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Eighth Dimension: #96 An Authentic RPG

Discussion in 'BoM Blogs' started by 8people, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. 8people

    8people 8 is just another way of looking at infinite ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran

    Apr 20, 2002
    Likes Received:
    After reading the article on The Authentic RPG and its Demise I feel a strange need to consolidate the genre.

    More choice! More open ended! More player interaction with the characters and settings!

    And I find myself wondering - how much choice is too much choice? A dark and brooding loner may be a compelling character to play but if the main storyline is about a happy chirpy group working together like a big happy family then the character is forced to evolve beyond what may be reasonable.

    So the storyline should accomidate for a broader range of character types, yes?

    But then you get the players who complain they can't do everything in one run through as that would mean *gasp* playing the game more than once.

    In the end a game cannot emulate fully a wonderfully crafted game run by a human being as a GM/DM/ST there has to be limitations in the game to make it a coherent, quantifiable system that can be adequately tested, supported and accessable to all players.

    Yet that does not mean limiting the options a player makes, a player needs to feel invested in a decision for it to really matter, it's all well and good to give equal opportunities to every race and gender but what does it MEAN to be those things in that world? I'm not advocating sexism and racism in games (though it is an adequate avenue to explore those issues) but they should have SOMETHING to do with the game and the character, even if that means certain options in the game are not open to them in a traditional manner.

    Games are partly at fault as most RPGs will have 'must have' skills or combinations that are simply a nobrainer to include. Yet the game should adapt to a player and what they have available to them, if that means multiple branches in quests then that is another sacrifice that a player must accapt and a studio must account for - gameplay length will suffer for gameplay depth with the same constraints in place. The rush to get a game out needs to be relaxed, either through player encouragement or financial opportunities to ensure a game has the length and depth expected and applauded by its market. If it's what a gamer wants - then the gamers need to support and praise the efforts put in place!

    There needs to be a clear communication between having plenty of choices and those choices having meaning. There needs to be a sacrifice to further your character - in D&D sense this will mean neglecting physical attributes to advance magecraft, in LARP this could be losing out on magic and information skills for the sake of surviving combat, in an RPG this should mean you cannot get 100% in everything because you had to DECIDE what was important to your character and what your character hopes to achieve, will he sacrifice his personal power to help a team mate? Will she make dangerous deals to further her power?

    Choice, Action, Limitation. No complaints and no whining when the decision is made because roleplaying is not about being the best at everything, it's about being the best at what you want your character to be.
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