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Author Topic: [Liquid] Well, I just rolled the dice for show  (Read 10358 times)
oliof
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Harald Wagener - Zurich, Switzerland


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« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2009, 01:26:18 PM »

Vincent,
some people might just announce the arena their raise is in, which is enough for me to know the kind of fall-out. This might be an extreme example of stripping content from mechanics, but I can imagine it happen someplace, somewhere.
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Callan S.
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« Reply #16 on: February 17, 2009, 01:58:41 PM »

Vincent,
All I can see are two buttons - dodge or take the blow. I can't see how a lack of fictional context stops my hand from reaching out and pressing one. Yes, my choice would be largely random, but it'd still be my choice ("Take the blow sounds kewl! I choose that!"). I am still capable of choosing, despite no invested in SIS.

I'm trying to ask Frank if what he wants is, without an invested in SIS, there are no buttons there at - I can reach with my hand, but there are no buttons to press. I am incapable of choosing, having been presented with no choice/no buttons.

But if you see it as impossible to decide in your example as well, I'm pretty much screwed for a contrasting example and might curl up and leave it there.

PS: Not important to my point, but do you have to perfectly match the 13, or get a 13 or over? Just curious about the design.
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Callan S.
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« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2009, 02:14:01 PM »

Oh, I should have noted
Quote
and the size of the fallout dice you accumulate depends on the precise details of my raise.
What you would say is based on the details of the raise, all I'd probably see is someone, by some rules (hopefully written ones) can simply decide the die size of the fallout. So again he could choose, largely at random, a die size for fallout - play (as in following the rules procedures) can continue despite there being no invested in SIS.

I can just never see it when people say 'The SIS/the details of the imagined space determines the value of X'. I can only ever see the matrix of player decision points beneath the veneer of the 'SIS determines X!', or I can see how someone is denying me the information that shows that matrix.

It's like being stuck on one side of a wall when everyone seems to be on the other, insisting the SIS decides/determines stuff.
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Christopher Kubasik
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« Reply #18 on: February 17, 2009, 02:24:05 PM »

Callan,

For context, can I ask for a quick list of games you've played? 
And could you name the games you're currently playing right now (say, in the last four months?)
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"Can't we for once just do what we're supposed to do -- and then stop?
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Callan S.
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« Reply #19 on: February 17, 2009, 05:29:49 PM »

Hi Christopher,

You may ask. Perhaps in a private message?
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Frank Tarcikowski
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a.k.a. Frank T


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« Reply #20 on: February 18, 2009, 01:26:05 AM »

Hey all,

I dont have access to a computer regularly right now, so I cant contribute as much as Id like, but please keep it coming.

Callan, I get your point about what works "perfectly well". How about "allows play to continue" without investing in the SIS? As an aside, I know a bunch of people who really seem to not mind if the details of the SIS are totally blurry, as long as there are conflicts and decisive moments and punchy one liners. The way they play has been characterized as "story workshopping" in previous discussions.

Vicent, I agree with you, but I think using Dogs as an example may be misleading because the dynamics of a Dogs conflict are quite unique.

Paul, you summed it up perfectly, as usual.

Ill be back on Sunday.

- Frank
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Callan S.
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« Reply #21 on: February 18, 2009, 02:03:46 PM »

Basically, by "allows play to continue" you mean you can still follow the rules procedures without investing in the SIS?

It's an interesting distinction and I thought it worth noting. Not sure what name you might give to 'allows play to continue' and 'what the next options are are unknown if there is no invested in SIS'.
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lumpley
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« Reply #22 on: February 20, 2009, 09:12:31 AM »

Frank: I'm seeing that! I'll try again, no Dogs.

I can just never see it when people say 'The SIS/the details of the imagined space determines the value of X'. I can only ever see the matrix of player decision points beneath the veneer of the 'SIS determines X!', or I can see how someone is denying me the information that shows that matrix.

Well...

First of all, obviously it's people making decisions. The game's fiction doesn't have any REAL momentum or causative power.

But then, neither do dice. Here, look at these two possible rules:

1. The player rolls 1d6 and adds her character's weapon damage bonus, from her character sheet. That's how much damage she does.

2. The player rolls 1d6 and adds her character's weapon damage bonus, from her character sheet. Furthermore, if her character's been in the presence of the King Wolf within the past 24 fictional hours, she adds 2. That's how much damage she does.

The number on the die, the number on the character sheet, the character's in-fiction position and history: they're all equally available to the rules, all equally available as a basis for the players' decision-making.

