Hybrid RPG Pros & Cons: IF & SABM

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Solo Adventure Books & Modules (printed paper) PROS:

  1. Not dependent on finding others in order to participate, do not need any other players

  2. Generally low barrier to entry for full participation as far as complexity.

  3. Accessible to a wide range of populations.

  4. Flexible time commitment. (don’t have to juggle other people’s schedules too). Easy to stop and start as needed.

  5. Well structured.

  6. Reusable(especially useful if included at a facility for use by many different people coming and going over time). (depends, the revealer-pen versions are problematic). 

  7. Inexpensive.

  8. Easy facilitator learning curve for adaptation (easy to read aloud and use for accessibility adaptation).

  9. Easily portable (books slightly more so than modules).

  10. Does not require any electricity, batteries, etc. (paper-printed versions, obviously different for ebook versions, and audio-enabled versions)

  11. Does not require network/Internet connection (paper-printed versions, likely different for ebook versions, and possibly audio-enabled versions)

  12. Does not require a screen (paper-printed versions, obviously different for ebook versions, and possibly audio-enabled versions)

  13. Some versions may help with social growth, though does not help as much as TRPGs for hands-on social growth, though some can still have helpful learning lessons that could be applied in life.

  14. Significantly helps improve reading capabilities (reading skills, comprehension, vocabulary, etc.), and may inspire other reading.

  15. May trigger various creative benefits (though perhaps less than the other RPG formats) inspiring wanting to write, draw, sculpt, etc.

  16. May help slightly with empathy building (very book/module/system specific), though generally significantly less than most of the other RPG formats.

  17. Can be used as early first step in brain-injury recovery program when read by facilitator. See example program here: https://www.rpgresearch.com/slides/slide/rpg-research-traumatic-brain-injury-treatment-using-role-playing-gaming-69

  18. Other benefits related to standard reading/literature/stories.



Interactive Fiction / Branching Narrative Printed Book CONS:

  1. Not social (unless modified/adapted to be read aloud by others). Lacking cooperation with others.

  2. Rigidly structured (but usually more flexible than IF formats), some versions do not allow flexibility outside of the if/then design, so not as creative in problem solving as other RPG formats.

  3. Being able to see is a requirement, otherwise needs adaptation (read-aloud or audio-book variant).

  4. People with some times of color-blindness may struggle with decoder-pen or colored-film-revealer types.

  5. Some versions may be difficult to read for those people with some forms of dyslexia (recommend audio alternatives or cleaner versions with better fonts and kerning).

  6. Requires matching language ability which may be difficult to find a translated version, or below a certain level of development/function.

  7. Requires sufficient reading comprehension, or else someone/something to read aloud for them and change pages, etc. (adaptation)

  8. Compared to LRPG: very sedentary.

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