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Author Topic: At the roots of roleplaying  (Read 9648 times)
FredGarber
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Posts: 95


« Reply #45 on: June 30, 2009, 11:06:07 AM »

I'm having trouble following how any of this is Actual Play, or even how Theory manifests itself in the Real World of Roleplay
This is an analysis of ANY sort of communication.    I can type anything I want, in any language that I want.  But if I don't do it in English, according to the Social Contract of the Forge, then Ron will moderate my post, and it won't make it onto the message boards for someone else to comment on, it, and I read the comments.  Personal Space -> Shared Space -> Personal Space :)

And I'm willing to state (this may blow a hole in your theory) that I do not "Engage in a RolePlay Scenario" for the purpose of "Stimulating My Own Imagination, for my Entertainment."  I can do that sitting on the couch by myself.   I "Engage in a "RolePlay Scenario" for the purposes of "Stimulating Other People's Imagination, for my Entertainment."  In order for me to get Satisfaction, the SHARED Imagined space is far more important than what I take away into my Personal Imaginary Space. 

-Fred
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Caldis
Member

Posts: 392


« Reply #46 on: June 30, 2009, 11:57:11 AM »


I'm pretty much with Fred.  Although I will say that if you want to take the term and apply it to how individuals take part in a game and what they bring to it that could be useful.

Like say pre-play prep.  How much, who does it etc. and of course how to get that stuff into the SIS since all the pre-play stuff means nothing if it never makes it's way into the game.
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rgrassi
Member

Posts: 69


« Reply #47 on: June 30, 2009, 12:22:47 PM »

Thanks again for reply... :)

@Fred
Quote
This is an analysis of ANY sort of communication.    I can type anything I want, in any language that I want.  But if I don't do it in English, according to the Social Contract of the Forge, then Ron will moderate my post, and it won't make it onto the message boards for someone else to comment on, it, and I read the comments.

Ahahahah... :)
Especially if Social Contract of the Forge include "Courtesy" and "Tolerance" for Non-English native speakers. :)

Quote
And I'm willing to state (this may blow a hole in your theory) that I do not "Engage in a RolePlay Scenario" for the purpose of "Stimulating My Own Imagination, for my Entertainment."

That's not my theory is saying. :)
I've only remarked by a simple example (and an actual play) why the SIS alone is not enough to handle all the stuff, moreover, that the SIS is too much overrated in its importance.

Quote
I "Engage in a "RolePlay Scenario" for the purposes of "Stimulating Other People's Imagination, for my Entertainment." 

Exactly. :)
What you really do is stimulate Personal Imagination of the others through a (transient) SIS.

Rob
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Caldis
Member

Posts: 392


« Reply #48 on: June 30, 2009, 02:57:45 PM »

What you really do is stimulate Personal Imagination of the others through a (transient) SIS.

Rob

Isnt that already implied by the term shared, i.e. it comes from one person to others through the act of sharing?
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rgrassi
Member

Posts: 69


« Reply #49 on: June 30, 2009, 11:47:02 PM »

What you really do is stimulate Personal Imagination of the others through a (transient) SIS.
Rob
Isnt that already implied by the term shared, i.e. it comes from one person to others through the act of sharing?

No. I see that Ron's 'shared' flavour is:
http://www.indie-rpgs.com/forum/index.php?topic=16998.msg180387#msg180387
Quote
Shared means shared among us via communication, not common to us in terms of known or unknown overlap.
But, as I said before, 'shared' is not enough. "Shared and agreed" is the right concept behind the SIS.
Sharing occurs via communication channels, agreement comes (mostly) from the system.
Rob
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Adam Dray
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« Reply #50 on: July 01, 2009, 09:22:35 AM »

So, it seems you've contributed some vocabulary for the conceptual spaces in which information lives during play. Besides naming the spaces, are you saying anything other than, "people think stuff, they communicate stuff, and then the group either validates it or not"? Because none of that is novel to this forum. It's all been hashed out in numerous IIEE discussions.

