Roleplaying with Rock Stars

2008 October 14
by Stupid Ranger

Dante & I had the great privilege to go to a Death Cab for Cutie concert Sunday night.  And the part of my brain that loves music was suddenly merged with the part of my brain that loves roleplaying, and I had a musically inspired roleplaying epiphany.

In all roleplaying ventures, there are three readily-identifiable personality types: the Star, the Second and the Stage-Hand.
The Star
The Star is the lead, the spotlight character, the one who leads nearly every encounter with little effort.  The Star loves the attention, the grandiose plans and high adventure.  The Star can ascend from any class; since this is mostly personality driven, there is very little dependence on class.  However, the Star may take a step back if it becomes necessary for another character to take the lead, but such role reversal will not last long.
The Second
Like your back-up singer, the Second is the character that helps bring it all together.  The Second doesn’t usually like to draw all the attention and enjoys being in the background, helping the plot move along and keeping the Star from Certain Death.  Of course, a Second may occasionally step up to the mic and lead a Star-quality solo performance but will usually revert to the Second role very quickly.
The Stage-Hand
The NPCs in your adventure are Stage-Hands who perform those little behind-the-scenes tasks that need to happen in order for the adventure to progress.  Whether it’s testing the mics or detailing the prophecy that will lead to fame and glory, the Stage-Hand makes sure things run smoothly.
Life in the Band
A good performance requires all three roles to be filled.  Without everyone involved, the set will generally fall apart or, at the very least, will not be very entertaining.  Not every player is suited to every role, just as not every character is suited to every role.  I personally prefer to be a Second, but I enjoy taking the Star role every once in awhile; however, I have played the occasional character who was better suited as a Star than a Second.  Be aware of how your band is composed, treat each other with kindness and respect for your roles, and enjoy the beautiful roleplaying music.

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