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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 12:42 pm 
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Hey Grettir I was reading over this essay by R. Edwards some more and came across this:

Quote:
Three player aims or outlooks have been suggested, in that a given player approaches a role-playing situation pretty much from one of them, with some, but not much, crossover possible.
Emphasis mine.

Now I am aware that you have stated this is an old essay, and I'd be interested in seeing where this thought changes. Because as it stands it is contradictory with what you yourself wrote a few posts ago about us all being a hybrid of G, N and S and that we can change from moment to moment etc.

This quote and the reason I quoted it is because whether the theory behind GNS has significantly changed or not, this is still the vibe that it gives off, that you have to be one or the other with only a little crossover possible, which is complete and utter crap, as I myself cannot be put in any of the boxes and I have significant crossover in my own personal preference of Gaming Style (as do you according to your post).

To me the whole GNS thing did not start as something to give us a vocabulary to discuss gaming, it started as a way to label people and the way they play. And since it failed in the former all we are left with is the latter which in my opinion is misguiding.

I mean why does your style need to be Narist? Why can't you simply say you prefer a style that really emphasizes the Story and pays particular attention to the Theme of the Story. As that is what I understand of your preference and correct me if I'm wrong.

Anyway I feel I've ranted about this long enough. But feel free to share your thoughts if you want, and I'll respond if that is what you would like. Otherwise I'm willing to let the debate rest, GNS might be useful to some people and that is fine, but to me I find it detrimental to getting at the true heart of role-playing and only serves to label people. To each his own right?

Cheers & God Bless!

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:03 pm 
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I wonder if you are aware that Ron Edwards no longer supports GNS? And that infact:

Quote:
On December 2, 2005, Edwards closed the forums on The Forge regarding GNS theory, explaining that the forums supporting the GNS theoretical framework had outlived their usefulness


Quote from Wikipedia. I'm now looking into his new theory The Big Model to see if it has addressed any of the issues I have with GNS.

I find it strange that you and Ian (not trying to drag you mate just you and Michael are seemingly (to me) the two who talk about GNS the most) would still adhere to a Theory that its own founder finds useless? Are you at all familar with The Big Model? Perhaps you disagreed with the changes he made?

Cheers & God Bless!

EDIT: The following quote from the Critiques section of Wikipedia addresses some of my problems with GNS.

Quote:
Critiques

Introduction of GNS has met with marked opposition from elements of the gaming community. Some feel that RPG's are inherently frivolous and reject out of hand that they can be subjected to artistic criticism at all, and disparage any attempt to do so as pseudo-intellectualism. Direct critics of the theory have argued that it doesn't really explain anything regarding player behavior and only serves to shoehorn game design down limited paths. Many casual players react negatively to the idea, complaining that it forces them into false dilemmas and draws artificial, wordy distinctions between elements that can, in practice, combine well with one another and mutually reinforce.


PS: I know I said I'd shut up about this, but that was before I find more crap to rant about lol... my bad :P

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:19 pm 
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Lol, nevermind GNS apparently lives on in the Big Model, now it is the Creative Agenda, and now it is even more screwed as the "creative agenda" is what holds the whole game together, and it seemingly can only be G, N or S.

*Shakes head* I don't understand Mr Edwards need for this?

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:43 pm 
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Crow Caller, I wish you would stop posting consecutively; many forums outright ban it, I find it a bit annoying. No biggie, though.

Then, Ron Edwards has not abandoned GNS theory, and the forum does nor support it anymore because the model is finished after many years of discussion.

The Big Model has not so much replaced GNS, but it encompasses it; GNS lies firmly at the core of it and interacts with it.

Anyhow, GNS is working for me, I am going to continue to use it to orientate myself and to make reference to it, but I do not feel the need to preach it, spread it, or defend it. If you don’t like it, take your issues up with people who feel called upon to defend it – even at my worst of moments, I’m no crusader. ;)

I really think you should read The Forge essays, Wikipedia or wherever you may have derived your info is just no substitute if you are interested in the matter, wether positively or negatively. But then the topic of this thread seems to be Turku anyway, so talking about GNS in another sense than how it relates to the Turku Manifesto seems to be off-topic, but that's of course Ian's call....

