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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 76 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Any rpgs in which rule 0 doesn't apply?  (Read 20971 times)
Nogusielkt
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« on: November 20, 2005, 08:20:36 AM »

Might be the wrong forum, but the descriptions aren't clear on where to ask questions about existing rpgs... So, can I get a list of games that don't have rule 0 or where rule 0 is discouraged?  Thanks in advance.
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timfire
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« Reply #1 on: November 20, 2005, 08:48:30 AM »

Since you're not asking about an actual project you have in development, this would be a better topic for the Theory board. Oh well, live and learn.

Real quick, what do you mena by "Rule #0"? "The GM is always right" or "feel free to ignore or change any rule"?

Thanks!
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--Timothy Walters Kleinert
Eero Tuovinen
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« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2005, 08:48:48 AM »

I'm sure you don't mean Asimov's law 0 of robotics, "A robot may not injure humanity, or, through inaction, allow humanity to come to harm.", but for the death of me I can't figure out what else you'd intend, here. Any clarification?

I might as well say what Ron usually does: if you aren't sure, then PM Ron and ask. This is definitely the wrong forum, because this one's intented only for concrete game design issues. The forum you'd want is RPG theory, wherein we discuss rather down-to-earth matters when the theorists look elsewhere. I guess Ron will soon move the thread there, accompanied with an exasperated comment on the forum rules ;)
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Nogusielkt
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Posts: 55


« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2005, 09:09:46 AM »

Since you're not asking about an actual project you have in development, this would be a better topic for the Theory board. Oh well, live and learn.

Real quick, what do you mena by "Rule #0"? "The GM is always right" or "feel free to ignore or change any rule"?

Thanks!

The "feel free to ignore or change any rule" part.  I put it here because I'm asking about actual games, and it has nothing to do with the theory of Rule 0, I just want to know which games don't have it.
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komradebob
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« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2005, 09:28:45 AM »

Since you're not asking about an actual project you have in development, this would be a better topic for the Theory board. Oh well, live and learn.

Real quick, what do you mena by "Rule #0"? "The GM is always right" or "feel free to ignore or change any rule"?

Thanks!

The "feel free to ignore or change any rule" part.  I put it here because I'm asking about actual games, and it has nothing to do with the theory of Rule 0, I just want to know which games don't have it.

It depends on how broad your idea of rpgs is. Games that don't have a set GM, or which have a very different distribution of GM duties frequently have rules that are significantly different and Rule 0 is simply inapplicable.

In Universalis ( the "everybody is a GM game") there is a specific method for entering rules variations into the game during play.Players cannot ignore or change a rule without presenting the rule variation to the play group as a whole for acceptance or rejection.

In Chris Engle's Matrix Games, the GM typically presents the situation to the players, then acts as a neutral referee for the remainder of the game. Players are free to attempt to add or change rules, with the referee assessing the roll needed on a d6 for that new rule to be added to the game.Once added the change remains in effect until another player attempts to remove or alter it using the same method as the original player.
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Robert Earley-Clark

currently developing:The Village Game:Family storytelling with toys
Nogusielkt
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« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2005, 09:42:27 AM »

That's all I needed to know, the topic can be closed instead of moved, if such a thing is needed.  Thanks again.
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timfire
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« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2005, 09:55:49 AM »

If I may add one more quick thing, pretty much all Forge games discourage rule #0. The general design philosophy here at the Forge is to design games that are to be played in a very specific manner. By allowing players to change rules, it disrupts the way the game is designed to function.
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Josh Roby
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« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2005, 11:29:01 AM »

I'll answer from a different tack.  By "games that don't include rule #0" do you mean the formal set of rules as presented in gamebooks, or do you mean actual instances of playing the game?

If the former, sure, there are lots of gamebooks that don't include rule #0, either because their designers didn't think of it, or they didn't want it there.  Before White Wolf's "golden rule" it was almost never seen -- White Wolf got a reputation as revolutionary for printing it.  In printed matter, rule #0 is relatively rare.

