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Enlightenment (GGD Group Game Design)

Started by Sylus Thane, October 22, 2002, 04:56:01 PM

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talysman

Quote from: Mike Holmes
Quote from: talysmanmaybe they are aware that the catholic church still has monastic orders, but for the most part they regard catholic monks as male nuns -- and nuns get little respect these days, either.

Heh, I'll mention that to Brother Marv when I see him next. Of course having been raised Catholic might have something to do with the fact that I know quite a few Monks. ;-)

Want a stereotype from someone who talks to monks occasionally? Monks, rock, and are, in the very Catholic tradition, all pretty decent basketball players. Which only makes sense, as the Spirituality of B-Ball brings one closer to God.

Get to know a monk; they're fun guys. Franciscans, especially.

Mike

P.S. if you get a chance to, talk to a Jesuit priest some time as well. Yeah, they still exist, too.

oh, I know there are still Jesuits (there's a school here called Christian Brothers, which is Jesuit-run.) I'm just talking about popular perceptions. I get the feeling most people don't know what a monk is, or that they do things besides teach in schools. there's a group of (Trappist?) monks who specialize in training dogs. there are other monks who get medical degrees and start free clinics. nuns, too; monks and nuns really aren't that different from each other, but most people I hear talking about monks or nuns just talk about them as if they were people who pray alot, don't have sex, and get teaching jobs.

and most people don't even know that friars (like the Franciscans) still exist, let alone the differences between a friar and a monk (friars take vows, but they don't have a monastic rule; plus, I don't know if this is still true or not, but monks originally were clerics and could perform the rites of the church, while friars couldn't.)

anyways, we're zooming way off topic. oh, and to Kester: please re-read that thread I mentioned for more information about the game's premise. this thread is not about changing the premise of the game to make it more historical or whatever; it's about implimenting the existing premise through game mechanics. if you still have questions about what the premise is, you could private message me, I suppose. also, please keep opinions about NeoPaganism or other religions in another thread. this thread is in the "RPG Theory" forum and is about making a game. thanks.
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Mark D. Eddy

QuoteIOW: Design a core rules system. Take the "premises" which have been outlined by various people, many of which were very good by the way, develop them into full fledged "campaigns" or "scenarios" and what you have is an instant RPG with playable scenario modules.

Hope that made sense?

Oh, yes. It makes perfect sense. The problem is that we seem to have a pile of people who are great at ideas and concepts, but lousy at mechanics.

The closest we've been able to come to what we want are the following:
1)It should be easy to raise the Unenlightened stats, but difficult to raise the Enlightened stats.
2)The stats should be paired up to represent the two sides of an Enlightenment coin.
3)There should be enough power in Unenlightened action to tempt the character to temporarily abandon his path of Enlightenment.
4)There should be some mechanism by which the Stat-pairs (as I have been calling them) can be customized.

As an aside, I hate to say it, but your memory-imp is on the fritz when it comes to monastics as clergy in the Christian setting. Especially in the Eastern Orthodox churches. Not all monks are/were ordained to the diaconate or priesthood, but a significant minority are/were. I think it rises to 20% in, for instance, the Russian Orthodox monestary in my neck of the woods (Vashon Island, WA).
Mark Eddy
Chemist, Monotheist, History buff

"The valiant man may survive
if wyrd is not against him."

Kester Pelagius

Greetings,

Even having saved this thread to file I feel I cannot hold my proverbial water as I feel strongly about this.  My apologies, but read near the end, it is topical to this thread.  I ask, kindly, for my fellow Forgeites indulgence in this matter.  Your support or contempt is your own regard and you may act accordingly.

Quote(text expunged)

talysman:  anyways, we're zooming way off topic. oh, and to Kester: please re-read that thread I mentioned for more information about the game's premise. this thread is not about changing the premise of the game to make it more historical or whatever; it's about implimenting the existing premise through game mechanics. if you still have questions about what the premise is, you could private message me, I suppose. also, please keep opinions about NeoPaganism or other religions in another thread. this thread is in the "RPG Theory" forum and is about making a game. thanks.


As a general rule I endeavor not to take posts too seriously.  However, the unmitigated gall and sheer hypocrisy displayed in a post where two people are chattering on *about* religious matters where one of those actively taking part in said conversation then closes their posting with an caustic aside to an unrelated party about taking any of *their* comments about "religions in[to] another thread" is utter tripe.

