*
*
Home
Help
Login
Register
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
October 31, 2014, 11:23:22 AM

Login with username, password and session length
Forum changes: Editing of posts has been turned off until further notice.
Search:     Advanced search
275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 71 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
Pages: [1] 2
Print
Author Topic: Run-in with a Gamist Player  (Read 6046 times)
Cameron
Member

Posts: 46


WWW
« on: August 09, 2001, 10:30:00 AM »

Clinton and I had a run-in with gamism last night that I thought I'd mention. We were getting together with a bunch of players that we had never gamed with to talk about an upcoming Vampire: The Masquerade game. I thought it would be wise to just have a brainstorming session before we made characters or got right to the heart of it, and my intuition was correct.

One of the players, who was totally gung-ho for the game, had a background exclusively in mission-oriented, dungeon crawl, objective-oriented games. When we started talking about how underpowered we wanted the PCs to be (one of the elements of the premise), he began to squirm uncomfortably. Sensing his discomfort, Clinton launched into a nice speech about different styles of roleplaying. I think it really opened up his eyes.

He came to the game ready to make a character and, in fact, prepared to help another novice player make one too. Suddenly, he realized that not only was he not on the same page as the rest of the players, he wasn't even in the same library. The happy ending for this little example is that he wasn't opposed to the idea of changing his mode to something new. I guess I'd assumed that people find a style of play and stick with it, stubbornly unwilling to delve into other modes.

He ended up leaving the brainstorming session with big eyes, like a whole other world had been opened up to him. He didn't end up making a character at the session because all the preconceptions he'd had were based on Vampire as "D & D with fangs." I got the feeling he was going to go home and re-read all the Vampire books in a whole new light.
Logged

Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 16490


WWW
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2001, 10:37:00 AM »

Cameron,

This is a great story, in terms of communicating about the goals prior to play.

Lest people get the wrong idea, though ... the goal of GNS thinking (or any constructive take on role-playing) is not to convert anyone to "the right way" to play. I know Cameron and Clinton understand this, but what with all the new members of the Forge showing up, it seems like a good idea to repeat it up front.

It's also one of the foundation concepts here that many people are NOT especially happy with their role-playing experiences, and that coherent discussion and some good terms definitions can go a long way toward fixing that. If someone IS happy about how they role-play, then the body of theory at this site has no recommendations for them.

Therefore, the good news from Cameron's post is that this communication event DID occur. It's not a matter of "fixing" those "evil Gamists," but rather of simply making sure that everyone's aware of the shared goals. The very same good news would apply if I were to show up for a game of Ninja Burger expecting a philosophically-intense story about honor to emerge, and if the GM and other players disabused me of this (disastrous) notion right away.

Best,
Ron
Logged
Cameron
Member

Posts: 46


WWW
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2001, 11:11:00 AM »

I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear. The focal point of my story was that there had been open and clear communication between people of vastly different styles of play. I'm sure everyone has heard a horror story about showing up to game with new people and being at odds with their gaming style, only to be made fun of, shunned or otherwsie made to feel uncomfortable. I was posting because this type of thing had been averted because of open-mindedness and mature behavior.


Logged

Doc Midnight
Member

Posts: 24


WWW
« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2001, 10:28:00 AM »

I'd like to add that it is entirely possibe to have a group in a session of any game in which all involved really want to play that particular game.

Our house gamist will play anything and plays some games quite well (not many games quite well though). He just needs to be clued in to the general style and feel of the game before character creation.

Not because he's a gamist but because he's just not a quick thinker in a gaming context. A mission oriented player probably sees everything in those terms so if the goal of the mission is to convice the caliph that a treaty must be signed through diplomacy, he'd make some type of rogue, disguise himself and set about the task of being glib.

GNS is neat but I've been noticing that the stepchildern called gamists COULD be duped into altering their perspective.
Logged

Doc Midnight
www.terrygant.com
I'm not saying, I'm just saying.
jburneko
Member

Posts: 1351


« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2001, 10:48:00 AM »

Quote

On 2001-08-13 14:28, Doc Midnight wrote:

GNS is neat but I've been noticing that the stepchildern called gamists COULD be duped into altering their perspective.



In the course of my observations Gamists are very easy to please.  All they need is an objective goal and a set of objective tools to reach that goal.  The problem that *I* personal have with gamists is that (in my experience) most gamists refuse to emotionally engage with the world in any other way than objective game mechanics.

