Our guiding principles for play, commitments we make as both players and GM. Principles largely borrowed from Blades Against the Dark, Beam Saber, and Dungeon World.
Be a fan of the heroes
Don't actively push them to defeat, but do push them to the edge.
Let everything flow from the fiction
Don't prepare stories, prepare scenarios. Let the PCs drive the action, and let consequences flow from that.
Address the heroes
When talking about fictional concerns. "Tark, how do you feel about what happened to your friend?"
Address the players
When talking about story direction and narrative. "Ryan, can you expand on your goals in this scene?"
Fill the world with colour and detail
All the characters around you have needs, desires, and stories of their own. Things happen even when the PCs aren't looking at them.
Play goal forward
We're going to check in about what players want, and use that to drive play.
Consider the risk
Make the stakes clear at the outset of a roll, and be prepared to offer qualified success.
Hold on lightly
If someone wants to take back a statement or decision, that's okay, but consider what it means if the dice have already been rolled.
Protect your comrades
Both at the table and in the game. RPGs works best when PCs are teaming up with each other and spending resources to help each other.
Embrace the adventurer's life
It's okay to fail, but push yourself. Play your character like you stole it. Go into danger, and fall in love with trouble
Not only for outcomes, but in embodying the tone, theme, and ethos of the game at the table. If you want the world and story to be serious, take serious harm when it's offered. If you want interesting politics, then wave a flag. As always, if you want to back off on something, you can always play the X card and we'll move on.
Use your Inspiration
It's a resource, and recoverable.
Advocate for the scenes you want
We can always do flashbacks, or make sure that the scene you're looking to happen before something else happens.
Don't talk yourself out of fun.
The fiction serves the players, and not the other way around. Do the thing you think is dope.
Build your character in play
Your character sheet as it stands is who your character was, not who they are or who they will become.
Hustle to get ahead
Think about ways you want to improve, and your goals both as a player and a character.
Break the rules with long term projects
Use downtime to pursue things you couldn't normally accomplish in a single session.
Act now, plan later
Skip to the action with limited planning. Take the action, and don't get caught up in plans. We can always do flashbacks to fill in the planning.