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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 180 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: [Drowning & Falling] Gamers' id revealed for all to see  (Read 13201 times)
Ron Edwards
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« Reply #15 on: July 10, 2007, 05:45:40 AM »

While re-reading the thread, I realized that Tim and I missed answering one of Jason's questions.

Our session was shorter than we realized while playing it. We met at my house around 7:00 pm, finished grilling, and ate dinner as we discussed what game to play and started to work our way through the steps of the rulebook. That process didn't really kick in, what with casual conversation and stuff, until about 7:30. I can't imagine that real play began before 8:00. Yet amazingly, after playing six rather meaty rooms, we finished before 11:00.

Since we all get up early to work, the day after game night has become something of an acknowledged burden among us. So we're sensitive to the issue of how long games and/or sessions take, even though we usually bite the bullet and suffer the next day. It was cool to realize, unexpectedly, that this time we wouldn't have to.

Best, Ron
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Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #16 on: July 10, 2007, 05:59:35 AM »

Thanks, Ron.  I've had sessions that started to feel strained after three hours, due to the pressure to relentlessly invent new (highly constrained) stuff and then repeat challenges.  The apocryphal second edition is going to include some words on playing a short game.
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #17 on: July 12, 2007, 05:35:03 AM »

Hi Jason,

I've been thinking over your post and have decided I do not understand it. I tend to understand you a lot better when you write out a step-by-step paragraph, and for some reason I get really confused by your short answers.

The first confusion is that our game obviously went very, very quickly in real time. There were three of us, using six cards apiece, and that ended up being six "rooms" as it turned out, and including mostly really hard ones, too. So right there I can't match what I'm saying to what you're saying - you're saying you end up having long, long games? How does that happen?

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due to the pressure to relentlessly invent new (highly constrained) stuff

Wait a minute. We made up our challenges prior to playing, so that each person sat there with them next to him. Then, when you get tagged as the next challenger, you have to pick the easier of the ones that you have. As I understand it, this is directly following the rules. How is it possible that anyone has to invent a new challenge during play itself?

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and then repeat challenges
.

I'm lost. Repeat challenges? I was under the impression that you played until you'd gone through all the challenges, regardless of "beating" them or not, more-or-less from easiest to hardest. What's this about repeating them?

I'm pretty sure that either I'm totally misunderstanding you or the game, so help me out. Can you clear up my misunderstandings, or maybe re-write your reply in much longer and suitable-for-small-child format?

Best, Ron
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Jason Morningstar
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« Reply #18 on: July 13, 2007, 10:56:32 AM »

It's me being unclear; I'm frazzled with work, shepherding two games through production, and my dad's visiting.  Excuses!

The brain-frying pressure I'm referring to is the pressure to entertain your friends with some narrative one-upsmanship when it comes around to your turn to describe how your guy is confronting the challenge.  Somebody set up the challenge, but you've got to describe how Twisp Hornblower works her magic to get through it.  This isn't any different from any game, but you are almost always "on" in Drowning and Falling, and it can get mentally tiring.  It's a minor and highly variable point.  Improv shows are twenty minutes long for a reason. 

Repeat challenges = new challenges one after the other in rapid sequence.  Sorry, poor choice of words. 

Your game length, based on 18 cards, makes perfect sense.  I don't know what I was thinking.  You didn't misunderstand anything, as far as I can tell. 

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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #19 on: July 14, 2007, 05:01:49 AM »

Whew - I was afraid we'd screwed up the game more horrendously than I'd thought.

Given that explanation, it makes sense that we didn't experience that sort of stress, because our closing narrations were fairly minimal. Tim K even suggested that we'd shorted them by too much, which I can understand. Our narrations of how someone did X or Y tended to be either almost all before a given roll, or almost all after a given roll. Also, in our first couple or three rooms, we narrated how someone who failed a given challenge but didn't die in that particular room managed to make it through the room at all. After that, such logistic continuity became less important to us, or at least to Tim A and me.

As a general point, whenever I see or read about people stressing over providing "enough" or "exciting enough" narration, it sets off an alarm bell for me. I think that might be a good topic for conversation when a bunch of us convene over beers at GenCon.

Best, Ron
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Tim C Koppang
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« Reply #20 on: July 14, 2007, 08:21:14 PM »

As a general point, whenever I see or read about people stressing over providing "enough" or "exciting enough" narration, it sets off an alarm bell for me. I think that might be a good topic for conversation when a bunch of us convene over beers at GenCon.

I second that, Ron.  In short, for me, it's not so much a matter of providing "exciting" enough narration so much as it's about making sure that there's some sort of fictional continuity -- filling in the spaces in the SIS.  After all, we are roleplaying here; not just gaming.

- Tim
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