It is currently Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:10 pm

All times are UTC




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 33 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 11:31 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:43 pm
Posts: 2112
Location: Melbourne, Australia
The Turku Manifesto:

Ian.Plumb wrote:
In Actor Stance the joy is in the Exploration of the gaming environment, seeing the place and situations through your character's eyes, reacting to people and events in the manner you believe your character would if he was really there.


higgins wrote:
Just a side note. As with GNS misses the turkuist/immersion aspect, I feel that Actor/Author/Director/Pawn Stances also fail to model what my group does in gaming.


The ManifestoAnother way of dividing the different ways of gaming is to group them into gamist, dramatist, simulationist and eläytyjist styles. The gamist players ("munchkins") try to somehow win the game by making their character as powerful as possible - in a way turning the role-playing into strategy-gaming. The dramatist people have no true grasp for the meaning of interaction, as they think the purpose of the game is for the game masters to tell a story using the players as actors - but with no audience to tell the story to! The simulationists try to create a working society or even a world which is simulated through role-playing. The eläytyjist set the goal to becoming the characters, to experiencing everything through the character.


Is the author aiming for humour here? I once spent part of an evening social gathering with the Finnish boyfriend of one one of my workmates. His English "humour" was like this.

Regardless, how do you see the player's goal of "becoming the characters" as not being an aspect of Actor Stance?

Actor StanceThe person playing a character determines the character's decisions and actions using only knowledge and perceptions that the character would have. This stance does not necessarily include identifying with the character and feeling what he or she "feels," nor does it require in-character dialogue.


Note that "This stance does not necessarily include identifying with the character and feeling what he or she "feels," nor does it require in-character dialogue." because Stance only refers to the cognitive relationship of the player to the character, not how the player plays the game.

I mean you could say that Turku play is more than the Stances but by the same token any play is more than the Stances. I'm not seeing anything in the Manifesto that can't be described quite well using GNS and subsequent vocabulary but I will happily admit that I found the language difficult to wade through.

Regards,

_________________
Ian Plumb
Illustrations for Gamers
Lyonpaedia
Griffin Grove Gaming
Kraftworks for Kids School Holiday Program


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 1:04 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:05 pm
Posts: 2035
Location: Estonia
Ian.Plumb wrote:
I'm not seeing anything in the Manifesto that can't be described quite well using GNS and subsequent vocabulary but I will happily admit that I found the language difficult to wade through.
Gamist. This player is satisfied if the system includes a contest which he or she has a chance to win.
Narrativist. This player is satisfied if a roleplaying session results in a good story.
Simulationist. This player is satisfied if the system "creates" a little pocket universe without fudging.
Immersionist. This player is satisfied if a roleplaying session results in creating experiences and emotions, and allowing him or her to see things from a truly personal point of view.

I'm sorry, but IMO the fourth goal simply can't be modelled using the first three. True, it ties heavily into Simulationism, but the Simulationism is merely a byproduct there. The more grounded the players are in the reality, the more Simulationism is needed as the implausibility breaks immersion.

Ian.Plumb wrote:
Note that "This stance does not necessarily include identifying with the character and feeling what he or she "feels," nor does it require in-character dialogue." because Stance only refers to the cognitive relationship of the player to the character, not how the player plays the game.
Hm, if put like that, you're probably right on this... :)

Ian.Plumb wrote:
Is the author aiming for humour here?
I think not... but since I've never (knowingly) spoken to a self-claimed Turkuist, I have no way to give you the definite answer. Mind you that I don't agree a 100% with the manifesto... Not even 75% for that matter, but they do have some good points I agree with. Yet reading The Players' Vow of Chastity made me think that I stumbled upon some weird cult. :?

_________________
"Brothels are a much sounder investment than ships, I've found. Whores seldom sink, and when they are boarded by pirates, why, the pirates pay good coin like everyone else."
- Lord Petyr Baelish, A Game of Thrones


Last edited by higgins on Tue Apr 21, 2009 2:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 1:08 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:07 am
Posts: 953
Location: Melbourne, Australia
I personally don't understand much of the GNS talk and am not really fond of it either. I don't see the need nor the ability to lable Role Playing. I definetely don't see the point in being just one "type" of RPer, I myself as most of you would know have tried to fit myself into the GNS model a few times now, it is only now that I realise that I don't fit into any of them, but if you take all three of them together you will get a better grasp of what I enjoy from Role-Playing, and my personaly tastes will lean from one aspect to another from day to day, sometimes changing mid-game. One thing that I know, is that in order to catergorise my style of play you would need to put all three categories together and even then it would not fit everything in it.

So I ask, what is the point of GNS Theory? And if the Theory fails to work (as it does in my case) then doesn't that mean it is wrong?

I see the GNS thing as detremental to RPing personally... I saw first hand what "labels" did over at the D&D boards when Roll-Player and Role-Player was introduced, it led to devision and elitism, and eventually crept into the game forcing D&D to take further and further steps to what GNS would likely call Gamism thus runing what elements there were for those players who GNS would call Naratists and Simists.