If, however, you mean actual instances of play, I don't think there are many games that never ignored a rule for expediency or entertainment.  Sure, there have been some groups that insisted on playing by every single rule in the vain hope that absolutism was the route to fun, but even before rule #0 was printed in books, it was the baseline for a lot of people's social contract.
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Nogusielkt
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« Reply #8 on: November 20, 2005, 12:03:34 PM »

I'm to understand that it is impossible to control how player's play the game, and that you can merely try to guide them in the direction you intended.  By "games that don't include rule #0" I was referring to the formal set of rules in gamebooks.  Therefore, there are three types of books for this discussion.  Those books that say "if you don't like a rule, change it" thus approving and encouraging rule 0, those books that discourage rule 0 by reinforcing the stance of the rules and why there were made or some other method, and those books that don't mention it at all.
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JDMcDonnell
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« Reply #9 on: November 20, 2005, 12:11:33 PM »

So why would you want to play without rule #0?
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TonyLB
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« Reply #10 on: November 20, 2005, 12:19:19 PM »

As a GM, why would you want to play with Rule #0?  Other people get to sit back and play, enjoy themselves, and do whatever they want (as long as it's within the rules).  The GM, on the other hand, has to constantly be evaluating the game outside of the rules, thinking to herself "Is this a moment where I have to ignore the rules and take charge?  Is this?  What about this one?"  And then, if the players think the GM should override a rule and the GM thinks she shouldn't, there's an argument.  If the GM thinks she should override the rules and the players think she shouldn't, there's an argument.  It's exhausting.  I GM to have fun, not to herd cats.
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timfire
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« Reply #11 on: November 20, 2005, 01:06:09 PM »

I'm to understand that it is impossible to control how player's play the game, and that you can merely try to guide them in the direction you intended. By "games that don't include rule #0" I was referring to the formal set of rules in gamebooks. Therefore, there are three types of books for this discussion. Those books that say "if you don't like a rule, change it" thus approving and encouraging rule 0, those books that discourage rule 0 by reinforcing the stance of the rules and why there were made or some other method, and those books that don't mention it at all.

With The Mountain Witch, I was very conscious of what I believed could be tweaked and what I didn't want to be tweaked. I never outright say, "you shouldn't change this rules", but all over the place I said, "some people will play that part in different ways" and "it's up to you how you want to play this part". I tried to embrace the fact that different groups have different preferences. But I also knew that if certain rules were changed, it would alter the fundamental experience. So I also tried to explain the design goals behind certain mechanical features. I figured if the player understood why a certian rule was in place, they wouldn't try to change it (or they would at least understand that they would change the functioning of the game).

So I guess tMW is one of those books that "discourage rule 0 by reinforcing the stance of the rules and why there were made or some other method".
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JDMcDonnell
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« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2005, 02:06:50 PM »

Well Tony, in the game I've designed there are two over-arching rules which eclipse all others, and it says it in the campaign book: 1.) What is seems real is real. 2.)The director (game master) is always right. So, there is no argument. If you have a problem with the director you simply don't show up the next time we game. If enough people follow suite (and they always do), then eventually we all lose by losing our gaming group. The director sits alone.

No Game For You! (think Soup Nazi :-)

The reason I installed it really came from my experiences as a player. I have watched hours slip by as both Players and DM's alike (sometimes in a rules lawyers style showdown, but more often just "trying to get it right") flitted through books looking for some obscure rule or comment which applies to the situation. Considering that most game companies stay in business through book sales, the rule bloat has only made matters worse over the years. To play an accurate and official game of AD&D is nearly impossible.

So I support rule #0 because, "Hey, we haven't got all night. The rest of us would like to play sometime"

And Timfire. I actually started out that way, but the rule book blossomed to such a thickness no one wanted to touch it. I eventually figured out that I simply love casting rules and thinking about game interactions, much to the expense of the game itself. So I adopted rule #0 and streamlined  the  book to half it size by tearing out many of the options and variations. The theory I loved too much and kept it in a document which is slowly becoming a separate book called, The Philosophy of the ToAd.

A big seller to be sure :-)
 
-JDM

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TonyLB
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« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2005, 04:15:08 PM »

So I support rule #0 because, "Hey, we haven't got all night. The rest of us would like to play sometime"

So basically, you figured that your choice was between trying to play rules as written that can't be played as written, or not trying to play rules as written at all?  That's a tough dilemma. 
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #14 on: November 20, 2005, 05:30:31 PM »

Hey!! That was a threadjack.

The original question is, What games lack rule 0?

That has been clarified, very well - we are talking about games which do not favor rule 0 even implicitly. Also, the topic does not include any justification or preference for/against rule 0. That would be a different thread.

Help to answer this question or cease posting in this thread.

Best,
Ron
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