You talked about the Personal and Unvalidated Imagined Spaces being more important than the SIS. Why does this matter?

How can we use this theory to better understand game play and game design?
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Adam Dray / adam@legendary.org
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Callan S.
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« Reply #51 on: July 01, 2009, 04:46:57 PM »

Well, there often seem to be accounts of people suddenly going "Oh, of course X would happen!!" in play, where the events of the shared fiction become so convincing for them they bypass a validation stage as "It's obvious X would happen!!". Which doesn't ask if people would imagine it (there's no request for validation), it insists/forces other people to imagine it. It seems the SIS does get idolised fairly often.
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Moreno R.
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Posts: 547


« Reply #52 on: July 01, 2009, 05:56:25 PM »

Hi Roberto!

As Ron before, I am not sure I understand the point of this. Do you want to make a point for ADDING thiese new "spaces" you have labeled to the Big Model, or do you want to create a new, "single-player centric" (and not social) model of roleplaying?

Because, for now, all you have done is labeling. We all know that what we add to the SIS come from SOMEWHERE, but I call that somewhere "the player's imagination", or "the player's mind", not "Personal Imagined Space".

Why not add that new "space" to the Big model? Well, first, because (at least in my opinion) is a useless labeling.  Jargon can be useful when you have the need to give a name to something new, but you have simply given another name to imagination.  We could go on labeling the player "the active imaginer" and his chair "the support for the active imaginer", but they are still a player and a chair.

Second: that space would "break" the fundamental nature of the big model: it's a model of roleplaying seen as a SOCIAL activity, looking only at what it's shared, communicated, and what can be observed.

Rpg models that take into account imagination are not new. Hell, every single rpg model outside of the Forge (that I know) do it! Almost all of them START by considering the player' imagination as the fundamental "space" where role-playing exist. The result of this are usually gaming "theories" that devalue communications and shared agenda between the players, looking instead at the turtling player who imagine worlds inside his mind as the "perfect player" because he is "imagining he is in the game world", and system as a "necessary evil" instead of a fundamental part of the act of roleplaying.
It's for this basic and fundamental initial errors, that they are all failures. When you consider "the fundamental act of roleplaying" something you do alone, and other can only disturb you when you do it, you have already missed what roleplaying is by a mile.

The objective success of the Big Model (in practical terms: it did product fruitful innovation and new ways of gaming) come from this "break" from the traditional vision of imagination as the fundamental act, a 180 degree turn: in the Big Model, imagination is even OUTSIDE the model. We simply don't care what your imagination is doing. You could have a perfect image of the game world with incredible special effects, or you could think about tomorrow's exam. It doesn't matter, if you still do your part in the game. If you still engage with the other player, contribute to the SIS and the the common agenda, you're playing well. You are doing you part in this SOCIAL activity.

I don't see your model, so, as a fruitful addition to the Big Model. At best is imagination with a new name. At worst, it's return to older, useless visions of role-playing that never amounted to anything.

More than that, if we add your SECOND new "space", separating what it's accepted from what still isn't, we have an artificial, not observable division.  The process used by the system (in the lumpley principle sense) to filter what can be added from what isn't isn't so simple and clear-cut as you draw it.  For example, if a player says "I use my red coat to cover the hole in the dress", the GM can in many games refuse to allow this "No, you can't make it in time, they have seen the hole". But now every other player "know" that the coat is red. They know that that character wanted to do that action.
If you consider EVERY addition to the SIS as part of the SIS, and the SIS as a running process, not as a static space, not only all make sense, but you can film a movie of the gaming session and see the SIS in action, every single little bit of it.

If you label a part of the SIS as "unvalidated" and another as "shared", you break the model's objectivity. Because you can't observe one or the other of these "spaces" separately. Worse: you have took "system" away from both of these spaces (using it as the barrier betwwen them) turning both in static places, made up only of character, setting, situation and color, without movement and without possible changes, and the only way to have changes is to change space again, returning back to the unvalidated space, and be re-validated again. All you get is a terrible complication of the model, and the result is to turn a observable element of the model in two imaginated "spaces" that I don't really believe exist as separate spaces anyway.

