Outdoor-friendly games

edited May 2013 in Story Games
Spring is springing, the weather is getting nice. Playing inside doesn't always cut it - what are your experiences playing tabletop RPGs outdoors? How did you manage the potential pitfalls (papers blowing away, uneven ground for maps, etc.)? What games are best for outdoor play?


  • Use stones to hold down sheets and don't play map-heavy games.

    Ribbon Drive would work great you have a great outdoor sound set-up and don't have a lot of ambient noise where you live.

    I had a fun game of Fiasco outside, character was a bit of a hassle from the wind, but once the game started things flowed naturally.

    Really, any paper-lite game works well.
  • We played a game using the WaRP system by getting small dice -- either 8 or 10 mm. Take one of one color, two of a second, and three of a third. Put them into one of those bubble containers from a bubblegum machine. You now have a portable set of dice and can roll a number of combinations, including bonus and penalty dice.

    And, if you're using WaRP / OTE character creation, the character sheet can fit on the back of a business card. Or, you know, you can just remember it, or put it online / read it on your phone / tablet. Easy peasy.
  • A good solution to the wind problem is to use plastic sheet protectors and three-ring binders. (With the right kind of dry-erase marker, you can even write on 'em. Plus, it's a good excuse to indulge your office supply addiction!)
  • Mist-Robed Gate is often played outdoors, because that's where you can more reliably find tables you're allowed to stab with a knife.
  • Steffan O'Sullivan's Sherpa is designed to be played while walking.
  • I could see The Quiet Year with the map drawn in the dirt, a handful of dice marking projects, and someone holding the deck....
  • Steffan O'Sullivan's Sherpa is designed to be played while walking.
    I think that The Nightime Animals Save the World was also designed with this in mind.
  • How about Vast and Starlit? It's so tiny it can't blow away!
  • Well, I call The Trouble with Rose a parlor game since you don't sit around a map and roll dice. You have an index sized character sheet, a hidden playing card, all held down by your hand of dominos. It sounds fairly wind proof.
  • Oh also! Baron von Munchausen is an outdoor, firepit, drinking kind of game!
  • I've played summers of games semi-outdoors in Illinois -- grab some citronella (mosquitos are heinous beasts,) pop a garage door open, remove vehicles, setup tables, play in the garage.

    This is largely from a wargames influence -- 8x8 tables are fairly difficult to setup indoors, right? Or even just a couple 4x6 tables. That said, it's pleasant, so we played a lot of WFRP3 outside.

    And we played a lot of White Wolf outside -- except it was that kind where you just talked and never rolled dice.

    But yeah, garages. I've enjoyed that environment quite a bit. Also removes the whole "wait let's take a break so people can smoke" if you have that particular impediment in your games!
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