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275647 Posts in 27717 Topics by 4285 Members Latest Member: - Jason DAngelo Most online today: 81 - most online ever: 565 (October 17, 2020, 02:08:06 PM)
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Author Topic: Difficulties Advocating Forge Schtuff  (Read 8577 times)
W. Don
Member

Posts: 113


« on: August 14, 2003, 07:30:18 AM »

Hiya folks,

I've just had my first experience introducing other gamers  to some Forge terminology (on a mailing list of gamers here in the Philippines).  And, man oh man, did I completely make an ass of myself.

I pointed out with a straightforward comment that perhaps the Impossible Thing might be happening in such and such a game. Then I had to explain The Impossible Thing. Quick basic explanation. I got swamped with some contentions against my use of the term "story" and "protagonist". The discussion veered off to how different RPGs are from other media and how the "dichotomy" I was pointing out was such and such. I'm still busy clearing it all up, but I'm afraid my entire point might have been missed completely.

Anyone with any advice on being a Forge Games and Schtuff advocate?

My apologies, if this sounds like a gripe and if it all sounds like I'm just running home to mommy cuz the big boys clipped me one on the kisser.

It isn't that. I'm curious as to how Forge schtuff might be broached to some old gamers who have very articulate ideas about what an RPG is.

(Hmm. Maybe I shouldn't even try.)

Thanks!

- W.
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Valamir
Member

Posts: 5574


WWW
« Reply #1 on: August 14, 2003, 07:44:25 AM »

Best bet is to send them here.  Especially if there are several of them and 1 of you it is easy for a number of people with shared beliefs to wave away an individual who offers a different perspective.

If they are articulate about gaming they probably have spent some time thinking about it and may enjoy being introduced to the discussion here.  One advantage is instead of just you there are dozens of people who've also spent time thinking about it and that can add a little weight behind it.
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Marco
Member

Posts: 1741


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« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2003, 08:01:54 AM »

It'll probably come as little surprise that I think that that particular case is one where the terminology terminally obscures the content in precisely the manner you describe.

The specific language is good only for people with a shared understading--for people who don't read TF--and I mean read TF--just hitting the articles is a lot of work and that, by itself, won't do it (IMO/IME/Look at the posts that crop up periodicially).

I would stick to describing the phenomena that you think is occurring (the Players think they should be making the important choices, the GM maybe agrees in theory but in practice is setting things up so that's not really possible--as an example).

And stick with that. Maybe say "This theory board, The Forge, has a special term for this conflict ..." but I wouldn't start there.

I'm not sure what instructions one would use to send one's friends here to figure out what the problem was (i.e. saying "check this out" is fine--but if you're saying "I wanna talk to you about this--but before I do, read all this stuff" would prompt me to say "just explain it.")
-Marco
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pete_darby
Member

Posts: 537

Will dance with porridge down pants for food.


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« Reply #3 on: August 14, 2003, 08:08:20 AM »

Then we assimilate them...

Sorry! I mean, then we engage in a friendly and frank exchange of expertise, adding their cultural distinctiveness to the collective...

Sorry, there I go again...

Then we get a common vocabulary to discuss what's actually going on in play.

Yeah, that's it.
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Pete Darby
Bankuei
Guest
« Reply #4 on: August 14, 2003, 08:08:51 AM »

Hi WD,

I am against trying to explain, and explain things to folks, since most of the contention comes from strongly held beliefs and myths.  The Impossible Thing has been advocated for a long, long time, and folks have been trying to get it, for the longest time.  Telling them their quest is in vain sends thems straight into defense mode.

No, instead, I pull out Inspectres, Donjon, Trollbabe, octaNe, and I put folks to playing.  As preconceptions get shattered through play, then I explain how and why they work.   It's rather like trying to explain to a person who's never seen a plane that man can fly.  It's easier to show the individual, then start talking about how it works.

Isangmahal,

Chris
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Jason Lee
Member

Posts: 729


« Reply #5 on: August 14, 2003, 08:45:50 AM »

I'm gonna wave Marco's banner, I think he's dead on.

In my own group I've wanted to pump up the level of play analysis, and maybe try to solve some subtle and slippery issues.  But, without introducing theory, it was sort of a pain in the ass (everyone is pretty much uninterested...the Forge is apparently not in fact the Forge, it is instead "blah blah blah GNS neer-ni-neer-neer ismism blah blah blah", go figure).  Anyway, I've just been using close enough for now concepts:  theme, challenge, verisimilitude, concept freedom, consistency, game balance, and umm, sentences instead of words.  Plus, its all sort of my personal little test to see if any of this theory stuffy actually holds up in play, or whether it's just a kind of false economy of jargon.

Anyway, seems to be working very well (and surviving the test very well).  Sometimes I think people will agrue about terms simply for the sake of arguement (hey wait, don't I do that, here even?)...If you explain the concept and they agree, they might decide they want a name for it then.

Trouble is, it's seeming really hard to get to some concepts without covering others first.  If you try to cover them at the wrong time, you might get push back/agruement/confusion, and that topic can be spoiled for a while.