So, it's not that your model is "wrong". You can label anything you want anyway you want, until you make predictions it can't be "wrong". Is that you lose the things that make the Big Model useful. and don't show any new useful part to make up for it.

I have other issues with it, too.  For example the way it seems to consider imagination transitive (If I imagine a red coat, how can I be sure that the coat you imagine is the same coat I am imagining?), bit it's a common problem of any model that consider the SIS as a physical "space" instead of a workspace.

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Ciao,
Moreno.

(Excuse my errors, English is not my native language. I'm Italian.)
rgrassi
Member

Posts: 69


« Reply #53 on: July 02, 2009, 02:29:24 AM »

Hi Moreno! :)
Gosh... It takes really a long time to read and reply.

Quote
Do you want to make a point for ADDING thiese new "spaces" you have labeled to the Big Model, or do you want to create a new, "single-player centric" (and not social) model of roleplaying?

Single-player centric model of roleplaying is beyond my scope (even if it would be really interesting and both the single-player centric and social-based model are part of the whole representation of it, so it should'nt be underestimated, but it's maybe out-of-scope for this forum).
So, I imagine the right answer is "to add new labels to the model".

Quote
Because, for now, all you have done is labeling. We all know that what we add to the SIS come from SOMEWHERE, but I call that somewhere "the player's imagination", or "the player's mind", not "Personal Imagined Space".

As said before, I've nothing against changing labels. "Player's Imagination" is good for me.
At the same way "Validation Space" may be a good name instead of "Unvalidated Imagined Space".

Quote
Second: that space would "break" the fundamental nature of the big model: it's a model of roleplaying seen as a SOCIAL activity, looking only at what it's shared, communicated, and what can be observed.

And I absolutely agree.
For that reason, I think it's important to exactly identify what is NOT explicitly shared, NOT explicitly agreed, NOT explicitly communicated and NOT clearly observable in order to respect the nature of the model and delimit its scope.

Quote
The objective success of the Big Model (in practical terms: it did product fruitful innovation and new ways of gaming) come from this "break" from the traditional vision of imagination as the fundamental act, a 180 degree turn: in the Big Model, imagination is even OUTSIDE the model. We simply don't care what your imagination is doing. You could have a perfect image of the game world with incredible special effects, or you could think about tomorrow's exam. It doesn't matter, if you still do your part in the game. If you still engage with the other player, contribute to the SIS and the the common agenda, you're playing well. You are doing you part in this SOCIAL activity.

I clearly see your point. And i go further.
What I claim is that only what is "explicitly shared" and "explicitly agreed" (by players or by the characters in the fiction) is part of the SIS.
I'm not talking about imagination.
I'm talking about something observable.
What "is not said" or is "taken for granted but not explicitly said" is NOT in the SIS.

Quote
I don't see your model, so, as a fruitful addition to the Big Model. At best is imagination with a new name. At worst, it's return to older, useless visions of role-playing that never amounted to anything.

I don't want to get back to 'imagination based' models.
And i think that this representation may be useful to solve some issues.
I'll be back with that, but it takes a lot.
Moreover, how can I with a single post and some figure convince at-once so many people? The only thing I can do is to propose my thoughts (share), discuss, and try to convince that they may be useful (agree).
The syndrome of "show in one post your thoughts and convince us that you've significant addition/modification to the model" doesn't seem to much constructive to me.
Anyway, I will respect people's will and Ron's one, of course.
He can stop this thread in any moment, particularly if he thinks, ad moderator, that it leads nowhere.

Quote
More than that, if we add your SECOND new "space", separating what it's accepted from what still isn't, we have an artificial, not observable division.

Most of the model is made by artificial divisions. I don't see the problem with that.

