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More on Task Resolution to facilitate Narrativism

Started by John Kim, May 10, 2005, 01:09:38 AM

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I apologize if this is utterly inappropriate or not understanding the topic as I have only just skimmed this thread but I was struck by the following which I, though I have not thought it through yet, I thought my be useful.

Task resolution is geared towards the establishing of facts (objects/symbols) within the Fact Space of the SIS.  (Proposal Space -> Fact Space -> Individual Affect Space)

Conflict resolution is geared towards the manipulation of "concepts" that are important to or are derived from the Individual Affect Space - Which includes and encompasses such "concepts" as theme, premise, scene, "meanings," victory, challenge, plot, antagonist, protagonist, bangs, feints, etc.

Think of the first as the rules by which one is allowed to move the chess piece on the board - the fact space.

The latter operates on the high order elements of aesthetic assessment/consideration and assigns the significance of the relationships of the objects/symbols as laid out on the "chess board/Fact Space."  Conflict resolution would then rearrange the pieces/objects/symbols of the Fact Space outside the "self-confined rules of movement on the chessboard" in order to establish certain aesthetically informed relationships among the "pieces/objects/symbols" on the board/Fact Space so that play may again resume in a satisfying direction.

I don't know if this helps or hurts...As I said I haven't thought all this through yet...
Aure Entuluva - Day shall come again.


M. J. Young

I suppose that as long as Jay has thrown in his way of seeing it, I might as well throw in mine.

I tend to think of these more in terms I would have called "outcome resolution" and "event resolution". I realize that in some ways this seems like it turns it into a question of scale; but I'm not thinking in quite those terms.

Event resolution resolves the overall conflict by building the pieces one at a time. In a Prisoner of Zenda sort of conflict, the question is whether we're going to defeat Black Michael and save the throne for the king, but we get there one task at a time. In a sense, we invent the resolution of the conflict by figuring out what tasks must be successful (singly or in combination) for the conflict to be resolved one way or the other.

Outcome resolution is something like describing a chess game in terms not of the individual moves but of the shifts in power or position. We could still break down our Prisoner of Zenda scenario into many resolution steps, but now we're not thinking in terms of whether Rudolph survives Rupert's surprise attack based on skill, defenses, and damage, but rather the degree to which Rudolph's confrontation with Rupert advantages one over the other. We decide through our mechanic whether Rudolph or Rupert has the upper hand coming out of this encounter, and in a very real sense we invent the resolution of the tasks again "by figuring out what tasks must be successful (singly or in combination) for the conflict to be resolved"--but this time, we are saying that because the outcome favors Rupert, he must have succeeded at surprising Rudolph with the attack and so injuring him seriously.

Thus in task resolution we are allowing the individual moves made by the characters to determine through their success or failure how the conflict is resolved, while in conflict resolution we are allowing the determination of how the conflict is resolved to determine the success or failure and even in some ways the choice of the individual moves made by the character.

Looked at another way, "I draw my sword and stab him" could be the sum total of the result of either a single-roll task resolution system or a single-roll conflict resolution system. However, in the task resolution system you're going to announce that it is your intention to do this and then roll to see if you are successful, while in the conflict resolution system you're going to roll to see if you are successful at winning the conflict and, once it is determined that you succeeded, you create the act of drawing the sword and stabbing him to explain how the success was achieved.

I will admit to being a bit fuzzy on this in places, and it's entirely possible that Ron will say this doesn't work as an explanation, but thus far it seems to fit what I hear Ron and Vincent saying on the subject.

--M. J. Young