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The Wizard's Desk

The Wizard's desk is a blog space where our staff and creative leads offer their insight and experience on engaging with DrachenFest US! We're excited to share what we can, so pull up a seat!

2024 Play Guide & Change Log

Here is our updated DrachenFest Play Guide. This year's updates were light - we focused on streamlining the wording around a few complicated topics, and ideas that have evolved since the festival began. Here are the highlights:

  • We did some light clarity-driven editing on sections "It's a Game" (p4) and "Rules and Reacting to stuff" (p6).

  • (p7) Clarified our stance on "alternate characters" - our intention is that you play the same character throughout the festival. We do make some exceptions for groups with concepts based on full masks or other high-difficulty costumes (like Orc Clans). When they need to get a bite to eat, or take a break from the heat, they can play as an "alt" tightly linked to the main character (maybe a servant or mercenary). Alts have the same roles & guild skills as the primary character. If this creates a lot of confusion or frustration, alt permission can be limited or revoked.

  • (p9) Added text about Theft in the Bazaar and the rules for shoplifting from enterprises. More details can be found in last year's Banditry and the Bazaar post.

  • (p12) Clarified our stance on personal firearms in this high fantasy game: you can wear a medieval firearm prop as a costuming accessory, but it cannot be drawn in combat or used in play. Guns simply don't work here.

  • (p21) Last year, some areas in the Bazaar were marked "18+" because of roleplay or concepts that might not be child-safe (ie seedy bars, surgery scenes with lots of blood and gore, etc). We've extended this rule to allow any area to be designated 18+ as long as clear signage is posted.

  • (p27) under "You can opt out at any time!" added a paragraph encouraging active calibration. "Oh, Mother" is not just to protect yourself, it also alerts referees to overly intense play.

  • (p33) Updated text about Leadership roles and how they are selected. Each role also links to a blogpost with more details.

  • (p34) Provided additional "spirit of the rules" explanations around Guild Skills and classes.

  • (p35) Updated text about "leveling up" to better set expectations around mechanical character progression.

  • (p42) Added a paragraph to "See a Ref when you..." encouraging players to talk to their camp refs about plot. They can help you build your own fun festival plots and quests!

  • (p44) Added a timeline of the event. Clarified that it's okay to roleplay and get into character during the pre-game days. While the opening ritual signals the beginning of formal gameplay, many people gradually get into character long before that.

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