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Re: [indie-netgaming] Digest Number 241

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  • nevthederanged@aol.com
    Alrighty, I take it then that nobody is interested in the game I proposed. That s alright. I have other projects to work on (always.) I ve added a
    Message 1 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003

      Alrighty, I take it then that nobody is interested in the game I proposed.  <shrug>  That's alright.  I have other projects to work on (always.)  I've added a few new chapters to the Continuum, at least one of the stories already has at least thirty chapters I just need to transcribe.  Check it out if you're so inclined.  Some fans of a game I ran on Furcadia a while back are hounding me to revive it, even though I'm really not jazzed about it right now, so, we'll see what happens with that.

      I also am wondering if the second Topos playtest is officially dead, or are we still awaiting someone to take up those reins and ride a new mile?

      N.
    • Ed Heil
      ... I must admit I haven t given it much attention myself. For the record, I just noted that you got the point you requested. :) I fear that my kibitzing
      Message 2 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003
        On Wednesday, June 25, 2003, at 05:35 PM, nevthederanged@... wrote:

        > I also am wondering if the second Topos playtest is officially dead,
        > or are we still awaiting someone to take up those reins and ride a new
        > mile?

        I must admit I haven't given it much attention myself. For the record,
        I just noted that you got the point you requested. :)

        I fear that my kibitzing with Mike and others about the rules may have
        drained considerable energy from the playtest itself.
      • Alexander Cherry
        My interest waned when we drifted from the nifty dual-storyline space station/post apocalypse thing to the ninja thing. I m just not finding myself inspired
        Message 3 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003
          My interest waned when we drifted from the nifty dual-storyline space
          station/post apocalypse thing to the ninja thing. I'm just not
          finding myself inspired for the ninja/explosion/urban thing. Maybe
          that's just temporary, I'm not sure.

          --- In indie-netgaming@yahoogroups.com, Ed Heil <edheil@f...> wrote:
          > On Wednesday, June 25, 2003, at 05:35 PM, nevthederanged@a...
          wrote:
          >
          > > I also am wondering if the second Topos playtest is officially
          dead,
          > > or are we still awaiting someone to take up those reins and ride
          a new
          > > mile?
          >
          > I must admit I haven't given it much attention myself. For the
          record,
          > I just noted that you got the point you requested. :)
          >
          > I fear that my kibitzing with Mike and others about the rules may
          have
          > drained considerable energy from the playtest itself.
        • Ed Heil
          You know, I m finding this storyline drifted off in a direction that s not working for me thing is pretty common. I m sure it s partly a matter of just
          Message 4 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003
            You know, I'm finding this "storyline drifted off in a direction that's
            not working for me" thing is pretty common. I'm sure it's partly a
            matter of just playing with people who don't know what's gonna work for
            each other and what isn't -- no set of common assumptions about what's
            cool. And Topoi might be too slow a feedback mechanism to establish
            that over email.

            In settingless games, too, there's often a tendency to try to come up
            with a very clever, wacky genre/setting/concept for the story.
            Speaking personally, I find that beyond a certain point of cleverness,
            I'm like "well, I've had my fill of cleverness just reading the game
            concept, I don't need to play the game now." Common with Universalis,
            where people seem sometimes to vie with each other to see how wacky
            they can get with the gameworld concept. (In the case of Uni, this
            might be encouraged by the example setting ["the high tech bird riding
            lizard fighting lilliputians"] , which is so arbitrarily bizarre I
            would never have been able to suspend disbelief concerning it.)

            So I think it's partly a "playing with strangers" problem, and it's
            partly a "players determine the setting as part of the game" problem,
            at the very least.