Especially when the reference made was so obviously in relation to *online* material, of which most isn't scholarly in the slightest.  Not, I now realize, that this matter one whit to you, sirrah.

As I have started to use multi-syllable words this should tell you, sirrah, that I am none too pleased.

As to the remainder of your remarks, having read the originating thread, I was under the impression this was an OPEN DISCUSION to develop the best game possible.  If I was mistaken in this then, dear posters, give the fatal words and I shall delete all my posts and leave you as you were.  It is not in my philosophy to continue where unwanted.

Casual readers and posters to this thread,

Thank you.

To talysman:  Good day, sirrah.
"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri

talysman

Quote from: Mark D. Eddy
QuoteIOW: Design a core rules system. Take the "premises" which have been outlined by various people, many of which were very good by the way, develop them into full fledged "campaigns" or "scenarios" and what you have is an instant RPG with playable scenario modules.

Hope that made sense?

Oh, yes. It makes perfect sense. The problem is that we seem to have a pile of people who are great at ideas and concepts, but lousy at mechanics.

not so much lousy at mechanics as not yet able to agree on what mechanic to use.

Quote
The closest we've been able to come to what we want are the following:
1)It should be easy to raise the Unenlightened stats, but difficult to raise the Enlightened stats.
2)The stats should be paired up to represent the two sides of an Enlightenment coin.
3)There should be enough power in Unenlightened action to tempt the character to temporarily abandon his path of Enlightenment.
4)There should be some mechanism by which the Stat-pairs (as I have been calling them) can be customized.

there are a couple other points to add to that list:


[*]we (or at least a majority of us) want a dice pool technique.
[*]the highest number for either side of a stat-pair should be equal to the highest roll on 1die (for obvious reasons).
[*]the Unenlightened stat increases by one point permanently any time the Unenlightened bonus is used (we decided that in the previous thread.)
[*]the Enlightened stat only increases after an "exit interview/debriefing" with the mentor, and only after successfully using the Enlightened stat a number of times equal to the Unenlightened stat (Mike's idea from the last thread, which is why I suggested a tick-mark system in this thread.)
[*]the stat pairing is permanent -- so when an Enlightened member of a pair is increased, the Unenlightened member decreases, and vice versa.
(this is why I suggested writing each stat pair as a single number, but writing two numbers that add up to the highest roll on 1 die works fine, too.)
[/list:u]

I'm switching alliegance from d10 to Mike's suggestion of using d6, so I believe that solves the problem of die type. so, our current sketch of how conflict resolution should work is:

[list=1]
[*]describe your action, including whether you will be acting in an Enlightened or Unenlightened manner;
[*]roll an as yet unknown number of d6s;
[*]factor in a bonus based on the trait you used;
[*]interpret the roll (working on this);
[*]narrate the results;
[*]if acting Enlightened, make a tick-mark next to trait used; if acting Unenlightened, shift one point from Enlightened half to Unenlightened half of pair.
[/list:o]

at the end of a mission comes the debriefing with the mentor. if the mentor agrees that your overall mission was in accord with the religion's values, you keep your tick-marks, otherwise they are lost (or possibly: tick-marks become metagame points that shift to the mentor, who uses them to add neophytes or otherwise improve the monastery.)

if you have enough tick-marks after debriefing (equal to your Unenlightened stat,) you can decrease the Unenlightened stat one point and increase the Enlightened stat. also, if the Unenlightened stat reaches zero, that problem is considered "solved" for that neophyte; Worldly is reduced 1 point (and Spiritual thus increases 1 point.)

at appropriate moments, the neophyte can "graduate" to mentor, and later may even "graduate" to master of a new monastery.

there's certainly more to be done, but right now, we need to focus on the conflict resolution and improvement mechanics, focusing first on how we determine how much dice to roll, how we add a bonus, and how we determine success.
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Mike Holmes

Quote from: Kester PelagiusAs to the remainder of your remarks, having read the originating thread, I was under the impression this was an OPEN DISCUSION to develop the best game possible.

Well, John could have been more polite. We certainly were chit-chatting at least as much as you were. OTOH, he had put at the end of his response a note saying that he and I were off topic and that we, too, should get back on topic. So he wasn't being that hypocritical. Just trying to get things back on track in general terms.

