Last night I had the honor of participating in Up to Four Players wonderful Extra life roleplay marathon (a recording can be viewed in this link). In case you don't know what some of those words mean let me help you: Up to four players is an excellent webcomic about games and gamers, it's written by Eran Aviram and drawn by Aviv Or, you might want check out their graphic novella Singularity (it's Free!). They decided to organize a six hours long roleplay marathon, that marathon was played using roll20 which is a website that lets people from around the world to feel as if they're sitting around the same table. There was one constant player (myself, playing Count de’Pun) who is accompanied by three other players. These players were replaced with new players every two hours. So, in total there were 10 different players playing the game.
What about the money? Well, the audience could donate money that went directly to the children's miracle network hospitals. Why should they pledge money? Because each pledge can be directed to support the monsters or to bolster the heroes. So the audience have the ability to influence the plot of the game and get the added value of donating to charity.
The event itself had numerous technical issues however thank to the efforts of our technical wizard Aviv Manoach they were resolved or mitigated in ways that allowed us to continue the game with minimal interference, you can read his summary in his blog (Hebrew).
I was delighted when I occasionally switched to Up To Four Players twitch channel and sew the buzz in the chat window, people from all over the world were commenting, joking and having a good time. I get an amazing kick from seeing people enjoying from something that I help create. That's why I enjoy Improv shows so much, I think it's the art form with the shortest distance between the moment of creation and the moment of reception by the audience.
The game was fluid and fun, the adventure were expertly chosen and masterfully run by Eran. The use of sound effect by TabletopAudio really enhanced the experience, you rock TabletopAudio! (btw, you can support them on Patreon as well). The marathon manage to recruit 385$, a worthy sum for the cause of helping children.
This marathon was a process of some ancient alchemy that I've seen happen numerous times in the past: an idea forms and by the ingredients of fun and joyful labor it transform into gold, leaving behind the world as a better place. I feel that I woke up to a slightly better world this morning and for that I'd like to thank you, Eran Aviram, Aviv Or and Aviv "Icel" Manoach for creating the stage. To thank you, fellow players who explored with us the world of Faerun for a bit and thank you, donors, who found our efforts worthy of your attention and for the repurposing of your coin. Together we managed to performed some healing magic for sick children.
[Update! the recording of the marathon is now on line in this link]