Stretch is the gap between what a role-playing game has been designed to do and what it is used for by the group at the table. The term stretch was invented by Quinn Murphy.[1]

Using a game in a way that its designers didn't intend (or didn't otherwise include in its rules) is itself a form of game design. The bigger the stretch, the more design work is being taken on by the group.[1]

Stretch is usually created by hacking or converting a game, although significant house rules may also create stretch. A small tweak using the game's existing design language may not be a stretch, but introducing new design language or using it in a new way will stretch the system.[1]

Views on stretch in role-playing games vary from highly negative (those who believe games should be used for their intended purpose, and that different games may be better for groups that want a different experience) to highly positive (those who want to test the boundaries of a system, or want to use their preferred system for every game they play).[1]

See also


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