Also, your comments could be seen to be potentially post premise, and as such they are appreciated. Still, in some lights they do look to be about a topic that has been closed for a while now. Namely that the general premise is set. As such, we have to try to go forward, and not look too much back, because if we continue with that behavior the project will never proceed. That said, we could have made it more clear what the subject of this thread is, which is, namely, coming up with mechanics for the premise determined by the previous thread.

So, please try to forgive John, Kester. He's just trying to get things moving in a forward motion. Which is something that this project will need a lot of if it is to get anywhere. And, BTW, I'd like it if this game could be the "best game it could be" but I'd settle for "complete" any day of the week. Because I still think it's got about a snowballs chance of actually making it there. So if we have to leave behind some good ideas, that's going to happen. The project can only proceed by group consensus, which, if you've ever worked by committee you'll know, is an extremely difficult proposition.


I will respond to your comment about a "Single night's entertainment". You must see this as very different that I think the rest of us do. That is, I posted about how progression for a single character would take several sessions per rank. Sounds like a very long term game to me. But that's just my impression. Why do you think that the framework as proposed would only support a one-shot?

Mike
Member of Indie Netgaming
-Get your indie game fix online.

talysman

Quote from: Mike Holmes
Quote from: Kester PelagiusAs to the remainder of your remarks, having read the originating thread, I was under the impression this was an OPEN DISCUSION to develop the best game possible.

Well, John could have been more polite. We certainly were chit-chatting at least as much as you were. OTOH, he had put at the end of his response a note saying that he and I were off topic and that we, too, should get back on topic. So he wasn't being that hypocritical. Just trying to get things back on track in general terms.

yes, I apologize if my comment seemed harsh. I think one of the problems is that I should have made the comments about the premise seperate from the comment about "opinions of NeoPaganism". although Kester's comments related to reworking the premise, I did not intend to criticise him for that; in fact, I welcomed him to post his game ideas earlier in this thread. I merely was suggesting he can catch up on what the premise is in the original design thread. I even offered to answer premise questions in private mail.

as for the comment about NeoPaganism, I believed it was potentially inflamatory, and I think Kester recognized that when he added the "don't throw stones". I think we need to avoid that, myself. if you have an idea about how to impliment NeoPagan monks, that's fine; discussions of what real-world religions do in order to impliment them in game terms is fine. but I don't want this thread to turn into an argument. I did think a long time about how to diffuse that situation politely, but I was obviously a little more curt than I should have been. maybe a simple "let's not call NeoPaganism a fast-food religion in this thread" would have been better and less offensive.

as a further apology, I will assume that Kester really was asking if the rules system works the same way as he understands NeoPaganism to work and answer the question. I haven't read these FAQs he refers to, but based on how he describes it, we are not talking about religions that make up their belief systems as they go along. the players design the religion, not the monk characters. the religion is assumed to have existed for some time. when we talk about choosing religious beliefs, we're talking about designing the setting.
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Kester Pelagius

Greetings All,

Rather than propitiate what the near semi-divine moderaters may take as a flame war (and forever banish me from these sacred halls) I would just like to say, next time just E-Mail me.  I actual included my email in my info when I logged in initially.  Should save on wasted space on "misunderstandings".

Additionally, for my part, I apologize if any thought my response was out of line.  Speaking of which, to get back *into* line...  Believe it or not talysman, me boyo, that post did inspire.

I started a thread here on the RPG.NET Game Design Forum which you may find of interest.

In an attempt to clarify my part in all this let me just begin by saying it is my *opinion* that what is required is a codefied Core Mechanic, meaning specificaly a complete Rules System encompassing (in outline) 1) definitions of the Attributes/Stats; 2) CharGen methodolgy; and 3) whatever else my fiendish imp of memory may have absconded with into the shadowy closet in the corner.

In otherwords a rules referent which *everyone* can agree upon and have to hold as model for their designs/ideas/etcetera.

As for the rest of it, I was just trying to suss out what, exactly, everyone wants/intends the overall game premise to be.  In my *opinion*, I think there *could be* a larger game here encompassing *everyone's* ideas.  Perhaps it is not practical to impliment, but from what I have read it appears like there is a cornucopia of ideas.  If there was *just* a Core Rules outline, in my *opinion*, I think something wonderful could be hammered out here.

Which is why I was asking round about questions, more or less.