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:22 pm 
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Grettir wrote:
Crow Caller, I wish you would stop posting consecutively; many forums outright ban it, I find it a bit annoying. No biggie, though.
Sorry itsjust that each one of my personalities demands its own post :P. Actually the reason is usually because Post Edits don't register as a New Post and as such so often go ignored. That and I am a little lazy :P

Quote:
Then, Ron Edwards has not abandoned GNS theory, and the forum does nor support it anymore because the model is finished after many years of discussion.

The Big Model has not so much replaced GNS, but it encompasses it; GNS lies firmly at the core of it and interacts with it.


Yeah I discovered that moments after posting the post that says he abandoned it :P hence the consecutive posts :D

Quote:
Anyhow, GNS is working for me, I am going to continue to use it to orientate myself and to make reference to it, but I do not feel the need to preach it, spread it, or defend it. If you don’t like it, take your issues up with people who feel called upon to defend it


Oh I most likly will, I can't let a good debate go undebated... not until there's been atleast a little eye-gouging and hair pulling ;) Oh! and Name Calling!!

Quote:
I’m no crusader. ;)
Aaaaw but you'd look so cute in Chain!

Quote:
I really think you should read The Forge essays, Wikipedia or wherever you may have derived your info is just no substitute if you are interested in the matter, wether positively or negatively. But then the topic of this thread seems to be Turku anyway, so talking about GNS in another sense than how it relates to the Turku Manifesto seems to be off-topic, but that's of course Ian's call....


Yep, Wikipedia is my "buffer zone" it gets me prepared, the key is knowing that you know nothing, you know what I mean? Damn, what did they put in my drink tonight?

Sorry, Cheers!

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 2:45 pm 
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higgins wrote:
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... :)
Wait! No! Now, here's a set of stances I agree with. I can understand why Ron Edwards expanded the Director Stance to Author, Pawn and Director, but I fail to see why he removed In-Character and Audience from the lot. Before, I was going to suggest that the Forge's stances also fail to model someone who plays because of the social activity, not because of the game/story, etc, but thought to shut up on that account as I have little experience with that kind of players. Now that I searched a bit, I see that other people have thought the same thing, but people over the Forge have deemed such aspects as not worthy of mention. :? I've always been uncomfortable with the word "actor" in role-playing context as well, as this isn't simply what role-playing is about (which is exactly why I disagreed with Michael's analogy of players being actors and referee being the director, as there are important (if subtle) differences there).

Grettir wrote:
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.
Sure, I could have brought an example about very consistent game about moon-goblins being at a volleyball competition taking place on Venus, but I figured it made no difference since realism is also Simulationism (and I thought you'd have easier time drawing parallels in your games if I'd stick to "realistic" example).

Grettir wrote:
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?
True, but if you define it as a subset of Simulationism, then the main the goal is consistency, not immersion. Say, I have a situation where two characters fight while being in water up until their hips and one dives underneath the surface to touch the other and paralyse him with a special ability. If consistency is a priority, then in TROS it would mean Terrain Rolls that are not defined in any of the published books and figuring those systems out will take time, yet that breaks immersion.

In the end I think Matthijs Holter said it better than I ever could, where I agree with the following immersion as definitions:
a) Channelling
b) Catharsis, kairosis, kenosis
c) Turku
which of course lead to:
d) Character attachment

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 3:18 pm 
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Crow Caller wrote:
Aaaaw but you'd look so cute in Chain!

Nah, me, I’m more of a lorica segmentata man. :lol:

higgins wrote:
I could have brought an example about very consistent game about moon-goblins being at a volleyball competition taking place on Venus, but I figured it made no difference since realism is also Simulationism (and I thought you'd have easier time drawing parallels in your games if I'd stick to "realistic" example).

Ah, I see. You stressing the realism made me suspect you thought that realism was important to Simulationism, when Simulationism merely tries to stay consistent within the framework of an imagined world, however remote from mundane reality this imagined world may be.

Anyhow, I think you will have realized from our current game that the world in Nar gaming is consistent as well. I have used this analogy from the stage elsewhere on these boards: I liken the setting to a huge stage that's in darkness, with spotlights on only the places where the action does currently take place. The stage dressing outside the circle of light is invisible, but once the action moves there, so does the light, and it becomes visible. Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it? Do you consider the latter consistent or inconsistent?

