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The trendy people

Started by Petter Sandelin, December 13, 2001, 04:31:00 PM

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Petter Sandelin

I guess this is the fourm for a topic with no forum..(couldn't there be one wich discusses X + other general issues?)

It was a couple of years ago since the swedish bible for trendy teenage girls/younger women, Frida magazine, caught my attention. They had an interview with a poor girl who had fled her earlier life of warshipping demons through drug use and rpgs.

This month I flipped through the newest number because of a Lord of the rings special, wich included a guide to create the perfect fantasy-party. The guide has the following suggestions:
-Instruct the guests to come in "medival clothing".
-Split them into two races/kingdoms wich fight each other.
-Make characters with personalities for each guest.(the shy one, the spy etc.)
-Build intrigues and love stories among the characters.
-Resolve the conflict through party games and quests.

Joe Murphy (Broin)

Years ago, Mark Rein*Hagen, the Vampire guy, developed a background for a science fiction setting. One of the more optimistic ideas was that, in the future, everyone would game. Running stories for your friends would be the only meaningful pasttime. I loved that optimisim.

This reminded me of it. Thanks. =)

Ron Edwards

Hi Petter,

Did the new article (the positive one) actually use the Swedish term for "role-playing"? Based on your description, I would think they didn't.


Petter Sandelin

No mentioning of any rpg words. The closest you come is character, wich sounds kind of like rpg terminology, having some problems with swedish/engilish here :smile:. I guess rpg still has that geek stamp attached on it, wonder if it will ever go away?


Hey, just to be the contentious gamist, I reckon that in the modern context, art = games.

A bold statement.  Nevertheless, as we have just passed the annual lunacy of the Turner Prize for modern art, I think there is a huge trend away from the audience as passive observer and toward active participant.  In Channel 4's art slot last night, they showed an artist whose "work" was to hang people upside down in the back of a truck and drive them round town.  They could and would, in this rather alien state, appreciate the view they were getting in an uncobnventional way.  The winner of the turner prize this year was a work called, Lights Going On And Off, by Martin Creed - and indeed they do, and that is the whole of the work.  Creed says he "does not make art" becuase the world is too cluttered by the stuff (his claim to fame is photographing bits of crumpled paper).  Some commentators have acidly suggested that the Emperors New Clothes will be next years winner.

So, my thesis is that art is turning away from a passive observer approach toward an interactive observer approach - nothing radical there, the issue of breking down the barrier between the art and tha audience has been floating about for a while.  One of the directions Creed and his ilk are going in is to posit that the work has no meaning until an observer imposes a meaning.  A further extent would be that the work does not exist until it is observed; i.e. the act of observation, the function of participating, is what realises the work proper.  This, in effect, is a game, like the hanging people upside down in the back of a truck.
Impeach the bomber boys:

"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

joshua neff

Actually, I would say "art" has always equalled "game", it's just that now, with the rise of conceptual art, we're recognizing it more. But art has generally abided by certain rules that one engaged in. When I write a poem or story, I create certain rules for myself ("must abide by the standards of grammar", "must ignore the standards of grammar", "must be a certain length", "must include certain words, etc). Of course, by that token, most activities are games. But, I believe that to be true.

Does that make me a meta-gamist?


"You can't ignore a rain of toads!"--Mike Holmes


Has anyone here read The Fantasy Role-Playing Game: A New Performing Art by Daniel Mackay

I haven't laid eyes on a copy, but it was brought to my attention by someone somewhere in favorable light.  Here's the link

Clinton R. Nixon

I have, in fact, read it. (Actually, it's in my bag beside my desk at work right now.)

It's good, if jargon-heavy. He does a good job of breaking RPG's down into Cultural Structure, Formal Structure, Social Structure, and Aesthetic Structure.

His concepts on cultural allusions in role-playing are really the best part of the book. He contends that much of roleplaying is bringing our own cultural influences into a different sphere, creating a sort of hyper-textual experience.

(Which is a great way to explain why gamers love having their medieval soldier in plate mail say, "I'll be back" in an Austrian accent.)

Honestly, though, unless you really enjoy the dissection, it's a little pricey for the value. (I may be encouraged to let people in Seattle borrow it if they play a bit o' Whispering Vault or Sorcerer with me.)
Clinton R. Nixon
CRN Games


Ooooh.... as if I wasn't already wanting to play Sorcerer and Whispering Vault with Clinton.   What about it, fellow Seattle-ites?  James/Yasha?  Cameron?  Anyone want to do a Seattle Indie Game Group 2-3 times a month, starting with one of those two systems?  We've batted around the idea in the past a bit, and come April-May I'm going to need a group to gametest Devils Cay.  We could do Sorcerer and Whispering Vault first.  

Lets make Art :smile:


Blake Hutchins

Aw, now you're making me jealous.  I'm just close enough to be too far away. :sad: