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Do you believe everything they tell you?

Started by joe_llama, May 01, 2002, 03:11:26 PM

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Paganini

Quote from: Joe Murphy (Broin)I'm actually having a conversation with a guy on the LiveJournal roleplayers community, about this assumption:

"They wouldn't be role-playing games if the purpose of them weren't to play a role."

Well... purpose is a pretty broad term. It all depends on what you mean by that. Is playing a role required in order for a game to be an RPG? Yeah, by definition. But is playing roles the *only* reason RPGs exist? Not hardly!

Joe Murphy (Broin)

Joe,

Cheers. =) Oh, how I love The Forge. I didn't flame you for 'yor dumb thread' and you didn't flame me back. Ah, reasonable debate, how we love ya. I look forward to your new theories.

I've another couple of gaming preconceptions for you, too. I'm debating initiative systems and random character generation on RPGnet at the moment, and in both cases, I made the usual Forgist point that the game system should only include elements that support the goal. There would seem to be a *broad* preconception that game systems need to improve on game systems that came before. That is, if Sorceror can't handle perception consistently, the way WW does, the designer must have forgotten something, and Sorceror can't be a complete system.

Secondly, in this age of RPG theory, many gamers feel that theory seeks to analyse and then pigeonhole their gaming style.

Here's another: players have control over their characters' pasts, but no control over their futures.

And finally, though this isn't so much a preconception, the narrativist technique with which the entire group discuss the premise/theme of the game before play, is seen as artsy fartsy. I've talked to Vampire GMs who don't feel that players can really handle such play, and feel that mood/theme is their domain.

Best,

Joe.

Joe Murphy (Broin)

Quote from: PaganiniWell... purpose is a pretty broad term. It all depends on what you mean by that. Is playing a role required in order for a game to be an RPG? Yeah, by definition. But is playing roles the *only* reason RPGs exist? Not hardly!

Well, his point was that getting deep into character and taking actions according to 'what my character would do' is the only way games can run. Role is all, story is secondary. That sort of thing.

The LiveJournal thread has been quite interesting so far, as it's thrown up the usual problems have when Exploration of Character bumps up against the various story-orientated GMing approaches.

Joe.

Ron Edwards

Nathan (Paganini),

Please read my previous post on this thread as well as Nadav's response. That illustrates this thread's purpose, and your posts are deviating from that.

If you want to raise any issues about agreeing/disagreeing with anyone's list of assumptions, start a new thread. If you want to chit-chat at all with anyone about some post on this thread, start a new thread or send a private message.

Best,
Ron

joshua neff

Has any one mentioned yet (I'm too tired & roadweary to check) one of my favorite assumptions? "You can hook a character without hooking a player." Heh. Yeah, right.
--josh

"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes

Knight

Role-playing games are really for reading, not playing.

Has anyone ever actually said this?

Ron Edwards

Hi Knight,

Yup, although not in the text of a game itself. It's a very widely-held principle among game designers and publishers, especially those who are heavily-wedded to the three-tier industry structure, as well as to the "periodical" model of publishing.

I was confronted with it in very committed, no-bones-about-it form recently, during a discussion at GAMA.

Best,
Ron