True, but if you define it as a subset of Simulationism, then the main the goal is consistency, not immersion. Say, I have a situation where two characters fight while being in water up until their hips and one dives underneath the surface to touch the other and paralyse him with a special ability. If consistency is a priority, then in TROS it would mean Terrain Rolls that are not defined in any of the published books and figuring those systems out will take time, yet that breaks immersion.[/quote]
I do of course see how rules concerns can break immersion, but I don’t quite get your consistency point. Are you trying to say that you think that commitment to the imagined events, specifically their in-game causes, is first and foremost a referral to the mechanical side of consistently simulating the working of an imagined world? Because I understand the commitment to … in-game causes to definitely encompass the in-game cause of the character’s personality, the “How would my character feel?” and “What would my character do?”, and thus commitment to immersion in the character. Would you say that’s stretching it too far, and if so, why?

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 3:44 pm 
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Grettir wrote:
Crow Caller wrote:
Aaaaw but you'd look so cute in Chain!

Nah, me, I’m more of a lorica segmentata man. :lol:


Ahhh! My bad lol.

Quote:
I liken the setting to a huge stage that's in darkness, with spotlights on only the places where the action does currently take place. The stage dressing outside the circle of light is invisible, but once the action moves there, so does the light, and it becomes visible.


Just thought I'd chime in and that this is exactly how my group plays. Nothing exists until it is heard, smelt, seen, touched or tasted by a PC.

Quote:
Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it? Do you consider the latter consistent or inconsistent?
There is no difference atleast not IMO, however the way we play does run a much higher chance of becoming inconsistant.

Also, I would say that Immersion isn't in any of the categories, as you can be playing in a Sim game and Immerse yourself, in Gamist Game and Immerse yourself (this is sometimes what outsiders looking a D&D game call "scary") and you can be in a Nar game and Immerse yourself. Perhaps it is a subset of all three? (I don't conform to this as you all know but I'm trying to be helpful :P)

Cheers & God Bless!

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 4:15 pm 
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Crow Caller wrote:
Grettir wrote:
I liken the setting to a huge stage that's in darkness, with spotlights on only the places where the action does currently take place. The stage dressing outside the circle of light is invisible, but once the action moves there, so does the light, and it becomes visible.
Just thought I'd chime in and that this is exactly how my group plays. Nothing exists until it is heard, smelt, seen, touched or tasted by a PC.

I’m not sure that you grasp the full scope of what I’m saying. I’m saying that entire continets, religions, races and whatnot that were not there before can be placed just before the light goes on. Is this scope really acceptable in your games?

Crow Caller wrote:
Grettir wrote:
Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it? Do you consider the latter consistent or inconsistent?
There is no difference atleast not IMO, however the way we play does run a much higher chance of becoming inconsistant.

Agreed. One has to stay alert to what has already been established and to where there are still white spots on the map. That’s usually not a problem in shorter campaigns, but it can become one in longer ones, where ever more established facts have to be memorized and made allowance for in establishsing new ones.

But speaking once again about Immersion:
Crow Caller wrote:
I would say that Immersion isn't in any of the categories, as you can be playing in a Sim game and Immerse yourself, in Gamist Game and Immerse yourself (this is sometimes what outsiders looking a D&D game call "scary") and you can be in a Nar game and Immerse yourself.

I don’t see how this should be possible, especially in Narrativism. Narrativism requires that players shape the story consciously, with an eye on their wishes for the story’s progress, as opposed to their character’s wishes. This requires a frequent stepping back from the character to evaluate the situation from an author’s viewpoint. Every time you do so, you break the Immersion; and Narrativist play requires you to do this often.

higgins wrote:
I can understand why Ron Edwards expanded the Director Stance to Author, Pawn and Director, but I fail to see why he removed In-Character and Audience from the lot.

I have given some thought to the abandoned Stances, and why I have no idea why they were abandoned, I feel that doing so was right, and I have reasons for that.

In Actor Stance, a character is played taking into consideration nothing but that character’s knowledge and motivation.
In In-Character Stance, a character is played taking into consideration noting but that character’s knowledge and motivation, and the player tries to banish from his consciousness that there is anything else at all.

Operatively, they are indistinguishable; the difference is merely an internal one, to be found within the mind of the player. In the game (not just the setting and the story, but the game at large), characters played correctly in either Stance will function identically. And I think that a mere internal difference is too slight to warrant a complete Stance of its own; I’d much rather view In-Character Stance as a subtype of Actor Stance, in the way Pawn Stance is a subset of Author Stance.