You have all done a lot of work, very interesting and thought provoking, and I was trying not to seem like someone coming up to your gaming table and saying, "Hey what's that?  Oh," picking up the dice without asking, "pretty, but funny looking.  So what's this all about then."

As for the rest of it.  My suggested mechanics tie in to the premise.

I wont bore you with lame attempts to explain why as most here probably already are well aware of the numerical associations, and could probably tell you better than I the reasons why.

I will save this thread for further review.  Good evening to you, sir talysman, and a good and safe weekend may it be.


Kind Regards,

Kester Pelagius

EDIT:  One day I will learn the "preview" button is there for a reason, and that the board administrators provided it so people wouldn't have to correct grammar and syntax errors this way.  But did I find them all?
"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri

Bob McNamee

One thing that hit me at work today after having posted my thought about doing a combined stat pair roll method.  I'm putting cart-before-horse ...

Are we doing task resolution, conflict resolution, scene resolution, narrative control rolling?

I/We should try to hammer out an example description of "the game in play"

Bob McNamee
Bob McNamee
Indie-netgaming- Out of the ordinary on-line gaming!

talysman

Quote from: Bob McNameeOne thing that hit me at work today after having posted my thought about doing a combined stat pair roll method.  I'm putting cart-before-horse ...

Are we doing task resolution, conflict resolution, scene resolution, narrative control rolling?

I/We should try to hammer out an example description of "the game in play"

good idea. I was just thinking we do need a sample of how it would play out. I've been posting really simple examples, the kind you would see as explanations of rules, not a sample of play.

as for the resolution system, we've been mostly talking conflict resolution. I think everyone's anxious to avoid the task-resolution level. this so far seems Narrativist rather than Simulationist or Gamist.
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Bob McNamee

Quote from: talysman
Quote from: Bob McNameeOne thing that hit me at work today after having posted my thought about doing a combined stat pair roll method.  I'm putting cart-before-horse ...

Are we doing task resolution, conflict resolution, scene resolution, narrative control rolling?

I/We should try to hammer out an example description of "the game in play"

good idea. I was just thinking we do need a sample of how it would play out. I've been posting really simple examples, the kind you would see as explanations of rules, not a sample of play.

as for the resolution system, we've been mostly talking conflict resolution. I think everyone's anxious to avoid the task-resolution level. this so far seems Narrativist rather than Simulationist or Gamist.

Thats more or less what I thought...Narrativist conflict resolution, just kicking it out there to see if I had misinterpreted.

If I get some quiet time this weekend maybe I'll write up some play example text... (how I envision it anyway...)
Bob McNamee
Indie-netgaming- Out of the ordinary on-line gaming!

talysman

Kester,

thank you for accepting my apology.

Quote from: Kester Pelagius
In an attempt to clarify my part in all this let me just begin by saying it is my *opinion* that what is required is a codefied Core Mechanic, meaning specificaly a complete Rules System encompassing (in outline) 1) definitions of the Attributes/Stats; 2) CharGen methodolgy; and 3) whatever else my fiendish imp of memory may have absconded with into the shadowy closet in the corner.

In otherwords a rules referent which *everyone* can agree upon and have to hold as model for their designs/ideas/etcetera.

we're probably not all going to agree. that is OK. I've already had a couple of my ideas shot down (and I was the one who suggested monks!) it's no big deal... if someone's vision doesn't get accepted by the group as a whole, there's always the possibility of a "rules fork" -- someone develops the rules in the specific direction they find most inspiring.

this is why we are discussing "Enlightenment the RPG" as a generic, low-detail, ahistorical background; it's easier for  group to cooperate on. highly specific settings are really more like personal visions and are best designed by one person (or maybe a two-person partnership.)

plus, we have to be realistic about this. we're designing a game as a group, in the forums. I doubt you could do a 100+ page game that way; it's too much work for what may later turn out to be a "just for fun" experiment. we're really talking about a 30-pager, here. that's quite enough on our plates.

your earlier suggestion (3 stats, 12 trait-pairs, 9 archetypes, and so on) is just far too complicated for a small Narrativist rpg. plus, the carefully-selected numeric values and stat names fit in with a specific religious background rather than being generic. they would be good for a different game, maybe (specifically, one designed by a single designer.) plus, one of the reasons why we went with a monks-only game was the challenge of creating a single-character-type system; nine archetypes sounds like nine character classes, to me. we're not doing "Monk: the Enlightenment", just a nice simple game you could play for 3-5 sessions.

