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Author Topic: [TSOY] Transcendence (split from First Impressions)  (Read 16229 times)
sirogit
Member

Posts: 503


« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2005, 01:35:05 PM »

I really think that people should stop confusing Gamism and numbers going up, indicating you can do stuff better. Because I see the Transcendence system as completely arrived at via the -narrativist- goals, and a completely sensical continuance thereof. Competency level and the pursuit of one's growing power are very big Narrativist currencies in TSOY, and to treat them as something different opens up absurdity.

The big narrativist premise of TSOY, as I se it, is that the world's a sandbox with a power vacuum. There's the amazing and the fantastic contained within, but it lacks anyone capable of really absolute power, as the apocalypse destroyed much of the world's amazing things and the old traditions have started to prove themselves unwise. Therein creates a strong invitation for the new generation to rise up from the rubble and make a name for themselves.

Enter the Player characters. How do they address this premise? By following their drives(Keys, which also enforce TSOY's thematic highpoints.) which criss-cross and cause question again and again, until they earn the advances needed to quickly grow more and more capable of shaping their world.

Ability level is very primary here because its the only thing which determines -how much you can do-, Pools, Secrets, etc. determine how likely you can succeed at something or how you can do it, but pure ability determines just how much is possible.

Getting an Ability at 10+ is meaningfull in Narrativist terms. In means that you followed your drives on an exceedingly long road, and if all the benefits it could have given you, you chose that one thing. Why? Because having a huge impact with that ability is meaningfull to you.

When you roll a 22, it means that you just proved yourself -above- the sandbox. You are now capable of deciding anything within. Whether you strove for this very directly, as soon as possible in your existence or merely arrived at it after a much longer time, Several realities are now clear:

A) You've answered the lingering question, how you would change the world.

B) You can get out of the sandbox now, and see the wonders beyond description that lie ahead.

C) Your level of ability doesn't belong here.

D) You're done here.

It's graduation... It would just be very silly to try to stay at school forever.
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Stephen
Member

Posts: 172


« Reply #31 on: January 31, 2005, 03:10:45 PM »

Quote from: Bob Goat
Okay, so you don't like the mechanic.  Fine, don't use it or if it bothers you that much don't play the game.  I don't see what the point of this is anymore.  It isn't a discussion, just people cursing the wind for blowing.  You are adamant in your belief, fine.  Unless there is something to actually discuss, why is this thread still going on.


I already apologized for any annoyance I might cause, both here in public and directly to Clinton in private.  If the thread becomes useless, Clinton is perfectly within his rights to remove it.

If you don't find the thread productive (and I for one am appreciating the effort and explanations people are providing here, even if I haven't yet been swayed in my reservations), you're under no obligation to read it.
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Even Gollum may yet have something to do. -- Gandalf
Stephen
Member

Posts: 172


« Reply #32 on: January 31, 2005, 03:54:57 PM »

Quote from: sirogit
The big narrativist premise of TSOY, as I see it, is that the world's a sandbox with a power vacuum.

Ability level is very primary here because its the only thing which determines -how much you can do-, Pools, Secrets, etc. determine how likely you can succeed at something or how you can do it, but pure ability determines just how much is possible.


I'm not sure I'm following you here.  It would seem to me, from what I understand, that it's the other way around -- it's the Ability scores which determine the likelihood of succeeding at an attempt, but it's the Secrets and the Abilities which determine what you can attempt.  A character with Scrapping 1 can do anything and everything a character with Scrapping 9 can; he just won't succeed nearly as often.

Quote
Getting an Ability at 10 is meaningful in Narrativist terms. It means that you followed your drives on an exceedingly long road, and of all the benefits it could have given you, you chose that one thing. Why? Because having a huge impact with that ability is meaningful to you.


Except that you aren't likely to stick around long enough to play out that impact.  If having a huge impact is so meaningful, why take away from the player the character through which he will exercise that impact, just at the point he becomes capable of it?

Quote
You can get out of the sandbox now, and see the wonders beyond description that lie ahead.


And the very poetry and appeal of that potential makes it all the more annoying to me that I can't play through that, because my character is going on, in a sense, without me.

Quote
It's graduation... It would just be very silly to try to stay at school forever.


But this isn't school; it's the character's life.  And life has no graduation.  Even Conan's adventures didn't stop when he became King of Aquilonia; heck, the very first Conan story ever written was set after Conan became King.

I'd like to go back to something I suggested way back at the beginning of this thread that nobody so far picked up on: the idea of tying Transcendence not to maxing out an Ability, but to Keys and Key Buyoffs, where it's the progression of the character's personality and not merely his power that measures the approach to Transcendence. What do people think of this idea?

Or alternately, instead of using a great many Abilities, boil them down into very broad capacities designed to be customized by Secrets, things that no matter what you Transcend in suggest great impact and majesty:  Prowess.  Lore.  Renown.  Inspiration.  Skill.  Knavery.  Stuff like that, where every level gained represents far more than simply getting better at Scrapping or Staying Up, and where simply knowing that a character is Level 9 in Prowess, or Lore, is enough to keep most people from Bringing Down the Pain.