And then I’m asking myself wether anybody would ever choose Actor Stance as his preferred Stance without aspiring to In-Character Stance. The joys of Author Stance and Director Stance are clear, as is the joy of In-Character Stance. But what is the joy of Actor Stance, if not aspiring to identify with a character? I can hardly imagine anybody wanting to portray a fictional character as faithfully as possible but not wanting to identify with this character; but that’s exactly the corner into which the propsed In-Character Stance would herd Actor Stance – playing the character taking into considerationnothing but the character’s knowledge and motivation, but not identifying with the character.

Which of course is a restraint placed upon Actor Stance only by assuming an In-Character Stance. Actor Stance itself does not forbid identification with the character, and I fail to see how anybody who likes to take into considerationnothing but in-character knowledge and motivations could ever not want to identify with this character. Introducing In-Character Stance would make Actor Stance a virtual Stance, one that exists theroretically, but is never actually taken.

My issue with Audience Stance is that it seems to be a Stance that is only taken when the player becomes aware of events in he game-world that are unknown to the character. It is a thoroughly passive Stance, playing a character in it is impossible. I don’t quite see the use for a Stance that will never have any impact on the game, as it has to be abandoned to take any action at all.

What do you think?

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 6:43 pm 
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DISCLAIMER: Its really late/early and what I've written below may at times cause you to think I'm an idiot, please don't tho, I'll try and clean it up a bit.


Grettir wrote:
Crow Caller wrote:
Grettir wrote:
I liken the setting to a huge stage that's in darkness, with spotlights on only the places where the action does currently take place. The stage dressing outside the circle of light is invisible, but once the action moves there, so does the light, and it becomes visible.
Just thought I'd chime in and that this is exactly how my group plays. Nothing exists until it is heard, smelt, seen, touched or tasted by a PC.

I’m not sure that you grasp the full scope of what I’m saying. I’m saying that entire continets, religions, races and whatnot that were not there before can be placed just before the light goes on. Is this scope really acceptable in your games?


Yep, it is exactly how we play (unless we are roughly using a setting or whatever).

When I GM you can say I am very Narrativist :P an example: A Character in one of my games (that I was GMing) contracted a desease, similar to Lycanthropy but it was a chemical disease that had symptoms much more along the lines of being a Zombie (Hmm Chemical Zombie Werewolf, this is one of those things I was talking about in the Disclaimer, enjoy). Anyway, the other Character who was a Psychic went into the mind of the first Character. I described it as a hellish Nightmare.

Eventually the Psychic Character escaped and was able to free the infected Character. About 6 hours later (real time) after the Character's had played on they found reality was being twisted. Originally in my mind this was because another Powerful Psychic was projeting its hellish mind into reality, but then I changed my mind completly and had the Psychic Character realise he was still trapped in the infected Character's mind, and so it came to be. The PC's still don't know if they are in the real world or not, and they are loving the game.

Quite often I will give the Characters (I can only say this cause none of them read this forum :P) a problem to solve, to which I myself do not know the answer! Then they rack their brains and come up with answer after answer, trying to gleam if it is the right one or not, I don't let them know that I don't have the answer! Then when one of them comes up with an Answer I really like, that becomes the correct answer (and it usually way better than anything I could have come up with myself!) :D they are happy they figured it out, and commend me for the excellent riddle/puzzel! Win win for everyone! LOL.

Quote:
Agreed. One has to stay alert to what has already been established and to where there are still white spots on the map. That’s usually not a problem in shorter campaigns, but it can become one in longer ones, where ever more established facts have to be memorized and made allowance for in establishsing new ones.
Two things aid me in this, one, no one in my group has a particularily great memory :P and two, we make some allowance for "RetCons". Basically, if something doesn't gel we fix it, and because we deal with it out of play in an effort to make the game run better, noone has a problem with the Suspension of Disbelief that the Half Elf just became a Full Elf or whatever, we just try and use RetCon's very sparingly and in the most minor ways possible.

Quote:
But speaking once again about Immersion:
Crow Caller wrote:
I would say that Immersion isn't in any of the categories, as you can be playing in a Sim game and Immerse yourself, in Gamist Game and Immerse yourself (this is sometimes what outsiders looking a D&D game call "scary") and you can be in a Nar game and Immerse yourself.

