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Author Topic: What Comes After "Yes".  (Read 1436 times)

The Yann Waters

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What Comes After "Yes".
« Reply #15 on: July 03, 2008, 05:04:40 PM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;221925
You just say "yep", and keep moving.

You see, this is how I approach every single action that any character takes. Typically in those simplest cases their basic competency is enough to handle it all, but whatever they do, it's still resolved through the system. These least details, the "flavour", are equally "real" as any matter of life and death as far as the mechanics are concerned, even if they don't merit as much elaboration.
Previously known by the name of "GrimGent".

Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #16 on: July 03, 2008, 05:07:26 PM »
Quote from: GrimGent;221926
You see, this is how I approach every single action that any character takes. Typically in those simplest cases their basic competency is enough to handle it all, but whatever they do, it's still resolved through the system. These least details, the "flavour", are equally "real" as any matter of life and death as far as the mechanics are concerned, even if they don't merit as much elaboration.


Roll to tie up your horse?

Are we using "system" differently, here?

The Yann Waters

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« Reply #17 on: July 03, 2008, 05:30:07 PM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;221927
Roll to tie up your horse?

Are we using "system" differently, here?

Well, an "action" isn't always the same as a "skill check". Two of the three games I run regularly are diceless and even the third one has a rule for automatic success in routine situations, so trivially handling your horse wouldn't require any rolls. In all three of them, however, performing that activity is covered by some facet of the system, although casually since it's not of particular significance.
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Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #18 on: July 03, 2008, 05:51:35 PM »
Quote from: GrimGent;221930
In all three of them, however, performing that activity is covered by some facet of the system, although casually since it's not of particular significance.


Yep, we're using system differently.  All good.

The Yann Waters

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« Reply #19 on: July 03, 2008, 05:58:17 PM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;221933
Yep, we're using system differently.  All good.

Just to clarify, you wouldn't consider performing a "mundane action" in Nobilis (like opening a door, walking down the street or tying your horse to a post) to be part of the system?
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Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #20 on: July 03, 2008, 06:19:43 PM »
Quote from: GrimGent;221934
Just to clarify, you wouldn't consider performing a "mundane action" in Nobilis (like opening a door, walking down the street or tying your horse to a post) to be part of the system?


Nope.

System is stuff that requires agreement on "how to handle it".  If how to handle it is instinctive, automatic, and invisible, to the point where no agreement or discussion ever is, was, or will be seriously required, that's just basic procedure.  

Like, if we play at a kitchen table, there should be chairs, but that can simply be taken as read.

The Yann Waters

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« Reply #21 on: July 04, 2008, 04:49:28 AM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;221937
System is stuff that requires agreement on "how to handle it".  If how to handle it is instinctive, automatic, and invisible, to the point where no agreement or discussion ever is, was, or will be seriously required, that's just basic procedure.

But all those simplest of mundane actions are only resolved automatically because they correspond at most to the lowest required level of ability, "difficulty 0", and their place in the greater scheme of the system is clearly defined: they can be performed once per turn, are not based directly on any attribute, and may fail through arbitrary fiat. A gun can be fired or a car driven at that same everyday level of efficiency, and that is in fact how untrained mortal characters in the game operate. Then again, your suggestions in the OP are generally in line with the advice in the book, which deals with handling meaningful challenges and consequences when gathering a vast army of monsters to escort you is as easy as riding a horse into the town would be to an ordinary human being.
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Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #22 on: July 04, 2008, 08:58:07 AM »
Quote from: GrimGent;222018
But all those simplest of mundane actions are only resolved automatically because they correspond at most to the lowest required level of ability, "difficulty 0", and their place in the greater scheme of the system is clearly defined


Maybe that's how you frame the thought, yeah.

I frame it as "Of course you can turn the doorknob.  And if the book says otherwise, it can go to hell; I'm not going to bother looking."

The Yann Waters

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« Reply #23 on: July 04, 2008, 09:41:28 AM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;222048
Maybe that's how you frame the thought, yeah.

