At low levels, characters’ capabilities and skills tend to be predictable, but the players are free to explore how they use their skills. At higher levels, the distinction between classes becomes blurred, as characters grow in unforseen directions and acquire skills uncommon to their class.

The experience of forty eight hours of constant roleplaying is one not easily conveyed on paper. The live aspect has such far reaching effects that an entire article could be dedicated to analyzing them alone. Tabletop players who are used to knowing their character’s percentage chances of hitting with a sword or spell, picking a lock or sneaking up on someone: get ready for reality (sort of).

While the rules are simple, the game itself is immeasurably complex, involving political intrigue, the amassing of coin or fame, or the pursuit of just about any agenda you can conceive of.

There is a saying that you can’t be paranoid since everything is out to get you. This is the last aspect of the game which you have to experience to understand: the intensity. Adrenaline-induced exhilaration, rage, greed and fear (always fear) are not common in tabletop games. A weekend will keep you on your toes: you may not sleep, you’ll run yourself ragged, you won’t want to put your sword down to eat, and when it’s over you’ll be eagerly waiting for the next weekend to do it all again. Cryptych Spring 1994