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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 76 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: A lightbulb moment...  (Read 3591 times)
Joshua Patterson
Member

Posts: 34


« on: July 08, 2005, 07:11:48 PM »

I've been reading and pouring over all the topics about SIS in Capes, trying to see both sides of the discussion.  It was hard in the begining because as a dyed in the wool Narrativist I was siding with Jesse and Vaxalon pretty much on every single point.  Tonight I re-read most of the posts and it finally hit me.  Tony, someone, please tell me if I'm far off base or spot on.

Please remember I'm operating off of Capes-lite knowledge here.  I avoided buying Capes for the reason above, but after tonight I might completely change my mind.

The goal of Capes is the accumulations of the various "good" currency.  Story tokens, etc.  If you're accumlating these tokens, it obviously means you're doing a "good job" in terms of your fellow players.  The story is the method of getting these tokens.  The story is *not* the end result.  

Now I realize the above might be a "duh" post to most people, but I think it's tripping up some.  The way I see it, the story in Capes serves much the same purpose that combat does in D&D.  It's the means to get reward and win the game, in Gamist terms.

This is why I would imagine Narrativist players are scratching their heads and wondering what's going on, we're used to having the story as the end result, not the means to the end result.  So with all that out of the way, this is what I see from the "two camps" of thought about Capes in this forum.

(please correct me if I'm in anyway wrong)

Jesse/Vaxalon -  The SIS can be changed on a whim, without using the system, so why use the system?  Why do anything in the SIS when it can be overridden by not spending a thing??

Tony/Sydney -  So??  The player isn't using the system, thus isn't getting and currency, thus isn't winning.  Who cares??

Now watch me be completely wrong.  ;)
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- Joshua Patterson
TonyLB
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« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2005, 07:21:22 PM »

Actually, I think (for the side of the discussion I was on) you're spot on.

I have this vague, yet-unworded, sensation that there's something a little bit more to it:  that showing your acumen in a game where the playing field is largely inside another person's head (i.e. whether they're interested in the conflicts you set up) is different from showing your skill in a game where the playing field is more objective.

Sort of the difference between being a really good poker player and a really good chess player.  A chess player can be social or antisocial, perceptive or clueless.  An expert poker player is socially perceptive by definition.

And that's making it hard for me to not pick nits with the idea that the story in Capes has the same function as the combat in D&D, just because they're such different models of game.  But it would be picking nits.  I think the insight that the statement is made in reference to is solid.
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Joshua Patterson
Member

Posts: 34


« Reply #2 on: July 08, 2005, 07:28:00 PM »

One further thought....it's going to be crude, so be prepared...

Imagine if you will 3 people playing Capes.  One is not playing the system, creating/re-creating anything he wants, etc, much in the fashion that Jesse and Vaxalon are suggesting.  The other two are playing the system, earning debt and story tokens, etc.

The first one is off masturbating in the corner by himself, the other two are engaging in mutal masturbation.  They creat conflicts that each will know the other can't avoid, really dig and want to win, etc.  Everyone "gets off", however the guy in the corner might as well not even be there, because he's not contributing anything.  He could go home and do it just fine.  In fact, I would go one step further...the goal in this really crude analogy, is to get your fellow players off "the best".  (awardment of story tokens)  Taken in this light, the guy in the corner looks even more useless..
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- Joshua Patterson
Joshua Patterson
Member

Posts: 34


« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2005, 07:39:38 PM »

Quote from: TonyLB
I have this vague, yet-unworded, sensation that there's something a little bit more to it:  that showing your acumen in a game where the playing field is largely inside another person's head (i.e. whether they're interested in the conflicts you set up) is different from showing your skill in a game where the playing field is more objective.


To not derail this thread too much, because I think what you've stated above easily warrents it's own thread, I'll say this...

It makes perfect sense what you're talking about, and I see why my D&D analogy is bothering you.  lemme give an example..

Distance can be very important in D&D for tactics purposes, but 5 feet in D&D on Monday, is 5 feet on Thursday, as well as any other day of the week.  

Now say you're playing with Bob.  Bob really dug the revenge conflicts last week because his girlfriend dumped him.  This week they got back together, and now Bob isn't too keen on revenge conflicts.  5 feet isn't 5 feet anymore in terms of Bob.  Where did this change?  In Bob's head of course, it's your job to figure it out.  Next time before you start playing you might want to ask how Bob and his girlfriend are doing.  ;)
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- Joshua Patterson
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