No, that's how the mechanics work by the book: it's perhaps even more explicit in the live-action variant of the rules in which all mundane actions have the active "default force" of 0. Also, supernatural beings (such as the PCs) can decide to perform any mundane action as miraculous instead, eliminating any chance of arbitrary failure by fiat. Then the door won't get stuck, they won't slip on the street, and the knot won't accidentally come loose after they've tied the horse to the pole: that just can't happen. Basically, by choosing to do something as a mundane action, the players signal to the GM that they either don't care about the outcome or wish to leave it entirely into his hands (much as in a diced game they might waive their right to have the matter resolved with an appropriate roll), since otherwise they can constantly maintain a simple level 0 miracle of going about their ordinary life, and it will be perfect, and it won't cost them a thing.
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Arminius

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What Comes After "Yes".
« Reply #24 on: July 04, 2008, 10:51:44 AM »
(Skipping past the back & forth with GrimGent so I can use the following as a jumping-off point.)

Quote from: Stuart
I guess it depends on what your intention for this is. Advice for game designers? Advice for Players and GMs (to be included in a game)? Philosophical ponderings?
I don't think there's anything breathtakingly new in the article--but that's not a complaint or criticism. I think the article is best read as a draft advice section.

Given that, first, I'd suggest having a look at Over the Edge, where you can find an advice section with a similar thrust (written by Robin Laws I think).

Second, I'd suggest making a greater effort to write in a way that doesn't show such strong marks (one might say scars) of coming out of RPG theory discussions. By this I mean both the fact that it's kind of obvious that you're struggling with an ancient dialectic, and that you take certain bits of jargon for granted (such as that horrid neologism, "yes" ;) ).

In short I think the article could be improved a great deal by focusing on your audience and assuming that they know less than your typical RPG theory geek but also that they're less f-d up by the reifications and divisions caused by theory.

Lawbag

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« Reply #25 on: July 04, 2008, 10:57:58 AM »
was I the only one who read the thread title and thought "after Yes, why would you want to listen to any other prog-rock band"?

Sorry
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Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #26 on: July 04, 2008, 11:11:54 AM »
Quote from: Elliot Wilen;222077
Given that, first, I'd suggest having a look at Over the Edge, where you can find an advice section with a similar thrust (written by Robin Laws I think).


I have that...  Haven't read it in a bit, though.  Time to crack that back open.

Quote from: Elliot Wilen;222077
Second, I'd suggest making a greater effort to write in a way that doesn't show such strong marks (one might say scars) of coming out of RPG theory discussions. By this I mean both the fact that it's kind of obvious that you're struggling with an ancient dialectic, and that you take certain bits of jargon for granted (such as that horrid neologism, "yes" ;) ).

In short I think the article could be improved a great deal by focusing on your audience and assuming that they know less than your typical RPG theory geek but also that they're less f-d up by the reifications and divisions caused by theory.


:D

This makes a deal of sense.  In reality, I'll admit that I wasn't totally clear on who my audience was for this one.  I mean, from my perspective, this is an RPG theory article (though I'll admit few people would be likely to agree).

Levi Kornelsen

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« Reply #27 on: July 04, 2008, 11:13:15 AM »
Quote from: GrimGent;222054
No, that's how the mechanics work by the book:


Sure.  But the book doesn't run my game.  The book is a pile of paper sitting over there that I took ideas from, and nothing more.

The Yann Waters

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« Reply #28 on: July 04, 2008, 12:08:08 PM »
Quote from: Levi Kornelsen;222088
Sure.  But the book doesn't run my game.  The book is a pile of paper sitting over there that I took ideas from, and nothing more.

That's another difference in playstyle, again. I'm more inclined to go with "mechanics as the physics of the setting." They may not necessarily be in every respect the same mechanics as in the original book (what with possible houseruling and all), but they aren't subject to sudden changes just because the GM or another player happened to think of something "cool", either.
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