I've had a complicated relationship to role playing games over the years. I'm wondering if I could get some advice from more seasoned players.
I have been thinking quite a bit lately about 3d modeling some role playing scenery and dungeon decor, but since I haven't role played for years I don't know what I would do with it...
RPGs are a kind of game that I want to like. Conceptually they are more appealing to me than other miniatures games. Especially those with really vibrant worlds full of background and character. Trouble is that the last time I actually enjoyed a role play gaming session was when I DMed for my younger brother and our cousin thirteen years ago. For the next 4 years after that I continued trying to get into the spirit of the game but I always had a really hard time getting out of my own head. Then I stopped trying altogether after I had a falling out with one of the regular players.
Nowadays, actually speaking the words "I attack the [monster]" or "I cast magic missile" put me outside of my comfort zone.
As neat as the setting and the magic is, I'm not doing those things. I'm sitting in a chair rolling dice while I hmm and haa about mundane things like whether the dungeon walls are brown or grey, whether I want my character to use a maul or a morning star, whether the DM actually has any idea about where the story is going, or I might be silently judging another player at the table for running the campaign right off the edge of a cliff, and taking everyone --including the DM -- with him.
Oh. Eureka moment. I just realized that the biggest problem might have been that one guy the whole time.
I'm interested in playing but I have a habit in real life of being paralyzed with indecision. I'm the kind of person that takes forever at the grocery store to compare prices, size, packaging, brand, ingredients list, and then once I've finally narrowed it down I realize that I've spent half an hour agonizing over a twenty cent difference between two loaves of bread. Or whether to buy large vs extra large eggs. (How many calories do they have? Which is better for baking? Is one of them lower cholesterol? Should that even matter?) And do I buy salted or unsalted butter? I just don't know... (I'm exaggerating a little bit, but that's certainly how I felt at the grocery store when I moved out and started buying my own food.)
There's nothing quite so daunting as a DM asking me, "what do you do?" My inner dialogue looks like this: "I dunno?? What is there to do? Everything? Nothing? I could... uhh... Do I have any spells? I'm in a room... Hmmm... In a room... Is there something I'm missing? What's the point of any of this? Guess I'll just sit tight and wait for someone to make a decision. Maybe if I just sit here and no one says anything, the DM will give me more info." And then a battle starts (because why not) and even though I would prefer a good story with drama and consequences, irony or foreshadowing, ethical dilemmas, etc. I'm relieved that fighting skeletons/goblins/whatever at least gives me some concrete, simple goal to work towards. But it's really not what I hope for in a game. If I wanted that I could just play any old skirmish game, I don't need to dress it up with character sheets.
How can I enjoy role playing?