobby. My own experience was reading a book and then i was stuck. You might know the book type, where you are being a part of an adventure, and make decisions and go to a page depending on the choise you made. After that i moved on making similar adventures for friends, and character sheets evolved from 3 simple stats ”strength”, ”magica” and ”health” in to very advanced character sheets that took hours to fill out. We all had our different stories on how we got introduced. Most people have been dragged to the game by some enthusiast player who would like someone else to enjoy their hobby to the same degree as they do. And this is usually where the problems start. The seasoned player forgets to introduce the new player to the hobby and expects the friend to know everything that the game is about. So lets start at the beginning.
What is role-playing about
This is a common topic often discussed in almost every rulebook there is on the market. There is tons of guides about this topic, so i will try and keep it short and precise.
Role-playing is about playing a role in a though theater where you with your voice describe the actions of your character. Your character does not exists outside of your description and have no actions beside what you say you do. You defeat challenges by chance, decided by dices where you often have to roll towards a target number that describes the chance of success. In certain periods of the game players take turns to describe what they do.
Why do people play
Role-playing is verry soccial, people talk about role-playing, boast about previous experiences and tell about their everyday life. People watch movies together, and spend time outside the game. Beside that, it gives people the chance of experience stories where they can influence the outcome them selves. Often exiting and entriquing stories with interesting characters and amazing challenges. It stimulates creativity and is plain fun. Like playing a computergame, but without being limited by the skills and predicitbility of the developers and gamedesigners. And did i say it was soccial?
What is the most important thing i should bring if im ever invited
I use to say an openmind and a pair of dice. But most people have dices you can borrow. A pencil is never a bad thing to bring. But bring good mood and give it a fair chance. Don't be afraid of doing something stupid. And don't be afraid of doing mistakes.
The game master and other players will often help you make the best descitions that you can make at that moment, and do their best to guide and help you in dificult situaitons. And you are always able to ask for help with rules.
Just describe what you want to do, the more colorfull description the better, and the gamemaster will help you with what to roll if a roll is needed. At the beginning, try to do simple actions but with great descriptions. A new comming player that says, ”I take a step forward block his attack, look him in the eye and hit him with the guard on the sword”, gets more credit than a seasoned player who says ”i hit him with my sword”. The gamemaster will then help you with what rolls you need to roll to make the parry and then the counter attack, and no matter what the rules say the game-master should allow it, but he might divide the the actions in to a few rounds.
But as with everything else, have an open mind, ask alot of questions, be sure to talk about expectations beforehand with the person introducing you.