Quote
The process used by the system (in the lumpley principle sense) to filter what can be added from what isn't isn't so simple and clear-cut as you draw it.  For example, if a player says "I use my red coat to cover the hole in the dress", the GM can in many games refuse to allow this "No, you can't make it in time, they have seen the hole". But now every other player "know" that the coat is red. They know that that character wanted to do that action.

Yes, but they know only because the player has EXPLICITLY said that and the GM hasn't EXPLICITLY said the contrary.
And validation has absolutely worked fine, since three explicitly said [red coat, covering action, hole in the dress] out of three [red coat, covering action, hole in the dress,] proposed have passed the validation step and are now in the SIS.
What's not in the SIS? For example, the reason why you did it, because it's not been explicitly said.

Quote
If you consider EVERY addition to the SIS as part of the SIS, and the SIS as a running process, not as a static space, not only all make sense, but you can film a movie of the gaming session and see the SIS in action, every single little bit of it.

This makes sense. SIS should be an observable thing and it is made by "all that's being said". (but does not include, I imagine, what is taken for granted, or not explicitly said and does not include even how I'm imagining the fictional world.)
But is this the REAL sense of SIS in the model?

Quote
If you label a part of the SIS as "unvalidated" and another as "shared", you break the model's objectivity. Because you can't observe one or the other of these "spaces" separately.

From a pure 'observation' (like the camera film) it's a separation in 'time'.
Some behaviours between players occur before others.

Quote
Worse: you have took "system" away from both of these spaces (using it as the barrier betwwen them) turning both in static places, made up only of character, setting, situation and color, without movement and without possible changes, and the only way to have changes is to change space again, returning back to the unvalidated space, and be re-validated again.

Absolutely right... Why is worse?

Quote
All you get is a terrible complication of the model, and the result is to turn a observable element of the model in two imaginated "spaces" that I don't really believe exist as separate spaces anyway.

I don't think they're not observable.
They're observable in terms of "what players do and what the players say".

Quote
I have other issues with it, too.  For example the way it seems to consider imagination transitive (If I imagine a red coat, how can I be sure that the coat you imagine is the same coat I am imagining?), bit it's a common problem of any model that consider the SIS as a physical "space" instead of a workspace.

In the representation that's not an issue.
Rather, discrepancy between what we're imagining it's the 'salt' of the roleplaying fascination.
Rob
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JMendes
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« Reply #54 on: July 02, 2009, 03:45:11 AM »

Hey, Rob, :)

I'd like to ask that you take a glance at this older thread and tell me if there's anything in common between what Victor was talking about and what you're saying here.

Cheers,
J.
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Joćo Mendes
Lisbon, Portugal
Lisbon Gamer
rgrassi
Member

Posts: 69


« Reply #55 on: July 02, 2009, 05:56:30 AM »

Hi J...

Hey, Rob, :)
I'd like to ask that you take a glance at this older thread and tell me if there's anything in common between what Victor was talking about and what you're saying here.

In some ways they overlap. I know Victor (and maybe he knows me), because we're both lovers of textual interative fiction and we're aware (and in some case take part to) theory efforts in that field. And I actually see his point of view.
The strange thing is that, as many others, the thread stops "in-between" and there's no pronunciation such as "this is good, this is no-good". There're only proposition of intents and some proposals... There're even direct questions without answers. :)
Analogies are in the "proposed text added", "proposed text rejected", the sequencial logical steps and the 'spaces' to add.
Main difference is that I'm not strictly interested in saying that what is proposed/added is "text", "words", "events" or "whatever". Whatever is proposed is filtered and accepted or rejected.

Interesting stuff that may be derived from my kind of approach are...
A) Are explicit procedures/rules or implicit assumptions existent on the arrows of the model? If not, are they really needed?
For instance... on the arrow on step #1. (The player submits the candidate 'move')
  • Does some game provide explicit rules about "How things must be said?" or about "What can I say and what I can't say?" That is meant before any validation occurs. (Someone has said that there's a game in which you have to talk in first person, that's an example).
  • If there are no explicit rules, are there any assumptions taken for granted? I mean "How things must be said" must be deduced from the 'social contract'? "What I Can't say" must be deduced by a common understanding of the SIS?

