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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 84 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: GNS Definitions  (Read 1362 times)
coreyclark
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« on: July 22, 2002, 10:05:38 AM »

I am new to the discussion.  Would anyone provide a brief definition of each.

Thanks.
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jburneko
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Posts: 1351


« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2002, 10:13:52 AM »

Hello and Welcome!

Brief definitions tend to do more harm than good because they tend to be quick-and-dirty and thus imprecise and introduce all kinds of confusion.

Instead, I offer the main source of the GNS discussion which is Ron's essay which can be found here:

http://www.indie-rpgs.com/articles/gns/gns_introduction.html

That should provide you with the foundations of the theory.  Once you've read that, feel free to make any comments and ask all the questions you like.

Jesse
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2002, 10:18:44 AM »

Hi Corey,

Welcome to the Forge!

No one could accuse it of being "brief," but the main reference for GNS is in the Articles section of the Forge, an article by me called GNS and related matters.

To be brief, though, GNS refers to how people play in terms of decisions and goals. Everyone wants to have "fun" through play, but how people have fun can be really different. Gamist, Simulationist, and Narrativist play represent the three main priorities that I and others have observed.

Gamist play: prioritizing competitive strategy or "winning"
Simulationist play: prioritizing imagining in-game-world processes and events
Narrativist play: prioritizing generating and resolving emotionally-engaging conflicts

A lot of common distinctions like "roll vs. role playing," "story-oriented," and "realism" are specifically not included in the above definitions.

A big part of the dialogue here at the Forge is dedicated to recognizing them all as valid, even if a particular person doesn't like or enjoy all of them.

The three GNS categories do not describe everything about role-playing, not at all. They themselves are subsets of only one aspect of the process.

Best,
Ron
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Zak Arntson
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« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2002, 05:11:26 PM »

I'd also like to add that calling a player Gamist is short for "a player who tends to make Gamist decisions during play", and a Gamist rpg is short for "an rpg which focuses decision-priority on Gamism". Just replace "Gamist" with "Simulationiost" or "Narrativist" and voila!

I've been bitten in the butt by this one so many times.
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Paganini
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« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2002, 05:11:04 AM »

Quote from: coreyclark
I am new to the discussion.  Would anyone provide a brief definition of each.


Once you've read Ron's document as mentioned by other posters, you can check out this thread. A lot of Ron's terms are not obvious, and don't mean what you would expect at face value. This thread has quick definitions for Ron's terms if you need your memory jogged while posting.
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2002, 05:21:46 AM »

Hi Corey,

Well, that's about as much "brief" definition as I think this thread can stand. Everyone, let's lay off the nuances and discussion until Corey confirms it - otherwise we'll starting talkin' to one another rather than addressing the purpose of the thread.

The only other thing I can think of to contribute, at this point, is the Seven Major Misconceptions thread.

Corey, let us know - questions? Comments?

Best,
Ron
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