I don’t see how this should be possible, especially in Narrativism. Narrativism requires that players shape the story consciously, with an eye on their wishes for the story’s progress, as opposed to their character’s wishes. This requires a frequent stepping back from the character to evaluate the situation from an author’s viewpoint. Every time you do so, you break the Immersion; and Narrativist play requires you to do this often.


I don't think it does really. I think the way to get both Nar and Immersion is to first of all create the Setting and Characters around the Theme, keeping it in mind all the time. Then just make every In-Character Decision that best keeps this Theme (this shouldn't be too hard since you designed the charaacter with the Theme in mind central to it). The GM then maintains the Director's Chair. In GNS theory the Modes are kept seperate from the Stances. There is nothing that says Nar Players need to take Director Stance, or that they can't maintain Actor Stance.

It is IMO impossible to play an Immersive Nar game in the way we are playing What Price Freedom, for one it is 3rd person and IMO Immersion works best through 1st Person. And ofcourse we do keep steping away from actor Stance even if just to talk OOC, and then to use Director Stance.

But are you implying that Nar can't be played in Actor Stance at all?

Cheers & God Bless!

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 8:20 pm 
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Grettir wrote:
I liken the setting to a huge stage that's in darkness, with spotlights on only the places where the action does currently take place. The stage dressing outside the circle of light is invisible, but once the action moves there, so does the light, and it becomes visible. Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it? Do you consider the latter consistent or inconsistent?
I think while it can be consistent and mostly is so, it can also lead to different assumptions if too few facts are established and then others have to adjust (say, the colour of the Godstone example). But most of all, I think it's immersion breaking. The more alien the setting is, the more established facts would be needed for a proper immersion (it's basically impossible for me in Ozomatli).

Grettir wrote:
Are you trying to say that you think that commitment to the imagined events, specifically their in-game causes, is first and foremost a referral to the mechanical side of consistently simulating the working of an imagined world?
If "accuracy" and consistency take precedence over everything else, it must surely apply to mechanics too, mustn't it? In my games, I often ditch the Fortune based mechanics and use Drama instead (requiring no rolls while not even consulting the sheet) and sometimes even Karma (deciding that some skill is good enough for the action to succeed without a roll). I'm confident that I could upset a large number of Simulationist (and from your example, even Narrativist) players with this. :lol:

Also, as my current game started off pretty much as your games do (I had very little facts established in the beginning), I've had no issue with fudging setting specific stuff provided the players will never know about it. For example, I changed one of the key concepts on what the blood abilities were based on in my game when the only player who knew about it had to leave the game (I simply had become aware of a much more interesting idea meanwhile). And that wasn't a simple mechanic, it was literally hard-coded into the aftermath of a character death. As the referee can immerse much more rarely than the players, I have no issues with that kind of non-simulationist behaviour as long as the players or me as a player will never know about it.

Grettir wrote:
Because I understand the commitment to … in-game causes to definitely encompass the in-game cause of the character’s personality, the “How would my character feel?” and “What would my character do?”, and thus commitment to immersion in the character.
If you're asking those questions, you're not immersing, but are in Actor Stance (as defined by Narrative Stance Model, not by Forge terms). If you're asking “How do I feel?” and “What will I do?”, and by those thoughts refer to your character, not yourself, then you're in In-Character Stance and we're talking about immersion.

Grettir wrote:
And then I’m asking myself wether anybody would ever choose Actor Stance as his preferred Stance without aspiring to In-Character Stance.
Ian brought an excellent example for this. If the rest of the group knows the character well enough, they can predict the character's actions... yet they do not identify themselves when doing so. So, Actor Stance is used when someone is playing character by the guidelines... either because he's a guest player and the GM has given him an NPC to play with specific goals or he is replacing another player while being familiar with the character. Now THAT'S acting by the definition. Why not have jargon for that kind of (important) distinction?

Grettir wrote:
My issue with Audience Stance is that it seems to be a Stance that is only taken when the player becomes aware of events in he game-world that are unknown to the character. It is a thoroughly passive Stance, playing a character in it is impossible. I don’t quite see the use for a Stance that will never have any impact on the game, as it has to be abandoned to take any action at all.
Hm, I thought that this Stance models what a Casual Gamer does in a gaming session -- most of the time he's simply there and he likes it, but his character does stuff only if the player is forced out of the Audience Stance. I see it as "indecision is a decision too" type of thing.