For example, I'd try to explain to one of our players that the reason he really enjoys our 'laws of conversation' (who speaks, how, and when during resolution) as a player is because it avoids deprotagonizing effects via FitB/FitM and gives him much more control over color, but why it really doesn't work for him as a GM is that the rules about now narration passes from attacker to defender make Illusionist techniques involving resolution basically impossible.  But, whoa, I'd have to cover concepts ranging the wiff-factor to IIEE to the Impossible Thing just to get that point across.  Trodding over a lot of 'how gaming is supposed to work' assumptions the whole way.  I don't think I'd make it.  

If you really want to talk theory, little pieces at a time are probably best.  I doubt many theory gurus reached their level of understanding all at once.
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- Cruciel
W. Don
Member

Posts: 113


« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2003, 10:00:36 AM »

Thanks for all the advice, folks!

It's all a big help. I sometimes feel it's such a shame that I and my own little playing group seem to be the only ones all the way over here who's even heard of The Forge or who's ever played any of the Forge-born games. Strikes me as sad, somehow. I can really see how many of the folks on the mailing list I'm talking to could benefit greatly from the ideas here. It's a tough nut to crack.

At any rate, great point about the vocabulary Pete, Marco, Jason. I've forgone jargon in my succeeding explanation of The Impossible Thing and have been sticking to explaining observed phenomena in -uhm- human terms.

(And this is just The Impossible Thing here! I can't wait till they read about and digest the rest. FitM, GNS, etc. Hopefully they'll feel encouraged enough to check The Forge out -- before I inadvertantly open other cans of chewy worms. So I'm trying to start nice and easy. )

Good idea about the numbers, Ralph. I've already pointed The Forge out to them. As well as Chris' (Bankuei) excellent articles at RPG.net. Maybe some of them will take a look-see, maybe not. Hopefully they will. I'll find out tomorrow.

Great suggestion on opening with a game, Chris! That was actually how I started the ball rolling in my own playing group. Whipped out InSpectres and -bang!- instant headway!

I've gone ahead and fielded some warm invites to the folks on that mailing list to drop by our currently running InSpectres game. Maybe get into the action. We'll see. We'll see.

Again, my thanks compadres!

Mabuhay,

- W.
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Clay
Member

Posts: 550


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« Reply #7 on: August 14, 2003, 10:34:42 AM »

This incident should probably serve as a clue to everybody here about how to relate to auslanders.  The language of the forge is unique to the forge.  It's not only meaningless outside of here, but it makes you sound like a pompous ass and puts people off.  The language evolved here, and needs to stay here.

The important thing is to take the lessons learned here and applying them on the outside.  Play your games so that the characters are protagonized. Support your closet gamists with opportunities for rule-based challenge.  Try to achieve The Impossible Thing (whatever the heck that is; even regulars can't keep up on the latest terminology). But remember to keep your language appropriate to your audience, just like you speak differently at work, at church (M.J. Young excepted, of course) and when you're into the second week of deer camp with the boys.
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Clay Dowling
RPG-Campaign.com - Online Campaign Planning and Management
Kester Pelagius
Member

Posts: 508


« Reply #8 on: August 14, 2003, 01:55:06 PM »

Greetings,

Generally I refrain from comment about these sorts of things.  But. . .

Quote from: Valamir
Best bet is to send them here.  Especially if there are several of them and 1 of you it is easy for a number of people with shared beliefs to wave away an individual who offers a different perspective.


That is perhaps the most exlusionist, adversarial, and patently offensive comment I've read anywhere of late.

In essence, in reading that, the impression I am left with is that you are advocating members of The Forge as a group either ignore or pile on anyone with a diverging point of view?  Sort of like what the Catholic Church did with the Bogomils, Albigensians, Cathars, and etcetera?

If you did not intend your remark to convey that intent I apologize, if you did then I think it is a sad commentary upon the state of GNS.


Kind Regards,

Kester Pelagius
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"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri
Jeffrey Miller
Member

Posts: 191


WWW
« Reply #9 on: August 14, 2003, 02:03:16 PM »

Quote from: Kester Pelagius
Quote from: Valamir
Best bet is to send them here.  Especially if there are several of them and 1 of you it is easy for a number of people with shared beliefs to wave away an individual who offers a different perspective.


That is perhaps the most exlusionist, adversarial, and patently offensive comment I've read anywhere of late.

In essence, in reading that, the impression I am left with is that you are advocating members of The Forge as a group either ignore or pile on anyone with a diverging point of view?  Sort of like what the Catholic Church did with the Bogomils, Albigensians, Cathars, and etcetera?


I seriously doubt Ralph meant that; in fact I read it to mean that if YOU are the individual trying to convince a group of your out-of-the-box ideas, you're in a losing position.

Anyway.. back you the thread..

-j-
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Valamir
Member

Posts: 5574


WWW
« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2003, 02:34:15 PM »

Quote
If you did not intend your remark to convey that intent I apologize, if you did then I think it is a sad commentary upon the state of GNS.


I can't even comprehend how you came to that idea unless you were predisposed of your own bias to look for such things.  Pay attention to the punctuation in the sentence.  Its there, or not there for a reason.