To bring it back to Frank's comment:
In my experience, if you have a game system that works perfectly well without investing much in the SIS, people may tend to rush the story and their imagination of the actual in-game situation gets rather blurry.

In games without any rules of the #2 sort, without rules that depend distinctly upon details of the character's in-fiction position and history, play can collapse into a mechanics-only, rushed, blurry, play-in-summary mode.

-Vincent
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Callan S.
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« Reply #23 on: February 20, 2009, 03:13:17 PM »

Yes, but who decides if they have been in the presence of the wolf king? Where does the buck stop? Who has the final say? No wonder you need/have to be invested in an imagined space to keep playing, because there is no printed rules procedure to follow (in your example) if there is dispute about the imagined space. It's like needing to stay on a tight rope because there is no safety net. That's a very compelling rule reason to stay on the rope (or as you say, you must be invested in the SIS). The imagined space must be harmonised amongst all participants. Otherwise play immediately grinds to a halt, in terms of printed rule procedure following - there is nowhere to go upon dispute, the buck stops at no one. It's harmony or die.

I'm contrasting and comparing this against rule sets that 'allows play to continue'. Which, if you'll forgive further analogy use (I can hear Ron snoring in the background) are rules that have a net your allowed to fall in (allowed to just collapse into pure number crunching), but just clamber up the little ladder and be back on the rope in no time (ie, try to again start working the numbers in reference to a fiction, rather than pure working the numbers, asap).

Quote
In games without any rules of the #2 sort, without rules that depend distinctly upon details of the character's in-fiction position and history, play can collapse into a mechanics-only, rushed, blurry, play-in-summary mode.
I can't help but think that play doesn't just collapse like that, but instead those participants just don't care about a highly invested in imagined space. They may have invested in the other ruleset, but that was at risk of fucking the harmony up and having everyone fall of the highwire when there is no net.
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lumpley
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« Reply #24 on: February 23, 2009, 09:25:03 AM »

Yes, but who decides if they have been in the presence of the wolf king?

I don't understand. I mean - if it happened in play, nobody has to decide it. It happened, same as looking down at the 6 showing on the die. Or, to put it another way, the group decided, back when it happened, in play; nobody has to decide it anew.

Or if it definitely didn't happen, same thing.

If it didn't happen in play, but might have happened anyway, then you just write your rules to account for that case. For instance: only things that happen in play count, mechanically. Or: the GM decides based on what she considers most likely. Or: the player in question decides, because we should give her the benefit of the doubt. Or: the group votes. It's not hard, there are a zillion possible solutions, it's just a matter of deciding which suits your game.

Frank, I may be kind of haring off after Callan here in your thread. On-topic check me?

-Vincent
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Callan S.
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« Reply #25 on: February 23, 2009, 03:17:06 PM »

My hypothesis is that the liquid/PTA difference is to do with what I'm talking about. So I'd say I'm on topic, but I understand it may be too blue sky theory/it isn't practical for some reason to include it here.

It happened, same as looking down at the 6 showing on the die. Or, to put it another way, the group decided, back when it happened, in play; nobody has to decide it anew.
Well the human imagination/agreement matrix isn't like the six showing on the physical die. With physical dice, if a 6 is showing on the top then a 1 is showing on the bottom - nobody has to agree to that, for it to actually be the case. But in the imagined space, if in the past your character watched the wolf king go by in a parade, the GM (or whatever player) who described the parade certainly agreed a parade went by. But that doesn't mean at the time he agreed to the additional ramification that your character was in the presence of the wolf king.

Just because something would seem to be a logical ramification of a described fiction, doesn't mean that person agreed to that ramification. The group may indeed have decided something, but that doesn't mean they decided/agreed to every possible ramification of it.

To make it even clearer, taking the dice example but lets say it's an imagined die now. The player narrates that it rolls and shows a six at the top. That player certainly agrees that a six is showing. Does that mean, by logical ramification, a one is showing at the bottom? The answer is no - because he hasn't agreed to that. The only thing agreed to is that a six is at the top. That's the only thing agreed to. It makes sense there is a one showing at the bottom. It may seem clear cut. But you have no agreement on that piece of fiction at all. And without that agreement...well, you know.

While with a real six sider, yes, if you see a six at the top, yeah, there is a one showing on the bottom. It happened. It really did. But in the imagined space it did not happen. Only the six was agreed to.

