Writing a paper on authorship in tabletop RPGs played online

Started by Kludgel, April 24, 2012, 08:01:24 AM

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Hi, all, here's the deal:

I've been playing D&D 3.5 with my brother (the DM) and a few others this semester, primarily via Google Hangouts, facebook messages, and Skype. I'm also taking a doctorate-level course called "Writing in Computer Games," (though it extends to tabletop RPGs and boardgames, too) and have to write a paper to submit for publications & whatnot.

I decided to focus on the differences (if any) in the distribution of authorship and the way story is created when playing D&D online (via skype, etc) versus face-to-face. I'm particularly interested in whether DMs notice a difference in the way they plan/don't plan the plot (and what effect that might have had on the gameplay).

So I want to hear from you guys! (Please and thanks.)
Below is a list of prompt-type questions that you can use or ignore as you wish.

  • Have you played TRPGs via social media (like Google+, skype, chat services)? Which game and what service(s) did you use? 
  • GM or player?
  • How would you describe your overall experience compared to playing face-to-face?
  • Did you feel like you had more or less control over what happened in the story? What about compared to the other players?
  • Is face-to-face more fun than online? Vice-versa? Why?
  • Any other thoughts or experiences you want to share?

You don't have to answer these questions exactly; they're just to give you an idea of what I'm looking for. Thoughts on the nature of collaborative authorship in TRPGs are also welcome (especially related to computer- or internet-mediated games). Basically, I want your XP. Give me your XP.

Rock on. \m/

Ron Edwards


This looks like a poll conducted for outside research. It's not a discussion topic. Please do not post to reply.

If you'd like to help the author with his or her work, then contact them privately and proceed from there.

Best, Ron


Sorry about that, I was thinking that people would play off each other---someone's post sparking someone else's memory and things like that---but I see your point. 'Twas not my intention to type out of turn :)
Rock on. \m/