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Author Topic: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.  (Read 4376 times)

GeekyBugle

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2021, 12:26:45 PM »
Situation Uber Alles!

Seriously tho, the only story I do/Enjoy is the one told after the fact or, on some rare occasions, the story told by the GM about some distant event that set in motion some things that now have to be dealt with.

But the last one is just setting the situation.
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Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

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Wrath of God

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2021, 12:36:29 PM »
That depends how we define "story".
OSR gamers want to define it strictly as "what happened", most of players contextually use it for "pre-determined" or at least "foretold" narrative bits happening around. Like if PCs are guests in prince's summer residence and find him third day with cut throat - that's story/scenario/narrative element planned by GM.
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GeekyBugle

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2021, 12:40:12 PM »
That depends how we define "story".
OSR gamers want to define it strictly as "what happened", most of players contextually use it for "pre-determined" or at least "foretold" narrative bits happening around. Like if PCs are guests in prince's summer residence and find him third day with cut throat - that's story/scenario/narrative element planned by GM.

That's setting the situation tho:

"On the third day you find the Prince with his throat cut on the bed of the maid, what do you do?"

Even any bit's you add to explain why he got killed or by who fit into either setting up the situation or in the situation resolved.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

Wrath of God

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #18 on: October 28, 2021, 12:56:37 PM »
And yet if it was planned for me, when whole situation was estabilished that's exactly what in most of discuourse would be called scenario element / story bite and so on. Narrative not sandboxey element, creating situation to precisely put PCs in in, not just presenting sandbox to them.
"Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon.”

"And I will strike down upon thee
With great vengeance and furious anger"


"Molti Nemici, Molto Onore"

KingCheops

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #19 on: October 28, 2021, 01:25:42 PM »
Depends on the context of which game we're playing.  5e is not great for situations over story so I usually just go with a published campaign with my own twist.  The 2e game I just started I told them that I'd railroad them to get them to the borderlands but after that it's up to them.

GeekyBugle

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #20 on: October 28, 2021, 01:31:59 PM »
And yet if it was planned for me, when whole situation was estabilished that's exactly what in most of discuourse would be called scenario element / story bite and so on. Narrative not sandboxey element, creating situation to precisely put PCs in in, not just presenting sandbox to them.

Isn't it a sanbox tho?

Can the PC's choose their acctions? Can they not engage with the situation?

Lets change your example a bit, my players are walking on a forest, either because I planned it or by random rolling it, they encounter a sick person. What do they do?

Let's make it more like yours, after saving the kingdom they get invited to the castle and they discover the murdered prince. Does it matter if I planned it or it was a random roll? Would you have changed the place where the body was so they found it if they choose not to go into room 3?

The second is a railroad, not a sandbox but I'm not sure it'0s a story and not just setting the scenario for your railroad.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

Wrath of God

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #21 on: October 28, 2021, 01:41:04 PM »
Quote
5e is not great for situations over story so I usually just go with a published campaign with my own twist.

What's stopping you in 5e from doing s.o.s.

Quote
Isn't it a sanbox tho?

Can the PC's choose their acctions? Can they not engage with the situation?

Lets change your example a bit, my players are walking on a forest, either because I planned it or by random rolling it, they encounter a sick person. What do they do?

Let's make it more like yours, after saving the kingdom they get invited to the castle and they discover the murdered prince. Does it matter if I planned it or it was a random roll? Would you have changed the place where the body was so they found it if they choose not to go into room 3?

The second is a railroad, not a sandbox but I'm not sure it'0s a story and not just setting the scenario for your railroad.

It's not like mutually exclusive. Me making whole Assassin King's plot, am estabilishing story that goes beyond just sandbox of various locations. But it does not mean I'm gonna railroad PC's through it maybe aside this first situation. But this first act on itself is IMHO using my narrative power I'd say. And if for instance each player gives me some part of unresolved business in backstory is also narrative/storytellingley - if I decide to act upon them to give them some personal resolution (which is very narrative aspect overall).

I guess overall language here is just bit murky and not well defined. But language usually is. So story or situation, who cares, just fuck the railroad and play.
"Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon.”

"And I will strike down upon thee
With great vengeance and furious anger"


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Godsmonkey

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #22 on: October 28, 2021, 02:32:14 PM »

Lets change your example a bit, my players are walking on a forest, either because I planned it or by random rolling it, they encounter a sick person. What do they do?