My resident gamist does things like this: He'll start talking to this NPC and after a few lines of banter he'll immediately turn to his sheet roll something like, Bluff or Persuasion, look up and say, 'I got a 15, give me the relevant information.'  And when I say, 'Um, there is no "relevant" information.' he gets exasperated and can't figure out why I wasted his time with this NPC.  Never mind that the NPC happens to be his sister's fiancee.  If it doesn't move him closer to the goal of the game it's superfluous and a waste of time.

This of course goes for events as well.  You can kill the gamist's character's entire family and if it doesn't tack on a penalty or take his character away from him then it really doesn't matter.  Unless the survival of his family was an element of the goal the gamist sees no reason to care.  If it doesn't threaten him or his objectives then it's irrelivant.

This is probably an extreme but it is my personal experience of gamists.  Simulationists fit better into my game than gamists.  Immersive simulationists are there to 'keep it real', so to speak.  If someone's family was wiped out the 'realistic' reaction would be a lot of conflicting emotions.

Jesse
Logged
contracycle
Member

Posts: 2807


« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2001, 06:43:00 AM »

> This of course goes for events as well. You can kill the > gamist's character's entire family and if it doesn't tack > on a penalty or take his character away from him then it > really doesn't matter. Unless the survival of his family > was an element of the goal the gamist sees no reason to
> care. If it doesn't threaten him or his objectives then
> it's irrelivant.

Hang on a minute.  I think I'm pretty gamist myself, and this appears to walk right into the criticism that Brian Gleichman offers of the gamist definition being crypto-perjorative.  I suppose it comes down to: "what makes you think the gamist does not care about the characters family"?
I believe Brian has been arguing that this may well constitute a game goal for both player and character, or either separately.  Resolving the problem may need, for the player to get their gamist goodies, to be mediated through objective contests and the like, but there is no reason to believe that gamism implies a necessary rejection of all other elements of the game or setting.  I see no contradiction in gamist players pursuing such "nebulous" in-game goals.
Logged

Impeach the bomber boys:
www.impeachblair.org
www.impeachbush.org

"He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast."
- Leonardo da Vinci
jburneko
Member

Posts: 1351


« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2001, 08:17:00 AM »

Quote

On 2001-08-14 10:43, contracycle wrote:

I suppose it comes down to: "what makes you think the gamist does not care about the characters family"?


Sorry, first of all I was talking from personal experience.  My experience with gamists oriented players has not been pleasent but obviously my experience does not constitute the whole gamist world.

AND I would absolutely AGREE with you that the survival of the character's family might very well be an objective goal for the gamist.  And if it is then he would care about it very much.

Jesse
Logged
FilthySuperman
Member

Posts: 62


WWW
« Reply #7 on: August 16, 2001, 06:16:00 AM »

Wow.. this all sounds like alot of "worst case" scenarios involving players. I've run the gamut of player types and don't really consider myself a specific type. (G N or S) My first gaming experiences, of course, were with DnD. We didn't really know about the whole "alternate world" thing so we hacked, slashed, and spelunked our way to the end to get experience points. We thought it was funny when someone "roleplayed". After a few chuckles at our resident Halfling thief (doesn't every group know "the guy that came up with the name "pepper" for a halfling thief? :razz:) doing silly things to make us laugh. We started getting more and more in character. My biggest problems throughout the years have been arguments based on "theory and principle" though. In a VERY LONG rifts campaign I was in I was constantly annoyed when a new supplement came out because our power gamers had to roll up new characters. "I think this Monster-hunter OCC can take a glitter boy, I've got to play one, let me check and see how much of a dodge bonus I can get with him first though". On the other hand, my V:tM games were just as annoying when we played with extreme narrativists. (btw: I'm usually the GM for all the games I play... cause noone else will do it :razz:)

Well that's my two quid on the matter.

T
Logged

Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Member
*
Posts: 16490


WWW
« Reply #8 on: August 16, 2001, 09:56:00 PM »

Hey T,

Just a quick aside - what you describe in the Vampire game isn't Narrativist at all, but genre-faithfulness, which is often a big deal for Simulationist play. So I think that's what you were seeing there.

This WAS an aside, though, so any hassle about it ought to go to private messages.

Best,
Ron
Logged
TrizzlWizzl
Member

Posts: 27


« Reply #9 on: October 17, 2001, 09:41:00 AM »

Quote

On 2001-08-14 10:43, contracycle wrote:
 I suppose it comes down to: "what makes you think the gamist does not care about the characters family"?  I see no contradiction in gamist players pursuing such "nebulous" in-game goals.