Crow Caller wrote:
Grettir wrote:
Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it? Do you consider the latter consistent or inconsistent?
There is no difference atleast not IMO, however the way we play does run a much higher chance of becoming inconsistant.
Hm, I think you misunderstood what Michael was getting at... Say, one of your player asks a question about the game world that every character should know... I, and probably you too, would then establish a fact about it and tell it to everyone. Michael however, would probably say that this has no relevance at the moment and they would deal with that issue when it actually mattered to the story.

Crow Caller wrote:
Quite often I will give the Characters (I can only say this cause none of them read this forum :P) a problem to solve, to which I myself do not know the answer! Then they rack their brains and come up with answer after answer, trying to gleam if it is the right one or not, I don't let them know that I don't have the answer!
I think there is little connection (if any) between consistency and predetermination. This is how I always do... Why to have any solutions set in stone? It never does any good. Don't keep it hidden dude! It's the first advice I give to any newbie referee. :)

Crow Caller wrote:
But are you implying that Nar can't be played in Actor Stance at all?
He is. :)

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Last edited by higgins on Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2009 9:51 pm 
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Crow Caller, in the examples of you changing your mind about the psychic and about you not knowing the answer to puzzles you present for your players you are mixing up a technique used frequently in Narrativism, but not limited to it, with Narrativism itself. Changing facts that have not yet been disclosed to players, or making them up only once it does become really necessary is not Narrativism, no more than a hacksaw is carpentry. And just like in carpentry a hacksaw is used more frequently than in gardening, this tool is used more frequently in Narrativism than in Gamism.

Think back to what I disclosed about my reasons for giving the Shoatli the very powers I did. When I assigned the powers only in the last possible moment, I was using the technique we are talking about – but it was the manner in which I used it, the reason for using it and what I did with it, that made this an instance of Narrativism. I did it to address theme, in the way I have explained when talking about what specific powers Ghost Jaguar should choose to learn.

And addressing theme lies at the core of Narrativism. In your examples, you use the technique to make the game more exciting or more challenging and that’s super – but it’s not Narrativism.

Crow Caller wrote:
In GNS theory the Modes are kept seperate from the Stances. There is nothing that says Nar Players need to take Director Stance, or that they can't maintain Actor Stance. (…)But are you implying that Nar can't be played in Actor Stance at all?

I once again suggest that you read the original essays. They are long, and doing so is going to take you time, but it will save you more time spent on typing long passages you wouldn’t have to if you had read the entire stuff. See, the point about Narrativism is that during play, out-of-character priorities, player priorities, are fully recognized and enter into the decision making of what happens during the story. If you don’t consciously shape the story with out-of-character priorities in mind (most often furthering the theme), you are not playing Nar. So playing Nar in purely or even just predominantly Actor Stance is not possile – you can take it, but stepping frequently out of it and into at least Author and possibly also Director Stance is an absolute requirement.

higgins wrote:
Say, one of your player asks a question about the game world that every character should know. (..)Michael however, would probably say that this has no relevance at the moment and they would deal with that issue when it actually mattered to the story.

Almost, but not quite. Even if it was completely irrelevant at the time of asking, I would not tell the player not to pose this kind of question – I would much rather say that he should determine for himself what the answer is. But I would indeed also say that he should in the future try to abstain from needlessly pruning our creative space and narrowing down our possibilities.

Grettir wrote:
Where's the difference for anybody involved if the stage dressing has not been there all along but has only been placed there immediately before the light fell on it?
higgins wrote:
But most of all, I think it's immersion breaking. The more alien the setting is, the more established facts would be needed for a proper immersion.

Yes, certainly. I just wanted to know to what extent you, personally, understand the consistency of mechanics part to take precedence over the consistency of character portrayal part of The Right to Dream.

If it breaks the Immersion for you, then that’s that and this is to be respected. I can’t but think it’s a bit schizophrenic, like saying being lied to is ok as long as one doesn’t know that one is; see here:

higgins wrote:
Also, as my current game started off pretty much as your games do (I had very little facts established in the beginning), I've had no issue with fudging setting specific stuff provided the players will never know about it. (…)As the referee can immerse much more rarely than the players, I have no issues with that kind of non-simulationist behaviour as long as the players or me as a player will never know about it.

