Kickstarter LIVE: Role Quest by Hercules Game Studios
Role Quest describes itself as a game of roleplaying, guessing and improvisation that will undoubtedly make you laugh. In Role Quest players take on the roles of fantasy characters with quirky personalities. The players interact one on one, taking on the role of their character trying to act out their hidden personality trait in a scenario set by friends in order to win goblin head trophies. The game is played over two rounds, and the person with the most goblin heads wins.
Players select a character, each of which has a unique ability e.g. the Necromancer can guess the personality of a player twice. Locations cards are put in the playing area. Role play cards are issued to players with their personality traits, and treasure cards with curses etc.
To start the game, each player moves in turn to a location, which holds a maximum of two players at a time. Starting with the first player, both players at a location select a roleplay card from their hand and place it in front of them. They will secretly act as one of the three personality traits on their roleplay card. The rest of the group come up with a scene for the encounter at that location between the two characters. For example, The Innkeeper visits the Town Hall to complain to the Mayor about the high taxes. At this point, other players may play curse cards before the encounter begins, for example, the target player must speak in the third person for the duration of the encounter. If the player fails to complete their curse, they must give two goblin heads to the person who noticed! Thankfully a player can only have one curse at a time!
Once the curses (if any...) have been set, the two players then roleplay for 60 seconds. Their goal is to convince the other player of their personality so the other player can guess correctly the trait they have chosen. When the time is up, players attempt to guess the personality on the roleplay cards starting with the conversation partner and going around the table after each incorrect answer. If a player answers correctly, both them, and the roleplayer gain two goblin heads and one treasure card. Then the second round repeats this process and the person with the most goblin heads at the end wins!
As we played a prototype version of this game and as such I will not comment on the quality of the components or the rules as I am sure they will be enhanced as the game has already been successfully funded on Kickstarter!
When I first told my friends about this game, I was met with a little trepidation! They are a shy bunch and roleplaying is not something they believe comes naturally to them. However, one round into the game, everyone had settled into their character and even the shyer players were having fun. In fact, we played multiple rounds, each more boisterous than the last.
The selection of the personality trait to play was probably the trickiest part since this is what the whole roleplay aspect depended on. It would be great instead of having multiple traits per card, which was a little confusing, that more cards were offered with a single trait, and perhaps a ‘line or verse’ to include as part of the roleplay. We thought this would help get players going if anyone was struggling.
The 60 seconds timer limits perfectly the roleplaying requirement, giving enough urgency to try and roleplay your trait, as well as limiting the downtime between player turns, however, it doesn’t really feel like downtime as you are so entertained by your fellow players!
Initially, we did struggle a bit to come up with some interesting scenarios, and we relied on some examples set out in the rule sheet to get us going. However, once a clever player released that Dungeon doesn’t have to refer to a traditional fantasy Dungeon but a more NSFW Sex Dungeon, the creativity flowed from there! We thought it would be awesome if there was an optional scenarios deck, which could be used when people are struggling to come up with interesting or varied encounters.
When it came to dishing out the goblin heads (those poor goblins!) as rewards, it felt like it was rewarding good guessing rather than good roleplaying - particularly given the additional difficulties the curses added! It would be great if there were additional ways to reward good roleplaying.
The curse cards were the best part of the game and generated the most laughs and memories. They offered the most variety in terms of the gameplay and it would be great to see the options expanded on - perhaps giving more opportunities to gain and use them against fellow players.
The Kickstarter refers to a Roleplaying handbook and I would love to see what has been included in that - as it may address a few of the suggestions included above.
I think this game is a hidden gem. The fun is not limited to those roleplaying at any given time - even the spectators have a great time witnessing what could be considered mundane encounters which the curse cards never fail to liven up. Even without incorporating the suggestions above, we had so much fun. I can only imagine how it would go after a few drinks on a Saturday night! There is so much potential for really fun encounters and memorable exchanges! I can certainly see how this game could expand to include more characters, NSFW elements and perhaps even secret objectives!
Role Quest is essentially party DnD, just don’t forget the alcohol for maximum laughs! The minimum pledge for the base game is £15 which I feel is great value for the laughs we had playing.