so far, what we have been aiming for is:


[*]one stat (not decided yet, although I suggested Past);
[*]a variable number of trait-pairs (start with one, acquire others during play);
[*]a Worldly/Spiritual stat-pair for each scope of play (one personal, one for the monastery as a whole, perhap one for the order as a whole.)
[/list:u]

as we develop the system, there's a chance we may discover a need for another stat or two. we just might take your suggestion to add Psyche or Willpower (probably not both, since one stat could be used for all "internal" issues, in contrast to the stat for "external" issues.)

still, why not describe how you see psyche or willpower being used, or how you would break down nine archetypes of monk? if there's something that just screams "USE ME!", or something that raises some issues that need addressing, that would help a lot.

thank you for your suggestions!
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Kester Pelagius

Quote from: talysmanKester,

thank you for accepting my apology.

After those two eloquent and even minded posts I would have felt a heel to have done otherwise.


Quote from: talysmanKester,

we're probably not all going to agree. that is OK. I've already had a couple of my ideas shot down (and I was the one who suggested monks!) it's no big deal... if someone's vision doesn't get accepted by the group as a whole, there's always the possibility of a "rules fork" -- someone develops the rules in the specific direction they find most inspiring.

If that is the case, and you don't mind, then I think I will post my little bit of rule mechanics I have partially hammered out.  Not saying they will be viable for use with this, but for the sake of *idea* and *inspirational* value they may aide others.

If no one objects to this I shall post the thumbnail mechanics under the title: "Code Name: Pleroma".  (I know, a bit puffed up, but I wanted to keep to something relatively in line with "Enlightenment".)


Quote from: talysmanthis is why we are discussing "Enlightenment the RPG" as a generic, low-detail, ahistorical background; it's easier for  group to cooperate on. highly specific settings are really more like personal visions and are best designed by one person (or maybe a two-person partnership.)

Indeed.  I have no qualms with the background.  The background, as established, is fine.  I was (or rather was *trying*) to find out what direction the mechanics were taking and how close to the underlying premise/background they were intended to be.

Moot point now.  Onward and upward I say!



Quote from: talysmanplus, we have to be realistic about this. we're designing a game as a group, in the forums. I doubt you could do a 100+ page game that way...

(Blink)

(Blink)

Great gods of Cobol man, who said anything about anyONE doing a 100+ pages of text?

(Sorry, Battlestar Galactica reference.)

Of course, if everyone contributed a few pages here or there...


Quote from: talysmanyour earlier suggestion (3 stats, 12 trait-pairs, 9 archetypes, and so on) is just far too complicated for a small Narrativist rpg. plus, the carefully-selected numeric values and stat names fit in with a specific religious background rather than being generic. they would be good for a different game, maybe (specifically, one designed by a single designer.)

It only sounds complicated.  You already have lain the ground work for most of the Syzygies (opposite pairs), I only suggested "12" because, I think, there were 8 or 9 in Emily's example.

You could just as well reduce this to 7, 9, or expand it.  I wouldn't suggest the latter.  Overtly complicated.


Quote from: talysmanplus, one of the reasons why we went with a monks-only game was the challenge of creating a single-character-type system; nine archetypes sounds like nine character classes, to me. we're not doing "Monk: the Enlightenment", just a nice simple game you could play for 3-5 sessions.

Well if that is what is wanted who am I to argue?

Still it would have been nice to expand the system to be modular and allow for those wandering monks...  Of course it would also be nice if we could all win the Lotto.  ;)



Quote from: talysmanas we develop the system, there's a chance we may discover a need for another stat or two. we just might take your suggestion to add Psyche or Willpower (probably not both, since one stat could be used for all "internal" issues, in contrast to the stat for "external" issues.)

Yes, I noticed my flubb.  Instead of Stats for "Body, Mind, Spirit" I did "Mind, Spirit, Soul" or somesuch.  I redid those basic Stats.  Of course they are rather religio-centric, if that's even the right made up word for them.

No matter, if no one objects I'll post what I have.  Still very much a work in progress.


Quote from: talysmanstill, why not describe how you see psyche or willpower being used, or how you would break down nine archetypes of monk? if there's something that just screams "USE ME!", or something that raises some issues that need addressing, that would help a lot.

thank you for your suggestions!