I've shot down enough of people's well-intentioned explanations here; it's time people shot down mine.
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Even Gollum may yet have something to do. -- Gandalf
Clinton R. Nixon
Moderator
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« Reply #33 on: January 31, 2005, 05:32:16 PM »

Quote from: Stephen

I'd like to go back to something I suggested way back at the beginning of this thread that nobody so far picked up on: the idea of tying Transcendence not to maxing out an Ability, but to Keys and Key Buyoffs, where it's the progression of the character's personality and not merely his power that measures the approach to Transcendence. What do people think of this idea?


You should really write this up and put it somewhere (which of course you can do because of my license, blah, blah, blah.) I like it. You do have the one mechanical problem that a character cannot have more than 10 in an ability without changing the game completely.

Quote

Or alternately, instead of using a great many Abilities, boil them down into very broad capacities designed to be customized by Secrets, things that no matter what you Transcend in suggest great impact and majesty:  Prowess.  Lore.  Renown.  Inspiration.  Skill.  Knavery.  Stuff like that, where every level gained represents far more than simply getting better at Scrapping or Staying Up, and where simply knowing that a character is Level 9 in Prowess, or Lore, is enough to keep most people from Bringing Down the Pain.


This I love. It reads like what TSOY might have been if it'd been more focused from the get-go. Here's what I imagine:

    [*] Characters still have pools, abilities, Secrets, and Keys.
    [*] Abilities are associated with pools. Secrets are associated with abilities.
    [*] The abilities are: Grace (Instinct), Prowess (Instinct), Lordship (Vigor), Virility (Vigor), Lore (Reason), Insight (Reason). They are very loose abilities, and the structure is in how you can use them against each other.
    [*] Secrets provide new ways to use each ability.
    [*] You still choose 1 A ability, 2 B abilities, and 3 C abilities.
    [*] It costs more XP to gain an advance than before. Maybe 15-20. An advance can buy:
      [*] +1 to an A ability, its associated pool, and an associated Secret. (Awesome.)
      [*] +1 to a B ability, and either its associated pool or an associated Secret.
      [*] +1 to a C ability or its associated pool or an associated Secret.
      [/list:u]
      [*] The transcendence mechanic stays the same. It's important to note that the Conan example above is moot. Conan as king is only getting near to transcendence. I'd say he has an eight in Scrapping, Battle, and Savoir-Faire.
      [/list:u]
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      Clinton R. Nixon
      CRN Games
      DaGreatJL
      Member

      Posts: 57


      « Reply #34 on: January 31, 2005, 06:35:00 PM »

      Quote from: Stephen
      Except that you aren't likely to stick around long enough to play out that impact.  If having a huge impact is so meaningful, why take away from the player the character through which he will exercise that impact, just at the point he becomes capable of it?


      First of all, since when you hit level 10 is something you have complete control over, your character isn't taken away, you're letting him go. And they don't leave right when you can change things, that's not what Transcendence is. YOU CHANGE THINGS. You get a 22, you say, "Okay, so... everyone can use Zu normally again, it's not a broken language, and here's how it happens." And you narrate a groundbreaking change in the world. I guess what I'm getting at here is, your arguments against Transcendence don't apply to Transcendence.

      Quote
      I'd like to go back to something I suggested way back at the beginning of this thread that nobody so far picked up on: the idea of tying Transcendence not to maxing out an Ability, but to Keys and Key Buyoffs, where it's the progression of the character's personality and not merely his power that measures the approach to Transcendence. What do people think of this idea?


      I think that in play, this would result in the problem you claim the rules already create- a PC being taken away at the height of their story.
      I can choose to keep my Abilities from going over 9, if I'm not ready to give the huge moment of glory yet. I can simply put my advance towards more Pool points and secrets, and improving other abilities. Basically, the character doesn't get to Transcend until I think they're ready, and I'm not really held back by holding back. (At a 9 Ability, the lowest roll you get will be a SL 2.)

      However, what if I'm one Key Buyoff away from retirement, and I'm not ready to stop playing, but I also really want to buy off another Key, as part of the story (maybe I've given up being a coward, and want to fight for what’s right) If Transcendence is tied to Key Buyoffs, I'm stuck, without the ability to play out the story further (as I want it to go anyway) without buying off the Key, and I can't buy off the Key without Transcending.
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      JL

      I got the Power of Metal without cheating.
      RPL
      Member

      Posts: 61


      « Reply #35 on: June 19, 2006, 07:13:58 AM »

      I've just finished reading the second edition rulebook and started reading the posts on this Forum about it and this one seems very interesting. If I got it straight the point of Transcendence is to cap characters that became to powerfull for the the story to deal with and at the same time provide closure to them, however I do see Stephen point, why should a player say goodbye to a character he doesn't feel is ready to leave the story yet. So my question is, was the Secret Of The Bodhisavatta created to prevent this?
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      RPL
      Member

      Posts: 61


      « Reply #36 on: June 19, 2006, 08:22:01 AM »

      Sorry, i'll post it on a new thread.
      Logged

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