Game Format

All House Games follow the same basic formula.

  • There must be a minimum of two players and one GM. Veteran high-rollers can attempt Solo Games.
  • Anyone may run a Game, and everyone who plays should at some point. See Writing and Running Games.
  • A Tribunal of Regional GMs may declare any Game or Event "Void" if required.

A character who is invited to participate in a House Game typically has the option of refusing. GMs will clearly want to avoid this, so they should strive to make their introductions enticing. In the event the character cannot be induced to play, they sit out that Game.

If the character accepts, they are brought to the location where the Game is set, typically meeting the other players (a number that can include NPCs) at the "starting point". Depending on the nature of the Game, the characters are instructed in whatever details are deemed relevant and set on their way. Early Games are usually straightforward, while later Games can have all sorts of complications. Most early scenarios are "closed" to outside influence (the "House" in House Games), requiring the Characters to overcome the scenario without interference.


Any given Game can have one of three outcomes.

Failure: The character fails to achieve the objective of the Game. They are awarded 2 experience points and no gift.

Success: The character achieves the objective of the Game. They are awarded 4 experience points and a special gift.

Death: Character death cannot be a requirement for the success of a Game, and is generally not a direct result of failure. However, most character deaths occur during Games. If your character dies, they receive no experience, no Gift, and you cannot play them anymore.

Outcomes are decided on a per-character basis. Most of the time Games are won and lost as a group, with all characters sharing the the thrill of victory or shame of failure.

Game Archetypes

GM's will often stray from this list, but the most standard types of House Games operate as follows:

Bug Hunt: Just what it sounds like: Find & neutralize the monster. This sort of game strongly favors fighter types, but can be cast in numerous layers of subtlety. These games tend to be the most predictable.

Escort Mission: You are required to protect an individual, location, or group for a specified period of time. Due to the inherent flexibility of roleplaying games, these games tend to be far more compelling than their video-game counterparts.

Puzzles: These Games involve a variety of riddles and complex problem solving. Clearly favoring the cerebral characters, at no point should players be allowed to simply "roll" a solution. Investigative rolls and skills should provide clues, not answers. For obvious reasons, these Games can be frustrating, but also very rewarding when solved.

Puzzle Shooter: The combination of the above styles, these Games tend to run like the first Resident Evil: A combination of Antagonists and Problem Solving that ultimately leads to the finale.

Obstacle Course: Simple and often brutal, these Games send the characters through a series of traps, tests, and challenges with the objective of surviving to reach the goal. They are best when used sparingly, as a series of death traps and little in the way of flexibility can wear on players when used too often, yet can be refreshingly straightforward after several more cerebral Games.

Abstract Goal Many games present characters with an abstract goal that involves approaching, assessing, and gaining control over a situation. These games punish non-flexible characters, and give less combat-oriented and flexible characters a time to shine. Examples could include: robbing a bank, stopping a riot, saving a group of people, or penetrating a small conspiracy.


You can stir up the normal House Game by adding other elements such as the following.

  • Time Limit: Characters only have a set time to achieve specific goals.
  • Hostages: An NPC must be safely retrieved or brought along.
  • Open Door: The Game takes place in a public setting; local Institutions may help or hinder.
  • Rivalry: Individual characters have different, or even opposing goals. Alternately, a rival team may be after the same goal.
  • Highlander: Only one character can win.

See Writing and Running Games for more information about the requirements that a Game must fulfill.

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