Alas, from what you have said here, I fear what I had in mind may not be usable.  I haven't actually tried to write any of this up but here goes...

I had envision the Archetypes sa being based upon real-world mystic/philosophic paths.  Since every religious and mystic Order is slightly different I thought there would be plenty of background to braw upon.  Here's a few I had in mind:

Buddhist
Cabalist
Gnostic
Franciscan
...

And a few "Nun" types.  The female orders really are different, least I seem to think *some* are (Tibetan?) for some odd reason.   The few I can think of off the top of my head might include:

Pythoness
?

Not very inspiring, I am afraid.  But that's about as far into the idea as I got.  Also there were a lot of "fraternal" Orders which skirted the edges, then there are the "mystery schools" which could probably be looked into for resource material.


Kind Regards,

Kester Pelagius
"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri

Bob McNamee

Quote from: talysmanKester,

thank you for accepting my apology.

Quote from: Kester Pelagius
In an attempt to clarify my part in all this let me just begin by saying it is my *opinion* that what is required is a codefied Core Mechanic, meaning specificaly a complete Rules System encompassing (in outline) 1) definitions of the Attributes/Stats; 2) CharGen methodolgy; and 3) whatever else my fiendish imp of memory may have absconded with into the shadowy closet in the corner.

In otherwords a rules referent which *everyone* can agree upon and have to hold as model for their designs/ideas/etcetera.

we're probably not all going to agree. that is OK. I've already had a couple of my ideas shot down (and I was the one who suggested monks!) it's no big deal... if someone's vision doesn't get accepted by the group as a whole, there's always the possibility of a "rules fork" -- someone develops the rules in the specific direction they find most inspiring.

this is why we are discussing "Enlightenment the RPG" as a generic, low-detail, ahistorical background; it's easier for  group to cooperate on. highly specific settings are really more like personal visions and are best designed by one person (or maybe a two-person partnership.)

plus, we have to be realistic about this. we're designing a game as a group, in the forums. I doubt you could do a 100+ page game that way; it's too much work for what may later turn out to be a "just for fun" experiment. we're really talking about a 30-pager, here. that's quite enough on our plates.

your earlier suggestion (3 stats, 12 trait-pairs, 9 archetypes, and so on) is just far too complicated for a small Narrativist rpg. plus, the carefully-selected numeric values and stat names fit in with a specific religious background rather than being generic. they would be good for a different game, maybe (specifically, one designed by a single designer.) plus, one of the reasons why we went with a monks-only game was the challenge of creating a single-character-type system; nine archetypes sounds like nine character classes, to me. we're not doing "Monk: the Enlightenment", just a nice simple game you could play for 3-5 sessions.

so far, what we have been aiming for is:


[*]one stat (not decided yet, although I suggested Past);
[*]a variable number of trait-pairs (start with one, acquire others during play);
[*]a Worldly/Spiritual stat-pair for each scope of play (one personal, one for the monastery as a whole, perhap one for the order as a whole.)
[/list:u]

as we develop the system, there's a chance we may discover a need for another stat or two. we just might take your suggestion to add Psyche or Willpower (probably not both, since one stat could be used for all "internal" issues, in contrast to the stat for "external" issues.)

still, why not describe how you see psyche or willpower being used, or how you would break down nine archetypes of monk? if there's something that just screams "USE ME!", or something that raises some issues that need addressing, that would help a lot.

thank you for your suggestions!

I was thinking earlier that maybe there was a need for a stat like Family, Friends...etc that acted as a pull away from the contemplative enlightment into the world. Something mechanical to keep you from just deciding your way up the ladder. (always choosing the monkly choice)

I like the sound of the idea of a Past...
I'll have to go find where you mentioned it.
Does it work like a target number (maybe a target roll to even attempt a Worldly / Spiritual roll...a chance to leave your past behind)? This would make Worldly/Spiritual a very slow moving stat pair since there would be an addition "activation roll" to try for changing it. Perhaps the target number starts high as an initiate... lowering as you make successful Worldly / Spiritual decision rolls.

Alternately, you could include a Past stat as an Other-player director stance stat...that is, If you wish to jump in and use directors stance to up-the-emotional-ante for another Player's character... you can jump in (with a roll) and create ties to the Past of the character...actual ties or parallel situations that charge the scene for them.