Let's make it more like yours, after saving the kingdom they get invited to the castle and they discover the murdered prince. Does it matter if I planned it or it was a random roll? Would you have changed the place where the body was so they found it if they choose not to go into room 3?

The second is a railroad, not a sandbox but I'm not sure it'0s a story and not just setting the scenario for your railroad.

If the players dont go into room number 3, and them finding the prince is the lynchpin upon which the situation is balanced, there are other ways to get the players involved. Of course the players may choose none of them, and of course this may set a course of action for the future.

They may leave, and if they return, find they are wanted for questioning for the murder of the Prince.

They may hear rumors about the princes body being found, and the Kings Guard are questioning people. They could choose to ignore the rumor, or seek audience with the king, or something the GM hasn't thought of.

And if they dont engage with the murder investigation, dont force them by moving the body to room #3. I keep a number of scenarios loosely fleshed out in case the players dont take the bait of my main idea.

GeekyBugle

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #23 on: October 28, 2021, 03:59:23 PM »

Lets change your example a bit, my players are walking on a forest, either because I planned it or by random rolling it, they encounter a sick person. What do they do?

Let's make it more like yours, after saving the kingdom they get invited to the castle and they discover the murdered prince. Does it matter if I planned it or it was a random roll? Would you have changed the place where the body was so they found it if they choose not to go into room 3?

The second is a railroad, not a sandbox but I'm not sure it'0s a story and not just setting the scenario for your railroad.

If the players dont go into room number 3, and them finding the prince is the lynchpin upon which the situation is balanced, there are other ways to get the players involved. Of course the players may choose none of them, and of course this may set a course of action for the future.

They may leave, and if they return, find they are wanted for questioning for the murder of the Prince.

They may hear rumors about the princes body being found, and the Kings Guard are questioning people. They could choose to ignore the rumor, or seek audience with the king, or something the GM hasn't thought of.

And if they dont engage with the murder investigation, dont force them by moving the body to room #3. I keep a number of scenarios loosely fleshed out in case the players dont take the bait of my main idea.

Exactly, as long as the players can choose different paths with different outcomes it's not a railroad.

If they leave they could end as suspects, it's a possibility. And if it does come to that then it's just the world reacting to their acctions, therefore a sandbox.
Quote from: Rhedyn

Here is why this forum tends to be so stupid. Many people here think Joe Biden is "The Left", when he is actually Far Right and every US republican is just an idiot.

“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act.”

― George Orwell

Shasarak

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #24 on: October 28, 2021, 07:35:40 PM »
My current group of players are happy to sit on the railroad as long as it is going to interesting places.
There will be poor always,
pathetically struggling,
look at the good things you've got! -  Jesus

Wrath of God

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #25 on: October 28, 2021, 08:20:24 PM »
Well if they sit on railroad, they're not going anywhere, and only interesting thing that can happen to them is actual train.,
"Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon.”

"And I will strike down upon thee
With great vengeance and furious anger"


"Molti Nemici, Molto Onore"

Shasarak

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #26 on: October 28, 2021, 08:29:14 PM »
Well if they sit on railroad, they're not going anywhere, and only interesting thing that can happen to them is actual train.,

They got plenty of hps so they will be mostly fine
There will be poor always,
pathetically struggling,
look at the good things you've got! -  Jesus

Wrath of God

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #27 on: October 28, 2021, 08:43:40 PM »
But what if train has levels in barbarian.
"Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon.”

"And I will strike down upon thee
With great vengeance and furious anger"


"Molti Nemici, Molto Onore"

Steven Mitchell

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #28 on: October 28, 2021, 09:28:11 PM »
Situation pregnant with interesting elements that are often the stuff of narrative is still situation.  That simply means that the story that emerges has a greater chance of being somewhat more like a traditional narrative.  That is distinct from plot, which could use those exact same interesting elements in a very different manner.




jeff37923

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Re: Telling a story versus presenting a situation.
« Reply #29 on: October 28, 2021, 11:55:46 PM »
Situation over story. The NPCs can be characters in a story, but that only sets up the situation for the players. Even time limited adventures, like at a convention, work better as situations than as stories.

(One of the things about the AD&D2 era RPGA was that many of adventures were so contrived at the start. Shit like, "For no apparent reason, your character drops all possessions and walks stark naked into the jail cells of the Sheriff of Raven's Bluff." Adventure start. Why game if your character has no free will because of story?)