I understand that, but that wouldn’t work for me, maybe because I am one of the guys who always seems to end up the referee and who does thus know all the tricks of the trades. I know that referees lie, and fake things, and so on, not out of spite, but to make the gaming experience better for players. Thus, as a player, I do always suspect that referee is currently winging it, and I accept that. As I do suspect that, the next logical step for me was not to mind it. So where you are basically saying that you don’t mind being lied to (in gaming) as long as you don’t realize that you are being lied to, I say that I expect that I am being lied to all the time and that I know that this is happening to further my experience and that I do therefore not mind being lied to at all, no matter wether I am ignorant of it, suspect it, or am aware of it. And with that sceptical, maybe cynical stance, Immersion becomes very difficult, if not impossible.

higgins wrote:
If you're asking those questions, you're not immersing, but are in Actor Stance (as defined by Narrative Stance Model, not by Forge terms). If you're asking “How do I feel?” and “What will I do?”, and by those thoughts refer to your character, not yourself, then you're in In-Character Stance and we're talking about immersion.

In my whole way of speaking, I do always differentiate very clearly between player and character – it may be that my sentences are a bit awkward for it, but you’ll never hear me say “What are you going to do?”, but only ever “What do you want Itzcoatl to do?”. I think it a bit strange to actually try to become your character – you are not. Never. Period. Not in a million years. The “best” (supposing this is your goal) you can achieve is feeling like your character – but that does not make you him. That’s why I think that the question "What will I do" is pointless – the thing you do is only ever communicating what your character does.

I don’t suppose you do, but as this is about understanding Immersion I am going to ask for the sake of completeness: You do not actually think that you are your character, do you?

Anyhow, if you take issue with the way my questions were worded, please suppose the netire question to be reworded: Don’t you understand understand the commitment to … in-game causes to definitely encompass the in-game cause of the character’s personality, the “How do I feel?” and “What will I do?”, and thus commitment to immersion in the character?

higgins wrote:
I thought that this Stance models what a Casual Gamer does in a gaming session -- most of the time he's simply there and he likes it, but his character does stuff only if the player is forced out of the Audience Stance.

I have the suspicion that trying to work this out will sidetrack us from this thread, which is about Turkuism and in extension about Immersive play in general. Anyhow, you yourself say that the Stance is abandoned as soon as the player is forced to have his character do something, anything, which is also how I see it, like I’ve said above. And like I’ve also said before, what’s the point in having a Stance for doing nothing?

And even if one assumes this to be the Stance taken by a casual gamer, I still don’t quite see how even the asual gamer could have his character act without either having in mind his character’s motivation (Actor/In-Character Stance) or the events in the story at large (Author/Director Stance). If neither in-character nor out-of-character reasons figure in determining a character’s actions, what then does?

higgins wrote:
If the rest of the group knows the character well enough, they can predict the character's actions... yet they do not identify themselves when doing so. So, Actor Stance is used when someone is playing character by the guidelines... either because he's a guest player and the GM has given him an NPC to play with specific goals or he is replacing another player while being familiar with the character. Now THAT'S acting by the definition. Why not have jargon for that kind of (important) distinction?

I am not violently opposed to it, but I see no need for it either, as the difference of how the player is behaving is, like I said, merely an internal one – it’s not noticeable for spectators, and has no practical impact outside the player himself. Or do you perceive one?

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 4:26 am 
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Quote:
I once again suggest that you read the original essays. They are long, and doing so is going to take you time, but it will save you more time spent on typing long passages you wouldn’t have to if you had read the entire stuff. See, the point about Narrativism is that during play, out-of-character priorities, player priorities, are fully recognized and enter into the decision making of what happens during the story. If you don’t consciously shape the story with out-of-character priorities in mind (most often furthering the theme), you are not playing Nar. So playing Nar in purely or even just predominantly Actor Stance is not possile – you can take it, but stepping frequently out of it and into at least Author and possibly also Director Stance is an absolute requirement.


So what is a Game where the player's and ref get together and decide they want to tell a story about a specific Theme. They build the Setting and their Characters and NPCs around this Theme, with Kickers that will drive the Theme, then the Player's anter Actor Stance and enter the world, the ref takes Director stance. The Kickers "kick-in" and the Players start exploring the Theme of the game (remainging in Actor Stance), the Ref starts preparing Bangs to keep addressing the Theme. The story goes along exploring the Themes, the Players never leave Actor Stance (with perhaps the exception of using Drama Points). Their Characters are designed around the Theme, and they make decisions based on what their Character would do in regards to the Theme.