So what happens when you have logical ramifications but no agreement in terms of them? AND someone wont at this moment agree to the apparent ramification? Ie, when describing the passing parade they didn't agree you were in the presence of the wolf king and even when you state it now, they wont agree a passing parade means you were in the presence of the wolf king?

Well, either you have a safety net or have a group really, really invested in the SIS.

Quote
If it didn't happen in play, but might have happened anyway, then you just write your rules to account for that case. For instance: only things that happen in play count, mechanically. Or: the GM decides based on what she considers most likely. Or: the player in question decides, because we should give her the benefit of the doubt. Or: the group votes. It's not hard, there are a zillion possible solutions, it's just a matter of deciding which suits your game.
These are all designing in safety nets, as I put it. Now imagine deliberately leaving them out, because that means people will really have to invest in the SIS because they literally have nothing else to turn to in the face of disagreement.

So as to avoid play which pretty much stays in the safety net the whole time, ie mechanics-only, rushed, blurry, play-in-summary mode.

That's what I'd say is contrast between the liquid actual play and the PTA actual play. And I leave that for reflection and potential use. I'm happy to try and clarify any of the details/evidence that don't make sense, but basically it's all just so I can leave it at that description of what the difference between the liquid and PTA play might be. If those clarifications are too messy, it could go to PM instead. Though I do really like my imaginary die example I made up, hehe.
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lumpley
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« Reply #26 on: February 24, 2009, 07:56:37 AM »

Aha.

These two rules are very different in their effect on play:

1. The player rolls 1d6 and adds her character's weapon damage bonus, from her character sheet. Furthermore, the group votes: should she add 2 or no? That's how much damage she does.

2. The player rolls 1d6 and adds her character's weapon damage bonus, from her character sheet. Furthermore, if her character's been in the presence of the King Wolf within the past 24 fictional hours (with a vote to resolve ambiguous cases), she adds 2. That's how much damage she does.

They're very different all by themselves, in their small ways. Then, place them appropriately within coherent systems and they're very different, pervasively, throughout play.

-Vincent
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Frank Tarcikowski
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a.k.a. Frank T


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« Reply #27 on: February 25, 2009, 08:45:22 AM »

The whole notion that anything can be valid just because "the buck stopped" with someone and they "decided" it was so puzzles me. Or rather, it doesn't work for me. That's exactly my problem with these narration right type mechanics. In traditional role-playing where I play my character and the GM plays everything else and rules are task resolution based on some notion of causality or probability, you don't just say something is so. Even if you are the GM you don't. You have to respect the SIS that is already there. As it will be complex and detailed, you have a lot of context to pay attention to. Or, put in a positive way, you have a strong foundation to build on. And then you as a group have a shared understanding of how the SIS works, often promoted by the rules that say what a character can and can't do. So you know what can and can't happen. And that's how you establish stuff.

The presence of the wolf king thing, then, is a matter of interpretation. Everybody is clear about what happened, now you need to interpret that in the light of the resolution mechanic. And this very interpretation means further investment. It means further validating the SIS. Sometimes you fail. But that's just a sign that you as a group don't have as firm a grip on the SIS as I'd like you to if you were my group. This is the very thing I'm talking about. To continue play even though the content and/or meaning of the SIS is not actually shared, or even there, that's what I meant by "neglecting the SIS". That's what may happen if someone just gets to "decide" how it is because the rules say the "buck stops" with them.

- Frank
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oliof
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Harald Wagener - Zurich, Switzerland


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« Reply #28 on: February 26, 2009, 02:15:38 AM »

I imagine a line that goes from investing in the SIS heavily, using the game mechanics as creative constraints, and neglecting the SIS and using the rules as something to twiddle mechanically "because they're there". My sweet spot is in the second to third fifth from the left of that line.
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Callan S.
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« Reply #29 on: February 26, 2009, 02:35:02 PM »

Hi Frank,

Just for contrasting purposes, how I'd describe that for myself is that that isn't failure. What I'd describe it as is people not agreeing. Perhaps it's a glass half full/half empty thing, but I don't see people politely disagreeing as a failure. I mean, it's nice when everyone agrees - really nice! But disagreement/no immediate consensus is like situation normal/the average and agreeing is like good. Rather than disagreeing being failure and I don't know, agreeing being what is considered as standard?

Quote
But that's just a sign that you as a group don't have as firm a grip on the SIS as I'd like you to if you were my group.
When you refer to the group, do you mean including yourself? Or looking at the group without you in it?
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