I dunno, I still can't get my head around the whole thing, nor around the point of it. Though I suppose I could hazard a guess at what the points are.

Cheers!

_________________
"It was hard-fought, a desperate affair that could have gone badly; if God had not helped me, the outcome would have been quick and fatal" (115) ~ Beowulf after defeating Grendle's Mother.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 1:11 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:07 am
Posts: 953
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Okay here's a Fifth category:

Unitarist: This player is satisfied is a roleplaying session results in creating experiences and emotions that furthers the telling of a good story that takes place in a consistent world that the player can fully explore and includes obstacles for the Player to overcome.

What do you think?

_________________
"It was hard-fought, a desperate affair that could have gone badly; if God had not helped me, the outcome would have been quick and fatal" (115) ~ Beowulf after defeating Grendle's Mother.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:34 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:43 pm
Posts: 2112
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Ian.Plumb wrote:
I'm not seeing anything in the Manifesto that can't be described quite well using GNS and subsequent vocabulary but I will happily admit that I found the language difficult to wade through.


higgins wrote:
Gamist. This player is satisfied if the system includes a contest which he or she has a chance to win.
Narrativist. This player is satisfied if a roleplaying session results in a good story.
Simulationist. This player is satisfied if the system "creates" a little pocket universe without fudging.
Immersionist. This player is satisfied if a roleplaying session results in creating experiences and emotions, and allowing him or her to see things from a truly personal point of view.

I'm sorry, but IMO the fourth goal simply can't be modelled using the first three. True, it ties heavily into Simulationism, but the Simulationism is merely a byproduct there. The more grounded the players are in the reality, the more Simulationism is needed as the implausibility breaks immersion.


Do you think though that anyone sets out to create a little pocket universe? How would that be measured -- if not through the players and their viewing everything through the eyes of the characters? I don't think I would be able to tell the difference between someone who saw themselves as an Immersionist player, and someone who saw themselves as being mainly a Simulationist working mainly in Actor Stance. I mean this from the perspective of watching them play. What do you think that the difference would be?

Ian.Plumb wrote:
Is the author aiming for humour here?


higgins wrote:
I think not... but since I've never (knowingly) spoken to a self-claimed Turkuist, I have no way to give you the definite answer. Mind you that I don't agree a 100% with the manifesto... Not even 75% for that matter, but they do have some good points I agree with. Yet reading The Players' Vow of Chastity made me think that I stumbled upon some weird cult. :?


Unfortunately it is difficult to take something seriously that says, in essence, "Only we know what role-playing is; everyone else might be gaming but they're not role-playing." However, it is worth trawling through to try and get to the heart of what they're saying.

(Though surely nobody since 1st Ed D&D actually thinks that the referee is the sole arbiter of what is right for the game?)

Regards,

_________________
Ian Plumb
Illustrations for Gamers
Lyonpaedia
Griffin Grove Gaming
Kraftworks for Kids School Holiday Program


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Tue Apr 21, 2009 10:42 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:43 pm
Posts: 2112
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Crow Caller wrote:
I personally don't understand much of the GNS talk and am not really fond of it either. I don't see the need nor the ability to lable Role Playing.


All GNS does is provide a vocabulary that allows gamers to discuss gaming.

It doesn't label anyone. It talks about how people game -- and why they game in a particular way -- and why they might enjoy one particular game more than another -- and why a particular game might be broken in its design.

Crow Caller wrote:
I definetely don't see the point in being just one "type" of RPer...


Nobody who has ever gamed is a particular type of gamer. GNS indicates that we all operate in all of the Modes throughout the course of a game. However, it also indicates that we each have preferences which will lean us towards enjoying certain games more than others.

Crow Caller wrote:
So I ask, what is the point of GNS Theory?


It is a set of vocabulary that allows gamers to discuss gaming with less misunderstanding than if the vocabulary is not used.

Regards,

_________________
Ian Plumb
Illustrations for Gamers
Lyonpaedia
Griffin Grove Gaming
Kraftworks for Kids School Holiday Program


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:34 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:43 pm
Posts: 2112
Location: Melbourne, Australia
I can see how Turku applies unconditionally in LARP. In LARP, you are there to be the character. There is often no ruleset -- the results of your actions are determined on the fly by one of the many referees floating around the gaming environment. Almost by definition the referee defines everything and your role as player is to simply play your character.

I have a lot of reservation regarding translating this back to tabletop gaming.

The ManifestoThe object of the player should be to obey the game master's every wish concerning the style of play. This does not mean that the game master should tell the players what their characters should do. When it comes to the things that have to do with the game, the game master has the ultimate ruling power. Not the enjoyability of the gaming session, not cell phones, not hunger, not anything. Sometimes it might be fun to do something that is not in strict accordance with the character, but - unless the GM has specifically asked you to do so - THAT IS FORBIDDEN.