I'll soon provide new images with similar doubts allocated on the arrows, for the moment, and then on the circles.
Rob
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Adam Dray
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« Reply #56 on: July 02, 2009, 11:09:06 AM »

I'll say it one last time, then I'm bowing out of the thread. IIEE in The Big Model covers all this stuff you're talking about. You've just relabeled it to look at it a different way.

To use your arrow analogy, IIEE is the giant arrow between your PIS and the SIS. IIEE is how stuff gets into the fiction. IIEE is four moments (Intent, Initiation, Execution, Effect), and presumably System can get involved before or after any one of those, so there are five little arrows there, or more if you're silently skipping through (not over) the middle I, the middle E, or both.
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Adam Dray / adam@legendary.org
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #57 on: July 02, 2009, 02:38:08 PM »

Hey everyone, remember that the overall goal here isn't getting anyone to admit to or agree about anything. It's a matter of trying to reach an understanding of what everyone is saying.

If someone doesn't get there, that's all right. As long as you think you've said your piece so that someone else, a third party reading this now or later, can understand you, then you've done what you can.

Best, Ron
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rgrassi
Member

Posts: 69


« Reply #58 on: July 03, 2009, 05:34:42 AM »

Quote
I'll say it one last time, then I'm bowing out of the thread. IIEE in The Big Model covers all this stuff you're talking about. You've just relabeled it to look at it a different way.

Adam, a simple relabeling would be already a good result for me (and maybe for someone willing to use this image to better understand the cycle.
But what I'm trying to say is that no matters how you decompose the proposed stuff. Current 4 steps model (IIEE) may be 1 step or 126.
Each step will make a complete cycle. (I proposed, I validated, I personalized from the SIS; I proposed, I validated, I personalized from the SIS; E proposed, E validated, E personalized from the SIS; E proposed, E validated, E personalized from the SIS).


More.
Look at the figure below. No more trouble defining conch shell games.
Conch Shell Games are games in which no "Validation Space" exist for the entire duration of the game. Narration goes straight into the SIS. (I'm not saying that there are no checks for internal logic)



And moving a step ahead.

This is what I have in mind. Look at questions on the arrow. (1. - 2. - 3.)
In my next post I'll try to write all the questions that I've in mind and looking for a precious feedback.
Rob

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Adam Dray
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« Reply #59 on: July 03, 2009, 12:25:20 PM »

Whoa.... you said something new that dragged me back into the discussion.

Quote
Look at the figure below. No more trouble defining conch shell games.
Conch Shell Games are games in which no "Validation Space" exist for the entire duration of the game. Narration goes straight into the SIS. (I'm not saying that there are no checks for internal logic)

I think I understand what you're getting at, but I think you're totally wrong. Conch Shell games require validation just like all other RPGs. Just because someone has complete narrational authority, they don't get to just subvert the social contract layer. The SIS is always communicated, always shared, always validated, always consented by the entire group. Always.

Even your "no checks for internal logic" says so. Those checks are a small part of the validation in a Conch Shell game.

Here's a fictional example:

Bob and Jo's characters are in a melee fight. Bob wins narration.
Bob: "So Bobdar the Barbarian swings his axe down and CUTS OFF Jongar's nose! She's mutilated forever!"
Jo: "Seriously? That sucks. If you do that, I won't play any more."
Bob: "The rules say I have authority here."
Jo: "Yeah, well that sucks anyway. No way."
Bob: "Uh. Okay. He cuts off one of her fingers then."
Jo: "I can live with that. Bastard."

You CANNOT get rid of the group evaluation (the Validation Space or whatever). It's at the social contract level, too.
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Adam Dray / adam@legendary.org
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