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Author Topic: Crowdsourced RPG research  (Read 1731 times)
btrc
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Posts: 328


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« on: December 17, 2010, 08:07:01 AM »

I'm looking for some input from a bunch of sources, and since this spot is populated by gamers, it seems relevant. I'll also be making the request elsewhere, so don't be surprised if it pops up on rpgnet or such.

Anyway, for anyone interested, I need you to get the file:

http://www.btrc.net/pub/MarQ.pdf
(if it does not download automatically, then control-click or whatever to get the file)

Read it and email me your answers. It is only one page and fairly simple (it is a personality assessement of sorts). I'm trying to get a feel for certain qualities and I need a -lot- of outside opinions to get a sample big enough to wrap some rules around.

Greg
BTRC
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #1 on: December 17, 2010, 11:02:15 AM »

Hi Greg,

This isn't a Forge topic, especially not these days. It's especially difficult because I'm trying to establish the new standards for this forum and it's hard enough with just the ordinary misposts. I regret to say I'm going to have to junk it ...

... unless this has something to do with designing a game. If so, then mention that and provide a link to some kind of material we can see about that.

Best, Ron
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btrc
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« Reply #2 on: December 17, 2010, 11:29:46 AM »

Ron,
It is game-related. I'm trying to develop a rule model for constraining character behavior according to personality in the same way a combat mechanic constrains character behavior according to the laws of physics. It is explicitly taking some free will away from the players in the sense that the PC's (or a person's) personality pushes their actions at least as much as their skill set. A person who has no emergency training might jump into an icy river to save a child (or a dog!). They are not motivated by their abilities, they are motivated in spite of their abilities, and follow their beliefs as best they can with the talents they have.

The simple personality assessment is to help me correlate what aspects of personality (based loosely off the Five Factor Inventory) go with what sort of externally expressed beliefs (conservatism, religion, etc.), and I want to see if I can distill this down to something simple and usable. But I need a good sample of real-world responses to do so. Hence my post.

I don't want to provide any other detail at this point for fear of contaminating the results. But the game idea is not really any secret. It involves players running both a character and making decisions for a group that is aligned with their beliefs and/or personality, and dealing with the problems and problem individuals inherent with statistical deviations from the norm. For instance, you have Islam as a religion and Al-Qaeda as an outlier, or the Republican party and the Tea Party, or the environmental movement and people who burn down Hummer dealerships. None of these are applicable in the game setting I'm working on, but you get the idea. PC's will be doing PC things, but also making big picture decisions for their “group”, and in both cases, are constrained (or compelled!) by their personal or organizational personalities.

Greg
BTRC
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Ron Edwards
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« Reply #3 on: December 17, 2010, 12:47:19 PM »

That helps a lot. I'll spot you the external document requirement until the survey is over.

Best, Ron
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btrc
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Posts: 328


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« Reply #4 on: December 18, 2010, 03:52:39 PM »

I'm a long way from getting enough data, but an interesting trend is starting to emerge. If you haven't read the survey, you need to pick three personality traits that best match each part of a two-word belief (like "secular humanist"). The most prominent traits so far are Social and Intellect. And since this survey has only been posted to gaming groups, that somehow seems appropriate.

Self-described traits, in cumulative order of importance:
1)Social
2)Intellect
3)Empathy
4)Solo
5)Order
6)Apathy
7)Chaos
8)Caution
9)Risk
10)Emotion

If you haven't done the survey (and don't understand the context for all the traits), please give it a whirl. If you have done it, thank you (and con someone else into doing it too!).

Greg
BTRC
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Marco M.
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« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2010, 05:04:59 AM »

How's the survey going? Any new results?
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btrc
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Posts: 328


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« Reply #6 on: January 01, 2011, 04:12:50 PM »

Update:
The questions are based on the Five Factor Inventory and is an extremely simplified version. But, there are plenty of large-scale survey results that hit some of the big “alignment” questions like liberal, conservative or religiousity. So, my answers from gamers are partly new ground (look, a Taoist!) and partly an addition to existing correlations to see how well they match. I've got enough to generate a correspondence table, in the form of "if your traits are X, Y and Z you are likely to be (or be sympathetic to) belief N. For instance:

Conservative:   Caution   Order   Solo   
Liberal:         Social   Empathy   Risk

Religious:      Order   Empathy   Caution      
Atheist:         Solo      Risk      Intellect

Not 100% correlation by any means and not robust enough for a scientific paper, but more than sufficient for developing a game model. Some minor suprises. I would have thought that Emotion was a more important factor towards religious belief, but it seems a desire for Order and structure is the key component. And even in this limited example you get to see some differences. Religious Liberal has Empathy in both but Risk conflcting with Caution, while Religious Conservative has Order and Caution in both. In game terms, Religious Liberal would be a “conflicted Belief”, which is a nice way of saying "there's some hypocrisy or self-delusion going on somewhere”. Similarly, Athiest Liberal is not conflicted, but Athiest Conservative is. Yes, yes, these conflicted examples are not always the case, but a game has to cubbyhole things so that decisions can be made and I'm trying to make an amazingly complex topic as accessible and easy to use as possible.

Ron has seen my preliminary game idea and I'm fleshing out how to use the data now, mostly in splitting it into basic and advanced sections. I hope to have a draft available for comment in a week or so, and I'll post a link here.

Greg
BTRC
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