I find it absurd that a player or group of players are expected to set aside their enjoyment of the game if directing the game towards something more enjoyable impinges on what the referee demands as the style of play for the game.

The VowIt remains the game master's duty, however, to make sure I know what level of physical and mental safety and suspension of disbelief is in use in the game.


This has nothing to with tabletop gaming -- it is a LARP concept. Much of what is in the Manifesto and the creed of the Turku school devolved from LARP. It seems to me very full circle -- LARP fell out of role-players who wanted to do it for real. LARP evolved. Now LARPers are trying to get back to tabletop with what they've developed through LARP.

The VowIf forced to improvise or add to my character during the game, my first and foremost goal shall be to do this by thinking about the big picture I have of the character and the game world, not trying to add surface dramatics or theatre methods. While playing, I will focus on immersing myself in my own character, not trying to improve the gaming experience of other players. I will try to be true to my character without trying to spot a story-line which I should act out. I accept the fact that as a player my part is to see only a small part of the whole.


Being true to character concept is more important than ensuring that the others at the table are having fun? Ignoring plot arcs created by the referee is fine as long as it is in-character to do so? That will work because the Turku school advocates the referee controlling everything outside the player, as in a LARP -- but it really doesn't interest me as a player to play in this way. I mean, haven't we all moved past the notion that the referee is the sole arbiter and owner of the game?

The VowI shall not let any non-critical factors from outside the game (such as entertaining the other players, advancing the plot, guiding the newbies, off-gaming etc.) affect my playing in any way. During the game these things do not exist for me.


This works when it is the referee's responsibility to handle all of these factors. *sniff* Is that the smell of a referee burning out?

25 years ago when we were all at uni, gaming two or three times a week, with no money but a lot of time on our hands -- all of this was feasible. In other words, this could be an attainable way of playing. Now we all have jobs, work long hours, have children -- we have the money but not the time. We play once a month at best, a four hour session. Putting everything on the shoulders of the referee bar the playing of the character just isn't feasible. There are better ways of playing under these constraints. IMO.

So, what systems do the Turku school advocate using. Obviously TRoS wouldn't be on the list!

Regards,

_________________
Ian Plumb
Illustrations for Gamers
Lyonpaedia
Griffin Grove Gaming
Kraftworks for Kids School Holiday Program


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:01 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 8:06 am
Posts: 1495
Location: Vienna, Austria, Europe
More on the Manifest later; for now, Crow Caller:
Crow Caller wrote:
I personally don't understand much of the GNS talk and am not really fond of it either. I don't see the need nor the ability to lable Role Playing. I definetely don't see the point in being just one "type" of RPer, I myself as most of you would know have tried to fit myself into the GNS model a few times now, it is only now that I realise that I don't fit into any of them, but if you take all three of them together you will get a better grasp of what I enjoy from Role-Playing, and my personaly tastes will lean from one aspect to another from day to day, sometimes changing mid-game. One thing that I know, is that in order to catergorise my style of play you would need to put all three categories together and even then it would not fit everything in it.


In his famous “Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus”, Wittgenstein said “The limits of my language are the limits of my world” and “Of which I cannot speak I have to remain silent”.

The point of labeling is to provide – for the first time – a vocabulary that allows role-players to concisely spell out their expectations. Over in your player-recruiting-thread, I’ve asked you what style of game you would run, and having created labels for different styles gives you the ability to answer these questions concisely. If a group or a game is Gamist, I know that it won’t be for me.

Also, remember that before there was a terminology, there was only “good role-playing” and “bad role-playing”, and groups did define the former usually as the way they played themselves. A simulationist/immersionist experiencing narrativist play and not having this vocabulary would experience Nar gaming as just “bad” – little immersion, fully acknowledgment of OOC goals and knowledge in playing characters, and so on, that might just seem like “bad roleplaying”. The GNS model provides a means of classifying the different things different role-players want out of their hobby, and it provides the vocabulary to speak about these things.

Crow Caller wrote:
Unitarist: This player is satisfied is a roleplaying session results in creating experiences and emotions that furthers the telling of a good story that takes place in a consistent world that the player can fully explore and includes obstacles for the Player to overcome.

What do you think?

I thik it’s quite crappy, as definitons go; sorry. :P They term “good story” is an utter killer. What is a “good” story? Do you mean “exciting”? Do you mean “meaningful”? Do you mean “dramatic”? Do you mean “thought-provoking”?

I see little in your definition that wouldn’t be realized in Simualtionism.

And then you also have to realize that nobody is 100% Sim or 100% Nar. We all have all three aspects of GNS in ourselves at all times, to different degrees. The actual composition changes, and can even shift several times during the course of a single gaming session. You recognize yourself in none of the three modes – so what? Neither do I, and neither does anybody. That’s not how the system is meant to work. It tries to provide a vocabulary for the different enjoyable aspects of gaming to allow people to simply say something like “I don’t care much about the Nar side of gaming, but I very much like its Sim and Gamist sides. If I had to decide between either, if they clash, I guess I’d rather come down on the Sim side.”
.
That is already your unitarist view. Introducing it as a separate mode is counter-productive.

