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Author Topic: Implied Setting in BW(split from Bat-things, Spite, love...)  (Read 2704 times)

Posts: 1641

Please call me Judd.

« on: September 14, 2004, 08:18:49 PM »

Quote from: Ron Edwards
1. I've been saying for a while that there is a lot more Setting implicit in the Lifepaths than most people seem to be realizing. I do not think the Burning Wheel text is "setting-less" by a wide margin; there's more to work with there in Setting terms than you can find in a lot of books with 100 pages devoted to setting.

I also don't think BW is setting-less but the book does allow the game's players to fill in the blanks and the white space on the map all on their own, whch is nifty.

Are you saying the setting more implicit because it is so closely linked to the system and thus reinforced in a stronger method than a system that isn't liked to the setting at all but pages of game fiction to let the players know the mood?

Are there other games you can think of in which setting and system are linked like Burning Wheel's is?

Ron Edwards
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Posts: 16490

« Reply #1 on: September 15, 2004, 06:02:49 AM »

Hi Judd,

I'm not sure what to say to your post except "yes."

As I often have to remind people, the five Exploration components are not five separate little boxes or heads of a hydra. They are integrated with one another in a specific way.

In the Burning Wheel, System (in this case, character creation specifically) integrates Setting and Character as combined things. You can also see Color, mainly in the form of the asterisked Traits. Situation is the weakest in BW at this point of using the system, although players who feel this lack at this point may either check with the GM to make sure Situation is well on its way, or rack up the tension by choosing interesting Contacts and Affiliations.

Sorcerer presents exactly the same philosophy of integration via its Descriptors, which are specified per local setting.

The usual approach of providing a Colorful Setting story (better, "story" given that they are usually those stupid fragments) or descriptive chapter has a separative effect, as I see it.

For instance, L5R would have been a far more usable game for our group if it had left out 90% of the hoorah about Rokugan, but kept character creation just as it was, with setting-stuff integrated. Lots less effort, just as much necessary information, and much more opportunity to generate conflict and drama through actual play instead of reading about it and "playing along."

And I don't think our group is atypical.

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