I agree with contra here.  As a "rules lawyer" (or so my group has labeled me), I still require character goals to feel fully engaged in the game.  However: unless my DM has worked in the necessary plot elements for me to feel in some way like the story of my family has been in large part crafted by me, then no... I'd wouldn't feel particularly inclined to respond emotionally to a situation I had no part in creating just because the GM felt that an emotional response in this situation would somehow make for a "better narrative".  I would rather the GM, if he wanted to create an emotional situation, would set up the plot in such a way that I felt an honest emotional relationship with a plot element I helped create.

I have no idea if this is gamist.  I don't really care.  I just know that this is how I feel a well-run game will 'feel'... like the players are creating their own stories in response to the GM's objective descriptions.
Logged
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #10 on: October 17, 2001, 11:50:00 AM »

TW,

Jesse admitted afterwards that he had overreacted. Gasmism does not imply rejecting all other forms of play. It just means prefering those elements that are competitive, etc.

What you seem to like seems more Narrativist, but that's just fom your brief description. There is no reason why a player can't like all three modes of play. I certainly do. And you seem to get a kick out of at least two.

Mike
Logged

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

Posts: 2807


« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2001, 02:09:00 AM »

Quote

does not imply rejecting all other forms of play. It just means prefering those elements that are competitive, etc.


Which is itself disputed by gamists.
Logged

Impeach the bomber boys:
www.impeachblair.org
www.impeachbush.org

"He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast."
- Leonardo da Vinci
Clinton R. Nixon
Member

Posts: 2624


WWW
« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2001, 07:00:00 AM »

Quote

On 2001-10-19 06:09, contracycle wrote:
Quote

does not imply rejecting all other forms of play. It just means prefering those elements that are competitive, etc.


Which is itself disputed by gamists.


Gareth -

It's time to define what you mean by gamists. I fully realize there's a lot of people that would call themselves that, but using different models. I don't deny the use of other models, but do reinforce that we are discussing the most current model published by Ron Edwards on the Forge.

It's important to note again that other models are not necessarily invalid or not useful. Good games are designed using other models or even in the absence of models - Robin Laws is a champion of awesome game design, yet I've never seen him espouse a philosophy. Still, saying that something is "disputed by gamists" when a standard definition for what you mean by gamist is less than useful - it'd be like saying "issue X is espoused by good people". "Good people" are undefined.

Anyway, to cut myself short, I'm not sure what a Gamist player could be if not someone who enjoyed competition of some sort in games. So, as a self-identified Gamist, what exactly does that mean to you? Without that knowledge, this conversation is less than useful.
Logged

Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games
xiombarg
Member

Posts: 1183


WWW
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2001, 01:46:00 PM »

Perhaps I should put this in another thread, but I'd like to return to a quote from the start of this thread that, in my opinion, deserves highlighting.

Quote


I guess I'd assumed that people find a style of play and stick with it, stubbornly unwilling to delve into other modes.
 


...but instead, you found things to be different. I think this is something that isn't emphasized enough in discussions like this. In my experience, gamers are NOT stuck in their ways. If you show respect for them as human beings and for their old style of play, they are often open to new ways of doing things.

This is why it's important to try very hard not to be pejorative about other styles of play, as Ron and others have tried to emphasize here on the Forge. I've found that if you don't flinch when you talk to the sterotypical "Rifts power-gamist" or whatever, you find they're more resonable than you think. And even if they don't want to try another style of play, they can usually explain their own preferences well enough for you to be able to deal with them as player or GM.

Logged

love * Eris * RPGs  * Anime * Magick * Carroll * techno * hats * cats * Dada
Kirt "Loki" Dankmyer -- Dance, damn you, dance! -- UNSUNG IS OUT
contracycle
Member

Posts: 2807


« Reply #14 on: October 24, 2001, 03:14:00 AM »

Quote

Anyway, to cut myself short, I'm not sure what a Gamist player could be if not someone who enjoyed competition of some sort in games. So, as a self-identified Gamist, what exactly does that mean to you? Without that knowledge, this conversation is less than useful.


I am surprised to see this, because the problem with this boards approach to gamism has been wekll explored by Brian Gelichman.  This is hardly a new criticism to you - you keep priviliging competition instead of player skill.  As Gleichman laboured to inform you, it just does not appear to describe the actual experience. And one would think that if two seperate people cam along and applied the same criticism independantly, it might be taken more seriously.
Logged

Impeach the bomber boys:
www.impeachblair.org
www.impeachbush.org

"He who loves practice without theory is like the sailor who boards ship without a rudder and compass and never knows where he may cast."
- Leonardo da Vinci
Pages: [1] 2
Print
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
Oxygen design by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!