Crow Caller wrote:
Ian, the only flaw I see in your reasoning is that seems to lack Character Growth... If by the end of 5 sessions everyone "knows" your Character, that's cool, by the end of 5 Chapters in a novel everyone pretty much knows the Character. But if by the end of the Book your Character is the same as he was in Chapter 5 then you've lacked growth. By the end of the series he will again have changed significantly.

You are right in that any proper novel needs to have character development; the things the protagonist undergoes must not leave him unchanged, unless the author wants to make a point about how loggerheads his protagonist is. But do you think Hamlet lacks character development? Or Macbeth? Or Othello? Yet they are on stage only for a few hours.

Character development is not a matter of hundreds and thousands of pages of a novel – if it were, no theatrical play could ever work. It is a matter of catching a character at the right moment, at the cusp. What we are doing here, or trying to do, is to catch the character at this very cusp – providing it is the Kicker’s task. Like the author of a theatrical play or a screenwriter, we do without endless stretches of exposition before the real action begins and choose to expose our characters through the action itself.

We learn who the character is by watching him react to the Kicker, just like we learn who Hamlet is by watching him react to learning that his father was murdered by his uncle. And by definition, the Kicker puts strain on the character, and it should be set up in a way that challenges something that’s central for the character. Can what the character holds dear and true withstand the strain of being challenged, or will the character have to modify or abandon his tenets – will he change and develop?

Character development is reactive. It does not happen on itself, but is a reaction to something the character undergoes or learns, maybe as minor as encountering a new idea or compelling philosophical concept. Drastic character development happens when something drastic happens to the character. It is a matter of crisis.

The Romans had the saying “Amicus certus in re incerta cernitur” – “The true friend is revealed in difficult times”. Crisis does always reveal, more than anything else.

It is a grievous mistake, one furthered for economical reasons by producers of long series on TV and by publishers asking for endless cycles of books (loathsome things!) that character development needs a lot of time – the real development plays out in short time. The world’s theatrical plays are chock-full of three-dimensional, rivetting, breath-taking characters whose personalities are dissected for the audience in only a few short hours of stress and strain. People should and indeed need to review their tenets about character development having to be a drawn-out process in the face of characters like Medea, Macbeth and Faust.

_________________
My real name is Michael; use it, if you like.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:19 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:05 pm
Posts: 2035
Location: Estonia
Crow Caller wrote:
I saw first hand what "labels" did over at the D&D boards when Roll-Player and Role-Player was introduced, it led to devision and elitism /--/
And whenever has that been a bad thing? If you've ever refused taking someone in your group because you have a strong opinion on how that person games (an who hasn't) then you're already a damn elitist! :lol:

Ian.Plumb wrote:
Do you think though that anyone sets out to create a little pocket universe? How would that be measured -- if not through the players and their viewing everything through the eyes of the characters? I don't think I would be able to tell the difference between someone who saw themselves as an Immersionist player, and someone who saw themselves as being mainly a Simulationist working mainly in Actor Stance. I mean this from the perspective of watching them play. What do you think that the difference would be?
Like you said -- GNS is there to provide vocabulary to discuss gaming, not to label anyone, but it simply lacks vocabulary for expressing my priorities. As for seeing the differences (read: labeling)... how do you differentiate the first three by watching the play?

Ian.Plumb wrote:
The VowI shall not let any non-critical factors from outside the game (such as entertaining the other players, advancing the plot, guiding the newbies, off-gaming etc.) affect my playing in any way. During the game these things do not exist for me.

This works when it is the referee's responsibility to handle all of these factors. *sniff* Is that the smell of a referee burning out?
I think you're assuming the "traditional play" where all players are constantly in the same room. If 90% of the play is resolved through private sessions, this is hardly an issue.

Ian.Plumb wrote:
So, what systems do the Turku school advocate using. Obviously TRoS wouldn't be on the list!
Ugh, it's very difficult for me to explain my standpoint in a Turku school context which I don't completely agree with. Hm, I'll try to formulate my methods of play and make a separate thread about it. Doing so will probably take some time.

But the SAs aside, I'd figure Turkuists would be very happy with TROS. It's of course arguable how much TROS is TROS after removing the SAs.

Grettir wrote:
I thik it’s quite crappy, as definitons go; sorry. :P They term “good story” is an utter killer. What is a “good” story?
He obviously took the "good story" from the Narrativist definition... which is probably equally crappy definition then? :P

_________________
"Brothels are a much sounder investment than ships, I've found. Whores seldom sink, and when they are boarded by pirates, why, the pirates pay good coin like everyone else."
- Lord Petyr Baelish, A Game of Thrones


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:46 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 8:06 am
Posts: 1495
Location: Vienna, Austria, Europe
Ian has already raised many very good and valid points, including the – IMO correct – correlation of Immersionist play to a specific way of Simulationist play. Even the Manifesto admits frequently to a close connection, e.g. “The Turku School struggles for the immediate and long-term goals of the eläytyjist and simulationist role-players,…”

Apart from seeing no need to completely seperate Immersionist play from Simulationist play, the thing I really take issue with is the narrowness of Turku. It tries to define role-playing, to the point where role-playing that doesn’t conform at least in part to its vision is not just bad role-playing, but not role-playing at all. That’s not onl stuck-up, its also not helpful.

