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Author Topic: Narrativist Games with Actor Stance?  (Read 2809 times)
Michael S. Miller

Posts: 846

« on: February 07, 2003, 09:42:23 AM »

I ran Trollbabe for my wife, Kat, and a friend of ours, Michele, this week. They both kinda enjoyed it, but pointed out that the rules "enforce a separation between me and my character." I explained that this was a design feature, called Author Stance, and that the game was written intentionally to promote it. My wife's response: "I'm a writer. If I want to write, I'll write. When I role-play I want to be somebody else." Michele agreed.

Although they're both willing to continue with Trollbabe, I'm thinking that if they prefer Actor Stance, I should look for games that emphasize it. Most of the newer games that I like have lots of Actor/Director Stance. I think I should check out TROS, Orkworld & Puppetland, but does anyone else have suggestions of Narrativist games (my preferred mode) with strong Actor Stance?

Assuming, of course, that I'm not tripping over the Impossible Thing ...  8-)

Serial Homicide Unit Hunt down a killer!
Incarnadine Press--The Redder, the Better!

Posts: 1049

« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2003, 10:02:19 AM »

Donjon works as a "mainly actor stance, with sime director stance" style game. It seems to me though that you're gonna have a hard time having a real narrativist game with people who are into actor stance. If your players prioritize "being another person," then you're looking at simulationism.

Ron Edwards
Global Moderator
Posts: 16490

« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2003, 10:13:03 AM »

Hi there,

Donjon is not a Narrativist-facilitating game, I think. It's overtly Gamist and features much direct "gotcha" competition between the GM and players. Don't mistake "narration" for Narravism.

Actor stance is a fine thing for Narrativism. I'm pretty sure it can't be the only thing, but then again, I don't think any given session of play is characterized by a single, exclusive stance under any circumstances.

I think all the suggested games (TROS, Puppetland, and Orkworld) would be ideal for your purpose, Michael. However! I also think that Trollbabe would be too! That's because the separation that the players mentioned is not hard to get used to once you realize how much you're free to rely on "what the trollbabe wants" as the only imaginative priority of play.

I think you may be seeing an issue of habitual idiom rather than solid preferred-priority. Try a couple more sessions, with special reference to the impact of relationships over time and the between-session power of the players. Oh yeah, and provide NPCs who prompt very, very strong emotional reactions in the players.


P.S. I also think that the "be my character" thing is actually not the default behavior or preference for people who haven't played other RPGs before. But that's a debate for another time.

Posts: 2233

My name is Raven.

« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2003, 02:33:00 PM »

My response over in Be somebody is also relevant to this discussion, here, particularly the confusion of terms and the ingrained description-belief about "what we're doing."

Rev. Ravenscrye Grey Daegmorgan
Wild Hunt Studio
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