If not Nar then what style of Play is this?

Cheers!

EDIT: (I almost did a consecutive post but I stopped myself just for you Grettir ;)): I just wanted to say, that the example of play I given above, that you have said is not Nar, would IMO be a lot easier for people like me and Higgins to "Immerse" into. I consider it 100% Nar, and nothing I've read o far (except your posts) have said it would be anything but Nar. So IMO it is a primarily Actor Stance Narist game that lends itself well to Immersion. It can also be blended extremely well with both Simulationism and Gamism without ever detracting from the Narism.

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 7:03 am 
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Crow Caller wrote:
If not Nar then what style of Play is this?

*Sigh* :roll: It might be Gamism, but judging by the strict adherence to Actor Stance, which does not allow the out-of game motivation of "winning" to influence a player's choice of character action, it is much more likely that this is Simulationism.

For the very last time, Narrativism requires an active and conscious shaping of the story as it is told/built, the way a writer shapes his story. About a year ago, in the "Anatomy of a Story" thread we have discussed how, for a writer telling a story, it is not enough to just pick a theme, choose/create a setting supporting his theme, create well-rounded characters ready to address that theme and a thematic problem for the character(s) -- I remember saying that if it were, no writer would ever struggle with plot problems or suffer writer's block once he has these basic things in place. A theme-addressing story requires conscious shaping, again and again. In role-playing, if only the referee does this, this results at best in no player co-authorship and at worst in heavy railroading. If one desires player co-authorship of a thematically infused story -- and Narrativism does --, the players cannot remain in Actor Stance all of the time, not even most of the time. That's mutually exclusive, like having your cake and eating it.

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 Post subject: Re: The Turku Manifesto
PostPosted: Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:12 am 
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Grettir wrote:
I don’t suppose you do, but as this is about understanding Immersion I am going to ask for the sake of completeness: You do not actually think that you are your character, do you?
No. :lol:

Grettir wrote:
Don’t you understand understand the commitment to … in-game causes to definitely encompass the in-game cause of the character’s personality, the “How do I feel?” and “What will I do?”, and thus commitment to immersion in the character?
Grettir wrote:
higgins wrote:
If the rest of the group knows the character well enough, they can predict the character's actions... yet they do not identify themselves when doing so. So, Actor Stance is used when someone is playing character by the guidelines... either because he's a guest player and the GM has given him an NPC to play with specific goals or he is replacing another player while being familiar with the character. Now THAT'S acting by the definition. Why not have jargon for that kind of (important) distinction?
I am not violently opposed to it, but I see no need for it either, as the difference of how the player is behaving is, like I said, merely an internal one – it’s not noticeable for spectators, and has no practical impact outside the player himself. Or do you perceive one?
My issue with your listed Simulationist approach is that it parallels the unifying the In-Character and Actor Stances to simple Actor Stance. Simulation can (and probably does) include immersion, but since the used terms have their common meanings, it is VERY misleading. Maybe you remember how I disagreed with your analogy of players being actors? It's because the word "actor" has a very specific and distinct meaning, and adding some tiny remark in the stance definition (a'la immersion might be included too) doesn't wash the traditional meaning away. Same thing with Simulationism. Sticking immersion under the same label creates unnecessary confusion.

And saying that the internal difference doesn't matter is like looking at two amphoras and saying they are identical, while one of them is empty and another is filled with wine.

Grettir wrote:
Anyhow, you yourself say that the Stance is abandoned as soon as the player is forced to have his character do something, anything, which is also how I see it, like I’ve said above. And like I’ve also said before, what’s the point in having a Stance for doing nothing?
Ah, definition differences!
The Forge wrote:
Stance is defined as how a person arrives at decisions for an imaginary character's imaginary actions.
Sarah Kahn wrote:
NARRATIVE Stance model [...] describes the ways in which the *narrative* of the game is viewed by its participants. Perhaps it would be even more clear if we were to call it the "4 Stances Toward Game Narrative."
And I think the Forge's definition doesn't even work as the definition of Director Stance allows much more than suggested by the Stance definition.

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- Lord Petyr Baelish, A Game of Thrones


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