Do I get a pass for being sick? I’ve been pushing the edge of getting these into the right time frames for months, but here I am late for this month’s installment and I even have a parent who is a Leo.
positive: warmth, generosity, nobility, strength, loyalty, leadership, and a soothing, gentle tenderness
negative: arrogance, false pride, vanity, tyranny, haughtiness, and romantic promiscuity
– from Linda Goodman’s “Love Signs”
Leadership. Specifically, I’m thinking of party leadership. It’s something lacking in every campaign I play in. I haven’t played in some of them in months, but I’m theoretically in four: Conan, Camelot of the West, Ward World, and Heroes of Rokugan.
Camelot of the West is this brilliant fusion of Camelot and the Wild West but really needs momentum and focus. Ward World is a Fantasy Hero game that isn’t particularly weird.
Lack of leadership hurts. In our Conan campaign, we are mostly bumbling troublemakers who accidentally unleash horrors upon the world. In Camelot of the West we get easily sidetracked by individual character interests. In Ward World, things are more forced upon the party to where it basically follows a sensible plot, but the sessions are taken mostly with combat to where plot isn’t hugely important. In HoR, there are just times when direct action is called for and a lack of will to execute it; we usually get done what we need to, but it takes hours longer than it should.
On the flip side: I just recently ran my second session of Solomon Kane, a “campaign” that was supposed to be something to do at local conventions to fill up the dead time that would also give my Conan GM a chance to be a player. It’s funny how completely in charge his character is. Take away warmth, tenderness, and promiscuity, and his character covers the other traits listed above. There is a potential drawback to being so in command in terms of the other players getting overshadowed, but I don’t think the other players care.
Bumbling is funny, of course. Some bumbling is nice comedic relief, even can end up as high farce. But, as a predominant style, it runs contrary to heroic adventuring (I hadn’t thought about how all of my campaigns fall under fantasy) which is nominally what all of the campaigns are supposed to be.
As a third of the Zodiac is made up of cardinal signs – leadership signs – and Leo itself is not one of them, it seems odd how lacking in leadership parties seem to be. I wonder if it has something to do with people not wanting responsibility when they play games, even when they naturally take it on in work or family or whatever, and not wanting to take away choices from other players in a belief that part of the fun of the game is being able to do what you want.
Getting back to Leo, I find it to be a sign that is relatively easy to grasp. It also has the advantage of being very “noticeable”. I have this habit of creating characters who are way too subtle to where you never get a clear sense of them. If I did justice to a Leo, I shouldn’t run into that problem. Better to be flavorful than not even if it means being over the top as one of the primary benefits of RPGs is living a larger than life life.
I wonder if I could actually do justice to a Leo. Certainly, my Lion (HoR) is no Leo. I even have trouble playing arrogance, which is about as easy a personality trait to role-play. I’ll have to think more about Leo characters. I could easily give a character I recently created a Leo profile, but saying something is something doesn’t make it it.