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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 55 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: [Trollbabe] I GMed Trollbabe a couple of dozens times... and I really liked it.  (Read 3162 times)
Markus
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« on: November 27, 2008, 10:42:20 AM »

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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2008, 06:30:26 PM »

Hi Markus!

Guess what features are changed in the new version of the rules?

1. No Modifiers at all.

2. Specialties are now called Impressions and they specifically refer to what kind of perceptions the trollbabe evokes at first meeting.

3. "Zoomed-in" mapping is now an official part of prep.

4. The rules about combining Types are completely removed. One Type for conflicts, ever.

So it looks as if your rules-Drift was actually simply ... game design! ... and we were inadvertently working together.

Best, Ron
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droog
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« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2008, 03:32:13 PM »

Nice one. Markus has articulated a lot of things I've felt intuitively about TB, and Ron's changes look good (seems to me they're minor tweaks around the core).

Just had to say that, because I, too, really like this game.
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AKA Jeff Zahari
Callan S.
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« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2008, 08:56:19 PM »

I'm pretty skeptical about this being 'games design'. What isn't games design, in that case? I'm asking so to cover confirmation bias - we have a hypothesis that fits the situation. What can we do to challenge or attempt to falsify the hypothesis?
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Philosopher Gamer
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2008, 09:43:16 PM »

For Christ's sake, Callan. I was kidding.

Best, Ron

Editing this in a couple minutes later: Some folks do, in fact, consider such things to be game design, and yes, if that's so, then game design is extremely common and habitual among gamers. I tend not to take quite such a broad view, but I do think that design is a common thing, and often not recognized as such by the people who do it.
« Last Edit: November 29, 2008, 09:59:24 PM by Ron Edwards » Logged
Callan S.
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« Reply #5 on: November 29, 2008, 11:52:08 PM »

I'm pretty skeptical about Christ's sake...

I was going to ask if you were joking, but I'm too used to such things being said earnestly.


Hi Markus,

Thanks for posting an actual play account! I keep thinking that the very name presented at the start (Trollbabe) helps illuminate the way all following mechanics should be/could be seen. It'd be interesting to run a control game (like running a scientific experiment), so to speak, where the title is changed to something...I dunno, more empty of contrast? And the protagonists less divided between two sides? What would be seen in the exact same mechanics then?
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Philosopher Gamer
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Markus
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« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2008, 08:41:41 AM »

Hi guys,
in chronological order:

Guess what features are changed in the new version of the rules?

I'm very happy about this - for two reasons. The first reason is, well, that I won't be changing my style of playing when the new book comes out, and that's good since it's working really well for me. And the second is that this means that in some mysterious way, I really understood what you meant when you were writing the game's text, even if some parts of the same text felt extraneous to the message! That's causing some serious head-scratching to me. I wonder whether I can isolate the specific parts of the book that brought the message home in my case, or it's just an ensemble of factors, including the inevitable 'contextual messages' I got from sources that are external to this text.

I keep thinking that the very name presented at the start (Trollbabe) helps illuminate the way all following mechanics should be/could be seen. It'd be interesting to run a control game (like running a scientific experiment), so to speak, where the title is changed to something...I dunno, more empty of contrast? And the protagonists less divided between two sides? What would be seen in the exact same mechanics then?

I'm not sure I understand what the point of this experiment would be. Sure, if you take an elegantly minimalist design of any kind, and then remove one or more of its parts, you'll probably get a fatally flawed result. Trollbabe is perhaps the most minimalist 'narrativist toolbox' I know, not in the sense that it has the fewer tools, but in the sense that each and every tool is there for an essential purpose (especially after the upcoming revision, it seems - hooray!), and you get the smallest possible number of different tools that still allow you to "assemble a working nar engine". Setting, character positioning, etc (yes - possibly even the game's name) are all tools in the toolbox.

For example, Trollbabe works *also because* all characters are the literal embodiment of a worldwide conflict. If you remove this, well, I can foresee that the toolbox will be a lot less effective. When I GMed the 'Boba Fett' Pool session (see here: http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forum/index.php?topic=26752.15), I was asked, basically, to 'play Trollbabe in another setting', which I refused, for the very reason I detailed here.

P.S. - about the "drift/design/non-design" issue: I really don't know how to contribute to this, since I'm not sure I understaind exactly the point of contention. I mentioned 'drift' in my original post to provide an example of drastic system changes, which in my opinion (now confirmed by Ron) were absolutely not related to CA shift.

bye

M
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Callan S.
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« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2008, 03:20:58 PM »

Well the experiment would be to test a hypothesis on why the pool functioned as it did in your account. In stripping out the title and setting, I'm trying to 'pool-ify' Trollbabe. I wonder if run that way, whether the sessions mechanics use would be rather like your pool account?

I think what I'm trying to get at is that the title doesn't matter as a mechanical part. What mechanically matters is having a title that has a question embedded in it at all. (Just focusing on the title right now rather than the whole thing, as Ron usually does, because I prefer to keep it simple where I can).

Also that it's very easy to invent a question to think about when using mechanics, where no such question actually exists in the text. That's something I tried to get at in the pool thread you linked. In that thread I think you were being advised to basically invent a primary question, while in trollbabe it already has one (for anyone else reading, yes, in Trollbabe play you will almost certainly invent sub questions which aren't in the text, but they all branch off the main one, which is in the text).

It's a theory I'm leaning toward, anyway.
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Philosopher Gamer
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Domon
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« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2008, 05:57:31 PM »


P.S. - about the "drift/design/non-design" issue: I really don't know how to contribute to this, since I'm not sure I understaind exactly the point of contention. I mentioned 'drift' in my original post to provide an example of drastic system changes, which in my opinion (now confirmed by Ron) were absolutely not related to CA shift.

as i understand CA, this is still a drift: you are not changing the game to switch the CA category, but still to better support your own narrativist CA
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