I would like to know how this approach differs from any approach that says “the way I game is good, the way you game is either bad or not gaming at all”.

It is clear that, since its inception as a hobby in the 1970s, role-playing has undergone a development and has branched into many off-shoots. Are they all role-playing? And if not, which ones are? Turku provides the answer: “Role-playing is immersion ("eläytyminen") to an outside consciousness ("a character") and interacting with its surroundings.” – The rest isn’t role-playing. That’s utterly arbitrary. If there is any objective criterium to say what role-playing is, it is to be found at the very beginning of the hobby, when there was only one way to game – this way must have without a doubt have been role-playing, then. And this way is still there – its Gamism. So if there absolutely has to be a narrowing-down of what role-playing is, Gamism is the only Mode of playing that has any non-arbitrary claim to be “the real thing” – certainly not Simulationism, Narrativism or Turkuism.

higgins wrote:
Grettir wrote:
I thik it’s quite crappy, as definitons go; sorry. :P They term “good story” is an utter killer. What is a “good” story?
He obviously took the "good story" from the Narrativist definition... which is probably equally crappy definition then? :P

Yes, it is. I have limited myself in my previous post to addressing Crow Caller’s issues, but when I read your short definitons, I immediately thought that each one of them left me very dissatisfied and that they were actually highl ymisleading unless one really has a good grasp of the Modes. I was intending to ask you where you have taken them from.

A second answer would be that – of course not within the scope of those short definitons, but I have already said that they are too short by far – Narrativism itself defines what a “good story” is. In Narrativsm, the one thing that must not be missing for a story to be “good” is premise. Crow Caller’s short definiton does completely lack a definition what a “good” story is – from reading it, I have no idea what a proposed Unitarism regards as a good story, and thus no idea what such a Unitarism would try to achieve.

_________________
My real name is Michael; use it, if you like.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 10:27 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:05 pm
Posts: 2035
Location: Estonia
Grettir wrote:
Ian has already raised many very good and valid points, including the – IMO correct – correlation of Immersionist play to a specific way of Simulationist play.
But the Simulation is merely a byproduct there. If one of your games happens to be very historical and very realistic, would you define your play as Simulationist? I think not, as the realistic flavour was merely a byproduct. Why would it be any different in my case?

Grettir wrote:
It tries to define role-playing, to the point where role-playing that doesn’t conform at least in part to its vision is not just bad role-playing, but not role-playing at all. That’s not onl stuck-up, its also not helpful.
Agreed, but to my knowledge, this is the only group of people who acknowledges the immersion as a separate goal.

Grettir wrote:
I was intending to ask you where you have taken them from.
From System Does Matter by Ron Edwards (I took out the examples). If you'd like to give me better definitions, feel free to do so. :)

_________________
"Brothels are a much sounder investment than ships, I've found. Whores seldom sink, and when they are boarded by pirates, why, the pirates pay good coin like everyone else."
- Lord Petyr Baelish, A Game of Thrones


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:15 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 8:06 am
Posts: 1495
Location: Vienna, Austria, Europe
higgins wrote:
From System Does Matter by Ron Edwards (I took out the examples). If you'd like to give me better definitions, feel free to do so. :)

Ah, that essay is from back in 1999, I think, when GNS theory was in the process of being arrived at – the definitions are in part not yet sufficiently finely-honed and in part dated. And anyhow, there is the overall problem with the brevity of them, which I have addressed before. Such short definitions are only useful to people understanding them to be a kind of shorthand for bigger concepts that they already understand but which can’t be explained in but a few short words.

I think that short definitons are usually rather harmful, as they tend to omit or obscure details and thus create misconceptions.

higgins wrote:
But the Simulation is merely a byproduct there. If one of your games happens to be very historical and very realistic, would you define your play as Simulationist? I think not, as the realistic flavour was merely a byproduct. Why would it be any different in my case?

This does happen, and I do indeed not consider me as playing Simulationist. But your question has awakened doubts wether you are totally aware what Simulationism is, because it has little to with being “realistic”, but rather with being consistent.

Any Mode of play is defined by what actually happens during gaming (as this may of course go awry) but by the Creative Agenda with which the participants approach play. The Creative Agenda that is considered to underlie Simulationist play is called The Right to Dream, which is defined as “commitment to the imagined events of play, specifically their in-game causes and pre-established thematic elements”.

Wouldn’t you say that commitment to the imagined events and their in-game causes practically equals Immersion? And if not, where do you see the differences?

