What if you threw a party but nobody came? More specifically, they came but forgot it was a party? That was our experience with the first Ki Khanga game play. All the player showed up with the same excuse, 'that was tonight?' But then they exposed our naivety by following with, 'I forgot my character. I can still play, though. I'll use one of your characters.' Me, an RPG novice, looked at Balogun with my 'what the hell is he talking about' look. Balogun looked at me with his 'd'oh!' expression prior to smacking his forehead. First lesson; always have pre-built characters.
The evening was not a waste, far from it. Those who had built their characters but not brought them went on to play other games, but those who hadn't and those who weren't aware of the game sat down with us and built characters on the spot. During that time we shared information and learned what was good, okay and questionable about our game. We also learned something that filled a glaring hole in our character building process. Apparently one of the goals of gamers is to 'break' the game. They constantly try to find ways to bend the rules to increase character strength beyond the game's restrictions.
Initial responses were positive. The gamers were pleased with the character building process and impressed by Balogun's card play system. We came away with a better character building process and guaranteed players for two week from now. This time we'll have our own characters just in case. I can't wait to see what game play reveals.