I know...more thoughts...still no real mechanics...
(and now I'll go look for your last mention of Past stat to see if I've reinvented the wheel)

Enjoy!
Bob McNamee
Indie-netgaming- Out of the ordinary on-line gaming!

talysman

Quote from: Bob McNamee
I was thinking earlier that maybe there was a need for a stat like Family, Friends...etc that acted as a pull away from the contemplative enlightment into the world. Something mechanical to keep you from just deciding your way up the ladder. (always choosing the monkly choice)

I like the sound of the idea of a Past...
I'll have to go find where you mentioned it.
Does it work like a target number (maybe a target roll to even attempt a Worldly / Spiritual roll...a chance to leave your past behind)? This would make Worldly/Spiritual a very slow moving stat pair since there would be an addition "activation roll" to try for changing it. Perhaps the target number starts high as an initiate... lowering as you make successful Worldly / Spiritual decision rolls.

Alternately, you could include a Past stat as an Other-player director stance stat...that is, If you wish to jump in and use directors stance to up-the-emotional-ante for another Player's character... you can jump in (with a roll) and create ties to the Past of the character...actual ties or parallel situations that charge the scene for them.

I know...more thoughts...still no real mechanics...
(and now I'll go look for your last mention of Past stat to see if I've reinvented the wheel)

I suggested Past, described the dice mechanic I imagined, but didn't really describe the stat much. I basically borrowed the idea from Sorcerer & Sword, although there are a couple other games that use a "catch-all character profession stat", like SHERPA and Risus.

the Family mechanic sounds interesting, although instead of using a seperate stat, I'd just use Worldly. but that basic idea may be something we want ... so far, Worldly isn't being used except as a measure of steps away from the final goal. we could require a Worldly roll before any use of a virtuous ability. this would allow us to make the virtuous side of the stat pair work otherwise like the negative side.

normal roll:

[*]describe action being attempted
[*]roll dice equal to Past, opposed by opponent's Past, or:
   1 die for common actions, or
   3 dice for actions within the boundaries of your Past, or
   5 dice for actions outside your experience.
[*]dice higher than opposing dice count as successes
[/list:u]

negatively empowered ("unenlightened") roll:

[*]describe action being attempted, including how you are drawing upon your passions or attachments
[*]roll dice equal to Past, opposed as above, but add dice equal to the negative stat involved
[*]dice higher than opposing dice count as successes
[*]add 1 point to negative stat used
[/list:u]

postively empowered ("enlightened") roll:

[*]describe action being attempted, including how you are drawing upon your virtuous behaviour
[*]roll dice equal to Past, opposed as above, but add dice equal to the positive stat involved
[*]dice higher than opposing dice count as successes if they are also higher than your Worldly stat
[*]mark a tally next to the positive stat used (for a possible later gain)
[/list:u]

this would keep the negative stat a little more risky to use and keep the positive stat only slightly less useful than the negative side, which sort of reinforces the inner conflict more.

oh, and if we wanted to make the negative side slightly more tempting, we could make it only partly risky. maybe you only gain a point on the negative stat any time you roll one of your dice equal to or below your Worldly stat. maybe you could even gain multiple points, if several of the dice are below Worldly. this would make it sometimes risky to draw upon your anger when defending an innocent person, but not ALWAYS risky... plus, it is riskier when you are very worldly (a beginner) and becomes less risky the more spiritual you become... and virtuous actions become easier to perform as you become more spiritual.

this would also work well with the "add a trait-pair on the fly" idea I suggested in this thread. if you add a whole bunch of trait-pairs during the early stages of play, your character becomes burdened with many bad behaviors and must work harder to get rid of them... but also has more passions (and virtues!) to draw on in play... by waiting until later, the trait-pairs are added at the character's current Worldly score and may thus be closer to resolving.

one side note: as you can tell, I keep switching around on what to call each half of the trait-pair. I know we've been calling them "enlightened" and "unenlightened", but we're also talking about the quest for "enlightenment", and I think we're using words derived from "enlighten" a little too much... one possibility is to call the positive side of the trait a Virtue, but I'm not sure we want to call the negative side a sin... not sure what we should call it, though. Obstacle, maybe?
John Laviolette
(aka Talysman the Ur-Beatle)
rpg projects: http://www.globalsurrealism.com/rpg

Bob McNamee

Perhaps we could call the negative side of a trait pair a Temptation?
Bob McNamee
Indie-netgaming- Out of the ordinary on-line gaming!