_________________
My real name is Michael; use it, if you like.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:30 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:07 am
Posts: 953
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Grettir wrote:
The point of labeling is to provide – for the first time – a vocabulary that allows role-players to concisely spell out their expectations. Over in your player-recruiting-thread, I’ve asked you what style of game you would run, and having created labels for different styles gives you the ability to answer these questions concisely. If a group or a game is Gamist, I know that it won’t be for me.


Hmm, before coming to the TRoS boards I had never heard of GNS and neither did I lack vocabulary to talk about the way my group gamed or my likes and dislikes about the way other people played. The addition of the labels Gamist, Simist, and Narist has done nothing to increase my understanding of such things, and honestly in my case atleast it has only made things more confusing.

Also, the labels have already begun to be used in negative ways, already there is a sense that if some one is a Gamist they are a bad roleplayer, this I guess stems from the fact that most people who use the GNS labels are infact Simists or Narists and have negative veiws of Gamism.

Quote:
Also, remember that before there was a terminology, there was only “good role-playing” and “bad role-playing”, and groups did define the former usually as the way they played themselves. A simulationist/immersionist experiencing narrativist play and not having this vocabulary would experience Nar gaming as just “bad” – little immersion, fully acknowledgment of OOC goals and knowledge in playing characters, and so on, that might just seem like “bad roleplaying”. The GNS model provides a means of classifying the different things different role-players want out of their hobby, and it provides the vocabulary to speak about these things.


This does has truth in it, there were many occasions where one person would say another was a "bad Role-Player", I don't entirely see how the labels change this, I just think it creates labels that negative emotions can be attached to. Say for example I was a "Narist" and you were a "Gamist" and I thought little of your way of playing, instead of saying you were a bad role-player a stated to which people could then ask why and I would be forced to explain "because so and so only plays to try and win the game instead of trying to tell an exciting tale of good vs evil" or whatever, now I can simply disagree with you and call you a Gamist. For example, you say you don't see the point in trying to tell an exciting story and simply respond "That's cause you're a Gamist" and to be quite clear incase I failing to capture the negativity put on the term, I have personally seen it used time and time again towards people in a way a racist would apply a name or label to an person he thought inferior (And I've only known about GNS for a little over a year or so now).

Quote:
Crow Caller wrote:
Unitarist: This player is satisfied is a roleplaying session results in creating experiences and emotions that furthers the telling of a good story that takes place in a consistent world that the player can fully explore and includes obstacles for the Player to overcome.

What do you think?

I thik it’s quite crappy, as definitons go; sorry. :P They term “good story” is an utter killer.


Hey blame HIGGINS for that ;) I just took his definitions and lumped them together lol :P

Quote:
What is a “good” story? Do you mean “exciting”? Do you mean “meaningful”? Do you mean “dramatic”? Do you mean “thought-provoking”?

I see little in your definition that wouldn’t be realized in Simualtionism.


The "good" is I am assuming to be replaced by your prefered definition of Narism.

And there is ALOT different from Simualtionism in Unitarism, everything that you yourself would label Gamism and Narism is different, if not then why not call everything Simism? If you read Higgins definitions you'll see I simply unified them, word for word I'm pretty sure.

Quote:
And then you also have to realize that nobody is 100% Sim or 100% Nar.


Then I believe there should be no such labels, if everyone is part this and part that and part this etc. etc. Then the labels are inadequate and it would be better in my opinion to simply use decriptive words to describe ones preference of play.

For Instance if I was to say: I prefer a game with a definite goal where characters and players are kept seperate, if my character can intimidate a guard or persuade a king I shouldn't have to act it out, a simple roll of the dice should suffice. Furthermore I like the world to be realistic and consistent, I like things to make sense.

Now that is neither Gamist nor Simist, it is infact a blend, and it could well be defined quite easily in the catergories of Gamist/Simist, however if I was to simply say I'm a Gamist/Simist, there is noway for you to know what it is I want from the game. It only gives the vagueist hint which needs clarification, so why not forego the labels altogether?

Orcourse I'm not saying you should do anything, just posing a question as I don't see any benefit in keeping them.

Quote:
We all have all three aspects of GNS in ourselves at all times, to different degrees. The actual composition changes, and can even shift several times during the course of a single gaming session. You recognize yourself in none of the three modes – so what? Neither do I, and neither does anybody. That’s not how the system is meant to work. It tries to provide a vocabulary for the different enjoyable aspects of gaming to allow people to simply say something like “I don’t care much about the Nar side of gaming, but I very much like its Sim and Gamist sides. If I had to decide between either, if they clash, I guess I’d rather come down on the Sim side.”


The same sentence without using the words Nar, Sim, and Gamist:

“I don’t care much about the story-telling aspects of gaming, but I very much like its explorative and problemsolving aspects. If I had to decide between either, if they clash, I guess I’d rather come down on the explorative side.”

