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Incoherent Play and Bucket Seats

Started by Steven Stewart, November 28, 2006, 07:36:29 PM

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Ron Edwards

All completely on track and correct.

To provide another example which may be helpful, a group may be most invested in Color and System, with only the barest interest in Situation (and therefore Characters + Setting), just enough to provide the minimum "things" for "things to happen."

One might contrast that very strongly with still another group which invests most strongly in Color and Character, even diminishing Situation per se, and treating System in a funny way, i.e. imposing a "never really followed" overt one as a mask over a highly socially-driven, Drama-heavy, covert one.

Both of these groups may have a nice solid SIS ... as you say, if they're on board together regarding how it's done.

Two final points.

1. None of this has to be hard. It's quite possible for it to be stunningly easy, specifically by everyone contributing and expecting basic investment in all five components without making a big deal out of it. I've found that impromptu groups, such as the campus club "mini-groups" I used to organize, did very well with that approach. If a group does that, it's quite simple and in fact, predictable for them to arrive at a more "profiled" version of the SIS later, if they want, and for everyone to find their own place in what aspects get hammered hardest. But that cannot happen without that basic if minor shared commitment to all five to start.

2. Two things seem to be tripping up multiple groups described in multiple threads at this moment. First, a remarkable degree of murk, specifically a failure of procedures to arrive at situations during play - the people seem to stare around wildly a bit, then fall back upon "uh, Indians attack you!" or "the dying man gasps out his last breath, and his hand opens ... revealing a gold coin! With a map engraved on it!" Second, a lot of problems regarding authority as I've defined it earlier this year, which is not to say a power struggle, but rather ongoing confusions about credibility of input (what counts when who says it). What I'm seeing is therefore a lot of characteristic SIS-failure, which, to repeat, simply obviates the possibility of a meaningful CA ever gelling.

Best, Ron

Steven Stewart

Great, we can wrap up Eberron and put a bow on it. It has been informative, I originally thought we were going to get into the whole nar,sim,gam thing, but it turns out not. The fact that the conversation went in other directions I think is indicative that it was a usefull discussion (at least to me on this side of the world). I'd also like to thank Ron and Adam for their patience and being willing to stick with it - thanks.

Specifically to Ron, do you have the time or interest to keep going with the thread (I hope the answer is yes!)? If so, where do you think best line of thought is to talk about your points number (1) and (2) above?

(A) To dive into the Aliens session that was next, and that was a bit more coherent (or at least a big chunk of it was) in terms of the SIS,but still had some problems particullarly to an end-game scene that was rewarding to some, but frustrating to others? (Where Dennis was the GM - D20 modern)

(B) Or would it be better to skip ahead to where we are now in the last 3 months playing steve's homebrewed games which was a lot more shared for sure but again blew up at the very last scene of each one? (no-one is really GM in these ones).

(C) Continue a bit with the same SIS frustration, with the high level DnD game (except this time I think if I understand right, it was the system part that was tripping us up) But this I think is just a different symptom of what we have just been describing, except the motor wasn't catching on system for Dennis and Me when Pete was the GM for that game.

(D) Or better to warp this thread up entirely, and hold off until January to get the actual play for our upcoming game of '81 Moldvay Basic and see how we do now with the knowledge from this thread?

I think that A and B have a type of murk, but one that is different than your point number 2. I think those suffered from some very specific things that happened at specific points that ended up being big enough frustrations to be game-enders. 

Cheers for now,


p.s. I think besides telling me which direction Ron thinks is productive to take the conversation (assuming he wants to continue)- I think we should maybe a pause a bit before more posts of substance appear to let this all sink in a bit and would ask others to do the same if they could.

It can be a little tricky to go away and think and then come back with two or three posts that while seem to apply but are really a bit tangential. While they were useful, they made it a little tricky for me to follow.  I would humbly ask that if someone thinks there is more good discussion for the Eberron game to start a new thread and link to this one instead of posting more about it in this thread, I think I am ready to move on to the other games. Assuming that request isn't too out of line
"Reach out your hand if your cup be empty, if your cup is full may it be again"

Ron Edwards

Hi Steven,

My thinking? The Aliens game in a new thread. Let's keep going step by step and not jump all 'round the place; remember, the more context everyone has for your group's history and development and experience, the better the most relevant and recent concerns can be addressed.

So everyone, let's also call this thread closed. No more posting to it, please.

Best, Ron