If your still having difficulty parsing basic grammar:  The highlighted phrase was directed at WD, indicating my lack of surprise that 1 individual (him) was having difficulty overcoming the entrenched positions of a group because its easy for the group to reinforce each other.  If they come to the Forge and see many people talking about these things they may be less inclined to dismiss the concepts out of hand.

BTW:  I have little patience for "I apologize if you didn't mean it this way, but" openings.  Such caveats are not a Get Out of Jail Free card allowing you to spew whatever vitrol you like and then cover yourself with a brief "my bad".

If you are confused as to the meaning of something I write in the future, I suggest you PM me about it so I can explain it to you directly, before you trot out your soap box and demonstrate publically that you just critically failed your Reading Comprehension Roll.
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iago
Member

Posts: 863


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« Reply #11 on: August 14, 2003, 03:02:56 PM »

Quote from: Clay
This incident should probably serve as a clue to everybody here about how to relate to auslanders.  The language of the forge is unique to the forge.  It's not only meaningless outside of here, but it makes you sound like a pompous ass and puts people off.  The language evolved here, and needs to stay here.

This is not a point to be ignored.  In fact, I stayed away from the forge for a long damn time precisely because of the apparent prevalence of terminology, and that was when the terminology was where it was suposed to be (and to shore up Chris' point, it was the games that got me here -- I'm still pretty terminology-illiterate, and fairly happy to remain that way by and large).  

Trotting the lingo out into the great wide open without a structure to support it is going to be even worse of a situation.  If it's brought up here, at least the receiver of the term can acknowledge that he's not speaking the lingua franca of his current locale.  If it's brought up out there, it's much like an American insisting that all these darn furriners should learn some English, by gum, while touring abroad.  Ugly.
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Kester Pelagius
Member

Posts: 508


« Reply #12 on: August 14, 2003, 03:03:06 PM »

Quote from: Valamir
I can't even comprehend how you came to that idea unless you were predisposed of your own bias to look for such things.  Pay attention to the punctuation in the sentence.  Its there, or not there for a reason.


Nice passive aggresive response designed to attack the person and not at all deal with the message, much less speak to percieved misunderstandings.  Why this?


Quote from: Valamir
If your still having difficulty parsing basic grammar:


Again, you ability to sink passive aggressive fangs into the flesh of someone that is not at all trying to be your enemy is truly astrounding.

Why this?

Quote from: Valamir
The highlighted phrase was directed at WD, indicating my lack of surprise that 1 individual (him) was having difficulty overcoming the entrenched positions of a group because its easy for the group to reinforce each other.  If they come to the Forge and see many people talking about these things they may be less inclined to dismiss the concepts out of hand.


The above is all you really needed to type.

But then, going by your logic, you must have been predisposed to directing bile at me for. . . what?  Expressing a concern that your choice of wording was, is, and remains poor given the above paragraph which, again, is all you needed to type.

Quote from: Valamir
BTW:  I have little patience for "I apologize if you didn't mean it this way, but" openings.  Such caveats are not a Get Out of Jail Free card allowing you to spew whatever vitrol you like and then cover yourself with a brief "my bad".


Yet you did this very thing, several times, in the above.

Which, I think, proves the case for exlusionism rather well.  You percieved my post only from the perspective of it being non-agreeing with your POV, and thus attacked me, ignoring what I actually typed.

Why this tact?

Quote from: Valamir
If you are confused as to the meaning of something I write in the future, I suggest you PM me about it so I can explain it to you directly, before you trot out your soap box and demonstrate publically that you just critically failed your Reading Comprehension Roll.


And, here you did what you tell me not to do AGAIN.  And why would I want to PM someone that has just showered such an foeted heap of bitterness and hate in my direction?

Valamir, I am not now, nor was I then, trying to be your enemy.  I was not calling you out, just highlighting the facts as I see them.  Nor do I have a "soap box" but. . . really, words are wasted here aren't they?

What I get from this is simple: either agree with your statements or piddle off and don't dare to post or be subjected to humilation and deprecation???

I apologize to everyone.  Obviously I seem not to have the "Reading Comprehension" to be worthy of posting here any more.

WDFlores let this be a object lesson.  Not even directing people to The Forge, and its fine forums, may help you in your efforts.  But take heart not all days are bad, or every member as obviuosly retarded as Valamir thinks I am.  Best advice I can offer you is be your own judge.  Give your friends on the mailing list the links to the articles and this site, and let them make their own conclusions based on their own judgement of what they read.  Peace.

Good day.
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"The darkest places in hell are reserved for those who maintain their neutrality in times of moral crisis." -Dante Alighieri
Jeffrey Miller
Member

Posts: 191


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« Reply #13 on: August 14, 2003, 03:06:02 PM »

Quote from: Kester Pelagius
Quote from: Valamir


All y'all - chill. Take it to PM.

-j-
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Valamir
Member

Posts: 5574


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« Reply #14 on: August 14, 2003, 03:16:34 PM »

Kester, I have nothing further to say to you on this issue, and your mock pretentions at trying to appear the peacemaking level headed one, hold no water as you've used this tactic too many times to be believable.

If you have any further comments on this issue, I suggest you take them up with a moderator
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