Same sentence but now it tells you exactly what the person likes about each "catergorie" from gamism its the Problem Sovling, the accomplishing a task to "win", not to be Uber-Powerful which could be implied had they simply said they like the Gamism of Role Playing.

Quote:
That is already your unitarist view. Introducing it as a separate mode is counter-productive.


See I view the introduction of Gamist, Simist, and Narist as counter-productive, if they are all already part of the "Unitarist" view then why is there a need to further seperate them, especially when none of the labels are capable of trully defining a role player?

Quote:
You are right in that any proper novel needs to have character development; the things the protagonist undergoes must not leave him unchanged, unless the author wants to make a point about how loggerheads his protagonist is. But do you think Hamlet lacks character development? Or Macbeth? Or Othello? Yet they are on stage only for a few hours.
Not at all, and fear you may have missed my point, I wasn't saying that a short game can't have Character development, simply that a long game need not have a Character become stale.

I think short games are perfectly caple of accomplishing what they set out to do, which is generally (IME) to tell a short tale that focuses on a very specific thing, and that there is plenty of room for Character development.

What they can't do is tell several stories of a Character encountering and overcoming several obstacles throughout their life. Which is fine because that's not what they are designed to do.

However that said, there is no reason why you can't have one short game about one thing in a persons life and then have another story about another thing. This is similar to Long games except it cuts out the parts between the exciting stuff, much like the many Short Stories of Conan.

Quote:
Character development is not a matter of hundreds and thousands of pages of a novel – if it were, no theatrical play could ever work. It is a matter of catching a character at the right moment, at the cusp. What we are doing here, or trying to do, is to catch the character at this very cusp – providing it is the Kicker’s task. Like the author of a theatrical play or a screenwriter, we do without endless stretches of exposition before the real action begins and choose to expose our characters through the action itself.


I think I adequately addressed this above, but just to recap I agree 100% and wasn't saying that a Short Game can't do that, only that a long game need not be stale, and that a Character need not become predictable to eveyone at the table, jsut as we as people continue to grow and change through out our lives so to should our Characters, and in a long game/campaign this might even need to be exagerated a little.

Quote:
The Romans had the saying “Amicus certus in re incerta cernitur” – “The true friend is revealed in difficult times”. Crisis does always reveal, more than anything else.


I really like that. I think it can be used too to demonstrate one of the Strengths of Long Term playing.

In a short game, the Character's friends don't really "know" him, as he has just been made and not really played yet, when the crisis comes it reveals to everyone who the Character really is but without having really thought you knew who he was this doesn't have as much punch.

As an example, one of my old friends had a Character called Salvo the Holy, back when we were kids :P and you quessed it, he was a D&D Cleric! Now over the years (I think we payed these characters for a little over a year) he never really came across as that holy of a person, more selfish in most things. Petty and easily destracted, one would of assumed he had given himself the epithet, until one day we were in a huuuge crisis, we had thought we were tough enouch to take on the queen of dragons Tiamat... to put it simply, we were wrong. In fleeing we were unable to escape, until Salvo did the unthinkable, he sacrificed himself so the rest of us could escape.

None of the Characters who knew him ever thought he really believed what he preached, or that he was capable of such a thing, but in the end he really did.

Now if the Player had simply said he was playing a Priest that is selfish and barely adheres to the principles of his faith (a priest estranged from his faith) then after five session he lays his life down for the party, sure he has revealed himself in the moment of crisis, but it wouldn't be nearly as powerful had you spent fifty sessions with the Priest. (This is ofcourse simply my opinion, and YMMV).

Quote:
It is a grievous mistake, one furthered for economical reasons by producers of long series on TV and by publishers asking for endless cycles of books (loathsome things!) that character development needs a lot of time – the real development plays out in short time. The world’s theatrical plays are chock-full of three-dimensional, rivetting, breath-taking characters whose personalities are dissected for the audience in only a few short hours of stress and strain. People should and indeed need to review their tenets about character development having to be a drawn-out process in the face of characters like Medea, Macbeth and Faust.


See above, I agree it can be done in a short period of time and done well, but I think it can also be done over a long time, and in some ways it can be done "better" though I think simply saying it can be done "differently" would be a better way. They are two different approaches to the same thing that I think both have their own strenghts and merits. And their own weaknesses.

(Want an example of the Long "Game's" weaknesses? Watch Days of Our Lives :P

Cheers!

_________________
"It was hard-fought, a desperate affair that could have gone badly; if God had not helped me, the outcome would have been quick and fatal" (115) ~ Beowulf after defeating Grendle's Mother.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 11:52 am 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 1:07 am
Posts: 953
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Here's a quick quote from the essay Higgins linked, and I know Grettir thinks it is outdated but if it was stated at the beginning then the damage it does is still relevant I think:

Quote:
Here I suggest that RPG system design cannot meet all three outlooks at once


This to me is possibly the most damaging aspect of GNS, an RPG system cannot meet all three outlooks at once! What a load of rubbish. One can take the premise set by this statement and say that a Gaming System should focus on only one aspect! No thanks, you can keep your game.

