Layout – which came first, the chicken or the egg? #NaGaDeMon

Featured image is Date Night by Lyraina

Okay so I was just starting to think about layout once I get to the point of compiling all these disparate thoughts into one tome. And I was like hey what’s the best way to start off the book? I’ve seen it done many different ways. My instinct, because this is the type of gamer I am, is to have the world building text up front. I really love reading the cultural and historical framework for a game first, before delving into mechanics. But maybe that’s because I truly love reading people’s fantastical ideas. And then I was thinking it would be good to discuss basic mechanics, so then when one comes to character creation they already know layout of the world and the basics of the rules so they can create a character they know where to fit it in thematically (through world text) and abstractly (through rules). So my thoughts were to layout the document roughly this way:

    World text
    Basic rules (which includes combat)
    Character creation
    Extra areas such as gear & magic
    GM specific area

What do you think gamers? How have you best interact with RPG rulebooks? What have you found to be the best layout wise?

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