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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 94 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Play creating notes Vs notes creating play  (Read 9313 times)
Callan S.
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« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2005, 09:15:26 PM »

Hi Mike,

Okay, I'll wear that confusion.
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But I think I might see what you're saying here after the last post. You're saying if the play is about resolution, then why play it other than gamism?
Really the opposite...why take a resolution system that is built like a game and turn it into a story making device?

No need to bring gamism into it, either. We already have plenty of actual play accounts where (in Capes for example), the players engage the game thoroughly to get points to do what they want. It's not gamism, but they are using their resources as if it were a board game.

Regardless, I think I've had a lot of questions answered here, so I'm done. Wrap up posts from everyone are welcome! :)
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #16 on: October 18, 2005, 05:59:29 AM »

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Addressing premise is what you do in Story Now, story is what you make.  Much like cutting wood is what you do in carpentry, and tables and chairs are what you make.
Oh, so do not agree! When address is secondary, it's just exploration to me. But I think this is a bit of a side point.
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I don't know that it's a particularly important point here, but Josh is correct. It's true that creating story is not the definition of narrativism, as all creative agendas are about the process of creation, not the product of the creation. But Josh is not saying that address is secondary, he's saying that when addressing premise is primary, the result tends to be something that has some of the feel of a story. And he's right, that's why Ron calls it "Story Now." Ron used to simply call it story, but then it was pointed out to him by defenders of other modes that they also produce story in many cases. What narrativism is about is making decisions of a sort that address premise, which creates theme, which is what making stories is all about.

So the output of narrativism tends to be story created directly by the player. That doesn't define narrativism, it's just a description of the results of it. People make the same error with simulationism saying that it has "nothing to do with simulation." Which is dead wrong. Simulationism is making decisions in a way that prioritizes exploration by definition, but the output of such play tends to be something like a simulation. Hence the name of that mode. Gamism is about addressing challenge, yes, but this tends to produce an output that is like a game. These terms aren't picked randomly out of a bag, and have not lost their pertinence, even though the theory has shifted somewhat under them to defined them as the processes by which the indicated outputs are created.

Why not define the isms by the outputs? Because they're not at all discrete or individually linked to the modes. Again, story often is an output of simulationism - it's just put there by the GM, and it's creation is not part of the in-game decision-making process. Combats in narrativism play can look like games. Since the important part is the process by which decisions are being made, the output is not part of the definition.

Why's the output not important? Because everybody likes stories, games and simulations. There's never any conflict in creating any of these things. The only potential conflict is in the process of how they're created. That's why creative agenda is what it is.

Mike
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #17 on: October 18, 2005, 06:36:28 AM »

Sorry, cross-posted (which is odd, because the system now usually tells you when you're about to cross post).

Mike
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contracycle
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« Reply #18 on: October 18, 2005, 07:48:59 AM »

Why's the output not important? Because everybody likes stories, games and simulations. There's never any conflict in creating any of these things. The only potential conflict is in the process of how they're created. That's why creative agenda is what it is.

I don't agree I'm afraid - I don't think everyone likes stories, or games, or simulation.  I know many people who find the idea of games utterly trivial and boring for example; myself, I can't stand the seeming imposition of say a romantic sub-plot in any and all narratives, to the point when for example Pitch Black gets kudos from me because it didn't have one.

I do not regard "story" as a universal virtue, and I think talking about it as such has caused the hobby immense difficulties already.  The perception that "story is good" is, I suggest, a contributing factor in the incidence of railraoding in Sim games.  Failing to realise that "story" is optional and according to taste has lead to story being imposed willy nilly, because we "know" that Story Is Good.

And yet we would never dream of saying such a thing about Monopoly, obviously.  How often is story really an output of simulationism?  Surely thats precisely the claim that underlies the Impossible Thing Before Breakfast - that story can be an emergent property of play.
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Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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« Reply #19 on: October 18, 2005, 10:14:59 AM »

Gareth, you're correct, but I don't think that I was being that outrageous, and this has nothing to do with the overall point. Simply replace "everybody likes" with "nobody rejects" or "nobody cares about" or "with regards to agenda the matter is simply irrelevant."

Sure, somebody somewhere is pining away for their RPG play to create a good story, and will be upset if it doesn't do so. The problem is that there's also some person who wants their RPG play to have pink elephants in it, and will be dissapointed if it doesn't. Simply these things do not constitute the parts of creative agenda that we can note will have a consistent tendency to conflict. Yeah, some other player is going to be annoyed by the presence of all the pink elephants, but that's the part of agenda where we say, "and all the other stuff" without looking for specifics.

GNS divisions are important because it seems everyone has a strong opinion on how decisions are made in RPGs. Whether or not to use pink elephants in your decision-making is hardly a universal concern. Nor is whether or not a story is created.

Mike
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contracycle
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« Reply #20 on: October 19, 2005, 12:51:50 AM »

Gareth, you're correct, but I don't think that I was being that outrageous, and this has nothing to do with the overall point. Simply replace "everybody likes" with "nobody rejects" or "nobody cares about" or "with regards to agenda the matter is simply irrelevant."

...

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GNS divisions are important because it seems everyone has a strong opinion on how decisions are made in RPGs. Whether or not to use pink elephants in your decision-making is hardly a universal concern. Nor is whether or not a story is created.

Well I find that response confusing.  If this is recognised, then the question asked on page 1, is RPG about creating story, has an easy and obvious answer: No.
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"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
Mike Holmes
Acts of Evil Playtesters
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Posts: 10459


« Reply #21 on: October 19, 2005, 10:57:55 AM »

GNS is not all of Creative Agenda. Creative Agenda might include considerations about story. There is no theory on this, but if a player said, "I have to have something like a story as output," I'd say that was part of the Creative Agenda for that player. It's not, however, definitional of narrativism, which is a category of creative agendas. We can't say that narrativism is that play which creates story. What we can say is that narrativism, players addressing premises in order to create themes, tends to create something that has some of the qualities of a story. Just an observation.

I can also say that the subset of simulationism that's called illusionism tends to produce output that's very much like story (in fact, probably has a better chance of looking like a story than narrativism play does). In fact, I'd say that choice to play illusionism is largely probably most often predicated by a creative agenda desire to have story. But that's completely speculative on my part. But in any case, story is not definitive of the GNS divisions.

Though it's definitely what RPGs are "about" for some people.

Am I helping, or just going round and round?

Mike
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