What is TRoS? I've heard it said it is a Nar/Sim hybrid, I think that's false, I have a friend that plays and loves TRoS and there isn't a person that is even vaguely familar with GNS that if they had to label him as something would lable him as anything but a Gamist. To him TRoS is "100% Gamism". This is again IMO another perfect example that the labels don't work. TRoS isn't Nar/Sim, its whatever you want it to be.

So, am I a GaNaSist? or just a Role-Player? Before I was introduced to GNS I was just a RPer, so how has GNS helped my Role-Playing? It hasn't, its confused the hell out of me at times when I've tried to understand what the heck someone was talking about when they were using all these made up words to decribe things that people had no trouble decribing just a few years ago with English. *Shrugs* Some people like it, some don't, it defintely does not IMO set out to do what it tries to.

Cheers!

_________________
"It was hard-fought, a desperate affair that could have gone badly; if God had not helped me, the outcome would have been quick and fatal" (115) ~ Beowulf after defeating Grendle's Mother.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 12:33 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Sat Jan 19, 2008 8:06 am
Posts: 1495
Location: Vienna, Austria, Europe
Crow Caller wrote:
Hey blame HIGGINS for that ;) I just took his definitions and lumped them together lol :P

And I have already said what I think of these definitions, how they are only useful as a shorthand chiffre of much longer, more complicated definitions and indeed misleading when seen on their own, without the underlying understanding.

Also, I have the suspicion that you are confused by the terms exactly because you try to make sense of them based on short definitons and explanations. I really recommend that you go over to The Forge and read the (very long) articles on the three modes. I remeber having said it before, there’s just no other way to fly.

Crow Caller wrote:
Also, the labels have already begun to be used in negative ways, already there is a sense that if some one is a Gamist they are a bad roleplayer, this I guess stems from the fact that most people who use the GNS labels are infact Simists or Narists and have negative veiws of Gamism.

First of all I’ve never heard of this before. Until quite recently, I spent a lot of time lurking on The Forge, and when you look at the Actual Play threads, where gaming s discussed, you’ll find no hint of the minority of Gamists being looked down upon.

But even if the terms were used peioratively that’s not their fault. The fact that terms that were not meant to be used negatively often begin to do so is a human defect (see euphemism treadmill) and not a defect of the terms themselves. When somebody says “You’re a Gamist and thus have no idea what role-playing should be like”, the man is to blae, not the term.

Crow Caller wrote:
This does has truth in it, there were many occasions where one person would say another was a "bad Role-Player", I don't entirely see how the labels change this, I just think it creates labels that negative emotions can be attached to.

If you want to avoid negative connotations being attached to terms you’ll either have to avoid all language or to reform humanity.

Men have always used labels, because they are useful to say something brievely that wold otherwise require a legthy description. Though you can of course hold that no terms should ever be used and everything described. But I wouldn’t agree. A label is a useful tool for communication.

Crow Caller wrote:
See I view the introduction of Gamist, Simist, and Narist as counter-productive, if they are all already part of the "Unitarist" view then why is there a need to further seperate them, especially when none of the labels are capable of trully defining a role player?

Because humans dissect and analyze and want to figure out of what parts something is composed., to understand how things work. That’s why a untiarian approach is counter-productive. GNS tries to show the parts of which something is composed and the inner workings, you seem to want to abolish looking past the whole and examining how it is composed of smaller parts.

Crow Caller wrote:
However that said, there is no reason why you can't have one short game about one thing in a persons life and then have another story about another thing. This is similar to Long games except it cuts out the parts between the exciting stuff, much like the many Short Stories of Conan

In the Anatomy of a Story thread I have talked about why, for somebody who wants to address theme, addressing different themes with the same character is clearly inferior to addressing different themes with different character, each tailor-made to the theme. From a thematic viewpoint, a character has certainly more than one story in him, but certainly no more than a several – then this character has told us everything he is equipped to tell us.

Crow Caller wrote:
Now if the Player had simply said he was playing a Priest that is selfish and barely adheres to the principles of his faith (a priest estranged from his faith) then after five session he lays his life down for the party, sure he has revealed himself in the moment of crisis, but it wouldn't be nearly as powerful had you spent fifty sessions with the Priest. (This is ofcourse simply my opinion, and YMMV).

That’s an example that is valid, but looses the validity immediately if not viewed from Simualtionism’s Exploaration- and Immersion-angles. See, I don’t care about a character surprising me. If a player wants to tell a story about a character who is perceived as a cynical hypocrite to surprise everybody by indeed acting in accordance with what he has preached, I don’t need and I don’t want fifty sessions of exposition introducing this character to me as a hypocrite – I am happy to accept him as being a hypocrite right from the start and he may cut immediately to juicy bit.

_________________
My real name is Michael; use it, if you like.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 33 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2, 3  Next

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron


Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group              Designed by QuakeZone