            On Wednesday, June 25, 2003, at 08:21 PM, Alexander Cherry wrote:

            > My interest waned when we drifted from the nifty dual-storyline space
            > station/post apocalypse thing to the ninja thing. I'm just not
            > finding myself inspired for the ninja/explosion/urban thing. Maybe
            > that's just temporary, I'm not sure.
          • Alexander Cherry
            Oddly, the one part I like is Nev s secret warring races. I just haven t been inspired to connect it to what s currently going on (even through the gimmick
            Message 5 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003
              Oddly, the one part I like is Nev's "secret warring races." I just
              haven't been inspired to connect it to what's currently going on
              (even through the gimmick of starting a concurrent storyline).
            • Patrick Dunn
              ... My problem is that I write for a living. I *love* topos, especially its current incarnation, but I cannot bring myself to write a page for it right now,
              Message 6 of 7 , Jun 25, 2003
                Ed Heil wrote:

                > You know, I'm finding this "storyline drifted off in a direction
                > that's not working for me" thing is pretty common. I'm sure it's
                > partly a matter of just playing with people who don't know what's
                > gonna work for each other and what isn't -- no set of common
                > assumptions about what's cool. And Topoi might be too slow a feedback
                > mechanism to establish that over email.
                >
                > In settingless games, too, there's often a tendency to try to come up
                > with a very clever, wacky genre/setting/concept for the story.
                > Speaking personally, I find that beyond a certain point of cleverness,
                > I'm like "well, I've had my fill of cleverness just reading the game
                > concept, I don't need to play the game now." Common with Universalis,
                > where people seem sometimes to vie with each other to see how wacky
                > they can get with the gameworld concept. (In the case of Uni, this
                > might be encouraged by the example setting ["the high tech bird riding
                > lizard fighting lilliputians"] , which is so arbitrarily bizarre I
                > would never have been able to suspend disbelief concerning it.)
                >
                > So I think it's partly a "playing with strangers" problem, and it's
                > partly a "players determine the setting as part of the game" problem,
                > at the very least.

                My problem is that I write for a living. I *love* topos, especially its
                current incarnation, but I cannot bring myself to write a page for it
                right now, having just realized that I must re-write a chapter of my
                current project and so forth. All my recreations are becoming
                increasingly illiterate. I mean, I'm down to reading Mercedes Lackey
                for fun!

                But here's something neat: we can pick up Topos at any time we like:
                it's never officially dead. I kind of dig that.
              • Mike Holmes
                ... Thing is, in Universalis, if you don t want wacky, or if you don t like an element, or if something snaps your disbelief suspenders, you just challenge it
                Message 7 of 7 , Jun 30, 2003
                  >From: Ed Heil <edheil@...>

                  >Common with Universalis, where people seem sometimes to vie with each other
                  >to see how wacky they can get with the gameworld concept. (In the case of
                  >Uni, this might be encouraged by the example setting ["the high tech bird
                  >riding lizard fighting lilliputians"] , which is so arbitrarily bizarre I
                  >would never have been able to suspend disbelief concerning it.)

                  Thing is, in Universalis, if you don't want wacky, or if you don't like an
                  element, or if something snaps your disbelief suspenders, you just challenge
                  it out. Usually doesn't cost anything either. You just say, "hey, that
                  doesn't seem right, how about if instead..." and the game alters to become
                  what you want. It works as well as it does in part because there are "teeth"
                  behind the rules if one needs to resort to that to "prove" that they are
                  serious.

                  The people playing that sample game, hypothetical though it was, would have
                  made it via consensus. So nobody would be having problems with suspension
                  disbelief. The only time I've seen what you describe happen (actually the
                  only time I've even heard of it) in Universalis was with the Wiki game, and
                  in that case some of the players were apparently not up to speed with the
                  rules enough to understand that they should be challenging.

                  OTOH, I think that to an extent the media might be to blame. Since it takes
                  effort to make your will known in this media, something that's

                  trivial to accomplish in FTF gaming, I think people let things slide
                  more..until they find that they aren't really interested in what's going on.

                  That all said, I think the promary problem is simply that people aren't
                  posting. Sounds sorta circular, but people post in response to things. In
                  FTF Universalis, you can pass your turn, but the fact that you're there
                  presumably to play the game means that you'll participate sooner or later.
                  And that'll encourage the other players to participate. So a "critical mass"
                  of play is occuring to interest people in contributing. With the online play
                  if/when a lull occurs, you lose that critical mass. So like Nev noted, it's
                  either feast or famine.

                  The only way out of a lull is to post your way out. Look at the other Topoi,
                  and cater to them. Presumably if you do so, you'll prompt others to post in
                  response. I can't think of another solution.


                  I'm posting a new post to the list. So we'll see if that does anything.

                  Mike

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