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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4283 Members Latest Member: - otto Most online today: 66 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Questions for those who've played long-running GMless games.  (Read 3733 times)
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2004, 11:56:34 AM »

I have no problem with Chris's approach. But I see the whole argument as circular in general. Basically, yes, if you want to have a mystery that's pre-determined in some way by one member of a group, then you need to have that member do the predetermination.

But mysteries don't have to be predetermined at all. In play of Universalis everything it a mystery all the time to all the participants, until somebody "solves" it. As such, what you might call a "mystery" scenario actually makes up the majority of Uninversalis play. Kinda the oppposite of what you'd think.

For instance, in the ongoing Wiki game over at www.anvilwerks.com, there's some major conspiracy going on involving some ritual murders at a temple in Nicaragua. And there's something else going on with some alien organisms in the Australian outback (unbeknownst to any of the characters). Who's responsible for the murders? Why are they happening? Are they related to the goings on on the other side of the world???

Nobody knows. Because in such a game, nothing exists as predetermined fact. There is only fact as it's revealed. So, while you may think that there'd be a lack of suspense about what's going to happen, you'd be very incorrect. I'm dying to know whodunit. As are all the players playing.

So, while there's nothing wrong at all with Chris's approach, to say that it's neccessary to have a player in charge of these events is just not correct. It's an option certainly. But not in any way a neccessity.

Mike
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clehrich
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Posts: 1557


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« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2004, 12:01:18 PM »

Mike,

I wasn't claiming that this is the only way to run a mystery in a shared-GM game.  Dr.0 had noted that his players, who I think aren't all that uncommon, would object to having a mystery the solution to which wasn't predetermined.
Quote from: Doctor Xero
They felt betrayed, as though all their characters' hard investigative work were now rendered meaningless because I had arbitrarily changed the plot to hand them their victory.
So what I'm trying to suggest is that you can have your cake and eat it too.  You can have a predetermined mystery that still allows considerable shared input.

Does that make sense?

Chris Lehrich
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Chris Lehrich
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
Member

Posts: 10459


« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2004, 02:57:38 PM »

Again, it makes total sense, as I reiterated twice above. But the thread is about how to play better "GM Less". As such I didn't want the poster to get the idea that you can't do Mysteries in this fashion.

Mike
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