Started by Josh Porter, November 17, 2011, 10:35:16 PM
QuoteDie Rolls and Consequence Players roll dice not only to bring a random element to the game, but also to show what is important. If a player says, "My guy goes and eats some fish and chips," he probably doesn't roll any dice. Why would he? He's just having his lunch. But what if the pirate's player says, "I'm going to roll Eatery to eat some fish and chips"? Do you say no? Of course not. You see, the pirate's player has just communicated to you that eating fish and chips is somehow important. He is spending a resource to accomplish a goal, even if it seems like a silly one. If he rolls too high and has an accident, eating fish and chips will have made life harder for him. If it is unimportant, how could it have any negative effect on him whatsoever? The pirate has made his fish-eating consequential. By rolling dice to do it, he has decided that whether he succeeds or fails, there will be consequences. So what if he succeeds? We know he'll have an accident if he fails, but how can fish and chips matter in the slightest? It is up to you, the RA, to make it important. This is your greatest responsibility: making the pirates' action consequential. Maybe, by eating exceptionally well, the pirate impresses a new NPC, who (while offering congratulations) lets slip news of a fabulous space treasure. It's your call. But always make die rolls matter. When a die is rolled, the player is giving his action consequence, and if he succeeds it is your job to make that a reality.
QuoteIn order for a character's action to have consequence, the action must have some bearing on the character's interests in some way. That may be safety, life goals, or what have you.
QuoteSo if, perhaps, in the quoted text, the pirate eating fish and chips has an allergy to seafood and wants to prove something, that action should be consequential. If his player is merely looking for an excuse to roll dice (to try for a promotion via one more accident, or to get the dice back for the other players, maybe) then his action would not be consequential, and therefore not be deserving of a die roll. Is that pretty close?
QuoteIf so, let me follow up with another question. Would this be an idea likely clarified with a task v. intent clarification in the rules? In the same example, the pirate wants to roll to eat his fish and chips, and the RA asks the player to clarify what his intent is. This would inherently answer the question of consequence, wouldn't it? If the player really wants to roll, he'll need to make eating more than just a task.
QuoteI ask because I'm looking for a happy medium through which the players get to assign consequence to their actions simply by picking up the dice. When they go to the dice, they know that this roll will matter. It's a piece of authority that is often left up to the GM (who often lets it go by unnoticed, as his plate is pretty full already), and I'd like to mechanically allow the players choose what is consequential. Is there another game out there that does this (maybe even one I've played, but missed this aspect)?
Quote... Basically, the actions taken by characters are either a) relevant to the characters' interests in the game's fiction (SIS) and require a roll because of their inherent consequence, or b) a piece of color that may be enjoyable, but does not impact the interests of any character. Option b should not require a roll because there are no inherent stakes for any of the characters. How close is that? 8 out of 10?
Quote... From the playtests conducted so far, accidents are perhaps the strongest force of introducing new things into the fiction. The intention is to give a possible negative consequence to every die roll and to give the "failing" player some new authorship, and it turns out to be very fun. The question is: how important does a goal need to be to give it consequence when it succeeds?
QuoteThe real point I was trying to make is that the RA should not let a roll mean nothing when it succeeds. I should probably specify something along the lines of "You are not the players' bitch. They have to put some work in, too," to not confuse the point. The players need real, fictional (not an oxymoron) reasons to do things that matter. But if they do have their reasons, the GM should reciprocate by making the results of their actions matter. Am I getting a little closer to the heart of the issue with this?